Monday, November 24, 2008

Stupid Environmental Reporter Tricks

Tom Pelton may be gone, but the Baltimore Sun’s blatant environmental advocacy journalism continues. Tim Wheeler writing about Barack Obama’s cap and trade proposal mentions in passing:

Coincidentally, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported that combined global land and sea-surface average temperatures last month were the second warmest since record-keeping began in 1880. For details, go here.

In the words of Lee Corso, “not so fast my friend.” Wheeler has one huge problem. NOAA’s data was used to build James Hansen’s NASA GISS report, which falsely claimed that last month was the hottest (second or otherwise) October on record. However, Anthony Watts and Steve McIntyre analyzed NOAA’s dataset and found that in fact there was no data at all for October. The numbers for September had been carried over for a second month. McIntryre, some readers may remember, forced Hansen to revise his flawed findings, which claimed the 1990s were the hottest decade in the 20th century—it was actually the 1930s. McIntyre also that debunked the infamous hockey stick graph, which alarmists amazingly still trot out as proof of the theory of anthropogenic global warming.

I wait with baited breath for Wheeler’s clarification…

Some background on Wheeler:

Over the summer I wrote about stupid environmentalist tricks at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science, and DC Examiner op/ed page editor, Mark Tapscott about their lickspittles at the Sun. Simultaneously, my colleague Paul Chesser found out that Wheeler is a past president of the Society of Environmental Journalists, which intentionally marginalizes skeptics. Paul also discovered just how accommodating Don Boesch and his merry band of technocrats were to Wheeler, whose article/propaganda piece I challenged. Of course, when Paul FOIA’d the same information UMCES bent over backward to provide Wheeler, he ran into the standard roadblocks.


Tim Wheeler said...

Nothing to clarify. The data glitch in which some (not all) September temperatures were copied over in October was corrected before NOAA issued its press release declaring the month the second warmest globally.

Mark Newgent said...


The problem is that "glitches" like this keep popping up all the time. Like the one I mentioned with the hockey stick, and the the fact that 1934, not 1998 was the warmest year on record. Looking at McIntyre's corrected data table really punches a whole in the AGW theory.

The fact that October 2008 is only the second warmest October not THE warmest October is pretty damn significant. One would think that solid reporting would clarify that important distinction.

Furthermore, the data was carried over at Russian sites. This is important because October in Russia is colder than September.

Please don't get me started on the sketchy positioning of temperature monitors in the United States.