DEVASTATING REPORT: The Institute of Physics condemns junk climate science

Thanks to cartoonist Josh

The disclosure of climate data from the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia has prompted the world-renowned Institute of Physics, with a membership of over 36,000 physics-related scientists, to publish a report condemning junk climate science.

The Institute has just submitted its views to the UK’s House of Commons Science and Technology Committee’s inquiry set up to investigate the Climategate scandal revealing unethical and criminal conduct by researchers at the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia.

The Institute agrees with climate sceptics that the leaked emails prove

“prima facie evidence of determined and co-ordinated refusals to comply with honourable scientific traditions and freedom of information law.”

The Institute totally vindicates the attempts of independent auditors such as Canadian researcher, Steve McIntyre, to access the hidden and/or destroyed climate data. The illegal refusal to disclose has undermined claims the world’s climate is undergoing ‘catastrophic’ human-influenced change. This powerful lobby group lambastes crooked climate scientists for their “inappropriate” conduct that made it necessary for analysts like McIntyre to waste years seeking appeals via Freedom of Information legislation. Nevertheless, the Institute says, the “right to such appeals has been shown to be necessary.”

Thus the voice of tens of thousands of honorable scientists unhappy with climatologists, has been put to Parliament calling for “a wider inquiry into the integrity of the scientific process in this field.”

Here is the text of the report:

Memorandum submitted by the Institute of Physics (CRU 39)

The disclosure of climate data from the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia

The Institute of Physics is a scientific charity devoted to increasing the practice, understanding and application of physics. It has a worldwide membership of over 36,000 and is a leading communicator of physics-related science to all audiences, from specialists through to government and the general public. Its publishing company, IOP Publishing, is a world leader in scientific publishing and the electronic dissemination of physics.

The Institute is pleased to submit its views to inform the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee’s inquiry, ‘The disclosure of climate data from the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia’.

The submission details our response to the questions listed in the call for evidence, which was prepared with input from the Institute’s Science Board, and its Energy Sub-group.

What are the implications of the disclosures for the integrity of scientific research?

1. The Institute is concerned that, unless the disclosed e-mails are proved to be forgeries or adaptations, worrying implications arise for the integrity of scientific research in this field and for the credibility of the scientific method as practised in this context

2. The CRU e-mails as published on the internet provide prima facie evidence of determined and co-ordinated refusals to comply with honourable scientific traditions and freedom of information law. The principle that scientists should be willing to expose their ideas and results to independent testing and replication by others, which requires the open exchange of data, procedures and materials, is vital. The lack of compliance has been confirmed by the findings of the Information Commissioner. This extends well beyond the CRU itself – most of the e-mails were exchanged with researchers in a number of other international institutions who are also involved in the formulation of the IPCC’s conclusions on climate change.

3. It is important to recognise that there are two completely different categories of data set that are involved in the CRU e-mail exchanges:

· those compiled from direct instrumental measurements of land and ocean surface temperatures such as the CRU, GISS and NOAA data sets; and

· historic temperature reconstructions from measurements of ‘proxies’, for example, tree-rings.

4. The second category relating to proxy reconstructions are the basis for the conclusion that 20th century warming is unprecedented. Published reconstructions may represent only a part of the raw data available and may be sensitive to the choices made and the statistical techniques used. Different choices, omissions or statistical processes may lead to different conclusions. This possibility was evidently the reason behind some of the (rejected) requests for further information.

5. The e-mails reveal doubts as to the reliability of some of the reconstructions and raise questions as to the way in which they have been represented; for example, the apparent suppression, in graphics widely used by the IPCC, of proxy results for recent decades that do not agree with contemporary instrumental temperature measurements.

6. There is also reason for concern at the intolerance to challenge displayed in the

e-mails. This impedes the process of scientific ‘self correction’, which is vital to the integrity of the scientific process as a whole, and not just to the research itself. In that context, those CRU e-mails relating to the peer-review process suggest a need for a review of its adequacy and objectivity as practised in this field and its potential vulnerability to bias or manipulation.

7. Fundamentally, we consider it should be inappropriate for the verification of the integrity of the scientific process to depend on appeals to Freedom of Information legislation. Nevertheless, the right to such appeals has been shown to be necessary. The e-mails illustrate the possibility of networks of like-minded researchers effectively excluding newcomers. Requiring data to be electronically accessible to all, at the time of publication, would remove this possibility.

8. As a step towards restoring confidence in the scientific process and to provide greater transparency in future, the editorial boards of scientific journals should work towards setting down requirements for open electronic data archiving by authors, to coincide with publication. Expert input (from journal boards) would be needed to determine the category of data that would be archived. Much ‘raw’ data requires calibration and processing through interpretive codes at various levels.

9. Where the nature of the study precludes direct replication by experiment, as in the case of time-dependent field measurements, it is important that the requirements include access to all the original raw data and its provenance, together with the criteria used for, and effects of, any subsequent selections, omissions or adjustments. The details of any statistical procedures, necessary for the independent testing and replication, should also be included. In parallel, consideration should be given to the requirements for minimum disclosure in relation to computer modelling.

Are the terms of reference and scope of the Independent Review announced on 3 December 2009 by UEA adequate?

10. The scope of the UEA review is, not inappropriately, restricted to the allegations of scientific malpractice and evasion of the Freedom of Information Act at the CRU. However, most of the e-mails were exchanged with researchers in a number of other leading institutions involved in the formulation of the IPCC’s conclusions on climate change. In so far as those scientists were complicit in the alleged scientific malpractices, there is need for a wider inquiry into the integrity of the scientific process in this field.

11. The first of the review’s terms of reference is limited to: “…manipulation or suppression of data which is at odds with acceptable scientific practice…” The term ‘acceptable’ is not defined and might better be replaced with ‘objective’.

12. The second of the review’s terms of reference should extend beyond reviewing the CRU’s policies and practices to whether these have been breached by individuals, particularly in respect of other kinds of departure from objective scientific practice, for example, manipulation of the publication and peer review system or allowing pre-formed conclusions to override scientific objectivity.

How independent are the other two international data sets?

13. Published data sets are compiled from a range of sources and are subject to processing and adjustments of various kinds. Differences in judgements and methodologies used in such processing may result in different final data sets even if they are based on the same raw data. Apart from any communality of sources, account must be taken of differences in processing between the published data sets and any data sets on which they draw.

The Institute of Physics

February 2010

Possibly related posts:

  1. Royal Society of Chemistry backs 36,000 physicists in condemning Climategate
  2. The shit hits the fan: UK Parliament to investigate CRU
  3. Former student claims Climategate University ‘often’ falsified data
  4. Climategate inquiry under way
  5. Climategate Professor perjures himself to Parliamentary Select Committee

13 Responses to “DEVASTATING REPORT: The Institute of Physics condemns junk climate science”

  1. Graham says:

    I saw that too, and it’s going to put more pressure on the UK Government to actually have an inquiry that isn’t a whitewash, which is how UK inquiries usually pan out.

    As there’s already one looking into the IPCC and Dr Pachauri, it’s hard to maintain that everything’s fine and dandy in the AGW camp.

    The scientific consensus was always a myth as proven by this list of 650 world scientists, some members of the IPCC, who published their contrary opinion in December 2008.


    Who do you think you are kidding Dr Pachauri ?

  2. Theo Goodwin says:

    The IOP has identified the playing field. The debate is about adherence to scientific method not about climate science. Climategaters have avoided discussion of scientific method at every turn. Now the ball is in their court. Climate scientists must explain why they have locked away part of their scientific work and why they refuse candid discussion of their hypotheses. Computer models or statistics, however complicated and artful, do not by themselves constitute a hypothesis. A scientific hypothesis must describe physical processes and must be useful for making predictions. No Climategater recognizes this truth about physical hypotheses.

  3. ADE says:

    The tempo is heating more than the climate!
    But G Brown has said Cap and Trade ,the spawn of climate change[theory] will be adopted from April?
    He wants us as slaves to the UN’s yoke.

  4. Al [not Gore thankgoodness] says:

    It is time for everyone to contact their elected representatives at ALL levels of government and put it to them bluntly, that they must start addressing the climate gate scandal.
    Many politicians were taken in by the IPCC.
    Once the fraud is exposed, they may become non believers in AGW and work to stop the scam.
    Besides commenting on these articles, get busy and e-mail or preferably write a snail mail letter to your elected officials, that is registered and, designated as Personal and Confidential.
    This way, their Executive Assistants cannot DELETE the e-mail, before the politician reads it.
    I have been after my politicians for months and will not let up.
    We can thank John O’Sullivan for a beautifully written and concise summary the other day. Use it. I do not think John would mind.
    Would you mind John???

    • Please feel free to use anything of mine. We all work for each other here. Just like you, I’m happy to do what I can to protect democracy in all our nation states and bust the tax-hungry dystopia of unlected one world government. Let’s all keep up the good work!

    • VoteTissues says:

      Having sent numerous emails and letters since 2nd December 09 to my local conservative MP outlining my thoughts on; energy security, green jobs, measures to decarbonise our economy, pollution etc. also pointing out it seems there is a “Lobby” element operating in the scientific community directing public policy which is unacceptable. It ultimately came down to the bottom line of Co2 causing man made global warming. This had been the only reason for my original communication. After evading and circumventing the one specific question throughout I had have now had to resort to direct correspondence with David Cameron, Greg Clark (Shadow Energy Secretary) & Patrick McLouglin (party Whip) as all other avenues of eliciting an answer to the following question have been exhausted, the question;

      Does The Conservative Party, condone or sanction the CRU’s [representatives’ and that of its affiliates] behaviour, as revealed in the contents of the undisputed [genuine] emails and data files distributed on the internet?

      This is a very important and relative question affecting the voting public which should be addressed before our voting options are finalised.

      Both Conservative Party and current Governmental (Labour Party) “Public Policy” documents are based largely on Lord Sterns Report (itself “riddled with errors” http://torydrroy.blogspot.com/2010/01/stern-report-riddled-with-errors.html) which essentially drew its findings from the IPPC reports and that the IPPC reports were largely based on data compiled by the CRU [and affiliates] (in relation to AGW), which has been found in violation of the Freedom of Information Act (and is currently under further investigation for other offences). Importantly 75% of CRU [finalised] data set results are used by The IPPC to support its statement that the world is warming because of human activity due to the emission of Co2 into the atmosphere.

      [Note: In addition, as recently disclosed many of the IPPC report statements are erroneous and rely on advocacy group (& non-peer reviewed) findings].

      When the true facts and the views of the significant wider scientific community that appears to have been maligned and ostracized by the actions of the CRU and that of its affiliates are aired, those challenges can be considered and voted upon by the electorate and then expressed by their elected representatives in the House!

      In Mr. Cameron’s recent speech he expressed his intention [that in government], if elected, to ensure “openness and transparency”; well here is an opportunity to show it.

      Why don’t some of you out there ask your local Conservative MP the question;

      Does The Conservative Party, condone or sanction the CRU’s [representatives’ and that of its affiliates] behaviour, as revealed in the contents of the undisputed [genuine] emails and data files distributed on the internet?

      I really am appalled at the prospect of paying higher taxes (and increased costs estimated at 25% to 30%) only to fuel the “Carbon trading derivatives scheme” a euphemism for a Scam, with those costs hitting those already in fuel poverty and the elderly etc whilst lining the pockets of the financial industry. The money being squandered on Global Warming should be used to reduce the effects of the returning cycle of cooling climatic temperatures for those in the UK shivering with all this “Global Warming” we are currently having. In addition to the loss of UK jobs, estimated to be two current jobs for the gain of one green job, if policies, as they are currently proposed (which almost appears to be collusion) are pursued by David Cameron, Gordon Brown or Nick Clegg!

  5. Tom Roe says:

    On the limitation of the present political situation in the USA to rectify the abuses of climate change alarmists.

    The present leadership cadre of both major parties has pubically declared their belief in the underlying science and main policy ramifications of the Alarmist camp.

    A complex web of significant financial interests is in existence which acts as a potent pressure lobby on the political leadership.

    Although positive public opinion support for Alarmist legislation has erroded it dwarfs any organized opposition.

    In summation; they believe it, there’s a huge amount of money involved on one side, and the Alarmist forces can hurt them at the next election. Contact away as I have to make your existence known but let then know that this is a deal breaker. If they continue with this farce they will have lost your trust on all other issues as well. I believe that this issue merits that level of concern.

  6. Theo Goodwin says:

    In the USA, email, phone or write Senator Inhofe and tell him that it is time for his senate committee to start hearings on the behavior of Michael Mann, his superiors who whitewashed him, and all other ClimateGaters who received US government funding. The Democrats cannot protect Michael Mann now. No doubt Obama has recognized that Michael Mann is not the Michael Mann that he once knew.

    • Al [not Gore thankgoodness] says:

      M Mann is probably quite smart. The only thing is, that he is not smart enough to realize that he is not that smart.
      That is why he is an arrogant hypocrite.

    • vidkunquisling says:

      Hate to break this to you, but there are 41 Republicans and 59 Democrats in the Senate. Barbara Boxer, not James Inhofe, has called the shots since 2007 on the pertinent Senate committee. The U.S. Congress will do nothing except circle the wagons around the fraudsters until the Republicans take back the House or the Senate.

  7. barry woods says:

    As usual, the real climate type trolls, leap into the comments section of any C Booker article in the Telegraph..


    One of them David Welch, is posing as a member of the public.
    he has been outed once or twice but the mods keep changing it:

    A media professional whose job is to ‘spin’

    David Welch Sport and MEDIA management

    he has guardian and telegraph clients..
    he has been patrolling the booker articles for years on all things AGW.

    The Guardian, in response to an article about theoffcom complaint ‘bedtime stories’ government anti co2 TV add, with a father reading a child’s book, to a child about the co2 monster and drowning pets, in sea level rises.

    THe Guardian would not let me comment, about the quality (lack of) of debate
    Just removed it:

    Prince charles said, sea levels have risen 6 inches in a hundred years: fact

    I say, some of Prince charles’ subjects ancestors walked over from France, x thousand years ago. 6 inches a year (and a bit more) would explain the ENGLISH CHANNEL: Fact


    The Guardian, would NOT allow it…
    They are totally complicit.

  8. [...] Institute of Physics has condemned CRU’s global warming ’science’.  And they were blunt about it: The [Climategate] e-mails reveal doubts as to the reliability of [...]

  9. [...] RSC now stands shoulder to shoulder with the 36,000 strong Institute of Physics in speaking out against the cover up and destruction of data by unethical and criminal climate [...]

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