The Herald Sun’s chief climate scientist, Andrew Bolt, has uncovered a scandal that will no doubt have an impact akin to the “Climategate Emails”:


CSIRO’s warming gets a chill

CSIRO in 2010:

The State of the Climate snapshot, drawn together by CSIRO and the Bureau of Meteorology … shows that Australia’s mean temperature has increased 0.7 degrees since 1960….

The report states that temperature observations, among others indicators, ‘’clearly demonstrate climate change is real’’…

CSIRO in 2011:

Maximum temperatures nationally were the coldest on record with a national anomaly of -2.19°C. Most of Australia recorded below average mean maxima with parts of the north and south of the country recording their coldest March on record….

Rainfall averaged over Australia was 117% above-normal and ranks as the wettest March on record with most of the country recording above average falls.

Now, maybe I’m not able to read between the lines the way that Andrew is, but those statements don’t actually appear to be contradictory to me. And I hate to nitpick, but that second quote isn’t actually from the CSIRO, it’s from the Bureau of Meteorology, and it’s not a long term report on the climate, it’s a summary of a single month. Just because the CSIRO and at the BOM are looking at similar stuff, doesn’t mean that the output of their work is interchangeable, especially when they’re discussing completely different time scales.

Then Andrew reaches for the Comalco before asking:

And why did this concession have to get chiselled out of the CSIRO with a freedom-of-infornation request?

Firstly, freedom of information requests are how you get unpublished reports from government departments. Secondly, in what way is a report on cyclone frequency a “concession”? What does Andrew think that the CSIRO are conceding? Right there on Andrew’s blog he quotes from the Australian:

One paper, by CSIRO researcher Debbie Abbs, found rising temperatures could halve the frequency of tropical cyclones.

*emphasis added.

Rising temperatures Andrew, they’re still talking about rising temperatures. They don’t have ‘a chill’, they’re not backing away from their previous statements about climate change because we had a cold March, the only person who seems to believe that this information is somehow contradictory to the CSIRO’s previous statements is you.

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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