Climategate: Untangling Myth and Reality Ten Years Later

Written by Stephen McIntyre & Ross McKitrick

Two of the key players in helping expose and explain the Climategate email scandal of 2009 are Steve McIntyre and Ross McKitrick. In this detailed 33-page PDF they offer invaluable details and insight into what is the greatest science fraud of all time costing taxpayers trillions of dollars.

INTRODUCTION: MAKING THE MYTHS
It is now 10 years since the Climategate emails were released. The issues they raised continue to
reverberate; even figuring in a decision last week of the United States Supreme Court to allow
Michael Mann’s (US) defamation suits to proceed (see the dissent by Justice Alito), and in an
August 2019 decision of the BC Superior court dismissing a similarsuit (on which see more below).
The immediate reaction at the time to the emails was visceral, even among “green” reporters,
including George Monbiot as follows:

Pretending that this isn’t a real crisis isn’t going to make it go away. Nor is an attempt
to justify the emails with technicalities. We’ll be able to get past this only by grasping
reality, apologising where appropriate and demonstrating that it cannot happen again

UK reporter Fred Pearce, who covered the story for the Guardian and who, unlike Oxburgh or
Muir Russell, had actually read the emails, wrote in The Climate Files:

The evidence of scientists cutting corners, playing down uncertainties in their
calculations and then covering their tracks by being secretive with data and suppressing
dissent suggests a systemic problem of scientific sloppiness, collusion and endemic
conflicts of interest, but not of outright fraud. (p. 241)

Given the importance of climate science in today’s society, all of us expect more of climate
scientists than merely that they not commit “outright fraud.” Exoneration at such a low threshold
would be small exoneration indeed.

However, rather than confronting the corruption and misconduct apparent throughout the
Climategate emails, the climate academic community shut their eyes to the affair, eventually
even persuading itself that the offending scientists were victims, rather than offenders.
This re-framing was made possible by numerous myths propagated about the affair, of which the
following were especially important:

Myth #1: The Climategate scandal arose because “cherrypicked” emails were taken “out of
context”.

Myth #2: The Climategate correspondents were “exonerated” following “thorough” and
impartial investigations.

Myth #3: Scientific studies subsequent to Climategate have “confirmed” and “verified” the
original Mann hockey stick.

These are only the major myths from a veritable tsunami of disinformation from the academic
community. The myths are untrue and, in this article, we will explain why.

Read the full PDF here: www.rossmckitrick.com


PRINCIPIA SCIENTIFIC INTERNATIONAL, legally registered in the UK as a company incorporated for charitable purposes. Head Office: 27 Old Gloucester Street, London WC1N 3AX. 

Please DONATE TODAY To Help Our Non-Profit Mission To Defend The Scientific Method.

Comments (8)

  • Avatar

    jerry krause

    |

    Hi Steve and Ross,

    I am not a professional logger but I have fell several different kinds of trees at several different locations having different climates. And I have always taken a look at the tree rings of the trees that I have felled.

    So I know that there can be two, no three, meteorological factors which influence the width of the growth rings. I have just used the ‘find feature’ to check the number of certain words in your 33 page PDF.

    Moisture (0), Precipitation (0), Radiation (0), Solar (0), Sun (0), Temperature (27)

    Enough evidence? Where were you and other doubters? Where was the ‘intelligence’ of any peer reviewers and journal editors?

    Have a good day, Jerry

    • Avatar

      T. C. Clark

      |

      Jerry, stop cutting those trees down…instead, give’em a big hug. That way both you and the tree will have a nicer day, no?

      • Avatar

        jerry krause

        |

        Hi T. C.,

        No! The trees from which I learned the most were ponderosa pine which were growing were from where their pine cones fell. Hence, during some ideal time they started growing too thickly and had a virus (?? or some disease which caused them to grow deformed or even to die). So, they needed to be thinned so the crown of one tree did not intermingle with the crown of another. And will need to be thinned again as each of the remaining thinned trees continue to grow and form larger crowns.

        Ponderosa pine grow where there is limited precipitation because they have a long tap root to reach soil moisture necessary to survive at depths when even a significantly deep surface layer of soil is very dry during periods of extreme drought.

        Some of the trees, with trunks of a little more than a foot diameter and aheight of about 60 feet were about 80 or so years old (according to the tree rings). So it was easy to clear differences between the thickness of the rings from one year to the next and other longer periods of years when the thickness were consistently greater or consistently very thin. Which I considered to be evidence of these cyclic periods of differing precipitation patterns. For I could not imagine the difference in ring thickness was due to differing temperatures.

        I also need to note the climate is that the atmosphere is generally cloudless at the elevation of these trees (greater than 4600 ft) and significantly slopes downward to the west and less so to the east. You can look at it from a satellite at 42.55N and 121.09W I had not looked at it lately and now it may look like some of the trees are dead but the ‘black’ trees are shadows being cast by the vertical green trees which are difficult to see at the base of the black tree. Interesting because I had not seen this image before.

        The trees are growing in the volcanic ash likely from an eruption about 13 miles to the east. A very interesting place as you can see if you scan about the area.

        But, T. C., if one loves trees sometimes one needs to fell some and use the lumber to build things like the white roofed shed I built using lumber I had milled from the trees I fell.

        Have a good day, Jerry

        • Avatar

          T. C. Clark

          |

          OK Jerry but those who use trees should plant trees….that is why Greta is criticized…..she has not planted a single tree – can you believe it?

          • Avatar

            jerry krause

            |

            Hi T.C.,

            Certainly, I can believe it. I frequently have observed that many who repeat factoids have no idea of what they are repeating.

            I ask you: Do you know there are trees which do not need to be replanted after they are cut down? I am not going to tell you what trees these are. Instead, I ask you (to test your knowledge or to test your effort to find the answer which you know that you do not know) what are some of these trees?

            As to those trees which must grow from seeds, the USA (I do not know about the rest of the world) has ‘tree nurseries’ where seeds from living trees are planted in soils under somewhat ideal conditions, nurtured until they reach a certain size, and replanted to replace the trees which have been felled by the loggers, whose families depend upon the wages that the loggers earn.

            Except, not many trees of our federally owned forest lands are not being cut down. Instead we wait until there is a wild fire which kills large areas of these trees (maybe a hundred, or more, years old) which have not been cut down. Then we think about replanting trees.

            Have a good day, Jerry

  • Avatar

    Andy Rowlands

    |

    I’m part way through reading the pdf, and so far, it appears a pretty damning indictment of those involved.

  • Avatar

    judy

    |

    I have just read the conclusion. Now I’m going to read parts of it. It is very good useful material. I will use it in the public letters I write to academic, what the evidence indicates,

  • Avatar

    judy

    |

    Carrying on from my comment above. The evidence for academic fraud is pretty robust. Now we have to hold the fraudsters accountable in a court of law Then disseminate the findings of the judges to the people by what ever media format we can use. We are starting to do quite well getting our message across in Australia. Once we have completed the legal phase of this project we will have reached the conclusion and can then return to real science with renewed vigour

Comments are closed