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Ian Plimer’s ‘Heaven + Earth’ — Checking the Claims - page 47 / 64

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The ‘Hockey Stick’

The term ‘hockey stick’ refers to the climate reconstruction, produced by Michael Mann and colleagues and featured in the 2001 IPCC report. This was criticised by McIntyre and McKitrick

on methodological grounds. In response to analysis was reviewed by two expert panels.

requests from US legislators the ‘hockey stick’ lthough considerable partisanship was involved

in

establishing

the

panels,

the

core

mathematical

conclusions

of

the

panels

are

essentially

the

same.

The Hockey Stick temperature reconstruction by Mann Bradley and Hughes has come under intense criticism and Plimer repeats much of this in attacking the [Mann et al., 1998] paper (footnotes 369 and 372), repeatedly calling Mann et al. ‘fraudulent’. What is surprising is that all this invective is focused on the wrong paper — [Mann et al., 1998] is not the source of the data used in the IPCC hockey stick plots. Mann et al. [1998] is a global analysis (c.f. northern hemisphere in IPCC report) and only covers 600 years (c.f. 1000 years in IPCC report). Heaven

  • +

    Earth only cites the actual hockey stick paper much later as reference 1604, and misrepresents

it as referring to sea-level.

For the most part, my criticisms of Heaven + Earth address the issue of whether Plimer has exaggerated the conclusions of the more critical of the reports, i.e. the Wegman report [Wegman et al., 2006].

Since the time that version 2.1 was released, the Wegman report has come under serious

criticism. This has been summarised in the report Strange Scholarship on the

egman Report:

facade for the climate anti-science campaign by John Mashey. Some of the key claims in the report (obtainable form the deepclimate website) are:

  • the process of assembling the report was an orchestrated political campaign (as implied by Mashey’s subtitle);

  • much of the Wegman report is plagiarised (sometimes with distortion), including plagia- rism from wikipedia;

  • there are additional mathematical distortions.

These are serious concerns, but my focus here remains on whether Plimer has misrepresented what Wegman et al. actually wrote.

Plimer usually settles for describing the ‘hockey stick’ as infamous. However, on a number of occasions he explicitly describes it as fraud, a charge not sustained by either of the expert reviews. Plimer’s claim that the IPCC knowingly included results that were known to be wrong, is disproved by comparing his account on page 91 with what is actually in the IPPC reports [see item 32].

47

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