A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


The Skeptics Handbook

Think it has been debunked? See here.

The Skeptics Handbook II

Climate Money Paper




The nerds have the numbers on precious metals investments on the ASX



Finally! The long awaited Italian Translation

Click to download The Italian Translation of The Skeptics Handbook

Dario Buso has finally accomplished a task I’ve been looking forward too for a long time. The Italian Translation of The Skeptics Handbook is here ready to be sent to all your friends among the 62 million speakers of Italian around the world.

He has done a marvelous job of putting it all together, along with help on the in-depth and careful review work done by Guido Botteri and Patrick. It’s just another example of the remarkable productivity of exasperated people. Citizens who won’t let the half-truths and distortions stand unopposed.

As always these things take a team (all up, involving people in six countries).

Dario writes:

Guido and I would also like to mention the final review by Colonel Guido Guidi, an Italian Army weather forecaster who manages and presents some weather forecast programs on national RAI TV channel. Col. Guidi also keeps a very informative blog in Italy on the status of the global climate, as a skeptic of the AGW hypothesis. He’s our Anthony Watts “made in Italy”…

Guido’s Italian blog is Climate Monitor.

The 15th translation of The Skeptics Handbook.


Did GISS discover 30% more land in the Northern Hemisphere?

… UPDATED with GLOBAL values! The questions get bigger.  (See below) July 18th.

Frank Lansner has been a busy man, and he’s asking some very thought provoking questions.

The Northern Hemisphere has a ratio of 40% land to 60% oceans, and the Hadley Met Centre seems to use a similar ratio (NH HadCrut Series: 58% ocean, 42% land). But  Frank Lansner wondered why, when he graphed the GISS land-data-set alongside the combined-sea-surface-temperatures (CSST), GISS comes up with an “averaged” line that runs much closer to the land data set and not the sea surface set. If it were weighted 60:40 (ocean:land) the combined Northern Hemisphere line ought to run slightly closer to the ocean based temperatures.

So Lansner mixed the land and sea temperatures in different ratios and graphed them and an odd thing occurred. Perhaps there is some good reason for it, but the GISS NH average line is currently running close to a mix that could be almost 70% land, and only 30% ocean. Back in 1985 the NH Average was closer to the sea temps as would be expected. In fact as late as 1995, the NH line still ran at around 40% land area. But somewhere [...]

Abbreviations Page

I’ve added a page with a list of abbreviations, there’s a link to it in the sidebar on the top right. If you are looking for an abbreviation and can’t find it, or have a correction to make, please comment here so we can improve the page.

The “find things” list at the top right is becoming more organized and useful. (Yes, the social events page needs to be updated).

Find things INDEX ABBREVIATIONS ARCHIVES Links&Sources Latest Comments & News Guide for Comments Social Events

Thanks to both Bob, Rob and Barry who compiled the list. Sorry it’s taken so long to get it finished.

Abraham surrenders to Monckton. Uni of St Thomas endorses untruths.

John Abraham, University of St Thomas.

What do you do when someone speaks against your faith, sounds authoritative, well informed, and backs everything up with lots of evidence? If you’re sane, you change your mind.

If you are John P. Abraham, a lecturer in fluid mechanics at the University of St. Thomas, Minnesota, you write to a few select scientists distorting what your opponent said, and then collect the infuriated responses. Abraham went on to assemble a list of things Christopher Monckton didn’t say,  complained about things he didn’t cite (even if he did and it’s printed on his slides), pretended he couldn’t find sources (but didn’t take ten minutes to ask), and created a litany of communication pollution in an effort to denigrate Monckton’s character.

The untruths and fabrications have come back to bite him.

We’ve seen these tactics before. Tim Lambert (aka Deltoid) did a similar thing when he ambushed Monckton with quotes from Pinker that he arranged with emails he still hasn’t revealed. And when it comes to attacking things, graphs and arguments that weren’t made,  John Cook of SkepticalScience did the same with his attempt to rebut the Skeptics Handbook. What matters to the religious [...]

The ranks are splitting, tossing incantations as they go

We always knew Climategate would the test the cohesion of the “team”. The reputations of good greens, good journalists, and decent politicians (there are a few) are on the line. They have to draw a line somewhere, and six months later, a few more cracks in the wall are showing.

Even people who think we need action against CO2 are not convinced by the whitewashes. And for many of them, it’s not the ClimateGate emails themselves which pushed them over the edge, but the blatantly surreal nature of the so-called inquiries that don’t ask the basic questions or invite the key people.

Phrases about how the science is still settled (even though the scientists themselves might cheat) are like a pass-code that allows commentators to say something pointed against the tribal witchdoctors without getting too many nasty spells cast on them by the disciples.

Of course, in order to attack any part of the great facade, it’s important to recite the incantation against bullies. Phrases about how the science is still settled (even though the scientists themselves might cheat) are like a pass-code that allows commentators to say something pointed against the tribal witchdoctors without getting too many nasty spells [...]

The Climate Spectator joins the gravy train

Here we go again. I like Alan Kohler, the economic reporter on the nightly ABC news. He likes numbers, graphs and hard data. Yet here he is, setting up a new project which looks like it ‘s another climate clone site analyzing everything carbon-related in the harsh light of day except the assumption about climate “feedbacks” that the whole error cascade is based on. (This is the same assumption that the empirical evidence has shown was too high by a factor of six.) [See here for my latest demolition and  here where a Dr of Paleoclimate comes unstuck.]

The Business Spectator wrote so sagely and incisively about the Super Profits Tax, I’d love to think they would apply the same sharp brainpower to the issue of climate. But Kohler writes:

“We were initially despondent when the CPRS was kicked into the long grass by Kevin Rudd,…”

Despondent? Imagine them saying “Interest rates were raised and we were despondent?”

But Kohler and the other economic commentators have been caught watching the money instead of the reasoning (they’re watching the wrong money too, here’s the money that speaks volumes). If upper tropospheric water vapor doesn’t increase as the world warms, the reason [...]

Smell that evidence

Cows and complaints don’t correlate. See the graph of the empirical evidence on the Thompsons case; the complaints, the cows, the recorded smells. Compare the Thompsons feedlot with others in the US which are 4 – 8 times larger and closer to towns. [...]

Friday night reading: the eloquent take-downs

Today, while I work on something else, I thought I’d just share a few of the more entertaining pieces of writing I’ve come across lately.

How many mistakes can you pack in one phrase?

Remember how all defenders of the Man-Made-Catastrophe were trained to say that skeptics are funded by big oil, and Big Oil had that insidious agreement… that internal memo that said they were aiming to “reposition global warming as theory rather than fact” (which has all the meaning of “repositioning McDonalds as a fast food chain”, it being tritely obvious and all). Well, Russell Cook points out that this popular bumper-sticker line that’s quoted ad lib across the ether, is full of mistakes, misattributions and misinformation. It seems it’s not only not a smoking gun, but it’s not a weapon, and wasn’t fired by the prize winner shooter they attributed it too, and the guy that didn’t fire the dud shot, didn’t win a prize either.

With fanfare according to Gore it was “discovered by the Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Ross Gelbspan”, but the Pulitzer site doesn’t know about Gelbspans “prize”, and you can read all the sordid details at the Climate Gate Country Club, or a [...]

Tyranny: How to destroy a business with environmental red tape

Updated with Janet’s comments below.

Matt and Janet Thompson are at the end of the rope

Did you know in Australia it’s possible to ruin a business if you don’t like the way it smells? This is a heartbreaking story — that a government could effectively ruin a family by slowly strangling them in red tape, and that they would have apparently no protection from the courts or the ombudsman. It eats away at our sense of justice. Can we speak freely? Are we all treated equally under the law, or are some laws only enforced according to a capricious whim?

This is the price we pay for vague laws where business people can run ventures, do everything to the letter of the law, with best-practice procedures, winning customers and contracts, yet go broke despite all that because of onerous, impossible-to-meet conditions, that are unmeasurable, and change suddenly, with the added bonus of inordinately long delays. At the moment, Janet and Matts farm, Narrogin Beef Producers, lies empty, unstocked, while debts accrue by the minute.

This is also a story of sovereign risk. Investors in Australian industry beware.

Unused equipment that cost hundred of thousands of dollars lies [...]

The Unskeptical Guide to the Skeptics Handbook

It’s taken 21 months, four professors, and three associate/assistant professors, and THIS is the best they could come up with? The printed version listed no author (the pdf has been updated with John Cooks name*) yet wears the logo of the University of Western Australia (UWA), which will embarrass that university as word spreads of the intellectual weakness of their “Guide“.

Did UWA commission this piece of rather inept, qualitative “feel-good” science and clumsy reasoning? Stephan Lewandowsky invited John Cook to speak at UWA and “offer assistance“.

The booklet uses a mislabeled graph with a deceptive scale, won’t show the damning graphs it supposedly debunks,  assumes positive feedback occurs despite the weight of empirical evidence against it (Douglass, Spencer, Lindzen), and repeats irrelevant information even though The Skeptics Handbook describes why rising sea levels and glaciers and ice sheets can’t possibly tell us what causes the warming. It misleadingly discusses a different fingerprint — one that isn’t the key point and isn’t disputed by skeptics. Cause and effect are mixed up, and naturally there are strawmen arguments to unnecessarily destroy for the spectacle of being seen to do something. To top it off, Cook still thinks a measurement is [...]