• Alligators, Fire Insurance, Ignorance, And Risk

    • Date: 04/07/10

    A while ago, I was sauntering along one of our local beeches with a physicist. There are three outstanding things abut this guy, he is very clever, very tall, and an excellent walker with whom I’ve spent many days in the mountains, winter and summer, and in all kinds of conditions. We were talking about […]

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  • Down with Doom: How the World Keeps Defying the Predictions of Pessimists

    • Date: 02/07/10

    When I was a student, in the 1970s, the world was coming to an end. The adults told me so. They said the population explosion was unstoppable, mass famine was imminent, a cancer epidemic caused by chemicals in the environment was beginning, the Sahara desert was advancing by a mile a year, the ice age […]

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  • Deutsche Welle’s Journalism For Dummkopfs Conference

    • Date: 30/06/10

    Ulli Kulke of the German online Die Welt national newspaper has written a piece: How Sceptics Are To Be Converted. He reports on the recent Global Media Forum held by German public broadcaster Deutsche Welle dubbed “The Heat Is On – Climate Change and the Media”, see here for background and here. According to Kulke the real objective of the forum: The media […]

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  • Newton And Sea Level Rise

    • Date: 26/06/10

    By how much would sea-level rise if the Greenland ice sheet disappears ? Probably quite a lot, but not in Germany, or in North Western Europe for that matter. There, sea level would virtually unaffected. To formulate it a bit provocatively, Greenland is for Western Europeans irrelevant. They should be rather observing Antarctica more closely. […]

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  • The Wisdom of Solomon

    • Date: 22/06/10

    As part of his ongoing investigations into the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report, David Holland has used FoI to get hold of a pile of emails from Professor Brian Hoskins, then of the University of Reading and now at Imperial College.  Readers will remember that Professor Hoskins amusingly rubber-stamped the list of papers chosen by UEA for […]

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  • The Sun Still Sulks

    • Date: 21/06/10

    As many thousands flock to Stonehenge for tomorrow’s summer solstice, this is a moment to ask for the umpteenth time what the Sun is up to. The mean sunspot number in June 2000 was 119, today it is 28, with the spots clustered in the northern region showing most magnetic activity. Since 2004 there have […]

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  • Scientists & Science Journalists – Please Grow Up

    • Date: 19/06/10

    The “screaming death spiral” scientist now admits he might have overstated the matter. I’m fascinated by the way people talk about climate change – what words they choose, what they don’t say, and whether their arguments are intellectually rigorous or emotionally manipulative. In this regard, the manner in which Arctic ice melt is presented by […]

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  • Sea-ice Modellers Open Up?

    • Date: 18/06/10

    An article in Wired magazine recounts how sea-ice modellers are sharing data and methods and are learning from each other in the process. It’s not obvious whether the sea-ice community have actually made their data and code open to the world or whether this is just a case of sharing within the community, but it’s a […]

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