• Fifth Hottest Year On Record?

    • Date: 25/11/09

    Sometimes journalists can wander too far from the relatively safe grounds of reporting and analysis and into the shifting sands of spin. This can be done with what the reporter says, or neglects to say. In both cases the result is a misleading message given to an increasingly confused public. The recent BBC News Online […]

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  • Is East Antarctica Melting?

    • Date: 24/11/09

    The East Antarctic ice sheet is the largest mass of ice on our planet and so its stability and potential contribution to global sea level change is of great interest. It was thought to be relatively stable but new research suggests it may have begun to loose mass, although the true significance of the change […]

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  • Stay Close To The Data

    • Date: 22/11/09

    Anyone, whoever they are or whatever their background, who takes an interest in the environment, must come away confused at the claims and counter-claims made regarding the state of the science. Assessing the progress of climate science by reading articles in the media gives one a narrow viewpoint. For the work that is chosen the […]

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  • Carbon Confusion

    • Date: 22/11/09

    Although carbon dioxide released by human action enters the atmosphere it is not possible to relate that quantitatively to energy data because of our lack of understanding of carbon sinks. Some of the carbon that enters the atmosphere is sequestered naturally, but where, by how much is poorly understood, and is the efficiency of sequestration […]

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  • No Sign of Himalayan Meltdown, Indian Report Finds

    • Date: 15/11/09

      NEW DELHI—Are Himalayan glaciers beating a rapid retreat in the face of global warming? That would seem to be the case, according to a flurry of recent reports by BBC and other mass media. But the picture is more complex—and poses scientific puzzles, according to a review of satellite and ground measurements released by […]

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  • How Bold Predictions Hurt Science

    • Date: 09/11/09

    A South Korean postage stamp issued in 2005 depicts a scene that is reminiscent of the iconic human evolution cartoon in which a stooping ape evolves, in six or so steps, into an upright, bipedal Homo sapiens. It shows a paraplegic man climbing slowly out of his wheelchair, standing up straight, and then performing a […]

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  • Keeping Prediction in Perspective

    • Date: 29/10/09

    Mike Hulme, Suraje Dessai and I have a piece out today in Nature Reports Climate Change titled Keeping Prediction in Perspective. Here is an excerpt, which references the figure above: But evidence that climate predictions can provide precise and accurate guidance about how the long-term future may evolve is fundamentally lacking. Scientists and decision-makers alike […]

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  • Forecasting the Earth’s Temperture

    • Date: 09/09/09

    The recent spate of scientific papers that are attempting to predict what the earth’s temperature might be in the coming decades, and also explain the current global temperature standstill, are very interesting because of the methods used to analyse temperature variations, and because they illustrate the limitations of our knowledge Recall that only one or […]

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