The disclosure of climate data from the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia - Science and Technology Committee Contents

Memorandum submitted by Mike Haseler (CRU 30)

Creator of the Number 10 Petition Regarding the Climatic Research Unit:

We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to suspend the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia from preparation of any Government Climate Statistics until the various allegations have been fully investigated by an independent body.

Submitted by Mike Haseler—

Deadline to sign up by: 24 February 2010—Signatures: 3,101

  As the creator of the Number 10 petition regarding the Climatic Research Unit, I felt I should try to do justice to the 3,000 people who took the time to sign my petition by making a submission to your committee.

  Whilst it is clearly impractical to truly represent the views of the signatories to the petition, I have consulted other "sceptics" and read as many of the various comments being expressed on the subject as I am able. I believe these show the main area of concern to be the inappropriate attitudes shown in the emails regarding the appropriate standards of integrity for those involved in scientific research and a strong disquiet with the "science" in this area.

  There is a strong public feeling that there is "no smoke without fire" and the further revelations regarding the IPCC "dodgy dossier" seem to show this to be true. Whilst it is possible to find excuses for the phraseology used in the various emails, the overall impression remains that there is something very rotten with the "science". A closer examination of the available evidence would appear to support this disquiet.


  As someone who used to work in the UK wind sector and was even briefly selected to stand as a Scottish Green Party candidate for the Scottish Parliamentary elections, I have done more than my fair share to help convince the public of the real and imminent threat of man-made "global warming".

  Despite my scientific training, and very much to my shame, I participated in what I now see as a campaign to propagate bad science without ever really checking the scientific basis for these claims assuming that "someone" must have done the science. Only latterly did I try to assess the scientific evidence myself and to be frank I was horrified by what I found. But even then, despite the spin and clearly highly partisan use of data, I thought with the UK Met Office being responsible for compiling global temperature figures, at least the basic raw data could be trusted. Climategate proved that wrong! It was my exasperation that nothing in climate "science" could be trusted, not even the Met Office who used to be one of the great scientific institutions of the UK, that prompted me to create the petition in the hope that we could stop the rot before it spread further.

  (I have absolutely no financial interest except a few "hobby" websites whose combined income does not cover the cost of coffee consumed during their production.)


  The public are sick and tired of seeing exaggeration used to "sex up" a situation, creating an atmosphere of fear in order to manipulate us. We saw it with Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD), and now we see it in global warming. There should be many submissions dealing with the extent of the evidence and the quality of the scientific method. This submission will focus on the apparent public deception being perpetrated by the CRU and the wider climate community. We have no compunction in suggesting climategate has all the hallmarks of the deception over the (non-existent) Iraqi WMD as the similarities speak for themselves:


  (1)  In Iraq, the overwhelming consensus amongst the experts was: that there were WMD, the threat was "real & imminent" and, the public was told the evidence was "unequivocal". We were being told one thing in public by a campaign using the fear of WMD to sway public opinion, whereas in private experts like David Kelly were far from convinced.

    "SIR WILLIAM EHRMAN:In terms of chemical and biological, particularly through the spring and summer of 2002, we were getting intelligence, much of which was subsequently withdrawn as invalid, but at the time it was seen as valid, that gave us cause for concern,

    ... March 2002: the intelligence on Iraqi WMD and ballistic missiles is sporadic and patchy." 1

  (2)  How did Parliament and the public come to be so misled as to the certainty of WMD? Why did those against the Iraq war have to disprove the negative: to provide proof that every location in Iraq, where facilities for WMD might have been installed, had been searched?


  (3)  The world's climate is warming due to mankind or so the public are being told. The threat, again, is real and imminent, the evidence unequivocal. The onus is on opponents to disprove man-made global warming not the scientists to prove it. The public are being fed a daily diet by the likes of the BBC, of sexed up weather stories intended to force through a political imperative that requires a fear of climate change. How can the hurricanes, droughts, fires, famine be described except as: Weather of Mass Destruction?

  (4)  The truth, we learnt in November 2009, was that the public face of this well orchestrated campaign, is very much at odds with private reservations:

    "The fact is that we can't account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can't. The CERES data published in the August BAMS 09 supplement on 2008 shows there should be even more warming: but the data are surely wrong. Our observing system is inadequate." (Email: Kevin Trenberth to Michael Mann, October 2009)

  (5)  Is it happening again? Private, "sporadic and patchy" evidence, being publicly spun as "unequivocal"? Are the politicians and public being misled?


  (6)  Far from being "unequivocal", like WMD in Iraq, the evidence for man-made global warming is entirely circumstantial. It is based on the coincidental increase of CO2 and temperature in a period of just over three decades. As climate takes around a decade to change significantly, that period of 1970-2000 represents a mere three data points. Furthermore its scientifically testable predictions have almost all failed:

1.  2001 Prediction of Warming of between 1.4-5.8C/decade in 2001—Result so far: cooling at a rate of 0.8C/century.

2.  Met Office yearly Global Temperature predictions. Nine out of 10 forecasts have been high with an average error according to the Met Office equivalent to 6C/century which is larger than the projected warming.

Met Office
At confidence
"better than"
Temperature (°C)


0.33°C 80.00%0.24°CLower
20010.42°C75.00% 0.400°CLower
20020.47°C50.00% 0.455°CLower
20030.50°C75.00% 0.457°CLower
20040.47°C75.00% 0.432°CLower
20050.48°C75.00% 0.479°CLower
20060.45°C50.00% 0.422°CLower
20070.49°C75.00% 0.402°CLower
20080.37°C- 0.325°CLower
2009>0.4°C- 0.438°CHigher

Available data on Met Office global temperature predictions show them to be consistently high
*Taking eg 2000, this should be read as: "the Met office" predict with more than 80% confidence that the temperature will be higher than 0.33C above the 1960-91 average. At 0.24C the global temperature was lower.

**Reported historic temperature figures have changed (yet again) since this table was originally compiled in 2008 so figures are indicative. However the overall result, a failure to predict the climate, remains the same


Group think

  (7)  Groupthink: a mode of thinking that people engage in when they are deeply involved in a cohesive in-group, when the members' strivings for unanimity override their motivation to realistically appraise alternative courses of action. 2

Causes of Groupthink

  (8)  Highly cohesive and isolated groups like the CRU often develop what is known as groupthink. The cohesiveness which can be so beneficial in unifying the organisation, takes control. This creates a culture actively hostile to the diversity and self-questioning that forces normal organisations to respect wider social norms such as the openness and honesty that is the hallmark of good science. The closer the group members are in outlook, the less likely they are to raise questions that might break their cohesion. The greater the stress on the organisation, the greater the pressure on individuals to toe the line. According to Janis3, group cohesion can lead to groupthink if:

    — Structural faults in the organization exist: insulation of the group, lack of tradition of impartial leadership, lack of norms requiring methodological procedures, homogeneity of members' social background and ideology.

    — Provocative situational context exists: high stress from external threats, recent failures, excessive difficulties on the decision-making task, moral dilemmas.

  (9)  Social psychologist Clark McCauley's4 gives three conditions for groupthink to occur:

    — Directive leadership.

    — Homogeneity of members' social background and ideology.

    — Isolation of the group from outside sources of information and analysis.

  (10)  The CRU emails show us an insulated group, both geographically and scientifically, lacking a leadership embracing the scientific traditions of openness and impartiality. The members of the community are all very alike in view, background and ideology. The lack of any recent warming clearly caused huge stress on this group and many references to resisting FOI requests (illegally) clearly demonstrates their inappropriate response to the "high stress from external threats". All in all the emails show us that:

the CRU met all the preconditions for the development of Groupthink.

The Dangers of Groupthink

(11)  The Challenger Space shuttle disaster has been cited as a case study of groupthink. Roger Boisjoly, the engineer who warned about the effect of cold weather on the O-rings, argues that the caucus which resulted in a recommendation to launch, "constituted the unethical decision-making forum resulting from intense customer intimidation." Groupthink and poor organisational quality go together:

    "The unrelenting pressure to meet the demands of an accelerating flight schedule might have been adequately handled by NASA if it had insisted upon the exactingly thorough procedures that were its hallmark during the Apollo program. … Between that period and 1986, however, the program became ineffective. This loss of effectiveness seriously degraded the checks and balances essential for maintaining flight safety."5

  (12)  The parallels between climate "science" and Iraq should be obvious to anyone reading the torrent of news stories on poor quality science: from glaciers falsely claimed to be melting by 2035, to claims made by the IPCC being partly based on information from many dissertations by Masters students, in an uncanny similarity to the dodgy dossier:

    "Channel Four News has learnt that the bulk of an intelligence dossier heralded by Colin Powell at the UN yesterday, was copied from three different articles—one written by a graduate student." (C4 6 February 2003)


  (13)  The lessons we should learn from Iraq, were not that those who held the opinion that Saddam had WMD were wrong to hold those opinions given the evidence they had. It is that they were wrong to state the certainty of their conclusion, wrong to allow the politicisation of the evidential process and wrong to have a myopic focus on finding evidence to support the political imperative. These led to the exclusion of proper evaluation of the null hypothesis (that Saddam may not have WMD), the exclusion of those who were sceptical (such as Dr David Kelly) and the eventual distortion of the evidence through what the public know as the "sexing up of the dodgy dossier".

  (14)  The process of gathering evidence (in the civil service) had to be separated from the political interpretation and campaigning on that evidence. Impartial advice can only come from impartial experts, and if experts are set, or allow themselves to seek, political targets to find evidence that fits that target, they become ingrained in the partial political world which contaminates their impartiality.


  (15)  The CRU and the wider climate community exhibit all the failings of the Iraq "dodgy dossier" saga. They have tried to adapt the normal peer review processes, that are an essential part of quality control in science, to suit their purposes and override true peer review. The CRU has been actively partial, loudly and vociferously hostile to those who did not share its orthodoxy. Can a culture that actively endorses: "hiding the decline" be trusted? What are its boundaries of acceptability? What else might they do or have done? With the dodgy dossier on Iraq the experts gathering the data seemed impartial and though the data were "sexed up", the politicians (and aides) did so knowing the "impartial" evidence of the experts. In contrast, the climategate experts were the ones "sexing up" the data before anyone else had the chance to see it. These "scientists" were so partisan, they even ran an enviro-political campaigning website called

  (16)  Climate "science" at the UEA is part of a wider culture of climate "science" that permits abysmal quality of research when it supports the groupthink, and rejects everything which does not fit their groupthink mentality: the "voodoo science", the head of the IPCC labelled scientists who pointed out errors in an IPCC report. (The IPCC falsely claimed Himalayan glaciers would melt by 2035).

    "The other paper by MM** is just garbage. […] I can't see either of these papers being in the next IPCC report. Kevin and I will keep them out somehow—even if we have to redefine what the peer-review literature is!" (Phil Jones to Michael Mann Jul 8 16:30:16 2004)

    "The two MM**s have been after the CRU station data for years. If they ever hear there is a Freedom of Information Act now in the UK, I think I'll delete the file rather than send to anyone." (2/2/2005, Phil Jones to Michael Mann )

    **thought to be McIntyre and McKitrick


  (17)  According to some the "science is settled", clearly they know nothing about science, because even Newtonian Mechanics, or well formulated theories on the ether have given way in the face of scientific experimental evidence. Far from being "settled" the "science" lacks credibility; science stands or falls on the validity of its predictions, science is inherently sceptical and, science is based on proof, not the absence of proof. The absence of an alternative explanation for the warming at the end of the 20th century doesn't prove the unsubstantiated theory of man-made warming must be correct. Particularly given the lack of public funds looking at alternatives, the lack of integrity of those involved, and the wholesale failure of their predictions.

    …within a few years winter snowfall will become "a very rare and exciting event. Children just aren't going to know what snow is" (Dr David Viner of the CRU, Independent 20 March 2000)

Science Requires a Control, a Null Hypothesis

  (18)  In science, predictions are tested (not voted on), and in order to ensure that our predictions are not happen-chance coincidental changes, science has the concept of the "control" or "null hypothesis". The statement of causality requires more than just that two variables changed together, but that one had to cause the other. It is not sufficient to say that A seems to cause B, it must be true that B would not have happened except for A. That is the reason for the control, the control has all the same experimental conditions except the stimulus A, and in order to assert that A caused B, B must have happened with A, and it MUST NOT HAVE HAPPENED without A. And what is the control for man-made global warming on earth? If extra-terrestrial factors affected temperature would they affect Mars?

    "for three Mars summers in a row, deposits of frozen carbon dioxide near Mars' south pole have shrunk from the previous year's size, suggesting a climate change in progress."6

The Null Hypothesis (Natural Variation) is Consistent with Global Temperatures

  (19)  The null hypothesis of man-made global warming is that the warming is natural7. As can be seen from the top left plot, it is very easy to randomly produce a signal just like the global temperature data.

  (20)  Normal variation in the climate before and after CO2 levels rose have been around a tenths of a degree between decades. Out of the 15 decades of recorded global temperature data, we have seen a few runs of decades with warming, a few runs of cooling, and then at the end of the 20th century we saw a run of three decades of warming (1970s, 1980s, 1990s) followed by a decade of pause. As can be seen from the various random sequences it is highly likely that we will see a run of three decades of warming or cooling in a random sequence of 15 warming/cooling decades. Unless the warming in these decades far exceeded the normal inter-decadal change in global temperatures, the mere fact of three decades of warming is in itself entirely consistent with the null hypothesis of natural variation. Indeed a similar warming period occurred pre WWII.

  (21)  According to the IPCC8 long-term climatic variation is dramatically higher than short-term variation. This means there are natural increases & decreases in temperature over periods of up to a century which are larger than the inter-decadal or year to year variation. So there are natural long-term fluctuations in the climate which may easily be misinterpreted as man-made forcing on the climate. Such long term variation is perfectly natural and present in all kinds of systems and there is no excuse for "scientists" to suggest long-term fluctuations can only be explained by external forcing. Another implication is that long-term global forecasts are inherently more difficult than short-term. Contrary to the protestations of the Met Office, if they can't predict the climate even a year in advance, then there's little chance of longer term forecasts being correct.

  (22)  To highlight the similarity of the global temperature to natural noise, a section of 1/f noise (pink noise) is shown with lines in blue modelling the yearly average and red the decadal average. The section shown represents 200 years. It has been selected from a noise sample equivalent to 2,000 years, being the section most like the global temperature record in the first 150 years. The next 50 "years" shows the typical pattern of temperature.

  Noddy Science: Triple Glazing can't work

  (23) We are told that CO2 must heat up the atmosphere so the science is "unequivocal". This is bogus "Noddy science". Similar hand-waving arguments suggest triple glazing must be worse than the same window without the centre layer. Glass has a much higher thermal conductivity than air, so, replacing some insulating air with thermally conductive glass will reduce the overall insulation. But, if the space between the two panes of glass is sufficiently large to allow the air to move in a convective cycle, convection dominates and the air, heated in contact with the warm pane, rises due to convection and falls down the cold pane, transferring its heat across the insulation gap. Contrary to the "Noddy science", introducing a correctly spaced central thermally conductive layer of glass, decreases heat loss.

Noddy Science: CO2 Warms the Planet?

  (24)  The complex bond structure within CO2 means that it can readily absorb and emit radiation in the infra-red (IR) band where thermal radiation is given off by a blackbody9 at the temperature of the earth. Much of this IR is at wavelengths at which other atmospheric constituents do not interact, so if CO2 is exposed to a warmer surface like the earth, it will absorb radiation that would otherwise pass through into the cold of space AND likewise if CO2 is exposed to the cool of outer space it will emit vast quantities of IR at wavelengths which other gases cannot emit.

  (25) When CO2 is present low in the atmosphere, it tends to block transmission of these wavelengths into space and reduce heat loss to space. When CO2 is present high in the atmosphere, it helps emit IR, so causing cooling of the atmosphere acting as a vector by which other gases can lose heat into space. Like triple glazing, the system is complicated by the movement of air. Air warmed at the surface naturally tends to rise above the majority of the (blocking) atmosphere and it cannot descend until it has cooled by the emission of IR into the cool of outer space. CO2 cooling is as natural as CO2 warming, the atmosphere being a highly dynamic and complex system: a natural cooling system taking heat from the surface of the earth up into space via convective currents.

  (26) Simple physics could suggest CO2 is a cooling gas as easily as warming and "obvious" assertions must be validated against real evidence, not the preconceptions of "scientists". CO2 could impact the atmosphere in other ways: changes in specific heat capacity, density, interaction with water droplets and cloud formation. Other gases like water vapour also have their effects. It would be wrong to say that increases in CO2 can not affect the climate, but it is equally absurd, in such a complex system, to say this or that effect must dominate in the absence of the normal rigorous testing required by science.


  (27)  In the eyes of most "sceptics", this is a wholly partial review carried out by, and for, the Universities who make so much money from their threats of Weather of Mass Destruction. The only public faces of this review are the University Press Release and the statement of the scope on the committee's own website. Attempts to contact Sir Muir Russell have received no reply. The findings will be the usual formula: "a few bad eggs, but the science (and grant money) are safe". This review seems to serve no real purpose except the PR of the University to appear to be doing something. From the public's view, and from the wider view of worldwide confidence in the output of the CRU, this secretive internal review is most likely a waste of the time of a good person like Sir Muir Russell.


  (28)  A precautionary principle is at the very heart of science: science is inherently precautionary or sceptical about claims or assertions until they are fully substantiated by the evidence. The oft cited "precautionary principle" is not part of science. It belongs in the realm of political policy making based on science. It is policy makers, not scientists, who must decide how and when to invoke the "precautionary principle" not data-gathering scientists. But in climate "science" the precautionary principle is being used to force the public to accept bad, unsupported science unless contrary evidence can be found. This is contrary to all the principles of science forcing the burden of proof not on those making assertions but on those who are sceptical of these assertions. This is wholly unscientific, completely unacceptable by people claiming to be scientists and smacks of a blatant attempt to use science to provide a thin veneer of undeserved scientific respectability to hide an enviro-political campaign dressed up as science.

  (29)  Whether or not one believes in man-made global warming, we should all be able to trust the raw temperature data. If we cannot trust those who are trusted with the raw data, we cannot trust their many adjustments to the raw data. If we cannot trust the adjusted data, we have no trustworthy figure on global temperature. If we cannot trust the global temperature figures, we cannot draw conclusions as to the effects of temperature change, and so, if we cannot trust the raw data we simply cannot trust anything in the area of climate "science".

  (30)  The evidence is key because although different experts may interpret this evidence differently, we should all be able to agree on the validity of the original data. Global temperature data cannot be reproduced, there is no second chance to understand the global temperature within our lifetime. By their own PR, the climategate "scientists" have told us that there is no issue more important, and certainly no more costly in terms of public expenditure. They have raised their own status as keyholders to the data to such importance that trillions of dollars are riding on their integrity.

  (31)  But, for years, the reports of "sexing up" the data in the area of climate "science" have been legion: now those allegations have been found to stem from those right at the centre of the subject in the CRU. They had not only the means, the method, but as the emails show, they had the motive to adjust the data.

  (32)  Whether or not they did what they did with the best of intentions, the result of the actions of the CRU has been to undermine the credibility of the basic climate data to such an extent that no one really knows how much "man-made" global warming is the result of their "adjustments" (whose nature remain a mystery) or how much is real temperature change. For those who believe that mankind is heating the globe, for those like the CRU who say that there is no more important issue facing mankind, their crime is all the worse: there is no doubt that their failure to maintain due scientific impartiality led in part to the failure of the Copenhagen conference and the growing public scepticism on the subject.


1. Iraq Inquiry

2.  One who uses the scientific method: the systematic pursuit of knowledge involving the recognition and formulation of a problem, the collection of data through observation and experiment, and the formulation and testing of hypotheses.

3.  Janis, Irving L. Victims of Groupthink. Boston. Houghton Mifflin Company, 1972, page 9.


5.  Report of the Presidential Commission on the Space Shuttle Challenger Accident, Chapter 7.

6.  Nasa Press Release 20 September 2005.

7.  Strictly speaking the opposite of man-made warming is non-man-made and not natural the difference being the possibility aliens-caused warming.

8.  IPCC climate Change 2007: Working Group I: The Physical Science Basis Figure 9.7. Comparison of variability as a function of time scale of annual global mean temperatures (°C2 yr-1).

9.  The term blackbody is a commonly used term in physics and refers to the scientific concept of an "ideal" body loosing energy (heat) by radiation. At the temperature of the sun this "blackbody" radiation is in the visible spectrum. At the temperature of the earth the main radiation is in the infra-red band where CO2 has strong absorption and emission.

February 2010

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