UN climate change expert: there could be more errors in report

Full of Win

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Nov 22, 2007
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Two requirements that are non negotiable here
1. PRESENCE OF A TESTABLE HYPOTHESES
2. EXTRAORDINARY CLAIMS REQUIRE EXTRAORDINARY PROOF.

If they want to make massive changes to how humans lives, that owe us these. If the data is bad, then the predictions made on said data are questionable. However, as shown here the predictions they have made are seeming wrong and now they are saying this data might not be correct. This report by the way, won the Nobel Prize in 2007, so its not a small thing here.

I'm not saying that humans do not cause global warming; just that the body of data (much of it faulty; as shown below) does not warrant this. Also, I have yet to see a testable hypothesis or null hypothesis disproven on this.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article6999051.ece

The Indian head of the UN climate change panel defended his position today even as further errors were identified in the panel's assessment of Himalayan glaciers.

Dr Rajendra Pachauri dismissed calls for him to resign over the Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change’s retraction of a prediction that Himalayan glaciers could disappear by 2035.

But he admitted that there may have been other errors in the same section of the report, and said that he was considering whether to take action against those responsible.

“I know a lot of climate sceptics are after my blood, but I’m in no mood to oblige them,” he told The Times in an interview. “It was a collective failure by a number of people,” he said. “I need to consider what action to take, but that will take several weeks. It’s best to think with a cool head, rather than shoot from the hip.”

The IPCC’s 2007 report, which won it the Nobel Peace Prize, said that the probability of Himalayan glaciers “disappearing by the year 2035 and perhaps sooner is very high”.

But it emerged last week that the forecast was based not on a consensus among climate change experts, but on a media interview with a single Indian glaciologist in 1999.

The IPCC admitted on Thursday that the prediction was “poorly substantiated” in the latest of a series of blows to the panel’s credibility.

Dr Pachauri said that the IPCC’s report was the responsibility of the panel’s Co-Chairs at the time, both of whom have since moved on.

They were Dr Martin Parry, a British scientist now at Imperial College London, and Dr Osvaldo Canziani , an Argentine meteorologist. Neither was immediately available for comment.

“I don’t want to blame them, but typically the working group reports are managed by the Co-Chairs,” Dr Pachauri said. “Of course the Chair is there to facilitate things, but we have substantial amounts of delegation.”

He declined to blame the 25 authors and editors of the erroneous part of the report , who included a Filipino, a Mongolian, a Malaysian, an Indonesian, an Iranian, an Australian and two Vietnamese.

The “co-ordinating lead authors” were Rex Victor Cruz of the Philippines, Hideo Harasawa of Japan, Murari Lal of India and Wu Shaohong of China.

But Syed Hasnain, the Indian glaciologist erroneously quoted as making the 2035 prediction, said that responsibility had to lie with them. “It is the lead authors — blame goes to them,” he told The Times. “There are many mistakes in it. It is a very poorly made report.”

He and other leading glaciologists pointed out at least five glaring errors in the relevant section.

It says the total area of Himalyan glaciers “will likely shrink from the present 500,000 to 100,000 square kilometers by the year 2035”. There are only 33,000 square kilometers of glaciers in the Himalayas.

A table below says that between 1845 and 1965, the Pindari Glacier shrank by 2,840m — a rate of 135.2m a year. The actual rate is only 23.5m a year. The section says Himalayan glaciers are “receding faster than in any other part of the world” when many glaciologists say they are melting at about the same rate.

An entire paragraph is also attributed to the World Wildlife Fund, when only one sentence came from it, and the IPCC is not supposed to use such advocacy groups as sources.

Professor Hasnain, who was not involved in drafting the IPCC report, said that he noticed some of the mistakes when he first read the relevant section in 2008.

That was also the year he joined The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) in Delhi, which is headed by Dr Pachauri.

He said he realised that the 2035 prediction was based on an interview he gave to the New Scientist magazine in 1999, although he blamed the journalist for assigning the actual date.

He said that he did not tell Dr Pachauri because he was not working for the IPCC and was busy with his own programmes at the time.

“I was keeping quiet as I was working here,” he said. “My job is not to point out mistakes. And you know the might of the IPCC. What about all the other glaciologists around the world who did not speak out?”

Dr Pachauri also said he did not learn about the mistakes until they were reported in the media about 10 days ago, at which time he contacted other IPCC members. He denied keeping quiet about the errors to avoid disrupting the UN summit on climate change in Copenhagen, or discouraging funding for TERI’s own glacier programme.

But he too admitted that it was “really odd” that none of the world’s leading glaciologists had pointed out the mistakes to him earlier. “Frankly, it was a stupid error,” he said. “But no one brought it to my attention.”
 

GfPQqmcRKUvP

macrumors 68040
Sep 29, 2005
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Wow- that sure is a significant find! :rolleyes: So the glaciers aren't melting as fast as they thought. They're still melting.
I am interested though.

If it's found that glaciers are melting as the result of largely natural causes instead of being human-caused, should we seek to stop the natural course of events considering not stopping it might result in the rise of sea levels, the loss of biodiversity, and an increase in the severity and occurrence of storms?
 

leekohler

macrumors G5
Dec 22, 2004
14,162
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Chicago, Illinois
I am interested though.

If it's found that glaciers are melting as the result of largely natural causes instead of being human-caused, should we seek to stop the natural course of events considering not stopping it might in the rise of sea levels, the loss of biodiversity, and an increase in the severity and occurrence of storms?
I would hope your answer would be yes.
 

SwiftLives

macrumors 65816
Dec 7, 2001
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This is what I don't understand. We are an innovative country. One could even argue that we lead the world in innovation and progress. Beyond just being an American Citizen, we are an amazing race of human beings. So when people argue that we should do nothing about global warming because man didn't create it, that seems to me as though people are being intellectually lazy. And frankly, that's a position I find antithetical to what I believe makes our people wonderful.

So what if global warming turns out to be part of a natural cycle. Do we just throw our hands up and let coastal cities like New York, Washington DC, Los Angeles, Tampa, Miami....do we let them just drown?
 

Queso

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Mar 4, 2006
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People like Full of Win will still be denying climate change when mass famines force billions to migrate across continents.

Of course he and his ilk will probably blame "liberals".
 

Zombie Acorn

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Feb 2, 2009
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This is what I don't understand. We are an innovative country. One could even argue that we lead the world in innovation and progress. Beyond just being an American Citizen, we are an amazing race of human beings. So when people argue that we should do nothing about global warming because man didn't create it, that seems to me as though people are being intellectually lazy. And frankly, that's a position I find antithetical to what I believe makes our people wonderful.

So what if global warming turns out to be part of a natural cycle. Do we just throw our hands up and let coastal cities like New York, Washington DC, Los Angeles, Tampa, Miami....do we let them just drown?
As opposed to not understanding the system at all (which we don't) and trying to "correct" it which ends up killing everyone? No thanks, we've been here for quite a long time.

People like Full of Win will still be denying climate change when mass famines force billions to migrate across continents.

Of course he and his ilk will probably blame "liberals".
Sensationalist comments is the same tool the right uses, we don't know anything about mass famines in the near future.
 

Queso

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Mar 4, 2006
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Sensationalist comments is the same tool the right uses, we don't know anything about mass famines in the near future.
How do you think desertification will end up? You can say it's sensationalist, but it's just the logical conclusion of the data at hand IMO.
 

Ugg

macrumors 68000
Apr 7, 2003
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So what if global warming turns out to be part of a natural cycle. Do we just throw our hands up and let coastal cities like New York, Washington DC, Los Angeles, Tampa, Miami....do we let them just drown?
Of course we do. What other choice do we have? The Netherlands is investing heavily in floating housing. The idea of trying to save Manhattan is ludicrous and Washington DC is built on swampland.

We're humans, we adapt and if climate change turns out to be human caused, a few billion of us will die off which will help turn back the clock a little. Maybe after that, we'll have learned a little something.
 

Full of Win

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People like Full of Win will still be denying climate change when mass famines force billions to migrate across continents.

Of course he and his ilk will probably blame "liberals".
Please - I don't refute there is climate change. Sure, a few years ago we had an ice age and in the future we will have another ice age. We accept that the average temperature undulates, this is proven. What I do not think had been proven, beyond a doubt, is that humans contribute significantly to climate change. That is the question. I'm not saying we don't either. However, I want to see a testable hypothesis and strong evidence that humans are a significant contributor. Is that so much to ask? The science I was taught says no, this is the basic things to ask for. I don't think this is crazy or unreasonable.
 

Zombie Acorn

macrumors 65816
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Indeed they are...

Wouldn't want to engage in any "sensationalist comments", now would we? :rolleyes:
I am quite sure the earth has supported human life for tens of thousands of years without our intervention. There is more of a chance for destruction with our unprecedented intervention then without.
 

bobber205

macrumors 68020
Nov 15, 2005
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I still don't get the downsides of doing radical changes just in case we're causing it.

It's life or death of most if not all of the human species here we're talking about. I think we would want to be extra safe and if we're wrong then nothing is lost. We've only gained renewable energy resources and a cleaner planet.

The people here on PRSI I doubt have actually read the information for themselves in any kind of detail. Why this is a left/right issue I'll have no idea.

I guess it's because the right is sooooo pro business that doing anything at all that might harm them in the short term is just unacceptable. Whatever. I see that side I guess. I'm more for let the business adjust, help them anyway we can, and everyone work together to make the planet cleaner and healthier.

There is literally nothing to lose in the long term by trying to stop global warming, fake or not.
 

Ugg

macrumors 68000
Apr 7, 2003
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Please - I don't refute there is climate change. Sure, a few years ago we had an ice age and in the future we will have another ice age. We accept that the average temperature undulates, this is proven. What I do not think had been proven, beyond a doubt, is that humans contribute significantly to climate change. That is the question. I'm not saying we don't either. However, I want to see a testable hypothesis and strong evidence that humans are a significant contributor. Is that so much to ask? The science I was taught says no, this is the basic things to ask for. I don't think this is crazy or unreasonable.
Could you clarify please? I've been on the planet for over 40 years and know of no recent ice age. Perhaps you're referring to the Ice Age series of movies? If so, you need to get out more...
 

MacNut

macrumors Core
Jan 4, 2002
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If the earth is going through a natural phase that would happen if we are here or not is it our right to try to change it or just go along for the ride?

If we try to stop the natural cycle are we making it worse just to suit our needs?
 

Ugg

macrumors 68000
Apr 7, 2003
1,985
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Penryn
If the earth is going through a natural phase that would happen if we are here or not is it our right to try to change it or just go along for the ride?

If we try to stop the natural cycle are we making it worse just to suit our needs?
So you're fine with Mother Nature based genocide?
 

MacNut

macrumors Core
Jan 4, 2002
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So you're fine with Mother Nature based genocide?
We are just visiting on the planet that was here long before us and will be here long after we are gone. Nature will always win at some point. We could put it off and try to stop it but that won't change anything in the end. We are human not invincible.
 

Zombie Acorn

macrumors 65816
Feb 2, 2009
1,301
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I still don't get the downsides of doing radical changes just in case we're causing it.

It's life or death of most if not all of the human species here we're talking about. I think we would want to be extra safe and if we're wrong then nothing is lost. We've only gained renewable energy resources and a cleaner planet.

The people here on PRSI I doubt have actually read the information for themselves in any kind of detail. Why this is a left/right issue I'll have no idea.

I guess it's because the right is sooooo pro business that doing anything at all that might harm them in the short term is just unacceptable. Whatever. I see that side I guess. I'm more for let the business adjust, help them anyway we can, and everyone work together to make the planet cleaner and healthier.

There is literally nothing to lose in the long term by trying to stop global warming, fake or not.
I have no problem lowering emissions and R&Ding new technology. I have a problem with spreading fear and panic to do so. Also we were talking about purposely influencing the climate (assuming natural causes) to cool it down to save glaciers, its a recipe for disaster IMO.
 

Zombie Acorn

macrumors 65816
Feb 2, 2009
1,301
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Toronto, Ontario
We are just visiting on the planet that was here long before us and will be here long after we are gone. Nature will always win at some point. We could put it off and try to stop it but that won't change anything in the end. We are human not invincible.
I agree with this post.