Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Joseph D'Aleo and his Technically Flawed Report (Page 1)

Someone called Joseph D'Aleo has put his name to a particularly nonsense PDF titled Climategate: Leaked Emails Inspired Data Analyses Show Claimed Warming Greatly Exaggerated and NOAA not CRU is Ground Zero

I am going to critique it. It's a long PDF so I will do so one page per post. Feel free to add your own observations in the comments. If it's good I will insert them.

"This is a preliminary introduction – final much more complete report will be posted here and on SPPI, which has supported the study shortly"

Hopefully he's just going to add more bullshit and not modify the existing bullshit so that I can just expand my critique.

"The global data bases have serious problems that render them useless for determining accurate long term temperature trends. Especially since most of the issues produce a warm bias in the data."

This is of course what psuedo-skeptics the world over want to believe. They really hate the surface records. Why is that? Is it just a means to smear the scientists working on those records (ie Hansen is a famous "AGW leader" therefore lets smear Hansen by smearing his work...surface records)? Or are they just grasping at any angle they can make against AGW (eg attack the co2 record with Beck, attack the greenhouse effect with G&T, etc)?

"The Climategate whistleblower proved what those of us dealing with data for decades already knew."

Use of the term Whistleblower is yet another conclusion reached based on wishful thinking rather than facts.

"The IPCC and their supported scientists have worked to remove the pesky Medieval Warm Period, the Little Ice Age, and the period emailer Tom Wigley referred to as the “warm 1940s blip.” They have also worked to pump up the recent warm cycle that ended in 2001."

Is D'Aleo ignorant of the fact there are real scientific questions over the extent of the 1940s blip and the medieval warm period? If he is aware of such subtitles of science he doesn't mention them. Note also that the Little Ice Age, the Medieval Warm period and the 1940s blip still exist. They haven't been "removed"

The claim that scientists have pumped up the recent warm "cycle" defies the fact that the satellite records also show it. Unless of course he's also claiming the scientists working on the satellite records are committing fraud. But I doubt it, pseudo-skeptics only ever have the stomach to accuse surface record scientists of fraud. The satellite record is surprisingly free of smear and FOIA requests for raw data and source code, despite it's complexity.

Also take note of his silly claim of a warm cycle that ended in 2001.

"Programmer Ian “Harry” Harris, in the Harry_Read_Me.txt file, commented about"

He then quotes Harry having problems. Irrelevant. Might as well have posted a picture of a cat. We know that the hadcrut results are not some figment of the source code because GISTEMP and NOAA products similar results with different code. You'd only post extracts from Harry if you were simply trying to create a big childish fuss. You wouldn't waste time doing it if you had a serious point to make.

"There has clearly been some cyclical warming in recent decades most notably 1979 to 1998"

There's that off-hand remark that recent warming is "cyclical" again. Except now it's ended in 1998 instead of 2001. Go figure. Why not just point out the warming? Why say "cyclical warming"? I think we all know what he's trying to imply. But perhaps he forgot something he said right at the start of the page:

"The global data bases have serious problems that render them useless for determining accurate long term temperature trends"

Okay so strike out the "global data bases" (sic), what does Joesph D'Aleo have left to proclaim a cycle stretching back prior to 1979? Tea leaves?

The sorry state of psuedo-skeptics is they are so caught up throwing out silly claims left right and center that they don't notice the silly claims contradict.

"However the global surface station based data is seriously compromised by major station dropout. There has been a clear bias towards removing higher elevation, higher latitude and rural stations"

Joseph forgets that the "station dropout" occured since 1979, therefore clearly it hasn't "seriously compromised" the surface record at all or it would deviate significantly from the satellite record during "station dropout", yet it doesn't.

"The data suffers contamination by urbanization and other local factors such as land-use/land-cover changes, and improper siting. There is missing data and uncertainties in ocean temperatures. These factors all lead to overestimation of temperatures."

But are they corrected for Joseph? That's the question and again let me point you at the close agreement with the satellite records. Are you quibbling over 0.05C warming since 1979? If more than that then we have a situation where the lower troposphere would have warmed more than the surface. Care to explain that one? No probably you'll just pussy foot around ignoring it.

"Numerous peer-reviewed papers in the last several years have shown this overestimation is the order of 30 to 50% just from the contamination issues alone. The cherry picking of observing sites and the increase of interpolation to vacant data grids makes these estimates very conservative."

There are Numerous peer-reviewed papers, but they are just too numerous to mention in a PDF. We might run out of words! His claim that "makes these estimates very conservative", is smells of pure bullshit.

What's he claiming? That the surface has only warmed less than half as much as the records show since 1979? It certainly sounds like it unless he's claiming all the factors he mentioned above are dis-proportionally occuring prior to 1979. Again this idea doesn't make any sense as it would mean there had been a lot more warming in the lower troposphere than  happened at the surface. Does that make sense? Not to me. It kind of needs explaining, not ignoring.

"The data bases on which so many important decisions are to be made are “Non Gradus Anus Rodentum!”"

Data bases are bases full of data. You mean databases, one word. Might be a good idea to get that right before moving in on Viscountish Latin.

Oh and WTF you just quoted Ghandhi at the end of page 1. What a fucking joke.

So concludes page 1.


  1. Thanks for reading this and posting your critique. When you have to suffer through such bunk as pushed by D'Aleo, its better to do witha sense of humour.

    I'll be back for more of this!

  2. no problem, thanks for reading