NOAA is not just hiding the decline, it is hiding the data from Congress

Scientists study temperature readings from ocean buoys and determined global temperatures did not plateau at the turn of the century, as had been previously concluded. (NOAA photo via LA Times)

Secret science is not science.

In order for something to be scientific by definition it must be replicable. If the data are secret, they cannot be replicated. If the data cannot be replicated, it is not science.

A website called Understanding Science has this to say: “The desire for replicability is part of the reason that scientific papers almost always include a methods section, which describes exactly how the researchers performed the study. That information allows other scientists to replicate the study and to evaluate its quality, helping ensure that occasional cases of fraud or sloppy scientific work are weeded out and corrected.”

In June a study was published in the Journal Science in which National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration wrote that the planet’s “global average surface temperature had climbed 0.2 of a degree Fahrenheit each decade since 1950, without interruption, due to the heat-trapping effects of greenhouse gases,” according to newspaper accounts. This was supposed to quash the awkward reports that there had been a 15-year or longer plateau in temperatures that none of the models predicted.

There were accusations at the time that NOAA scientists had tweaked the data to fit the global warming agenda. Some said the scientists selectively altered which temperature data to use prior to the plateau, adjusting those temperatures downward to make it look like there was a continued increase.

In July the House Science, Space and Technology committee Chair Lamar Smith of Texas asked NOAA for data and internal communications related to the study.

According to the magazine Nature, NOAA handed over publicly available data, but refused to turn over the internal communications.

“Because the confidentiality of these communications among scientists is essential to frank discourse among scientists, those documents were not provided to the Committee,” NOAA told Nature. “It is a long-standing practice in the scientific community to protect the confidentiality of deliberative scientific discussions.”

Smith replied, “NOAA needs to come clean about why they altered the data to get the results they needed to advance this administration’s extreme climate change agenda. The Committee intends to use all tools at its disposal to undertake its Constitutionally-mandated oversight responsibilities.”

Smith also said in a statement, “It was inconvenient for this administration that climate data has clearly showed no warming for the past two decades. The American people have every right to be suspicious when NOAA alters data to get the politically correct results they want and then refuses to reveal how those decisions were made.”

Remember those leaked emails from scientists at the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit that revealed how data was being manipulated to fit the global warming agenda? Might that be the real reason a federally funded agency will not explain to the people who fund it how it is arriving at its scientific conclusions?

If there is no problem, there is no funding.



6 comments on “NOAA is not just hiding the decline, it is hiding the data from Congress

  1. nyp says:

    In other words, you don’t like the results of a scientific study so you want to use the power of a congressional committee to subpoena the researcher’ emails.

    PS: the bit about the british scientists “manipulating” climate data is a lie.

  2. nyp says:

    BTW, the peer-reviewed scientific study in question did indeed include the “methods section” that you say is necessary in order to determine if the results are replicable.

  3. Winston Smith says:

    It’s all in the data aggregation…

    DARPA: The American people paid for NOAA, and own ANY and ALL information used to derive its reports. It should be public, even without a Congressional subpoena. Or do you not believe in transparency in government, as required by any legitimate republic?

    BTW, Climategate was real…

  4. nyp says:

    No, I don’t think a political committee should be forcing scientists to turn over all of their emails and texts absent some evidence of wrongdoing. It someone wants to show that the peer-reviewed scientific study is not replicable, they have all the data sets they need. This Republican committee is simply unhappy with the fact that a scientist’s report contradicts their ideological approach towards a factual subject.

    I am surprised that someone who believes that 9/11 was a US government conspiracy is so unconcerned about the government using its powers to harass people with whom it disagrees.

  5. Winston Smith says:

    Nice try, DARPA, but if there’s a conspiracy to foist a bullshit AGW upon us by some government agencies, I’m more than happy to see a Congressional committee get to the bottom of it, just like any other bullshit some part of the federal government has done or may do, no matter which party it involves.

    With all the big money and “important” people involved in legitimizing AGW, any light shone upon this corrupt mess is certainly welcomed. Or do you not believe in transparency in government, as required by any legitimate republic?

    War is Peace; Freedom is Slavery; Ignorance is Strength

  6. Rincon says:

    Sorry Winston. So far as I know, there was no data altered in “Climategate” Let me know if you have any proof of such.

    If you look at Thomas’ story, it’s all innuendo. So as long as we’re playing that game:
    “…Exxon didn’t just “know” about climate change: it conducted some of the original research. In the nineteen-seventies and eighties, the company employed top scientists who worked side by side with university researchers and the Department of Energy, even outfitting one of the company’s tankers with special sensors and sending it on a cruise to gather CO2 readings over the ocean. By 1977, an Exxon senior scientist named James Black was, according to his own notes, able to tell the company’s management committee that there was “general scientific agreement” that what was then called the greenhouse effect was most likely caused by man-made CO2;”

    “Exxon responded, instead, by helping to set up or fund extreme climate-denial campaigns.”

    Maybe if Exxon gives up it’s papers, NOAA will give up their Emails.

    In truth, for both sides, it depends on the laws at the time. If in house Emails are legally protected, so be it; if not, bring them out. It is a little frustrating though, that the laws haven’t kept up with the times. Corporations are treated much like individual citizens despite the fact that some have more power than many state and local governments.

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