A scientist who has long disagreed with the dominant view that global warming stems mainly from human activity has resigned from a panel that is completing a report for the Bush administration on temperature trends in the atmosphere.
The scientist, Roger A. Pielke Sr., a climatologist at Colorado State University, said most of the other scientists working on the report were too deeply wedded to particular views and were discounting minority opinions on the quality of climate records and possible causes of warming.
Wedded to particular views is a fancy phrase for groupthink. I guess Roger A. Pielke is someone interested in real science, which means objective critical thinking, not desperation to fit a round peg into a square hypothesis.
"When you appoint people to a committee who are experts in an area but evaluating their own work," he said in an interview, "it's very difficult for them to think outside the box of their research."
Science is replete with examples of doom sayers, nay sayers and kill joys who love building careers out of criticizing people who don't think in the mainstream. Most of these people are a roadblock to innovation, not a source. The problem is, you can get quite a bit of useful data from these people, along with sloppy analysis and conclusions. Accept the former. Discard the latter.
Administration officials said the resignation would not affect the quality or credibility of the report, a draft of which is being finished in the next few weeks.
The report, the first product of President Bush's 10-year climate change research program, is likely to be closely scrutinized by climate scientists and environmental and industry groups for any sign of bias or distortion.
Oh God. This is beginning to reek of another Bush rollover. All the suspicious tags are in place. You have benign treatment by the Times, Strong dissent on one side of the issue and hand wringing over how the report will look. Recent environmental visits by Senators. Go out and buy that Glade plug-in today.
Dr. Pielke contends that changes in landscapes like the spread of agriculture and cities could explain many of the surface climate trends, while most climate experts now see a clear link to accumulating emissions of heat-trapping gases like carbon dioxide.
Over the last 130 thousand years the climate went from warm, to ice all over everything, back to warm again. We didn't melt those glaciers with our SUV emissions. The trends these guys are talking about look like noise on the geological charts.
This is another bad sign. Be prepared to be bent over like Marcellus Wallace in Pulp Fiction. Bring an extra pillow for the saw horse and a good book.
James R. Mahoney, an assistant secretary of commerce and the director of the federal climate research program, said the scientists involved in generating the report were "representative of the broad views" on the questions.
It looks like the data didn't fit their desired conclusions, so they decided to discredit the data.
Dr. Pielke said he decided to resign after three papers on the troposphere trends were published online on Aug. 11 by the journal Science. The papers said errors in satellite and balloon studies in the tropics explained why earlier analyses failed to find warming in the troposphere.
Several authors of those papers, who are also authors of the coming government report, said at the time that the new findings would be discussed in the report.
Dr. Pielke said those statements were an effort to influence the shape of the final report.
Several authors of those papers denied this, saying the process of creating the reports is intended to be public, while the contents remain confidential for now.
So the guy, who doesn't fall in line with the moonbat theory of global warming, quits over what looks like the looming equivalent of a scientific gay pride parade. We have the report data, being worked over in a massage parlor. We have recent visits by McCain, Hillary and company, fawning over grave conditions in Alaska. Put it all together.
We will see. I'm expecting an effort to garner public hysteria.
John R. Christy, another author of the coming report who like Dr. Pielke doubts that human-caused warming poses a serious threat, said that while disagreements were normal, the effort to generate the report was improving understanding.
"This process is the worst way to generate scientific information," said Dr. Christy, who teaches at the University of Alabama, Huntsville. "Except for all the others."
Visit Panelist Who Dissents on Climate Change Quits in the NYT for the original article by ANDREW C. REVKIN