The recent and concerning collapse of the once revered scientific process in large parts of the climate change and medical community is detailed in a highly critical ‘open review’ paper from the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF). Someday, charge the authors, there will need to be an inquiry into how so many scientific bodies abandoned core principles of scientific integrity, took strong positions on unsettled science, took people’s word for things uncritically, and silenced those who tried to continue the scientific endeavour.
Universities have abandoned their historical role of open and disinterested enquiry on behalf of humanity, and “should be sanctioned for this by revoking their charitable status”. Group-think that maintains prevailing fads and supresses dissent on behalf of alleged ‘consensus’ is the opposite of the central purpose of universities. Mainstream media have long been uncritical receptacles for alarmist ‘clickbait’ political scare stories, and this, it might be added, encourages self-promotion among aggressive publicity-hungry scientists. There are many errors and deceptions and much censorship, state the authors, blighting the complete story being told in an unbiased manner. Singling out the behaviour of state broadcaster the BBC, they note: “Any reasonable observer will wonder whether Ofcom [the state regulator] is asleep at the wheel, not requiring the BBC to correct the errors it has been made aware of by experts, nor return to some form of neutrality.”
The report is mainly written by Professor Michael Kelly, the former Prince Philip Professor of Engineering, Trinity Hall, Cambridge University, and Clive Hambler, Science Lecturer at Hertford College, Oxford. There is also economic input from Professor Roger Koppl from Syracuse University. The full GWPF report is due to be published in December and the paper is currently open for review, comments and contributions from other academics. The GWPF notes habitual attacks on its work from activists, and its ‘open review’ policy is explained here.
The realisation that genuine free speech and scientific enquiry is being replaced by strict politicised requirements to adhere to orthodoxy and pre-set narratives grows with every appalling ‘climategate’-style scandal. Regular readers will need little reminding of the recent retraction of the Alimonti et al. paper by Springer Nature following a year-long campaign by a small group of activist scientists and journalists. The paper, whose lead author was Professor of Physics Gianluca Alimonti, reviewed past weather trends and found no data to support the politically-termed ‘climate emergency’. World headlines have also been devoted to the astonishing story of Dr. Patrick Brown of Johns Hopkins University, who blew the whistle on his recent paper published in Nature on California wildfires. He said he wrote it according to the approved script boosting the role of ‘climate change’ and downplaying any natural causes and the horrendous role played by arsonists.
The full publication of the GWPF paper will add to the growing concern and alarm about the science advice given to governments and the media for onward distribution to the public. The corruptions involved in this process are seemingly built into the current system. Trillions of dollars now back the Net Zero collectivisation project across the world, and most scientists, largely paid for by politicians and wealthy green elites, are fully onboard the gravy train.
The GWPF authors aim to push back by maximising the diversity of advice, challenging advice through opposing ‘red’ teams, ensuring a reasonable level of accountability for scientists to discourage hype, and protecting scientists from career damage if they rationally disagree with mainstream views. Institutions should not take official positions on scientific issues, “since this stifles diversity of thought, freedom of speech and the reliability of advice”. Scepticism must be recovered as a respectful term for scientific behaviour from its present position as an insult, “and reinstated as a core duty of universities and learned societies”, demand the authors.
The authors are particularly dismissive of the role of computer models in the recent Covid pandemic and the promotion of climate change alarm. In the U.K., the “gross misuse” of Covid computer models in the absence of robust data to measure them against is noted. Along with a “paucity of challenge” to scientific advice, this may have contributed to “death tolls, economic decline and societal ills”.
On the climate side, the models have produced temperature forecasts two to three times higher than the actual data eventually showed. What is worse is that the results are getting more inaccurate. If the models were actually modelling the evolving climate, the gap would be narrowing. The inaccuracy is a “major embarrassment” and would not be tolerated in any other field of science, and certainly not in engineering. Separation of human-induced warming from natural temperature variation is far more difficult than that portrayed by the UN-funded Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change IPCC), since experimentation and replication is “simply not possible”. The inability to model significant parts of the atmosphere are “fatal flaws” in any system that is supposed to be predicting future climate change.
Yet, as regular readers will again recall, computer models play a vital part in promoting the unhinged Thermogeddon fantasies of people like the UN Secretary-General Antonio ‘global boiling’ Guterres. The UN-backed IPCC seems addicted to using computer models incorporating a ‘pathway’ of 5°C global warming within less than 80 years. Over 40% of its impact predictions are based on this forecast, despite an admission it is of “low likelihood”. According to a recent Clintel report, over 50% of clickbait climate science papers incorporate this pathway in a seemingly desperate attempt to attract the attention of activists writing in the mainstream media.
Chris Morrison is the Daily Sceptic‘s Environment Editor.