Feeds

NZ beaks give climate skeptics the bird

Warming records weren’t cooked

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

A group of climate skeptics that includes Australian Dr Bob Carter has failed in its bid to have New Zealand’s High Court hear its complaint against that country’s National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA).

Dr Carter lined up with retired journalist Terry Dunleavy and computer modeler Bob Dedekind under the auspices of the New Zealand Climate Science Education Trust to accuse NIWA of fudging New Zealand’s climate record to present an alarmist picture of warming in New Zealand.

At issue was a data series first published in 1999 based on a series of seven weather stations (“7SS”), showing a 1°C warming trend in New Zealand over 100 years (which the Trust says is overstated), without applying a 1993 methodology developed by Rhoades and Salinger; that a later data set of eleven stations (11SS) was published in spite of what the Trust claimed were deficiencies in its data; and that the publication of 7SS “departed from recognized scientific opinion”.

In this 186-paragraph decision, High Court judge Geoffrey Venning rejected all grounds for the Trust’s case, noting along the way that the High Court is not competent to rule on questions of science.

Justice Venning noted “This Court should not seek to determine or resolve scientific questions demanding the evaluation of contentious expert opinion.”

A court can, however, resolve questions of evidence, and here, the judge had some harsh words for the NZ Climate Science Education Trust’s witnesses. As a journalist, Dunleavy’s status as an expert witness was dealt with sharply: “Mr Dunleavy has, in any event, failed to comply with High Court Rule 9.43, and could not be regarded as an impartial expert”.

In a decision that has been seized on by bloggers such as Jo Nova, the judge also dismissed Dedekind’s evidence, stating that his “general expertise in basic statistical techniques does not extend to any particular specialised experience or qualifications in the specific field of applying statistical techniques in the field of climate science.”

Even Dr Carter’s evidence, as the sole expert witness admitted by the High Court, didn’t convince the judge. The Trust asked the court to find that NIWA had failed in its statutory duty, that its methodology was at fault, that it made errors of fact, and that publication of the climate data was unreasonable. The court dismissed all grounds for action. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
GRAV WAVE DRAMA: 'Big Bang echo' may have been grit on the scanner – boffins
Exit Planet Dust on faster-than-light expansion of universe
Mine Bitcoins with PENCIL and PAPER
Forget Sudoku, crunch SHA-256 algos
SpaceX Dragon cargo truck flies 3D printer to ISS: Clawdown in 3, 2...
Craft berths at space station with supplies, experiments, toys
'This BITE MARK is a SMOKING GUN': Boffins probe ancient assault
Tooth embedded in thigh bone may tell who pulled the trigger
DOLPHINS SMELL MAGNETS – did we hear that right, boffins?
Xavier's School for Gifted Magnetotaceans
Big dinosaur wowed females with its ENORMOUS HOOTER
That's right, Doris, I've got biggest snout in the prehistoric world
Japanese volcano eruption reportedly leaves 31 people presumed dead
Hopes fade of finding survivors on Mount Ontake
That glass of water you just drank? It was OLDER than the SUN
One MEELLION years older. Some of it anyway
Canberra drone team dances a samba in Outback Challenge
CSIRO's 'missing bushwalker' found and watered
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.