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[greenyes] Global Warming and Response to Critics
Last week I posted a Wall Street Journal article describing the efforts of a 
mining engineer, Stephen McIntyre, to challenge one of the graphs used to 
support global warming, the so called "hockey stick" representing higher 
temperatures in the 20th century, which was developed by Michael Mann.

Patty Bates asked how I reacted to that article.

At the outset, as the WSJ article itself repeatedly acknowledged, this 
debate over the hockey stick is a sideshow that does not affect the 
overwhelming evidence of warming associated since the onset of the 
Industrial Revolution with increased fossil fuel burning and other manmade 
sources of greenhouse gases, such as landfills.

But, to be fair to the other side, the hockey stick neatly pulled many 
stands of the case together in a visually understandable format.

I haven't had occasion to read the technical papers, but from the newspaper 
article, what McIntyre is doing is attempting to replicate Mann's study as a 
way of testing its validity.

To me it's not important whether McIntyre has the noblest of motives, both 
sides of any debate ought to be prepared to rationally defend the factual 
assertions it makes...otherwise what one is saying quickly descends into 

If the article is correct in stating that Mann has refused to share his data 
base and computer codes with McIntyre, then I believe that is wrong.  It 
appears that Mann views McIntyre as a gadfly, and he may be right in that 
regard. But, I don't believe that that gainsays anyone's obligation to 
support one's contentions with the facts relied upon.  The fact that the 
dominant weight of scientific opinion in this case mirrors the views of most 
of those on the listserve should not lessen that obligation now that the 
shoe is on the other foot from most of the situations we are in.

On a note closer to home, Steve Pollard has challenged my statements that 
landfills are a major source of greenhouse gases being grossly undercounted 
by EPA, which has ignored the issue in reliance upon arbitrary assumptions 
that are so absurd they are mathematical impossibilities.  The fact that 
Steve appears to have based his disagreement solely on those same impossible 
EPA assumptions, without any further facts, is immaterial to my obligation 
to support what I say. In the next few weeks, I will be sharing with him an 
analysis that supports my belief that landfills add something more like 12% 
rather than EPA's assumed 3% to greenhouse gases, so that he can respond to 
each of the underlying points.

If we can only strip away as much as possible the rhetoric and dig down into 
the underlying facts, this deeply divided country of ours will go a long way 
to reach comity with each other.


Peter Anderson, President
4513 Vernon Blvd. Suite 15
Madison, WI 53705-4964
Ph: (608) 231-1100
Fax: (608) 233-0011
Cell: (608) 698-1314
eMail: anderson@no.address

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