Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Sweet Moment for Steve McIntyre...

If you've been following the debates on the science behind global warming, you already know who Steve McIntyre is – the proprietor of the Climate Audit web site and quiet, diligent checker of the climate scientists' work, the gadfly who is always insisting on replicable results from honest and accurate data.  Mention his name in the presence of Michael “hockey stick” Mann, and you'll get an earful of vitriol and a face full of spittle.

A recent Freedom of Information Act request has revealed emails and other evidence that Steve McIntyre's actions had an actual impact.  Several scientists who contributed to the infamous “hockey stick” report agreed with McIntyre's criticism – much to Michael Mann's very vocal chagrin.  In the end, their inability to reconstruct the result with honest and accurate data caused a key paper to be withdrawn.

The gears of science grind more slowly than I had expected after the original ClimateGate revelations several years ago.  But they are grinding.  Here we have an example of traditional, peer-reviewed publication actually working: a paper by the warmists was forced to be withdrawn, and Steve McIntyre's criticism was the proximate cause of its withdrawal.  The results criticized by McIntyre are not some trivial sideshow – they are the main act in the hockey stick result that has led to so much wackiness in the funding and policy decisions in its wake.

Congratulations, Mr. McIntyre.  Let's hope this first instance of gnashing gears leads to many more...

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