A new climate website that everyone can trust?

I’ve just come across a new climate website, the “Climate Change National Forum“.

The idea is introduced here by John Nielsen-Gammon, who previously I had regarded as one of the more sensible climate scientists.

Apparently this is a new idea, to ‘develop a home’ for expert discussions to ‘educate the American public about climate change’, and he is not aware of any existing sites ‘that fit that bill’.  How he thinks his site is going to be any different from all the others is a mystery. He claims he’s trying to create a site that both ends of the spectrum can trust. But in the comments section below, he write“Real Climate is the best, and closest to what we’re doing,” (I’m not making this up, he really does say this!) though he does acknowledge that Realclimate has a ‘tainted reputation’.  He even claims that “Skeptical Science’s science is very high quality”.  It looks like it’s going to be just another of those sites churning out global warming propaganda while pretending to be balanced. 

Looking at the website of the new forum the first thing you notice is the pictures at the top. These include a graphic of the bogus 97% claim by the notorious John Cook, and an article from the only marginally more reliable activist scientist  Katharine Hayhoe, hiding the decline in warming by saying that the 2000s were warmer than the 1990s. There’s also a couple of silly comments from  a Fox News reporter.  A piece by Bart Verheggen describes Gavin Schmidt’s AGU talk as “fantastic” while Judith Curry’s was apparently “off-base”.   Now, JNG himself has written another article criticising Curry, just to show how balanced the site is. This is similar to what Roger Pielke calls “Stealth advocacy” – claiming to provide a balanced assessment of the facts while in fact promoting one particular viewpoint.

Why start off with Cook’s 97% and Fox News? It’s almost as if they are determined to alienate everybody.

Who do they think they are kidding?



11 thoughts on “A new climate website that everyone can trust?

  1. I note that John Nielsen-Gammon comments on that 97% article by agreeing with Jim Bouldin’s comment:

    “To be perfectly honest, this study and statement are fairly meaningless to me.”

    and promising to write more

  2. Interesting to see John and Bart and Jim all agreeing with each other so much about stuff. I guess that shows what a “diverse community” of contributors they’ve got!

    There doesn’t seem to be much fact-checking going on in the fact-checking section. If they were seriously interested in fact-checking the 97% nonsense, a quick google would have led to this or this or this or many others.

  3. Interested in your comment about Skeptical Science. They have a lot of info presumably refuting claims by “skeptics” but I have never seen a clause by clause debunking of their refutations. I don’t have the science background I need to confidently do that myself when someone throws one of their articles in my face. Can anyone point me in the right direction?

  4. Paul (Matthews), why don’t you join? You’re a scientist and you could probably make some valuable contributions regarding mathematical analysis, which of course is very common in climate studies.

    We’re really not trying to just do the same old thing here.

  5. Jim, thanks but no thanks. I feel I have burnt my boats here. Also there is so much I dont like about the forum in addition to what I have written here. Why the focus on ‘National’? Why the ‘aim to educate the American public’? Why the phase 1, science, to be followed by phase 2, policy? As Richard Tol said on twitter, the site shrieks advocacy screams activism.

  6. Well, with reference to Twitter, the record there shows that R. Tol and J. Curry have been invited to join the Forum. And now you, here.

    So it’s up to you really.

  7. Paul Stevens,

    this isn’t a bad suggestion:

    “[SkepSci] has a lot of info presumably refuting claims by “skeptics” but I have never seen a clause by clause debunking of their refutations. ”

    Yes, an antidote would be nice. But it would take half the Internet’s remaining volume to thoroughly detail SS’s errors—who would pay for such an encyclopedic endeavor? They don’t exactly throw grants at climate skeptic communicators. 😦

  8. “A new climate website that everyone can trust?”

    For what it’s worth, my own humble blog is still in its infancy but has already been praised as “equally offensive to both sides.” I’m sure you, too, will appreciate my obsessive fairmindedness.

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