Climategate 2.0: Wahl helps enviros prepare for Congressional testimony

Yet more evidence that IPCC scientists have been working hand-in-glove with enviro activists.

From the Climategate 2.0 collection, Alfred University’s Eugene Wahl explains why he’s tardy in responding to Keith Briffa:

… I’ve also been a lot involved with helping to get a person from the Pew Center for Global Climate Change ready to testify in front of the House Energy and Environment Committee tomorrow. That is why I couldn’t get this done and sent to you earlier today.

Until it imploded earlier this month, the Pew Center on Global Climate Change was a major activist group.

The complete e-mail is below.

From: Keith Briffa []
Sent: Mon 7/31/2006 10:29 AM
To: Wahl, Eugene R
Subject: RE: confidential
First Gene – let me say that I never intended that you should spend
so much time on this – though I really appreciate your take on these
points. The one you highlight here – correctly warns me that in
succumbing to the temptation to be lazy in the sense of the brief
answer that I have provided – I do give an implied endorsement of
the sense of the whole comment. This is not, of course what I
intended. I simply meant to agree that some reference to the
“divergence” issue was necessitated . I will revise the reply to say
briefly that I do not agree with the interpretation of the reviewer.
I am attaching what I have done (see blue highlighting) to the
section in response to comments (including the addition of the needed
extra section on the “tree-ring issues” called for by several
people). I have had no feedback yet on this as it has not been
generally circulated , but thought you might like to see it. PLEASE
REMEMBER that this is “for your eyes only ” . Please do NOT feel that
I am asking /expecting you to go through this in any detail – but
given the trouble you have taken,I thought it reasonable to give
you a private look. Cheers
At 07:16 27/07/2006, you wrote:
>Hi Keith:
>Here is the text with my comments. I will go over the “stolen”
>parts (highlighted in blue outline) for a final time tomorrow
>morning, but I wanted to get this to you ASAP. The main new point I
>have to make is added in bold/blue font on pp. 101-103. I question
>the way the response to the comment there is currently worded, as it
>seems to imply that the divergence issue really does invalidate any
>dendro-based reconstructions before about 1850–which I imagine is
>not what you would like to say. I give a series of arguments
>against this as a general conclusion. Maybe I got over-bold in
>doing so, as in my point (1) I’m examining issues that are at the
>very core of your expertise! Excuse me that one, but I decided to
>jump in anyway. Let me know if I got it wrong in any way!
>There are other quite minor suggestions (mostly focused on
>referencing other responses in a few places) that are also in
>bold/blue. These go on into the “120’s” in terms of page numbers.
>This is really a lot of work you’ve taken on, and I REALLY
>appreciate what you and the others are doing!
>[I’ve also been a lot involved with helping to get a person from the
>Pew Center for Global Climate Change ready to testify in front of
>the House Energy and Environment Committee tomorrow. That is why I
>couldn’t get this done and sent to you earlier today. Send Mike
>Mann and Jay Gulledge (Pew Center) all good thoughts for strength and clarity.]
>NB — “r” towards the end of the filename stands for my middle initial.
>Peace, Gene
>Dr. Eugene R. Wahl
>Asst. Professor of Environmental Studies
>Alfred University
>1 Saxon Drive
>Alfred, NY 14802
>From: Keith Briffa []
>Sent: Mon 7/24/2006 3:16 PM
>To: Wahl, Eugene R
>Subject: RE: confidential
>here is where I am up to now with my responses (still a load to do) –
>you can see that I have “borrowed (stolen)” from 2 of your responses
>in a significant degree – please assure me that this OK (and will not
>later be obvious) hopefully.
>You will get the whole text(confidentially again ) soon. You could
>also see that I hope to be fair to Mike – but he can be a little
>unbalanced in his remarks sometime – and I have had to disagree with
>his interpretations of some issues also.
>Please do not pass these on to anyone at all.
>Will pass all comments to you before they are fixed in stone- nothing
>from review article will be mentioned.
>Really grateful to you – thanks
>At 05:08 22/07/2006, you wrote:
> >Hi Keith:
> >
> >Glad to help. (!)
> >
> >If I could get a chance to look over the sections of my text you
> >would post to the comments before you do, I would appreciate it. If
> >this is a burden/problem let me know and we’ll work it out.
> >
> >If it is anything from the Wahl-Ammann paper, of course that is fine
> >to use at once since it is publicly available. There will only be
> >exceedingly minor/few changes in the galleys, including a footnote
> >pointing to the extended RE benchmarking analysis contained in the
> >Ammann-Wahl review article.
> >
> >What I am concerned about for the time being is that nothing in the
> >review article shows up anywhere. It is just going in, and
> >confidentiality is important. The only exception to this are the
> >points I make in my blue comments in the big review file on page
> >104, concerning the MM way of benchmarking the RE statistic. Those
> >comments are fine to repeat at this point. [Please excuse my
> >hesitance in this way.]
> >
> >Actually, all the other blue comments I made in the big review file
> >are also fine to use at once.
> >
> >
> >Again, if this request is in any way a problem, let me know and
> >we’ll figure out something.
> >
> >
> >Peace, Gene
> >Dr. Eugene R. Wahl
> >Asst. Professor of Environmental Studies
> >Alfred University
> >
> >________________________________
> >
> >From: Keith Briffa []
> >Sent: Fri 7/21/2006 2:00 PM
> >To: Wahl, Eugene R
> >Subject: RE: confidential
> >
> >Gene
> >your comments have been really useful and reassuring that I am not
> >doing MM a disservice. I will use some sections of your text in my
> >comments that will be eventually archived so hope this is ok with
> >you. I will keep the section in the chapter very brief – but will
> >cite all the papers to avoid claims of bias. I really would like to
> >discuss the whole issue of the reconstruction differences at a later
> >, less stressful time. I completely accept the arguments about the
> >limitation in the r2 and the value of capturing longer-term variance
> >. I think I will have to stop now as the temp and humidity are killing here.
> >
> >Thanks a lot again
> >
> >Keith
> >
> >At 18:39 21/07/2006, you wrote:
> > >Hi Keith:
> > >
> > >I’m sorry that there is a bit to digest…although I know it is just
> > >a result of the nature of things.
> > >
> > >By the way, copied below is a synopsis that I sent this morning to a
> > >person in DC who is working on all this with regard to the House of
> > >Representative hearings. Evidently, there is to be at least one
> > >more hearing next week, and Mike Mann will go. The person I sent
> > >this to is trying to understand the importance of the proxy PC
> > >issues –especially how, no matter what way the PC extraction is
> > >done, the reconstructions converge if the structures actually
> > >present in the data are not tossed out by truncating the number
> > >retained PCs at a too low level. What I’ve copied is this
> > >synopsis. I think it is straightforward — maybe a bit dense, but
> > >at least brief.
> > >
> > >Also, let me know if I can help on the issue of RE vs r^2. I could
> > >write a few brief sentences as something for you to look at if you
> > >would like. Wahl-Ammann show very clearly that there is objectively
> > >demonstrated skill at the low-frequency level of the verification
> > >period mean for all the MBH segments, although the earlier MBH
> > >segments do have really low r^2 values (indicating very little skill
> > >at the interannual level). Our argument that to throw out the
> > >reconstruction completely based on the fastest varying frequency,
> > >when it has objectively demonstrable meaning at lower frequencies,
> > >is to me quite reasonable. That it is some how entirely ad hoc, as
> > >McIntyre claims in one (more?) of his comments, is neither logical
> > >nor factual in my perspective. The idea of frequency dependent
> > >skill/non-skill is not new to the literature, and the independent
> > >re-reviewer that Steve Schneider had look over Wahl-Ammann said s/he
> > >had experienced this issue in his/her work. G.
> > >
> > >
> > >****************************** COPIED TEXT ******************************
> > >
> > >What it boils down to in the end is as follows:
> > >
> > >1) The different reference periods used to calculate proxy PCs from
> > >N. America (calibration only for MBH, full period for MM) only have
> > >the effect of re-arranging how the hockey stick shape appears across
> > >the rank ordering of PCs. In MBH it is concentrated in PC1. In the
> > >full-period method, it is spread over PCs 1 and 2. If one adds PCs
> > >1 and 2 (either arithmetically or as vectors) from either
> > >convention, you get an essentially IDENTICAL time series, only the
> > >amplitudes are a bit different. [Note that the input data were
> > >centered AND standardized before being put into the PC calculation
> > >algorithm. This is important, as shown below.]
> > > IS MINISCULE — MBH is colder over 1400-1449 by 0.05 degrees!
> > >
> > >2) IF the data are centered but NOT standardized and are input into
> > >in a PCA algorithm using the variance-covariance matrix and not the
> > >correlation matrix (the way MM did it), then the hockey stick shape
> > >shows up in PC4. MM in fact reported this first in their 2005
> > >Energy and Environment article. In effect, the first two PCs are
> > >pre-processing step. [When the correlation matrix is used instead
> > >in the PCA algorithm, then the standardization is in effect done by
> > >the algorithm, because all the correlations are “standardized” by
> > >construction–they all range between 0 and 1.]
> > > When 4 PCs from this calculation method are used rather
> > > than 2 PCs calculated as above, then the RECONSTRUCTION CONVERGES
> > >
> > >3) Thus, all the different “flavors” for PC extraction have
> > >essentially no effect on reconstruction when one does the exercise
> > >of adding PCs sequentially from 2 to 5 for any flavor. In the case
> > >of (1), the reconstructions converge by the second PC. In the case
> > >of (2), they converge by PC4. They don’t change with higher order
> > PCs added.
> > > the same underlying information is there in all cases, it is only
> > > how the structures present in these data are spread across the rank
> > > order of PCs, as explained. The simple exercise of taking the
> > > reconstructions to convergence across the number of PCs used shows
> > > this clearly.
> > >
> > >4) In fact, MM essentially say all this in the 2005 EE
> > >strongly claim that the movement of the hockey stick shape to the
> > >4th PC shows it is not a leading pattern of variance as MBH claim,
> > >and thus should not be used. This might be logical if their
> > >analysis was an apples-apples comparison, but it is not, due to the
> > >PCA method they use and applying it on NON-standardized data.
> > > THESE TWO DIFFERENCES (which one can only fully get
> > > from their actual code, not in the articles published) DRIVE THEIR
> > > that convergence to something like the MBH result is expectable,
> > > and indeed MUST happen given the data used, because the hockey
> > > stick shape is actually IN the data, it is NOT an artifact of PC
> > > calculation procedure.
> > >
> > >
> > >5) FINALLY, note that all of this rests on the foundation that
> > >keeping the bristlecone pine records in the data is appropriate,
> > >which Caspar and I find can be reasonable presumption. If one
> > >believes that the bristlecone data should be removed, then the
> > >1400-1449 reconstruction does not pass verification testing with the
> > >RE statistic, and the MBH reconstruction should commence from 1450 on out.
> > >
> > >Although there are a number of reasons to keep the bristlecone data
> > >in, maybe the most compelling reason they are a NON-ISSUE is that,
> > >over the common period of overlap (1450-1980), the reconstruction
> > >based on using them from 1400-1980 is very close to the
> > >reconstruction based on omitting them from 1450-1980. Since the
> > >issues about the bristlecone response to climate are primarily about
> > >1850 onwards, especially 1900 onwards [KEITH — PLEASE LET ME KNOW
> > >IF I AM NOT ACCURATE IN THIS], there is no reason to expect that
> > >their behavior during 1400-1449 is in any way anomalous to their
> > >behavior from 1450-1850. Thus, THERE IS NO REASON TO THINK THAT THE
> > >
> > >
> > >****************************** END OF COPIED TEXT *******************
> > >
> > >Peace, Gene
> > >Dr. Eugene R. Wahl
> > >Asst. Professor of Environmental Studies
> > >Alfred University
> > >
> > >607-871-2604
> > >1 Saxon Drive
> > >Alfred, NY 14802
> > >
> > >________________________________
> > >
> > >From: Keith Briffa []
> > >Sent: Fri 7/21/2006 4:51 AM
> > >To: Wahl, Eugene R
> > >Subject: RE: confidential
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >Gene
> > >thanks a lot for this – I need to digest and I will come back to you.
> > >
> > >thanks again
> > >Keith
> >
> >–
> >Professor Keith Briffa,
> >Climatic Research Unit
> >University of East Anglia
> >Norwich, NR4 7TJ, U.K.
> >
> >Phone: +44-1603-593909
> >Fax: +44-1603-507784
> >
> >
>Professor Keith Briffa,
>Climatic Research Unit
>University of East Anglia
>Norwich, NR4 7TJ, U.K.
>Phone: +44-1603-593909
>Fax: +44-1603-507784>

Professor Keith Briffa,
Climatic Research Unit
University of East Anglia
Norwich, NR4 7TJ, U.K.
Phone: +44-1603-593909
Fax: +44-1603-507784