NYTimes: Wojick vs. Schmidt

David Wojick offers facts. Gavin Schmidt starts with ad hominem attack.

In “Behind the Controversy, an Effort to Rewrite Curriculum on Climate Change,” the New York Times reports:

… Asked to specify what those points of debate are, Dr. Wojick wrote at length:

“Regarding the warming issue, it is scientifically fascinating. There are 5 different systems for estimating global temperatures, with a 6th in development. The problem is that these systems contradict one another. While all show some warming it occurs in different amounts and most importantly at very different times. Science needs something specific to explain but we just do not have that with warming. For example, HadCRU, UAH and RSS show no warming for the last 10-15 years, while GISS and BEST show steady warming,” he said, referring to the systems.

“So has it warmed or not, we do not know. It is a grand challenge. This is scientifically fascinating and should be taught,” he concluded.

But climate scientists who looked at Dr. Wojick’s evaluation of the data say that he is willfully misreading the findings. “You have to be specially trained to be so blind,” said Gavin Schmidt, a climate scientist with Goddard Institute for Space Studies.

Dr. Schmidt says that the climate records are actually all in agreement about long-term warming trends. This is clearest in data that has been adjusted for variations in El Nino and volcanoes. If the El Nino effects are included, there was a big spike in 1998 which models don’t necessarily have. But to say that we have not warmed is to ignore the underlying trend line up, he explained. The models and observations all agree, for example, that the last decade was the warmest on record.

“The big issue with creating curricula is cutting through the details to find what is important,” said Dr. Schmidt, “Instead, he is using details to obscure.”

2 thoughts on “NYTimes: Wojick vs. Schmidt”

  1. And this previous comment from Jeff is yet another indication of how sensitive everyone is anymore! One can’t say the least little thing for concerns that someone somewhere is just so ready to be offended by any comment that can be misused or miscontrued!! Having nothing to do with the comments being discussed!!

  2. “You have to be specially trained to be so blind,” said Gavin Schmidt

    Yes he used the sentence as a metaphor but these are the kind of discriminatory metaphors that organizations for the blind have worked tirelessly to negate. From his statement it seems he believes degrees of blindness are driven by levels of ignorance. I suspect he doesn’t realize how contemptuous the actual statement is. NASA should really invite in some advocacy training from disability groups.

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