from: Phil Jones <p.jonesatXYZxyz.ac.uk>
subject: Fwd: CCNet: DEBUNKING THE "DANGEROUS CLIMATE CHANGE" SCARE
Presumably you've seen all this - the forwarded email from Tim. I got this email from
McIntyre a few days ago. As far as I'm concerned he has the data - sent ages ago. I'll
tell him this, but that's all - no code. If I can find it, it is likely to be hundreds of
uncommented fortran ! I recall the program did a lot more that just average the series.
I know why he can't replicate the results early on - it is because there was a variance
correction for fewer series.
See you in Bern.
In keeping with the spirit of your suggestions to look at some of the other multiproxy
publications, I've been looking at Jones et al . The methodology here is obviously
more straightforward than MBH98. However, while I have been able to substantially emulate
your calculations, I have been unable to do so exactly. The differences are larger in the
Since I have been unable to replicate the results exactly based on available materials, I
would appreciate a copy of the actual data set used in Jones et al  as well as the
code used in these calculations.
There is an interesting article on replication by Anderson et al., some distinguished
economists, here http://research.stlouisfed.org/wp/2005/2005-014.pdf discussing the
issue of replication in applied economics and referring favorably to our attempts in
respect to MBH98.
Regards, Steve McIntyre
X-Mailer: QUALCOMM Windows Eudora Version 126.96.36.199
Date: Tue, 26 Apr 2005 13:28:53 +0100
To: Phil Jones <p.jonesatXYZxyz.ac.uk>,"Keith Briffa" <k.briffaatXYZxyz.ac.uk>
From: Tim Osborn <t.osbornatXYZxyz.ac.uk>
Subject: Fwd: CCNet: DEBUNKING THE "DANGEROUS CLIMATE CHANGE" SCARE
Keith and Phil,
you both feature in the latest issue of CCNet:
(4) GLOBAL WARMING AND DATA
Steve Verdon, Outside the Beltway, 25 April 2005
A new paper (http://research.stlouisfed.org/wp/2005/2005-014.pdf) from the St. Luis
Federal Reserve Bank has an interesting paer on how important it is to archive not only
the data but the code for empirical papers. While the article looks mainly at economic
research there is also a lesson to be drawn from this paper about the current state of
research for global warming/climate change. One of the hallmarks of scientific research
is that the results can be replicable. Without this, the results shouldn't be considered
valid let alone used for making policy.
Ideally, investigators should be willing to share their data and programs so as to
encourage other investigators to replicate and/or expand on their results.3 Such
behavior allows science to move forward in a Kuhn-style linear fashion, with each
generation seeing further from the shoulders of the previous generation.4 At a minimum,
the results of an endeavor-if it is to be labeled "scientific"-should be replicable,
i.e., another researcher using the same methods should be able to reach the same result.
In the case of applied economics using econometric software, this means that another
researcher using the same data and the same computer software should achieve the same
However, this is precisely the problem that Steven McIntyre and Ross McKitrick have run
into since looking into the methodology used by Mann, Hughes and Bradely (1998) (MBH98),
the paper that came up with the famous "hockey stick" for temperature reconstructions.
For example, this post here shows that McIntyre was prevented from accessing Mann's FTP
site. This is supposedly a public site where interested researchers can download not
only the source code, but also the data. This kind of behavior by Mann et. al. is simply
unscientific and also rather suspicious. Why lock out a researcher who is trying to
verify your results...do you have something to hide professors Mann, Bradley and Huges?
Not only has this been a problem has this been a problem for McIntyre with regards to
MBH98, but other studies as well. This post at Climate Audit shows that this problem is
actually quite serious.
Crowley and Lowery (2000)
After nearly a year and over 25 emails, Crowley said in mid-October that he has
misplaced the original data and could only find transformed and smoothed versions. This
makes proper data checking impossible, but I'm planning to do what I can with what he
sent. Do I need to comment on my attitude to the original data being "misplaced"?
Briffa et al. (2001)
There is no listing of sites in the article or SI (despite JGR policies requiring
citations be limited to publicly archived data). Briffa has refused to respond to any
requests for data. None of these guys have the least interest in some one going through
their data and seem to hoping that the demands wither away. I don't see how any policy
reliance can be made on this paper with no available data.
Esper et al. (2002)
This paper is usually thought to show much more variation than the hockey stick. Esper
has listed the sites used, but most of them are not archived. Esper has not responded to
any requests for data. '
Jones and Mann (2003); Mann and Jones (2004)
Phil Jones sent me data for these studies in July 2004, but did not have the weights
used in the calculations, which Mann had. Jones thought that the weights did not matter,
but I have found differently. I've tried a few times to get the weights, but so far have
been unsuccessful. My surmise is that the weighting in these papers is based on
correlations to local temperature, as opposed to MBH98-MBH99 where the weightings are
based on correlations to the temperature PC1 (but this is just speculation right now.)
The papers do not describe the methods in sufficient detail to permit replication.
Jacoby and d'Arrigo (northern treeline)
I've got something quite interesting in progress here. If you look at the original 1989
paper, you will see that Jacoby "cherry-picked" the 10 "most temperature-sensitive"
sites from 36 studied. I've done simulations to emulate cherry-picking from persistent
red noise and consistently get hockey stick shaped series, with the Jacoby northern
treeline reconstruction being indistinguishable from simulated hockey sticks. The other
26 sites have not been archived. I've written to Climatic Change to get them to
intervene in getting the data. Jacoby has refused to provide the data. He says that his
research is "mission-oriented" and, as an ex-marine, he is only interested in a "few
Jacoby has also carried out updated studies on the Gasp� series, so essential to MBH98.
I've seen a chronology using the new data, which looks completely different from the old
data (which is a hockey stick). I've asked for the new data, but Jacoby-d'Arrigo have
refused it saying that the old data is "better" for showing temperature increases. Need
I comment? I've repeatedly asked for the exact location of the Gasp� site for nearly 9
months now (I was going to privately fund a re-sampling program, but Jacoby, Cook and
others have refused to disclose the location.) Need I comment?
Jones et al (1998)
Phil Jones stands alone among paleoclimate authors, as a diligent correspondent. I have
data and methods from Jones et al 1998. I have a couple of concerns here, which I'm
working on. I remain concerned about the basis of series selection - there is an obvious
risk of "cherrypicking" data and I'm very unclear what steps, if any, were taken to
avoid this. The results for the middle ages don't look robust to me. I have particular
concerns with Briffa's Polar Urals series, which takes the 11th century results down
(Briffa arguing that 1032 was the coldest year of the millennium). It looks to me like
the 11th century data for this series does not meet quality control criteria and Briffa
was over-reaching. Without this series, Jones et al. 1998 is high in the 11th century.
Note that none of this actually "disproves" the global warming hypothesis. However, it
does raise very, very serious questions in my opinion. We are talking about enacting
policies to curb global warming that could cost not billions, but trillions of dollars.
Shouldn't we at least be allowed to see the source code, the data and ask for
replication at a minimum? I think the answer is simple: YES!!
Dr Timothy J Osborn
Climatic Research Unit
School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia
Norwich NR4 7TJ, UK
phone: +44 1603 592089
fax: +44 1603 507784
Prof. Phil Jones
Climatic Research Unit Telephone +44 (0) 1603 592090
School of Environmental Sciences Fax +44 (0) 1603 507784
University of East Anglia
Norwich Email p.jonesatXYZxyz.ac.uk