NIWA oddly denies everythingRichard Treadgold | October 9, 2010
Just a quick response to Hot Topic’s insipid rebuttal to my update on Wednesday to our stoush with NIWA. I’ll write in more detail later.
In NIWA V CRANKS 4: SHOOT OUT AT THE FANTASY FACTORY this morning, Renowden, in typically slippery style, omits in every material instance the fact that NIWA’s statements in their Statement of Defence are precisely what I say they were.
In other words, he doesn’t refute what I say. Anyone can verify this by getting the two Statements and comparing them; it’s a bit tedious, but immensely rewarding, and will be especially so, I guess, for those with legal training. Some mysteries remain for the rest of us, but that’s why we ask questions.
Still, I have told the truth. For instance, Renowden notes that I say:
NIWA has formally stated that, in their opinion, they are not required to use the best available information nor to apply the best scientific practices and techniques available at any given time. They don’t think that forms any part of their statutory obligation to pursue “excellence”.
Then he accuses me:
In fact, NIWA’s statement specifically points out that it is required to “pursue excellence in all its activities” (paragraph 4, quoting from the CRI Act 1992). Treadgold is, it appears, hoping no-one will actually read the details and see where he’s attempting to mislead.
But he’s the one omitting crucial details. His glaring omission is that NIWA does actually deny having to use the best information and techniques.
Admission and denial create a mystery
For in NIWA’s defence statement (their Paragraph 5) they admit Paragraph 4(a)(1)(b) “That a Crown Research Institute should pursue excellence in all its activities.”
But then they deny our Paragraph 5. What does that say? Simply, in full: “In discharging its duties NIWA is required to use the best available information, and to apply the best scientific practices and techniques available at any relevant time.”
To say the one while denying the other makes a mystery of both the admission and the denial, because to any ordinary reading of the words they have the same subject. I’m scratching my head to understand what point they’re making; it’s hard to argue against the ordinary meaning of those words!
Glaciers retreat — except those that advance
So, if anyone can see how you could pursue excellence while NOT using the best available information or applying the best scientific practices and techniques, let us know!
But when the dust has settled, all the temperature records will still show that NZ has warmed, and the glaciers will still have retreated.
Glaciers have retreated? Oh, yes, except those that have advanced, of course. How does he know the new record still shows similar warming to the 7SS? Does he realise that the raw readings from those stations show no warming and never will?
Then Renowden grizzles again, admitting that he really hasn’t been listening very well:
I think it’s rather more likely they’ll send you the bill for the money and time wasted by a pointless, politically-inspired campaign to smear NZ scientists and cast doubt on the reality of warming in New Zealand.
He claims we were “politically-inspired”. What a nonsense! Our assertions and complaints were grounded in science, or NIWA would never have listened to us or agreed, in the end, to cooperate. The “smearing” of scientists is often implied by criticism, but NIWA never complained about that.
NIWA vindicates our campaign
As for wanting to cast doubt on warming: who cares about warming? We just want to know one way or the other and we found that the 7SS was not reliable; it had been changed but nobody, not even NIWA, could say why – and NIWA agreed. Once warming is established, if it is, then we can discuss the causes of that warming.
As for our campaign being pointless: au contraire, mon ami — it has been fully vindicated! NIWA agreed with us that there are problems with justifying the 7SS in a proper scientific manner and they should therefore recalculate the temperature record! New Zealand will be better off as a result. They would never have engaged in the recalculation without our paper, the questions in the Parliament from Rodney Hide and John Boscawen from the ACT Party or our careful scientific descriptions of faults in the temperature record.
Why does Renowden think our campaign was pointless?
I find it curious that Renowden, filled with his righteous indignation throughout this affair, has not acknowledged the validity of any of our complaints; he’s railed emotionally but has not addressed our concerns. He’s backed NIWA like a lover who’s blind to their faults. What does he see in them?
To recap: NIWA specifically denies it’s required to use the best information and techniques. I didn’t say that – NIWA said it.
Spin on as you wish, Renowden – you cannot deny what NIWA said. We’re all wondering what they mean. Perhaps you can explain it?