Talk:IPCC Fourth Assessment Report/Archive 1

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The "Reaction" and "Exclusions" sections are biased against the IPCC's findings. The content must stay, but it is necessary to discuss in more detail both those who agree with the report and those who dispute it.

I would also question whether it is necessary to split out the "Exclusions" section. This could be added into the 'Against' section of the "Reaction" heading.

Also, the comment on Exxon Mobil needs to be refined. Exxon Mobil is not the only party which funds the AEI. I feel that the use of a quote directly from an article is an attempt to weasel out of looking biased. 12:28, 3 February 2007 (UTC)

The whole issue of "Big Oil" funding anti-green "research" needs to be discussed. That Exxon Mobil through the AEI got caught red handed trying to buy scientific opinion is very important. The Guardian quote should be ballanced with a rebutal/ explanation of what they were doing if they have done that. Hypnosadist 14:47, 3 February 2007 (UTC)
It should also be mentioned there are legit scientists who disagree with the theory of anthropogenic global warming by cause of greenhouse gases. -b 15:25, 4 February 2007 (UTC)
Try and find it and you will see its not so "legit", a few (less than 10) scientists dispute the Extent of Globalwarming as shown in this report OR whether it impacts their subject (tornados etc), thats it. But any legitamate criticism should be added if its notable.Hypnosadist 15:34, 4 February 2007 (UTC)
You said that "That Exxon Mobil through the AEI got caught red handed trying to buy scientific opinion is very important". I think it is only important if they succeeded. Did they? Just because someone is "buying" that doesn't necessarily mean anyone is selling. I think the fact that the Guardian was unable to come up with any examples of anyone actually saying anything that wasn't true in order to get Exxon money is also quite telling. --Lee Vonce 14:17, 6 February 2007 (UTC)
Yes it tells me $10,000 is not enough to buy an Honest scientist and that makes me very happy. The problem i have is with the AEI trying to Buy scientific opinion in order to protect its corperate funders, at the risk of millions of LIVES! Hypnosadist 15:19, 6 February 2007 (UTC)
What makes a scientist paid with government money so much different than a scientist paid with "big oil" money? Are the self selected IPCC members (and the resulting IPCC consensus) above the 'bought and paid for' shenanigans? Less than 1% of AEI's budget is funded by Exxon Mobil, yet 100% of the IPCC report is paid for by big government. Why the double standard? Don't kid yourself. If there were more governmental opportunities to be had in denying AGW, the UN IPCC would have found that it doesn't exist. The UN doesn't spend money to find out that it is not needed for a task. That many of the AGW believers turn a blind eye to the double standard they're employing as well as using ad hominems against those who dare to have any criticism is very telling. It's almost as if the "green movement" (whatever that self serving term is supposed to mean) is a religion that has to be protected at all costs. Nevermind that one of the costs is the honesty that their very claims require to be taken seriously. Likwidshoe 20:04, 15 February 2007 (UTC)
Be civil even in edit summaries. Got any proof that all 600+ scientists are lieing. PS You do not want me to "go there" on AEI's funders! Hypnosadist 21:21, 15 February 2007 (UTC)
What are you going on about? My tone is on par with yours and you tell me to "be civil"? You've got a lot of nerve. Why are you avoiding the first question? What makes a scientist paid with government money so much different than a scientist paid with "big oil" money? Go ahead and ignore the double standard yet again. Likwidshoe 20:28, 17 February 2007 (UTC)
I think "reply, you're choking on your own hypocrisy" is uncivil but thats just me. As to you point about a scientist paid with government money, most arn't, most work for the university they teach and do research at, hundreds of different ones. Some are funded by their governments americans and saudi's included. Yes strangly scientists have to have a job and get paid! Thats different to being paid 10000 dollars to lie!Hypnosadist 15:38, 18 February 2007 (UTC)
It's only your assertion that they were offered 10000 dollars to "lie". It's not surprising that you would make that unsupported assertion, as they are your forte. Btw, thanks for avoiding the question. Likwidshoe 10:38, 23 February 2007 (UTC)
Btw Likwidshoe thanks for being civil, oh wait you weren't again and i did answer your question try brushing up on english and logic it will help. Hypnosadist 15:35, 23 February 2007 (UTC)
Enough with the personal squabbling already. Mishlai 15:38, 23 February 2007 (UTC)
You answered my question Hypnosadist? WHERE? Through all of your excuses and insulting, you didn't answer. Likwidshoe 15:51, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

I've removed it. Hypnosadist if you disagree I'm willing to listen, but I think it just barely fits into this article, and would be better placed in the Global Warming Politics article or something similar. It has that "in related news" feel to it, you know? Mishlai 06:16, 18 February 2007 (UTC)

It has to stay as it is a failed attempt to corrupt the system and its outcome. Its proof that now the science is incontravertable that lieing and cheating are the only options they have left. It also acts as evidence against AEI a supposedly politically neutral think tank. And finally it fits with all wiki policies. Hypnosadist 15:38, 18 February 2007 (UTC)
AEI is trying to disrupt the consensus. I'm not doubting that. That doesn't really say a lot of about AR4, however. There's nothing in the article addressing AEI or its positions, so I don't see how showing AEI as not-neutral is relevant. If there were a cite right next to it saying that AEI had published a detailed criticism of the report that said X, Y, and Z then I would agree that the 10k report would be important for context. Even then, this article might not be the best place to put that. You can imagine that mess that would be created by trying to address the politics of the IPCC in every report article. It's better to just link the IPCC or some other article and address it there. I think it's relevant to the discussion, but not to this particular article. An article on AEI, an article on Exxon, and article on Politics or controversy - all of these places would be good choices. Perhaps it might go back in when we have a write-up from one of the scientists or economists that were petitioned, then it would be important to highlight that they'd been offered money - not just funding by the way, but personal payment - to write up their analysis. Until then, I just don't think it belongs here. Mishlai 16:42, 18 February 2007 (UTC)
It is relivent to this article because this (the AR4) was what they were trying to discredit with there money. It deserves the entire one line it gets in this article. A more detailed look at AEI should be on its article, and the politics behind this whole affair should should be on other article but it is tied to the AR4 and needs mentioning here.Hypnosadist 19:14, 18 February 2007 (UTC)
Hypnosadist, you may want to tone down your claims of lying and cheating. The cited article does not contain any evidence of that. The article does say that "[AEI is soliciting] articles for an independent review that would highlight the strengths and weaknesses of the IPCC report." I added a quote by an IPCC chairperson specifically commenting about the AR4 process, but it wasn't good enough to stay, so I agree with others that the AEI stuff isn't important enough either. --Spiffy sperry 05:29, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
Sperry is right. The AEI letter doesn't say that, the media interpretation of it does. Here's the text in question:

After the report's release, The Guardian reported that the American Enterprise Institute, who the newspaper calls "an ExxonMobil-funded think tank with close links to the Bush administration", had offered several scientists $10,000 USD each to write articles disputing the IPCC's conclusions.[1]

I still argue to remove it entirely, but if it stays it need to be rewritten to reflect the letter's factual contents. AEI's bias on this matter is perfectly clear to everyone, but wikipedia is not the place to insinuate meaning that isn't explictly stated. Mishlai 05:58, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

This meets WP:N and WP:V and that spiffy did not get his part in is irrelivent. This story tie's in with AR4 as it is about discrediting AR4. If you have got a link to the letter then post it. "wikipedia is not the place to insinuate meaning that isn't explictly stated" no but we say what a high quality british newspaper says and now what greenpeace says about AEI. Wikipedia's civility policies cover being civil to other wikipedians, not to the organisation that runs Iraq war policy. Hypnosadist 15:04, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

Here's the news article. [1]. What you've stated is in the article headline: "Scientists offered cash to dispute climate study". Here's what the article quotes the letter as asking for essays that: "thoughtfully explore the limitations of climate model outputs".
Greenpeace is no less biased on this matter than AEI, and our job is not to chronicle their bitter partisanship, nor to discuss failed attempts to discredit this report. The point of the article is to discuss the scientific assessment report put out by the IPCC. This blurb that you've added addresses the politics of global warming. I still maintain, rather strenuously, that it does not belong in this article. I think that your beliefs, strong and sincerely held, are shining through the article as an unacceptable POV. It's fine to believe what you believe, but I think it's affecting your editing in this case. Whatever you may think about AEI - "the organisation that runs Iraq war policy." - wikipedia is not the place to be uncivil to them either, however deplorable you may feel their actions are. Wikipedia, as NPOV clearly points out, is not even the place to be uncivil to Hitler or Saddam Hussein.
I'm asking you, in the interest of the article's NPOV and credibility, to remove the AEI bit. Its presence hurts the credibility of an article that otherwise speaks strongly to the science of global warming. Mishlai 17:13, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

If you disagree with the greenpeace quote due to their bias, how about this one insted discribing AEI's activities;

"Climate scientists described the move yesterday as an attempt to cast doubt over the "overwhelming scientific evidence" on global warming. "It's a desperate attempt by an organisation who wants to distort science for their own political aims," said David Viner of the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia.

Criticism from a notable british university. Mishlai you misunderstand NPOV it is not to have no pov but all notable pov's represented. As to a failed attempt, only because we got lucky. As to AEI and the iraq war see Iraq War troop surge of 2007. Hypnosadist 19:12, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

I understand what you're saying about NPOV. This AEI bit is a notable POV about AEI's conduct, and not about AR4. The new quote is better, but I'm still not a fan. I guess you're proposing something like this?

After the report's release, The Guardian reported that the American Enterprise Institute, who the newspaper calls "an ExxonMobil-funded think tank with close links to the Bush administration", had offered several scientists $10,000 USD each to write articles "thoughtfully explore the limitations of climate model outputs".[2]"Climate scientists described the move yesterday as an attempt to cast doubt over the "overwhelming scientific evidence" on global warming. "It's a desperate attempt by an organisation who wants to distort science for their own political aims," said David Viner of the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia.

Honestly, I still don't like it. It's controversial and unnecessary IMO. Perhaps someone else could weigh in here? Mishlai 19:24, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

The Guardian article shouldn't be included. One of the article's claims is that the AEI is "ExxonMobil-funded". In reality, AEI gets less than 1% of its funds from ExxonMobil. A big unsupported claim of the article is that "Scientists [are] offered cash to dispute climate study". What it doesn't tell you is that those invited to attend the AEI roundtable are some of the same scientists who produced the IPCC report. So what this Guardian article is saying is that these scientists are being offered money to dispute their own conclusions. That doesn't make sense, does it? This so-called "high quality british newspaper" is simply smearing any question of the consensus, in typical propaganda fashion, before they have a chance to ask questions. The article, along with the person who insists on it being included, are making some big unsupported assumptions. Likwidshoe 17:02, 23 February 2007 (UTC)
1)"AEI gets less than 1% of its funds from ExxonMobil" so you agree it is "ExxonMobil-funded". That less that one percent runs to 1.6 million US dollars! thats a lot of money in anyones life.
2)"So what this Guardian article is saying is that these scientists are being offered money to dispute their own conclusions. That doesn't make sense, does it?" Unless in paying them ten thousand dollars (plus expences) you expect them to "dispute their own conclusions" in a way that promotes your political agenda.
3)"This so-called "high quality british newspaper" is simply smearing any question of the consensus, in typical propaganda fashion, before they have a chance to ask questions." No this only "smears" the AEI's attempt to use money to alter the concensus. Those very few qualified scientists who dispute some part of the concensus have done so and are in this article and not mentioned in the Guardian artilce. Hypnosadist 17:47, 23 February 2007 (UTC)
The whole point in the article saying that it is "ExxonMobile-funded" is to put it into the minds of people like you that the majority of the funds come from the oil company (an attempt at discrediting through ad hominem). When it's pointed out that this is not the case, you go on as if it doesn't matter. You do this days after saying that most scientists aren't paid with government money when in fact most of the universities around the world, through which many scientists are employed, are funded in part by government money. That you won't even address this apparent hypocrisy of yours is telling.
You're showing us all that you don't like debate Hypnosadist. You assume that AEI is attempting to "alter the concensus". You've taken it upon yourself to determine that they're lying and have offered no proof of this damning assertion. You call it a "failed attempt to corrupt the system and its outcome", when in reality the group merely attempted to get a roundtable of scientists together, some of whom helped to craft the IPCC report, to discuss and debate the findings. You find this to be a threat to "the consensus" and would rather no questions be asked from any outside group. Maybe now would be a good time for you to brush up on your logic and ask yourself why simple questions threaten you so much. Likwidshoe 13:43, 24 February 2007 (UTC)
I think it would take a great deal of faith to assume that AEI is not trying to weaken the case for doing something about Global Warming. "thoughtfully explore the limitations of climate models outputs" is pretty clearly a nice way of saying that they want to discredit the IPCC's predictions. I think we can all recognize that, but we're discussing the topic now, and not the article. It's a vague implication, with a wink and a nod, and it doesn't belong in an encyclopedia article, which is why I've removed the whole thing. Mishlai 15:16, 24 February 2007 (UTC)
Mishlai - I responded [2]. , but William M. Connolley believes that this response is "unacceptable". He has since taken to erasing and banning, so that any kind of discussion will henceforth be one-sided. Likwidshoe 12:43, 26 February 2007 (UTC)
I read your response in the history. If you think that AEI isn't trying to avoid regulation of CO2, then that's fine. I'm not going to try to convince you of it. It's partly because of this unprovability that it doesn't belong in the article. The conservative agenda in the U.S. concerning this has been to dismiss global warming as a non-problem. Either because it isn't real, or because it's natural, or because the changes will be good, or because future technology will make it go away, or because future economic growth will make it go away, or because there's nothing we can do about it anyway. AEI is a conservative think tank, so I don't think it's too hard a conclusion to reach, particularly when their focus is on model limitations and not impacts, cost-effective mitigation strategies, etc. For the sceptical activist, an admission that "models have limitations" translates into rhetoric that "models can be made to lie" and "models are useless", which is not what it means. I'm sure you're familiar with this argument.
If Greenpeace solicited papers exploring the limitations of models, I think we could also safely assume that in this context it would mean "why they don't tell us how bad it really is". It's no great leap to associate an organization's actions with its political stance. AEI clearly isn't looking to strengthen the case for environmental regulation, because this is the kind of thing they're fundamentally opposed to. From their statement: "AEI's long association with a set of philosophical principles--such as limited government, competitive markets, and individual freedom and responsibility..." - these are not the principles of a group that will support increased government regulation - regulation is seen as interference from washington beaureaucrats who don't have any idea what is or isn't good for the rest of us. See CATO, Heritage Foundation, CEI, etc. for further examples. Frequently they're right (as in correct) in opposing a particular regulation, but the point is that they - as a point of principle - oppose increased regulation. Period. Environmentalists would typically support regulating substances of any kind, as humorous anecdotes about petitions to ban "dihydrogen oxide" indicate. But whatever, I'm not really looking to argue about it. What we need is rational analysis of risk and appropriate response, and not pre-packaged reactions to the suggestion that we enact some new regulations. The "yay!" from Greenpeace and the "boo!" from AEI shouldn't be shocking to anyone. It also shouldn't mean much. Mishlai 16:46, 26 February 2007 (UTC)

Dispute resolution


You and I disagree on this, and it seems that no one else is weighing in. If you'd like (and I'm not being hostile) we could start dispute resolution to get another view on it. I believe we 1st put in a request for a comment, and then someone comes and reviews it & weighs in. Non-binding I believe. How does that sound? Mishlai 15:43, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

Fine with me as you have provided no policy reasons for this deletion and it clearly meets all policies for inclusion.Hypnosadist 16:05, 23 February 2007 (UTC)
OK, and maybe I'm wrong. I'm going to request that an advocate advise on which DR option to take, because I've never done this before and it isn't clear to me which option is most appropriate for us. Thanks for your patience. Mishlai 16:10, 23 February 2007 (UTC)
I put in a request for clarification of DR policy here:
Mishlai 16:25, 23 February 2007 (UTC)
OK, this should sort it out to our satisfaction.Hypnosadist 17:47, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

OK, I'll weight in, having kept quiet so far. With some reluctance, I think it doesn't really belong here, and fits better in the politics article William M. Connolley 16:41, 24 February 2007 (UTC)

Hypnosadist, are you satisfied with this response or do you wish to continue the path of DR? Mishlai 16:48, 26 February 2007 (UTC)


User:Lee Vonce make an edit removing the word "authoritative" from the article. I'm sure that it was made in good faith, and he raises a good point. Does that word belong here? Is the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change an authoritative source? I believe it is, but I will admit I am biased here (hence I am not editing the article). Nemilar 17:00, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

I removed it because I don't believe that it is necessary or appropriate to insert an opinion in the middle of an article that should concentrate on reporting facts. The contents of the report are facts. Whether or not the IPCC is "authoritative" or not, is an opinion. I'm not saying they aren't authoritative. I'm saying what whether or not they are, it isn't really relevant here. If this article were about the debate surrounding the issue of anthropogenic climate change, then the relative authoritativeness of the IPCC would be a valid issue to raise and discuss. I'm sure the issue is discussed on the article about the IPCC, though I admittedly haven't read it yet. I just don't see how it belongs here. Fair enough? --Lee Vonce 17:19, 2 February 2007 (UTC)
I think I agree. At the same time, I'm not sure that the question of the IPPC's "authoritativeness" isn't relative - it's vital information to the reader, and lends to the relative importance (or unimportance) of the report. I've been looking through policies (I'm new to being an editor) and the most applicable thing I can find is Wikipedia:Neutral_point_of_view#Let_the_facts_speak_for_themselves. Thanks for the explanation! Nemilar 17:37, 2 February 2007 (UTC)
You're welcome. Yeah, I agree, the facts should speak for themselves. It isn't for the author of an article to tell the reader what to think about the subject but what the facts are. Then the reader can decide for themselves. I would disagree that the question of the relative authority of the IPCC is "vital information" though. Whether the report is important or not isn't for an encyclopedia to say. It is for us to describe the content of the report, perhaps how the report came to be written, who wrote it... things like that. Whether or not the report is "important" is a personal opinion. If some notable person expresses an opinion on the importance of the report, then that might be worth including in the article. But for an editor to make an arbitrary judgement and say that the report is or isn't important would be outside the scope of his/her authority. Think of a newspaper and picture the difference between what is written on the front page compared to what is written on the editorial pages. --Lee Vonce 19:18, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

I would also like to chime in with my endorsement of this strictly facts-based view. It's heartening to see people who seem to understand the Wikipedia:Neutrality policy so well, since it is badly misconstrued in other places. ausa کui × 19:59, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

Let the so called facts speak for themselves. Stop injecting bias into every freaking article on Wikipedia. Just regurgitate the numbers and move on to your Manga, fringe charity, or whatever it is you all do. --Haizum μολὼν λαβέ 08:34, 3 February 2007 (UTC)
Hell yes this is authoritative, in fact there has probably been no more an authoritative scientific document in history. People who do not know the level of experience of each of the 600+ experts and the years of study need to be made aware of how much scientific wieght this document has. Hypnosadist 15:06, 3 February 2007 (UTC)
That 600+ experts worked on the report is a fact. The individual scientific backgrounds of each of them is also factual information. The question of whether or not the document or the IPCC is "authoritative" is a matter of opinion. There are many reputable scientists who feel that the IPCC is a hopelessly biased organization more interested in promoting their political views than in getting at the truth. Their opinion is no less valid than those scientists who feel that the IPCC is the "gold standard" of climate science. --Lee Vonce 18:41, 5 February 2007 (UTC)
Perhaps this intergovernmental panel should be called "widely cited" or even "widely regarded as authoritative". However, the IPCC conducts no research of its own. It collects and synthesizes the work of scientists and issues periodic reports, parts of which have been criticized for political bias by S. Fred Singer, MIT Professor Richard Lindzen, and others. --Uncle Ed 18:47, 5 February 2007 (UTC)
Oh dear, another round of the usual wars. How dull. At the moment the article sez National and international responses to climate change generally regard the UN climate panel as authoritative which is pretty well the wording Ed asked for. If LV thinks "many" people think the IPCC is wrong about the science, then he should provide the evidence; it looks like the std false-balance otherwise William M. Connolley 19:59, 5 February 2007 (UTC)
I think the charge to not engage in speculation is quite significant. Much could have been said that was not if that prohibition had not been followed. Fred Bauder 21:53, 5 February 2007 (UTC)

Sea Level Rise

I believe that the discussion of sea level rise in this article is a bit too short. While it is true that the new report does give this range of numbers, this is for a specific calculation - which excludes the contribution of melting ice off Antarctica and Greenland. These were excluded for good reasons - no one really knows how to predict the rate at which they will melt or the dynamics of the melting. In other words, the actual sea level rise, including all effects, could be considerably worse. It's pretty hard to imagine that it could be significantly better. The authors of the report made this clear, but it has gotten confused in the media - and in this article.

See here, for example:

Mgolden 07:06, 3 February 2007 (UTC)

Yeah, I was taking a look at the numbers here, and they seem to really oversimplify what the SPM is saying. I'll try and take a crack at it and see if I can come up with something better reflecting the AR4 SPM. --Codemonkey 07:29, 3 February 2007 (UTC)
I rewrote it, but I was wondering if someone could take a look at something related. Before my edits, the article mentioned the range of 28 - 43 cm, which is also what a lot of news reports say. Maybe my eyes are glazing over it, but I can't quite find that range anywhere in the SPM. Anyone else willing to take a look, see if I'm missing anything? The only 28 cm I can find is the sum of individual climate contributions to sea level rise for 1993-2003, Table SPM-0. And the only 43 cm I can find is the top level estimate for sea level rise in 2090-2099 for midlevel scenario B2, Table SPM-2. I really have a feeling I'm missing something here, so someone help me out here. --Codemonkey 09:44, 3 February 2007 (UTC)
Never mind, I was being stupid, and missed the super obvious because I'm tired. 28 is of course right in the middle of the 18 to 38 range for the low scenario, and 43 is right in the middle of the 26 to 59 cm range for the high scenario. Mystery solved. I need to get some sleep... --Codemonkey 10:05, 3 February 2007 (UTC)


I took he Landsea stuff out of "reaction" - "reaction" to means reaction to the published SPM; since Landsea was quite some time ago that seems inappropriate. If L subsequently comments on the SPM that would be different.

I also took the "exclusions" bit out, since it seems rather trivial, and is sourced to the highly partisan Inhofe who is not reliable.

William M. Connolley 15:33, 3 February 2007 (UTC)

It might not belong in the "Reaction" section; I don't disagree with you there. However, it should be in the article, so I'll create a "Criticism" section and include it there. In due course I'll try to expand the criticism section to include some more statements of this kind. We wouldn't want anyone to think that this article wasn't objective. --Lee Vonce 16:17, 5 February 2007 (UTC)
Wouldn't objective be giving equal time to each of the thousands of climate scientists? Why does only the one who objects over a minor point (but agrees with the main findings) get a paragraph? Sad mouse 22:12, 5 February 2007 (UTC)
Surely you're not suggesting that Landsea is the only scientist who has problems with the FAR or the IPCC in general. This article needs a criticism section and Landsea's objections are certainly noteworthy. In time, I'm sure the objections of others will be added. --Lee Vonce 14:00, 6 February 2007 (UTC)

List of countries?

Is there a list of those 46 countries that have agreed to take action against global warming? 23:26, 3 February 2007 (UTC)

Hmmm, good question. What I've been able to find is that what they are pushing for is a "UN Environmental Organisation" or UNEO, which is supposed to be an upgraded version of the now current "UN Environmental Programme" or UNEP. I'll see if I can find something more firm than the now linked news story on this, and rewrite that section a bit. --Codemonkey 23:45, 3 February 2007 (UTC)
  1. ^ Sample, Ian (2007-02-02). "Scientists offered cash to dispute climate study". Guardian Unlimited. Check date values in: |date= (help)
  2. ^ Sample, Ian (2007-02-02). "Scientists offered cash to dispute climate study". Guardian Unlimited. Check date values in: |date= (help)