The Briffa "hockeystick" was based on a SINGLE TREE!

Warmist crook Keith "One tree" Briffa above

A full examination of the data chosen by the Warmists themselves shows that we live in an era of exceptional temperature stability. There has been NO global warming over the last 2,000 years -- including the 20th century.

I originally reported Steve McIntyre's demolition of the Briffa "hockeystick" on Sept. 28 but I am still catching up with some details: It seems that Briffa's Russian trees are even more unsatisfactory proof of anything than Michael Mann's Bristlecone pines. Briffa's British "Hockeystick" graph is just as deceitful as Mann's American one.

Instead of the normal statistical practice of disregarding outliers (grossly atypical cases), Keith Briffa built his entire global temperature reconstruction on one! He used just one atypical Russian tree as his basis for describing 2000 years of world climate history! He is a disgrace to science, a disgrace to Britain's Met office and (probably) a disgrace to Malta. Anthony Watts has read Briffa's lame reply to Steve McIntyre and rebuts it as follows:
1. Plotting the entire Hantemirov and Shiyatov data set, as I’ve done here, shows it to be almost flat not only in the late 20th century, but through much of its period.

(Larger graph here)

How do you explain why your small set of 10 trees shows a late 20th century spike while the majority of Hantemirov and Shiyatov data does not? You write in your rebuttal: “He offers no justification for excluding the original data; and in one version of the chronology where he retains them, he appears to give them inappropriate low weights.”

Justify your own method of selecting 10 trees out of a much larger data set. You’ve failed to do that. That’s the million dollar question.

Briffa Writes: “My application of the Regional Curve Standardisation method to these same data was intended to better represent the multi-decadal to centennial growth variations necessary to infer the longer-term variability in average summer temperatures in the Yamal region: to provide a direct comparison with the chronology produced by Hantemirov and Shiyatov.“

OK Fair enough, but why not do it for the entire data set, why only a small subset?

2. It appears that your results are heavily influenced by a single tree, as Steve McIntyre has just demonstrated here.

10 CRU trees ending in 1990. Age-adjusted index

As McIntyre points out: “YAD061 reaches 8 sigma and is the most influential tree in the world.”

Seems like an outlier to me when you have one tree that can skew the entire climate record. Explain yourself on why you failed to catch this.

3. Why the hell did you wait 10 years to release the data? You did yourself no favors by deferring reasonable requests to archive data to enable replication. It was only when you became backed into a corner by The Royal Society that you made the data available. Your delays and roadblocks (such as providing an antique data format of the punched card era), plus refusing to provide metadata says more about your integrity than the data itself. Your actions make it appear that you did not want to release the data at all. Your actions are not consistent with the actions of the vast majority of scientists worldwide when asked for data for replication purposes. Making data available on paper publication for replication is the basis of proper science, which is why The Royal Society called you to task.

Yet while it takes years to produce your data despite repeated requests, you can mount a response to Steve McIntyre’s findings on that data in a couple of days, through illness even.

Do I believe Dr. Keith Briffa? No.

SOURCE (See the original for links, graphics etc.)

Below is the "unmassaged" temperature record as seen in Russian tree rings (From here). It is as flat as a tack. Yet Briffa published many papers in learned journals over the years claiming the contrary.
He has dragged the name of the Climatic Research Unit (at the University of East Anglia) through the mud. Will CRU fire him? We will see. They are all in pretty deep there. The journals that have published Briffa's papers should certainly withdraw them if they have any respect for their own good name. It is a rarity for a journal to withdraw an article. It is normally done only where there is a case of complete fraud. This is such an case.

I reproduce the graph above simply to show Briffa's dishonesty. Using tree rings to represent temperature is very dubious. Temperature is only one influence on tree rings. Actual thermometer data does however go back 350 years in central England and it shows the 20th century average temperature to be a touch COOLER than the pre-industrial 18th century. So, on that much firmer basis, human industrial activity has had NO effect on temperature.

For all we know, however, central England may be as atypical as Briffa's tree. It is claims that "the debate is over" that are the absurdity. It was never true and there is now no trace of truth in it. We may in fact NEVER have a precise reconstruction of past global temperatures. And even the concept of a global temperature may not make much sense, considering that one place on the globe may be unusually warm while another is unusually cool.

Given that onomastics has long been a hobby of mine (No. Onomastics has nothing to do with the sin of Onan) I would be interested to hear if anyone knows the meaning of the surname Briffa. It is a Maltese name as far as I know so if you know any Maltese, ask them.

(For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, DISSECTING LEFTISM, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, EYE ON BRITAIN and Paralipomena . List of backup or "mirror" sites here or here -- for readers in China or for everyone when blogspot is "down" or failing to update. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here.)

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