September 7, 2010: Critical Pacific Ocean subset of UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) temperature data now to be examined by New Zealand High Court.
In what is believed to be the first case of its kind in the world, the newly formed New Zealand Climate Science Education Trust has taken legal action against the National Institute for Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA), a ‘Crown Research Institute’ contracted by the NZ Government to be its sole adviser on scientific issues relating to climate change. Instead of using the New Zealand Met Service temperature record that shows no warming during the last century, NIWA has adopted an “adjusted” record of seven surface stations that shows a 1 deg. C rise, almost 50% above the global average for that period.
Because there are very few long term temperature records in the Pacific Ocean, the NIWA record bears heavily disproportionate weight in determining multi-decadal trends in global average temperatures used by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. However, the basis for the NIWA temperature adjustments is unknown, the data and calculations that underlie the adjustment method lost, and the originator of the technique of adjustment summarily dismissed from his position at NIWA.
Read news release from ICSC affiliate, the New Zealand Climate Science Coalition (NZCSC), which has unsuccessfully sought access to the data and calculations behind the temperature adjustment since 2006.
Read November 2009 NZCSC paper on the scandal, “Are We Feeling Warmer Yet?”, by Barry Brill, OBE.
Read May 2010 response to NIWA attempts to whitewash the affair.
Due to the international significance of this case, ICSC will keep readers up to date as this legal action unfolds. Read more on the NZCSC Home page.