"Anti-science blogger Anthony Watts keeps attacking Al Gore and IPCC head Pachauri for supposed conflicts of interest, but does he have his own conflict?"
We have Al Gore who is viewed by many as being the most influential communicator on the climate change issue who is up to his neck in carbon trading and also has many board associations that help his cause. Now we have the leader of the UN’s IPCC with questionable business associations. Where’s NYT‘s Andy Revkin? Where’s 60 Minutes? Where’s Dateline NBC?
That would be former TV weatherman Anthony Watts in yet another post at his blog WattsUpWithThat acting as populist champion attacking supposed climate profiteers. Except of course the long-debunked Gore charge is a fabrication — see Grist on the NYT’s “baseless hit job on Gore,” plus the story’s origin in a Fox News doctored video. You can read Pachauri’s comments here, “Pachauri slams charges about conflict of interest.”
It’s kind of funny to see the anti-science crowd go after Pachauri for his connection to oil companies now that he has become a climate science realist. Pachauri was specifically chosen as IPCC chair in 2002 after the Bush administration waged a successful campaign to have him replace the outspoken Dr. Robert Watson, who was opposed by fossil fuel companies like ExxonMobil. It’s the facts that make people alarmists, not their politics or professional background (see “Desperate times, desperate scientists“).
But what’s even funnier is that holier-than-thou Watts might be open to a charge of conflict of interest by the same standards he holds others up to. Consider that Watts spends a great deal of time attacking the quality and trustworthiness of surface temperature stations in this country at his website surfacestations.org, one of whose stated goals is:
To photographically document poor examples of sites that may introduce biases and errors through faulty siting, encroachments, or maintenance issues, and to identify specific issues when possible
Nothing wrong with that, of course. It turns out to be a relatively pointless exercise, of course, from a scientific perspective, see Must-read NOAA paper smacks down the deniers: Q: “Is there any question that surface temperatures in the United States have been rising rapidly during the last 50 years?” A: “None at all.”
And, of course, if Watts really thought all those land-based U.S. weather stations were faulty and untrustworthy, he wouldn’t keep citing their data as supposed evidence that this country is seeing record-setting cold, would he? I mean, no serious person would do that (see “Anti-science disinformers to media: Please make case for something that isn’t true using data we don’t believe“). He’s just having some fun, right? Why else would he be doing it?
Let’s borrow Watts’ populist hat, and see what’s up. Hmm. So Watts enlists people from around the country to photograph supposedly poor surface temperature stations.
The project has minimal costs, mostly for this website and computer hosting/bandwidth and that is paid for by the designer of the project, Anthony Watts, out of pocket. No other funding has been needed, sought, or accepted from any entity, corporation, or group.
He’s a tireless, purely altruistic champion of the downtrodden. But wait, what does he do for a living?
Weather measurement and weather presentation technology is my specialty. I also provide weather stations and custom weather monitoring solutions via www.weathershop.com (if you like my work, please consider buying a weather gadget there, StormPredator for example) and www.tempelert.com, and turn key weather channels with advertising at www.viziframe.com
Say it ain’t so. Watts uses his blogs to try to convince people that government weather sites are faulty, that their data can’t be trusted, enlisting the unpaid help of countless people — and he makes money selling weather stations?
Where’s Andy Revkin? Where’s 60 Minutes? Where’s Dateline NBC?
Weathershop.com has been around longer (since 1996), shipped more orders, and provided more custom weather solutions than any other weather site on the web. We have customers all over the world in Education, Media, Government, Research, and just plain folks who like to watch the weather.
I’m filing this post under humor — because I think the charge of conflict of interest against Watts is as nearly as unserious as his charges against Gore and Pachauri, because I think that Watts, like Morano, is mostly a performance artist, trying to see how many people he can sucker with posts whose transparent outlandishness grows exponentially with time:
- Dust Bowl-ification hits Eastern Australia “” next stop the U.S. Southwest. Anti-scientific WattsUpWithThat says it has “nothing to do with the dreaded Climate Change” and “has an unappreciated benefit”!
- Exclusive: New NSIDC director Serreze explains the “death spiral” of Arctic ice, brushes off the “breathtaking ignorance” of blogs like WattsUpWithThat
- Diagnosing a victim of anti-science syndrome (ASS)
- Must-read AP story: Statisticians reject global cooling; Caldeira “” “To talk about global cooling at the end of the hottest decade the planet has experienced in many thousands of years is ridiculous”
- WattUpWithThat labels Australia’s government “retarded”
- FoxNews, WattsUpWithThat push falsehood-filled Daily Mail article on global cooling that utterly misquotes, misrepresents work of Mojib Latif and NSIDC