Long wrong Joe Bastardi cooks the books to smear NSIDC. Time for Accuweather to fire him.

National Snow & Ice Data Center explains Bastardi can’t read graphs and “is unclear as to how standardized anomalies are derived”

UPDATE: Bastardi responded in the comments here. He couldn’t bring himself to admit that his accusation of fraud against NSIDC was not merely completely unwarranted but totally inappropriate and in fact based in part on his simple misreading of a graph. Finally, though, on Sunday afternoon, Accuweather took the post down and Bastardi admits in his new “Emily Litella” post his charge was baseless.

Note: Accuweather’s contact info is online here and below.

I suppose it is Accuweather’s business if they want to seriously undermine their credibility by employing arguably the worst professional long-range forecaster on Earth: See Joe Bastardi asserts “The coming cooling of the planet overall will return it to where it was in the ’60s, ’70s, and ‘80s.”


So what if Bastardi is a man who just makes crap up, like “The vast majority of the long-range private sector meteorologists can see what is coming down the road and agree with me”? So what if Bastardi has now firmly established himself as the least informed, most anti-scientific meteorologist in the world (see here)? So what if he can’t read a temperature anomaly map?

Why should, Accuweather, the self-proclaimed “World’s Weather Authority” care? They are a private company and they can hire whomever they want and, Lord knows, make whatever wild claims they want about their supposed “authority.”

But Bastardi has now moved beyond the realm of bluster and bad forecasting. His inability to read simple charts has combined with his endless quest to attack those whose data or analysis supports the well-established scientific understanding that humans are changing the climate and induced him to try to undermine the reputation of the nation’s leading Center for acquiring and analyzing ice data. As long as Bastardi stays at Accuweather, they are endorsing his willful errors and anti-science smears — and they merit the name Inaccuweather.

Bastardi’s latest error-riddled smear-fest is posted directly on the Inaccuweather site with an innocuous headline, “Monday Morning Sea Ice/Global Temp report” but a libelous caption:

Is the US NSIDC cooking the ice books? Sure looks that way if one is looking at all sites.

Actually, it far more looks like Bastardi is cooking the books. I videoed the video, fortunately, since Inaccuweather may return to science-based analysis sooner or later and take it down came to their senses and took it down following my posting this morning.


Bastardi challenges NSIDC: “Maybe they can come up with the reason for why, you know, my eyes are seeing the wrong things here.” Maybe a high school student could, but since he challenged them, I asked NSIDC to respond. Scientist Julienne Stroeve wrote this:

One problem with Joe Bastardi’s comparison is that with the JAXA data set he’s comparing to the 2006 line, not 2007. In JAXA, this year is a bit below 2007 right now (though there’s some missing data).

It’s important to remember that different sites use different algorithms (methods to derive sea ice from the raw data), different cutoffs of concentration (15% vs 30%), and sometimes different sensors (SSM/I vs AMSR-E). Studies that compare different algorithms have repeatedly found that differences between algorithms can be large. Generally, the largest differences are found in summer, with differences of more than ± 20 %. In winter, differences between the different algorithms are usually less than ± 10 %. No single algorithm has been found to be clearly superior under all conditions. The differences between satellite-derived estimates of sea-ice extent and so-called ground-truth observations are of similar magnitude. Nevertheless, while the absolute differences between algorithms and between with non-passive-microwave data sets are relatively large, they are generally constant over time.

Hence, trends in sea-ice extent that are estimated from different algorithms agree much more closely than do the absolute values of extent. Hence, trend estimates provide a rather high level of confidence in estimates of sea ice change and variability. In terms of absolute values, estimates of total sea-ice extent are more reliable than estimates of sea-ice area. For the former, a certain concentration threshold (often 15% ice cover) is defined, and the size of any grid cell covered by more ice than this threshold contributes fully to total sea-ice extent. For ice area, however, only the truly ice-covered fraction of each grid cell contributes, giving rise to higher uncertainty.

Finally, it seems Joe Bastardi is unclear as to how standardized anomalies are derived. Standardized anomalies are not the same thing as anomalies, which is defined by the actual deviation from the mean (climatology for that day or month). A standardized anomaly is further divided by the climatological standard deviation for that day/month. When seasonal variations are present within a set of data, it is often helpful to express the data in terms of standardized anomalies. They generally provide more information about the magnitude of the anomalies because influences of dispersion have been removed.

Here is the JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) data (click to enlarge):

It’s pretty clear that the NSIDC data (click here) is fully consistent with JAXA for late November, if you can read a graph. Yes JAXA has some missing data — I can hardly wait for Bastardi to spin some conspiracy out of that.


Bastardi should retract the video and apologize to NSIDC. If he won’t, then he clearly is abusing his position at Accuweather to spread disinformation in order to undermine one of the world’s leading scientific institutions — an institution that, unlike Bastardi, is trying to provide accurate, independent information about what humans are doing to this planet. In that case, InAccuWeather should retract the video and fire him. Of course, if they do, I expect FoxNews will officially ire him as their ‘forecaster’.

If you want to share your views with Inaccuweather, the American Meteorological Society was kind enough to post the contact information for their distinguished Founder, Chairman, & President, Joel N. Myers:


Please keep it genuinely civil (unlike the laughable disingenuousness of Bastardi’s “let’s all just calm down” in the video after he just finished accusing NSIDC of fraud!). I suspect/hope Myers is unaware of what Bastardi is doing. But once he becomes aware, then I can’t see how he could knowingly allow Bastardi to keep spreading anti-science disinformation with the specific goal of undermining the scientific institutions that are trying to inform the public about what humans are doing to the cryosphere.

UPDATE: Bastardi responds in the comments here. He just can’t bring himself to admit that his accusation of fraud against NSIDC was not merely completely unwarranted but totally inappropriate and in fact based in part on his simple misreading of a graph:

NSIDC contacted me on this, I posted on this explaining the situation and saying I believe they are above board. The Monday morning ( Dec 6th) sea ice report will make sure they are treated as the honest brokers they are. The explanation in on the site I do on the free site at accuweather.com and the Dec 6th video will explain why they are seemingly lower. For the record, I am not the only one that has questioned why they always seemed lower but they took the time out to contact me, and in detail, explain it. and now they have an advocate for their site, whether my forecast agrees or disagrees with them in the longer term. That is a matter for debate, which I happen to advocate.

Contrary to the way you portray me, I simply believe given what I see that the earth will cool back, using objective satellite observations, back to levels we saw in the late 70s, and the ice will increase back to those levels in the N hemisphere, and FALL in the southern hemisphere where overall it has increased. Its a simple debate and one we can objectively judge. And for the record, I am all for developing other ways to get and use energy . In fact if I am right, we will need it faster than if we warmed.

In spite of the harsh treatment you give me and others that believe as I do, I do believe that you are concerned for the betterment of man, and I wish you all the bestJB

Seriously. Bastardi harshly accuses one of our premier scientific institutions of fraud based on nothing more than his own inability to read graphs and his unscientific conviction that the climate is about to start cooling again the 1970s level, and I call him out for it, and he comes here to whine about “harsh treatment” (but not apologize to NSIDC). Boo-hoo.


For the record, the nameless others who have question NSIDC are the anti-science disinformers of WattsUpWithThat, a widely discredited website that Bastardi continues to tout on his new non-apology up on InAccuweather, “Monday Global Sea Ice Report ( A day early).” I have no idea what Bastardi is “concerned” with. I only know that if any significant number of people keeps believing his anti-scientific nonsense, it will lead to the reverse of the betterment of man that science has helped deliver.

You’ll note that in the new video, he still tries to defend his original libelously wrong claim, and he still can’t bring himself to admit that he utterly misread the JAXA graph — and he refuses to click on the expanded JAXA image that is much easier to read. He waits until the very end to admit that, in regards his charge of “cooking the books,” well, “There’s nothing to that.”

In short, like Emily Litella, “never mind!” I will address Bastardi’s claim (at 3:30 in the new video) that Arctic sea ice is “leveling off” — and will turn the other way! — in a later post.

You can find more examples of Bastardi’s disinformation here: