When a three-year-old tells whoppers it can be cute. It’s not so cute if the whopper-tellers are scientist Tim Flannery, aged 60, and his Climate Council. Flannery is Chief Councillor of the crowd-funded body, which is dedicated to “accurate and authoritative information on all aspects of climate change”.
His Council website has this item:
19 climate champions, who also happen to be women… To celebrate International Women’s Day, here’s a list of nineteen women kicking goals in the climate change debate — from scientists to politicians, diplomats, community organisers and more. (My emphasis).
It begins, “This article originally appeared on the International Council for Science’s Road to Pariswebsite.” Click through to that site (a spin-off from the International Council for Science, ICSU) and you find the original was not about 19 women but was headed, “20 women making waves in the climate change debate”.[i]
Even more mysterious, the Climate Council website has a Facebook prompt (left) headlined:
Kicking goals: 20 climate champions, who also happen to be women…From scientists to politicians, community organisers to diplomats – here are 20women fighting for climate action around the world. Climatecouncil.org.au
But click it and the original 20 women suddenly become the Climate Council’s 19. (below right)
So what’s going on? The ICSU’s 20 women were meant to reflect women’s contribution to the “diversities of the climate debate”. The 20 included distinguished scientist Dr Judith Curry, who doesn’t toe the doomsters’ party line on climate. The Climate Council simply couldn’t bear to list her – even though she has a peer-reviewed publication list of 150+, dwarfing that of the other women cited in the top 20 (or top 19). So the Climate Council simply clipped her from the list, notwithstanding the ICSU’s copyright.
The Climate Council’s tampering was done without public acknowledgement or apology to the original compilers, namely three editors associated with ICSU and the Stockholm Resilience Centre. The editors in turn had compiled the list by an extra survey in the wake of their unisex survey about top 15 climate news-makers a year ago. That list of 15 included only three women.[ii] The Road to Paris doesn’t say who exactly was surveyed for nominations for its later “20 women” list, but did name 16 individuals who were both “judges” and respondents for the unisex list of 15.
I googled a few of them. They included, for example, Alice Bows-Larkin, Professor of Climate Science & Energy Policy, Manchester University; Max Boykoff, of the Centre for Science & Technology Policy Research, Oregon; Simon Buckle, Policy Director, The Grantham Institute for Climate Change, Imperial College, and at the far end of the alphabet, Professor James Wilsdon, Director of Impact and Engagement, Sheffield University.
We can assume the ICSU/Stockholm’s “20 women” respondents were of comparable weight and lustre.
The Climate Council’s deletion of Judith Curry from the 20 Women list bears a family resemblance to the revered Soviet practice which saw photos that originally included purged-and-shot apparatchiks doctored, the unwanted individuals’ images made to disappear. At least the Soviets owned the photographs they doctored. The Climate Council doesn’t own the ICSU 20 women list and has no more right to delete a woman it hates than to insert its own choice into the list. Perhaps we’re lucky the Council didn’t decide to re-make the list into 20 by replacing Curry with its winsome CEO Amanda McKenzie (left), who is more the telegenic cutie. That way, the odd, eye-catching numeral 19 could have been avoided.
The Climate Council’s monkeying with a third party’s survey-based list hardly validates its claim:
We exist to provide independent, authoritative climate change information to the Australian public. Why? Because our response to climate change should be based on the best science available.