After looking at hundreds of temperature series from different locations across Australia, I’ve come to understand that only cities show the type of warming reported by the IPCC, and other such government-funded institutions. Much of this warming is due to what is known as the Urban Heat Island (UHI) effect: bitumen, tall-buildings, air-conditioners, and fewer and fewer trees, means that urban areas become hotter and hotter.
What is very interesting about this post by Dr Marohasy isn’t what she wrote in the post but the dialog between her and “Mike R” in the comments to the post.
Mike R has taken issue with Marohasy’s post and the discussion is fairly technical but should be enough for the layman to get an idea about each person’s position.
It isn’t easy to follow up on details about Mike R but the following is what the web reveals about Marohasy.
Jennifer Marohasy (born 1963) is an Australian biologist, columnist and blogger. She was a senior fellow at the free-market think tank the Institute of Public Affairs between 2004 and 2009 and director of the Australian Environment Foundation until 2008. She holds a PhD in biology from the University of Queensland. She is sceptical of anthropogenic global warming.
Not a climate scientist, she’s a biologist, and she’s a climate denier. And what about the Institute of Public Affairs? This link is above but here is the first paragraph from the site to save you the visit:
The Institute of Public Affairs (IPA) is a public policy think tank based in Melbourne, Australia. It advocates free market economic policies such as privatisation and deregulation of state-owned enterprises, trade liberalisation and deregulated workplaces, climate change skepticism, the abolition of the minimum wage, the repeal of parts of the Racial Discrimination Act 1975, In its own words, the Institute believes in “the free market of ideas, the free flow of capital, a limited and efficient government, the rule of law, and representative democracy.”
PRIVATISATION and DEREGULATION and FREE MARKET are three terms that generally are not in synch with environmentalism of the sort documented on this website. Also, a bit further down on that page you find who the donors are for IPA….
The IPA funded by its membership which include both private individuals and businesses. Among these businesses are ExxonMobil, Telstra, WMC Resources, BHP Billiton, Phillip Morris, Murray Irrigation Limited, and Visy Industries.
In this Media Watch Interest In the Rivers Need Estuaries Campaign .pdf (pg 7) Marohasy states the following:
Jennifer Marohasy: I have never been paid by the Heartland Institute. I worked for the IPA as a salaried employee on contract from 2003 until 2009. During this time I attended a conference on climate change organized by the Heartland Institute.
Same document, same page she does share this about the B. Macfie Family Foundation:
The B. Macfie Family Foundation was established and is run by a Perth based philanthropist who is concerned that public policy should be evidence based.
From her own website / about:
In September 2015, I was appointed a Senior Research Fellow at the Institute of Public Affairs (IPA) – I had previously worked at the IPA from July 2003 to the end of 2008. The recent appointment follows the termination of my adjunct position at Central Queensland University (CQU) on 1st July 2015. The specific reason given was that after 5 years and 17 peer-reviewed publication with the CQU affiliation, my work was ‘not well integrated into emerging research clusters’. This followed the kerfuffle and ousting of Bjorn Lomborg from the University of Western Australia in May 2015. Indeed universities can be so political, and in modern Australia so intolerant of dissent.
My work at CQU was wholly funded by the B. Macfie Family Foundation, and this will continue to be the source of funding for my employment at the IPA.
Attempts to find information regarding Dr Jennifer Marohasy’s PhD dissertation were unsuccessful but revealed this article:
Steve Bishop 13 January 2015
The Institute of Public Affairs, however, risks becoming a casualty in the climate wars, with its book published a week later under the misleading title:
‘Climate Change: The Facts 2014, featuring 22 chapters on the science, politics and economics of the climate change debate …[featuring] … the world’s leading experts and commentators on climate change’.
The IPA does not include one expert from the Royal Society (full name: Royal Society of London for Improving Natural Knowledge, which is the National Academy of Sciences in the UK and the world’s pre-eminent assembly of brains from all aspects of science).
The IPA book’s authors are John Roskam’s “serious sceptics” rather than the promised ‘world’s leading experts’, despite the fact that the IPA boasts on its website that it supports ‘evidence-based public policy’.
Today Jennifer Marohasy has formed a new Australian .com. She is Founder of The Climate Lab
Jennifer Marohasy has a BSc and a PhD from the University of Queensland. She has published in science and law journals including Atmospheric Research, Advances in Atmospheric Research, Wetlands Ecology and Management, Human and Ecological Risk Assessment, Public Law Review and Environmental Law and Management.
She has always been interested in the nexus between applied and theoretical science; and is a fan of philosopher of science and physicist the late Thomas Kuhn. According to Kuhn, it is competition between segments of a scientific community that can cause a failed paradigm to be replaced; only then will it be accepted that it has been disproven.
A fun day for Dr Marohasy involves problem solving, and especially the opportunity to interrogate large data sets.
The other two members are Dr John Abbot – the “Climate Lab”‘s chief Scientist who “has also be involved in basic research associated with the refining of crude oil, working at the Caltex oil refinery in Brisbane.”
And John Nicol – “Physicist, and former Dean of Science at James Cook University, Dr Nicol is excited by the potential economic value of long-range rainfall forecasts using artificial neural networks that are a form of machine learning. ”
You can draw your own conclusions about the unbias nature of Dr Marohasy’s positions. Of course, scientists are entitled to their own biases just like everyone else, aren’t they? Yet, it does seem like the “Climate Lab” lacks enough diversification amongst it’s members to be taken seriously.
Thanks to Mike R for leading me down this rabbit hole and once again leading me to disappointment that I did not find convincing evidence to cause me to seriously doubt anthropomorphic global warming as I would certainly love to be able to believe this horror show unfolding is indeed deniable.
Additional Suggested Reading & Viewing:
- When climate deniers are desperate because the measurements don’t fit their claims, some of them take the final straw: they try to deny and discredit the data.
- The Ostrich or the Phoenix? … dissonance or creativity in a changing climate (new version)
- Source Watch Information on the Institute of Public Affairs
- IPA Risks Injury in Climate Wars by Steve Bishop 12/1/2015