Click images for more details



Recent comments
Recent posts
Currently discussing

A few sites I've stumbled across recently....

Powered by Squarespace
« Muller in the Guardian | Main | When Irish Greens are Sliding »

Natural Histrionics Museum

The Natural History Museum has set up a climate change quiz, which has to been seen to be believed.

See it here, (but be warned, you will need a strong stomach).

PrintView Printer Friendly Version

Reader Comments (73)

Now what does this remind me of? Must be that Science Museum poll just before the Copenhagen conference. Except they've learnt how to dumb it down even more, and make sure the "correct" answers are already decide. Good job it's only a game. What larks, Pip!

Feb 27, 2011 at 8:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterKeith Macdonald

First page includes a link to OPAL. Skip the quiz & follow the link; much more entertaining.

Feb 27, 2011 at 8:18 PM | Unregistered Commentersimpleseekeraftertruth

I wonder what Beddington would think..
It is desperate stuff, answers to your questions, from the Met Office

A nice definition of 'climate change'

What is climate change?

The Earth’s climate has changed many times in response to natural causes. The term climate change usually refers to man-made changes that have occurred since the early 1900s, that have contributed to the gradual warming of our planet.

To understand climate change it’s important to recognise the difference between weather and climate. Weather is the temperature, precipitation (rain, hail, sleet and snow) and wind, which change hour by hour and day by day. Climate is the average weather and the nature of its variations that we experience over long periods of time."

and of course this is worse.....

Whys is it Happening? (my caps)

Greenhouse gases’ such as carbon dioxide and methane trap heat and keep the planet warm. This is a natural process known as the ‘greenhouse effect’ and it keeps the Earth warm enough for life.

However, our modern way of life has released huge quantities of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere upsetting the NATURAL BALANCE and causing increased warming.

Carbon dioxide levels have also increased due to the destruction of rainforests, which play an important role in absorbing CO2.

Hang about doesn't the planet ever cool, ie natural climate variations, apparently not?

Yes. There is natural variability in the Earth’s climate but the current climate change is very unusual as it’s not exclusively part of a natural cycle.

"Natural factors include volcanic eruptions, aerosols and phenomena such as El Niño and La Niña (which cause warming and cooling of the Pacific Ocean surface). Natural climate variations can lead to periods with little or no warming, both globally and regionally, and other periods with very rapid warming.

However, there is an underlying trend of warming that is almost certainly caused by man’s activities.

Feb 27, 2011 at 8:35 PM | Unregistered CommenterBarry Woods

useful links and resources..

first one - WWF
second link - Act On CO2

Feb 27, 2011 at 8:41 PM | Unregistered CommenterBarry Woods

Lol, I just did the quiz, deliberately answering the opposite of what they wanted.
I was a little careless, but managed to get 5/30.
They claim this is a "good" score !

Feb 27, 2011 at 8:43 PM | Unregistered CommenterGeorge

'Temperatures have risen sharply'

I don't think that's true. I'm not an expert, but I don't think even the most ardent warmistas would say that.

Why do they have to lie?

Feb 27, 2011 at 8:57 PM | Unregistered Commentercaroline

OK - Question 5 on Malaria is simply wrong

Question 9 is simple propaganda

Question 13 claims that models can be trusted (what planet are these guys on?)

Question 15 demonstrates an inability to understand statistics

Question 20 I approve of

Question 25 is idiotic

Question 27 merely proves that GIGO applies

Obviously there's no accounting for the level of stupidity residing within the Met Office. Who exactly approved this?

Feb 27, 2011 at 8:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterLiKW

Oh. My. God.

Were these questions written by conscious humans, or a random generator - and if the latter, where did it get its corpus of propositions?

I must say, though, I liked the one about being struck by lightning vs. winning the lottery. Did Joe Romm talk about that once, or something?

Least favourite: "Mass migration is expected in the future because of GW." Passive voice - expected by whom?

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:02 PM | Unregistered Commenterjim

Thank you for drawing our attention to this. I must investigate whether the Science Museum has a website where we can leave scathing comments.

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:05 PM | Unregistered CommenterMariwarcwm

Thank you for drawing our attention to this. I must investigate whether the Science Museum has a website where we can leave scathing comments.

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:06 PM | Unregistered CommenterMariwarcwm

I scored 11/30
It says my climate knowledge could use a top up. Must visit RealClimate lol

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:10 PM | Unregistered CommenterBaa Humbug

I assume this is aimed at kids, but it's a truly appalling piece of propaganda, irrespective of the target audience. The people behind this in the Science Museum and Met Office should be ashamed of themselves.

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:12 PM | Unregistered Commenterlapogus

Q9 is a winner. Spot the non sequitur.
Q:- “Climate scientists are split over whether climate change is man-made - fact or fiction?”
A: “Fiction. In 2004, a study showed that out of 928 academic papers relating to global climate change, not a single one doubted it was happening”.

The questions are signed “Met Office”. Some resignations are due.

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:12 PM | Unregistered Commentergeoffchambers

Someone got paid to produce that, who's daft though, them for producing it, or us for paying for it?

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:15 PM | Unregistered CommenterFrosty

another essenshul sevisse from the ministry of silly ideas

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:18 PM | Unregistered Commenterphinniethewoo

Baa Humbug,

Same score, 11/30 but must learn more he he he.

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:20 PM | Unregistered CommenterLord Beaverbrook

So who is putting in the FoI requests to the Met Office then?

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:21 PM | Unregistered CommenterLiKW

It provides insight into their scientific and moral decadence, and is valuable for that alone, but it is also valuable as a reminder that despite all that has happened, in the blogosphere and in the atmosphere, the struggle against this malevolent idiocy is not yet over.

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:23 PM | Unregistered CommenterJohn Shade

There is a questions page on the web site:

I have tried this to see if there is a neutral response!

Why does the MO only look at climate change as an increase in temperature, does climate change not cover any decrease in temperature also?

They do state:
Scientists at the Met Office will try to answer as many questions as possible.

Questions with a common theme may be addressed together. Please note, not all questions will be answered. Check back regularly to see if scientists have answered your question.

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:31 PM | Unregistered CommenterLord Beaverbrook

the willingness of the Met Office (and the rest of the CAGW "scientists"), the Pollies and the media to throw the language under the bus is mindboggling:

26 Feb: Calgary Herald: Tom Harris: Deceptive climate poll should be ignored
A news release from the Public Policy Forum and Sustainable Prosperity last Wednesday began, “A poll released today shows that Canadians believe that climate change is happening and would be willing to pay for government policies that reverse or slow the damage…
Respondents were not asked if “climate change is real.” Neither were they asked if they “believe in the science behind climate change.”
Pollsters actually inquired: “From what you’ve read and heard, is there solid evidence that the average temperature on earth has been getting warmer over the past four decades?”…
In the “Key Findings Report” discussing the survey results, one of the principle problems underlying this work becomes clear — the report authors treat “climate change” and “global warming” as if they are synonyms. They are not…
Tom Harris is Executive Director of the International Climate Science Coalition (

in australia, we now have the threat of a "carbon tax" which no-one will call a tax on CARBON DIOXIDE, and so far the pollies and the MSM have totally avoided using the words "global warming" much less CAGW, so the public has no clue what is even being proposed or for what purpose.

shame on the Natural History Museum, the Met Office and all involved in the quiz.

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:40 PM | Unregistered Commenterpat

Q:- “Climate scientists are split over whether climate change is man-made - fact or fiction?”
A: “Fiction. In 2004, a study showed that out of 928 academic papers relating to global climate change, not a single one doubted it was happening”.

What would be interesting to know is how many of those papers dealt with possible causes and how many with possible effects? My guess is that nearly all of them where about the possible effects.
A paper about the possible effects of a change in climate on the Lesser Spotted Woodpecker's habitat does not mean the author believes climate change is man-made and is does not prove climate change is man-made.

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterTerryS

15/30 :(

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:42 PM | Unregistered Commenterdunton joe

Your Grace

Score 9/30 - a 'good' score apparently - but some of their answers were correct.


Feb 27, 2011 at 9:43 PM | Unregistered CommenterDP

Just done the 'quiz'...I don't have the language to describe my emotions....sorry...

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:43 PM | Unregistered Commenterjones

Words fail me.

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterPhillip Bratby

Totally disgraceful - how far will these people go!

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:47 PM | Unregistered CommenterDr John

Q20 displays the warmists' gift for comparing apples and oranges:
'There is more chance of being killed by lightning than winning the lottery jackpot'.

Over what timeframe? The 'right' answer they give is 12m:1 against being killed by lightning, 14m:1 against winning the jackpot. Problem is, the former looks like a lifetime figure, whilst the latter is per week.

In fact, about 3 people a year are killed by lightning in the UK
..whilst out if 102 draws (OK, guesswork) probably 125 win the lottery.

Phil D

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:50 PM | Unregistered CommenterPhil D

Sorry, could not stomach the stupidity after question 11. Perhaps someone can sue these MET folks for false advertising????

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:52 PM | Unregistered CommenterJoe Prins

Sorry, could not stomach the stupidity after question 11. Perhaps someone can sue these MET folks for false advertising????

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:54 PM | Unregistered CommenterJoe Prins

OPAL fruits - made to make your mouth water. Much better than this version.

Feb 27, 2011 at 10:00 PM | Unregistered CommenterPhilhippos

Question 20 states that sea levels around the UK have risen by 10cm since 1990. That's a ride of 5mm per year - I'd like to see their source for this. I recall seeing a sceptic academic being interviewed on Newsnight (about 10 years ago - I think it was Benny Pieser?), referring to sea level data from Liverpool Docks which showed no significant rise in the last 100 years. states:
One of the most important impacts of climate change is sea level (IPCC, 2007):
* Global-mean sea level has been rising. The average rate of rise was 1.8 ± 0.5 mm yr-1 between 1961 and 2003, compared with 1.7 ± 0.5 mm yr-1 for the 20th century.

But just found this very alarming summary of UK sea level rises:

which amazingly states that:

"In the past few decades, North Shields (in Newcastle) and Sheerness (in Kent) have seen the largest rises in sea level, compared to 1920 levels. Since 1998, an increase of at least 2 metres compared with 1920 was seen at both these sites. In fact since 2002, sea levels in North Shields have been higher than the 1980-1989 average by at least 60 cm.
Until the mid-1980s, sea levels in Aberdeen have varied with 1920 levels. However for every year since 1985, sea levels have been higher than 1920. On average, in the past two decades sea levels are more than 60 cm higher than the baseline. Between 2006-2008 sea levels have been higher than 1920 by more than 1 m, with a 55 cm increase from 2005 to 2006 alone."

Yes, that's 2m! I suspect some numptie in the DECC has assumed that the rises must be in cm rather than mm (otherwise what would all the fuss be about when the average tidal range is about 10m). But how could this error go un-noticed before it was put online?

Feb 27, 2011 at 10:09 PM | Unregistered Commenterlapogus

Sorry - the sea level question is number 22, not 20.

Feb 27, 2011 at 10:11 PM | Unregistered Commenterlapogus

I got 16/30 - quite worried to have got such a 'high' score. There was one answer that said 'according to David Attenborough...'!

Feb 27, 2011 at 10:32 PM | Unregistered CommenterPaulM

I hope this isn't spoiling the fun for anybody, but my personal favourite was about sea level (#20 for me, apparently different for others):
Q: Sea levels around the UK have already risen?
A: Fact. Sea levels around the UK have risen 10 cm since 1900 and the rise in recent decades has been faster than previously observed.

Wow, 10 cm since 1900, scary stuff indeed. No attempt to put it in perspective at all. And at current rates, it might be a foot more by 2100.

In an apparent attempt to be fair, they *do* discard some of the more ludicrous catastrophe predictions, such as melting of all ice. Well sort's their answer: "If all the ice on the planet was [sic] to melt the oceans would rise by a whopping 67 meters. This is highly unlikely to happen because of climate change however, and certainly wouldn't happen for hundreds or even thousands of years." I think thousands is at the very low end of the scale, and the likelihood is that the correct answer is never: the Antarctic ice cap would continue to grow in a warmer world. (Not that there wouldn't be a real increase in sea level; it's just that there would be an increase in precipitation which would outweigh any melting in Antarctica.)

Feb 27, 2011 at 10:33 PM | Unregistered CommenterHaroldW

Well, that was fun - 6/30, so I'm due to be sent away for re-education, I suppose.. Although it also told me 6/30 was a "good score"!

Q20: I'm mystified by this one - can someone explain to a self-confessed climate numpty what lightning strikes and lottery wins have to do with the climate?

Q24: "Using evidence from ice cores, it's been shown our planet's climate has gone through some major changes over the past few hundred thousand years. But right now, our climate is changing faster than it has done for thousands of years - and that's because of mankind's activities." Not sure if this one bears up under scrutiny.

Q27: "The Met Office's supercomputer (amongst the fastest in the world) receives information from all over the world and runs trillions of calculations every second to predict how the weather patterns will change. This computer helps us predict how climate change will affect us." Comedy gold, especially the last sentence.

Feb 27, 2011 at 10:37 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlex Cull

Someone got paid to produce that, who's daft though, them for producing it, or us for paying for it?

Feb 27, 2011 at 9:15 PM | Frosty

If you go to the bottom of the OPAL page it says "Lottery Funded".

Feb 27, 2011 at 10:51 PM | Unregistered CommenterBrownedoff

lapogus --
The start date for the UK 10-cm sea-level rise was 1900, not 1990. At least in my version of the quiz. That makes for a more logical rate, actually somewhat less than other figures I've seen.

As for North Shields (and no doubt the other sites), DECC figures are just not in the likely range. It seems that DECC have slipped a decimal place. See the NOAA data, which gives the rise rate at North Shields as 1.88 mm/yr.

Feb 27, 2011 at 10:51 PM | Unregistered CommenterHaroldW

This one has really peeved me, more indoctrination. I hate these bastards with a vengeance Bish. Enough is enough.

My son is due to start school this year and if they feed him or drip feed him this crap then I will be home schooling him.

Feb 27, 2011 at 11:29 PM | Unregistered Commentercalvi36

Brownedoff, I feel an FOI to Camelot coming on!

Feb 27, 2011 at 11:32 PM | Unregistered Commentercalvi36

From 1 March, consumers are being invited to make official objections about indecent or misleading information on the internet.

They will be able to complain to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), which is taking on new powers to regulate commercial websites

Feb 27, 2011 at 11:38 PM | Unregistered CommenterAnoneumouse

lapogus, you nailed it -- DECC interpreted the sea level readings which are in mm, as being in cm instead, hence all their figures must be reduced by a factor of 10. As to your question "how could this error go un-noticed before it was put online?" the only answer is that whoever prepared the report, and those who reviewed it (if any), have absolutely no physical intuition whatsoever.

Feb 27, 2011 at 11:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterHaroldW

Hello - I'm a newbie here, though frequent lurker. I confess to not being a 'climate sceptic' (hence my choice of moniker for the sake of transparency!) but I still find some of the articles on here interesting and informative. Hope no one minds me posting, if so don't hesitate to say and I'll go back to lurking :)

I just wanted to ask - the OP links this quiz to the Natural History Museum, but the only logos on the quiz itself seem to be OPAL and the Met Office. Am I being dense?

Oh, and I agree wholeheartedly about Q20 - don't see what that has to do with anything, and suspect whoever wrote the quiz just came across it as a 'fun fact' and decided to throw it in for good measure!

Feb 27, 2011 at 11:50 PM | Unregistered Commenternonsceptic

@Anonemouse it will be interesting to see how the ASA will attempt to regulate companies that are hosted on servers outside the UK, or companies even based in the UK. I own numerous websites and none are hosted in the UK, yes they are commercial sites and this is how I make my living. I do not dupe anyone as to what we sell not the services we provide. Some companies do though and they must be stopped. What I do not want is the ASA being given rights similar to FSA and OFCOM, both ineffective and Government puppets.

I worry that the ASA will be given the power to block websites, whom they deem "unsuitable" to be viewed by UK browsers, ie people in the UK. Regulation means rules and control to me.

Feb 27, 2011 at 11:50 PM | Unregistered Commentercalvi36

@nonsceptic Hiya, i have found this site to be extremely useful and so informative that it almost blew my nuts off. I was a warmist, believing all that Gore said and yes I did see his presentation in Glasgow, cost me £700 to see it but I guess aviation fuel must have been at an all time high.

Look and learn, take what you want and leave the rest and provide your input, it is most welcome in my book.

Feb 27, 2011 at 11:55 PM | Unregistered Commentercalvi36

Sponsored by Met Office -- does anything else need to be explained?

Feb 27, 2011 at 11:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterDon Pablo de la Sierra

I hope someone is capturing these answers. I have a feeling we might see some subtle editing over the next few days.

Feb 28, 2011 at 12:02 AM | Unregistered Commentermakes you weep

They got 12 right by my count.

Feb 28, 2011 at 12:03 AM | Unregistered CommenterSean Houlihane

@makes you weep

I see a discussion most of it on topic and a couple off topic, There is nothing to see here, move along lol.

Feb 28, 2011 at 12:04 AM | Unregistered Commentercalvi36

@calvi36 thanks for the welcome :)

Feb 28, 2011 at 12:18 AM | Unregistered Commenternonsceptic

11/30 correct. I guess I better study.

Feb 28, 2011 at 12:30 AM | Unregistered CommenterKevin

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>