Is Tom Chivers serious?
Feb 10, 2012
Bishop Hill in Climate: WG2

The news that Himalayan glaciers are not melting at all, let alone being set to disappear by 2035 has been exercising all and sundry today. Tom Chivers at the Telegraph has a somewhat snide piece setting out the facts.

Well, some of the facts.

The particular aspect that I want to look at is that ideaa that the glaciers will have disappeared by 2035. The story has been set out in great detail by EU Referendum. We know

The 2035 date appears to have been added to the Second ORder Draft of the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report. The only document cited in the section on Himalayan glaciers was Hasnain 2002.

The IPCC's expert reviewers raised the issue of the 2035 claim:

[Update:after the review, but before publication, another scientist wrote advising of errors in the report, including the 2035 one. Other parts of the letter were acted on, but not the claim about the Himalayan glaciers.]

Despite this, no changes were made to the text. In fact, when V.K Raina challenged the 2035 date in his report on Himalayan glaciers for the Indian government, the IPCC accused him of mischief and defended 2035 as a good estimate of when the glaciers would be gone.

Now let's look at how Tom Chivers reports the strange case of the 2035 date.

When the IPCC stupidly included a prediction that the Himalayan glaciers would disappear entirely by 2035 – apparently because some idiot had misread "2350" in a non-peer-reviewed hydrology article – the error was not picked up by any of the army of internet sceptics, but by a glaciologist at Ontario's Trent University called Prof J Graham Cogley.

"Misread"? Oh dear.

Rather than everyone simply piling on, I shall ask Tom if he cares to comment.

Update on Feb 10, 2012 by Registered CommenterBishop Hill

Tom Chivers tweets that he is going to add a caveat to his article. He says the 2035 figure was "conceivably misrepresented". I think that's probably fair.

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