ABC bias (yet again) and sea level alarmism

Climatically compromised

Climatically compromised

UPDATE 2 [17 Jan]: The Australian has removed the sea level story below and issued a correction. Whilst I have yet to read the paper in full (kindly provided by Dr John Church), the correction states: “[The paper] found that in the past two decades, the rate of sea level rise had been larger than in the 20th century.” More to come.

UPDATE: There is a bunch of static in the headbanger camps about the sea level paper referred to below, and how the sceptics have ‘misinterpreted’ it. If anyone has the full PDF of the Gregory et al 2012 paper, I would be grateful for a copy. TIA.

Two great stories from Graham Lloyd in The Australian today. Firstly, we have – shock horror – the ABC spinning its climate reporting by failing to mention stories, inconvenient to its alarmist editorial agenda, which have been around for weeks, and then choosing an unusual source for sea level information:

THE ABC’s flagship news programs have favoured advice from a non climate scientist based on speculation from a Byron Bay real estate agent over less alarming research from one of the world’s leading scientific organisations.

In the first of a week-long climate change special to coincide with a meeting of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change scientists in Hobart, the ABC did not mention the fact that Britain’s Met Office had reduced its forecasts for average global temperatures up to 2017. The ABC has not reported the issue despite widespread debate internationally.

Instead, the ABC, which is running the series on its main radio and television news programs, yesterday focused on the threat to coastal living from possible sea level rises without discussing the great uncertainties that exist in future sea level projections. Australia’s pre-eminent sea level expert, John Church, highlighted concerns about the melting Greenland ice sheet. And the report did mention a Climate Commission report that a 1m sea-level rise could potentially expose 250,000 homes to inundation.

But the ABC did not mention recent scientific findings that there was no firm link to sea-level rises and climate change in the 20th century(source)

Is it any wonder there is such confusion in the mind of the public when our own national broadcaster is so hopelessly compromised?

And Lloyd has the sea level story as well:

THE latest science on sea level rises has found no link to global warming and no increase in the rate of glacier melt over the past 100 years.

A paper published last month in Journal of Climate highlights one of the great uncertainties in climate change research – will ocean levels rise by more than the current 3mm a year?

The peer-reviewed article, “20th-century global-mean sea-level rise: is the whole greater than the sum of the parts?” by JM Gregory, sought to explain the factors involved in sea-level rises during the last century. It found that sea-level rises had not accelerated “despite the increasing anthropogenic forcing” or human influence. (source)

If you’re waiting for the ABC to report this, you’ll be waiting a long, long time.


  1. Richard Abbott says:

    Obviously with his beach front property metres away from lapping water the PM’s climate change adviser ,Tim Flannery has concluded that the sea level rise that he publicly predicted is actually not an issue and therefore we should not be hysterically worrying?

  2. ..and Adelaide Now has a piece on shacks at Black Point (on Yorke Peninsula) being “at risk”.

    They’re certainly not at risk now, since sea levels in the area have been flat for decades.

  3. More of our tax dollars at work on alarmism at the ABC:

    Extra dollars, being a 5 part series.

  4. Cogdissonancedagain says:

    Clearly as Tony Abbott’s number #1 priority as PM will be to commence the repairing of the economy by balancing the budget.

    So; what could be better or simpler than selling off or privatising the ABC; or better yet, offering an MBO to the resident apparatchiks

    QED really.

  5. Toscamaster says:

    The deeper the ABC and other obfuscators dig these holes of misinformation the worse will be their fate at the hands of scientific truth.
    As an environmental activist, the most effective tool was to pursue the truth about refinery operations then insist that those environmental improvements that could deliver cleaner air were in fact delivered – ambient air relatively free of fine cat cracker dust. This worked. If we had only pursued rumour and innuendo we would have rightly been castigated and hence been ineffective.
    This resulted in a significant improvement to Geelong’s public health.
    It is beholden on these so-called climate scientists to open their books to those of us who suspect they are perpetrating climate science shenanigans and allow the scientific method to stand.
    Australia’s economic well-being is being trashed at the hands of politicians, from both major parties, who have fallen for the IPCC spin and the spurious claims of Australian academics intent on maximising government grants.
    This must stop.

  6. Bombard the ABC and ACMA with compliants

  7. Bill Goatse says:

    How much of this journal article did you read? Maybe read this…

    [Ah, RealClimate… thanks]

  8. I think the ABC’s gone to the wrong venue.

    Instead of a story on the Australian Psychic Expo currently being held in Toowoomba Qld, they gone to Hobart Tas. to cover the IPCC’s latest getaway destination.

    Still … apart from one being in Queensland and the other in Tasmania, there’s not much difference in the story I suppose. Both use numerology to try and make predictions!

  9. Richard N says:

    As expected, the current heat wave and severe bush fires have bought the warmists out in force. While they are at it why not throw in a sea level rise scare as well. Pathetic.

  10. Charles Johnson says:

    Sadly, all to common from Auntie. Heat-waves and bushfires are more to do with the late arrival of the monsoonal influence. Probably that’ll get blamed on climate change as well, even though it has happened numerous times in the past.

  11. Mervyn Sullivan says:

    I watched last nights unbalanced biased ABC TC news coverage and CSIRO’s alarmism over sea level rises. The CSIRO can hardly contradict the global warming line of the Gillard government.

    But consider this… the world’s most renowned sea-level expert, Dr Nils-Axel Mörner, has for years studied the matter and explained to the IPCC, and to the world, that the alarmism about rising sea level is baseless. In his latest report – “Sea Level is Not Rising” – he used the raw data from the TOPEX/POSEIDON sea-level satellites, and the GRACE gravitational-anomaly satellites. These two distinct satellite systems (using very different measurement methods) produced raw data reaching identical conclusions: sea level is barely rising, if at all.

    Click to access sea_level_not_rising.pdf

    What source of data did the CSIRO use to justify its alarmism? And how does the CSIRO justify its alarmism against the findings of world sea-level expert, Dr Nils-Axel Mörner?

  12. The ABC News during summer has been one long climate change campaign. Three topics are conflated repeatedly, in story after story: Bushfires, Climate Change and Summer Heat. These are spoken of as though there were a necessary causal link, with climate change being the sufficient reason for heat and fires. No other causal factors are considered. That is, if any causal link was needed – Australia is a hot country with hot summers where fire is a necessary part of the way ecosystems function. Other stories are linked in with this central theme – health advice for hot days, for example. Climate change lurks ubiquitously behind so many news items that immediacy is achieved without any need for facts. Brilliant propaganda, bad in every other way.

  13. uhavitbad says:

    The ABC and the IPCC . How convenient.

  14. Simon,

    Judith Curry in her sea level post on 20 December gave the thumbs up to the Gregory paper.

    “So . . . the addition of one more paper to the literature without an accelerating trend (2 out of 4) implies, according to the IPCC reasoning about uncertainty, that acceleration of sea level trend is ‘about as likely as not.”

    She also described it as “superior from a methodological perspective”

  15. Reinhard P says:

    Dr Church has replied as follows “Sea level clearly is linked to climate change, it clearly is linked to greenhouse gases and that was in the paper quoted by The Australian. The quote is, I am sorry, inaccurate”

    The Australian also issued the following retraction:
    “A report in the Australian on Tuesday (Sea rise ‘not linked to warming’, page 1) said a paper by JM Gregory with a contribution from John Church had “found no link to global warming and no increase in the rate of glacier melt over the past 100 years”. In fact, the paper found the effect of anthropogenic global warming on the rate of sea level rise would have been greater in the 20th century but for volcanic activity. It found that in the past two decades the rate of sea level rise had been larger than in the 20th century.”

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