Eli, and the bunnies, have been following the on line review of Ice melt, sea level rise and superstorms: evidence from paleoclimate data, climate modeling, and modern observations that 2 °C global warming is highly dangerous by J. Hansen, M. Sato, P. Hearty, R. Ruedy, M. Kelley, V. Masson-Delmotte, G. Russell, G. Tselioudis, J. Cao, E. Rignot, I. Velicogna, E. Kandiano, K. von Schuckmann, P. Kharecha, A. N. Legrande, M. Bauer, and K.-W. Lo.
The Weasel is also taking part both in the burial and the rising
Think it's over. Think again.
UPDATE: Peter Thorne remarks in the comments
As the review process is ongoing I shall wait for its conclusion to say anything substantial (if at all).
That said, my review is on record and as such it is hardly a secret that my position is the literature is the place to discuss science and there are many far more appropriate avenues and fora to explain and expound the policy implications. This position is not in any sense remotely consistent with any entirely unwarranted accusations of a desire for obfuscation.
Indeed, exactly the opposite is what is being expounded in my review.
Use the appropriate tool for the appropriate job. The scientific literature is not the appropriate tool for advocacy. It is where science advances are carefully, meticulously and objectively discussed and defended so that the science process can continue on its merry way. If we blur that line we shall create an almighty mess where the literature becomes all about position statements. A very slippery slope. The scientific method has cast us in good stead for Centuries. It is all about cold hard facts, methods etc. It is not an advocacy vehicle.Yesterday a rather more, let Eli say, interesting, reply to the Thorne and Archer reviews appeared from James Hansen. It was less about the reviews than the review process. He starts in the usual way by thanking the solicited reviewers (Eli suspects there must have been a third, but maybe the food fight scared the dread third reviewer away, or maybe the third reviewer gave up on page 60 of the paper. Never mind)
Hansen then says something surprising about the review process
Contrary to the impression that may be obtained from some media, including blogs, I find our experience with the ACPD publication method to be exceptionally effective. The innovative aspect of ACPD (and a few other journals) is the open publication of the Discussion version of the paper, which is used to generate open public comments as well as official referee assessment. This Discussion version of the paper is published; it is freely and permanently available.Hansen likes the open review. A considerable amount of ink has been spilled,
I was responsible for drawing media attention to the Discussion paper. If I did it over again, I would do the same. The reason for wanting publicity is the relevance of the paper’s conclusions to ongoing climate discussions, specifically the Paris summit this December, and the urgency of achieving effective policy changes needed to avert undesirable consequences of climate change that would especially affect young people and future generations.
The publicity was successful in drawing attention to issues that the paper highlights, notably the threat of large sea level rise. Criticism that it got too much attention seems clearly wrong. Would it have been better to keep the process and issues hidden from the public while they were being worked out?and the problems caused by interfering comments from some of the looser thinkers roped in by the publicity.
The only argument presented for that conclusion is that the publicity resulted in some irrational (bad science) comments from climate change “deniers”. Is there harm in that? On the contrary, it shows a disinterested judge or observer that all opinions are given a hearing. Yes, a few may be of low scientific quality and thus a nuisance, but the public probably wants all to be heard. When an editor cuts off such discussion after it becomes an excessive nuisance, a judge can readily verify that fact and affirm that all parties had a fair opportunityHansen raises the point that the open review process is a protection against group think making it easier for unorthodox voices to be heard and that in the normal peer review process it can take years for such views to be accepted. This argument has actually modified Eli's POV on where the winds come from. There is a place between blogs, arXiv and Science for really speculative papers, but the authors need to strongly defend themselves. Allowing the papers to be published is another call, but it is sink or stadium wave.
Hansen accepts that the paper must be shortened and simplified. They understand that their point of view diverges from the IPCC consensus. They strongly believe that their point of view needs to be heard, not only by other scientists
The second reviewer represents IPCC positions, many of which we disagree with. We will respond to these matters point by point. We also strongly disagree with the contentionthat pointing out the policy implications of our results is “out of scope”. On the contrary, when scientific results have policy implications, we believe it is an obligation of climate scientists to draw attention to those implications.Otherwise, as history has shown, we run the risk of laypeople drawing conclusions about this complex issue that are erroneous, ill-informed, misleading and counterproductive. Do we expect policymakers to read scientific journals and figure it out? Certainly a scientist is free to avoid or obfuscate the policy implications if they so choose, but they cannot impose such a constraint on other scientists.Eli would be pleased to print a reply from Peter Thorne to this challenge.