A Bet Won on the Warming Standstill

Congratulations to Dr David Whitehouse of the GWPF for winning a bet with Dr James Annan.

The bet, made in 2007, was that by 2011 that HADCRUT3 temperature record of 1998 would not be beaten by 2011. The bet was made at the instigation of the BBC Radio 4 program “More or Less”. Annan then provided data analysis to show why he was odds-on favourite to win the bet here and here. Both RealClimate and Mark Lynas had earlier weighed in with articles giving the mainstream viewpoint. I post on Dr Annan’s blog the following comment

The mark of good science is not to predict the obvious, but to predict the unlikely.

Dr Whitehouse has stated that it was going beyond the obvious that enabled him to take on the bet. His full analysis can be found at both the GWPF and wattsupwiththat.

Of course there are those who will point to the biased GISSTEMP to show that the warming is continuing. See my analysis here about why that dataset looks to be a little biased. There are of course those who will still maintain the warming is continuing (such as Roger Black of the BBC), but the true measure is the predictive ability.


  1. Brian H

     /  13/01/2012

    Yeah, no need to fake current data when you can revise the past downward.

    Edit note, missing word:
    “that dataset looks to a little biased.” — looks to be a little biased.

    Thanks for using “biased” correctly. I deplore and excoriate the recent(?) habit of using “bias” as though it was an adjective!!

  2. manicbeancounter

     /  13/01/2012

    Thanks for the grammatical tip

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