The Mail’s Concentration on Sea Ice Extent

Further to our previous communications about what we refer to here as “The Great White Con” I have now received another email from John Wellington, Managing Editor of the Mail on Sunday.


Amongst other things it says that:

The incorrect figure published by the NSIDC was taken in good faith. Our writer [AKA David Rose] did not expect an institution of its stature to make such an error, so it is not reasonable to expect him to contact NSIDC to check it, specially as the general idea of an increase in the icepack was consistent with more anecdotal information such as the shipping information. You say we did not produce evidence of the NSIDC mistake. I am attaching a screen grab of their web site before they corrected it.

Mail on Sunday screen grab of NSIDC article entitled "A real hole near the pole"
Mail on Sunday screen grab of NSIDC article entitled “A real hole near the pole”

John’s latest email also included the following statement:

The August NSIDC report begins with a diagram (see  attachment). This shows the Arctic ice sheet stretching from Siberia to the Canadian islands:

Another Mail on Sunday screen grab of NSIDC "Arctic Sea Ice News" article of September 4th 2013
Another Mail on Sunday screen grab of NSIDC “Arctic Sea Ice News” article of September 4th 2013


You will note I have taken the liberty of annotating The Mail’s screen grabs with what seem to me to be reasonable questions for any vaguely competent investigative journalist to ask themselves when reading the NSIDC’s early September update. At this juncture I can only repeat this question from my most recent missive to The Mail:

This raises any number of questions about the Mail on Sunday misleading its readers, such as “Why didn’t The Mail ask the NSIDC about the apparently conflicting information, much like Bob Ward did, before publishing an article relying on that information?” not to mention “Why can’t David Rose perform accurate arithmetic?”

and provide my own screenshot from the “terminology” page of the NSIDC web site in a no doubt vain attempt to provide John and David with an answer to just one of those questions:

NSIDC explanation of the terms "concentration" and "extent"
NSIDC explanation of the terms “concentration” and “extent”

In brief:

Extent defines a region as either “ice-covered” or “not ice-covered.” For each data cell, it is a binary term; either the cell has ice (usually a value of “1”) or the cell has no ice (usually a value of “0”).

 Do you suppose that given their apparent difficulties in performing elementary arithmetic John and David are able to appreciate the difference between “1 or 0” and “low-concentration sea ice (20 to 80% cover) within our extent outline” or even “near-zero ice concentration“?

How about the readers of The Mail on Sunday, or the Press Complaints Commission for that matter?

3 thoughts on “The Mail’s Concentration on Sea Ice Extent

  1. The conclusions are:
    incompetent and dishonest journalism
    and not very smart people.

    Jim, I am not sure you should spend your precious time arguing with these people. You need a more sophisticated intellectual challenge to keep your precious green cells en parfait état!

      1. Yes Jim, keep up the good work exposing these fraudsters. It’s a classic case of distorting information for their propaganda machine. I believe its important to stand up to this kind of deceit and if possible pursue them in court if there is a way. The state of the Arctic is basically earths most visible thermometer and it’s clear that Rose and their henchmen are fully aware of this so its important for them to downplay the seriousness of this by writing erroneous reports to calm down the public.

        If pointing out the errors now does not bring them to correct them and publicly apologize, I sure hope that we can put the likes of David Rose in jail for serious fraud and mis-information – as its basically real and correct information that could be holding back a critical mass of people wanting to take action on CO2 emissions.

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