While many deniers are spending this coronavirus lockdown time arguing that we should throw away our umbrella during this rainstorm because we’re not getting wet, at least some are trying to focus on climate science.
For example, at WUWT, Dave Burton has a post asking readers to register with the IPCC to be an expert reviewer for the forthcoming 6th Assessment Report.
Now, is Dave Burton an expert? Fortunately for him, the IPCC defines the term rather loosely (literally anyone can sign up as one) so Dave qualifies. But we were curious, so we went looking for his area of expertise.
The end of Burton’s post has a link to his website, SeaLevel.info, which is basically a header image of people windsurfing followed by various lists of links to recent sea level rise-related denial blogs and research. For some reason his contact page lists his home address, which when googled shows that in addition to submitting local Republican party resolutions about how “lies are the devil’s language,” Dave runs Geeks Alive! Computer Rescue and Burton Systems Software, both of which appear to be optimized for 56k dial-up modem internet access, and definitely inspire confidence in his technical abilities. (And if you feel nostalgic for the days when a hundred spammy toolbars cluttered up your Netscape Navigator web-browser, check out this page of his.)
Mr. Burton doesn’t appear to be particularly adept at his day job, but that doesn’t mean he’s not perfectly capable of offering salient feedback. Whether or not he actually does so is a matter for the IPCC, whose authors will need to read and reply to all his comments, as well as the comments from whoever else he gets to sign up.
But that’s not good enough for Dave, who complains that he won’t be given access to the replies/rejections until the report is finished, as opposed to during the process. Though he doesn’t say it outright, it sounds like he’s complaining that an expert reviewer doesn’t have the same influence over the final report as an actual author.
Deniers don’t have much to complain about, though, as the responsibility for nominating IPCC authors from the United States fell to none other than the Donald J. Trump administration. So if Burton wanted more intimate access to the report, he can’t exactly blame alarmists!
As it turns out not even the Trump administration wanted Dave’s supposed expertise, but maybe they’ll give him a call if they need someone to design a website that looks like it hasn’t been updated since the ‘90s.
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