NIWA is using higher temperatures to cook the books

Christchurch has one of New Zealand’s longest temperature records, with weather readings in the Botanic Gardens dating back to 1863.

Which makes the claim that Christchurch is heating up more quickly than other parts of the country, based largely on an urban record that only goes back to 2002, seem pretty dubious.

How did Niwa – the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research – calculate that Christchurch’s temperatures are now 0.7 degrees Celsius higher than they were at the end of 2004, a very short period on which to build any kind of convincing case?

Blue Skies Weather forecaster Tony Trewinnard has called Niwa on its use of the Kyle St, Riccarton site –surrounded by concrete, traffic and industry – to determine the figure, when less than two kilometres away is the Botanic Gardens’ weather enclosure, largely unaffected by recent human activity.

Trewinnard says Niwa’s 0.7C calculation and claims about what the figure means are “bad science”. It certainly seems to be selective science, particularly when you consider the Botanic Gardens has only experienced a non-storymaking 0.1C rise in temperatures since 2004, according to Niwa.

He says over the past 11 years Kyle St temperatures have averaged 0.2C higher than the Gardens but since the start of 2015 it has been 0.8C warmer. Clearly something has changed in the Kyle St environment that is increasing temperatures there. Read more »

A View from the Passenger’s Seat…at 180 kmph

Guest post


I have just spent the last 3 days & 2000+ km criss-crossing Germany in a car with technology I have never seen before … and would never want to travel without again. This was a standard, off the show room model with just one (standard) extra. It had Radar.

Let me explain.

The car had forward looking radar that was connected to the cruise control. The driver would set a desired speed and then also a ‘follow zone’ from any car in front. For the driver this is just selecting 1-5 as a follow option. The ‘follow zone’ was not a set distance but some formula about speed. eg at a slow speed you would follow closer, but at a higher speed there would be a greater safe space. When it rained the follow distance would increase to account for the conditions

So you jump on a German Autobahn with Cruise set at 180 kmph & the radar is looking forward 150 meters. When the car detects another vehicle in front of it, the car will automatically slow down to reach the designated follow distance. When that vehicle moves out of the way the car will automatically accelerate to reach your set cruise speed.

If you come into a sharp corner the car sees the road via Sat-Nav & will slow you down to a safe cornering speed even when there is no traffic ahead.

Over the 3 days we had every possible motorway traffic condition (apart from snow & ice). We also did a fair bit of town & country driving.  Read more »

Photo of the Day

Dr. Sam and Marilyn Sheppard on their wedding day.

Dr. Sam and Marilyn Sheppard on their wedding day.

Who Killed Marilyn?

The Sam Sheppard Case

In every decade of the twentieth century, there was one sensational murder trial that riveted public attention and at the time was called “the trial of the century.”

More than 40 years before the O.J. Simpson trial there was the Dr. Sam Sheppard murder case.

The victim at its centre was Marilyn Sheppard, the doctor’s wife, and the crime itself was so heinous and shocking, combining so perfectly extra-marital sex and violence, that it seized the country’s imagination and became an international media sensation. The trial was so polarizing it nearly tore apart the small community of Bay Village, Ohio, where the murder was committed, and its eventual verdict was so controversial that the appeals went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. The repercussions of its conduct ultimately changed how juries and press-coverage of trials were handled in America, and the case itself was so compelling that it was thought to inspire the television show The Fugitive, as well as a movie, a docu-drama, a NOVA documentary, and numerous books.

At the same time, the case contained seeds of not only the dawning sexual revolution’s ecstatic explorations and moral hazards, but also the conflicts and ambivalences inherent in the nascent feminist movement: the competing roles women faced as professionals, spouses, and mothers in the second half of the twentieth century, seismic shifts in the changing expectations of both men and women that were already reverberating in movies like Alfred Hitchcock’s Rear Window. Yet in spite of competing verdicts in three separate trials over the course of nearly fifty years, the Dr. Sam Sheppard murder case remains unsolved at worst, unsatisfactorily resolved at best. More immediately, to peer into it is to gaze on the darkest places of conjugal intimacy, to wonder at the limits and saving possibilities of matrimony, to question assumptions about a man’s capacity for fidelity as well as a woman’s tolerance of its lack, to ponder the degree to which, if at all, people are capable of change.

Read more »

Blow your mind with these “Are you transgender?” quizzes


If you are biologically a woman click here to take this quiz to find out if you are transgender or not.

I took the test and it turns out that I am cisgender but to find out what that means you will have to take the test yourself. The test for biological  men is over the break.

Read more »

Cartoon of the Day

Credit:  BoomSlang

Credit: BoomSlang

Is this Labour Party idea worth stealing?


The Labour Party wants to build 100,000 affordable homes across the country.

KiwiBuild: 100,000 affordable houses over 10 years, of which half will be in Auckland where they will cost up to $600,000 for a standalone home. The Affordable Housing Authority will deliver it. It will require a $2 billion start-up which will be recouped from house sales and returned to the Crown once the houses are built.
Did Whaleoil readers think that this was a policy idea worth stealing? Read on and find out what The Great Whaleoil Housing Survey revealed.
Read more »

Epic cartoon battles of history: Immigration

Today’s epic battle cartoon battle is about Immigration, both legal and illegal including “boat people.”

Let the battle begin…


Read more »

Compare and contrast Lisa Owen’s treatment of two individuals

I will declare my bias up front. Lisa Owen’s treatment of my husband when the Rawshark hacking story hit was appalling. He was the victim of a criminal act, a criminal hack and she constantly interrupted him and spoke to him as if he was a criminal rather than a victim. He was speaking from Israel and even though she knew it took a few seconds for her question to reach him she consistently would not give him time to reply and consistently cut him off. I don’t know how Cam remained calm under the circumstances but like David Seymour in this latest interview he did. Only a transcript of the interview is now showing on The Nation website. The video link has been removed.

Her latest investigation has her interviewing Te Whanau O Waipareira Trust chief executive John Tamihere and Education Under-Secretary David Seymour.  If you compare and contrast the two interviews it is incredibly obvious who she has cast as the victim and who she has cast as the criminal.  The way she speaks to Mr Seymour is disgusting. She lacks respect and keeps trying to frame the story the way she wants it to be, not the way it actually is. David even refers to her ” relentless negativity ” while being interviewed by her.

Read more »

We need a prison for stupid people


A recidivist offender with 22 prison terms to his name was feared to have driven close to 300km while drunk at the wheel of a stolen van – earning himself yet another stretch inside.

Judge Chris Sygrove said it was apparent Christopher Bryan Woodcock’s struggles with alcohol abuse and self-control were a “common thread” throughout his offending.  Read more »

Phil Goff is an independent candidate


The left-leaning political ticket for Central Auckland, City Vision holds two seats on the council as well as majorities on several local boards.

A coalition of Labour, the Greens and others in the central suburbs, it is backing Phil Goff for the mayoralty.

Its launch focused on what it said were a balance of major issues in the city. Read more »