17 September 2014
A fellow meteorologist pointed me to a web-site today about a new scientific society called the Open Atmospheric Society (OAS), which is apparently in the process of organizing. They have a fancy logo, and a list of membership requirements that look very similar to that of other scientific societies, until you start looking closely. When you do, things begin to look a rather strange. One of the options to full membership in the society caught my eye right away:
Member: An individual with a Bachelors or higher level degree in Atmospheric sciences, Earth Sciences, Physical Sciences, General Science, Technology, or Engineering – OR- an individual that has at least three (3) published peer reviewed papers an individual that has at least three (3) published peer reviewed papers in any accredited peer review publications that have an ISSN designation. Members may vote in elections and hold elected and appointed positions in the OAS.
It’s number three that caught my eye, and this is not something you will see in real societies like the AMS, AGU etc. You see an ISSN designation means nothing other than your publication has a serial number recognized by the library of congress. Just fill out a form, and name your scientific journal, and presto you have (totally free) an ISSN number!
Does that mean it’s a recognized peer-reviewed journal like The Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, or Geophysical Research Letters, or Nature? No, of course not. This is really a non-sensical membership requirement that allows someone with no education background in atmospheric sciences to become a full member. All they have to do is to publish 3 papers in an ISSN listed journal.
Oh, and guess what? They have just the journal for you! :
So, publish 3 papers in this journal and you get full membership in the society! Now, I wonder what kind of papers they are looking to publish??
The answer is easy to find, and all I had to do was check out the tab on their website that said “ABOUT”. Here below is what it says, with my highlighting:
The OAS is an international membership society for the purpose of studying, discussing, and publishing about topics in atmospheric related earth sciences, including but not limited to meteorology, hydrology, oceanography, and climatology. The OAS was designed to be an alternative to organizations like the AGU, AMS, AIP, and ACS, NAS, and AAAS that have become more political than scientific in the publication of climate position statements, publication gatekeeping, and media editorializing .
Now we get to the answer! It’s all that peer-reviewed science in those famous journals like Nature, Science, Journal of Climate, and the dozens of AGU journals that are the gold standard for peer-reviewed research. This society seems to be for those who want to publish their own peer-reviewed science about climate change, and members need no academic background in science? Anyone want to make a bet that their first edition has at least two papers showing that a paper published in one of those big journals is all wrong about climate change? Then will come the claim that their peer-reviewed journal is as good as those published by the AMS, AGU,AAAS, etc.
Except it’s not, and will not be.
This certainly seems to be a silly attempt, by those who think that all that published science on climate (in dozens of journals worldwide) is wrong. The answer is to publish their own scientific truth, under the guise of modern science. This isn’t that surprising, since they must have noticed that the news media has quit giving them equal time with those who have published real science. So, who is behind the OAS? I could find no names of the founding members (or any members for that matter) on the website. There is this note:
“The initial setup of The OAS was made possible by a grant from Stephen and Dr. Mary Graves.We thank them for their foresight and generosity.”
There is a grant making foundation with this name in Santa Rosa California. It was founded in 2010 and lists 5 employees. This website lists it as an educational and religious foundation. The listed address is a residential home by the way, not an office, and I’m not even sure they have anything to do with the names listed on the OAS website. The lack of names on the OAS site seems a bit suspicious to me, but the rest seems pretty obvious.
Note: Anyone can submit a paper to a peer-reviewed science journal, but you will need to have a good understanding of the science and have done your homework to get it published. If someone has already shown your conclusions to be wrong, or you obviously have no understanding of the subject matter, it’s not happening. A good example of this are the frequent submissions about using bombs to dissipate hurricanes and tornadoes! If you have not bothered to figure out the amount of energy in a category one hurricane, and can discuss the thermodynamics of the situation, you obviously have little scientific understanding of the subject. Meteorologists get these very frequently by the way. My favorite was a paper describing thunder as a language between thunderstorm cells (it was written in long-hand too)!