Just noticed on my regular trawl through the web on a Sunday, Roger Pielke Sr. has announced that his website, Climate Science, is to cease activity on September 2nd. The archive will remain available.

There will be a range of responses to this news, some regretful, others crowing or cynical. Some may feel that it is no great loss to the blogosphere. I will not be one of those people.

Agree or disagree, like or loathe, satisfaction or frustration: irrespective of the feelings or reactions that the website generated, it has had a large number of readers for the two years it has been running.

I have personal feelings in response to this news, as I have had the pleasure of working with Roger, and have great respect for him both as a person and a scientist. I am frequently astonished by the sheer extent of his output, a workload which shames many of us, and which probably goes a long way to explaining why he is not going to keep the website up. I also have huge respect for his personal courage in refusing to bow to peer-pressure and having the audacity to continue challenging what he saw as important issues in climate change, politics, science and the rest.

But for me, the critical matter is that Climate Science is just about the only credible website I have been able to go to in recent months with any expectation of rational consideration of some important issues, from a particular perspective. It has never been a ‘sceptic’ website, though too many of the commenters recently have been of that persuasion, but it has given me a lot of information about the science which might otherwise have been lost in the crowd. It has also alerted me to the complexity of the issue of land-use in relation both to the climate and the environment.

Now I’m going to have a problem: when a ‘genuine’ doubter asks where they can find a challenging, scientific approach to some of the questionable ‘orthodoxies’ of theIPCC, where am I going to send them?

I’ve left a goodwill message on CS. I repeat it here: all the very best wishes, Roger.

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