Scott Denning to ICCC Heartland ‘conference’ gathering: “Be skeptical… be very skeptical!”

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An excellent presentation was given by atmospheric scientist Scott Denning at the Heartland Institute gathering (ICCC 2010), amidst much ‘skeptical’ talk, which is the expected staple over there (h/t Michael Tobis). Both to Denning’s and Heartland’s credit, he was invited to speak there and his talk was apparently well received. How the audience will resolve their inevitable cognitive dissonance remains to be seen.

He makes a number of important points, which are especially apt for a ‘skeptical’ audience:

- The expectation of global warming to result from greenhouse gases is based on common sense and basic physics:

[It is] based on the idea that when we add energy to the surface, it will warm up

- Be skeptical of the claim that this extra energy will somehow magically be negated.

- Climate sensitivity is around 3 degree for a doubling of CO2 concentrations. This is based on e.g. observations from the Last Glacial Maximum, when the climate forcing was 4.1 W/m2 from greenhouse gases and 3.4 W/m2 from the difference in surface albedo (snow and ice are brighter, and thus more reflective, than water and land surfaces), and the temperature difference with the interglacial that followed was about 6 degrees C.

“No climate models required … just based on observations

(modern calculations agree … coincidence?)”

- About a quarter of today’s emissions will stay in the air [semi-] permanently! So when we reduce or stop the burning of fossil fuel, things will not go back to normal for a very long time.

- Historically, 3 degrees C warming is a big deal (e.g. for sea level rise).

- And on how (not) to frame the mitigation challenge:

Then making the obvious point that society didn’t go broke building that very system. To the contrary…

- The worst media myth of all: Without the subsidy of cheap fossil energy, civilization will crumble!

Be skeptical… be very skeptical!

He’s not afraid of sarcasm:

You’d think those un-American naysayers had never heard of capitalism …

of the magic of markets …

of the creative genius of a free people!

… or to call a spade a spade:

Alarmist politicians and pundits say:

“(…) If we stop burning coal we’ll freeze in the dark!”

Postscript:

He very effectively changed the frame of the debate:

- The science is about common sense and basic physics

- Who is being ‘alarmist’?

- Being so ‘alarmist’ about the consequences of mitigation efforts is antithetical to having faith in the ‘magic of markets’, entrepeneurship and the power of innovation.

Come to think of it, it is quite surprising that his talk was well received, as there were quite a few digs towards the common way of thinking of undoubtedly many members of the audience. I guess it was delivered with style, respect and humor, and towards the end, he provides his audience with both a mirror and a carrot. There are communications lessons to be learned here. Also, Heartland was clearly happy to have a mainstream scientist present at their party. After all, they crave being taken seriously. The real question however is, did it sink in?

A point of critique could be that he glossed over the mitigation challenge a bit easily, apparently trusting that “the magic of markets” will take care of new energy technologies being invented and implemented. Such a frame may encourage a ‘wait and see’ approach, which I deem risky. I guess a bit of skepticism is at its place whether it will happen so effortless. A lot may depend on how long we keep postponing meaningful emission reductions.

Those who most strongly oppose government intervention would be wise to call for strong early action to avoid really stringent measures becoming necessary later on.

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266 Responses to “Scott Denning to ICCC Heartland ‘conference’ gathering: “Be skeptical… be very skeptical!””

  1. Harry Says:

    I think that the simple observation that the US relies for 48% of their electricity generated by coal can not do much in a short frame of time. When looking at China and India, at their rate of opening new coal fired plants that we are facing an impossible task. South Africa just got approval of a World bank loan for a huge coal fired plant.

    The reality is that we will be burning coal, oil and natural gas for decades to come. Add to this the tiny amount of biofuels, that mostly are more CO2 producing than commonly known, and we will not be able to curb CO2 emissions. Imposing draconian economic burdens on CO2 production will only result in massive fraud, as is already the case in Europe with Carbon credits and the generation of PV and wind energy in Spain by diesel powered generators.

    The only viable alternative is nuclear and for this option to work we should have hundreds of reactors under construction by now. This is not the case.

    So we are left with NO choices if we want to curb CO2 emissions. When we also take into consideration how long it will take for atmospheric CO2 levels to start decreasing once a total ban is imposed, it will be clear that this a Sisyphus labour. Even if we stop now completely emitting CO2, it will not help reducing AGW for the next 50 years.

  2. phinniethewoo Says:

    @the article: Has Peter Sinclair cloned himself?

    The BP catastrophe shows what happens when you have a president only blighted by carbon mirages.
    Obama could have put his focus on the environment and demanded better blowout preventers. He did not. He was asleep at the wheel.
    Without the middjah in his pocket, this would be Obama’s Katrina.

    Pollution is one of the world’s main problems. But socialists, with their legions of pseudo scientists at the many pseudo universities, aren’t interested in that. Carbon mitigation is much more fun for them.

  3. phinniethewoo Says:

    Bartje

    Who do you want to convince with images of heating jars ?
    What is the science there, and where does science stop and good old [edit] propaganda begin, in your opinion???

    Yes,as a “denier” , I know that all the unleashed CO2 gets excited by radiation. I know that.

    From that knowledge, to the “scientific” conclusion that we should “invest” (=clunk over to African dictatorships and Ayatollah Gore his coffins) trillions is a scientific leap too far for me.

  4. Arjan Says:

    It is exceptionally brave that this guy has dared to visit this conference!

    (BTW, McIntyre, besides his usual selective quoting of “emails”, which is pityfull, did also make some rather interesting (surprising!) comments at the end of his discussion.) I think most scientists don’t want to go because of two major reasons:

    1) Ignore it. If you give it attention, that will only draw more media attention to the skeptics case.

    2) It is mostly (or all) nonsense anyway, so there is nothing to be learnt.

    Anyway, currently I think that (1) does not work anymore, because they will get attention anyway, and (2) there are serious skeptics and you might be surprised. It is never bad to know the “other side” of the discussion. It can be refreshing to answer or think about critical questions. Scientists are people and people have different opinions. Accept it. You don’t have to agree though.

    Hopefully in the future we can have more serious discussions between skeptics and proponents, and get rid of all the extreme alarmism and political nonsense in this important debate! If we keep on ignoring each other the debate will continue to become more polarized, and the “skeptical” climate science and “AGW” climate science will continue to diverge, leaving the public in a state of complete confusion.

    However, I fear that I am being somewhat naive and optimistic…

  5. DLM Says:

    Imagine it’s 1800, and you’re in charge…
    Somebody presents you with a grand idea to transform the world economy:

    -banish famine for the vast majority of the world’s population, while feeding an additional 5 billion people
    -books and book learning available to all
    -wondrous treatments and preventives that will eliminate or render curable many of the diseases that are the worst scourges of mankind, and increase the average lifespan by three times
    -bring light and heat to your homes without chopping any wood, and you won’t believe this but we can keep your house cool too
    -travel the world over in unimagined speed, comfort and safety, and never feed or clean up after a horse again
    -communicate with people anywhere on the globe almost instantly
    -send people to the moon, if they want to go
    -Super Bowls, Academy Award Winning science fiction moving pictures, porn on the net, washing machines, vibrators, Chucky Cheese, nail salons, birkenstocks, breast implants, Chinese take-out …
    -etc., etc.

    And they promise to do all this with windmills, and sunshine. Uh huh. Ain’t that what we been a usin’ up to now? Anyways, they say just pay them what they call carbon taxes, and it will all be taken care of. They are also selling tulips again.

    Whose turn is it to supply the rope this time boys?

  6. Bart Says:

    phinnie,

    For an audience who often gets the very basics very wrong, it makes perfect sense to come with a simple yet clear example (e.g. a stovepot).

    Check your language before submitting a comment please. I’m not interested in your derogatory or conspiracy remarks.

  7. Bart Says:

    Arjan,

    Well said. There’s a catch 22 to it, but I agree that ‘ignoring’ may not be the best strategy.

  8. phinniethewoo Says:

    Bartje

    So your blog is all about instruing the last ones who deny CO2 molecules their irradiance properties??

    these properties cannot account for 0.3 degrees of warming 1970-2000 compared to 1940-1970, and they cannot account for a global stagnation 1998-2009 despite 50% CO2 atmospherical increase, and they cannot account for 4 degrees of waming 2000-2100.

    So far the science, the physics.

    [edit. So far so good. Leave the rest at home. BV]

  9. phinniethewoo Says:

    Bartje

    you try to frame me in a conspiracy corner:

    -Well, do you or don’t you abide by the mantra that only “centrally imposed regulation” will save planet earth??

    a non conspiring biased mindset forks the road in 2:
    -we conclude there is catastrophical global warming so we close down all research on it. too CO2 costly. Bartje loses his job.
    -we conclude there is more research to be done. Bartje is put on a stats course.

    Wot’s it gonna be?

  10. Tom Fuller Says:

    While Denning’s presentation is quite good, and I like the inversion of alarm and skepticism, the ‘news’ we should be discussing is his invitation and acceptance. You would probably be very surprised at the number of people (including myself) who find his presentation mostly non-controversial but who are routinely vilified by consensus holders. That group would include Steve McIntyre, btw. But because a conscious decision was made to marginalise everyone who didn’t agree with the Gore and Romm brigade, you have managed to disrupt communications.

    Heartland may not have been seeking validation, but rather communication. Something to keep in mind.

  11. Scott Mandia Says:

    Heartland IS trying to communicate but their message is full of misinformation and outright lies. If Heartland had their way, we would all be smoking cartons of cigarrettes and using CFCs for every type of spray. Heartland has now moved on to climate change. Something to keep in mind.

    See: A Well-Documented Strategy

    Scott A. Mandia, Professor of Physical Sciences
    Selden, NY
    Global Warming: Man or Myth?
    My Global Warming Blog
    Twitter: AGW_Prof
    “Global Warming Fact of the Day” Facebook Group

  12. Tom Fuller Says:

    Mandia, thanks for proving my point so perfectly.

  13. DLM Says:

    Mitigation: The Chinese are building coal fired power plants to supply electricity to factories that build solar panels to sell to the green suckers here in California. And to encourage the purchase of those uneconomical solar panels our government has to borrow money from the Chinese to pay out large subsidies.

    Despite many years of hand wringing and alarmist yammering among the consensus scientists and political class, the only mitigation of CO2 has resulted from worldwide recession. A significant reduction in CO2 output would require economic pain on a far larger scale. That is not going to be tolerated by us ignorant selfish voters. Get used to it.

    Denning’s talk was not well received, it was politely received. Anyone who thinks that the crowd at the meeting had not already heard all the arguments in Denning’s dogmatic spiel has got his head up that part of his anatomy where the sun don’t shine.

  14. Howard Says:

    Bart:

    The 3’C for 2xCO2 is based, in part, on 4-w/m2 increased radiative forcing. That is the straight physics calculation that is not in any serious dispute AFAIK.

    Since the last glacial MAX, we have a delta T of 6’C (OK) and a delta F (forcing) of 8-W/m2 due to GHG (CO2) + albedo changes (OK).

    Does this calculation assume that everything else is unchanged?

    Including changes in Forcing due to Milankovitch cycles?

    Does this also assume that aggregate feedback mechanisms during the hyper-dynamic transition phase from Glacial MAX to interglacial “Optimum” are of the same form, magnitude and sign as those during a quasi-stable interglacial period?

    Does this also assume that feedback mechanisms due to albedo changes are identical to feedbacks associated with changes in GHG concentration?

    What am I missing here?

    Thanks

  15. Bam Says:

    Ehm, Mr Fuller, I don’t know from what planet you are coming, but on my planet you do not include so many “fraud”-screamers in your line-up for a conference if communication is your aim (I’m thinking about e.g. Delingpole, Watts, D’Aleo, Eschenbach, and now even Lindzen).

    As organiser, when communication is my aim, I’d also be extremely upset when one of my speakers fires up the audience, such that several of them yell “to jail”, referring to what they think should happen to a variety of climate scientists who are claimed to have ‘cheated’. I have not seen any negative reaction of the Heartland Institute about what Brian Schmitt did.

    As organiser, when communication is my aim, I would have long removed incorrect information from my website (take Watts’ false claims about the US surface record).

    As organiser, I’d also be extremely upset when within two days two of my speakers are already caught presenting rather questionable data, getting very close to fraudulous data presentation. When I want communication, I should at least make sure the quality of the speakers is good.

    Sorry, Mr Fuller, but Heartland clearly invited a ‘consensus’ scientist in the idle hope that this would increase media attention, NOT to increase communication.

  16. DLM Says:

    After spending tens of billions on climate research in the last couple of decades, they can’t find fully half of the heat they tell us we should be seeing now. But they somehow have made ‘observations’ of the Last Glacial Maximum that have allowed them to confidently calculate, within a tenth of a W/m2, the various climate forcings that ruled 20,000 years ago. That is ludicrous, and amusing.

  17. Howard Says:

    Bam:

    Can you provide a link where Lindzen uses “fraud”. He mentions instances of “overt cheating” in his Heartland talk. He seems to be too careful in his word choices to drop the F bomb. His point is well taken. Hiding the decline and the simultaneous failure to overtly address the divergence problem and stonewalling FOI requests fit the bill.

    I agree, however, with your more broad point that Heartland is not effective in communication. It’s mainly preaching to the choir with the audience cheering based on speakers fulfillment of their confirmation bias. The videos sound more like political rallies than a scientific conference.

    The irrational debate framing of Professor Mandia does not change the failure of Heartland, Tom. It is a mirror image of outlandish skeptical arguments.

  18. Bam Says:

    I know Lindzen did not use the word fraud. Call it “overt cheating” and let the authors call it fraud. Dog whistle politics comes to mind. The two concepts are close enough.

    Further, try using google scholar and type in the words “divergence problem” and “tree rings”. Plenty of papers that discuss the divergence problem. You might also want to pick up any recent textbook on dendrochronology, and it will discuss the divergence problem at great length, and also why this issue does little to the credibility of tree rings as climate proxies. This, in short, makes removing the clear diverging portions of tree ring chronologies from a scientific point acceptable. Censoring and truncation is common in of a wide variety of data in various other fields, all based on good arguments of course, so I simply can’t see why people make such a fuss about it.

    In addition, the divergence problem is mentioned in the Third Assessment Report and in the 4th at greater length, so even in the reports focused on “lay people” there’s no hiding.

    Stonewalling FOI requests is not anything close to cheating either, especially when just about all data is freely available.

    Sorry, but I don’t see how any of the examples you discuss get even close to overt cheating.

  19. Bart Says:

    Tom Fuller suggests that Heartland seeked “communication”, whereas DLM argues that the reception was merely “polite” and “that thye’ve heard it all before” (i.e. in one ear and out the other).

    I still think that the mirror image (who is being alarmist?!?) and the case that blanketly opposing mitigation is kind of backwards (i.e. opposing innovation and progress) was well made and something that the audience may not be very accustomed to hearing.

  20. Howard Says:

    Bam:

    Removing proxy data from the most dynamic, warming and modern portion of the calibration period is mind-boggling. This is the most important bit one needs to make the best case for using treerings as paleoclimate indicators. If ring data diverges from modern warming, how reliable are they for past warming?

    I don’t find this to be scientifically acceptable. Also, grafting truncated proxy data to the instrument record is not science, it is art.

    Below is the first AGW-related hit on divergence problem from google scholar. They say that it could be this, it could be that, it could be something else, it’s complicated, we don’t really know. We want to blame man, but can’t make it stick yet:

    On the ‘Divergence Problem’ in Northern Forests: A review of the tree-ring evidence and possible causes

    Rosanne D’Arrigoa, Corresponding Author Contact Information, E-mail The Corresponding Author, Rob Wilsona, b, Beate Lieperta and Paolo Cherubinia

    Received 28 November 2006;
    revised 23 February 2007;
    accepted 9 March 2007.
    Available online 24 March 2007.

    Abstract

    An anomalous reduction in forest growth indices and temperature sensitivity has been detected in tree-ring width and density records from many circumpolar northern latitude sites since around the middle 20th century. This phenomenon, also known as the “divergence problem”, is expressed as an offset between warmer instrumental temperatures and their underestimation in reconstruction models based on tree rings. The divergence problem has potentially significant implications for large-scale patterns of forest growth, the development of paleoclimatic reconstructions based on tree-ring records from northern forests, and the global carbon cycle. Herein we review the current literature published on the divergence problem to date, and assess its possible causes and implications. The causes, however, are not well understood and are difficult to test due to the existence of a number of covarying environmental factors that may potentially impact recent tree growth. These possible causes include temperature-induced drought stress, nonlinear thresholds or time-dependent responses to recent warming, delayed snowmelt and related changes in seasonality, and differential growth/climate relationships inferred for maximum, minimum and mean temperatures. Another possible cause of the divergence described briefly herein is ‘global dimming’, a phenomenon that has appeared, in recent decades, to decrease the amount of solar radiation available for photosynthesis and plant growth on a large scale. It is theorized that the dimming phenomenon should have a relatively greater impact on tree growth at higher northern latitudes, consistent with what has been observed from the tree-ring record. Additional potential causes include “end effects” and other methodological issues that can emerge in standardization and chronology development, and biases in instrumental target data and its modeling. Although limited evidence suggests that the divergence may be anthropogenic in nature and restricted to the recent decades of the 20th century, more research is needed to confirm these observations.

  21. Howard Says:

    Bart:

    Climate Science effectively brought Heartland to the debate by over-selling AGW and CAGW. I agree that decarbonizing energy are important for many other reasons with already provable harm happening in the here and now. Also, cheap, easy and harmless geoengineering need to be tested “just in case” (interestingly enough, climate science blogs are against such measures). Unfortunately, CAGW has been sold too hard by media and politics with support from science. Because of packaging science like religion using Madison Avenue methods, folks like Lord Monkeyton gain credibility.

  22. DLM Says:

    Pull your head out Bart. I didn’t say in ‘one ear and out the other’. We don’t need to communicate with you all Bart. You can continue to dismiss us as ignorant dolts, and we can continue to be amused by your colossal failures to implement your agenda.

    The only national government that has gotten really serious about solar and wind power (your socialist friends in Spain) have in a few short years rendered their industries uncompetitive, and have wrecked their economy. And the debts they have incurred to pay out subsidies to the likes of General Electric, are hastening their slide into bankruptcy. Thanks to our socialista Iberian friends for showing us the results of their green economy experiment. But we already knew.

    Common sense and basic physics should inform one that socialist schemes to encourage or force the adoption of green power ain’t gonna cause the sun to shine any brighter, or the wind to blow any harder. We had the wind and the sun back in 1800. If we had left the coal and oil in the ground and relied on those sources of energy, we would still be living as they did two centuries ago; not very well, and not very long.

    Wind and solar have no chance of substantially replacing fossil fuels, until fossil fuels become a lot more scarce and expensive. Get used to it. If you want to see any meaningful reduction in CO2 emissions, start lobbying for more nuclear power. Can you stomach that realistic alternative to the pie-in-the-sky nonsense Bart?

  23. willard Says:

    Sometimes I wonder how many people roving around these discussions have ever heard of citation bias.

  24. Bam Says:

    Howard,

    First of all, read a textbook on dendrochronology to find out why dendrochronologists are certain they have a good proxy for climate.

    Second, many tree ring chronologies do not show a divergence problem, or only very recent.

    Third, various other proxies show the same profile as tree rings, tree rings just have a higher temporal resolution.

    Fourth, the temperature record is used for calibration, but also continues beyond the point of just about any proxy. The truncated data is not grafted onto the instrument record, at worst it is the opposite. However, I don’t see why that should be a problem. The instrument record simply goes to the current date, but has at least a 80-year overlap with the tree ring chronologies, and thus gives a better idea of how the temperatures of the past relate to those of today.

  25. Harry Says:

    BAM,

    There is a huge difference between dendrochronology and paleodendroclimatology. The first one takes all factors into account and tries to date the trees that are subject of their research. The second tries to extract climate related information from the trees that are their subject. The first is proven to be applicable (within certain limits), the second is not proven at all. There are no experimental data using controlled environments that show that treerings can be used as thermometers, nothing. The closest that has been done was in the early 80’s with Douglas fir for the effect of air pollution on growth using the ESPAS system.

  26. Howard Says:

    Bam:

    Thanks for the response and prodding to do more study of the topic. This recent paper does not increase my confidence in paleoclimate reconstructions using trees. It is clear that much more work is needed before anything close to certainty is achieved with this type of proxy.

    Recent Dendro Paper

    7 Concluding remarks
    We have shown the strength and weakness of dendroclimatology
    in Fennoscandia as a high-resolution proxy of regional
    climate variability. While temperature has been the most frequently
    investigated climate parameter, new efforts are being
    made to look into other features as well, such as precipitation,
    drought and the large-scale circulation. Naturally there
    exist limitations in tree-ring based climate reconstructions,
    since other processes than climate affect tree-growth, and this
    will influence the climate information derived from tree-ring
    data. However, in combination with other climate proxies
    and climate models, tree-ring data can provide more information
    of past climate variability and change. One obvious
    future direction is for the Fennoscandian dendroclimatologists
    to collaborate more closely and utilize the vast spatially
    distributed tree-ring chronology data set that exist to extend
    our knowledge about regional climate variability and set it
    into a global perspective.

  27. Bart Says:

    This thread is for discussing Scott Denning’s talk at the Heartland meeting and communication between mainstream scientists and ‘skeptics’.

    Dendroclimatology belongs in the open thread and conspiracy talk trying to link science with socialism doesn’t belong on this blog at all.

    Thanks!

  28. Howard Says:

    Sorry for the digression Bart. One of the things highlighted in your post was a declarative statement that climate sensitivity was 3’C. This appears to be based on a very simplistic calculation that ignores in my opinion several conceptual factors as outlined above:

    Previous Sensitivity Qusetion

    Am I off-base here? I ask because IMO sensitivity is one of two most important factors that are poorly understood in AGW. The other being natural variability.

    Thanks

  29. Shub Niggurath Says:

    I think you right Bart.

    [edit]

    Bart: I’ll try another ‘inversion’ – let us see if that goes down well.

    We discuss climate change. The climate has changed manifold on the geological timescale, but that cannot ultimately concern us. Given this scenario, climate scientists have embarked on two long-range projects:

    1) They want to promote the paradigm that no significant climate change has taken place in the recent climatalogic past.
    2) No climate change should take place in the upcoming climatologic future

    Why do climate scientists deny climate change thus?

    I am aware of the fact that we are in an interglacial steady period now.

    3)But the skeptics did not cook up the considerable climatic variation as evidenced by the MWP and the LIA in the system – the factual existance and verification of these are in conflict with the project No (1) and in fact led to Climategate.

    4) Climate scientists participate willingly in societal debate that involves catastrophism and disaster and there are many in this debate who argue that such change should not take place. At some level, they desire climate continuity – unmolested by human ‘intervention’. The simple ultimate reality that mankind – the ‘anthropogenic’, is also a part of the order of nature itself is lost

    Points 3) and 4) make skeptics think that ‘warmers’ are the actual deniers.

    You could argue that, in the end, these are all semantics. But please remember, you claim that Denning is attempting an inversion here. And the skeptics whom you are so fond of talking down to, are stuck on the wrong side of the semantics for some time now.

    Why do you say: discussion of socialism does not belong in this blog?
    When you argue strongly in favor of “government intervention”, what do you think you are prescribing?

  30. willard Says:

    > When you argue strongly in favor of “government intervention”, what do you think you are prescribing?

    By the same token, when someone argues strongly in favor of “Irak occupation”, should we think he’s prescribing socialism?

  31. Bam Says:

    Shub,

    [edit] I have no intention to go to Delingpole and get abuse after abuse hurled after me (assuming my messages are not removed). I have looked twice at the comments, and you’d think we’re living on a different planet where ideology trumps physics (and where screaming nonsense makes it true).

    Furthermore, could you point out where Bart argues strongly in favor of government intervention? If you then also want to link that to socialism, you may need to define what *you* consider socialism. Last time I checked, virtually all political ideologies promote government intervention in various areas, so it appears you are conflating issues.

  32. Shub Niggurath Says:

    Willard
    ? what?

    BTW, the neocon fools argued, using the precautionary principle, to support their war-mongering ‘preemptive strike’ logic.

    Do you believe that the Iraq war-Global warming parallels support the Warmists side??!

    The neocons also argued (more specifically Dick Cheney) that it is not upto the United States to prove that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, but for Iraq to prove that it *did not* have weapons of mass destruction.

    Kind of like the warmists claiming they do not have to turn any absolute proof for catastrophic warming, and yet asking the skeptics to come with credible theories in the peer-reviewed literature to prove that catastrophic warming will not happen.

  33. Bart Says:

    Howard,

    The calculation is quote simplistic indeed, but uses ballpark figures of forcing and temp change, and gives a ballpark figure for sensitivity in return. More elaborate calculations don’t come up with wildly different results.

    It indeed assumes that GHG and albedo changes were dominant. Milankovitch forcing started it all off, but are small in comparison I think. The temp response to any forcing is more or less the same for the same value of the forcing (whether is from GHG, solar, albedo or whatever). The small difference there is in temp response is given by the so called efficacy (which can be different by a few tens of percent for different forcings).

    There are similar but slightly different calculations around, e.g.

    Specifically, it has been shown that the 5°C global climate change between the last ice age and the current interglacial period was maintained by a global forcing of 7.5 ± 1.5 W/m2 (16, 42, 43). (…) The result is confirmation that climate is very sensitive to global radiative forcings; we estimate, 3 ± 1°C for doubled CO2.

  34. Bart Says:

    Shub,

    You’re taking this to the absurd. Policy decisions are routinely based on on uncertain propositions, though they vary wildly in likelihood. Going to war without offering any real evidence of the need therefore is a very different cup of tea alltogether than the very real evidence there is for AGW occurring. Plus going to war is very different from building more windturbines and solar panels.

    And, as Bam also said, I haven’t specifically argued for govenrment intervention, nor is favouring govenrment intervention (e.g. to build more roads?) equal to socialism. You’re off into a totally different direction here. Keep it on topic, and keep the smears, accusations and baiting at the door.

  35. willard Says:

    Shub,

    Reread your rhetorical question:

    > When you argue strongly in favor of “government intervention”, what do you think you are prescribing?

    Replacing any kind of “government intervention” should make it clear that the implicit assumption is that rhetorical question:

    > Any form of “government intervention” leads to socialism.

    Bam considers that you are conflating issues; Bart considers that you’re off into a totally different direction here; I am merely showing how caricatural you are portraying socialism.

    Your libertarianism shows, Shub. A caricatural libertarianism, to boot.

  36. DLM Says:

    Nobody said anything about a science/ socialist conspiracy, Bart. You keep doing that. I pointed out the folly of the socialist Spanish government’s energy policies, which I assume that you find to be just brilliant and necessary. You do know that the government of Spain calls themselves socialists, don’t you?

    Bart said:”A point of critique could be that he glossed over the mitigation challenge a bit easily, apparently trusting that “the magic of markets” will take care of new energy technologies being invented and implemented. Such a frame may encourage a ‘wait and see’ approach, which I deem risky. I guess a bit of skepticism is at its place whether it will happen so effortless. A lot may depend on how long we keep postponing meaningful emission reductions.

    Those who most strongly oppose government intervention would be wise to call for strong early action to avoid really stringent measures becoming necessary later on.”

    Yes, we would be wise to go along like little sheep now, before they really crack down on us. What new energy technologies do you expect to be invented and implemented? Do you actually believe that there are advances in solar or wind power on the horizon that will solve our alleged problem? If so, please explain to us dummies the physics that cause you to think so.

    You did not answer my question about nuclear power? And you have never answered my questions about Al Gore. He popularized your cause. Is he a hero, or isn’t he? Has he misused science, but in a good cause? And no, I am not going to take this to the open thread, which nobody reads. Why don’t you do a post on Al Gore, so we can discuss the hero of your movement? No, I didn’t think so. Just like you all don’t want to discuss the missing heat.

    That’s all I have to say on this obscure forum. You should beg VS to come back.

  37. Howard Says:

    Bart

    Thanks. What got me going is the apparent large forcing fluctuations from the M cycles. Hopefully the below graph shows up which shows Vostok Temps with M-cycle forcings for the past 250K ybp. A lot of food for thought. It seems our interglacial is remaining relatively flat compared with previous. Perhaps shallower core samples influence this or else perhaps man-made changes to landuse is a big factor.

  38. Shub Niggurath Says:

    Global warming alarmism as a means to increase state power is the most ‘caricatural’ – it is difficult to beat that. ;).

    “The possibility of catastrophe is kept alive within the limits of uncertainty”- paraphrasing Richard Lindzen.

    The parallels between what happened before and during the Iraq ‘War’ and now are too numerous.

    Bart:
    I looked at your postscript. You say a ‘wait and see’ approach is ‘risky’. You also say – those who do not like government intervention should ask for it now because when the crunch comes and if we haven’t done anything, the government would have to intervene more drastically. Is that correct? I think it is.

    You put your final line in bold.

    This *is* a prescription of socialism, more specifically absolute socialism. In fact, I would say, it is something worse.

    But I did not make this claim de novo. You seemed to think that discussion of socialism is somehow out of place here where we are discussing the ‘magic of markets’. So I brought it up. We can discuss what constitutes socialism and we may or may not vary in our ideas; but the idea of socialism is never off topic in any discussion of government intervention using the excuse of catastrophic global warming.

    Regards

  39. sailrick Says:

    “skeptical climate science and AGW climate science will continue to diverge, leaving the public in a state of complete confusion.”

    No, what has left the public in a state of complete confusion, is the manufactured illusion that both represent real science.

    Go to the Greenpeace website(yes they are environmentalists), and download the pdf file called “dealing in doubt”.
    It is a pretty good summary, of what there has been at least seven books written about. The entire global warming denial phenomenon is manufactured.

    You might also want to read a few books, like:

    “Climate Cover-Up” by James Hoggan

    “Scorcher: The Dirty Politics of Climate Change” by Clive Hamilton

    “Science as Contact Sport” by Stephan Schneider

    “Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming”
    by Naomi Oreskes and Erik Conway (available May 25th)

    “Boiling Point”
    and
    “The Heat Is On” both by Ross Gelbspan

    Censoring Science: The Political Attack on Dr. James Hansen and the Truth of Global Warming” by Mark Bowen

  40. sailrick Says:

    Shub

    It has become common practice with those of your political ideology to accuse everything and anything that you don’t like, as socialism. It is absurd, delusional thinking. Give me one example of a successful economy that is NOT a mixed economy of capitalism and social programs. And for the most part they are all strong democracies.
    The politicizing, in regard to the IPCC, that so called skeptics whine about, has actually had the effect of watering down their reports and making them generally more conservative than what the science indicates.

    If you were truly skeptics, you would not cling to a whole littany of skeptic arguments, most of which were long ago disproven. Someone like Anthony Watts, continually grasping at straws of skepticism, is not a searcher for truth. That kind of activity is not scientific inquiry. It is looking for confirmation for an agenda, always ready to switch to the next memorized argument as soon as the last one has been debunked. You think science works like that?
    Science works in part, due to real skepticism, the kind all scientists employ, and when shown to be in error, they don’t keep beating a dead horse. The MWP you speak of was not a phenomena that happened at the same time all over the world. This myth is perpetuated by ignoring the time span of several hundred years, wherein some regions experienced warm climate, hundreds of years apart from when other regions experienced it. And there is no good evidence that it was global, even at that.

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/Common-graphical-tricks-and-the-Medieval-Warm-Period.html

  41. MapleLeaf Says:

    Someone asked of evidence that Lindzen has engaged in fudging numbers– the word ‘fraud’ was used, but I’ll let people decide for themselves. Well, look what we have here:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/03/11/a-note-from-richard-lindzen-on-statistically-significant-warming/

    Lindzen coaching Mr. Watts to cherry pick a (short) window from the SAT record to hide the stat sig increase in temperatures without having to use the cherry-picked 1998 that the contrarians were using for so long. Instead he selects a short period. What is neat about Lindzen’s trick to hide the incline is that you can play that game ad infinitum even while the long-term (stat sig trend) is up. Dick also cherry-picked windows in Lindzen and Choi (2009), and that was just one of several issues with that paper.

    We also have Goddard, Easterbrook, Monckton, Taylor, Eschenbach and others disseminating misinformation and deception at the Heartland contrarian conference. Yes, and I suspect the contrarians here will passionately defend the data fudging and deception by the aforementioned guilty parties. The double standard and hypocrisy of the contrarians is well established, however.

    Call me skeptical, but the invitation to have a credible such as Denning was probably purely for optics. Nice to hear that he was well received though.

    I hear that Delinpole’s libertarian talk was ‘brilliant’ ;)

    Bart, I see that your site is still invested with trolls. Sorry to be blunt, but I might come back when you have gotten rid of the vermin, because for a while now there is not much hope of entering rational and informed scientific discussion with those in denial about AGW and conspiracy theorists.

    In the mean time, 0-2000 m OHC continues to increase, UAH MSU temps continue to rise, and Arctic sea ice volume continues to set new record lows. Even Goddard and Watts have now conceded that the Arctic will be (mostly?) ice free around September 2065, much sooner than the IPCC predictions.

  42. Howard Says:

    Below is link to the site (previous botched HTML) showing M-Cycle forcing in W/m2. ~50-W/m2 broke Glacial Max, Still ~9-W/m2 above Glacial Max.

    Overall the climate seems to be quite insensitive to these large M-cycle forcing fluctuations that range from 40- to 100-W/m2 with Temp changes ranging from <1'C to up to 8'C. Obviously I need to get more information how CO2 sensitivity is calculated, but from what I see in this plot, negative feedbacks predominate.

    Vostok Temp and M-Cycle Forcing W/m2

    PS Sailrick: I manufactured my own skepticism of AGW based on geologic common sense. I’d take Greenpeace dilettantes with a mountain of salt. People that actually clean and preserve the environment tend to be male blue collar homophobic tobacco addicts. Kinda like the most compelling peaceniks are combat vets.

  43. Bart Says:

    DLM,

    “before they really crack down on us. “

    You really seem to have an irrational fear of “them”, whoever “they” are. It’s a matter of how fast can we reduce emissions? The faster they need to be reduced, the harder/harsher the measures need to be. We can do it relatively smooth (though at a cost, of course) if we start early, or we can do it harsh (at larger financial and societal costs) if we keep postponing it. It’s like with any procrastination: Divide the work up over several weeks of steady work, or be forced to work the last few days without getting any sleep. You’re the one who’s so afraid of losing sleep, so you should be the one arguing most strongly to start early. Rationally speaking, that is.

    Nuclear power and Al Gore are off topic for this thread. You can use the search box at the bottom right to check out what I’ve written about those topics before.

  44. Bart Says:

    Shub,

    Your first statement is hilariously caricatural indeed. Is your belief in it strengthened the more you repeat it to yourself?

    And on uncertainty: So scientists are accused of hiding uncertainty and of abusing it to push catastrophism? Anything goes, as long as the conclusion is favorable, right?

    I fail to see what my statement has to do with socialism. You’re just using the term as a meaningless stick.

    See my reply to DLM on the risks of wait and see. I put it in bold because I think it’s a very important and often forgotten issue. Perhaps your interpretation comes from you confusing where I’m coming from: I’m not favoring the kind of drastic interventions that would be required in a worst case scenario (see e.g. this report, where they distinguish four main categories to respond to extreme climate change (page 21 has the rundown): drastic emission reduction, carbon dioxide removal, solar radiation
    management (geoengineering) and enhanced adaptation to unavoidable consequences. A worst case scenario may call for policy measures that are “neither voluntary nor kind”). Just to make myself very clear: I’m not advocating such far reaching efforts at this moment. Rather, I’d want to avoid having little choice later on than to use such harsh methods. I’d thought that you would also want to avoid them.

  45. Shub Niggurath Says:

    Bart:
    I do understand what you are saying. Yet we talk past each other – atleast I seem to have talked past you.

    I wrote exactly what you say to DLM – about procrastinating now versus drastic action/geoengineering later in my post. It had nothing to do with your discussion with BAM.

    My understanding you are calling for ‘small’ measures now. Is that correct?

    Having said all this, let me tell you – I stand by what I say.

    You may use words like ‘accuse’..it doesn’t matter. Scientists have participated in catastrophism – even the document you provided shows that. I dont think they do it in bad faith – atleast not all of them.

    I think using political labels and designations should perhaps be avoided because it gets everyone riled up. (I reiterate once more – I did not bring up ‘socialism’ myself, of my own accord).

    The underlying meaning of these political labels is what concerns us, isn’t it?

    My point to support my stand about government control/intervention etc is: using unproven hypotheses to control or influence CO2, which is an ubiquitous gas, who production is linked to the basis of all human productivity is not a good idea. All policy measures operate under some uncertainty. But CAGW policies operate only on the basis of the uncertainty.

    Please consider what I said. Like I said previously – we do not have to agree on socialism, libertarianism or other ism’s to argue this.

    Maple:
    Lindzen and Choi is a good experiment. They’ve issued a correction too. I understand why it can be a great source of trouble – it is based on real physical evidence.

    Sailrick:
    Many of your references, including the Greenpeace reference follow a certain paradigm – they model the skepticism/denial issue in the ‘frame’ of a tobacco second-hand smoke saga.

    This paradigm does not hold true completely for AGW skepticism – for several reasons and certainly is completely outmoded by Climategate.

    I have abundant life experience living in a predominantly socialist economy, I have seen the transition into a mixed economy and I have seen the change with my own eyes. I know the mixing of what with what makes mixed economies tick. ;)

  46. MapleLeaf Says:

    Shub,

    The Lindzen and Choi paper is dead in the water. It has now been refuted by three other papers Trenberth et al. 921010), Murphy (2010) and Chung et al. (2010).

    Chung et al. (2010) conclude that:

    ” While the feedback parameters determined over the tropical ocean show significant sensitivities depending on time period and model simulation type, the global analyses yield much more consistent feedback parameters in the model simulations. This difference suggests that the tropical ocean is not an adequate domain for the determination of climate sensitivity [e.g., Trenberth et al., 2010; Murphy, 2010]. In addition, a positive relationship is noted between the interannual values of radiative damping and the climate sensitivity of the model.”

    Trenberth et a;’s refutation in particular was pretty damning. Lindzen seems to have, again, been guilty of confirmation bias. And yet another contrarian paper has not passed muster.

    I am not aware of any correction by L&C which has appeared in press– found nothing at GRL. Besides, you are being presumptuous that they managed to fix the errors, but even if they do address them, the fact remains that it has been demonstrated by several independent studies that the “tropical ocean is not an adequate domain for the determination of climate sensitivity”.

    Interesting how the good science keeps converging towards a climate sensitivity of >+2 C for doubling CO2. And at this point please don’t be so desperate at to invoke the dismal G&T paper which has also been soundly refuted.

    Denning was on, or close to, the mark with +3 C for CS.

  47. Harry Says:

    Shub,

    I agree with you. Mapleleaf, I do not agree with you. Bart: you are showing something I like.

    My opinion is very simple:

    I have my doubts about the A in AGW. So long as nobody can show me the convincing evidence that we, A, are the source for GW, I will not accept any of the following:
    Massive taxation of all CO2 emitting processes
    The urgency to switch to renewables such as wind and PV.
    Electric cars

    And maybe the GT paper is dismal, but more evidence is surfacing to support their observations. It is not only physics or modelling. The combination of bad physics and bad modelling has ruled for too long unabated.

  48. MapleLeaf Says:

    Harry,

    Fine you do not agree, but you are not being rational, objective or quantitative. The data are clear– 0-2000 m OHC (no UHI) and global SATs are up (not monotonically of course), satellite MSU temperatures are up (no UHI), volume of Arctic sea ice is dramatically down, Greenland and both WAIS and EAIS are losing ice et cetera.

    CO2 is going up (not to mention other GHGs such as CH4 and N2O and WV), isotopic analyses show that the reason is burning of fossil fuels. Finger printing techniques (e.g., Santer et al) have made the connection between GHGs (not only CO2). Moreover, satellites and surface-based observations have showed an enhanced “greenhouse” effect.

    You are the one being alarmist by talking about “massive taxation”, stop fear mongering and making unsubstantiated statements. Also, please stop deluding yourself Harry. You and your ilk do not accept the theory of AGW, not because of issues with the science, but because it is not consistent with your ideology. Consequently, there is a mental block there which seems to be preventing you from viewing the science objectively and rationally. The unfortunate result is a disconnect between what you perceive and the stark reality.

    We are playing with a loaded dice here and you are betting that it will have no impact on the outcome.

    And saying that “I do not agree with you” does not cut it, not in these fora or in science. Back up your assertions with reputable science and vetted facts. I do not agree with you, but at least I back up my assertions with vetted facts from reputable groups such as NOAA, NASA etc.

    And what evidence is surfacing which supports their (nonsensical) assertion that:

    “We take the opportunity to clarify some misunderstandings, which are communicated in the current discussion on the non-measurable, i.e., physically non-existing influence of the trace gas CO2 on the climates of the Earth.” [from G&T reply to Halpern et al. 2010]

    Wow, “non-existing influence of the trace gas CO2″!? Well O3 is a trace gas with concentrations of 6-8 ppbv (parts per billion) in the stratosphere, yet it is essential. By comparison CO2 is currently about 390 ppmv (parts per million).

  49. Harry Says:

    Mapleleaf,

    We had this discussion before and I have not changed my opinion. There is still more than sufficient space in the flawed data to accept non AGW. The effect of CO2 is logarithimc, so we will not feel anything below a doubling (this is the way human sensors work). Comparing O3 with CO2 is just silly, as you will agree. And that you cite NOAA or whatever does not make any whatsever impression on me. My opinion does not need strengthening by out of context citations. I can judge them by myself, I do not need any citations to make a more solid impression.

  50. MapleLeaf Says:

    Harry,

    Sigh, yes this is tiresome, that is why I stayed away fro a while. Would you not be more comfortable at WUWT? Lots of comforting, albeit erroneous/fallacious “science” there.

    “I can judge them by myself, I do not need any citations to make a more solid impression.” I fear that is not true as demonstrated by your comments here.

    “Comparing O3 with CO2 is just silly, as you will agree.” No I do not. Why is that “silly”? Support that subjective assessment with some facts. The point is that certain trace gases are important.

    “And that you cite NOAA or whatever does not make any whatsever impression on me.”
    Actually, therein lies the problem. And that is at this point when people suggest that people like you may be suffering from the D-K effect, although it is pointless telling someone with D-K that, b/c they are incapable of recognizing it. The only point for mentioning it is for it to be noted for the record and to forewarn other posters that engaging someone with D-K is hopeless. That is not a slight Harry, it is an honest observation based on the content of your posts, and one which others agree with me on.

    “My opinion does not need strengthening by out of context citations.”
    What are you trying to say? What citations were out of context?

    “The effect of CO2 is logarithimc, so we will not feel anything below a doubling (this is the way human sensors work).”
    Please elaborate, this makes no sense.

  51. Harry Says:

    Mapleleaf,

    There is no climate science. It is not an experimental science, it is nothing but a statistical evaluation of bad data, which is used to build even worse models. It has nothing to do with science. You can claim one thing, I can claim any other thing. You can support it by citations, I can support my claims with citations. But because the data are flawed, we will never ever get to a consensus. And that is Ok, consensus is the last that I would like to have. If we would ever reach consensus then I will reconsider my position.

  52. Harry Says:

    Mapleleaf,

    Are you trying to build a “cordon sanitaire” around me? “He is raving mad, please do let him, then he will do no harm?”. If anything fails, call the cordon sanitaire and you have no problems. Why are you incapable of accepting that some other visions, ideas can exist? Why do you always want to have citations with a higher authority? Because you yourself lack the authority. I do not claim any authority, I only claim my simple minded reasoning. And that your buddies agree that I am nuts is something I consider a great achievement.

  53. MapleLeaf Says:

    We have actually moved well beyond “consensus” to “consilience”.

    And making gross, unsubstantiated generalizations about that the data are flawed is nonsense. Funny then how you then seek out those flawed (because you say all data is flawed, so it follows that data you are using to support your argument are flawed) data which support your ideology. You are tying yourself in knots here Harry.

    The reality is that all data have issues, all data, even data from controlled lab experiments. Scientists are very good at dealing with those issues. You clearly are not equipped to grasp that critical concept.

    The models are not exclusively based on data Harry– I think before you have even made reference to the SAT record in that context and you are showing your ignorance. NWP and AOGCMs are based primarily on physics and fluid dynamics etc. They validated using observations. There are exceptions of course, for example if you are dealing with an empirically-based model or a process that has to be parameterized.

    Anyhow, I am going to follow my own advice and not waste my time engaging you.

    A parting request Harry, please go set up shop at WUWT. I am serious, you will be ‘happier’ there and the continuous stream of misinformation will keep your mind at ease and avoid you having to deal with inconvenient thoughts.

    It is really sad that contrarians have taking advantage of Bart’s generosity by setting up camp here on Bart’s science page. I would even go so far as to say that the site has been hijacked– IMO that is no way to repay Bart’s tolerance.

  54. MapleLeaf Says:

    Harry,

    “I only claim my simple minded reasoning”

    I agree and it is most evident. Providing citations is not an appeal to authority, it is part of the scientific process– so stop making straw men arguments.

    And the D-K effect is not a mental health condition, read up on it! I am not saying that you are crazy or a danger. Given your over-reaction though, you do not seem convinced of that fact, which is telling. And you actually have previously threatened me with violence on this blog….yet, here I am trying to engage you as politely as possible.

    Bye, bye Harry. Take care and good luck. And please do go here:

    http://www.wattsupwiththat.com

  55. Harry Says:

    Mapleleaf,

    Thanks for your concluding remarks. They were exactly as I would expect them to be: patronizing, not open for discussion, what are you doing here, you do not belong to our clan.

    I do not want to go to WUWT, although I read it regularly and post on it. But why should I go to WUWT? I would like to have discussion with other minded people, but I only meet people which like to teach me and treat me as if I am an ignorant Joe Six-pack. I love six packs, but that is another issue. I thank you for refraining from your previous harassing language, but it is not essentially improved. You are still patronizing as if your opinion is given by a higher authority. Which is for me not obvious.

  56. Shub Niggurath Says:

    Maple – methane is rising??

    I think an attempt was made to build a ‘cordon libertarianaire’ around me.

    Building roads as a syllogism to support government-mandated CO2 control???

  57. phinniethewoo Says:

    mapleleaf thingy

    MO that is no way to repay Bart’s tolerance.

    At least you implicitely concede here that the majority of sites (the “consensus” clique) are INtolerant..

  58. phinniethewoo Says:

    Electric cars especially is sheer madness.
    Gargantuan investments for saving a couple of % CO2, allegedly.

    In mobility if there are any savings to be got , it is via automated driving as we can then rent and share 2ton steel instead of having it parked 23H on the bitumen parking lot, in urban areas.

  59. Harry Says:

    Mapleleaf,

    Citation:
    I agree and it is most evident. Providing citations is not an appeal to authority, it is part of the scientific process– so stop making straw men arguments.
    Citation end

    Are you trying to convince me that you are following the scientific method? Really? So citing papers that I do not have read or can understand is OK? Revealing my personal opinion is a strawman? And who do you think you are to be able to judge the scientific merits of the posters on this blog? As far as I can tell you do not know anything about any exact science beyond the first grade class.

    Get used to it: I will be here.

  60. MapleLeaf Says:

    I’m not biting Harry, good night.

  61. Bam Says:

    Interesting, Harry just dismissed astronomy. Like climate science, it depends on data collection and subsequent analysis. Doing actual experiments is not possible (we can’t build a mini-sun and analyse it, and then transfer the results to the real world). Perhaps Harry wants to tell the astronomers that.

    Funnily enough Harry also supports Gerlich & Tscheuschner, two theoretical physicists. “Theoretical”, as in “not doing any experiments”.

  62. MapleLeaf Says:

    Shub,

    You are behind the times Shub–yes, the increase in CH4 took a brief hiatus between 1999 and 2006, but since then it has resumed its upward trajectory.

    Of course, the long term trend in CH4 concentrations shown in the above figures is up; since circa 1980 CH4 has increased by about 230 ppbv, or by about 14%. But you contrarians love to cherry pick short windows and data points to hide the incline in temperatures and in this case CH4, whilst doing the same to hide the decline in Arctic sea ice and H. Hemisphere snow cover.

    And yes, right now, the contribution of CH4 to radiative forcing is small. Got it. Let us hope we don’t loose too much of the permafrost.

    Now, back to those contrarians fudging their data and/or making misleading/deceptive statements at Heartland and elsewhere. You guys (DLM, Shub, Harry, Winnie the poo wannabe, cohenite) are doing an OK job misrepresenting the science and facts here, but really, you have nothing on Goddard, Watts, Eschenbach, Easterbrook, McLean, Taylor, Monckton, Douglass, Soon, D’Aleo, Ball, McKitrick, Singer, McIntyre, Michaels, Plimer, Loehle plus others, but let us not forget Lindzen and Spencer.

  63. Shub Niggurath Says:

    Bam:
    Astronomy – is an observation-based science.

    What observations can you perform in ‘climate change science’?

  64. MapleLeaf Says:

    Shub, surely you are joking. Surely. And climate science and astronomy are based on more than observations, if you don’t know that then there is no hope of entering into a dialogue with you. Besides, what science disciplines do not use observations whether they be from lab experiments or field measurements etc.?

    You guys are twisting in the wind, first it is show me the evidence (i.e., hard data/observations which support AGW, and which do exist except in those blinded by their ideology), and now contrarians are claiming that climate science ‘depends on data collection’. Would you please make up your mind, and also at least try and be consistently wrong instead of flip flopping.

    And what does this have to do with Dr. Denning’s talk? I sense the contrarians are nervous by all the attention Heartland got and that the scientists are now pulling their propaganda campaign to pieces, so they are trying to float as many red herrings as they can to detract from that :)

  65. MapleLeaf Says:

    Shub,

    “What observations can you perform in ‘climate change science’?”

    Please answer your own question. I am curious to see what you come up with after thinking about it for a while.

  66. Bam Says:

    Shub, are you seriously asking a question, or just trolling?

    If the former: http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/data-sources/

    If the latter: you sad bugger.

  67. Shub Niggurath Says:

    Surely Bart, my strong rhetoric can be tolerated then, by those who cannot hold their own tongues in check. ;)

  68. Harry Says:

    BAM,
    As usual, discussions end with name calling. Good scientific arguments, I am really impressed.

    Many people are expressing their concern regarding the quality of data, as I am. As long as this is not clearly solved, we will not be able to determine what is going on in climate and what caused it. The variation within the currently used global mean temperature sets allows any interpretation for the causative origin of global warming. Natural fluctuations are well within the range of the data. The modelling is based on these datasets and the individual parameters of the respective physics rules in them are accordingly adjusted to fit the historic record. The interference of clouds with the Stephan Bolzmann radiative models is poorly understood and hampers a simple application of these laws to model radiative forcings. Horizontal stratification within the atmosphere complicates this problem even more.

  69. Shub Niggurath Says:

    Maple: I considered what Bam said briefly and then posted. Yes, it might have sounded provocative, but no more than Bam’s suggestion than astronomy and whatever it is that he wants to defend, have something in common.

    Firstly let me draw your attention to what I wrote – ‘climate change science’. This science then, is comprised of several endeavors.

    Let us remind ourselves here: climate is a statistical phenomenon, ultimately. This does not mean that it is a non-corporeal entity, but rather, it is a summation of different parameters and physical phenomena which are in and of themselves non-climatic processes. These phenomena however, can be observed – we can observe the weather and weather processes, for example.

    The next step is ‘data collection’. This is performed by measurement. Observation, let me remind you, is different from measurement. Measurement imposes inter-observation comparability between different observations of instantaneous processes, which in our case is the weather.

    In climate change therefore, at the basic minimum, to learn of the ‘climate state’ we need to derive quantities by summation or integration of measurements of non-climatic processes over sufficiently long periods of time. This process then results in variables which are the ‘fundamental irreducibles’ of climate change science.

    Even at this stage, if you agree with the above, it is evident that an interpretive and inferential process is interposed and required between ‘observation/measurement’ and ‘climate state’.

    Is it just that the tempo of the processes create the illusion of observability in astronomy but fool us to think otherwise of climate?

    If I follow the motion of a planet across the skies with my telescope – I measure its position, record it everyday, and deduce after several weeks, that it has moved from point A to B. Any one given day, I cannot perceive its movement at all. But in the end, I have inferred its movement, haven’t I?

    But if we examine our argument carefully, we would notice that our measurements – the position of the planet relative to time, is a directly derived variable from the natural world in which the experiment is done. It is not a construct. There may be hundred assumptions to render this one measurement (radians) meaningful or true, but the measurement itself does not decompose.

    This does not hold fast for climate change science. Its basic variables are derived quantities and not direct observations. The problem is not in its tempo, it is in the nature of what we wish to study.

    This is clearly exemplified by the study of meta-climatic processes such as malaria and butterfly behavior as evidence for climate change. It is not that a change of the climate cannot have any effect on the butterflies. But by the same account, it is difficult to substantiate climate change from the butterflies.

    Even at the most basic level, the residue or the signature of the heat energy transfers that constitute our climate system – the temperature – measurement of this observation cannot give us the climate state. We need to grid it, homogenize it and so forth.

    Jones is not a stupid man – he uses the term ‘instrumental proxy’. It is an accurate term. It is a proxy. It stands for our scientific interpretation of the temperature grid – it is not a measurement. Maybe we will make better instruments, more discoveries and have better proxies.

    All this is not to say there is no climate change. It is to say there are no observations in climate change science.

    None of this is new – I am sure people like Bart – the professionals can provide a more nuanced view.

    Maple, I am glad you paused a bit and thought about what I said. Which is what I did too.

    BAM, do not try to garner support for your climate science ideas by telling us that astronomers cannot recreate suns and perform experiments and therefore climate scientists are in the same bracket as them. They are not.

    Climate science is an interpretive, synthetic, creative process. Astronomy is an mensurative, descriptive process. In the frame of classical physics, astronomy especially observational astronomy stands conceptually closer to physical reality than climate science. It is this presumed ‘credibility’ that comes with this closeness that you try to steal and claim for climate science – do not think that went unnoticed.

    Try to think on your own, instead of wasting your time underestimating and abusing your skeptical fellow commenters.

  70. DeNihilist Says:

    Bart, thanx for the site.

    I watched the Video of Scott’s requested talk at the closing lunch on Anthony’s site. Very gracious I thought. Not afraid to state his opinion. And was grateful to having attended as he stated that he learned some things himself.

    To me, it is this openess (and that of Curry and yourself, plus a few others) that will help to open the lines of communication. It will take courage from both sides to realize that the only real way to progress is to listen.

  71. Bam Says:

    Harry: when someone makes a comment that suggests there are no observations in climate science, he’s either ignorant or trolling. You shift the goalposts by claiming the data is untrustworthy. By that you already admit that there ARE observations.

    Shub: GCMs are based on physics. The greenhouse effect as such is based on physics (despite Gerlich & Tscheuschner’s attempt to overthrow basic physics). Climate science is completely based on observations. Of course, if you do not like astronomy as an example, let’s take the theory of evolution. Maybe even better example, it’s been attacked for violating the second law of thermodynamics, too.

  72. Bart Says:

    DeNihilist,

    Denning gave a good and gracious speech indeed. The following quote is interesting (h/t “Neven”):

    What I think really has been missing from this debate, if you can call it a debate, is constructive solutions that come from the political faction or whatever you want to call it that’s represented in this room. I think that if one only argues about the physics and doesn’t argue about the political response to that physics, the danger is that the political response comes entirely from one side of the political spectrum. And I think that there’s really a tremendous opportunity for free-market solutions to climate issues, energy issues that is not being heard. And I would caution you about falling into a sort of ‘us versus them’ paranoid point of view that will make your voices less heard. I really think you do have important things to say here and I hope to be able to continue the dialogue with you folks.

    As I wrote before:

    The more relevant discussion for society is about how to deal with climate change (rather than about Siberian tree rings or other scientific details). How do we act in the face of uncertainty, but with real risks of problematic consequences? “Skeptics” could make a very useful contribution to such a discussion, if they started thinking about how to deal with climate change while at the same time minimizing the perceived consequences they dislike so much (e.g. taxes and regulations).

  73. Bart Says:

    Phinniethewoo, DLM:

    You’re welcome to post comments to this blog, but I’ve run out of patience with your repetitive and derogatory remarks. If you have something constructive or insightful to say that you haven’t said yet, please do so in a respectful way. Otherwise, stop wasting everybody’s time here. You’re on moderation, as you’ve probably noticed.

    Thanks!

  74. Anonymous Says:

    Bart says – {The more relevant discussion for society is about how to deal with climate change (rather than about Siberian tree rings or other scientific details). }

    and therein lies the rub. A lot of sceptics are of the opinion that the climate change we are experiencing right now is more natural then manmade, ergo, why waste time and money on a solution that has no problem. Which follows for some, that the science is not robust.

    Here lies the conundrum. As a scientist involved in climate studies, how do you get this part of the population (if you are so inclined) to accept that what you and your peers have published is , for want of a better term, valid?

    My personal opinion is to keep on doing what you and Lucia and even Jo Nova, plus others are doing right now, allow the other side a reasonable voice. Keep the rough and tumble for your peers.

    The general public, no longer want to be preached at, we want to have a say. That may in this example take some time for most of us to get up to speed, but really, the concept of CO2 slowing the travel of LWR to space is not hard to grasp. But the consequences are. Have patience, and eventually most will get it.

  75. DeNihilist Says:

    Bart, sorry, forgot to post my handle to the above statment.

  76. DLM Says:

    Professor Mike Hulme says:

    We must stop saying ‘The science demands…’
    Top climate-change expert Mike Hulme tells spiked it is a scandal that scientific claims are increasingly usurping politics and morality.
    Tim Black

    ‘To say that the science demands a certain policy response to climate change is just a wrong reading of the relationship between science and policy.’

    Mike Hulme, professor of climate change in the School of Environmental Sciences at the University of East Anglia, is a passionate advocate of science. Yet, as he tells spiked, when it comes to climate change, too many people expect too much of science. Physics and ethics seem to have become conflated in the climate change debate. We see politicians expecting science to determine policy; we see environmental campaigners, armed with peer-reviewed papers, expecting it to win all the arguments; and, in turn, we see so-called sceptics expecting their science to refute the green vision of society. But for Hulme, author of Why We Disagree About Climate Change, science cannot, and should not, be expected to do these things. It is no substitute, he argues, for politics or for moral judgements.

    ‘The phraseology that I object to – because it’s inappropriate – is “the science demands this” and “the science demands that”, as though the making of climate policy, or policy in general in fact, is a simple process of translating scientific evidence or scientific knowledge claims directly into policy. In no area of policy is that the case – least of all in climate change, where the making of policy has to bring in a much wider range of pieces of evidence and also political and ethical considerations.’

    So how should we grasp the relationship between science and policymaking? ‘I do think that scientific knowledge about climate change is very important’, says Hulme. ‘Science is a unique and very powerful way of bringing understanding to bear on how the physical world works. Scientists have been able to reveal the fact that humans are an influence on the climate system and are likely to continue to be so. And that evidence, that knowledge, should be brought into public and policy deliberations. But it then has to be interpreted alongside these other considerations – political, ethical, moral and so on.’

    Hulme is keen to point out the limits to what climate science can tell us about the future: ‘Scientific knowledge around climate change can only speak with large uncertainty margins about what may or may not happen. Yes, climates will continue to change in the future because of human emissions. But putting exact numbers on changes, and therefore predicting what risks lie ahead, is extremely difficult for science to do. So it’s important for scientific knowledge to be adequately hedged in public debate and policy discussion with appropriate caveats and caution about uncertainty.

    ‘That is not the same as saying that this knowledge is not useful or that it should be ignored. Most scientific knowledge is uncertain. Most scientific insights are hedged with caution or uncertainty. But that’s exactly why judgement – political, ethical, moral judgement – has to be used for making policy.’

    He goes further still: just as science cannot make decisions for us, he says, so the arguments about climate change today ought not to be grasped as being scientific in origin: ‘I certainly think politics and ethics explain why people have so many different positions on climate change. I think that deeper-seated issues [inform the arguments]: different cultural perspectives on the relationship between humanity and the natural world; different attitudes to, for example, the responsibilities that humans have as opposed to those of the divinities that people believe in – the role of religion becomes important here.

    ‘Even in a secular setting, people have very different attitudes that inform their relationship to climate change. For instance, some see nature, and therefore the planet, as something that is fragile and easily dislocated. Others see that nature is actually quite robust and resilient. And then there are different attitudes – secular or religious – to technology. People have very different views on the ability of technology to mitigate against risk and danger. Some people see technology as inherently loaded with further problems and complications and unintended side effects.’

    Given evident disagreements about climate change, and climate change-driven policy, how should we understand the meaning of a scientific ‘consensus’? ‘In science’, Hulme says, ‘phrases such as “the scientific consensus” or “the IPCC consensus” are frequently used. I do think it’s important to understand what this process of consensus-making in science is all about. There are criticisms from both sides of the debate around this thing called scientific consensus. Some people criticise it by saying, “Well, science doesn’t work by consensus, science works by testing, by experimentation, by falsification. It’s not a democracy. Ninety-nine per cent of scientists can be wrong and one per cent might be right.” So actually, some people criticise the IPCC process because it’s using an inappropriate method for producing knowledge claims. Other people, meanwhile, actually interpret consensus as meaning certainty. I think it’s important to unpack what is meant by consensus in science.’

    Ironically, he says, the search for a consensus on the science of climate change is evidence of deep divisions on this issue. ‘Consensus in science only makes sense if there is disagreement amongst experts’, he says. ‘If all the experts agreed, you wouldn’t need to go through this process of consensus-making. Hence we don’t need to go through a process of consensus-making around the laws of gravity. But a process of consensus-making around climate change is important because there is disagreement. So actually consensus assumes disagreement amongst scientists.

    ‘But what the process of forming a consensus does do is establish where the centre of opinion lies, given the spectrum of views and judgements. So it’s not just about consensus knowledge, it’s about the spectrum of beliefs. And those two things actually work together: there’s a wide spectrum of beliefs about aspects of climate change, but nevertheless this is where the centre of gravity lies. And that’s a slightly more subtle position than simply saying “the IPCC consensus is this or that”.’

    Yet if consensus is predicated upon disagreement, why, politically, is there so much anxiety about anyone appearing to challenge the consensus, with people branded as ‘deniers’ and modern-day heretics if they dare to question what some greens mistakenly consider to be concrete agreement amongst leading experts? ‘One of the reasons for that’, says Hulme, ‘is because of this belief that there is a specific relationship between scientific knowledge and policy. As a result, it is argued that you have to have clear and certain scientific knowledge that will translate into clear and certain policy. And if the science is presented as being not clear and not certain, then the whole argument, or the whole policy, breaks down.

    ‘And that’s why so many of the battles, so many of the ideological battles, are fought through the proxies of science and scientists – because people think that if you win that battle, then you’ve won the policy battle. This again is an inappropriate understanding. Actually, the ideological battles, the policy battles, have to be held on the territory of politics, ethics, worldviews and beliefs. That’s where the legitimate battle should be held.’

    Hulme cites the 2007 Stern Review as an example of the worrying effacement of political and ethical debate in favour of apparent scientific facts: ‘It offered a very powerful economic case for early and urgent action on climate change. But actually what didn’t get debated in the Stern Review – and it should have been – was the ethical dimension that underpinned the economic analysis. There was just so much focus on the numbers. But the argument should have been held around the ethical decisions that Lord Stern’s team made about discounting the future at very low discount rates or using inequality of risk parameters that seemed to give very little weight to the contemporary poor in favour of the unborn poor. Those are not matters of science, they are matters of ethical judgement. And you can get a radically different set of policy pronouncements depending on where you fall on that ethical spectrum.

    ‘So really, what the Stern Review should have catalysed is a major public debate on how we value the future, how we value the present, how we value the contemporary poor versus the unborn poor. And Stern took a very particular ethical line. And you can agree with it or you can disagree with it, but it should have been centre-stage. Instead, the final arguments were drawn from economics again, as though that provides the one single route for policy development.

    ‘The battle, the argument, the public debate’, Hulme argues, ‘should be around these matters – values, beliefs and ethics – rather than continually reverting back to the science to try to provide the certainty and the clarity. Because science, particularly in this area of complex systems, like the Earth system, is never going to provide that kind of certainty.’

    All of which raises the question: why isn’t the battle, the argument and the public debate about the Good Life, about how we should organise society, being had in its own terms? Why is it being had through the prism of climate science?

    ‘This question opens up a much bigger set of issues which don’t just pertain to climate change’, he answers. ‘People have been thinking and writing about this in the much wider context of the political, cultural and ideological mood at the end of the twentieth century and the beginning of the twenty-first. It involves the erasure of ideological difference in political life and the accompanying trivialisation of politics. It involves the unwillingness of Western liberal democracies to engage in debates and arguments about fundamental questions of value, purpose and meaning, because, to an extent, we’ve all bought into the liberal capitalist model which delivers very comfortable lives for most of us.

    ‘So I think that it’s the wider cultural phenomenon in which climate change sits that helps to explain why we’d rather argue about whether this is good science or bad science or whether a scientist is being influenced by oil companies or by environmental alarmists. We’d rather have those sorts of arguments because they seem more comforting and less challenging than arguments about the scandal of global poverty in a world of affluence, or the question of whether we can really secure unfettered capitalist growth at three per cent of GDP per annum for the next 300 years. Those much more challenging and unsettling arguments we’d rather not have. And so the convenient arguments, the much more narrowly bounded ones about good and bad science, take their place.’

    Mike Hulme is professor of climate change in the school of environmental sciences at the University of East Anglia. He is author of Why We Disagree about Climate Change, published by Cambridge university Press. (Buy this book from Amazon(UK).

    Tim Black is senior writer at spiked

  77. Bart Says:

    Anonymous/DeNihilist,

    The following quote, from a commenter (working at the state government) at Keith Kloor’s, is very relevant:

    Fundamentally, the use of science to advance particular political positions is hardly unique to climate policy. It occurs continually in every public policy domain.

    Having said that, here’s my truncated take on the sciences relevant to CC: In my experience, with regard to AGW the policy consequences of our current state of scientific knowledge and data, the risk spectrum, are unusually clear. The debates y’all are engaged in are particularly heated because the outputs of contemporary climate and geosciences are extraordinarily consequential for human civilization, not because the science itself is imbued with unusually significant uncertainties (and certainly not fraud).

    That is very well said. Indeed, as Mike Hulme also sais (see DLM’s long comment) the real argument is about policies, but the argument is being had about science as a proxy for politics. That’s a dead end, and it sets up a discussion frame in which the science can be bend to suit one’s policy preferences. One part to get this debate forward is to disentangle the policy debate from the scientific debate. And whereas in the former everybody naturally participates (or is at least welcome to do so), scientific discussions and the increase of our knowledge occurs predominantly within the realm of professional science. Everybody can have an opinion about science, but in the end, science is about facts and understanding them. As Scott Denning also said: The real world exists independent on our thoughts about policy or whatever.

    What’s also relevant in this context is how can a layperson decide what is more likely true and what’s not? I think there are useful guidelines that can be used for that purpose (for any complex topic). Not foolproof, but useful nevertheless.

    In the end, I think that many “skeptics” are “skeptical” of the science for extra-scientific reasons: Because they don’t like the perceived policy consequences. Well, an ‘easy’ way out would be to think creatively about policy consequences that you don’t have a problem with. As Scott Denning pointed out in his talk: Emission reduction doesn’t lead to shipwrecking the economy. And, admittedly a bit naive, I still hope that explaining what we know about the physical climate system, is useful to get people to understand it better. But only if their mental block to this information is softened.

  78. Bart Says:

    DLM,

    Indeed, as Hulme sais, the battle is about ideologies; not about science. Science is used as a proxy for the ideological battle. See also my previous longer comment (directed at DeNihilist).

    Perhaps Hulme’s position exemplifies some common ground between our respective position?

    And as to other topics you want to discuss (comment not approved): They’re for the open thread, or for a potential future threat that deals specifically with those topics. Not very likely anytime soon though.

  79. MapleLeaf Says:

    Bart,

    Thanks for those posts. IMO, you have hit the nail on the head. I especially agree with you when you say:

    as Mike Hulme also sais (see DLM’s long comment) the real argument is about policies, but the argument is being had about science as a proxy for politics.

    “In the end, I think that many “skeptics” are “skeptical” of the science for extra-scientific reasons: Because they don’t like the perceived policy consequences.”

    Here, here– you just cornered the contrarians. They will deny this too of course, but what they somehow fail to realise is that their agenda and modus operandi is well known (e.g., fabricate doubt, fabricate debate, attack the scientists and science, misinform, distort, spin) and has its roots with big tobacco. They also are very good at using the fear mongering and alarmist card (e.g., addressing AGW will ‘destroy’ the economy).

    What annoys me is that some people are not even willing to try and develop a sustainable and clean and low carbon economy, and the excuses they find (e.g., there is “no evidence” of AGW) are, to be blunt, extremely weak, non-existent even. The biosphere does not care less about all this, it just continues to respond the the climate drivers and physics.

    The science continues to advance, and the more information that is coming to light rather than casting doubt on the theory and science of AGW is solidifying it. We have known for many decades that their was a potential problem on the horizon (read/see Spencer Weart’s excellent summary), yet here we are now in 2010 still arguing semantics and politics, when we should be developing policy and making changes on the ground. The time for using the lame excuse that there are uncertainties is long, long over, yet the contrarians have been allowed to resurrect that old trick.

    IMHO, it would serve everyone’s best interest to focus our intellect and energy on moving towards a low carbon and sustainable global economy. This means being flexible, it is not a one shoe fits all. Have lots of wind? Use turbines. Have lots of sun, use solar. Have geothermal, tap into that. Have marked tides, tap into that. There are also many new technologies coming online.

    Nor does it mean we will have to go to zero carbon emissions or even reducing GHG levels (besides we missed that boat a long time ago); not even the most aggressive of the IPCC scenarios call for zero global carbon emissions by 2100. So we are not talking about changing the world overnight, but we need to at least muster the foresight, courage and will to take on this long-term challenge. You never know just how much you can achieve if you do not at least try. This defeatist attitude of many contrarians is pathetic.

    We scientists have played into the contrarians hands by continually being on the defensive about the science. They spout something ridiculous and we feel compelled to set the facts straight, but the public perception is that there is a debate, and it sows a seed of doubt in their mind. They make a ridiculous and unsubstantiated accusation of fraud, for example, and we are on the defensive and it creates an impression that the science might be compromised or that scientists are all crooked, and another seed of doubt is sown. Alas, this modus operandi works all too well, and those with ethics and standards cannot play by the same dirty rules. Well, we could, but that would be wrong and self defeating.

    I’m not sure how we deal with this. Maybe you have some ideas? Maybe it is time to speak out and go on the offensive, like NAS did. Or to keep placing their ‘science’ under public scrutiny (and we know very well that is just does not hold up) so the public can see just how bad the arguments for doing nothing are. Or maybe we need to focus more on policy and how we can meet this challenge. The media really do have to step up to the plate on this file and help educate and inform the public with the facts, as does the IPCC.

    As for making peace with the contrarians on the science front. I think that is a dead end, the contrarians for the most part are not interested in actively participating in the science or making a positive contribution to the science– they have shown that many, many times. That is because as you noted, the contrarians are using science is a proxy for politics. Also, how do you work in good faith when they are requesting you to be flogged and/or beheaded? If their intentions were honorable and their science reasonable, then sure, those people can help advance the science. Regardless, that does not mean that we cannot simultaneously work on developing and implementing solutions.

    So how about the contrarians contribute to the development of policy to moves towards a low carbon and sustainable global economy? If it is the prospect of change which scares/threatens them, what better way to protect their interests by participating in developing policy and solutions, rather than shouting foul play form the side lines all the time.

    Sorry for the long post Bart.

    PS: I recommend reading Dr. Schmidt’s latest essay over at RC.

  80. phinniethewoo Says:

    DeNihilist

    You seem to be someone with a cunning approach and sophisticated policies..

    You tell us then how “earth’s temperature” should have looked like , 1850-2010, without us putting CO2 in.

    Draw us a nice graph, crsip and clear, and with a strong body of evidence.
    Thanks.

  81. phinniethewoo Says:

    [edit]

    Hello? Is there anyone out there that can explain to a layman how Earth’s temperature should have evolved?? Comparing with the adulterated graphs of the record i could come to a gues as if there is AGW or something?
    Thanks.

    [edit]

  82. DLM Says:

    Bart,

    I think you missed some parts of the Hulme piece:

    ‘To say that the science demands a certain policy response to climate change is just a wrong reading of the relationship between science and policy.’

    ‘Scientific knowledge around climate change can only speak with large uncertainty margins about what may or may not happen. Yes, climates will continue to change in the future because of human emissions. But putting exact numbers on changes, and therefore predicting what risks lie ahead, is extremely difficult for science to do. So it’s important for scientific knowledge to be adequately hedged in public debate and policy discussion with appropriate caveats and caution about uncertainty.

    ‘That is not the same as saying that this knowledge is not useful or that it should be ignored. Most scientific knowledge is uncertain. Most scientific insights are hedged with caution or uncertainty. But that’s exactly why judgement – political, ethical, moral judgement – has to be used for making policy.’

    The reality is that climate science was not dragged into politics. And skeptics certainly did not initiate politicization of climate science. Climate science was politicized by activist climate scientists, and the politicians they enlisted in their cause. Or was it the politicians who co-opted the climate scientists?

    OK, so how many of the skeptics are skeptical for extra-scientific reasons? Aren’t you really implying that there are no scientific reasons to be skeptical, and therefore we all are idiots, who just don’t get the science? Or worse yet, perhaps you agree with your fan Maple, as you never find fault with any of his bizarre pronouncements:

    “Here, here– you just cornered the contrarians. They will deny this too of course, but what they somehow fail to realise is that their agenda and modus operandi is well known (e.g., fabricate doubt, fabricate debate, attack the scientists and science, misinform, distort, spin) and has its roots with big tobacco. They also are very good at using the fear mongering and alarmist card (e.g., addressing AGW will ‘destroy’ the economy).”

    Why don’t you moderate some of his [edit], Bart?

    “Those who most strongly oppose government intervention would be wise to call for strong early action to avoid really stringent measures becoming necessary later on.”

    You brought it up Bart. What is the strong early action that you advocate ? Do you believe that wind and sunshine will solve our problem? Are there any other sources of power that could be useful in saving the planet? You are telling us we need to do something. What should we do Bart? Instead of telling me to take it to the open thread, how about advising me that your reply will be found on the open thread? I am not going to waste my time going there, if it just continues to be a convenient dumping ground for issues that you want to avoid.

  83. phinniethewoo Says:

    Bart

    You do not seem to criticise libellous and lewd remarks that identify “all” of the climate sceptics with the old tobacco lobby.

    i cannot accept bringing in and putting on a pedestal Peter Sinclair crocks in a blog that calls itself scientific, in that respect.

    I think this is low.

    [edit]

  84. Bart Says:

    DLM, phinnie,

    The tobacco strategies are well documented and they show important similarities with the anti-mitigation lobby. See e.g. here, here, here, here, here, here, to get you started.

    Note that I’m *not* labeling all “skeptics” as tobacco lobbyists (and neither is Maple in my reading). But the lines of argumentation, the strategies used in both instances are similar. And I don’t think it’s coincidental that a number of individuals and organizations were active on both fronts (and more).

    Of course there are interesting issues in the science to be discussed, and of course there are issues on which skepticism is justified. The problem comes when the forest is being missed for the trees; when unwarranted conclusions are drawn; and when a clear spin is being put on someone’s interpretation. I certainly don’t have a problem with skepticism per se (scientists are professionally skeptical). See for a longer take my comment here.

    What actions do I propose on climate change? See this older comment where I address that question. I’ll put out a new thread on proposed solutions ‘soon’. I don’t try to avoid issues, but am merely trying to keep the discussions reasonably focussed.

  85. Bart Says:

    I’d like to point readers to an older post of mine, which is very relevant to the discussion we’re having.

  86. DeNihilist Says:

    Phinnie, I am not a scientist nor a statitician, so if I drew you a graph, it would be in crayon. :)

    Bart and Maple, the point that I am trying to make, is exemplified by two recent events.

    One – on Lucia’s blog, there is now multiple threads about GissTemp being discussed by warmers, lukes and sceptics. It has gotten to the point where they are helping each other get more understanding about this product. Why? in my opinion, they actually allowed themselves to LISTEN to what the others were trying to say.

    two – just this past week in Canada, an historic agreement was reached by enviromentalists and forest companies regarding the boreal forests. For three years, logging will be heavily curtailed while these 2 groups PLUS the first nations, PLUS governments sit down and negotiate a way forward. The didn’t happen overnight, but took over two years of intense discussions, accusations and finally agreement. Again, both sides committed to listen to each other.

    It is called dialogue.

  87. Bart Says:

    DeNihilist,

    Those are positive developments indeed. I’ve followed Lucia’s blog on and off lately, and indeed there seems to be a lot of constructive dialogue going on between people with quite different perspectives on AGW and mitigation as a whole. Talking about specific numbers without extrapolating wildly and without all the political fluff around seems to work over there.

  88. MapleLeaf Says:

    Perhaps I should clarify, it was not my intention to lump all the contrarians in with big tobacco. However, as noted by Bart the tactics used by big tobacco are very well documented, Are you expecting people to believe that it is pure coincidence that the tactics employed by big tobacco the contrarians on AGW are the same? Please, let us not be naive, and to deny the aforementioned fact that the same strategies are now being used by many/most contrarians is not being honest, not here, nor with yourself. Consider Singer’s past, he is just one example of someone who was part of the big tobacco misinformation machine and he has now jumped ship to work for the AGW contrarians.

    I see no attempt by some of those here who are crying foul about my alleged generalization regarding big tobacco and contrarians to refrain from lumping all climate scientists as ‘alarmists’ or from making insinuations about them having a political agenda. Is your oncologist being ‘alarmist’ when s/he informs you that you have a tumor or your GP when s/he detests a murmur in your heart? Are NOAA or Dr. Gray being alarmist when they issue hurricane season forecasts, or just when they issues forecasts for the potential of above-normal activity? No, of course not– they are doing their job to the best of their ability and being prudent.

    It is encouraging that JeffId et al. have made some efforts to actually reproduce the SAT record (both GISS and HadCRUT). Sadly it seems lost on the contrarians that they essentially obtained the same results as the official records. In fact, JeffId obtained a greater rate of warming than calculated using the official HadCRUT record.

    The contrarians have had many years to contribute to the science in this constructive way, yet for a long time people like Lucia were only too happy to distort and manipulate the data and to chastise the scientists (see Tamino’s exposes on her past antics). Better late than never I suppose.

    That said, I make no apology for being wary of their true agenda. People like Mosher say in one breath that AGW is real and is a concern, and in the next breath they attack the science and scientists. That is, IMO, not acting in good faith and is cleverly designed to confuse the public. I maintain that Mosher and others behave reasonable just enough to make it possible for lay people to entertain their more ludicrous ideas (e.g., Piltdown man), which then directs their attention away from the very problem that they claim we need to address.

    The dialogue now needs to be moved forward to working on solutions. It will not be easy, but then again, neither was putting a man on the moon.

    Really busy today, and out of town next week on business, so I won’t have time to post again.

    Have a good weekend all.

    PS: Phinniethewoo, the graph you talk of does indeed exist. Google scholar is your friend.

  89. Shub Niggurath Says:

    Have you guys read Mike Hulme’s submission to the ICCER panel?

    http://www.cce-review.org/evidence/Hulme.pdf

    Have you read Sonia Boehmer Christiansen’s submission?

    http://www.cce-review.org/evidence/Boehmer-Christiansen.pdf

    I would strongly reccommend reading Hulme’s submission and the paper referred to, within, before talking about tobacco. The CAGW story is very, very different from second-hand smoke. Sure there are similarities, but in these similarities I side with the tobacco companies rather than researchers like Stanton Glantz.

    Comparing the storyline of global warming to the story of second-hand smoke is crap.

    Bart,
    I think you’ve always come down hard on those who are skeptical. It is they who have been patient in all this.

    You want to browbeat your skeptical commenters – they cannot discuss the politics, they cannot discuss the radical solutions…I dont know. It is a superficial, cosmetic openmindedness that I encounter – I am not talking about Maple – I somehow get the feeling that he is one the bleeding edge of an epiphany, I don’t know why.

    You are chopping up PTW and DLM and even my comments,left and right – how do I know what they said? If there is anything that gets me – it is comment deletion and censorship… everyone’s thickskinned and everyone will forget the tiny barbs, but comment deletion – that always gets me.

    Do as you will, Bart – you have been nice to me, thank you for that, but I have been nice to your co-commenters too. I know how to employ rhetoric without using ugly words, unlike many of them.

    Thanks for your time

    Shub

  90. Bart Says:

    Shub,

    Please take a look at the comment policy. DLM and Phinnie have repeatedly violated all guidelines. I’m not keen on disapproving or editing comments either (it’s a lot more work than to just let everything go, and it is inevitably subjective). But the discussion can quickly degenerate if some basic guidelines (e.g. some decency) are not adhered to. Calling scientists all kinds of names is clearly off limits.

  91. Harry Says:

    Maple,

    You again go wrong with your big tobacco. Please stay on topic. Since you are a scientist you should know that this diversion will not work with dedicated people.

    And what I repeatedly have said and will keep repeating:

    Make sure that your data are reliable. As long as they are not, any discussion is useless, models are useless whatever Gavin will tell you at RC.

    You can do excellent research with simulated datasets, but do not claim that these datasets and results have anything to do with reality. You will get excellent confimation of your virtual universum with its own laws of physics.

    Bam,

    You did not get my point. It was about calling names.

    I almost finished reading the Johnston paper. Very interesting. Amazing that a lay law person could summarize climate research so appropriately.

  92. phinniethewoo Says:

    Alas the graph has not been produced by the warmists.
    Drivel enough. No graph.

  93. DLM Says:

    Shub,

    I don’t recall Bart removing, or severely censoring, any of my comments. I have to give him credit for being relatively tolerant. I submitted a few comments to some other denialist debunker sites, and none ever saw the light of day.

    On the other hand he allows clowns like sod, doghaza, and maple free reign here. He even encourages them. That big tobacco/cancer card crap is unconscienable and has nothing to do with any discussion of climate science.

    I think the best thing for us wooden-headed, cancer-loving, skinflints to do is to leave these geniuses alone. They have already been rendered harmless by their own perfidy. If you, and I, and Harry leave, there audience will be cut in half. I am out. No time for any more of this foolishness.

    Bart, you have a streak of honesty in you. Let it out.

  94. Bart Says:

    Phinnie,

    Lower panel is an estimate of what the temp would have looked like in the absence of anthropogenic forcings. (black is observations; colour is model)

  95. Steve Bloom Says:

    Shub, I suppose we can say you’re lucky that Bart tolerates serial misrepresentation.

    In this case I happened to recall the Rabett Run thread where you picked up the Hulme reference (note your comment at the end), albeit only because I was the one who took the time to establish that the sainted Prof. Hulme was telling a porkie the size of a dirigible.

    Let’s see:

    Hulme’s submission (your link) implies that there’s a relevant lesson in Ungar & Bray‘s sad tale of the suppression by cruel scientists of a perfectly legitimate Enstrom & Kabat (by paper finding little or no connection between seciond-hand smoke and cancer. We can suppose that the lesson is that Phil Jones and others were similarly improperly mean to the people whose papers they disparaged in the CRU emails.

    But St. Mike was in such a hurry to provide a basis for the committee to hang Phil that he neglected to do his homework. Here’s what the relevant Wikipedia article says (click through for the many links to sources):

    A 2003 study by Enstrom and Kabat, published in the British Medical Journal, argued that the harms of passive smoking had been overstated. Their analysis reported no statistically significant relationship between passive smoking and lung cancer, though the accompanying editorial noted that “they may overemphasise the negative nature of their findings.” This paper was widely promoted by the tobacco industry as evidence that the harms of passive smoking were unproven. The American Cancer Society (ACS), whose database Enstrom and Kabat used to compile their data, criticized the paper as “neither reliable nor independent”, stating that scientists at the ACS had repeatedly pointed out serious flaws in Enstrom and Kabat’s methodology prior to publication. Notably, the study had failed to identify a comparison group of “unexposed” persons.

    Enstrom’s ties to the tobacco industry also drew scrutiny; in a 1997 letter to Philip Morris, Enstrom requested a “substantial research commitment… in order for me to effectively compete against the large mountain of epidemiologic data and opinions that already exist regarding the health effects of ETS and active smoking.” In a US racketeering lawsuit against tobacco companies, the Enstrom and Kabat paper was cited by the US District Court as “a prime example of how nine tobacco companies engaged in criminal racketeering and fraud to hide the dangers of tobacco smoke.” The Court found that the study had been funded and managed by the Center for Indoor Air Research, a tobacco industry front group tasked with “offsetting” damaging studies on passive smoking, as well as by Phillip Morris who stated that Ernstrom’s work was “clearly litigation-oriented.” Enstrom has defended the accuracy of his study against what he terms “illegitimate criticism by those who have attempted to suppress and discredit it.”

    So now Mike Hulme is consorting by proxy with racketeers in order to use a discredited paper to assassinate a colleague’s reputation? Scandal!

    More seriously, I suppose we’re left with a choice here of whether Mike was just plain sloppy or thought the committee so stupid that they wouldn’t notice the misrepresentation.

    Anyway, Shub, you’ve certainly lived up to expectations nicely.

    PS: John Mashey pointed out in the same RR thread that more recently Ekstrom was a signer of the ridiculous letter to the APS requesting that they change their climate policy. Wow, a AGW-denying cancer researcher *and* a tobacco-soaked physicist all in one package! Most impressive.

  96. Shub Niggurath Says:

    Steve Bloom:
    I did not quote the reference merely for the fact that Mike Hulme submitted it. I picked up on the Hulme submission from Eli Rabett’s blog.

    I quoted it because I like Sheldon Ungar – I’ve read many of his papers – he is right on the mark on several aspects of the IPCC science.

    I like quoting Ungar because he is timely – these issues have been addressed by him before. Given that, I do not think his recent understanding of the climate change social dynamics is complete either. But he has very interesting views.

    I think you should the PSU paper in full (and not just some Wikipedia scraps). I can email it to you, if you like.

  97. Shub Niggurath Says:

    “I don’t recall Bart removing, or severely censoring, any of my comments”

    My sense for what Bart would do is this – if he finds one or two objectionable words, he might object.

    That said, if I see an “[edit]” – I don’t know *how much* has been deleted. That is paranoia-inducing, and that is what I was talking about

    Thanks for the clarification. I’ll post back with details of the Enstrom and Kabat paper for Maple, Bloom’s benefit because they seem fond of the tobacco thing so much.

    I am willing to bet they are both non-smokers.

  98. Steve Bloom Says:

    Shub, you continue to misrepresent. First, I linked to both papers. Second, I suggested clicking through to the Wikipedia article to see the sources. The District Court comment is my favorite.

    While I’m sure you like Ungar, that doesn’t make this particular paper any less an example of bad scholarship, nor does it make you or Hulme less reprehensible for referencing it positively.

    Tobacco kills. Tobacco companies are evil. People who use tobacco products while imagining it won’t harm or kill them and those around them are delusional. Second-hand smoke is assault with a deadly weapon. There’s a strong and obvious connection between tobacco denial and climate denial. Let me know if there’s any of that you’re unclear on.

  99. Harry Says:

    Steve,

    Would you please stop this very OT brabble about smoke and tobacco?

    The strong and obvious connection between tobacco denial and climate denial is in your mind, not mine. You can not silence me by this utter nonsense, you only prove that you are clueless and do not have any idea how to come forward with good objections.

    I am really amazed at what the AGW crowd is doing to discredit people who do not accept the A in AGW. Calling names, identifying them as holocaust deniers, tobacco deniers, flatearthers, anti science dumbos, criminals, Big Oil suckers, ridiculing people who dare to doubt AGW. Hurting feelings, insulting people who have the gut to speak out against AGW. Citing papers they never could have read, can not understand, do not have the background to digest a scientific paper, link bashing with the same links to the same sites all the time.

    Well go on, continue, try to convince me. The way you are going on, you will have a hard time. I am very skeptical you know.

    I am now reading the paper by Pirtle. Nice stuff.

  100. Steve Bloom Says:

    Harry, had you been paying attention you’d be blaming Shub for referencing the Hulme submission. As for those who don’t accept the A in AGW, just so you know I prefer either “scientifically illiterate” or “delusional.” I wouldn’t dream of silencing you, BTW, or of trying to convince you of anything.

  101. Steve Bloom Says:

    Here’s a nice Einstein quote for you, Harry (from 1920):

    “This world is a strange madhouse. Currently, every coachman and every waiter is debating whether relativity theory is correct. Belief in this matter depends on political party affiliation.”

  102. Eli Rabett Says:

    Well Harry, since the coachmen and waiters are now debating climate change, it is worth asking which scientists they are listening to. In the case of climate change, many of the most prominent sciency types on the denialist side are the same ones who denied that tobacco was harmful. It tells you something important about who is worth trusting.

    Sorry Harry, at best you are being taken, and that is a nice way of putting it.

  103. phinniethewoo Says:

    It is since the 50s that consensus had emerged that tobacco damages the health rather than “improves” the lungs.

    However, the ensuing discussion 50s–>2010 was:

    -Should we have a nannystate forbidding everything? (answer: NO)
    -Should we destroy perfectly honourable industries of growing tobacco , producing distributing it ? Or should we leave it to free informed people to decide?
    -What do we gain by listening to the health fascists, apart from populating hospitals with Alzheimers?

    Oh and make Barry the enlightened green messiah stop smoking if you do not like it.

  104. phinniethewoo Says:

    Einstein is cooked overdone.

    He lost the plot with QM, it would hv been better if he had smoked a bit more.

    Tather than parrotting Einstein’s relativity theory to each other in fancy tax-overpaid-for asali, we should debunk / further his theories.
    Your average professorship is too dumb to consider that.

  105. phinniethewoo Says:

    Tobacco kills. Tobacco companies are evil. People who use tobacco products while imagining it won’t harm or kill them and those around them are delusional.

    Same can be said about alcohol, sugar and coffee in the end.
    Go have a kumbaya with nannystate pooper buddies on the moon.

  106. DLM Says:

    Eli, you better tell your friend Eli to cancel his subscription to Newsweek. It seems they are no longer on the team. The coachmen and the waiters must have seen this stuff:

    http://www.newsweek.com/2010/05/28/uncertain-science.html

    Uncertain Science
    Bickering and defensive, climate researchers have lost the public’s trust.

    Blame economic worries, another freezing winter, or the cascade of scandals emerging from the world’s leading climate-research body, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). But concern over global warming has cooled down dramatically. In über-green Germany, only 42 percent of citizens worry about global warming now, down from 62 percent in 2006. In Britain, just 26 percent believe climate change is man-made, down from 41 percent as recently as November 2009. And Americans rank global warming dead last in a list of 21 problems that concern them, according to a January Pew poll.

    The shift has left many once celebrated climate researchers feeling like the used-car salesmen of the science world. In Britain, one leading scientist told an interviewer he is taking anti-anxiety pills and considered suicide following the leak of thousands of IPCC-related e-mails and documents suggesting that researchers cherry-picked data and suppressed rival studies to play up global warming. In the U.S., another researcher is under investigation for allegedly using exaggerated climate data to obtain public funds. In an open letter published in the May issue of Science magazine, 255 American climate researchers decry “political assaults” on their work by “deniers” and followers of “dogma” and “special interests.”

    This is no dispute between objective scientists and crazed flat-earthers. The lines cut through the profession itself. Very few scientists dispute a link between man-made CO2 and global warming. Where it gets fuzzy is the extent and time frame of the effect. One crucial point of contention is climate “sensitivity”—the mathematical formula that translates changes in CO2 production to changes in temperature. In addition, scientists are not sure how to explain a slowdown in the rise of global temperatures that began about a decade ago.

    The backlash against climate science is also about the way in which leading scientists allied themselves with politicians and activists to promote their cause. Some of the IPCC’s most-quoted data and recommendations were taken straight out of unchecked activist brochures, newspaper articles, and corporate reports—including claims of plummeting crop yields in Africa and the rising costs of warming-related natural disasters, both of which have been refuted by academic studies.

    Just as damaging, many climate scientists have responded to critiques by questioning the integrity of their critics, rather than by supplying data and reasoned arguments. When other researchers aired doubt about the IPCC’s prediction that Himalayan glaciers will melt by 2035, the IPCC’s powerful chief, Rajendra Pachauri, trashed their work as “voodoo science.” Even today, after dozens of IPCC exaggerations have surfaced, leading climate officials like U.N. Environment Program chief Achim Steiner and Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research head Joachim Schellnhuber continue to tar-brush critics as “anti-Enlightenment” and engaging in “witch hunts.”

    None of this means we should burn fossil fuels with abandon. There are excellent reasons to limit emissions and switch to cleaner fuels—including an estimated 750,000 annual pollution deaths in China, the potential to create jobs at home instead of enriching nasty regimes sitting on oil wells, the need to provide cheap sources of power to the world’s poorest regions, and the still-probable threat that global warming is underway. At the moment, however, certainty about how fast—and how much—global warming changes the earth’s climate does not appear to be one of those reasons.

  107. Shub Niggurath Says:

    Denihilist:
    Do you really believe that ‘dialogue’ will solve the CAGW/mitigation issue?

    Here is my part of the dialogue: Climate scientists and advocates – give up on the catastrophe and the anthropogenic. Put an end to your relentless year-to-year conferencing scams, give up on the carbon trading and scamming, and give up calling names and reverse-psychologizing. Dismantle the FCCC and send the hustlers home.

    There can be dialogue only after this.

    Your example of environmental groups getting into bed with local state authorities is a perfect illustration of what is wrong with the environmental movement. I am saying this, not being any sort of an environmental activist whatsoever myself. It is these type of activities that have contributed to more environmental degradation if anything.

    Once the environmentalists were happy to stand up to corporate and state power for nature. Now it is about wearing suits, showing up at board meetings and council halls,striking deals about how many trees are to be cut and then going out for drinks.

    The environmental movement in California exemplifies this attitude.

    Re Bloom:
    I meant to write “read the Ungar paper in full”, instead of “I think you should the PSU paper in full”, which doesn’t make sense.

    Yes, I know the Enstrom and Kabat paper generated much heat.

    The Ungar paper takes a constructionist approach to the events surrounding the publication of the paper. It catalogs the efforts by the scientific intelligentsia and members of the lay public to browbeat the British Medical Journal for publishing the paper.

    There are many parallels with what happened with that one paper and how the medical scientific and the lay community responded, and shall we say, publication of the McIntyre/Soon and Baliunas papers and how ‘silencing of science’ was attempted or actually carried out in the climate science community.

    Both the anti-tobacco and the global warming movements, have many common elements – moral entrepreneurship of a supposedly important issue, the hunt for infinitesimally small attributed effects and the crude efforts to silence debate and science.

    The pro-tobacco lobbies (for lack of a word) and skeptics on the other hand are different from one another. Any similarity is merely due to the fact that they both have had to react – to an social opponent whose form and tactics are similar, as noted above. The AGW proponents are so lazy, that they have to simply borrow interpretative themes from a neighboring social conflict to bash their opponents.

    Surprisingly enough, Ungar himself refers to the global warming skeptics and deniers as being exclusively funded by oil corporations. People like Schneider are irked no end by Ungar because they cannot stomach the constructionist approach – they cannot accept the ‘climate change is a constructed reality of the IPCC’ approach, they believe that the IPCC science, with its billions of dollars, has truly penetrated the veil surrounding the climate mysteries.

  108. Steve Bloom Says:

    Yourn 17:33 comment is perfect in every way, Shub. Don’t ever change.

  109. phinniethewoo Says:

    Bartje

    Lower panel is an estimate of what the temp would have looked like in the absence of anthropogenic forcings. (black is observations; colour is model)

    That is a worked back estimate, done by the modelling:
    -Observations are done (quite adulterated, but hey!)
    -Then a model is concocted that follows these adl’d observations, including GHG forcing drama..Easy enough if you have 1000 parameters. The art is in having models with parsimonnity in it , but hey, we have published!
    -Then the above model is re-run without the GHG forcing and you produce the blue one I guess

    I guess:
    Some indications might be fruitful as to how the various graphs, crisp and clear, are made, but hey! We are scientists.. If you have published you can clunk any crap anywhere..

    What I wanted to make clear is that you do not have any knowledge or model whatsoever to do a climate prediction. Backtracking games with complex climate models is good for “an inconvenient truth” and Peter Sinclair crocks.

  110. Eli Rabett Says:

    Gee, you know Shub, if you continue to claim that the pro-tobacco lobby and the climate denial lobby are different you might even convince yourself. On the other hand anyone is free to search the tobacco archives and discover for themselves the close links between the tobacco lobby and climate change denial.

    In short stop lying, it’s getting real old

  111. MapleLeaf Says:

    DLM, Shub and Phinnie,

    Shub, if I read your earlier post correctly you seem to be denying that second hand smoke is an issue, that puts you at odds with pretty much the entire medical community. Did you follow the links Bart posted? To suggest that there are “similarities” to the tactics used by tobacco and the tactics being used by most contrarians is grossly misleading. And, the big tobacco fight extends beyond “just” second hand smoke, please, learn your history before pontificating. Your beliefs are seemingly at odds with not only with most of the medical community, but most of the climate science community too.

    At a meeting of tobacco executives in New York city on 15 December 1953 the minutes indicate that executives decided to enter a “campaign that attacked directly those who conclude that cigarettes cause cancer” after John Hill (from Hill and Kowlton, a PR firm) suggested that “the industry could instead, mount a public counter-attack against the scientists”. The “scientists” in question being those who had demonstrated that smoking was bad for your health. And this was long before it had been demonstrated that second-hand smoke was also dangerous for one’s health.

    Hill also recommended that recommended that the tobacco companies engage in “what have come to be called “dirty tricks”, that is, legal or semi-legal attempts to smear the companies’ opponents, produce publicity or events which would not seem to originate with themselves, and attempts to disrupt the communications of their opponents by sending their own people to give counter arguments in every possible forum”. Google “TIRC”.

    Further, “to build their defense, they [the tobacco companies] were able to find scientists outside the companies who said cigarettes were very probably not the cause of cancer”.

    Additionally, “The [tobacco] executives found themselves clinging to every possible doubt, waiting for the last possible moment before admitting to themselves and others what the problem was” Why? Because there was simply too much money to lose.

    And on it goes. All above quotes from “Smoke Screen” by Philip Hilts, based primarily on secret tobacco industry documents leaked by a whistle-blower.

    Anyhow, as for ‘censoring’. Don’t fool yourselves “skeptics”, almost all blogs moderate to varying degrees, and that very much also pertains to the prominent contrarian blogs. WUWT has banned numerous “warmers”, and even investigates peoples’ IP addresses and makes not-so-vague threats. CA has banned some people, edits posts (snips) extensively, and even ‘awards’ people “rubber rooms”. That said, moderation is a necessary evil. Deal with it.

    As for the Newsweek article, are these not the same people who mangled the “looming ice age” article so badly and managed to partake in establishing a myth that exists today still? I would argue that the scientists have not “lost the public trust”, but that the contrarians have framed the debate and been aggressive enough and disseminated sufficient misinformation so as to manufacture/fabricate doubt thereby altering public perception or understanding of the facts.

    Further, just because the public perception may have waned in the last six months since SwiftHack, that does not change the fact that the science is sound and the reality that the planet continues to accumulate heat on account of an enhanced “greenhouse” effect arising from anthro activities. I suspect that this is a temporary ebb in public support, but with time the evidence and impacts of AGW will become so noteworthy that the contrarians will increasingly be backed into a corner. In fact that might be happening l now, with troubling data on record low Arctic sea-ice volume, rapid glacier retreat, increasing 0-2000 m OHC et cetera coming to light.

    To quote Dr. Michael Boulter “the contrast with this earlier man-made confusion [referring to Piltdown Man] is paradoxical. Then, one man tried to mislead the world with the most convincing hoaxes based on artificial fossil evidence. Now, selfishness is causing us to ignore the scientific facts about climate change” [from his 2002 book].

    Dr. Denning spelled out the problem very clearly and simply at a contrarian Heartland conference. It is telling that the contrarians can not even accept and digest his simple message. Sadly, the “selfish gene” hypothesis of Dr. Dawkins is appearing more plausible each and every day.

  112. Harry Says:

    Steve, Eli,

    Thanks for your appropriate reactions.

    It is truly beyond my imagination how you react to my statements.

    I will add “scientifically illiterate”, “delusional” and “being taken” to my CV, it will be a valuable asset. Do I get your permission to mention you as the authors of these?

    What is the point of the tobacco story? What do you intend to show with it? That I must be a smoker because I do not accept the A in AGW?

    Sorry lads, you really have lost the track. What has this to do with climate?

  113. Al Tekhasski Says:

    This was an interesting presentation, especially the part with voice demonstration of vibrational degrees in different air molecules. The style of presentation reminds of the clownage by Richard Allen.

    The idea of entire presentation was that the Earth is an isolated (in vacuum) system, therefore there is no need in any complicated computer model to predict “warm-up” if energy is “added” to the system. The cornerstone of the presentation was an assertion that doubling of CO2 adds this extra energy flux of 4W/m2. Prof. Denning is so confident in the 4W/m2 (he knows that “from modern spectroscopy and radiative heat transfer calculations”) so it makes me wonder.

    Bart, could you please present any instrumental or theoretical evidence that doubling of CO2 from initial level of 300ppm causes this amount of energy imbalance, 3.7W/m2? Not just citaions to Myhre or Freckelton, but actual logic of their calculation. Please note that initial magnitude of CO2 level is quite important to this question. Maybe you should start another blog article on this.

  114. Harry Says:

    Maple,

    It is nice to see how all these self proclaimed AGW specialists know anything about cancer, smoking and tobacco. It raises the question why we had to wait so long for these universal specialists to reveal themselves. Maybe they should open a clinic? There must be thousands of patients waiting to be treated by these omniscient AGW specialists.

  115. Bart Says:

    Phinnie,

    Perhaps it’s an idea to check out what climate modeling is actually about before making a fool of yourself.

    Harry,

    Nobody here as claimed to be a all knowledgeable about medical sciences, but rather, as Eli hinted, to search the tobacco archives on the web and see th tactics they used, and compare them the tactics and arguments currently used wrt climate change.

  116. Harry Says:

    Bart,

    For me there is absolutely no reason to compare the tactics of the tobacco industry with my skeptisism of AGW. This is a bogus argument and you know that, but you still endorse it. It is despicable!

  117. MapleLeaf Says:

    Harry,

    You seem to be willfully distorting the comparison that is being made with your bizarre post at 21:39. Maybe your just trying to bait someone to get into yet another argument or again distract from the reality. Continue to deny the inconvenient truths if you will, but the facts and science stand. Anyhow, I’m not biting.

    Al, if the initial value of CO2 is allegedly so important, why do you not quite get it right? Also, did your mean for your slur to apply to Dr. Alley? I do know of a Dr. Richard Allen, but he does work in a very different field to that of Alley.

    Al, start here:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climate_sensitivity

    Science of Doom has an excellent series on CS. All based on published scientific papers of course.

    There is much, much more to be found in the scientific literature. Plenty of papers to read in which they describe their methodology etc.

    Al, I’m thinking that you are pretty smart and are fishing here, how about we cut to the chase and you tell us what the radiative forcing for doubling CO2 (or CO2 equivalent if you wish) is? The science has made its case, now where is yours?

    PS: Contrarians such as Lindzen and Spencer do not dispute that radiative forcing from doubling CO2 will likely produce a warming of +1.1 C (i.e., as far as I know L&S do not dispute the 3.7 Wm-2 value), they are of the belief that there are negative feedbacks which result in a net or equilibrium climate sensitivity of around +0.5 C. That, at least, is my understanding of their position. To date they and other “skeptics” have repeatedly failed to demonstrate that– all papers which claim to show that are known to have serious problems which nullify their findings. They have also been soundly refuted. Spencer is having another bash (new paper in press), but all indications are that he has again failed to make a legitimate, sound and convincing case for low CS.

  118. Harry Says:

    Maple,

    I was in the (wrong) conviction that you would not react to me. But the “facts”and the “science”do not stand. And you are among the least of people to have anything to say in this area with a shade of authority.

    Not biting….

  119. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Dear MapleLeaf,

    I don’t know what is the absolute forcing from CO2. However, from indirect observational evidence, the forcing, if any, seems to be a small fraction of this frequently quoted number, no higher than 1/6-th of it, and maybe less.

    Instead of lecturing and pontificating, why don’t you coherently present all basic ideas of the case made by climate science for calculations of CO2x2 “forcing”? I mean all assumptions, so we could critically examine them. Maybe then you will get my drift why substantial initial concentration of CO2 is important for realistic calculations.

    Please understand that the entire logic of catastrophic AGW is hanging on this very thin thread of theoretical calculations.

  120. Al Tekhasski Says:

    MapleLeaf,

    Yes, you are right, I meant R.Alley, this clownage:

    http://www.agu.org/meetings/fm09/lectures/lecture_videos/A23A.shtml

    Sorry for misspelling.

  121. Harry Says:

    Al,

    You are putting too much authority upon Maple. What you request, Maple will not be able to deliver. He is too busy taking note of the tobacco conspiracy.
    Maybe you could visit

    http://claesjohnson.blogspot.com/.

    He is dissecting the warming and forcing, using common sense.

  122. Harry Says:

    Maple,

    I think the radiative forcing for doubling of CO2 is close to zero. Since the effect of increasing CO2 is logarithmic and already close to saturation of the absorbance, any addition will decrease in its efficcacy. So there will be little or no effects of doubling.

  123. MapleLeaf Says:

    Harry, Al,

    Disparage all you want, it does not help your credibility. Harry I’ll remind you that Al initially directed his question to Bart.

    The physics behind the ~3.7 W m-2 number have been set out in the scientific many times– I directed Al to those resources, please do not simply ignore the links and citations therein. Now Al, if you think the 3.7 number is bunk, then you need to present your case and publish it a relevant (and reputable) peer-reviewed journal and then see if it holds up to further scrutiny. Lindzen and Spencer have both repeatedly failed in achieving the latter…..

    Claes Johnson is not a climate scientist. In fact, I could not find a single paper by him on climate science in the peer-reviewed literature– he seems to like to post unvetted and non-critiqued PDFs on the web though. Could not find him here either:

    http://www.eecg.utoronto.ca/~prall/climate/climate_authors_table_by_clim.html

    Just perused an article by Johnson from his blog, he appears to be a fan of G&T. I also see his names pops up a lot on contrarian sites, (e.g., “globalwarming hoax”). Enough said.

    Al, I suggest posting your question/assertion at RealClimate. There is a very lively debate going on there right now on attribution, with a contrarian troll to add to the mix (so much for censoring). Anyhow, there are many people posting there who are very familiar with RT theory etc.

  124. Harry Says:

    Maple,

    That would be a great idea, for Al to post his question at RC. There he will get a real scientific answer, wholly compliant with the AGW bible.

    Claes is not a climate scientist but he has very original, refreshing views, which is what I like. And his ideas are not as easy to refute. Give it a try, Maple? Call Gavin if you like.

    I still have your attention, don’t I?

  125. MapleLeaf Says:

    Harry,

    The saturation myth has been debunked ad nauseum. For example, this form the EPA:

    “We disagree with assertions by commenters about a number of the radiative characteristics of CO2. We do agree that the forcing due to increases in CO2 concentrations is roughly logarithmic (Forster et al., 2007).
    This logarithmic relationship holds over a wide range of concentrations; commenters provided no peer reviewed literature to support the contentions that CO2 has a forcing limit of 325 ppm, a maximum threshold, or no infrared absorption, and we find that these assertions are not consistent with the scientific literature (Forster et al., 2007).”

    Also,

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/saturated-co2-effect.htm

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2007/06/a-saturated-gassy-argument/

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2007/06/a-saturated-gassy-argument-part-ii/

    Harry you are raising the same old ‘arguments’ that were made in the mid 20th century.

  126. Harry Says:

    Maple,

    If you believe EPA, then you should go back to college.

  127. Harry Says:

    Maple,

    You promised to ignore me. Remember?

  128. Harry Says:

    Maple,

    You do not reference any peer reviewed paper. Why?

    I have made clear that I will not go to RC or any related sites.

    If they state anything, I will be inclined to believe the opposite. Just for fun.
    Point me to RC and I will oppose what they state.

  129. MapleLeaf Says:

    Harry,

    “I still have your attention, don’t I?”

    Mostly because you are antagonizing people (e.g., making reference to the alleged “AGW bible”) and making bizarre statements that rational people feel obliged to address. You fail to see that you let your true agenda and ideology slip when you engage in rhetoric such as ‘AGW bible’.

    I look forward to seeing Johnson’s hypothesis in print in a reputable peer-reviewed journal. He has not even gotten that far yet.

    For what it is worth, I would very much like to believe Johnson. However, even if he were correct, his hypothesis does not address the other issues surrounding the burning of FFs such as carbonic acid in the oceans, black carbon etc.

    Harry, be honest with yourself, you like Johnson’s unvetted claims because it agrees with your belief that we can continue to emit Gt of CO2 each and every year without any negative consequences both in the short or long term.

  130. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Dear MapleLeaf,

    My credibility on incredibility has nothing to do with climate change. I asked a simple question. Your direction to populist “resources” looks goofy, since I asked upfront that I am not satisfied even with ORIGINAL published “scientific” work (I already mentioned publications of Myhre and Freckelton). Apparently you are not paying attention.

    All I asked for is a list of assumptions that went into 3.7W/m2 calculations. Apparently you have no clue about atmospheric profiles, inversions, optical thickness, and fine structure of absorption spectrum of rarefied gaseous media.

    Your proposition to hide behind backs of RC is ridiculous; I have been there, and they don’t like me, for obvious reasons of their inability to coherently refute my objections. We a here on Bart’s blog, who supposed to be a climate scientist no worse than the RC members.

    For you, I have a counter-suggestion: if you have no clue on the subject, please sit quiet.

  131. Harry Says:

    Maple,

    Did you intend to point to foster et al 2007? If not, please provide the complete ref.

  132. Pat Cassen Says:

    Harry – If you are really interested in climate sensitivity, here is a good place to start reading:
    http://www.iac.ethz.ch/people/knuttir/papers/knutti08natgeo.pdf

    Lots of good references to follow up on.

  133. MapleLeaf Says:

    Dear Al,

    I provided you with links which cite papers on the subject. Please read the papers– no need to rehash everything here. I also directed you to Science of Doom.

    http://scienceofdoom.com/

    There are many papers cited and explained therein. The 3.7 W m-2 number is robust.

    And based on your invective directed at me, I can understand why they might not like you at RC.

    Anyhow, Bart seems to be very accommodating, patient and tolerant. Feel free to argue with him, but at least please try and be respectful.

  134. Harry Says:

    Maple,

    I am getting more of your attention:

    It is on the contrary: because you think that we should stop emitting carbon that we have to cut back on CO2 emissions. You do not provide any proof for your statement. The logarithmic response is widely accepted. You always ask for peer reviewed papers, but never, ever use them appropriately.

    But it is a great relief for me that we are now discussing climate, and not tobacco or cancer.

  135. Harry Says:

    Pat,

    a new kid on the block, alerted by the failing infantry?

    Welcome, I will read.

  136. MapleLeaf Says:

    Harry,

    Never said that we “need to stop” emitting GHGs. How you distort.

    And you should know very well what the Forster et al. 2007 reference is :) If not, use Google scholar.

    Good luck– b/c I actually now do promise to ignore you.

  137. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Dear MapleLeaf,

    I don’t know how to express it more clearly – I am well familiar with ORIGINAL literature on the subject, your pointers to lists is pointless. You believe there is no need to “rehash everything here”. I disagree with your belief, on the basis of existent contradiction between model predictions and observations. As I asked, if you are familiar with background of this subject, put it up, or shut up.

    Regarding respect, it is you who was disrespectful to Bart by your suggestion to move the question to RC as like they are a higher authority.

  138. Harry Says:

    Maple,

    Sorry,

    But if we do not stop now emitting GHG, how do you see the future? Have a look at The IPCC four chapter 10. Even if we cut emitting Co2, it will not have any effect on the atmospheric Co2 concentration for the next 100 years.

  139. MapleLeaf Says:

    Al,

    Nonsense. I suggested moving your comments to RC b/c they are discussing this very subject right now. Simple.

    If you are so familiar with the original literature then you should know about the assumptions, caveats, methodology etc. Moreover you stated in your first post “please present any instrumental or theoretical evidence that doubling of CO2 from initial level of 300ppm causes this amount of energy imbalance, 3.7W/m2″.

    That request has been addressed in the literature Al. You seem to dispute the 3.7 m-2 number, the onus is now on you to refute it.

    Al says “contradiction between model predictions and observations”

    Please elaborate.

    Got to go, have to do some work.

  140. Harry Says:

    Maple,

    Are you seriously advocating anyone to go to RC?

    RC is the equivalent of a meatgrinder for anyone with views that do not fit in the agenda of RC.

    I have been there, I will not encourage anyone to go there.

    It is not science, it is a cagefight.

  141. Harry Says:

    Maple,

    Models will tell you anything you want to hear. It is physics! But even physics models need to be tweaked. And they are. I claim to be able to tweak any existing model to produce an ice age or a fire ball. Just by tampering with the model parameters.

  142. MapleLeaf Says:

    Deart Bart,

    Re the post made on May 31 at 01:52. That sounds like a veiled threat to me. This same poster has also previously threatened me with physical violence in a post made on your site.

    [removed. BV]

  143. Al Tekhasski Says:

    MapleLeaf wrote:
    “That request [about 3.7W/m2] has been addressed in the literature Al.”

    No, it has not been addressed. In particular, the original literature asserts that it is sufficient to use “three vertical profiles (a tropical profile and northern and southern hemisphere extratropical profiles)” [Myhre 1998] to compute the forcing over entire Earth. I find it somewhat not convincing, since polar areas have very distinctive atmospheric profiles with frequent inversions, such that the contribution from CO2x2 must be negative. If you use only tropical models, this effect will be missing.

  144. Shub Niggurath Says:

    Harry:
    “It is nice to see how all these self proclaimed AGW specialists know anything about cancer, smoking and tobacco.”

    LMAO! ;)

    Eli, if you are so sure of my ‘lying’ you should read the Ungar paper and crosscheck with what I posted.

    The anti-second-hand-smoke lobby has a lot in common with CAGW. It can be proven easily, wont require much time. I am not talking about motivations at all – that weakens any argument.

  145. MapleLeaf Says:

    Al,

    Finally, you state your concerns. Why not just do so up front? Is this your “only” concern or are there more? Best to put all your concerns out there up front, then one is not going back and forth and/or seemingly moving the goal posts.

    Anyhow, it sounds like you need to play around with MODTRAN. You can select polar temperature profiles (summer and winter). That fact alone speaks volumes. Please let us know what you find.

    You correctly noted yourself that Myhre et al. (1998) used three different profiles, they did not “use only tropical models” as you state. From Myhre et al. (1998):

    “Freckleton et al. [1998] have shown that three vertical profiles (a tropical profile and northern and southern hemisphere extratropical profiles) can represent global calculations sufficiently. These profiles are used for
    all calculations in this study,…”
    .

    You might also try to engage Dr. Rabett, he was one of the authors of Halpern et al. (2010) who refuted G&T, and tell him about your concerns.

    Talking of lapse rates, what do you think of Goddard’s intriguing (cough) musings about the cause for hothouse Venus?

  146. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Listen MapleLeaf,

    Thee posts back I already formulated some parts my concern:

    “All I asked for is a list of assumptions that went into 3.7W/m2 calculations”, and mentioned “atmospheric profiles, inversions, optical thickness, and fine structure of absorption spectrum of rarefied gaseous media.”

    Apparently you have no clue what were these assumptions, right?

    Your manner of flipping subject and grasping at straw (“only tropical models” versus “extratropical”) does not speak well of your debating tactics. What is your point of citing back what I already cited? What about the educational MODTRAN of Archer’s website? “Polar” is not “Extratropical”, what do you not understand? Why another straw?

    Please stop contaminating the thread.

  147. sod Says:

    this discussion is PROOF of an important point:

    that Scott Denning went to the heartland conference, was a completely useless and that for stupid move by him.

    the denialists can not be convinced by facts. Shub, Harry and Al do not understand anything. any attempt to explain something to them, is futile. and real scientists talking at a denialists conference only boosts their position, without having any effect on their position.

    they are playing by the tobacco rulebook. we should not allow them to play their game.

  148. DLM Says:

    I told them the same thing early in this thread sod. Those people at the Heartland meeting were not moved by Denning’s talk, even though his reversal of that alarmist thing was very cute. All those deniers are just puppets, and their strings are being pulled by the fat tobacco stained fingers of the demonic mob that set out in 1953 to defend cancer and kill any attempt to save the earth from catastrophic AGW, I mean climate change. It’s a travesty soddy! And from all appearances, they are kicking your behinds up between your ears. Did a Greenpeace guy really say this:

    “Legitimacy has shifted to the side of the climate skeptics, and that is a big, big problem,” Ben Stewart, a spokesman for Greenpeace, said at the meeting of environmentalists here. “This is happening in the context of overwhelming scientific agreement that climate change is real and a threat. But the poll figures are going through the floor.”

    Oh, no! Not Newsweek too:

    http://www.newsweek.com/2010/05/28/uncertain-science.html

    “Uncertain Science
    Bickering and defensive, climate researchers have lost the public’s trust.

    Blame economic worries, another freezing winter, or the cascade of scandals emerging from the world’s leading climate-research body, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). But concern over global warming has cooled down dramatically. In über-green Germany, only 42 percent of citizens worry about global warming now, down from 62 percent in 2006. In Britain, just 26 percent believe climate change is man-made, down from 41 percent as recently as November 2009. And Americans rank global warming dead last in a list of 21 problems that concern them, according to a January Pew poll.

    The shift has left many once celebrated climate researchers feeling like the used-car salesmen of the science world.”

    I don’t even want to remind you of the series of devastating articles in Der Spiegel. And the German greenies used to be so reliable. It’s a travesty!

    It’s all a rather stunning reversal from the times of 99% mass media lockstep support, Academy Awards, Nobel Prizes, and solid majority backing in the public opinion polls. And according to Newsweek, the shift has left once celebrated climate researchers feeling like the used-car salesmen of the science world. Ouch!

    Well, don’t worry sod. Cancun is coming up. That should be a fun get together for you all, as long as it doesn’t snow.

    Anyway sod, I don’t think you are as bad a person as I first thought. After seeing maple’s dirty work, you look somewhat decent in comparison.

  149. Shub Niggurath Says:

    http://klimazwiebel.blogspot.com/2010/05/maybe-some-inconvenient-similarities.html

  150. sod Says:

    Shub, that link is plain out stupid.

    you folks can t see the similarities to tobacco, with the same institutions, and even the same people using the exactly same tactics.

    but make comparisons to Stalin.

    plain out stupid.

  151. MapleLeaf Says:

    Hi Al,

    I’m afraid that you not-so-deftly or subtly tried to side step the critical issues by going on the “offensive”.

    You called into question the 3.7 W m-2 number used by Denning. You eventually volunteered that you were not convinced of its validity because Myhre et al. did not consider polar temperature profiles, and because those polar profiles are different from those in the tropics and extratropics. Now, you can also select polar profiles in MODTRAN and compare the results with those obtained using other profiles.

    Also, had you bothered to read my quote properly you would have seen that it made reference to a study by Freckleton et al. who found that using the three profiles in question they could ‘represent global conditions sufficiently’. You ignored that important fact when you cited Myhre et al’s work and Freckelton’s work, that is why I posted it (that and the fact that one should not assume that everyone here has access to the papers).

    Finally, you should know that low-level temperature inversions are not unique to the polar atmosphere. So it will be interesting to see what you find using different atmospheric temperature profiles in MODTRAN.

    You have been caught floating a red herring and when asked to substantiate your claims or back them up with hard numbers, instead of speaking science, elect to attack and engage in invective– hardly convincing. And no, a vague references to 1/6th of the IPCC number or “indirect observational evidence” does not cut it. Now instead of dismissing the 3.7 W m-2 number, please describe for us how you arrive at the 1/6th of the IPCC number. Also, please demonstrate that by not considering polar temperature profiles one gets an answer very different from 3.7 W m-2. Also, please tell us which or the assumptions made by Myhre et al. are allegedly wanting, why that is so and then demonstrate what the impacts of those alleged “faulty” assumptions are. If these alleged issues have already been addressed in a journal paper, please provide the citation. Thank you.

    You take on Goddard’s “hypothesis” is pertinent, so I and others are interested in your opinion. Think of it as a litmus test.

    Got to fly.

    PS: Please don’t hide behind insults et cetera, just answer the questions and make a convincing case using science. I’m interested to know exactly how you arrive at your preferred number.

  152. MapleLeaf Says:

    Sod, nice to have you here. I’m afraid that there is much denial going on here by certain contrarian elements. I’m afraid we are wasting our time, but what else to do?

    Anyhow, better go before I’m late.

  153. Shub Niggurath Says:

    Sod,
    How about this one?

    http://txipl.org/?q=spotlightcongregations

  154. DeNihilist Says:

    Shub says – {Denihilist:
    Do you really believe that ‘dialogue’ will solve the CAGW/mitigation issue?}

    If the issue is, “is the science right” then yes it is one of the main ways to solve the issue.

    Here, read this, and let me know if you can trust what ever evidence comes from this:

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704655004575114010457906340.html?mod=wsj_india_main

    As I have stated before, this “argument” will be ending in about 7-10 years.

    If the sun is the main driver, and this minimum continues, we will know.

    If these ice cores help us to understand how natural variability actually works, we will know.

    If the cold phase of the oceans precipitate a global cooling, we will know.

    If Dr. Spencer’s paper on clouds proves to be correct, we will know.

    If I can/cannot grow ghot peppers in my vege garden within 7-10 years, we will know!

  155. Lazar Says:

    Al Tekhasski writes;

    “polar areas have very distinctive atmospheric profiles with frequent inversions, such that the contribution from CO2x2 must be negative

    I don’t think so. The tropopause is around 9km at the poles. Antarctic temperature inversions range in depth between 100-200m, and in the Arctic they are less than 1km.

  156. Shub Niggurath Says:

    Denihilist:
    You are talking about argument end-time.

    “[The Villach Conference]… argued that another ten to twenty years of observation would be needed before detection of global warming was likely, and that ‘uncertainty dominates every aspect of the greenhouse gas question,…”

    This was written in 1994.

    The WSJ article was a piece about Antartic ice cores. What am I supposed to ‘trust’ here?

    It would be interesting to know whether the medieval warming caused the black soot or the black soot caused the medieval warming. Let us do some ice core divining.

  157. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Lazar,
    I was under impression that it is not so important where the tropopause is, it is important where “effective emission layers” are located relative to inversions, for each particular absorption-emission line.

  158. Al Tekhasski Says:

    MapleLeaf,

    In my first post on this thread I asked to “present any instrumental or theoretical evidence that doubling of CO2 from initial level of 300ppm causes this amount of energy imbalance, 3.7W/m2? Not just citations to Myhre or Freckelton, but actual logic of their calculation.”

    Then I elaborated: “why don’t you coherently present all basic ideas of the case made by climate science for calculations of CO2x2 “forcing”? I mean all assumptions, so we could critically examine them.”

    Now you are boldly reflecting: “please tell us which or the assumptions made by Myhre et al. are allegedly wanting”

    How could I tell which assumptions are “wanting” if you failed to present them? See the dissonance in your cognitive ability?

    P.S. I have no idea what the “Goddard hypothesis” is and I am not interested, especially in any peculiarities of Venus. I have no problem with Venus.

  159. Ibrahim Says:

    Has there been significant warming from 1990 to the present?

    Watch the attribution of the Pinatubo and consider there was an El Niño from 1991 to 1995.

    http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/people/klaus.wolter/MEI/

    Phil Jones: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/8511670.stm

    James Hansen: http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/1992/91GL02788.shtml

  160. Lazar Says:

    Al Tekhasski,

    Effective radiating level is around 5-6km.

  161. Sean Says:

    Shorter this thread:

    “Despite all the misinformation, science tells us that AGW is real.”

    Denialist: “Nope.”

  162. Hank Roberts Says:

    “… the doubling of CO2 causes direct radiative forcing of about 3.7 W/m2 [IPCC, 2007]” (from a paper much beloved of those arguing for more delay): http://www.iac.ethz.ch/doc/publications/Chylek-et-al-JGR2007-climate-sens.pdf

  163. Harry Says:

    Hank,

    This radiative forcing is only applicable when the sky is clear, and no convection or turbulence in the atmospheric layers involved in the radiative cooling. Also water vapour has to be low, otherwise water vapour absorption will prevail, regardless of the CO2 concentration. CO2 absorption only occurs in the sidebands which have not already been saturated, and do not overlap with the absorption wavelengths of watervapour. In clouded situations, energy transport by convection, evaporation and condensation are far more important, shielding the effect of increased CO2 absorption. In general it will always be far less than the 3.7W/m2, let us say 0.5 W/m2.

  164. Frank Says:

    sod Says:

    “(Y)ou folks can t see the similarities to tobacco, with the same institutions, and even the same people using the exactly same tactics.”

    What similarities would those be? I don’t know of any smoker that doesn’t know from real-world observation that cigarettes are harmful. Conversely, I don’t know of any CAGW predictions that are verified by real-world observations.

    Regards – F.

  165. Harry Says:

    Sod,
    whoever,

    please stop playing the smoker/cancer card. It has nothing to do with AGW and it hurts. It hurts! It hurts!!!

    I do not comprehend why you are attacking me with this cancer issue. I think you are animals to continue with this.

    It hurts! Every time you speak of cancer so ligthly, so by the way, it hurts me. And I am sure there will be more people offended.
    I have seen how my son has been devoured by cancer, day by day. Starting as he was, a champion, ending as a disintegrating body, full of life and ending as as bag of skin.

    Shame on You!

  166. Harry Says:

    Bart,

    Ik word er knap ziek van. Zou je me kunnen uitleggen waarom klimaatskeptisisme meteen kanker verhalen oproept?

    Ik ben een extreme klimaatskeptikus, maar waarom moet ik met kanker ge-identificeerd worden? En voor mij is dat tamelijk traumatisch, gezien het feit dat ik mijn zoon 3 maanden geleden heb begraven. En ja, daar wil ik iemand die daar noncalant over doet voor zijn bek slaan. Zoek Yvar Verhoeven maar eens op.

  167. Lazar Says:

    Hank writes…

    the doubling of CO2 causes direct radiative forcing of about 3.7 W/m2 [IPCC, 2007]

    Harry writes…

    This radiative forcing is only applicable when the sky is clear

    Cited source (IPCC 2007, WGI, Chapter 2);

    “The simple formulae for RF of the LLGHG quoted in Ramaswamy et al. (2001) are still valid. These formulae are based on global RF calculations where clouds, stratospheric adjustment and solar absorption are included, and give an RF of +3.7 W m–2 for a doubling in the CO2 mixing ratio.”

    Worried about using average atmospheric profiles (or three)? Use a GCM (IPCC 2001, WGI, 6.3.1)…

    IPCC (1990) and the SAR used a radiative forcing of 4.37 Wm-2 for a doubling of CO2 calculated with a simplified expression. Since then several studies, including some using GCMs (Mitchell and Johns, 1997; Ramaswamy and Chen, 1997b; Hansen et al., 1998), have calculated a lower radiative forcing due to CO2 (Pinnock et al., 1995; Roehl et al., 1995; Myhre and Stordal, 1997; Myhre et al., 1998b; Jain et al., 2000). The newer estimates of radiative forcing due to a doubling of CO2 are between 3.5 and 4.1 Wm-2

    […]

    The new best estimate based on the published results for the radiative forcing due to a doubling of CO2 is 3.7 Wm-2,

    Check the variation of forcing with latitude of forcing for well-mixed GHGs from 1750-2000 AD (IPCC 2001, WGI, Chapter 6, Fig 6.7 a).

    Also (IPCC 2001, WG1, 6.3)…

    Several previous studies of radiative forcing due to well-mixed greenhouse gases have been performed using single, mostly global mean, vertical profiles. Myhre and Stordal (1997) investigated the effects of spatial and temporal averaging on the globally and annually averaged radiative forcing due to the well-mixed greenhouse gases. The use of a single global mean vertical profile to represent the global domain, instead of the more rigorous latitudinally varying profiles, can lead to errors of about 5 to 10%; errors arising due to the temporal averaging process are much less (~1%). Freckleton et al. (1998) found similar effects and suggested three vertical profiles which could represent global atmospheric conditions satisfactorily in radiative transfer calculations.

    Clouds,

    Trapping of the long-wave radiation due to the presence of clouds reduces the radiative forcing of the greenhouse gases compared to the clear-sky forcing. However, the magnitude of the effect due to clouds varies for different greenhouse gases. Relative to clear skies, clouds reduce the global mean radiative forcing due to CO2 by about 15% (Pinnock et al., 1995; Myhre and Stordal, 1997)

    More worries (citing Harry)…

    CO2 absorption only occurs in the sidebands which have not already been saturated, and do not overlap with the absorption wavelengths of watervapour

    Those effects (water vapor, saturation, overlap) are accounted for in radiative transfer calculations which produce the 3.7 W/m^2 figure.

  168. Harry Says:

    Lazar,

    The absorption side bands have not been take into account. The H2O absorption also has been neglected…

    And the O3 asbsorption… neglected.
    In fact, IPCC did not account for anything but CO2. Not my failure….

    Please tell me that you do not accept IPCC at first glance…

  169. Harry Says:

    Lazar,

    why are all your citations of the previous version of the IPCC report?

  170. Harry Says:

    I dare to say that all models do not properly include the wavelength dependent absorption by CO2. Most of te CO2 absorbing bands coincide with the absorption wavelengthts of water vapour, and where they do no coincide they still show significant and more important absorption than CO2 does. In other words, water vapour is ways beyound the CO2 absorption.

  171. Harry Says:

    A doubling of atmospheric CO2 does not automatically imply a doubling of the absorbation of the back-radiated energy. This is only true when earth would be a perfect black body, which it is not.

  172. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Lazar says, June 1, 2010 at 13:52:

    “Effective radiating level is around 5-6km.”

    Yes, that’s what textbooks say, calculating this backwards from average surface temperature along lapse rate down to 255k emission temp.

    But do you happen to know the definition of “effective radiating layer”, mathematically speaking? As I said, my particular interest is in treatment of each particular absorption-emission line. How high is this layer for, say, 667.5 cm-1 wavenumber? And for 667.0? I am sure the average will be around 5-6km, but are you sure that this average really represents the physics correctly?

  173. Bart Says:

    Harry,

    You are not being personally attacked. Rather, the tactics and style of argumentation used by certain thinktanks is likened to those used in the tobacco wars (often by the same thinktanks and even persons). A different issue is that I find the analogy useful of medical professionals diagnosing an individual’s state of health and geoscientists diagnosing the planet’s state (“of health”). Neither of these observations are meant to downplay the incredible pain you feel. They are separate issues.

    My brother died of cancer a couple of years ago. I can feel your pain, and am truly sorry for your loss.

  174. Bart Says:

    All:

    Please remain respectful to others, especially regarding issues that invoke strong personal emotions. Health analogies are fine; analogies with past discussions about other sciences (e.g. medical, biological, etc) are fine. But try to keep it as clean and factual as possible, and try to avoid the appearance of equating others with horrible diseases, people or actions.

  175. Lazar Says:

    Al Tekhasski

    “are you sure that this average really represents the physics correctly?”

    Since the average corresponds directly to the flux of outgoing longwave radiation, which is the quantitiy we’re interested in, yes.

  176. Lazar Says:

    Harry, where are you getting your sources from? Water vapor and ozone distributions were included in one of the first modern calculations and practically (if not literally) every one since, including every GCM.

    Manabe, S., and R. T. Wetherald (1967), Thermal Equilibrium of the Atmosphere with a Given Distribution of Relative Humidity, Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences, 24(3), 241-259, doi:10.1175/1520-0469(1967)0242.0.CO;2.

    Abstract:

    “Radiative convective equilibrium of the atmosphere with a given distribution of relative humidity is computed as the asymptotic state of an initial value problem. The results show that it takes almost twice as long to reach the state of radiative convective equilibrium for the atmosphere with a given distribution of relative humidity than for the atmosphere with a given distribution of absolute humidity. Also, the surface equilibrium temperature of the former is almost twice as sensitive to change of various factors such as solar constant, CO2 content, O3 content, and cloudiness, than that of the latter, due to the adjustment of water vapor content to the temperature variation of the atmosphere. According to our estimate, a doubling of the CO2 content in the atmosphere has the effect of raising the temperature of the atmosphere (whose relative humidity is fixed) by about 2C. Our model does not have the extreme sensitivity of atmospheric temperature to changes of CO2 content which was adduced by Möller.”

  177. Daniel Says:

    Bart: “Both to Denning’s and Heartland’s credit, he was invited to speak there and his talk was apparently well received. How the audience will resolve their inevitable cognitive dissonance remains to be seen.”

    It is worth noting (if mentioned above, my apologies) that Denning was not the only AGW proponent invited to the Heartland Conference. Invitees also included Michael Mann, Gavin Schmidt, James Hansen, Phil Jones and William Schlesinger. Denning was the only one of this group who accepted the invitation. Good for him.

    It’s been my experience that climate skeptics are every bit as open to their views being challenged, as curious and seeking the truth (if not more so), as those who believe there’s cause for alarm over CO2 emissions.

  178. Shub Says:

    It is clear how Michael Mann, Gavin Schmidt, James Hansen, Phil Jones and William Schlesinger resolved their ‘inevitable cognitive dissonance’.

    They did not turn up for the conference.

    “those who strongly oppose government intervention would be wise to call for strong early action…”

    It is funny how advocates of CAGW cannot discern dissonant vibrations in their own thought processes.

    How is it that, because of catastrophic global warming, we should put the whole ‘planet’ on a low carbon diet and yet put governments, climate scientists and advocates on a sinful path of gluttony whereby these entities feed and engorge themselves on tax and project climate money?

    Ever since global warming ‘became’ a credible ‘threat to civilization’, global warming advocates have been criss-crossing oceans repeatedly, all in ‘one big jet-fuel crazed thermodynamic whoopee’ (Credit – Kurt Vonnegut).

    Hideously bloated and obese bureaucracies who do not know what to do with their funds and climate scientists who play the ‘the models are inadequate – the data is not enough’ game in tandem – all this is supposedly desirable, when the whole ‘planet’ is ordered to diet till its ass falls off – super advice indeed. ;)

  179. dhogaza Says:

    It’s been my experience that climate skeptics are every bit as open to their views being challenged, as curious and seeking the truth (if not more so), as those who believe there’s cause for alarm over CO2 emissions.

    Someone doesn’t read Watts Up With That, where standard science unrelated to climate science, textbook physics and physical chemistry, are routinely “overturned” by Steven Goddard.

    This is actually one of the funniest statements I’ve ever seen a denialist make!

  180. Bart Says:

    Phinnie,

    You’re not welcome here anymore.

    Your comments won’t be published.

  181. Bart Says:

    Shub,

    Not that I’ve agreed much with what you’ve written here, but at least you seemed serious before.

  182. Daniel Says:

    “This is actually one of the funniest statements I’ve ever seen a denialist make!”

    Once distracted from examining their navel lint, people who use the term “denialist” are easily amused.

    Don’t forget which faction started throwing around statements like: “The debate is over” and “The science is settled” within nanoseconds of the announcement of the global warming “crisis”.

  183. Harry Says:

    Bart,

    I am truly sorry to learn about your brother. I will try to keep a more distant look and a delayed action.

    But I will try to contribute to your blog, if you will allow me to do so.

    Thanks.

    Harry

  184. Harry Says:

    Lazar,

    I have not been able to find the exact wavelength and concentration dependent absortion of CO2, H2O and O3. Can anyone help me? (A table, not graph, so I can do some calculations)

  185. Lazar Says:

    Harry,

    Well, absorption depends on wavelength, temperature, air pressure and species partial pressure. If you really mean “exact”, downloading the HITRAN line database and doing line-by-line calculations is non-trivial… the math is not greatly advanced, but there are many steps. Finding a broadband parameterization scheme might be easier. Barton Paul Levenson’s page might be useful. Either way, if you’re going to do radiative transfer, read something like this

    Liou, K. N. (2002), An Introduction to Atmospheric Radiation, Volume 84, Second Edition, 2nd ed., Academic Press.

    and / or this…

    Thomas, G. E., and K. Stamnes (2002), Radiative Transfer in the Atmosphere and Ocean, Cambridge University Press.

    … also the paper cited previously and references cited therein.

    Sorry that I can’t be more precise.

  186. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Lazar wrote regarding the use of band average:

    “Since the average corresponds directly to the flux of outgoing longwave radiation, which is the quantitiy we’re interested in, yes.”

    It is likely true that the average corresponds to flux directly. However, total _change_ in flux from changes in individual lines due to concentration increase is not so obvious.

    Consider one line (or a narrow band) with strong absorption, and another wider area (say, 2x) with very weak absorption. Their average “emission height” is, say, at 5-6km within troposphere where “higher = colder”. Therefore the standard theory asserts that the”average emission height” will go up with increase of GHG concentration, where is colder. Colder layer emits less, and therefore an imbalance of OLR would occur, and force climate to warm up.

    However, the reality is that this average of 5-6km is made of 0km emission height and 18 km emission height. Increase of 0 km band gives you zero change in OLR, while increase in 18km emission height will give you MORE OLR, because the temperature gradient in stratosphere is opposite to one in troposphere, so “higher = warmer”. As result, the warmer layer would emit more, and the energy imbalance would be POSITIVE, implying cooling. See now this little problem with averages that are prematurely assumed?

    Are you sure that OLR was always calculated across the entire atmosphere and not truncated along tropopause only? That’s why I am asking about assumptions that went into the cornerstone of AGW theory, the 3.7W/m2.

  187. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Harry wrote: “I have not been able to find the exact wavelength and concentration dependent absortion of CO2, H2O and O3… so I can do some calculations”

    Harry, this is not an easy task, it is more like a full-time job to perform these calculations. Obviously disregard references to science fiction writers, and for HITRAN, it is useless in its native form and requires proper parametrizations for pressure broadening and other effects. You might try to fish some relevant data out of this,

    http://www.spectralcalc.com/calc/spectralcalc.php

    (which is a sort of user front end to HITRAN database). But to get practically useful data you might need to pay a subscription fee. Have fun.

  188. Shub Niggurath Says:

    Bart:
    I spoke in humor but my point is clear enough.

    Those who advocate national fiscal discipline, historically, have called for cuts in government spending, whether it be the US or other countries.

    Increasing taxes or imposing a new one is a burden on the productivity and sustainability of families and industries which limits their inherent dynamism (ability to respond to economic perturbations).

    It is interesting therefore, to note that catastrophic climate change advocates want to increase government spending (increasing project allocations, expansion of departments) against a backdrop of ‘carbon’ taxation, something that will virtually impact every single action in society, therefore amounting to a gigantic break-shoe on industry and productivity.

    Which CAGW advocate talks of this paradox?

    The assumption of course, is that, swimming in all these tax dollars will be scientists who will come up with solutions to the greenhouse gas problem. This is stupid.

    Take any number of African countries, or other third world countries. They recapitulate, so to speak in present-day, the scenario that is envisioned by these measures. Armed thugs accumulate and concentrate material wealth which is sucked dry from the impoverished countryside. What science or innovation comes from these countries?

    The situation in the developed nations is *analogous* – islands of government profligacy will not survive in a sea of carbon-poverty.

    The other dissonance no CAGW advocate will talk about is this:

    Shrill calls for mitigation/adaptation, impassioned appeals to ‘save the planet’ were at their highest in 2004-2008, exactly in a period of monetary abundance and financial boom. Prosperity appeared real, however bubble-like the underlying fundamentals may have been. It was this prosperity that prompted the pursuit of fantasy solutions to imagined problems in the future, precisely because it is in such periods that such a thing is possible at all.

    Today, when many economies are down, environmental advocates understand this issue in the exact opposite fashion – the dissonance. Instead of realizing the above fact – that prosperity enables thoughts of mitigation – they blame and berate the general populace today for putting climate change last on their list of concerns, in other words for attending to real problems first than imagined future ones.

    I say ‘imagined’ in the broadest sense – you could susbstitute ‘IPCC-projected’ or ‘modelled’. Or even ‘misprinted’ ;)

    I would suggest to the CAGW advocates to take heart – when the next economic upturn or boom comes along, you do not have to worry – the spiritually barren but monetarily-endowed members of the globe will turn to you for solace.

    Regards

  189. Lazar Says:

    Al Tekhasski

    I get your point. In your example, I think what you say is essentially correct. In reality… I would expect the distribution of emission to space heights to have a central tendency.

    “Are you sure that OLR was always calculated across the entire atmosphere and not truncated along tropopause only?”

    My sloppiness… forcing is defined as heating or cooling of the surface-troposphere system measured by the change in net flux at the tropopause. The stratosphere contributes downward flux to the troposphere, which increases with CO2. TOA is typically the tropopause in GCM calculations, and in one-dimensional calculations, including line-by-line, TOA is typically the stratopause or higher.

  190. Ani Says:

    Thanks for a great blog site Bart. You have what we used to say the patience of a swede. I hope that’s politically correct. Anyway though you may have to beat your head against the wall once in awhile, keep up the good work.

  191. Lazar Says:

    Ditto the recommendation for spectral calc. One caveat; there was no water vapor continuum last time I checked.

    “science fiction writers”

    Barton has studied for years and written multi-layer broadband radiative-convective models. He knows more than most.

  192. Eli Rabett Says:

    Water vapor continuum is very, very hard to model, esp foreign gas broadening

  193. Lazar Says:

    Correction… at least for IPCC 2007, GCMs include the stratosphere in calculations of instantaneous forcing, most up to the stratopause, and use 200hPa as a surrogate height for the tropopause, see Radiative Transfer Model Intercomparison Project and model specs.

    Relevant paper…

    Collins, W. D. et al. (2006), Radiative forcing by well-mixed greenhouse gases: Estimates from climate models in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Report (AR4), Journal of Geophysical Research (Atmospheres), 111(D14), D14317, doi:10.1029/2005JD006713.

    Note the average 2xCO2 LW forcing of the surface-troposphere system calculated by various GCMs gives 5.07 W/m^2 (Table 8, 2b-1a).

    Adding the SW forcing (Table 9, 2b-1a) of -0.79 W/m^2 gives 4.28 W/m^2.
    The authors write…

    the calculations omit the effects of stratospheric thermal adjustment to forcing derived using fixed dynamical heating (FDH) [Ramanathan and Dickinson, 1979; Fels et al., 1980] […] For the purposes of this intercomparison, ‘‘flux’’ is defined as ‘‘flux for clear-sky and aerosol-free conditions’’ and ‘‘forcing’’ is defined as ‘‘instantaneous changes in fluxes without stratospheric adjustment’’. It should be noted that our omission of FDH means that the results in this study are not directly comparable to the estimates of forcing at the tropopause in the IPCC [2001] reports, since the latter include the effects of adjustment.

    IPCC 2001…

    Trapping of the long-wave radiation due to the presence of clouds reduces the radiative forcing of the greenhouse gases compared to the clear-sky forcing. However, the magnitude of the effect due to clouds varies for different greenhouse gases. Relative to clear skies, clouds reduce the global mean radiative forcing due to CO2 by about 15% (Pinnock et al., 1995; Myhre and Stordal, 1997)

    Crudely…

    0.15*4.28 = 3.64 W/m^2
    minus some more for stratospheric adjustment

  194. Lazar Says:

    0.85*4.28

  195. Lazar Says:

    Eli,

    Any thoughts on Roberts vs Ma & Tipping vs Clough, Kneizys & Davies (any others)?

    Roberts old, simple, fast works for me. Despite much huffing, I don’t really see any great improvements by the others. Ma & Tipping is beyond my grokking. CKD might be grokkable if the documentation were better…

  196. Shub Niggurath Says:

    http://frugalyankee.wordpress.com/2010/06/03/why-sex-the-city-bombed/

  197. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Lazar says: “I get your point. In your example, I think what you say is essentially correct. In reality… I would expect the distribution of emission to space heights to have a central tendency. ”

    Could not agree more on this. In reality, it is very likely that the effect of strong lines “centers” the effect of weak bands (I read this as “cancel”). And the change in “medium” bands with effective emission height in tropopause contributes nothing to the change, since tropopause is essentially isothermal. So, what do we have in the end? Zero forcing, in first approximation. That’s exactly what I tried to convey. Thanks for your understanding and support :-)

  198. Bart Says:

    Shub,

    What’s your point?

  199. Lazar Says:

    Al Tekhasski,

    Whoa whoa… effective emission heights are measures that crudely summarize the results of radiative transfer calculations, not visa versa. You don’t know where those heights are without doing the calculations. The effect of moving an emission height at some arbitrary point in the troposphere to another does not necessarily ‘equal’ or “cancel” the effect of moving another in the stratosphere; which depends on the particular temperatures, pressures, species concentrations, and upward and downward fluxes.

    Ok, I take back what I wrote about effective emission heights negating the inversion profile argument :-)

    But not the bit where I disagree with your a-priori…

    “polar areas have very distinctive atmospheric profiles with frequent inversions, such that the contribution from CO2x2 must be negative“

    You were worried about using average profiles as done in a paper by Myhre. Have you read?…

    Myhre, G., and F. Stordal (n.d.), Role of spatial and temporal variations in the computation of radiative forcing and GWP, Journal of Geophysical Research, 102(D10), PP. 11,181-11,200, doi:199710.1029/97JD00148.

    “A broadband model, which is used in the calculations, is described. Some comparative calculations have also been performed with a line-by-line model. The most detailed horizontal resolution used is 2.5° × 2.5° in latitude and longitude. A variety of resolutions up to global averages are investigated. The effects of variations on diurnal, monthly, and seasonal scales are also studied. Spatial and temporal variation in the radiative forcing due to variations in temperature, humidity, and cloudiness has been taken into account on the basis of observed data.”

    They found CO2 forcing using a global average profile was 0.92% less than using a 2.5° grid with clouds, and 0.79% less without clouds.

    Then there’s the GCM results.

    The temperature inversion thing… it’s an interesting point. But I don’t see any evidence of it being a significant and/or unaccounted effect.

  200. Shub Niggurath Says:

    The author writes, obviously about the US:

    “The last 18 months have seen this country wracked by economic misfortune brought on my mindless greed, unbridled ambition and an unmooring of our moral compasses. Buying a dress that costs more than a mortgage purely for vanity has little resonance in today’s society. There are reports that the clothing budget for the four main gals rain in excess of $10 million. That type of waste is unseemly in these days of unemployed and underemployed. When a movie flaunts outlandish fashion and we are asking where our 401K went, it is incongruous. Yes, films have shown high society before. They have shown how the rich live, but this is different. SEX & THE CITY bombed because it became disconnected from its core audience.

    My interpretation:
    Frivolous superfluities like mitigation will ‘bomb’ because they are disconnected from its audience, whom it depends on for its own funding, and from current economic realities.

    Mitigatory actions can be considered without inducing palpitations only in financially stable and prosperous times, which are paradoxically the result of economic growth – the very raison d’être for mitigation in the first place.

  201. Lazar Says:

    “less” -> “greater”

  202. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Lazar said: “effective emission heights are measures that crudely summarize the results of radiative transfer calculations, not visa versa. You don’t know where those heights are without doing the calculations.”

    I think you are putting a cart before horses. What I presented was a qualitative physical view on the process, “crude” analysis if you wish. It tells that the effect is likely a secondary order effect, a difference between two opposite contributions. It is very easy to miss something in calculations of differences and arrive at absurd, especially if you have no means to experimentally detect the change, and have no clear benchmark or corner cases to verify your massive numerical calculations.

  203. Lazar Says:

    Al Tekhasski,

    a difference between two opposite contributions

    Yes, this does happen. E.g. surface-troposphere forcing due to increased GHG concentrations is a balance between increased absorption of upwelling emission from the surface and downwelling emission from the stratosphere, and increased emission into the stratosphere and beyond.

    It is very easy to miss something in calculations of differences

    Truism… wishy-washy hand-waving :-)

    especially if you have no means to experimentally detect the change, and have no clear benchmark or corner cases to verify your massive numerical calculations

    Atmospheric radiative transfer modelling has been verified empirically using observed radiances into space and downwelling at the surface. Many, many times. Literature is chockablock. Performs very well. Equations of radiative transfer also unlikely to change. This thing is solid.

  204. Lazar Says:

    You also wrote “zero forcing, in first approximation”, which is beyond

    “a qualitative physical view”

  205. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Lazar wrote: “Atmospheric radiative transfer modelling has been verified empirically using observed radiances into space and downwelling at the surface. Many, many times. Literature is chockablock.”

    Really? If you want to mention the shoddy job by Griggs and Harries (2004), please do not bother.

    “Performs very well. Equations of radiative transfer also unlikely to change. This thing is solid.”

    Except that “radiation codes” are handled as mysterious gospels and nobody knows what is inside and how they work. Are you trying to say that this thing is as solid as GCMs?

  206. DeNihilist Says:

    Dr. Dyson’s Views on CO2 –

  207. Harry Says:

    Lazar, Al, thanks for the refs. I will study them. Just have been absent for a few days.

  208. Al Tekhasski Says:

    That’s a very nice and clever position of Dr.Dyson. I always suspected that climatology knows next to nothing about seasonal fluxes across vegetation areas. I know that estimation of CO2 fluxes across oceans are totally botched due to elementary mathematical mistake they make in averaging of fluctuating spatio-temporal fields, so that the global vegetation fluxes are not very well constrained from global mass conservation point of view.

    However, I am much less enthusiastic about prospects of measurements. As physicists know from Shannon-Nyquist sampling theorem, 200 stations would be quite short to satisfy the theorem’s requirement. My crude estimation is that recording of climatological fields requires about 1,000,000 measuring stations (based on 50km typical spatial scale of weather fields), so the ground observations would require 200,000 – 300,000 stations, not 200 as Dr Dyson wishes to get.

  209. DeNihilist Says:

    Dr. Bart, is there any validation in what Dr. Dyson says in regard to the cooling of the stratosphere causing a drop in ozone?

  210. Bart Says:

    DeNihilist,

    I haven’t checked out the video, but stratospheric ozone depletion indeed needs low temperatures: The chemical reactions involving chlorine atoms (from CFC’s) take place on the surface of polar stratospheric clouds which only form below a certain temperature (around -80 degC from memory). That’s also why ozone depletion is/was mostly a problem over the Antarctic. CFC concentrations are going down, but so are the stratospheric temp’s. In the end, the downward trend in CFC’s is going to win I’d say, but in the short term, I dunno. There are more interactions between global warming and the ozone layer.

  211. Lazar Says:

    Al Tekhasski,

    “My crude estimation is that […] (based on 50km typical spatial scale of weather fields), ground observations would require 200,000 – 300,000 stations”

    … doesn’t sound right.

    Spatial correlation out to 500km is typically around +0.8 in the Northern Hemisphere and +0.6 in the Southern Hemisphere;

    Hansen, J., and S. Lebedeff (1987), Global trends of measured surface air temperature, Journal of Geophysical Research, 92(D11), 13345-13372, doi:10.1029/JD092iD11p13345.

    Which correlation results in reduced degrees of freedom…

    “The dof of the monthly surface temperature field is studied numerically. The B method shows that the dof of the Northern Hemisphere (NH) has an obvious annual cycle, which is around 60 in the winter months and 90 in the summer months. The dof for the Southern Hemisphere (SH) varies between 35 and 50, with large values during its winter months and small ones during its summer months.”

    Useful references…

    “Another example is the question of how many stations are needed to measure the global average annual mean surface temperature. Researchers previously believed that an accurate estimate required a large number of observations. Jones et al. (1986a,b), Hansen and Lebedeff (1987), and Vinnikov et al. (1990) used more than 500 stations. However, researchers gradually realized that the global surface temperature field has a very low dof. For observed seasonal average temperature, the dof are around 40 (Jones et al. 1997), and one estimate for GCM output is 135 (Madden et al. 1993). Jones (1994) showed that the average temperature of the Northern (Southern) Hemisphere estimated with 109 (63) stations was satisfactorily accurate when compared to the results from more than 2000 stations. Shen et al. (1994) showed that the global average annual mean surface temperature can be accurately estimated by using around 60 stations, well distributed on the globe, with an optimal weight for each station.”

    Wang, X., and S. S. Shen (1999), Estimation of Spatial Degrees of Freedom of a Climate Field, Journal of Climate, 12(5), 1280-1291, doi:10.1175/1520-0442(1999)0122.0.CO;2.

    If the sampling rate were inadequate for constructing a global average, the observed extemely high correlations between satellite, land station, and sea surface temperature reconstructions would not exist.

    For constructing an average, it is not clear that Nyquists’ theorem applies in the way suggested.

    How exactly did you estimate a “50km spatial scale”?

  212. Lazar Says:

    Related…

    Christiansen, B., T. Schmith, and P. Thejll (2009), A Surrogate Ensemble Study of Climate Reconstruction Methods: Stochasticity and Robustness, Journal of Climate, 22(4), 951, doi:10.1175/2008JCLI2301.1.

  213. Lazar Says:

    Oooh… a temperature reconstruction by Nick Stokes using just 61 land stations.

  214. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Lazar wrote: “Spatial correlation out to 500km is typically around +0.8 in the Northern Hemisphere and +0.6 in the Southern Hemisphere.. Hansen, J., and S. Lebedeff (1987)”

    Compare the century-long data from these two stations in Texas:

    Haskell

    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/gistemp/gistemp_station.py?id=425722660030&data_set=1&num_neighbors=1

    Albany

    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/gistemp/gistemp_station.py?id=425722660020&data_set=1&num_neighbors=1

    Haskel has a warming trend of about 1.8F/century. Albany has COOLING trend, about 1F/century. The point is that these stations are only 63km apart.

    Take another pair, Boerne and Blanco, less than 45 km apart. Again, one has a warming trend; the other has a cooling trend.

    Do you know what kind of trend could be possibly recorded 50 miles North, N-E, NW, South, whatever, in the vicinity of these stations? No.

    Ok, the placement of stations could be random. Do you have any proof or characterization of this?

    Conclusion: I don’t give a rat about all your citations, especially from Hansen. The facts are that stations as close as 50km have opposite century long trends. Therefore the temperature field does exhibit spatial patterns that are not resolved by current positions of sampling stations. The field is undersampled. It needs many more stations. Just as I said.

  215. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Lazar said: “Oooh… a temperature reconstruction by Nick Stokes using just 61 land stations.”

    You do realize that in 3000 nearly random data series there must be one (to even few more) traces that resemble the average nearly exactly, do you? Do you realize the whole stupidity of Nick Stokes example?

  216. Bart Says:

    Any chance you cherrypicked those two stations, Al Tekhasski? From what I’ve read, there’s a high degree of spatial correlation in temperature anomalies.

  217. Lazar Says:

    Al Tekhasski,

    I don’t give a rat about all your citations, especially from Hansen

    That is an immature response.

    The problem is not one of describing every local variation, it is of estimating regional and global averages to within an acceptable degree of error. If, for example, temperatures along 200km lines are on average correlated at greater than +0.9, you do not need on average four stations to adequately characterize the average temperature along such lines. There will, of course, be instances where the correlation breaks down at small spatial scales, but such infrequent events do not impact large scale averages. Hansen’s paper shows the distribution of correlations at all spatial scales. It is more convincing than a sample size of two (here are some equally trivial counter examples showing high correlations of temperature and precipitation, and the typical station seperation is 150km).

    You have not really addressed issues of spatial correlation and degrees of freedom.

    You do realize that in 3000 nearly random data series there must be one (to even few more) traces that resemble the average nearly exactly, do you?

    Yep, it’s possible that the excellent agreement between the 61 station subset and circa 3000 station dataset was by chance. And that the agreements in Jones (1994) between a 119 station subset and the full 2540 station dataset for the NH, and a 59 station subset and the full 421 station dataset for the SH, were also by chance. And the agreement with satellite measurements was by chance. And the agreement with SSTs was by chance.

    What is that chance?

    Estimating global average temperature is statistical work. You understand we’re constructing an estimator, right? And that there’s inevitably a “chance” that the sample estimation is wildly out. That is a truism.

    Do you realize the whole stupidity of Nick Stokes example?

    If what you say is true (“50km typical spatial scale of weather fields”), there’s an easy way for you to demonstrate the “stupidity” of the example. Take each of Nick Stokes’ 61 stations, pick a station at random that is between 50 and 200km distant, and construct a new global average that is wildly different. Then do it again. The code is online, the data is online.

    Further, construct multiple global averages with 200km resolution. Show how the reconstructions differ wildly. Publish. Show the world and thousands of climate scientists to be wrong. Let everyone gasp at the flukiness of the agreements between all previous data. Win a Nobel. Be a hero. Smack Al Gore upside the head. The code is online. The data is online.

  218. Lazar Says:

    … or, even easier, simply take the 2-3,000 station datasets, pick multiple 1,000 station subsets and construct multiple global averages. If “50km typical spatial scale of weather fields” and “the field is undersampled”, the averages should differ wildly from each other and the standard ‘full’ reconstructions; GISTEMP, HadCRUT, NOAA, and the satellite and SST measurments.

  219. DLM Says:

    Lazar, please cite some of the papers that explain where the missing heat can be found. The polls are going through the floor and we desperately need an explanation for the missing heat, before our little junket to Cancun. We don’t want to have another travesty.

  220. Lazar Says:

    DLM,

    You’re recycling soundbites to derail the discussion.

    I’m not your teacher. Not my job. Couldn’t care.

  221. DeNihilist Says:

    Actually DLM, Dr. Trenbreth just said in an interview, that the latest “record warmth” for the last few months is from the El Nino that we just went through.

    Not all the scientists are frauds ya know….. :)

  222. Lazar Says:

    another fluke; agreement between Northern Hemisphere average temperatures reconstructed from two independent subsets of GHCN; stations which report after 1992 versus those which don’t.

    and another; agreement between regional average temperatures (roughly 1,100 km x 1,200 km areas) each reconstructed from two independent subsets of GHCN; stations above versus stations below the median average absolute temperature.

    The claim of “3000 nearly random data series” seems increasingly unlikely.

    The selection criteria in Nick Stokes’ example is stated in the blog post;

    I looked at stations from the GHCN set that were rural, had data in 2009 2010, and had more than 90 years of data in total. The selection command in TempLS was
    “LongRur” = tv$endyr>2009 & tv$length>90 & tv$urban == “A”,
    That yielded 61 stations.

    There is also a map of the distribution of stations.

  223. DeNihilist Says:

    Lazar,

    Ummm, I thought the temp debate was pretty well settled. Even Jeff ID came up with a reconstruction, that was a bit “hotter” then GISS. I think where most skeptics are focused is on the “catstrophic” element of temp gain, predicated by strong positive reactions. I, for what it is worth, don’t see that happening.

  224. Lazar Says:

    DeNihilist,

    Ummm, I thought the temp debate was pretty well settled.

    It is.

    Why not address Al Tekhasski who claims otherwise, instead of me who agrees?

  225. Lazar Says:

    DeNihilist,

    “Dr. Trenbreth just said in an interview, that the latest “record warmth” for the last few months is from the El Nino that we just went through.”

    Unless you have a different source, that isn’t what he said

    Kevin Trenberth, head of climate analysis at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Colorado, said: “We have seen rapid warming recently, but it is an example of natural variation that is associated with changes in the Pacific rather than climate change.

    “However, this warming is in addition to the 0.7C long-term rise in global temperature caused by climate change. The record temperatures are due to the two factors adding together.

  226. DeNihilist Says:

    On point one, I addressed you as support.

    On point 2, thanx for the quote, I couldn’t find it before dinner.

    {“However, this warming is in addition to the 0.7C long-term rise in global temperature caused by climate change. The record temperatures are due to the two factors adding together.”}

    In my way of reading this quote, Dr. Trenberth is stating that without the added “kick” from El Nino, Dr. Hansen would not be claiming that we have just gone through the warmest 12 month period in the instrumental era.

    Surely you do not claim that El Nino is a postive forcing from AGW?

  227. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Bart wrote: “Any chance you cherrypicked those two stations, Al Tekhasski? From what I’ve read, there’s a high degree of spatial correlation in temperature anomalies.”

    That’s what Hansen and Lebedeff claimed. However, when I checked stations near Canadian border, I found the same abrupt spatial changes in many places – see here:

    http://ourchangingclimate.wordpress.com/2010/03/08/is-the-increase-in-global-average-temperature-just-a-random-walk/#comment-1733

    To answer your question, yes, I specifically searched for stations that are as close as one can get, yet have opposite trend for many decades. Even a single precedent means that the measuring grid is inadequate to construct even an average, not even the trend.

    When a physicist takes measurements of some fluctuating function or more-dimensional field, he makes sure that he did not miss essential details. It is usually done by substantial oversampling of the signal, and initial estimation of its power spectrum, in frequency or spatial domain. Then the correct sampling rate is selected. Even if a researcher is interested only in slow-changing effects (but the actual field is changing rapidly), the only correct way to get right measurements is still to oversample the input, and only then apply a filter. The Nyquist-Shannon-Kotelnikov sampling theorem warns a scientist/researcher that there could be spurious aliasing effects if the sampling is not done right. Even if you use a modern digitizing oscilloscope in engineering work, people frequently make embarrassing mistakes if they forgot to evaluate the signal with substantial oversampling first before trying to acquire long behavior.

    Consider that your physical field of interest is a sine-wave function of space with period of 1 with amplitude of 1, such that its average is strictly zero, or nearly so. Now consider that your sampling points also have spacing of 1. Or 0.5. Now your estimation of average would depend on phase difference between the phase of signal and the phase of sampler. Across a limited space (of land, for example), you now can get any result from -1 to +1. The only way to get correct answer is to have several samples over typical period of your signal. Or sweep the phase of sampler over certain distance.

    In the case of land measurements you do not have the luxury to change sampling points, they are historically predefined before climatology placed its demand on data.

  228. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Lazar wrote: “Further, construct multiple global averages with 200km resolution. Show how the reconstructions differ wildly”

    It could vary wildly, or it could not. That should be a first section in any paper on surface temperatures from a serious researcher. Could you kindly point me to corresponding places where it was done? :-)

    However, there could be few caveats. First, the station data are already pre-selected, homogenized, gridded, and outliers are eliminated, whether they are real on not. So it would be highly unlikely that you would find anything special with this approach.

    More, the station positions are predefined. You 200km sampling grid is short of Nyquist requirement by a factor of 8. If you could go back in time and re-establish all these meteo stations on an even grid of 25km x 25 km, then you could try to play with different sub-sets of the sampler, and you could get onto something.

    Then, one can try to invoke the concept of “frozen turbulence” to spatial station data. It would be questionable as well, because while the weather is chaotic, it is questionably random, and its statistical properties are not known, please correct me if I am mistaken. More, spatial differences are likely to be a result of subtle interaction of prevailing weather pattern with local terrain shape, so again, no cigar, there will be a systematic bias.

    Lazar writes: “Publish. Show the world and thousands of climate scientists to be wrong. Let everyone gasp at the flukiness of the agreements between all previous data. Win a Nobel. Be a hero. Smack Al Gore upside the head. The code is online. The data is online.”

    No need to get that emotional and sarcastic, Lazar. This is strictly science, and no place to wonder about coincidental similarities in pre-selected and pre-processed data sets.

  229. Lazar Says:

    Al Tekkhaski,

    That was a better (more responsive) reply.

    No need to get that emotional and sarcastic

    I was being serious. You have a simple way to overturn literally thousands of papers with minimal effort, so why not do it?

    I think you’re making several claims…

    One is that something important may be hidden in the interstitials. That is a truism irrelevant of what the sampling rate is relative to what (you estimate) the Nyquist frequency is. It can never be resolved.

    Secondly, you’re claiming that sampling below the Nyquist frequency cannot reliably be used to construct averages.

    As physicists know from Shannon-Nyquist sampling theorem, 200 stations would be quite short to satisfy the theorem’s requirement […] recording of climatological fields requires about 1,000,000 measuring stations […] ground observations would require 200,000 – 300,000 stations […] The field is undersampled. It needs many more stations. […] 3000 nearly random data series […] Even a single precedent means that the measuring grid is inadequate to construct even an average

    If that were true, then large differences between the land surface station, sea surface temperature, and satellite measurements would be observed. They are not (GISTEMP=red, HadSST=blue, UAH 2LT=black). The probability that your claim is correct is the probability that the observed correlations (both are greater than +0.80) occured by chance, which is less than 1E-10, or essentially zero.

    Moreover, if the sampling cannot construct reliable averages, then averages constructed from subsets of the data would disagree both with themselves and the ‘full’ station averages. Clearly they do not using a diverse range of selection criteria and geographical areas. Add to the examples in previous comments work by Menne et al. (2010) using two subets of stations in the conterminous U.S., of sizes 71 and 454. The results (Fig. 2) are nearly identical. Bringing the number of comparisons so far to six… two by Jones, two by Tamino, one by Nick Stokes, and one by Menne.

    You have raised a few objections to this approach…

    First, the station data are already pre-selected

    ‘Pre-selected’ doesn’t change anything… if what you say is correct, subsets will show differences between themselves and, if their sizes are relatively small, with the ‘full’ reconstructions.

    homogenized […] outliers are eliminated

    Not true in the case by Nick Stokes, the two cases by Tamino, and the case by Menne et al. (comparisons were made using unadjusted records in one instance and in another records which adjusted using stations in the same subset only).

    gridded

    Grid square averages are computed from station records. That seems irrelevant.

    Consider that your physical field of interest is a sine-wave function of space with period of 1 with amplitude of 1 […] Now consider that your sampling points also have spacing of 1. Or 0.5. Now your estimation of average would depend on phase difference

    That concern is irrelevant if either of the following are true;

    a) the temperature field is not periodic
    b) the sampling points are irregularly spaced

    … both are true in the case of surface temperature.

    And, it would show up in subsets etc.

    Finally,

    That should be a first section in any paper on surface temperatures from a serious researcher.

    This is of historical relevance. I think most if not all researchers have done analyses which in retrospect they think could have been greatly improved upon. I tend to cut some slack for those on the front line who are actually doing the work, increasing human knowledge.

    Meantime, you’re still not addressing several issues… one, the correlations shown in Hansen & Lebedeff (1987)… which are between all the stations, not just a few cherrypicked examples. Are you saying those correlations were calculated incorrectly?

    Secondly, Wang (1999) who calculated the annual global average temperature has 45 degrees of freedom, in other words 45 independent stations are sufficient to calculate the global average… which is in empirical agreement with work by Jones and Nick Stokes.

    References not given previously;

    Jones, P. D. (1994), Hemispheric Surface Air Temperature Variations: A Reanalysis and an Update to 1993., Journal of Climate, 7(11), 1794-1802, doi:10.1175/1520-0442(1994)0072.0.CO;2.

    Menne, M. J., C. N. W. Jr, and M. A. Palecki (2010), On the reliability of the U.S. surface temperature record, Journal of Geophysical Research, 115(D11108), 9 PP., doi:201010.1029/2009JD013094.

  230. Lazar Says:

    DeNihilist,

    On point one, I addressed you as support.

    Thanks.

    In my way of reading this quote, Dr. Trenberth is stating that without the added “kick” from El Nino, Dr. Hansen would not be claiming that we have just gone through the warmest 12 month period in the instrumental era.

    Yes.

    All media references to Hansen stating “warmest 12 month period” I could find cite this draft paper as the source;

    Current GISS Global Surface Temperature Analysis
    J. Hansen, R. Ruedy, M. Sato, and K. Lo

    The authors say…

    The well-known strong correlation of global surface temperature with the Nino index is apparent in Figure 10. The correlation is maximum (at 30%) with 12-month running mean global temperature lagging the Nino index by 4 months. Global cooling due to large volcanoes in 1963 (Agung), 1982 (El Chichon) and 1991 (Pinatubo) is also apparent.

    The data in Figures 9 and 10, and knowledge that tropical SSTs have now (May 2010) returned to ENSO-neutral conditions, permit several conclusions. The 12-month running mean global temperature in 2010 has reached a new record level for the period of instrumental data. It is likely that the 12-month mean will rise still somewhat higher during the next several months.

    A global temperature decline is likely to begin later this year, especially if ENSO-neutral conditions progress into the next La Nina. As for the calendar year, it is likely that the 2010 global surface temperature in the GISS analysis also will be a record for the period of instrumental data. However, record global temperature for the calendar year might not occur if tropical SSTs deteriorate rapidly into a deep La Nina in the latter half of 2010.

    It is climate scientists who have consistently noted the influence of internal variability such as ENSO on global surface temperature records. It is by their research that we know and understand what we do of such effects. It is the ‘skeptic’ camp which has routinely, opportunistically, and incoherently used internal variability to advance their cause… for years they ignored the massive 1998 El Nino when claiming ‘global warming stopped in 1998’… now they are emphasizing the impact of the moderate 2010 El Nino on current records !

    Surely you do not claim that El Nino is a postive forcing from AGW?

    It is inconclusive if, and how, AGW effects ENSO. If there is a large effect, it would be on short-term trends only. If there is such an effect, it would be wrong to call it a forcing, I think it would also be incorrectly labelled as feedback.

  231. Lazar Says:

    DeNihilist,

    A good analogy is that forcing and feedbacks relate to the energy balance imposed on the system, whereas ENSO-like internal modes of climate variability relate to the funneling of heat within the system.

  232. MapleLeaf Says:

    Lazar and DeNihilist,

    Nice to have you here! I was out of town most of last week on business and have been playing catch up here.

    If Al were talking about adequately sampling precipitation, then he might have a point. However, as Lazar has shown, independent research studies have found that temperatures, especially temperature anomalies, are relatively homogenous in space and time. Of course, there will be exceptions which contrarians can tease out of the data, but generally speaking the methodology used is robust. Al seems to be nitpicking on a few cherry-picked examples to try and refute everything. If there were serious problems with the sampling density it would have quickly become apparent. It is possible that one or more of the sites in question has/had issues which resulted in the opposing trends, or the sites might be near or in mountainous terrain.

    And, not that there are issues that I know of with Grigg and Harries (2004) (Al failed to substantiate his dismissal with anything concrete), the literature still has numerous papers demonstrating an enhanced greenhouse effect, both from surface-based and space-based observations. I’m sure that Al can find them.

    Re ENSO, you guys are right on the mark. If ENSO were driving all the observed warming, why did we not have record high global SATs following the strong El Ninos in 1982-1983 or 1986-1988 or 1991-1993? And how did a marginal El Nino event in 2005-2005 lead to a new record high global SAT in 2005? Trenberth’s and your assessments explain why.

  233. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Maple wrote: “with Grigg and Harries (2004) (Al failed to substantiate his dismissal with anything concrete)”.

    Actually, it is you who failed to follow Bart’s blog:

    http://ourchangingclimate.wordpress.com/2010/03/19/what-do-we-know-about-climate-change-peter-sinclair-climate-crocks/#comment-2050

    and follow the exchange.

  234. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Lazar wrote: “..This is of historical relevance. I think most if not all researchers have done analyses which in retrospect they think could have been greatly improved upon. I tend to cut some slack for those on the front line who are actually doing the work, increasing human knowledge.”

    You think? In other words, you cannot present any example where this kind of analysis precedes main results. That’s what I thought. In this case the slackers did not increase any knowledge, they just failed the basic scientific test.

    Lazar wrote: “if the sampling cannot construct reliable averages, then averages constructed from subsets of the data would disagree both with themselves and the ‘full’ station averages. Clearly they do not using a diverse range of selection criteria and geographical areas.”

    The selection is not diverse nor independent. That’s why the probability that my objection is correct is likely very high, because these are essentially the SAME data using criteria that selects already pre-selected datasets. There are dozens and dozens of surface stations that “stopped” reporting data. Common feature of these stations is that they all recorded decline in temperatures over climatologically substantial period of time, see this blog post:

    http://ourchangingclimate.wordpress.com/2010/03/08/is-the-increase-in-global-average-temperature-just-a-random-walk/#comment-1731

  235. MapleLeaf Says:

    Al, with respect, you should have provided that link when you dismissed Grigg and Harries– I had no way of knowing a priori that that paper was discussed on another thread, this is a separate thread. So your derogatory tone is uncalled for. You still seem to be choosing to ignore the other papers out there showing an enhanced greenhouse effect.

    Al, please reconstruct the SAT record and publish it. Your omniscience on the subject will be a great boost for the science, especially of it shows the current SAT records to be hopelessly flawed. I say that with a hint of sarcasm, but with more sincerity than you might think. Critiquing and dismissing stuff is easy, following through requires immensely more effort. I encourage you to follow through and publish and demonstrate that the NCDC, GISS, HadCRUT and JAM SAT records are not robust or that the warming in them is not real.

  236. LDLAS Says:

    “Re ENSO, you guys are right on the mark. If ENSO were driving all the observed warming, why did we not have record high global SATs following the strong El Ninos in 1982-1983 or 1986-1988 or 1991-1993? And how did a marginal El Nino event in 2005-2005 lead to a new record high global SAT in 2005? Trenberth’s and your assessments explain why.”

    Ever heard of volcanoes?

    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/graphs/Fig.E.lrg.gif (see the long Niño’s from 1989-1995 and 2001-2007)

    Hansen in 1992: “The simulations indicate that Pinatubo occurred too late in the year to prevent 1991 from becoming one of the warmest years in instrumental records”
    from http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/1992/91GL02788.shtml

    also see: http://pubs.usgs.gov/pinatubo/self/index.html

  237. Lazar Says:

    Al Tekkhaski,

    In other words, you cannot present any example where this kind of analysis precedes main results.

    Knowledge proceeds incrementally. First studies are often flawed, later work builds and improves. Subsequent work looked at the issue of sampling requirements (Jones and Wang & Shen… the paper whose methodology and results you are still refusing to address). Your objection is of historical relevance only…

    The selection is not diverse nor independent

    I think most people would disagree…
    [Area, seletion criteria]
    Jones; NH, equally spaced 119 station subset vs full 2540 stations
    Jones; SH, equally spaced 59 station subset vs full 421 stations
    Tamino; NH, stations reporting after 1992 vs stations which do not
    Tamino; 1,100 km x 1,200 km grid box Central Europe, below median temperature subset vs above median subset
    Tamino; as above for 1,100 km x 1,200 km grid box in Northern Europe / Scandinavia
    Nick Stokes; Global, stations reporting in 2010 with a record length greater than 90 years
    Menne et al.; conterminous U.S., USHCN stations with a CRN1,2 rating versus those with a CRN3,4,5 rating

    these are essentially the SAME data

    No they’re not, see above.

    using criteria that selects already pre-selected datasets

    If the sampling rate is inadequate for constructing averages, then averages constructed from mutually exclusive sets will disagree. That’s what “sampling rate is inadequate for constructing averages” implies. Here they do not disagree. The subsets used in comparisons are independent (they are mutually exclusive sets). Whether subsets are selected from an existing dataset, or whether one is physically built after another… makes not a jot of difference to the argument. If a subset is small (say an order of magnitude) relative to the full dataset, their averages will also disagree.

    You quite clearly understood and believed this very simple truism initially…

    You do realize that in 3000 nearly random data series there must be one (to even few more) traces that resemble the average nearly exactly, do you

    As evidence built up and the above objection appeared ever more tenuous (probabilistically unlikely), you changed to a contradictory objection…

    the probability that my objection is correct is likely very high, because these are essentially the SAME data using criteria that selects already pre-selected datasets.

    And changing the subject, also more cherrypicking instead of substantive statistical analysis…

    There are dozens and dozens of surface stations that “stopped” reporting data. Common feature of these stations is that they all recorded decline in temperatures over climatologically substantial period of time

    Back on track, there are counter-arguments you’re not addressing…

    An objection to your probabilistic claim…

    When a physicist takes measurements of some fluctuating function or more-dimensional field, he makes sure that he did not miss essential details.

    Response: “something important may be hidden in the interstitials. That is a truism irrelevant of what the sampling rate is relative to what (you estimate) the Nyquist frequency is. It can never be resolved.”

    Objections to your a priori claim…

    As physicists know from Shannon-Nyquist sampling theorem, 200 stations would be quite short to satisfy the theorem’s requirement […] recording of climatological fields requires about 1,000,000 measuring stations […] ground observations would require 200,000 – 300,000 stations […] The field is undersampled. It needs many more stations. […] 3000 nearly random data series […] Even a single precedent means that the measuring grid is inadequate to construct even an average

    Illustrated by;

    Consider that your physical field of interest is a sine-wave function of space with period of 1 with amplitude of 1, such that its average is strictly zero, or nearly so. Now consider that your sampling points also have spacing of 1. Or 0.5. Now your estimation of average would depend on phase difference between the phase of signal and the phase of sampler.

    Response:

    “That concern is irrelevant if either of the following are true;

    a) the temperature field is not periodic
    b) the sampling points are irregularly spaced

    … both are true in the case of surface temperature.”

    Response: see above, starting “If the sampling rate is inadequate for constructing averages, then averages constructed from mutually exclusive sets will disagree […[”

    Response:
    “If that were true, then large differences between the land surface station, sea surface temperature, and satellite measurements would be observed. […]The probability that your claim is correct is the probability that the observed correlations (both are greater than +0.80) occured by chance, which is less than 1E-10, or essentially zero.”

    Miscellaneous objections;

    “Meantime, you’re still not addressing several issues… one, the correlations shown in Hansen & Lebedeff (1987)… which are between all the stations, not just a few cherrypicked examples. Are you saying those correlations were calculated incorrectly?

    Secondly, Wang (1999) who calculated the annual global average temperature has 45 degrees of freedom, in other words 45 independent stations are sufficient to calculate the global average… which is in empirical agreement with work by Jones and Nick Stokes.”

  238. Lazar Says:

    Hi MapleLeaf,

    I agree that the objections are tenuous. I think most scientists would look at the agreements between land surface, sea, and satellite lower troposphere measurements across the frequency spectrum and agree that there’s some worthwhile data there.

  239. Lazar Says:

    … put briefly, I think a reasonable scientist when shown the agreement between land station, satellite lower troposphere, and SST measurements, and presented the option of believing either
    a) effects missed due to sampling are insignificant
    b) the agreement is due to chance
    … would pluck for a). That’s without knowing about average correlations of +0.8 out to 500 km, datasets consisting of 2,000-3,000 stations compared to 45 degrees of freedom, agreements between independent subsets etc.

  240. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Lazar, your above statements show exactly where the problem with climatology is. You said “the option of believing..”. That’s the critical point. You elect to rely on believe system. Science relies on scientific methods.

    You believe that there is no chance that satellite measurements would agree with surface temperatures if surface is measured sloppy, and therefore their similarity unveils the ultimate truth. Do you know that satellite weighting functions for low-troposphere channels have 20-40% of emission coming directly from surface, and therefore must be calibrated/corrected from ground records? Please correct me if I am wrong.

  241. J Says:

    Al Tekhasski Says: “Please correct me if I am wrong.”

    I think you’re wrong, or at least Roy Spencer says you are. His monthly posts about the UAH MSU lower troposphere temperature data generally contain the following note:

    [NOTE: These satellite measurements are not calibrated to surface thermometer data in any way, but instead use on-board redundant precision platinum resistance thermometers (PRTs) carried on the satellite radiometers. The PRT’s are individually calibrated in a laboratory before being installed in the instruments.]

  242. MapleLeaf Says:

    LDLAS,

    Yes, I am very familiar with the short-term impacts of aerosol loading on global SATs (with cooling of around 0.2 C possible for a Pinatubo-like event).

    Anyhow, good point. That probably explains why the 91-93 (Pinatubo) and 1982-1983 (El Chichon) events did not produce record high global SATs. It does not explain why the 86-88 event did not produce record high global SATs, not to mention previous strong El Ninos such as 57-58 and 72-73.

    Interestingly, there were numerous significant eruptions between 1965 and 1995, yet the global SATs increased by quite a bit over that time (about +0.6 C according to GISTEMP):

    http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Features/GlobalWarming/page4.php

    My point was, and is, that El Nino does not explain the warming of global SATs between 1965 and the present day. Rather it is a signal (maximum of +0.2 C) superimposed on an underlying upward trend. The warming from ENSO is transient, whereas the warming from GHGs is increasing with time as concentrations increase. Drs. Trenberth and Hansen support that observation which is borne out by the data.

  243. Al Tekhasski Says:

    J cites R.Spencer: “These satellite measurements are not calibrated to surface thermometer data in any way”

    I have my doubts about “in any way”. The same R.Spencer explains in his article:
    How_Temps_are_produced

    “AMSU channel 5 is used for our middle tropospheric temperature (MT) estimate; we use a weighted difference between the various view angles of channel 5 to probe lower in the atmosphere, which a fairly sharp weighting function which is for our lower-tropospheric (LT) temperature estimate. We use AMSU channel 9 for monitoring of lower stratospheric (LS) temperatures.

    For those channels whose weighting functions intersect the surface, a portion of the total measured microwave thermal emission signal comes from the surface. … it turns out that the microwave ‘emissivity’ of the surface (it’s ability to emit microwave energy) is so variable that it is difficult to accurately measure surface temperatures using such measurements. “

    So I guess he needs some additional explanations to make about how did they correct the Channel5 (main source for low troposphere) for ground emissions.

  244. MapleLeaf Says:

    Al,

    “In any way” sounds pretty definitive to me.

    Please, go and argue with Dr. Spencer– he has a contact email posted on his blog, and get back to us when you have it figured out.

    Regardless, funny how the mid-trop temperatures from the GUAM (RATPAC) also agree remarkably well with the global surface SAT data:

    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/get-file.php?report=global&file=global-sfc-radiosonde-temp&byear=2009&bmonth=1&year=2009&month=12&ext=gif

  245. J Says:

    Al, I’m pretty sure that’s why they combine measurements from multiple viewing angles. The figure at the link you cite is for nadir-viewing geometry. By using off-nadir viewing angles, with a longer atmospheric path length, they can estimate the fraction of emissions coming from just the lower troposphere.

    But I could be wrong about that, so I agree with MapleLeaf that if you’re really curious you should ask Roy directly. In the meantime, though, I think we should probably assume that “not calibrated to surface thermometer data in any way” means exactly what it says. The processing of the satellite temperature data is effectively independent of the processing of the surface temperature data.

    I agree with Lazar that your suggestion about a Nyquist-related requirement for hundreds of thousands of surface stations is mistaken.

  246. Lazar Says:

    Al Tekhasski,

    You believe that there is no chance that satellite measurements would agree with surface temperatures if surface is measured sloppy, and therefore their similarity unveils the ultimate truth. Do you know that satellite weighting functions for low-troposphere channels have 20-40% of emission coming directly from surface, and therefore must be calibrated/corrected from ground records? Please correct me if I am wrong.

    Influence from surface emissions is not corrected for, period. The real concern is not the surface emissions per se, but temporal changes in the coupling between the surface and lower troposphere. Averaged over each hemisphere the introduced error is estimated to be relatively small. See;

    Spencer, R. W., J. R. Christy, and N. C. Grody (1990), Global Atmospheric Temperature Monitoring with Satellite Microwave Measurements: Method and Results 1979-84., Journal of Climate, 3(10), 1111-1128, doi:10.1175/1520-0442(1990)0032.0.CO;2.

    Spencer, R. W., and J. R. Christy (1992), Precision and Radiosonde Validation of Satellite Gridpoint Temperature Anomalies. Part I: MSU Channel 2., Journal of Climate, 5(10), 847-857, doi:10.1175/1520-0442(1992)0052.0.CO;2.

    A point of order. If I knew that scientists had created satellite products with the express intent of providing an independent check on surface station readings (Spencer et al. 1990), I would not assume that they would use surface station measurements to ‘correct’ the results. They’re scientists, not third graders. If I knew that one of the major scientists involved had emphatically stated that their results are not calibrated or tied in any way to surface station measurements, I would not give much credibility to the notion that they are lying. I would first go to the primary literature to check my assumptions. What I would definitely not do is to give as argument an unresearched, unreferenced claim to someone who is discussing in good faith and demand that they do the work for me in substantiating my claim.

    Lazar, your above statements show exactly where the problem with climatology is. You said “the option of believing..”. That’s the critical point. You elect to rely on believe system. Science relies on scientific methods.

    Science isn’t a game like in formal math where theorem are ‘proven’. Nothing is known with absolute certainty, instead there are degrees of belief based on evidence, weighing competing hypotheses, weighing evidence. Deciding what to reject, what to accept, what we’re unsure about. Ask someone versed in statistics. And the language is in most papers written, and not just in the atmospheric sciences.

    I think you need to respond to my previous reply and the pointed objections made therein that relate closely to your specific claims re Nyquist frequency and supposed sampling inadequacy, some of those objections I’ve asked for responses to several times, before raising any more new issues.

    Thanks.

  247. DeNihilist Says:

    {Lazar Says:

    June 9, 2010 at 15:27
    DeNihilist,

    A good analogy is that forcing and feedbacks relate to the energy balance imposed on the system, whereas ENSO-like internal modes of climate variability relate to the funneling of heat within the system.}

    By funneling, do you mean concentrating to a smaller area?

  248. DeNihilist Says:

    {Lazar Says:

    June 10, 2010 at 14:12
    Hi MapleLeaf,

    I agree that the objections are tenuous. I think most scientists would look at the agreements between land surface, sea, and satellite lower troposphere measurements across the frequency spectrum and agree that there’s some worthwhile data there.}

    Some? No Lazar, the temp question is resolved, the earth has been warming. CO2 is a big part of this warming.

    To me, the big question is, will it be catastrophic, or will a Spencerian style natural occurence dampen the rise to a very tolerable limit?!

  249. LDLAS Says:

    now if you would not take in account the attribution of Pinatubo, which was -0,4 C globaly in 1992 and 1993 (read http://pubs.usgs.gov/pinatubo/self/index.html ) , what would have been the warming from 1990 to present? And what would it have been from 1980 to present if El Chichon wouldn’t have errupted?

  250. MapleLeaf Says:

    LDLAS,

    I’m not interested in arguing hypotheticals or entertaining straw men arguments.

    Below is what has actually transpired, the net result of all forcings both internal and external to the climate system:

    Add to this the increase in 0-2000 m global OHC, loss of Arctic sea ice volume, loss of land ice in both hemispheres et cetera, a robust and coherent picture is emerging.

  251. MapleLeaf Says:

    Lazar and DeNihilst,

    ENSO represents a redistribution of heat/energy already present in the climate system. There is no net gain of heat in the climate system from an El Nino event, it is an internal climate mode.

    The climate system is, however, experiencing a net gain of heat (positive radiation imbalance) on account of an enhanced greenhouse gas effect. That fact is very well documented and understood.

    The last 12-months were the warmest on record according to NASA GISS, helped no doubt by the El Nino (which was much weaker than that of 1997-1998). But this event alone cannot explain all of the observed warming, but coupled with the enhanced greenhouse effect it can be explained– a transient positive blip superimposed on an underlying warming trend.

  252. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Lazar, I cannot respond to all your groundless objections, you pouring too much volume of them. Let me only remark that my example of spatially-periodic field was for illustration of the concept only. In fact the Shannon-Nyquist-Kotelnikov (S-N-K) theorem formally applies to signals with CONTINUOUS bounded spectrum. As you should know, these kind of signals can be subject to Fourier decomposition, and all those so-called “aliasing” effects may arise and usually do arise. In case you failed to make a connection, the S-N-K theorem is a cornerstone of all modern digital communication technology, GPS, you name it.

    Now, regarding allegedly missing disagreement between MUTUALLY EXCLUSIVE SETs. Ok, here is an exclusive set of stations in TEXAS
    These stations exhibit cooling trend over two-three decades.
    Likewise, it is easy to pick a different exclusive set of stations that would have warming trend over the same period of time. Their trends do disagree, brutally. Hence, your assertion that [all] averages agree is proven to be false by example.

    Instead of making and promoting a growing list of agreeing speculations, please try to explain how it is possible (within the standard theory of radiative forcing due to increase in GH gases) that many pairs of stations that are just 50km apart exhibit opposite trends over a century? These stations are so close that they see essentially the same sky, and therefore are subject to the same radiative imbalance, and must all warm up, at least not cool down.

  253. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Lazar wrote: “If I knew that one of the major scientists involved had emphatically stated that their results are not calibrated or tied in any way to surface station measurements, I would not give much credibility to the notion that they are lying.”

    I think you overly dramatize the issues. Let me refer to the same source. The source states:
    “The biggest concern is the long-term changes in instrument temperature, not the changes within an orbit. Since the Aqua satellite does not drift, the solar illumination does not change and and so there is no long-term change in the instrument’s temperature to correct for.”

    Do I think the source is “lying”? Heck no. The standard (rather rude) formulation is that “some circumstances has escaped attention of the author”. In this case this “circumstance” is that surfaces of space instruments are subject to erosion and degradation due to continuous bombarding by cosmic particles, so with time the initially shiny wraps would become less shiny and therefore their optical absorbency will change, and hence the instrument temperature with be affected correspondingly. So, one factor was neglected in the overall scheme of things. There might be more.

  254. Bart Says:

    Al Tekhasski and others,

    This discussion has reached a point of diminishing return. You have raised your objections, and they have been responded to by pointing out that temperature anomalies are highly correlated in space.

    So I suggest you either agree to disagree or do your own comprehensive study and report the results, preferably in the scientific literature or conference. E.g. Take randomly a couple of hundred stations and see if the resulting average anomalies differ by much.

    This back and forth is getting tedious and has nothing to do with the topic of this post.

  255. Ibrahim Says:

    LDLAS

    douze points :-)

  256. Lazar Says:

    Bart,

    Agreed. This has run its course.

  257. Lazar Says:

    DeNihilist,

    By funneling, do you mean concentrating to a smaller area?

    That’s possible, but I only really meant to imply a general shifting of heat around. Perhaps a funnel isn’t so appropriate :-)

  258. Lazar Says:

    Al Tekkhaski,

    Bart wants to end this so this will be my final response.

    Now, regarding allegedly missing disagreement between MUTUALLY EXCLUSIVE SETs.
    Ok, here is an exclusive set of stations in TEXAS
    These stations exhibit cooling trend over two-three decades.

    You understand the difference between comparing averages from randomly selected samples (where knowledge of temperature trends does not effect sampling, and there is no reason to believe that selection criteria will bias the result) and those where you’ve deliberately put cooling trends in one set and warming in another, right? You can pull the same trick with the roll of a dice, putting rolls with high numbers in one set and low numbers in another and miraculously finding a significant difference between the averages… except that it ain’t significant, because of the sampling. You also understand the effects of sample size on variability of estimators, right? You’re comparing results from a sample size of eight versus sample sizes of sixty and more.

  259. MapleLeaf Says:

    It is your blog Bart, you call the shots and we will all (hopefully) respect that.

    Have a great weekend.

  260. DeNihilist Says:

    Dr. Bart, hopefully you will allow me to ask some more questions of Lazar and ML, as in the spirit of Dr. Denning, I am trying to be sceptical of the sceptism also. If not, thanx for the time already allocated.

  261. Orson Says:

    Early in this thread, Shub and MapleLeaf had it out over Lindzen and Choi and consequent criticism. Shub claimed the latter had a reply to Trenberth. et al. from last winter but unless I am remiss, no one posted a link.

    Here are blog post with links to these papers.

    The NASA blog entry from february nicely summarizes Trenberth’s critique.

    http://blogs.nasa.gov/cm/blog/whatonearth.blog/posts/post_1266867684232.html

    Lindzen acknowledges that much of the criticism was deserved, but goes on to affirm their original conclusions with an improved analysis, according to the abstract posted early May.

    http://www.heliogenic.net/2010/05/03/lindzen-and-chois-new-paper-out-confirms-negative-feedback-unlike-agw-climate-models/

    “We argue that feedbacks are largely concentrated in the tropics and extend the effect of these feedbacks to the global climate. We again find that the outgoing radiation resulting from SST fluctuations exceeds the zero-feedback fluxes thus implying negative feedback. In contrast to this, the calculated outgoing radiation fluxes from 11 atmospheric GCMs [global climate models] forced by the observed SST are less than the zero-feedback fluxes consistent with the positive feedbacks that characterize these models. The observational analysis implies that the models are exaggerating climate sensitivity.”

  262. Orson Says:

    Lindzen and Choi (2010, submitted) is here

    http://www.eike-klima-energie.eu/uploads/media/Lindzen_Choi_ERBE_JGR_v4.pdf

  263. Al Tekhasski Says:

    Bart, the discussion has a diminishing return because both sides are not making sufficient efforts to understand arguments and look outside a dogma. Which includes myself except the “dogma” part.

    You are pointing out that “temperature anomalies are highly correlated in space.” The correlation between two time series of “anomalies” X and Y is essentially a sum of products X*Y. The correlation will have a high value if both series have similar year-to-year variations, which is kind of obvious – warmer years and colder years are obviously correlated over short land distances. That was the result of formal processing by Hansen and Levedeff and likely many others. So their numbers are likely true, the “spatial” correlation” is about 0.8.

    However, climate change is not about seasonal or yearly fluctuations of temperatures; it is about long term trends. It appears that who time series can have high correlation coefficient, yet their overall 100-years long trend could be opposite.

    Consider again same GISS data for Texas, say Pauls Valley, and Ada. These stations have 100+ years of records. Their correlation coefficient over 102 years (1907-2009) appears to be 0.7658, or very high in terms of formal statistics, just as Hansen and Lebedeff reported. These stations are just 55km apart, so it should be of no surprise that colder years appear colder in both records, and warmer years are warmer than average too. However, the Pauls Valley station has a consistent positive trend over 102 years, while the Ada station shows a gradual decline over the same period of time. I am saying that this behavior is not consistent with the main AGW concept of CO2-caused radiative forcing.

    What we see from this example is that the metric selected by Hansen/Lebedeff is a very poor measure of climate trend, and is misleading to the theory of global warming.

  264. Shub Niggurath Says:

    Orson
    Thanks for the link. I read the paper, quite some time back ( I think Motl posted about it on his blog).

    Most discussion about the original LC paper and the present one(of which I haven’t seen much discussion though) seem to be based on the following logic: “LC is one paper, Author X wrote another paper refuting this, LC therefore stands anhhilated. Hah! or something to that effect.

    I did not post any links because I thought it might contribute to thread derailment (we were talking about mitigation, Denning’s subliminal sarcastic message to the skeptics etc).

    Moreover if I said LC had a correction in, I wouldnt have been making up stuff, so those curious could have gone looking for the paper.

    This is an important point – every climate discussion could be boiled down to sensitivity estimates (which BTW hasn’t changed from Arrhenius’ times) and then we could all go and hide in the proving grounds of ‘science’, while the real points and issues with climate science would go unaddressed.

  265. how to study effectively Says:

    how to study effectively…

    […]Scott Denning to ICCC Heartland ‘conference’ gathering: “Be skeptical… be very skeptical!” « My view on climate change[…]…

  266. Lee el informe completo Says:

    Lee el informe completo

    Scott Denning to ICCC Heartland ‘conference’ gathering: “Be skeptical… be very skeptical!” | My view on climate change

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