IPCC and Glaciers

It seems quite possible to me that study of glacier changes would actually shed some useful light on the relative levels of the MWP and modern warm period. I’m quite prepared to let the chips fall where they may (although I would deny that this would vindicate the statistical falsehoods of the Mann HS, any more than a belated discovery of some other type of WMD in Iraq would vindicate Powell’s claim that aluminum tubes were conclusive proxy evidence of WMD.)

What frustrated me about the NAS Panel’s treatment of glaciers is the amateurism of the review. I’d love to see a detailed and critical exposition of what’s known about the "Green" Alps or about the lengthy research on glacier fluctuations in the Rockies – as soon as one delves into the literature, one sees just how detailed the latter is. But instead of that, the NAS panel highlighted a then unpublished reference to an organic from Quelccaya, published in a pamphlet style by Lonnie Thompson, rather than as an organized geological report with maps and cross-sections. In effect, they relied on the worst documented site, rather than the Alps or the Rockies.

This made me wonder about a couple of things – why has the Team not made more noise about glaciers? And what did the IPCC say about glacier changes?

I’ve posted some extended excerpts from IPCC 1AR and 2AR online in the past here and here as a reference and will review comments on glaciers from the three published IPCC reports,

IPCC 1AR (1990)
IPCC 1AR (1990) noted evidence for worldwide warmth in the mid-Holocene and cited extended glaciers in the recent past in nearly all alpine areas of the world as evidence for a Little Ice Age, citing the text Grove 1989.

There is growing evidence that worldwide temperatures were higher than at present during the mid-Holocene (especially 5000-6000 BP), although carbon dioxide levels appear o have been quite similar to those of the pre-industrial era at this time. Thus parts of western Europe, China, Japan, the eastern ISA were a few deegrees warmer in July duing the mid-Holocene than in recent decades…

Cooler episodes have been associated with glacial advances in alpine regions of the world; such "neo-glacial" episodes have been increasingly common in the last few thousand years. Of particular interest is the most recent cold event, the Little Ice Age, which resulted in extensive glacial advances in almost all alpine regions of the world between 150 and 450 years ago (Grove 1988) so that glaciers were more extensive 100-200 years ago than now nearly everywhere (Figure 7.2 – Figure of glacier temini 1650 on). In a few regions, alpine glaciers advanced down-valley even further than during the last glaciation (for example, Miller, 1976). Some have argued that an increase in volcanism was repsonsible for the coolness (Hammer, 1977; Porter 1986); others claim a connection between glacier advances and a reduciton in solar activity (Wigley and Kelly 1989)…At present there is no agreed explanation for these recurrent cooler episodes. The Little Ice Age came to an end only in the 19th century. Thus some of the warming since 1850 could be a recovery from the Little Ice Age rather than a direct reslt of human activities. So it is important to recognize that natural variations of climate are appreciable and will modulate any future changes induced by man.

IPCC 1992
IPCC 1992 had no discussion of glaciers, but the following comment about ice core oxygen isotpoes is intriguing. In subsequent reports, the Aristarain results disappear from view without explanation.

Oxygen isotope measurements from the northern Antarctic Peninsula have been interpreted as evidence of warmer [bold in orig] temperatures during the 19th century compared with the 20th century (Aristarain et al 1990). However the isotope/temperature links is weak both physically and statistically (Peel 1992) and accumulation rate changes which are more directly related to in situ temperatures point to cooler conditions in the 19th century (Jones et al 1992).

IPCC 2AR (1996)
IPCC 2AR makes virtually no mention of glaciers. Here’s their listing of methods to deduce past climates:

Climates from before the recent instrumental era must be deduced from paleoclimatic records. These include tree rings, [now with pride of place] pollen series, faunal and floral abundance in deep sea cores, isotope analysis from coral and ice cores and diaries and other documentary evidence.

Glaciers didn’t even make their list. Their main focus is on characterizing the MWP and LIA as local and regionally variable events, based on Hughes and Diaz 1994 – a horrendously bad study – and Jones and Bradley 1992. For example:

The term Little Ice Age is often used to describe a 400-500 year long, globally synchronous cold interval, but studies now show that the climate of the past few centureis was more spatially and temporally ocmplex than this simple concept implies (Jones and Bradley 1992).

In passing, it’s interesting to observe the same blindness to bristlecones in IPCC 2AR as just shown by the NAS panel. They state specifically:

The possible confounding effects of carbon dioxide fertilization needs to be taken into account when calibrating tree-ring data against climate variations.

But they then go on to cite a ring width series from Campito Mountain from Lamarche 1974, without mentioning Lamarche et al 1984 or Graybill and Idso 1993. The only comments about glaciers or that I could find are the following:

The interpretation of ice core records from polar ice sheets and tropical glaciers may be in some cases limited by the noise inherent in snow depositional processes especially dueing this period when climate changes were rather small (by comparison, for instance, with the large rapid changes [in the Pleistocene] discussed in the next section.

… Recently analysed ice cores from the north-central Andes (Thompson et al 1995) indicate that temperatures were cool in the 200-500 years before the present. Strong warming has dominated the last two centuries in this region.

New Zealand tree rings reproduce the warming observed instrumentally since about 1950 although there is also a suggestion of warmer periods in the 18th and 19th centuries (Salinger et al 1994) near a time of maximum mountain glacier ice volumes in the Southern Alps of the country…

Alpine glacier advance and retreat chronologies (Wigley and Kelly, 1990) suggest that in at least alpine areas, global 20th century temperatures may be warmer than any century since 1000 AD and perhaps as warm as any extended period (of several centuries) in the past 10,000 years.

It seems unlikely, given the smaller regional changes, that global mean temperatures have varied by 1 degree C or more in a century at any time during the last 10.000 years (Wigley and Kelly, 1990).

I discussed Wigley and Kelly 1990 last year here. Boy I get tired of seeing people from the Team being cited in diverse contexts – why is Wigley being cited on glaciers rather than Holzhauser?

IPCC TAR (2001)

IPCC TAR has two somewhat inconsistent considerations of glaciers. Mostly it’s straight from the Team, but, as noted below, there is an interesting question raised about them, which has mostly gone unnoticed.

In section 3.1, they state the following:

2.31. Coarsely resolved climate trends over several centuries are evident in many regions e.g., from the recession of glaciers (Grove and Switsur, 1994…The SAR examined evidence for climate change in the past, on time-scales of centuries to millennia. Based on information from a variety of proxy climate indicators, reconstructions of mountain glacier mass and extent, and geothermal sub-surface information from boreholes, it was concluded that summer temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere during recent decades are the warmest in at least six centuries. …A number of important advances have been in key areas such as ice core palaeoclimatology (e.g., White et al., 1998a)

I have trouble locating a quote from IPCC 2AR which supports that claim that reconstructions of mountain glacier mass and extent
showed that summer temperatures are the "warmest in at least siz centuries". Maybe I’ve missed the quote, but I don’t think so.

In section 2.3.2.1, they say that information from glacial moraines, inter alia, can supplement "high-resolution proxies" such as tree rings, still occupying pride of place.

High-resolution proxy climate indicators, including tree rings, corals, ice cores, and laminated lake/ocean sediments, can be used to provide detailed information on annual or near-annual climate variations back in time. Certain coarser resolution proxy information (from e.g., boreholes, glacial moraines, and non-laminated ocean sediment records) can usefully supplement this high-resolution information. Important recent advances in the development and interpretation of proxy climate indicators are described below.

They briefly discuss ice cores, which I won’t excerpt here. About glacial moraines, they say that these can provide "reliable information on past temperature changes", cinting, among others, Raper et al 1996 – who prove to be those well-known glaciologists, Raper, Briffa and the ubiquitous Wigley:

Mountain glacier moraines
The position of moraines or till left behind by receding glaciers can provide information on the advances (and, less accurately, the retreats) of mountain glaciers. Owing to the complex balance between local changes in melting and ice accumulation, and the effects of topography which influence mountain glaciers (see Section 2.2.5.4), it is difficult to reconstruct regional (as opposed to global) climate changes from the extent of mountain glaciers alone (Oerlemans, 1989). For example, both increased winter precipitation (through greater accumulation) and lower summer temperatures (through decreased melting or “ablation”) can lead to more positive glacial mass balances. The inertia of large glaciers dictates that they respond to climate change relatively slowly, with delays of decades or occasionally centuries. For smaller, fast moving glaciers in regions where precipitation and accumulation are moderate, temperature changes are usually the dominant factor influencing mountain glacier masses and lengths. Here glacier moraine evidence in combination with other lines of evidence can provide reliable information on past regional temperature changes (Salinger, 1995; Holzhauser and ZumbàƒÆ’à‚⻨l, 1996; Raper et al., 1996; Salinger et al., 1996).

In section 2.3.3, as against the view of a more or less worldwide cool LIA expressed in IPCC 1990, relying on Grove 1989, they advocate the dog’s breakfast view of the LIA, relying on Bradley 1999 – his textbook on Paleoclimatology, rather than a primary source.

Evidence from mountain glaciers does suggest increased glaciation in a number of widely spread regions outside Europe prior to the 20th century, including Alaska, New Zealand and Patagonia (Grove and Switsur, 1994). However, the timing of maximum glacial advances in these regions differs considerably, suggesting that they may represent largely independent regional climate changes, not a globally-synchronous increased glaciation (see Bradley, 1999). Thus current evidence does not support globally synchronous periods of anomalous cold or warmth over this timeframe, and the conventional terms of “Little Ice Age” and “Medieval Warm Period” appear to have limited utility in describing trends in hemispheric or global mean temperature changes in past centuries. With the more widespread proxy data and multi-proxy reconstructions of temperature change now available, the spatial and temporal character of these putative climate epochs can be reassessed.

The IPCC notes in passing a seeming discrepancy between glacier and tree-ring information from New Zealand and Tasmania, but do not explain it (And I’m unaware of any subsequent efforts to resolve the discrepancy.)

glacier evidence from the Southern Alps of New Zealand suggests cold conditions during the mid-17th and mid-19th centuries (Salinger, 1995). Dendroclimatic evidence from nearby Tasmania (Cook et al., 2000) shows no evidence of unusual coldness at these times.

The most intriguing discussion is perhaps in section 2.2.5.4, where discrepancies in the timing of glacial retreat and timing of instrumental and proxy reconstruction increases are noted. They point out that glacial retreat commenced prior to the instrumental and reconstruction increases.

The recession of mountain glaciers was used in IPCC (1990) to provide qualitative support to the rise in global temperatures since the late 19th century…

Nevertheless, work done so far indicates that the response times of glacier lengths shown in Figure 2.18 are in the 10 to 70 year range. Therefore the timing of the onset of glacier retreat implies that a significant global warming is likely to have started not later than the mid-19th century. This conflicts with the Jones et al. (2001) global land instrumental temperature data (Figure 2.1), and the combined hemispheric and global land and marine data (Figure 2.7), where clear warming is not seen until the beginning of the 20th century. This conclusion also conflicts with some (but not all) of the palaeo-temperature reconstructions in Figure 2.21, Section 2.3 , where clear warming, e.g., in the Mann et al. (1999) Northern Hemisphere series, starts at about the same time as in the Jones et al. (2001) data. These discrepancies are currently unexplained…

Finally, they note the evidence from the 5000-year old Oetzal ice man, also cited by the NAS Panel.

Finally, indications in the European Alps that current glacier recession is reaching levels not seen for perhaps a few thousand years comes from the exposure of radiocarbon-dated ancient remains in high glacial saddles. Here there is no significant ice flow and melting is assumed to have taken place in situ for the first time in millennia (e.g., the finding of the 5,000-year-old Oetzal “ice man”).

The disgorging of ancient organics from glaciers is an interesting, important and provocative argument, that needs careful dissection. It deserves careful consideration with proper publishing of stratigraphy and adequate geological reports. Of course, Hormes et al reported that the 1995 jokulhaup disgorged organics from many different periods, some earlier than 5000 years ago and some later. So the interpretation is not easy.

None of the IPCC reports mention the work in the Rockies – and it’s very extensive, both by Luckman and associates, but also up and down the coast.

I’m puzzled by the above comment about no "significant ice flow". I don’t pretend to be authoratiative on glaciers, but at Quelccaya and other tropical glaciers (and I presume that this applies to temperature glaciers), the width of the layers decreases more or less in a negative exponential as you get deeper and earlier. Thus the top 50 m may cover 100 years and the bottom 10 m about 1000 years. So there’s always compression, extrusion and flow, presumably at all points of the glacier. What’s the basis of the claim that there was no "significant ice flow" – no citation is given? I’m not saying that, at the end of the day, the glacier recession might not be the greatest in a few thousand years – just that I’d love to see the point properly argued and presented.

Of course, even if the glacial recession proved to be the greatest in a few thousand years, it is obviously not "unprecedented". Regardless of how one spins the reslts, we see unequivocal evidence for forests far above modern tree lines. I realize that the forersts and glaciers may not be inequilibrium with present climates, but equally I’ve not seen arguments to suggest that present climate would support forests at locations where they have been identified in sub-fossil forms. (I’m not saying that such an argument can’t be made, merely that I haven’t seen it.)

some discussion
Bradley 1999; Raper et al 1996 Bradley, R.S., 1999: Paleoclimatology: reconstructing climates of the Quaternary Harcourt. Academic Press, San Diego, 610 pp.
Raper, S.C.B., K.R. Briffa and T.M.L. Wigley, 1996: Glacier change in northern Sweden from AD 500: a simple geometric model of StorglaciàƒÆ’à‚⣲en. J. Glaciol., 42, 341-351.

216 Comments

  1. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 9:52 AM | Permalink

    The most intriguing discussion is perhaps in section 2.2.5.4, where discrepancies in the timing of glacial retreat and timing of instrumental and proxy reconstruction increases are noted. They point out that glacial retreat commenced prior to the instrumental and reconstruction increases.

    Not only that, but the supposed 10-70 yr glacial response lag to temps makes this discrepancy even more interesting.

    I raised this issue on RC long, long ago, not sure in response to what (maybe I was trying to highlight just how substantial the uncertainties in the hockey stick really are, both qualitatively and quantitatively). Gavin’s response was literally “It’s nothing,” and his exact quote was only a word or two longer than that.

  2. jae
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 9:52 AM | Permalink

    It looks like an awful lot of the “evidence” for the lack of a global MWP and LIA in the later TARs comes from tree ring studies…I think we all now know the problems associated with this evidence.

  3. Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 10:23 AM | Permalink

    It’s interesting that glacier retreat is used by Al Gore among others as a visual proof that there is dangerous warming. Yet, it looks like this is not used as a proof of anything in the IPCC reports. surely if they lag warming by 70 years, they’re not indicative of the recent trend. It’s one way or the other, you can’t have it both ways. Of course, glaciers are more visually striking than tree rings!

    I’m wondering to what extent glacier experts like Holfhauzer were asked to contribute to the IPCC reports. Are they listed anywhere as authors? Or is it mostly the usual suspects?

  4. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 10:43 AM | Permalink

    None of Holzhauser, Joerin, Schlüchter or Hormes are authors for IPCC 4AR. There is no discussion of any of their work. Two articles involving them (but not Hormes et al 2001) are listed in the IPCC 4AR Bibliogrpahy but are not cited or discussed in the text.

  5. The Knowing One
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 12:01 PM | Permalink

    Glacier mass balance is largely determined by (i) winter increase, mainly controlled by precipitation, and (ii) summer decrease, mainly controlled by temperature. There are other complicating factors. In principle, you could even have an increase in mass with increasing temperatures.

  6. bender
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 12:04 PM | Permalink

    Their main focus is on characterizing the MWP and LIA as local and regionally variable events

    It seems there is a double standard here. Global-scale forcings are allowed to have regionally variable impacts in the 20th century (i.e. spatiotemporal decoherence due to regionally varying radiative feedbacks), but these same regionally variable impacts in the MWP refute the action of a global-scale forcing process. You can’t have it both ways.

    Is this not the very same logical inconsistency I pointed out this morning in my response to gbalella:

    “gbalella et al. are trying to have it both ways. i.e. Natural rapid climate change is a powerful force to be feared TODAY, but not so powerful as being capable of producing unprecedented warming during the MWP.”

    Am I misrepresenting or misunderstanding “the consensus”?

  7. Tim Ball
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 12:27 PM | Permalink

    Ice cores present more problems than tree rings for the team because they are clearly as much a function of precipitation as temperature. With glaciation they are directly confronted with the issue of water which they essentially side-step in all its forms in tree ring studies and computer models. Glaciers form because of net annual accumulation of snow which can result from decreasing temperatures, increasing snowfall or a combination of both. You cannot study glacier formation and movement in even the simplest way without including temperature and precipitation. Ice cores also serve as the primary source of evidence for CO2 and that evidence is even more shaky and questionable than the data and analysis of tree rings. I refer you to Dr. Zbigniew Jaworowski’s testimony before the US Sneate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation on March 19, 2004. (http://www.mitosyfraudes.org/Calen5/JawoCO2-Eng.html.) Especially note his concluding comments about Mann et al.

  8. bender
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 12:51 PM | Permalink

    Ice cores present more problems than tree rings.

    Ice cores also serve as the primary source of evidence for CO2 and that evidence is even more shaky and questionable than the data and analysis of tree rings.

    As somebody who knows something about tree rings, this is saying something.

  9. Dano
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 12:58 PM | Permalink

    7:

    Tim, can you trot out some testable, empirical evidence to support your tout? That is: do you have something that has been audited? Ah, well.

    Why some must resort to such slender, tenuous [http://www.someareboojums.org/blog/?p=18] threads to weave their widdle tale will be a mystery for some time.

    Thank you in advance,

    Best,

    D

  10. bender
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 12:59 PM | Permalink

    Giving other domains the benefit of the doubt, I had always assumed the tree-ringers were the worst of the lot.

    Is it possible that the tree-ringers are counting on the ice guys, the ice guys are counting on the sediment guys, the sediment guys are counting on the coral guys, the coral guys are counting on the GCM guys, the GCM guys are counting on the multi-proxy guys, and around and around?

    That would be quite a house of cards. Not a conspiracy. Just a domain-distributed co-dependent belief amplification system.

  11. Dano
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 1:01 PM | Permalink

    Lookit how the meme spreads! It must be true because – gosh – someone said so!

    Best,

    D

  12. bender
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 1:26 PM | Permalink

    Hold your horses, there, Dano, I’m reading your stuff too.

  13. bender
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 1:32 PM | Permalink

    Thanks for the link, Dano. I always wondered how they calibrated these CO2 measurements from ice cores. (I’ve been told several times “there is no error” involved in that calibration.)

  14. welikerocks
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 1:35 PM | Permalink

    #11 Dano, Sorry, Can you define “meme spreads”? You mean in the context of this blog as it develops in the discussions? Or on all the blogs you visit? Or do you mean the media or the information the public is getting? IOW What is your sarc directed to? Climate Audit? NAS panels? audits of any HS team data? tree ring data? people opinions or Congressional commities? I want to read EVERYONE’s opinion, not just yours about tree rings and proxies, and what all this means, especially when people speak that I have paid attention to in the past. I’ve paid attention to your contributions as well but don’t quite know what you are really after , and I am just a wife of a geologist speading too much time concerned with all this, because of my children’s future.

    On topic,
    when the IPCC lists pollens, are they talking about glacier data there maybe? 1996 paleoclimate data I think I saw it listed in, but it just says “pollens”, not glaciers anywhere.

  15. bender
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 1:39 PM | Permalink

    Re #11
    Also, Dano, #10 (speculation, not accusation) was an unfortunate crosspost with your #11. Your point on meme-spreading is well-taken.

  16. bender
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 1:44 PM | Permalink

    Re #14
    He means that I leaped to a conclusion and by doing so was likely to cause others to leap to that conclusion too. Of course, I did not leap to any conclusion; I was reading. But I (a) should have kept my mouth shut until finished reading, and (b) not crossposted. Because that’s how falsehoods are propagated (=memes spread).

  17. Phil B.
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 1:46 PM | Permalink

    Re 10, bender you forgot to mention the borehole temperature reconstructions. Mann included these in one of his 2003 survey papers. I have spent some time on these reconstructions and they are another example of poor science that has been peer reviewed.

  18. welikerocks
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 2:03 PM | Permalink

    #16 Ah. My husband worked for the EPA ! So we’d be leaping right there with you if we could speak freely without worrying “who we influence or not”. LOL

    It’s funny because his masters education in environmenatal geology corresponds exactly with the timing of the “domain-distributed co-dependent belief amplification systems” birthing spurts and we’ve watched them grow more as an offshoot not included; but alternate/or next, and sometimes mentioned, in his experience in school and in the real world. He often says he’s not convinved ice cores are the holy grail that some would say they are, same with corals, in the context of his education and these methods findig “temp” representations with them, over big time spans. If this makes any sense at all! It’s a young science after all; this climatolgoy is. and we are forever arguing about fractions of temp on top of all that!

  19. John Cross
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 2:16 PM | Permalink

    Tim Ball: You said:

    I refer you to Dr. Zbigniew Jaworowski’s testimony before the US Sneate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation on March 19, 2004.

    That is interesting since in fact the Committee never had a meeting to hear any testimony on March 19. In fact if you search the committee records, Jaworowski is not mentioned at all.

    Could you provide some clarification?

    Thanks,
    John

  20. Dano
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 2:21 PM | Permalink

    12:

    Hold your horses, there, Dano, I’m reading your stuff too.

    Yessir. I merely use the example as an opportunity to point out examples of my point in 139 here. Unfortunately, you were the person doing it. BTW, I much prefer you taking apart my comments sir, and I hope I don’t besmirch your good name here by saying I enjoy taking apart your comments.

    Best,

    D

  21. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 2:24 PM | Permalink

    Out of all the issues to deal with CO2 measurements in ice cores are not something that particularly worry me and I do not believe that this evidence is “more shaky” than tree rings.

    A little while ago, people like Lee wanted to talk about glaciers. I’m trying to see what actual avidence is there. Let’s not go off on tangents like CO2 values in ice cores – please.

  22. Tim Ball
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 3:07 PM | Permalink

    Re #9 and 20
    John :
    The reference I gave is a web page and you are correct it says a “Statement written for the hearing…” not that the presentation was made. My error. It has become almost axiomatic that when the team respond quickly and with vehemence you are touching nerves. As the Bard said “Methink…” In the case of the Jaworowski piece he points out many of the problems with ice core records although there are many others including, as Steve M notes, plasticity in the ice. I recall a conversation with Koerner about results from his ice cores on Baffin and Ellesmere islands that were showing results contradicting those from Greenland and Antarctica. I also learned a great deal from him about the limitations of site and extraction. For example, you may have asite where the wind erodes not only one years snow deposit but then abrade other layers to create discontinuity in the sequence. It is clear that people are not adequately explaining the assumptions they make or the limitations of the method in collecting and analysing the data obtained. As I recall the original authors o fthe Antarctic data urged people not to rush to judgment. But when you are looking to prove rather than disprove the blinkers go on too quickly.

  23. Dano
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 3:13 PM | Permalink

    23:

    Shorter TB:

    I have no empirical evidence for my assertion’.

    Best,

    D

  24. Hans Erren
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 3:20 PM | Permalink

    dano’s meme:
    astroturf mendicisfifition.

  25. Hans Erren
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 3:25 PM | Permalink

    ok back to science:

    Here is the glacier movement of the Aletsch glacier in the alps.

    from Haeberli and Holzhauser

  26. Ken Fritsch
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 3:31 PM | Permalink

    re: #22

    A little while ago, people like Lee wanted to talk about glaciers. I’m trying to see what actual avidence is there.

    I have been able to spend some time today reading your “IPCC and Glaciers” blog article and linked references and just wanted to comment that I appreciate your efforts. I am assuming that the IPCC comments give a reasonably accurate presentation of the evolving climatology view of temperature reconstructions. In that way your reviews from 1990 to current certainly are helpful in tracking those views and in juxtaposition of papers cited earlier versus those today.

    Are papers cited in earlier IPCC reports ever refuted in later reports or are they merely forgotten as in “we have moved on”? Would not there be some obligation to note these earlier cited papers and at least discuss them again in context of later papers cited? Is the IPCC just being overly polite in what they are doing or are they doing something more sinister like selectively presenting evidence that supports the prevailing viewpoint? Perhaps old climatology reports never die they just fade away.

    I asked a question about a book or review paper that explains the use of tree rings in temperature reconstructions and would like to pose the same question on the use of glaciers for the same purpose. I have been very frustrated sitting here in the flatlands of Illinois and attempting to simply visualize what would happen with these glaciers retreating and advancing over the years and making any sense of what they would or could reveal.

  27. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 3:38 PM | Permalink

    RE: #26 – if there is a pattern to it, I think the Alps may be in for some very interesting times.

  28. Dano
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 3:42 PM | Permalink

    26:

    Where is the testable hypothesis wrt nulling an anthropogenic effect? You know: ‘science’ [2.]?

    Thank you in advance,

    D

  29. Ken Fritsch
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 4:05 PM | Permalink

    re: #26

    Linky.

  30. welikerocks
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 4:14 PM | Permalink

    #29 found this as well
    Glacier Mass Balance Data 2002/2003➍
    World Glacier Monitoring Service 21feb2005

    http://tinyurl.com/q3tel

  31. Hans Erren
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 4:14 PM | Permalink

    Questioning scientific authority dano?
    Prof.Dr. W. Haeberli publications
    Dr Hanspeter Holzhauser publications

    Unfortunately it’s mostly in german

  32. Dano
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 4:23 PM | Permalink

    30:

    Oh, darn. One of Hans’ authors that he likes so much is co-auth on a paper using tree-rings for climate indicators*. Back to science I guess. What to do? What to do?

    Anyway, thanks for the better search result, Ken.

    Best,

    D

    * The drastic change in climate starting in 1565 which cause the remarkable advance of Alpine glaciers can be easily seen in the tree-ring curves (maximum density, tree ring width) of larches (Larix decidua Mill.) in the Alps.

  33. Hans Erren
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 4:41 PM | Permalink

    not quite dano

    Previously available sources and new historical sources, as well as dendrochronological investigations of larches that were destroyed by glacier advances

    here you see how well the larch tree rings match with historical observations:

  34. welikerocks
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 4:48 PM | Permalink

    #33 I know how to think all on my own thank you.

    it says ” This article reviews evidence for 16th century glacial fluctuations in the western Swiss and the French Alps” (1999 before the onset of Mannomania too) It also says:

    “The drastic change in climate starting in 1565 which cause the remarkable advance of Alpine glaciers can be easily seen in the tree-ring curves (maximum density, tree ring width) of larches (Larix decidua Mill.) in the Alps.”

    General climate conditions showing up in tree rings is vastly different then claiming exact temperatures from tree rings to represent the whole planet. If they don’t ref Mann et al, even better! IMHO

  35. welikerocks
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 4:55 PM | Permalink

    Ah see I was doing well on my own- almost. LOL Thanks Hans. :)

  36. Dano
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 5:08 PM | Permalink

    34:

    So what does the ‘science’ say, Hans? Does your author still like tree rings or not? And lemme know if you need someone to edit your upcoming paper for you (you know, the ‘science’) to let the folks who do this for a living know of your discovery.

    And, BTW, where is the testable hypothesis wrt nulling an anthropogenic effect (you know, the ‘science’)? Is there one of those on your site? A model testing a hypothesis (you know, doing the ‘science’)?

    Best,

    D

  37. jae
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 5:23 PM | Permalink

    Aha, Dano is getting hyper. Could it be a sign that his icons are being disassembled before his very own eyes?

  38. welikerocks
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 5:36 PM | Permalink

    “where is the testable hypothesis wrt nulling an anthropogenic effect”

    Can you even do that, if the effect comes from a flawed mis-use of statistics hypothesis that failed under auditing/testing? (I don’t even know if that’s a stupid question. LOL)

  39. John Cross
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 6:07 PM | Permalink

    Re 23: Tim, I take it you didn’t even bother to look at the link that Dano posted. Since Steve doesn’t want us to discuss CO2 and ice-cores in this thread, why don’t we take the discussion over there?

    Regards,
    John

  40. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 6:40 PM | Permalink

    Re #14: Rocksy, haven’t you made it crystal-clear in prior comments that you came to this discussion with a certain pre-conception about AGW? Isn’t that the opposite of the open-minded attitude you just claimed here? Just asking for a little consistency.

    Re #31: Up to date world glacier info from the source. (Didn’t I point you to this not more than a month ago, Rocksy? Please keep the handy link in your favorites for next time.)

    Re #39: Big words strung together by the largely ignorant generally comprise phrases that make no sense. They also distract attention from the small words and result in grammatical gems like “flawed mis-use.” On the substance, what Dano means is there is no alternative testable hypothesis. E.g., the solar stuff keeps getting trotted out but has a bit of a hard time in the face of modern observations. Very often the more inexpert proponents of such ideas end up relying on interesting ideas such as that we’re in a clinate rebound from the LIA. Well, OK, I said interesting but I meant ludicrous.

  41. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 7:03 PM | Permalink

    #41. Steve B, IPCC cites MBH98 as evidence against solar. However, as Jean S, chefen and I showed here in early June, Mann made false statements about solar correlations in MBH98, which were cited and relied on by IPCC. Is that what you mean by a hard time?

  42. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 7:29 PM | Permalink

    he he

    “Mann made”

    I think we can add that to the lexicon.

  43. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 7:34 PM | Permalink

    Re #42: No, paleo solar brightness changes are tricky at best (although note that the Milankovitch component is knowable). I’m talking about brightness changes vs. climate change during the period of modern observations. The record is short but sufficient.

  44. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 7:44 PM | Permalink

    ” The record is short but sufficient.”

    Yes very sufficient, modern climate tracks very well to changes in solar output, even to showing 1940-1970 cooling.

    It’s not 100%, nor should it be there are too many variables, but it tracks much better than changes in CO2

  45. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 7:45 PM | Permalink

    Re #42: Which post was that, BTW? I don’t recall seeing it, but am rather curious about the general subject. It looks as if you may have tried to link to it, but if so the link didn’t take.

  46. Paul Penrose
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 7:47 PM | Permalink

    I count myself as a skeptic, but I don’t feel any onus to “disprove” the AGW “theory”. Anyone that implies that I should be doing that are just throwing up a red herring.

    I just think that the theory, such that one actually exists, is weak, and the data (supporting and otherwise) to-date contains too much uncertainty. I think that honest people can disagree on these things without throwing around insults.

    And please don’t tell me to go outside to experience AGW, that’s just stupid.

  47. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 7:49 PM | Permalink

    Re #45: It’s one those multi-variable things, Sid. Please let me apologize in behalf of reality for being complicated.

  48. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 7:57 PM | Permalink

    Yes, do you feel some need to re-iterate what I just said?

    But Solar output can account for the majority of recent climate change

  49. Paul Linsay
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 7:57 PM | Permalink

    #41:

    the solar stuff keeps getting trotted out but has a bit of a hard time in the face of modern observations

    Look at the first figure here. It’s quite good, and even tracks the cooling from about 1940 to 1975. No model, no need for an ad hoc insertion of aerosols, just increasing and decreasing solar activity.

  50. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 8:10 PM | Permalink

    #46. Steve B, here and here. It’s really as big a fiasco as the other stuff – flat out untrue statements in Nature, cited in IPCC. The falseness of these statemens was very easy to prove – much easier than showing the falseness of claims about verification statistics or robustness to presence/absence of dendro indicators. It’s one thing to make mistakes – but these statements are simply untrue. Ah, but to a climate scientist, if it’s for the greater good, … who cares whether it’s true or not.

  51. John Cross
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 8:17 PM | Permalink

    Re #50, Paul, have you read this paper?

    Regards,
    John

  52. David Smith
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 8:22 PM | Permalink

    Re #51

    Can anyone spot a Hockey Stick in the link?

    Regardless of the hockey stick, it makes good points.

  53. David Smith
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 8:23 PM | Permalink

    Woops, that’s number 52. My error

  54. welikerocks
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 8:52 PM | Permalink

    RE: #41 Steve Bloom FYI
    #14 pre-conception about AGW, yes. Of sorts, I do. But not the way you think it I do. I will say no matter what the verdict is, I will not allow people like you to scare children or indoctrinate them in school with this stuff. I will continue to speak up. Guess what? Teachers agree with us most times and only say anything at all in class because they are “required” in California to do so. We didn’t get a say in that. So the teachers ask for more information and we direct them to it or reccomend reading something.

    #31 I posted that link for Dano implying the chart at #26 wasn’t scientific because he couldn’t find the scientist. Funny, my kids practice science, and I practice science all the time. The scientist is listed on that link.

    #39 Big words and by the largely ignorant?
    Sheesh. It’s very clear what I meant or what I was asking, and I knew it might be a lame question, and my husband laughed and said it was just fine for who I am before I posted it. He easy going.

    #51 SteveM, thank you so much for what you do.
    I don’t how you keep track of all this.

  55. John Cross
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 8:54 PM | Permalink

    David: True – good eye. But I will note that it only shows it from the 1700’s onwards. I don’t think this is the problematic part (or at least as problematic as the 1500s).

    Best,
    John

  56. Paul Linsay
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 9:27 PM | Permalink

    #52: John. Thanks. Anything I read by Schneider I take with a shaker of salt. He was one of the leaders of the hatchet job on Lomborg in Scientific American. I don’t think much of Lomborg’s work and even less of Schneider for organizing and participating in an attack where the victim wasn’t given a fair chance to answer. That’s politics not science.

    That out of the way, Friis switched to 1-2-1 followed by no filtering to avoid an edge effect. You have to be at least 5 data points from the end to do 1-2-2-2-1 filtering. This is correct data handling despite what Schneider says.

    There could also be a problem with the measurement of the global temperature which Schneider doesn’t address at all. (I’m assuming that Friis… are using the ground based measurements, which they have to to go that far back.) If you compare the satellite and radiosonde data with ground based measurements from 1980 on, only the ground data shows the significant warming.

    Take a look at figures 4 and 7 in the link, still good agreement and back fairly far, 1750, without the 1980 on problems that Schneider harps on. I’d bet that the models have a terrible time with the temperature data in Figure 7.

    I love the last line of the article “The suggestive basis for the solar claims”¢’‚¬?as presented personally by Svensmark and Friis-Christensen on the screen”¢’‚¬? are the misleading graphs from the above mentioned 1991 and 1998 articles.” But he has no problem with Mann and features him prominently in his Figure 2.

    rant/ The plots also bring up a major beef I have with “climate science”, error bars. See any on either article? Didn’t think so. Steve’s been good about criticizing Mann, et. al., for computing them incorrectly, but most of these people don’t seem to understand the concept at all. /rant off.

  57. John Cross
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 9:43 PM | Permalink

    Paul, you are of course aware that Schneider did not write the article, was not a co-author, and is not even cited in the article? In regards to your comment about error-bars – fair enough. I tend to agree that they should be used more. However I doubt your assertion that the satellite records show no significant warming.

    Regards,
    John

  58. Deanster
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 9:57 PM | Permalink

    Ya know what is really going on here … There is a bunch of data that says absolutely nothing .. but at least one side is trying to say that this bunch of data says everything, while the other side is saying .. it really says nothing.

    Pretty Funny …

    And then there is all the anecdotal evidence regarding a glacier here or a tree ring there. And, a few folks have found it that they can comment on “global temperature” using data that clearly only reflects changes that occurred at that specific location. But, they are quick to point out that any data that disagrees with them, well, that is just a “regional” effect.

    Looooove it!

  59. McCall
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 10:12 PM | Permalink

    re: 52, 53, 56
    With few word well-placed substitutions in the first 3 para’s, this opening could be the review of MBH’9x; except that the errors in those documents are worse and over a much longer time frame.

    This paper (in 52) should also be referencing papers from Solanki etal among other papers discussing recent unusual solar irradiance and the measurement time-scales thereof, and not MBH’99. But it was published in SEP’04, so they may not have had access to Solanki etal’s most recent 2003-4 work. But since satellite base TSI measurements started in 1978 (with substantial changes along the way, but especially in 1991), I’m still not comfortable with solar vs temp correlation (or lack thereof) claims beyond that date. Similar to my caution around the splicing of instrument temp record in the spaghetti graphs, I’m also cautious of the much shorter time-scale satellite TSI splicing on the solar output graphs. You appear to embrace both without such questioning, okay; but at the very least, you should be slow to embrace the lack of correllation over the 2+ solar cycles since 1978! It is just too short; but perhaps someone like Dr Hoyt could comment…

  60. Bryn Hughes
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 10:15 PM | Permalink

    Re 10
    “Is it possible that the tree-ringers are counting on the ice guys, the ice guys are counting on the sediment guys, the sediment guys are counting on the coral guys, the coral guys are counting on the GCM guys, the GCM guys are counting on the multi-proxy guys, and around and around?”
    I wonder also if the sea surface temperatures have been modified to suit the land suface temperatures. Arguments about the inflating effect of urban heat are countered by the argument that the SSTs show warming.
    I you go back far enough they show nothing of the sort.

    Subsequent”modification and modernisation” has been carried so that the SSTs now confirm AGW.

  61. Pat Frank
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 10:34 PM | Permalink

    #20 — Speaking of Jaworowski, “>here’s his paper on the source of climate change.

  62. Pat Frank
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 10:36 PM | Permalink

    #62 — Oops, that didn’t work. Here it is again.

  63. JMS
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 10:47 PM | Permalink

    You’re really going to take seriously an article published by the LaRouchies? Did you read their “Statement of Purpose”?

  64. James Lane
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 11:09 PM | Permalink

    Re #1

    Not only that, but the supposed 10-70 yr glacial response lag to temps makes this discrepancy even more interesting.

    I raised this issue on RC long, long ago, not sure in response to what (maybe I was trying to highlight just how substantial the uncertainties in the hockey stick really are, both qualitatively and quantitatively). Gavin’s response was literally “It’s nothing,” and his exact quote was only a word or two longer than that.

    Michael, the Realclimate post you are referring to is interesting for the graphic showing glacial retreat (I’d post it here, but I’m not sure how – I’ll put the URL at the bottom of this post so I don’t muck up the sidebar. If someone can post the graphic here, it’s worth a look in the context of the thread.)

    Commenter John Finn at post #20 notes that (referring to the graphic) in most instances where data is available, glacial retreat began about 1850, and can therefore hardly be evidence of AGW as the effect precedes the cause. You can read Gavin’s non-answer for yourself. John Finn comments further in post #26.

    The Realclimate post is here:

    http://tinyurl.com/zk82d

  65. Hans Erren
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 11:24 PM | Permalink

    IPCC TAR figure 2.18 from chapter 2.2.5.4 Mountain glaciers
    (image 50% reduced in size)

  66. Hans Erren
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 11:26 PM | Permalink

    full width (250 pixels):

  67. Allan M.R. MacRae
    Posted Aug 9, 2006 at 11:49 PM | Permalink

    RE # 6 from bender:

    I agree – I said something similar below. We can certainly say that many parts of the current world have not warmed on average since 1930 – such data is regularly posted on the CO2Science website, for example.

    So let’s just assume the Modern Warm Period is regional, not global. I submit that we cannot say this with the same certainty for the Medieval Warm Period, partly because our data resolution (esp. timing) is not nearly as precise and the areal coverage of the data is much more sparse.

    True or false, or mostly or partly so?

    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=767, post #37

    One of the main knocks on the MWP by the hockey team types (remember the film Slapshot – let’s just call them “the Hansen’s”) is that they claim it was a regional, not a global phenomenon. I have not seen the Hansen’s provide good evidence of this. Furthermore, and I may be misunderstanding their point, is it not true that in spite of the current warming (whatever the cause), we have also seen some recent record low temperatures all over the globe? I was in North Africa and London in Feb 2005 and damned near froze. Lately, I understand it has been very cold in parts of the Southern Hemisphere.

    My point is we could also make the (questionable?) argument that the modern warming trend is a regional, not a global phenomenon. It may be simply that we have so much more detailed information now, compared to what we can infer from proxies for the MWP.

    Comment by Allan M.R. MacRae “¢’‚¬? 3 August 2006 @ 11:00 pm

    Best, Allan

  68. James Lane
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 12:02 AM | Permalink

    Thanks Hans, that’s the graphic i was referring to – I didn’t realise it was from IPCC TAR. It ties in nicely with Steve M’s original quote from TAR about the unexplained discrepancy with MBH99 and Jones (2001), which Gavin does not appear to have noticed.

  69. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 2:04 AM | Permalink

    This seems like as good a place as any to mention that July was yet another record low month for Arctic sea ice.

  70. James Lane
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 2:31 AM | Permalink

    Steve, that chart only goes back to 1979. In any case, did you notice that Antarctic sea ice shows no change (or a slight rise) since 1979? This is global warming we’re talking about?

  71. Peter Hearnden
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 2:39 AM | Permalink

    Re #71, seriously? Sheeshh…

    Read the first line of this

    Average…

  72. Paul Gosling
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 2:42 AM | Permalink

    Steve

    Glaciers, more particularly small ice sheets, don’t erode very much. They tend to get frozen to their beds and the bottom layer just sits there. I have seen a several million year old paleosol on a plateau in Scotland, so it is feasable to find in situ organics in Alpine colls.

    PS since when have Tasmania and the New Zealand southern Alps been close together (> 2000km)

  73. James Lane
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 3:14 AM | Permalink

    Re #72 Peter, thank you for linking to the wiki global warming page.

    The first line is this:

    “Global warming is the observed increase in the average temperature of the Earth’s atmosphere and oceans in recent decades.” Doesn’t say anything about sea ice.

    So your point is…?

  74. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 4:34 AM | Permalink

    #73. Paul, on your first remark, maybe the vertical gradient of tongues of alpine glaciers causes them to behave differently. The finds reported in Hormes et al 2001, used in the Green Alps, all came from a 1995 jàƒ⵫ulhaup, which disgorged material with dates varying by nearly 10,000 years, with physical evidence of being re-worked. So the circumstances must vay sufficiently to cause different behavior.

    Re the “near”-ness, or lack of nearness of New Zealand and Tasmania, don’t blame me. I’m merely quoting IPCC TAR.

  75. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 6:34 AM | Permalink

    Re#65,
    Don’t think that’s the precise thread I was talking about b/c I don’t see Gavin’s super-short response. But maybe my memory is slanted since it was almost a year and a half ago.

    I did bring up the discrepancy that the IPCC acknowledged and that Steve pointed-out, and this was Eric Steig’s response:
    Second: I think IPCC was looking for rather too “perfect” a correpondence here. To say that because two noisy things don’t match perfectly they are “in conflict” is a bit silly — they certainly match rather well within the noise.-eric

    I rather like my response to that:
    Yes, within the noise, they certainly do match within the noise. Then again, within the noise of any temperature reconstruction of the past several hundred to 1000 years, a lot of things match. Within the noise, you can say the MWP and LIA existed globally. Or you can say that, globally, only one existed, but not the other. Or you can say that neither existed globally. Or you can say they both existed globally, but not at the time periods we think they may have existed. You can even draw a line within the noise suggesting the MWP where we think the LIA was, and the LIA where we think the MWP was.

  76. bruce
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 7:03 AM | Permalink

    Re #44, 46, 48, 70: Hey Steve Bloom. Nice to see you contributing to a credible climate site!

    In #48 above, you said:

    It’s one those multi-variable things, Sid. Please let me apologize in behalf of reality for being complicated.

    So lets play with that for a moment. I suppose you mean “complicated” in the way that the Summary for Policymakers of TAR was wildly different than the underlying science, as convincingly demonstrated by the marked up version of the edits. And “complicated” in the sense that the NAS panel seemed to find that Michael Mann’s “science” is junk! Yet, wasn’t quite able to say it (in polite company you understand).

    I, and many others who frequent CA, am still waiting for your explanation. To me, it seems like the Stephen Schneider view which is that the end justifies the means. Not so? Please explain?

    From this POV it seems that pushing the Stephen Schneider view of the world must indeed be “complicated”.

  77. Jeff Weffer
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 7:32 AM | Permalink

    The Urban Heat Island effect, changes in Solar Radiation, the Milankovitch Cycles and the Position of the Continents are entirely capable of explaining changes in the climate over the past 1,000 years and, indeed, the last 3.0 million years (and longer if you want to go back into the Snowball Earth glaciations of the extreme past.)

    You don’t need GHGs at all. Or, at least, they are not the dominant variable that warmers want everyone to believe.

    And “believe” is the most accurate word available because climate research should be based on demonstrated science, not “belief”.

  78. welikerocks
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 7:58 AM | Permalink

    From the RealClimate Link:

    My still unanswered question is why does the hockey stick shape of Earth temperatures show up in a chart of the Solar magnetic flux?
    How did some CO2 molecule on earth spread THAT news back to the sun?

    [Response: Recent solar variations do not look "just like" the recent temperature history as this comment implies. See our post on climate forcings.]

    (In other words, Gavin replies with a link with two papers, one of which he and Mann authored: http://tinyurl.com/g54nd )

    Seems not only the MWP and LIA is bullied by these people. They are also after the Sun.

  79. bender
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 8:17 AM | Permalink

    Re #76
    I rather like your response too. If the warmers understood confidence envelopes as well as you do we wouldn’t be having to waste our time constantly refuting all these ridiculous claims of unprecedented 20th c. this or that.

  80. Tim Ball
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 8:32 AM | Permalink

    This entire blog was triggered by one catalyst, Michael Mann’s failure to disclose code. The plain fact is he has still not disclosed that code despite congressional hearings and many other requests. Similarly Jones has not disclosed how he calculates the warming of the last 130 years. I am also waiting for similar disclosure from the modelers, but the track record suggests we will see the same obfuscation and refusal to disclose the assumptions and machinations they used to build their models. Only after all those disclosure are subjected to peer review and prove or disprove whether the positions taken are valid can a reasonable, rationale, logical, apolitical scientific debate occur. In the meantime we have the tyranny of the minority with people on this blog who keep shifting the target of the debate. I have run graduate seminars, I know how easy but unproductive it is to keep playing the games a few on this blog play. If they really want to remove the skepticism why don’t they spend their time pursuing Mann and others to produce the goods?

  81. bender
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 8:53 AM | Permalink

    If they really want to remove the skepticism why don’t they spend their time pursuing Mann and others to produce the goods?

    They aren’t interested in removing the skepticism. They would rather try to dismiss or discredit the skeptics than argue with them on a level playing field. If they were to work toward the higher standard of evidence and level of accountability that CA is asking for, it would put two things at risk – their fragile belief system, and the gatekeepers’ lucrative monopoly on the science.

  82. Paul Linsay
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 9:06 AM | Permalink

    #58, John. re Schneider. You’re right, my bad, I shouldn’t respond to comments late at night. I stand by my criticism of the article.

    RE satellite temps: it looks like two steps to me, before and after the 1998 El Nino warming. A straight line is a poor characterization.

  83. James Lane
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 9:27 AM | Permalink

    Re #76 Nice response Michael. As bender notes, that goes to the heart of the issue.

  84. bender
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 9:36 AM | Permalink

    Straying off-thread in #82, I should have added … that part of this new, higher standard of evidence being asked for is a more careful consideration of stratigraphy in glacial reconstruction studies. Just as the tree-ringers do not provide adequate metadata or ecological context to replicate/re-analyze their work, this seems to be yet another area where improvement is needed. (Seems there is a parallel here in that stratigraphy can be re-worked over time in the same way that the statistical distribution of tree-ring widths can be re-worked over time.)

    So, Dano and others, is this so unreasonable a request? Or maybe you think stratigraphy is just a trivial detail? Just as you once thought details in the tree-ring studies were mere details.

  85. mikep
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 9:42 AM | Permalink

    There was an intesting experiment in the UK that ran from the late 1980s through to 2000 on macro-economic models. All ESRC-supported models had to be deposited with a modelling bureau at Warwick UNiversity. The team there were then able to develop forecasts on a consistent basis across modesl, compare published forecasts with pure model forecasts etc. Among the many interesting findings were that published forecasts usually contained a strong element of judgement – ie the published forecasts often overode the model. This judgement usually improved forecast accuracy, but of course made it impossible to use forecasts to test the accuracy of the underlying model, and by implication the simulations of changing policy variables. My particular favourite was a pure model forecast (using no judgement and actual values of the exogneous variables – those variables that were not not forecast within the model, but guessed in advance as it were) using the CUBS model which for 1986 produced a forecast for unemployment in the UK of minus 300,000 people (the actual outturn was plus over two million!).
    It would seem like a good idea to undertake a similar exercise for the climate models, though we might have to wait some time before we can compare forecasts to outturns.

  86. mikep
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 9:44 AM | Permalink

    And if anyone wants to follow up there is still a link to all the work at

    http://www.warwick.ac.uk/fac/soc/Economics/MMB/aboutmmb.htm

  87. Jonathan Schafer
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 10:25 AM | Permalink

    #3

    Speaking of Gore, here’s a nice little write-up about his *ahem*, “Carbon neutral” lifestyle…

    Gore not quite as Green as he’s led the world to believe

    Just another example of hypocracy in action and how having money allows you to try and impose all sorts of costs on everyone else without really worrying about how it affects you.

  88. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 12:55 PM | Permalink

    Re #74: That the warming is “average” and is not expected to be even. That there is little warming in the Antarctic as a whole (yet) is no surprise. Are you aware of the positive feedback implications of an Arctic that is ice-free in the summer? Do you know how quickly it will become ice-free if the current rate of decline continues?

  89. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 1:05 PM | Permalink

    Re #82: I would point out that the skepticism is disappearing very nicely by itself. I rest this case on 1) multiple polling results, 2) the rapidly growing number of media outlets that have stopped on presenting “both sides” as if they were scientifically equal, and 3) the increasing frequency of political events such as the recent agreement between Blair and Schwarzenegger. I don’t mistake any of this for the needed strong action to curb GHGs, but all of them are harbingers.

  90. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 1:07 PM | Permalink

    So what your saying is that even though there is no warming trend in the Arctic in the summer yet, there will be, what is your basis for this?

    GW theory states that the majority of the warming will happen in the Winter, this has been seen to be true. The Arctic will not be ice free in the winter anytime soon so this is not an issue (at a minnumum of -25C below zero it will be a while before we see Ice melting).

    Therfore there is no basis at all for the Arcitc being Ice free in the Summer anytime soon. Yet you want us to be concerned about it.

  91. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 1:11 PM | Permalink

    Re #78: Tell me, Jeff, what would the effect on global temps be if there were no greenhouse effect?

  92. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 1:17 PM | Permalink

    Re #90 – And none of your 3 items are contributing to the science or TRUTH.

  93. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 1:25 PM | Permalink

    Re #70 and #71 – Maybe we should look at the ice more realistically – The low amount of Arctic Sea Ice is a *local* phenomenon, you know similar to the *local* MWP.

  94. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 1:27 PM | Permalink

    #92 Tell me Steve, what percentage of that effect is down to CO2 compared to others like Methane and Water vapor.

  95. Peter Hearnden
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 1:41 PM | Permalink

    re #95 before Steve answers you Sid can you give a source and explaination for your claims in #91?
    Summer in the artic is (get this) warmer than winter, and normally temps hover around 0C. You dont’t need to raise that by much, or indeed extend the time at or around 0C to have an effect. And, before you start, it’s 0C becuase melting ice is at about that temperature.

  96. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 1:52 PM | Permalink

    Re #91: What, Sid, surely you’ve heard of the Arctic summer aerosol iris effect?!

    Seriously, do have a look at the actual sea ice trends in recent years. See the discussion and more linked data here.

  97. Dave Dardinger
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 1:53 PM | Permalink

    Are you aware of the positive feedback implications of an Arctic that is ice-free in the summer?

    Are you forgetting exactly what the arctic does in terms of acting as a heat radiator? Ocean surface which is free of ice can radiate more IR directly into space, can evaporate water into the atmosphere which moves heat high into the atmosphere, where it can escape to space and the evaporation also increases the density of the surface so that cool dense water is available to move toward the tropical areas. Also the extra humidity will increase clouds over land in areas where the winds are coming from the arctic area. This will both directly reflect SW radiation into space and allow earlier and later snowfalls around the arctic, offsetting reduced reflection by ice on the water. And since the sun, while nominally in the sky in the summer, is quite near the horizon it can’t penetrate deeply into the open water. Indeed a lot of shortwave radiation will be below the critical angle and be reflected back into space anyway. I’m not at all sure that the net result is much of a positive feedback, though I wouldn’t claim it’s a negative feedback.

  98. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 2:06 PM | Permalink

    Re #93: Gerald, the question was why don’t scientists spend more time directly working on convincing the skeptics. In case I wasn’t clear, the short answer is that they don’t need to.

    Re #94: Yes, and when the loss of summer sea ice results in a rapid positive feedback due to the greater absorption of sunlight by open water and this in turn induces much more rapid melting of adjacent land ice (Greenland, e.g.), all of that will be local as well. Er, actually the sea level rise won’t be, but whatever.

  99. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 2:19 PM | Permalink

    Re #98: That all seems like pretty obvious stuff to take into account, Dave. Of course one would want to actually run the numbers. Citation? I would point out that one shouldn’t have to wait for an actual ice-free state to begin seeing those effects kick in. Do current observations find any of them growing stronger as the summer ice wanes?

  100. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 2:20 PM | Permalink

    RE: #97 – that’s a questionable source for sea ice work. I trust very few of the US sea ice sites. Many ones in other countries are superior.

  101. Dane
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 2:22 PM | Permalink

    Here is a honest question a little off topic, but here it is anyway.

    I just read today that Termites were responsible for a huge amount of the atmospheric CO2 (95%?), problem was it was from a politician, so I don’t trust the information. Does anybody have any idea what % of Co2 Termites contribute to the atmosphere, if any? Apparently this problem is greatest in the equitorial areas and rainforsts therin?

  102. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 2:31 PM | Permalink

    “Summer in the artic is (get this) warmer than winter”

    Really Peter, your grasp of the obvious is amazing.

    What you failed to notice in my statement is that the temprature trend in the Arctic in summer, at the pole, is not getting warmer.

    Yes Steve, yet another data set (arctic Ice) that we have little info for. However we have information on surface tempratures and there i sn o summer warming trend.

    Interesting reading for all.

    http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v361/n6410/abs/361335a0.html

  103. Peter Hearnden
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 2:34 PM | Permalink

    #102, 95% seriously? LOL :). You mean there’s a politician with odder ideas than Inhofe ;) Oh, and before YOU start, you brought up politicians!

    Termite ‘emissions’ were and are part of the carbon cycle – in other words they’re going to take in pretty much as much as they give emit. Think about it, if they were responsible for 95% of CO2 the atmospheres would surely be chocked with CO2 by now?

  104. Dane
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 2:39 PM | Permalink

    Here is the link to the aricle I read this morning. Remember I am just curious as to any validity in these claims, I really have my doughts, but you never know, sometimes truth is stranger than fiction….

    http://www.hbindependent.com/articles/2006/08/10/politics/hbi-global10.txt

  105. Peter Hearnden
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 2:40 PM | Permalink

    Re #103, Sid, you ‘trump’ me with a ref from 1993, 13 years ago! Why hasn’t the pole changed much? Because, as I said, melting ice is at ~0C – think about it.

    Oh, and have you checked Mark Serreze’s views recently?

  106. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 2:40 PM | Permalink

    Re #103: You’re right, Sid, it was rather difficult to detect anything when that paper was submitted… 14 years ago. Please be serious.

  107. Peter Hearnden
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 2:45 PM | Permalink

    Oh no, please no. Noooo, please, not the 95/5 question again……

    Why can’t people get this! People like the politician are counting natural emissions but ignoring natural sink of CO2 – it’s quite DAFT to do so! The two balance (how could they not given natural emissions are vast!), without natural sinks we’d have soffocated hundreds of millions of years ago.

  108. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 2:46 PM | Permalink

    Re #101: Questionable based on what, Steve? Let’s see some links critical of their work. I have to say, it is gratifying in a perverse way when we catch these little glimpses of pure denialism peeking out from beneath the sheep’s clothing of skepticism. That said, if you think other countries have better sources for similar data, link them and we’ll see.

  109. Dane
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 2:54 PM | Permalink

    #108, That didn’t answer my questions. Do you have links showing the sources and sinks as they relate to termites, thats my question? I am curious as to where the congressman got his info.

  110. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 2:54 PM | Permalink

    Re #99 **the question was why don’t scientists spend more time directly working on convincing the skeptics. In case I wasn’t clear, the short answer is that they don’t need to.**
    Right Steve B. They do not want to (get the science right) and they do not need to because they have a gullible media and RC doing the stick handling.

  111. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 2:59 PM | Permalink

    Re#102 – Probably methane, not CO2. There are dogs trained to sniff-out termites by being trained to detect methane.

    Re#104 –

    Termite “emissions’ were and are part of the carbon cycle – in other words they’re going to take in pretty much as much as they give emit.

    Fossil fuels and man are “also” part of the carbon cycle…so what?

    The concept is the same: take carbon which is sequestered inertly in a solid or liquid form, consume the product, and release much/all of the carbon as methane, carbon dioxide, etc.

    The USEPA estimates annual termite methane emissions as “20 Tg/yr, approximately 11% of the global emissions from natural sources” (not sure that Tg/yr is as methane or as ‘CO2 equivalents’).

    Surely you don’t suggest termites take-in nearly that much back from the atmosphere?!?!?!?

  112. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 3:03 PM | Permalink

    Oh so now there was no AGW signal 13 years ago. So there was no trend 13 years ago, but apparently (with no reference cited) it started warming in 1994. That kind of goes against everything you two have been saying all around about AGW.

    Please cite a reference of warming in the arctic in the summer in the past 13 years.

    Maybe you can have better luck searching for the data than I did here.

    http://cdiac.ornl.gov/

  113. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 3:08 PM | Permalink

    Re #105: For a thorough grounding in the science related to this, see this RC post and the links therein.

  114. Peter Hearnden
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 3:13 PM | Permalink

    Micheal, humans are part of the carbon cycle, but our banging, how many I forget, giga tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere isn’t what happens in the normal working of the planet. If it were we’d see 380+ (and rapidly increasing) ppm of CO2 in the record more often. Yup, I know it does happen though. Last time it did, it was very warm, so we’re doing something that can happen (though not so fast as atm I think) naturally – I expect you’ll try to confuse the two in your reply ;) .

    And if you think the Carbon cycle is just about emissions then you also are daft (I hasten to add you’re not, you know the carbon cycle, so I suggest you’re making mischief). Truth is, of course, termites eat wood and/or plant matter (directly or indirectly). Wood made by plants. Plants take in CO2, and, without going into the details, turn it into wood. Get it?

  115. bender
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 3:15 PM | Permalink

    I tried to bite my tongue on #99, but I can’t. What an awful, cynical view: ‘we don’t need science because we’ve got all the ‘facts’ we need to plow ahead with our agenda’. That’s just shameful. Cheers to #111. Now maybe we should talk about IPCC & glaciers?

  116. Dane
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 3:20 PM | Permalink

    #114 Steve Bloom,

    That link had nothing to do with termites CO2 contribution to the atmosphere, at least MJ in post 112 tried to answer the question. try again maybe?

  117. Dane
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 3:23 PM | Permalink

    #115 PH, just answer the question or STFU

  118. bender
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 3:27 PM | Permalink

    Why would termites be considered a contribution to CO2 emissions? If they’re eating harvested timber, the timber is already considered an “emission”, at least in the carbon accounting models I’m familiar with (as silly as this may sound). Or maybe you are talking about insects that eat green wood? Because if that’s the case, insects in general are huge producers of CO2.

  119. jae
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 3:31 PM | Permalink

    102. Termites contribute enormous quantities of methane. Termite farts.

  120. Dane
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 3:34 PM | Permalink

    #119 Re “Or maybe you are talking about insects that eat green wood? ”

    I think that is what the congressman was referring to. I am simply trying to figure out if his statements were based on any facts as he is my congressional representative. See link above. Thanks for the input.

  121. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 3:40 PM | Permalink

    #97

    Steve is there a reason why you quoted a source on sea ice data that only goes back 18 years when we have data going back further? (Peter, if you don’t like 13 year old papers, what is your position on truncating data?).

    Anyways for a longer data examination of sea ice.

    http://www.frontier.iarc.uaf.edu:8080/~igor/research/pdf/50yr_web.pdf

    From the conclusion. “However,Vinje[2000] using observations over the past 135 years showed that the recent decrease in ice extent in the Nordic Seas is within the range of natural variability since the 18th century.”

    PS. Which is the stronger influence on Arcitic sea Ice. Temprature or wind patterns?

  122. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 3:41 PM | Permalink

    Sorry 122 should read “Steve B’ of course. Hard habit to get into.

  123. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 3:46 PM | Permalink

    Re #113: Er, the US government CO2 data site, Sid? Do they even have temp data there? 2.0.CO;2″>This is the most up-to-date study on Arctic temp trends. It turns out there’s some summer warming, but the major increase is in the spring. There’s a pdf of the full paper you can find via GS.

    Speaking of GS, do try it. Finding the most up-to-date science on a given subject is usually a matter of a few minutes. If you rely for your science on, let’s say, maybe, oh I don’t know… the Idsos, you can pretty much depend on not getting the current stuff.

  124. jae
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 3:47 PM | Permalink

    Sierra Club Steve: Even if the ice is melting, it may be because we are coming out of the LIA, REMEMBER? I fail to see why you think you can convince any of the people on this blog that the sky is falling. Spend your time on the general public.

  125. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 3:49 PM | Permalink

    Not sure why that 2.0.CO;2″>link didn’t take the first time.

  126. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 3:55 PM | Permalink

    Yes Steve they do have temperature data there. You might want to give it a look.

    I don’t read the Idso’s so I don’t see your point, Have they moved on? Anyway, temperature data is temperature data, the temperature for 1993 doesn’t change over time, it is what it was. Your link doesn’t work, so I can’t verify your warming trend. You also don’t give enough information to find the paper you are referring too. Does it only go back to 1979 too? You really want to look at the full Data Set Steve. Searching on Google scholar you can usually find a longer data set than 25 years in a few minutes.

    Is it warm enough in Spring to melt Arctic Ice? I don’t think it is, because it doesn’t melt to open water until late summer. I reckon it’s still below 0 in Spring, by a significant amount. Doesn’t really support your position. Backs up my -Majority of warming in winter months when its -25C, as predicted by GH theory- which will not effect sea ice extent.

    To pull a Peter and state the obvious. Spring is closer to Winter than Summer is.

  127. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 3:56 PM | Permalink

    Still didn’t take.

    How about the papers name and author.

  128. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 3:57 PM | Permalink

    Re #126: The software here choked on something in the URL, that’s why. Anyway, the citation is Journal of Climate: Vol. 17, No. 17, pp. 3263–3282, and here is a pre-pub pdf that as far as I know is identical to the published version. The abstract:

    “Instrumental surface air temperature (SAT) records beginning in the late 1800s from 59 Arctic stations north of 64°N show monthly mean anomalies of several degrees and large spatial teleconnectivity, yet there are systematic seasonal and regional differences. Analyses are based on time–longitude plots of SAT anomalies and principal component analysis (PCA). Using monthly station data rather than gridded fields for this analysis highlights the importance of considering record length in calculating reliable Arctic change estimates; for example, the contrast of PCA performed on 11 stations beginning in 1886, 20 stations beginning in 1912, and 45 stations beginning in 1936 is illustrated. While often there is a well-known interdecadal negative covariability in winter between northern Europe and Baffin Bay, long-term changes in the remainder of the Arctic are most evident in spring, with cool temperature anomalies before 1920 and Arctic-wide warm temperatures in the 1990s. Summer anomalies are generally weaker than spring or winter but tend to mirror spring conditions before 1920 and in recent decades. Temperature advection in the trough–ridge structure in the positive phase of the Arctic Oscillation (AO) in the North Atlantic establishes wintertime temperature anomalies in adjacent regions, while the zonal/annular nature of the AO in the remainder of the Arctic must break down in spring to promote meridional temperature advection. There were regional/decadal warm events during winter and spring in the 1930s to 1950s, but meteorological analysis suggests that these SAT anomalies are the result of intrinsic variability in regional flow patterns. These midcentury events contrast with the recent Arctic-wide AO influence in the 1990s. The preponderance of evidence supports the conclusion that warm SAT anomalies in spring for the recent decade are unique in the instrumental record, both in having the greatest longitudinal extent and in their associated patterns of warm air advection.”

  129. Douglas Hoyt
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 4:14 PM | Permalink

    “The degree of summer melt [around Svalbard and presumably the Arctic Ocean as a whole] was significantly larger during the period 1130–1300 than in the 1990s.”

    See http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2006/2005JD006494.shtml for evidence of a warmer MWP compared to the present.

    JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH, VOL. 111, D07110, doi:10.1029/2005JD006494, 2006

    Svalbard summer melting, continentality, and sea ice extent from the Lomonosovfonna ice core

    Aslak Grinsted, Arctic Centre, University of Lapland, Rovaniemi, Finland
    Department of Geophysics, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland

    John C. Moore, Arctic Centre, University of Lapland, Rovaniemi, Finland

    Veijo Pohjola, Department of Earth Sciences, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden

    TàƒÆ’à‚⴮u Martma, Institute of Geology, Tallinn University of Technology, Tallinn, Estonia

    Elisabeth Isaksson, Norwegian Polar Institute, TromsàƒÆ’à‚ⶬ Norway

    Abstract

    We develop a continentality proxy (1600–1930) based on amplitudes of the annual signal in oxygen isotopes in an ice core. We show via modeling that by using 5 and 15 year average amplitudes the effects of diffusion and varying layer thickness can be minimized, such that amplitudes then reflect real seasonal changes in àƒÅ½à‚ⲱ8O under the influence of melt. A model of chemical fractionation in ice based on differing elution rates for pairs of ions is developed as a proxy for summer melt (1130–1990). The best pairs are sodium with magnesium and potassium with chloride. The continentality and melt proxies are validated against twentieth-century instrumental records and longer historical climate proxies. In addition to summer temperature, the melt proxy also appears to reflect sea ice extent, likely as a result of sodium chloride fractionation in the oceanic sea ice margin source area that is dependent on winter temperatures. We show that the climate history they depict is consistent with what we see from isotopic paleothermometry. Continentality was greatest during the Little Ice Age but decreased around 1870, 20–30 years before the rise in temperatures indicated by the àƒÅ½à‚ⲱ8O profile. The degree of summer melt was significantly larger during the period 1130–1300 than in the 1990s.

    Received 13 July 2005; accepted 18 January 2006; published 14 April 2006.

    Keywords: melting; continentality; sea ice extent.

    Index Terms: 0724 Cryosphere: Ice cores (4932); 0740 Cryosphere: Snowmelt; 0750 Cryosphere: Sea ice (4540); 1863 Hydrology: Snow and ice (0736, 0738, 0776, 1827); 9315 Geographic Location: Arctic region (0718, 4207).

  130. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 4:20 PM | Permalink

    Peter. You will not that the data for that paper is from high latitudes to be sure, but no data from the pole (90 degree) in areas where the ice pack frequently melts. Where is the high arctic data and sea ice data.

    And why are the referncing papers that are so old. You just got through telling me a 1993 paper wasn’t any good, they reference 2 papers from 1993, and one each from 1982, 1985, and 1978 This can’t be right, because you and Peter don’t accept that data older than a few years is valid.

  131. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 4:21 PM | Permalink

    Sorry, not you Peter, Steve B.

  132. fFreddy
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 4:34 PM | Permalink

    Re #125, jae

    Sierra Club Steve: … I fail to see why you think you can convince any of the people on this blog that the sky is falling.

    I’ve wondered that. I think his contract is to try to prevent lurkers from picking up any of our evil, wicked, scientific ways.

  133. fFreddy
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 4:36 PM | Permalink

    Re #106, Peter Hearnden

    Why hasn’t the pole changed much? Because, as I said, melting ice is at ~0C – think about it.

    Umm, Peter, the arctic is sea ice. You may want to think about that…

  134. welikerocks
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 4:44 PM | Permalink

    RE: 129 Journal of Climate: ( just so you know)
    Two team members are contributing editors of this Journel, or some position like that. They were listed on the main page allegedly. Gavin Schmidt and Mann is too if I am not mistaken. I dont have the link saved or anything. ( I saw this a month or so ago before the NAS panal report, or around that time)
    I am sure it’s still easy to look up!
    carry on! :)

  135. jae
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 4:45 PM | Permalink

    Steve B. and Peter H: As you must certainly know, but seem to refuse to address straight-forwardly, in order to add the A to GW, we must be able to show whether the MWP, RWP, etc. were as warm or warmer than now. This is the key to our understanding. It does no good to prove that the sea ice melting, since this could be natural. Mann and the Team have failed to remove the MWP and LIA, due to their poor understanding of statistics, poor scientific procedures, and reliance on cherry-picked tree ring series. Plus the FACT that their reconstructions disagree with hundreds of other studies and completely discount WRITTEN RECORDS of the MWP and LIA. So it IS time to move on to other ways of reconstructing the past. What type of studies do you think can shed better light on the past?

  136. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 5:15 PM | Permalink

    RE #109 – any supposedly scientific link that couches sea ice studies in AGW doom and gloom rhetoric is automatically suspect. A number of German and Danish sites are pure science with no such rhetoric. They are honestly trying to gain an understanding of the poorly researched and tricky area of sea ice. There is a lot riding on the ability (or lack of it) to accurately measure and forecast sea ice conditions. Ask any far northern mariner or fisherman.

  137. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 5:24 PM | Permalink

    Re #129 – Surprise, surprise!!! Isn’t it another coincidence that the anomalies of the 1930’s to 1950’s were regional but the last decade anomalies are not. Sort of like the MWP being regional.

  138. Dave Dardinger
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 5:26 PM | Permalink

    re:129

    Analyses are based on time–longitude plots of SAT anomalies and principal component analysis (PCA). Using monthly station data rather than gridded fields for this analysis highlights the importance of considering record length in calculating reliable Arctic change estimates; for example, the contrast of PCA performed on 11 stations beginning in 1886, 20 stations beginning in 1912, and 45 stations beginning in 1936 is illustrated.

    Hmmm. PCAs and varying numbers of prox… er make that stations. Does this begin to sound like something we’ve seen before?

  139. bender
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 5:31 PM | Permalink

    Regional effects imply global processes only when Steve Bloom says so.

  140. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 5:34 PM | Permalink

    Re #136: Rather, it’s the key to your misunderstanding, jae. I’ve rather carefully explained before why the issue of where current temps stand relative to past highs isn’t even faintly important to the A in AGW. It’s as if something’s keeping you from recalling those past interchanges, something like… happy hour.

  141. bender
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 5:35 PM | Permalink

    Re #139
    I’ve noted a couple of times previously (in discussing MBH98) that it makes no sense to me to do PCA on instrumental data. (Recall that was the first step toward applying the Mannomatic.) I’ve never gotten a justification for it yet. Anyone?

  142. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 5:45 PM | Permalink

    Re #137: No links? Steve S., you specifically questioned the veracity of the NSIDC data I linked. Alternatively, if you say the data is fine and it’s just the conclusions of the NSIDC scientists you’re questioning, you need to produce links to credible sites processing, using and writing papers on the same data where scientists draw differing conclusions about current Arctic sea ice trends. Either way, it’s time to put up or shut up. Links, please.

  143. jae
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 5:48 PM | Permalink

    141. Yes, but I do not agree with you Steve B.

  144. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 5:49 PM | Permalink

    Micheal, humans are part of the carbon cycle, but our banging…

    I know the rest. But you simply stated “termites are part of the carbon cycle,” as if that somehow negated any GHG contributions they made.

    Truth is, of course, termites eat wood and/or plant matter (directly or indirectly). Wood made by plants. Plants take in CO2, and, without going into the details, turn it into wood. Get it?

    So if humans just burned wood and/or plant matter, everything would be ok?

    Obviously, humans are different than termites. I just wanted to clear-up any confusion as to how inconsequential their GHG contributions might be.

    If nobody has posted any evidence showing that termites are a “carbon sink,” “carbon neutral,” or almost “carbon neutral,” then why should their GHG contributions be ignored? Who knows…maybe they had a population and consumption boom starting around the time of the industrial revolution… :)

  145. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 5:53 PM | Permalink

    Re #127: In which Sid confronts Conservation of Energy and wins.

  146. bender
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 5:54 PM | Permalink

    Re #145
    Indsutrial revolution population/consumption boom :why not? Spruce budworm did. Emitted tons of CO2, directly and indirectly through wildfire.

  147. jae
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 5:54 PM | Permalink

    PS to Steve B. Why don’t you answer my question? What are some promising ways to determine the magnitude of natural climate cycles (I assume you do agree there are cycles, at least)? Maybe the hokey stick is so imprinted on your mind that you can’t see beyond it?

  148. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 6:06 PM | Permalink

    Re #145: Michael, as you know perfectly well, termites are a CO2 source in a period (the Holocene) where CO2 levels had remained in the range of 280 ppm for thousands if years because the total contrbution from sources (including our friends the termites) was approximately in balance with the sinks. The anthropogenic contribution has increased the CO2 level to 380 ppm even while the prior sources and sinks remained more or less the same. It would be an exceptionally bad idea to exchange the current anthropogenic contribution for one involving the conversion of a current major sink and reservoir into a source. Possibly it would be better to just stop putting more CO2 into the atmosphere.

  149. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 6:26 PM | Permalink

    Re #131: Sid, the problem is with you citing old papers that you (often incorrectly) think support your point and just plain not caring whether those papers represent current scientific thinking. It is rather common, BTW, for scientific papers to cite various older papers. The difference is that those scientists are familiar with all the material and to support a particular pre-existing point of science that is important to their conclusions will always go to the oldest relevant paper (in order to give proper credit, you see). Anyway, the paper at issue here had about 50 total citations, most of which were in the last 5 years. Now, do you have some relevant point to make on this subject?

  150. jae
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 6:51 PM | Permalink

    Steve B: Your silence re my question indicates to me that you refuse to concede that there MAY have been an MWP or LIA. If so, you nothing but a paid alarmist.

  151. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 7:28 PM | Permalink

    Re #148: jae, I’ll go against my better judgement and treat that as a serious question:

    Detection and attribution is the hardest part of climate science. I have only a general and very amateur knowledge of it, but if you really want to learn about it I suggest reading the two D+A papers linked in 129 and 130 (being sure to ignore Doug’s cheap little editorial insertion at the beginning of 130). If you have a Nature sub, there’s a current long article dealing in large part with D+A in the Arctic that gives a good sense of what’s involved. If I remember right somebody is quoted to the effect that the Arctic is the single hardest place to do D+A due it being sort of a crossroads for natural climate oscillations.

    A good non-arctic one is the recent hurricane-GW attribution article in EOS by Kerry Emanuel and (ahem) your favorite author (who in another life is the leading expert on Atlantic clunate cycles; KE, BTW, is to hurricane science what Eric Clapton was ro rock ‘n roll circa 1970.). See also this paper that highlights the fact that the task of identifying and describing all the natural climate oscillations (necessary to the accuracy of D+A) is not yet complete.

    Also useful to look at are papers that do reverse D+A (my phrase) dealing with future affects of GW on natural climate cycles, and in particular on teleconnections between regions. This is one that purports to find a link between a warming Arctic and persistent drought in the western U.S., but I don’t know the extent to which it’s considered to be speculative.

  152. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 7:32 PM | Permalink

    #146 Steve B, you might want to clean the CD, doesn’t seem to be tracking well. How exactly did I refute conservation of energy, or are you just throwing out non-sequitors to confuse the issue.

    #150. I see older papers are okay if your writing a scientific paper. But if someone measure the teprature in 1993 and writes it down, somehow over time that information becomes incorrect?

    Plenty of relevant points. What about your comeback for Igor’s paper on arctic tempratures.

    http://www.frontier.iarc.uaf.edu:8080/~igor/research/pdf/50yr_web.pdf

    From the conclusion. “However,Vinje[2000] using observations over the past 135 years showed that the recent decrease in ice extent in the Nordic Seas is within the range of natural variability since the 18th century.”

    Care to comment where you reference showed sea Ice trend from the late 79’s, while the data goes back to the 19th century?

  153. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 7:56 PM | Permalink

    Re #153: You said that warming in the spring couldn’t have an effect in sea ice melting in the summer. Where would that heat go?

    As to the paper, I have no problem with you citing an older one *if* you check to see whether it’s still good science. That paper was looking at temps ending in about 1990 to try to find a GW signal in the Arctic, and says nothing about trends subsequent to that.

    Regarding Igor’s paper, note that it’s *Nordic* seas, which is to say only a portion of the Arctic. Again you implied a broader conclusion. Also, the fact that something is within the range of natural variability doesn’t necessarily mean it has a natural cause. The reverse is true as well.

    Regarding sea ice data, NSIDC has the modern satellite observations. The older stuff is less reliable.

  154. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 8:06 PM | Permalink

    “You said that warming in the spring couldn’t have an effect in sea ice melting in the summer. Where would that heat go?”

    Umm no Steve B, you might want to go back and re-read.

    Hows about some clues.

    I said that Spring comes before Summer and as such is cooler than summer.

    Peter H saud that Summer tempratures hoover aruond 0(C I assume) therefore if Spring is cooler it would be less than 0

    Does Ice melt easily at less than 0C?

    As to trends. Yes your absolutely right, it did not say anything about trends after 1994 or so, He left it to Mann (Mann, Mann He’s our Mann) to project trends into the future.

    Point being Steve B, up until 1994 there was no trend in the Summer, do you have contrary evidence (A hockey stick maybe) that shows a Summer warming trend after 1994? And if AGW is the issue, why was there no warming trend untill 1994?

    As to Igor. Ahhh soo you can quote papers that limit themselves to an area that is completely outside the area of discusion, but when I quote something that at least includes the area that is poor form?

    You going to quote something that includes the arctic in the area of 90 degrees.

  155. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 9:42 PM | Permalink

    Memo to self: Debating with the, um, tipsy isn’t very productive.

    Melting in the news for anyone still reading. Pretty much bad news from both poles, but in particular a big acceleration in Greenland melting starting in 2004. The Greenland paper is in Science Express, BTW.

  156. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 9:43 PM | Permalink

    RE #154 – **Regarding sea ice data, NSIDC has the modern satellite observations. The older stuff is less reliable.**
    Familiar story – When you analyze part of a cycle that is what you get – only the decreasing ice amount. That is what your “hurricane expert*, KE did – he did a study since the 70’s (because that is how long satellite data is available). But he only got half a cycle, so you do not need to do a study to show that hurricanes have increased in 35 years. I notice that temperatures have rocketed upward since January. May need to do a PCA analysis.

  157. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 9:49 PM | Permalink

    Really, You been drinking Steve. Or putting out the typical Ad Homs your like so much. Peter, got anything to say about Steve’s Ad Homs.

    As to your link. Do you guys have a mialing list. Fearmongers-R-us or something.

  158. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 9:52 PM | Permalink

    BTW. It may be drinking induced on your part Steve B.

    But is your assertation that Spring is warmer than Summer? And then Spring in the arctic is like 10C warm and balmy.

    Because if it get’s that warm, maybe I should spend Spring Break up there.

  159. JMS
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 10:06 PM | Permalink

    ET, sea ice melts at a temperature lower than 0C because it is made of *salt* water. Think about it.

  160. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 10:15 PM | Permalink

    Yes it does,

    It freezes at about 1.8C (28.76F) Spring tempratures.

    It also tends to freeze at different tmps (higher) due to wind creating spray.

    Would you say that Arctic spring temperatures are much above 1.8C

  161. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 10:21 PM | Permalink

    Sorry -1.8 obviously

  162. Kenneth Blumenfeld
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 10:51 PM | Permalink

    Welikerocks said (currently #135):

    RE: 129 Journal of Climate: ( just so you know)
    Two team members are contributing editors of this Journel, or some position like that. They were listed on the main page allegedly. Gavin Schmidt and Mann is too if I am not mistaken. I dont have the link saved or anything. ( I saw this a month or so ago before the NAS panal report, or around that time)
    I am sure it’s still easy to look up!
    carry on! :)

    It is easy to look up. Neither Schmidt nor Mann are editors. The allegations are false.

  163. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 11:04 PM | Permalink

    Are being the operative word.

    Hows about “were”

  164. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 11:06 PM | Permalink

    Er actually for better grammer “was” would probably be a better word.

  165. Tim Ball
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 11:09 PM | Permalink

    #163
    But Andrew Weaver is very much a member of the team and a modeler.

  166. Kenneth Blumenfeld
    Posted Aug 10, 2006 at 11:28 PM | Permalink

    ET:

    Mann’s very up-to-date CV is here.

    He has refereed for JoC, but not edited. Big difference. That’s 0-for-1. Why don’t you check on Schmidt?

  167. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 12:39 AM | Permalink

    Hey Ken

    How about there own bios on real(sic)climate.

    Mann Mann He’s our Mann

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php?p=47

    “He served as editor for the ‘Journal of Climate’ and…”

    Herr Schmidt

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php?p=46

    “… is an Associate Editor for the Journal of Climate.”

    Can anyone edit post 167 to reflect 1-for-0

    O as in Ohhh Snap!

  168. fFreddy
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 12:46 AM | Permalink

    Re #167, Kenneth Blumenfeld
    Kenneth, about a third of the way down in the CV to which you link, it says :

    2000-02 Editor, Journal of Climate

  169. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 1:08 AM | Permalink

    Damn he scores on his own goal.

    I believe it is 2-for-0

  170. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 1:13 AM | Permalink

    So, naturally, being members of the Team, Control is Exerted by them even from a Great Distance. (I think the caps are necessary to capture the essence of this sort of thinking.)

  171. John Baltutis
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 1:18 AM | Permalink

    Re #163

    As with most AGW supporter’s scholarship, you didn’t dig deeply enough to support your contentions (beliefs!). See Journal of Climate, wherein it lists, under Editors Emeritus, Herr Michael E. Mann and, under Associate Editors, Herr Gavin Schmidt.

  172. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 1:33 AM | Permalink

    Sometimes, late at night, sitting here at my computer avoiding real work, I wonder if it’s possible that the central Climate Audit meme is right after all and we don’t have to worry about climate extremes any greater than past natural variability.

  173. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 1:36 AM | Permalink

    Re #172: John, this little debate started with an assertion that MM and GS *are* JoC editors. As you note, they aren’t.

  174. fFreddy
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 1:52 AM | Permalink

    Re #174, Steve Bloom
    I thought it started with welikerocks in #135 saying

    Two team members are contributing editors of this Journel, or some position like that.

    I’d say that John Baltutis in #172 has demonstrated that WLR is correct.

  175. John Baltutis
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 2:19 AM | Permalink

    Re #173 Steve Bloom

    Sometimes, late at night, sitting here at my computer avoiding real work, I wonder if it’s possible that the central Climate Audit meme is right after all and we don’t have to worry about climate extremes any greater than past natural variability

    And, what’s your conclusion after this speculation?

  176. nanny_govt_sucks
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 2:27 AM | Permalink

    I wonder if it’s possible that the central Climate Audit meme is right after all and we don’t have to worry about climate extremes any greater than past natural variability.

    Heaven forbid! Warming might cause a huge proliferation of life! How terrible!

  177. John Baltutis
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 2:42 AM | Permalink

    Re #174 Noted.

    However, I was responding to Kenneth Blumenfeld’s blatantly erroneous statement that led him to conclude said editorship was false and impugn what WLR stated earlier:

    It is easy to look up. Neither Schmidt nor Mann are editors. The allegations are false.

    and, since it was easy to look up, especially if you look in the correct place, I just pointed out that the Journal of Climate cites them as editors.

  178. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 3:02 AM | Permalink

    Re #178: OK, going back and looking again at the original, Rocksy is right on Schmidt and wrong on Mann. Her implied point, which is that JoC articles can’t be trusted because of the malign influence of the Team, remains a paranoid fantasy. There are something like a dozen editors and three dozen associate editors, just to put this in perspective.

  179. Steve Bloom
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 3:15 AM | Permalink

    Re #176: That a transition to such a climate state would be a disaster. Among other unpleasant effects, the fossil record indicates a ten to sixty times increase in extinction rates. And let’s not forget about the 80 meter sea level rise.

  180. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 6:43 AM | Permalink

    RE#149 Steve,

    Yes, termites were around back in the old days of GHG balance, but who is to say they were present in anywhere close to the numbers of today? Or maybe the dominant species of those time periods were much more efficient and less voracious, producing fewer GHG emissions per termite lifetime?

    I’m not asserting their CH4 and CO2 emissions aren’t balanced-out by other factors in nature, but it strikes me as odd that their 20 Tg/yr contribution (amounting to 11% of all natural sources, according to USEPA) is dimissed so readily by you and Peter without any legitimate justification.

    To me, your dismissal is just as poor and over-simplified as someone saying, “glaciers melted in periods when CO2 levels were lower than today, so glacier melting today isn’t due to increased levels of CO2.”

    If you have some sort of evidence showing that termite GHG emission activity is negligibly different today compared to 50, 100, 200, 500, 1000, etc, years ago, then share it. Otherwise, you’re just guessing. And for what reason, I have no idea.

  181. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 6:45 AM | Permalink

    Steve Bloom said:

    Sometimes, late at night, sitting here at my computer avoiding real work, I wonder if it’s possible that the central Climate Audit meme is right after all and we don’t have to worry about climate extremes any greater than past natural variability.

    That is not a meme of this site. I’ve never made that assertion. I have said repeatedly that I view the issue of climate change as a serious issue. It is precisely because it is a serious issue that it is a valid and worthwhile exercise to see what reliance can be placed in climate studies. The only policy that I’ve advocated is full disclosure of results and data and improved due diligence.

    As to Journal of Climate, I corresponded with Andrew Weaver about Rutherford et al 2005, while it was in pre-publication (it was posted up at realclimate) and found their editorial practices very unsatisfactory. Rutherford et al 2005 purported to discuss principal components issues, referring to MM03 which identified a problem with Mannian PC calculations, but had not diagnosed the de-centering problem. Rutherford et al 2005 perpetuated a canard about the "wrong" data set and made no discussion of the problem of de-centering, then known to the authors. I pointed out to Weaver that a "full, true and plain disclosure" standard required that the de-centering problem be disclosed – the authors could attempt to handle it anyway that they wanted, but it needed to be disclosed. Here’s an excerpt from lengthy correspondence:

    I recognize that, as an editor, you can’t reasonably sort out this matter, but I think that you can reasonably inquire as to why the data transformation issues (described as centering “convention” issues), which have dominated recent comments by Mann et al. on this matter, are not mentioned in Rutherford et al [2004], which, instead, focuses on obsolete concerns (which additionally are inaccurately described.) In this respect, your reviewers don’t appear to be particularly up-to-date on the controversy, or else they would have brought this to your attention already. I realize that the performance of peer reviewers is very inconsistent and, as an editor, you do the best that you can.
    ….
    You will also probably need to explain to the authors the difference between a “full true and plain disclosure” standard and a don’t ask-don’t tell standard, as they probably don’t understand the difference. The difference has been explored pretty thoroughly in securities offerings, where there is an obligation to disclose adverse information. This is taken pretty seriously — for example, David Peterson, the former Premier of Ontario and a reputable person — was unfortunate enough to be a director of YBM and was charged by the Ontario Securities Commission in connection with non-disclosure in a YBM prospectus. It will be interesting to see how Rutherford et al. respond to your certification request. I suspect that they will try to take the narrowest possible response in respect to the PC controversy — limiting the discussion to our “published” comments in our first article in 2003. But given the comments already on record from Mann et al. on the centering methods, an extremely narrow response would be inconsistent with full, true and plain disclosure requirements. I suspect that the authors will ignore this, but I may be surprised.


    Having said all this, I can also understand your dilemma. There has to be a cut-off point. You are not a securities commission. You don’t have the facilities to audit their results. At a certain point, you probably have to take the authors at their word and, if they let you down, shame on them.

    I challenged Weaver to ask the authors to warrant that they had made "full true and plain disclosure", as I thought that someone like Phil Jones would be unable to make such an affirmation about this article. Weaver replied a little later that Rutherford warranted that the article made "full true and plain disclosure".

    Just for the record, I did in fact obtain a statement that the article contained "full, true and plain disclosure" from Dr. Rutherford.

    Weaver then proceeded to publish the article as is. I remain surprised that Rutherford could have made such an affirmation and presume that he must have no understanding of what’s involved in “full disclosure” as opposed to don’t ask-don’t tell.

    Weaver himself stated clearly that no science journal would have published our original E&E article:

    “It’s not a science journal,” he says, pointing to the fact that the paper was written by an economics professor and a Toronto-based analyst, not climate scientists. “If that paper had been submitted to a science journal, it would have been rejected.”

    Perhaps so and that’ s too bad. Our analysis has progressed since MM03, but the scorecard on MM03 is pretty good. Perhaps more significantly, it arguably sparked a small industry of increasingly critical articles of multiproxy studies (not just us, but the von Storch-Zorita articles, the Burger-Cubasch articles. Von Storch has noted that, prior to us, the entire topic of the validity of multiproxy studies was pretty much off-limits. I guess that’s what Weaver had in mind.

  182. Peter Hearnden
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 7:27 AM | Permalink

    Re #145, #181. Michael, I haven’t nor will I dismiss your figures – several sources give similar figures. What I think unreasonable is to suggest, without any evidence, that termites CH4 emissions might have changed enough to have changed their impact on climate. I don’t think they have, until I see evidence they have (and you’re making the suggest, so lets see the evidence) I don’t see any reason to think there has been such a change.

    But, I’ve done some googling…Try this . Note how relatively small termite emissions are (fig one, can you make out their contribution? It’s the thin green ‘line’). Oh, and note the word ‘constant’ in the table higher up. So, what makes you think emissions might have radically changed? I think you’re just guessing they have.

    So, again, I do agree with the figures but I think the rest is a red herring, or, perhaps, a white Isoptera.

  183. welikerocks
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 8:05 AM | Permalink

    Re: I also said regarding the Journal Of Climate, in regards to MM and GS as editors : “They were listed on the main page allegedly” And I knew if I provided the link it wouldn’ t be as much fun.

    Re: my #179 and “Schmidt et al. 2004″
    Schmidt, G.A., D.T. Shindell, R.L. Miller, M.E. Mann, and D. Rind 2004. General circulation modelling of Holocene climate variability. Quaternary Sci. Rev. 23, 2167-2181, doi:10.1016/j.quascirev.2004.08.005.

    On the chart contained in the pdf., Northern Hemisphere Surface Temp on page 10 : everytime the temperature drops (alot) on that chart there’s a volcanic eruption indicated by a triangle (1550 to 1800 is plotted only).

    Maybe because there have not been any major volcanic eruptions during this decade of the “warmest temps ever!” (spongebob voice), we are experiencing this condition (if we are in fact) because of lack of eruptions? This paper also uses MBH 1998, 1999, & 2002

    Keep looking at ALL the natural influences! Termites, et al! ;)

  184. Dane
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 8:40 AM | Permalink

    This may or may not scare you.

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14295054/

  185. jae
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 8:48 AM | Permalink

    Err, Steve B, you still haven’t answered my question. You are a good politician, which is why the Sierra Club keeps you on the doll. Instead of answering the question, you deal in obfuscation, citing all kinds of related stuff. The DA studies rely heavily on the hokey stick and climate models, which have not been validated (and probably can never be validated). The hokey stick is broken, Steve, although you probably will not concede that, either. Now there are three questions:
    1.) Do you think that it is just POSSIBLE that the modern warming is at least partly due to natural causes?
    2.) Do you think that any of those hockey stick studies which use tree rings are valid?
    [snip]

  186. Dane
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 8:49 AM | Permalink

    #183 PH,
    Your figures are talking about methane, not CO2. Are the 2 outputs the same? for all other sources listed?

  187. Dane
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 8:59 AM | Permalink

    #180 Re Steve B.
    Interesting abstract. I actually wrote a graduate paper on this subject for human evolution and climate change in a grad course on the subject of climate change. The results were staggering. The onset of glacial cycles had a huge negative impact on humans and there evolutionary patterns. Entire lines of humman cultures dissapered in areas of warmer climates as people from the cooler northern latitudes moved south. I don’t know about other species as they were not a part of my study.

  188. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 9:18 AM | Permalink

    RE#183,

    What I think unreasonable is to suggest, without any evidence, that termites CH4 emissions might have changed enough to have changed their impact on climate.

    And I haven’t done such a thing. I simply noted that posters such as you and Steve seemed to completely dismiss the possibility immediately without any evidence. And is it so impossible for termite CH4 emissions to have changed significantly over time with changes in forestry and land use, building materials and quantities thereof, etc? I’m not sure at what point the impact of such a change would be significant, but I won’t say it’s impossible without further info.

    Oh, and note the word “constant’ in the table higher up.

    Since others in the table are noted as “seasonal,” that “constant” appears to refer to Jan-Dec, not year-to-year, decade-to-decade, century-to-century, etc (which is consistent with Fig 2). It appears that it was approximated as an annual constant for the purposes of a MODEL, but there is no presentation of historical data.

    The fact that the table you referred to notes that the IPCC cited estimates ranging from 10 to 50 Tg/yr would suggest there might just be a significant amount of variability.

    I imagine it’s a wild goose chase. I was just trying to make a point.

  189. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 9:24 AM | Permalink

    #145,… Michael, this sounds like a wild goose chase to me. Examples have a habit of being taken literally so it’s a good idea to be a little more prudent in choosing examples.

  190. welikerocks
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 10:04 AM | Permalink

    #190 and #145
    I just spent the last hour in a wild goose google search myself . All I wanted was a percentage or list of estimations of natural known sources of GHG’s (or by anything other than the human contribtion) and I could not find anything definitive about nature (like the argument we have had on the volcanic contributions), or anything that didn’t mention the (IPCC) except this one about water vapor here:http://tinyurl.com/gtp6z
    From a West Virgina Plant Fossil site. “GW a closer look at the numbers” which I have no clue or not if it’s valid information.

    Not saying the information isn’t somewhere, just it doesn’t readily pop up when you preform a search for it online…which is odd, since I think it should be important.

  191. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 10:26 AM | Permalink

    “which is odd, since I think it should be important. ”

    As should solar changes. There should be a good definitive set of info to correlate directly from Solar output, and climate, if for no other reason than to factor it out because its so obvious of an influence (Though amazingly I’ve had a variety of people at different times call me all manner of names for even mentioning that the Sun’s warmth has an influence on climate).

    Instead of every climate paper saying “First we will subtract the influence of the Sun..” The arm wave and say it doesn’t matter, or that the suns output is constant, etc etc etc. Regardless, If you try to do the same thing you did with a variety of what seems to be basic, foundation research on obvious influences in the debate you instead find nothing, or at best get flooded with a bunch of normal “The end is Nigh” papers that utilize the same terms, but don’t discuss the real issue.

  192. jae
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 10:31 AM | Permalink

    Rocks: Some information is here.

  193. jae
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 10:32 AM | Permalink

    Some info. on methane here.

  194. jae
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 10:39 AM | Permalink

    ET: some info.

  195. jae
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 10:47 AM | Permalink

    What intrigues me is that the solar cycles are well represented in Loehle’s work (which Bender doesn’t like, because of overfitting).

  196. Dane
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 11:00 AM | Permalink

    #193 jae,

    That looks like a pretty decent site, but they don’t list the sources for the volcanic emissions. All the ones that do list sources list the same ones, and they only cover 4-5 volcanos, and only one during an eruptive phase (Pinatubo). I just wish they had more data, it would make me feel better about their estimates.

  197. J Edwards
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 11:10 AM | Permalink

    jae, just read over the Loehle papers. I’ll need to re-read in greater detail, but it appears on the surface that Loehle is using some good signal processing techniques without an a priori assumption of what the data should actually reveal.

  198. welikerocks
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 11:16 AM | Permalink

    Thanks guys. :)

    Re: Solar stuff
    Didn’t they underesitmate the Sun by 30% in some models a year or so ago? Then the model makers came back and said “it doesn’t matter ” one because “30% is no big deal” and it was down played and then two because “it didn’t change the graphs” when corrected or something (which I never saw illustrated myself)

    I remember thinking at the time and my husband too if our income taxes were raised 30% or if someone’s salary was decreased 30% …Most people would be saying something waaay different about a number such as that!

  199. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 11:27 AM | Permalink

    Don’t forget to apply positive feedbacks for said 30% as well.

    Always astounds me when people atrribute feedbacks to CO2, but refuse to do so for any other warming, as if CO2 warming is some specail case.

    Hey It’s 1:30 on the east coast, I think we’ve reached a tipping point on tempratures and it will warm dangerously for the rest of the say.

  200. J Edwards
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 11:32 AM | Permalink

    #199

    I’m not sure about the use of solar in the models, but there has been a lot of in-fighting among the astrophysical crowd over solar variation for the last 10 or so years. Judith Lean is firmly in the Mann camp. RC Willson is mostly middle-of-the road and has differed with Lean several times, and Willson has been a contributor to Hansen’s work. Solanki is probably Lean’s opposite as far as solar forcing goes. Additionally Scafetta & West published a paper which I believe implied exactly what you stated, that the models were underestimating the solar influence by a perceptible margin. If I recall Rasmus Benestad tried to refute the work on the RC page, but came off looking as though he didn’t understand basic math.

  201. welikerocks
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 11:39 AM | Permalink

    This article is from 8-9-06 Physorg.com

    http://tinyurl.com/lznt8

    “Study breaks ice on ancient arctic thaw”
    (No humans involved)

  202. welikerocks
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 11:59 AM | Permalink

    #210 J Edwards, thanks for that too. It’s like a soap opera isn’t it?

  203. KevinUK
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 12:04 PM | Permalink

    Thanks for the link Rocks,

    So it looks like Al Gore might be out by four orders of magnitude as it seems the PETM global warming event took 100,000 years to occur and not just 10? Sound like one hell of a long duration tipping point to me.

    Does anyone have any further links to any reports resulting from the ACEX. What was the level of CO2 (and other GHGs) in the atmosphere at the time compared with today etc. Does anyone have any links which would give an indication of just how much CO2 would be released into the atmosphere if we were to use up all the current estimated reserves of fossil fuels on the planet? Assuming no sequestration into any possible CO2 sinks (invalid assumption I know but), what would the CO2 concentration in the atmosphere be?

    KevinUK

  204. jae
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 12:39 PM | Permalink

    197: did you look at this?

  205. Dane
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 12:44 PM | Permalink

    #205. Link doesn’t work?

  206. jae
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 12:49 PM | Permalink

    sorry, I’ll try again.

  207. Dane
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 3:03 PM | Permalink

    #207 jae,

    It appears they have done a pretty good job with what they have. I would still like to see more direct measurements of volcanic gas emissions though, it would make for a clearer picture of what is really going on. It must be very hard to do or really expensive to get that kind of sampling done? Thanks for the info, best I have seen yet.

  208. welikerocks
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 8:12 PM | Permalink

    Re #204:
    Here’s the link for the ACEX expedition:

    http://tinyurl.com/kgbrp

    302 participants from all over the world (geologists yay!)
    The results are still pending on these pages.

    here’s another news article about it:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/3774051.stm

  209. welikerocks
    Posted Aug 11, 2006 at 9:24 PM | Permalink

    And another cool web page.
    “MMAB Sea Ice Analysis History Page ”

    “Annual animations of sea ice fields”
    The ‘year’ is the ice year, starting October 1 of the listed year and running to September 30 of the following year. Ice year 1995 runs from 1 October 1995 to 30 September 1996. This is done because October 1 is a typical reference date in sea ice work, and because it is near the annual minimum. You’ll be able to watch the growth and then decay of ice through the seasonal cycle.

    http://tinyurl.com/jouyp

    My husband and I were talking at dinner about how people can do images of space using color to show planatery bodies doing what they do and wondering how it could be used for all this..so I went searching and found these animations on sea ice. Interesting huh?

  210. K Goodman
    Posted Aug 12, 2006 at 5:51 AM | Permalink

    This may already been posted – I haven’t been able to keep up with the threads.

    Antarctic Snowfall Snafu Derails Climate Models

    An improved method of measuring Antarctic snowfall has revealed that previous records showing an increase in precipitation are not accurate, even over a half-century. In the August 10 edition of Science magazine, researchers explain that their analysis of ice cores and snow pits revealed that precipitation levels in the Antarctic have in fact remained steady. The upshot of the study is that models assessing climate-change may need to be revised, as they can no longer be deemed accurate.

    linky in text:

    http://www.scienceagogo.com/news/20060711004957data_trunc_sys.shtml

    linky here if it works:

  211. Kenneth Blumenfeld
    Posted Aug 12, 2006 at 3:00 PM | Permalink

    Re: stuff in the #160s and 170s

    Apologies to ET, and WLR by extension. I did it, I own it. My bad.

    Steve B., thanks for putting in for me (I know you didn’t do it for me).

    I agree, largely, with the sentiments of #179; outright mistrust of articles based on who the editor is or has been is extremely cynical.

  212. welikerocks
    Posted Aug 12, 2006 at 4:30 PM | Permalink

    #212 Kenneth, apology accepted of course. :)

    Taking into consideration your gage for extreme cynical behavior considering the content of this site, you and Steve Bloom are going to keep people’s backgrounds or connections out of dialogs and just look at the data right? Ooops. Oh no Steve Bloom already made a comment about Warwick Hughes today so it’s not going to happen I guess!

    I am with SteveM on the Hockey Team methods which I quote:
    “What a pile of garbage this stuff is” So I am cynical of anything connected to it or that champions it!

    Cheers!

  213. ET SidViscous
    Posted Aug 12, 2006 at 7:06 PM | Permalink

    #212

    that’s a very respectable post. Apologies accepted of course

  214. maksimovich
    Posted Aug 12, 2006 at 10:16 PM | Permalink

    Re non anthropogenic variables.

    1 Volcanic temperature oscillations Stenchikov,and Ramaswamy are best used,the failure of modelling to capture ternds to observation is part of the AR 4 review.There are errors in the gcm models that do not reflect the AO temperature oscillations during volcanics(winter warming)

    There are also substantial questions on the increased chlorine discharge during 5-6 magnitude events and the resulting increase of both ozone depletion and T-TP temperature gradients.

    2 Methane termites,magmatic thermogenic discharge,biologic,and archea production.Earthquakes etc.

    There are a substantial number of issues here namely quantification of types,and the measurement quality issues due to ambiguous signatures.Most important is the measurement of output from geothermal events,mud volcanics,and magmatic degassing in the pacific techtonic area.The WCRP has identitifed its level of underatanding as 10%.

    3Aerosols free atmosphere .To carry out such comparisons, modeling has been necessary since the primary products differ for the various instruments, so that direct comparisons are not generally possible. For example, comparison of SAGE extinction coefficients at visible and near infrared wavelengths and HALOE extinctions in the infrared requires assumptions on size distributions and particle composition. Comparisons between SAGE and the number densities obtained with the optical particle counters require an evaluation of the extinctions based on assumptions of the aerosol properties, especially index of refraction.

    The accepted level of undertanding is 10% by the wcrp.A good example of a poor unquantified attribute is the contribution of primary tropospheric particles and material of extraterrestrial origin remains very uncertain. Observations in the lower stratosphere suggest that meteoritic material is present in a significant fraction of stratospheric particles. Observations at and just above the tropopause also show the presence of a peak in the aerosol mass distribution that may indicate the presence of tropospheric particles in the lower stratosphere.

    The effect of insoluble extraterrestrial and tropospheric particles on hydrate and ice formation needs to be determined.Meteoritic material contributes a significant fraction to the total stratospheric aerosol mass. Recent investigations suggest that the flux of meteoritic material amounts tobetween 44 and 260 tons/day with an uncertainty as large as a factor of six. These mass fluxes compare to about 820 tons/day for the overall net mass flux from the troposphere to the stratosphere of all material that is eventually transformed into aerosols during volcanically quiescent times.

    Solar .This is a very complex area that is not effectively covered in the various models,the temprature osciallation of observations is 1.5-5k dependent on latitude ,time of day,time of year,and solar max-min.,Whilst there is a direct relationship of variance from solar max to min the oscillation are both time variable and dependent on cosmic flux/solar flux.

    To summarise there is No model(experiment)that reflect correctly all the relevant endogenous and exogenous variables that show there are not time dependent natural oscillations.

  215. Posted Jul 15, 2007 at 9:54 AM | Permalink

    Job ONE!

    Supply clean coal tech, [foreign aid], for hundreds of thousands of *dirty* coal-gen plants across the globe. Mainlly India, China and the USA. USA power is 50% coal generated.

    Promote moving away from burning petroleum or bio fuels for trans port and campaign for the use of compressed air and battery-pack motor power.

    Start referring to the problem we all face as *World Pollution* and drop the *Warming* diversion.

    Clarify and simplify the message. You are drowning your audience in seas of detail.

    Get all IPCC Egos together and simplify or lose the exercise completely. = TG

  216. Patagon
    Posted Jul 22, 2010 at 7:30 PM | Permalink

    This comment comes 4 years late, but anyway

    There is a beautiful reconstruction of glacier variations in the Alps by Holzhauser and others here: http://www.giub.unibe.ch/klimet/docs/climdyn_2005_Holzhauser_et_al.pdf

    It is interesting what AR3 said about glaciers:

    Glaciers are generally not in equilibrium with the prevailing climatic conditions and a more refined analysis should deal with the different response times of glaciers which involves modelling (Oerlemans et al., 1998). It will take some time before a large number of glaciers are modelled. Nevertheless, work done so far indicates that the response times of glacier lengths shown in Figure 2.18 are in the 10 to 70 year range. Therefore the timing of the onset of glacier retreat implies that a significant global warming is likely to have started not later than the mid-19th century. This conflicts with the Jones et al. (2001) global land instrumental temperature data (Figure 2.1), and the combined hemispheric and global land and marine data (Figure 2.7), where clear warming is not seen until the beginning of the 20th century. This conclusion also conflicts with some (but not all) of the palaeo-temperature reconstructions in Figure 2.21, Section 2.3 , where clear warming, e.g., in the Mann et al. (1999) Northern Hemisphere series, starts at about the same time as in the Jones et al. (2001) data. These discrepancies are currently unexplained.

    (emphasis added)

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 3,295 other followers

%d bloggers like this: