Unthreaded #6

Continuation of Unthreaded #5

327 Comments

  1. Hans Erren
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 8:41 AM | Permalink

    John A writes

    I’m sorry Hans but that makes no sense at all.

    If the ice cores show CO2 rise as a delayed reaction to T rise (and they do every time) and never show T rise as a result of CO2 rise, it means that the real sensitivity of T to CO2 is minute.

    Furthermore, since the theoretic T response to CO2 concentration is logarithmic, then there is no single value for what CO2 doubling is supposed to produce. If CO2 was a lot lower in the past, then the response of T to CO2 rise should be apparent in the ice cores – but that isn’t what happens.

    So the Greenhouse Hypothesis has two problems: a lack of any feedback (since CO2 can continue to rise well after T has already begun to fall and a false physical response that is supposedly imputed to CO2 doubling.

    It certainly does make sense, an outgassing of 10 ppm per Kelvin as observed in the the icecores is absolutely not in conflict with the observed climate sensitivity of 1.3 K/2xCO2 (Shaviv) or even with a postulated sensitivity of 3 K/2xCO2 (preferred by the IPCC). Because the cause of the ice ages is not CO2 but Milankovitch, as is visible in the graph, Even with a high sensitivity, the temperature contribution from CO2 is relatively small during the ice ages.

    see also:

    http://home.casema.nl/errenwijlens/co2/howmuch.htm

  2. bernie
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 8:58 AM | Permalink

    Another potentially dumb question around accuracy/precision of fundamental measures.

    When air bubbles in ice cores are analyzed how do you correct for any chemical reaction of CO2 with the surrounding H20? I assume that all these effects have been modelled under controlled conditions akin to the formation of the ice cores themselves?

  3. george h.
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 9:33 AM | Permalink

    Just got through downloading and watching “The Great Global Warming Swindle”. An excellent documentary which deserves a wider audience. I sincerely hope that a major network or cable outlet will pick it up for broadcast in the US.

  4. Ian S
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 10:22 AM | Permalink

    #1 Could some of the CO2 concentration rise today be explained by a delayed response to the medieval warming period ( that’s about 800 years right).

  5. John A
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 11:05 AM | Permalink

    Re #1

    It certainly does make sense, an outgassing of 10 ppm per Kelvin as observed in the the icecores is absolutely not in conflict with the observed climate sensitivity of 1.3 K/2xCO2 (Shaviv) or even with a postulated sensitivity of 3 K/2xCO2 (preferred by the IPCC).

    Hans, that makes no sense to me.

    An outgassing of 10 ppm CO2/K is fine (albeit delayed by 8 centuries) but it does not follow that there is a climate sensitivity of 1.3 K/2x CO2 because there is no evidence that CO2 causes temperature rise.

    It does not follow at all.

    For example if I drop a stone to the ground, the potential energy of the stone is expressed is terms of mass, gravity and height. As it drops, the stone’s potential energy is converted into kinetic energy in terms of mass and the square of the velocity. When the stone hits the ground, that energy is converted into heat and sound.

    So for the sensitivity of the stone’s energy delivery to the ground could be said to be 9.8 meters per second squared per kilogram per meter. It does not follow that the heat and sound energy has a potential of 1/9.8 kilogram meters per meter per second squared to raise stones. Heat and sound energy applied to a stone do not make them spontaneously leap from the ground.

    Just because temperature rise causes carbon dioxide rise does not imply any sensitivity for the reverse. And I repeat, if that sensitivity of temperature carbon dioxide is logarithmic, then that sensitivity depends upon the level of carbon dioxide, a lower level would have a greater effect. Yet that effect is not found in the ice cores at all.

  6. fFreddy
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 11:47 AM | Permalink

    The Wegman report used to be available from Congress here. It’s not there any more.
    If you go to the Energy & Commerce page here, and search for Wegman, you get no hits.
    Is this normal when there is a change of control in Congress ?

    PS Steve/John – it might be good to change the link on the Multiproxy pdfs page to point to a local version of the report.

  7. John A
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 11:54 AM | Permalink

    Re #6

    No fFred, you’re looking at a new website for the new Majority Congressional Committee. If you go to the minority website and search for Wegman you get plenty of hits. The Wegman report is at http://energycommerce.house.gov/reparchives/108/Hearings/07192006hearing1987/Wegman.pdf

  8. DeWitt Payne
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 12:08 PM | Permalink

    Re: #5

    The fact that CO2 lags temperature is sufficient to prove that CO2 doesn’t cause the temperature to start to swing from glacial to interglacial and back again. However it is not sufficient to prove that CO2 doesn’t contribute to the size of the temperature swing. CO2 is a greenhouse gas and the calculation that doubling of CO2 concentration causes an increase of 4 W/sq.m. in downwelling longwave radiation (and halving a decrease) is pretty solid. However, 4 W/sq.m. is only good for about 0.6 C warming. Even using the 5 fold positive feedback of the IPCC, though, the contribution of CO2 to the temperature swing in the Vostok graph above is only about 2 C or 20% of the total.

  9. John Lang
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 12:52 PM | Permalink

    … the contribution of CO2 to the temperature swing in the Vostok graph above is only about 2 C or 20% of the total

    Extremely important point, DeWitt.

    The temperature change in the above graph is 10C, while the increase in CO2 is only 100 ppm. No theoretical climate change model predicts anything like that impact at all.

    CO2 concentration has already increased by a further 100 ppm in the last century and we have seen very little temperature change at all IMO.

    How can they keep pointing to these charts (Al Gore for example) saying “here’s proof.” In fact, the charts prove the opposite. That the models way off in their assumptions.

  10. richardT
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 1:49 PM | Permalink

    Don’t forget that the temperature estimates from isotopes in the ice-core are of local temperature. The temperature over Antarctica probably changed much more than the global average (polar amplification), certainly there is no evidence that tropical temperatures changed by 10 degrees C.
    This means that the CO2 rise can account for much larger proportion of the glacial-interglacial temperature rise than you are assuming.

  11. DeWitt Payne
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 1:55 PM | Permalink

    Re: #9

    I believe that ice/snow albedo feedback would be more strongly positive at the depths of a glacial period than it is now, so an increase in heat input from whatever source would have a larger effect on average temperature. However, the ice core record shows clearly that the change in insolation from the cyclic changes in the earth’s orbit (Milankovitch cycles) overwhelms the effect of CO2. If you look at the Vostok record for the last 100 years, btw,there has been no change in temperature.

  12. John A
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 2:18 PM | Permalink

    However it is not sufficient to prove that CO2 doesn’t contribute to the size of the temperature swing. CO2 is a greenhouse gas and the calculation that doubling of CO2 concentration causes an increase of 4 W/sq.m. in downwelling longwave radiation (and halving a decrease) is pretty solid. However, 4 W/sq.m. is only good for about 0.6 C warming. Even using the 5 fold positive feedback of the IPCC, though, the contribution of CO2 to the temperature swing in the Vostok graph above is only about 2 C or 20% of the total.

    DeWitt, I’m starting to lose patience which is a bad sign for me. Where is the evidence that carbon dioxide rise causes temperature rise? Where is the evidence that carbon dioxide doubling is a fixed figure and is that high?

    I keep repeating the same questions and getting non sequiturs for answers.

  13. Jim Edwards
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 2:28 PM | Permalink

    Re: the 600,000+ yr Temp v CO2 record – proposed data analysis

    The RealClimate position seems to be that the first 800 years [more or less] of warming is concedingly non-CO2 [solar], but the CO2 that is released takes over [pos feed] and produces the majority of the warming afterwards in each cycle.

    Aside from the fact that Occam’s Razor would tend to argue against this more complex model proposed by Team members, the Team’s model only addresses initiation of the cycle, not the resolution.

    The non-CO2 initiating force [i.e. - solar] has to exist at least through the maximum, because temperature starts to precipitously drop while CO2 is still increasing. This means that either the background force was still existent and disappeared -or- there is some major missing neg feedback.

    So we have proxy recordings of two main forcings partially overlapped for the last 600,000+ years.

    Why not graph the first derivative of the Temp against the CO2 concentration and compare from cycle to cycle over the whole historical record ?

    If the RealClimate crowd is right, one would expect to see major accelerations and decelerations in the rate of Temp change highly correlated to CO2 concentration – assuming, of course, that CO2 is the primary driver of Temp and the irregular underlying forcing is an initiator only.

  14. paul m
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 3:20 PM | Permalink

    RE VARIOUS ABOVE

    POLITICS

    I know this is an apolitical site but AGW is now all about politics and despite some hopeful suggestions above that the Channel 4 programme will mark a turning point I’m not so sure. First, just a comment on Mrs Thatcher, CO2 and the Miners’ strike. It was news to me that Mrs T can claim the credit for the start of the AGW hysteria and that the UK initiated the IPCC and shows the truth of the Confucion warning of being careful of what you wish for. John Brignell, in his books and at his website Numberwatch also blames Mrs T for starting the rot in British Universities through centralisation and making them dependent on government funding. But then above,( thread 5) Arthur Scargill was described as naive, when in fact he was a firebrand socialist who though it was his right to bring down the government. Arthur versus Margaret – no contest. Yes it could have been handled better but the point was that the likes of Scargill could not be allowed to hold the country to ransom.

    In the past week, we have had Lord Rees of Ludlow, the chairman of the Royal Society no less saying that the IPCC had ‘looked at all the evidence including solar irradiance’. In the recent past, he has also said that the ‘science is decided’ and such like. Then today in the Daily Telegraph we have Dr Richard Pike, CEO of the Royal Society of Chemistry saying, in response to the ‘Great Climate Change Swindle’

    “our own profession is proud of the special scrutiny that the peer review process engenders; it would be useful to know if the judgements of those in programmes such as this have been similarly examined by colleagues before they were projected to the public”

    Clearly, Pike knows nothing about the standing of Michaels, Singer, Lindtzen et al and supports the peer review process that gave the Hockey Stick life. Every day now we have reports blaming virtually everything on AGW. We have a climate change bill imminent in the UK and the useless EU has just promulgated some not too taxing CO2 reduction targets – way off into the future of course – that will be backed by legislation. Soon incandescent light bulbs will be banned by EU dictat. Our media including previously ‘skeptical’ papers like the Telegraph and Spectator just report the garbage without challenge and the BBC, well words fail me.

    I could go on but am sure that you want to get back to the science.

    Perhaps we need to form some form of not for profit body that could fund better research by the likes of Steve M. If anyone in the UK is interested, they are welcome to mail me at pmaynard@pmaynard.plus.com

    Paul m

  15. Hans Erren
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 3:26 PM | Permalink

    re 12:

    DeWitt, I’m starting to lose patience which is a bad sign for me. Where is the evidence that carbon dioxide rise causes temperature rise? Where is the evidence that carbon dioxide doubling is a fixed figure and is that high?

    Physics?
    Read Nir Shaviv’s theoretical and empirical evidence for a climate sensitivity of 1.3 K/2xCO2.

    On Climate Sensitivity and why it is probably small

  16. Kit
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 3:31 PM | Permalink

    John A you may want to look at this comment about you:

  17. Kit
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 3:33 PM | Permalink

    Whoops! Try the link again:

    Link

  18. Kit
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 3:36 PM | Permalink

    John A you may want to look at this comment about you:

    Link

  19. Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 3:54 PM | Permalink

    The Great Global Warming Swindle video from Channel 4 is here! Watch:

    http://www.torrentspy.com/torrent/1093015/the_great_global_warming_swindle_XviD

  20. DeWitt Payne
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 3:55 PM | Permalink

    Re: #12

    Well, there’s the fact that the surface temperature of the earth is about 33 K warmer (288K instead of 255 K) than it would be if there were no CO2 and water vapor in the atomosphere. This is basic phyics, the Stefan-Boltzman radiation law with an average albedo of 0.3 and a solar constant of 1368 W/sq.m (divide by 4 because the earth is a sphere so 342 W/sq.m over the whole surface of the earth on average). Water vapor alone is insufficient to account for all of this rise (MODTRAN calculations, e.g.). This is all basic chemistry and physics. It is unassailable. The earth’s surface radiates heat in the infra-red spectrum, mostly between 5 and 25 micrometers. Some heat is also transferred to the atmosphere by convection (think wind) and evaporation of water. A lot (about 90%) of the radiation from the surface is absorbed by water vapor and CO2 in the atmosphere, (mostly water vapor at low altitude, with increasing contribution from CO2 at higher altitude) warming the atmosphere which then radiates in all directions including back to the surface. This slows down heat transfer from the surface back to space compared to direct radiation. Slow heat transfer is the definition of insulation and results in a warmer than expected surface, just like in a greenhouse where the glass slows convective heat transfer to the outside atmosphere.

    The details of why CO2 is more important that would seem from its concentration relative to water vapor have to do with the lessening of collisional broadening of IR absorption lines of CO2 and water vapor with altitude as the pressure and temperature decline, so they no longer overlap as much and are not saturated (i.e. absorb 100% of the radiation). Also, the relative contribution of carbon dioxide increases with altitude because water vapor decreases (low temperature, less water) while CO2 remains constant. This means that an increase in CO2 must cause the altitude where the atmospheric temperature equals the black body temperature to rise. Then, with a constant lapse rate (the rate at which temperature decreases with altitude determined largely by pure thermodynamics, adiabatic expansion, nearly unassailable) the temperature of the atmosphere below that level goes up. Where I have problems with the warmers is the actual climate sensitivity to a doubling of CO2. The first order effect of doubling is about 4 W/sq. m. or 0.6 C (note that about half of that, 1.6 W/sq. m., has already happened). They then assume that all feedbacks are positive and large leading to an expected rise of 3 C. IIRC all the climate models have clouds being a positive feedback (more clouds = warmer) while actual measurements are more consistent with clouds being a negative feedback (more clouds = cooler). I remain unconvinced that the net effect of all feedbacks is that large and believe the the sensitivity to doubling CO2 is approximately 1 C +/- 0.5.

  21. DeWitt Payne
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 4:30 PM | Permalink

    Re: #15

    I think Shaviv’s theoretical sensitivity calculation from the Stefan-Boltzman law in your link applies only to solar radiative forcing at the altitude where the atmosphere is at the grey body temperature. So his S is 239 W/sq.m. I’m using Trenbeth’s figure of 490 Watts total (long and short wave) absorbed down-welling radiation at the earth’s surface, and assuming the radiative forcing from doubling CO2 is long wave and that the long wave albedo of the surface is 0.00. Then because the S I use is larger relative to delta S, delta T is smaller. I do think he has a valid point that the lower scatter in empirical sensitivy estimates by including a cloud/cosmic ray contribution lends credence to the cloud/cosmic ray hypothesis.

  22. John A
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 5:11 PM | Permalink

    Re: #15

    Hans, Nir Shaviv has made the same mistake of assuming the reversability of carbon dioxide and temperature sensitivities.

    DeWitt:

    Well, there’s the fact that the surface temperature of the earth is about 33 K warmer (288K instead of 255 K) than it would be if there were no CO2 and water vapor in the atomosphere.

    Yes.

    This is basic phyics, the Stefan-Boltzman radiation law with an average albedo of 0.3 and a solar constant of 1368 W/sq.m (divide by 4 because the earth is a sphere so 342 W/sq.m over the whole surface of the earth on average). Water vapor alone is insufficient to account for all of this rise (MODTRAN calculations, e.g.). This is all basic chemistry and physics. It is unassailable.

    Unfortunately that basic chemistry and physics doesn’t include clouds.

    The earth’s surface radiates heat in the infra-red spectrum, mostly between 5 and 25 micrometers. Some heat is also transferred to the atmosphere by convection (think wind) and evaporation of water.

    Here’s where the problem lies – most of the Earth’s surface is ocean, which is a very big infrared absorber. You’re making an assumption too far.

    A lot (about 90%) of the radiation from the surface is absorbed by water vapor and CO2 in the atmosphere, (mostly water vapor at low altitude, with increasing contribution from CO2 at higher altitude) warming the atmosphere which then radiates in all directions including back to the surface.

    Another guess. The dominant heat transport is convective, not radiative. Most of that energy is transferred into fluid motion of the atmosphere and the oceans.

    This slows down heat transfer from the surface back to space compared to direct radiation. Slow heat transfer is the definition of insulation and results in a warmer than expected surface, just like in a greenhouse where the glass slows convective heat transfer to the outside atmosphere.

    Actually that’s exactly NOT like a greenhouse. Greenhouses don’t warm primarily because of slowing heat transfer through the glass, but by suppressing convection.

    The “Greenhouse Effect” in the atmosphere may capture a little more heat in the downwelling radiation but it has no effect on convective energy transport, which is the dominant mode of heat transfer (a classic example would be a hurricane).

    So the major assumptions of your “basic physics” are not present. The surface of the planet is mostly dark to infrared radiation, there is no treatment of clouds which both radiate heat and block heat, the “greenhouse effect” doesn’t work like a greenhouse, and the dominant mode of heat transport in the ocean/atmosphere system is ignored.

    Ironically, much of what you’ve said would apply to the planet Venus, which is very nearly an equilibrium system. But we don’t live there.

  23. Hans Erren
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 5:47 PM | Permalink

    Re: #22

    Hans, Nir Shaviv has made the same mistake of assuming the reversability of carbon dioxide and temperature sensitivities.

    I can’t see why that would be a mistake. The beauty of Shaviv’s empirical evidence is that is doesn’t make a priori assumptions about feedbacks.

  24. DeWitt Payne
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 6:09 PM | Permalink

    Re: 22

    Bodies that aren’t perfectly reflective with temperatures above absolute zero, including the ocean, absorb and emit radiation from their surfaces. The fact that absorbtion is 100% means by definition that emissivity is also 100%. Basic physics again, not an assumption. I have no reason to doubt Kiehl and Trenberth’s energy balance calculations, which include the effect of clouds on absorption, emission and reflection, published in BAMS and can be found here. If you can cite references that disprove them, as opposed to gut feelings, please do. In that paper, convective heat transfer from the surface of the earth to the atmosphere is 24 W/sq.m. or about 5% of the total energy budget. Radiative transfer to the atmosphere and space, OTOH, is 391 W/sq.m. Again, this is basic Stefan-Boltzman (S=5.67E-08*T^4) with a surface temperature of 288 K.

    just like in a greenhouse where the glass slows convective heat transfer to the outside atmosphere

    And how is this different than what you said?

    Never mind, I give up. Believe what you want.

  25. Jos Verhulst
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 6:10 PM | Permalink

    Comment on AGW by a teacher:

    http://activistteacher.blogspot.com/2007/02/global-warming-truth-or-dare.html

  26. Nicholas
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 6:16 PM | Permalink

    I think what JohnA is saying is that if you DO include feedback, the actual reaction to increased CO2 could be somewhat smaller than “simple” models allude to. In fact, if you have a 100% negative feedback from, say, clouds (probably don’t have anything of that magnitude, but I guess it isn’t totally impossible, or at least could be very large if not 100%), then the actual effect on a real climate could be much smaller than that predicted even by the basic physics, let alone the big-positive-feedback GCMs.

    Idso’s experiments certainly measured a low sensitivity (IIRC, 0.1C/+1W/m^2, 0.4C/2xCO2?), which suggests there are negative feedbacks at play.

    To be honest, I trust any actual measurement/analysis of the climate more than I trust any theory, since you can always forget to include additional (complex) factors in a theory, whereas the climate is the real deal. This is not to say that basic “greenhouse” theory is wrong, but rather that it fails to take more complex processes into account which can redistribute heat around the atmosphere and surface.

  27. John Baltutis
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 8:00 PM | Permalink

    The Great Global Warming Swindle is available here:

  28. Loki on the run
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 8:34 PM | Permalink

    Warming to Failure

    claims that models do not take into account the heat removal effect of precipitation.

  29. John Creighton
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 9:51 PM | Permalink

    Has anyone looked at this yet:

    http://stephenschneider.stanford.edu/Publications/PDF_Papers/DamonLaut2004.pdf

    I found it here:

    http://forums.canadiancontent.net/science-environment/59257-great-global-warming-myth.html?highlight=solar

  30. Willis Eschenbach
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 10:01 PM | Permalink

    Dewitt, you say above:

    The first order effect of doubling is about 4 W/sq. m. or 0.6 C

    I have asked elsewhere, and I now ask here … how is the 3.7 W/m2 effect of CO2 doubling established? I ask, because with a two shell radiation balance model (my model is available here) and reasonable assumptions for absorption, an additional 10.8 W/m2 must be absorbed in the troposphere in order for the TOA forcing to change by 3.7 W/m2 … how does that figure into the calculation of the 3.7 W/m2 figure?

    Anybody know?

    Many thanks for any answers,

    w.

  31. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 10:07 PM | Permalink

    The number of 4 wm-2 comes originally from Ramanathan in the 1970s and is mentioned in the Charney Report of 1979 – see reference there. The original Ramanathan articles are pretty interesting.

  32. Pat Frank
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 10:10 PM | Permalink

    I just watched the Channel 4 program Lubos linked in #19. It does a good job fostering public understanding that there is no scientific case for AGW. All the physical elements discussed here at ClimateAudit are included. Neither Steve nor Ross is mentioned, though, but Tim Ball comes across well. Tim mentions having received death-threats for his public stand, which is not surprising but very shameful anyway. The program makes a pretty good case for a solar climate driver, and includes footage interviewing Nir Shaviv.

    Anyway, while watching the section discussing ice cores and the ~800 year lag of temperature by CO2, it suddenly occurred to me to wonder whether some of the recent atmospheric CO2 increase is actually a response to the Medieval Warm Period. The timing is just about right. That is, if the MWP had not happened, could the world oceans have just absorbed all of the CO2 we are emitting, instead of just half of it?

    I wonder if that could be estimated on the basis of the empirical Vostok CO2-lags-T results plus some sort of global ocean solubility calculation. Could it be that the 20th century rise of atmospheric CO2, in the context of the Vostok results, is a proof that the MWP was a global phenomenon? Could the 20th century CO2 rise be an empirical disproof of the hockey stick?

  33. Willis Eschenbach
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 10:14 PM | Permalink

    DeWitt, thanks for your interesting post. You say:

    I have no reason to doubt Kiehl and Trenberth’s energy balance calculations, which include the effect of clouds on absorption, emission and reflection, published in BAMS and can be found here. If you can cite references that disprove them, as opposed to gut feelings, please do. In that paper, convective heat transfer from the surface of the earth to the atmosphere is 24 W/sq.m. or about 5% of the total energy budget. Radiative transfer to the atmosphere and space, OTOH, is 391 W/sq.m. Again, this is basic Stefan-Boltzman (S=5.67E-08*T^4) with a surface temperature of 288 K.

    I doubt, not the sizes of the flows in the Kiehl/Trenberth budget, but I doubt the physical layout of their explanation. If you look at their drawing, you will note that the atmosphere is shown as emitting much more radiation downward (324 W/m2) than upward (195 W/m2) … do you have a physical explanation for how that can happen?

    In addition, it is very necessary to distinguish between the underlying size of the flows due to losses (24 W/m2 for sensible heat and 78 W/m2 for latent heat), which are a small percentage of total upwelling radiation, and the respective contributions to a change (‘ˆ†) in upwelling energy. The losses (sensible and latent) are generally thought to be about 75% of the total ‘ˆ†W.

    Finally, theory is not too useful in climate, because of our poor understanding of the feedbacks in the natural system. For example, the models all assume that decreasing snow and ice cover in the Arctic leads to increased absorption of energy, due to reduced ice albedo. In reality, however, recent NASA measurements show that the decreased ice albedo is almost exactly balanced by increased cloud albedo … which is why measurement is always preferable to theory in poorly understood complex systems.

    w.

  34. Willis Eschenbach
    Posted Mar 10, 2007 at 10:16 PM | Permalink

    Thanks, Steve, I’ll check out Ramanathan. I suspect that the number 3.7 is for simple absorption, which in a two-shell greenhouse does not translate directly to a TOA change.

    w.

  35. Pat Frank
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 1:16 AM | Permalink

    #30, 34 — Willis, if you look at G. Myhre, et al., (1998) New estimates of radiative forcing due to well-mixed greenhouse gasesGeophys. Res. Lett. 25(14), 2715-2718, Table 3, you’ll find the equation for CO2 forcing, which is: change in forcing = dF = 5.35*ln(C/Co) where “Co” is the reference level of CO2 and “C” is the new level of CO2, all concentrations in ppmv.

    According to that equation, if Co is set to 1.0, then the forcing for 285 ppmv of CO2 is 30.25 Wm^-2 and for 570 ppmv is 33.96 Wm^-2. So the change in forcing for doubled CO2 is about 3.7 Wm^-2. It’s that simple.

    That was the equation I used when comparing direct greenhouse forcing temperature projections with 10 GCM outputs from LLNL’s Climate Model Intercomparison Project and two GFDL projections. The projections were virtually the same. For all their complexity, GCMs apparently do little more than project pure unmitigated greenhouse warming as calculated by that equation. You can find the analysis and plots on ClimateAudit here.

  36. Pat Frank
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 1:26 AM | Permalink

    35 — I forgot to add, see also the plot in post 81 at the above link.

  37. Pat Frank
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 1:57 AM | Permalink

    #2 — bernie, your question is right on the money. So far as I can tell, there has been little work on the chemistry of CO2 under deep ice conditions. And the problem is much more complicated then just reaction with water. For one thing, deep glacial ice hasn’t any visible CO2 bubbles. Pressure has caused any frozen bubbles to collapse. The ice looks pretty uniform. The CO2 comes out when the ice is crushed.

    But more than that, enough UV radiation penetrates ice so that over long times there is radical chemistry that can affect the CO2. There are organics in ice like formate and formaldehyde that can enter into these reactions by producing hydrogen atoms, for example. Deep ice also has a network of cracks filled with hypersaline water, that can also have significant concentrations of sulfuric acid. These also can promote reactions and provide diffusion channels for trapped soluble gasses, such as CO2. Calcium trapped in deep ice can precipitate CO2 as carbonate. Deep ice can also contain living bacteria that engage in slow respiration, affecting CO2 and organic concentrations.

    All of this is rather mysterious, and there is some but not enough discussion in published ice core work on the effects of all this on ice core CO2 levels. Most workers seem to take CO2 trapped in ice as mostly analogous to argon trapped in granite. I.e., deep glacial ice is assumed to be a geologically closed matrix after it converts from firn ice.

    Zbigniew Jaworowski discusses some of this in published testimony before Congress here. He also pubished a very strong critique of ice core CO2 work in Ancient Atmosphere — Validity of Ice Records 1994 Environmental Science and Pollution Research 1(3) 161-171. So far as I know, few of his concerns have been addressed even 13 years later.

  38. Willis Eschenbach
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 3:46 AM | Permalink

    Pat F., thank you for your detailed answer. However, my question was not the size of the claimed change in forcing for a doubling of CO2, but exactly how that size (3.7 W/m2 per doubling) was calculated.

    The question arose because of my experimentation with my simple radiation balance model (available here). One of the unexpected things I found out while playing with the model is that you have to change the absorption quite a bit for the top of atmosphere (TOA) downwelling longwave radiation (DLR) to change by 3.7 watts. In order for the TOA DLR to change that much, the absorption of upwelling surface radiation in the troposphere has to increase by over 10 W/m2.

    This led me to the question of how the number 3.7 W/m2 per CO2 doubling was obtained. Was it the total change in absorption (ignoring re-radiation) in a hypothetical column of air, or what? At Steve M.’s suggestion, I’ve looked at the early papers by Ramanathan, and it appears that what they are measuring are the changes based on absorption in a single atmospheric layer model. As I have explained elsewhere, a single atmospheric layer model does not provide enough increase in surface temperature to be a valid representation of the Earth’s situation. To get enough energy to replicate the conditions on Earth, a double layer model is necessary.

    One of the results of having to use a double layer model is that for a given change in the TOA DLR, the change at the surface is smaller than with a single layer model. This is because the outer (stratospheric) layer’s downward radiation is partially absorbed by the inner (tropospheric) layer. If the absorption of both layers is increased, more of the TOA DLR is absorbed in the troposphere, and does not directly heat the surface.

    Finally, I found it quite fascinating that Ramanathan says that if we include the overlap of the H20 and CO2 absorption, it makes a huge difference in the temperature change at the surface. Calculated on CO2 alone, he says a doubling of CO2 alone will cause a surface increase of 6.8 – 7.2 W/m2, and a TOA forcing change of 4.9 – 5.3 W/m2. On the other hand, when the overlap of CO2 and H20 is considered, the TOA DLR change drops to 3.65 – 3.84 W/m2 (about the IPCC figure), but the increase in surface forcing drops to only 0.26 – 0.5 W/m2 …

    So, still more questions than answers. I see no easy way to answer the question experimentally. It does seem that Ramanathan is using a simple, one layer model to calculate his numbers for CO2 doubling, which makes me very uneasy about the relevance of his results. I suspect that this may be the reason for the very large disparity between the climate sensitivity used by the IPCC (somewhere around 0.6 – 1.2°C per W/m2), and that observed by e.g. Idso’s “natural experiments” (0.1 – 0.2°C per W/m2). My radiation balance model favors the latter, giving a result of 0.2°C per W/m2.

    All the best,

    w.

  39. richardT
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 4:56 AM | Permalink

    #37
    Most measurements of CO2 in ice cores are now done in Antarctic ice as they have substantially lower dust content than in Greenland, so problems of organic acids reacting with carbonates are vastly reduced.

    The claims of Jaworowski regarding the quality of the ice core CO2 records have been discussed by Oeschger (1994), “Z. Jaworowski: Ancient Atmosphere – Validity of Ice Records ESPR 1 (3) 161-171 (1994)”, Environ. Sci. & Pollut. Res. 2: 61-62.
    Jaworowski conflates the problems experienced with the first few attempts to reconstruct CO2 history with current practice.

  40. Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 5:57 AM | Permalink

    Concerning the Swindle documentary, #19:

    Dear Pat Frank #32, I personally believe that the concentration has been below 300 ppm for tens of thousands of years, so I would find it unlikely that the 380 ppm today is a natural result of MWP, especially if the observed CO2 growth agrees with the amount of carbon that we’re adding to the system.

    Yes, I think you are right that they should have discussed the hockey stick because it is kind of important. I still view the hockey stick graph as the most direct way anyone has ever had to argue that the recent climate change was predominantly man-made except that this way was flawed.

    There are some errors in the movie – like the statement that the volcanoes emit annually more CO2 than industry. That’s clearly not the case – it’s 50 times less or so. Just cummulatively, the volcanoes have contributes much more than we did in the last millenia etc.

  41. T J Olson
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 6:29 AM | Permalink

    Powerful. Stunning.

    I was able to view “The Great Global Warming Swindle” here.
    It allows you to conveniently email the iink with comments to friends and local media outlets.

    QUESTION: I thought to programme was three hours – not the 1 hour 15 minutes listed at this site. Anyone know why that is? THANKS!

  42. 2br02b
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 6:41 AM | Permalink

    Here’s a oddity. I don’t know if anyone else has commented on this but, according to the US Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center (which used by IPCC as part of their data set) per capita anthropogenic CO2 (that is total anthropogenic CO2 divided by world population) grew steadity from at least 1950 until about the early 1970s or so, from which time is has fluctuated around a consistant value, showing no significany trend, either to grow or to shrink.

    This is clearly seen in the “Global per capita CO2 emission estimates” chart at

    http://cdiac.ornl.gov/trends/emis/glo.htm

    but what makes this even odder is that the period from 1950 to the early 1970s pretty much coincides with the 1940 to 1975 period of global temperatures falling back or at least not increasing.

    Could this mean that increased per capita CO2 actually cools the atmosphere? :-)

    It would seem to me that it is difficult to believe that over the course of the last 30 years or so, when indistrialisation has spread out from the West into large parts of the rest of the world–not least China–per capita CO2 has not grown. In fact, I would say it is quite unbelievable.

    Three possible explainations:

    (1) World anthropogenic CO2 data is crap.
    (2) World population data is crap.
    (3) Both sets of data are crap.

    In whichever case, one of the pillars of the anthropogenic global warming theory would seem to have developed a serious structural defect.

    Taken at face value, this would suggest there is no connection between per capita CO2 and global warming…?

    Anyone else got a better explaination?

  43. DocMartyn
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 6:57 AM | Permalink

    A question for DeWitt Payne

    “Also, the relative contribution of carbon dioxide increases with altitude because water vapor decreases (low temperature, less water) while CO2 remains constant. This means that an increase in CO2 must cause the altitude where the atmospheric temperature equals the black body temperature to rise.”

    This would seem to be true, but there is a problem. As you state, as the altitude increase, the air pressure, temperature and the water vapor content all drop, and so the relitive contribution of CO2 IR absorbtion increases.
    HOWEVER, as the temperature drops, so the IR spectrum of CO2 changes. The absorbtion peaks sharpen, and the line broardened spectrum observed a ground level disappears. At high altitudes the ability of CO2 to absorbe, decreases at the wings, and the only absorbtion is at the sharpe peaks. These peaks are fully saturated. So as the temp goes down, so does the overall absorbance, across the full IR spectrum.

  44. Dave Dardinger
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 7:22 AM | Permalink

    re: #42

    Anyone else got a better explaination?

    Spurious correlation. If you break the data into specific areas, etc. you’ll find that first world countries are becoming more efficient and developing countries are using more energy. We’ve just been in a stretch where the two balance each other off when total population is used as a basis. Extrapolate the trends in each area, allowing for likely population changes and you’ll see things won’t stay in the present regime for much longer.

  45. John Lang
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 7:58 AM | Permalink

    For Willis and others with more experience in the physics of CO2 IR capture and downwelling, it seems to me that this is the science area we really need to “settle”, if the debate surrounding global warming can move to a factual basis.

    What we have now is almost “tribal” argument. My side says this and here is a chart proving it. My side says the opposite and here is a chart proving your chart is wrong. It is camp against camp. It is human bonding in a group against another group. It is political party against the other party. It is sports team against rival team.

    And humans like for their side of a dispute to be right and they are willing to distort all manner of facts just to ensure their side comes out on top. The global warming debate clearly has this tribal feature.

    In my mind, the tribal debate will never end. The AGW’ers will just keep distorting the record until noone knows what is really going on. The global warming is not proven crowd will keep getting called “deniers” for decades to come.

    But what it really comes down to, is the science of CO2 IR absorption. The AGW’ers will eventually back off if a case can be proved that CO2 is not quite the greenhouse gas that was originally thought based on the proven physics.

    From what I have read, I do not see the science as settled. In fact, I see precious little study being done on what the REAL numbers are. We have studies from the 1900s (obviously inaccurate due to the lack of good equipment and scientific understanding), we have studies from the 1930s, 60s and early 80s, all supplanted by later studies refining some aspect of the physics.

    Most recently, we have Ramanthan and Idso but none of these studies appear to me to be solid enough basic science experiment-based proof to say anything about CO2 IR aborption beyond just educated guesses. The CGM models attempt to answer the complex physics problems but these are just assumption-based computer models.

    We need a real proven case on what the facts of CO2 IR absorption really is. The person that proves this case will settle the science.

    If it is already proven, we and the AGW’ers need to have that science pushed in our faces 24 hours a day until we accept it and move on.

  46. Paul Linsay
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 8:12 AM | Permalink

    #38, Willis. I took a quick look at your model. What makes me uneasy, and it’s not your fault, is that there are no errors on any of the fluxes, reflectances, and absorbances. I’d be surprised if many of these numbers are known to even 5%. How do errors propagate and affect the conclusions?

  47. george h.
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 9:13 AM | Permalink

    Question.

    In the RealChurch response to “Swindle” Gavin et. al make the following claim:

    “the 40-70 cooling type period is readily explained, in that the GCMs are quite happy to reproduce it, as largely caused by sulphate aerosols. ”

    They are implying, I guess, that for this period of global cooling, aerosols acted to mask an otherwise-visible CO2 temperature forcing. What evidence exists to show that this is true, and why was it not in play before 1930 or after the 70’s?

  48. Paul Linsay
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 10:11 AM | Permalink

    #47, since you’re lurking over at RC, ask them to provide references to measurements of the sulphate aerosols from 1940-1970. Please report back if you get an answer with real data.

  49. 2br02b
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 11:04 AM | Permalink

    Re: #42|

    Spurious correlation

    Sorry, this is not supported by the data.

    At http://cdiac.ornl.gov/trends/emis/em_cont.htm the data is broken down into specific areas.

    It seems clear from inspection of the charts that things do not pan out as you suggest and indeed as one might expect.

    There is a lot of numerical data there to use as the basis of a much more thorough analysis, which I will do. Meanwhile I am reporting on what seems obvious from the charts only.

  50. Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 11:08 AM | Permalink

    #47 They can explain everything. Reminds me of Popper’s

    These theories appear to be able to explain practically everything that happened within the fields to which they referred. The study of any of them seemed to have the effect of an intellectual conversion or revelation, open your eyes to a new truth hidden from those not yet initiated. Once your eyes were thus opened you saw confirmed instances everywhere: the world was full of verifications of the theory. Whatever happened always confirmed it.

  51. John Lang
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 11:29 AM | Permalink

    In terms of the 1940 to 1975 cooling, that fact has already been re-written out of temperature record so I don’t know why they want to blame it on sulphate aerosols now.

    The cooling event was almost 0.8C between 1940 and 1975 …

    … while now it appears as a small 0.2C reduction from 1940 to 1950 only.

    And sulphate cooling was not a big issue between 1940 and 1950 so how can they use that explanation now.

    Can you say “We must get rid the Medieval Warm Period” and we must get rid of the cooling event from 1940 to 1975 and …

  52. johnmccall
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 11:59 AM | Permalink

    re: 51 … identical links?

  53. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 12:09 PM | Permalink

    Re #39 **The claims of Jaworowski regarding the quality of the ice core CO2 records have been discussed by Oeschger (1994), “Z. Jaworowski: Ancient Atmosphere – Validity of Ice Records ESPR 1 (3) 161-171 (1994)”, Environ. Sci. & Pollut. Res. 2: 61-62.
    Jaworowski conflates the problems experienced with the first few attempts to reconstruct CO2 history with current practice.**
    I am not entirely convinced by the response of Oeschger to Jaworowski in that reference. That is not saying that I agree with Jaworowski. There are several authors that Jaworowski references that are not available on the internet which I would like to read yet. Most of Oeschger’s comments are not backed by data, but sound more like an AGW opinion. He asks a question ” Why should there be such a drastic increase of CO2 and CH4 in the middle of the 19th century?” Right, a good question. He uses a similar statement at the end “How can so many be wrong?” Well we are asking that of the hockey stick. So, more work needs to be done.

  54. Steve Reynolds
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 12:19 PM | Permalink

    Re 40 and 51:

    A commenter over at RC made this comparison:

    of the temperature record with the graph shown in the Swindle documentary. Does anyone know exactly where documentary graph came from?

  55. John Lang
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 12:53 PM | Permalink

    On #51, sorry about the screwed up links. Here they are again.

  56. Jos Verhulst
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 1:44 PM | Permalink

    In Belgium, there has been a row of sorts because a socialist minister, André Flahaut, traveled by an army helicopter from Brussels to Hasselt (90 km) to go watch the well-known film “An Inconvenient Truth”.
    http://www.7sur7.be/hlns/cache/fr/det/art_400649.html?wt.bron=hlnRPArtikels
    http://www.rtl.be/article/70845.aspx?lg=1

  57. Pat Frank
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 1:56 PM | Permalink

    #38 — Willis, Myhre ea 1998 refer to a “broad band model (BBM) and a “narrow band model (NBM) as their modes of calculation. These models in turn are discussed in G. Myhre & F. Stordal “Role of spatial and temporal variations in the computation of radiative forcing and GWPJ. Geophys. Res. 102(D10) 11,181’€”11,200, 1997. The equation I gave above is the one given in M. ea 1998, as derived from the models in M&S 1997.

    Here’s the abstract for the 1997 paper:
    +++++++++++++++++++++++

    Abstract:
    “We investigate the role of spatial and temporal resolution for estimation of radiative forcing due to SF6 and a range of halocarbons as well as CO2. A broadband model, which is used in the calculations, is described. Some comparative calculations have also been performed with a line-by-line model. The most detailed horizontal resolution used is 2.5°à—2.5° in latitude and longitude. A variety of resolutions up to global averages are investigated. The effects of variations on diurnal, monthly, and seasonal scales are also studied. Spatial and temporal variation in the radiative forcing due to variations in temperature, humidity, and cloudiness has been taken into account on the basis of observed data. Inaccuracies due to temporal variations are small in all cases (up to about 1%). Deviations in forcings due to spatial averaging are also small (less than 1%) as long as latitudinal variations are resolved, but significant inaccuracies are introduced when global averaged conditions are assumed. The forcing due to CO2 responds somewhat differently to spatial averaging compared to SF6 and the halocarbons, so global warming potential (GWP) values for SF6 and halocarbons with CO2 as a reference gas are less accurate. Resolution of latitudinal variations in input parameters is shown to increase the accuracy of the GWP values for SF6 and the halocarbons. The choice of tropopause level, where radiative forcing is determined, is shown to be crucial, with differences up to 10% in the global average radiative forcing for different assumptions.”
    +++++++++++++++++++++++

    I’ve not looked at this paper yet, but Ramanathan’s work is cited extensively. I’d send it to you through JohnA except that it’s 52.6 MB in size because of several color figures. However, if JohnA lets me know that his server is set to accept email files that size, I’ll send it along for you. Presumably that paper should answer your questions about the source of the CO2 forcing value.

  58. Willis Eschenbach
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 2:13 PM | Permalink

    Paul L., thank you for your response. You say:

    #38, Willis. I took a quick look at your model. What makes me uneasy, and it’s not your fault, is that there are no errors on any of the fluxes, reflectances, and absorbances. I’d be surprised if many of these numbers are known to even 5%. How do errors propagate and affect the conclusions?

    I also would be surprised if the underlying numbers were known to 5%, which should tell us something about the state of climate science … in any case, the model allows you to do a sensitivity analysis of the “if I increase this variable a bit, what happens?” variety.

    All the best,

    w.

  59. Pat Frank
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 2:24 PM | Permalink

    #39 — richardT, I just now read Oeschger’s 1994 reply to Jaworowski’s Ancient Atmosphere’s paper. Thank-you for the reference. Unfortunately Oeschger’s reply is more like a complaint because he included no citations to the literature to support his points. I’ll do a little searching on his name and see what comes up.

    On the other hand, Oeschger criticises Jaworowski for shifting the Siple core result back 100 years on the assumption that the ice and the CO2 are of the same age. But Oeschger lets it be known by the way he replies that the Siple dome CO2 was shifted up 100 years because high CO2 in the 19th century wasn’t a believable result and besides then Siple lined up very nicely with modern Mona Loa measurements. This rationale doesn’t seem very valid, either.

    What’s very curious is that the reconstructed 19th century CO2 measurements done by Ernst-Georg Beck indeed show some very high spikes in atmospheric CO2 during the 19th century, possibly validating Jaworowski. See this unofficial document: http://www.warwickhughes.com/agri/BeckCO2short.pdf I’m waiting for Beck to actually publish the work before taking it seriously, though. But in any case, right now I’d say the jury is out.

  60. bernie
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 2:32 PM | Permalink

    An aside. On this site there is a link to RealClimate and other AWG sites. However, I do not see any links from Real Climate to this site. Did I miss something?

  61. Willis Eschenbach
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 2:38 PM | Permalink

    Pat F., thanks for your usual detailed response. I’m not sure that Ramanathan ea are using the word “model” in the sense of a GCM, or even a simple radiation balance model such as I have built. Rather, I think that they are using “model” to refer to the way that they are calculating the absorption of CO2 vs. altitude … at least, that’s my reading of it to date.

    My email address is willis AT taunovobay.com, you can send it to me directly (I think my server will accept it). Is that zipped? If it is a PDF file and you are working on a Mac, there’s a program called “PDFShrink” that lowers the resolution of the PDF and can cut huge files way down in size …

    The question for me is whether Ramanathan et al. are calculating CO2 absorption in a dynamic system (including re-radiation and re-absorption, such as in my two-layer model) or in the more simple sense of looking at a column of air and seeing how much CO2 is absorbed vs. height. I suspect the latter, but haven’t found a clear statement of it yet.

    If so, then to compare apples to apples, for a doubling of CO2 in the real world we need to look at, not the change in TOA forcing (which is affected by the double-layer nature of the physical setup), but the change in absorption in the troposphere plus the stratosphere. According to my model, in the first case (increase in TOA DLR forcing of 3.7 W/m2), the surface temperature change (blackbody) is ~ 0.8°C. In the second case (increase in total absorption of upwelling surface radiation of 3.7 W/m2), the surface temperature change is only about half of that, ~ 0.4 W/m2.

    Man, I love a good mystery …

    w.

  62. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 2:45 PM | Permalink

    Re #60 – Bernie, You did not miss anything – what you see is what you get!
    OK, I have to move on.

  63. Boris
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 2:54 PM | Permalink

    Is that swindle program the best the sceptics can put together?

  64. Chas
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 2:58 PM | Permalink

    #60 ,Pat I understand that all the info on E-G Beck’s collation has been taken down from Warwick Hughes site as a paper might be in the offing but parts of the document can be got by clicking on ‘view as html’ in a Google search (sadly no graphics).
    The discussion of it seems to be cached by Google, though I dont know if this is all or only part of the discussion.

  65. Hans Erren
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 3:15 PM | Permalink

    re 63:
    The problem with a program like that is that there no unanimity in the skeptics front so a programmemaker has het difficulty of separating the crackpots from the scientists, not an easy job. IMHO the programme made some invalid claims like the one that volcanoes emit more than humans.

  66. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 3:32 PM | Permalink

    Re #63 and #65 – not too many slips compared with “The Inconvenient Untruth”

  67. Hans Erren
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 3:39 PM | Permalink

    Here are three issues well spotted in AIT (8 mins youtube):

    The scare tactics of Al Gore

  68. John Lang
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 4:39 PM | Permalink

    The Great Global Warming Swindle is now on Google video (pretty good streaming technology in my opinion).

  69. richardT
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 4:52 PM | Permalink

    #59
    The link you gave is broken, but I found the manuscript, without figures, in google’s cache. It reads like a undergraduate essay, making numerous appeals to authority – listing the Nobel prizes won, and the scientists’ other contributions. Without the figures, its impossible to evaluate it.

  70. Peter Lloyd
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 5:07 PM | Permalink

    How can we put a number on the amount of CO2 emitted by volcanoes? I find it difficult to believe that we can measure the output of one volcano, let alone every volcano on the planet. Planting monitors round the rim won’t measure a rising column of hot mixed gases.

    Add to that the output of underwater volcanoes and the unknown number and size of superheated submarine vents…..OK, these are not contributing directly to atmospheric CO2 but are adding huge unknown quantities to the system.

    Another reason for believing in the impossibility of modelling the system with anything like reasonable accuracy.

  71. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 5:32 PM | Permalink

    #59, 69. Pat, I would be very wary of putting any weight on the Beck article. I put little credence in it.

    I really don’t want this site to get involved with much more discussion of this issue.

  72. Peter Lloyd
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 5:32 PM | Permalink

    From today’s Sunday Telegraph, Christopher Booker’s column:

    A turning point in climate change

    Only very rarely can a TV documentary be seen as a pivotal moment in a major political debate, but such was Channel 4’s The Great Global Warming Swindle last Thursday. Never before has there been such a devastatingly authoritative account of how the hysteria over global warming has parted company with reality.

    With the aid of almost every top scientist in the field, from Professor Richard Lindzen, of MIT, and Roy Spencer, the former top climate expert at Nasa, to Patrick Moore, a co-founder of Greenpeace, Martin Durkin’s superbly professional film showed how the evidence is now overwhelming that the chief cause of climate change is not human activity but changes in radiation from the sun.

    Almost the only point he did not include was the evidence now accumulating from observers in many parts of the world that a significant degree of “warming” has recently been taking place all through our solar system, from dwindling ice fields on Mars, to Jupiter, and even as far out as Neptune’s moon Triton and Pluto.

    Yet it is at just this moment, when genuine scientists are at last hitting back against the hysteria, that our own political establishment, led by Tony Blair and David Cameron, is lining up with the EU, the UN and that self-promoting charlatan Al Gore. They propose measures that threaten not only to undermine the prosperity of the developed world but to rob billions of people across Africa and Asia of any chance to escape from the deprivation that kills millions every year.

    Truly, this pseudo-religious madness has become by far the most important and all-pervasive political issue of our time.

  73. David Smith
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 6:32 PM | Permalink

    Update on the Southern hemisphere tropical cyclone season:

    There have been 21 cyclones so far this season, which is about normal.

    There have been four intense cyclones so far, which is maybe a bit below normal (6 would be the average for 21 cyclones).

    Summary: normal.

    Apocalypse: postponed.

  74. Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 7:16 PM | Permalink

    Dear John Lang #68, if you look at comment #19, you will see that you are more than 24 hours late. ;-) More formats of the documentary:

    http://motls.blogspot.com/2007/03/great-global-warming-swindle.html

  75. DeWitt Payne
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 7:39 PM | Permalink

    Re: #38 Willis

    I’ll be the first to admit that my understanding of the details of the greenhouse effect is less than perfect. That being said, I think your model is flawed because I’m pretty sure there can be no change in the top of the atmosphere radiative flux to space with an increase in CO2 or other greenhouse gases. The grey body temperature doesn’t change in the absence of a change in albedo, just the altitude where that temperature exists and the outward radiative flux has to balance with the inward flux of energy from the sun, which also hasn’t changed. Here’s a crude analogy: Say you’re cold at night and put an extra blanket on the bed. The temperature at the outside of the blanket doesn’t change because it’s determined by the temperature of the room. However, the temperature under the extra blanket increases, even though the total heat flux through the blanket(s) is still the same (required by basic thermodynamics, I think). The higher resistance to heat flux provided by the extra blanket means the temperature on the inside has to increase to maintain the same heat flow. Then if you calculate black body radiation emissions using the Stefan-Boltzman equation, the inside of the blanket will emit more energy than the outside because it is at a higher temperature. So the atmosphere near the surface emits more radiation in all directions than at higher altitudes because it’s warmer.

  76. absolutely
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 8:31 PM | Permalink

    Dear Lubos #74 & #19, if you look at the comments, you will see that you also were more than 24 hours late. ;-)

  77. Pat Frank
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 9:58 PM | Permalink

    #61 — Willis, you’re right that “model” as Ramanathan and Myrhe used it means the spectroscopic model of atmospheric GHG radiation absorption, and not a climate GCM.

    Unfortunately, PDFShrink requires OSX 10.4, and I’m running only 10.3.7. So I’ll have to upgrade to send you the manuscript. My home server has a 10 MB limit on uploads, and I believe there is a similar limit at work. We’re presently kind of stuck as regards Myhre 1997, until I get a system upgrade and run PDFShrink. I’ll get back to you on that.

  78. Willis Eschenbach
    Posted Mar 11, 2007 at 11:40 PM | Permalink

    Dewitt, thank you for your post. You say:

    Re: #38 Willis

    I’ll be the first to admit that my understanding of the details of the greenhouse effect is less than perfect. That being said, I think your model is flawed because I’m pretty sure there can be no change in the top of the atmosphere radiative flux to space with an increase in CO2 or other greenhouse gases.

    As you have written, there is no change in the total outbound flux at the TOA, because (overall at equilibrium) the total outgoing radiation must equal the total incoming radiation. That said, the outgoing radiation is the total of the amount emitted by the atmosphere, and the amount which passes through the atmosphere. The more energy that passes through the atmosphere, the less is radiated by the atmosphere, and thus the lower the radiation temperature of the atmosphere.

    To use the “blanket on the bed” analogy, if some heat passes through the blanket and some is absorbed by the blanket, the temperature of the blanket can certainly be different under different conditions. The only constraint is that the total energy is constant, not that the energy radiated by the blanket (and thus the temperature of the blanket) is constant.

    w.

  79. Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 12:40 AM | Permalink

    #60

    Just Google RC posts that include word ‘climateaudit’, and you’ll find many reasons:

    1) We are childish (I wouldn’t bother linking to climateaudit until the regulars there can conduct themselves in a more adult manner. -Nick)

    2) We are mining consultants with political ties.

    3) Large fraction of our posts is mumbo-jumbo (-rasmus)

    4) We all work for Exxon

  80. paul m
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 1:08 AM | Permalink

    The Great Climate Swindle

    Further to the post about Booker above, alos a very positive ( if you are a skeptic) Sunday T editorial but it contavis this quote “oil companies did immense damage when it becaem apparent that they had bribed hundreds of scientists to act as PR loobbyists for the claim that “GW is not happening”….

    Anyone want to comment on this allegation?

    Note also a minor article covering John Redwood ( member of Cameron’s shadow cabinet) supporting the GCS.

    Paul M

  81. Willis Eschenbach
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 2:53 AM | Permalink

    paul m, you say:

    it contavis this quote “oil companies did immense damage when it becaem apparent that they had bribed hundreds of scientists to act as PR loobbyists for the claim that “GW is not happening”….

    Anyone want to comment on this allegation?

    Sure, it’s easy to understand. If you receive money from Greenpeace it’s a grant or funding, but if you receive money from an oil company it’s a bribe. Dead simple, actually.

    Any other questions?

    w.

  82. bruce
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 3:17 AM | Permalink

    Re #81: Hear Hear!! Well said Willis!

  83. Paul M
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 3:19 AM | Permalink

    Re 81

    Yes I know that and agree. I just wondered if the Telegraph were referring to anything substantial
    or the usual ad hominem stuff from the AGW alarmists. I intend to write to the ST to challenge them on
    this point.

    Regards

    Paul

  84. Arma Geddon
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 3:44 AM | Permalink

    Folks that I miss from this site!

    1. Dano
    2. Steve Bloom
    3. John Hunter
    4. TCO (yes I know TCO, you are a renegade amongst this lot!)
    5. Judith Curry
    6. Peter Hearnden
    7. Lee
    8. Others that I can’t remember at this point

    Lately the posts seem to be dominated by rational, professional and truly scientific observers with very few interjections from the dissenters. To put it another way, I am gaining an impression that the claimed ‘consensus of scientists’ that ‘AGW is the most serious problem facing the world population’ is anything but. That is, the views of the contrarians (sceptics) are not being effectively refuted.

    If all of these characters with strong opinions yield the field to the CA crowd, can I conclude that scepticsm is gaining the ascencdancy?

    I also note (two years later) that we have no meaningful or professional response from Mr Mann re points made here re the Hockey Stick. I also note that Mr Jones is curiously silent in defending his flagship analyses from attack. (Mind you, having looked at his work, I can understand his reasons for going quiet).

    I also note that Algore is being seen more and more for the uninformed, hypocritical person that he demonstrably is (as well as the power consumption issue, think about his predeliction for first class travel – by my calcs some 5.6 times the space of an economy class seat, and therefore 5.6 times the fuel consumed and emissions, assuming of course that he travels scheduled airlines). Does this man have no shame?

    My simple view of the matter is that the Hockey Team has stretched too far, and are losing popular support. They are increasingly being seen as passionate polemicists, not at all interested in expressing the real uncertainties that characterise their trade.

    Their cause cannot be helped by the arrogant and patronising tone that they adopt on RC, and the blatent censorship of dissenting views.

    By contrast, I note the dispassionate, objective, professional and scientific tone adopted by most posters here. It is abundantly clear that the CA crowd are primarily interested in learning the truth, whatever it may be, and letting the chips fall where they may. I find it hard to say the same thing about the RC crowd.

    In fact, I worry that the CA crowd could become altogether too consensual in its reaction to developments in the debate.

    I seriously am interested in what the above listed folk think about how things are unfolding in the AGW debate. The CA position needs to be challenged. Absence of such challenge can only be viewed as acquiescence. No doubt, there will be those who disagree. Views?

  85. James Erlandson
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 4:03 AM | Permalink

    Re 80 Paul:
    From the Wall Street Journal, February 9, 2007

    AEI President Chris DeMuth says, “What the Guardian essentially characterizes as a bribe is the conventional practice of AEI — and Brookings, Harvard and the University of Manchester — to pay individuals” for commissioned work. He says that Exxon has contributed less than 1% of AEI’s budget over the last decade.

    As for Exxon, Lauren Kerr, director of its Washington office, says that “none of us here had ever heard of this AEI climate change project until we read about it in the London newspapers.” By the way, commissioning such research is also standard practice at NASA and other government agencies and at liberal groups such as the Pew Charitable Trusts, which have among them spent billions of dollars attempting to link fossil fuels to global warming.

    For more details follow the link.

  86. Stan Palmer
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 4:39 AM | Permalink

    Very recently, there was a posting, that I cannot locate’ on this site asking for comment on a blog posting, from someone claiming to have a postgraduate degree in signal processing, that defended Mann’s hockey stick calculation. Among the points the blog poster tried to make was that Mann used principal components as a data compression technique with the necessity for compression being the performance capacity of computers in the late 90s when Mann did his work.

    I foud this claim to be quite surprising given the scale of computer applications that were being routinely done then (less than 10 yesrs ago). I would be interested to now how many data points did Mann take into consideration in his model. Considering that he used tree ring , I would find it very surprising that there could be so much data that it would tax even the capacity of even a very modest computer from the late 90s.
    from so

  87. Allan J
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 5:03 AM | Permalink

    Here is a little scenario I find credible. The EU, U.S., Canada, Australia and a few other industrialized nations adopt carbon output reduction programs and thereby reduce their industrial output. China, India and a few other emerging nations increase their industrial output to meet the newly unfulfilled demand. Carbon output stays the same or increases.

    It reminds me of the great “population explosion” of the 1950s that was part of the justification for western cultures to reduce their birth rates. World population kept growing anyway.

    Maybe the end result of distributing industry and wealth more evenly around the world would be a good thing. On the other hand, it might just be a part of a pattern of (often discussed) decline of the West.

    This site is doing a fantastic job of examining the data and methods underlying climate science issues. I understand that is what it is intended to do. But could it also include some threads on the costs and benefits of the actions proposed by IPCC? It would also be interesting if some Political Scientists and Economists would comment on the kind of world that might result from following, or partially following, IPCC orders. Maybe that is the kind of world we would want to create anyway. Or maybe it is the kind of world we consider so bad we would prefer Global Warming.

  88. Mark
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 5:23 AM | Permalink

    Willis,

    They are probably reacting in shock to the discover that AEI pays authors for the articles published. The fact that everyone else pays
    authors as well is not relevant to this discovery. The fact that AEI apparently receives about 0.1% of it’s funding from Exxon is
    also proof positive that the authors in question were bribed to take their positions.

  89. johnmccall
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 6:16 AM | Permalink

    re: 60 – “I do not see any links from Real Climate to this site.”

    Easily explained:
    1) CA fosters open and specific debate, making it easy to find/verify/rebut the others position.
    2) and then there’s RC.

  90. Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 6:47 AM | Permalink

    Dear absolutely #76, that would be an entertaining comment of yours except that I am convinced that #19 is the first link to the Swindle video here. Am I wrong? ;-)

  91. Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 6:52 AM | Permalink

    Dear Arma #84, if you miss TCO, you may try The Reference Frame – click my name and look at some recent fast comments. He’s great but I also have more of his good thing than needed. ;-)

  92. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 9:35 AM | Permalink

    RE: #14 – You can also thank / blame Mrs. T for the rapid rise of the PRC. Without the existance of the Hong Kong – Pearl River Delta complex as a relatively integrated whole and without PRC control of HK capital, the PRC would be rising (and hence adding pollutants!) more slowly. With the support of the US / NATO, the UK could have easily stated the case that the HK lease agreement was made with a past defunct government and did not apply to relations with the new one by the Communists. Lease defunct, HK would have reverted to UK territory until further notice … Fascinating! ….

  93. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 9:38 AM | Permalink

    RE: #87 – Read James Burnham. Pretty amazing insights considering it was more than 40 years ago.

  94. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 9:43 AM | Permalink

    The synoptic pattern in the NH is highly disturbing. Last year Europe had a drought and now the drought in the Western US has shifted westward into areas that are normally not as arid as the interior. Technically, based on precipitation amounts, a large portion of California is currently experiencing a desert climate. One year of this we can withstand. Two years it would become a crisis management scenario, but still tolerable. Three years? …. I don’t want to think about it. What worries me is how the El Nino got swamped so quickly. I don’t think it’s a simple La Nina taking over, I think it’s negative phase PDO. I doubt most Americans are ready for what will happen if that is correct.

  95. Rod
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 10:05 AM | Permalink

    “Apocalypse My Arse”

    Martin Durkin, director of The Great Global Warming Swindle, on green intolerance, soft censorship and his dodgy’ Marxist background.

    http://www.spiked-online.com/index.php?/site/earticle/2948/

  96. Ken Fritsch
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 10:31 AM | Permalink

    Re #73

    Update on the Southern hemisphere tropical cyclone season:

    There have been 21 cyclones so far this season, which is about normal.

    David Smith, can you either post the 2006 annual hurricane/TCs statistics for the NATL basin and other world storm basins or point me in the right direction. On another thread, M. Mann was quoted as stating that 2006 was not a particularly tame year for hurricanes/TCs (and one would be silly to think that). I have made an unsuccessful preliminary search for measures of these storms such as PDI. I found a value of ACE that I believe was around 70 for 2006 — that indicated a more or less normal year.

    Mann’s statement is equivocated by reference to using the El Nino context. Do you have any measure(s) of the 2006 El Nino that can be used to compare with past seasons?

  97. Rod
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 10:32 AM | Permalink

    Martin Durkin
    The director of The Great Global Warming Swindle responds to his critics.

    http://www.spiked-online.com/index.php?/site/article/2948/

  98. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 11:16 AM | Permalink

    #96. Ken, I’ve put collations of data in ASCII form at http://www.climateaudit.org/data/hurricane and have some scripts at http://www.climateaudit.org/scripts/hurricane.

  99. bernie
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 11:30 AM | Permalink

    #97
    Rod:
    I think we need to be cautious about aligning too closely with essentially the anti-Inconvenient Truth documentary. I have yet to see iteither. However, that said, I take Carl Wunsch’s reaction to be genuine. While it is OK to smile at the outrage from the usual suspects, I personally believe that we can lose significant credibility by aligning ourselves with anything that undermines genuine and open scientific dialogue. After all , I am assuming that many here are focused on the truth: If there is AGW then we should recognize it. If AGW is far less serious then we will say so. If GW is a serious threat, regardless of source, then again we will respond accordingly based on the facts. The great advantage possessed of this site is the willingness of Steve and others to be objective, open and rational in pursuit of scientific facts. That is what I admire about this site and its many contributors.

  100. DeWitt Payne
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 12:15 PM | Permalink

    Expressing the effect of changes in greenhouse gas concentrations as a forcing in W/sq.m. is unnecessarily confusing, I think. What’s actually happening is that the thermal conductivity and possibly also the heat capacity and density distributions with altitude of the atmosphere changes. So this should really be expressed in terms of a solution to the differential equations governing heat transfer (the Heat Equation). All the data should be measurable. We have T surface, T gray body, incoming/outgoing heat flux, temperature gradient (lapse rate) and structure and composition of the atmosphere. Surely someone has actually done this even if there isn’t a closed form solution that applies to the atmosphere. Numerical methods (Crank-Nicolson for one) to solve the heat equation have been available for decades. This would, of course, be just a first order approximation to the real world. However, it would be interesting to see if a one watt change in solar flux is really equal to a 1 watt change in ‘forcing’ from CO2 in terms of temperature change at the earth’s surface.

  101. John Lang
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 12:37 PM | Permalink

    I have a question arising out of the documentary.

    As the ice ages ended, temperature increases led the increase in CO2 by an average of 800 years. CO2 concentrations increased from about 190 ppm to about 290 ppm as the ice age ended. Temperatures increased by about 10C in the polar regions and about 5C globally.

    The documentary notes that cooler ocean temperatures can absorb more CO2 and as the oceans warm at the end of the ice age, presumably CO2 is released.

    I have seen data showing that ocean temperatures have increased by the same 5C from the end of the ice age to the current warmth (at least sea surface temperatures, I’m sure deep ocean temperatures have not changed that much.)

    The question is – Is an increase of 5C in ocean temperatures enough to liberate enough CO2 to cause an increase on atmospheric concentrations of 100 ppm?

    If the answer is Yes, then that would provide even further evidence that temperatures lead CO2, not the other way around.

    [I'm not saying that the current increase in CO2 concentrations of 290 ppm to 383 ppm is caused by ocean temperature increases. Obviously man-made emissions are causing the biggest increase in CO2 today.]

  102. Simple Simon
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 12:55 PM | Permalink

    If all human activity had ceased after 1850 would global temperatures have remained constant or fallen?

  103. bernie
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 1:00 PM | Permalink

    I am curious, is your last statement “Obviously man-made emissions are causing the biggest increase in CO2 today” a statement of fact or does it remain an open question? It seems to me that there is so much carbon and carbon dioxide potentially in play that any carbon dioxide releasing mechanism could be the biggest source of any actual increase. What we can estimate is what we do produce from burning of fossil fuels, etc. There are potentially many complications. For example, since mankind is primarily responsible for both deforestation and reforestation we have to calculate surely what our net impact is. What impact does our suppression of forest and grassland fires have on the overall equation.

  104. David Smith
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 1:09 PM | Permalink

    Re #96 Ken, a quick and easy link for global activity is the Unisys database . They do a good job.

    Regarding the Atlantic, the ACE index time series is graphed here . The ACE index is a more reasonable way to evaluate a season, as it measures both intensity and duration, rather than simply counting the number of storms. ACE is not perfect, but it is considerably better than storm count.

    As you indicate, 2006 ACE was normal, or actually below-normal, as it was the 15’th-lowest year out of 57.

    (Note the year 1950, which ties 2005 for highest-ACE. We hear a lot about 2005 being unprecendented, but 2005 only ties the highest value realized.)

    Using storm count alone, and ignoring ACE or PDI, gives a incomplete and possibly misleading impression of the 2006 season. I’m shocked, shocked I tell you, that Michael Mann did that.

    The PDI value for 2006 was around 7 or 8, using Emanuel’s scaling. PDI uses the cube of windspeed, so it is more sensitive to high winds than ACE (which uses the square of windspeed). ACE is currently in greater use than PDI and seems to be increasingly the index-of-choice.

    (NOAA’s Atlantic summary for 2006 is here . It’s a fairly easy read.)

    I’ll take a stab at El Nino a little later.

  105. richardT
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 1:17 PM | Permalink

    #101
    Your question is ill posed, as it neglects the contribution of CO2 to that warming. The changes in insolation between glacials and interglacials are quite small, amplification is needed to get the large changes in climate. CO2 forcing is part of this positive feedback. The lag of CO2 behind temperature (because of the slow turnover of the deep ocean) is irrelevant, all it shows is that CO2 changes did not initiate the transition out of the glacial. Nobody suggests it did.
    A better question, would be to ask how warm interglacials would be without the CO2 feedback. This question can only be addressed with climate models.

  106. bernie
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 1:27 PM | Permalink

    #105
    Richard:
    But it can be any source of amplification right not just CO2? I always assumed that during a glacial significant amounts of water vapour would be locked up and, therefore, would be released during an interglacial. Do I have it wrong?

  107. jae
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 1:29 PM | Permalink

    I still don’t know what is wrong with my sensitivity calcs. in 5 Unthreaded, #44. An ideal way to determine sensitivity is to perturb the system and see what happens. The system is perturbed big time every year from winter to summer. Here is a shortened version of that post (sans IPCC spoof). This may be over simplistic or just plain wrong for some reason. If so, I would like to know why.

    Using solar energy design information for Denver, I found that the energy received during December is 3-4 KWH/M^2/day and it is 5-6 KWH/M^2/day for June. (This is insolation on an almost zero albedo (black) panel, I presume, but it also does not count the amount absorbed by the atmosphere. So I conservatively assumed that the decrease in reflection is balanced by the amount absorbed in the atmosphere). Using the midpoints of these two ranges, gives a difference of 2,000 KWH/M^2/day between December and June. This is equivalent to an average of 2,000/24 hr = 83.3 Watts/M-2 difference between December and June.
    The actual average temperature increase associated with the average 83.3 Watt increase in energy from December to June in Denver should be related to the increase in temperature from December (0 C) to June (19 C) in Denver. This gives a sensitivity of 19deg C / 83.3 Watts = 0.22 deg/Watt. It is quite intriguing that this sensitivity factor agrees remarkably well with Idsos’ and Nir Shaviv’s calculations! Also, Willis’. Just coincidence? Willis thinks so. I still wonder.

    Someone will immediately think that I’m making a big mistake by assuming that there is a linear relationship between temperature rise and heat increase, pointing out that there are some important reasons for non-linearity, such as the relationship between water vapor pressure and temperature (which could increase positive water vapor feedback with increasing temperatures). However, I will counter that Shaviv has shown that sensitivity does NOT vary with temperature over the seven degree range of -2 C to + 5 C.

    But then someone will argue that it might not be linear over a wider range of, say, 0 C to 20 C. But consider the following scenarios:

    Case 1: Assume a cold Dec. and a very hot June in Denver: a diff. between Dec. and June of the maximum 3,000-6,000 KWH/day = 3,000KWH/day, or 124 w. At 0.22 deg/Watt, that = 27 deg. C = 80.6 deg F CHANGE between Dec. and June. (that might correspond to, say, an avg. Dec. temp of -5 and avg. June temp. of 22 deg. C, or 71.6 F)
    Case 2: Assume a “normal” December and a very hot June’€”a diff. between Dec. and June of 3500-6000 KWH/day = 3,000KWH/day, or 104 w. At 0.22 deg/Watt, that = 22.88 deg. C = 73 deg F change between Dec. and June. (that might correspond to, say, a normal avg. Dec. temp of 0 C and avg. June temp. of 22.8 deg. C, or 73 F)

    Case 3: Assume a warm December and an exceptionally cold June’€” a diff. between Dec. and June of 4000-5000 KWH/day = 1,000KWH/day, or 42 w. At 0.22 deg/Watt, that = 9 deg. C = 48 deg F change between Dec. and June. (that might correspond to, say, an avg. Dec. temp of 3 C and avg. June temp. of 12 deg. C, or 54 deg. F)
    All the above cases seem to be reasonable possibilities.
    Now, if the relationship between temperature rise and heat were not somewhat linear, then sensitivities would increase with increasing temperature, and Case 1 would give an unrealistically high average June temperature. And Case 3 would be snowball Denver. In other words, if sensitivities increased with increasing temperature, then one should have a run-away temperature rise in Denver during an exceptionally hot summer. There are obviously some important negative feedbacks, such as clouds and t-storms that tend to make the relationship fairly linear.

  108. John Lang
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 1:54 PM | Permalink

    To RichardT #105. I should have added that a 100 ppm increase in CO2 is not large enough to provide enough feedback to increase global temperatures by 5C. I’m saying that the numbers do not add up.

    Throw into the mix that temperatures increase fairly rapidly for a 800 year timeframe, does that not question whether CO2 adds any feedback at all.

  109. richardT
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 2:26 PM | Permalink

    #106, 108
    Yes, the water vapour feedback is important. Locking the water up as ice is of secondary importance (via lower sea-levels), the main mechanism is the cooler temperatures mean that the atmosphere holds less vapour. There are also several other feedbacks – albedo (ice and vegetation).
    The CO2 feedback certainly isn’t responsible for the entire glacial-interglacial change. Have a look atBerger et al. 1993 Water Vapour, CO2 and Insolation over the Last Glacial-Interglacial Cycles. Phil. Trans. r Soc. Lond. B, 341: 253-261 for a relatively simple climate testing the importance of CO2 for glacial-interglacial changes.

  110. DeWitt Payne
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 2:31 PM | Permalink

    Re: 107

    Well, you should probably be measuring the temperature of the panel itself rather than the air. Even so, if you plug 0 and 19 C (273 and 292 K) into the Stefan-Boltzman equation, you get 315 and 412 W/sq.m. for a difference of 97 W/sq.m. Pretty close. Also, if you solve for temperature and differentiate, the sensitivity in degrees/W only changes by about 10% from 0 to 19 C.

  111. David Smith
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 2:31 PM | Permalink

    Re #96 On El Nino, I know of no precise measure of the effect of El Nino on Atlantic hurricane activity. It’s generally believed that a mature El Nino will increase wind shear across the Atlantic during storm season, suppressing both storm count and intensity. However, the exact effect depends on the timing, strength and duration of the El Nino, as well as other stuff that is poorly understood (by me at least).

    Some studies have grouped years into “El Nino”, “Neutral” and “La Nina” years, and looked at the related hurricane activity. If I remember correctly, El Nino years have 30 to 50% fewer Atlantic storms. There is an even greater reduction in severe hurricanes (severe hurricanes are remarkably fragile and susceptible to wind shear).

    Interestingly, El Nino increases hurricane activity in the eastern Pacific, the opposite of the Atlantic.

    Many people have forgotten that El Nino’s wind shear effect did not begin until late in 2006 (October). By that time 2006 was already something of a dud. You may recall Steve M’s early-August prediction of a normal season, based on how quiet June and July had been.

    (My layman’s belief is that something I call seedling vertical stacking is as important as El Nino in determining whether a season is active. In some seasons the middle and lower parts of the seedlings are hundreds of miles apart and have trouble interacting and strengthening. They are “born” that way near Africa, for reasons which are hard to predict.)

  112. Richard Sharpe
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 4:28 PM | Permalink

    Deconstructing the Great Global Warming Swindle

  113. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 4:54 PM | Permalink

    Re #112 – “Reconstructing……”
    When they use RC as a reference, it gets watered down in a hurry.

  114. David Smith
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 5:14 PM | Permalink

    RE #94 Steve S, the models show a chance of rain in California in about 8 days. Another, better chance happens in about two weeks, with one model showing SoCal getting an inch or two.

    I would keep doing a rain dance, though, as the models at that great distance are often way wrong.

  115. Follow the Money
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 6:51 PM | Permalink

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,258342,00.html

    “The small measured changes in solar output and variations from one decade to the next are only on the order of a fraction of a percent, and, if you do the calculations, not even large enough to really provide a detectable signal in the surface temperature record,” said Penn State meteorologist Michael Mann.

    The link between solar activity and global warming is just another scapegoat for human-caused warming, Mann told LiveScience.

    “Solar activity continues to be one of the last bastions of contrarians,” Mann said. “People who don’t accept the existence of anthropogenic climate change still try to point to solar activity.”

    ________________________

    Michael Mann is a solar expert now?

  116. Ian Blanchard
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 7:01 PM | Permalink

    The skeptics/climate realists (in which I will include those who believe AGW is proven, but with non-catastrophic consequences) face a serious PR battle in the UK, as the media, especially the BBC, is so strongly pro-catastrophic AGW. A case in point on tonight’s news, where an item was shown describing the risk to a Norfolk coastal village due to man-made sea level rise. Only problem was that it was really a coastal erosion issue, which has 2/3 of naff all to do with sea level and climate change.

    I (partly at the behest of my wife, also a degree level geologist) wrote the following as a complaint to the BBC because of the misleading nature of the report.

    “A report was just aired stating that the erosion of coastline threatening a Norfolk village was a consequence of climate change. This piece was presented by the Science correspondent.
    This article was mis-leading in that it conflated a natural issue (coastal erosion) with ‘climate change'(implying anthropogenic global warming) and sea level rise.

    In fact, the process of coastal erosion has historically been an issue on the North Sea coast, and relates variously to the relatively soft coastal geology and long-shore drift along the coast. Any rise in sea level attributed to global warming is an order of magnitude lower than the normal tidal range, and is of a similar scale to isostatic changes in land levels in south-eastern UK (caused by post-glacial rebound).

    Overall, the rate of change of coastal erosion due to (regional or global) climate change is trivial compared with the historic natural rate of erosion in these areas.

    To complete the mis-leading nature of the report, the return to the studio included a shot of the correspondent in front of a graphic of a pair of cooling towers which had been manipulated to give a sillouette image of dark grey towers and ‘smoke’, whereas the reality is that these are concrete structures that emit almost exclusively steam, which is white. This was a particularly crude example of distortion in an attempt to manipulate opinion in a manner inconsistent with the main story.”

  117. Peter Lloyd
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 7:42 PM | Permalink

    re: 90/Lubos

    Sorry, Lubos! Ian S, Unthreaded 5/249 link to youtube Mar 8; and absolutely, Unthreaded 5/253 link to bittorrent Mar 9.

    But you might have been first with a link to google

  118. DeWitt Payne
    Posted Mar 12, 2007 at 8:23 PM | Permalink

    Re: # 101

    richardT, this link to Berger, et. al. at least gets you the abstract. Not all of us belong to institutions with free access to JSTOR. Interestingly, the conclusion is not too different than what Hans Erren posted originally: CO2 and water vapor feedback only accounts for 30% of the temperature change between glacial maximum and minimum. The rest is due to insolation changes from orbital variations (Milankovich cycles).

  119. paul m
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 12:52 AM | Permalink

    RE 99 and 116

    Yes, in an ideal world, this site and the ‘rational’ debaters on climate change should stay on the side of the angels. But, at least in the UK, we are facing overwhelming AGW hysteria, a media that, with the now increasingly rare exception of the Telegraph Group, has capitulated before the AGW hystericists and a government and opposition that now want to outdo each other in stupid ‘carbon’ taxes and measures. Last night the London Evening Standard reported that Chancellor Gordon Brown was planning to ‘outlaw’ incandescent lightbulbs and, heaven forfend, standbys on electrical equipment.

    If you actually look at what Carl Wunsch said, he has no right to complain. The programme only adopted some of the yaboo techniques of the greens. Not pure but effecive.

    Of course, we need the scientific arguement to win but if we look at the hysterical behaviour of the media and medical profession to cholesterol, where there is some equally dubious ‘science’, we are right to be worried for the future.

    Regards

    Paul

  120. Klaus Brakebusch
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 3:07 AM | Permalink

    re #115,

    Mann: “The small measured changes in solar output and variations from one decade to the next are only on the order of a fraction of a percent, and, if you do the calculations, not even large enough to really provide a detectable signal in the surface temperature record …”

    Hmm, but it looks alike wheat prices react to solar output:
    Manifestations of Influence of Solar Activity and Cosmic Ray Intensity on the Wheat Price in the Medieval England (1259-1703 Years)

    Authors: Pustil’Nik, Lev A.; Dorman, L. I.; Yom Din, G.

  121. Tomas Szabo
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 3:09 AM | Permalink

    Re:112

    The first 5 points are non convincing, it’s just the same entrenched “RC is right and you deniers are wrong” imo.

    This sentence is from point 7:
    “…and there exists no long-term trend for cosmic ray flux, while global mean temperature keeps rising.”
    This graph by Nir Shaviv seems to contradict that:

    The last two points have some merit though, co2 emissions can and will be decoupled from economic growth some time in the future. And the part with the african clinic is definitely one of the weakest parts of the film.

  122. Klaus Brakebusch
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 3:12 AM | Permalink

    addendum to #120.

    another link

  123. Klaus Brakebusch
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 3:14 AM | Permalink

    addendum to #120

    another link:

  124. Willis Eschenbach
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 3:17 AM | Permalink

    From the “You Couldn’t Make This Sh*t Up” department … I particularly liked the fast footwork in the last sentence.

    w.

    Frostbite ends Bancroft-Arnesen trek

    By PATRICK CONDON, Associated Press Writer Mon Mar 12, 5:28 PM ET

    MINNEAPOLIS – A North Pole expedition meant to bring attention to global warming was called off after one of the explorers got frostbite. The explorers, Ann Bancroft and Liv Arnesen, on Saturday called off what was intended to be a 530-mile trek across the Arctic Ocean after Arnesen suffered frostbite in three of her toes, and extreme cold temperatures drained the batteries in some of their electronic equipment.

    “Ann said losing toes and going forward at all costs was never part of the journey,” said Ann Atwood, who helped organize the expedition.

    On Monday, the pair was at Canada’s Ward Hunt Island, awaiting a plane to take them to Resolute, Canada, where they were to return to Minneapolis later this week.

    Bancroft, 51, became the first woman to cross the North Pole on a 1986 expedition. She and Arnesen, 53, of Oslo, Norway, were the first women to ski across Antarctica in 2001.

    But the latest trek got off to a bad start. The day they set off from Ward Hunt Island, a plane landing near the women hit their gear, punching a hole in Bancroft’s sled and damaging one of Arnesen’s snowshoes.

    They repaired the snowshoe with binding from a ski, but Atwood said the patch job created pressure on Arnesen’s left foot, which led to blisters that then turned into frostbite.

    Then there was the cold ‘€” quite a bit colder, Atwood said, then Bancroft and Arnesen had expected. One night they measured the temperature inside their tent at 58 degrees below zero, and outside temperatures were exceeding 100 below zero at times, Atwood said.

    “My first reaction when they called to say there were calling it off was that they just sounded really, really cold,” Atwood said.

    She said Bancroft and Arnesen were applying hot water bottles to Arnesen’s foot every night, but had to wake up periodically because the bottles froze.

    The explorers had planned to call in regular updates to school groups by satellite phone, and had planned online posts with photographic evidence of global warming. In contrast to Bancroft’s 1986 trek across the Arctic with fellow Minnesota explorer Will Steger, this time she and Arnesen were prepared to don body suits and swim through areas where polar ice has melted.

    Atwood said there was some irony that a trip to call attention to global warming was scuttled in part by extreme cold temperatures.

    “They were experiencing temperatures that weren’t expected with global warming,” Atwood said. “But one of the things we see with global warming is unpredictability.”

  125. Random Comment
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 3:18 AM | Permalink

    Statistical investigation of the claimed 1470 years cycle (PDF)

    The significance of the apparent 1470 years cycle in the recurrence of the Dansgaard-Oeschger (DO) events, observed in the Greenland ice cores, is debated. Here we present statistical significance tests of this periodicity. The detection of a periodicity relies strongly on the accuracy of the dating of the DO events. Here we use both the new NGRIP GICC05 time scale based on multi-parameter annual layer counting and the GISP2 time scale where the periodicity is most pronounced. For the NGRIP dating the recurrence times are indistinguishable from a random occurrence.

  126. Ian Blanchard
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 3:59 AM | Permalink

    Can anyone point me to any literature regarding carbon isotope changes in the atmosphere?

    I recall somewhere seeing a comment about the atm becoming increasingly C12 rich as a consequence of human CO2 input.
    My understanding though was that the ocean-dissolved CO2 has a similar light DeltaC, therefore the fractionation
    could equally relate to exsolution with rising temperature. My thought was that C14 would surely act as a further
    marker, as it will be absent from fossil fuels but present in ocean-dissolved CO2 (as long as the residence time
    is less than 10000 years or so.

    If there is strong evidence that human-caused CO2 is remaining in the atmosphere, why has this not been strongly
    promoted by the pro-AGW media? It would seem to be one of the most feasible ways of proving a human influence.

  127. richardT
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 4:40 AM | Permalink

    #126
    Do a search for the Seuss effect. Changes in atmospheric carbon isotopes have been known, and attributed to fossil fuel use, since the 1950s.

  128. richardT
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 4:42 AM | Permalink

    #126
    Sorry, typo – the Suess effect

  129. Willis Eschenbach
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 4:54 AM | Permalink

    Most people agree that humans have increased the CO2 in the atmosphere, and this is in fact presented by the pro-AGW folks. The real question is, how much temperature difference has a CO2 change from a quarter of a percent to a third of a percent actually made? Based on the science as I understand it, I’d say … not much.

    w.

  130. Vasco
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 6:56 AM | Permalink

    Monbiot’s (knee jerk) reply in the Graudian:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/story/0,,2032575,00.html

    Damage control?

    The problem with The Great Global Warming Swindle, which caused a sensation when it was broadcast on Channel 4 last week, is that to make its case it relies not on future visionaries, but on people whose findings have already been proved wrong. The implications could not be graver. Just as the government launches its climate change bill and Gordon Brown and David Cameron start jostling to establish their green credentials, thousands have been misled into believing there is no problem to address.

    The film’s main contention is that the current increase in global temperatures is caused not by rising greenhouse gases, but by changes in the activity of the sun. It is built around the discovery in 1991 by the Danish atmospheric physicist Dr Eigil Friis-Christensen that recent temperature variations on Earth are in “strikingly good agreement” with the length of the cycle of sunspots.

    Unfortunately, he found nothing of the kind. A paper published in the journal Eos in 2004 reveals that the “agreement” was the result of “incorrect handling of the physical data”. The real data for recent years show the opposite: that the length of the sunspot cycle has declined, while temperatures have risen. When this error was exposed, Friis-Christensen and his co-author published a new paper, purporting to produce similar results. But this too turned out to be an artefact of mistakes – in this case in their arithmetic.

  131. richardT
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 7:08 AM | Permalink

    #130
    Many of the papers expounding a cosmic ray-climate link are seriously bad science, with errors that this blog would rightly condemn if they had be made by a palaeoclimatologist. Why don’t you try reading them, and their rebuttal, before accusing Monbiot of damage control.

  132. John A
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 7:29 AM | Permalink

    If that’s what Monbiot wrote then someone needs to write a correction. My understanding was that the shorter the solar cycle the greater the warming.

    Did I miss something?

  133. MarkW
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 8:16 AM | Permalink

    If the science is so “seriously bad”, it shouldn’t be much of a challenge for you to demonstrate this fact.

  134. richardT
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 8:28 AM | Permalink

    #134
    I don’t need to. Its already been done, and published in Eos, and elsewhere.

  135. Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 8:59 AM | Permalink

    I don’t understand why too often someone (now richardT) hurries up to declare a certain work “bad science”.
    In event you missed the replay by Shaviv and Veizer, please go here

    and then here

  136. Paul M
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 9:11 AM | Permalink

    Melting Himalayan Glaciers/The Sun/Cosmic Rays

    Some of you may remember that I am organising a lecture at the Insurance Institute of London, working title “Global Warming -The Myths”. Just met with my speaker, Dr Robert Bradnock, who is Visiting Senior Research Fellow in Geography at King’s College London, where he specialises in geopolitics, the environment and development with special reference to South Asia. He mentioned that even if all the glaciers in the Himalayas melted, river flow would only increase by 5% as the main source of water is rain and snow melt. Also, there is a place in Northern Ireland where radio-carbon dating shows that the beach has been at the same level relative to the sea for over 20,000 years despite the rise in sea-level since the end of the last ice-age. But then world sea levels vary by 150 metres+ so who knows what sea level is?

    So according to Monbiot, the sun is unvarying in its output, has been for ever and does not affect climate variation?

    Cosmic Rays. Last important paper was I believe published by the Royal Society. But obviously unimportant as Lord Rees has said that the science is decided.

    Paul M

  137. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 9:23 AM | Permalink

    RE: #114 – Even if we now have another “year almost without a Summer” we are not going to be able to pick up enough precip by June 30 to reach normal. The Pacific High is simply too strong for that to happen. Best case, we’ll get a few weaker events through mid June like we did last year, and come in at about 75 or 80% of normal …. best case. Has global cooling (and hence, mega droughtyness) come into play?

  138. Ken Fritsch
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 9:41 AM | Permalink

    Re: #134

    Many of the papers expounding a cosmic ray-climate link are seriously bad science, with errors that this blog would rightly condemn if they had be made by a palaeoclimatologist. Why don’t you try reading them, and their rebuttal, before accusing Monbiot of damage control.

    I certainly am not convinced by these correlations and appreciate the skeptical critiques. Now, if we could see more of the same enthusiasm displayed in the climate community in critiquing palaeoclimatology, and for that matter climate models, I would have a better feeling, in general, about the whole situation.

  139. bernie
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 9:44 AM | Permalink

    richardT:
    My assumption to date has been that the current ways GMT is calculated are viewed by many as problematic – both in the way data from proxies are generated and the pre-satellite intrument records. Without these being nailed isn’t it hard to assess the validity of CO2 induced AGW? If there is convergence on a GMT series of any duration then we can reasonably test the competing hypotheses. Prior to the GMT benchmark being established (and the CO2 record being confirmed) are not we simply chasing our tails?

  140. richardT
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 9:57 AM | Permalink

    #136

    I am organising a lecture at the Insurance Institute of London, working title “Global Warming -The Myths”.

    So are you promulgating or countering the myths?

    even if all the glaciers in the Himalayas melted, river flow would only increase by 5% as the main source of water is rain and snow melt.

    River flow is likely to decease, not increase if the glaciers melt.

    there is a place in Northern Ireland where radio-carbon dating shows that the beach has been at the same level relative to the sea for over 20,000 years despite the rise in sea-level since the end of the last ice-age. But then world sea levels vary by 150 metres+ so who knows what sea level is?

    If you think this is relevant, I suggest you look up the difference between eustatic and isostatic sea level change. The latter, common in previously glaciated or tectonically active regions, is often as large or larger than the former. At the unnamed place in Northern Ireland these two effects have canceled each other.

    So according to Monbiot, the sun is unvarying in its output, has been for ever and does not affect climate variation?

    Nobody doubts that the sun’s out put changes. What is at doubt is if the changes are large enough to make much difference. If the effect was large, the mechanism would be the obvious one, not via an interaction with cosmic radiation, for which there is little good evidence.

    Cosmic Rays. Last important paper was I believe published by the Royal Society. But obviously unimportant as Lord Rees has said that the science is decided.

    I presume you are referring to the recent paper by Svensmark; it was published in the Royal Astronomical Society – not the Royal Society.

  141. MarkW
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 11:06 AM | Permalink

    Richard,

    I’ve read it. Color me unimpressed.

  142. Paul M
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 11:20 AM | Permalink

    Re 140

    Countering the myths, e.g. Himalayan Glaciers will all melt flooding the Ganges
    etc all will die.

    Cosmic Rays – Proceedings of the Royal Society A”, October 3rd 2006.

    I’ll get back to you on the sun.

    Paul

  143. jae
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 11:34 AM | Permalink

    131:

    130
    Many of the papers expounding a cosmic ray-climate link are seriously bad science, with errors that this blog would rightly condemn if they had be made by a palaeoclimatologist. Why don’t you try reading them, and their rebuttal, before accusing Monbiot of damage control.

    Not so fast, here. The curves in question are smoothed 1,2,2,2,1, and the last few data points cannot be plotted without more sunspot cycles. Also, it’s beginning to look like the so-called “global average temperature” includes a LOT of UHI effects. Moreover, Shaviv and Veizer have developed some very strong evidence for the Sun as the main driver of temperature changes.

  144. richardT
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 12:17 PM | Permalink

    #142
    Is anybody (other than some lunatic fringe) seriously suggesting that melting of the Himalayan Glaciers would flood the Ganges? Melting of the glaciers is highly unlikely to cause anything other than localised flooding immediately down stream. Bursting of pro-glacial lakes is a much bigger problem, and could cause serious flooding over large distances (but never the whole of the Ganges). If this is the type of myth you are countering, then I wish you luck – they breed like rabbits. Dismissing such myths does nothing to dismiss the science.
    OK, I’ve found the paper in the Proceedings of the Royal Society A, its in the February issue 2007 (published online 3rd October 2006). Its experimentally interesting, but of questionable relevance outside the laboratory, as the paper admits “If this sensitivity is still relevant at the size of cloud condensation nuclei,…”

  145. Follow the Money
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 12:50 PM | Permalink

    richarT writes:

    Nobody doubts that the sun’s out put changes. What is at doubt is if the changes are large enough to make much difference.

    Much? What is “much?” Is “much” the perceived 20th c. temp change? Is the infinitessimal change in 20thc. CO2 relative to atmosphere “much?”

    If the effect was large, the mechanism would be the obvious one, not via an interaction with cosmic radiation, for which there is little good evidence.

    What is “large?” What is “obvious?” Is the temp change “obvious?” I agree the cosmic (non-sun) radiation agreement is not good, but I’m having trouble seeing why the sun is so readily discounted, otherr than they are on the carbon dole.

  146. John Lang
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 1:02 PM | Permalink

    RichardT #144 Is anybody (other than some lunatic fringe) seriously suggesting that melting of the Himalayan Glaciers would flood the Ganges?

    Drop the question into Google and you get alot lunatic fringe (AGW’ers) talking catastophe.

    http://www.google.ca/search?hl=en&q=Himalayan+Glaciers+will+all+melt+flooding+the+Ganges&meta=

  147. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 1:11 PM | Permalink

    #146. I’ll bet that you can find Pachauri talking about the Himalayan glaciers.

  148. Vasco
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 1:11 PM | Permalink

    Nobody doubts that the sun’s out put changes. What is at doubt is if the changes are large enough to make much difference.

    Isn’t that the same with AGW? Even hundreds of years ago scientists already noticed the difference in Earth climate depending on the number of sun spots, seemingly large enough to make a difference.

  149. Paul M
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 1:13 PM | Permalink

    Re Lunatic Fringe

    Richard T, I don’t think you based in the UK. Spend some time listening/watching the BBC or reading most of our press plus the Met office – we are all doomed.

    The AGW brigade have already been fingered for egging the pud becauuse the ends justify the means – e.g Schneider. Goebbels said that if you tell a big enough lie enough times you get pointless windfarms all over the Thames Estuary and a Chancellor who outlaw TVs and DVD players with standby.

    Regards

    Paul

  150. David Smith
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 2:19 PM | Permalink

    From the it’s-weather-not-climate inbox:

    1. Wunderground notes that a new record for 3-day rainfall was set in February. Part of Madagascar got 390 centimeters (155 inches) of rain in a tropical cyclone. That’s a 10-year supply for Southern California, in 72 hours.

    2. So far this year there have been no tropical storms in the western Pacific. That is unusual: eighteen of the last twenty years had at least one tropical cyclone by mid-March. (Is this lateness significant? Nope, but since the rainfall record will probably get blamed on AGW I figure I’d try to balance it with equally-unsignificant data on the typhoon season.)

  151. dover_beach
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 3:17 PM | Permalink

    James Hansen was on my national broadcaster last night worrying aloud about ‘tipping points’ and the real possibility of a sea level rise in the order of 5m over this century or 1m every 20 years. See here:

    http://www.abc.net.au/7.30/content/2007/s1870955.htm

  152. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 3:21 PM | Permalink

    RE: #150 – While it’s a somewhat loopy, Art Bellish site, the “Not By Fire By Ice” site has an ongoing log of extreme rainfall and snowfall events. The theory of course being “if it were all snowfall, the ice front would be on the move.” Naturally that really only might apply to cold fronts. But it is interesting to flip things around and do thought experiments that puport the opposite of AGW alarmism – extreme precip, drought and other oddities as portents of a new ice age. If nothing else, it helps to clear the mind. LOL! ;)

  153. DeWitt Payne
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 4:00 PM | Permalink

    Here’s a question: Ignoring the meaning or lack of it of a global average temperature, what would be the average surface temperature of an earth-like body (same solar constant, an albedo for incoming solar radiation of 0.3 and 0.00 for outgoing IR) and with and atmosphere of pure argon with a average surface pressure of 1000mbar so it’s completely transparent in the UV,VIS and IR? My gut feeling is that it would be less than the gray body temperature of 255 K because some heat would be lost to the atmosphere by conduction and convection.

  154. MarkW
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 4:21 PM | Permalink

    Apparently 55% of Democrats think that there is a serious danger of all human life being wiped out by AGW.

    http://www.galluppoll.com/content/Default.aspx?ci=26842&VERSION=p

  155. Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 4:24 PM | Permalink

    Has anyone seen this yet?http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/story/0,,2032575,00.html

  156. KevinUK
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 4:54 PM | Permalink

    Well I’ve just been watching ITV News here on the UK and have just witnessed a dialogue between Tony ‘Do as I say not as I do’ Blair and Arnie ‘The Termininator’ Schwarzeneeger. Questioned about his ‘Hummers’ Arnie has just informed UK viewers that one of his Hummers now operates on hydrogen and ‘so does not emit any greenhouse gases’. Do you think that perhaps Arnie needs to be taught some basic physics about the greenhouse effect? At the risk of shattering his unquestioning faith in AGW will someone volunteer to tell him the ‘inconvenient truth’ that the water vapour that his hydrogen powered Hummer is now emitting is in fact the MAJOR greenhouse gas?

    KevinUK

  157. John M
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 5:14 PM | Permalink

    #156

    Not to mention the fact that the hydrogen most likely (very likely?) was produced from natural gas with CO2 as a by-product. Of course, on the positive side, the hydrogen production process consumes water, thereby rendering hydrogen as a fuel to be “water neutral”.

  158. DeWitt Payne
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 5:26 PM | Permalink

    #157

    Almost certainly. That is the industry standard process. Unless his Hummer has a fuel cell, though, it would emit less CO2 if it burned the natural gas directly.

  159. Nicholas
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 5:28 PM | Permalink

    Hydrogen is an energy storage medium, not an energy source. It isn’t a very good storage medium either, because it’s hard to store it densely (you need heavy pressure or cryogenic tanks, or else to store it chemically inside solid metal). As such, if it’s produced by splitting water molecules using nuclear/hydroelectric/solar/wind power then I guess it is more or less not a CO2 emitter (although CO2 is emitted in building such power plants, and by many side-effects of operating them). As I understand it most hydrogen is still produced from hydrocarbons because it’s by far the most economical method. Hydrogen produced by electrolysis is, energy for energy, substantially more expensive than gasolene. But then I suppose the governator can afford it. But first someone has to bankroll the facilities to extract it on a commercial scale.

    I hear that the most efficient method is to use a gas-cooled nuclear plant since the some of the hot gas can be used to pre-heat the water, making the electrolysis a lot more efficient. We’re a long way from seeing any such plants being commercially built though, not least because of the NIMBY factor, but also because most tried and true reactor designs are water-cooled.

  160. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 7:41 PM | Permalink

    In case you have not hit the snooze buttons yet – Glen Beck on CNN interviewed Michaels and Easterbrook about the Warming. Beck was praising the New York Times for going after Gore. However he also asked where they were for the last year?? I have not checked the Times yet.
    You may be able to catch it on a repeat tonight? or don’t they repeat news?

  161. Willis Eschenbach
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 8:22 PM | Permalink

    Dewitt, you say:

    Here’s a question: Ignoring the meaning or lack of it of a global average temperature, what would be the average surface temperature of an earth-like body (same solar constant, an albedo for incoming solar radiation of 0.3 and 0.00 for outgoing IR) and with and atmosphere of pure argon with a average surface pressure of 1000mbar so it’s completely transparent in the UV,VIS and IR? My gut feeling is that it would be less than the gray body temperature of 255 K because some heat would be lost to the atmosphere by conduction and convection.

    How can energy be “lost” to the atmosphere? The atmosphere will absorb energy until it reaches equilibrium, and then will be neither a source or sink for energy.

    w.

  162. David Smith
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 9:03 PM | Permalink

    The NCDC supports their surface temperature record by displaying weather balloon trends and citing breakthrough papers which describe errors in the satellite methodology, giving adjusted satellite time series like this . The appearance is of two independent methods which support NCDC’s surface record.

    The NCDC weather balloon plot is based on RATPAC data, in which the number of global radiosonde stations was reduced by about 90%, down to about 85 “carefully selected” stations with (apparently) some historical data adjustments. The paper which addresses the RATPAC culls and adjustments offers little detail about exactly what was done, but it is remarkable how the RATPAC radisosonde trend (0.16C/decade) now agrees so well with the reported surface record.

    OK, but what about the third, apparently independent method, which is based on satellite data? Well, I was surprised to read that the Fu et al method, which is used to adjust the UAH and RSS satellite trends, uses the RATPAC radiosonde data to calculate key coefficients. That stricks me as hardly an independent relationship – if RATPAC is flawed, then the satellite reconstruction is flawed. I also suspect that decadal trends in the RATPAC data would tend to carry over into their satellite reconstructions.

    Odd.

  163. tom
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 9:31 PM | Permalink

    Monbiot appears to be getting a bit of a roasting from reader over his latest diatribe and felt obliged to anti up an explanation for the lag between temperature and increasing concentrations of CO2.

    Monbiot
    March 13, 2007 9:28 AM

    Several posters have asked me to comment about the lag between temperature and increasing concentrations of CO2. This is a real phenomenom, but it does nothing to discredit the theory of anthropogenic global warming.
    There is little doubt that changes in solar activity, including the sunspot cycle, influence global temperatures. What is not demonstrated – in fact what has been disproved – is that they are responsible for the current rise in temperature. The length of sunspot cycles and global temperatures are in fact inversely correlated over much of the past 40 years.
    But when they or other factors have caused a rise in temperature in the past, this has triggered the release of greenhouse gases, by precisely the feedback mechanisms now understood to present a danger of accelerating the global warming initiated by burning fossil fuels. After warming periods in the ice core record began, carbon dioxide started to be released from the biosphere in greater quantities, and appears eventually to have taken over as the principal driver of further warming. The record is consistent with current predictions.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/story/0,,2032575,00.html

  164. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 9:33 PM | Permalink

    Re #162 – I had a brief look at the references. It comes down to – they have not measured (warming) with a thermometer so they infer what they think it should be using satellites.

  165. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 9:40 PM | Permalink

    Those Minus 50’s will get you every time:
    Trek to North Pole to Create Awareness of Global Warming Called off after Explorer Suffers Frostbite From ‘Extreme Cold’

    By EPW Blog

    Monday, March 12, 2007
    Frostbite, equipment damage end latest Bancroft-Arnesen trek

    By: Patrick Condon, Associated Press

    MINNEAPOLIS – A North Pole expedition meant to bring attention to global warming was called off after one of the explorers got frostbite.

    The explorers, Ann Bancroft and Liv Arnesen, on Saturday called off what was intended to be a 530-mile trek across the Arctic Ocean after Arnesen suffered frostbite in three of her toes, and extreme cold temperatures drained the batteries in some of their electronic equipment.

    “Ann said losing toes and going forward at all costs was never part of the journey,” said Ann Atwood, who helped organize the expedition.

    On Monday, the pair was at Canada’s Ward Hunt Island, awaiting a plane to take them to Resolute, Canada, where they were to return to Minneapolis later this week. …………..
    “They were experiencing temperatures that weren’t expected with global warming,” Atwood said. “But one of the things we see with global warming is unpredictability.”
    Meanwhile Rosie Stancer continues solo:

    http://www.rosiestancermarsnorthpolesolo.co.uk/

  166. O'Dubhda
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 11:12 PM | Permalink

    Hey guys, really enjoying the site.

    I’ve been searching, to no avail, for a list of the 2,500+ expert scientists that have contributed to the 4AR. I’ve got a hankerin’ that this is a totally bogus number but I’m unfortunately unable to validate my claim.

    -just wondering if anyone around here knows where a list of the authors might be found.

    I did manage to find the nomination form, however. In the event that anyone here feels like making it 2,501, here’s the link: http://www.ipcc.ch/ar4/nominations/nominationform_ar4.doc

    Make sure you remember to check ‘expert’!!

  167. Willis Eschenbach
    Posted Mar 13, 2007 at 11:28 PM | Permalink

    David, thanks for your interesting post regarding the “proof” that the troposphere is warming as fast as the surface temperature. However, what is often overlooked is that if the warming is due to CO2, radiation balance models say that the troposphere should warm, not merely as fast, but much faster than the surface. This has not happened.

    w.

  168. paul m
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 1:24 AM | Permalink

    Intelligence Squared US Debate

    All at CA should note the debate on Global Warming tonight on the “the highly-acclaimed “Brian Lehrer Show” heard weekday mornings on WNYC⬠New York Public Radio⬬ 820 AM, 93.9 FM and wnyc.org. Features Richard Lindzen, Michael Crichton and Phillip Stott.

    http://www.intelligencesquaredus.org/

    Paul M

  169. Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 2:11 AM | Permalink

    Tom 163:
    Thanks for correcting my dead link. Too tired to think last night and sickened by Monbiot.

  170. Mark T.
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 2:17 AM | Permalink

    What’s interesting is the comparison between the way the media treat Crichton vs. the way they treat Gore. Crichton is “not a scientist, so we should take his words with a grain of salt” yet somehow, Gore gets a pass on all that. Grrr…

    Mark

  171. Peter D. Tillman
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 3:18 AM | Permalink

    Re: climatology graphs

    Many posters here have used the Wikipedia graphs, for example

    the classic spaghetti chart….

    What you may not have realized is that these are all the work of one person, Robert A. Rohde, a Ph.D. candidate at Berkeley http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Dragons_flight

    And he has a bunch more, all wonderful, all freely useable: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Dragons_flight/Images
    You can get a pretty good education in climatology and paleoclimatology just by studying these masterful graphics. Bravo!

    Note that Rohde is sympathetic to some of Shaviv’s work, in particular his “flight through the galactic arms” idea to explain the greenhouse/icehouse periods in the Phanerozoic:

    http://www.sciencebits.com/ice-ages

    Cheers — Pete Tillman
    Consulting Geologist, Arizona and New Mexico (USA)

  172. Andrey Levin
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 4:23 AM | Permalink

    Re: 154

    82% of democrats versus 38% of republicans worry that “ocean levels will rise, leaving many coastal lands under water”. Does that mean that democrats are selling their ocean beach properties and moving to mainland red states?

  173. Andrey Levin
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 4:49 AM | Permalink

    Re: 162

    Apparent tampering with satellite data scares a sh*t out of me. Much more than melting of Antarctica or Ebola mosquitoes. Probably because it is real.

    I believe that assuring proper archiving and accessibility of raw measurement data should be of uppermost importance for Steve and everybody else here.

  174. MarkW
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 5:24 AM | Permalink

    Funny thing, NASA’s Solar Max satellite has reported that the sun has been increasing in intensity over the last 30 years or so.

    I guess that’s evidence that Exxon money has polluted NASA data as well.

  175. Rod
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 5:26 AM | Permalink

    re: #99

    I agree that Durkin’s misleading of Carl Wunsch was not ideal ‘€” however cherry picking tends to be a normal part of the reporting profession in support of the message they are promoting. As has already been pointed out the BBC news regularly distorts global warming facts. However, if you look at the transcript of what Carl Wunsch actually said and compare it with his letter you’ll see that he may “protest too loudly”. I suspect he has noted that scientists in his field of work have to be careful where they tread. A summary of his views on GW is here: http://www.royalsoc.ac.uk/page.asp?id=4688&tip=1

    Of the other scientists appearing on the programme Richard Lindzen was on Durkin’s previous programme “Against Nature”, the Climate Change edition and so must have been fully aware of what he was involved with. Nir Shaviv was backing his/Svensmark’s high energy cosmic ray/low level cloud/lower CO2 sensitivity hypothesis, much of which can be read about on his blog at http://www.sciencebits.com.

    I don’t recall an interview with Henrik Svensmark but Nigel Calder discussed his work. As an amusing aside Nigel Calder also noted that he was the one who originally publicised Bert Bolin’s ideas on CO2 and there was an old clip of Bert Bolin on this.

    Of the other scientists on the programme who are active in their particular field, e.g. Ian Clark, Tim Ball, Myles Allen, Paul Reiter, John Christy (see for example http://www.timesdaily.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070307/NEWS/703070330/-1/COMMUNITIES) seemed reasonably clear in their views.

    Of the others Philip Stott is a regular contributor to BBC radio 4’s weekly environmental programme and his views are well known. Piers Corbyn is a rather unconventional weather forecaster. It should be possible to check the percentage accuracy of his predictions against the Met Office’s. Patrick Moore reputation as founder of Greenpeace and views about its current direction are well known.

    James Shikwati, the African economist’s views were also clear on what Africa needed. The example was well chosen: a small rural hospital relying on solar cells for its electricity which could either have a small refrigerator working or a single light but not both. I’m not sure how typical this is but it would seem that a proper, reliable electric grid across Africa would do wonders for lots of their current problems.

    I thought the approach in Durkin’s Against Nature series in 1997 was useful and maybe should be followed for this programme. It ended with a live debate by the various protagonists, including Richard Lindzen. I can’t remember who the other members were: Jonathan Porritt maybe?

    As a result of the programme I’ve started to read “The Chilling Stars: A New Theory of Climate Change”. It’s written for the layman so is an easy read. After I’ve finished it I’m going to have to look at some of the deeper stuff on ScienceBits plus the references therein and see if I can figure out whether or not Nir Shaviv deals adequately with his critics.

  176. Jim Hanrahan
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 7:08 AM | Permalink

    Re: #162

    I’m a layman coming late to this debate, but I think it should be noted that there are at least three different reconstructions of the satellite data. The University of Washington puts the warming trends at 0.1C/decade; Spenser and Christy at UAH have acknowledged the error in their earlier work, but their revised version puts the warming trend at 0.12C/decade, which they claim is verified by the radiosonde record. I have seen now three different numbers associated with the RSS version: 0.14C, 0.17C and 0.19C. Also, Spenser and Christy have complained that the RSS reconstruction has been positioned as a “correction” of their work, and it is not: it is independent work using a different methodology.

    Whichever version who accept, as pointed out in #167, the models say the troposphere should be warming much faster than the surface.

  177. Gaudenz Mischol
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 7:41 AM | Permalink

    I’m also a layman, but I was thinking about solar versus CO2 some days ago and asked myself the following question, but don’t know the answer:

    It is often stated and seems to be accepted that there is a lag of temperature with the increase of CO2 until new radiative equilibrium is achieved. So if we would cut back the emissions of CO2 so that the level in the air would remain the same, we would still see a further increase of temperature. My question is how long this lag will be? Is there an estimation of this lag?

    Now, the sun seems to be on a high level of activity compared to the beginning of the 20th century but does not seem to show any trend since this high level was reached around the fifthies of the last century. If we now assume a lag of temperature to equilibrium when increasing CO2, is there a similar lag for an increased solar activity or not? Or is this new radiative equilibrium reached more or less immediately with increased solar activity?

    Perhaps somebody can help me here (I posted this question on Nir Shaviv’s blog, but didn’t get an answer yet, I think he’s just too busy)

    Regarding the tropospheric temperture trends: would there be a difference if the recent warming is caused by the sun or CO2? ( I assume, as CO2 blocks outgoing radiation)

    (I hope those questions are not too stupid)

  178. pochas
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 8:04 AM | Permalink

    #176

    The mid-troposphere is not warming?

    More than anything, this proves the models are wrong, and that AGW is strictly a surface phenomena, with convection dominating heat transport within the atmosphere starting a very few meters above the surface. If the atmosphere were not well-mixed, we would be toast.

    Until the models can deal with convection (How hard is the wind blowing? Is it raining?) accurately over long periods of time they will not give useful information.

  179. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 8:15 AM | Permalink

    #173.

    I believe that assuring proper archiving and accessibility of raw measurement data should be of uppermost importance for Steve and everybody else here.

    Absolutely. I’ve certainly done what I can to emphasize this issue. My impression is that the raw data has been made available to critical groups and that’s how Mears et al and Fu et al have arrived at different results. If that’s not the case, I would absolutely endorse any request by Mears and/or Fu to have access to raw measurement data.

  180. Mark T.
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 9:35 AM | Permalink

    Monbiot appears to be getting a bit of a roasting from reader over his latest diatribe and felt obliged to anti up an explanation for the lag between temperature and increasing concentrations of CO2.

    Monbiot
    March 13, 2007 9:28 AM

    Several posters have asked me to comment about the lag between temperature and increasing concentrations of CO2. This is a real phenomenom, but it does nothing to discredit the theory of anthropogenic global warming.

    Apparently Monbiot has the same problem with the concept of causality as Gavin over at GISS does. These guys need to take a simple Introduction to Discrete-Time Signal Processing class where the distinction between causal and non-causal is spelled out. The very real problem is that it is possible to build a non-causal filter/system, feedback, feedforward or otherwise, but they do not exist in nature. Has anyone ever reviewed their models to determine if such a violation has been made?

    Mark

  181. Gaudenz Mischol
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 9:46 AM | Permalink

    I recommend anybody to read the Unlicensed Engineers Part 1 to 3 by Prof. Tennekes over at Prof. Pielkes blog

    http://climatesci.colorado.edu/2007/03/14/unlicensed-engineers-part-3-by-hendrik-tennekes/

    Eager to see how E. R**bet will rant at him…

  182. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 10:15 AM | Permalink

    RE: #180 – “These guys need to take a simple Introduction to Discrete-Time Signal Processing class where the distinction between causal and non-causal is spelled out.”

    Herein lies the nub of the issue. Decriptive sciences like biology, ecology, and the like, tend to attract people who don’t like maths (and who tend to abuse stats). Even those physicists who are involved in Climate Science, like Mann, seem to be innately attracted to the descriptive sciences camp. I know all this well, I am a mathophobe whose phobia was overcome via brute force, due to my own studies of geophysics, physics and electrical engineering. My own leaning toward a descriptive sciences comfort zone got me in a heap ‘o trouble in an undergrad geological mapping class – I, shall we say, used a bit too much geomorphology in making my maps, and ended up barely eeking out a C.

  183. MarkW
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 10:18 AM | Permalink

    geo what ology??

    Are you allowed to say that in mixed company?

  184. EW
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 11:01 AM | Permalink

    #183
    I would also gladly remain in the realm of descriptive, however referees sometimes force me to statistics, although I know that using it does no good to both me and my data.

  185. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 11:15 AM | Permalink

    RE: 184 & 185 – LOLOLOL!

  186. jaye
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 11:24 AM | Permalink

    I have a question about the temp/c02 lag. Since we get increased CO2 due to warming but lagged by a few hundred years, why doesn’t the slope of the temperature plot increase with the onset of increased CO2? Looking at the various ice core plots, it doesn’t look like the second derivative of temperature is increasing when CO2 kicks in. Wouldn’t you get some sort of runaway feedback if CO2 had the proposed impact on temperature? Am I missing something here?

  187. Jean S
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 11:26 AM | Permalink

    From RC:

    [Response: Yes, indeed it gave me a bit of digestion. Now in fairness to Spencer, he is only responsible for a combination of algebraic and sign errors that led him to a cooling trend from satellite data that correctly analyzed, actually indicated warming. The degrees vs. radians error that compromised the Michaels and McKitrick "bombshell" claim that the global surface temperature record is compromised by non-temperature related biases, was all McKitrick. -mike]

    There has to be a psychological diagnosis for mike’s apparent condition.

  188. Peter D. Tillman
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 11:59 AM | Permalink

    John A. upthread was asking about heat balance in the atmosphere. Here’s a cartoon (by Robert A. Rohde) that might be helpful in visualizing what’s going on:

    –and the realclimate discussion “What does the lag of CO2 behind temperature in ice cores tell us about global warming?” http://www.realclimate.org/index.php?p=13
    is clear, well-written and helpful:

    “At least three careful ice core studies have shown that CO2 starts to rise about 800 years (600-1000 years) after Antarctic temperature during glacial terminations. These terminations are pronounced warming periods that mark the ends of the ice ages that happen every 100,000 years or so.

    Does this prove that CO2 doesn’t cause global warming? The answer is no.

    The reason has to do with the fact that the warmings take about 5000 years to be complete. The lag is only 800 years. All that the lag shows is that CO2 did not cause the first 800 years of warming, out of the 5000 year trend. The other 4200 years of warming could in fact have been caused by CO2, as far as we can tell from this ice core data…

    …The 800-year lag is about the amount of time required to flush out the deep ocean through natural ocean currents. So CO2 might be stored in the deep ocean during ice ages, and then get released when the climate warms.”

    The article is by Jeff Severinghaus, Professor of Geosciences, Scripps Institution of Oceanography and is refreshingly free of cant. Give it a shot.

    Cheers — Pete Tillman

  189. Chris H
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 12:31 PM | Permalink

    The reason has to do with the fact that the warmings take about 5000 years to be complete. The lag is only 800 years. All that the lag shows is that CO2 did not cause the first 800 years of warming, out of the 5000 year trend. The other 4200 years of warming could in fact have been caused by CO2, as far as we can tell from this ice core data…

    This would only be a convincing argument to me with a bit more detail. In the graphs I have seen, the slope of the CO2 increase tracks the slope of the temperature increase fairly closely. If the initial warming is caused by one factor and subsequent heating is caused by CO2, why do these curves track each other so well? Surely the relationship between the two curves would look more complex. I would like to see what form of function could cause this behaviour and the physical argument behind it.

    Without more detail, I prefer to use Occam’s razor and go with the idea that the bulk of the warming is caused by other factors and that the warming is responsible for the increase in CO2

  190. Paul M
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 12:46 PM | Permalink

    Temp/Warming

    “The reason has to do with the fact that the warmings take about 5000 years to be complete. The lag is only 800 years. All that the lag shows is that CO2 did not cause the first 800 years of warming, out of the 5000 year trend. The other 4200 years of warming could in fact have been caused by CO2, as far as we can tell from this ice core data”

    Is this supposed to be proof? Is that it? No other factors involved? So not only does correlation not equal causation it equals what ever you want it to be?

    Paul M

  191. jaye
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 1:13 PM | Permalink

    Seems to me that if CO2 caused significant warming the rise of CO2 would accelerate the warming and the accelerated warming would accelerate the release of CO2, which would cause the whole cycle to quickly get out of control.

  192. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 1:14 PM | Permalink

    Re #166 **I’ve been searching, to no avail, for a list of the 2,500+ expert scientists**.
    Try this link at junkscience. They have a draft copy of the technical report. Check all the boxes on the fidderent topics. Some will have all the papers that were reviewed – this will give autors. then you can go over the Summary report – this gives a list of the reviewers and the Lead Authors. I am not sure if the 2500 covers the reviewers AND the authors?? What becomes clear is that 2500 “scientists” did not finalize the Summary for Policy Makers. That number is likely under a hundred. Look atLead Authors for that.

    http://www.junkscience.com/draft_AR4/

  193. Richard Sharpe
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 1:49 PM | Permalink

    It seems that Jeff Severinghaus, Professor of Geosciences, Scripps Institution of Oceanography said:

    … The 800-year lag is about the amount of time required to flush out the deep ocean through natural ocean currents. So CO2 might be stored in the deep ocean during ice ages, and then get released when the climate warms. (Emphasis added.)

    I doubt that he would get away with a conclusion like that in a peer-reviewed paper. What makes him think that it is appropriate in any discussion on such a contentious and important issue?

  194. richardT
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 2:21 PM | Permalink

    #194
    Assuming you accept the ice-core CO2 data, then its clear that atmospheric CO2 levels fell in the glacial. This is supported by independent stomatal density-based estimates. The CO2 removed from the atmosphere had to go somewhere. Terrestrial carbon stores are unlikely – forest cover deceased substantially, and there are few large glacial peat deposits. So that leaves the ocean, there is nowhere else for it to go.
    There are several changes in ocean circulation and chemistry during the last glacial that are consistent with a larger deep ocean CO2 reservoir.

  195. jaye
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 2:21 PM | Permalink

    Jeff uses “could have” and “might” frequently in his article.

  196. Reid
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 2:45 PM | Permalink

    Satellites track monster cold water whirlpool off Australia coast.

    http://www.news.com.au/story/0,23599,21379283-2,00.html

    The alarmists didn’t include monster cold water whirlpools in their scenarios.

    The cooling has begun. The just ended el-nino was short and weak. 1998 was the inflection year and the next few years will probably get sharply cooler as the atmosphere responds to the recent ocean cooling.

    If I were a gambling man I would short global warming futures.

  197. Darwin
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 3:00 PM | Permalink

    Re: 189-192, 194-195 When Severinghaus was interviewed by AP’s Seth Borenstein in 2005 for a review of Crichton’s State of Fear, he argued: “The ocean data says it all. Ground temperatures confirm this” to dismiss the book as nonsense. It is noteworthy that Borenstein didn’t go back to Jeff to discuss Lyman et al on oceans or Pielke Sr. et al’s study on land temps, not to mention Steve M.’s work here. Why, if the oceans “say it all,” do they only say it all when their temps go up, not when they go down? And why does CO2 say it all, all the time? I sure wish I’d had Steve S.’s persistence and math background. Then I might figure a way to plot the twists and turns taken to make everything in climate change consistent.
    Re: 166 — count up the authors’ names on the papers in the bibleography for the IPCC report. They are counted as having “contributed” and no doubt make up the bulk of the noble 2,500.

  198. Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 3:04 PM | Permalink

    Here is some entertainment:

    A North Pole expedition meant to bring attention to global warming was called off after one of the explorers got frostbite.

    “They were experiencing temperatures that weren’t expected with global warming,” Atwood said. “But one of the things we see with global warming is unpredictability.”

    Well, wake up and smell the coffee Atwoord, The Butterfly Effect is not just a bad movie.

    The weather has always been and will continue to be unpredictable.

    Note, however, the fact that it gets cold in the Arctic should only come as a surprise to people with IQs below room temperature (charitably measured in Fahrenheit and not subject to global warming).

    And, to think of the fossil fuels expended to rescue these two.

    Sinan

  199. Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 3:07 PM | Permalink

    Re: #124

    Sorry Willis, I missed your post above as I was quickly skimming to the bottom. I should know I am always late to the game. :-(

    Sinan

  200. Peter D. Tillman
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 3:12 PM | Permalink

    Re: 190, 191 — CO2 lag

    Here’s the current link to the source for the 800 year lag (dead link at RC page)
    Caillon, Severinghaus et al, Science, 2003
    New link: http://icebubbles.ucsd.edu/Publications/CaillonTermIII.pdf

    There’s some interesting fine structure in Fig. 3 of this paper (which I’ve only skimmed so far). But the crux of the matter is the mysterious “fast atmospheric amplifier” of the CO2 (etc.) released during deglaciation, which is the old, unanswered question of what the CO2 sensitivity really is. And you’re right, there’s a chicken & egg problem here. At least, with the ice cores, you’re dealing with real data (vs. computer models) — but when you start looking at all the assumptions that are made to produce those neat, colorful ice-core charts — well, that’s what we’re paying these guys to do, I suppose. SFAICT, Severinghaus and colleagues are making a good-faith effort here, and their interpretation seems reasonable.

    Re: 194, CO2 stored in ocean

    You’ll recall that cold water can dissolve more gas than warm, so that, as the ocean warms, it’s likely to release dissolved CO2 (etc). Severinghaus, in his RC piece, is being admirably cautious about getting ahead of the data, I thought. The Science article has a little more aggressive interpretation, perhaps from the senior author.

    Re 192, runaway amplifiers — the best answer here is that it hasn’t happened in the past, and no serious climatologist (sfaik) thinks it will ever happen. As to why, who knows, but empirical observation always trumps theory.

    Neverthelees, the climate has taken some nasty, abrupt swings in the past, and almost certainly will do so again in the future. Regardless of the cause, we’d best be prepared. Severinghaus has some links to abrupt climate change info at http://icebubbles.ucsd.edu/Links/links.html

    Cheers — Pete Tillman

  201. Follow the Money
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 3:24 PM | Permalink

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/story/0,,2032575,00.html

    #163

    Monbiot’s clever sidestep:

    “and appears eventually to have taken over as the principal driver of further warming. The record is consistent with current predictions.”

    Taht’s an interesting take by the GW’s. Admit Gore’s favorite graph supports the opposite, but then theorize carbon later takes over the role of heat…or something like that.

    Has there ever been a paper suggesting that, or is that just verbal junk fantasy?

  202. jaye
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 3:52 PM | Permalink

    re: 201

    Re 192, runaway amplifiers ‘€” the best answer here is that it hasn’t happened in the past, and no serious climatologist (sfaik) thinks it will ever happen. As to why, who knows, but empirical observation always trumps theory.

    So then do we have a proof by contradiction that CO2 doesn’t have the effect on temperature that is claimed by the AGW crowd? We know X is true so lets pretend Y is true, but Y => !X so there you have it.

  203. MarkW
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 4:15 PM | Permalink

    #199

    How do you convert IQ’s to metric?

  204. Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 4:21 PM | Permalink

    Re: #204

    It really does not matter in that context.

    Sinan

  205. Reference
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 4:44 PM | Permalink

    Apologies in advance if the link to this paper has already been given; for those interested in Jaworowski views here is his latest article just published in EIR Science

  206. Robert McConnell
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 5:33 PM | Permalink

    Re: #s 205, 199 etc

    This story raises at least two questions:

    1. Why did they set off at the absolutely coldest part of the year in that area,
    when the weather station at Alert routinely registers daily highs in the -30s and
    lows in the -40s, dipping down to the -50s?
    2. Did they really record outside temps of -100, and -50 inside their tent, as reported in the news stories?

    Remember, you can wrap yourself in hubris, but it won’t keep you warm.

  207. David Smith
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 7:23 PM | Permalink

    Re #197 The Cold Ocean Pool may be too late to save Sydney, as the city is now under attack by the dreaded Australian cockroach ( link ). The infestation is attributed to … global warming.

    The article also noted that the German cockroach left Sydney several years ago, but of course that nice development was not attributed to …. global warming.

    (Seems like, if Sydney is going to have cockroaches, they might as well be the Australian variety which already know about Vegemite sandwiches.)

  208. DeWitt Payne
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 7:42 PM | Permalink

    Re: #161

    Willis, I thought some more about the whole thing and discovered an error in my logic. Because argon doesn’t absorb in the IR, it can’t emit either. So you are correct, there would be no heat lost from the surface to a pure argon atmosphere once it reached ‘equilibrium’ through conduction and convection because such an atmosphere has no mechanism to lose heat to space. Well, there might be a small leak at the top of the atmosphere because a (very) tiny fraction of the argon atoms might exceed escape velocity, but this would not be significant. So the equilibrium surface temperature would be the gray body temperature in this case.

    This is not true of our atmosphere, however, because the CO2, water vapor and other components in the atmosphere (greenhouse gases) do have IR emission/absorption in the 5 to 30 micrometer range that covers most of the black body radiation spectrum emitted by the surface. Once the free path of an IR photon emitted upward by a molecule of one of these gases exceeds the remaining height of the atmosphere it will escape to space. Which reminds me that I don’t like the term ‘down-welling long wave IR’ either. I think back-scattered IR would be much more descriptive of what is actually happening.

    Another note in my continuing education project on atmospheric physics: I was very surprised to see that many (most) standard descriptions of the atmosphere completely ignore the greenhouse effect and radiative heat transfer in the lower atmosphere. For example, they only do an energy balance on the incident solar radiation. Thus they come up with figures showing something like only 15% of the incoming energy is emitted by the surface as IR. Plug that number into the Stefan-Boltzman equation and you get a surface temperature of 173 K. That also drastically increases the relative importance of sensible and latent heat flux in the overall energy balance compared to the Kiehl and Trenberth energy balance.

  209. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 8:53 PM | Permalink

    #199. Sinan, Rasmus of realclimate appears on their site http://www.bancroftarnesen.com/explore/ArcticOcean2007/msgNetClient2.jsp?meetingId=9&a=show . I guess Rasmus assumed that the distributions would be i.i.d.

  210. Dave Dardinger
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 9:28 PM | Permalink

    re: #209 DeWitt,

    I don’t like the term down-welling long wave IR’ either. I think back-scattered IR would be much more descriptive of what is actually happening.

    I disagree strongly. The atmosphere isn’t scattering IR at all. It’s absorbing it and then the energy is thermalized (i.e. it’s converted into molecular velocity / heat). Finally either some GHG molecule obtains sufficient internal energy to emit IR (not at all necessarily at the same energy) OR more rarely, I suppose, two non-GHG molecules collide and in the process emit an IR photon. It’s just that on a random basis, half of the IR photons emitted will point down and half up. (And yes, quantum gurus I know that actually being waves the photons go in all directions at once and can only be said to have moved up or down ex post facto.)

  211. Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 9:39 PM | Permalink

    Re: #210

    The whole thing reflects badly on everyone involved. Even if the Santa’s backyard warmed up by 10 degrees Celsius, it ought to be obvious to everyone that it would still be freezing cold. Especially during the Northern Hemisphere winter. Did they really think they would find a Mediterranean beach club up there? Reading their web site certainly leads me to think so. Let’s assume the two polar explorers’ brains had been fried due to exposure on previous expeditions. Could Dr. Benestad not have given them a little heads up, especially given that he works for the Norwegian Meteorological Institute? My psyche has been disturbingly perturbed by this amazing demonstration of complete subjugation of reality to fantasy.

  212. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 9:51 PM | Permalink

    I notice that they returned to Ward Hunt Island. I’ve posted about the Ward Hunt ice shelf in the past; I wonder how it’s doing this year.

  213. Wang Dang
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 9:58 PM | Permalink

    #210
    The irony of the Bancroft Arneson expidition to the north pole to raise awareness of the effects of global warming on the arctic is amusing. The link provided by Steve has Rasmus answering global warming questions from children. One child asked if the CO2 levels were at an all time high, Rasmus answered, yes.

    My third grader could explain to Rasmus that this is not true.

  214. bernie
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 10:01 PM | Permalink

    Hopefully this is not a total distraction. I am playing catch up here, big time. But I just read the NAS Report. I looked most carefully at the chapter on Statistics. My read – though perhaps I was reading selctively – is that they excoriated the HS statistical methods and accepted MM’s submission without reservation. Yet this seemed to be totally downplayed in the summary and conclusions in favor of an emphasis on the last 20 years.
    Did I misread it?

  215. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 10:10 PM | Permalink

    Bernie, I think that you got it exactly right. That’s what we said at the time. Some people noticed this – Eduardo Zorita commented here that the report was as severe on Mann as possible given its makeup. But it had enough conflicting statements and comfort phrases that it could be spun both ways.

  216. Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 10:39 PM | Permalink

    I am speechless:

    http://www.bradenton.com/mld/bradenton/news/nation/16890578.htm

    They blamed damaged equipment, frostbite on three of Arnesen’s toes and temperatures that hit 103 below zero at night.

    Sjogren and two other experienced Arctic explorers interviewed separately said a combination of global warming, time pressure and cost considerations also probably influenced the decision to abandon the expedition.

    They set out again, across an inhospitable landscape. Because global warming has reduced the thickness of the ice to only about 6 or 8 feet, it cracks more easily, making it much more difficult to cross.

    Now, I have no experience in Arctic exploration, but over February, I frequently ventured onto 6 inch thick ice here in Ithaca with no problem. I am sure forces on a floating island of ice are different, but could it really have been cracking up with every step these explorers were taking?

    I give up.

    Steve, the fact that there are no updates on the status of the ice shelf indicates to me that it ain’t gonna disappear any time soon. :-)

    Sinan

  217. DeWitt Payne
    Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 10:55 PM | Permalink

    Re: #211

    Dave, I don’t know if the process is formally equivalent to inelastic scattering (the emitted photon is always lower energy than the absorbed photon), the time scale may be too long. But I think it’s practically equivalent. Down-welling implies to me that the energy originates in the atmosphere, when in fact almost all of it, probably all of it in the lower atmosphere, comes from the ground either as radiative, sensible or latent heat transfer.

    I’m still looking for a good reference on why increasing greenhouse warming should cause the lapse rate to decrease (i.e. atmosphere warms faster than the surface). That still seems like confusing cause and effect.

  218. Posted Mar 14, 2007 at 11:12 PM | Permalink

    215,216
    This month mike said that MM criticism was debunked by Wahl and Ammann (is that paper still in press ?)

    But maybe we should move on, there are other modern statistical methods that should be evaluated thoroughly:

    Robustly estimated red-noise background with confidence limits (1996)

    Evolving multivariate regression method (1998)

    Inflation of variance, instead of self-consistent estimates based on the observation of Gaussian residuals (1999)

    Estimation of proxy noise autocorrelation coefficient from the proxy data themselves (2006)

  219. Willis Eschenbach
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 1:13 AM | Permalink

    Dewitt, thanks for the comments. You say:

    Another note in my continuing education project on atmospheric physics: I was very surprised to see that many (most) standard descriptions of the atmosphere completely ignore the greenhouse effect and radiative heat transfer in the lower atmosphere. For example, they only do an energy balance on the incident solar radiation. Thus they come up with figures showing something like only 15% of the incoming energy is emitted by the surface as IR. Plug that number into the Stefan-Boltzman equation and you get a surface temperature of 173 K. That also drastically increases the relative importance of sensible and latent heat flux in the overall energy balance compared to the Kiehl and Trenberth energy balance.

    I think that actually what’s happening is that the descriptions that you reference are showing the net radiation. For example, since per K/T energy budget the surface is receiving ~ 325 W/m2 from the atmosphere and is radiating ~ 390 W/m2, this is reported as an emission by the surface of 65 W/m2. While this is true as far as it goes … it doesn’t go very far.

    w.

  220. Chris H
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 2:16 AM | Permalink

    #201 Pete,
    Thanks for the link to the paper. Looking at figures 3 and 4, the 800 year lagged correlation between temperature and CO2 is very good. This correlation supports the idea that rising temperature causes rising CO2 levels and that any impact of CO2 levels on temperature is insignificant in comparison.

  221. Ian Blanchard
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 5:45 AM | Permalink

    The harder question to answer (for those promoting CO2 as a major driver of warming) is not what happens at the start of warming events, but rather what causes cooling to start (and be rapid) whilst CO2 continues to rise.

    Surely the best evidence (at least at the CO2 concentrations present in the ice core [and by inference the atmosphere] at these times) that climatic behaviour is not dominantly or even significantly driven by CO2, i.e. that the climate is relatively insensitive to CO2 concentration changes.

  222. MarkW
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 5:51 AM | Permalink

    What happened to the format on this site?

    The style changes are interesting, but I would like to have post numbering back. It makes it easier to let people know which post you are referring to. The loss of the latest postings window makes keeping up with the discussions much more difficult.

    The new text entry box works better than the old one.

  223. bernie
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 6:32 AM | Permalink

    Steve:
    How significant is the UMass connection via Bradley. I am asking because I was stunned by his comment on the NAS Report: http://www.geo.umass.edu/climate/nasreport2006.html

    Seems like Mann was a Post Doc there.

    One other question: For the UHI effect to be a significant factor driving overall temperature, there needs to be some kind of positive relationship between the level of energy emitted in the immediate vicinity of the instruments and temperature and that the level of energy emitted is somewhat steadily increasing. Do longitudinal case studies exist where this is in fact the case? I have noted elsewhere, to Doug who is looking at Canadian Artic stations, that these are in very small communities (

  224. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 6:51 AM | Permalink

    I don’t know why the style changed. It’s a surprise to me.

    Bernie, Mann was not only a post-doc at UMass, but Bradley was a coauthor of MBH. He was also a coauthor of Bradley and Jones 1993 and other papers with Jones. The overlap of authorship of HS-type studies is really quite remarkable.

  225. John A
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 6:55 AM | Permalink

    I didn’t change the theme either so its probably a glitch in the database. Its back now.

  226. TonyN
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 7:55 AM | Permalink

    RichardT, you say:

    “Is anybody (other than some lunatic fringe) seriously suggesting that melting of the Himalayan Glaciers would flood the Ganges?”

    Did you really intend to suggest that George Monbiot is a member of the lunatic fringe? See: http://www.guardian.co.uk/letters/story/0,,237731,00.html

  227. bernie
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 8:05 AM | Permalink

    This messaged somehow got truncated:

    One other question: For the UHI effect to be a significant factor driving overall temperature, there needs to be some kind of positive relationship between the level of energy emitted in the immediate vicinity of the instruments and temperature and that the level of energy emitted is somewhat steadily increasing. Do longitudinal case studies exist where this is in fact the case? I have noted elsewhere, to Doug who is looking at Canadian Artic stations, that these are in very small communities (

  228. John A
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 8:15 AM | Permalink

    Re #227

    Good catch. Well done.

  229. richardT
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 8:32 AM | Permalink

    #227
    Monbiot’s article, says nothing about the Ganges flooding, nor does the reply from Bradnock you link to.

  230. fFreddy
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 8:56 AM | Permalink

    Re #228, bernie
    You look as though you are trying to post something with a “less than” sign. Unfortunately, WordPress tries to interpret this as the start of a HTML tag. If it cannot resolve it properly, it leaves blank everything thereafter.
    Either use the words less than, or the following four characters & l t ; (without the spaces).

  231. Mark T.
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 9:05 AM | Permalink

    Yes, I got caught with the l.t. problem once as well. fFreddy saved me then as well. :thumbsup:

    Mark

  232. Jeff Norman
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 9:21 AM | Permalink

    Re:#199

    A North Pole expedition meant to bring attention to global warming was called off after one of the explorers got frostbite.

    I see the article is dated March 12, 2007. History repeats. Here is one from March 31, 2005.

    Dispute Halts Bancroft-Arnesen Arctic Expedition

    Two Russian military helicopters evacuated polar adventurers Ann Bancroft and Liv Arnesen on Thursday only 136 miles into their planned 1,200-mile hike over the North Pole from Siberia to Canada.

    Although the pair had been tracked by a polar bear, negotiated shifting ice and were forced to dry out Arnesen after she fell into frigid water, it was not the elements that stopped the expedition. It was a business dispute. [my emphasis]

    Re:#201

    But the crux of the matter is the mysterious “fast atmospheric amplifier” of the CO2 (etc.) released during deglaciation,

    [snip]
    You’ll recall that cold water can dissolve more gas than warm, so that, as the ocean warms, it’s likely to release dissolved CO2 (etc).

    Pete,

    I’m having some difficulty with the explanations being offered up to explain the lag. It seems to me that despite there being an ice age, the temperature of the oceans was greater than 0°C. When the glaciers melted they deposited fresh water at or near 0°C into the oceans to an extent that increased the mean sea level by many tens of meters. This must have decreased both the mean salinity and the mean temperature of the oceans. This should have increased the amount of CO2 in the oceans for three reasons:

    1. there was more water;

    2. the water was colder; and
    3. the water was less saline.

    Carbon dioxide is more soluble in fresh water than in salt water.

    To overcome these effects would have required a significant temperature increase.

    Re:#178

    Actually, the troposphere is warming but it is warming in a manner that is more suggestive of an increased heat flux between the surface and space. The hypothesis has the troposphere warming thereby slowing the heat flux from the surface and thereby increasing the surface temperature. Gavin’s BS explanation of the models glossing over short term effects is just that.

  233. bernie
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 9:21 AM | Permalink

    Richard:
    You are correct but somehow that obfuscates the primary point brought to light in the Guardian letter.

    Monbiot writes: “On the Indian sub-continent, the great centres of both population and food production are the valleys of the Ganges, the Brahmaputra and the Indus, all of which are fed by Himalayan glaciers. The glaciers are retreating so fast that the rivers may dry up in the summer by 2040. The results, if this happens, will be catastrophic. Bangladesh will be hit twice, as the people of the river deltas are driven off their lands by rising sea levels. ” article

    Mr Bradnock’s point , however, remains:
    “Sadly, in seeking to make easy points about global warming he has got his “facts” wrong. Glaciers contribute virtually nothing to the flow of the Ganges, Brahmaputra and Indus rivers, which depend primarily on monsoon rain and to a much lesser extent on snow melt (not glacier melt).”

    Mr. Monbiot may also have missed this story which suggests a slightly different view as to the fate of Himalayan Glaciers (sorry I
    couldn’t get the link to work, but you can Google “Himalayan Glaciers” +retreat and look for the Hindustan Times):

    Experts question theory on global warming

    Anil Anand

    New Delhi, February 11, 2007

    Believe it or not. There are only about a dozen scientists working on 9,575 glaciers in India under the aegis of the Geological Society of India. Is the available data enough to believe that the glaciers are retreating due to global warming?

    Some experts have questioned the alarmists theory on global warming leading to shrinkage of Himalayan glaciers. VK Raina, a leading glaciologist and former ADG of GSI is one among them.

    He feels that the research on Indian glaciers is negligible. Nothing but the remote sensing data forms the basis of these alarmists observations and not on the spot research.

    Raina told the Hindustan Times that out of 9,575 glaciers in India, till date, research has been conducted only on about 50. Nearly 200 years data has shown that nothing abnormal has occurred in any of these glaciers.

    It is simple. The issue of glacial retreat is being sensationalised by a few individuals, the septuagenarian Raina claimed. Throwing a gauntlet to the alarmist, he said the issue should be debated threadbare before drawing a conclusion.
    However, Dr RK Pachouri, Chairman, Inter-Governmental Panel of Climatic Change said it’s recently released fourth assessment report has recorded increased glacier retreat since the 1980s.

    This he said was due to the fact that the carbon dioxide radioactive forcing has increased by 20 per cent particularly after 1995. And also that 11 of the last 12 years were among the warmest 12 years recorded so far.

    Surprisingly, Raina, who has been associated with the research and data collection in over 25 glaciers in India and abroad, debunked the theory that Gangotri glacier is retreating alarmingly.

    Maintaining that the glaciers are undergoing natural changes, witnessed periodically, he said recent studies in the Gangotri and Zanskar areas (Drung- Drung, Kagriz glaciers) have not shown any evidence of major retreat.
    “Claims of global warming causing glacial melt in the Himalayas are based on wrong assumptions,” Raina, a trained mountaineer and skiing expert said. He rued that not much is being done by the Government to create a bank of trained geologists for an in-depth study of glaciers.

    The agencies such as the GSI are not getting fresh talent simply because of the measly salaries offered by the Government.
    Consider this. During one of his visits to Antarctic, to his utter dismay, Raina discovered that the cook of a Japanese team was getting a bigger pay packet than him.
    If he is to be believed, currently only about a dozen scientists are working on Indian glaciers. More alarming is the fact that some of them are above 50. How can one talk about the state of glaciers when not much research is being done on the ground, he wondered.
    In fact, it is difficult to ascertain the exact state of Himalayan glaciers as these are very dusty as compared to the ones in Alaska and the Alps. The present presumptions are based on the cosmatic study of the glacier surfaces.

    Nobody knows what is happening beneath the glaciers. What ever is being flaunted about the under surface activity of the glaciers, is merely presumptions, he claimed.
    His views were echoed by Dr RK Ganjoo, Director, Regional Centre for Field Operations and Research on Himalayan Glaciology, who is supervising study of glaciers in Ladakh region including one in the Siachen area. He also maintained that nothing abnormal has been found in any of the Himalyan glaciers studied so far by him.
    Still, he wondered on the Himalayan glaciers being compared with those in Alaska or Europe to lend credence to the melt theory. Indian glaciers are at 3,500-4,000 meter above the sea level whereas those in the Alps are at much lower levels. Certainly, the conditions under which the glaciers in Alaska are retreating, are not prevailing in the Indian sub-continent, he explained.
    Another leading geologist MN Koul of Jammu University, who is actively engaged in studying glacier dynamics in J&K and Himachal holds similar views. Referring to his research on Kol glacier ( Paddar, J&K) and Naradu (HP), he said both the glaciers have not changed much in the past two decades.

    This being the case, one if forced to wonder what else Mr Monbiot got wrong in his article.

  234. Jeff Norman
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 9:25 AM | Permalink

    Bancroft must be P.O.’d. On the first trip Arnesen fell through the ice. On the second Arnesen got frost bitten. Business dispute indeed.

  235. TonyN
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 9:40 AM | Permalink

    #230

    George Monbiot claims that there is a significant link between the Himalayan glaciers and water levels in the Ganges. He also predicts rapid catastrophic melting. There is only a very tenuous link as Bradnock points out.

  236. Ron Cram
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 9:54 AM | Permalink

    The wikipedia Talk page on Global warming controversy has been discussing the controversy around the lack of data archiving and how that hampers the auditing of climate research. I decided to start a new article titled Scientific data archiving. It was amusing to see how my fellow editors (who have published in scientific journals) complain about the policies of journals and the NSF on the two Talk pages. One said the plan was unworkable and unenforceable and another said most authors are not aware of the requirements (even though the AGU policies were first adopted in 1993).

    Like Steve, I am somewhat amazed at this whole situation.

  237. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 10:03 AM | Permalink

    RE: #207 – If you want to do a true and full Arctic crossing you need to time it such that pack ice has closed with shorefast ice in the area where you enter the ocean, and such that it is still there at the point you exit by the time you have made the crossing. Crossings are done both from Russia to Canada and vice versa. If you want to be sure not to be stranded at the end (thereby requiring a plane to complete your journey) you need to start your trek no later than February, so that you’ll end up at the other shore no later than April 1 or thereabouts, when the melt back typically starts, given the rising sun angle, and spring time changes in wind patterns, etc.

  238. Jeff Norman
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 10:40 AM | Permalink

    Re:#199

    Hmmmm.

    Then there was the cold _ quite a bit colder, Atwood said, then Bancroft and Arnesen had expected. One night they measured the temperature inside their tent at 58 degrees below zero, and outside temperatures were exceeding 100 below zero at times, Atwood said.

    Its not clear if this -100° is °C or °F. If it’s °C then it beats the all time coldest temperature ever measured at Vostok in Antarctica by 11°C. If it’s °F then it’s -73°C.

    According to Environment Canada the coldest temperature ever measured at Alert (the closest weather station) was -50°C in 1979. Mind you Eureka recorded -55.3°C (also in 1979).

    At Alert daily temperatures range between -28°C and -37°C.

    But let’s say they actually experienced the temperatures they recorded, what does this say about the GISS claim that climate within a 1,200 km radius is pretty much the same? Especially as they apply it to the Arctic?

  239. Darwin
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 10:46 AM | Permalink

    Re 168 The Intelligence Squared debate on the issue: Global Warming Is NOT A Crisis had interesting audience poll results on before and after.
    There may be a good reason that those scientists alarmed about global warming don’t want to engage in face to face debate with those scientists who aren’t. Some numbers:
    For it not being a crisis: Before debate — 29.88% After debate: 46.22%
    Against it not being a crisis: Before — 57.32 After: 42.22

  240. Robert McConnell
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 11:15 AM | Permalink

    Re: #238

    Yes, but they weren’t doing a full crossing. Their plan was to reach the pole by the end of April, then
    ski to the Tara, a French research vessel that’s drifting in the pack ice and expected to be well north
    of 86 degrees by that time. From the Tara, in mid-May, they’d fly home. According to their web site
    their early-March departure
    was “marking the beginning of International Polar Year.” Since they expected to have a rapt audience of
    schoolteachers and students, I guess they also wanted to have it all wrapped up before the school year
    ended.

  241. Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 11:46 AM | Permalink

    Talk about the HT moving on… Mike Hulme (Prof of Emvironmental Sciences at Univ East Anglia) is advocating ‘post-normal’ science. He writes:

    Self-evidently dangerous climate change will not emerge from a normal scientific process of truth seeking…

    Unbelievable.

  242. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 11:51 AM | Permalink

    If you google articles on Trans-Polar Drift, the story of Arctic pack ice is very interesting. It forms offshore Siberia in the Laptv and similar Seas (“ice factories”) and then drifts across the North Pole and melts in the “warm” Atlantic. The trip is usually single-digit number of years so there isn’t much “old” ice in the Arctic. Some ice gets caught in hte Beaufort Gyre and may take an extra 20 or so years. The driftwood provenance in the Arctic Archipelago is held to give information on changes in patterns.

  243. Follow the Money
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 12:25 PM | Permalink

    #242

    That opinion piece is a classic! Worth a million carbon credits! A scientist telling the Guardian faithful to discount, essentially transcend science and the scientific method, demonizing dissenters and those who identify political motivations within the AGW lobbies as “normal” scientists. Is this unprecendented? What are the roots of this thinking, Marxist? Fundamentalist religion? Maybe the appeal is Nietzschean recognizing the AGW British/Guardian readership is susceptible to having their sense of superiority flattered by discounting the “other” as “normal.” Ironically, of course, their AGW religion is a product of money interests of taxes, carbon traders, scientists on the dole, and enviro groups converted into front groups with corporate money. Yelling “Exxon!” at them is a sure way to prevent interest in examination of the corporate interests in carbon trading/cap and trade.

    Here are some more classic lines:

    “What matters about climate change is not whether we can predict the future with some desired level of certainty and accuracy; it is whether we have sufficient foresight, supported by wisdom, to allow our perspective about the future, and our responsibility for it, to be altered.”

    This has to be a joke, right? That British sardonic wit at play? It’s like a cult predicting the messiah, or UFOs coming, which fail to come, and its preacher makes an appeal to keep the flock together appealing to the flock’s conceits. It also reads as the preacher has come to accept the utter failure of the AGW lobby and cocoons himself in an anti-rational belief system, IOW he is conceding the game to the dissenters the argument on the basis of reason.

    “”All of us alive today have a stake in the future, and so we should all play a role in generating sufficient, inclusive and imposing knowledge about the future. Climate change is too important to be left to scientists – least of all the normal ones.””

    Is the Guardian readership that arrogant to fall for this appeal? What’s next, labelling the “dissenters” as “neo-cons” (nudge nudge, wink wink).

    Nah, looking at the Guardian discussion boards it looks like the British citizenry is waking up to the multi-faceted money scheme the global warming movement is at it’s core.

    Moderator, I think the article at 242 deserves its own thread. IN a prominent media outlet, writtne by an academic, and about the scientific method – a core interest of this forum.

  244. Follow the Money
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 12:40 PM | Permalink

    #242:

    Steven,

    I’m having second thought that the Hulme piece is a bit of brilliant high-brow satire.

    He also wrote this just last November:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/6115644.stm

    Apparently an anthropogenic AGW believer, but rational here, and criticizes the “tipping point!” type polemics, acurately identifying that such has a political genesis.

  245. bernie
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 1:03 PM | Permalink

    Februaryand Winter Data from NOAA
    This has some potentially interesting news in the Global Section with some indications that Jones is about to publish an article about how his GMT data was calculated. Or am I being too optimistic?

  246. Stan Palmer
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 1:31 PM | Permalink

    re 244

    The most salient portion of Hulme’s artilce is:

    If scientists want to remain listened to, to bear influence on policy, they must recognise the social limits of their truth seeking and reveal fully the values and beliefs they bring to their scientific activity.

    All he is saying is what many philopsphers of science have said. All science is political. The hockey stick is much more of a political artefact than a scientific one. it has been discredittted on this blog but that is immaterial. It cannot be discredditted scientficallybecasue it it political. All Hulme is asking is for scientists and that must include Mann’s hockey team to admit that.

    This article supports the aims of this blog very much. Is thesiis the same as found in Wegman
    s social analysis work. Much of climate science is political advocacy dressed up in scientific garb.

  247. Steve Reynolds
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 2:45 PM | Permalink

    Interesting debate won by skeptics:

    http://blog.sciam.com/index.php?title=debate_skills_advantage_climate_contrari&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1

    Debate Skills? Advantage: Climate Contrarians

    Last night at the Asia Society and Museum, a panel of notables debated the merits of the proposition “global warming is not a crisis.”

  248. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 3:03 PM | Permalink

    #246. you got tricked by a stale webpage. The “submitted” aticle was pubished in 1999 but did not resolve our questions.

  249. DeWitt Payne
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 3:08 PM | Permalink

    Re: #220
    Willis, thanks for your comments as well.

    I think that actually what’s happening is that the descriptions that you reference are showing the net radiation. For example, since per K/T energy budget the surface is receiving ~ 325 W/m2 from the atmosphere and is radiating ~ 390 W/m2, this is reported as an emission by the surface of 65 W/m2. While this is true as far as it goes … it doesn’t go very far.

    Yes, that was my assumption. But by ignoring greenhouse you get things like this: the standard model predicts that there is no heat transfer if the potential temperature gradient (temperature corrected for adiabatic expansion with altitude) is zero because the density gradient in this case doesn’t allow convection and radiative transfer can be ignored. While that is certainly true for a radiatively inert atmosphere like pure argon, it cannot be true for the real atmosphere. The total black body radiation that the surface actually emits must affect the atmospheric lapse rate, but it seems to be completely ignored in the standard descriptions of the atmosphere that I have found. The night time reversal of lapse rate looks very much to me from my electrochemistry background like what a concentration gradient does when the surface flux changes sign, and the diffusion equation and heat equation have the same form.

  250. Rod
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 3:32 PM | Permalink

    Alan Thorpe has responded to “The Great Global Warming Swindle” in the New Scientist this week, see: http://environment.newscientist.com/channel/earth/mg19325955.900-fake-fights-are-not-helping-climate-science.html. Unsurprisingly he doesn’t place much credence in the cosmic ray/cloud theory of climate change nor the programmes highlighting of the lag in CO2 increase v. temperature implying temperature being the driver of CO2.

  251. DeWitt Payne
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 3:44 PM | Permalink

    Re: #43

    Sorry I didn’t reply sooner:

    HOWEVER, as the temperature drops, so the IR spectrum of CO2 changes. The absorbtion peaks sharpen, and the line broardened spectrum observed a ground level disappears. At high altitudes the ability of CO2 to absorbe, decreases at the wings, and the only absorbtion is at the sharpe peaks. These peaks are fully saturated. So as the temp goes down, so does the overall absorbance, across the full IR spectrum.

    True, but the total absorbance will still increase with increasing CO2 concentration. The narrowing of the lines means less overlap of lines in the regions where both CO2 and water vapor absorb. And at the low pressure and concentration found in the upper atmosphere, you still have Beer’s law to contend with because even if an individual line or band has high absorptivity, the concentration (partial pressure) of the absorber is low enough that the percent transmittance in the actual atmosphere is significantly greater than zero. Hence, a concentration change of carbon dioxide will change transmittance significantly.

  252. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 5:27 PM | Permalink

    RE: #241 – Well you’ve answered the question. They needed to start in Feb because they are slow pokes. And whiners. Anyone who does not understand the issues of sea ice (which is quite different from continental glacial ice) with its constant motion, pressure ridges and polayanas, has no business doing an Arctic expedition. These two were completely over their heads and had a really bad plan.

  253. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 5:29 PM | Permalink

    RE: #243 – Steve M that’s spot on. The oldest “old ice” is normally 1 – 3 years old. Much “old ice” is only from the previous year.

  254. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 5:31 PM | Permalink

    RE: #244 – The World, or at least a noticable part of it, has gone stark raving mad.

  255. DeWitt Payne
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 6:59 PM | Permalink

    Re: #38

    Willis, I have questions about your global energy budget model. You show long wave IR emission by the stratosphere of 263 W/sq.m. But 263 W/sq.m. in the Stefan-Boltzman equation gives a temperature of -12 C, a lot hotter than the -54 C average temperature in column N. Also, where did you get the figure of 70% absorption in the stratosphere of long wave IR emitted from the troposphere? My probably naive assumption would be that since 80% of the atmosphere is in the troposphere (and 99% of the water vapor) that the IR absorption in the stratosphere would be no more than 25% of (and probably a lot less than) the absorption in the troposphere.

  256. Willis Eschenbach
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 8:04 PM | Permalink

    Sorry for the lack of clarity, DeWitt. The 263 W/m2 is the total emitted, 131 up and 131 down. The 131 W/m2 is thus the radiation temperature.

    Regarding the 70% absorption in the stratosphere, it may be too high. The problem is that if it is lower, you need to have very high absorption in the troposphere to get the earth warm enough. But play with it and tell me what you think is reasonable, given the constraints that the DLR total needs to be about 325 W/m2 and the surface radiation temperature needs to be about 390 W/m2.

    Keep us posted.

    w.

  257. bernie
    Posted Mar 15, 2007 at 8:25 PM | Permalink

    February 2007 data
    I screwed up the link. Here is the one with the February data. I would still swear I saw something else – I will try to track it down.

  258. paul m
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 1:30 AM | Permalink

    Food waste and Climate Change

    This morning another example of bad science and propoganda and the uselessness of the BBC and our media.

    Headline, a new report says that we throw away 6.7 mn tons of food in Britain each year equal to one third ( yes one third) of all the food we buy. Hmmmm a suspicioulsy accurate number for something alomost ceratinly based upon a questionnaire of 4 houses. On comes Roger Harribin ( BBC Environment Reporter). He reads out press release but then mentions that about half is actually pototoe peelings and tea bags/leaves. Of course most of this goes to landfill where guess what, it decomposes to make methane, “one of the worst greenhouse gases” causing more global warming. That’s the methane that has been falling? But then again the headline of one third is repeated without qualification.

    Then on the telly on the other side. Who is consulted as an expert, why Tony Juniper from FOE or Greenpeace. They are discussing not only waste food which naturally according to Juniper equals methane = global warming.

    And on and on …………

    Paul M

  259. Hans Erren
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 1:59 AM | Permalink

    NOAA has taken down this interactive visualisation site which used to plot most recent CO2 readings:

    NOAA CMDL CCGG – Interactive Atmospheric Data Visualization

    http://www.cmdl.noaa.gov/ccgg/iadv/

    Here is an old result:

  260. Reference
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 2:23 AM | Permalink

    Transcript of the recent debate “Global warming is not a crisis” (PDF)

  261. Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 3:24 AM | Permalink

    #261

    page 49

    GAVIN SCHMIDT ‘€”lets deal with that. The National Academy of Science report said that we have good evidence that were warmer from 400 years ago, we have credible evidence that were warmer from 900’€”

    Less confidence = credible

  262. Jean S
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 5:47 AM | Permalink

    #261
    page 47

    PHILIP STOTT
    But the most famous astrophysicist working on it say it has.
    GAVIN SCHMIDT
    Uh, he is drunk. [LAUGHTER]

  263. Paul Linsay
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 5:50 AM | Permalink

    Related to the debate here’s some interesting discussions of “Post-normal Science” aka Global Warming. “Post-Normal” Science As Proof of Global Warming and What is “Post-Normal” Science?

  264. Basil Copeland
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 8:00 AM | Permalink

    I wake up this morning to read Winter has been world’s warmest on record. Well, maybe, maybe not. What really jumps out, though, is the following quote:

    Over the past century, global surface temperatures have increased by about 0.11 degree F per decade, but the rate of increase has been three times larger since 1976 — around 0.32 degree F per decade, with some of the biggest temperature rises in the high latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere.

    Now it so happens I’m deep in analyzing the global trend embedded in the the NCDC global monthly anomalies data. And what I’m seeing is a trend, since 1979, of ~0.045 C per decade, and a plausible structural shift of about ~0.21 C since 1997.

    Here’s an image of one regression run, using monthly anomalies, from 1880:1-1997:2, with the period aftward, to 2007:2, projected:

    An upward shift after 1997 is clearly discernable, but there is no evident increase in trend. I’ll provide further information, such as detailed statistics, in a further post if anyone is interested. And FWIW, the ~0.045 C decadal “trend” since 1979 (it was ~0.032 C per decade for the previous hundred years), takes the NCDC data for what its worth. So if there are any upward biases in the NCDC data, the “real” trend would be less. It would certainly seem to me that the data are “consistent with” the view that recent temperature may be higher than expected on the basis of long term historical trends, but that it is not trending higher. Rather, we’ve seen a structural shift upwards in recent years. Now how that sudden shift upwards could be explained by a gradual trend in C02, I’ll leave to the climatologists.

  265. Jim O'Toole
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 8:13 AM | Permalink

    Re #263,

    What astrophysicist was he talking about? Nir Shaviv?

  266. John Lang
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 8:19 AM | Permalink

    Interesting paper from a researcher at the International Arctic Research Centre at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

    Premise is that planet is still warming from the LIA and he presents some interesting historical temperature measures.

    http://www.iarc.uaf.edu/highlights/2007/akasofu_3_07/Earth_recovering_from_LIA.pdf

  267. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 8:29 AM | Permalink

    #265. Basil, you get a similar effect around 1976. BTW it’s worth exploring the provenance of the NCDC data.

  268. Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 8:36 AM | Permalink

    #263. Before this goes any further, the word I used was ‘wrong’, not drunk. The transcription is incorrect.

  269. Paul Linsay
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 8:39 AM | Permalink

    #265, Basil

    The step function change in temperature after 1998 is quite obvious in the MSU temperature data. This seems to be a common feature of climate and one that I doubt that can be explained by a steady rise in CO2. My guess, and that’s all it is, is that the oceans suddenly dumped a lot of heat into the atmosphere.

  270. Hans Erren
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 8:43 AM | Permalink

    Hi gavin,

    When will you create a link to climateaudit on realclimate?

  271. Jean S
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 9:01 AM | Permalink

    # 269: Ok, Gavin. Before this goes any further, are your statements about the NAS report (e.g. #262) correctly transcipted?

  272. Basil Copeland
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 9:18 AM | Permalink

    #267 Steve…I’m sure you are right about the provenance of the NCDC data. I’ll take a look at what happens around 1976. I chose 1979 to create a trend dummy because that’s when the satellite record begins, and I was interested in how this surface record would compare to the satellite record. It actually compares very closely to the UAH data. I’m still scratching my head in comparing it to the RSS data (the charts they post do not agree directly with the data I download from their web site, so I wonder if the data are being subjected to a moving average or filter of something before being charted).

    #270 Paul…thanks for that link. I have the UAH raw data, but had not seen that graphic. It very much illustrates the same thing, as you point out.

  273. Ken Fritsch
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 10:45 AM | Permalink

    #263. Before this goes any further, the word I used was wrong’, not drunk. The transcription is incorrect.

    And the audience laughed when you said he was “wrong”. Maybe the audience was drunk — or the transcriber.

    I do think that debates in general, even when done by scientists, add very little to our knowledge base. That would also apply to sound bits on shows like the one Lou Dobbs hosts or even press conferences and speeches delivered by scientists in advocacy mode.

    It is typical of debates to get into the nuances of what the NAS report said about current temperatures versus what can reliably be said about reconstructions using proxies going back 400 and 1000 years and what bearing that has on their direct critiques of the Mann reconstructions. Debates tend to take things out of context and confuse rather than clarify.

  274. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 11:41 AM | Permalink

    This La Nina / Negative PDO we seem to now be in is looking rather grim. I foresee a water crisis in California if we have a below normal precip year July 1 2007 – June 30 2008. For July 1 2006 – June 30 2007 it is now a near statistical impossibility that we’ll be at or above normal, even if the much hoped for rain event materializes next week. So, the prospect of a real drought (2 or more below normal years) is looming, given that another El Nino or even ENSO neutral, let alone positive PDO, is highly unlikely in time for the next rainy season here. I am planning for the worst.

  275. Darwin
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 11:48 AM | Permalink

    RE 274 : When USA Today began, the paper was derided by others in the press for the debate format on its editorial page. To many, it was wishy washy to have “on the one hand, and on the other hand.” John Siegenthaler, publisher of the Nashville Tennessean and USAT’s editorial page editor responded that it was better than what was found in most newspaper editorial pages, “On the one hand, on the same hand.” Unfortunately, his protege, Al Gore, lacks that attitude, and has attempted to systematically throttle debate on climate change, even going so far as to refuse to appear to discuss his ideas if Bjorn Lomborg was in the room. Others have decided there is only one hand on the issue, as when James Hansen admitted to not attending a House committee hearing because John Christy would be present. Many in the press now preach that Balance is Bias in reporting on climate change, so they only report the alarmist views. I would agree with the late physicist Richard Feynman when he said that if we did not have a doubt or recognize ignorance, we would not have any new ideas. A little more confusion and a little less clarity sometimes may be a good thing.

  276. John Lang
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 12:48 PM | Permalink

    We should find out if Gavin really said “Uh, he is drunk”, or if he actually said “Uh, he is wrong” as he indicates now. I’m sure the record will be changed however.

    But one of the participants (or the sound recording) may be able to tell us what he really said.

    [snip]

  277. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 1:11 PM | Permalink

    Re paper in #267 – Some good honest comments at the end – GCM’s could not hindcast results.

  278. Mark T.
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 1:27 PM | Permalink

    A fact that is apparently ignored by the “scientific community” at large.

    Mark

  279. DeWitt Payne
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 1:50 PM | Permalink

    Re: #257

    Willis, I’m still trying to get my head around the whole thing. Unfortunately, I still haven’t found any good modern syntheses to help yet. Also, I’m not exactly an Excel master, but maybe I’ll learn some more by playing around with your model. I’m actually considering asking questions on RC, but only as a last resort. I think I’ll try Prometheus first.

    My current conceptual model is that the temperature profile of the troposphere past the boundary layer is caused by a combination of adiabatic expansion and absorption/emission (inelastic scattering) of surface black (gray) body radiation. That is consistent with the temperature decreasing with altitude and a net heat flux upward. At the tropopause the atmosphere becomes essentially transparent to IR and the temperature profile of the stratosphere is controlled by absorption of incident solar ultra-violet radiation, causing warming with altitude. That would mean, though, that the stratosphere would not emit much IR. If that’s the case, then there is little heat flux downward from the stratosphere because you have a temperature inversion and no driving force for convective heat transfer. I can’t reconcile that, though, with increased forcing from CO2 of any magnitude at the tropopause. That would, I think, have to occur at lower altitude. Not to mention that increased forcing at the tropopause would seem to imply a warmer stratosphere while the models say that increased greenhouse cools the stratosphere. Maybe I need a multi-layer model of the troposphere.

  280. MarkW
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 2:13 PM | Permalink

    277,

    Unless Jones gets ahold of the recording first and adjusts it for what it should have said in the first place.

  281. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 2:18 PM | Permalink

    RE: #280 – sort of OT, sort of not …. when a major CuNim buildup surpasses the tropopause, any IR it is radiating from its top will head straight for outer space. While this may seem counterintuitive given the stratosphere’s thermal profile, what’s key here is as noted, the outer atmosphere is nearly transparent to IR. The upper stratosphere has such a low density, that although those few molecules and ions there are indeed more energetic (and hence, the temperature is higher) than those just above the tropopause, there are so few of them that IR cruises right through. This mechanism of sporadic spikes in upward IR, I strongly believe, would be pay dirt for those embarking on serious studies of it.

  282. Mark T.
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 2:50 PM | Permalink

    There are so many topics in here right now, that it would truly be hard not to have hit at least one. Besides, Steve, you’re the master weather/climate trivia poster which is always on topic.

    Mark

  283. Gaudenz Mischol
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 2:58 PM | Permalink

    269

    Why did Gavin then say: I’m sorry?!?

    PHILIP STOTT
    But the most famous astrophysicist working on it say that it has.
    GAVIN SCHMIDT
    Uh, he is drunk. [LAUGHTER]
    BRIAN LEHRER
    Okay’€”
    Media Transcripts, Inc.
    PROGRAM Rosenkranz-Intelligence Squared US-“Global warming is not a crisis” Page 48.
    GAVIN SCHMIDT
    Im sorry.

  284. Lee
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 3:01 PM | Permalink

    re 271 –

    Perhaps RC should link to this:

    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=1250

  285. Robert McConnell
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 3:33 PM | Permalink

    Re: #s 278, 267

    The author of the piece, Syun-Ichi Akosofu, is the founding director of the International Arctic Research Center, a Japan-US partnership athe the University of Alaska – Fairbanks. He’s retiring this year, so this may be the opening notes of his swan song. He’s also written a small essay as a companion piece to the research paper, speculating on how AGW became such a crusade. It’s on their website, as are some interesting charts and datasets

  286. Hans Erren
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 3:40 PM | Permalink

    re 260:

    I received assurance from NOAA that the visualistation tool will be updated and be back up soon.

  287. Rod
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 4:18 PM | Permalink

    re: 286 – I forgot to mention him as one of the scientists featured on the Channel 4 programme. I’ve just had a quick read of his paper and I thought he made some excellent points.

  288. jae
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 4:25 PM | Permalink

    As some of you know, I am interested in estimating climate sensitivity by looking at annual changes in Solar radiation. Accordingly, I prepared a spreadsheet, located here that determines sensitivity, in deg C/watt/M-2, at 68 locations in the US by using 30-year average December vs July temperature and radiation fluctuations. Some graphs are also provided. The data and relationships are very interesting, and I draw the following conclusions from this exercise:

    1. Sensitivity varies greatly, but is remarkably consistent within general climate regimes. For example, sensitivity for all locations West of the Cascade and Sierra Nevada Ranges is about 0.5 deg/watt/m-2 and is very uniform, with the exception of San Francisco (which is expected to be weird). The sensitivity in this zone is less than half of that for the rest of the US, which I believe is attributable to low absolute humidities for this area. The low humidities, in turn, are probably caused by the influence of the cool waters of the Pacific Ocean.
    2. The average sensitivity for all locations is 0.11 deg/watt/m-2, very close to that determined by Idso in his famous experiments.
    3. The sensitivity for virtually all locations East of the Rocky Mountains is about 0.14, and this is also strikingly uniform across the entire area.
    4. The sensitivities in the Northern and Central Rocky Mountains are linked very closely to altitude, by a logarithmic relationship (R^2 = 0.89). The highest sensitivity, 0.22, was at the highest elevation, Flagstaff, AZ. Sensitivities in Alaska also appear to be closely related to altitude.
    5. Water vapor feedback appears to limit the forcing to about 0.14 in low-lying areas where sufficient water exists and which are not under the influence of the Pacific Ocean (i.e., the US East of the Rockies). Forcing is higher at higher elevations where there is insufficient “buffering” by water vapor.
    6. Sensitivity no longer increases with radiation when the July absolute humidity is above about 12-14 grams/m-3 (most of the area East of the Rockies). Thus, it appears that greenhouse gases cannot alter the temperatures in such locations.
    7. There is a good linear relationship between sensitivity and the annual change in solar radiation (R^2 = 0.66). The relationship would be much stronger if three locations with abnormal weather patterns were deleted (Flagstaff, AZ; Miami, FL; and Key West Fla.).
    8. There is a fair relationship between sensitivity and annual change in absolute humidity (R^d2 = 0.30).

    It appears that the idea of a “global climate sensitivity” is about as meaningful as a “global average temperature,” for the same reasons outlined by Ross, et. al. in their recent paper.

    It would be very helpful if someone familiar with R would expand this database.

  289. Richard Sharpe
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 4:30 PM | Permalink

    There are two papers by Syun-Ichi Akasofu at this page.

    Perhaps he is willing to be more like a scientist because he is close to retirement age …

  290. DeWitt Payne
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 4:34 PM | Permalink

    Re: #282

    Steve, A storm top doesn’t have to reach the tropopause to significantly increase local heat lost to space. The transmittance of IR from the surface to the tropopause is about 10% based on the numbers in Kiehl and Trenberth, but there must be an increase in the transmittance with increasing altitude for two reasons, which are multiplicative, shorter path length and lower concentration (partial pressure) of absorbers in the remaining path. Still, this may already be included in the average sensible and latent heat energy transfer numbers.

    Willis, I think you may be oversimplifying when you show upward and downward radiation from the troposphere being equal in your model. That may be true for any thin layer, but because there is a temperature decrease with altitude in the troposphere, as you move upward, each layer emits less until you get to the tropopause where the total outward flux must equal (first order anyway) the inward flux from the sun (on average over the whole surface, at ‘equilibrium’). As a result, when you integrate over the whole height of the troposphere, you get asymmetry between the upward radiation flux at the tropopause and the downward radiation flux at the surface. The change in this asymmetry with CO2 concentration, otherwise known as the climate sensitivity, is the main topic at issue. Climatologists, OTOH, oversimplify IMO when they show the effect of CO2 as a change in forcing at the tropopause in W/sq.m. If the stratosphere is indeed IR transparent, then forcing at the tropopause can only change if the solar constant changes. Or at least I think that’s the way it works. Today.

  291. Peter Lloyd
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 5:16 PM | Permalink

    Link to Steve Connor’s rebuttal of Durkin in The Independent, 14th. March:

    http://news.independent.co.uk/environment/climate_change/article2355956.ece

    Unfortunately the format doesn’t show the charts Steve chose to support his points. One was our old friend the hockey-stick, unchanged and proudly quoted from IPCC 2001 as proving that the MWP and LIA shown in Durkin do not exist.

    I’ve written a letter of protest (polite, with effort) to he Editor, but if anyone thinks it will be printed – dream on!

  292. Pat Frank
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 5:19 PM | Permalink

    #247 “All he is saying is what many philopsphers of science have said. All science is political.”

    No science is political. Scientists may be political. Some scientists may use politics to decide what is important to study. They may use their results for political ends. They may even distort their results for political ends. But science itself sets an objective standard that ensures universal monosemy. Proper science is distinguished from everything else by meeting that standard. Its results mean the same thing everywhere. That is the opposite of politics.

    Arguments in reply that assert the behavior of scientists is what determines the meanng of science are essentially arguing that, ‘Science is what scientists do.‘ This is manifestly not true, however, as proved by the universality of scientific results and by falsifiably predictive theories.

    So, let’s not say that all science is political. This is merely the fatuous claim of post-modern solipsists. Say that some scientists pervert their own work, or that some of them actually subvert their professional ethics. This is sometimes true. But if so, that is a different matter entirely than that science itself is nothing but politics.

  293. Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 5:41 PM | Permalink

    John A. and/or Steve:

    It looks like some spam bot is hounding the fun stuff thread. Is it possible to delete/block those?

    Sinan

  294. Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 6:05 PM | Permalink

    Science versus politics:

    I have a couple of things to say here, as an economist: It is true that all persons engaging in pursuit of scientific knowledge also have a set of political and moral beliefs which influence both their perspectives and which problems they choose to work on.

    We see the world through models because without some way of organizing and prioritizing variables it is impossible to understand anything: As someone else said, you cannot find your way on a 1:1 map and the most useful maps tend not to be the most accurate in every detail.

    This, however, does not mean that we cannot distinguish between the subjective and the objective. Which is why scientific does require certain things such as falsifiability.

    There is no way I can prove my religious beliefs are better than or your or vice versa. There are, however, criteria for selecting among scientific models. Empirically, we care about unbiased and consistent estimates (and methods that produce those) because if many people independently study the same phenomena using such methods we get closer to *what is* than what we want to find.

    Hence, open scientific debate is not a naive ideal but an absolute necessity.

    Sinan

  295. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 6:05 PM | Permalink

    Sinan, can you explain how the spam bot is is affecting the thread, We de-activated our robots blocked because of google.

  296. bernie
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 6:16 PM | Permalink

    #293

    Nicely put.
    At its bare bones I think it comes down to “Is Logic political?” If so, and I take your answer to be an emphatic “No”, I’m with you. Which is completely different from saying can Logic be used/abused for political purposes.
    Those who do not abide by the principles of science, viz., hide or manipulate data, clearly are abusing science for political (i.e., selfish) purposes.

  297. Pat Frank
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 6:28 PM | Permalink

    #297 — Thanks, bernie. But be careful of logic. Logic is only a tool that works on assumptions or axioms; assuring only that the end deduction is consistent with the beginning premises. If one makes political assumptions, a strict logic can be applied to derive a very bad end. Rigorous logic in mathematics assures proof of theorems. Rigorous logic in science assures falsifiability of theories (assumptions must always be testable in principle and axioms need not apply). Rigorous logic in politics, though, can rationalize universal health care, or slavery, equally. It all depends on one’s political assumptions, none of which are provable and none of which are testable.

  298. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 6:45 PM | Permalink

    RE: #289 – RE: San Francisco – I think you would find that anything in a beach / high marine influence setting in California is going to have issues. I need to look into that more. Low RH – yes and no. Low RH when it’s hot out (although, you’d be surprised how humid it can be when there is mT air flowing up from Baja during a Monsoonal surge, but that does not cover a large enough percent of warm season days to have any major overall impact on the average). Probably the biggest spanner in the works would be the marine layer during the summer, and the oft associated blanket of coastal stratus. That gives us high RH but relatively cool temps and of course the stiff on shore breeze. Inland, there are also some contradictions. RH swings wildly with time of day during summer in the ag areas – irrigation impacts combined with very hot day time temps. But not in non arable inland areas, where it is very dry during the warm part of the year. In winter, tule fog (and humid haze) also throw things for a loop in inland low lands.

  299. Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 7:02 PM | Permalink

    Re: 296

    Oh, this wasn’t an indexing robot. This was some kind of automated blog posting script that was making bogus posts linked to some Google ads loaded site called radioblogsomethingorother.info. Those posts are now gone. I don’t know what happened in the mean time.

    Sinan

  300. jae
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 7:23 PM | Permalink

    299, Steve S: Be aware that I am looking at absolute humidity, not relative humidity. This is very important.

  301. Peter Lloyd
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 9:21 PM | Permalink

    Can’t remember whether I’ve posted this before, but a recent re-read reminds me what a great book is Marcel Leroux’ “Global Warming – Myth or Reality”

    He’s a real dyed-in-the-wool climatologist and knowing the strict hierarchical structure of science in France, it must have taken a lot of courage for him to write it. More common sense than I’ve seen in many years. Worth two or three evenings of anyone’s time and I guarantee you will learn something, however experienced you are.

    By the way, did anyone see the load of complete crap (sorry, admin, but it’s the only word) in The Sunday Times Magazine, March 11th. – “To The End Of The Earth” Unbelieveable – and apparently the precursor of a book! Written by a Mark Lynas, who’s only connection with science seeems to be the word processor he wrote it on.

    I’m getting bitter in my old age.

  302. Pat Frank
    Posted Mar 16, 2007 at 10:13 PM | Permalink

    #265 — Just yesterday night, I plotted the NASA/GISS global temperature anomalies for 1913-1944 against those for 1973-2004. The slope of a linear fit to those data was 0.97. The ‘r’-value was about 0.75 because the scatter was high, but the points were pretty symmetric about the fitted line. There doesn’t seem to be any particular increase in relative rate of warming at all in the later period. Over the same period, by the way, the comparative rate of CO2 increase was 2.5, which means warming in the later period should have been 40% faster than in the earlier. It appears that the rate of warming isn’t following CO2 at all.

  303. Reference
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 4:35 AM | Permalink

    Cooler Heads Coalition on Global Climate Change (CSPAN webcast video)

    Marlo Lewis, Senior Fellow, Competitive Enterprise Institute talks about global climate change and critiques former Vice President Al Gore’s Academy Award-winning documentary “An Inconvenient Truth.” Mr. Lewis finds the film’s claims about climate science and climate policy to be unconvincing. Mr. Lewis spoke to congressional staff and the media in the Rayburn Office Building.
    3/16/2007: WASHINGTON, DC: 1 hr.

    A highly professional deconstruction of Al Gore’s “work”

  304. TonyN
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 4:38 AM | Permalink

    Link to Hardaker interview on BBC is here.

    When AR4 was launched he wrote an article for the Sunday Telegraph claiming that the SPM was unequivocal’ on the anthropogenic cause of warming but was later corrected in a letter accusing him of spinning the science. Strange coincidence?

  305. TonyN
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 4:43 AM | Permalink

    Sorry! My previous post got caught by the spam filtre. It said:

    Lead story on BBC Radio news this morning is that two top British climate scientists have criticised the AGU for exaggerating the scientific evidence for global warming.

    Professor Paul Hardaker of the Royal Meteorological Society was interviewed and said that people should understand “what evidence is based just on our expert judgement”.

    I’ll post a link to the interview when it is available.

  306. fFreddy
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 6:15 AM | Permalink

    The BBC page on Hardaker is here. There is a link to the radio interview at the upper right. Amazingly, it is the lead item on the BBC web site this morning.
    For a scientist, Hardaker displays considerable skill in avoiding direct answers to the interviewer’s questions.

  307. jae
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 6:33 AM | Permalink

    282, 291: Water vapor seems to be very important in “buffering” the effects of increased radiation. It may enhance warming (positive feedback) up to a certain point, but it seems to halt the warming (negative feedback) after a certain level is attained. As noted in #289, sensitivity no longer increases with radiation when the July absolute humidity is above about 12-14 grams/m-3 (most of the area East of the Rockies). Beyond a certain absolute humidity, water vapor evidently releases more energy to space somehow. Storms certainly play a role, but I suspect there is additional “bleeding” of heat to space at high humidities.

  308. TonyN
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 7:01 AM | Permalink

    #307

    For a scientist, Hardaker displays considerable skill in avoiding direct answers to the interviewer’s questions.

    Agreed, but there is a wealth of meaning in his hesitations and the ansewers that he gives are at least honest. I would say that he is a brave man given the political pressures here at the moment. Surely we can accept that there are some warmers who are on the level and really don’t like the pressure that politicians and activists are putting on them to article say article what is politically correct, regardless of the science. Or perhaps I’m being naif and someone asked him to do it as part of a more complex strategy to neutralise the excesses of the extremists which are now backfiring on them.

    The Hardakers article in the Sunday Telegraph is here and the response the correspondence column is here

  309. Peter Lloyd
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 7:23 AM | Permalink

    re: 308/jae

    I may have misunderstood you, and my approaches to problems are always simplistic, but how about this:

    Within a limited range humidity is present in the atmosphere only as water vapour. When the limits of humidity/temperature are reached, excess water stays in the atmosphere as minute droplets, contributing to the overall mmeasured humidity. Water vapour absorbs IR very strongly, but liquid water absorbs IR much less efficiently, so as soon the critical limit is reached and the liquid phase becomes present, ‘surplus’ IR will radiate through to space without being absorbed.

  310. Basil Copeland
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 7:25 AM | Permalink

    #303 Pat Frank…that’s interesting. I’ll have to look into that. A good test of this would be to test a linear restriction of 1.0 on the slope.

  311. jae
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 7:41 AM | Permalink

    310: Sounds plausible. I don’t understand just what is going on, but some very interesting things are shown by my spreadsheet.

  312. fFreddy
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 8:07 AM | Permalink

    Re #309, TonyN

    there is a wealth of meaning in his hesitations and the ansewers that he gives are at least honest. I would say that he is a brave man given the political pressures here at the moment.

    Yes, agreed.
    I think I would have more sympathy for him if that Telegraph article in your link were not a blatant bid for funds for more super-computers for weather forecasters.

  313. fFreddy
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 8:34 AM | Permalink

    Re jae, Steve Sadlov, Peter Lloyd – energy flows to space

    Sorry to be a bore about these things, but I’m still curious about Sprites and their brethren. They obviously represent an enormous flow of energy betwen cloud tops and space, but I have no idea if they are even of the same order of magnitude as the sort of energy flow that would be relevant here.
    If the average terrestrial lightning bolt has a discharge energy of up to 3×10^11 joule, and these high atmosphere mega-lightning bolts are very frequent and are a couple of orders of magnitude bigger – is this in the right ball park to be relevant ?

  314. Ken Fritsch
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 9:48 AM | Permalink

    Re: #295

    Hence, open scientific debate is not a naive ideal but an absolute necessity.

    I hope that my dim view of debating, as in US presidential debates, and live debates between scientists was not construed as a general opposition to debating the subject matter. Well considered written (and audio) exchanges, as we see in scientific journals and in the media in general and on blogs such as this one, are very important and indeed a necessity in sorting out the truth in these matters. The face to face debates are the ones which I find most often not sufficiently thought out and detailed to contribute positively to our knowledge base. Besides debating skills are separate from the knowledge that one might have on a subject and how well it is used to make a valid point. Debating puts too much emphasis on making (from an audiences’ perspective) the points extemporaneously.

    I saw what I thought was Gavin Schmidt, Michael Mann and another individual on a Lou Dobbs show some time back answering a few of Dobbs questions on climate change and recommended mitigating actions and like Schmidt said about the recent debate these guys were not going to win many people over on sheer strength of their personalities ‘€” or at least as they came across in that public rendition. That these people attempt to make points in these ways makes it even more important to be able to separate the debating/public relations skills from the content of their arguments.

  315. jae
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 10:50 AM | Permalink

    314: Don’t know. Wish I had some information on the vertical distribution of water vapor. I think that has a lot to do with energy loss to space.

  316. Peter Lloyd
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 11:01 AM | Permalink

    re: 312/jae

    ….plus, if the liquid phase has condensed out of the vapour phase, (I can’t think how else it could get there) still more thermal energy is released. As it cannot radiate down, against the temp. gradient, it has to go up, into space. And there’s an enormous amount of it – heat of vapourisation is a powerful beast.

  317. esceptico
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 12:50 PM | Permalink

    Post-normal science?

    Multi-scale analysis of global temperature changes and trend of a drop in temperature in the next 20 years

    Lin Zhen-Shan and Sun Xian

    1.-Received May 2, 2005
    2.-revised October 24, 2005
    3.-accepted April 6, 2006
    4.-Published online: July 31, 2006
    5.-Meteorol Atmos Phys 95, 115’€”121 (2007)

  318. Richard Sharpe
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 2:36 PM | Permalink

    “We’ll all be ruined said Hanrahan”

    Warming temperatures damage cereal crops, report says

  319. bernie
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 2:53 PM | Permalink

    #267, 278 and 286

    I also read Akosofu’s article Is the Earth still recovering from the “Little Ice Age”? A possible cause of global warming . As a neophyte, I found it very clear and straightforward. The most telling point I thought, apart from his point that the warming in trend is so linear and constant over 100 years that it is hard to extract the CO2 effect, was his demonstration that current GCM cannot demonstrate their validity by “hindcasting”, that is reproduce historical temperature records. This for me is very telling since it suggests that the models are more about tuning than accurately modelling actual climate processes.

    I would find any comments from the more informed on Akosofu’s article helpful.

  320. Willis Eschenbach
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 5:39 PM | Permalink

    Richard S., I’ve been looking for a copy of the study you referenced (which has been widely reported) but I can’t find one. I’m very curious to find out how on earth they would distinguish a loss in productivity due to temperature from any other kind of productivity loss.

    This is especially true given that your article states that “The report does not include national or regional breakdowns.” Say what?

    w.

  321. Willis Eschenbach
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 6:00 PM | Permalink

    Found the cereal crop study … it’s here (1 MB pdf).

    w.

  322. Dave Dardinger
    Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 9:21 PM | Permalink

    re: #322

    I was less than impressed by the article. They admit up-front that farmers could change their cropping practices to obviate the effects of temperature changes on their present crops but basically accuse farmers of being too stupid to know what’s good for them. Wrong! Two thumbs down on the logic behind the article and a big raspberry for the editors who agreed to publish it.

  323. Posted Mar 17, 2007 at 11:54 PM | Permalink

    Has anyone ever looked into trading in the “carbon credit” futures market and would certain people who might be releasing information or making comments to the press be considered “insiders” who would know ahead of time that certain information might move the market in certain ways?

    We know that Gore is in the carbon credit market, but I wonder how many others are.

  324. DaleC
    Posted Mar 18, 2007 at 12:25 AM | Permalink

    Regarding Mike Hulme and post-normal science,
    Unthreaded 6, #242, #244, #245, #247, #264, The East Side Debate, comment #19

    This is post-modernism writ big. While I am happy enough about playing the post-modern game in literature, semiotics or philosophy, it has no role in science. I suspect that Hulme’s Guardian article will come to be seen as something of a turning point.

    Perhaps post-modernism is the inevitable consequence and final conclusion of the cult of the individual which has so characterized western civilization. In the late 19th century the scope of the concept of the individual began to be extended to notions of self-fulfillment and self-determination (Ibsen’s The Doll’s House is a common example), and in the 1960s/70s, the elevation of self-esteem to unprecedented heights led to labelling the baby-boomers as the ‘me-generation’. From the focus on the importance of self follows an exaggeration of the importance of subjectivity and personal belief. Subjectivity and truth, however, have only an accidental relationship. With post-modernism now apparently influencing science, we are risking a return to the world of medieval superstition, a point implied by Sallie Baliunas in her account of the witch hunts which followed extreme weather events during the LIA (see first link at #264 above).

    A relevant anecdote from the first Crusade: In 1098 Peter Bartholomew, a servant, had a vision of where the lance used to stab Jesus in the side was buried at Antioch. After digging all day, nothing was found. Peter then jumped into the trench and, bidding all to pray, triumphantly produced an old piece of iron. Many, including church officials, were deeply suspicious, but because the find had encouraged the troops, no one was prepared to publicly voice any doubts. Peter gained a lot of prestige from this, and having the wit to realize that he was onto a good thing, announced several subsequent visions, culminating in the claim that Christ, St Peter and St Andrew all demanded an immediate attack on Arqua. The army however was beginning to smell a rat, and suspecting that these visions had a political motive, became openly skeptical, even doubting the authenticity of the lance itself. Peter still had many supporters, but, stung by the questioning of his credibility, he demanded to be able to defend himself by the ordeal of fire. Two piles of logs were set up in a narrow passage and set alight. Peter, clutching the lance, leapt through the flames. He emerged horribly burnt, and died after twelve days of lingering agony. (see Runciman, The First Crusade, pages 241, 273-74, CUP).

    The laws of thermodynamics, it would seem, are quite indifferent to human beliefs.

  325. Andrey Levin
    Posted Mar 18, 2007 at 2:04 AM | Permalink

    Re: 319,322,328

    From Lobell & Fields:

    “yields for all crops increased substantially since 1961”

    “Gridded monthly temperature (minimum and maximum) and rainfall data at 0.5° à— 0.5° for the same time period were obtained from the Climate Research Unit. Spatially weighted averages of the CRU data were computed for each crop, with weights defined by the spatial distribution of crop area from Leff et al, resulting in crop-specific monthly time series of `global’ temperatures and rainfall for 1961’€”2002.”

    Temperature was from Mitchell T D and Jones P D 2005, of course. So, corrected for precipitation:

    “For wheat, maize and barley, there is a clearly negative response of global yields to increased temperatures. Based on these sensitivities and observed climate trends, we estimate that warming since 1981 has resulted in annual combined losses of these three crops representing roughly 40 Mt or $5 billion per year, as of 2002.”

    What do we know…I am wondering, bristlecone pine also grows slower on warm year, precipitation being the same?

  326. MarkR
    Posted Mar 18, 2007 at 2:08 AM | Permalink

    ‘The global-warmers were bound to attack, but why are they so feeble?’

    Martin Durkin-Daily Telegraph UK

    ‘The Great Global Warming Swindle’, broadcast by Channel 4, put the case for scepticism about man-made climate change. The programme sparked a heated debate and charges of scientific inaccuracy. Here, its director, Martin Durkin, responds to the critics.

    On March 8, Channel 4 broadcast my programme. Since then, supporters of the theory of man-made global warming have published frothing criticism. I am attacked for using an “old” graph depicting temperature over the past 1,000 years. They say I should have used a “new” graph – one used by Al Gore, known as the “hockey stick”, because it looks like one.

    But the hockey stick has been utterly discredited. The computer programme used to generate it was found to produce hockey-stick shapes even when fed random data (I refer readers to the work of McIntyre & McKitrick and to the Wegman Report, all available on the internet). Other than the discredited hockey stick, the graph used by us (and published by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) is the standard, accepted record of temperature in this period.

    A critic claims that one of the graphs cited by us, illustrating the extraordinarily close correlation between solar variation and temperature change, has since been “corrected”. It most certainly has not. The graph was produced by Prof Eigil Friis-Christensen, the head of the Danish National Space Centre, who says it still stands. But if the global-warmers don’t like that graph, there are plenty of others that say the same thing.

    No one any longer seriously disputes the link between solar activity and temperature in earth’s climate history. I urge readers to look up on the net: Veizer, Geoscience Canada, 2005; and Soon, Geophysical Research Letters, 2005.

    In the film, we used three graphs depicting temperature change in the 20th century. On one there was an error in the dates on the bottom. This was corrected for the second transmission of the programme, on More4, last Monday. It made no difference. Global-warmers can pick whichever graph they like. The problem for them remains the same. The temperature rise at the beginning of the century (prior to 1940, when human emissions of CO2 were relatively insignificant) was as great, most graphs show greater, than the temperature rise at the end of the century.

    So what else do they hit me with? Prof Carl Wunsch, of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, who appeared in the film, later claimed he was duped into taking part. He was not.

    The remarkable thing is not that I was attacked. But that the attacks have been so feeble. The ice-core data was the jewel in the global-warming crown, cited again and again as evidence that carbon dioxide ‘drives’ the earth’s climate. In fact, as its advocates have been forced to admit, the ice-core data says the opposite. Temperature change always precedes changes in CO2 by several hundred years. Temperature drives CO2, not the other way round. The global-warmers do not deny this. They cannot.

    During the post-war economic boom, while industrial emissions of CO2 went up, the temperature went down (hence the great global-cooling scare in the 1970s). Why? They say maybe the cooling was caused by SO2 (sulphur dioxide) produced by industry. But they say it mumbling under their breath, because they know it makes no sense. Thanks to China and the rest, SO2 levels are far, far higher now than they were back then. Why isn’t it perishing cold?

    Too many journalists and scientists have built their careers on the global-warming alarm. Certain newspapers have staked their reputation on it. The death of this theory will be painful and ugly. But it will die. Because it is wrong, wrong, wrong.”

    Link

  327. fFreddy
    Posted Mar 18, 2007 at 5:04 AM | Permalink

    They say maybe the cooling was caused by SO2 (sulphur dioxide) produced by industry. But they say it mumbling under their breath, because they know it makes no sense. Thanks to China and the rest, SO2 levels are far, far higher now than they were back then.

    Dumb question : does anyone know who actually measures SO2 levels ? Where do they publish ?

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