Unthreaded #26

Continuation of Unthreaded #25

751 Comments

  1. John A
    Posted Nov 28, 2007 at 10:25 PM | Permalink

    This news just in.

  2. MarkR
    Posted Nov 28, 2007 at 10:54 PM | Permalink

    Draft Papers for Publication. Following the obvious interest in the Wiki for Newbies, and following the lack of publication of much of SteveM’s work. How about a Wiki for drafting up short papers for publication, based on the work SteveM and others have done. There are several areas, eg:

    Putting any numbers in the Manomatic will produce a Hockey Stick.
    The non resilience of climate studies to the removal of the Bristlecone Pine.
    The failure of many papers to meet statistical test standards.
    The incorrect use of non-temperature Proxies, and the inversion of some.
    Suppression of data and methods from review.
    Criticism of use of, unproven novel statistical methods, or misapplied use thereof.
    Miscalculation or missed error bars on studies.

    Obviously there are more.

    The papers could be Wiki’d to a level for approval by SteveM, and submitted by a committee of the leading qualified contributors, who would also have the resposibility of defending the Paper, subject again to the final approval of SteveM.

    The Statistical content could be aimed at Statistical Journals. As some have said that Statisticians are not getting grants or other inducements, the maybe Papers on these areas would be welcomed by Statistical Journals. The Climatological content at all the regular Journals, let them fight it out for who wants to Publish or who wants to be left behind.

    Perhaps this is a way of getting what we know in here, to out there.

    Come on all you professionally qualified Statisticians, and Climatologists, now could be an opportunity help get papers published as joint contributors.

  3. kim
    Posted Nov 28, 2007 at 10:55 PM | Permalink

    Perhaps we can listen to ‘offers for Bali’.
    ========================

  4. David Archibald
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 12:08 AM | Permalink

    Thankyou very much Jan Pompe and UC.

  5. MarkR
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 4:11 AM | Permalink

    #2 All subject to SteveM’s permission and approval being forthcoming, of course.

  6. Thomas Bolger
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 4:21 AM | Permalink

    I am a retired Laboratory Technician with over 30 years
    industrial experience.
    I have set up a version of the Experiment about the Greenhouse Effect
    which is described at :

    http://www.chemsoc.org/networks/learnnet/jesei/co2green/home.htm

    This is apparently part of the recommended National Curriculum in Britain

    Using this apparatus I was able to demonstrate that CO2 does indeed
    warm faster than air under the experimental conditions described.

    Modifying the apparatus by substituting methane for the CO2
    and keeping the essential conditions, I was able to demonstrate that
    methane does not warm faster than air.

    If the 3/4 of the vessels that are not directly facing the lamp are insulated
    CO2 warms up at much the same rate as air.

    Insulation is necessary because the temperatures of the vessels are
    raised to a higher temperature than that of the surroundings.
    This causes to them lose heat so that their temperatures become
    unrelated to the amount of IR each vessel is absorbing.

    These results lead to the conclusion that the Experiment is not
    measuring the Greenhouse Effect but that the fact that CO2 loses
    heat at slower rate than air.
    If the Greenhouse Effect was being measured then methane would
    warm at far faster rate than CO2
    (I am told that it is 21 times more effective than CO2).

    My discovery shows that the conclusion that CO2 is
    shown to be a Greenhouse gas is simply untrue.

    The originators of other Greenhouse gas warming experiment seem to have forgotten that warm air rises

  7. pjm
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 4:57 AM | Permalink

    Thomas

    Relating to the Greenhouse experiment in post #6. I teach science in an Australian high school. I read the link and thought their explanation looked convincing. Then I read your comment and learned better. It occurred to me that if you only did the CO2 and air comparisons you would want to make sure the insulation was not absorbing radiation and putting it back into the gases. Perhaps using white insulation, or painting the bottles white (except for a window) and then insulating would help here. But the methane comparison does seem to show GH effect is not involved. Tricky!

  8. Jan Pompe
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 6:25 AM | Permalink

    #45 David,

    You are welcome and I hope it’s useful for you.

    #6 , #7 Thomas, pjm.

    A possible answer to the problem with with no appreciable difference between CH4 and air is that the former is made of C-H bonds which have particular vibration modes and polyethylene also has those same bonds with the same spectral absorption so the IR to be absorbed by the methane will be to some extent be absorbed by the container.

  9. DocMartyn
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 7:09 AM | Permalink

    Soda bottles are typically made from polyethylene terephthalate, this absorbs strongly in the IR.
    The specific heat capacity of air at 20 degrees is 1.01 KJ/KG K, whereas it is only 0.86 KJ/KG K. So it may be easier to heat CO2 than air. The question is also of dryness. If the air is damp, then its heat capacity will rise. The specific heat capacity of water is 4.18 KJ/KG K, any moisture in the bottle will have a big effect.

  10. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 11:07 AM | Permalink

    I think it would be interesting to vary CO2/CH4/O3/N2O experiments at different humidity levels.

    You guys haven’t shopped for hosting recently, have you? :)

    I don’t know, is 250Gig of bandwidth for $2.80 “not much”? :D
    27G? Nothing. For $360 a year you can get 5,000-20,000G worth of bandwidth depending on what else you need with the plan and where you go. (And yeah, most domain registrars are also hosts.)
    As far as bandwidth goes for those worried about hosting, the 3 year paid at once at godaddy is $2.80/mon = 50G space 250G transfer (first year domain is $2 then ~$10 after that) Very few places offer less than 50G transfer a month in their plans that are around $5 a month.
    The primary difference between the hosts is how much they charge for domains (and any specials they have) and what extras come with the hosting (# of Email accounts & FTP accounts, ad credits, software add-ons, databases and sizes….) So you may want to pay more or go with host x instead of host y ‘cuz you need the goodies!
    (For example, many people buy one host account with a lot of traffic allowed and run multiple domains/sites on the same hosting account)

    So anyway, yes, you can host a site for about $30 a year most assuredly.

    Comparison shop:

    http://www.webhostingbluebook.com/

    http://www.thehostplanet.com/

    http://www.comparewebhosts.com/

    http://www.godaddy.com

    http://www.webhero.com

    http://www.hostwire.com/

    http://www.lypha.com/

    http://www.2mhost.com/

    Hopefully you can all find something less expensive for you. Hey, anything to help the community and the cause!

  11. Jeremy Ayrton
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 12:20 PM | Permalink

    Thomas, re #6. Back on unthreaded #25 I stuck my oar in regarding back garden experiments; and now I would like to raise the point I made then again. Could you try the experiment with no gas present? I remember those little whirly things inside a glass bulb which spun round in Sunlight. Similarly, here the thermometers will be heating up as a consequence of the energy (radiated from the source) that is has absorbed – how do you distinguish the direct effects of this from the heating effects of the gas, and so now can you arrive at the temperature of the gas, which seems to be one point of the experiment?

    One interpretation of the higher measured temperature in a vessel containing carbon dioxide compared to that containing air is that in the first case the gas is more ‘transparent’ to the radiant heat, and hence the higher temperature the thermometer shows.

    I think that school lab. experiments along the lines described in your link can be very misleading, and their use as ‘proof’ of AGW (or anything else, for that matter) gives me misgivings.

    Convincing experimental proof of the any of the views concerning AGW is not trivial!

  12. Larry
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 1:28 PM | Permalink

    One more observation wrt bandwidth, any computer types please correct me if I’m wrong, but as I understand it, deep threads use up a lot more bw than shallow threads, because the whole bloody thing from comment 1 gets reloaded every time there’s an refresh, so it would conserve bandwidth to break threads at maybe 200 comments, and not let them get out to 600+. This might make a significant difference in the total GB used in a month, but then again, maybe not.

  13. Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 1:44 PM | Permalink

    #12 Larry:
    That’s absolutely right.
    Bandwidth is cheap though — it’s normally the CPU to keep a site responsive that you pay for.

  14. SteveSadlov
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 1:56 PM | Permalink

    If you are East of the Rockies and have not seriously prepared for winter, you may be in for a very rude awakening starting this weekend. This would especially be true for areas south of the northern tier which have not gotten much / any snow yet. A higly likely event, consiting of merger of two “split jet stream” systems, one coming from the Gulf of Alaska and one from off of Mexico, could impact a wide area. Things could end up being newsworthy. At best, the central plains will probably get clobbered. At worst, frozen precip from nearly the Canadian border to the Gulf.

  15. DocMartyn
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 2:15 PM | Permalink

    I would like a favour. The Hadley Center has a temperature series on line that goes from 1850 to 2007 for the, NH, SH and global temperature.
    What I would like is for someone to model the monthly levels of photon input into the Earth between these dates. Someone will have to gauge the change in orbit.
    If you only do a decade it is fine by me. If you want to split it between NH, SH and Global w/m2 for the 150 years I will sell you my children at half price.

    What I wish to do is to look at the gross effect of solar input vs temperature.

  16. Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 2:18 PM | Permalink

    Can anyone recommend a good book on statistical analysis?
    I’ve got undergrad textbooks that derive everything from first principles (and don’t get very far), but given my limited free time I’m looking for something a little more pragmatic.

  17. Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 2:21 PM | Permalink

    1) I believe gavin when he says none of the RC authors are paid.

    2) The whois for Realclimate.org says their name server belongs to pair.com.

    Real climate uses WordPress which requires PHP and a database. Pair.com provides several barebones hosting plans, but the cheapest that permits WordPress costs $17.95/ month. More expensive plans are available.

    Someone (presumably the non-profit listed on the whois registration) is paying Pair.com at least $17.95 a month to provide the services RC uses.

    3) I suspect whoever is paying the $17.95 wouldn’t pay the fees for just anyone. So, that person or entity is subsidizing RC because they value RC content. That’s fine with me. People are allowed to donate money to whomever they want.

    4) I suspect gavin does not pay the hosting fees. Someone told him the cost of running their blog was $30 a year and it never occurred to him to check whois, find out how much hosting really costs. Nevertheless, I suspect gavin is incorrect and the costs of running RC exceed $30/year.

    So, there is probably nothing nefarious. Still, gavin might want to check and make some decisions about appearances.

  18. Larry
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 2:30 PM | Permalink

    17, that’s the name server. The domain name is registered to “Environmental Media Services”, Washington, D.C.

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

    It’s all right there in the wiki article, no deep, dark secret.

  19. steve mosher
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 2:33 PM | Permalink

    RE 17. Lucia, RC is “funded” by Fenton Communications/Enviromental services.

    Eviromental Media Services “invented” RC. They registered the domain. ( google betsey Ensley)

    The location of the servers for RC and for Enviromental media services is the same address in Pennsylvania.

    Fention has contacts with Soros.

    Once I posted a post using Betsy Ensley as a moniker. It was a simple ” thanks Gavin for the great job!”
    Betsy Endsly.

    Guess if that post made it through? Guess? WAAAA.

    That kinda settled it for me.

  20. BikerTrash
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 2:49 PM | Permalink

    But some of the work associated with originating, maintaining, and moderating the RC material blog seems to be done on the taxpayer’s dime.

    Just an observation, no hard facts.

  21. jae
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 3:08 PM | Permalink

    An article about the leveling off of temperatures. It mentions how the climate models have failed to predict this “out of sample” data.

  22. MarkW
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 3:23 PM | Permalink

    SteveS, I’ve got my sled ready.

  23. Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 3:29 PM | Permalink

    @Larry: Yes. I know Pair.com is the name server. But the whois suggests EMS pays pair.com for hosting services. The least EMS is paying is $215/year. That money is paid by EMS on to operate RC.

    I believe EMS doesn’t pay gavin and the rest of the boys, but they subsidize the cost of running the blog. (Gavin could also run it for free on blogger, but evidenty doesn’t want to)

  24. Gunnar
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 3:36 PM | Permalink

    >> The least EMS is paying is $215/year.

    Isn’t it possible that the server hosting costs are justified by some other commercial purpose, and that RC is just along for the ride? I’m also not getting what’s wrong with Gavin getting paid?

  25. Larry
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 3:49 PM | Permalink

    23, I believe that was everyone’s understanding. Pair does the DNS serving, it wasn’t clear who actually does the webhosting. But their traffic just isn’t that high. That annual budget sounds about right.

  26. Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 3:51 PM | Permalink

    @Gunnar–
    I don’t think there would be anything wrong with Gavin being paid. Gavind says they don’t; I believe him.

    Yes, there could be some other reason EMS is paying hosting. However, reading EMS’s site, it appears that subsidizing those who write on environmental issues is EMS’s mission.

    So… the most likely explanation for all this is: EMS is fulfilling it’s mission to subsidize those who write about environmental issues by subsidizing RC. It appears they subsidize at a rate of at least $215 / year.

    I don’t honestly see anything nefarious in this arrangement.

    The only odd thing is that gavin seems to be saying EMS doesn’t subsidize.

    My reaction is: Either gavin is confused, or he is mystifying.

  27. Larry
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 3:51 PM | Permalink

    24, nothing’s wrong, it’s just that they make a big deal out of it, and then allow comments to stand accusing CA of being funded by oil/coal/fill_in_the_earth_rapist_here while they get backdoor support from a substantial NGO.

  28. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 3:55 PM | Permalink

    We’re paying $69/month for a server. RC has had a good server right from the get-go and so the value of the service to them on a commercial basis is going to be something like that. There’s also the effort in setting up the website. Here John A contributed time and effort to do so and received no remuneration other than an honorarium from CA readers when he “retired”. I doubt that Gavin Schmidt did the website programming; was it someone at Environmental Media Services. It’s a fair enough question.

    The main operating cost at RC is Gavin’s time as my time is the main cost here. The activities at RC are intimately related to Gavin’s occupation as they were not for me. It’s hard to imagine that Gavin’s contribution to realclimate – and like him or not, he’s very sharp – doesn’t count in his job evaluation at NASA GISS (as it should).

    This can result in Gavin wearing a couple of hats. In the NASA Y2K last summer, Gavin acted as a NASA spokesman and then was active at RC deprecating the issue. The two activities are hardly separate. I was allowed to make a couple of comments and one of them was partially censored – he deleted a link to climateaudit for example. The line between “private citizen” and NASA employee got very blurred.

  29. Gunnar
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 3:56 PM | Permalink

    >> some other reason EMS is paying hosting.. saying EMS doesn’t subsidize .. Either gavin is confused, or he is mystifying.

    Lucia, what I was trying to say is maybe the server is internal to EMS, so they aren’t paying an external hosting company. Certainly my server is in this category. As such, the server could be serving some other commmercial purpose which justifies the expense of electricity. In that case, RC is really operating for free.

  30. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 4:05 PM | Permalink

    #29. The value of the contributed services is what they would cost to purchase on the arms-length market. That’s a well-established accounting principle.

  31. Gunnar
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 4:08 PM | Permalink

    >> it’s going to be something like that.

    Yes, electricity is about $50/month, but an additional web site on a server running 5 other things, each of which independently pays the power bill, is not really costing anything.

    >> If so, then NASA GISS is, in effect, subsidizing realclimate.

    Yes, but government is always trying to increase the size, scope and reach of government. This isn’t the only example. The government (yours too Steve M) is chock full of what we might call “abuse of tax payer dollars”, but what they would call “investing in the future of govt”.

    I’m guessing that RC and gavin started all this during the last administration, when every govt agency was politicized. Remember when Al Gore was asked about making campaign “shake down” calls from his office, in direct violation of US federal law, he famously said “there is no convening authority”, which is doublespeak for “who’s gonna stop me?”.

  32. Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 4:10 PM | Permalink

    re: #28

    That doesn’t sound too good to me if NASA/GISS is subsidizing RC ‘Climate science from climate scientists’. As someone helping to pay the bill I would like to see many fewer posts about PowerPoint Presentations, fictional novels, fictional movies, TV shows, newspaper editorials, popular non-scientific books, non-scientific reports, and all the like. There’s no ‘Climate Science’ in that stuff. Newspaper editorials are by definition ‘opinion pieces’. Opinion does not ever have to be based on True facts.

    How about sticking to their beloved Peer-Reviewed Literature. What’s wrong with that?

  33. Gunnar
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 4:14 PM | Permalink

    #30, Steve, I agree with that, but what is the conclusion or controversy?

    The accounting for EMS is their own concern, isn’t it? They aren’t required to valuate expenses per project. The firm has an electric bill and when it’s paid, it’s a legitimate IRS expense.

  34. Larry
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 4:15 PM | Permalink

    Gunnar, read #29. It doesn’t matter if they’re serving RC off of the secretary’s laptop, general accounting principles require the service to be valued as if it were an arms-length transaction. Period. Their costs are irrelevant.

  35. Gunnar
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 4:20 PM | Permalink

    >> As someone helping to pay the bill I would like to see many fewer posts

    You can say the same thing about a million other things. As someone paying the bill, I would like Norwegian available as a foreign language option in all public schools. What’s so special about spanish, german, french?

    Ahh, but the only way we can affect that is to vote.

  36. Gunnar
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 4:24 PM | Permalink

    #34, Larry, what are you talking about? In what context does GAAP require that?

  37. Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 4:33 PM | Permalink

    If you have not yet seen Tim Slagel’s Utube satire on Lubos Moti’s site then you must.

  38. UK John
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 4:59 PM | Permalink

    Re #6,#7,#9

    If you put water in the bottle it really does heat up nicely, and cool down slowly. not really a surprise

    Still can’t understand why my back garden CO2 bottles hung outside on a hot dark night didn’t heat up at all.

    Gonna wait till next summer and try all these different suggestions, but I think I know the result, the wavelength bit is the key, but I did read once on the AIP website that this experiment had been done properly years ago and the result was the same.

  39. Hoi Polloi
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 5:01 PM | Permalink

    ‘Loads More Bad Stuff’

    Stuff like that “Super Storm” that never happened?

  40. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 7:11 PM | Permalink

    My only point is that you can host a site for around $30 a year.

    Now if you’re talking about dedicated server, virtual ones are about (for example) $30 a month and up, and real ones $70 a month and up. That’s a different ballgame.

    Normally text doesn’t take all that much, but images might. Depends on how much a refresh actually transfers and how often people do it. What kind of bandwidth does CA experience?

    In any case, Gavin might just be talking about RC’s out of pocket, not donations. So I would hazard a guess the site mostly runs on donations. Can’t find anything on there that says they’re a non-profit.

    Are there any scientists working at pair, emf, or wordpress donating this stuff as “contributors” (I”m thinking they are talking about content only, anyway, but hey)

  41. scp
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 7:49 PM | Permalink

    Steve Mc@28

    I never thought of it this way before… I stopped reading over
    there because of the censorship, but since it was just a private blog,
    I recognized their right to control the content.

    However, what seems to be happening is that a NASA spokesperson
    (a representative of the US federal government) is actively depriving
    US citizens (and also Canadians) of their right to free expression
    on this other Internet web site?

    I am troubled by this.

  42. cbone
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 8:08 PM | Permalink

    I guess I should chime in, since I was the most recent kicker of the hornet’s nest.

    First and foremost, I have no qualms if Gavin (or any of the others) are compensated for their time at RC. He claims that he is not, and in a very narrow sense its probably true. No one at Fenton or EMS pays him directly to contribute. However, his statement is dishonest because it ignores the value of the platform that they provide him and the publicity that he gains from that. Every news article I have seen where Gavin is mentioned, his credentials include his work at RC. In science, (or at least in climate science) notoriety and name recognition is a valuable commodity. His cavalier dismissal of the intrinsic value of being one of ‘the climate scientists’ at RC is laughable. Furthermore, the hosts of his site have a financial interest in promoting AGW. The ‘business model’ of environmental action groups is to tout some problem in order to secure donations in order to combat the evil of the day. They have a vested financial interest in making AGW appear to be as alarming as possible to secure more donations. RC repeatedly allows ad hominem dismissal of any skeptical viewpoint as shilling for industry. The idea being, industry has a vested interest in downplaying AGW to protect their profit. At the end of the day both ‘sides’ do have a vested financial interest. The fact that RC ignores the criticism that their view always happens to coincide with the financial best interests of their hosts raises suspicions. The heavy censorship that always occurs when this topic comes up only serves to further those suspicions.

  43. Gunnar
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 8:56 PM | Permalink

    >> present admin has done little to stop or change it

    Remember, this is the guy who wasn’t smart enough to replace the CIA guy, appointed pro AGW Whitman to the EPA, and started singing Kumbaya.

    >> However, what seems to be happening is that a NASA spokesperson (a representative of the US federal government) is actively depriving US citizens (and also Canadians) of their right to free expression on this other Internet web site? I am troubled by this.

    Now, hold on. You guys are getting silly. Just because someone works at the government doesn’t mean they don’t have the right to free expression. You can’t twist his right to have a hobby into “being a spokesman for the government” to “depriving you of your free expression rights”. What kind of logic is that? You are free to express yourself using your own property. That’s all that right means. It does not mean that you get to hijack someone else’s expression, just because that person works for the govt.

    >> The heavy censorship

    Only a government can censor something. What Gavin and Steve M do is called editorial discretion, which is their right.

  44. Steve Moore
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 10:31 PM | Permalink

    Free expression is a good thing. Here’s Tim Slagle exercising his:

    http://www.lenejohansen.com/?m=20071018

    PS: the site looks worthwhile, too.

  45. Susann
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 10:36 PM | Permalink

    Ive been trying to bite my tongue, but I thought this was a “climate” audit site, not a “personal” or “financial” audit site. Yet I see a thread musing about the cost of hosting RC and whether NASA is subsidizing RC, whether taxpayers money is being misspent, whether the web hoster is financially motivated to support AGW, etc. Isn’t that one of the allegations that most irks climate skeptics? That their claims are biased because they are financially backed by industry? If it’s a fallacious argument for one side, it’s fallacious for the other.

    I was told that it is not a political blog but one focused on the science issues, in particular, the stats and data. Yet, here I see a thread that seems to be focused on RC and Gavin, attempting to make mud and throw it. It’s one thing to go over the climate science papers and claims about global warming / climate change, the data, the statistics. It’s another to start alleging wrong-doing, etc. and delving into motives and making allegations. Or was all that verbiage about “audit” and having “no position” just so much window dressing?

    As to censorship, what happens at at RC or CA is not censorship. None of us have the right to post to either website except at the leave of the owners/managers. These weblogs are private and it’s up to the discretion of the owners to edit and delete posts as they see fit. If people are upset, they can always go elsewhere, set up their own blog, and scream to the top of their lungs about fairness. Censorship would be the government preventing you from doing so.

    Steve: I agree that this is irrelevant to the merits of any points. The point was raised because Gavin said that it cost $30 per year to operatre realclimate, which is unrealistic from my own experience. But enough on that matter.

  46. John A
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 11:02 PM | Permalink

    Susann:

    As to censorship, what happens at at RC or CA is not censorship. None of us have the right to post to either website except at the leave of the owners/managers. These weblogs are private and it’s up to the discretion of the owners to edit and delete posts as they see fit. If people are upset, they can always go elsewhere, set up their own blog, and scream to the top of their lungs about fairness. Censorship would be the government preventing you from doing so.

    Since Gavin is a government employee who appears to be operating a website on government time, the question becomes a query about government resources and taxpayers’ money [snip]

    Censorship exists whether or not government intervention is happening or not. This weblog practices censorship of subjects that Steve does not want to overwhelm the scientific output.

    RC practices censorship, but in that case it is concerning the central scientific arguments proposed by Gavin et al, where straightforward questions about those arguments are routinely deleted.

    I think there is a difference in approach to scientific questions of public importance between CA and RC.

  47. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 11:05 PM | Permalink

    Let’s not discuss RC policies any more. It’s been done over and over already. A better example of blurring of public and “private” interests is perhaps Hansen, sho set up links on a NASA website to his personal website, where he expounded opinions that would not meet the requirements of the Data Quality Act. Should government employees be permitted to link to personal websites? I don’t think so. But let’s not discuss it.

  48. Jonde
    Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 11:09 PM | Permalink

    Susann, take it easy.

    This is Unthreaded. I assume in here people has little bit more freedom to discuss what they want. I do not see CA to become a political blog if some people discuss non-audit topics in here.

    Give slack. Many people in here are quite frustrated with RC in a reason. I assume it is not prohibited to discuss about RC in CA, even though in RC it is prohibited to discuss about CA.

  49. Posted Nov 29, 2007 at 11:53 PM | Permalink

    Susan, #47: the original offending comment that has apparently upset you so was by a person who doesn’t appear to be a regular contributor on the scientific topics that are discussed here. Given the many fine and occasionally brilliant commnets posted today on these forums, I find it somewhat surprising that you would focus on that particular post and the thread it elicited, which was little more than gossipy nonsense.

    If you want to enjoy your experience here and benefit from it, you need to think of yourself as dining in a fine restaurant. If you overhear some disgusting gossip or foul language from the table adjacent to yours, are you going to allow it to spoil the entirety of your dining experience? Are you going to allow it to discourage you from going over to another table where someone whose work you admire is dining and complimenting them on their work?

    Concentrate on and learn from the many excellent thinkers who post serious and informative comments and are the heart of this blog. Ignore the trivial. It’s easy to do if you are here looking for the right stuff.

  50. Thomas Bolger
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 3:22 AM | Permalink

    Re 8,9,10
    I have emulated modified versions of the Greenhouse Gas Warming
    Experiments detailed at

    http://www.espere.net/Unitedkingdom/water/uk_watexpgreenhouse.htm

    and at

    http://www.nagt.org/files/nagt/jge/abstracts/Lueddecke_v49n3p274.pdf

    No plastic is involved in either of these experiments
    The modifications were necessary to prevent the escape of warm
    air or methane but otherwise the experiments were faithful
    replications of the experiments on a smaller scale.
    Methane does not show any sign of being a greenhouse gas.
    These tests indicate that the experiments have little to do
    with differences IR absorption and a lot to do with
    differences in the speed of convection currents.
    Here is a quote from

    http://www.nagt.org/files/nagt/jge/abstracts/Lueddecke_v49n3p274.pdf

    “One cautionary note to relay is the result of frustrating
    personal experience. There is a strong temptation to use
    aquarium lids to reduce the loss of CO2 from the experimental
    tank over the duration of the run. We had transparent
    fiberglass lids fabricated for both tanks, but for
    reasons that remain not altogether clear to us, these lids
    seem to completely suppress the differential heating of the
    two tanks. As several textbooks note, the “greenhouse effect”
    is a misnomer because greenhouses stay warm
    through an entirely different mechanism – the glass prevents
    conductive and convective heat loss – so that the insulating
    effects of the fiberglass lids may have overwhelmed
    the greenhouse warming in the tanks. It is worth
    noting, however, that we later did get good results using
    glass lids. Partially because of the early frustration and
    partially because of our own uncertainly about the mechanisms
    at work, we have used open tanks ever since.”

    This confirms that insulation does, ” suppress the differential
    heating of the two tanks”
    Insulation would have no effect whatsoever on IR absorption
    it should however reduce heat loss.
    The experiment needs a lid to prevent warm air rising out of
    of its vessel to be replaced by cooler air.
    I am astounded that

    http://www.nagt.org/files/nagt/jge/abstracts/Lueddecke_v49n3p274.pdf

    got through peer review and is used in US schools to indoctrinate
    pupils

  51. Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 5:14 AM | Permalink

    Canadian beer drinkers are destroying The Planet and by teleconnection The Entire Known Universe.

  52. John A
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 5:22 AM | Permalink

    Re #54

    I thought so. These Canucks have been under the radar for too long but now their wickedness is revealed!

  53. MarkR
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 6:56 AM | Permalink

    #55 Thomas. Isn’t the water trap removing energy at the wavelengths absorbed by water/water vapour, therefore leaving a higher proportion of energy that is at the frequency absorbed by CO2, therefore the CO2 rich environment will obviously warm more, because it is receiving energy at filtered wavelength?

    Wouldn’t a better way be to have the light source far enough away that the thermal energy does not reach the gasses, but have the unfiltered light channelled down a white tube, so all the spectrum will be going through to the black card?.

  54. DocMartyn
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 6:59 AM | Permalink

    Thomas Bolger says: I have emulated modified versions of the Greenhouse Gas Warming

    I read your paper with interest. According to my calculation the vapor pressure of acetic acid at 20 degrees is 11.5 mmHg. Acetic acid has both a very strong IR spectrum

    and it also has a very high heat capacity of about 123 J/(mol K) liquid and 63.4 J/(mol K)gas.

    Now have a look at the output of a tungsten lamp.

    notice that you are pumping out a huge amount of IR.

    Repeat your experiment, without adding bicarbonate. You will find that the temperature of the tank increases even more that it did before. You can also way the watch-glass before and post illumination.
    What you are doing is aiding the liquid/vapor transition of acetic acid, using IR energy. The gaseous acetic acid then dumps heat by undergoing a vapor/liquid transition. I bet you can see the small beads of “sweat” on the thermometer bulb. You may also be able to see beads on the walls. However, acetic acid/water does not always form droplets as it has a surface tension of about a third of waters.

    I suspect what you are seeing is the conversion of light to latent heat in the liquid/gas phase change in acetic acid followed by the return of latent heat to sensible heat on the gas/liquid phases change.

    Do the experiment using a fire extinguisher or from dry ice next time.

  55. Susann
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 8:14 AM | Permalink

    I could chill out, I suppose, but I’m having enough of a mental workout trying to sort through the actual science threads and issues and am really trying to set aside my own biases to do so. I understand people’s need to vent about what they view as inequity and the like. It just makes this place less credible when people appear as if this is, for them at least, all about proving the existence of a MWP regardless of the merits of the paper to debunk AGW and attacking RC and the people who manage it. This thread may harbor the most rubbish, but it seeps in elsewhere.

    As to the issue of costs at RC, if webhosting is donated, the cost may be only $30 for domain registration. I don’t know what Gavin’s arrangements are with his employer and won’t speculate as to when he does what he does and whether he has a right to do it. I’m trying to understand tree ring proxies and their foibles.

  56. Susann
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 8:21 AM | Permalink

    I find it somewhat surprising that you would focus on that particular post and the thread it elicited, which was little more than gossipy nonsense.

    I’m not really qualified to add anything substantive to the climate science threads, which appear to me to be mostly serious discussions about the ins and outs of data and what they can or cannot say. There is no need for me to comment — I’m trying to learn from those who have the expertise. When discussion veers to the political, personal or policy level, I think I have something to say, especially since those subjects are supposed to be verboten.

  57. kim
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 8:27 AM | Permalink

    Truly S, tree-ring proxies should be irrelevant to policy decisions. Tea leaves are more useful and saturated with theophylline. Surely, understanding climate regulation, and in particular the role of carbon dioxide in it, are what are policy concerns, and, of course, that is not the (main) point of this blog. Tree ring stuff is critically important, though, to the maintenance of ethical, hence, useful science. My happenny bit’s worth.
    ===============================================

  58. kim
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 8:32 AM | Permalink

    Should be ‘ethical, hence useful, science’.

    Sorry.
    ===

  59. George M
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 9:26 AM | Permalink

    Speaking of “Science”. Twenty-odd years ago, Fractals jumped into the limelight, as computational power became generally available which could perform the necessary iterations to generate them. Fractals are an element of Chaos Theory, and one of the major initial drivers of Chaos Theory was the desire to be able to predict weather. (See where this is going?) One of the salient points of Chaos Theory development was Edward Lorenz’ (early climateer/mathematician) discovery of the “Butterfly Effect”, or the sensitive dependence on initial conditions. A very tiny change in the initial conditions can drastically change the long-term behavior of a system, real or modeled. Now, Anthony Watts’ efforts to document the state of recording weather stations quality shows that they are all over the place in potential accuracy, and these contribute to one of the initial conditions. Thus, the various climate models being exercised by the Team are no more likely than random guesses to be able to predict future climate conditions. Steve Mc is likely a lot more familiar with Chaos Theory than I will ever be, but that is my simplistic condensation of what I know about it.

  60. steve mosher
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 9:41 AM | Permalink

    RE 58. Susanne. The issue is not the 30 bucks or whatever. The issue is that Gavin represents
    that RC receives NO BENEFIT WHATSOEVER from outside parties. Owning a domain name ( http://www.realclimate.org)
    is a valuable thing. Gavin don’t own that. RC receive a benefit by using it. I’d say that domain name
    is worth a bunch. The point is NOT the influence. The point is transparency. Being Open and honest.

    If Gavin just said, ” Yes, EMS own this name, yes EMS host this site at the facility they host their stuff
    at, Yes, they have a political agenda, But we are all about the science… then I am sure the issue would
    go away.

  61. Larry
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 9:59 AM | Permalink

    62, go look at the exponential growth thread.

  62. Thomas Bolger
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 10:05 AM | Permalink

    Re 56 and 57
    My CO2 was not made with acetic acid but was
    derived from soft drinks after which it was
    dried.
    If you wan’t to prove me wrong do the experiment
    yourselves and stop nitpicking

  63. Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 10:15 AM | Permalink

    Mosh, #63: yes, the point is to drop the veil on all the obscurantism, to borrow a word from JEG. There is more meaning in what they don’t say than in what they say, much of the time.

    Raiinin like hell, here. Finally.

    Susann:

    I’m not really qualified to add anything substantive to the climate science threads, which appear to me to be mostly serious discussions about the ins and outs of data and what they can or cannot say. There is no need for me to comment — I’m trying to learn from those who have the expertise. When discussion veers to the political, personal or policy level, I think I have something to say, especially since those subjects are supposed to be verboten.

    I’m similarly unqualified. But my guess is that this site, because it’s male-dominated, is never going to win a seal of approval from the Ladies Home Journal. (Please don’t take that the wrong way.) Definitely could use a little civilizin’ at times. That said, the stakes are huge, which will naturally ignite passions. Passion can be good.

    Remember this?:

    “Science is a bloodsport cloaked in collegiality.”-bender

    Sometimes the cloak drops away.

  64. John A
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 11:35 AM | Permalink

    Steve M

    I agree that this is irrelevant to the merits of any points. The point was raised because Gavin said that it cost $30 per year to operatre realclimate, which is unrealistic from my own experience. But enough on that matter.

    $30 a year would not pay for the electricity used to power the server, let alone the airconditioning used to keep it cool.

    So we can definitely say that RC is being subsidized. The open question is by whom.

  65. Gunnar
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 11:59 AM | Permalink

    >> $30 a year would not pay for the electricity used to power the server, let alone the airconditioning used to keep it cool. So we can definitely say that RC is being subsidized. The open question is by whom.

    No, your premise is that RC is the only thing running on the server. There could be dozens of applications on the server, each of which could justify the electricity expense. Therefore, it could be just domain cost, which could be lower than 30/year, if multiple years are purchased.

  66. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 3:12 PM | Permalink

    Susann, oh, if only everyone was open and followed the rules and made everything replicable. When people act a certain way, and do certain things, then yes, that becomes part of the auditing process, because their actions (or lack thereof) point to certain things. Case in point; if you say tree ring cores aren’t updated because it’s too expensive and difficult and would serve no purpose, discussing the issue from an attempt to disprove it (which is a bit adversarial) is science. Why ponder the issue in the first place? The demonstrated patterns that make one wonder (besides the curiousity science brings) wonder if it’s true. If you don’t want your motives questioned, don’t act in ways that make people question them. The code. The data. The proxies. The trust us the adjustments are perfect. And on and on.

    I agree that who funds whom and why is an almost meaningless converstation we’ve spent too much time on tho. :)

  67. DocMartyn
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 4:08 PM | Permalink

    Thomas Bolger says:
    My CO2 was not made with acetic acid but was derived from soft drinks after which it was dried.
    If you wan’t to prove me wrong do the experiment yourselves and stop nitpicking.”

    I am awlfuly sorry, I read the pdf you supplied and assumed you wanted comments on the possible effects that you are observing.
    I take it that you already know all the possible artifacts and need no further help. I am somewhat suprised that you bothered to post it if have established the “offical” truth.

  68. Susann
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 4:29 PM | Permalink

    Truly S, tree-ring proxies should be irrelevant to policy decisions. Tea leaves are more useful and saturated with theophylline. Surely, understanding climate regulation, and in particular the role of carbon dioxide in it, are what are policy concerns, and, of course, that is not the (main) point of this blog. Tree ring stuff is critically important, though, to the maintenance of ethical, hence, useful science. My happenny bit’s worth.

    Good policy depends on the quality of the information used to formulate issues and options. If there is significant uncertainty in the climate models and predictions, and if there is significant uncertainty in the science of AGW, then the policy can’t help but be affected. I’m just trying to understand uncertainties better and what those uncertainaties mean for policy so I can feel more confident in my ability to understand and represent the issues and options.

  69. George M
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 4:41 PM | Permalink

    64, Larry:

    Interesting, I had no idea the concept had any real value. Or applied to exponential growth. Thanks ofr the tip.

  70. dennis
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 5:00 PM | Permalink

    Bender noted in the previous unthreaded that it was time for a blog about global climate models.

    Presumably the blog would (ala Climate Audit) audit such models (or a specific model e.g. http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/csm/) from a variety of points of view.

    So, the question is: does such a blog already exist and what is its URL?

    Note: I have discovered http://danhughes.auditblogs.com/ which occasionally looks at GCMs. Any others?

  71. jae
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 5:54 PM | Permalink

    Maybe the expected AGW signal in the atmosphere is not there?

  72. TAR
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 6:26 PM | Permalink

    As a long time “lurker being educated” I will mention for the better informed regulars, if it has not already been covered, that a Dr. Naomi Oreskes study, which I have read was discredited, continues to be presented as fact, most recently in June 2007 in Washington D.C as noted on page 19 in her presentation -

    http://www.ametsoc.org/atmospolicy/Presentations/Oreskes%20Presentation%20for%20Web.pdf

    which also continues to present the “hockey stick” studies as fact (page 49 and 53).

    It continues to amaze me how discredited work continues to be presented as fact.

  73. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 6:36 PM | Permalink

    Oreskes’ study wasn’t discredited, per-se. It was a contradictory piece of garbage that didn’t use a method that would have proven what the experiment was supposed to have been, was sloppy and one-sided, and was also pretty meaningless. Testing that dissenting scientists might be kept quiet by the IPCC et al was done by looking over peer-reviewed article abstracts? Please.

    The issue was that when Pieser “recreated” it, all the land-mines in it blew him up. He accepted it as being something valid, when it was just an op-ed with methods that couldn’t be recreated from what was in the document. (Sound familiar?)

    If you’re talking about the most recent attempt to “discredit it” it also wasted its time trying to falsify a method that wasn’t even doing what the stated goal was supposed to have been.

    You need to read Lindzen’s op ed in the WSJ about it, and her subsequent ranting nonsense in response to him, too.

  74. mccall
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 6:36 PM | Permalink

    And peer-rejected, unpublished work is cited as published and peer-reviewed…

  75. Susann
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 7:01 PM | Permalink

    #73, I was concerned that the science was moving away from the actual data, which was incomplete, to using more and more convoluted statistical methods to re-analyze the existing incomplete data. So in that sense, I think it’s fine to point out that collection of more data to make the proxy record more complete is not all that difficult. But it’s this innuendo about individuals and the attempt to mine or manufacture evidence of fraud or wrong-doing that smacks to me of political motives rather than a desire to audit the science. Let’s just say I’m auditing the audit. :)

  76. Robert L
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 7:09 PM | Permalink

    A little off topic, but:

    Bender:

    It would, of course, be a mistake to judge a community by its garbage dump.

    Isn’t archeology largely driven by the study of middens, broken pots, and similar garbage dumps?

    cheers,
    Robert

  77. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 7:18 PM | Permalink

    That’s fine, Susann, but at least some of that is to be expected. People are going to wonder about things, and just saying “person A might have done that because” as conjecture isn’t an accusation; it’s a case of bringing up a reason for why somebody does something that seems um well whatever.

    The open and honest sharing of ideas is very helpful in either case. As far as that goes, at least whatever’s going on discussion-wise in any field of thought, it gives us ideas, lets us know what to expect, and lets us use our time wisely knowing the patterns of what to expect of others. In that way, it’s helpful. I think you’re making a little more out of it than it’s worth, but I certainly agree it’s not a good use of time to spend a lot of time and effort wondering why.

    But think about it this way; at least you’re not on pharyngulash or open mind or rabett run. deltoid might be somewhat educational also.
    :)

  78. Susann
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 7:24 PM | Permalink

    Sam, I read all the climate blogs. I check them regularly. :)

  79. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 7:43 PM | Permalink

    All of them? You poor dear. Not that I haven’t been known to lurk on all of them myself, from time to time, but (depending on the board) but they get rather tedious and I only go over when there’s not much new here and I get really bored. When I have the time. Just that often, the prevailing opinion seems to be if you don’t totally agreee, everything you say or do is evil. IMO :) And sometimes I follow the links here. (Like the one to Atmoz about the Svalgaard topic.)

    But yeah, it’s good to get some experience with all the viewpoints.

  80. steve mosher
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 7:43 PM | Permalink

    RE 85. Nobody important here cares one wit about hansens legal fees. Not one flippin wit.

  81. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 7:46 PM | Permalink

    You’re correct mosh. I think my wit’s about a range of .1 – .335

  82. Susann
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 7:58 PM | Permalink

    All of them? You poor dear.

    There’s no tongue-in-cheek smiley is there? :)

  83. reid simpson
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 8:03 PM | Permalink

    Sam: what are the error bars about your wit and how did you calculate them ;-)

  84. Larry
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 8:23 PM | Permalink

    As I said, there’s no indication of any corruption there [Hansen and GAP], no payola, but it does raise the question of what a government employee, and presumably objective scientist is doing receiving that kind of support from a political advocacy group pertaining to an issue related to the work that the taxpayers are paying him to perform dispassionate and objective work on.

    It would be as if a defense contractor were paying expenses associated with a colonel advocating the purchase of their system, when the colonel was supposed to be an objective judge of competing bids.

  85. Pat Keating
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 8:43 PM | Permalink

    Susann

    Is that you, Jim?

  86. Larry
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 8:43 PM | Permalink

    Maybe this puts the issue into proper perspective: Imagine Dr. Hansen testifying in front of congress that there’s no global warming. Now imagine him getting legal and PR support from the ExxonMobil. No problem, right?

  87. steve mosher
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 9:20 PM | Permalink

    RE 90. Smokey Says? Susanne. Smokey has Zero track record here. None zero nada zip.
    So, like I plainly said in English. NOBODY IMPORTANT HERE gives a hairless rats ass about hansens
    legal fees. You want a list of important people here. Go back through the archives
    read every thread, look for the people who make contributions, not just comments.

    Start with Bender, UC, JeanS, Willis, Dr. B, RichardT, RomanM, Others as well.

    SteveMc Characterizes this place as a seminar of sorts.

    And yes, we have our class clowns.

  88. Larry
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 10:25 PM | Permalink

    98, only you can prevent forest fires.

  89. Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 11:13 PM | Permalink

    #99: hearty LOL here.

  90. j bono
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 11:14 PM | Permalink

    “Warmist polar expedition was cancelled due to extreme cold”

    this is amusing, funny and sad at the same time.

    http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2007/11/warmist_polar_expedition_cance.html

  91. Philip_B
    Posted Nov 30, 2007 at 11:18 PM | Permalink

    The global warming industry, that is economic activities occuring as a result of the perception of climate warming, is very large and growing. I can’t find a good estimate of how large it is, but over the life of the Kyoto Treaty, it could well be in the trillions of dollars. A substantial number of people are benefiting financially from AGW.

    Economists recognize that many economic activities produce substantial benefits for a relatively small number of people at a small cost to most people, and as a consequence these interest groups lobby politicians and the public to defend or enhance the activities they benefit from. That lobbying is frequently framed in a way that claims what benefits them is in fact for the general good. Lobbyists rarely say anything untrue. What they try to do is frame the debate in ways that benefits the group they represent. There is the perception that this lobbying is cynical manipulation. In my experience it’s not. People frequently rationalize that things that they benefit from are in fact good for most people. There are many examples of this – Doctors support spending more money on healthcare.

    Of course, many people with no financial interest will agree with the interest groups and some will also lobby in favour because they think the position is a good one. Whether person x or y benefits is largely irrelevant. What matters is how much the debate is influenced by this kind of lobbying by interest groups.

    When it comes to the climate debate, on the warming side, I frequently have trouble separating the advocacy from the science. RC is an example of this.

    Despite the ‘in the pay of big oil’ claim, there is no comparable benefit to a group of people in reducing or eliminating the global warming industry. You can’t claim that those who benefit say from the oil and coal industries represent a lobbying group on the sceptical side of the debate. Coal and oil companies are thriving and will continue to do so in the future (until we run out of the stuff of course). Which explains why there less advocacy on the sceptical side of the debate. To claim otherwise, is just the standard political trick of accusing your opponent of doing whatever it is you yourself are doing in the hope (expectation?) most people will conclude both sides are doing it, so what does it matter.

  92. Ron
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 1:14 AM | Permalink

    Susann,
    As a preamble I would like to offer a brief comment on your point that “a real journalist would do as much” (#90).

    Other than for those who have had the experience of actually being objects of news coverage it would never occur to most people to think about what journalists actually do, other than having some vague notion based on clichés such as the “fourth estate”, “historians on the run”, “truth seekers”, etc. thus giving them a veneer of authority or scholarship. However, most working journalists, including reporters (news gatherers) and editors (gatekeepers who decide what is published), are seldom ever able to determine the truth of anything on their own.

    They generally don’t have the time, tools and schooling of scholars to determine truth, nor do they have the power of the judiciary to compel witnesses (at the risk of punishment for perjurers) to tell the truth. Scholarship, including Science, and the judicial system are generally regarded as our most trusted discoverers of truth. Instead journalists generally “research” self interested sources within the establishment and the counter-establishment to acquire biased, Cole’s Notes’ versions of truth. Thus they really aren’t scholars and judges, but something more akin to drum skins to be beaten by whoever has the best sticks (including the hockey kind).

    So while a “real” journalist should do as you suggested, I doubt if most would. But maybe you could consider a (real) journalistic project and do a survey of 1200 (or whatever number you prefer) randomly selected entries from the total to this website submitted over, say, the last 3, or 6 months, to determine what percentage of entries are “allegations” (#90), “innuendos” and “political motives” (#82) of the sort you are concerned with. It would be interesting to see if the percentage turns out to be greater than the margin of error for such a survey. If so, it might be wise to bring this issue up on fewer occasions.

  93. Geoff Sherrington
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 1:39 AM | Permalink

    Re # 6 Thomas Bolger

    Can you devise an experiment where the gas is cooled? We all know that it gets colder when the altitude increases to the tropopause, about minus 80 degrees C, but how and why?

    Regards Geoff.

  94. Philip_B
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 2:38 AM | Permalink

    #103 is a story from some time ago. In the last week or so a cruise ship sank off Antarctica after hitting an iceburg. Doubtless full of tourists following after Ban Moon to see for themselves the melting Antarctic ice. Unfortunately, it hadn’t melted enough.

  95. Geoff Sherrington
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 4:07 AM | Permalink

    Re # 58 Susann

    There could have been others who asked who funds RealClimate, but I asked that question a few weeks ago and was told $30 was the cost of the server service or some similar trivial detail.

    I asked the question in the context that it is common for people associated with an industry to be disbelieved because they must be in the pay of the industry.

    The many contributions made by the moderators at RealClimate could be made (a) in working time while in the pay of others. If so, the pay of whom? or (b) the moderator comes home from at hard day at the office, gulps down a meal, says goodnight to the kids and then heads off for several hours on the PC, just about every day/night.

    Because I asked the Q of RealCimate, I expected an evasive answer and I got one. I cannot accept the possible duality that persons on the Government payroll are also free to make up policy on the run; or that these comments can relate to data donated by other countries, especially when it is being misused.

    A strong point of Climate Audit is that a genuine question of science will attract comments from scientists with no particular barrows to push except the search for truth. Those who rely upon the press or on politicians for straight answers to science have a bit of maturing to do, hopefully without being burned too much. From experience with RC, it sets out to burn you. Draw your own conclusions.

  96. Bob Koss
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 4:26 AM | Permalink

    Geoff,

    I responded to your query, but the post has fallen off the recent comments frame. It’s here. http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=2201#comment-169136

  97. MarkR
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 4:53 AM | Permalink

    #109 Geoff. William M. Connolley is another classic case. Claims to “work” part time for the British Antarctic Survey in….Cambridge, appears to have about half a dozen blogs or wikis, and is head censor on the climate change pages of Wikipedia. Don’t know how he finds the time. Interested to know if he “works” from home.

  98. Boris
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 7:57 AM | Permalink

    Start with Bender, UC, JeanS, Willis, Dr. B, RichardT, RomanM, Others as well.

    Can I get a list of the unimportant people. It would be nice to know whom to ignore. Until you call them out, don’t get snippy when people respond to them.

    Cheers to bender for calling a couple of them out…

  99. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 8:18 AM | Permalink

    108 Mark

    See #95. I smell the same thing.

  100. MarkR
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 8:45 AM | Permalink

    #114 Agree with you Pat.

  101. kim
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 8:49 AM | Permalink

    Revealingly defensive. But I’m one of the ones who can be safely ignored.
    =============

  102. kim
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 10:29 AM | Permalink

    The irony, presumably entirely lost on him, is the fate many of the believers would wish on the skeptics.
    =========================================================

  103. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 11:19 AM | Permalink

    113. I have some socratic like wisdom for you Boris.

    IGNORE THYSELF. The converse is a fate I would wish on no one. Put so that you can comprehend
    it: I would never suggest that you should “Know thyself” since the object of the subject is objectionable.

    Anyway, if I have to school you in who can be ignored, then I’m not so sure you have the sense
    to follow directions. Further the issue wasn’t who to IGNORE the issue was who to take seriously.

    Is that Dunce Cap sewn to your scalp?

  104. barryW
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 11:47 AM | Permalink

    This is just informational.

    Hansen’s activities would fall under the Hatch act, although I don’t know if he has specifically violated it:

    These federal and D.C. employees may not-

    use official authority or influence to interfere with an election
    solicit or discourage political activity of anyone with business before their agency
    solicit or receive political contributions (may be done in certain limited situations by federal labor or other employee organizations)
    be candidates for public office in partisan elections
    engage in political activity while:
    on duty
    in a government office
    wearing an official uniform
    using a government vehicle
    wear partisan political buttons on duty

  105. Susann
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 11:51 AM | Permalink

    Then you go defending Hansen, who when it comes to rhetorical excess lately is perhaps the most offensive of any of the scientists in the debate.

    No, I was defending facts. How is it defending Hansen to expose a lie? When you start ignoring facts or turning a blind eye to obvious lies out of hatred for a particular individual, how much easier is it then to ignore other facts that might contradict your point of view?

    As a civil servant, it should be possible to reveal government corruption and retain your job but in practice that doesn’t happen very often, human nature being what it is. GAP is a whistleblower org with a mandate to protect whistleblowers from the fallout of their actions. It’s a laudable mandate, so I do not feel that Hansen receving free legal advice from it was an issue. I haven’t given the whole Hansen affair a really close review so I don’t know what to think exactly, but if I can google this info and find it in a few tens of minutes, any other journalist worth his or her salt could as well. The fact that one takes a lie and runs with it without fact checking is proof that you can’t trust what you read on the internet.

  106. Larry
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 11:53 AM | Permalink

    Hansen is a whistleblower? How so? Show me evidence that he’s blown the whistle on any corruption whatsoever.

  107. MarkR
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 12:00 PM | Permalink

    Hello Kim, I for one am certainly coming to appreciate your pithy remarks.

  108. Larry
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 12:04 PM | Permalink

    I’ve seen enough. I concur with 95, 114 and 115.

  109. Susann
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 12:18 PM | Permalink

    How was Hansen a whistleblower?

    He was prevented from speaking to the press about his work and his work was censored. He called this to the attention of the news media. As a result of an investigation, the agency had to revise its policy so that this kind of political interference was no longer possible.

    Think what you like about Hansen. I’m just pointing out the facts and trying to counter lies. If that makes me a troll, what does that make you?

  110. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 12:22 PM | Permalink

    RE 122. Larry, you cant believe what you read on the internet. See comment 121, which says you
    can’t believe what you read on the internet, which is written on the internet which
    causes me all sorts of self referential issues.

    Independent fact checking is held out as a standard. That’s good.

    1. Can I fact check Dr. Mann’s papers? Nope.
    2. Can I fact chck Lonnie Thompsons Ice cores? Nope.
    3. Can I fact check Phil Jones temperature record? Nope.
    4. Can I fact check ….

    Don’t trust the internet, The AP, The NYT, FoxNews, Cnn, The bible, the IPCC, The government, the GAO,

    And of course don’t trust this post

  111. Larry
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 12:24 PM | Permalink

    Frecripesake, he testified in front of the senate in 1988 (for which we was paid $250,000). He’s not being silenced, never was. That’s just plain flat-out propaganda. They were trying to get him to obey the same media relations rules that applied to every other NASA employee. That’s not whistleblowing. Whistleblowing is exposing corruption. I ask again, what corruption did he expose?

    Thank you for confirming my conclusion in 124.

  112. John Norris
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 12:24 PM | Permalink

    Suggest that the California climate variability paper that’s up at Anthony Watt’s site would be a good candidate for an audit on a new thread

    Incidentally I ran into chasing Smokey’s links.

  113. Larry
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 12:26 PM | Permalink

    126, I do trust the flying spaghetti monster:

    http://www.venganza.org/

  114. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 12:48 PM | Permalink

    Hansen is not the issue. Focusing on Hansen the person diffusses your radical potential.

    It’s Hansen THE METHOD you need to eyeball. The latest rhetorical action line has been this:

    the IPCC is consensus driven. It’s conservative. Only Hansen has the guts to sound the Alarm.
    Hansen is paul revere.

    So, you should all note the rhetorical shift. Initially the appeal is to consensus. All these
    wise men agree. And anyone who disagrees is a heretic. 2500 scientists can’t be wrong.

    Canon versus Apocraphyl literature.

    Against this metaphor of “wise men Vs Heretic” , people raised the counter plot of heretics
    who turned out to be right. But this plot was given no air time.

    So, Now comes the question. How does Hansen argue with the IPCC?. he cannot adopt the heretic mantel.
    They burned that. So, there is a subtle twist, the IPCC is labelled as “conservative” You saw Dr. Curry
    use these words. You see Tamino using the same character structure..

    FIRST they construe the IPCC as a rational body that comes to consensus. This puts disgreement outside
    of civility. THEN, after time passes, Then they construe consensus as conservative, because of the connotations
    of that word.

    That is how they first endorse the IPCC and now claim that Hansen knows better

  115. MarkR
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 12:58 PM | Permalink

    #130 Steve Mosher. The way you describe it, and I don’t doubt you, it’s clever cynical media savvy manipulation on a grand scale, And that costs big bucks.

  116. Susann
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 1:43 PM | Permalink

    Actually, #130, I agree with you, but perhaps with a different conclusion. I won’t even bother to respond to #131, who is makes his irrelevancy apparent with that statement.

    The IPCC process is conservative. When you get dozens of governments together to agree on the wording of a document, it can’t help but be conservative because no one wants to go beyond the most conservative position and commit themselves to anything or take on any unnecessary risk. That’s why there’s all this parsing of verbiage in the process of creating the final summary document. It doesn’t mean that the conclusions are right or wrong, just that they are likely not wildly overblown.

    When you get the group of government appointees involved, the least risky position will likely be taken. So, if we accept that (and I’ve personally witnessed this kind of conservative thinking in action), then the predictions for AGW may indeed be understated. I don’t know if that’s the case since I have no idea how reliable the climate models are. Given the errors and uncertainties in the existing climate science research, the models are only as good as their assumptions and the data that feeds into them, etc. I think it’s possible that the models underestimate the potential for significant climate disruption; but I think it might be possible that they overestimate it as well. I just don’t know.

    If the models underestimate, and if the IPCC reports are underestimations based on the influence of government parsing, Hansen could be seen as a Paul Revere or, if they overestimate, Chicken Little.

  117. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 2:17 PM | Permalink

    RE 131… Actually not. Once the “narrative” is explained people involved in the process respond
    based on their cultural training.

    For example. The Plot line was “consensus” .if you have EVER studied fiction or written stories
    , you know there is one complication in this plot:

    The man who stands apart. The man who fights the system. This plot is IS IN YOUR GENES.

    But, there are two versions.

    Version A: The outsider who is right. Mr Smith
    Version B: The outsider who corrupts. Dr. evil.

    Hence the need to connect the deniers to Holocaust deniers. Once this paradigm was
    set up, then everyone knows how to tell the story. It’s a plot than runs down the gradient
    of your cultural training.

    There are also rules for treating this kind of outsider. No debate with him. Why? because
    speaking with this kind of outsider confirms value on him.

    Then… After time passes, you introduce the plot twist. Where Hansen becomes Mr Smith.

    It’s not actually clever. It’s rather like a TV show. These are all standard plot devices
    but most people don’t view reality as a construction. I do.

    My favorite construction:

    http://www.museum.tv/archives/etv/L/htmlL/leaveittob/leaveittob.htm

  118. MarkR
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 2:23 PM | Permalink

    #132 Susann. See the linky to IPCC on the left menu bar? Try reading the linked articles, starting with “IPCC AR4 and the Return of Chucky – He’s Baaack!” SteveMc was a reviewer for the IPCC, he gives you the inside track on how they actually work, and you can also follow the story of how the IPCC tried to suppress the release of information, till SteveMc changed their minds. PS. What happened to the Smileys?

  119. bender
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 2:25 PM | Permalink

    #132 Let’s be sure to distinguish between the process and the findings. The process may be conservative. But until the hypothesis has survived numerous attempts at falsification, one can not decide if the the findings themselves are conservative.

    Susann, in your readings, may I recommend asking yourself the question: “what role does faith in the GCMs play in scientist X’s position on GHG attribution?” In your dialogues, challenge the authorities to clarify their view on this question.

    If I were Hansen’s boss I would recommend he spend more time using the media to articulate to non-climatological scientists and engineers and intelligent people everywhere the scientific merit of his models. Some of us would like to understand better how they are parameterized to overcome the obvious challenge of modeling what is surely a very complex nonlinear system.

    (I look forward to conversing with JEG on the subject at some point.)

  120. Larry
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 2:29 PM | Permalink

    The notion that the IPCC is “conservative” because their respective governments are conservative raises an obvious question; why did the UN create the IPCC in the first place, if they didn’t want to hear the answer? It also raises a less obvious question, which is why does every environmental NGO on earth get standing? And what about other “stakeholders”, such as the coal industry? This certainly doesn’t appear to be a “conservative” organization in either mission or structure.

  121. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 2:30 PM | Permalink

    RE 132. IPCC is not conservative. It is portrayed as conservative. That is it is portrayed as
    “splitting the difference” being reasonable etc etc. Dr. Curry tried this same line of hooey
    a while back ( all due respect Dr. C )

    First time I negotiated with a Russian I actually took my shoe off and beat on the table
    exclaiming that the table wasnt real unless I agreed it was real. Needless to say, we came
    to agreement at some point that the table was not real. Why? Because I had the power to
    compell his assent. If he wanted my business, then the table wasnt real. So, in the end
    we had a nice lunch on that imaginary table.

    Funny thing, Nobody got the shoe pounding thing. Argg..

  122. Susann
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 2:41 PM | Permalink

    #136, yes, that’s what I mean — the process is conservative. I specifically mentioned the effects of the political appointees’ review on the construction of the summary document and if my post appears to imply the entire proess is conservative, I was not being clear. The summary document is not likely going to overstate what the underlying reports claim. I made no claim about the content of the reports themselves. In fact, I have a lot of questions about the GCMs, but I am not yet at that stage of my study of this issue. Like I said, I’m still reading up on proxies in the paleo recons and have encountered enough questions to make me highly suspect of their use.

  123. MarkW
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 2:43 PM | Permalink

    #113,

    You could start with the poster Boris

  124. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 2:44 PM | Permalink

    RE 135. MarkR I totally forgot about the IPCC denying access to reviewer comments.

    That’s a good one Susanne.

    Question: do you think that the scientist comments submitted to the IPCC should be
    Openly distributed?

    Some of these comments ar critical, a number of reviewer comments are outright ignored.
    Yet, the final text is treated as consensus. No minority report. And if we had not
    gone after NOAA with FOIAs, the comments would be locked away at Harvard, wth access restrictions
    and duplication restrictions and distribution restrictions.

    The US governemnt paid employees to comment on the reports. IPCC don’t own them words, but they
    control their dissemination.

    Wanna be a freedom fighter? Go download the IPCC comments and post them in the clear without
    use restrictions.

  125. bender
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 2:47 PM | Permalink

    #139 That’s what I thought you meant. Just thought I would help to clarify.

  126. Larry
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 2:48 PM | Permalink

    141, worse than that, they made the review comments available online, but you had to check a box stating that you wouldn’t republish them anywhere. Transparent? Really.

  127. bender
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 2:52 PM | Permalink

    There is more than one “process”. The review process is fairly closed (and unaccountable). The final drafting of the summary process is fairly conservative (and unaccountable).

    No sense arguing where you are both right.

  128. Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 2:54 PM | Permalink

    @Susann–
    I’d guess the IPCC process is conservative in some sense: governments don’t want to lose face individually. They also want to foster goodwill with other governments.

    In this regard, there is a strong desire to constantly under report disagreement and over emphasize consensus. Conclusions like “We’ve polled people, and the amount of confusion and disagreement is amazing!” tend to be frowned on by groups working together to write a document that contains ‘the answer’.

    As to the question of whether the IPCC over-estimates or under-estimates the likelihood or AGW — the experts on a panel will by definition contain a large number of people who earn their livelihood studying the problem of AGW. These people will tend to be predisposed to think AGW is important — because if they didn’t, many would have picked other disciplines to study!

    So, the social dynamics will tend to result in judgements to lean toward “There is a problem” rather.

    If you think this unlikely ask yourself: If you get together a group of people whose research requires the existence of a big particle accelerator and you ask them how vital a new particle accelerator is to America’s future, will they tend to over rate the importance of a the accelerator (compared to say spending money on developing better GCMs?)

    ===========
    On the “is Susann really a pro-AGW troll thread”….

    Do not forget I am the pro-AGW troll. :)

    I think AGW is probable; I said it before. And yet, except when I say it directly, none of you seem to accuse me of troll-ish-ness.

    You should not forget that there really are people who get pissed off when others support their cases with distortions, smears, mis-leading claims, wild overstatements and obfuscation.

    Steve M seems to be one of these people. I strongly suspect Susann also is. I could be wrong of course…. but you know… sometimes it takes one to know one.

  129. Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 3:00 PM | Permalink

    My observations, fwiw: The IPCC is not a conservative process. It’s actually two processes. The scientific and the bureacratic. Most of the scientists appear generally sympathetic to the theory of AGW and may have been picked for that reason. The ones who are not sympathetic seem to be ignored. The bureacratic process which oversees the scientific process (and also created the overall process) and writes the reports, applies subtle pressure of the wink and nod variety on the scientific process.

    Which suggests that the overall process is a dysfunctional process, which is what Lindzen means when he asserts that the conclusions don’t accurately reflect the science.

    I stand ready to be corrected.

  130. Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 4:07 PM | Permalink

    Re smokey: he’s been here before:

    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=2077#comment-154985

  131. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 5:04 PM | Permalink

    That the IPCC is a policy advocate for rather immediate mitigation of AGW is not really anything that is being hidden from the public. Like so many other government action groups, their job is to market a policy by showing the best of the evidence that they judge supports that view and, while not totally ignoring counter evidence, they certainly are not presenting evidence such as would be the case in an adversarial debate in an action brought before a court of law.

    The approach to selling a need for immediate action to the public has changed the tenor of the IPCC from presenting evidence for general problems in the future due to AGW to making a case for more specific problems that will occur closer to the near future. None of these changes are really disguised in any form.

    The only conservative part of the process that I see is that that relates to all the governments involved not wanting the wording of the reports to push them to an action that they are not ready to sell to their constituents and that each government has some say in the final wording. That makes the statements and calls for action somewhat more general than they might otherwise be, but certainly does not, in my mind, detract from the marketing of the policy.

    I see no difference in the way the IPCC is making and selling policy on AGW effects and mitigations than I have witnessed for the US government doing the same with programs it was selling. That selling is seldom “conservative” (think US military action in Iraq) but it sometimes runs up against a “conservative” bent of the voting public to which it is attempting to sell it.

    I suspect that most governments selling programs have not dwelled on the issues of uncertainty as much as has the IPCC in their attempts to give some appearance of an objective consensus. When all is said and done, however, the best we know is that the uncertainties as described by such terms as likely and highly likely with accompanying percentages were derived by a show of hands by the authors writing the chapter reports. I attempted, in this matter, to find the documented methods for determining how the certainty levels and percentages were arrived at (as stated as a requirement in the introduction of the AR4 to be part of the writing process for each of the chapters in AR4) and have them made public. I know I failed and have not been able to determine if anyone has succeeded in this matter.

  132. Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 6:01 PM | Permalink

    From RealClimate:

    This post announces my (William Connolley’s) departure from RealClimate, and indeed from the professional climate field in general, in favour of the wide world of Cambridge software engineering. I’ve enjoyed my time with (Real)Climate, but now its time to move on.

  133. Larry
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 6:11 PM | Permalink

    145, sellout!

  134. Susann
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 6:41 PM | Permalink

    So while a “real” journalist should do as you suggested, I doubt if most would. But maybe you could consider a (real) journalistic project and do a survey of 1200 (or whatever number you prefer) randomly selected entries from the total to this website submitted over, say, the last 3, or 6 months, to determine what percentage of entries are “allegations” (#90), “innuendos” and “political motives” (#82) of the sort you are concerned with. It would be interesting to see if the percentage turns out to be greater than the margin of error for such a survey. If so, it might be wise to bring this issue up on fewer occasions.

    Someone else can do that kind of bean counting. It’s not my thing. :) I’m interested in what I’m reading here and now. If I see something noteworthy, I take note of it. Other people may shrug and ignore these instances I point out, but I suspect if similar posts were/are made at RC about Steve Mc or Ross McK, people here would take note. In other words, a lot of anger is focused on Gavin and Hansen and Mann, RC and the IPCC. I can certainly sense it in the brief time I’ve been here. Maybe that anger seems justified to people who are regulars here, but as someone with no bone to pick with these people, it is quite, well, interesting and enlightening.

    My pointing out an obvious falsehood elicited quite a telling response from some people. I would think those who claim to be only interested in evidence-based science rather than handwaving and obfuscation would prefer to see the facts, whatever they are and wherever they lead.

  135. MarkW
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 6:51 PM | Permalink

    Hansen has been prevented from talking to the press?????

    When? He practically has had a microphone surgically implanted.

    As to his work being censored, that lie has been exposed many, times.

  136. MarkW
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 6:56 PM | Permalink

    Somebody once tried to convince me that the mainstream media had to be conservative. Since they were owned by major corporations and everybody knows that the rich guys who run these corporations are the definition of hard core conservative. Examing the output of the media was irrelevant.

  137. T J Olson
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 6:58 PM | Permalink

    re #144 – Kenneth

    There is another authoritative source of opinions on AGW, besides the IPCC.

    Last Spring, an international survey of 530 climatologists from a few years back was re-presented in more popular terms.

    Abstract:
    This booklet summarizes the results of international surveys of climate scientists conducted in 1996 and 2003 by two German environmental scientists, Dennis Bray and Hans von Storch. Bray is a research scientist at the GKSS Institute of Coastal Research in Geesthacht, Germany. Von Storch is a climatology professor at the University of Hamburg and director of the Institute of Coastal Research.

    Themes of uncertainty, doubt, and “we need to know more” make for a counterweight to official hysteria You can download the report as a pdf file. It makes for interesting, contrarian reading.

  138. T J Olson
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 6:59 PM | Permalink

    re #144 – Kenneth

    There is another authoritative source of opinions on AGW, besides the IPCC.

    Last Spring, an international survey of 530 climatologists from a few years back was re-presented in more popular terms.

    Abstract:
    This booklet summarizes the results of international surveys of climate scientists conducted in 1996 and 2003 by two German environmental scientists, Dennis Bray and Hans von Storch. Bray is a research scientist at the GKSS Institute of Coastal Research in Geesthacht, Germany. Von Storch is a climatology professor at the University of Hamburg and director of the Institute of Coastal Research.

    Themes of uncertainty, doubt, and “we need to know more” make for a counterweight to official hysteria. You can download the report as a pdf file. It makes for interesting, contrarian reading.

  139. Susann
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 7:25 PM | Permalink

    As to his work being censored, that lie has been exposed many, times.

    Care to point us to a few sources, with a better fact-checking record than, say, Investors Businness Daily?

    I’m happy to see whatever facts you show me, for I personally don’t care about Hansen one way or the other.

  140. jae
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 8:34 PM | Permalink

    My pointing out an obvious falsehood elicited quite a telling response from some people. I would think those who claim to be only interested in evidence-based science rather than handwaving and obfuscation would prefer to see the facts, whatever they are and wherever they lead.

    I got lost in this thread. I would appreciate it if you would explain this again.

  141. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 8:37 PM | Permalink

    RE 154. I hate when I’m wrong about someone. ah well. Smokey smoked another one out.

  142. _Jim
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 8:41 PM | Permalink

    Care to point us to a few sources, with a better fact-checking record than, say, Investors Businness Daily?

    Here’s how George Deutsch, former (he resigned) NASA public relations employee, put it:

    George Deutsch … [said] that he was warned about Hansen shortly after joining the space agency.

    “The only thing I was ever told — more so from civil servants and non political people — is, ‘You gotta watch that guy. He is a loose cannon; he is kind of crazy. He is difficult to work with; he is an alarmist; he exaggerates,’” Deutsch said.

    Here’s what Brown, a career civil servant with over 20 years’ service at NASA said:

    “I don’t think Hansen has ever really been censored,” “We at public affairs have been very supportive of all our scientists. [Hansen] has always been welcome to talk about this data. I mean, we encourage our scientists to talk about the data. That is what they get paid to do.”

  143. Susann
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 8:52 PM | Permalink

    As to the question of whether the IPCC over-estimates or under-estimates the likelihood or AGW — the experts on a panel will by definition contain a large number of people who earn their livelihood studying the problem of AGW. These people will tend to be predisposed to think AGW is important — because if they didn’t, many would have picked other disciplines to study!

    So, the social dynamics will tend to result in judgements to lean toward “There is a problem” rather.

    You and I are in agreement on this — from what I understand, the IPCC a priori assumes there is “a problem” and sees its mandate to summarize the research on global warming for policy makers. It does not seem to me to be about deciding if AGW is real.

    In any group, even among a group that shares the same general perspective, there will be differing points of view. I imagine it is the same for the IPCC reviewers. Some may well feel that the IPCC reports overstate the certainty of certain outcomes. I imagine that there are those who feel the report understates it. The question to me is this: do the reports accurately reflect the underlying science and its uncertainties? I honestly don’t know, and the more I read, the less confident I am in my own ability to judge or feel confident about any prediction.

    But as to the issue of bias towards one’s source of income, unless we are independely wealthy, all of us income earners are reliant on our sources of income for our livelihood. It seems rather self evident, no? Scientists who study climate change and are paid to do so are going to be biased towards seeing it as an important branch of science. We are all biased towards the importance of our respective occupations unless we are complete cynics. The world would fall apart without policy analysts. :)

    In the end, who is going to evaluate climate science but those who know it best or who otherwise have the relevant background and knowledge? We don’t all have the time it takes to become dendros so we can make a sensible and informed critique of tree ring proxies, and that is just one small branch of climate science.

  144. Susann
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 8:59 PM | Permalink

    #157, a quick google turns up Deutsch’s testimony, the content of which I believe speaks for itself.

  145. Susann
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 9:02 PM | Permalink

    I hate when I’m wrong about someone

    Me too. It’s a shame to see a closed mind.

  146. John M
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 9:33 PM | Permalink

    Susanne, #160

    In the end, who is going to evaluate climate science but those who know it best or who otherwise have the relevant background and knowledge?

    I always find it useful to compare how some folks feel about climate science to how they treat other issues. As a policy wonk, how do you feel about these statements:

    In the end, who is going to evaluate drug development and commercialization but those who know it best or who otherwise have the relevant background and knowledge?

    In the end, who is going to evaluate industrial chemical manufacturing but those who know it best or who otherwise have the relevant background and knowledge?

    Should policy makers be guided solely by drug developers and industrial chemists?

    Some day, maybe I’ll share my surface station (Anthony Watts’ work) analogy and how climate scientists and their defenders have responded to that as well.

  147. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 9:42 PM | Permalink

    Re: #160

    My pointing out an obvious falsehood elicited quite a telling response from some people. I would think those who claim to be only interested in evidence-based science rather than handwaving and obfuscation would prefer to see the facts, whatever they are and wherever they lead.

    I have not been following all the unthreaded thoughts here, Susann, but did that obvious falsehood have anything to do with the statistics or science of climate? Do not let your coming here to learn something about climate science be side tracked by a mission to smoke out those who might participate here for reasons other than an interest in evidence-based science. That standard would fail all the climate related blogs that I have visited.

  148. John M
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 9:53 PM | Permalink

    Mosh

    You’re cruel dude.

  149. Susann
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 10:19 PM | Permalink

    As a policy wonk, how do you feel about these statements:

    Should policy makers be guided solely by drug developers and industrial chemists?

    I didn’t say “only” climate scientists can evaluate climate science. I said that climate scientists are best able to evaluate each other’s work because of the time and effort involved in developing the competency in the field. Do you want your local drug store clerk to decide what kind of surgical technique is best to resect your abdominal aortic aneurism or a vascular surgeon?

    Policy makers seek out input from all relevant “stakeholders” and use that input to determine options and the implications of each. Drug developers have obvious interests and biases that have to be taken into account, as do industrial chemists. There are other stakeholders who have something relevant to add.

    As a policy wonk, I would argue that policy should be based on the best available science. How do we decide what the best science is? Someone or some group with the appropriate knowledge of science is likely best able to judge what constitutes the best available science. I don’t go next door and ask my neighbor.

    It certainly shouldn’t be political appointees who have no background.

    They’re the ones who decide which policy option has the best optics. That’s completely different from determining what the best science says about the policy issue.

  150. Susann
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 10:29 PM | Permalink

    but did that obvious falsehood have anything to do with the statistics or science of climate? Do not let your coming here to learn something about climate science be side tracked by a mission to smoke out those who might participate here for reasons other than an interest in evidence-based science. That standard would fail all the climate related blogs that I have visited.

    A voice of reason.

    No it didn’t have anything to do with climate science, but neither did the comment that elicited my post. Still, a lie is a lie and if we ignore them, they propagate like vermin. I apologize if my desire to point out a lie has led to all this apparently worthless discussion. It has been productive in one sense — some people would rather let a lie stand than see the truth be told if it’s about some individual they personally dislike or hate, whatever the case may be. At least I now know who they are and can hold no more illusions about their commitment to “facts”.

  151. John M
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 10:36 PM | Permalink

    Susanne,

    At the risk of incurring the wrath of Mosh, let me respond one more time.

    Drug developers have obvious interests and biases that have to be taken into account, as do industrial chemists.

    I would agree with that. But the biases of climate cientists also have to be taken into account. I would argue that a committee of climate scientists, some of whom are lead authors of chapters “reviewing” their own work, can’t simply have its findings accepted at face value.

    But I think we agree (and Steve Mc has said as much himself) that policy makers are always forced to make decisions with imperfect data. It’s called politics, and needs to be subject to open and vigorous debate.

    Let’s just stop pretending the data are perfect (i.e “the science is settled), and let’s hold climate scientists to the same standards as other scientists.

  152. Russ
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 10:40 PM | Permalink

    Changes over at Real Climate, William Connolley is “moving on.” I wonder if he is going to stop guarding the climate change door on Wikipedia also? The world is changing, global cooling is on the way.

    This post announces my (William Connolley’s) departure from RealClimate, and indeed from the professional climate field in general, in favour of the wide world of Cambridge software engineering. I’ve enjoyed my time with (Real)Climate, but now its time to move on.

    Normally the career change of one minor scientist would be of little interest to the outside world, and perhaps this one will be too, but the climate arena does get rather highly charged. So perhaps a few words of explanation are in order.

    This doesn’t represent any disenchantment on my part with the state of the science, or with IPCC, or with RealClimate – all of which continue to have my respect. I’m sure that RealClimate will continue to deserve its high reputation as a source of accessible explanation and comment on important climate issues. It’s more a reverse of that – in some senses, much of the main areas of climate science have now become much clearer than when I began to be interested; the obstacles to progress are now very obviously political not scientific.

  153. Susann
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 10:52 PM | Permalink

    I would agree with that. But the biases of climate cientists also have to be taken into account. I would argue that a committee of climate scientists, some of whom are lead authors of chapters “reviewing” their own work, can’t simply have its findings accepted at face value.

    Agreed – and I never said that we shouldn’t take into account the biases of climate scientists. Neither can or should we take the cynical position that they can’t be trusted because they rely on their income to survive. Duh. You have to weigh all the participants’ biases and expertise when analysing the science.

    But I think we agree (and Steve Mc has said as much himself) that policy makers are always forced to make decisions with imperfect data. It’s called politics, and needs to be subject to open and vigorous debate.

    Yes, policy is always based on the best science at hand. It’s often led to very bad decisions but that’s the reality. With many policies, bad decisions don’t have the same potential for monumental harm, whether to the economy or to the environment that this policy debate has. Thus, getting the science right, or at least the best that can be had at this time, is all the more important.

  154. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 1, 2007 at 11:34 PM | Permalink

    Okay, just to get it all straight here. People that make statements that are reported in the national media are not being muzzled. What other proof is needed? That is boring on SO many levels.

    susann; “There’s no tongue-in-cheek smiley is there?” Yeah, it was right after the IMO part! :)

    reid; My calculations of the ‘wit’ is a more than likely measure of the degree of freedom involved in the second sigma derivation of the distribution of double half-life estimations. The error bars are about -112.8% and +77.4432342342343256346% and I calculated them by taking the square root of the median of the mean of the mode, after reducing the converging tripplet delta between up and down. Another half regressed deviation either positive or negative didn’t refit anything, so I’m quite sure that I am not only totally correct, but I’m not even un-wrong.

    mosher; I am quite good at throwing troll-slop with my left hand; quit harshing my gig. On the other hand (the right one), I’m quite good at keeping a circular argument going as well as I can, from any direction you care to think about. Not that I’m the expert at it, although I have calculated it along the lines of at least the top percentile. Care to discuss if a 2:1 transformer doubles or halves current? If the approximate speed of light is 186,000 or 186.282K miles per second? What’s better, BCP or 1885 thermometers? Is it alti-meter or speedo-meter?

    Along those lines, but not in a cause/effect relationship, the question for the day; who said this?

    We publish hundreds of papers a year… We have more data, code and model output online than any comparable institution, we have a number of public scientists who comment on the science and the problems to most people and institutions who care to ask. And yet, the demand is always for more transparency. This is not a demand that will ever be satisfied since there will always be more done by the scientists than ever makes it into papers or products. …independent replication from published descriptions – the algorithms in English, rather than code – are more valuable to everyone concerned than dumps of impenetrable and undocumented code.

    Just for fun, a recent conversation I heard:

    ARTHUR: I did say sorry about the `old woman,’ but from the behind you looked–
    DENNIS: What I object to is you automatically treat me like an inferior!
    ARTHUR: Well, I AM king…
    DENNIS: Oh king, eh, very nice. An’ how’d you get that, eh? By exploitin’ the workers — by ‘angin’ on to outdated imperialist dogma which perpetuates the economic an’ social differences in our society! If there’s ever going to be any progress–
    WOMAN: Dennis, there’s some lovely filth down here. Oh — how d’you do?
    ARTHUR: How do you do, good lady. I am Arthur, King of the Britons. Who’s castle is that?
    WOMAN: King of the who?
    ARTHUR: The Britons.
    WOMAN: Who are the Britons?
    ARTHUR: Well, we all are. we’re all Britons and I am your king.
    WOMAN: I didn’t know we had a king. I thought we were an autonomous collective.
    DENNIS: You’re fooling yourself. We’re living in a dictatorship. A self-perpetuating autocracy in which the working classes–
    WOMAN: Oh there you go, bringing class into it again.
    DENNIS: That’s what it’s all about if only people would–
    ARTHUR: Please, please good people. I am in haste. Who lives in that castle?
    WOMAN: No one live there.
    ARTHUR: Then who is your lord?
    WOMAN: We don’t have a lord.
    ARTHUR: What?
    DENNIS: I told you. We’re an anarcho-syndicalist commune. We take it in turns to act as a sort of executive officer for the week.
    ARTHUR: Yes.
    DENNIS: But all the decision of that officer have to be ratified at a special biweekly meeting.
    ARTHUR: Yes, I see.
    DENNIS: By a simple majority in the case of purely internal affairs,–
    ARTHUR: Be quiet!
    DENNIS: –but by a two-thirds majority in the case of more–
    ARTHUR: Be quiet! I order you to be quiet!
    WOMAN: Order, eh — who does he think he is?
    ARTHUR: I am your king!
    WOMAN: Well, I didn’t vote for you.
    ARTHUR: You don’t vote for kings.
    WOMAN: Well, ‘ow did you become king then?
    ARTHUR: The Lady of the Lake, her arm clad in the purest shimmering samite, held aloft Excalibur from the bosom of the water signifying by Divine Providence that I, Arthur, was to carry Excalibur. That is why I am your king!
    DENNIS: Listen — strange women lying in ponds distributing swords is no basis for a system of government. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical aquatic ceremony.
    ARTHUR: Be quiet!
    DENNIS: Well you can’t expect to wield supreme executive power just ’cause some watery tart threw a sword at you!
    ARTHUR: Shut up!
    DENNIS: I mean, if I went around sayin’ I was an empereror just because some moistened bint had lobbed a scimitar at me they’d put me away!
    ARTHUR: Shut up! Will you shut up!
    DENNIS: Ah, now we see the violence inherent in the system.
    ARTHUR: Shut up!
    DENNIS: Oh! Come and see the violence inherent in the system! HELP! HELP! I’m being repressed!
    ARTHUR: Bloody peasant!
    DENNIS: Oh, what a give away. Did you here that, did you here that, eh? That’s what I’m on about — did you see him repressing me, you saw it didn’t you?

  155. MarkR
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 12:10 AM | Permalink

    The new NASA guidelines say:

    guarantees that NASA scientists may communicate their conclusions to the media, but requires that they draw a distinction between professional conclusions and personal views that may go beyond the scope of their specific technical work, or beyond the purview of the agency.

    See Griffin message

    Hansen went straight to the media and purported to give a NASA view of temp records.

    The internal NASA memo link I posted up before makes it clear that what Hansen said to the media was not the official authorised NASA view, and that he did not follow the rules.

    [snip]

  156. PaddikJ
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 1:46 AM | Permalink

    steve mosher says on December 1st, 2007 at 2:30 pm, ca: 133:

    Funny thing, Nobody got the shoe pounding thing. Argg..

    Well I got it; in fact, I watched it happen live (or maybe it was on the Huntley-Brinkley report that evening – I was only 8 at the time).

    But I’m a little surprised that you knew about it – I had you figured for someone a little younger . . .

    Sorry Nikki, but we’re still un-buried after all these years.

  157. Thomas Bolger
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 4:11 AM | Permalink

    Re 103
    It is not up to me to prove that greenhouse warming
    occurs at exceedingly low temperatures and pressures
    I have demonstrated that it cannot be proved to
    exist by school experiments.
    In my view, even though most sceptics
    would deny it, Greenhouse gas warming is a Myth.

  158. T J Olson
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 7:09 AM | Permalink

    Davie Phillips, senior climatologist with Environment Canada, is predicting the coldest winter in Canada in 15 years because of La Nina, running until February 2008.

    More details here.

  159. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 7:35 AM | Permalink

    re 170. I didnt see it person, I saw it years later

  160. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 7:40 AM | Permalink

    re 167. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Xd_zkMEgkI

  161. Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 8:07 AM | Permalink

    @Susann- 156
    I’m not saying there is something evil about the bias based on choice of discipline, or that it’s a bias based on ones own desire to make money or increase their income. There may be some of that, but it’s not what I meant. (I think you are assuming I meant that because so often, the accusation of taking a POV to line their own pockets is so common. :) )

    What I mean is: in the US, we each select our the fields we enter. This is particularly true for people with Ph.D.s. So, on average you will generally find English majors think literary awareness is somehow more important that math. Mathematicians may think the converse. Engineers think applying science to make things is more important than study for study’s sake than say theoretical physicists.

    I haven’t read any sociologists studying this effect, but based on my life experience I’d be very surprised if my claims would fail any empirical test.

    I’ve venture to guess that many who enter climate science are inclined to believe AGW is true before they apply to grad school, accept a job at an institution that works in this area etc. So, the tendency for bias pre-exists any pay check. (In fact, some of these people might have chosen different majors if their primary motivation was money.)

    Note: I am not saying all. There will be a range of opinions.

    The tendency toward bias, which exists in people and all fields, doesn’t mean any particular group is wrong to hold a particular view. I’m only saying that this self-selection bias will have an effect on average POV of the group. (Yes, there will still be a range of views. :) )

    Of course, one will ask experts in climate science to evaluate climate science. But you’ve only discussed bringing in specialists (climate scientists) and stakeholders. What about a third group?

    If you were developing the most objective process, to reduce the self-selection bias I just described, one might want to pull experts in neighboring fields to evaluate modeling assumptions in GCMs. And awful lot of the stuff in GCM’s is classical transport covered in chemical, mechanical, aeronautical and civil engineering. We just look at other cases. Similarly, having statisticians familiar with particular treatments review statistics might be wise.

    We know both the weakness and the strengths of peer review. It’s caused both by the self-selection bias and the tendency of specialists to focus on one big problem. One weakness is that people inside of a field tend to get used to certain assumptions that people from neighboring fields find odd. Bringing those in neighboring fields helps reduce both.

    I don’t know if the IPCC brings in these “near-neighbor” specialists. If they don’t, the process will tend to have a larger bias than otherwise.

  162. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 8:07 AM | Permalink

    My issues with Hansen: 1. he promised to release a simplifed version of GISSTEMP two weeks after he released
    the First version. It’s been months.

    My issues with Gavin: 1. he stated that GISSTEMP was about two pages of MATLAB. it was 10000 lines of
    FORTRAN and PYTHON. 2. After the release of the code within minutes I encouraged everyone to go to RC
    and publically thank him. Our posts doing this were blocked. 3. he claimed they get no support whatsoever from
    EMS. 4. He claims AIT contains one error of verb tense. ( on the island evacuation issue )

    My issues with Mann: see threads here

  163. Larry
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 8:34 AM | Permalink

    Lucia, Richard Lindzen has said essentially what you said, but what he also noted is that the field of climatology has increased by over an order of magnitude since AGW became an issue, and what you describe is an accurate description of the vast majority who entered the field in past 15 years, but not of the old-timers. The very senior climatologists tend to be skeptical.

  164. Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 9:37 AM | Permalink

    @Larry– 176
    Of course old timers entered before AGW was a widely discussed topic. So, yes, the same argument would suggest they had no particular opinion on the subject before they entered the field.

    It is interesting if they are more divided. Of course, that would not prove the skeptics right. On could argue other biases– but it’s interesting.

  165. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 9:39 AM | Permalink

    No more Soros stuff. I’ve deleted some posts and will probably delete more.

  166. Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 9:40 AM | Permalink

    Hhhmmm… the Zamboni came through? I’m getting motivated to volunteer to write a plugin to let Steve keep comment numbers. . .


    Steve:
    Lucia, that would be great. It takes about 5 times as long to snip as to delete and I’m already overloaded.

  167. Larry
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 9:48 AM | Permalink

    169, it was just a comment that Lindzen made, not a scientific study. An actual (and honest) study would be interesting, though. I know where I’d put my money.

  168. Susann
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 9:51 AM | Permalink

    Suse:

    Is this/does this/do you, in the above comment, have an axe to grind with Deutsch (who had NO lack of raw class credit-hours but was one specific math course short of requirements)?

    It was a general reference, Jimmy. But if you think it applies to Deutsch, fine. He was a political appointee. As to his “misrepresenting” his having a degree, it’s so embarrasing when that happens, no? It tends to disredit the person, doesn’t it? If you can’t ensure the accuracy of your own resume, with which you should have a close personal relationship, how can you be expected to monitor the accuracy of the writings and speeches of an award winning scientists with a definite point of view? I feel bad for the poor lad and blame his superiors. He was obviously in over his head. I have the feeling Deutsch will do just fine, regardless. I’m sure he has a whole crew of champions given his battle with the dragon. :) I don’t have a axe to grind with anyone, but I sure see a lot of axes being ground on this thread.

  169. Susann
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 10:00 AM | Permalink

    #170 (Steve Mc), fine, your call, but perhaps in the interest of fairness, given that my deleted post was in response to #160 (MarkH) which implies a criminal act, it should be deleted as well. I’ll be interested to see which posts get deleted and which posts are left.

  170. M. Jeff
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 10:47 AM | Permalink

    Amazing machine that Zamboni. Transforms a flaky and deeply flawed mess into a coherent usable structure while cleansing the arena of broken hockey sticks.

  171. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 10:53 AM | Permalink

    >> Hhhmmm… the Zamboni came through?

    Love it, a hockey reference!

  172. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 11:01 AM | Permalink

    we all have biases. That is either false or trivially true. Less obscurely.
    When I hear people say that they must assess a scientist’s bias I wonder what Method, what scientific
    method they use to assess Bias. I think about bias in the bias assessment.

    Observer bias is a concern in all science. This is controlled for
    by the method of replication. Simply, I do not need to probe the Mind of Mann, and I cannot probe
    the Mind of Mann. I do not need to and CANNOT establish his Bias. I cannot establish his bias with
    any method; BUT What I can do is REMOVE POTENTIAL BIAS. How? by independentally replicating his results.
    If his results cannot be replicated it may be due to bias or stupidity or the dog ate my homework.

    Now, we can avoid this replication question. How? When I attack Manns results, you accuse me of Bias.
    Then the conclsuion becomes ” Dr. Mann’s results were only challenged by people with personal animus
    toward him” Dr. Mann says 2+2 =5. His ex wife explains that he is wrong. She is biased, he is right.
    The danger in calling the bias police.

    People assume Mann has a bias. Perhaps the Bias police are called.
    Perhaps a bias test is applied ” have you ever taken money from the Tides foundation” This path
    of “bias” estimating is not rule governed. Simply, the people judging bias may be biased.

    Forget about Mann’s Bias. Ask the question: can his results be duplicated or replicated by a third party.

    This is hardball bias removal. Dr. Mann: free your data. free your code. Why? So that third parties can
    check your work and replicate your results. So that we can lend credibility to the claim that you are NOT
    BIASED.

    The thought that somebody “the bias police” can ferret out all the biases of people is beyond
    stupid. BIAS is removed by TRANSPARENCY. Show your data, show your methods.

    Or We could have a Bias calculator:

    professor A released some of his data, actually 65.43% of his data, and 72.96% of his code, and
    he donates 2.564% of his income to enviromental causes, but his wife works for big oil and so, we
    estimated his bias factor degree ( BFD) at .1754 Which means his results should be discounted by the
    Bias discount factor.

    Experts: The other notion appealled to here is the notion of experts. Somebody will decide which
    experts to listen to. Experts on experts. How are experts on experts tested on their expert expertise?
    Many experts believe
    that Dr. Mann is an expert. he claims not to be statistician, yet he invents new methods and ignores
    the advise of experts in the feild he claims not to be an expert in. WTF? The expert experts on experts
    need an expert expert on experts.

    White smoke. Elect a pope of experts. Al Gore.

    There is one pragmatic (useful) way to adress the issue of bias and the issue of experts on experts.

    Replication by multiple independent parties.

    If a scientist resists releasing his data and his methods. Then we have two reponses.

    Weak: Your claims have no SCIENTIFIC MERIT.
    Strong: You are hiding from the scientific method for a Reason.

    The former is always justified, the latter becomes more plausible with repeat offenders.

    So when someone claims to be interesting in deciding bias and deciding which experts should be listened to…

    Ask for their methods. ask for their data.

  173. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 11:11 AM | Permalink

    #174. Susann, if there are posts, that you feel are objecitonable – please identify them for me. If I have to do more than cursory editing of this thread, I’d rather shut it down as the issues discussed here are typically not ones that interest me directly.

  174. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 11:28 AM | Permalink

    Deletion Request: delete 18,19,20,21,24,25,26,40,42,48,62,66.

    These all mention the connection between RC and EMS RC dont allow these kind of posts.
    We should follow the high road and delete them as well.

  175. Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 11:29 AM | Permalink

    Re 177:

    Hooooahhh!!

  176. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 11:36 AM | Permalink

    Deletion Request: Delete 67 82 83 85 86 87 89 90 91 92 98 100 102 103 105
    107 108 110 12 114 115 118.

    These Mention Hansen or EMS or question the credibility of people. Posts like this
    are not allowed at RC or Tamino or Rabbett.

  177. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 11:45 AM | Permalink

    Deletion Request: Delete 121 124 125 127 128 130 137 138 140 146 147 156 157

  178. Larry
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 11:53 AM | Permalink

    Add to that 109, 113, 117. That leaves the discussion on the “conservativeness” of the IPCC standing.

  179. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 12:08 PM | Permalink

    RE 183… I’d keep those, There were two salient arguments in the thread.

    One about the “conservatism of the IPCC” about which no one has any observational evidence.
    The other about deciding what experts to listen to.

    The rest was trash talk about hansen and gavin. So, I’d remove the attacks against hansen and gavin.
    You have to leave up the defenses offered for them.

  180. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 12:36 PM | Permalink

    Yes, policy is always based on the best science at hand. It’s often led to very bad decisions but that’s the reality. With many policies, bad decisions don’t have the same potential for monumental harm, whether to the economy or to the environment that this policy debate has. Thus, getting the science right, or at least the best that can be had at this time, is all the more important.

    Susann, I do not know where or for whom you do your policy work, but the way I see it is that we have science being done primarily, and in its theoretically pure state, without a political policy in mind. It arrives at conclusions and presents results in piecemeal fashion with the occasional review paper that might attempt to integrate a relatively small area of a research field. We are all aware of the dangers of mixing politics and science and in the process science, as normally practice and in its raw state is not very compatible with political policy making — with my emphasis here on political.

    In order for the political process to effectuate a policy it must be sold to the voting constituents. Most policy is going to involve trade-offs, priorities and potential benefits of mitigations versus problems from unintended consequences and, at the most basic level, the general arguments of the appropriateness of government action in the matter at all. The critical question then becomes one of how the process evolves and particularly so when the effects are to be realized in the longer term future. Is science (and not scientists) and the science, as interpreted by the policy makers, pushing the process or is it being pulled by a political process that has more less decided that mitigating action is required or would be at worst a benign effort that government should be involved with anyway? Pulling the process will be evidenced by the amount of selling and kinds of selling that are used to sway the voting constituents and the tendency to attempt to show benefits and ignore or minimize potential costs and likelihood of unintended consequences.

    My question to you, Susann, as a self-confessed policy person, is how much does the policy person get involved in the pulling part of the process compared to the pushing part of it as both are described above?

  181. MarkR
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 12:38 PM | Permalink

    So,…….. Suzann what’s your take on the climate change controversy? Have you picked up anything useful from the IPCC section I mentioned, or indeed any of SteveMc’s voluminous works of scholarship?

    If you need more time, that’s OK. We need more like you, open minded, that’s the ticket.

    I’m just glad we got the important stuff out of the way first. Made more room on the thread. Good stuff.

  182. kim
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 12:42 PM | Permalink

    The herd has been stampeded by bellowing about an approaching storm; the most acute of the listeners find the movement of the herd reckless.
    ====================================================

  183. windansea
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 2:17 PM | Permalink

    speaking of trash talking, in a thread at Tamino’s commenters are attacking CA for allowing trash talk, especially about Mann and hockey stick, Steve Mc responds a few times.

    http://tamino.wordpress.com/2007/11/26/i-gave-em-the-truth-they-thought-it-was-hell/#comment-9899

    what is amusing is that I found the quote below by Tamino himself calling GW sceptics “criminally irresponsible” in the same thread :)

    The idea that global warming will be no more troublesome than catching a cold is criminally irresponsible

    of course, when I tried to post the quote Tamino deleted it.

  184. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 2:26 PM | Permalink

    The idea that global warming will be no more troublesome than catching a cold is criminally irresponsible

    Would that idea be spending time in jail?

  185. Larry
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 2:29 PM | Permalink

    If certain people had their way, yes. Along with the thinker of said idea.

  186. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 2:46 PM | Permalink

    What the heck are those lies still doing on this thread?

    Susanne, could you please ask to have them removed. Those posts insinuate that
    RC receives benefits from EMS. As you aptly pointed out you cannot let lies stand.

  187. Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 3:13 PM | Permalink

    #188: Tamino directed all that ire at me. My response was something like, “When can I expect to be arrested?”

    I’ve been posting somewhat frequently on political threads for over ten years. Water off a duck’s back.

    There was another similar attack by Marion Delgado. He said a post of mine was an example of the “exact cultic mindset that’s marching in the war on science:. . . ”

    It’s always fun when you can provoke that kind of reaction. I pointed out to him that cultic mindsets were often characterized by hysterical rhetoric.

  188. Stephen Richards
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 3:13 PM | Permalink

    Steve Mc Delete the thread. I get the feeling that the siet is losing it’s original focus. If the Mosh can’t get extricate himself from this policy discussion it must be a problem.

  189. bender
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 3:34 PM | Permalink

    Umm, that’s called humor. irony. oh, forget it.

  190. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 3:39 PM | Permalink

    RE 192. Well dude when he accused you of being a criminal I Kinda lost it. Same way when Rabbett beat up
    on Kristin. You don’t hear to much from the Susannes of the world when a full professor attacks a
    15 year kid. You don’t hear too much from them when a nameless scientist calls people criminals for suggesting
    that GW might not be so bad.

    So I don’t mind Losing my temper attacking the attackers and attacking the ignorers.
    And I’ll serve my time in the brig. No whining.

    Actually Tamino has been pretty cool about letting comments through. I don’t mind when he bashes me with inline stuff.
    It’s like aftershave! But him accusing you of being criminal….

  191. Larry
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 3:53 PM | Permalink

    Umm…..if he’s going to call people criminals, can he cite the statute? Or does he have delusions of grandeur, and thinks he’s el presidente for life, and can just make it up on the fly?

  192. UK John
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 4:07 PM | Permalink

    Found this a bit unusual, and a bit surprising, as somewhere the Climate Change Gang told us that they had conquered this.

    From http://www.nasa.gov/vision/earth/lookingatearth/ozone_record.html

    The temperature readings from NOAA satellites and balloons during late-September 2006 showed the lower stratosphere at the rim of Antarctica was approximately nine degrees Fahrenheit colder than average, increasing the size of this year’s ozone hole by 1.2 to 1.5 million square miles.

    The Antarctic stratosphere warms by the return of sunlight at the end of the polar winter and by large-scale weather systems (planetary-scale waves) that form in the troposphere and move upward into the stratosphere. During the 2006 Antarctic winter and spring, these planetary-scale wave systems were relatively weak, causing the stratosphere to be colder than average”

    ” The recently completed 2006 World Meteorological Organization/United Nations Environment Programme Scientific Assessment of Ozone Depletion concluded the ozone hole recovery would be masked by annual variability for the near future and the ozone hole would fully recover in approximately 2065.”

  193. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 4:16 PM | Permalink

    RE 196… i sent him a post asking him to cite the statute, but it didnt make it through.
    that was nice, accuse a poster of being a criminal and then block posts defending him.

    guess what if you reply to tamino using his real name, your post gets wacked. even on rc.
    I GRANT you, this doesnt FOSTER confidence in his opinion.

    in the phone book he’s a pair of sunglasses

  194. Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 4:38 PM | Permalink

    mosh: “So I don’t mind Losing my temper attacking the attackers and attacking the ignorers.
    And I’ll serve my time in the brig. No whining.”

    It ain’t easy being a freedom fighter. (G)

    I prefer the cool veneer response. It drives some of them crazy. Which isn’t to say I haven’t fueled up the flame-thrower in the past.

    I really liked that “freedom fighter” post of yours. Gave me the goose-bumps, it did.

  195. George M
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 4:45 PM | Permalink

    At the risk of having Steve Mc delete this entire thread, I want to quickly revisit Hansen and NASA. And perhaps shed some illumination. My understanding is that Hansen works for Columbia U. In a NASA funded “department”. Which puts him one step away from being a government employee and subject to civil service rules. His funding derives from NASA, (and elswhere as pointed out) but this employment arrangement may help some of you understand some apparent anomalies in his position. These college professors enjoy a lot of “academic freedom”.

  196. bender
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 5:28 PM | Permalink

    That discussion at Tamino is lame. One character in particular is trying to twist my words to make it sound like I said something I didn’t say. Quite sad that someone feels they must resort to lies and distortions to win arguments. A real man would come here and talk to me about it, request a clarification or a retraction. Anyways, I clarified my oh-so precious words over on the tiny tim thread. “house of cards” is a figure of speech often used by skeptics to describe the conditional probabilistic nature of the AGW hypothesis. I forgot to put quotes around it to indicate it is not a universally accepted way of describing the hypothesis.

    Ironic that he curses me for trying to keep a thread clean of misinformation.

  197. Mark T
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 5:58 PM | Permalink

    Strawmen are the favorite by those with weak arguments. BTW, I wish I HAD missed the winning touchdown by OK last night. Blasted Tigers couldn’t have fought their way out of a paper bag. I thought it would be a good idea to do some work while watching the game… shoulda chucked the laptop and went downstairs to avoid the agony.

    Mark

  198. bender
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 6:18 PM | Permalink

    It’s annoying. I try to be fair. I try to be accurate. But sometimes I type quickly. There’s no way to police the whole blogosphere to protect your brand. It’s too bad. Because it’s these shenanigans that are the major barrier preventing many respected climate scientists from entering the blogosphere.

    Will the BCS put Florida above Mizzou? Probly not.

  199. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 6:34 PM | Permalink

    Re 197: I am bustin u out the joint.

    I was kinda stunned that he called you criminal— you retarded, selfish, greedy,
    uninformed, denialist, oil shilling, slack jawed, knuckle dragging, mouth breathing, cousin marrying ,neo con,
    C02 spewing,gun toting, nascar lovin numbnuts!

    There’s a huge ass bag full of adja-shives to stick you wit.

    Criminal? Na…you a wangster.

  200. Smokey
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 7:11 PM | Permalink

    I’ve been lurking here for a while & rarely post. But the link that I provided above has plenty of interesting info [and it links to Climate Audit], so I linked to it. John Norris and others were kind enough to express appreciation… but then Susann promptly labeled me “closed minded” for not sharing her opinion. Well, I guess that settles that! [/s]

    Steve Mosher:

    I hate when I’m wrong about someone. ah well. Smokey smoked another one out.

    Susann then snarked:

    …It’s a shame to see a closed mind.

    Sorry, Susann, “closed mind” isn’t a debate, it’s just name-calling. In fact, I was originally intrigued by the AGW argument — until that house of cards came crashing down. Now, the true believers are made up mostly of folks who wouldn’t know their elbow from an adiabatic chart.

    My AGW conclusions stem from my technical background [retired now]; I worked for over 30 years in a metrology/environmental calibration lab. My specific emphasis was on temp, humidity [R.H.] and Mass, plus similar related physical standards [all tracible to the National Bureau of Standards; although N.I.S.T. maintains the primary standards now].

    Anyway, the actual “consensus” in our lab regarding AGW was unanimous, as far as I could tell, and it goes like this: The planet has been warming up in fits and starts since the end of the last Ice Age, and human activity has nothing measurable to do with it.

    There’s a difference between having a related background from which one can follow most aspects of the AGW debate, and having a “closed mind.” Isn’t it the person who attempts to terminate a discussion by an easy ad hominem the one who is guilty of having a closed mind? It’s difficult/impossible to debate name-calling. Give me verifiable facts! Please!!

    OK, back to lurking status…

  201. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 7:25 PM | Permalink

    203. Did CNN fly you in to this thread?

  202. Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 7:27 PM | Permalink

    Smokey: thanks for that. From what I’ve seen, your laboratory’s eminently sensible consensus is more likely to be accurate in the final analysis than the one that is being shoved down people’s throats.

  203. bender
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 7:41 PM | Permalink

    duke,
    Bloom and I have had our disagreements in the past and I don’t think it’s productive trying to spark a conflict where we are operating on such different levels. I am interested in quantifying and reducing uncertainty. Bloom would rather have us ignore those scientific details and move forward based on a precautionary principle. For him, the science is settled enough. Much less so for me. Therefore there is not much for us to discuss. I respect his approach as long as he doesn’t stray into the statistics and I think he respects mine as long as I don’t stray into politics. By calling me on the “house of cards” comment he was just keeping me honest. That’s fine. If that’s his role, I’m ok with that. It’s not my “house of cards”, it’s the hardcore skeptics’. [I'm on the record as agnostic, but willing to support the idea of a precautionary principle - as long as the science is not distorted in the way it's presented to policy-makers.]

    Try to to rake up so much useless muck.

  204. Boris
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 8:16 PM | Permalink

    Can I join in the metadiscussion over here?

    And bender, I think you forgot quote marks around “high priests” in the other thread too.

  205. Boris
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 8:19 PM | Permalink

    One more Q: What do you guys think CS is anyway and how do you derive your range? Give me a couple minutes, I’m going to pop some corn.

  206. bender
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 8:32 PM | Permalink

    Keep the faith, Boris.

  207. Boris
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 8:35 PM | Permalink

    Are you calculatin’ CS?

  208. bender
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 8:59 PM | Permalink

    The “high priests hypothesis” of climate modeling is that there are a bunch of guys who should be disclosing their modeling methods in a fully transparent manner, and aren’t (maybe just because it’s time-consuming, or maybe because they are afraid the statisticians would tell them that what they are doing is incorrect?). Instead, they prefer to focus efforts on maintaining an orthodox view of what they do through web logs. Part two of the hypothesis is that there are a bunch of other climate scientists who don’t do modeling, but who are nevertheless willing to take the modelers results on faith, because it doesn’t really cost them anything to do so. So you have “high priests”, “gatekeepers”, “whips”, and so on down to the “plebes”.

    As I say, it is only a hypothesis. I would happily use a different term of Boris’s choosing. I picked this term only because it resonated with Steve Sadlov.

    It’s like the “Starbucks hypothesis”. After a while you get a little lazy and forget to reach for the quotes.

  209. bender
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 9:01 PM | Permalink

    #218
    Yeah, me and JEG :)

  210. bender
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 9:43 PM | Permalink

    duke, everyone’s free to do as they please, but what can you possibly hope to gain from that site? If you’re looking for answers you’re better off reading the archives (both CA and RC). Scan CA for “Bloom”. That will tell you a something about his level of knowledge and style of argumentation. His job is to discredit skeptics and denialists, using whatever means possible. It gets ugly because it’s antithetical to the way science is done, where the focus is on hypotheses, data, methods, inferences. Nothing wrong with the guy. It’s just that the job he’s been assigned makes use of ugly tactics.

  211. Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 10:13 PM | Permalink

    #222: good questions, bender. I know the answers, but I want to think about them and present them in a context relevant to this site. Tomorrow.

  212. bender
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 10:14 PM | Permalink

    duke, selective quoting to remove context is one of Bloom’s favorite tactics to discredit by alleging bias. I was specifically addressing the hardcore skeptics in that Kiehl thread – intelligent people who would have understood that the quotes on “house of cards” are implied. I was not addressing Bloom or people of his ilk for whom the quotes would have been necessary (and would have been provided).

  213. Phil.
    Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 10:51 PM | Permalink

    Re #50

    None of the experiments described do a reasonable job of demonstrating the greenhouse effect as it exists in the atmosphere in fact I don’t think it’s possible at a reasonable cost for a school experiment. The one with the water filter and the warm cardboard has the best shot but the tranmission spectrum of glass just won’t cut it.

  214. Posted Dec 2, 2007 at 10:56 PM | Permalink

    I know that bender. I’ve been dealing with these people on political blogs and forums for a decade. I know how it works.

    Your intent on the Kiehl thread was abundantly clear. His attack on you was typical of the genre.

    What people like you and Steve Mc have to realize is that they are attempting to limit your ability to use the language by nitpicking and quoting you out of context. When you make characterization like “house of cards” it’s based on years of observation and analysis. You are entitled to use that kind of terminology based on your observations and understanding of the science. They are coming after you for closely reviewing and criticizing the science that they find canonical. The only way they can attack you is by nitpicking your language and holding you to standards few people in their camp adhere to.

    If you’ve chosen to ignore people like Bloom, I suggest you stick with the program and not publicize their attacks on these boards, since that gives them far more coverage than they will get on OpenMind.

  215. Mark T
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 12:05 AM | Permalink

    Nothing wrong with the guy. It’s just that the job he’s been assigned makes use of ugly tactics.

    There’s plenty wrong with someone who’s ethics allow such an approach.

    Mark

  216. Philip_B
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 1:40 AM | Permalink

    Observer bias is a concern in all science. This is controlled for
    by the method of replication.

    Steve, do you have any evidence to support that contention? I always thought double blind was the way to control for observer bias, but if replication works I’d be interested to hear.

  217. UK John
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 2:51 AM | Permalink

    #217#50

    Surely this CO2 effect simulation experiment has been done “properly” by some scientist, somewhere, I have been trying to find it for years.

    I know you cannot fully simulate what happens in the real atmosphere, I have tried to find reference to an experiment, but nothing yet, even RC couldn’t help.

  218. Dave Adamson
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 3:26 AM | Permalink

    Now we see the tropics are expanding The Sydney Morning Herald says
    “Dr Seidel said the surprisingly rapid expansion of the tropics could lead to “profound changes in the global climate system”. Of greatest concern were shifts in rain and wind patterns that would affect natural ecosystems, agriculture and water resources in the world’s subtropical dry belts, including southern Australia.
    The director of the Research Institute for Climate Change and Sustainability at the University of Adelaide, Barry Brook, said it would push the westerly systems that bring rain to Australia’s southern coast closer to the South Pole.
    “As they shift southwards, progressively more rain is dumped over the Southern Ocean, instead of over continental Australia, where we need it,” he said. The expanding tropics would also extend the range of tropical diseases, Professor Brook said.
    “Subtropical cities such as Brisbane, and even those that are currently only marginally subtropical, like Sydney, will become increasingly suitable for diseases such as dengue fever, Ross River virus and perhaps eventually malaria.”
    I think I’ll move to Tasmania

  219. Hans Erren
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 4:44 AM | Permalink

    William Connolley announce his retirement from RC

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2007/12/goodbye-to-all-that/

  220. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 6:10 AM | Permalink

    I’ve been censored at Eli Rabett’s blog from replying to a comment.

    The deletion of post-1960 values of the Briffa reconstruction in IPCC TAR and the election of IPCC AR4 to do the same thing arose in a thread there. I sent the following post to Rabett, which was blocked:

    You refer to a post of mine http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=1792 on the deletion of the “inconvenient” portion of the Briffa reconstruction. The post-1960 values (which go down) were deleted in IPCC AR3 without any annotation giving a highly misleading rhetorical impression of the coherence of this reconstruction to other reconstructions.

    In the post in question, I showed the impact of this deletion on the IPCC figure and the different rhetorical impact of the inclusion of the deleted Briffa segment. I reported on my experience as an AR4 reviewer in trying to get the Briffa reconstruction shown to the end as follows:

    beginquote:
    “As an IPCC reviewer, I stated:

    Show the Briffa et al reconstruction through to its end; don’t stop in 1960. Then comment and deal with the “divergence problem” if you need to. Don’t cover up the divergence by truncating this graphic. This was done in IPCC TAR; this was misleading. (Reviewer comment ID #: 309-18)]

    In response, IPCC section authors said:

    Rejected – though note – issue will be discussed, still considered inappropriate to show recent section of Briffa et al. series.

    Once again, here’s what they were deleting and what they felt was “inappropriate” to show the public – the post-1960 decline in the Briffa index. (I’ve shown the IPCC TAR version here but the same deletion is made in AR4). By deleting the adverse segments, they enhance the rhetorical impression of the remaining series. Any mining promoter that did this would be in trouble with the securities commissions.” endquote

    I stand by the last sentence of the above quotation.

  221. kim
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 6:17 AM | Permalink

    Admissable.
    ======

  222. Craig Loehle
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 7:35 AM | Permalink

    Phillip_B asks about replication as a means for controlling for bias. There are actually multiple tools put in play to prevent bias: double blind is useful when the participants (humans) can bias the result, as in medicine and psychology. Replication is important when the study is a lab study or uses historical data. Using adequate sample size prevents the “bran muffins will save your life” food of the week syndrome. Using the proper statistics is key also. Fooling with the data until you get the curve you want is NOT a method that prevents bias.

  223. bender
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 7:44 AM | Permalink

    Replication reduces random sampling error. It does not remove bias.

  224. Philip_B
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 7:54 AM | Permalink

    Re #222 That report was criticized for making assertions without providing references to support the assertions. Is there any real evidence the tropics are expanding? Someone posted here that the ITCZ had in fact moved closer to the equator over Africa. And as an aside, it looks like a ‘big wet’ this year in Oz. As I type the news is talking about flash floods.

  225. Phil.
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 8:16 AM | Permalink

    UK John says:
    December 3rd, 2007 at 2:51 am
    #217#50

    “Surely this CO2 effect simulation experiment has been done “properly” by some scientist, somewhere, I have been trying to find it for years.

    I know you cannot fully simulate what happens in the real atmosphere, I have tried to find reference to an experiment, but nothing yet, even RC couldn’t help.”

    For a scientist the appropriate experiment is spectroscopy which has been done many times. What you want is a demonstration experiment which shows measureable differential heating depending on the levels of IR active gases. To be representative of the real world the exciting radiation should be from ~5 microns upto 20 microns and the walls of the vessel capable of transmitting those wavelengths. The experiment with filtered visible and the cardboard should be a reasonable experiment if done right but the base of the gas container should be made from a material that will transmit that wavelength range which is neither cheap nor straightforward.

  226. MarkW
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 8:17 AM | Permalink

    bender,

    Only if everyone who tries to do replication has the same bias.

    Replication allows people with different biases to have a go at the same experiment.
    If they get the same results, then the result is robust.

  227. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 8:22 AM | Permalink

    re 220. correct, I should not have said “observer” bias.

  228. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 8:28 AM | Permalink

    Hi Boris, hey You were right about the british hospital thing. The actual stats are
    9 million admissions, 900K mistakes, 90K deaths so I said 1/10 deaths. I was wrong
    it’s 1/100. thanks for catching the mistake.

  229. Filippo Turturici
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 8:54 AM | Permalink

    #222: from what I know of geography, Tropics are fixed and not moveable LOL
    For recent “climate” facts, what I could say is:
    a- tropical belt had its warmest year in 1998, and since 2002 it is slightly cooling;
    b- Austral Emisphere as well is cooling since 2002 (-0.1°C trand in 5 years for MSU data);
    c- Antarctica is generally cooling since decades;
    d- Antarctic sea ice sheet reached this last winter its historical expansion record, and has an increasing trend since at least 1979 (no satellite data before – on november 2006, icebergs reached New Zealand Southern Island, 1st time since 1931).
    Thus, in your shoes, I would not worry about :-) at least not for some decade – moreover, fears about tropical diseases are often illogic (our health system and higienic norms are of very high standard) or misunderstood (malaria is not a tropical disease, but a disease that in the recent past has been wiped out from civilised extra-tropical countries up to Arctic Circle; many animals and plants, then diseases, spread just by ships, planes etc. connctions and not due to climate changes).

  230. Hoi Polloi
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 9:04 AM | Permalink

    Thus, in your shoes, I would not worry about :-) at least not for some decade – moreover, fears about tropical diseases are often illogic (our health system and higienic norms are of very high standard) or misunderstood (malaria is not a tropical disease, but a disease that in the recent past has been wiped out from civilised extra-tropical countries up to Arctic Circle; many animals and plants, then diseases, spread just by ships, planes etc. connctions and not due to climate changes).

    Interesting read on this subject: Malaria in England in the Little Ice Age

  231. STAFFAN LINDSTROEM
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 9:20 AM | Permalink

    Mosh…You mistaken …Porque tu ne callas, Lindström?
    Well, another one to ten error is made by Swedish
    National Radio Program 1 …Supposed to be…Science
    News “Vetenskapsnyheter” They tell us that tropical
    climate has advanced “500 mil” One Swedish mile is
    10 km… So now tropical climate is well south of
    Buenos Aires …hmmm remember the snow in BA July 9??
    So it can now snow at sea level in the tropics…???…
    Well, after reading normally alarmist UK paper
    “The Independent” it turns out that in the last 30 years
    or so tropical climate has expanded S/N 172 miles…Just
    such an exact figure is totally laughable and ridiculous,
    or, well …Remember what Albert Einstein said about
    infiniteness…Only human stupidity was infinite, maybe
    also the universe but that he wasn’t sure of…Old
    grumpy cynic….??

  232. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 9:55 AM | Permalink

    RE 237. Imagine that! Making mistakes is a good thing, provided there is a feedback
    loop and an appropriate change in gain.

    Luckily, I made a mistake in a blog post. So the error report comes back fast and
    the change gets made.

    Now, imagine you are controlling economies based on climate data that requires decades
    of data to see a trend.?

    Thought experiment:

    suppose we changed policy ( carbon limits, carbon tax ) according to the weather.

    Think about how that how that control system would work ( stuck in lag?).

    Suppose we change policy according to the climate ( say a 30 year average) overleading
    the target.

    hmm.

    It might be better to assume the following. Assume C02 causes warming and assume warming imposes
    costs and assume that entities will innovate ways to reduce costs through a variety of measures.

    In the first two cases we trust the “government” to get the control right.
    In the last case we trust the collective ingenuity of people to optimize the controls.

  233. Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 10:27 AM | Permalink

    @227 — bender
    >>Replication reduces random sampling error. It does not remove bias.

    I once tried to tell a statistician this, but he wouldn’t believe me. . . Not even if I was the only one doing the experiment and never redesigned my test apparatus. But what do I know? I’m just a mechanical engineer :)

    @230 Mark W
    Change your caveat to different people using entirely different test apparatus and methods that don’t all suffer from the same bias.

    Experimental methods that all suffer from the same bias are common.

    For example, experiments in wind tunnels always involve some flow restriction due to the existence of walls around the test section. However, the experimentalists wants the test to mimic a flow in an unbounded medium.

    So, with regard to the problem one wishes to study, no matter who does the experiment, in any wind tunnel, there will be some finite size effect. This is known to affect results to a greater or lesser degree.

    Every individual experiment will exhibit this bias. The direction of the bias generally can’t be known. What is known is finite test section size biases are almost always in the same direction (example, all have too much drag or all have too little.)

    The proper protocol is for the experimentalist to describe the dimensions of wind tunnel, and describe how much area is blocked by the model and estimate the uncertainty due to bias in their experiment. (The experimentalists might report more information.)

    I could come up with examples where all experiments are known to introduce the same bias. Overlooked things that can matter in some transport issues include: external noise levels, roughnesses of surfaces, not realizing that air in a room is not really still when trying to measure heat fluxes due to natural convection from heated surfaces.

    The issue with regard to bias situation is generally worse when those in a particular discipline don’t recognize a factor that could bias the results. In that case experimentalists don’t account for the problem, don’t know what relevant details to report, and no one understands that results from different labs might all be biased!

    Also, in this case, all practitioners would say there are no known biases in the experiments. That would be true. It’s those unknown biases that kill you!

  234. bender
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 10:39 AM | Permalink

    N.B. “Replication” and “independent repetition of an experiment” are two different things. The latter may be used to remove investigator bias, but there is no guarantee it will happen in the short run.

  235. kim
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 10:47 AM | Permalink

    The bias in medical research is that ‘double-blinding’ can only effectively be done with modalities and placebos that can be hidden in capsules. This is part of the gold standard of knowledge in medicine! No wonder patients expect prescriptions for drugs. Nice article in the NY Review of Books, related, but more about the informational warp.
    ============================

  236. Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 11:33 AM | Permalink

    bender, 214: “duke, everyone’s free to do as they please, but what can you possibly hope to gain from that site? If you’re looking for answers you’re better off reading the archives (both CA and RC). Scan CA for “Bloom”.”

    Good advice. I did that and it yielded information that went into the following response to a post by bloom at Tamino’s:

    Steve Bloom // December 2, 2007 at 9:12 pm

    “Here are the results of a CA site search for “fraud.” My goodness that’s a lot of hits. ”

    Yes, I particularly enjoyed this one in which you said:

    “Re #8: Good point in the PS, Willis. WH’s “study” (or more precisely the conclusion he drew from it) would have been equally fraudulent using the RSS product.”

  237. STAFFAN LINDSTROEM
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 11:41 AM | Permalink

    More self-goals from Sweden: You know Madrid is warming
    100 % from global warming…: Dagens Nyheter (Biggest Swedish
    morning paper=Daily News), the other day… Do they even know the name of
    Navacerrada, much less that it is cooling or at least
    not warming, after checking Nasa-Giss this year will be
    almost 1,5C colder than 2006, and 1940′s were warmer…

  238. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 12:01 PM | Permalink

    Steve M

    Sorry you had to snip some of my posts.
    I think one reason you get so many OT posts to snip is that this is one of the few places where a reasonably intelligent exchange between the two sides of GW can occur without heavy moderator bias.

    I know you don’t want your blog to cover many of the topics involved in the GW issue, but can you suggest a couple of sites where such an exchange is possible and welcome?

    If you can do that, you will probably have to spend less time snipping and dealing with the OT folks.

  239. bender
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 12:09 PM | Permalink

    can you suggest a couple of sites where such an exchange is possible and welcome?

    Why don’t you create one?

  240. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 12:42 PM | Permalink

    Perhaps I’ll have to, but surely there are one or two already? Setting one up is OK, but it sounds like a lot of work to run it.

  241. kim
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 12:52 PM | Permalink

    Possibly a link to a time-out room where ranting is allowed, instead of a deletion. Are such things possible? I’ve come to trust Steve’s editing, but what is true elsewhere is true here, too; my best stuff gets deleted.
    ======================================

  242. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 1:02 PM | Permalink

    kim

    what is true elsewhere is true here, too; my best stuff gets deleted

    LOL! Your comments are great, though ’tis a pity they are often a little too abstruse for general entertainment.

  243. Larry
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 1:06 PM | Permalink

    Yeah, every blog has to have its Boomhower.

  244. kim
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 1:08 PM | Permalink

    PK, thanks, I’m just a rock stubbing the toes of giants.
    =================================

  245. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 1:11 PM | Permalink

    >> Setting one up is OK, but it sounds like a lot of work to run it.

    I have a site I could activate, but my concern is that it would take away from productive pursuits

    >> Are such things possible? I’ve come to trust Steve’s editing, but what is true elsewhere is true here, too; my best stuff gets deleted.

    It’s probably not supported by WordPress, but I was creating my own blog software, and many useful features are possible.

  246. Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 1:20 PM | Permalink

    Here’s a thread that the main protagonists could use:

    http://www.opentemp.org/main/2007/12/03/is-it-possible-for-a-small-amount-of-co2-to-warm-the-earth/

    I’m not going to open it up to everybody, but if you post and I recognize your name I’ll give you access.

  247. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 1:53 PM | Permalink

    kim
    modest, and deluded, too, I see.

    John V
    That’s a very kind offer to make. But are you sure? Isn’t your site mainly dedicated to the temperature record, rather than the kind of speculation and what passes for wit that gets snipped here?

  248. Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 2:08 PM | Permalink

    Hhhmmm what do you all want. I already installed blog software, but what with thanksgiving and the exponential thread have permitted myself to get derailed on learning R.

    I could easily allow a make one or two people co-bloggers with below full admin privileges, and we could start threads on things topics of interest. News stories etc. are fair game.

    (I’d lard up the blog with adsense so when people accuse me of doing running the blog for the money, I would just say “Hell, yeah!”. Then, I’d keep the $10 a month I’ll make on adsense for myself. :) )

    I’d write a few plugins that I can see are required in climate blogs. One plugin would let us keep track of the comment numbers when we deleted. I’d also tend to moderate by blacklisting certain words as much as possible. That should minimize me need to run a zamboni too often. (I could easily share these with Steve.)

    If you want, I can open a thread over at http://rankexploits.com and we can all discuss what features we want that we don’t already have here.

  249. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 2:21 PM | Permalink

    lucia

    That’s a good idea (opening the thread).

  250. Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 2:32 PM | Permalink

    Pat: Here’s the thread to discuss what we want in a new climate blog. New Climate Blog.

    I’ll go make sure I’m not moderating all first comments now. If you beat me to the punch you might get moderated. But, within a few minutes it should be a free for all. (Then, I may write that plugin to send rants off to at time out room– as kim suggested.)

  251. Larry
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 2:40 PM | Permalink

    Maybe you also need a rubber room for junk thermo. You know, light bulbs simulating the atmosphere, that kind of stuff.

  252. Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 3:55 PM | Permalink

    #257 Larry: :)
    Come on though — the lightbulb was never meant to simulate the atmosphere.
    It was showing that a small mass can substantially heat a much larger mass.
    (Gunnar was struggling with that so I tried to keep it simple).

  253. Larry
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 4:02 PM | Permalink

    At the risk of stirring it up again, maybe a water heater is a better analogy. The element is tiny compared to the mass of the water in the tank, and its surface doesn’t get hot enough to boil water, but it manages to heat that tank pretty well. K?

  254. Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 4:08 PM | Permalink

    #260:
    K.

  255. Smokey
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 4:21 PM | Permalink

    steve mosher:
    December 2nd, 2007 at 7:25 pm:

    203. Did CNN fly you in to this thread?

    I don’t understand what you mean. Please explain.

  256. Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 4:35 PM | Permalink

    Smokey: Mosh and I were having a little fun playing hillbilly and he was directing that at me. My posts got snipped and his didn’t which is NO FAIR cuz he started it!
    And I got caught! {Just kidding Steve Mc. I’ll try and keep the silliness in check in the future.)

  257. Susann
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 5:42 PM | Permalink

    then Susann promptly labeled me “closed minded” for not sharing her opinion. Well, I guess that settles that! Sorry,

    Susann, “closed mind” isn’t a debate, it’s just name-calling.

    I didn’t mean you, Smokey, and have no idea why you might think my post was directed your way. You can relax. I don’t know if your mind is open closed or absent. :)

    Besides, is it or is it not namecalling to call someone a troll? It’s such a simple attack. Where’s the debate in that?

  258. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 5:47 PM | Permalink

    >> but it manages to heat that tank pretty well. K?

    And if you did a thermo analysis, you would see that it makes perfect sense. Now, adjust the heating element to be just above the water a smidge, and see how long it takes.

  259. Larry
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 5:50 PM | Permalink

    You’re not getting the concept. You don’t get to adjust temperature, only power. Once you set the power, the temperatures are what they are.

    I knew I shouldn’t have rattled the cage…

  260. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 6:00 PM | Permalink

    >> You don’t get to adjust temperature, only power

    And what’s this nonsense? It’s an experiment that illustrates a concept. We get to control anything we want.

  261. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 6:04 PM | Permalink

    RE 265. Troll is not name calling. It’s a warning to other posters that a particular poster
    is not serious or not authentic or not forthcoming in their responses and that the best approach
    is to ignore them. Second best reponse is to over feed them.

    If you are interested in the science then don’t hang out in unthreaded. Unthreaded is a place where
    people come to unwind, to pontificate, to goof. It’s like trying to understand the US senate by hanging out
    in the restrooms or the barber shop

  262. jae
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 6:17 PM | Permalink

    I still just don’t get it. The average measured amount of solar insolation that reaches the surface is something on the order of 6-7 kwh/day/m^2 (conservatively crude estimate of the average for all parts of the earth over a year (Barrow, AK averages about 3.5 kwh/day over the year)). The average temperature of the Earth is 15 C. If 2 X CO2 actually adds 3.7 w/m^2, that = 3.7*24 = 88.8 watt hr/day. That represents 88.8/6,000 = 1.48 percent of the radiation reaching the Earth. That should translate into (0.0148)(15) = 0.22 degrees C. There must be one heck of a lot of positive feedback to produce 2.5 C!!

  263. Larry
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 6:24 PM | Permalink

    272, Umm…..Jesu Christo, that’s messed up. You don’t just multiply a temperature in centigrade by a factor, and say that’s the final temperature. There are so many things wrong with that, I don’t even know where to start.

  264. jae
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 6:28 PM | Permalink

    273: Please start somewhere, or be quiet.

  265. Susann
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 6:29 PM | Permalink

    If you are interested in the science then don’t hang out in unthreaded. Unthreaded is a place where
    people come to unwind, to pontificate, to goof. It’s like trying to understand the US senate by hanging out
    in the restrooms or the barber shop

    Steve, with respect, you don’t know where or what I read. I think unthreaded gives a lot of insight into who people are and what they are all about. Smokey posted a link to a news article that contained an allegation that was quite powerful. I spent a few moments googling and discovered it was untrue and that journalists failed to fact check before repeating a lie. How many others here just accepted it was true because it would confirm what they already think about Hansen? You claim that no one cares who pays for Hansen’s legal fees, but the response to my post suggests the contrary. My mistake was in assuming that people here, as concerned with facts as they claim to be, would prefer to know the facts.

  266. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 6:31 PM | Permalink

    RE 271. Gunnar deny not your inner trollhood. Be at one with it.

    Actually, you’ve been pretty good of late. Honestly, I think you are charmingly obstinate.

  267. Armand MacMurray
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 7:14 PM | Permalink

    Jae, remember that you need to use degrees K, not C. I don’t think you’ll be as happy with your analysis after correcting that.

  268. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 7:17 PM | Permalink

    274 jae

    I’ll pass on the units thing, and go to the 1.5% which I guess is probably about right. But you can’t use degrees centigrade for your next step. You have to at least use degrees K, so your rough calculation of deltaT would have to be .015*288 which is about 4.3 degrees K (or C, in this case), for what its worth.

  269. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 7:18 PM | Permalink

    Very charmingly obstinate.

    But in general, perhaps rather than just band y ing out the word “troll” we could use a phrase like “a certain percent of troll-like behavior at times”. Whatever, perhaps “now and then obtuse” or “makes us think, but sometimes not in a very good way” could be ways to refer to folks.

    To something Larry mentioned a few posts back…

    Dr. Lindzen’s comments about the cliqueiness seemed to me to be something obvious enough to not need any sort of detailed study, at least from my years in the computer industry, mid management, business maters, and teaching from theory to application and back. I know where I’d put my money, too. On the other hand, we do have supporting evidence, and that was given by Dr. Wegman in testimony to the House Sub-Committee.

    I can’t see how anyone could think otherwise, given the tone of some of the discussion here (e. g. how Dr. Svalgaard has acted vs how Dr. Emile-Geay has acted vs how Dr. Schmidt has acted vs how Dr. Browning has acted… ) So let’s just say actions speak louder than words? (Not that I have a problem with how people are, just that it’s pretty obvious, at least to me, how they’re going to act in the future based upon how they acted in the past…) It’s not just what you say, it’s how you say it. Anywayz.

  270. Larry
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 7:18 PM | Permalink

    277, that’s the easy part. The harder part is calculating the temperature by solving the radiation balance to outer space using the Stefan-Boltzmann law. And even that is a crass approximation.

  271. bender
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 7:23 PM | Permalink

    Junk thermodynamics and trollish commentary is hereby relegated to the moshpit.
    (And DO NOT ask for a proof as to which “bit” is junk.)

    Larry, I was going to say last week: I like your comments.
    People, can we please step it up a notch?

  272. Larry
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 7:27 PM | Permalink

    279, what I was getting at wasn’t so much the cliquishness as much as the fact that the group of researchers can be roughly divided into two groups; the “before AGW” 10%, and the “after AGW” 90%. The latter more than likely went into the field out of some sort of compunction to be part of history, and were probably heavily alarmist in makeup before they ever got into the field. This as opposed to the former, who as a group are a lot more ambivalent.

    So in a sense, the order-of-magnitude increase in research spending had the effect of creating a consensus out of this mass of newbies. Have you ever noticed all the gray hair on all of the skeptics? Not a coincidence.

  273. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 7:38 PM | Permalink

    RE 275

    “Steve, with respect, you don’t know where or what I read. ”

    Actually you dont know what I know. If you were interested in the science you would be asking UC questions.
    You would ask Dr. Browning. You would ask Lief. You would ask willis. You would ask jean S. you would ask
    bender. Lurking learns you nothing. But I don’t see you asking them. I see you trolling in unthreaded.
    That is a behavior. That behavior has a meaning. I know it well after a couple decades of this.

    “I think unthreaded gives a lot of insight into who people are and what they are all about.”

    I think this is the intentional fallacy. I disabused my freshmen students of it. This is like
    saying you understand Hillary because you saw her throw a lamp at Bill. Bad psychology. Bad history.
    and well beyond the expertise of a “policy wonk” I’d guess your were more journalistic in your
    true occupation. Further, the only way you can judge the correctness of your insight is to
    SUBJECT IT TO VERIFICATION. So, if you think unthreaded gives insight ( us insight into you as well)
    Put it out there. Subject it to verification. And susanne will not rise to this challenge.

    “Smokey posted a link to a news article that contained an allegation that was quite powerful.
    I spent a few moments googling and discovered it was untrue and that journalists failed to fact
    check before repeating a lie. ”

    You accused HIM of a lie. better that you should have accused him of posting an article that YOU
    beleived was false. Or more precisely, You didnt discover that it was untrue. YOU READ THAT IT WAS UNTRUE.
    and you believed what you read. The source you read may be right. But you did not determine that it was a lie.
    you read something ( the new york times, dan rather, cnn, rush limbaugh, the IRS) that said it was a lie.
    to be precise. So, when smokey links something that he reads. and you post something you read. and you accuse
    him of lieing ( that is saying something he knows to be untrue ) I reserve the right to wave the BS flag.

    “How many others here just accepted it was true because it would confirm what they already think about Hansen?
    You claim that no one cares who pays for Hansen’s legal fees, but the response to my post suggests the contrary.”

    There you go lieing. I said NOBODY WHO MATTERS cares one wit. Then I listed people who mattered.
    NOTICE that the people I listed are the SAME PEOPLE I told you you should interact with. Like I said
    Smokey doesnt matter ( sorry dude) by his own admission he is a lurker. Nobody who does significant
    work here gives a wit about it. THOSE were my words. You will find people here ( sock puppets ) saying
    all sorts of things. Do you know what a sock puppet is susanne? So, if you think you can read through the text
    to the author you are mistaken. If you think you can read through the commeters to the blogger you are
    mistaken.

    “My mistake was in assuming that people here, as concerned with facts as they claim to be,
    would prefer to know the facts.”

    You don’t read facts. you read reports of facts. I’m not interested in what you read about hansen
    I’m not interested in what Smokey read about hansen. That you think that text on a page is a fact
    gives me pause. Further, that you lump everyone into one class “people here” when I have specifically instructed
    you that this is a mistake gives me pause. Finally, that you shifted your concern from “science” to
    the “people here” also is a typical trope that I am well aquainted with. The name McCarthy comes to mind.

  274. jae
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 8:06 PM | Permalink

    OK, damn Dr. Kelvin. But since only about 70 percent of the TOA solar radiation reaches the surface, 3.7 degrees at the surface would be equivalent to 3.7/.70 = 5.3 watts/m^2 at the TOA. Since the accepted radiation at TOA = 342 watts/m^2 (Kiehl and Trenberth), a 3.7 watt/m^2 increase at the surface would be equivalent to 5.3/342 = 1.5 % increase in solar radiation. I find it really hard to accept that CO2 can be that powerful. If it is, then why isn’t water vapor, which is, on average present in amounts of at least about 21 times 2 X C02, more powerful? Why isn’t it adding 21*3.7 = 78 watts/m^2? Which would be equivalent to 78/0.70 = 111 watts/m^2 of solar energy, which would amount to 111/342 = 32% of the power of the Sun. Something is definitely wrong with this 3.7 watt number (maybe me again).

  275. jae
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 8:07 PM | Permalink

    Nuts. second sentence should say “3.7 watts/m^2,” not “3.7 degrees.”

  276. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 8:34 PM | Permalink

    I tend to associate drought with cold. Negative PDO, drought (except a few lucky places). La Nina, drought (ditto). So, I need to consider, what if. What if this is a repeat of 1975 – 1977. Here in Cali, the population has increased 60% above the 1977 level. The water infrastructure and storage have most certainly not. Making things worse, and here I shall wax Bloomesque, I would have to say that the majority of people living here now were not living here in 1977. Big, big problem if we have the “classic” negative PDO and “classic” dry La Nina. And it will be blamed on AGW, not on the cold Pacific.

  277. Philip_B
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 9:08 PM | Permalink

    Some interesting data on New Zealand glaciers lag in response to climate change. Those that respond slowly, lag >50 years, are retreating. Those that respond rapidly, lag

  278. Philip_B
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 9:22 PM | Permalink

    The end got lost.

    Those that respond slowly, lag >50 years, are retreating. Those that respond rapidly, lag

  279. Philip_B
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 9:47 PM | Permalink

    Mmm. It seems to be interpreting less than and greater than signs as tags. One more time.

    Those that respond slowly, lag greater than 50 years, are retreating. Those that respond rapidly, lag less than 10 years are advancing. The authors attribute this to most warming in NZ occuring mid 20th century and recent increased precipitation. The authors don’t say there is no evidence here for rapid warming after 1970 due to GHGs. BTW, I find glacier advance/retreat data persuasive because there is no possibility of systematic measurement error or bias.

  280. David Archibald
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 10:04 PM | Permalink

    Dear All, I am a “Non-Governmental” observer at the IPCC conference in Bali. There are supposedly 12,000 people attending, half of them journalists and half the sort of people who have spent a lifetime avoiding useful work. The Indonesians have laid on 4,000 security staff, mainly army with automatics. These stand in twos at street corners. There are also armed frogmen on the beach. My prediction is that the conference will let India and China off the hook and allow them to go to the industrialised nations average of CO2 emissions. [snip] The strange thing is that increased CO2 in the atmospher is wholly beneficial – a minuscule amount of warmingand a whole lot more plant growth. It is the best thing for the third world. We are doing our best to get carbon back into the atmosphere but the oceans are gobbling it down, taking half of what we produce. The partial pressure differential is increasing as the atmospheric CO2 level increases.If the oceans are taking half of what we produce at 100 ppm over pre-industrial, does that mean that they will take 100% at 200 ppm over pre-industrial? Has this been modelled? It could be that we don’t even get to a doubling, let alone the optimum 1,000 ppm that commercial greenhouses run at.

    There are a lot of UN security staff here, wearing blue uniforms and American-style police badges and sidearms. God knows what they do all year between conferences.

    The IPCC process is trying to get as much control as possible before the cooling of Solar Cycle 24 sets in. Then it will be a rearguard action to preserve what they can. As Dr Svalgaard has pointed out elsewhere, TSI is flatlining and, if the cycle is weak, it will also be late. My calculations are that the global temperature will decline by 0.2 degrees per annum during this minimum and it won’t be much better coming out of it. This is derived from the global temperature/solar cycle correlation in Svensmark and Friis-Christensen’s reply to Lockwood and Frolich (adjusted for El Ninos and volcanoes).

  281. UK John
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 10:13 PM | Permalink

    http://www.wmo.ch/pages/prog/arep/gaw/reports/ozone_2006/pdf/exec_sum_18aug.pdf

    I read this and just wondered why they were so certain!

  282. jae
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 10:16 PM | Permalink

    SS:

    I tend to associate drought with cold.

    Do you mean cold oceans? cold land? both? It could be both where the marine influence is dominating, I guess. But I doubt that the dust-bowl days were a period of cold.

  283. pjm
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 10:42 PM | Permalink

    Browsing hither and yon I came across the following in junkscience.com
    http://www.junkscience.com/Greenhouse/

    Theoretically, if the planet’s surface cooled by radiation alone, then the greenhouse-induced surface temperature would be much warmer, about 350 K (77 °C). Atmospheric motion (convective towers carrying latent and sensible heat upwards and large scale circulation carrying it both upwards and polewards) circumvent much of the greenhouse effect and significantly increase the “escape” of energy to space, leaving Earth’s surface more than 60 °C cooler than a static atmosphere would do.

    If this is correct, convection is enormously important: a 2% change in losses from convection would produce a bigger temperature change than we have seen so far.

    Given the chaotic nature of many nonlinear systems, (and afaik the climate system is nonlinear), it does not seem unlikely for quite large changes to occur unpredictably.

    I am trying to think out how this can be dealt with. Presumably it is all part of a ‘black box’ and you try to match any inputs you can think of with measured outputs and hope it makes sense.

    Help, anyone?

  284. jae
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 11:17 PM | Permalink

    If this is correct, convection is enormously important: a 2% change in losses from convection would produce a bigger temperature change than we have seen so far.

    Given the chaotic nature of many nonlinear systems, (and afaik the climate system is nonlinear), it does not seem unlikely for quite large changes to occur unpredictably.

    I am trying to think out how this can be dealt with. Presumably it is all part of a ‘black box’ and you try to match any inputs you can think of with measured outputs and hope it makes sense.

    Help, anyone?

    I’m working on it, and I think I’m close to a possible explanation. I think you are on the right track. I think the natural greenhouse effect is simply a matter of heat storage, just like constructing a home with thick concrete walls, to keep some heat at night.

  285. Phil.
    Posted Dec 3, 2007 at 11:53 PM | Permalink

    Re #289

    That site is aptly named as it includes fabricated numbers and errors!

  286. Craig Loehle
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 7:47 AM | Permalink

    Suggestion: when replying to someone, list the post number AND the name, so when posts get deleted it doesn’t turn into nonsense

  287. Jan Pompe
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 8:03 AM | Permalink

    Craig

    Suggestion: when replying to someone, list the post number AND the name, so when posts get deleted it doesn’t turn into nonsense

    I mostly click on the number that attaches the unchanging comment number in the URL locator to the URL and make a link of it (as in this reply). That way people can call up the comment unless it has been deleted, even if moved to another thread. Usually I also quote the part I’m replying to.

  288. henry
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 8:04 AM | Permalink

    In reading this latest unthreaded, the discussion of the IPCC and scientific concensus comes up.

    Most of the problem appears from the most visable place, the media. When a scientist puts out a press release to state their latest research, the public soon tires of the “global warming causes X”.

    To prove the point, check out this site:

    http://www.numberwatch.co.uk/warmlist.htm

    It’s a listing of news articles (over 600 at last count) all with the same thread (AGW = X). Some even contradict other stories.

  289. Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 9:12 AM | Permalink

    Craig Loehle, 7:47:

    Or better yet, list the name and the time. Then there will be no confusion after Steve wields the scissors.

  290. MarkR
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 9:44 AM | Permalink

    #290 jae. I found this from American Institute of Physics. Seems to indicate that there has never been any proof of any OCO feedback or forcing. They just messed around with some models, and latched onto Lonnie Thompsons ice core data to show some rates of change connecting OCO and Temp. But as we all know OCO has lagged Temp by c 800 years over the last 600K years.

    So to answer SteveM’s question. According to the American Institute of Physics, there has never been any mathematical formula involed in climate models apart from the Ice Cores show 3 C for a doubling of OCO (but only 800 years after the temp change.

    Still, scientists are always happier if they can reproduce an answer using independent methods. This had always been a problem with climate models, with their tendency to interbreed computer code and to rely on similar data sets. One solution to the problem was to cut down to the central question — how much would temperature change if you changed the CO2 level? — and look for a completely different way to get an answer. The answer could be boiled down to a simple number, the climate’s “sensitivity.” This was usually expressed as the temperature change for a doubling of CO2. A new way to find this number, entirely separate from GCMs, was becoming available from ice core measurement, which recorded that showed large swings of both temperature and CO2 levels through previous ice ages. A big step forward came in 1992 when two scientists reconstructed not only the Last Glacial Maximum, with its lower temperature and CO2 levels, but also the mid-Cretaceous Maximum (an era when, according to ample geological evidence, CO2 levels had been much higher than at present and dinosaurs had baked in unusual warmth). The climate sensitivity they found for both cases, roughly two degrees of warming for doubled CO2, was comfortably within the range offered by computer modelers.(93a)

    Confidence rose further in the late 1990s when the modelers’ failure to match the CLIMAP data on ice-age temperatures was resolved. The breakthrough came when a team under Lonnie Thompson of the Polar Research Center at Ohio State University struggled onto a high-altitude glacier in the tropical Andes. They managed to drill out a core that recorded atmospheric conditions back into the last ice age. The results, they announced, “challenge the current view of tropical climate history…”(94) It was not the computer models that had been unreliable — it was the oceanographers’ complex manipulation of their data as they sought numbers for tropical sea-surface temperatures. A variety of other new types of climate measures agreed that tropical ice age waters had turned significantly colder, by perhaps 3°C or more. That was roughly what the GCMs had calculated.
    Debate continued, as some defended the original CLIMAP estimates with other types of data. Moreover, the primitive ice-age GCMs required special adjustments and were not fully comparable with the ocean-coupled simulations of the present climate. But there was no longer a flat contradiction with the modelers, who could now feel more secure in the way their models responded to things like the reflection of sunlight from ice and snow. The discovery that the tropical oceans had felt the most recent ice age put the last nail in the coffin of the traditional view of a planet where some regions, at least, maintained a stable climate.(95*)

    http://www.aip.org/history/climate/GCM.htm#L_0753

    Hoffert, Martin I., and C. Covey (1992). “Deriving Global Sensitivity from Palaeoclimate Reconstructions.” Nature 360: 573-76.

  291. bender
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 10:20 AM | Permalink

    duke, speaking of boneheaded errors by unqualified people over at Tamino, have a look through CA archives where we have a wonderfully documented case of a master rhetoritician failing to understand the basic difference between a random variable and a discrete variable. It’s quite humorous for someone who goes around pretending to understand things like weather and climatology. Maybe *this* is the reason the rhetoritician doesn’t comment here any more? Maybe *this* is why he’s still lobbing grenades from afar? Still bitter from the caning he took:
    ignorance revealed
    lecture on sampling error
    lecture on series ensembles
    judgement: delinquent troll

  292. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 10:20 AM | Permalink

    296 Mark

    Good find, Mark. So it all hinges on Lonnie Thompson’s data?

  293. jae
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 10:42 AM | Permalink

    Hey, McKitrick has a neat new paper out.

  294. bender
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 11:35 AM | Permalink

    #299 On UHI contamination of the surface temperature record:

    3.3 What if the Data Were ‘Clean’?
    We can use the statistical model to estimate what the observed temperature trends would have been if everyone had as good circumstances for monitoring climate as the US does. The average trend at the surface in the post-1980 interval would fall from about 0.30 degrees C per decade to about 0.17 degrees. This shows that the problems identified in the statistical model add up to a net warming bias, and its removal could explain as much as half the recent warming over land.

    Anyone care to audit the auditers? Step right up.

  295. MarkR
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 11:36 AM | Permalink

    #298 Pat. I can’t believe it!!!! All made up from Lonnies database that has several markedly different versions, and is only released to his pals. And how does anyone get round the fact that the OCO changes after temp, not before. It’s so wrong I can’t find words to describe how wrong.

    So when the modellers do their tweaks, all they are doing is making them fit with the past temp and CO2 record, and then assuming the 3C for OCO doubling, and make everything else fit. Then in 10 years everyone finds out it was wrong, but they have moved on.

    Which leads on to:

    #298 jae. McKitricks paper, the bit about the rise in the current record:

    If they can’t attribute it to natural variability, they attribute it to greenhouse gases, since (they assume) all other human influences have been removed from the data by the adjustment models.

    It is as the Accountants know it, a “Balancing Figure”, a difference between two totals, the Warmers just assume it is man made.

    So anyway McKitricks paper shows that the world temp record has been exagerated for the last few decades. Meanwhile the modellers have been trying to get their models to match the Temp record, and all the time the record was wrong.

    Oh dear!

    PS SteveM, you are naughty, you let someone continue with the fantasy that the world temp record was OK, but all the while….

    PPS It’s like an old Perry Mason where there is a witness who saw the murderer stab the victim, but then finds out the victim was shot. Caught in a lie.

  296. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 11:48 AM | Permalink

    It is as the Accountants know it, a “Balancing Figure”, a difference between two totals, the Warmers just assume it is man made.

    Students know it as “the difference between the answer in the back of the book and the answer on your worksheet.” A fraternity brother of mine referred to this as “The Ron Constant.” He dropped out of school when we were sophomores, but he did return later to graduate. I’m guessing he figured out the appropriate “Ron Constant” to pass his classes. :)

    Mark

  297. bender
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 11:52 AM | Permalink

    What’s that called, when you have a conditional probabilistic working hypothesis where one or more of the conditions is itself probabilistic and uncertain, but where NONE of the uncertainties have been quantified? Like, when you perturb some dots on a graph, and they tumble off the page?
    ” ‘house’ of ‘cards’ “?

  298. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 11:57 AM | Permalink

    301 Mark

    Your “Balancing Figure” is known as a “Fudge Factor” in science.
    You can’t berate Steve M on this — he’s been trying harder than anyone to audit the temperature data — that’s why he gets impatient with all the “thermo” stuff on his blog.

  299. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 12:00 PM | Permalink

    RE: #288 – I am thinking more along the lines of the global drought picture. While I would be the first to argue that the warm 1930s were global, the dust bowl was not global. Now, look at desertification during the Dark Ages, to compare and contrast.

  300. Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 12:06 PM | Permalink

    #299 jae:
    I quickly read the McKitrick link. One thing struck me about his summary map of results. If the paper is right, then there is an artificial warming of ~0.15degC in the USA48. However, temperature analyses using the best rural stations in the USA48 appear to demonstrate this is not the case. The best rural stations give essentially the same trend as GISTEMP.

    Oh wait. Hold on a second. The results are probably versus CRU — does anyone have gridded differences between GISTEMP and CRU? If CRU is substantially different than GISTEMP for USA48, I would lean towards trusting GISTEMP.

  301. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 12:09 PM | Permalink

    Best line ever:

    The technical term for this is “making stuff up.”

    :)

    Mark

  302. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 12:12 PM | Permalink

    Your “Balancing Figure” is known as a “Fudge Factor” in science.

    Yeah, I know. I just find it funny that my buddy has his own term that often comes up (he actually used his last name, btw, but I can’t for obvious reasons).

    You can’t berate Steve M on this — he’s been trying harder than anyone to audit the temperature data — that’s why he gets impatient with all the “thermo” stuff on his blog.

    I’m not, just having fun with MarkR’s comment. I agree the problems with temperature audits are a mess.

    Mark

  303. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 12:14 PM | Permalink

    Oh, sorry, you weren’t referring to me…
    My bad.

    Mark

  304. MarkW
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 12:20 PM | Permalink

    JohnV,

    That just gets back to the question of how “rural” the “best rural stations” are.

    The evidence shows, not very.

  305. MarkW
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 12:22 PM | Permalink

    #309,

    I guess there are just too many Mark’s posting here. You guys will just have to change your names. Perhaps to Steve.

  306. Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 12:55 PM | Permalink

    #310 MarkW:
    The rural stations were approved by Kristen Byrnes and one of the Marks. They were pretty strict about it too. The good news is that it’s very easy to check them in the surfacestations.org database.

  307. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 12:57 PM | Permalink

    Wasn’t it Steve Mosher that proved Steve == Mark? Children of the 60s I suppose: twas a popular name back then.

    Mark

  308. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 1:08 PM | Permalink

    The Ross McKitrick and Pat Micheals paper appears to me to be using a model that will differentiate the amount of temperature error that occurs relative to some standard — such as the US. If there are substantial errors in the standards then the uncertainties must increase even more — or at least by my initial take on what was described about the model.

    John V., I think it is time for you to think about and consider more the differences between the trends in CRN123 and CRN45 category USCHN stations where the numbers to this point make for better statistical analyses.

    It has been some time since Jim Hansen begrudgingly made public the code for his GISS temperature data set and promised that clearer versions for those with more scientific needs (or something to that effect) would be forthcoming in 2 weeks. I do not recall this happening and was wondering whether anyone was holding him to that promise or have heard reasons from him why he could not uphold it.

  309. Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 1:26 PM | Permalink

    #314 Kenneth Fritsch:
    I do intend to analyze the differences between station ratings and urban-ness, but haven’t had time. Although those analyses will be useful for quantifying the micro-site and urban issues, I do not see how they could affect the rural CRN12 or rural CRN123 trends. Correct me if I’m wrong (as if I have to ask).

  310. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 2:36 PM | Permalink

    http://pafc.arh.noaa.gov/ice.php?img=sst

    It’s unusual for the 5 deg C isotherm to go far south of the Aleutians. And it’s not done moving south by any means. Several more weeks of southward movement yet to go.

  311. MarkW
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 2:58 PM | Permalink

    JohnV,

    Byrnes and Watts covered quality of station. They did not cover whether a station was urban or rural. You can have a station that completely meets the standards, and still have it in the heart of a major city. Or in an area that has been building up in recent decades.

  312. MarkW
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 2:59 PM | Permalink

    MarkT,

    Only if you use the d-arking function.

  313. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 3:01 PM | Permalink

    RE 314.

    Hansen did a minor drop in oct. Rabbett turd like. The Issue of rural versus urban remains.

    1. Population from the 1980s dont cut it
    2. Night lights is unverified. Nightlights for example says that Orland is urban.
    3. I have no clue how CRN123R was defined.

    The other approach is to ranks sites by trend… and do some data mining

  314. MarkW
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 3:02 PM | Permalink

    315 JohnV,

    If a station is listed as rural, but is no longer rural, then that will affect it’s temperature trend, regardless of it’s CRN rating.

    Additionally, the standard that CRN uses to determine rural vs. urban appears to be too loose. I’m thinking of several recent studies, including the Barrow Alaska one, that found significant UHI in a town with less than 50,000 population.

  315. eo
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 3:19 PM | Permalink

    Steve,

    Climate audit contains a large number of infomration and after four years is there any plan to organize the topics and discussions in a book for researchers to quote or use as a reference. In the absence of a printed material any suggestion or suggestions, as to how we could cite important information and ideas considering the possiblity that the blog site may not be accessible in the future?

  316. Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 3:32 PM | Permalink

    #320 MarkW:
    Yes, I am aware of those issues. That’s why I asked for the rural designations to be approved by others from this site. I did not use USHCN or GISS rural designations.

    For reference:
    Station Selection:

    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=2069#comment-139252

    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=2069#comment-139740

    TOBS Correction:

    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=2069#comment-140922

    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=2124#comment-144287

    Addition of CRN3 Stations (rural stations not approved):

    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=2124#comment-147568

    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=2124#comment-147569

  317. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 4:35 PM | Permalink

    Re: #315

    John V, you should proceed with what ever interests you because as I think many of us looking at these USCHN data have found is that you when you work the data you begin to learn and appreciate things about it, e.g., the variability of it by location and even within the same CRN classification and the amount of missing and wrong data from the earlier time periods.

    I guess I was thinking in terms of learning something from the Watts team quality ratings of stations. I see a significant difference in temperature trend in a given time period between CRN123 and CRN45 stations. I am hoping that some expert statistical thinking can be applied to that data.

    Also when I think Watts team CRN ratings, I do not think urban to rural differences. I think more in terms of large differences in individual station quality that could easily swamp (if not accounted for) the effects of the less local urban versus rural effects.

  318. UK John
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 5:03 PM | Permalink

    The Montreal Protocol is the one that protects us from Ozone Depletion caused by CFC’s etc. The Climate Change gang refer to this as one of their successes, and so it might be!

    CFC production and the nasty pollution in atmosphere has gone down, they have measured the fall, unfortunately the Ozone layer doesn’t seem to know its being protected and the Ozone Hole keeps getting bigger. This isn’t what the scientists predicted, but they are still absolutely sure they understand fully, even more than they did before! what is going on and say that the Ozone will return sometime soon!

    http://www.wmo.ch/pages/prog/arep/gaw/reports/ozone_2006/pdf/exec_sum_18aug.pdf

    Now call me a skeptic if you want, but if the experimental results don’t agree with the Theoretical prediction, shouldn’t you be a little less certain than this, just a few doubts ! you might just risk missing something important.

  319. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 5:16 PM | Permalink

    Re: #319

    Hansen did a minor drop in oct. Rabbett turd like. The Issue of rural versus urban remains.

    Steve Mosher, can you provide a link to what Hansen did?

  320. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 5:50 PM | Permalink

    In the category of, you simply could not make this … um … stuff … up:

    http://groups.google.com/group/globalchange/browse_thread/thread/727f46078d69c68f

  321. Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 6:02 PM | Permalink

    Bender, 297 10:20 am: that was quite a rumble. In the end you had him down with your hands around his throat so tight he must have been breathing through his ass– metaphorically speaking, of course. You’re right about him: don’t waste your time. He doesn’t listen, he can’t comprehend and he doesn’t want to learn. “He has not so much brain as earwax,” to quote Shakespeare describing someone of his ilk.

    Political fanatics always assume that everyone else is as disingenuous (a polite way of putting it) as they are. Scientific truth is only valid if it fits the agenda.

    (Aside: I believe the word is spelled “rhetorician;” my old dictionary confirms this but maybe both ways are acceptable by now.)

  322. T J Olson
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 6:43 PM | Permalink

    Ross McKitrick now has his Carbon Tax linked to predictions about tropical tropospheric temperatures before the scientists at NCAR and UCAR.

    This is my inference today, when his “Let policy follow science” piece appeared in the Colorado Daily, a free university oriented newspaper in Boulder, Colorado.

    In getting to his win-win proposal out to the AGW honchos, McK also raises contrarian notes about AGW science – how it is fast changing and new research could change current expectations, and therefore how an adaptive policy process is better than any static one. Good grist for the mill!

    Another reason why this piece appears at this time is that Boulder city planners are attempting to plan for AGW, affecting future interests like the local water supply.

    The [local newspaper, The Daily] Camera reports Boulder may well be the first city anywhere that has tried to model the potential effects of global warming on a scale small enough to predict how its water supply will be altered by warming temperatures and changing precipitation patterns.

    Conclusion of their study? No problem, Bob. But the ongoing attempts to model what can’t be done scientifically, as per TAR held in 2001, remains amusing to those who appreciate the erosion of good science in policy formulation.

  323. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 7:41 PM | Permalink

    I agree Larry “were probably heavily alarmist in makeup before they ever got into the field.” Just sayin’ the cliquiness has already been ‘independently verified’! Rather a different subject….

    As far as responding and the numbers, you could just do what I did with what mosh said that now points to my post; go find what he was answering! :)

    John UK, too many people have a terminal case of looking at hints and determining the outcome before there’s any concrete proof, stating opinions, or conclusions based upon a certain set of circumstances and assumptions, as proof.

  324. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 8:58 PM | Permalink

    RE 325… Its on the ushcn3 thread.. code drop on the 10th of oct. unannouced. Speed up of step
    2.. I thought you saw it? Anyway if you go get GISSTEMP supposedly there has been a minor update.
    I did not confirm this.

  325. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 8:58 PM | Permalink

    RE 325… Its on the ushcn3 thread.. code drop on the 10th of oct. unannouced. Speed up of step
    2.. I thought you saw it? Anyway if you go get GISSTEMP supposedly there has been a minor update.
    I did not confirm this.

  326. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 9:00 PM | Permalink

    re 329. Huh? Sorry about harshin on your gig.

  327. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 9:06 PM | Permalink

    re 306. JohnV Long ago I found the gridded HADCRU data. It took me foreever to find it. I linked
    it here a long long time ago. The issue you would have comparing it to GISSTEMP is that the hadcru
    stuff is done on a different grid basis and what was published had adjustments for the sea.
    That is, if a grid was half water and half land Jones had a “method” for averaging them.
    My link might be on one of the Jones threads or I could go look for it again. The data is
    gridded anomaly with a different reference period than GISSEMP ( easy to figure out) I can go
    hunting again but not tonight. I may have posted the link on warwick page since he was looking for the same thing

  328. Susann
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 9:21 PM | Permalink

    Steve Mosher, I had this very long response to your post dealing with it line by line, but sadly with a slip of the finger I deleted it by accident and have no desire to try to recreate it in its entirety. The gist of it was: everything you accuse me of you did yourself, from assuming motivation, misrepresenting my posts, and focusing on people rather than science. I spent some time describing my own motivation for posting here so there would be no guessing and what I hoped to get out of it, and I made some observations about CA, climate science and uncertainty, based on my readings so far. I even made a few observations about you, but all that is now lost to the ether. Probably just as well it was accidentally deleted, for it mostly likely would have elicited another yelling match from you and it would have to be deleted in the end. We will have to agree to disagree on just about everything in your post. My only concession to you is that I did mis-state your words — “IMPORTANT” people, not just people.

  329. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 9:25 PM | Permalink

    RE 320, 322, 323 Rural versus Urban. We all know the urban rural distinction is contenious.

    My approach has been to NOT cut the data on that line…( i’ll explain later)
    JohnV let Kristin decide.. a hands off approach.

    The UHI problem is waste heat, heat storage and lack of vertical mixing due to the “urban” bubble
    ( you can see this is the bubble projects graphs… I linked them at the end of the Parker thread)

    The problem is we have no ready way to look at a site and tell if it has “uhi” problems.

    Population is only a proxy. Hansen himself is suggesting finer gradations to capture population density.
    And the shape of an urban lanscape ( roughness) also plays a role. So basically we have two proxies
    population ( 1980 population at that) and nighlights.. These probably correlate with waste heat
    but the mixing problem is a physical geometry problem.

    I dont have a better idea for dividing urban and rural. I just dont know how good population and nightlights
    is or how bad. I know it doesnt capture all the problems that cause UHI.

    For grins guys you should have a look at the Bubble project

    http://pages.unibas.ch/geo/mcr/Projects/BUBBLE/textpages/md_main.en.htm

  330. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 9:32 PM | Permalink

    RE 313. I proved that Mark== steve. Should be here somewhere in the hall of flame.

  331. Posted Dec 4, 2007 at 10:58 PM | Permalink

    Mosh: “I dont have a better idea for dividing urban and rural. I just dont know how good population and nightlights
    is or how bad. I know it doesnt capture all the problems that cause UHI.”

    Maybe they just ought to give up whole urban/rural thing and just do wilderness?

    just a thought, fwiw.

  332. Philip_B
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 1:19 AM | Permalink

    Maybe they just ought to give up whole urban/rural thing and just do wilderness?

    I had the same idea, calling it pristine locations. The most pristine locations on the planet are Southern Ocean islands and none that I am aware of show a 20th century warming trend.

  333. Philip_B
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 1:26 AM | Permalink

    Pristine defined as remote from local and regional athropomorphic effects. That is they should be most sensitive to a global signal.

  334. Mark T
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 1:31 AM | Permalink

    30-mile campground: located in the least densely populated county in Colorado, right at the base of the Rio Grande Reservoir, 30 miles from Creede (hence the name). Take a run up timber hill you’re in the middle of absolutely nowhere at 12000 feet (beware the bears and mountain lions). That’s pristine. Still had snow on the peaks in July when we were there (got pictures of my son throwing a snowball at me).

    Mark

  335. Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 3:30 AM | Permalink

    Re: 324 – Thanks for that link to the WMO Ozone Assessment report. I just spent a couple of hours reading it in detail. It helps in understanding the WMO’s contradictory position of being very certain while not knowing much for sure.
    So we must do more about producing less because “Empirical and model studies have shown that changes in tropospheric and stratospheric dynamics have been partially responsible for the observed NH midlatitude winter ozone decline from 1979 to the mid-1990s and the ozone increase thereafter. Whether this is due to dynamical variability or results from a long-term trend in stratospheric circulation is not yet clear. Estimates of these dynamical effects on long-term trends range from ~20% up to 50% for the winter period.”

    I like this statement: “changes in climate, specifically the cooling of the stratosphere associated with increases in the abundance of carbon dioxide, may hasten the return of global column ozone to pre-1980 values by up to 15 years“. In other words CO2 emissions will help fix the ozone problem.
    And similar to the “global warming” issues, the Antarctic just does not fit the models for ozone.

  336. Filippo Turturici
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 3:41 AM | Permalink

    How to get a very erroneous input from a station: Zell-am-See, Austria, near Salzburg, is indeed from several years showing very high temperatures compared to neighbouring lands in Austria and Bavaria, and now you can see how much “hot” it is:

  337. Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 4:03 AM | Permalink

    Re:340 – And Creede is less than 100 miles west of where the man most responsible for this whole “global warming” mess has his new-age ranch.

    To understand why, when the IPCC says that their models only need anthropogenic CO2 since the 1970s, and the consensus suddenly switched from global cooling in the 1970s to the formation of the global-warming based IPCC in 1988, one needs to look at who wields power within the U.N.

  338. Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 4:11 AM | Permalink

    The image in #343 showe dup in the preview- try again

  339. Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 4:21 AM | Permalink

    If a WordPress preview was really a preview….. the image is also in the page linked above at consensus history

  340. David Archibald
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 5:04 AM | Permalink

    Bali Day 3

    Some of the European women here are stylishly dressed, as you would expect. A good proportion of the warmer chicks have hairy armpits and wear sensible shoes, also as you would expect. Hairy armpits – no worse than being in France, you would say, but one this morning was somewhat worse, with lint stuck in matted underarm hair. But one of the warmer blokes took the prize – a goatee and wearing a felt beret. This place is like Houston in July. The beret would be a mating signal to equally whacko females of the type.

  341. MarkW
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 5:45 AM | Permalink

    UK_John, 5:03pm:

    The ozone hole is growing bigger because we are at a solar minima, and the sun is producing less UV radiation. If I remember rightly, we were at a solar minima back when all of the CFC hoopla was going on as well.

  342. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 7:31 AM | Permalink

    re: The most pristine locations

    We just spent 10 days on the North Shore island of Oahu. Family lives there, and we visited for thanksgiving. Father in law has resided on the island for almost 20 years and the weather has not changed and the beach in front of his house is growing not shrinking. I wonder what the temp data looks like over those twenty years? Seriously, we thought of it and spoke about the AGW hoax/theory with everyone a couple of times during the visit. Lots of laughter, no tears or wringing of hands.

    SNIP

    David Archibald: thanks for the Bali updates. Glad you keeping an eye on these people and reporting what you see.

    Boy its hard to keep up with the topics if you miss a week or two of reading.

  343. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 7:42 AM | Permalink

    Temperature and rainfall data for Oahu found here:

    http://hikawa.htohananet.com/climate-oahu/

  344. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 8:12 AM | Permalink

    “We humans are political animals, our training in the scientific method notwithstanding. Scientists are expected to take into account errors and bias in their research design and questions but very often, they are completely unaware of their personal political biases and how those affect every step of the research process from choice of topic to forumlating scientific problems to evaluating findings. And, as in every walk of life, some are outright frauds.”

    Given that the above is true, I would argue that one can look at both the science and the people.
    I do both. Now, Susanne. Do you agree with the quote and ould you agree that one can look at both?
    no more shouting from me. Peace.

  345. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 8:20 AM | Permalink

    re337. theduke. wilderness ha! the problem is the stations have human observers. CRN will move to automated.

    Anyway, I think I have an approach to the problem. basically ordering sites by trend and then regressing against
    population by zipcode. the building height is also important, but no easy way to get the data. stereo pairs
    of sat photos could be used to do a 3d reconstruction.. but that’s beyond the scope

  346. M. Jeff
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 9:23 AM | Permalink

    re: #350, steve mosher December 5th, 2007 at 8:12 am

    This excerpt from an opinion in today’s Wall Street Journal seems to relate to some of the issues that your quote addresses:

    Here’s exactly the problem that availability cascades pose: What if the heads being counted to certify an alleged “consensus” arrived at their positions by counting heads?

    It may seem strange that scientists would participate in such a phenomenon. It shouldn’t. Scientists are human; they do not wait for proof; many devote their professional lives to seeking evidence for hypotheses (especially well-funded hypotheses) they’ve chosen to believe.

    Another excerpt from the same opinion does not take into account the probability that AGW models will be adjusted for brief cooling periods:

    Public opinion cascades are powerful but also fragile — liable to be overturned in an instant when new information comes along. The current age of global warming politics will certainly end with a whimper once a few consecutive years of cooling are recorded. Why should we expect such cooling? Because the forces that caused warming and cooling in the past, before the advent of industrial civilization, are still at work.
    No, this wouldn’t prove or disprove a human role in warming, only that climate is variable and subject to complicated influences. But it would also eliminate the large incentive for politicians to traffic in doom-laden predictions — because such predictions would no longer command media assent and would cease to function as levers to redistribute resources.

  347. Andrey Levin
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 9:33 AM | Permalink

    Re#352, Jeff?
    And how would we know about “few consecutive years of cooling”?

    Also:

    SAN FRANCISCO, California (December 3, 2007) — Climos, a company dedicated to removing carbon from the atmosphere, today announced that EcoSecurities has prepared a draft version of a methodology for Ocean Iron Fertilization, based on precedent established by the Kyoto Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism. This methodology has been delivered to DNV (Det Norske Veritas) for review, in preparation for its implementation at a specific project site.

    http://www.climos.com/123release.html

  348. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 9:53 AM | Permalink

    I might be just grumpy, but can somebody point me to the posting rules so I won’t get snipped. Bender is doing a good job policing, ;) but I’d like the protocols..so I can understand.

    I don’t see how Susanne can go on about “everybody” and when I make an observation and give advice, one sentence, barely saying anything about what I “see here” about her comments and Mosher’s I get snipped. I admire, listen to, and read all the regular posters here but just for an example: my husband Mr. Welikerocks (earth scientist, environmental geologist, state geologist) said a time ago, early on in the blog he felt there was no evidence CO2 has anything at all do to with temperature in the geologic record, the data is flawed and the data needs to be looked at, he also said “The Greenhouse” theory was messed-up. I know you want things to fan out here in a certain way SteveM, and these are simple statements but at that time he was replied to with insults even from Ms Judith Curry insulting geologists as a whole, laughter, (even from you SteveM and Bender) when he said these things over a year ago in an Unthreaded area, and look where we are now… He never took it personal, but I remember how he was treated and he hasn’t been convinced any differently.

    We admire and need CA, and are grateful for many of the topics and this site, and for your work SteveM, we have used the tip jar (my husband and I) more than once, however it is now pretty “cliquey” and confusing in the comments and who gets to comment and who “can’t Maybe I am not the only one feeling confused. I dunno, I don’t believe in censorship unless its something really offensive.

    Anyway no hard feelings, and I have a memory like an elephant!

    -Elizabeth Robinson.

  349. Hoi Polloi
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 9:58 AM | Permalink

    Climos, a Sillcon Valley entreprise, let me guess another balloon filled with CO2?

  350. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 10:06 AM | Permalink

    >> however it is now pretty “cliquey”

    That’s been my experience as well. You can’t blame Steve M for the people who choose to hang out here. Steve M has a valid agenda to audit certain AGW papers. That’s all. He doesn’t want his site turned into general AGW discussion.

    It’s some of the people here who have turned this into the discussion by the art of personal destruction, ridicule, ostracization, and flippant dismissal.

    Unfortunately, it’s human nature. If I created a site, the same thing would happen. When I go home, my kids do the same thing, adding gratuitous violence ad-hoc.

  351. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 10:16 AM | Permalink

    re 352. everyone is missing the irony of my post. So, I will let the secret out.

    The quote is taken from Susanne. They are her words. As she says, we are poltical animals. And politics
    is about power not truth. And so science may be infected by politics and personal interest.
    The question is Who has a licence to hunt for motive?

    The intellectual bankrupcy of Motive hunting is ignored when you are in power.
    Specifically, when you are in power you can hunt out motives
    with impunity. When you are out of power, motive hunting is inexcuseable.

    For example: We asked Hansen for his code. He referred to us as Jesters. His words, not mine.
    Some people got the implication of that metaphor. Who is king in that court? Asking for code
    is a jest? Ironically, he didnt understand how the jester metaphor actually undermined his position, given
    the historical role of the jester. The right metaphorical response was to call Hansen the emperor with
    no clothes. However, when you make those types of responses you are hunting without a licence.

    Now, the dominant meme being pushed is this: the IPCC was conservative. Note the choice of words. Hansen, RC
    and others are pushing this Meme. Why? because the consensus of the IPCC did not sound a large enough
    alarm bell for them. They want action and they want it now. They cannot attack the IPCC outright.
    So now consensus which was the hallmark of validity is characterized as “reticence” and conservativism.

    This is an interesting lesson in rhetoric. The power of framing an issue and the metaphors we live by.
    ( credit lakoff)

  352. Cliff Huston
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 10:22 AM | Permalink

    welikerocks,

    Not to worry. Your comment was snipped because of Susanne’s acid one line reply. The last thing Steve needs here is personal fights and Susanne’s reply was looking for just that. Nothing in you comment deserved the reply (or snip), but Steve has no time to sort it out – so the safest thing is just to snip both comment and reply.

    Cliff

  353. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 10:35 AM | Permalink

    Can anyone identify for me a cheap or freeware pdf-maker.

  354. M. Jeff
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 10:44 AM | Permalink

    re: steve mosher, December 5th, 2007 at 10:16 am

    re 352. everyone is missing the irony of my post. So, I will let the secret out.

    Before posting #352 I searched this thread for the origin of the quote but could not find it. My qualifier concerning the quote, “… seems to relate to some of the issues that your quote addresses …” suggests some uncertainty in my understanding?

  355. Larry
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 10:45 AM | Permalink

    I think MS word can make pdfs. Or do you need all of the bells and whistles?

  356. bender
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 11:02 AM | Permalink

    rocks, if things seem cliquey, maybe it’s because there’s been a lot of activity in recent months that you haven’t been around for? For the record I have always supported your position that scaring children doesn’t empower them. (And more than once I have missed you.) As for mr rocks, he’s a tough fella. He knows that science & politics are bloodsports. If y’all want to throw rocks at AGW, there is always “unthreaded”.

    The problem – which you have witnessed firsthand – is that ever since the blog award (coincidence?), there have been more folks like Susann, trawling for informed POV. And when they sense “denialism” in one comment, regardless who, they paint the whole blog with a broad brush. (Of course as any “policy wonk” knows, “guilt by association” is a logical fallacy.)

    Cliquey? Well, I have to admit I like mosh and lucia and Larry. Which is to say: I like the way they write, and what they write. For some reason it resonates with me. (Whereas I cannot stand the authoritarian attitude on RC.)

    I’m not the comment police. I’m just trying to emphasize some of the great things CA is doing. It is a new model for doing science-policy due diligence – which is necessary for open democratic accountable governments – and I think it has incredible potential. It is prone to parasitism by non-auditing oriented functions, and I think that is an unavoidable cost of transparency that needs to be watched.

  357. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 11:03 AM | Permalink

    Oh thanks Cliff! I had no clue she replied. So sorry SteveM! I do know what its like to run a blog and what all else you handle on top of it amazes me.

    Steve Mosher, I didn’t miss the irony.

    Good gosh. All that matters is the data!

    I was wondering, anybody else getting constant tv/radio ads like the ones here in So. California which say “Climate Change is a choice”? (various people from all walks of life state “I pledge too leave California the way I found it for my children”) (leave-I guess means “when I die”) Not sure who the funder is. I’ll have to look into it.

  358. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 11:03 AM | Permalink

    359
    OpenOffice is free and allows you to output an .odt or .doc type document as a .pdf file.

  359. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 11:17 AM | Permalink

    bender, you are probably right, you were gone for awhile too! Tough husband? yeah he is, retired disabled -US army infantry,and he loves the earth and the ocean as much as anybody, he was born on Oahu too.

    and this: “I’m not the comment police. I’m just trying to emphasize some of the great things CA is doing. It is a new model for doing science-policy due diligence – which is necessary for open democratic accountable governments – and I think it has incredible potential. It is prone to parasitism by non-auditing oriented functions, and I think that is an unavoidable cost of transparency that needs to be watched.”

    Totally agree and please keep it up! :) Can you ease up on jae though, he’s my sun buddy! ;) I think when he and Gunner and others like that; me too- muse out loud it is a good thing, right or wrong -shows how complex all this really is.

  360. Duane Johnson
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 11:24 AM | Permalink

    Another relatively low cost option is PDF Creator. A free trial download is available, and a permanent license is about $59 US. I’ve been using it for several years now.

  361. jae
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 11:28 AM | Permalink

    Rocks: BTW, jae doesn’t want bender to ease up. He likes open honest criticism and is fully capable of deciding whether or not it is warranted. Sometimes it is.

  362. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 11:28 AM | Permalink

    >> Can anyone identify for me a cheap or freeware pdf-maker.

    A few months back, I used one of the free conversion sites. It worked great. google: free ms word pdf conversion

    http://www.doc2pdf.net seems familiar, but I’m not sure.

  363. reid simpson
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 11:29 AM | Permalink

    “It’s preposterous to think anyone can predict cash flows out that far,” says Edward Ketz, an accounting professor at Pennsylvania State University.”

    link

    Funny how it is preposterous to forecast cash flows (which management tries to control) out 26 years but we can forecast weather (over which we have no control) out 100 years with no problems.

  364. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 11:29 AM | Permalink

    cutepdf (www.cutepdf.com) is freeware. It seems to work well, though I haven’t used it in a while because I have Acrobat Standard (full-version) at the office now. My boss is a Mac user so he prefers PDFs to the bilge that Word produces. :)

    Mark

  365. Philip_B
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 11:31 AM | Permalink

    #364 I’ll second that. OpenOffice is also more reliable creating pdf files than Word.

  366. Ron
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 11:32 AM | Permalink

    Required reading for all newbies here, and particularly those with a “policy wonk” orientation, is today’s article in the National Post out of Toronto (Financial Post section, page FP19) by Ross McKitrick. It deals with his new paper and is truly a masterpiece of clear exposition in non technical terms of a whole lot of the basics of the global warming science/political science debate. If I were “King-For-A-Day” it would be required reading in every science department of every high school and above. Furthermore, it should be insisted that every government “energy department” sign off having read it, and be required to explain what they will do with it.

  367. bender
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 11:33 AM | Permalink

    Ease up?! Their continual stream of errors add complexity where absolutely none is needed. This @#$%’s is complex enough already. Nowadays I try to leave them alone to stew in their juices. That seems to work. But only because of Larry. I wish they would find a “random junk” thread somewhere and stay there.

  368. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 11:40 AM | Permalink

    #373 Tee hee bender : “Their continual stream of errors add complexity where absolutely none is needed.” I am not so sure, the same could be said about Hockey Teams and houses of cards. :)

    Everyone google “Scientists Beg for Climate Action” That’s the latest AP wire from Bali on my home page news.

  369. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 11:45 AM | Permalink

    re: #367
    Spoken like the true scientist you are! (And I didn’t think so! )

  370. Larry
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 11:45 AM | Permalink

    OO has a learning curve, but it does perform pretty well if you can figure out what the authors were thinking. It’s not at all intuitive. It’s written in compiled/interpreted java, and is slow as molasses if you don’t have 3 ghz under the hood. But it may the best choice, depending on what you’re trying to do.

  371. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 11:51 AM | Permalink

    >> Spoken like the true scientist you are!

    Agree, and what a contrast between civility and dignity and the insecure ostracizing childish rant: I wish they would find a “random junk” thread somewhere and stay there.

  372. MarkW
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 11:57 AM | Permalink

    welikerocks,

    There are scientists in Bali? I thought it was mostly the policy wonks who went to this meeting.

  373. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 12:06 PM | Permalink

    RE 362. bender.. I love lucia and I found her first! anyway, Her discussions with Jerry are an example of
    why I come here. ( oh yes, and raising cane, since I have more than 1 dimension)
    Once I tried to stick my wise ass in the browning/lucia convo and Dr. J slam dunked me from half court. OUCH.
    Lucia’s got spunk. I think Dr. J should cut her a bit more slack .
    I think the BEST thing would be a web conference
    were Dr. J, lucia, TVonk and others could go to a virtual white board. I share Lucia’s fustration at the
    “money wall” and paying to get access to papers/data..
    Jerry’s papers made my head hurt.

    So.. TRee rings.. Two major factors: 1) yearly precipitation falling 2-3sd below the mean.
    2. temperature.

    After looking at the Algamre data.. eyeballing.. I found this. the mean precip was 16in.
    16in per year makes the tree happy. Happy tree lives long. When the precip dropped, from
    say 16in to 10in ( 2 sd) the tree was not happy and lost ring width. Now, I didnt see
    ( need to double check) any correlation in the other direction. That is, increasing from
    16 in to 22 in ( 2sd) you dont see an INCREASE Ring width due to increased watering. If, you
    went from 10in to 16in, then you see a response.. So the precip reponse is not a function
    of raw inches. DUH. its a function of departure from norm and return to norm…Not sure
    how to express this in a model of growth.. Basically 16 inches is what these tree want.
    If drops to 10 inches or lower. RW is decreased.I need to check the wet years, but I’m guessing
    that moving from 16 to 22in is NOT going to show the same effect.

    more later

    Obviously you can over water and over snow. My sense was that the Ring width might be
    expressible as a function of Precip ( deviation from Mean) and temp ( deviation from mean?)

    Shoot me with a stupid bullet.

  374. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 12:17 PM | Permalink

    Rule 1: Don’t confuse logic with emotion.
    Rule 2: Don’t confuse facts with opinion.
    Rule 3: Both parties in a 2-way conversation could be correct.
    Rule 4: Both parties in a 2-way conversation could be incorrect.
    Rule 5: Both parties in a 2-way conversation may or may not be talking about the same thing.

    Anywayz

    Mosh: “Huh? Sorry about harshin on your gig.” Nah, I was just saying about the posts and numbering when snippin’ happens; I go find what’s being responded to (which clearly wasn’t mine) which is easy if you just hunt for things quoted. But I agree, there should be a quote and a name, if not the number. (For example, here, the number of your postisn’t needed for the context; nor is my original one.)

    Thanks Cliff for stating the snipping thing (in general and in this particular case) so well.

    Steve: PDF. Open Office. http://download.openoffice.org/2.3.1/index.html

  375. Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 12:24 PM | Permalink

    @Sam– Rule 5 is very common on blog threads, especially long ones.

  376. Susann
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 12:27 PM | Permalink

    The problem – which you have witnessed firsthand – is that ever since the blog award (coincidence?), there have been more folks like Susann, trawling for informed POV. And when they sense “denialism” in one comment, regardless who, they paint the whole blog with a broad brush. (Of course as any “policy wonk” knows, “guilt by association” is a logical fallacy.)

    Bender, as a policy wonk, I know that guilt by association is a logical fallacy. However, it’s not a fallacy that the public is well-acquainted with or cares much about. You can bet that you are measured by the company you keep.

    Second, there is no guide to who’s who. I didn’t know who Steve Mosher’s “important people” were whose opinions and views count until he pointed them out. When I see denialism, and when I see it expressed frequently, I have to sit back and think about what it means. Let’s just say I’m a skeptic about the value of this blog until I see all the evidence. Steve can’t police every thread to sift through the decent science debates and the personal crackpot theories and mudslinging/conspiracy theories. As a result, a visitor here has to take rhe blog at face value. It’s great to have this take place in an open blog. I’m trying to give Steve M a fair shake take his project seriously. Some people here do not help his case. That’s the drawback of doing this in an open blog.

    As an outsider with an academic interest in this place who does not care to make friends here (and I’m doing a bang-up job at it :)) I only point out that when members here focus on personality, especially the evil four (Mann, Gavin, Hansen, Gore) and make inuendos about fraud and hoaxes, you discredit yourself in the eyes of people on the other side and in the middle, and Steve M’s blog by association. I’m just telling you how it looks from the point of view of an outsider. I come to this place to learn — and judge. I am here to learn what I can from Steve M’s audit and judge if the more reasonable and grandiose claims made by some here are valid — that the “hockey stick” has been broken, that the IPCC case is based on it and is therefore invalid, and that the AGW “hoax” is a billion-dollar “house of cards” fed by corrupt scientists acting out of self-interest and that the “fake” consensus will collapse as the next little ice age kicks in. I’ll also be judging the other side, including the “warmers” and the IPCC process, and the claims made based on GCMs. I’ll (I hope) be one of those policy types making policy and so I read here with interest to see how credible Steve M’s work and his project here really are. I’m sure I’m not the only policy wonk that visits here to check the blog out. People should think about that when they post. What may seem obvious and taken for granted by people here who share the same POV is not so obvious to others who don’t.

  377. Etienne
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 12:40 PM | Permalink

    no.372

    very good article by Ross in the National Post

    here is the link

    http://www.nationalpost.com/todays_paper/story.html?id=145245

  378. Jaye
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 12:43 PM | Permalink

    Point of order here: saying “denialism” implies the truth of the thing that one is trying to prove, that there is something true that is being denied. The word is loaded with extra meaning beyond “skeptic”. IMO, one should either say “skeptic” or if you prefer “denier” then say what is really on one’s mind – “heretic”.

  379. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 12:54 PM | Permalink

    My sense was that the Ring width might be expressible as a function of Precip ( deviation from Mean) and temp ( deviation from mean?)

    And soil quality and CO2 fertilization and sunlight, etc… Many of the inputs are also correlated (temp and CO2 by hypothesis), and non-linear (which you indirectly pointed out) which further confounds the issue.

    Mark

  380. Jaye
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 12:55 PM | Permalink

    383…ouch…but the true believers can never be swayed. Their careers and/or their beliefs are so invested in the AGW hypothesis, they cannot let it go regardless of the evidence that is presented before them.

  381. bender
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 1:02 PM | Permalink

    Susann,

    You say you are reading all the threads, but just commenting in unthreaded. That would be a good thing. When you are reading those other threads, be sure to post any substantive questions you have.

    You say you are here to judge. In science you can not judge people by the company they keep. To falsify a hypothesis, you have to know what the hypothesis is. Your opponents are your informants. Keep that in mind in your judgements. Good scientists keep themselves well-informed of opposing views. A superficial level of understanding is inadequate.

    You seek synthetical summaries. There are some deep problems in climate science. It’s not a conspiracy. Well, not that kind of conspiracy, anyways. As Wegman suggests, the whole lot of them are too divorced from statistics. For a variety of understandable, and not-so-easy-to-understand, reasons. And the evidence comes through in a variety of ways. The lack of statistical rigor has led to an outbreak of speculation as to the probabilistic dangers that are faced. The bias – in the surface station data, the UHI effects, the Y2K adjustment, the paleoclimatology data, hurricane dynamics – is a decidely warm one. Maybe the GCMs too? We shall see.

    Once these biases are objectively estimated and fairly removed it is anyone’s guess what the residual data will say. Different camps have different guesses. The GCMs and the oceans are the wildcards. They are complex. Don’t hold your breath.

    Good luck in your work.

  382. bender
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 1:21 PM | Permalink

    #386 et al. The major problem with McKitrick’s argument that the surface station record is heavily warm-biased is the counterpoint by Gavin Schmidt that ocean heat shows the same steep rising trend. Removing the surface station UHI/land-use bias may or may not eliminate the global temperature trend – we don’t know because McKitrick does not present us with the corrected curve – but it will not, AFAICT, eliminate the trend in ocean heating. (Watt’s up with that?)

    Really, I think that’s what it comes down to: what’s *really* happening in the oceans, and do the GCMs accurately capture that dynamic? Carl Wunsch & Demetri Koutsiyiannis, meet Jeffrey Kiehl & Gavin Schmidt. Edward Wegman to moderate. Do we know enough? Debate. ASA Journal of Statistical Climatology inaugural issue.

  383. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 1:44 PM | Permalink

    #386 et al. The major problem with McKitrick’s argument that the surface station record is heavily warm-biased is the counterpoint by Gavin Schmidt that ocean heat shows the same steep rising trend.

    I’m curious if any rigor has been applied to auditing the SST data?

    Mark

  384. Jaye
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 1:44 PM | Permalink

    The major problem with McKitrick’s argument that the surface station record is heavily warm-biased is the counterpoint by Gavin Schmidt that ocean heat shows the same steep rising trend.

    Those two things can both be true can they not? Both can be contaminated, one could be more so than the other, etc. Even if the ocean heat shows a large positive slope the land data could actually be incorrect which would still have implications for correctly applying forcings in the GCM’s. I see this occasionally where I work, trying to justify bad data leads to incorrect model assumptions.

  385. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 1:54 PM | Permalink

    Lucia; “Rule 5 is very common…” You’re telling me? :)

    Susann; Few people focus on the personalities of any of the “evil four” (as you so quaintly put it). Or at least how I’m parsing it, few do. There’s certain behaviors that are focused upon, which I think is fair.

    I invite you to read ( or re-read and become a member of the “after the fact is more fun” club) the 620 posts at http://www.realclimate.org/?comments_popup=465 and see how Gavin’s argument progresses, as well as some of his interactions with Steve, and some of the commenter’s comments snip. I think it starts on #128 [Response: The algorithms are fully described in the papers - basically you use the rural stations trend to set the urban stations trend. It's a two-piece linear correction, not rocket science. - gavin] Focus just on the ones Gavin answers, it’ll be quicker. Come back and let me know what you’ve learned.

    BTW, “The papers” for the “two-piece linear correction” (Or is that “a couple of pages of MatLab?”, or 10,000 pages of a badly documented mix of fortran, pascal, ada and machine code…) are here: http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/references.html Take some time out, there’s 16 of them.

    But that even ignores the main point; Steve wanted to verify their code, which is what he asked for. Instead, Gavin told him to replicate it. While replication has a use in science, it’s not the same as checking the original. If Gavin understood that or not, I don’t know. It should have seemed obvious, so why would you be surprised if somebody thinks he did understand it and wonder why the code wasn’t given out?

    As I said before, if you act a certain way, expect certain results.

    What are we to think of people that make metaphors like this, as mosh pointed out:

    “We asked Hansen for his code. He referred to us as Jesters. His words, not mine. Some people got the implication of that metaphor. Who is king in that court?”

    And did you or did you not yourself say that:

    “We humans are political animals, our training in the scientific method notwithstanding. Scientists are expected to take into account errors and bias in their research design and questions but very often, they are completely unaware of their personal political biases and how those affect every step of the research process from choice of topic to forumlating scientific problems to evaluating findings. And, as in every walk of life, some are outright frauds.”

  386. Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 1:56 PM | Permalink

    Re McKitrick’s article and paper:
    My view is that this is a great opportunity to put the surface station site quality ratings to good use. McKitrick’s results show a substantial artificial warming in the USA lower 48. We have a network of known high quality stations in the USA lower 48 that can be used to test his results.

    Since his results are gridded we can compare on a grid-cell basis. Let’s take the 17 rural stations with site quality ratings of 1 or 2 (CRN1, CRN2), compare their trends to CRU results for appropriate grid cell, and confirm or deny whether CRU shows artificial warming.

    If anyone can provide a link to CRU gridded results, this could be done in a few hours.

  387. Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 2:08 PM | Permalink

    I found the CRU gridded data here: http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/data/temperature/
    I could write a parser, but has anyone already written one?

  388. UK John
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 2:12 PM | Permalink

    Susann,

    I really used to believe in AGW the CO2 effect and all such stuff, and have been of a Green mentality as long as I can remember, and was an active member of several sustainability minded charities, before it was fashionable.

    I remember arguing with Policy wonks long ago that sustainability ought to be top of the agenda, and you know what I was told!

    But being curious I just tried to find out how CO2 actually does cause all this warming, and that was the start of it, because even though I am a bit scientifically minded I couldn’t find the scientific paper that I still look for that shows and calculates the figures given by the IPCC.

    In reality you either believe or you don’t, I just don’t think it matters! even if all the assumptions and approximations are true or false, it just doesn’t matter. This is the biggest distraction of all time, even beating the last scientific consensus myth “the Y2K computer bug”. That was a complete Myth from start to finish, but thankfully did have an end date that proved the Myth, unfortunately I see no end to this.

  389. Larry
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 2:15 PM | Permalink

    Gavin’s argument is true (much more sensible heat in the oceans than in the atmosphere), but what are he and his boss Jimmy doing spending so much time with the surface records if they don’t matter?

  390. bender
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 2:41 PM | Permalink

    Trying to lurk. Two comments.
    #395 Larry. Good question. I don’t know. Maybe they will accept the McKitrick UHI land surface adjustment and change tactics, refocusing on oceans?

  391. jae
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 2:48 PM | Permalink

    In case nobody has posted it yet, here is a link to Ross McKitrick’s full paper.

  392. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 2:54 PM | Permalink

    re 393. No I just sucked it into EXcell and picked out the US land grids. Laborious work

    Actualy I only picked out the California grids. and then the issue of the land/sea “averaging”
    came up.

    Jones has a paper on the HADCRU site ( hadley ) that describes how he “averages” a cell when part of it
    is in the ocean and part on land. I’d be very careful comparing HadCRU to GISS for CONUS because
    Hansen (best as I can tell) doesnt use Jones’s method for grids that straddle the land/ocean.

  393. Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 3:16 PM | Permalink

    #398 steven mosher:
    Shall we move to the new thread on the McKitrick Op-Eds?

  394. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 3:49 PM | Permalink

    Susanne, Good to see you back. The best way to interact here is to go on the science threads
    and ask science questions. Like the Alagmre threads. Before I came here I knew nothing about tree rings.
    So you read. folks will give you links. Real live scientists will show up and answer your questions.
    And sometimes people will crack jokes and make off topic remarks. Dont try to measure the latter against the former.

    Even better, download some data and
    have a look. Usually if you make a bonehead mistake people will correct you. No yelling, no name calling
    Down load the tree ring data. Get your shoes dirty. Ask questions. Bender won’t bite, much; and willis, willis
    has been very generous with his comments and suggestions. he is just a cowboy.

    you will find that when things get slow the commentary deteriorates. Guilty. I don’t think it’s very
    perceptive to judge a blog, to judge Steve M. by the comments here. How do we do that? How do we weigh
    a 300 comment thread with Dr. Browning against the mosh pit of unthreaded? What’s the calculus?
    Controlling speach at a blog is pretty hard. On one end you have the NO COMMENT approach. On the other
    end un censored… and in the middle you have a variety of editorial policies more or less rhapsodic in their
    approach

    Steve’s policies are pretty clear for those of us who have been here for more than a few months.
    no discussion of religion. No discusion of thermo. Usenet style flame wars ( you and me) will be
    managed like fires should be managed: If they are not burning out, shut the mess down.

    This isnt the bible. It’s not the inherent word of St. Mac.

    snip

  395. Larry
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 4:16 PM | Permalink

    Usually if you make a bonehead mistake people will correct you. No yelling, no name calling

    But after the third mangling of thermo or whatever, I’ve been known to lose it. It’s ok to be wrong. It’s ok to be stubborn. It’s not ok to be wrong and stubborn.

  396. bender
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 4:19 PM | Permalink

    “Don’t insult the evil”: LOL! Best line ever!

  397. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 4:27 PM | Permalink

    Re 401 its not ok to be wrong and stubborn? Gunnar will have issues with that as will sod.

    And back in the day TCO would have issues with it
    And Juckes thinks the confluence of the traits is laudable.

  398. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 4:29 PM | Permalink

    re 399. Sure… Unthreaded is wrong for this

  399. Earle Williams
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 4:34 PM | Permalink

    By the way mosher, I don’t know if it’s willfulness, stubbornness, or just wrongness but there is no ‘e’ at the end of Susann. ;)

  400. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 4:42 PM | Permalink

    Can you even compare temperatures as measured in 1910 with ones measured in 1990?

    Anyway.

    Experiment time.

    1. Take a kitchen, cover the windows and doors and such with thick plastic sheets. Take an 8 gallon stainless steel pan with a 2 mm copper bottom and 1/16th” of 18/10 body and put 5 gallons of filtered water in it. Put it on a stove burner and turn that to an output of 25 Btu/sec. The size of the room is 1000 cubic feet and contains “normal” home air (let’s say the CO2 levels are at 250 ppmv). It (and the water) are currently at a temperature of 70 F with a relative humidity of 25%.

    How long does it take for the water to boil away?
    What is the resulting level of humidity in the room at that point?
    What is the resulting temperature in the room at that point?
    How much heat does the pan continue to give off?
    What is the humidity level in the room an hour after the water has boiled away?
    What is the temperature in the room an hour after the water has boiled away?

    2. Repeat the above experiment after increasing the CO2 levels to 1000 ppmv.

    3. Repeat the first two experiments in an empty room with ceramic tiles kept to a constant temperature of 70 F.

    4. Repeat the first two experiments in an empty room made out of 1/4″ plywood.

    5. Repeat the first two experiments in an empty room made out of 1/2″ alluminum alloy.

    6. Repeat the first two experiments with oceans, wind, clouds, sunlight, and similar increases (400%) in all the components of the air.

  401. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 4:45 PM | Permalink

    RE 405. Thx Earl. U pwned me with that 1.

  402. Larry
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 4:56 PM | Permalink

    406, what does that have to do with the price of peanuts in Trinidad?

  403. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 4:58 PM | Permalink

    Re 402 hehe. the don rickles of climate scepticism.

  404. bender
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 5:02 PM | Permalink

    but the timing – the timing is all mosh
    you killed me man

  405. MarkR
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 5:05 PM | Permalink

    Could everyone say, what are the top 5 reasons you believe in AGW?

  406. bender
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 5:11 PM | Permalink

    #411 Faith in GCMs and their fit to ocean temperatures.

  407. bender
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 5:16 PM | Permalink

    … but I would refer to it as my “Bayesian prior” rather than my “belief”.

  408. Jeremy Ayrton
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 5:21 PM | Permalink

    John v and Steve Mosher, re #393 and #398 – have you guys used an RDBMS like SQL Server 2005 (my number cruncher of choice) to sort out these data files into something usefull?

    FWIW I’m sitting next to a fairly chunky server running the above. But I’m not sure what you are trying to achieve.

  409. Larry
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 5:30 PM | Permalink

    411,

    1. ‘Cause Al Gore knows all this science stuff
    2. The polar bears are drowning
    3. Haliburton is evil
    4. He got an oscar
    5. Can’t you see? It’s hot out there!

  410. Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 5:32 PM | Permalink

    #414 Jeremy Ayrton:
    I spend a lot of time with SQL Server 2005 but I have not been using it for this work. Instead I’ve been using text files in a format that Excel can easily parse.

    Why? To keep the barrier to entry very low for anyone wanting to reproduce or check my work.

    For a quick utility, I’m considering a parser that saves HadCRU gridded temperatures in a database keyed by latitude, longitude, and month. I could then extract the necessary grid cells with a simple query and copy into an Excel worksheet.

    R would also be a good option, but I haven’t taken the time to learn it yet.

  411. M. Jeff
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 5:38 PM | Permalink

    re: #411, MarkR, December 5th, 2007 at 5:05 pm.

    The answers depend upon the definition of “believe”. For example, would a belief that the AGW effect might potentially be 30% percent of the “consensus” projection qualify a person as a denier, skeptic, or believer?

  412. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 5:39 PM | Permalink

    RE 414 WRT the CRU dataset it is an Array ( lat by lon) of temperature anomalies
    for the period of something like 1880 to present… It’s just an annoying bitch to write a whole
    program to read it in but JohnV will wack it out in no time.

    Ideally when you post a file like this you would post a subroutine to read it.
    as the producer of the file you already have a subroutine to write it. and
    as a part of test proceedures you would create a subroutine to read it.

  413. bender
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 5:51 PM | Permalink

    #417 M. Jeff:
    That’s why I expressed things in terms of Bayesian prior probabilities. Regardless of your *overall* level of belief in strongly alarming AGW, what 5 factors/pieces of data/anecdotes/experiences/etc. contribute most to that probability? Say your estimate of A in AGW is only 0.1% of 20th century warming (whatever you take that to be); what are your top five contributing factors preventing you from guessing even lower (e.g. A=0 or A=-5%)?

  414. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 5:53 PM | Permalink

    RE 410.. curtsy.

  415. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 5:58 PM | Permalink

    Larry, I didn’t say what kind of experiement it was. I’ll put up the results later.

    Top 5 AGW reasons

    1. We are dumping GHG and pollutants into the atmosphere and onto the ground due to our use of fossil fuels and how we change the land with cities, farms, forests (adding and removing) and roads. (This could be counted as more than one thing)
    2. The circumstantial evidence of the GHG related to those things going up, especially that of the non-natural GHG.
    3. The circumstantial evidence of the atmosphere anomaly going up.
    4. The circumstantial evidence of the sea surface temperatures going up.
    5. The circumstantial evidence of most all of the measured glaciers losing mass. (Or receding, take your pick to the measurement you like.)

    Or just

    1. Thermometers and satellites and models are made by people.

  416. jae
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 6:02 PM | Permalink

    This looks like it might be a good tree ring proxy study. At least they correlated the proxy with local temperature.

  417. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 6:09 PM | Permalink

    411: Top 5 reasons? Ahhh.. can I get partial credit by only having 2 reasons?

  418. M. Jeff
    Posted Dec 5, 2007 at 6:13 PM | Permalink

    re: #419, bender, December 5th, 2007 at 5:51 pm.

    I’ll remain agnostic on the issue and will not discount A=-5% or any other range of possiblities.

  419. Filippo Turturici
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 3:18 AM | Permalink

    RSS-MSU data (satellite) go down for November! Globally -0.01°C on the average, it was since January 2000 we had not such a low value:

  420. MarkW
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 6:27 AM | Permalink

    Earle,

    Aye, there’s no ‘e’.

  421. kim
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 6:48 AM | Permalink

    Of course not; there’s an ‘n’ and the ‘n’d’.
    ===========================

  422. MarkR
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 7:50 AM | Permalink

    Well done everyone who got 5.
    To those who didn’t answer the question, please note that it is a compulsory question, you cannot pass you AGW course without submitting an answer.
    Mosher. Could you stay behind for the “re-education” class?

  423. MarkR
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 8:03 AM | Permalink

    Bender. As we speak, Team Hansen is forging ahead of the game.

    “Update as of 5/30/07: Recent analyses have revealed that results from some of the ocean float and shipboard sensor data used in this study were incorrect. As a result, the study’s conclusion that the oceans cooled between 2003 and 2005 can not be substantiated at this time. The study authors are currently working to “correct” these data errors and recompute ocean temperature changes.
    “It’s important to measure upper ocean temperature, since 84 percent of the heat absorbed by Earth since the mid-1950s has gone toward warming the ocean. Measuring ocean temperature is really measuring the progress of global warming.

    http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.cfm?release=2006-112

    Ooops!! And what about SteveM’s revelation that SST has been wrongly adjusted for change of method? New buckets all round?

    So when the USA 48 Temp is debunked, followed by the World Land Temp (see the McKitrick paper), and the SST record is wrong (see above), the satellite and balloon record shows cooling what exactly is left? Have the Warmers no shame?

  424. Tom Vonk
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 8:06 AM | Permalink

    #419

    That’s why I expressed things in terms of Bayesian prior probabilities. Regardless of your *overall* level of belief in strongly alarming AGW, what 5 factors/pieces of data/anecdotes/experiences/etc. contribute most to that probability? Say your estimate of A in AGW is only 0.1% of 20th century warming (whatever you take that to be); what are your top five contributing factors preventing you from guessing even lower (e.g. A=0 or A=-5%)?

    That’s interesting but I don’t yet know at what level to take the question .
    Pity that it will disappear in the depths of an unthreaded very fast .
    My reaction at first degree was to wonder what the probabilities have to do with the question .
    Personnaly I have absolutely NO estimate of the A in AGW .
    Going a bit farther I don’t see the scale for which the question makes sense .
    On small scales it obviously doesn’t .
    On very large scales it doesn’t either .
    So then we have the intermediate scales and the right anthropic scale is the life duration – so some 100 years to take a round number .
    Have I an estimate for the A on the centenal scale ?
    Well even then I still don’t because it doesn’t say which particular part of the 10 millions years where A exists I take .
    Let’s say 1900 – 2000 for no particular reason other than that is the one where I am .
    As we went from 1 billion to 6 billions , there has been plenty of A in this particular period .
    More or less everything changed rather much on the planet during this period so why not some albedo , river flows , plancton amount etc .
    Does it translate in a probability that a surface integral on a sphere of earth radius averaged over 10 years follows a trajectory different by f(t) from the same (unphysical) integral in the case where we’d still be 1 billion in 2100 and didn’t do anything different than what we did in 1900 ?
    Or in other words have I a sort of internal probabilistic estimate of f(t) .
    Ummm … no .

    Actually I have more problems with the GW than with the A .
    Obviously the above mentionned integral has no physical meaning because for every given value , there exists an infinity of temperature distributions each corresponding to completely different dynamics so this value and its evolution (averaged or otherwise) is only of academical interests .
    There is surely A in it if only because we built thousands of km² of towns , roads , dams etc that change the radiation and convection properties in the neighbourhood of such constructions .
    The point being that it doesn’t interest me much because the knowledge of such integrals doesn’t give the slightest indication on the future dynamics .

  425. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 8:13 AM | Permalink

    re 428. held back again?

  426. Filippo Turturici
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 8:23 AM | Permalink

    #429: really strange, historical measurements were correct then we warmed since the ’50ies, but recent slightly cooling measurements are uncorrect…I thought accuracy and technology would have only evolved…maybe I can bet they would find a warming trend in agreement with their land stations of Northern Emisphere? ;-)

  427. Boris
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 8:26 AM | Permalink

    5 reasons, huh?

    1. The Earth has warmed.
    2. CO2 is a GHG and has increased by ~30%.
    3. WV and ice albedo are strong feedbacks to amplify this warming.
    4. TSI has been flat during the recent warming spell.
    5. Stratospheric cooling shows that the greenhouse effect is intensifying at the surface.

  428. MarkR
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 8:28 AM | Permalink

    Tom Vonk and Bender chatting. “….and seventeenthly…..”. (Smiley thing goes here.)

  429. bender
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 8:30 AM | Permalink

    #430
    The kind of answer you would expect from an analytical type who has no faith in the GCMs! Tom, I’m trying to roll with it. Play along. What are the 5 best arguments warmers have on their side? Receding glaciers? Weak/ambiguous solar connection?

  430. STAFFAN LINDSTROEM
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 8:43 AM | Permalink

    #433 Boris…”…warming spell” so it’s just a spell or “spell”
    in “spellbound, perhaps?! But of course we all “know” that the
    universe will cool before getting hot again??
    My Nasa-Giss Rural US Overview has been down for personal
    reasons but I’ll proceed like this: All stations that have steady
    (or almost) temp rise curves angle 25-45 degrees are UHIs : DELETED
    We (pluralis majestatis) use the rest, after all it is just a test!!

  431. bender
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 8:45 AM | Permalink

    #433 Boris
    Assertions 1-5 depend on an attribution step (which may or may not be embedded in #2). For that you need the GCMs. Can you describe for you what role faith plays in accepting the GCMs? Do you consider yourself “qualified” to analyze the input and output of one of these monsters? Or is it more that you just trust the experts?

  432. bender
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 8:48 AM | Permalink

    #433 Boris, can you expound on #5?

  433. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 9:04 AM | Permalink

    Susann, your posts here are becoming more like those who come here to post with a countervailing POV (not to Steve M’s POV or many of the posters’ here but those that are lumped into a general classification as denialists or at least skeptics with an agenda) and seem to veer from their stated purpose of doing some objective fact finding and exchanges based on evidence to a critique of selected posters and their attitudes. This approach would logically appear then to stem from a preconception that the tone and thoughts here are driven more by an attitude than an objective view and analysis of things. I always hope that some who come here in that manner will contribute to our collective knowledge basis, but often I have been disappointed.

    The hard, and readily discernible, facts are that blogs with free access are going to have posters that make overstatements and often to support an agenda, but that is not necessarily what the blog is about nor defines its learning value. So when someone comes along and lectures us on an obvious part of blogs in general its… well something like Mosher has been telling you.

    Jim Hansen speaks with a scientific voice and political one and much in the manner that one sees in some blogs with scientific interests (although Steve M, valiantly in my mind, attempts to keep this blog on target while maintaining free access). I will quote you one that gives clarity to Hansen’s political voice and then let you decide whether what you see here is exceptional.

    By Hansen’s reasoning in his excerpted statement below, policy is most affected by the captains of industry and would suggest that policy wonks deal at that level and not with the “jesters” as Hansen references them or “stooges” as Judith Curry has referred to them at this blog.
    Hansen, the scientist/politician, has, however, in the excerpted statement below provided some wonderfully emotional lines for those who favor the political pulling of climate policy along as opposed to having science push it: “Tipping points”, “Living in infamy”, “Placing short-term profits above the fate of the planet”, “Well being of our children” and, oh yes, “Don’t joust with jesters”.

    “How big an error did this flaw cause? That is shown by the before and after results in Figure 1. The effect on the global temperature record is invisible. The effect on U.S. average temperature is about 0.15°C beginning in 2000. Does this change have any affect whatsoever on the global warming issue? Certainly not…”

    “I believe that these people are not stupid, instead they seek to create a brouhaha and muddy the waters in the climate change story. They seem to know exactly what they are doing and believe they can get away with it, because the public does not have the time, inclination, and training to discern what is a significant change with regard to the global warming issue.”

    “The contrarians will be remembered as court jesters. There is no point to joust with court jesters. They will always be present. They will continue to entertain even if the Titanic begins to take on water. Their role and consequence is only as a diversion from what is important.

    The real deal is this: the ‘royalty’ controlling the court, the ones with the power, the ones with the ability to make a difference, with the ability to change our course, the ones who will live in infamy if we pass the tipping points, are the captains of industry, CEOs in fossil fuel companies such as EXXON/Mobil, automobile manufacturers, utilities, all of the leaders who have placed short-term profit above the fate of the planet and the well-being of our children. The court jesters are their jesters, occasionally paid for services, and more substantively supported by the captains’ disinformation campaigns.”

  434. STAFFAN LINDSTROEM
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 9:09 AM | Permalink

    #433 Boris, you will get your fishes cold…So you think Filippo’s
    RSS-MSU are only fairy-tales?? FYI These values are for the lower
    troposphere…I’m sorry to say it but we’re probably living on
    after-heat from the oceans but it’s rapidly cooling too…Hope
    I’m wrong but…

  435. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 9:11 AM | Permalink

    Re: #433

    5. Stratospheric cooling shows that the greenhouse effect is intensifying at the surface.

    Tropospheric cooling relative to the surface in the equatorial regions should be explained also.

  436. Tom Vonk
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 10:07 AM | Permalink

    The kind of answer you would expect from an analytical type who has no faith in the GCMs! Tom, I’m trying to roll with it. Play along. What are the 5 best arguments warmers have on their side? Receding glaciers? Weak/ambiguous solar connection?

    OK Bender , I’ll play along :)
    I won’t find 5 because I restrict it to really scientifically relevant arguments and not to some anecdotal points like polar bear populations and such .

    1) The GH effect exists . Well , it does and IR absorbing species indeed increase the temperature of their surrounding .
    2) Increasing evaporation is a positive feedback . Extremely complicated so only numerical simulations can approach it . But they are not to be trusted . So …
    3) Energy , mass and impulsion conservation are enough to determine the end state of a dynamical evolution of a dynamical system and to calculate incertitudes . This one is very vicious because it implies that it is not important to know the trajectory from A -> B . In other words the state B is largely independent from the trajectory . That implies further that either the trajectories obey known simple statistical laws and/or that there are little non linear interactions between the variables of the system . However there are physical systems that conserve everything yet are neither computable nor ergodic …

    For me 3 is the key . If it was true (and I am sure it isn’t) , then numerical models would converge to “right” final states given enough time .
    Perhaps some would be not so far even today at least in terms of “sensibility” while still being far from the predictability .
    There are already elements of the proof that 3) is wrong for the system called “climate” but it will take years before it sinks in .
    Ironically what will kill much sooner not only the A but also the GW yet for the wrong reasons , will be accumulation of surface temperature data showing that the unphysical nonsense of “global temperature” doesn’t increase anymore or even decreases .
    Once THAT sinks in first in the heads of uneducated journalists (and by that I actually mean any journalist) and then in the heads of scientifically ignorant public , the backlash will be terrible .

  437. Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 10:16 AM | Permalink

    #439 Kenneth Fritsch:
    When I read your quote of Hansen, I see something a little bit different. You suggest he is advocating “political pulling of climate policy along as opposed to having science push it”. I suggest he is saying that the “‘royalty’ controlling the court” opposes the changes the science says is necessary because they place “short-term profit above the fate of the planet and the well-being of our children”.

    Like many things it comes down to trust. In choosing who to trust among those I do not know personally, I tend to rank science geeks ahead of managers and politicians.

    In no particular order, here are some other factors I have considered when placing the balance of my trust with the consensus:

    1. When it comes to conflicts of interest, billions in research dollars pales in comparison to tens or hundreds of billions in energy industry profits.

    2. Tenured university professors have less to lose in the “debate” than do many on the other side.

    3. Most researchers would prefer to make a new discovery rather than duplicate what’s already known. Think of the fame and money that would come to a group that could truly disprove AGW.


    Anyways, I don’t want to waste too much time debating these points. Go crazy with your counter-points, try to keep the flames to a minimum, and I will do my best to listen without arguing back. Also keep in mind that although the *balance* of my trust is with the consensus, I *am* in here reading and evaluating the other side.

    Finally, I would *prefer* if the consensus was wrong — it would be better for my family, country, and career. However, if the consensus is right it’s better for my family, my country, and the world to fix the problem.

  438. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 10:20 AM | Permalink

    Let me take some time to clarify why this is interesting to me.

    http://www.heyotwell.com/work/arthistory/marginalia.html

    Some people mistake the margin for the text. Some mis the marginalia.

    Looking through medieval prayer books and bibles is a fascinating study in the mixing
    of the sacred and the profane. Nobody who ever read a medieval bible let the marginalia
    get to them.

    And mad magazine fans would never ignore the marginalia.

  439. Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 10:24 AM | Permalink

    Hmmm, 5 reasons eh?

    1. Basic Science: The basic greenhouse effect (sans feedback) is real and well accepted, whether Gunnar likes it or not (sorry Gunnar).

    2. Divergence: Correlations such as sunspot number vs temperature or length of solar cycle vs temperature have historically been very strong, but the correlation has broken down in recent decades.

    3. Predictions: CO2 causing temperature increases has been predicted, and the predictions have been pretty close (Hansen’s “most likely” scenario from 1988 is quite close to reality)

    4. Lack of Alternatives: I have seen no alternative explanation for the divergence between temperatures and known causes for the last 30 years.

    5. Trust: I do not have the time or skills to evaluate all of the science, so at some point it comes down to trust.

    —-
    For those who do not want to answer the top 5 reasons why AGW is real, how about providing your top 5 reasons why AGW is false? I suggest a maximum of 1 reason can be assigned to conspiracy theories, distrust, etc. The rest should be scientific.

  440. jae
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 10:25 AM | Permalink

    443:

    Finally, I would *prefer* if the consensus was wrong — it would be better for my family, country, and career. However, if the consensus is right it’s better for my family, my country, and the world to fix the problem.

    Yes, but HOW do you propose that we fix the putative problem, especially when the probablity that China and India will help out is very very low?

  441. Larry
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 10:46 AM | Permalink

    For those who do not want to answer the top 5 reasons why AGW is real, how about providing your top 5 reasons why AGW is false? I suggest a maximum of 1 reason can be assigned to conspiracy theories, distrust, etc. The rest should be scientific.

    Fallacy alert. The burden of proof falls on the party making the positive assertion. Disproof is not necessary.

  442. Larry
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 10:47 AM | Permalink

    1. When it comes to conflicts of interest, billions in research dollars pales in comparison to tens or hundreds of billions in energy industry profits.

    Then why is the support from the energy industry of skeptics almost non-existent?

  443. jae
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 10:50 AM | Permalink

    442:

    1) The GH effect exists . Well , it does and IR absorbing species indeed increase the temperature of their surrounding .

    CO2 is an extremely small part of GHs, no matter how you look at it. See what Fred Singer has to say.

    2) Increasing evaporation is a positive feedback . Extremely complicated so only numerical simulations can approach it . But they are not to be trusted . So …

    I don’t think this has been established. The latent heat of evaportation “robs” energy, only to release it high in the atmosphere, causing a negative feedback at the surface. See here.

  444. bender
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 11:02 AM | Permalink

    #445 John V is to be commended for admitting to his #5. Others? Boris?

  445. Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 11:05 AM | Permalink

    #447 Larry:
    That’s weak.

    First, nobody is asking for proof. Just give your reasons why you disagree with the consensus.

    Second, 50 years ago, before AGW was well accepted, your argument may have been valid. However, it is now those who disagree with AGW that have the burden of proof. To demonstrate, replace AGW with the sun being the centre of the solar system: Give your top 5 reasons why you believe the sun is not the centre of the solar system? Would the burden of proof still be with those who say the sun *is* the centre of the solar system?

    Third, let me skirt your logic and re-phrase the question:

    Give your top 5 reasons why the current warming has a natural cause.

  446. Larry
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 11:06 AM | Permalink

    450, agreed. That was a moment of high candor to admit that viscerally, he trusts the non-profit sector more than the for-profit sector. I believe that that’s what it all comes down to for the majority on both sides.

  447. Tom Vonk
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 11:07 AM | Permalink

    For those who do not want to answer the top 5 reasons why AGW is real, how about providing your top 5 reasons why AGW is false? I suggest a maximum of 1 reason can be assigned to conspiracy theories, distrust, etc. The rest should be scientific.

    That one is easy :

    1) Basic thermodynamics . The so called “global temperature” is unphysical . Therefore it is correlated to nothing (or to everything) depending on what one wants to show . It represents neither an energy content nor energy transfer processes or radiation or impulsion .

    2) Basic physics . Time averages don’t appear in any natural law . They are integrals . Correlating integrals to integrals says nothing about the functions having been integrated . The conditions under which it works in some rare cases (specifically linearity and randomness) are not fulfilled for the climate .

    3) The models after 30 years made no progress . They still fail miserably at showing correct regional behaviour . They contradict themselves and don’t agree even on the sign of regional variations . As for a non physical easily to be fitted parameter , the “global temperature” they disagree by a factor 3 .

    4) There are 23 models supposed to be ran and developped by experts . Yet those experts were unable in 30 years to select the best model and concentrate on it . That shows that they don’t understand the real physical processes in detail and deeply disagree among themselves . Otherwise it would be criminal waste of time and money to entertain 22 wrong models instead of 1 correct .

    5) Climate system is scale invariant . Follows that if it is chaotic on 1 scale (and it is) , it is chaotic on all scales . Pretending to isolate the effect of one particular subsystem (A in this case) within a chaotic system is impossible . Therefore the A is unknown and dilutes exponentially with the time . The climate today definitely doesn’t look very different from climates over past 2000 years – about the same temperature distributions , about the same precipitations , the deserts are where they were and the oceans too . Everything else are fluctuations with spurious pseudo trends that are typical for chaotic systems . The probable strongest driver of the dynamics is the spatial and temporal distribution of the clouds .

  448. MarkR
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 11:13 AM | Permalink

    Ladies. Could we have your top 5 please?

  449. Larry
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 11:15 AM | Permalink

    First, nobody is asking for proof. Just give your reasons why you disagree with the consensus.

    There you go again, begging the question. Show me that there’s a “consensus”, and what exactly that means. Again, you’re making the positive assertion, you bear the burden of proof.

  450. Tom Vonk
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 11:16 AM | Permalink

    P.S
    Ah I forgot

    6) There is no consensus . If there was people would not be writing things on boards and publishing AGW critical papers . Besides consensus has never been a scientific argument anyway . To quantify it , if I remember well there were 54 scientist commenting on the Chapter 9 (the A of AGW) of the AR4 . Out of the 54 some 30 were IPCC authors and the remaining 20 independent . So taking those 30 who more or less agree among themselves , I wouldn’t call it overwhelming . I know what I would call some of the 30 but we are to be civil here .

  451. Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 11:21 AM | Permalink

    #452 Larry:
    I wouldn’t call it a trust of the non-profit sector more than the for-profit sector.
    It’s more of a trust in the majority scientific opinion versus the minority opinion.

  452. Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 11:28 AM | Permalink

    #455 Larry:
    I take it you’re unwilling to answer then.

    I am left with the opinion that your only reason for not believing in AGW is that it is not “proven”. Is that accurate? If so, don’t forget that science deals with levels of confidence — proof is a mathematical concept only.

    If you support a position you should be willing to step up and defend it.

  453. Dave B
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 11:39 AM | Permalink

    451 John V…

    First, nobody is asking for proof.

    That’s a subtle switch-of-question. WE are asking for proof of the positive. The answer tends to be, “there is no other alternative”, when that’s really not true. Then, when someone says to you, “YOU bear the burden of proof for proving the positive”, you bounce back that “nobody is asking for proof.”

    But we are.

  454. Larry
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 11:40 AM | Permalink

    458, I think that Steve here has demonstrated that if nothing else, the Manns and Hansens of the world are unbelievably sloppy and unprofessional in their general conduct, and have no intention of engaging in honest science. Given that, the reasonable default position should be that they haven’t met their responsibility to either 1. demonstrate that their science is sound, or 2. show that they’re even dealing in good faith. Sorry, if that’s the best they can do, it’s not good enough. You brought up the trust thing. I see nothing in the general conduct and attitude of the leaders of the AGW movement to indicate that they deserve trust. Do you honestly not think that they could do better? Do you really think that slop masquerading as science is good enough to base policy on?

    It gets back to what Steve’s been saying about standards. This garbledygook wouldn’t pass muster if it were used as an engineering study, why does the world have to sit back and accept it at the most important work of science in history?

  455. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 11:53 AM | Permalink

    #460 Hear! Hear

    Sheesh. I don’t have to defend anything.
    BTW My husband only turns 44 next week. He can remember the days in grad school if your thesis was reviewed: THE MATH and NUMBERS had to be correct ; THEN you could come to some sort of a conclusion with confidence, not the other way around!

  456. Earle Williams
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 11:55 AM | Permalink

    John V., MarkR et al,

    I’m sorry but this sub-thread of the top 5 will likely generate much more heat than light. We already have Larry and John V. each taking a position of superiority with respect to the other regarding points of view that are probably a) at the very core of their respective selves and b) absolutely unchangeable.

    If any of the top 5 for a person are changeable, I would be much more interested in the answers to the question: What evidence would be suffficient to change your position with respect to AGW? If the answer is none then any further discussion a complete waste of time.

    Honest answers to this question would take us away from POV advocacy and back into the realm of science.

  457. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 11:57 AM | Permalink

    Remember the question. “Could everyone say, what are the top 5 reasons you believe in AGW?” Besides answering it “I don’t; why didn’t you ask me if I do or not before asking me why?” What else could it be answered with.

    “I’m not sure if I believe it or not, there are too many unknowns, too many variables, too many assumptions being made, and too many random and chaotic parts of the system being treated as discrete and quantifiable (surface water average as proxy for “the oceans” and samples of 5 feet up the boundry layer air average for “the land”). Aside from GHG levels being higher now than before, that’s pretty certain. All the rest, and the conclusions, those are rather iffy. So I can’t give you a list, I don’t have one.”

    But isn’t the issue really “How can you rationally and calmly discuss a subject (or make forceful arguments) if you don’t understand the position of the person to whom you’re speaking?”

    My number 1 above (in 2468#comment-172476) is actually 2 things; air and surface (both solid and liquid). It should be, as a lumped together statement:

    1. We are changing the behavior of the atmosphere by dumping GHG and pollutants into it due to our use of fossil fuels and industrial processes etc, and we are changing the behavior of the the surface with some of those pollutants as well as with cities, farms, forests (adding and removing) and roads, and other factors related to both air and land impact the water portions of the Earth as well.

    Then the 4 pieces of “evidence” used to make the case, the measurements of GHG concentrations, the measurements of air temp, the measurements of water temp and the behavior of glaciers, that appear linked to #1 and each other.

    Or another track would be:

    1. Thermometers are made by people.
    2. Satellites are made by people.
    3. Computer models are made by people.
    4. Climatologists are people.
    5. Reporters are people.

    Poof. A are creating GW.

    Or even:

    Not to jump for your assumption I do. Instead, here’s my 5 reasons I don’t believe in AGW.

    1. There’s certainly an indication from the measurements that exist the concentrations of the greenhouse gasses linked to human activity are certainly going up. There’s two issues with that. One, while the lab behaviors of the gasses indicate they create energy, we don’t know as well how they act in practice as part of the system. Two, those same processes also produce other substances that have a moderating effect upon the IR absorbing gasses directly and indirectly. It’s just as likely as not a wash.
    2. There’s no such thing as a “global temperature” so tracking the mean anomaly of it isn’t any kind of evidence, even if you could show it to be accurate, which you can’t.
    3. Even if you overcome the issues in #1 and #2, there’s no proven causal link between the two, so the point becomes moot. But you wanted 5, so here’s two more:
    4. Receding glaciers is annecdotal circumstantial evidence, not proof of anything except perhaps that soot is getting on them and the sun is melting the surface ice faster than “normal”, which leads to #5.
    5. There is no proof that any of this is out of the bounds of the ordinary, and nobody can demonstrate either what the “Perfect temperature of the Earth” is, or how it can accurately and meaningfully measured.

  458. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 12:08 PM | Permalink

    RE 451. Human caused warming is natural. All causes are natural.

    The structure of the AGW argument is essentially “abductive” See CS Pierce. basically,
    it’s the easiest available explaination.

    There are a few possible explainations for global warming.

    1. The record is wrong. It’s not getting warmer.
    2. The sun.
    3. “natural variablity” which is caused by Idontknowium.
    4. Man did it. ( C02)

    So, you rule out #1. You rule out #2. You rule out #3 with the hockey stick.
    Therefore #4.

    Then you back up #4 with other support.

  459. Jaye
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 12:09 PM | Permalink

    If you support a position you should be willing to step up and defend it.

    No, one only has to supply a counter example to blow the prevailing theory. There is no requirement to replace it with something.

    what the “Perfect temperature of the Earth” is, or how it can accurately and meaningfully measured.

    There is probably some sort of n-dimensional attractor that represents what sort of behavior one could expect. Doubt you could go much farther than that.

  460. Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 12:18 PM | Permalink

    Pierce: “A surprising fact, C, is observed. But if a proposition, A, were true, C would be a matter of course. Hence, there is a reason to suspect that A is true.”

    Rowe “abduction includes the case where A and C are distinct from one another and only become related through the existence of some appropriated scheme, or ‘view of the world’, that has meaning for both A and C. ”

    Bateson:
    “finding other relevant phenomena and arguing that these, too, are cases under our rule and can be mapped onto the same tautology”.

  461. MarkW
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 12:18 PM | Permalink

    We can start with disagreeing with the claim that there is a consensus.

  462. Boris
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 12:22 PM | Permalink

    bender,

    Yes, I trust the experts on GCMs and am not qualified to fully evaluate the models. It’s not blind faith, however.

    Ignoring the GCMs, there is still the theory that adding CO2 will increase temps because of CO2′s ability to absorb and reemit IR in certain ranges.

    And, if you throw out models, it seems you’re left with observations, and those point to a wide range for climate sensitivity (though Annan thinks he’s cut it down to a narrow range. Of course, even his narrow range agrees with the models).

    Sorry this seems rushed. Gotta go.

  463. MarkW
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 12:27 PM | Permalink

    JohnV,

    First off your request is a strawman. Only one or two posters here have ever claimed that there was no AGW.
    My top 5 reason’s for not believing in catastrophic AGW.

    1) The surface temperature measurement system is so hosed up, the idea that we know what the entire earth’s temperature is, within 5degrees, much less a few tenths of a degree is not supportable.
    2) The MWP was as warm or warmer than today, without the help of any CO2. The Roman, Minoan, warm periods were warmer still.
    3) The current rise in ocean height started at the end of the LIA, and there has been no acceleration of this trend in recent decades.
    4) The retreat of glaciers started at the end of the LIA, and there has been no acceleration of this trend in recent decades.
    5) The rise in temperature (even assuming the surface measurements were accurate) we have seen over the last 100 years has been less than what we would expect from a system with zero feedbacks.

  464. MarkW
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 12:30 PM | Permalink

    JohnV,

    You have yet to demonstrate that a majority of scientists believe in catastrophic AGW.

  465. bender
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 12:38 PM | Permalink

    #468 Thanks for saying so, Boris.

  466. Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 12:40 PM | Permalink

    #460 Larry:
    Is it fair to paraphrase your reason as distrust?

  467. MarkR
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 12:42 PM | Permalink

    Earle #462. I take your point, but the question was to see if any argument in favour of AGW is being missed, if there is something everybody on the AGW side is thinking that isn’t already known about. I haven’t seen anything new yet, but it is interesting to see where everyone is coming from.

    I would suggest that posters should be encouraged to give their honestly held views. This is probably the only board where people can freely give opposing views without constant censorship. (Thanks SteveMc).

  468. MarkW
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 12:44 PM | Permalink

    Allow me to add a point 6.

    6) CO2 as a gas has a logarithmic impact on IR absorbtion. And it’s already just about played out.

  469. Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 12:50 PM | Permalink

    #470 MarkW:
    Rather than getting into a back-and-forth on each of my reasons, I think it’s better to leave this thread open for others to give their reasons (for or against). For that reason I will also refrain from asking you to demonstrate many of your points.

    Speaking of strawmen: who said anything about catastrophic?
    I believe the question was about AGW, not catastrophic AGW.

    Thanks for providing a list of reasons for your position. I hope others will do the same (on both sides).

  470. Larry
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 12:57 PM | Permalink

    472 distrust based on tangible evidence. I think dotting “i”s and crossing “t”s on the science instead of putting out memos about jesters and gorillas and conspiracy theories about the energy industry would go a long ways in helping to instill confidence.

  471. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 1:06 PM | Permalink

    RE 466. The duke. More folks need to read Pierce.

    When I point out to people that AGW logic is “abductive” and that “intelligent design”
    also uses “abductive” reasoning, lot’s of people blow gaskets.

    When I point out that the “precautionary principle” is a version of pascal’s wager
    lot’s of people blow gaskets.

    Arguments have structures. Categorizable structures. for every structure there is a
    battering ram.

    I make no bones about being a sophist. Socrates got as good as he gave. a Pharmakon for the old guy.

  472. trevor
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 1:16 PM | Permalink

    These “top 5″ questions are very interesting, and require that we examine the reasons for holding the positions we do.

    My position is fundamentally agnostic in that I simply don’t know, and more than that, I don’t know how we can know. The earth systems are complex, and there is much we don’t know. There are natural buffer systems that keep conditions within tolerable limits for life, and I suggest that we really don’t know much about how they work, or if man is affecting them, and if he is, how he can make it OK again.

    In contrast, I note that those advancing AGW as a serious problem seem to talk as if, and even say “the science is settled”, and “a consensus exists” when such is demonstrably not the case. The level of confidence expressed by IPCC and its supporters is not, at least AFAICT, supported by the evidence.

    More than that, when we have the work of Hansen, Gore, Mann, Thompson, Jones et al examined, we find that it is poorly done, and that there is evidence of manipulation in an apparent effort to find support for positions taken.

    I also note that Stephen Schneider and Al Gore have argued that it is OK for climate scientists to exaggerate the problem, since the problem facing mankind is so serious that the end justifies the means.

    I worry that demonising CO2 is likely to be ineffective (at least) in changing anything, and likely to divert attention from real problems that need solving.

    The things that I worry about are wholesale clearing of forests, land ‘management’ practices that disturb and destroy natural moisture systems, pollution of various kinds (not CO2), diversion of natural water systems, poverty and ill-health and conflict for millions of human beings unlucky enough to be where they are.

    I think Bjorn Lomberg is right to ask the questions he does (Copenhagen Consensus) and I think that the resources being thrown into AGW could be much better applied focussing on problems we can do something about.

  473. yorick
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 1:27 PM | Permalink

    “Who said anything about catastrophic?”

    Only the entire media, the Nobel Peace Prize committee and a huge percentage of Western governments.

    My top five.

    – The models don’t match the warming. Who knows, maybe we can fix that when we fix the surface temp or abandon it.

    – Al Gore’s movie is so full of risible fairy tales as to make a skeptic of anybody.

    – Boreholes in ice sheets are the only direct measurement of past temperatures and they show clearly, in Antarctica and the Arctic, that we are well within natural variabiliy, and that the correlation with solar is very high. These cannot be disproven with dendroclimatology, with the myriad confounding variables, unless somebody came come up with a physical reason why the boreholes are wrong.

    – I wonder if anybody has ever successfully modeled a process in “new terretory” purely through a modeling process when the physics were not first understood, at any significant level of complexity?

    – C02 is logarithmic in effect.

  474. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 1:29 PM | Permalink

    mosher: Or how about this:

    “Where there are threats of serious or irreversible damage, the lack of full scientific certainty shall be used as a reason for not implementing cost-effective measures until after the… degradation has actually occurred”

    Boris: You could be correct. That 100 ppmv of CO2 = +.7 C trend in 125 years. Trouble is, there’s no proof of it, nor is it the only possibility. Even if one assumes the +.7 C number is accurate and meaningful (which as far as I’m concerned is a pretty big and baseless leap of faith), there is no way to know how the rest of the system would react to another 100 ppmv; the levels of everything associated would go up also, too. And then there’s the rest of the carbon cycle, which could very well (and probably would) modulate that to a very small number (or nothing, or in reverse).

    You might as well start talking only of sulpher particulates causing increased albedo in the air cutting as much IR as more CO2 would absorb, or of water turning into water vapor using up any of the energy that CO2 would create, or any number of other processes that use energy or reduce IR.

    John V:

    “1. When it comes to conflicts of interest, billions in research dollars pales in comparison to tens or hundreds of billions in energy industry profits.”

    You need to drill down a little deeper into it than that, this all boils down to individuals, in which case the dollar amounts per person would be the same (this is an assumption on my part, the ratio of people:dollars). In addition, AGW or no AGW, the energy industry will still make profits, or at least the people in it will (even if they get out of the energy industry, or the type of energy changes, or a certain company changes business focus).

    “2. Tenured university professors have less to lose in the “debate” than do many on the other side.”

    If they got into the field already believing in AGW (or not) there probably isn’t any reason or desire to look at “the other side” or even care about it.

    “3. Most researchers would prefer to make a new discovery rather than duplicate what’s already known. Think of the fame and money that would come to a group that could truly disprove AGW.”

    If you believe CO2 is the primary driver of climate change, and that temperatures have really increased (ie that the mean global temperature anomaly is accurate and meaningful) and that CO2=temperature, why would you waste any time trying to disprove it, assuming you even do care about fame and money in the first place?

    Give your top 5 reasons why the current warming has a natural cause.

    Operating on the assumption in that request (it is currently warming) as a basis (rather than what the “Perfect temperature of the Earth” is, or how it can accurately and meaningfully measured in the first place) then it becomes an issue of the natural causes it could be. So I’ll list some I think are reasonably possible.

    1. The “thermostat” of the sun was set at a time in the past where it’s been contributing a steady increase of energy*years since that point.
    2. The temperature of the core of the Earth is 1000 C higher than estimated.
    3. Current thermohaline circulation patterns are causing the oceans to release more heat and GHG.
    4. Mantle plumes and tectonic plate movement patterns are causing the oceans to release more heat and GHG.
    5. The Earth’s magnetic field is at a strength where it’s been reducing the effects of solar wind and cosmic rays since some time in the past, resulting in extra energy*years since that point.

    Larrry: I agree with that if one “trusts the non-profit sector more than the for-profit sector.” and think also “that’s what it all comes down to for the majority on both sides.” by and large is true. As a generalization. And yes on the trust issues you talk about in #460;

    the reasonable default position should be that they haven’t met their responsibility to either 1. demonstrate that their science is sound, or 2. show that they’re even dealing in good faith.

    I think that sums up one probable issue in the argument very well.

  475. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 1:30 PM | Permalink

    RE: #425 – Look at the core continental ice formation areas in North America. Wow! I sure hope not! …

  476. yorick
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 1:31 PM | Permalink

    Number 5 is that the MWP shows up in the history books, if not in the tree rings, and the LIA, whatever one might say about reasons for the Thames freezing, also saw glacier advances that destroyed Alpine villages. I am waiting for that one to be explained away.

  477. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 1:43 PM | Permalink

    RE: #460 The Manns, Hanesens (and Kiehls) of this world appear to care more about a reputed existential struggle they view themselves being part of, than science. They resent the Scientific Method because it is “too slow” and because it shatters to weak rationale for “the precautionary principle” vis a vis large natural systems. The precautionary principle is somewhat defensible for fast reacting, human designed systems used for high demand, high hazard things such as freeway driving, jet flying and pharmaceuticals. For slow reacting, difficult to affect large natural systems, I am sorry, but, I cannot buy into the so called “precautionary principle.” Yes, there is human impact on nature. However, nature is a highly filtered, slow reacting set of systems. Therefore, the Scientific Method must be used to balance notions that are Gaiaistic “nice-to-haves” versus real world issues demonstrated with high confidence over statistically significant populations, areas and time scales.

  478. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 2:09 PM | Permalink

    >> Don’t make me go all “lightbulb in a cooler”

    JohnV, thanks for bringing a smile to my face and being civil. Someone asked a question, it’s not my fault the answer lies in the relative amounts of energy. Apparently, Larry thinks there is another reason why people walking around transferring heat to the atmosphere are not warming the planet, but I note well that he doesn’t say what. JohnV, btw, do you realize that UHIs are continuously warming the environment? That means, according to you, that the UHI effect adds up to significant warming of the planet.

    >> The basic greenhouse effect (sans feedback) is real and well accepted, whether Gunnar likes it or not (sorry Gunnar).

    That’s disappointing, since I certainly made it quite clear that in our last discussion, I accepted the GHE, lock, stock and barrel.

    #442, #3 is very revealing into your thought process: if energy is conserved, then models would converge. I get the whiff of subjectivism, as if our ability to compute affects reality.

    >> Top 5 reasons to think AGW is true

    1. Everyone says so
    2. Humans are basically bad, so they must be having a bad effect on the environment
    3. History is one of decreasing human subjugation to the state. This trend must be reversed, and AGW is the latest effort to do so.
    4. It will greatly increase political donations
    5. Gosh, it’s hot

    >> Top 10 reasons to think AGW is false

    1. The amount of energy (low mass) in C02 is insufficient to have a significant effect on earth’s thermodynamic state
    2. The GHE is bypassed by other heat transfer mechanisms
    3. There is no experimental evidence for the AGW hypothesis, which is also not clearly specified anywhere
    4. Pre-industrial C02 was not low
    5. C02 does not accumulate in the atmosphere (carbon cycle is like water cycle)
    6. Man has no significant effect on the C02 level
    7. The global C02 level is very hard to measure, and may not be increasing (my one distrust, supported by Luxembourg data)
    8. Actual C02 measurements pre-1960 don’t support AGW
    9. There is no general temperature trend. There are several isolated step ups, but this does not match the AGW speculative idea.
    10. Solar energy inputs match the temp data steps, ie a very high solar mimumum in the late 90s caused 1998

    >> What evidence would be suffficient to change your position with respect to AGW?

    1. If AGW proponents clearly specified their hypothesis and
    2. If AGW proponents attempted vigorously to falsify their own hypothesis and
    3. If everyone failed in their attempts to falsify
    4. Or if AGWers seemed less interested in statism (no interest in Branson challenge or technological ways to cool earth)
    5. If proponents did not say that even if AGW is incorrect, increasing statism is the right thing to do

  479. Larry
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 2:15 PM | Permalink

    Holy cow.

  480. Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 2:38 PM | Permalink

    Susann, I am a long time lurker, sometime commentator here. I ask a simple question. Why would any scientist refuse to allow their results to be fully replicated by witholding any information required to conduct such replication. My family and I will be directly affected by the current push to raise taxes to combat climate change. I merely ask that they be open and honest. As a scientist I would presume that would mean throwing out your work for all to see and examine knowing that whether fault is found or not such examination will push science forward. When the IPCC and governments and their organisations refuse to insist on such openess I MUST question why? Not to do so is called blind faith.

  481. MarkW
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 2:44 PM | Permalink

    JohnV,

    If it’s not catastrophic, why should anyone care?

  482. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 2:49 PM | Permalink

    >> unphysical nonsense of “global temperature”

    I realize the point here is not to comment, but just to get everyone’s view out on the table, but this one is quite extraordinary.

    The earth is a physical thing that has mass. Any mass has a temperature, by definition. You have somehow worked yourself into a purely academic concept that has no basis in reality.

  483. Larry
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 2:52 PM | Permalink

    489, the earth is a 3-dimensional object with a whole range of temperatures. It does not have ‘a’ temperature. I know what Gore said, but the earth does not have a temperature.

  484. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 2:58 PM | Permalink

    Re: #443

    John V:

    Perhaps you do not see the excerpt in light of the point I was making for Susann’s benefit. I used the example of a well-known and respected climate scientist to show that, not unlike posts that might appear on free access technically oriented blogs, the political side can be exposed also and in this case in rather emotionally laced terms.

    Hansen is obviously frustrated with the results of the scientific pushing of policy, but I do not suggest that he is advocating, as a scientist, the political pulling of science, but merely that with his political cap on he is using terminology that even handed politicians might not use in selling policy.

    I think that the group differentiations that you make (on technical versus business, money levels at stake, and job security differences) to apparently be used to evaluate the current debates on climate science might pass muster for the partisan voter who never gets beyond the party line, with all of its convenient misconceptions, but certainly not for the more astute observer.

    For Hansen to imply that contrarians are the jesters and dupes of the captains of industry and controlled by them is just too remindful of the arguments I used to hear when rabid anti-communists used to attribute ideas that they did not agree with to a communist conspiracy. Invoking a “bad old” third party into these debates is just plain silly.

  485. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 3:01 PM | Permalink

    >> Why would any scientist refuse to allow their results to be fully replicated by witholding any information required to conduct such replication.

    Indeed, that gets at the good faith issue, which is central to Larry’s thinking, and the thrust of CA. I can think of several selfish reasons, but absolutely none that are compatible with being a true scientist.

  486. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 3:04 PM | Permalink

    Nicely said Paul.

    What, Larry, why the surprise? Is it you didn’t believe Gunnar when he said he was anti-AGW hypothesis?

    Ahem, “unphysical nonsense of ‘global temperature’” There’s a difference between having temperatures and having A temperature. Semantics. Let’s say “No single defined discrete temperature” or something.

    SteveS: BP as in Bristlecone Pines? :D If I was BP, I’d be dang sure to figure out ways to profit from any “GW reducing” legislation, regulation and technology, regardless of where or why or if the GW was real or not nor concerned with where it came from. It’s just one more issue a business has to deal with. Oh, wait.

    We will focus our efforts on continuing our business activities in energy efficiency, fuels switching, hydrogen power, solar energy, wind, biomass and natural sinks

    http://www.bp.com/modularhome.do?categoryId=7010&contentId=7026283

    You think these guys are worried about this costing them money rather than making it?

    http://www.exxonmobil.com/Corporate/energy_climate_actions.aspx

    http://www.chevron.com/globalissues/climatechange/

    As far as “precaution”, I would say this is valid:

    “Where, following an assessment of available scientific information, there are reasonable grounds for concern for the possibility of adverse effects but scientific uncertainty persists, provisional risk management measures based on a broad cost/benefit analysis whereby priority will be given to human health and the environment, necessary to ensure the chosen high level of protection in the Community and proportionate to this level of protection, may be adopted, pending further scientific information for a more comprehensive risk assessment, without having to wait until the reality and seriousness of those adverse effects become fully apparent”.

    But I don’t think CO2 meets that test, although some pollution issues do. So we should do the right things for the right reasons (or regardless of the reasons.) (I would add, the cost-benefit needs to include looking at the option values, opportunity costs, and the possible unintended consequences.)

    It’s like examining model algorithms; regardless of motive, they’ll be shown to be what they are, whatever that is. Motive is not important. In fact, as Gunnar said, you should be attempting vigorously to falsify even your own hypothesis; why wouldn’t you invite others to do the same thing? If your hypothesis is good, you should be searching out confrontational people that don’t agree with you at all, not trying to hide from them. What better way to prove your ideas robust and honest than to have somebody other than yourself with the opposite viewpoint attempt to rip it to shreads?

    And no, CO2=warming is not a hypothesis, and neither is sulpur particulates=cooling It’s a naive attempt to explain a complex system with a single cause/effect relationship, not a hypothesis.

  487. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 3:04 PM | Permalink

    >> the earth is a 3-dimensional object

    All objects are 3-dimensional.

  488. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 3:05 PM | Permalink

    RE 475. Arguments for or againt. I think you miss the agnostic middle.

    I have no reason to believe. I have no reason to disbelieve. I suspend judgement. The suspension
    of judgement is the quintessential sceptical position. Neither believing nor disbelieving. Since the
    believers have power, agnostics get lumped with disbelievers. Shrugs.

    I would return to Pierce:

    “A surprising fact, C, is observed. But if a proposition, A, were true,
    C would be a matter of course. Hence, there is a reason to suspect that A is true.”

    Suprising fact C is warming. proposition A is Human C02 release caused it.

    This means there are three issues:

    1.Is the warming accurately measured.
    2.Is the signal suprising ( think Shannon and information theory )
    3.Is A the only explanation.

    arguments can be categorized into classes according to this:

    Warming is Accurately measured ( yes/no/ dont know): measurement arguments
    Is the warming suprising ( yes/no/dont know): Paleo recons
    Are GHG the only explanation ( yes/ no/ dont know): C02, sun spots, and whatnots.

    So basically 27 arguments. I should break it down into the ones that are coherent.

  489. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 3:24 PM | Permalink

    >> the earth is a 3-dimensional object

    And let me anticipate your next objection: all objects are composed of components. If the doctor asks, shall I say “sorry, my child has no temperature, the concept is unphysical”?

    Why does AccuWeather list my city has having a temperature of 33 degrees? Don’t they know that my city is 3 dimensional object, consisting of many temperatures? The entire meteorological establishment is conspiring to foist an unphysical myth upon an unsuspecting population.

    How can anyone get this simple concept wrong? Conceptual p0rn!

  490. See - owe to Rich
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 3:27 PM | Permalink

    Re #478 Trevor: nicely put, sums up most of my feelings/understandings too.

    And now for something completely different…

    An alarmist part of a natural science programme I was watching said that current warming could release huge amounts of methane from melting tundra. I googled “methane” inside this site to see if I could find out more, but all I found was things like #143 under “SPM Released” which said that methane has been decreasing slightly because oil/gas companies were being more careful about wastage. So I ask:

    1. How long might it take to melt 1 degree (60 miles) of tundra?
    2. What change would that make to the CH4 concentration?
    3. How many doublings of CO2 would that equate to?

    Hope you agree it’s about time this thread had a new topic…

    Rich.

  491. See - owe to Rich
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 3:30 PM | Permalink

    Hey, and my posting must have been perfect because it was given a perfect number (496)! (Until some previous ones get snipped at any rate.)

  492. Larry
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 3:31 PM | Permalink

    Actually, the arguments for/against don’t matter, because it was the wrong question. The important question is, what kind of future will be under a number of scenarios, based on different cases of world economic growth and different abatement schemes? You have to apportion warming to anthropogenic and non-anthropogenic causes in order to answer the question, but then you have to get into all manner of other questions. By itself, the “is it, or is it not” question is pretty meaningless.

    Then we get into remedies. That’s as big a can of worms as the science itself. Interestingly, that’s as big a part of the IPCC reports as the science part, and is rather inconspicuously riding inside the Trojan horse under the umbrella of “scientific consensus”. If you think there’s some slight-of-hand going on in WG1, don’t overlook WG2 and WG3. I think there’s a universe of conjecture and non-sequitur hiding in there.

  493. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 3:33 PM | Permalink

    Let me kinda sum up my various top 5 lists. Which one you agree with will let you know what camp you’re in. Sort of.

    Agnostic:
    “I’m not sure if I believe it or not, there are too many unknowns, too many variables, too many assumptions being made, and too many random and chaotic parts of the system being treated as discrete and quantifiable (surface water average as proxy for “the oceans” and samples of 5 feet up the boundry layer air average for “the land”). Aside from GHG levels being higher now than before, that’s pretty certain. All the rest, and the conclusions, those are rather iffy. So I can’t give you a list, I don’t have one. I officially withhold judgement at this particular stage in the game. Make me a detailed cost-benefit analysis of your proposed solutions, and if they make sense to implement after taking any possible negatives into account, we’ll do them. But they must be justified.”

    Pro:
    1. We are changing the behavior of the atmosphere by dumping GHG and pollutants into it due to our use of fossil fuels and industrial processes etc, and we are changing the behavior of the the surface with some of those pollutants as well as with cities, farms, forests (adding and removing) and roads, and other factors related to both air and land impact the water portions of the Earth as well.
    2. The GHG related to those things going up, especially that of the non-natural GHG, correlated to the burning of fossil fuels and industrial processes.
    3. The atmosphere anomaly is going up.
    4. The sea surface temperatures are going up.
    5. Most all of the measured glaciers losing mass or receding.

    More simple pro:
    1. Earth is warming.
    2. CO2 absorbs IR.
    5. CO2 is causing the warming.
    4. People put CO2 into the air.
    5. Very bad things will happen from the warming.

    Con:
    1. There’s certainly an indication from the measurements that exist the concentrations of the greenhouse gasses linked to human activity are certainly going up. There’s two issues with that. One, while the lab behaviors of the gasses indicate they create energy, we don’t know as well how they act in practice as part of the system. Two, those same processes also produce other substances that have a moderating effect upon the IR absorbing gasses directly and indirectly. It’s just as likely as not a wash.
    2. There’s no such thing as a “global temperature” so tracking the mean anomaly of it isn’t any kind of evidence, even if you could show it to be accurate, which you can’t.
    3. Even if you overcome the issues in #1 and #2, there’s no proven causal link between the two, so the point becomes moot.
    4. Receding glaciers is annecdotal circumstantial evidence, not proof of anything except perhaps that soot is getting on them and the sun is melting the surface ice faster than “normal”, which leads to #5.
    5. There is no proof that any of this is out of the bounds of the ordinary, and nobody can demonstrate either what the “Perfect temperature of the Earth” is, or how it can accurately and meaningfully measured.

    More simple Con:
    1. There is not A global temperature.
    2. The air measurements are suspect.
    3. The sea measurements are only the top.
    4. CO2 isn’t the only factor to consider.
    5. If whatever it is isn’t normal, there are other explanations.

    Due to humans but not really happening:
    1. Thermometers are made by people.
    2. Satellites are made by people.
    3. Computer models are made by people.
    4. Climatologists are people.
    5. Reporters are people.

    Possible non-human explanations of actual warming:
    1. The “thermostat” of the sun was set at a time in the past to equilibrium+X% where it’s been contributing a steady increase of energy*years since that point although the level has remained steady.
    2. The temperature of the core of the Earth is 1000 C higher than estimated.
    3. Current thermohaline circulation patterns are causing the oceans to release more heat and GHG.
    4. Mantle plumes and tectonic plate movement patterns are causing the oceans to release more heat and GHG.
    5. The Earth’s magnetic field is at a strength where it’s been reducing the effects of solar wind and cosmic rays since some time in the past when it went to equilibrium-X%, resulting in extra energy*years since that point.

    Conspiracy:
    1. It’s an attempt to ruin the world economy.
    2. It’s a plot by communists to enslave the planet.
    3. It’s a plot by extremists to get control of nuclear weapons.
    4. It’s the CFR and IMF and KGB.
    5. It’s scientists trying to get more grant money while furthering the agendas of their evil masters.

  494. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 3:47 PM | Permalink

    Gunnar, and here I was thinking you’d continue to be reasonable today after your ealier post.

    Okay. Simple. Your city has a temperature but you can’t measure it, because it’s not one discrete thing. When the TV tells you it’s 33 F, what they really are saying is “The thermometer we’re telling you about happened to measure 33 F at the point of time we looked at it.” It’s just like anything, there’s not just a location in space, there’s a time component. Does Paris have A single temperature that is the same all of January, everywhere in the city, from the ground to the top of the highest building, in the entire air mass? Not.

    Conceptualize an iron bar 10 feet long 5 feet wide and 5 feet thick. It has different and varying sources of heating and cooling at random locations that move. You measure 10 random spots on the bar. After a half hour you again measure a random 10 spots. You record the temperature in degrees centigrade. Here’s the first,second reading. Now, tell me what ‘the’ temperature of ‘the’ bar is.

    10,15
    8,33
    12,9
    -10,15
    0,12
    55,-6
    14,14
    0,0
    15,-15
    82,12

  495. John Lang
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 3:58 PM | Permalink

    Speaking of global temperature …

    … The Global satellite temperature measurements for November are out.

    The November lower troposphere temperature has gone below the 1979 to 2007 average for the first time in 7 years at -0.014C.

    Through 2007, troposphere temperatures have declined by 0.4C (compared to the global temperature increase of 1900 to 2006 of 0.6C).

    This La Nina seems to be packing quite a punch.

    http://www.remss.com/data/msu/monthly_time_series/RSS_Monthly_MSU_AMSU_Channel_TLT_Anomalies_Land_and_Ocean_v03_0.txt

  496. conard
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 4:01 PM | Permalink

    Steve Mosher
    I am glad that you bring this up. First because I was amused when the Pascal’s Wager / Precautionary Principle was brought up at Tamino’s (Steve Bloom I am still waiting for a response). Secondly because I am looking for an exposition of the structure of AGW theory that is abstract (If A not B therefore C) and comprehensive but mostly I see polemics or way too much detail (no forest only trees). Suggested reading?

    JohnV
    I am neither a believer or denier but actively undecided. Sure there is AGW just as there is C[ow]GlobalWarming or AGP[pollution]. It seems a small matter to demonstrate that a species will have some impact on it environment. The follow-on questions are much harder to quantify so it seems prudent to put some qualifier before AGW and perhaps qualifiers for those qualifiers (catastrophic to whom and on what scales).

    Not a criticism of you, but I cannot find any meaning to reasons 4 and 5.
    On a more positive note I have some hope that my work schedule will ease and allow me some time to work on OpenTemp. Ever considered using a language that is more suitable to a devoted Mac user? ;-)

  497. Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 4:12 PM | Permalink

    #502 Conard:
    OpenTemp is pretty small and simple at this stage. I’m open to suggestions for a new platform. Java on Eclipse might be interesting, and I could use a step outside my Visual Studio comfort zone. Suggestions?

  498. conard
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 4:20 PM | Permalink

    JohnV
    Java would be nice. I use emacs and intellij (some xcode) but since most dev platforms can use ANT as a starting point I think that is a smaller issue.

    Maybe the extra mile would be a Java app that can be deployed stand-alone or as a Tomcat application.

  499. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 4:43 PM | Permalink

    conard, I’d hardly call AGW a theory, but whatever, just quibbling over semantics. Kinda.

    However, just because something has an impact on its environment (cows people pollution) and even though it is a fact that turning raw land into orange groves (or orange groves into Disneyland) changes the way the land reacts to sunlight, it does not logically follow it is getting warmer (or colder) at all. (Much less because of potential cause X.) It’s a non-sequiter.

    The derived global mean temperature anomaly is trending up .7 C
    This does not prove it is warming.

    This does prove that what we’re specifically measuring and sampling is, on the average, trending upwards after we process it. That’s it. It doesn’t prove it’s real.

    And it certainly doesn’t prove that it has to be because anything is doing anything, that’s a conclusion drawn from the belief the number means something and that it must have a cause. It doesn’t prove that the original measure/sampling is meaningful, it doesn’t prove it’s accurate, it doesn’t prove it was processed correctly. It also doesn’t prove that the derived number for 1981-1990 isn’t just more (or less) accurate than the derived number for 1931-1940.

    Nor does it disprove that the number isn’t meaningful, accurate and correctly processed. It doesn’t disprove it’s not getting warmer “on average”, (regardless if the number is or isn’t meaningful, accurate and correctly processed – we could be actually 5 C warmer; if so, it’s 5 C warmer regardless if we can or do measure it or not).

    My agnostic opinion is it’s an unknown, and potentially unknowable.

  500. Craig Loehle
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 4:52 PM | Permalink

    Re: Steve Mosher logical arguments posts. This is very important. There are many logical fallacies in the GW debate. To add to what has been said:
    The fallacy of Particulars. Your theory says there should be more of X. You observe an x (case of class X). Concluding that this proves your theory is the fallacy (Katrina example).
    The fallacy of Virtue: Because I declare myself on the side of virtue, the actions I propose can’t be questioned and are certain to solve the problem (Kyoto, recycling, compact flourescents).

  501. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 5:00 PM | Permalink

    RE 502… Glad you enjoyed the pascals wager thread I started at Tamino. Way too many people
    saw it as a religious argument rather than a game theory question. Well, part of my humour
    was to show them that they were actually using argument forms that have been used by theists.
    They were none to happy with it. I think most people would benefit from studying the form
    of arguments. Oh well.

    You asked me for a formalization of AGW. Grossly, I’ll repeat what I said above
    The form of the argument is abductive. theduke, pulls this quote
    from CS pierce.

    “A surprising fact, C, is observed. But if a proposition, A, were true,
    C would be a matter of course. Hence, there is a reason to suspect that A is true.”

    Most people think that science advances by offering a hypothesis and then testing it.
    Pierce says science advances differently. People observing something strange and then
    explaining it.

    Probably a little of both.

    but here goes:

    1. The world is getting warmer.
    2. GHGs are increasing.
    3. GHG increase is due to man.
    4. GHG increase can explain warming.
    5. Other explainations are flawed.
    6. The increase cannot be explained by natural varition.

    Therefore, human caused increase in GHGs explains the world getting warmer.

    Not exactly logical form, but it’s the basic sweep of the argument.

    various people attack various parts of this chain

  502. Larry
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 5:10 PM | Permalink

    The other fallacy is that it’s an either-or proposition. Everybody seems to be stepping into that one.

  503. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 5:57 PM | Permalink

    RE 506. Yes, Craig it’s astounding what people are able to get away with. WRT hurricanes
    I have seen every hypothesis under the sun. More storms, more intense storms, more rapidly intensifying
    storms.. every angle covered. This is the insulation from disconfirmation.

    The virtue fallacy is even more insideous. It’s insulation from debate.

    By the by

    Did you respond to JEGs request that he made on his web site?

  504. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 6:01 PM | Permalink

    RE 503.. JohnV if you try exclipse let me know what you think.

  505. Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 6:05 PM | Permalink

    A very fine column in yesterday’s WSJ:

    http://www.opinionjournal.com/columnists/hjenkins/?id=110010947

  506. conard
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 6:22 PM | Permalink

    Sam : 505
    Thanks taking the time to respond. I think we are on the same page or at least in the same chapter. It (species effect on environment) is only a non-sequitur when evaluated in the context of a theory. Beyond some hand waving I cannot tell you what that theory is.

    Steve Mosher : 507
    I understand. I have a simple model in my head that roughly matches yours: I have a few branches on some of the items ( re 1: { can cool temp, can’t cool temp, etc. } ). Since you brought up the topic of evolution this book is a popular (popularized) example of what I am looking for. I realize AGW is young so a chapter on the structure of the theory would suffice– for now.

    Guidance from the group: What do the current temperature measurements tell us about the earth’s heat budget? From my vantage point current temperature records primarily describe the motion of ‘heat’ and secondarily suggest little ( hopefully more that I currently understand ) about the earth’s budget { heat in, heat out, heat saved for later } I realize that is what the ‘average’ global temperature is supposed to measure but I have some reservations about how it is calculated (why I lurk here) and puzzle over what the physical interpretation is.

    When time permits I looking forward to playing with the ROW data.

  507. Jeremy Ayrton
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 6:27 PM | Permalink

    John V and Steve Mosher – re your 416 and 418 (as things stand at the moment). Thanks for your replies. I stuck one of the files into a table (eventualy), had a quick mess around, and replied to this effect before going to bed. (It was about 2.30 am) This got eaten, hence this tardy note of appreciation.

  508. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 6:55 PM | Permalink

    RE 512. I’m not so interested in the content of the arguments as I am intersted in there structure.

    What types of arguments work in what situations with what audiences.

    including emotional arguments and metaphorcial ones.

    Basically, I am fascinated by how words/images move people to action.

    Free the code.

  509. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 7:03 PM | Permalink

    mosh, using yer stuff, I’d say this is what we get overall (at least from certain people).

    It’s one I forgot, hysterical hyperbole catastrophic AGW stated in absolutes:

    0. All the scientists and IPCC associated people agree, except for a few nut-cases with no credentials, ties to big oil, and only able to publish in rags like E&E or JGR, making them instantly dismissable as frauds, quacks and misguided lunatics.
    1. It has been proven beyond doubt the Earth is getting much warmer.
    2. CO2 is increasing a huge percentage and is accelerating.
    3. All the CO2 increase is due to man.
    4. The CO2 increase explains and has been proven to correlate to warming.
    5. Other explanations have been proven incorrect.
    6. The increase cannot be explained by anything other than CO2.
    7. Warming is bad, in fact, it is not only a disaster, it is the most pressing issue facing the planet.
    8. We must, regardless of the direct costs, regardless of the opportunity costs, and regardless of any possible unintended consequences do every single thing we can to halt further production of CO2 and remove whatever exists in the atmosphere, immediately.

    Although 8 isn’t usually stated that clearly. And often there’s a lot of obfuscatory language and wording.

    Boils down to “CO2 is causing disasterous warming, and immediate action must be taken to resolve this planetary crises before it’s too late. The science is settled! The consensus is real! These are good things to do regardless! Think about the children!”

    Something like that.

  510. Larry
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 7:09 PM | Permalink

    514, obviously a scientist should be using a different argument structure than an activist. Thus, you should be able to tell the role someone is in by the structure of the argument. Thus it is unremarkable that Gore uses polar bears to make his case. More remarkable is that Hansen uses jesters and gorillas and insinuations relating the coal industry to the Nazis that should make us wonder.

  511. Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 7:11 PM | Permalink

    . . . The media will be tempted to blur the fact that his medal, which Mr. Gore will collect on Monday in Oslo, isn’t for “science.” In fact, a Nobel has never been awarded for the science of global warming. Even Svante Arrhenius, who first described the “greenhouse” effect, won his for something else in 1903. Yet now one has been awarded for promoting belief in manmade global warming as a crisis.

    How this honor has befallen the former Veep could perhaps be explained by another Nobel, awarded in 2002 to Daniel Kahneman for work he and the late Amos Tversky did on “availability bias,” roughly the human propensity to judge the validity of a proposition by how easily it comes to mind.

    Their insight has been fruitful and multiplied: “Availability cascade” has been coined for the way a proposition can become irresistible simply by the media repeating it; “informational cascade” for the tendency to replace our beliefs with the crowd’s beliefs; and “reputational cascade” for the rational incentive to do so.

    Mr. Gore clearly understands the game he’s playing, judging by his resort to such nondispositive arguments as: “The people who dispute the international consensus on global warming are in the same category now with the people who think the moon landing was staged in a movie lot in Arizona.”

    Here’s exactly the problem that availability cascades pose: What if the heads being counted to certify an alleged “consensus” arrived at their positions by counting heads?

    I wish I’d written that. It’s from the link above in 511.

  512. Jeremy Ayrton
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 7:21 PM | Permalink

    Re #514

    RE 512. I’m not so interested in the content of the arguments as I am intersted in there structure.

    What types of arguments work in what situations with what audiences.

    including emotional arguments and metaphorcial ones.

    Basically, I am fascinated by how words/images move people to action.

    Somewhat tangentially,have you considered analysing a blog/thread such as this?

  513. Richard Sharpe
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 7:26 PM | Permalink

    PNAS says: Global warming could lead to increased severe thunderstorms

    Scientists anticipate anthropogenic intensified precipitation by the end of the century as increased greenhouse gas concentrations are expected to raise average temperatures by 2-6°C around the world. Robert Trapp et al. used global and high-resolution regional climate models to examine whether the intensified precipitation will arise from severe thunderstorms.

    Increased precipitation would seem to be a good thing, but maybe not thunderstorms.

  514. conard
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 7:33 PM | Permalink

    Sam : 515

    8. We must, regardless of the direct costs, regardless of the opportunity costs, and regardless of any possible unintended consequences do every single thing we can to halt further production of CO2 and remove whatever exists in the atmosphere, immediately.

    The interesting thing about this line of reasoning is that it is difficult to understand the moral argument that justifies sacrificing some known number of people today by events we do understand and can mitigate for an unknown number of people tomorrow that may be killed by some unknown event whose likelihood is not known.

    If anyone knows of a thoughtful treatment I am very much interested.

  515. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 7:34 PM | Permalink

    RE 518.. hehe.

    Broad brush. When things got really hairy, did you watch guys come in and change the subject.?
    When the science threads slow down, the social aspect picks up.

    You’ve been to a cocktail party right?

    Larry is the guy with the damn lampshade on his head.

  516. Susann
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 7:38 PM | Permalink

    The gods of climate science weblogs must be trying to silence me because in the last few days, three very long and detailed posts have vanished into the ether — once by a slip of my finger, once by me forgetting to sign in, and once because the server was down. Maybe I should take the hint. :) I actually thought last night that Steve M had finally tired of me and blocked me completely. There’s still time. :)

    This is going back quite a bit but I wanted to respond to this:

    The critical question then becomes one of how the process evolves and particularly so when the effects are to be realized in the longer term future. Is science (and not scientists) and the science, as interpreted by the policy makers, pushing the process or is it being pulled by a political process that has more less decided that mitigating action is required or would be at worst a benign effort that government should be involved with anyway? Pulling the process will be evidenced by the amount of selling and kinds of selling that are used to sway the voting constituents and the tendency to attempt to show benefits and ignore or minimize potential costs and likelihood of unintended consequences. My question to you, Susann, as a self-confessed policy person, is how much does the policy person get involved in the pulling part of the process compared to the pushing part of it as both are described above?

    I think I know what you are getting at, but perhaps our terminology is different. Where you use “push” and “pull”, I tend to use “drive” as in “have a primary influence on the direction” of the policy process. The short answer is this: in my view (and I may be wrong — I am not an expert) science does not drive the policy process nor do policy analysts like me. The policy process is always politically driven, pulled and pushed, by interest groups who may or may not be informed by science. Science (as opposed to scientists or science advocacy groups wo may become stakeholders) is a tool. Policy analysts are technicians. Science can provide scientific data X relating to issue Y but that doesn’t necessarily mean that any policy will be developed and any action taken. If there is no political will, nothing will happen no matter what science says.

    How does the political will to act come about? It is there that the battle is really fought. How to influence political will becomes the issue. When does science become so politicized that it becomes a player in the policy process? That is one of the more interesting questions.

    Science is often used by stakeholders to support their position in a policy debate. In the ideal world, science should take place outside the political process. The goal of science is to produce objective knowledge of the world. That knowledge is useful to humans because it helps us understand (knowledge for its own sake) and manipulate (practical knowledge). In the ideal world there are processes in place to keep science objective and outside the larger political process. In reality, this is not always the case. Politics influences science in a number of ways and levels, but at the broader level, primarily through funding. Think stem cell research. This doesn’t necesarily mean the findings are wrong or biased, although it might. It does mean that some questions are not explored and some possible answers not pursued. Knowledge is thus potentially (and likely always) incomplete.

    Those who have a stake in the policy process try to influence political will so that their interests are realized. Science becomes a tool to influence political will. Because there is usually debate and disagreement in science, differing sides in a policy debate can use the same science to buttress their differing positions. One side may point to one position in a body of scientific research, while the other side point to an opposing side in a body of scientific research. It is also possible to completely bypass scientific evidence and point to other factors that are used to determine policy directions. Economic interests, ethical concerns, etc. may trump what science says.

    It’s simply not enough for science to say X about policy issue Y and bang, legislation is enacted. There are other considerations with weight. Sometimes – often – these other considerations have more weight than the science.

    In my experience, the government is usually reactive (although not always) – they usually act when a political problem arises that they feel is in their interest and in fulfillment of their agenda to act upon, and not until. Something is labeled a political problem if it brings untoward publicity or if important stakeholders raise enough of a fuss because they perceive something to be a problem. When this happens, the politicos ask for policy on problem X. Policy analysts pull the information together on the problem, consult with stakeholders, develop potential solutions, options and risks, etc. as well as recommendations. The policy advisor may suggest which recommendation to choose, but the policy maker, the politicos, ultimately make the decisions, based on their evaluation of the costs of acting (political, economic, social) or not acting.

    In the best of all possible worlds, one wants the policy analyst to be objective in their assessment of the problem and solutions. (Policy advisors are usually biased and meant to be so. They are there to see the political agenda enacted.) Accurate portrayal of the science, of the stakeholders’ interests, of the risks, costs, etc. Let the politicos decide based solely on the evidence. But it isn’t (always) the case in reality. Policy analysis is not scientific, but there are usually codes of conduct and values, etc. that guide professional ethics. There is always uncertainty in the science. The interests of some stakeholders have more weight than others. It’s a political not scientific process.

    The “voters” may not be “sold” on the policy unless it is a larger popular issue. They might not even be consulted in a more general manner, such as a referendum or public consultation. If it is a very arcane issue not in the public eye and not likely to become a larger public issue, there will be little selling involved. Decisions will be made and legislation enacted without much public selling or information other than a lowly press release.

    So it’s not clear-cut who or what drives the policy process. Depends entirely on the issue. Clear as mud, no?

    Now, as to AGW? It’s an exemplar of many policy process issues.

  517. bender
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 7:44 PM | Permalink

    #511/#517

    “availability cascade”
    “informational cascade”
    “reputational cascade”

    See how the meme spreads? (Dano?) Faith in GCMs. Boris. John V. Who else? Dare I name names at RC? It’s the glue that binds it all together.

    The oceans are misbehaving. Study the oceans.
    The atmosphere is misbehaving. Study the atmosphere.
    The models are misbehaving. Study the models.

  518. Larry
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 7:51 PM | Permalink

    522 hint: if you’re going to write a long comment, use a text editor.

    Second hint: (psst! Mosh!) if you use a text editor, use one that doesn’t insert line feeds.

  519. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 7:57 PM | Permalink

    I second that, if you are losing posts (it happens…) use notepad or vi to craft your missive….

    lol bender, meme, dano, heh….

    conard, thanks. I’ll answer the second comment first.

    To me, there isn’t a moral argument. I doubt you’ll find much that is anywhere near neutral (scientific?) on the subject. I don’t know if it’s a worldview that sees all things in an environmental light that considers people as despoilers of nature, capitalism as evil and nature pristine and divorced from the living things other than plant life, I don’t know. Is it something with the inequalities between various classes of economic beings? Is it just illogic or shortsightedness?

    The fact is, there is a limited amount of money, a limited amount of resources, and some people try harder than others (some of those trying harder fail anyway….). To me, there are other, more important and more pressing issues than the climate (regardless of the reality or cause) and only by doing careful analysis of the cost-benefits (and related matters) can we best know how to funnel things. The problem is that we are dealing with people, and they have emotions, they have preconceived ideas, and they don’t always come to the same conclusions based upon the same information. If that’s from pride, jealousy, a basis of thought, a lack of understanding, or just their emotional makeup, I don’t know, and it doesn’t matter. Being aware of such things lets you ask the right questions, if you’re paying attention. Thankfully, it doesn’ matter, because there is an economic incentive to solve some of these potential problems, and like the population growing so fast it outstrips its food source, technology seems to keep up pretty well. I don’t know, maybe I’m just a pollyanna, or so jaded I don’t care. :)

    As to your first response, of course living things have an effect upon their environment, but as far as developing a cause/effect relationship, we need some kind of proof, not just conclusions based upon what seems to be political motivations.

    As far as your question on what current temperature measurements tell us about the Earth’s heat budget, my contention is nothing. See my post at ?p=2494#comment-173033

    To boil it down to a paragraph:

    a) is the global mean temperature anomaly a reliable indication of the increase/decrease in the Earth’s energy levels in the first place and b) if ‘a’, then is the +.7 that we have the correct value, and not more or less and c) if ‘b’, what are the ratios in the anomaly between anthro GHG, the resulting pollution, and the changes in land use changes?

    People interested in the truth ask these questions, not, as mosh said, come in and change the subject then leave. FWIW, YMMV.

  520. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 8:02 PM | Permalink

    Oh. I have a random odd behavior where the text I’m typing is not always visible in the text
    window. Or the browser scrolls. If I hit return before either (or both) happens, then you
    get shorter lines….

  521. jae
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 8:23 PM | Permalink

    Susann:

    Policy analysts pull the information together on the problem, consult with stakeholders, develop potential solutions, options and risks, etc. as well as recommendations. The policy advisor may suggest which recommendation to choose, but the policy maker, the politicos, ultimately make the decisions, based on their evaluation of the costs of acting (political, economic, social) or not acting.

    I agree with most of what you are saying here, BUT in a typical controversial policy-making situation, TWO SIDES (or more) are invited to the dabate, and debate is encouraged (as in a public hearing for an environmental rule change). In the case of AGW/IPCC, this has NOT happened, to the detriment of the process. The UN and allies (NGOs, and “progressive” governmental agencies, especially) have encouraged exposition by ONLY one side and have reinforced that bias by giving leadership roles to authors with “a dog in the fight.” Many of the real stakeholders (the “deniers”) are excluded or marginalized in this process. This is not a normal way of addressing complex issues, and it a corrupt process, IMHO. The fact that most, if not all, of Steve Mc’s recommendations to IPCC were completely ignored supports my case.

  522. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 8:30 PM | Permalink

    RE 524. Line feeds? It’s poetry dude. Those are stanza breaks.

  523. Larry
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 8:33 PM | Permalink

    528, you know what Popeye said: “that’s all I can stanza, cause I can’t stanza no more”…

  524. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 8:41 PM | Permalink

    RE 522. So what do you think of Ross’ tax proposal? As a libertarian ( more of the Rue Paul kind and
    less of the Ron Paul kind.. actually more of a Les Paul kind) I hate taxes. But I like Ross’s approach.

    Not to change the subject

  525. Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 8:47 PM | Permalink

    Sam, #526: I get the same thing. The server slows way down or something. If you type looking at the keyboard, it’s not a problem. If you type looking at the screen, it is. I typed the last sentence looking at the keyboard and it took nearly three seconds to show up. Or catch up, as it were.

  526. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 8:50 PM | Permalink

    Larry, moe here, who do you nominate for curly?

  527. Susann
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 9:30 PM | Permalink

    I agree with most of what you are saying here, BUT in a typical controversial policy-making situation, TWO SIDES (or more) are invited to the dabate, and debate is encouraged (as in a public hearing for an environmental rule change). In the case of AGW/IPCC, this has NOT happened, to the detriment of the process. The UN and allies (NGOs, and “progressive” governmental agencies, especially) have encouraged exposition by ONLY one side and have reinforced that bias by giving leadership roles to authors with “a dog in the fight.” Many of the real stakeholders (the “deniers”) are excluded or marginalized in this process. This is not a normal way of addressing complex issues, and it a corrupt process, IMHO. The fact that most, if not all, of Steve Mc’s recommendations to IPCC were completely ignored supports my case.

    Jae, as I’ve said before, IMO, I think the IPCC process starts from the position that AGW is established science and proceeds on that basis. Because of this, it does not invite debate over the issue of whether AGW is real because that has already been determined, although the certainty of that conclusion seems to be reinforced using new research with each iteration. IOW, the debate is not if AGW exists, but how certain, how much, when and how to respond. Given that starting point, a few reviewers raising technical points about some of the data is not likely going to have much sway — unless the points raised gain footing among other scientists and then interrupt the process, causing it to go back to square one. There is already a policy lens in place through which the science is viewed. A whole lot of science and evidence will have to be brought to bear on the issue to change directions at this stage of the IPCC process. YMMV. I don’t know that it’s corrupt for I don’t have all the facts. I see it as farther down the policy road than some feel is warranted given the science.

  528. conard
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 9:40 PM | Permalink

    If the ‘change the subject’ comments were directed at me, my apologies. My original intent was to gently push back on JohnV’s objection to MarkW’s use of the qualifier ‘catastrophic’. It is inevitable that mistakes will be made when entering into something new. Toe in the water participant– I have been following the debate between CA and RC for some time now.

    Sam
    I did not expect you to have a moral argument. I was hoping to see some light from Boris, Sod, Steve Bloom, etc. With Steve McIntyre being otherwise occupied I thought the timing was right ;-) I fully expect my comment to be deleted.

  529. Susann
    Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 10:17 PM | Permalink

    530, I don’t have all the facts about carbon taxes to know if $4 or $24/ton/decade is the optimal range or if the warming of the troposphere is the correct measure of AGW, but I think a flexible policy/program that can change in response to changes in the climate and scientific knowledge makes sense given uncertainties. I also like the idea of stimulating better means of measuring temperature, since that’s one of the issues.

  530. Posted Dec 6, 2007 at 11:08 PM | Permalink

    Susann, #522: “So it’s not clear-cut who or what drives the policy process. Depends entirely on the issue. Clear as mud, no?”

    Actually I think it’s very clear as it relates to the issue of AGW. The policy process is driven by a loose affiliation of scientists, policymakers (bureaucrats) politicians and people (activists, sympathizers and financial contributors) who have been cultivating and disseminating the ideology and the science that reputedly proves it for decades now.

    Few people paid much attention until recently. But now that the radical nature of their recommendations are becoming known, it has provoked a reaction. A contending coalition similarly composed has materialized to rigorously check and frequently contest the advocates’ assumptions and recommendations, not to mention the science that underlies them.

    In its most basic form, this controversy differs only marginally from the arguments over slavery, Darwin, prohibition, abortion, the separation of church and state, and Women’s suffrage. It’s a moral argument with scientific underpinnings that became a contentious political issue once proposals for radical reform were introduced.

    A lot of what you write on this issue needlessly complexifies (if I might coin a word) the situation.

  531. Andrey Levin
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 1:12 AM | Permalink

    Susann:

    Two chapters of old article of Lindzen

    Consensus and the Current “Popular Vision” and
    The Temptations and the Problems of “Global Warming”

    http://eaps.mit.edu/faculty/lindzen/153_Regulation.pdf

    could be of interest to you.

  532. Tom Vonk
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 4:51 AM | Permalink

    # 535

    I don’t have all the facts about carbon taxes to know if $4 or $24/ton/decade is the optimal range or if the warming of the troposphere is the correct measure of AGW, but I think a flexible policy/program that can change in response to changes in the climate and scientific knowledge makes sense given uncertainties. I also like the idea of stimulating better means of measuring temperature, since that’s one of the issues.

    Hallucinating .
    I believe this person defines herself as being involved in politics . As I am not american I can’t say if it is believable or not . Let’s suppose it is .
    So here we have somebody who happily admits that he hasn’t a clue about climate physics , that he hasn’t a clue if the level A or level B of a certain action has a desirable effect and even goes so far as to admit that he hasn’t a clue how the desirable effect could be measured .
    OK that’s honest and the only 2 possible rational courses of action should be :
    1) for the God’s sake keep her as far from any decision related to AGW as possible or ,
    2) train her for 2-3 years in basic physics (10 hours a week should be easily found . If not skip some useless meetings)

    Is that what happens ?
    Well no , instead the person “thinks” that a flexible policy makes sense .
    How can any policy , flexible or otherwise , make sense when the person deciding it can neither define the target nor measure if the “flexible” policy is efficient or not .
    How can a politician be so irresponsible as to say :

    “OK , let’s slap a tax of 10 $/t . It is as flexible as flexible goes because we can always put it to 0 or to 100 . Why ? Well there is this guy who’s telling us that if we do that it will stop getting hotter . When ? He babbled something about 2100 but that doesn’t make sense – we won’t wait so long .
    Where ? Ummm … I think that the guy actually said in the Antarctics so we’ll slap 2 or 3 billions of taxpayer money and stuff Antarctics with thermometers , baloons and government services . Beats me why it is not the USA but they say so . When do we flexibly change the tax ? Ummmm , no idea . Perhaps when somebody yells very loud and the media take it up . Or just before the elections ? Yep that’s it – we ll say that things are no more so hot and that we cut taxes . People will love that .
    Oh and by the way the white blouse guys need 1 billion for new computers , I have no clue why but make sure they get it . Why ? We totally depend on them and they are supposed to know what they do . They said so in several talk shows and there is even a movie . Got an Oskar so must be right . I read somewhere that some physics Nobel prize says otherwise but he’s never invited to talk shows . Is surely wrong .”

    God , can it be that such people are actually allowed to decide things that affect our lives ?

  533. Filippo Turturici
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 5:44 AM | Permalink

    Sorry, guys: who knows what is the right decadal trend 1979-2006 for RSS-MSU data?
    The RSS site gives +0.176°C/decade for lower troposphere; but another site, calculating it by computer (not given then) gives +0.13°C/decade, and this value seems more right to me with a fast looking at data.
    Anyway, here the graph:

  534. MarkW
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:13 AM | Permalink

    I find it interesting that those who insist on setting a tax rate for CO2 emissions, are only interested in calculating the negative impacts of a warmer world.

    Why is there no interest in offsetting these negatives with a valuation of the positive impacts of a warmer world, not to mention the positive impacts of higher CO2 levels?

    It is my belief that when all impacts, both positive and negative are analysed, we will end up subsidizing CO2 emitters, not taxing them.

  535. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:33 AM | Permalink

    Michael Mann, “Science Friday”, The Daily Kos, Jan 2006:

    Re:The Hockey Stick

    While our work was important, it represented only one in many studies coming to the same conclusion, and all of these studies collectively represent just one small part of a large number of independent lines of evidence indicating a human influence on climate in recent decades. Our Northern Hemisphere temperature reconstruction, since termed the “Hockey Stick” by a colleague of mine, due to the sharp 20th century warming (the “blade”) that occurs at the end of the 1000 year record, became an icon of the evidence for global warming in large part because it was a simple, easily depicted indication of climate change, and was prominently featured in the summary for policy makers of the 2001 report of the U.N. intergovernmental panel on climate change. Even though several other studies, as shown in the report, came to the same conclusion, the iconisation of our work made it a target for special interests who thought that they could sow doubt about the vast amount of science that indicates that human-caused global warming is a real phenomena, by attacking our study by whatever means possible, regardless of how vicious or dishonest.

    The original criticisms of our work have been completely discredited now, and as I mentioned above, numerous independent studies have confirmed our original.

    We dealt with the technical issues involved in past posts at RealClimate here and here. To be sure, our original work is hardly the last word on the subject and new data and improved methods are continually being published by many groups including my collaborators and me. The science has advanced well beyond where it was nearly ten years ago when we started our original work, focusing instead now on the detailed comparisons of model-predicted and reconstructed spatial patterns of climate variables in past centuries, and interpretation of past changes in terms of various factors such as changes in solar output and volcanic eruptions, as well as recent human influences. In fact the whole focus by our attackers on an almost decade old piece of work instead of the current state-of-the-art demonstrates clearly that the aim of these manufactured ‘controversies’ is political and not scientific.

    Mann in the news click on the Daily Kos

    BS galore~!

  536. trevor
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:35 AM | Permalink

    I was very encouraged today to read the following in an e:mail from a senior, and very credible scientist:

    Incidentally there is no ‘scientific consensus”, and repeated
    > attempts to gag opposing views is a very unhealthy, unscientific way
    > to behave. I have recently been asked to be a signatory for a
    > document to be sent to the United Nations explaining something like
    > views given above. It is by invitation only, but there will be
    > thousands of top scientists signing on.

  537. Susann
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 7:27 AM | Permalink

    Actually I think it’s very clear as it relates to the issue of AGW. The policy process is driven by a loose affiliation of scientists, policymakers (bureaucrats) politicians and people (activists, sympathizers and financial contributors) who have been cultivating and disseminating the ideology and the science that reputedly proves it for decades now.

    I’m glad you have all the answers and can assure me of how simple it all is. I only work in the policy field so what would I know about how complex it is?

  538. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 7:28 AM | Permalink

    re 534 no the comments were not directed at you. Changeing the subject was a good thing since
    a couple of us were having a kerfuffle! that was my point. You’re doing fine

  539. Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 7:31 AM | Permalink

    @Susan–

    >>I also like the idea of stimulating better means of measuring temperature, since that’s one of the issues.

    Better measuring isn’t quite the problem. Ideally, measuring global average temperature (however it is defined) with a view toward detecging changes is very difficult. A continuous set of measurements in the ‘same’ location over a long time are required to assess changes in global temperature. To identify changes in the global average one also wants the temperature at that location to not change for reasons not specifically related to changes the global average temperature. (Or at least, you don’t want a substantial portion all changing in the same direction of reasons unrelated to the global average.)

    Unfortunately, back in the “pre-concern” time, many, many of the temperature measuring stations were placed in populated areas rather than very unpopulated areas. This tended to happen because we mostly want to know the temperature in locations where people live. We always want to measure temperatuer at airports etc..

    Some met stations and measurements get placed elsewhere– to provide information for weather forecasts.

    What happened pre-weather forecasting? I’d bet there were very few funded met stations out in truly unpopulated areas.

    Since the 1900′s opulation has exploded. Unfortunately, it’s known that when cities grow, the local climate experiences something called the “urban heat island effect”. Urban areas, in particular get hotter even when areas not far away do not.

    Because so many thermometers tended to be inside these areas — which may be the only small city in a vast open area– many of the measurements are subject to this.

    This is a known upward bias.

    How much effect does this have?

    Well, figuring that out would required analysis and ‘correction’. But, what if the person correcting is biased toward a POV?

    Scientists are people and do have biases. Problems arise outside of AGW when a graduate student takes data to test their advisors pet theory. One will graduate much faster if your data confirms. If it fails to confirm, it will be back to the lab to get more data until it’s quite clear all hope of confirming the pet theory is gone! ;0

    As far as temperature statisons go, sometimes, measurement locations are shifted for some reason. Nowadays one reason might be to remove the heat island effect, but this could happen for other reasons. The land on which the weather station is located might be needed for some other purpose.

    So, in 1973, a weather stations might have been moved from the middle of say, a small city like Waukegan, Illinois to a pasture in neighboring rural Gurnee. (Not saying this specifically happened – in fact that would be a fairly big move and it would shift further from lake michigan– just a for instance.)

    The temperature record for that region will have a discontinuity. That discontinuity is not due to climate change. It’s due to the fact that Gurnee is not Waukegan. Gurnee is not on the lake– it’s one town in. It’s not urban etc.

    If all you want is to tell local farmers something the weather back in 1973 , both towns gave pretty good information. But to find the effect on the climate change?

    Once again you correct?

    The issues vis-a-vis Hansen’s data are partly related to these corrections. The are also partly related to how one fills in data between sparse stations. (There aren’t a lot of weather stations in the middle of the Pacific.)

    Mistakes were made. The mistakes made happen to be in the direction of confirming his theory.

    In principle one might expect there is a 50%-50% chance mistakes will cancel. But, if you read my graduate student example above, you can see the dilemma: people have a strong tendency to go back to the lab or check and recheck results when they get results they don’t believe. They tend not to stop checking otherw

    The real issue
    So, the issue isn’t how can we better measure temperature now, but “Can we redesign the process to minimize the possibility of bias in estimating Global Average Temperature” whatever that may be.

    Solution options might include:
    1) Funding an agency &or research group that does not run GCM’s to estimate Global Mean Temperature (or at least the US bit). There are plenty of agencies that don’t do run GCM whose staff who have appropriate skill set for this task. One could find a group at a DOE national lab, one could set up a program like DOE ARM — or just move the project over there. One could do lots of things.

    2) Making all programs, algorithms and data sets used to compute this public a condition of receiving government funding for the program to compute these. (Obviously, interested amateurs could still access the data and fiddle themselves for free.)

    That’s sort of what people here at CA are requesting.

    Frankly, I think when this is done, we’ll still find it’s hotter now than in the 70s and 80s. Possibly not by as much, but still noticeably warmer. But if the US government is in the business of monitoring climate, it ought to split the US efforts toward computation of global average temperature apart from from US efforts in running GCM’s.

    Part of the scientific process involves ensuring entirely different groups find confirming results. The task of running GCM’s and computing global mean temperature are sufficiently different that splitting the two would not necessarily require a huge outlay. (It might even save money. NASA ain’t cheap! Of course, either are national labs!)

  540. Susann
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 7:38 AM | Permalink

    Hallucinating .
    I believe this person defines herself as being involved in politics .

    Actually, I did not identify myself as being involved in “politics” but “policy”. As a pragmatist rather than an ideologue, I know that policy will be made regardless of what I happen to understand personally about carbon taxes and proper measures of change in global temperature. Given that’s the case, and given the uncertainties in the science and impacts of regulation, a responsible person would agree that a policy should be flexible rather than static so it can respond to changes in either the science or the actual temperature. Given that climate change is a long-term on-going phenomenon, a static policy might lock industries into certain carbon tax or capture programs that would either be harmful or not powerful enough to deal with changes as they occurred.

    It’s quite possible to disagree with a person’s position without personal insults.

  541. Greg
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 7:41 AM | Permalink

    Susann

    I have been following this blog for about a year now spending hundreds of hours reading all the threads. I rarely post my thoughts (other than an occasional visit to the tip jar), however, your position as a Policy Analyst coupled with your desire to seek information has inspired me to comment on what I observe in your posts. I truly believe that your presence here is admirable in your due diligent quest.

    That said, I believe I can identify your reserve in this highly complex matter. To me, you seem a bit confused.

    In 522 you state:

    The short answer is this: in my view (and I may be wrong — I am not an expert)

    With all due respect, and I truly mean this in a non-sarcastic tone, as a Policy Analyst, you are more of an expert in terms of how the policy process works than most.

    You then state:

    The policy process is always politically driven, pulled and pushed, by interest groups

    However, some 600 words later, you somewhat contradict this with:

    So it’s not clear-cut who or what drives the policy process.

    Within 522 you clarified the objective role of a PA:

    Accurate portrayal of the science, of the stakeholders’ interests, of the risks, costs, etc.

    IMHO, you seem to skirt a clearer and more concise role of a PA. This is where your confusion lies. There is a conflict in ‘an accurate portrayal of science’, i.e. truth seeking, and ‘the interests of the stakeholders’. It would be by coincidence if the two were the same.

    May I suggest that you follow the former and let the advisors determine which ‘mud’ they choose to use weather (sp. pun intended) it’s money for grants, greed for special interest, power and prestige for the electorate and so on. Being on this blog tells me you are interested in the truth.

    Now, that being said, what is the truth on AGW? I will point to your post in 527:

    In the case of AGW/IPCC, this has NOT happened, to the detriment of the process….The fact that most, if not all, of Steve Mc’s recommendations to IPCC were completely ignored supports my case.

    This then somewhat conflicts when you say in post 533:

    IOW, the debate is not if AGW exists, but how certain, how much, when and how to respond.

    So, by your own admission, there really was no debate, it’s settled. Now you are here and are probably wondering why.

  542. D. Patterson
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 7:45 AM | Permalink

    Please note as a matter of record and not a matter of opinion that the IPCC has no mandate and at no time has ever had a mandate or any other form of legal or administrative authority to decide, consider, research, or deliberate in anyway whatsoever the possibility that a change of climate is not or cannot be “attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere.” Consequently, the IPCC is obligated by treaties and international law to disregard anyone and any evidence which purport to demonstrate human activity may not or definitely has not altered the composition of the global atmosphere enough to be responsible for a significant change in the global climate/s. The decision to attribute Climate Change to human activity, impose legal obligations upon members of the United Nations, indoctrinate the decision upon the populations of member nations, and grant international legal authority to impose further obligations was made more than a third of a century ago. No scientific research, no matter how valid or how compelling, can be or likely will be acknowledged with substantive effect by the IPCC or the organizations of the United Nations until and unless the domestic laws and international treaties which granted such authority and obligations are revoked.

    United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC 1992) [adopted definitions from WCC 1979]
    ARTICLE 1 DEFINITIONS [....] For the purposes of this Convention: [....] 2….”Climate change” means a change of climate which is attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere and which is in addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable time periods.

    ARTICLE 3 PRINCIPLES. In their actions to achieve the objective of the Convention and to implement its provisions, the Parties shall be guided, INTER ALIA, by the following: [....]
    3….The Parties should take precautionary measures to anticipate, prevent or minimize the causes of climate change and mitigate its adverse effects. Where there are threats of serious or irreversible damage, lack of full scientific certainty should not be used as a reason for postponing such measures, taking into account that policies and measures to deal with climate change should be cost-effective so as to ensure global benefits at the lowest possible cost. [....]

  543. Susann
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 7:59 AM | Permalink

    Except Greg, that I did not make post 527.

  544. kim
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:10 AM | Permalink

    More discussion of the precautionary principle and Pascal’s Wager. Susann needs cautioning that there are opportunity costs, gained and lost, in any direction.
    ====================================

  545. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:15 AM | Permalink

    re551 are you trying to get me in trouble?

  546. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:15 AM | Permalink

    re551 are you trying to get me in trouble?

  547. Tom Vonk
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:23 AM | Permalink

    Actually, I did not identify myself as being involved in “politics” but “policy”. As a pragmatist rather than an ideologue, I know that policy will be made regardless of what I happen to understand personally about carbon taxes and proper measures of change in global temperature. Given that’s the case, and given the uncertainties in the science and impacts of regulation, a responsible person would agree that a policy should be flexible rather than static so it can respond to changes in either the science or the actual temperature. Given that climate change is a long-term on-going phenomenon, a static policy might lock industries into certain carbon tax or capture programs that would either be harmful or not powerful enough to deal with changes as they occurred.

    It’s quite possible to disagree with a person’s position without personal insults.

    I humbly admit that I must have missed the fine difference between being involved in politics and being involved in policy .
    However I strongly contest having used any “personnal insults” in the case that the last phrase was meant to comment on my post .
    My point was not if any policy should be flexible or not .
    My point was that any responsible person should ask herself the following questions :
    - do I understand what the problem is about and what the evidence is ?
    - if yes , do I understand what the effects are and what the evidence is ?
    - if yes , do I understand if something I have control of can change the effects ?
    - if yes , can I set a target and a policy ?
    - if yes , can I measure the progress or in other words the efficiency of the policy ?

    In the case that this chain is broken by a no somewhere , the responsible person says “There must be no policy , flexible or otherwise because I see neither problem nor policy target .”
    A non responsible person would say “Despite the fact that I don’t know what the problems are I will take action because a certain small subset of other people says that I should do so . I can’t say if they lie , if the policy results can be measured or even if many things can go horribly wrong . We’ll see what happens .”

    That was my point .

  548. D. Patterson
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:36 AM | Permalink

    Re: 549 D. Patterson says:
    December 7th, 2007 at 7:45 am

    Sorry, small correction…it should have read…

    No such scientific research, no matter how valid or how compelling, can be or likely will be acknowledged with substantive effect by the IPCC or the organizations of the United Nations until and unless the domestic laws and international treaties which granted such authority and obligations are revoked.

  549. Greg
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 9:08 AM | Permalink

    Re: 550
    Ooops, sorry about that. Honest mistake which I hope that doesn’t invalidate all that was written.

  550. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 9:47 AM | Permalink

    Susann’s comments are illuminating. We have a number of engineers here. Show of hands. How many have ever been assigned by their idiot pointy-haired bosses to solve a “problem” that hasn’t been established to be a problem?

    [Waving hands...]

    And when you try to explain that it’s not really the big deal that they think it is, and the “fix” can really throw a monkey wrench in the works, what does said pointy-haired boss say?

    [Ok, I understand, but go fix it...]

    This whole process is right out of Dilbert.

  551. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 9:54 AM | Permalink

    RE 558. Ding ding ding.

    When you move up into management you are expected to be a problem exposer or problem creator.
    Then your engineers solve these problems. Finding good problems, creating good problems is
    an artistic endeavor. It requires different training than most engineers get.

  552. bender
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 10:03 AM | Permalink

    It’s quite possible to disagree with a person’s position without personal insults.

    Think of Susann as a POV, not a person. It’s the rock-and-a-hard-place between scientist and politician. Between majority consensus and minority dissent. All she has to work with is conflicting information. Have some respect for the challenge this person faces. While warmers and skeptics are skeptical of each other, this person is skeptical of both. Escalating the degree of conflict with warmers will not bring this ‘person’ any closer to your POV.

    By the same token, in a democratic society this element should be held fully accountable whenever it meanders over toward the margins of unbalanced advocacy. Is Susann listening to the skeptical voice? I think possibly so. But watch her.

  553. bender
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 10:11 AM | Permalink

    #558/#559
    Exactly. The engineer thinks there is not a problem. The manager knows there is a problem. The reason they don’t see eye-to-eye is that the problem is fundamentally a business problem, not an engineering problem. So the engineer wants to use engineering to solve the business problem. But maybe the manager does not have an engineering background. He prefers organizational tactics. It IS Dilbert.

    ‘Susann’ has a problem. Don’t you engineers be telling her otherwise.

  554. bender
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 10:13 AM | Permalink

    #561 Wouldn’t Ross McKitrick make for a great graduate student supervisor?

  555. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 10:22 AM | Permalink

    SS, #58: My guess fwiw: she’s a grad student in search of a subject for a thesis, which in all fairness, can be a tough row to hoe.

    That’s the toughest part of the whole process if your advisor does not already have something. My thesis advisor did, my dissertation advisor did not.

    Exactly. The engineer thinks there is not a problem. The manager knows there is a problem.

    Hehe, usually it’s the other way around. :)

    Yes, bender, Ross would. Steve would, too, but I’d liken him to something more like my current advisor: mostly hands off but critical enough to keep you on the right path.

    Mark

  556. bender
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 10:27 AM | Permalink

    Mark T, your age is showing.

  557. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 10:32 AM | Permalink

    The engineer thinks there is not a problem. The manager knows there is a problem.

    That’s not the exact issue, though. Often the manager sees a real problem reflected in the financial numbers, correctly concludes that there’s a plant yield problem, and then just assumes that that’s due to bad instrumentation, and instructs the engineer to install a new $50,000 control system. The engineer knows the real reason is the graveyard operators snoozing on the job and fiddling the recipes so that he can get some uninterrupted shuteye. That’s because the boss sees the monthly cost numbers, but the engineer sees the daily yield numbers, and notices things going to hell whenever Joe’s on graveyard. So the engineer tells the boss, but the boss doesn’t want an HR issue, so he tells the engineer to fix the controls.

    Situation 2 (classic): Y2K. Boss orders engineer to make sure nothing can possibly go wrong at midnight, Jan 1, 2000. Engineer says “sure thing” and submits an appropriation request for a 1 MW generator. Boss signs it. Generator is installed and running by June, 2000 (yes, this really happened).

    In retrospect, people taking such draconian measures based on the precautionary principle end up looking very stupid, but it was serious business in 1999. So serious, the generator suppliers were 6 months behind on deliveries, which is why the generator wasn’t installed and running until June. This is the kind of stupidity that I hope to avoid, but there are a lot of people out there hell-bent on stupidity.

  558. D. Patterson
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 10:35 AM | Permalink

    Ding, ding, ding…

    Manager of a Fortune 100 computer marketing company:

    who doesn’t understand what a computer operating system does, what it looks like, or where to find one…

    has the salesman deliver and install a computer on customer’s business site…

    the customer complains to manager that computer doesn’t work and demands it be returned for a full refund…

    manager sends computer engineer to customer site to repair computer or return it…

    customer is irate and wants the computer to be returned immediately until computer engineer discovers the computer is not operating, because the operating system was not installed, asks customer for parts delivered with the computer, installs operating system, and leaves customer happy with a working computer…

    computer engineer returns to office, and manager demands computer engineer sign document warning of impending termination of employment for damaging reputation of employer to customer…

    manager insists computer engineer at fault for customer complaint to manager about manager’s salesman failing to install operating system and thereby embarrassing company…

    manager insists computer engineer incompetent for letting customer know the computer needed an operating system not installed by salesman, and customer engineer should have said nothing about operating system being missing and returned computer for cancellation of sale…

    manager also insists computer engineer still at fault even if computer is returned because of computer engineers failure to repair the computer for the customer…

    Manager says he should fire the computer engineer for incompetence and demands computer engineer sign document acknowledging failures…

    Manager complains computer engineer is negligent for giving him a computer in his office that doesn’t work…

    Computer engineer tries to show manager how to load the operating system, but manager angrily rebukes computer engineer for wasting his time with technical stuff he doesn’t want to know or waste time on when he just wants to use the computer…without the operating system…(sigh).

    Sound like anyone in climate science you know?

  559. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 10:46 AM | Permalink

    RE 563.. Did you see Ross’ response to BCL? Got the moshpit seal of approval.

  560. Jeremy Ayrton
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 10:55 AM | Permalink

    Guys – get with the project. We have Opportunities these days.

  561. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 10:58 AM | Permalink

    573, opportunities and challenges. Se habla managementspeak.

  562. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 10:59 AM | Permalink

    http://pafc.arh.noaa.gov/ice.php?img=sst

    The 4 dec C isotherm is now nearing the Aleutians. As a rule of thumb, if this isotherm moves south of the Aleutians prior to the Winter Solstice, then ice may form in the Bering Sea nearly as far south as the Aleutians at the extent maximum in late Winter.

  563. D. Patterson
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 11:10 AM | Permalink

    Re: 573, 574

    Which cycle is in play now: constant improvement, improved productivity, productive diversification, diversified opportunity, or opportunity to excel?

  564. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 11:35 AM | Permalink

    Mark T, your age is showing.

    My cynicism? :) I’ve never met an engineer with more than 10 years in the industry that isn’t a cynic. We like to call ourselves “realists” and not “pessimists” but, alas, such a nuance is not true in reality.

    Of course, you say you “avoided engineering,” but I detect an engineer screaming to get out of the ecology package, hehe.

    Mark

  565. MarkW
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 11:44 AM | Permalink

    It’s best to be a pessimist.

    That way, when things go to heck, you expected it. And when they don’t, you are pleasantly surprised.

  566. Stephen Richards
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 11:50 AM | Permalink

    It’s the Dilbert scetch about the puncture. A bit old now but I still laugh.

  567. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 11:52 AM | Permalink

    Loehle paper has hit RC buddy boys!

  568. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 12:00 PM | Permalink

    571, unless you’re the guy who just spent $25000 on your Y2K shelter…

  569. Craig Loehle
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 12:07 PM | Permalink

    Fallacy of “not that bad”: this fallacy occurs when a flaw is pointed out in a theory/argument, and the response is a weak defense “it’s not that bad”. We have seen this with defense of the utility of tree rings, with defense of the GCMs by various people, with defense of the USHCN data. The reason the flaw is pointed out is that the flaw indicates that one should not put undue trust in the data/model/theory (IF flaw THEN implication=confidence in result should decrease). The defense (“its not that bad”) does NOT establish that the implication is false, but sounds like it does (especially with condescending tone added).

    By the way: Hu McCulloch has posted a response (Loehle ci thread) to JEG request for formal confidence intervals on my climate reconstruction, I have computed them in another way (not posted yet) and Hu and I are working on a ms (in the real nonblog world this is a lightening fast response, I think…)

  570. Susann
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 12:20 PM | Permalink

    However I strongly contest having used any “personnal insults” in the case that the last phrase was meant to comment on my post .

    I’m not one to complain overmuch (maybe only somewhat) about being personally attacked. How could I come here and be critical and not expect to be attacked? Still, you should have the courage to stand by your words and insults if you meant them. It seems clear to me that your post was intended to refer to me and ridicule me. I believe others took it that way as well, evidenced by their posts quoting you. Why would we get this idea? First, you cited my post # and then quoted from it, ensuring that we all knew to whom and to which post you were responding. What personal insults did you level? You stated that the person linked to the quote was “hallucinating” and that you “couldn’t believe this person defines herself as being in politics”, which suggests that you feel the person does not have whatever qualifications or intelligence is required to be in politics. *laughs at that one* Then, you suggest this person should be kept as far away from any decision about AGW as possible and that she requires training in basic physics for 10 hours a week for 2-3 years. That’s what it takes to comment on this topic in your view? That excludes about 99% of everyone. You suggest this person is irresponsible and then you create an absurd over-the-top straw man (or woman) in an attempt to drive home your point. After a paragraph of clear excess, you then ask whether such a person should actually be allowed to make decisions that affect lives. It’s clear, despite your attempt to claim no such personal insult was intended, that you intended your insults to be personal. So have the courage to at least own up to the personal insults if you’re going to make them.

    Now to the substance in your post: First, I never said I understood nothing about climate physics. I have admitted that I am not a climate scientist. Yet, I don’t have to be a climate scientist to understand the basic issues or support a given policy. We don’t agree on the issues or need for policy. This does not mean that I am deserving of ridicule. I have read literature and opinion on whether a cap and trade or carbon taxation system would be better a policy tool to address GHG emission levels. I’ve already indicated that I accept that liklihood that AGHG are probably the largest cause of observed warming in the northern hemisphere in the late 20th C. The melting of the ice caps and glaciers seems to point to that, regardless of the data errors and problems with paleoclimate reconstructions. Given that, some policy measures to limit or reduce GHG emissions over the long term seem prudent. If we are going to try to limit or reduce GHGs, the policy should be flexible, given the uncertainties. What policy options exist and what are their limitations? Cap and trade offers some benefits over carbon taxation, but also has drawbacks. There is a greater ability to directly address emission levels with C&T, but there is also more opportunity for evasion. Carbon taxation has drawbacks, for it is a regressive tax that all pay regardless of income. The wealthy are huge users of fossil fuels and energy. They create more GHG and they will pay more tax on carbon. However, it is possible to structure the tax so that it is less harmful to certain groups, industry and individuals alike, if that is your policy goal, and it is possible to rebate taxes in a progressive manner so that the lowest income earners are compensated. There is also the ability to use the tax revenue to encourage innovation that will lead to further reductions in GHG emissions. Sweden, for example, instituted a carbon tax as have other EU countries, and they have been successful in reducing emissions and encouraging alternatives like biomass. What I said was that I was not certain if the range McKitrick proposed was going to be effective. There is debate about the appropriate level of taxation on carbon to achieve desired results. There is no sense in implementing a tax that is not going to achieve the end you desire – reduced consumption, development of alternatives and revenues for encouraging innovation, etc. If the tax is too low, it will not have the desired result and will end up being only window-dressing. This will discredit any future attempts to regulate GHGs.

    Second, I never said I had no clue about how to measure the desirable effect. I said I wasn’t sure if the troposphere was the correct measure. There is debate whether the ocean or the troposphere should be used as a measure of global temperature change. McKitrick makes some arguments for the troposphere. Others suggest oceans. I don’t know which is better. In this policy tool, there needs to be some measure of climate change, and I was merely reflecting my own uncertainty about which is the best measure. I support the idea of tying taxation levels to actual climate change. I think the policy should be flexible because of uncertainties inherent in climate science and the unknowns in policy options such as carbon taxation. This seems to be a safety valve that will allow a more flexible response to changes in global temperature based on the principle that we do not know for certain the dimension or direction of any future change in temperature caused by anthropogenic GHG emissions and our efforts to address them.

    Your approach (allowing only those with years of physics courses to comment) would have 99.9% of the world holding up their hands and excusing themselves from saying anything because most of us do not have the expertise you believe is necessary to offer opinions. Or is it just that anyone who disagrees with your position is hallucinating?

  571. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 12:25 PM | Permalink

    Oooh, my commments about lawyers got snipped. Well, to any AGW fanatic lurkers, more evidence that this site is not some sort of biased affair. Unlike, well, um … certain other sites.

  572. Susann
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 12:27 PM | Permalink

    Susann

    I have been following this blog for about a year now spending hundreds of hours reading all the threads. I rarely post my thoughts (other than an occasional visit to the tip jar), however, your position as a Policy Analyst coupled with your desire to seek information has inspired me to comment on what I observe in your posts. I truly believe that your presence here is admirable in your due diligent quest.

    Sometimes I wonder if some people use me as a proxy for those they despise on the warmer side. But as they say, if you can’t stand the heat… Thanks for the positive comment.

    That said, I believe I can identify your reserve in this highly complex matter. To me, you seem a bit confused.

    In 522 you state:

    The short answer is this: in my view (and I may be wrong — I am not an expert)

    With all due respect, and I truly mean this in a non-sarcastic tone, as a Policy Analyst, you are more of an expert in terms of how the policy process works than most.

    You then state:

    The policy process is always politically driven, pulled and pushed, by interest groups

    However, some 600 words later, you somewhat contradict this with:

    So it’s not clear-cut who or what drives the policy process.

    Perhaps the apparent confusion reflects instead a lack of clarity on my part or a semantic issue. This is not my dissertation but a blog post. I should have written

    “So while overall, politics drives the policy process, it’s not clear-cut in any given policy debate who or what drives the policy process. In some policy debates, the policy advisors, in an attempt to implement the government’s agenda, drive the policy. In other policy debates, the stakeholders do. It’s not possible to break this down into a mathematical formula used to predict which stakeholders or what set of interests will drive which policy debate. It’s a political process driven by political actors. Science as a discipline is not a “political actor” or a stakeholder. “Science” cannot drive anything as a result. Only if “science” as in scientists/science advocacy bodies (Mann, IPCC, etc) becomes directly involved as stakeholders (politicized) will it/they drive policy. Scientists or science bodies may be stakeholders. Developments in science may be used by stakeholders to drive the policy process, but science is not an actor. It is a tool. It is evidence used by stakeholders to influence the policy process.

    Does that clarify my position? I welcome criticism and alternative views.

    Within 522 you clarified the objective role of a PA:

    Accurate portrayal of the science, of the stakeholders’ interests, of the risks, costs, etc.

    IMHO, you seem to skirt a clearer and more concise role of a PA. This is where your confusion lies. There is a conflict in ‘an accurate portrayal of science’, i.e. truth seeking, and ‘the interests of the stakeholders’. It would be by coincidence if the two were the same.

    May I suggest that you follow the former and let the advisors determine which ‘mud’ they choose to use weather (sp. pun intended) it’s money for grants, greed for special interest, power and prestige for the electorate and so on. Being on this blog tells me you are interested in the truth.

    Yes, I do understand what you are getting at and agree. Accurately portraying the uncertainties in a science is important, which is why I am here. Different stakeholders will have different views on the importance of that uncertainty and whether it should have no effect on action, should limit action or stop it completely. For example, some may understate uncertainties, others will overstate them, depending on their interests in the matter. It is the role of the analyst to describe these uncertainties and the way they are viewed by stakeholders and let the politicos choose which risks they are willing to take.

    Now, that being said, what is the truth on AGW? I will point to your post in 527:

    In the case of AGW/IPCC, this has NOT happened, to the detriment of the process….The fact that most, if not all, of Steve Mc’s recommendations to IPCC were completely ignored supports my case.

    This then somewhat conflicts when you say in post 533:

    IOW, the debate is not if AGW exists, but how certain, how much, when and how to respond.

    So, by your own admission, there really was no debate, it’s settled. Now you are here and are probably wondering why.

    First, that was not my post as I indicated earlier. Second, the quote was about the IPCC process, not about my own view of the matter. Let me clarify: IIUC, the IPCC process starts from the position that AGW is established science and thus, it is not about debating “if” it is happening. It therefore is not likely to satisfy those who feel the appropriate policy question is “whether” AGW is valid. I made that statement to explain to another poster why I thought the IPCC did not invite AGW opponents to the table to debate if AGW was in fact established science. That’s not their mandate.

  573. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 12:40 PM | Permalink

    >> It seems clear to me that your post was intended to refer to me and ridicule me. I believe others took it that way as well,

    Susann, it was certainly clear to me as well. Unfortunately, some people here are not capable of lifting themselves above the style of discussion characterized by the art of personal destruction, ridicule, ostracization, and flippant dismissal.

  574. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 12:54 PM | Permalink

    Re: #558

    Bender said:

    While warmers and skeptics are skeptical of each other, this person is skeptical of both. Escalating the degree of conflict with warmers will not bring this ‘person’ any closer to your POV.

    By the same token, in a democratic society this element should be held fully accountable whenever it meanders over toward the margins of unbalanced advocacy. Is Susann listening to the skeptical voice? I think possibly so. But watch her.

    I think that there are some of us who are skeptical of overstatements and emotional reactions from both (all) sides of this debate and that is why I was pointing to what I saw as Susann’s preoccupation with an overstatement here and the reactions to it when she would more efficiently expend her efforts here wonking the more objective material. None of the sides in this debate is immune from making overstatements and to think so, in my view, is to be naive or partisan.

    Susann’s text book view of policy makers as objective information gatherers and gatekeepers would seem at odds with her reaction to an overstatement.

    I also gulp when I hear a policy maker talk naively about a policy that can be changed or revoked if it does not work. How many times has a government initiated program, and particularly for the more expansive ones, that later is shown to fail, or at least not live up to its expectations, been substantially changed or scrapped? So while the policy maker may feel good about making a case for policy, they also have a moral responsibility to understand unintended consequences and government’s tendency not to admit to mistakes or for that matter to have the accountability that private entities have.

  575. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 1:12 PM | Permalink

    Susann, You are taking a lot of heat here. Remember where we first met? On Craig Loehles thread.
    That was his gauntlet. This is yours. Some advice. Ignore the personal attacks unless you have a 3 word
    killer quip.the personal attacks are meant to throw you off your game. Hip check to the boards.
    Its trash talk. If you can’t counter it in a witty way, ignore it. Simply, dont take the personal
    attacks personaly, because they are NOT MEANT personally. Ok? It’s ritualistic behavior.
    hazing.

    Let’s focus on one thing:

    “There is debate about the appropriate level of taxation on carbon to achieve desired results.
    There is no sense in implementing a tax that is not going to achieve the end you desire….

    If the tax is too low, it will not have the desired result and will end up being only window-dressing.
    This will discredit any future attempts to regulate GHGs.”

    I think you might think about control systems.

    “There is debate about the appropriate level of taxation on carbon to achieve desired results. ”

    YES. The point of a control system is this. You predict a response: You apply a control. You look for feedback.
    you adjust the control based on the ERROR. The error is the difference between your prediction
    and reality. The point is this. there is no appropriate level of taxation. This level is not a decision.
    it’s the output of a process.

    The DESIRED RESULTS are not carbon reductions. The desired results are a stabilized climate. Carbon reductions
    are the supposed control. You Control carbon and watch temp. The GOAL isnt reduced carbon.

    Then you wrote:

    “If the tax is too low, it will not have the desired result and will end up being only window-dressing.
    This will discredit any future attempts to regulate GHGs.”

    I find it interesting that you focus on low tax errors and not the opposite. That is, if the taxes are TOO HIGH.
    This will ALSO discredit and in a worse way. The metaphor here is the boy who cried wolf.

    An engineered solution would pick: 1. a varible to control: C02. 2: A variable to MEASURE as a feedback:
    Tropospherical temperature. 3. a sampling frequency for #2. 4. A gain adjustment when you guessed #2 wrong.

    YOU CANNOT PICK the right value of the tax. cannot. you can guess a value and then engineer a solution
    to converge on good answer.

    The first step is admitting you don’t know, and then building a system that seeks the truth you could never
    derive.

  576. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 1:37 PM | Permalink

    Mosher said:

    An engineered solution would pick: 1. a varible to control: C02. 2: A variable to MEASURE as a feedback:
    Tropospherical temperature. 3. a sampling frequency for #2. 4. A gain adjustment when you guessed #2 wrong.

    If politicians were engineers they perhaps would devise such an attempted solution as you describe, but in the real world politicians are, well, politicians. The feedback that they use comes from the voting constituency and interest groups.

    On the other hand an engineer’s pet solution might never be reconsidered by the engineers as long as it did its job (stabilize climate – with all the problems that defining that might involve) even though the results of that solution were devastating in other areas of human existence.

  577. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 1:41 PM | Permalink

    RE 582. agreed. Politicians choose control systems that ensure re election. With the climate I think
    they may wish they tackled SSI first.

  578. jae
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 1:42 PM | Permalink

    On the Solar thread, Larry sez:

    No, the greenhouse effect has absolutely zero to do with heat storage. It affects the steady-state balance.

    I don’t agree. Heat storage IS the greenhouse effect, IMHO. Otherwise, why are average temperatures (as well as maximums) in humid areas cooler than dry areas, at similar latitudes and elevations. You can’t get much above 32 C over water, even at the equator, but you can get over 50 C in the deserts. Why aren’t humid areas hotter, since the primary “greenhouse gas” is water vapor? And the reason that there is less diurnal variation in humid areas is that the heat storage capacity of water is twice that of dry air.

  579. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 1:48 PM | Permalink

    584, it’s not a question of opinion, it’s a question of fact. If you think that GHE has anything to do with heat capacity, you don’t understand either. All the handwaving about empirical observations in the world isn’t going to change that. GHE is a very specific theory involving radiative heat transfer. It is what it is, not what you feel like what it is. Or do I get to say that the earth is flat because it looks like it?

  580. jae
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 1:58 PM | Permalink

    GHE is a very specific theory involving radiative heat transfer.

    Yes, and perhaps a very specific WRONG theory. Perhaps YOU can explain the expected 2.5 degree increase for 2 X CO2 with that very specific theory?

  581. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 2:01 PM | Permalink

    586, For a doubling of CO2, it predicts about 1C rise. It’s the handwaving about feedback that is used to claim 2.5.

  582. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 2:01 PM | Permalink

    >> GHE is a very specific theory involving radiative heat transfer

    Are you able to make a distinction between how it works and its effect? It has the effect of storing or retaining heat that would have escaped.

  583. jae
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 2:27 PM | Permalink

    587: Agreed. Now, can you direct me to an unequivocal demonstration of the 1 C?

  584. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 2:38 PM | Permalink

    In deciding on what actions to take, a cost-benefit analysis that factors in both the opportunity costs and the option values involved needs to be done. However, there are a number of difficulties. One is that in modern policy-making, there are often irreducible conflicts between various interests; therefore, the debate will involve politics….

    On to better things. So, carbon taxation is a method sought to be used to reach the goal of reducing rising temperature trends.

    Unfortunate, but this assumes many contentious things.

    1. The temperature is actually rising.
    2. The temperature rise is a bad thing (environmentally and/or economically and/or physical health-wise etc).
    3. Temperature is rising due to carbon.
    4. Taxing carbon will reduce its use.
    5. Reducing the use of carbon will lower its rate of rise in concentration.
    6. The lowering of rate of rise in concentration will result in a stabilization or fall in temperature.
    7. Unintended consequences can be identified and the ones that might reasonably happen that are worse than the warming can be neutralized.

    I’m not going to discuss the assumptions, I’m just listing them. If you feel the need to justify or explain which assumption is true or not, you don’t need to. You’ve already proven the point it’s contentious! :)

  585. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 2:39 PM | Permalink

    >> If you think that GHE has anything to do with heat capacity, you don’t understand either.

    I’m still waiting to hear the theory of physics where C02 can absorb energy, but NOT involve the heat capacity of C02. The theory was first expressed by Dr JohnV in his miracle week, late in 2007. It was refuted by several others, but Larry has now picked up on it, perhaps realizing that without this new theory, his pet greenhouse warming hypothesis is impossible.

    This theory is perfect for explaining how any mass, no matter how small, can heat any other mass, no matter how big. With this, you can use a hair dryer to heat up an entire swimming pool. If it doesn’t seem to have an effect right away, just leave it running continuously, since that ensures that significant warming will occur. If anyone at the pool says you’re crazy, just say “don’t bother me with your strange ideas of thermodynamics p0rn”.

  586. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 2:41 PM | Permalink

    No, nobody said the number was unequivocal. To get an exact number requires models that we don’t know how to do. That doesn’t mean that we get to guess, and any number is as good as any other number. It is what it is, we just don’t know exactly what it is.

    For an approximate derivation, try this: http://www.sciencebits.com/OnClimateSensitivity

  587. Andrey Levin
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 2:41 PM | Permalink

    Susann:

    Physics is not really relevant to the subject. Knowing the world you live in is.

    Carbon is the foundation of life, including ours and plants and animals we depend on. Carbon-based energy is the backbone of industrial society, or put it other way – it is the reason why world could support life of 6 billion people, verse 200 millions in pre-industrial society. No amount of taxation or regulation could change this. If one will try really change this, he will wreck the economy and will be booted out of the office.

    There is only one real possibility to reduce in half carbon emissions from combustion of fossil fuels (and hence reduce total GHG emissions by 25%). It is nuclear power, first for electricity, then for heating and transportation. Everything else is (self snip). And it will not cool the climate.

  588. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 2:47 PM | Permalink

    I guess I asked for this. Moe, it’s your turn.

  589. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 2:50 PM | Permalink

    It’s like this.

    The “greenhouse effect” is a process where the emission of infrared radiation downward in the atmosphere and warms a planet’s surface.

    The process causes a 33 C rise in the Earth’s average surface temperature.

    So I’d say the atmosphere is storing the heat, and the GHE is regulating it. It’s the atmosphere capturing and recycling energy from the surface, by way of what we call the GHE.

  590. Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 4:08 PM | Permalink

    @576– @Susann,
    Yes, I saw the “hallucinating” and thought “whoa!”

    Unless the dig is aimed at me, I just don’t read comments that start with digs. What I do is:
    1) Read the name of the author to record in my mind who is prone to argue by digs.
    2) Skip to next comment. (This should be a lesson to those prone to starting with digs.)

    I read all comments aimed at me, the comment may include information I seek. (They sometimes do– though possibly not the information the writer meant to communicate.)

    @Ken F 580

    I actually think Susann should notice overstatements on both sides. People will. I’ve seen overstatements, exaggeration, sleight of hand, disingenuous and obfuscatory behavior on both sides.

    The reality for any individual making any decision is that you nearly always need to proceed in full knowledge that things are uncertain. You must weigh evidence, and gauge the costs and benefits and decide.

    In science, one does certain things certain ways. But the scientific method is not ultimately used to decide what to eat for breakfast, or what type of house to live in, who to vote for etc. (Anyone who says the use the scientific method for their whole life is either lying, deluded or both.)

    The scientific method also not how, ultimately, a country decides collectively what to do.

    Outside or areas of concentration, we all read tea-leaves to a greater or lesser extent. We bring our method of approaching problem to our tea-leaf reading sessions, but we are all reading tea leaves.

    Susann does need to observe the overstatements, see which types are made, read the criticisms from the other side. She does need to try to learn the symptoms.

    Heck, I’m not a policy wonk, and I do it. And… as I’ve said, I’ve seen it on both sides. I just don’t see it in all people (or at least I see less.)

    In that vein… I have to say, I’m a pretty big admirer of SteveM.

    @jae– 584 Wrong. Read what Larry says in 585.
    @Gunnar– CO2 retains, but does not store the heat. Think of the mylar film inside a thermos filled with coffee. The film retains heat in the sense that it prevents it from escaping. The coffee inside stores the heat. Think of the new fangled low e windows. The air inside the house retains heat; the windows …..not so much.

  591. Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 4:13 PM | Permalink

    @Gunnar

    I’m still waiting to hear the theory of physics where C02 can absorb energy, but NOT involve the heat capacity of C02

    It absorbs and the energy is transferred to other molecules in the normal way.

    If you boil water for spaghetti, steam rises, mixes with the air in the room, and not far from the spaghetti pot, the water molecules have the same temperature as the rest of the air molecules.

    The CO2 molecules transfer energy in the exact same way as the spaghetti water steam does.

  592. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 4:18 PM | Permalink

    596, sometimes it’s a little hard to tell “overstatements, exaggeration, sleight of hand, disingenuous and obfuscatory behavior” from plain, old fashioned ignorence. IMO, most what what appears to be the former here is actually the latter. Ditto for some of the commentors at RC. It’s a little harder to be so forgiving when someone like Gavin does that.

    Nonetheless, anyone reading comments anywhere needs to keep that in the back of their mind.

  593. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 4:20 PM | Permalink

    spaghetti water steam

    Spoken like a true engineer.

  594. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 4:26 PM | Permalink

    597, fromwhat I can surmise, Gunnar is having a hard time conceptually with 380 ppm (0.038%) of CO2 having a significant effect on temperatures, because the molecule would have to be so hot that it will burn (or something like that). You could actually calculate a temperature for a single molecule of CO2 after absorbing a 15 micron photon, and I have no doubt that it would be hundreds, if not thouthands of degrees. This isn’t a problem. It loses that energy in less than a millisecond. No, it won’t burn you. I think that’s the issue, but I’m not entirely sure.

  595. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 4:28 PM | Permalink

    CO2 has a heat capacity of 36.33 J/(mol K) at 0 C and 38.01 J/(mol K) at 100 C

  596. austin
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 4:51 PM | Permalink

    Found this.

    http://arxiv.org/PS_cache/arxiv/pdf/0707/0707.1161v3.pdf

    “Falsfication of Atmospheric Greenhouse Effects Withing the Realm of Physics”

  597. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 4:59 PM | Permalink

    602, our host has requested that that paper not be linked here.

  598. austin
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 5:01 PM | Permalink

    The thermal diffusivity of the atmosphere is treated in the paper. It does not change much at all even if CO2 is doubled. Look at page 10.

  599. austin
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 5:03 PM | Permalink

    Sorry about that. Please delete my post.

  600. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 5:09 PM | Permalink

    The vertical air column ‘weighs’ about 10,000 kg/m^2, if my conversion isn’t screwed up. At a heat capacity of 1 kJ/kg/K, that’s 10^7 Joules/m^2/K. In other words, you would need 10^7 joules to heat that column up to an average temperature of 1 degree C.
    But CO2 is only about 4.10^-4 of that, so the CO2 in a m^2 column of air would only represent about 4000 joules for each degree C, not much more than 1 kW-hour.

  601. Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 5:11 PM | Permalink

    Gunnar:
    I gave you a full explanation of why greenhouse forcing does not involve heat capacity, and you acknowledged reading it. It got deleted as being out-of-bounds thermo talk. I invited you to continue the discussion at my site, but you claimed to be too busy.

    The offer is still there. Here’s a link to the “conversation”:

    http://www.opentemp.org/main/2007/12/03/is-it-possible-for-a-small-amount-of-co2-to-warm-the-earth

    And for your convenience, here’s the explanation again:

    =====
    Gunnar, let’s work out the details with your model of CO2 purely absorbing energy. Think of the CO2 molecules as tiny black rubber balls distributed in the atmosphere. Each ball gets warmed continuously by incoming radiation reflected from the earth’s surface. This causes each ball to become warmer than the air around it. Necessarily, the warm ball will heat the surrounding air.

    That’s the summary. Now for the details:

    First, consider the incoming radiation only. The radiation power is Pr (J/s) and the heat capacity of each ball is H (J/degC). The rate of warming for the ball is:

    dT/dt = Pr/H

    Second, consider the heat transfer from the ball to the atmosphere. Use deltaT for the temperature difference between the ball and the air. The rate of heat transfer is linear with deltaT for conduction and cubic (?) for radiation. However, for small temperature differentials it’s reasonable to linearize the radiative heat transfer. The rate of heat transfer from the ball to the atmosphere is:

    Pa = a*deltaT, where a is a constant

    And the rate of cooling for the ball is:

    dT/dt = a*deltaT/H

    At equilibrium, the rate of warming must match the rate of cooling:

    Pr/H = a*deltaT/H
    Pr = a*deltaT

    That is, at equilibrium the heat transfer from the ball to the air (a*deltaT) exactly matches the warming from the incoming radiation. The deltaT between the ball and the air depends on the heat transfer propeties of the ball/air interface, and not on the heat capacity of the ball. In fact, the heat capacity of the ball drops out of all the pertinent equations.

  602. jae
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 5:16 PM | Permalink

    Lucia:

    CO2 retains, but does not store the heat. Think of the mylar film inside a thermos filled with coffee. The film retains heat in the sense that it prevents it from escaping. The coffee inside stores the heat. Think of the new fangled low e windows. The air inside the house retains heat; the windows …..not so much.

    Now, that’s an odd paragraph. “Retain” is different than “store?” So liquid water (coffee) can store heat but gaseous CO2 can’t store heat (energy)? Both are fluids, you know? So why are heat capacity coefficients (Cp) published with units of joules/kg/K? If you lower the temperature of a kg of CO2 from 100 C to 0 C, you get about (870 joules/kg/C)(1 kg)(100 C) = 87,000 joules of energy. If you lower the temperature of a kg of water vapor by the same amount, you get about 200,000 joules, which is why water vapor is so important to heat storage in the atmosphere and why it’s feels so hot in Georgia in the summer. And why there is so little diurnal variation there. CO2 is very lousy at storing heat. Even N and O2 are 15% more effective.

    Re:

    584 Wrong. Read what Larry says in 585.

    There is absolutely nothing substantive there. All hand-waving. I need the facts, mam, the facts. Till I’m shown otherwise with facts, I say “Show me, I’m from Missouri.”

  603. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 5:26 PM | Permalink

    608 jae

    CO2 can store heat, but it can’t store very much because there is very little of it in the atmosphere.
    (See #606).
    You are correct that water can store a lot of heat, because of the two phase-changes it undergoes. Whoever designed the Earth did a great job with using water. It not only has those two phase changes at the right temperatures, but liquid water also has its maximum density at 4C, which saves the fishes and frogs from a lot of grief.

  604. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 5:28 PM | Permalink

    607, you use funny rubber ball physics. CO2 is more like three balls connected by two springs. When a photon of the right frequency hits this thing, one of the balls starts bouncing a lot on it’s spring (or both springs, if it’s the ball in the middle). Then the boinging thing almost instantly hits a N2 or O2 molecule (2 balls and one spring), and gives it a whack. Then it gives another whack at another, and to another, until that photon has had its energy distributed to a bunch of molecules, all in less than a second.

    Of course, water is the most interesting of all, because it has three balls and two springs, but it’s cockeyed. That gives rise to more possibilities, which is why it’s a more potent GHG.

  605. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 5:32 PM | Permalink

    609, I’d never though about that before. If water didn’t have that rather unique property, ice would sink, and polar oceans would be very different places. And lakes would almost never freeze.

  606. jae
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 5:35 PM | Permalink

    606: Yes, Pat, about 2,700 watt hr to raise the temperature of the air 1 degree C. On an average summer day in Atlanta, you have about 7,700 watt-hr/day/m^2 solar energy reaching the surface, enough to raise that whole column of air by 2.85 C. Plus you have a lot of energy also being absorbed by the atmosphere directly from the sun. Of course, you don’t raise the whole column uniformly, since most of the energy goes into the lower atmosphere, as the energy is absorbed by the surface and released to the lower part of the air column. And that’s about all there is to the “greenhouse effect!”

  607. Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 5:36 PM | Permalink

    @jae–608

    Now, that’s an odd paragraph. “Retain” is different than “store?”

    Yep.

    Retain has several uses, one is
    “allow to remain in a place or position; “We cannot continue several servants any longer”; “She retains a lawyer”; “The family’s fortune waned and they could not keep their household staff”; “Our grant has run out and we cannot keep you on”; “We kept the work going as long as we could”

    Retain can also mean store. But if you ask how something can retain heat but not store it, the answer lies in the fact that the word “retain” does not always mean store. It sometimes means remain in place or position.

    An insulator causes heat to remain in place; it retains heat.
    The stuff it insulates stores the heat.

    See definition of retain

  608. Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 5:38 PM | Permalink

    @Larry– 600
    Do you think it might help Gunnar or jae if we reminded them individual molecules don’t really have temperature? Or specific heat? Temperature is only defined for a collection of molecules, or seen as an ensemble average quantity.

    On the earlier point:
    Yes, plain old fashioned ignorance can look like “overstatements, exaggeration, sleight of hand, disingenuous and obfuscatory behavior” . Hhhh… I forgot to add “evasive, subject changing, and odd semantic shifts” to the lists of things to watch out for.

    When faced with disingenuous behavior, one often wants to ask: “Are you that stupid? Or do you think we are?”.

    Still, with regard to applying the smell test, if you read enough comments, you can often tell one from the other.

  609. jae
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 5:43 PM | Permalink

    LOL

  610. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 5:44 PM | Permalink

    Lucia,

    “Are you that stupid? Or do you think we are?”.

    Stubbornness enters the picture, too. I don’t try to tell Steve about statistics. The main reason why I don’t is that I understand how stupid that would make me look if I tried. I don’t understand people who aren’t even clear on what’s included under the umbrella of thermodynamics arguing about thermo with a ME professor.

  611. bender
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 5:44 PM | Permalink

    … and if ice sank you would lose a lot of the slippery iceball vs blackbody bistability characteristic of D-O oscillations

  612. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 5:48 PM | Permalink

    Name that CA denizen

  613. Phil.
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 5:53 PM | Permalink

    Re #600 & 601

    “CO2 has a heat capacity of 36.33 J/(mol K) at 0 C and 38.01 J/(mol K) at 100 C”

    So absorption of a single photon (per Larry) is the equivalent of raising the temp of the CO2 molecule 200º+.

  614. jae
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 5:54 PM | Permalink

    CO2 can store heat, but it can’t store very much because there is very little of it in the atmosphere.

    Yes, at 370 ppm, it is a whopping 0.037 percent of the atmosphere. Moreover, it is a lousy heat absorber, only about 870 joules/kg/C, whereas, the rest of the air constituents store about 1,005 joules/kg/C, which means it stores only (0.00037)(0.87) = 0.00032 = 0.032 percent of the heat in the air column. It just is not much of a greenhouse gas.

  615. jae
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:00 PM | Permalink

    618: Whatever happened to that guy? He was one of the funniest people I can remember.

  616. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:01 PM | Permalink

    And Lucia, I was going to say something about ensemble thermo, but in this particular case, if you’re talking about a single molecule absorbing a single photon, temperature increase of a single molecule does have meaning (since the photon has a fixed amount of energy). But again, it loses it so fast, you’ll never know it got that hot.

  617. Phil.
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:09 PM | Permalink

    Re#620
    “Yes, at 370 ppm, it is a whopping 0.037 percent of the atmosphere. Moreover, it is a lousy heat absorber, only about 870 joules/kg/C, whereas, the rest of the air constituents store about 1,005 joules/kg/C, which means it stores only (0.00037)(0.87) = 0.00032 = 0.032 percent of the heat in the air column. It just is not much of a greenhouse gas.”

    Absolute rubbish, unlike N2 and O2 it’s capable of absorbing IR so it is an excellent heat absorber which it then transfers to surrounding N2 and O2 via collisions. Also your rather idiosyncratic use of the units J/kg/ºC whereas J/mole/ºC is more appropriate, CO2 molecules have a higher heat capacity than N2 or O2, even then you couldn’t do the calculation correctly as you used the wrong value for the CO2 concentration!

  618. Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:09 PM | Permalink

    @Larry– but is the increase in energy called temperature when it’s a single molecule? Or is it energy?

    I try to avoid thinking of individual molecules whenever possible. If it’s not possible to do so in a particular problem, “That’s not my problem!” ;)

  619. jae
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:10 PM | Permalink

    I don’t understand people who aren’t even clear on what’s included under the umbrella of thermodynamics arguing about thermo with a ME professor.

    I’ll admit I’m old and have forgotten a lot of my thermo. And a lot has been learned since I studied thermo. But I also used to be a chemistry professor and I think I still remember enough of it to engage in this conversation. BTW, the ad-homs just show me that I’m getting some goats, LOL. The axe will come soon, anyway.

  620. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:16 PM | Permalink

    624, I think you’re right, reaching way back in the cobwebs, I seem to recall temperature is a Lagrange multiplier on an ensemble statistic, and is undefined in the case of a single molecule. Still, physicists talk about temperatures in plasmas where there aren’t even molecules, properly speaking, so there may be a “new and improved” definition that they’re going by.

  621. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:28 PM | Permalink

    There’s nothing intentionally ad-hom here, but unthreaded is the litterbox of CA. When Steve goes a day or two without cleaning it, it starts to show. I’d prefer that kitties here go outside and bury their doo-doos out there, but if you’re going to do them here, at least bury them. We have a few ferrets here who don’t get that concept.

  622. jae
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:29 PM | Permalink

    623: Have a look.

  623. Susann
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:31 PM | Permalink

    Carbon is the foundation of life, including ours and plants and animals we depend on. Carbon-based energy is the backbone of industrial society, or put it other way – it is the reason why world could support life of 6 billion people, verse 200 millions in pre-industrial society. No amount of taxation or regulation could change this. If one will try really change this, he will wreck the economy and will be booted out of the office.

    Absolutely agree that our civilization is premised on carbon-based energy. It underpins everything. I am suspicious of the doom and gloom on either side of this debate, seeing it as useful rhetoric rather than scientific conclusions based on irrefutable evidence. There have been studies that look at the effects of carbon regulation on economic growth. Not all predict doom and gloom, and we better hope not since carbon-based energy appears to be finite and will eventually run out. In the long term, we will have to develop alternatives if that is the case. If the peak oil people are right, in the near term we will have to adjust to higher-cost energy as it becomes more difficult to extract. Developing carbon-free or cleaner alternatives seems like a positive side-effect of regulating carbon emissions to address GHG emissions and climate change.

    There is only one real possibility to reduce in half carbon emissions from combustion of fossil fuels (and hence reduce total GHG emissions by 25%). It is nuclear power, first for electricity, then for heating and transportation. Everything else is (self snip). And it will not cool the climate.

    Agreed on nuclear being part of the solution, but there are other renewables that can play a role. Obviously if you don’t buy the AGW scenario, you won’t think controlling GHG emissions will affect climate. You sound pretty certain. Not a skeptic?

  624. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:37 PM | Permalink

    610
    That’s pretty close, but it’s complicated by the fact that it is difficult for the 3-ball CO2 molecule to give that energy up in bits and pieces (it’s quantized).
    To first order, everything linear, the molecule either keeps all that energy or it gives it all up. So it probably gives up all the energy it got from the photon at once, to a few acoustic modes (bunches of molecules vibrating cooperatively), or in one giant kick up the ass of one N2 molecule, converting vibrational energy to translational, and then the energy gets divided up among a whole bunch of molecules (the translational-energy levels are close together).

  625. Susann
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:39 PM | Permalink

    Yes, I saw the “hallucinating” and thought “whoa!”

    Unless the dig is aimed at me, I just don’t read comments that start with digs. What I do is:
    1) Read the name of the author to record in my mind who is prone to argue by digs.
    2) Skip to next comment. (This should be a lesson to those prone to starting with digs.)

    I read all comments aimed at me, the comment may include information I seek. (They sometimes do– though possibly not the information the writer meant to communicate.)

    Lucia, it seemed pretty apparent to me. I had to reread several times when he denied it being personal in case I was hallucinating. :)

    Good advice. I don’t play hockey and never had to contend with schoolyard bullies, so I admit it’s hard to ignore cross-checking.

  626. jae
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:39 PM | Permalink

    Obviously if you don’t buy the AGW scenario, you won’t think controlling GHG emissions will affect climate.

    Even if I buy the AGW scenario, any action on limiting carbon dioxide emissions is futile, unless China and India go along. Do you think that is a possibility?

  627. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:45 PM | Permalink

    629, if the peak-oil crowd is right (and I’m agnostic on the issue, they may be right for the wrong reasons), then the situation will rectify itself, won’t it? Controls then become superfluous.

    As for renewables, that’s something that we could go on for hundreds of comments, and not even scratch the surface. One observation though; if you start subsidizing, you’re probably going to create environmental problems in the process; for example biofuels not only consume a lot of fossil fuels in the process of their growth, but they also result in land erosion, agrochemical use, and most importantly, water use. Water is an up-and-coming environmental problem in many parts of the world, and biofuels will aggrevate the problem.

    Better to lose the nuclearphobia than to try to get too clever.

  628. Susann
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:46 PM | Permalink

    Even if I buy the AGW scenario, any action on limiting carbon dioxide emissions is futile, unless China and India go along. Do you think that is a possibility?

    If you do buy the AGW scenario, what alternative is there to limiting carbon dioxide emissions, even if China and India don’t comply?

  629. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:48 PM | Permalink

    629

    there are other renewables that can play a role

    People like to say that, but most of the renewables will play only a very minor role. Look at the fuss over the windmills off the Kennedy compound, look at the problems associated with ethanol. Geothermal is the only one I can think of that could play a significant role.

  630. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:52 PM | Permalink

    633 Are you familiar with the Thomas Gold theory of abionic oil, and is that legal on this blog?

  631. Susann
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:52 PM | Permalink

    629, if the peak-oil crowd is right (and I’m agnostic on the issue, they may be right for the wrong reasons), then the situation will rectify itself, won’t it? Controls then become superfluous.

    Of course, we could stand around and wait to find out who is right and face the upheaval associated with inaction.

    As for renewables, that’s something that we could go on for hundreds of comments, and not even scratch the surface. One observation though; if you start subsidizing, you’re probably going to create environmental problems in the process; for example biofuels not only consume a lot of fossil fuels in the process of their growth, but they also result in land erosion, agrochemical use, and most importantly, water use. Water is an up-and-coming environmental problem in many parts of the world, and biofuels will aggrevate the problem.

    Better to lose the nuclearphobia than to try to get too clever.

    I don’t have nuclearphobia. I think there are other renewables that can be useful. Where I live, there’s ample sunlight, geothermal and wind. They aren’t panaceas but part of the solution along with nuclear.

  632. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:53 PM | Permalink

    How many times do I have to say this? There isn’t ‘an’ AGW scenario, there’s a whole range of possible sensitivities.

    Having said that, you also have to remember Arrhenius’ law: greenhouse heating is proportional to the logarithm of concentration. Cutting output of part of the world in half won’t do diddly. Not even squat. If China and India won’t sign on to reductions, might as well devote the recources to adaption, because there will be nothing the west can do to stop the inevitable warming.

  633. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:56 PM | Permalink

    Of course, we could stand around and wait to find out who is right and face the upheaval associated with inaction.

    Do you really think that the oil companies keep it a deep, dark secret until the last minute? And what then? They’re out of business, too.

    Maybe you should call Art Bell.

  634. Larry
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:59 PM | Permalink

    636, no that’s not legal here. However, there are other carbon-based alternatives that could keep the world supplied for centuries (i.e. Fischer-Tropsch coal liquifaction). So running out of petroleum doesn’t have to mean running out of liquid hydrocarbons.

  635. Susann
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 6:59 PM | Permalink

    How many times do I have to say this? There isn’t ‘an’ AGW scenario, there’s a whole range of possible sensitivities.

    Sor-ry. Of course I know that. Let me rephrase: If you don’t accept any AGW scenario.

    If China and India won’t sign on to reductions, might as well devote the recources to adaption, because there will be nothing the west can do to stop the inevitable warming.

    There’s always the use of force. :)

  636. Duane Johnson
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 7:01 PM | Permalink

    If you do buy the AGW scenario, what alternative is there to limiting carbon dioxide emissions, even if China and India don’t comply?

    Adapt.

  637. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 7:03 PM | Permalink

    640
    Thanks for the heads-up — I thought it might be.

    641

    There’s always the use of force.

    Is that a policy statement?

  638. Susann
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 7:05 PM | Permalink

    Do you really think that the oil companies keep it a deep, dark secret until the last minute? And what then? They’re out of business, too.

    Maybe you should call Art Bell.

    Maybe you should get an irony booster. :)

  639. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 7:09 PM | Permalink

    RE 631. You give as good as you get kiddo. Serpentine or say hello to the ice.

  640. Susann
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 7:09 PM | Permalink

    Is that a policy statement?

    Sure. You should see the implementation plan. :)

  641. Susann
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 7:21 PM | Permalink

    Susann’s text book view of policy makers as objective information gatherers and gatekeepers would seem at odds with her reaction to an overstatement.

    No textbooks here. I’m only taking my first policy class in January. I’m afraid its all just observations from 5 years of frontline experience. I see overstatement as evidence that people have gone beyond an intellectual interest in an issue. It’s become personal.

  642. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 7:28 PM | Permalink

    637

    and face the upheaval associated with inaction

    How about the upheaval that will come if the economy is screwed up pro-AGW policy mistakes?

    Here are some quotes from Time Magazine over the years:
    1923, September 10: “new ice age”
    1939 Jan 2: “growing warmer”
    1974 June 24: “another ice age”
    2001 April 9:”global warming is happening”

  643. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 7:29 PM | Permalink

    RE 648. Sheesh. Susann and lucia never laugh. Thanks for leaving me with the tough crowd. PAL!

  644. Phil.
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 7:37 PM | Permalink

    Re #630
    “That’s pretty close, but it’s complicated by the fact that it is difficult for the 3-ball CO2 molecule to give that energy up in bits and pieces (it’s quantized).
    To first order, everything linear, the molecule either keeps all that energy or it gives it all up. So it probably gives up all the energy it got from the photon at once, to a few acoustic modes (bunches of molecules vibrating cooperatively), or in one giant kick up the ass of one N2 molecule, converting vibrational energy to translational, and then the energy gets divided up among a whole bunch of molecules (the translational-energy levels are close together).”

    Don’t forget that absorption of a ~15 micron photon involves a rotational-vibrational transition so there are many tiny rotational quanta which can be given up piecemeal during the ~1000 collisions that take place during quenching.

  645. Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 7:54 PM | Permalink

    Larry:
    I realize my “rubber ball physics” model is grossly simplified. However, our disagreements with Gunnar are not due to subtle misunderstandings in molecular dynamics or quantum energy states — they are about fundamental heat transfer issues. A simple model that captures the essentials of the problem is often a more efficient way to resolve misunderstandings.

  646. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 7:55 PM | Permalink

    653
    That’s a useful point. However, there’s still a big vibrational quantum to deal with.

  647. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:05 PM | Permalink

    Susann says:

    No textbooks here. I’m only taking my first policy class in January. I’m afraid its all just observations from 5 years of frontline experience. I see overstatement as evidence that people have gone beyond an intellectual interest in an issue. It’s become personal.

    Is that the same as saying you never read a text book on policy making? That would be difficult to reconcile with someone who apparently feels objective learning is an important part of the process.

    Recognizing that overstatement is not an intellectual interest should provide a major clue that it is time to move on from them or better yet ignore them. An objective and truth seeking text book policy debate would not hinge on attributions of the propensity for overstatements by the various sides that otherwise are presenting objective statements.

  648. Phil.
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:08 PM | Permalink

    Re #657

    “653 That’s a useful point. However, there’s still a big vibrational quantum to deal with.”

    The evidence from CO2 laser studies is that collisional deactivation results in rapid thermalisation of the rotational levels of a given vibrational level and that internal conversion to another vibrational level is also rapid so that isn’t a problem.

  649. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:11 PM | Permalink

    >> CO2 retains, but does not store the heat

    @lucia, this clarification is good, and so is your #597.

    #606,609, Pat that seems productive.

    #607, JohnV, please don’t be offended, but I see very little return on my time

    >> individual molecules don’t really have temperature? Or specific heat?
    >> single molecule absorbing a single photon, temperature increase of a single molecule does have meaning
    >> CO2 molecules have a higher heat capacity than N2 or O2

    hmmm, the witnesses can’t even agree amongst themselves. In a superconductors, near absolute zero, the molecules stand nearly perfectly still, so the electron can shoot through with zero resistance. So, temperature is a measure of how much kinetic energy an individual molecule has. lucia, you have a lot of work to do correcting not only http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Temperature but also an enormous number of text books.

    I guess you’ll take any contrary position, no matter how absurd. I’ve worked JohnV into a position where he claims that a mass, no matter how small, can heat another mass, no matter how large. And now I’ve got lucia on record as saying that an individual molecule has no specific heat, which is a non sequiter.

    >> BTW, the ad-homs just show me that I’m getting some goats

    They also show insecurity and bitterness

    >> They aren’t panaceas but part of the solution

    Solution? There is no problem other than the desire of some humans to throttle and control other humans

    >> Where I live, there’s ample sunlight, geothermal and wind.

    You are free to use those very expensive options, just don’t force it on other people. I say “Live large, maximize you C02 footprint”.

    >> what alternative is there to limiting carbon dioxide
    >> nothing the west can do to stop the inevitable warming

    How about building a huge mirror somewhere between here and the sun? :) Actually, there are lots of ways to cool the earth.

    >> There’s always the use of force

    Disgusted, but surprised that you admitted it so easily.

  650. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:17 PM | Permalink

    660

    collisional deactivation results in rapid thermalisation of the rotational levels of a given vibrational level and that internal conversion to another vibrational level is also rapid so that isn’t a problem.

    Agreed.

  651. Follow the Money
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:18 PM | Permalink

    586 587,

    For a doubling of CO2, it predicts about 1C rise. It’s the handwaving about feedback that is used to claim 2.5.

    You fellows are a bit out of date. AR4 revised the 2.5 to 3.0C. See AR4 Box 10.2 for the overly wordy and not to convincing reasons why.

  652. Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:25 PM | Permalink

    What is the perfect temperature for mankind Suzann? Why all of a sudden is adaption to new surroundings and circumstances beyond us? Here in NZ most people are happy to adapt but the frogs (green outer, red inside) say no we can’t have nuclear and no, we can’t use hydro so we have to have wind power.
    It’s not about adapting or changing it’s about control.

  653. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:27 PM | Permalink

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

    The width of a spectral line is an important element in understanding its importance for the absorption of radiation. In the Earth’s atmosphere these spectral widths are primarily determined by “pressure broadening”, which is the distortion of the spectrum due to the collision with another molecule. Most of the infrared absorption in the atmosphere can be thought of as occurring while two molecules are colliding. The absorption due to a photon interacting with a lone molecule is relatively small. This three-body aspect of the problem, one photon and two molecules, makes direct quantum mechanical computation for molecules of interest more challenging. Careful laboratory spectroscopic measurements, rather than ab initio quantum mechanical computations, provide the basis for most of the radiative transfer calculations used in studies of the atmosphere.
    The molecules/atoms that constitute the bulk of the atmosphere: oxygen (O2), nitrogen (N2) and argon; do not interact with infrared radiation significantly. While the oxygen and nitrogen molecules can vibrate, because of their symmetry these vibrations do not create any transient charge separation. Without such a transient dipole moment, they can neither absorb nor emit infrared radiation. In the Earth’s atmosphere, the dominant infrared absorbing gases are water vapor, carbon dioxide, and ozone (O3). The same molecules are also the dominant infrared emitting molecules. CO2 and O3 have “floppy” vibration motions whose quantum states can be excited by collisions at energies encountered in the atmosphere. For example, carbon dioxide is a linear molecule, but it has an important vibrational mode in which the molecule bends with the carbon in the middle moving one way and the oxygens on the ends moving the other way, creating some charge separation, a dipole moment, thus carbon dioxide molecules can absorb IR radiation. Collisions will immediately transfer this energy to heating the surrounding gas. On the other hand, other CO2 molecules will be vibrationally excited by collisions. Roughly 5% of CO2 molecules are vibrationally excited at room temperature and it is this 5% that radiates. A substantial part of the greenhouse effect due to carbon dioxide exists because this vibration is easily excited by infrared radiation. CO2 has two other vibrational modes. The symmetric stretch does not radiate, and the asymmetric stretch is at too high a frequency to be effectively excited by atmospheric temperature collisions, although it does contribute to absorption of IR radiation. The vibrational modes of water are at too high energies to effectively radiate, but do absorb higher frequency IR radiation. Water vapor has a bent shape. It has a permanent dipole moment (the O atom end is electron rich, and the H atoms electron poor) which means that IR light can be emitted and absorbed during rotational transitions, and these transitions can also be produced by collisional energy transfer. Clouds are also very important infrared absorbers. Therefore, water has multiple effects on infrared radiation, through its vapor phase and through its condensed phases. Other absorbers of significance include methane, nitrous oxide and the chlorofluorocarbons.

  654. MarkR
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:29 PM | Permalink

    Graeme Bird says:

    “Now did everyone catch why the WATTS PER SQUARE METRE model is untenable.
    I’ve been around a long time and seen many different makes and models of kettles.

    But its been my experience that in each and every make or model the ELEMENT is towards the bottom of the kettle.

    We see with the mistaken WATTS PER SQUARE METRE paradigm the climate scientists act as if it makes no difference where the extra joules are added.

    I’m quite willing to believe, just for example, that the extra CO2 in the air is likely having a measurable effect 5 kilometres up. And that if we had had a host of censors at that level for the last 200 years our data-and-attribution (ie EVIDENCE) people might very likely be able to seperate out a CO2-effect WHICH THEY ARE UNABLE TO NOW.

    But we can NOW AND WITH NO TROUBLE AT ALL seperate out the effects of anything that takes or adds heaps of joules SPECIFICALLY to the ocean.

    So we can see the effect of a Forbush event. We can see the effects of a massive vulcanic eruption.

    The former heats the atomsophere markedly, first the ocean and then in step-fashion the air.

    The latter cools the atomosphere and by no small amount…. First the oceans, and then this affects the air.

    And this is because the joules are being primarily added to or taken away from the strata that is below the one in which we live.

    So like my example of the heater in the lower basement we are getting double and triple duty from the extra thermal energy punched in below us on account of the undeniable fact that HEAT RISES.

    Now the fact that heat rises makes the PENETRATION of the extra JOULES for the influence in question IMPORTANT.

    And the fact that water can store far more energy then just about any damn thing means that for cumulative warming we need only worry about the oceanic heat content.

    It ought to be clear to anyone by now that for our purposes the WATTS PER SQUARE METRE paradigm must exaggerate the importance of extra CO2 by a very great factor and it must diminish the importance of solar variation and aerosols by massive multiples as well.

    Is any part of this incorrect?

  655. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:29 PM | Permalink

    661

    So, temperature is a measure of how much kinetic energy an individual molecule has.

    Actually, temperature is a measure of how much kinetic energy an ensemble of molecules has. The individual molecules have varying energies, following a roughly exp(-E/kT) population distribution over energy. (The exact distribution depends on whether they are bosons or fermions, but that’s another story).

    You can take an individual molecule, ion, or particle and divide its energy by k, and call that its ‘temperature’. But it has little useful meaning.

  656. Chris
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:39 PM | Permalink

    55

    Ahhh that is the problem, too much people listening to Al Gore, ch.4 swindle type sources. Nevermind going to Petit et al. Monnin et al., Caillon et al., etc where all this “lag” nonsense (and blatant manipulation of evidence) comes from. I also specifically noted that “proof” (for respect to Karl Popper I don’t like that word in Science) is not dependent on paleoclimate, nor is it dependent on models, something people don’t seem to get. It just so happens that paleoclimatic reconstruction rom thousands to millions of year timescale supports the notion of CO2 influence, which helps from predictive and explanatory power.

    Still, I see no problem with Al Gore’s claim in this regard. All of the studies which skeptics have manipulated to make it sound like “a lag, therefore, CO2 can’t come first” specifically note a strong greenhouse feedback. It is strange that people really argue this point.

    For tropospheric temps, I think anyone paying attention has the troposphere warming a bit more per decade than the surface now. See the U.S. Climate Change “Temperature Trends in the Lower Atmosphere” report, or the National Academies or IPCC information on the issue. My guess is you are still looking at outdated Christy and Spencer data

  657. jae
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:40 PM | Permalink

    667: Again, I agree.
    666: I don’t see anything wrong there.

  658. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:41 PM | Permalink

    #56 Boris, you sure get pointy and around! And here you are attributing Nature, not Tamio to your pointy knowledge. I was just googling on the “lag” and there you were. Who’s the lagger now?

    Boris:

    ON the historical CO2/temp:

    It appears that Hansen actually predicted the lag before it was discovered, so any claim that the lag does not fit in with current theory is simply wrong. Hopefully this is the nail in the coffin for this silly argument.

    http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v347/n6289/abs/347139a0.html

    Posted by Boris | November 16, 2007 8:40 AM
    Patrick Henry:

    Boris,

    The Vostok core data was measured in the 1950s when Hansen was still a baby. The response and lag is due to the fact that CO2 solubility is lower in warm water and responds to changes in ocean temperature. That principle has been understood for hundreds of years.

    Posted by Patrick Henry | November 16, 2007 8:56 AM

    AccuWeather.com “Climate Change Expert Answers Your Questions” Last month we asked our viewers to present questions for Dr. Charles Keller, an internationally known scientist specializing in atmospheric conditions and climate change and Dr. Fred Singer, a noted skeptic and president of the Science and Environmental Policy Project.

    (Steve Bloom is there full force too, must be a club!)
    link

    The “lag” explanation is lacking whether its Hansen or RC , or JohnV’s (I do understand it JohnV! You don’t. Call me Shep! Nyuck nyuck ;) )

  659. Mike B
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:41 PM | Permalink

    John V. #29:

    A lag is expected and required for a feedback term. There’s no mystery. Basically the sun (or something else, but probably the sun due to orbital cycles) causes the temperature to begin increasing. The increasing temperature causes CO2 to be released from the oceans, since the solubility drops as the temperature rises. The CO2 amplifies the solar warming.

    So CO2 is both a forcing and a feedback, and whether CO2 leads or lags, or whether the temperature increases or decreases, it matters not. Do I have that correctly?

  660. jae
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:44 PM | Permalink

    Make that 661 and 660. The numbers just changed (someone please explain again how you link a specific comment?)

  661. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:49 PM | Permalink

    As soon as we hit 666 STEFFAN will show up and say something incomprehensibly swedish and funny
    you watch.

  662. Phil.
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 8:51 PM | Permalink

    Re#659
    Lokks like Wiki needs a rewrite!@

  663. Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 9:34 PM | Permalink

    @susann–
    Oh, I agree absolutely the dig was aimed at you. That’s why I just noted the author, noted the comment started with slam and moved on.

    I figure if a comment starts with a slam, there is small likelihood the remaining bits will contain information. But, if it’s aimed at me, I read it. (I should probably skip those too. ….)

    I it was aimed at you. I do try to be aware of who does what; I noted this behavior but skipped the rest of his message. :)

    I also agree he denied it was a dig. More info.

  664. Susann
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 9:37 PM | Permalink

    Disgusted, but surprised that you admitted it so easily.

    You didn’t notice the smiley face? I was joking.

  665. Bob Weber
    Posted Dec 7, 2007 at 11:41 PM | Permalink

    Contents of Tree-Ring Research, vol 63, no. 2 (2007)

    RESEARCH ARTICLE

    Effects of dwarf mistletoe on climate response
    of mature ponderosa pine trees Inner Mongolia, China,
    since A.D. 1627 …………………
    Sharon Stanton

    The potential to reconstruct Manasi River streamflow
    in the northern Tien Shan Mountains (NW China)………….
    Yujiang Yuan,Xuemei Shao, Wenshou Wei, Shulong Yu,
    Yuan Gong, Valerie Trouet

    Dendroarchaeology of the
    Salt Lake Tablernacle, Utah ?………………………..
    Matthew F. Bekker, David M. Heath

    RESEARCH REPORTS
    Tree-ring dating of Sinmu-mun, the North Gate of
    Kyungbok Palace in Seoul…………………………….
    Won-Kyu Park, Yo-Jung Kim, Jung-Wook Seo, Jin-Ho Lee,
    Tomasz Wazny

    Climate response of Dahurian larch in Secrest Arboretum,
    Wooster, Ohio, USA……………….
    Tyler Moore, Nathan Malcomb, Gregory Wiles

    ATRICS- A new system for image acquisition
    in dendrochronology…………….
    Tom Levanic

    Bob

  666. Chris
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 2:30 AM | Permalink

    re 58

    Have you read the IPCC 2007 report? Or any of the reports by the National Academies? Are they wrong? Are they in a big conspiracy theory?

    With all things being equal, you add CO2 and you get warming. The greenhouse forcings have very little uncertainty because it is easy to measure their infrared absorption effect and atmospheric concentration. More uncertainty with cloud parameterization, aerosol effects, etc. The greenhouse physics is rather easy physics, in fact, and stuff we have known for a long time (history here or here). I do think RC’s post “CO2 problem in 6 easy steps” is a good read here.

    - We know temperatures have risen over the last 100 years and this is unequivocally shown by a variety of techniques and coherent responses from glaciers and ice sheets, sea level rise, ocean heat content, decrease in snow cover and earlier springs, etc
    - We know the composition of the atmosphere is changing. We know CO2 is an important greenhouse gas. Use of Line-by-Line Radiative Transfer codes, GCM’s, attempts to use observations and ocean heat uptake, and physical constraints from paleoclimate over decades of study all point to the influence of CO2 as ~2 to 4.5 C per 2x, though uncertainties in
    forcing and response made it hard to use observed global temperature changes to constrain Equilibrium Climate Sensitivty (See the NAS report on climate sensitivty and IPCC 2007 on attribution of climate change). Also http://www.jamstec.go.jp/frcgc/research/d5/jdannan/GRL_sensitivity.pdf is pretty good (for McIntrye, many more with no models, but still a deal of uncertainty). I’d love to have sensitivity tightened, but it is just not now possible (see the Roe and Baker paper recently). Of course, there is also no reason to widen the range because there is no physical evidence to justify such.
    - We know there are many “fingerprints” of CO2. Kind of like detective work. For example, an enhanced downward infrared flux, stratosphere cooling, etc
    - We know other things like the sun, volcanic activity, cosmic rays, etc have no explanatory trend since at least mid-century.

    I suppose you can hope for two things 1) That we are screwing up the CO2 physics 2) some unknown phenomena will come out to explain the warming trend. I suppose neither is physically impossible, but in any other scientific category this would be more than enough to put as a ‘known’ in science textbooks.

  667. fFreddy
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 2:42 AM | Permalink

    Re #65, Chris

    With all things being equal, you add CO2 and you get warming.

    Do you seriously believe that all other factors in the Earth’s climate are equal ?

  668. Chris
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 2:46 AM | Permalink

    61 and others

    Global warming so far is, in round numbers, 1 degree. That is large
    compared to decadal-average global-average variability, so we can see the warming signal clearly. We know there is a radiative imbalance, we have satellites and ground stations, and ocean records, and glacierl oss and ice sheet loss, and spring-winter patterns, and biological patters, etc all consistent with warming. It amazes me that people say “uncertainty, therefore, no AGW” The logic is flawed and can quite as well mean “uncertainty, therefore, larger sensitivity” (like would be the case if a warmer MWP) but no one mentions that. I am amazed the uncertainty principle is also applied only to climate science. “Hey doctor, you’re full of it for saying smoking causes cancer because we don’t know everything about the human body.” That always works… It appears we have a few different types of skeptics here (see http://www.pik-potsdam.de/~stefan/Publications/Other/rahmstorf_climate_sceptics_2004.pdf ). Warming skeptics (must be all the flawed equipment or UHI effect), attribution skeptics (CO2 physics must be wrong, and some unknown cause must be doing it), impact skeptics, etc. Which do you guys classify yourselves as? Also, Steven Mcintrye- which would you classify yourself as? Just out of curiosity.

    I think it is quite easy, but with a lot of complexities. We know the extra 100 ppm CO2 is ours from isotopic analysis and other methods. CO2 is a natural absorber of longwave radiation (infrared) which we know the Earth emits and is absorbed by a greenhouse effect, and the result is now a greater absorption of radiation than input of solar radiation. This has resulted in a change in the earth’s annual global mean energy budget (see http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/cas/trenberth.papers/KiehlTrenbBAMS97.pdf) See the book on radiative forcing at http://books.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=11175 as well.

    Also, the claim the temperatures have been in decline over the last few years or so is just not right. I really do think people are so fixed on the medieval warm period here that they’re not looking into any of the other science, am I wrong?

  669. Chris
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 2:52 AM | Permalink

    #66

    Of course not. We should probably be in a slight cooling now without anthropogenic(see graph http://www.pewclimate.org/docUploads/images/meehl-attribution.gif which also demonstrates how unreliable models are up to 1950 or so). A lot of work has been done to get natural and anthropogenic down (e.g. http://www.pnas.org/cgi/reprint/104/10/3713.pdf ) but we have no evidence of any strong trend in anything since about 1950 to even come close to what we know about various greenhouse gases (CO2, methane, nitrous oxide). To say this is all wrong because we don’t know some stuff very well is a bit bizarre to me. The only way (since things are not equal) to hope for a cancellation of human effects is to pray the sun gets dimmer or a bunch of volcanoes keep going off or something like that. Wishful thinking.

  670. Chris
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 3:01 AM | Permalink

    Also, this subject is getting way off topic now from the original discussion on Roesch and proxies. Noisy indeed!

    I leave you gentleman (if any ladies as well) to discuss. MY only comment is that I am not a paleoclimatologist so have no advanced training in proxies, methods, etc. I would hope people understand why I read NOAA Paleoclimate, National Academies report or IPCC before blogs as authority, and there is just too much showing a regional MWP in Greenland, parts of Europe and Asia without a signal in the tropics or southern hemisphere (nothing shows a MWP in anatarctica). A lot of decadal and century fluctuations, but a clear rise (and quick rise) globally in the 20th century, and the confidence is now considerably high we’re the major suspect- Chris

  671. GMB
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 3:24 AM | Permalink

    “A lot of decadal and century fluctuations, but a clear rise (and quick rise) globally in the 20th century, and the confidence is now considerably high we’re the major suspect- Chris”

    We are not the suspect. Stop talking nonsense and make good with the evidence.

  672. Philip_B
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 3:40 AM | Permalink

    >>>Have you read the IPCC 2007 report?

    Chris, Yes I have. In summary, it says the science and data is indicative, but not conclusive. Therefore, we (have to) rely on the models to tell us what will happen in the future.

    Would you dispute that statement?

  673. Demesure
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 3:53 AM | Permalink

    Chris,
    You’re widely off topic. “unthreaded” is the place on CA to posts things not related to Loehe.

  674. Philip_B
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 3:56 AM | Permalink

    Chris: And, let’s say we are having this discussion in 1910. The ocean temperature record is showing an accelerating downward trend in temperatures (probably more pronounced than the late 20th century warming trend). The world economy was booming in 1910 and globalization was apace (hence rapidly rising CO2 emissions from fossil fuels).

    You said, ‘so we can see the warming signal clearly.’ well in 1910 you could see ‘the cooling signal clearly’.

  675. Rob
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 4:18 AM | Permalink

    Chris,
    you are talking politics. This blog is not about politics and all your arguments of evidence of AGW can be turned the other way around by using simple rhetoric’s. I’m not learning anything from what you are saying I’ve heard it all before, you repeating it does not make it more plausible.

    The reason I’m reading CA is that it is one of very few sources of information questioning the mainstream view using facts and scientific argument as opposed to politics. Therefore I’m learning. So what’s you contribution? More politics?

  676. John A
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 4:22 AM | Permalink

    Around the Chris[snip]

    Global warming so far is, in round numbers, 1 degree. That is large compared to decadal-average global-average variability, so we can see the warming signal clearly.

    No it isn’t.

    Here is the rate of change of temperature taken from the GRIP ice core D180

    The current rate of increase is well within the natural range of climate variability.

    We know there is a radiative imbalance, we have satellites and ground stations, and ocean records, and glacierl oss and ice sheet loss, and spring-winter patterns, and biological patters, etc all consistent with warming.

    Yes, now tell me whatever it was that convinced you that climate did not naturally change and on all timescales. Be honest – did you feel a warming of the breast when you saw the Hockey Stick?

    It amazes me that people say “uncertainty, therefore, no AGW”

    It amazes me that people will come to this blog a[snipp]

    The logic is flawed and can quite as well mean “uncertainty, therefore, larger sensitivity” (like would be the case if a warmer MWP) but no one mentions that.

    But if there was a warmer MWP then it would be much more difficult to show that the current climate was “unprecedented in a milllllyyyuuunnnn years”. [snoip]

    That always works… It appears we have a few different types of skeptics here (see http://www.pik-potsdam.de/~stefan/Publications/Other/rahmstorf_climate_sceptics_2004.pdf ). Warming skeptics (must be all the flawed equipment or UHI effect), attribution skeptics (CO2 physics must be wrong, and some unknown cause must be doing it), impact skeptics, etc. Which do you guys classify yourselves as? Also, Steven Mcintrye- which would you classify yourself as? Just out of curiosity.

    I classify myself as a skeptic of mindboggling amounts of money being spent on a foolish escapade to try to control the Earth’s climate based on faulty reasoning, bad models, bad practice, badmouthing and endless appeals to authority, ignorance, popularity, conspiracy theories and “consensus” WITHOUT EVER CHECKING THEM THOROUGHLY FROM BEGINNING TO END.

    I think it is quite easy, but with a lot of complexities. We know the extra 100 ppm CO2 is ours from isotopic analysis and other methods. CO2 is a natural absorber of longwave radiation (infrared) which we know the Earth emits and is absorbed by a greenhouse effect, and the result is now a greater absorption of radiation than input of solar radiation.

    [snip]

    This has resulted in a change in the earth’s annual global mean energy budget (see http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/cas/trenberth.papers/KiehlTrenbBAMS97.pdf) See the book on radiative forcing at http://books.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=11175 as well.

    All of which would be fascinating except THE EARTH’S CLIMATE IS NOT A LINEAR SYSTEM. ITS NON-LINEAR.

    Also, the claim the temperatures have been in decline over the last few years or so is just not right.

    Oh really? Because you say so?

    I really do think people are so fixed on the medieval warm period here that they’re not looking into any of the other science, am I wrong?

    [snip]

    Steve: John A – please be a little calmer.

  677. Andrey Levin
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 4:31 AM | Permalink

    Susann:

    Sometimes I wonder if some people use me as a proxy for those they despise on the warmer side…

    No. These egg-headed old and young farts are just desperate for attention (me included).

    …our civilization is premised on carbon-based energy…

    Carbon-based energy GHG emissions are only tip of the iceberg. For a glance of what is lying underneath take a time to read this excellent paper produced under UN umbrella (quite a rare feat):

    http://www.virtualcentre.org/en/library/key_pub/longshad/A0701E00.htm

  678. Peter Thompson
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 4:45 AM | Permalink

    #59 Tetris,

    Can you provide url’s to those three sources. Talk about noise, the “official” sites are full of it, and very difficult to get any actual data from.

  679. Jeremy Ayrton
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 5:04 AM | Permalink

    Susann, if you want to say

    I’m not one to complain overmuch (maybe only somewhat) about being personally attacked.

    You shouldn’t then devote a long paragraph to doing just that.

    Or anything else. Please be brief; I haven’t the time to plough through all this stuff.

  680. Jeremy Ayrton
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 5:22 AM | Permalink

    Susann,

    You didn’t notice the smiley face? I was joking.

    Be careful! Note the recent furore over naming a Teddy Bear.

    This could come back to haunt you. And BTW, some jokes aren’t funny. Best avoid them.

  681. Philip Mulholland
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 6:01 AM | Permalink

    jae

    #666 Like this 666

    Unless Steve moves a comment to a different thread (in which case the thread page number changes), then the comment ID number (e.g. 173647) remains constant, even if the published comment sequence number (i.e. 666) changes because of Steve’s comment cleaning.
    Create a URL link to the Permanent Link Number http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=2468#comment-173647(Top Right of Comment).
    Hope this helps.

  682. Gary Moran
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 7:29 AM | Permalink

    Chris #65

    The greenhouse physics is rather easy physics, in fact, and stuff we have known for a long time (history here or here). I do think RC’s post “CO2 problem in 6 easy steps” is a good read here.

    Something that has become apparent to me over the last six months is that there is nothing simple about the physics of the atmospheric greenhouse effect. Look at unthreaded here at CA, or some threads at UK Weatherworld here and here

    Further discussions on the physics would be most appropriate in unthreaded I’d think.

    As far as Loehle is concerned I think the comments by Bender #62 are very relevant.

  683. Susann
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 8:31 AM | Permalink

    You shouldn’t then devote a long paragraph to doing just that.

    Or anything else. Please be brief; I haven’t the time to plough through all this stuff.

    Of course, you are not obliged to read my posts at all. :)

  684. Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 8:37 AM | Permalink

    @Pat– 661. I’ve been pondering the definition pressure and volume of a single molecule and how one takes the partial derivatives of H or U with respect to those. Do you think there is a good wikipedia page explaining that? :)

    @steve moscher 649

    Sheesh. Susann and lucia never laugh. Thanks for leaving me with the tough crowd. PAL!

    Oh, I laugh quite frequently. I even sometimes say amusing things, but people usually don’t get my jokes. :(

  685. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 8:46 AM | Permalink

    re 690. If you stop using RPN to tell the jokes more people would get them.
    HA! ( that’s a joke )

  686. Jeremy Ayrton
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 8:56 AM | Permalink

    Susan,

    Of course, you are not obliged to read my posts at all.

    Attagirl!

    Brief and to the point.

    I like it!

    TTFN

  687. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 9:42 AM | Permalink

    690
    Perhaps it would make a good thesis topic……..

    BTW did you see second half of post 648?

  688. jae
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 10:15 AM | Permalink

    676, Chris:

    A lot of decadal and century fluctuations, but a clear rise (and quick rise) globally in the 20th century, and the confidence is now considerably high we’re the major suspect- Chris

    There has been virtually no rise in T during the last 9 years. What’s going on? Maybe just a short pause? Or maybe a sign of cooling? Whatever it is, none of the climate models that are so precious to IPCC predicted it.

  689. Larry
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 10:22 AM | Permalink

    690, With any of these thermo variables, you can define the variable for a single molecule simply by taking the limit as the number of molecules and the volume around the molecule approach one. If you can do that thought experiment, it’s obvious that as you take a sample and continue to divide it into halfs, and thirds, and and whatever other fractions needed to end up with one molecule, the variable itself doesn’t change, until the numbers start getting so small that they’re no longer normally distributed. If you can make one more crass assumption for the purposes of this thought experiment, and say that when you get to that scale, the variables are no longer distributed, but are all equal to the original mean, then you can keep dividing down to one, and it won’t change.

    That seems like a crass assumption, but the original question was, does a unique value exist for one molecule? I would claim that the answer is yes, simply by working the argument backward, and saying that if that one molecule has a mean temperature of x, you can take y of those molecules, turn them loose, and eventually, they’ll establish the normal distribution of energies that you expect out of a large population.

    If you scale the volume around that molecule down with it, you get the two independent variables that determine the thermodynamic state, so the other variables (minus molecular interactions; i.e. ideal gas) become defined. Of course, this all comes completely unglued at high densities.

  690. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 10:32 AM | Permalink

    re 695. This explains why I am a free electron.

  691. John M
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 10:39 AM | Permalink

    #696

    I think the term “free readical” is more appropriate.

    (Look out for the Zamboni Machine!)

  692. John M
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 10:41 AM | Permalink

    Sheez,

    Make that “free radical”.

    (I hate it when a bad joke is ruined.)

  693. Larry
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 10:44 AM | Permalink

    Interesting article on polar bears:

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/news/worldnews.html?in_article_id=500424&in_page_id=1811

  694. STAFFAN LINDSTROEM
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 10:59 AM | Permalink

    #667 MOSHO POSHO like Macchu Picchu …sorry
    I was working extra running to the Essinge Island from
    Solna (When I get hold of a surf-cellphone I’ll take all unthreaded #666
    but jae got it this time but that’s appropriate as “Jävel=Devil”), Google Earth that could be 5.5 km in 40 minutes,
    jogging half the way..Mosh I really can’t understand
    why you read “Staffan” as “Steffan”??…Hudson Bay will
    soon be all ice…down to the bottom of … James Bay
    Preliminary comparisons of cherrypicked rural US stations
    show the 1930′s were 0.2-0.3C warmer than 1990′s…
    It’s also some good chances weird Al Gore can get some wet flakes
    inside his collar in Oslo on Monday…we’ll see, it’s as hot as it
    can be…

  695. STAFFAN LINDSTROEM
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 11:04 AM | Permalink

    #700 If Chris had got #666 you can guess my renaming
    of him ….

  696. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 11:43 AM | Permalink

    STAFFAN… Sorry I always try to slip an E into your name.

    like Macchu Picchu i thought you were lost!

    What will you swedes do without Snow?

    Good to hear from you again friend.

  697. Larry
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 11:48 AM | Permalink

    Now that we’ve dinged the devil number, time for #27?

  698. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 11:54 AM | Permalink

    Re: #690

    @Pat– 661. I’ve been pondering the definition pressure and volume of a single molecule and how one takes the partial derivatives of H or U with respect to those. Do you think there is a good wikipedia page explaining that?

    Lucia, since the word is you do not laugh, I ignored your smiley emoticon for the above and went to work searching wiki for said explanation. I’ll post if I find anything. Larry’s redefining the single molecule case as noted in post #695 has got me to thinking about reorienting my search.

    Note: Many of these posts here (mine included) deserve the short-lived existence that Steve M gives them, but they do provide a humorous respite from the more serious and technical issues covered here.

    It reminds me of the time in my youth many, many, many years ago when we tested authority to see what we could get away with. I do think it is more a male thing and in line with the old adage that girls grow up to be ladies and boys grow up to be bigger boys.

  699. David Smith
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 12:03 PM | Permalink

    In case it hasn’t been posted

    http://www.junkscience.com/MSU_Temps/RSSglobe.html

    Looks like global temperatures continue to fall.

  700. Larry
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 12:11 PM | Permalink

    705, let’s be clear; that’s anomaly. The anomaly is dropping. Once it drops below zero, then temperatures will be falling.

  701. Mark T
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 12:21 PM | Permalink

    Uh, no Larry. The anomaly indicates the amount above average. As it goes down, that indicates the temps are also going down. Once they anomalies are negative, then we will be below average. Your point would be true if that was a graph of the rate of change.

    Mark

  702. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 12:22 PM | Permalink

    Global warming bets on lake effect snow in buffalo this year?

  703. Larry
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 12:27 PM | Permalink

    I stand corrected, but that chart isn’t properly centered. There’s a lot more area above 0 anomaly than below.

  704. Larry
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 12:29 PM | Permalink

    708, La nina says it will be below normal. GW doesn’t enter the picture.

  705. Mark T
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 1:22 PM | Permalink

    Well, it’s centered to show the full range, which includes the 1998 el Nino.

    La Nina is doing wonderful things to the SW mountains in CO, btw. Crested Butte and Wolf Creek have both had 7 feet of snow in the last week (2-3 overnight the past couple nights, too).

    Mark

  706. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 1:34 PM | Permalink

    695

    comes completely unglued

    Yes, indeed.
    If that makes you feel good, go ahead — but may I ask what you plan to do with this formalism?

  707. Larry
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 1:41 PM | Permalink

    712, the point is that the analogy works (sort of) going from an ideal gas to a molecule. It’s not conceptually applicable to anything else, because you end up breaking intermolecular interactions when you try to chop it up like that. That’s cheating.

  708. Larry
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 1:47 PM | Permalink

    712, now I see the point of your question. I was trying help Gunnar out by suggesting that if the molecule that just swallowed a photon did have a temperature, it would be pretty high (but not for long). His assumption that it only raises the CO2 a degree or so is just a false assumption. I’ll concede that the temperature of a single molecule is more of a conceptual construct for the purpose of gedankenexperiment than a physically meaningful variable.

  709. Spence_UK
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 2:03 PM | Permalink

    Re #705-711

    The satellite temp anomaly is centred on the first 20 years of data (240 months, from Jan 79 to Dec 98 – it does say it on the Y axis of the graph, it doesn’t leap out at you though!), not across the entire data set. And, just to point out to Larry – in addition to missing the rate of change thing, you also seemed to think it hadn’t dropped below zero, but Nov 2007 has a value of -0.01, so the temp is already below zero, the average for 1979-1998.

    This isn’t hugely surprising given the ENSO cycle. Keep watching this space though!

  710. Boris
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 2:12 PM | Permalink

    #56 Boris, you sure get pointy and around! And here you are attributing Nature, not Tamio to your pointy knowledge.

    Um, Tamino pointed me to that article. What’s your point? Is that some pathetic attempt at a “gotcha”?

    The “lag” explanation is lacking whether its Hansen or RC

    No, the “lag” explanation is entirely correct and fits in perfectly with what we know about CO2 as a feedback (rebound form glaciations) and as a forcing (today). Only people who don’t understand and/or want to obfuscate believe otherwise.

  711. Larry
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 2:24 PM | Permalink

    It’s a very straightforward theory. And just like all feedbacks, there’s no way to calculate a reliable value. In other words, it’s qualitative hand-wave.

  712. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 2:52 PM | Permalink

    At some point I need to look at this C02 debate a bit more closly.

  713. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 4:56 PM | Permalink

    Yes Boris, see Steve Mosher’s graph there? It tells us nothing, starts where ever it wants and doesn’t prove anything just like your hand waving.

    I could say: Oh look at the graph! CO2 following the temperature like a good little CO2!
    Or, Oh look at that graph, say: the Little Ice Age is over, the Earth is getting warmer and look at the CO2 rise! Be free be free!

    I know what you say. Say whatever you want, but what you say is lame to a REAL Earth scientist.

  714. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 5:08 PM | Permalink

    RE 719..

    I was just curious. I looked at the latest Hadcru data. Hadcru temps.. they are used by the IPCC
    right? any way, I wanted to check the arte of temp change between two regimes

    1910-1940 and 1974-2005. Trying to get a sense of how rapidily the temp could go up
    and get a sense of the gain for increasing C02. The trend in theses two regimes
    was nearly identical. That’s interesting. So, I figured if C02 causes the increase in temp from
    1974 to 2005, then an interesting question is what caused the same rate of change from 1910 -1940.
    C02? or something else? And what about the gain factor for that something else.

    I dunno, I’m just playing around…

  715. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 5:33 PM | Permalink

    720 Steve Mosher, well yeah play away, but try and think like a geologist. data for 50 yrs, 100 yrs, 400 yrs is nothing , like 0 data really! So you are zooming into this time span. Ok, then IF the lag is true and CO2 followed a rise in temperature and the temperature started to rise, like from say the Little Ice Age-continuing to your 1910 and beyond , we might be seeing the lag happening in your graph and the CO2 we are adding as modern humans screws up that graph (ha, for lack of a better words.) :)

  716. JohnB UK
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 5:34 PM | Permalink

    SteveMosher@508

    Steve, forgive me for butting in. I’m not a scientist, just someone with an interest. I’ve just plotted the annual rate of CO2 increase against annual temperatures in a simple excel bar chart going back to 1980, and the profiles of the two sets of figures rise and fall very closely. Can you or one of the team explain why for me? If a higher temperature is matched with a faster increase in CO2, doesn’t that suggest that either temperature is driving CO2 rather than the other way round, or something else is driving both?

    Great site. Apologies for interrupting and for probably dumb question.

    John

  717. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 5:44 PM | Permalink

    #722 No question is dumb, and butt in anytime!

  718. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 6:12 PM | Permalink

    RE 722. No problemo.. I think This phenomena is being discussed over on the C02 levels thread.

    JohnV has a theory about why the rate change in C02 tracks the temp..others have some issues with it.

    The lag debate has never really been high on my list of things to look at. So head on over to the C02
    thread or ask somebody else here. I’m just looking at things and puzzling.. Maybe I come up
    with a good puzzle.. maybe not.

  719. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 6:21 PM | Permalink

    RE 721. Well, folks started talking about Hadcru data. We’ve spent so much time looking at GISS I thought
    I should have a look at Hadcru again. I was focused on Ross’ study ( se the Ross thread) and as I looked
    at the HADCRU it occured to me? The rate of temp change between 1910 and 1940 looks about the same as 1975 -2005.

    That struck me as weird, if AGW is true. especially with the argument about the feedback gain of C02.
    So, I’m just exploring.. I understand the time scales involved in the lag/no lag argument are much
    longer than the regime I zoomed in on.

  720. Larry
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 6:31 PM | Permalink

    725, keep in mind that feedback can have any lag and any nonlinearity. It can basically explain anything you observe, because it has so many twiddle factors.

  721. Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 6:32 PM | Permalink

    #725 steven mosher:
    From what I’ve seen, the temperature rise from 1910 to 1940 had a corresponding increase in TSI. There does not seem to be a similar rise for the last 30 years.
    Bruce will now tell say something about the last ~70 years being the longest run of high solar activity in ~8000 years. That may be true, but if we are only now seeing the temperature rise from sustained solar activity begun in 1940, that means the time constant for warming is *very* long. I would also expect *sustained* solar activity at a given level cause temperature to approach a new steady state logarithmically.

    Anyways — that was a quick brain dump before heading out. Do with it as you will.

  722. Jim Clarke
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 6:59 PM | Permalink

    Here is a lengthy response to #720. It will be my latest blog entry at http://www.abc-7.com/Blogs/clarke.shtml as soon as I can get it posted. It is written for a lay audience, so some of it is a bit simplified. Also, I could only get one of the graphics to display in this post, but the links should work to the other two. It is entitled: Global Cooling is Imminent:

    So what are the factors that will decide our future climate? Let’s start by recognizing that climate is very complex and that there are many aspects of climate change that we are only beginning to understand. Still, we know that the primary drivers of climate change are both natural and man-made. The main natural factors are the sun, volcanoes and internal oscillations in the oceans. The man-made factors are the so-called ‘greenhouse gases’ (GHG’s) and land use changes. The dilemma is in figuring out how all of these factors combine and the relative ability of each to change our climate.

    The IPCC and their accomplices in media and government are almost entirely focused on increasing GHG’s. The reasons for this are very complex and would likely make a great adventure novel. Just ask Michael Crichton! The earth, however, is telling us that other factors are more important than increasing CO2. Consider this graph which shows the atmospheric concentration of CO2 and the estimated global temperature from 1880 to the present:

    Note that global temperatures warmed about 0.4 degrees from 1910 to 1945, while CO2 climbed slowly from about 290 to 310 parts per million (ppm). From WWII on, we humans really increased our burning of fossil fuels, pumping more and more CO2 into the atmosphere each year. During this time, global temperatures cooled, indicating that something was overriding the warming effect of CO2. Around 1977, temperatures began to warm again and have seemingly peaked at the present time, with no discernable trend over the last 10 years or so. A statistical analysis of how well the temperatures of the 20th century correlate with increasing CO2 reveals a very poor fit.

    Those defending an impending global warming crisis try to explain the mid-20th century cooling with the notion that man-made aerosols (air pollution) cut down on the amount of sunshine reaching the surface and caused the cooling. The problem with that argument is that the cooling took place in both hemispheres, while man-made aerosols were primarily in the northern hemisphere. To this day, we do not know very much about how human emitted aerosols impact climate. Some say they produce warming. Others argue for cooling. Still some suggest that the affect of aerosols depends on there location in the atmosphere and may produce warming or cooling at different times.

    To make the Global Climate Models reproduce the climate changes of the 20th Century, modelers arbitrarily assigned a cooling effect to the human emissions of aerosols! If your child was discovered arbitrarily assigning a value to get the ‘desired’ result in a 6th grade science fair project, he or she would get a very poor grade. Apparently it is more important to be scientifically honest in a 6th grade science fair than for the United Nations to be scientifically honest when reorganizing the global economy and diminishing our standard of living…but I digress.

    Some global warming crisis skeptics point to the sun to explain recent warming while crisis supporters counter that the total irradiance (energy) from the sun does not change enough over time to account for the observed temperature trends. While this latter point is true, it is also misleading. The total irradiance does not change much, but there are more significant variations in solar wind, sunspots and ultraviolet radiation, each producing a reaction in the Earth’s atmosphere. The following graph of sunspots is often suggested to explain the global warming trend from the 17th Century to the present.

    While the solar argument is compelling on many levels, it still doesn’t explain the observed climate changes of the 20th century very well. For example, the most active sunspot cycle in the 400-year record occurred in the 1950’s, as the global temperature cooled.

    Global temperatures seem to correlate with increasing CO2 during the final third of the 20th century, but do not correlate well over the first two thirds of the century. Temperatures correlate with increasing solar activity over the first third of the 20th century, but not all that well over the latter two thirds of the period. Neither correlates at all with the observed cooling of the mid 20th century! So there must be another factor. There must be something else that can overwhelm the warming influence of both increasing CO2 and a very active sun, in order to explain the global cooling of the mid-20th century.

    Take a look at this:

    PDO stands for Pacific Decadal Oscillation. It is only over the last few decades that we have discovered that the world’s oceans go through warm and cool phases that generally last for several decades. The exact cause of the oscillations is not understood at this time, but they do happen, and they do have a big influence on climate. Since the Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean by far, it is reasonable to deduce that fluctuations in the Pacific will have the largest impact on global climate.

    The blue shaded areas show the years when the Pacific was in its cool phase, while the red areas show the years of the warm phase. El Ninos, which have been shown to produce a general warming over much of the planet, are more prominent during warm phases of the PDO, while La Ninas are more numerous during the cool phase.

    The similarities between the 20th century record of global temperature and the PDO are unmistakable. The mid 20th Century cooling begins and ends at the exact same time as the cool phase of the PDO! Think about it. While both the sun and the rapidly increasing concentration of ‘greenhouse’ gases where trying to warm the planet in the 1950s, the PDO seemingly overpowered their influence and produced cooling!

    Despite the overwhelming evidence that internal cycles like the PDO have played a huge role in 20th century climate change, the IPCC and the global warming community ignore them almost entirely. They argue that internal variations do not change the total energy of the Earth/Atmosphere system and, therefore, can not have any long-term influence on global temperature trends. True enough, but also misleading.

    If we look at just the last 30 years of temperature records, we get an increase in global temperature of nearly 0.60 degrees centigrade, or about 0.20 degrees per decade! This is a very scary number! If this trend were to continue, or even accelerate over the next 100 years, some of the dire predictions of the IPCC could actually come to pass. The IPCC and the media tend to focus primarily on the last 30 years of warming; ignoring the fact that much of the observed trend is likely the result of the warm phase of the PDO.

    In order to factor out the influence of the PDO, any examination of global temperature trends would have to begin and end at the same point in the PDO cycle. For example, if you look at the trend from 1945 to the present, we get a global warming of about 0.35 degrees centigrade, or roughly 0.06 degrees per decade. The beginning and end times of this period correspond with one complete cycle of the PDO, thus removing its influence from the global temperature trend.

    It should also be noted that the 0.06 degrees per decade is not just the result of increasing ‘greenhouse’ gases. Nearly every other climate factor has also been trending towards warming. The sun was unusually active throughout the entire 20th century. Land use changes, including more pavement, farmland and irrigation, have also contributed to the warming. Volcanic aerosols in the stratosphere, which tend to cool the planet, have been lower over the last 7 years than any similar period in the last 100 years. Even the Atlantic Ocean oscillation switched from its cool phase to its warm phase in 1995, contributing to the overall trend.

    It is not possible to tell just how much of the 0.06 degrees warming per decade is the result of increasing CO2 and other ‘greenhouse’ gases. Even if we assume that it accounts for 2/3 of the observed trend (unlikely), it only leads to a net warming of 0.80 degrees over the next 200 years! Such a warming would be largely beneficial and any negative impacts could be dealt with cheaply and efficiently at regional levels.

    But what about the more immediate forecast? What is likely to happen over the next 3 or 4 decades? In 1945, the PDO shifted to the cool phase and global temperatures dropped about three tenths of a degree in 7 years, despite rapidly increasing ‘greenhouse’ gases and a very active sun. We appear to be on the verge of another shift to the cool phase of the PDO, although we probably won’t know for sure until several years after it happens.

    The solar influence, which was growing stronger in 1945, appears to be waning now. Solar physicists believe the next 11-year sunspot cycle will be the weakest in many decades and the one after that will be weaker than any since the Dalton Minimum, nearly 200 years ago! The Atlantic Ocean oscillation will probably shift back to its cool phase in about 15-20 years. A major volcanic eruption could happen at any time. It is a good bet that one or more will occur in the next 30 years, causing some cooling.

    All things considered, global temperatures over the next 30 to 40 years should return to levels measured in the 1950s to 1970s, or roughly a half degree cooler than they are today. The human influence will still be a warming one, but will be totally swamped by the natural climate change factors. If we dramatically curtail our CO2 emissions with huge tax increases on fossil fuels and shift to the more expensive, less reliable renewable energy sources, we might make it insignificantly cooler, although I don’t know why anyone would want to do that!

  723. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 7:07 PM | Permalink

    RE 727… Thanks JohnV.. My assumption was that

    1. Someone would argue it was TSI
    2. Someone would say TSI hasnt changed substantially ( leif for example)

    And then the whole lag issue would come up and the gain issue.

    Is there a recognized gain on TSI increase?

    Also, the C02 numbers for 1910-1940 are my rough order guesses. The best data I could find
    was a reference that 1880s was 285-290.. and the instrument record starts around the late 50s.

    Might be fun to play around with, FWIW.

  724. Phil.
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 7:18 PM | Permalink


    As I pointed out above “So absorption of a single photon (per Larry) is the equivalent of raising the temp of the CO2 molecule 200º+.”
    The was in response to a comment by Larry

    Smart alec comments on whether a single molecule has a temperature aren’t germane to the argument.

  725. Al
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 7:32 PM | Permalink

    A comparison of tropical temperature trends with model predictions
    David H. Douglass 1 *, John R. Christy 2, Benjamin D. Pearson 1, S. Fred Singer

    That doesn’t seem to be mentioned above. This appears to be a study of “the Divergence Problems”.

  726. jae
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 8:43 PM | Permalink

    Sadlov or other Bay Area denizens, I need some help. Why are temps. at the S.F. Airport so different from Mission?

  727. Jim Clarke
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 9:59 PM | Permalink

    Re #731

    If you mean that any examination of the actual climate seems to diverge from the AGW Theory, yes…it is an example of the divergence problems.

  728. Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 10:11 PM | Permalink

    Jae, #732: my take, fwiw: the Mission is surrounded by hills and is deep in the UHI of SF. The airport is way down peninsula with much less UHI effect betweeen it and the prevailing winds off the ocean.

    YOuve heard of Candlestick Park? The airport is similar but more so. You probably get more persistent fog in the Mission.

    Disclaimer: these are impressions.

  729. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 8, 2007 at 10:18 PM | Permalink

    727 John V

    the temperature rise from sustained solar activity begun in 1940, that means the time constant for warming is *very* long.

    You think from 1940 to 2007 is ‘very long’, but 800 years of CO2 lag (from 1207 t0 2007) is a minor issue?

  730. Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 12:09 AM | Permalink

    # 728

    Jim Clarke,

    The solar influence, which was growing stronger in 1945, appears to be waning now.

    And so the tropospheric temperature, which has been decreasing in the last six years. 1998 was the warmest year of the current decade and for ENSO the warmest year was 1997. Curiously, one year before the warmest year of the last decade.

  731. Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 1:59 AM | Permalink

    Re mosher: quote I should have a look at Hadcru again. I was focused on Ross’ study ( se the Ross thread) and as I looked
    at the HADCRU it occured to me? The rate of temp change between 1910 and 1940 looks about the same as 1975 -2005. unquote

    Nice to see you don’t read anything I post….

    Yes. Steady rise 1910 to 39, big clang, fight back to the steady rise rate by 1976. (to find my other post, look for ‘homeostasis’).

    OK. So what caused the clang?

    JF
    (looks all swivelly eyed)

  732. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 6:17 AM | Permalink

    735, tell me about it! I said try and think like a geologist. :)

    SteveMosher and JohnV. You are looking at a snapshot during a deglaciation period. And there could be dozens of similar snap shots like this. Even the Little Ice Age had peaks and valleys warming years, flat lines and dips, don’t you think? its not fair to say these little periods of time are weird. You can’t know that.

    Trivia:

    The Chandler wobble is a small variation in Earth’s axis of rotation, discovered by American astronomer Seth Carlo Chandler in 1891. It amounts to 0.7 arcseconds over a period of 433 days. In other words, Earth’s poles move in an irregular circle of 3 to 15 metres in diameter, in an oscillation. This is in addition to the precession of the equinoxes, a larger oscillation which takes over 25,000 years to complete.
    The wobble’s diameter has varied since discovery, reaching its most extreme range recorded to date in 1910.

    Stop Global Wobbles?

    Lassen Peak, California, erupted from 1914 to 1917
    How many more volcanos above ground and below the sea sent steam and gas into the mix around the world in your snap shot? How many fires burned? How many rice paddies and cook fires sent soot into the air? How much snow at the poles?

    How about the clouds? The currents of the sea? Sunspots, TSI, etc Lags , forces or feedbacks all have a perfect set times when they happen that fit on nice graphs of tiny time periods? Nothing about the Earth is that constant and or predictable, or easy to see.

    Here’s a page I found that suggests a CO2 lag can take up to 1,000 years:
    “Fig 1 also shows that carbon dioxide and methane (main greenhouse gases) occur in higher concentrations during warm periods; the two variables, temperature and greenhouse gas concentration, are clearly consistent, yet it is not clear what drives what. The correlation coefficient is 0.81 between CO2 content and apparent temperature, on the whole. During deglaciation the two varied simultaneously, but during times of cooling the CO2 changed after the temperature change, by up to 1000 years. This order of events is not what one would expect from the enhanced greenhouse effect.”

    http://www-das.uwyo.edu/~geerts/cwx/notes/chap01/icecore.html

    If some kind of 1,000 year lag is operating in your snapshot, will you see it?

  733. kim
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 6:26 AM | Permalink

    Is there any usefulness in the thought that increased temperature facilitates biological sinking of carbon, and decreased temperature, physical sinks?
    ====

  734. Boris
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 7:12 AM | Permalink

    Just a reminder that the CO2 rise we currently see is manmade. Temp is NOT driving CO2 now.

  735. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 7:30 AM | Permalink

    re 737. Sorry JF..

  736. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 7:39 AM | Permalink

    Boris, the LIA ended around 1850 on any graph you look at and one of Mosher’s CO2 lines on his graph is sloped upward starting at 1909 is it not? So when exactly did “Now” start?

  737. kim
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 8:00 AM | Permalink

    I’m a little curious if the speculative thinkers at the time of the LIA thought that that cooling then was climatic change, or just bad weather. Was consciousness of the difference advanced enough at that time for them to wonder about the causes? Surely it wouldn’lt have been so during the Medieval Warm Period, or earlier? Or is there such speculation, about which I am unaware?
    ============================

  738. kim
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 8:07 AM | Permalink

    I come to this backwards from the thought that it really is not surprising that, in a time of consciousness of the difference, that the human race could mistake co-incidence for cause, particularly at he end of a quarter century of warming, especially when it was not difficult to invoke human guilt. So I wonder what they thought back then.
    =============

  739. kim
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 8:10 AM | Permalink

    You know, really, this titanic belief is hitting a mountain of cold facts. Have we enough lifeboats?
    ============

  740. M. Jeff
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 10:52 AM | Permalink

    re: #743, kim, December 9th, 2007 at 8:00 am

    Was consciousness of the difference advanced enough at that time for them to wonder about the causes?

    Excerpts from a February 15, 2005, article which implied that the LIA and MWP actually existed: http://www.pbs.org/saf/1505/features/lia.htm

    February 15 , 2005 During the LIA, summers were wet and unusually cold and the growing season was shortened. Widespread crop failure resulted in famine that killed millions of people.

    Malnutrition aggravated an influenza epidemic in 1557-8 in England and hastened the spread of the bubonic plague throughout Europe. Cool, wet summers led to outbreaks of a bacterial illness called St. Anthony’s Fire — the afflicted would suffer convulsions, hallucinations, gangrene, and even death.

    In the late 14th and 15th centuries, many blamed their climate problems on witches, who were thought to control the weather. People looked for scapegoats to blame for their suffering and accused one another of witchcraft. Extensive witch hunts occurred during the years with the worst weather in the LIA. Within one German region alone, there were over 1,000 people burned to death for witchcraft in a span of forty years.

    These excerpts suggest that consciousness during that time frame was focused on survival, which included solving the problem by burning witches.

  741. Jaye
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 11:21 AM | Permalink

    Just a reminder that the CO2 rise we currently see is manmade. Temp is NOT driving CO2 now.

    Do you understand what lag means? Let’s just assume that the T/CO2 lag from the ice core data is correct. Then eventually your statement would have to be true. One would see correlation between the two measurements before T peaked. Just phase shift two cos waves to see what I mean…the linear parts of the wave will appear to be correlated.

    Do you think your post was anything more than a useless tautology?

  742. Boris
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 11:45 AM | Permalink

    Do you think your post was anything more than a useless tautology?

    Um, no. Some people on this thread appear to think that CO2 is rising now because the temperature is rising. Thus, the helpful reminder that the CO2 rise is from fossil fuels.

  743. Larry
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 12:11 PM | Permalink

    Sez Boris.

  744. Larry
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 12:12 PM | Permalink

    [Here comes the isotope red herring...]

  745. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 12:22 PM | Permalink

    # 748 Boris, um no, nobody thinks that. You appear to not grasp the point being made here at all.

  746. Larry
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 12:28 PM | Permalink

    751, to be clear, the evidence is inconclusive. I can’t say that it’s not true, but I can’t say it’s true, either. Ambiguity sucks.

  747. Boris
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 1:04 PM | Permalink

    Then why don’t you understand that the lag argument is meaningless? Feedback vs. forcing, you know.

  748. STAFFAN LINDSTROEM
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 1:28 PM | Permalink

    #701 Where did Chris go after my not renaming him?? LOL
    #732 jae (Mr 666) That source “Sperling” places International
    Falls in Michigan…Actually it is as most people know in
    Minnesota, you know that in the town of Lindström MN you can
    eat Swedish style meatballs and lingon any day in a restaurant!

  749. Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 1:38 PM | Permalink

    steve mosher says:
    December 9th, 2007 at 7:30 am

    quote re 737. Sorry JF.. unquote

    My dear chap, no apologies required. If you feel any guilt, assuage it by furthering the study of the Kriegesmarine effect. Why is there a CO2 dip during 39-45 ish? Strange.

    What happened to the isotope signal?

    JF

  750. STAFFAN LINDSTROEM
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 2:54 PM | Permalink

    #Boris, why don’t you brush up your french lingo
    if you ever had any and go to the Radio Suisse Romande
    site this week mon-fri at 18:00 “Histoire vivante” Use
    Net Transport or Flashget or whatever if you want save
    them, in these programs you can really indulge in
    WARMING….Stephen Fry pompous?? Not compared to these
    guys and dolls…

  751. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 3:43 PM | Permalink

    The lag is only meaningless to believers in AGW.

    Steve Mosher posted a graph. Boris has to look at it and tell us where “now” is because he says “now” is different then the past because the ice core record shows that the TEMP rises BEFORE CO2, and it lags. If it doesn’ t lag “now”, he has to tell us why not? At the end of The Little Ice Age temps began to rise and CO2 began to rise as well which is only 60 yrs maybe before that graph begins. AND There is no “CO2″ spike on that graph so the “human” part must be very small on that graph and can’t be seen, and that graph has data to 2005.

    My grandma passed away last year. She was 104 years old.
    When was “now”? Good grief! I wanna know if she ever lived in it.

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