Unthreaded #27

continuation of Unthreaded #26

1077 Comments

  1. Scott-in-WA
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 4:02 PM | Permalink

    A quick question concerning the desire for a clear explanation of 2xC02 yields 2.5C warming: Is the mild climate that we enjoyed in the 1980s statistically “normal”, i.e. is it the climate we should expect would persist indefinitely in the absence of accelerating greenhouse gas emissions?

  2. Jim Clarke
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 5:50 PM | Permalink

    Scott-in-WA,

    The IPCC and the computer models would say “Yes”.

    Everything in the real world says “Absolutely Not”.

    Climate is changing. It always has and always will, even when CO2 is relatively staple. The real climate change deniers are with the so-called ‘consensus view’ who imply that climate will not change if the CO2 concentration remains stable. The AGW crisis skeptics have no qualms admitting that the climate changes.

  3. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 5:51 PM | Permalink

    Julian Flood: I’ve visited your site a time or two. Sorry for my ADD.

    Anyway I like your question. Ask not why it warms. Ask why it cools?.

    Cooling rates…

  4. Larry
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 6:14 PM | Permalink

    4, good point. The handle of the hockey stick is climate change denial.

  5. Larry
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 6:15 PM | Permalink

    Err….make that 2.

  6. Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 6:38 PM | Permalink

    Terry discussing Susann’s question at #157 of Realclimate on Loehle,

    “I went to Stockholm and all I got was this lousy hockey stick”

    Make that Oslo — for reasons no one knows, Alfred Nobel insisted that the Peace Prize be awarded in Oslo, rather than Stockholm like all the science prizes. Of course, this year it is easy to make up reasons it should be distanced from the science prizes…

  7. Jaye
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 7:18 PM | Permalink

    Ok the lag is only apparent when you see the whole time series. Like I said take a look at two phase shifted (say by pi/4 just so the peaks are displaced a little) cos functions then zoom in to the linear portion, there is no lag per se the two linear sections are both going up. So if that is NOW then you have the two correlated with no perception of lag.

  8. Scott-in-WA
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 7:25 PM | Permalink

    Jin Clarke #2: Climate is changing. It always has and always will, even when CO2 is relatively stable.

    Let’s assume for purposes of argument this is so, that climate changes.

    If we are to ask for a clear explanation of how 2xC02 yields 2.5C warming, an explanation that is provided in a form similar to an engineering study, then certain things must be clarified up front:

    – A precise definition of “climate” must be agreed upon.

    – A precise definition of “climate change” must be agreed upon.

    – The time frames over which climate change is thought to occur must be agreed upon.

    – The methods used to identify, measure, and document both “climate” and “climate change” must be agreed upon.

    There are other important definitons that must be agreed upon before such an analysis could be started in earnest, but these are a few of the basics, I would think.

    Two more questions, while I’m thinking about this topic:

    Once we have “climate” and “climate change” adequately defined, how would we go about defining “normal climate”?

    Given that the earth is some 4.5 billion years old, it seems to me that the concept of normal climate must embody, at the very least, reference time frames that span:

    1 year
    10 years
    100 years
    1000 years
    10000 years
    100000 years
    1000000 years
    10000000 years
    100000000 years

    At the state of current climate science, can “normal climate” be adequately defined both regionally and for the globe over each of the listed time frames?

    A further related question would be this: if there is indeed such a thing as “normal climate” and “normal climate change”, how do we go about defining “abnormal climate” and by inference “abnormal climate change”?

  9. Boris
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 7:27 PM | Permalink

    welikerocks says:

    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.

    The modern rise in CO2 is what I was referring to with “now” (as opposed to the rebound from glaciation “then”). When we started burning fossil fuels, the CO2 level in the atmosphere (and the ocean and biosphere for that matter) began to rise. Nothing to do with any Little Ice Age at all, which should be obvious because even the BIG Ice ages never got CO2 this high. The lag is a feedback. The current CO2 is a forcing. Easy peasy summer breezy.

  10. Boris
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 7:34 PM | Permalink

    Is the mild climate that we enjoyed in the 1980s statistically “normal”, i.e. is it the climate we should expect would persist indefinitely in the absence of accelerating greenhouse gas emissions?

    Indefinitely? Of course not. The evidence shows that non-anthropogenic forcings are flat for the last half of the 20th century. Who knows how natural forcings may change in the future? Nobody, that’s who.

  11. Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 7:40 PM | Permalink

    #2 Jim Clarke:
    The “IPCC and computer models” do not claim that climate does not change or will not change without CO2. That’s a classic “skeptic” distortion of the truth. The concern is with the rate of change that modern CO2 is very likely causing.

  12. jae
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 8:19 PM | Permalink

    11:

    #2 Jim Clarke:
    The “IPCC and computer models” do not claim that climate does not change or will not change without CO2. That’s a classic “skeptic” distortion of the truth. The concern is with the rate of change that modern CO2 is very likely causing.

    Look at the outputs of the computer models. They are all predicting a steady rise in temperature, not a natural course of “changing temperature.” They ARE claiming that climate does not change without people and their CO2. Do you really have that much faith in computer models that did not even predict the last 9 years? Computer models? The local metjock can’t tell me with much certainty about tomorrow. So you believe in a computer model with a dozen or more “tuning knobs”: to predict the next 100 years? If so, let me sell you one that predicts the stock market for the next 100 years. I say LOL.

  13. jae
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 8:45 PM | Permalink

    I vote for higher temperatures in the future. I’ve got this farm in northern Canada…

  14. Boris
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 8:50 PM | Permalink

    They ARE claiming that climate does not change without people and their CO2

    Models don’t attempt to predict natural changes in forcing, but that doesn’t mean that they are saying that those forcings won’t change. They answer the question, what will happen in the future if CO2 keeps rising and natural forcings stay the same?

    Your other point is #ss-32.

  15. Philip_B
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 9:00 PM | Permalink

    The concern is with the rate of change that modern CO2 is very likely causing.

    That seems a very easy claim to verify with data. Do you have any?

    Analysis of long thermometer temperature records shows that fastest rate of increase in temperature occured prior to 1950.

    The temperature time series for Europe shows a
    warming of approximately 0.5°C over the past 245 yr.
    The period of most rapid warming in Europe occurred between 1890 and 1950

  16. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 9:15 PM | Permalink

    The “IPCC and computer models” do not claim that climate does not change or will not change without CO2. That’s a classic “skeptic” distortion of the truth.

    Gore clearly implied in AIT that climate change and CO2 levels were intimately connected – both currently and historically. In fact, as I recall, he had some snickering remarks for anyone who didn’t agree as such. And since the IPCC and computer models are on Gore’s side, with everything in AIT being supported by science…well… :)

    Seriously, the IPCC collectively has more sense than to think/say that CO2 is the sole driver of climate change throughout history. But if one takes a GCM and inputs a constant CO2/GHG level from 2007-2100, how much climate change would one see in the results?

    Re#12, I agree that the GCMs are off-kilter, but I think the short-term forecast vs long-term forecast comparison is quite misleading and tire of seeing other skeptics bring it up. A long-term (100 yr) forecast which is not accurate over a short-term (9 yrs) for such a dynamic system doesn’t really say much about how good or bad the forecast is. As far as the stock market analogy goes, it’s not unreasonable to assume 10% annual returns averaged over a person’s lifetime, but that doesn’t mean the assumption is poor if the market doesn’t average 10% annually over a 9-yr period. I would assume that you are planning for your future retirement – you must have some sort of basic long-term model for achieving it? Do you scrap that model just because it’s not accurate over a given short period of time? And as far as the metjock goes…well, even the best stock fund managers may not be able to tell you what stocks you should day-trade with tomorrow, but they will do a good job of picking the stocks that produce for an extended period of time.

  17. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 9:17 PM | Permalink

    14

    [Models] answer the question, what will happen in the future if CO2 keeps rising and natural forcings stay the same?

    You don’t need complex computer models to do that. Once you assume a CO2 climate sensitivity of around 2.5C/doubling, then you can calculate the result on the back of an envelope.
    So the whole thing rests on that unsupported assumption — an assumption which no-one can validate by an ab origine calculation (that’s why there is such a wide range of choices used by the models).

  18. Philip_B
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 9:22 PM | Permalink

    jae, when I moved to Canada in 1981 you could still homestead in the Peace River area – free grant of 64 acres of land. My wife at the time and I seriously thought about it. Oil sands under the land and global warming over the land. Man, did I make a big mistake in not going for it.

  19. Jaye
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 9:28 PM | Permalink

    the CO2 level in the atmosphere (and the ocean and biosphere for that matter) began to rise

    Wrong CO2 had a slight positive slope before industrialization.

  20. MattN
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 9:30 PM | Permalink

    Is the mild climate that we enjoyed in the 1980s statistically “normal”,

    Hmmm. If it’s “normal”, then I want no part of “below normal”. The lake froze over twice in the ’80s. And I live in the south….

  21. Scott-in-WA
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 9:30 PM | Permalink

    John V. #11 (refering to #2 Jim Clarke:) The “IPCC and computer models” do not claim that climate does not change or will not change without CO2. That’s a classic “skeptic” distortion of the truth. The concern is with the rate of change that modern CO2 is very likely causing.

    John V., I am curious what your position is concerning Steve McIntyre’s stated opinion that the latest IPCC report is lacking in a clear explanation as to how 2xC02 yields 2.5C, and that such an explanation could be provided in a form similar to an engineering report that would possess the rigor, the precison, the clarity, and the strength of organization that such an explanation ought to have.

    Forgive me if you have already stated your opinion in other threads and my question is redundant.

  22. jae
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 9:45 PM | Permalink

    16: Fair enough, but

    Seriously, the IPCC collectively has more sense than to think/say that CO2 is the sole driver of climate change throughout history. But if one takes a GCM and inputs a constant CO2/GHG level from 2007-2100, how much climate change would one see in the results?

    Where is that sense displayed?

  23. Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 9:50 PM | Permalink

    Does climate change without CO2? Of course it does.
    Can the current warming be explained by natural causes alone? Very likely not.

    It’s not an either-or proposition. Many things can affect climate. Some obvious examples from pre-industrial times include the sun (of course), continental drift, and natural CO2 differences. The “contrarian” position is that CO2 has little to no effect, but the IPCC position is that CO2 is one of many things that can affect climate. At the present, it is very likely the dominant cause of warming.

    =====
    Scott-in-WA:
    It’s been pointed out many times that it is not possible to derive from first principles the temperature sensitivity to doubling CO2. I commented on this on my own site this weekend, so I’ll quote myself to save time:

    “A simple radiation balance shows a temperature increase of only ~1.1C. The remaining warming is caused by feedbacks which are much more difficult to quantify without a model. Steve McIntyre knows this but continues to ask for an answer without the use of a model. As some have said at CA, it’s like asking for the total lift of a Boeing 747 from first principles (no modelling allowed).”

    “The point is that Steve McIntyre’s request for the derivation of the climate sensitivity from first principles is basically impossible. There are two ways to determine the value:

    1. Empirically using CO2, temperature, and solar reconstructions;
    2. Numerically using computer models;

    Another problem with determining climate sensitivity is that it has different values depending on the timescale. There are slow feedbacks (eg. glaciers melting) and fast feedbacks (eg. water vapour).”

    The empirical and numerical results that I have seen seem to cluster around 2 to 4 degC for doubling CO2.

  24. Chris
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 9:50 PM | Permalink

    #21

    Perhaps McIntrye has not read the IPCC report. His opinion is noted though. Models are obviously important here because you guys don’t seem to be happy unless we build a time machine, but the use of paleoclimate to constrain sensitivity, as well as current observations and trends are used as best can be done. LBL codes, and understanding feedback processes, and the known principles of radiative physics are applied as best can be done. The unfortunate truth is, no matter how hard one blogs, is that there are uncertanties (especially with feedback processes, like cloud parameterization) but there is not now any physical plausible way to reasonably accomodate a range outside a 2-4.5 C mark.

  25. Chris
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 9:58 PM | Permalink

    Re #2

    Actually, everything in the real world says things might be a bit worse than the models are telling us. In fact, the models you bash might be a bit more conservative than you might think, though the general agreement in the actual peer reviewed literature is that the AR4 models are doing a good job. Real-world observations, and not wishful thinking now point to a warming world and feedback processes underway, with nothing explaining it except CO2, but you’re welcome to get the nobel by showing all of the data wrong.

  26. bender
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 10:00 PM | Permalink

    #24
    1. Steve M was a reviewer. My guess is he has read it.
    2. Time machine, no. Confidence intervals, yes.
    3. Given these uncertainties, the question is: how do they propagate through, say, the derivation of the CO2 sensitivity calculation? That’s all I ask. Present the confidence intervals on these parameter estimates, along with the code used to make the calculation. Is that so much to ask? Apparently.

  27. Chris
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 10:13 PM | Permalink

    # 26

    Not too much to ask, but it is too much to ask me to play librarian when the literature is there. The IPCC itself gives ranges, and confidence intervals, and cites the relevant literature. IF you read those documents, they go through errors and uncertanties. The IPCC report is an assessment of the current state of knowledge, it is not meant to give step-by-step walkthroughs for every subtopic out there; that would cover countless books. Climatologists are doing the best they can, and no, skeptics will not be happy unless they get their time machine- equipped with coffee holders and air conditioning.

  28. Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 10:13 PM | Permalink

    Perhaps next won’t be a white Christmas

  29. Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 10:22 PM | Permalink

    Chris: The IPCC don’t give a rats a..s about anything other than “how much A is there in AGW”. Thats what they were set up for and even if someone came up with an alternative theory and could prove it 100% correct they would not be interested, that’s not in their mandate. Governments are also committed to this mandate and they too cannot consider the alternatives without breaking there agreement to the UN/IPCC.

  30. bender
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 10:24 PM | Permalink

    Chris, I know AR4. They talk *around* uncertainty. They paid lip service to statistics. They don’t estimate *robust* confidence intervals. If they did, it would shatter their case. And that’s exactly why they don’t do it. Read what Wegman says in the NAS report. This skeptic will be happy when his recommmendations are followed. If climate scientists just did what they were supposed to do according to their own granting agencies (archiving data and code), that would be a good start. If journals enforced their OWN archiving requirements, that would be a good start. But they don’t.

    Your “time-machine” assertion is a fabrication – a straw man. All we’re asking for is due diligence, not black magic. Don’t make things up.

  31. Mark T
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 10:27 PM | Permalink

    The IPCC report is an assessment of the current state of knowledge,

    It’s not even that, Chris. It’s the current state of what the IPCC lead authors believe is the current state of knowledge, and in particular, largely their own work, scarcely subject to outside scrutiny. It is but one large package of hypocrisy.

    Mark

  32. Chris
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 10:28 PM | Permalink

    ahhh yes conspiracy theories…keep it up guys, you just prove more and more there is no science behind a “no A in AGW” position.

  33. Mark T
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 10:29 PM | Permalink

    The empirical and numerical results that I have seen seem to cluster around 2 to 4 degC for doubling CO2.

    And one day, somebody may actually offer up a clear exposition of where these numbers come from. Indeed, it is a nagging open wound for the climate “scientists” that cannot even offer a single reason they use these numbers with nary a derivation. Circular references don’t count, btw.

    Mark

  34. Mark T
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 10:32 PM | Permalink

    ahhh yes conspiracy theories…keep it up guys, you just prove more and more there is no science behind a “no A in AGW” position.

    Yet another strawman. Are you capable of debate without fallacy? No conspiracies here, Chris, do some research, this is all public knowledge. The IPCC is NOT a scientific body, and only a few authors were responsible for the body of work referred to as AR4. They reviewed their own work on top of it all, and there weren’t nearly as many papers included in the work as you may think.

    This is all available right here, Chris. Quit pretending to understand objectivity.

    Mark

  35. bender
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 10:36 PM | Permalink

    No conspiracy. Read Wegman. There are good reasons why climatologists have divorced themselves from statistics. They found it too constraining. Dead serious. Read Wegman.

  36. Mark T
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 10:41 PM | Permalink

    Bender, this guy showed up and commented that Steve probably had not read AR4… failing to realize that Steve not only read it, he was a reviewer. Do you think he’s truly interested in “truth” or simply making waves telling all of us how biased and otherwise unintelligent we are? Forget that most of us don’t even draw open opinions on the existence of A one way or another… no, we’ve inherited just another advocate. At least he’s (suppose it could be a she) not pretending to do science while preaching the advocacy, like some I can think off. I’m sure you know of a few, too, and I’m guessing there’s some overlap.

    Mark

  37. bender
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 10:45 PM | Permalink

    #35 was a crosspost with #34
    Chris, search CA and you will find a record of 19/20 skeptics admitting that in their opinion A in AGW is significantly non-zero. If you can’t find the table, I’ll post it again. What we’re all struggling with is to figure out how the experts assess their uncertainty on that parameter estimate (not to mention the parameter itself). And by “uncertainty” I don’t mean hand-waving ignorance; I’m referring to a statistically determined “standard error of the estimate” or S.E.E.. Would love to see the SEE. IPCC doesn’t see fit to go that route. Why not? Good question. Read Wegman.

  38. Chris
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 10:50 PM | Permalink

    31

    So we should just ignore the work of 2500 leading climate scientists? Tell me guys, if they are wrong, what is right?

    If you don’t like the facts because of your preconceived notions, that is hardly my problem. It isn’t just IPCC who is in on this conspiracy theory. It is NASA, National Academy of Sciences, American Meteorological Society, U.K. Royal Academy, EPA, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), American Geophysical Union, American Institute of Physics, American Association for the Advancement of Science, National Center for Atmospheric Research, Canadian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society, State of Canadian Cyrosphere, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Russian Academy of Science, Australian Academy of Sciences,
    Science Council of Japan, Royal Irish Academy, and many others (e.g. http://www.royalsociety.org/displaypagedoc.asp?id=13619).

    I’m sure you guys know more than everyone involved with these organizations, as well as professors in universties and elsewhere. Because there is no counter-evidence yet, doesn’t mean “they won’t accept scrutiny.” Generally, at this point in the “debate” when people have no evidence on their side, they just say 1) we don’t know enough, so we can ignore what we do know 2) those that display the data aren’t considering the “other side.” Unfortunately, there is no “other side” aside from manipulated graphs and shaky evidence. I asked why McIntrye doesn’t take the time to audit papers like Roesch when he goes over other proxy studies, and he said he hasn’t the time. So, all I’m left with is the same nonsense I can find in Durkhim’s swindle video. You want to talk about “talking around?” Go to McIntrye’s TGGWS link on the left, and immediately he switches the topic to the hockey stick and IPCC (what else?). Please, don’t lecture me about the IPCC when I am constantly bombarded with nonsensical manipulated data involving “CO2 makes up a small amount,” “Water vapor is more important,” “but we had a medieval warm period with vikings!” “The sun is doing it!” CO2 lagged in the ice cores!”

    Either you have something convincing and can step up to the plate, or there is no use in corresponding with you. Because people are unfamiliar with the literature, that doesn’t mean I need to guide them through how climate sensitivity work is done just to “win an argument.” If you actually have a reason why AGW is wrong or not very likely or what have you, we can go over it (maybe elsewhere so McIntrye’s blog stays on topic), but reminding me that we don’t know everything, and we do need indirect methods because first principles only go so far, and we can only settle for things like “high confidence” because 100% proof doesn’t exist, won’t go too far.

    Sure, I am ‘skeptical’ of projections into the future. Do I think they can be stretched enough to accomodate a very minimal CO2 forcing? No. Do I think some magic fairy is going to remove the CO2 or dim the sun by several percent? No. Do I think that science has a lot of work to do to understand clouds or aerosols better? Yes. Do I think D-O events, tipping points, non-linear or chaotic things need to be worked out better? Yes. Do I think proxy work, better understanding of paleoclimate and statistical analysis and agreement on methods needs to improve? Yes. Bottom line- science has uncertainty, but also knows quite a bit. And the policy makers will probably keep hearing the same stuff as more and more evidence cntinues to show AGW and problematic projections and real-world observations– Chris

  39. Chris
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 10:53 PM | Permalink

    I liked http://www.pewclimate.org/what_s_being_done/in_the_congress/7_27_06.cfm better.

  40. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 11:09 PM | Permalink

    Chris, could you direct me to what you believe to be the most thorough derivation of 2.5 deg C from doubled CO2? Not a report of a model calculation, but one which includes an engineering level description of the key parameterizations.

  41. bender
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 11:21 PM | Permalink

    The models predict tropospheric warming. It’s not happening. The models are not correctly predicting local ocean warming (Arctic) and cooling (SH), which is happening. Either the model parameters are off, or the formulations are off. If the basic internal climate dynamics are not correctly modeled, this puts the external forcings in error. The CO2 forcing is tightly tied to the aerosol forcing for which there is inadequate data. Solar dynamics and ocean dynamics are areas of active research where the science is not settled.

    I believe it was kim that mentioned the importance of considering the opportunity cost of implementing a precautionary principle if in fact A in AGW is lower than what the alarmists suggest.

  42. Jim Clarke
    Posted Dec 9, 2007 at 11:24 PM | Permalink

    In response to many of the above comments:

    It would have been more precise to add the word ‘significant’ into my comment that the models would not show any climate change if CO2 was held stable, as in “the models would not predict any SIGNIFICANT climate change if CO2 was held stable”.

    If the models assume no natural climate change (and only increasing CO2) for the next 100 years, then how can they be verified or supported by hindcasting, unless they start with the assumption that natural climate change was insignificant? Then if we start with the assumption that natural climate change is insignificant, than any significant climate change must be man-made! How do we prove that? We run the models which confirm that the recent warming must be due to humans! How can anyone argue with such a perfectly circular argument?

    The statements that natural climate change factors have been neutral for the last 50 years, or that the recent warming can only be explained if increasing GHG’s caused most of it, are mostly true, provided we ignore the biggest natural influence on multi-decadal climate change on the planet. Soon, the AGW community is going to have to come to grips with the overwhelming influence ocean cycles have on the global climate, particularly on 20-30 year time scales.

    Here is an explanation from a lengthy post I made on unthreaded #26(#728):

    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.

    Note that 0.80 degrees is very close to the direct forcing of about 1 degree normally attributed to a doubling of CO2 in the lower atmosphere. As I understand it, the 1 degree assertion is based on a clear sky scenario, and the actual forcing of a doubling of CO2 would be something less than 1 degree due to the substantial cloud cover the Earth enjoys at any given time. So I see 0.80 degrees as the maximum for a doubling of CO2. It is probably less than that.

    This is the result we get if we adhere to first principles and steer clear of unsubstantiated speculations about positive feedbacks. It is perfectly in line with everything we are observing in the real world, as long as we strive to observe EVERYTHING, and not pick and choose the observations we wish to highlight/ignore.

  43. Jim Clarke
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:01 AM | Permalink

    Chris,

    I would guess that every skeptic on these pages is a member of one or more of the organizations that you listed as supporting the AGW crisis theory. Just because an organization makes a statement, does not mean that every member agrees with it. In fact, I do not believe that any of the organizations you listed actualled polled their membership to find out what the rank and file believed.

    Of the 2,500 scientists contributing to the IPCC, only a fraction were climatologists and I am not sure how we can tell they were ‘top’ climatologist or even what that means. Also, there is no indication how many of the 2,500 scientists actually agree with the conclusions of the IPCC. If you wish to believe that all of science is marching in jack-booted lock-step to the AGW mantra, that’s your choice, but it certainly is not the reality.

    Finally, in #42 above, I present an explanation for climate change that does not require the use of unprovable positive feedbacks or hand-waving explanations for Antarctic cooling, the simultaneous cooling of both hemispheres in the mid 20th century, the relative lack of mid-tropospheric warming, the lack of any warming over the last 10 years, the rewritting of climate history to eliminate the LIA and MWP, and so on. My explanation fits the observations much better than the AGW explanation, which doesn’t seem to have much more depth than “its warmer now so we must be right!”

    The bottom line, however, is that I have no real responsibility to prove anything, because I am not asking everyone in the world to sacrifice and suffer for my cause. If I were, it would be absolutely essential that I present a compelling argument and answer all queries promptly and with solid scientific evidence. If, on the other hand, I respond by personally attacking those who question, withold data, ignore inconvenient observations, rewrite established records to support my argument, appeal to scientific authority and ‘sell’ my case with emotional, exaggerated storylines, then there is a good chance that my ‘science’ isn’t all that compelling…don’t you think?

  44. Chris
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:05 AM | Permalink

    41

    The models predict tropospheric warming. It’s not happening.

    Wrong. See http://www.climatescience.gov/Library/sap/sap1-1/finalreport/default.htm and corrections to earlier papers like Christy (e.g. Mears and Wentz 2005) or in studies within the AR4.

    The models are not correctly predicting local ocean warming (Arctic) and cooling (SH)

    They are showing polar amplification, and the SH is not cooling, which is happening.. Some places in Antarctica are, which has been predicted with ENSO, ozone depletion, SAM, etc

    Either the model parameters are off, or the formulations are off. If the basic internal climate dynamics are not correctly modeled, this puts the external forcings in error. The CO2 forcing is tightly tied to the aerosol forcing for which there is inadequate data.

    No, a lot of differences between going over GHG and aerosols forcing. CO2 has a higher level of confidence because the infrared absorption properties are very accurately measured in the laboratory, and its atmospheric concentration is known accurately.

    I believe it was kim that mentioned the importance of considering the opportunity cost of implementing a precautionary principle if in fact A in AGW is lower than what the alarmists suggest.

    Well, scientists could be wrong that smoking cuases cancer as well. Show me on “first principles” that it does so. Unfortunately, I don’t question the doctors analysis because we don’t know everything about the human body, I stop smoking. What if projections are lower than what will happen, as I think the papers show that I linked? “What if” you pay for an education and don’t get the degree or job you wanted. Maybe you shouldn’t get an education?

    #40 McIntrye

    I’ll respond tomorrow when I can get on my other computer for more info, but first 1) What do you not like about the AR4 starting on pp. 718 or the NAS 2003 report? What do you not like about RC’s posts on climate sensitivity or CO2 in 6 easy steps? As we’ve noted, there is only so much you can do with basic first principles. Using 5.35 ln (C/Ci) (See LBL codes from Myhre et al 1998) and the forcing-response workout from the TAR and other studies, maybe some paleoclimate constraining (see Royer, Berner, and Park 2007 in Nature), trying to do what we can from observations and ocean heat content, etc is really the best we can do if you want to take away models. I am not familiar with any paper which is going to give a magic formula with feedbacks included. Have you read Spencer Weart’s work on the history of this matter?

  45. Chris
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:21 AM | Permalink

    I present an explanation for climate change

    Get it published

    d

    that does not require the use of unprovable positive feedbacks

    What problems do you have with the NAS report on feedbacks and references therein? Or are water vapor, the carbon cycle, etc no longer important? Proof doesn’t happen in science, just the evidence we get, see ex. Del Genio on water vapor after the Pinatubo impact

    or hand-waving explanations for Antarctic cooling

    handwaving? So ENSO, Southern Annual Mode, ozone depletion, and other things are no longer important for regional climate changes? I know skeptics love to cherry pick, but just ignoring everything as “handwaving” is a good one

    , the simultaneous cooling of both hemispheres in the mid 20th century,

    aerosol impact? I mean, as you guys all readily point out, CO2 isn’t the only thing that influences climate, just an important one

    the relative lack of mid-tropospheric warming,

    This is wrong, see post above

    the lack of any warming over the last 10 years,

    This is wrong, see GISS or other other sites showing temperatures

    the rewritting of climate history to eliminate the LIA and MWP, and so on.

    No one got rid of a MWP or LIA, we just showed the tropics and SH aren’t showing it like Greenland and parts of Europe, and all the evidence show it to be a bit more regional. Also, again, nothing to do with global wamring attribution, so I can minus well say “the sun is doing it today” and you say “you liberals love the sun so much, so you’ll manipulate studies to show a cooler medieval time.”

    As for your theory, there are only 3 ways to change climate like we are now: change SW or LW radiation, or albedo. For one thing, where is the evidence for this great changes in ocean circulation pattern causing our warming today, and where is the evidence that the underlying radiative physics behind CO2 (which would only amplify the conditions by your scenario, not “replace” it) is wrong?

  46. Jonde
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:31 AM | Permalink

    I think Chris’s mails are really enjoyable to read. It has been a long time since I last time read any hardcore believers visions.

    I just thought to link this site for Chris’s 2500 scientist peer-reviewed IPCC publications claim (congrats to Steve M for his share of the Nobel Price). It might be that the site is all lies and deceive. Made by oil/coal and tobacco industries. Anyway, here it is.

    http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/sppi_originals/peerreview.html

  47. Jonde
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:31 AM | Permalink

    I think Chris’s mails are really enjoyable to read. It has been a long time since I last time read any hardcore believers visions.

    I just thought to link this site for Chris’s 2500 scientist peer-reviewed IPCC publications claim (congrats to Steve M for his share of the Nobel Price). It might be that the site is all lies and deceive. Made by oil/coal and tobacco industries. Anyway, here it is.

  48. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 1:08 AM | Permalink

    Chris: The IPCC was never intended to be a vehicle for governments to be able to exercise a huge amount of control over their peoples lives (except those who lied about it’s purpose). I believe many people genuinely believed there might be an issue and the IPCC would investigate and come up with some solutions. Since then it has become a bandwagon and those on board can’t jump off, they are protecting their incomes, their families, their carreers, their credibility, their funding streams and some are just protecting the governments that employ them. But most importantly don’t forget the IPCC mandate. I have asked enough questions of my own government to know they have no idea what is going on and just quote the IPCC blindly. They even tell us that they are bound by their UN agreements to quote the IPCC mantra.

    I have an open mind but they would rather I live with a closed one. Which do you think has furthered mankind more Chris, the open mind or the closed one?

  49. Peter
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 1:17 AM | Permalink

    The hard thing is to disentangle the logic. It seems that Chris is making the following argument. In the past, CO2 rises occurred because of warming temperatures. The initial rise in temperatures was due to some other cause than a CO2 rise. However, when this had produced a CO2 rise, this then caused further warming.

    Consequently, to argue that in the past CO2 rises happened after a rise in temperature, and therefore we should not worry, is fallacious. The argument on the present warming is that the current rise in CO2, though it is happening for different reasons than earlier ones, is comparable to them, and will produce a similar rise in warming.

    If this is a correct account of the logic, it is a bit like the argument that because I started a car with a handcrank yesterday, this means that starting it with the starter motor will fail. The thing that starts the car is the engine turning over. There are two ways of doing this, either of which will work. It does not matter why CO2 rises initially, the effects of the rise will be the same.

    This is why the view that previous warmings preceding CO2 rises don’t logically affect the AGW proponents argument. They fully realize that what started a rise in CO2 in the past is different from what is starting it now. But they believe the effects of the rise will be the same.

    What would cast doubt on their argument would be to cite paleo evidence that in the past, when the rise in CO2 got well underway, there was no rise in temperatures. It would also presumably be a refutation of their view if it turned out that, at the end of a warming period, temperatures fell while CO2 levels were either rising or static.

    It is hard to see how the argument for CO2 causation of warming could survive either no warming with CO2 rises, or temperature falls with rising or static CO2 levels.

    What are the paleo facts on this?

  50. MarkR
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 1:34 AM | Permalink

    Can anyone say exactly how adding a molecule of CO2 to the atmosphere generates heat?

  51. D. Patterson
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 1:50 AM | Permalink

    Peter says:

    December 10th, 2007 at 1:17 am
    [....]
    It is hard to see how the argument for CO2 causation of warming could survive either no warming with CO2 rises, or temperature falls with rising or static CO2 levels.

    What are the paleo facts on this?

    For example: at the beginning of the Cretaceous 144 million years ago the atmospheric CO2 declined from ~2,000 ppmv to ~1,200 pmmv as the temperature increased ~7C from ~15C to ~22C, and CO2 continued to decline throughout the Creataceous and into the Tertiary from the ~2,000 ppmv to the present ~200+ to 300+ ppmv (Geocarb).

  52. Filippo Turturici
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:27 AM | Permalink

    Chris, not to mention all what I would disagree with (still matter of scientifical discussion), you wrote at least two errors: not opinions, not points of view, just errors.

    First of all, Antarctica is really cooling unless some place which is not, since at least 1982 (the opposite of what you wrote, despite you too needed some way to justify eventual cooling):

    and its sea ice sheet is increasing:

    This situation should have been “admitted” even in the last IPCC papers, so I really cannot understand why there is still the legend of Antarctic warming and melting (out of Gore poor science fiction).
    More, any explanation could be right (ozone layer, ENSO, random things etc.), but never linked to “AGW mechanics” as previously forecasted.

    Saying temperature is rising since 1998, not on a mere statistical trend (which would be anyway irrelevant for the reasons explained below), is just an error too.
    You totally forgot measurement theory: even considering only ground stations and not satellite data, you would have differences, on peak years but not only them,

  53. Chris
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:28 AM | Permalink

    Peter, I think you are in the wrong thread (there is discussion on the CO2 lag elsewhere, but not here except for like 50 posts ago before McIntrye told us not to continue).

    But anyway, that is my position except until “that would cast doubt on their argument would be to cite paleo evidence that in the past, when the rise in CO2 got well underway, there was no rise in temperatures.”

    One needs to look no further than 1940-1970 to find such a time (or ordovician glaciation), CO2 rose, temps declined a bit. Skeptics use this argument a lot- the problem is other things were also going on which overwhelmed the CO2 inluence; a bit of aerosols, a bit of internal variabilty. CO2 is going to have a warming effect on its own. This is rather basic stuff regardless of what you hear. If something else is going on (aerosols, sun dims, etc) it may neutralize or overwhelm the CO2 and cause cooling since there is only one way to look at forcings: the sum of them all.

    You can see here or here for instance on some of the “paleo facts.” There are others like Petit et al. or Fischer et al. as well…This argument is also addressed on many basic “skeptic rebuttal sites” like this or this or this or this where a lot of these other claims (like no trop warming, no warming in last decade) are addressed, and people can keep up to date on what is going on.

    #47 Jonde

    My problem is not that I am a radical, it is that I have problems with blatant manipulation of evidence like people reading the above studies and saying “Well, CO2 lags temp so it must all be wrong” when they both make it clear that feedback processes are required. Or when it is quite clear a 100 ppmv feedback over 100 years with

  54. Chris
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:29 AM | Permalink

    cont

    Peter, I think you are in the wrong thread (there is discussion on the CO2 lag elsewhere, but not here except for like 50 posts ago before McIntrye told us not to continue).

    But anyway, that is my position except until “that would cast doubt on their argument would be to cite paleo evidence that in the past, when the rise in CO2 got well underway, there was no rise in temperatures.”

    One needs to look no further than 1940-1970 to find such a time (or ordovician glaciation), CO2 rose, temps declined a bit. Skeptics use this argument a lot- the problem is other things were also going on which overwhelmed the CO2 inluence; a bit of aerosols, a bit of internal variabilty. CO2 is going to have a warming effect on its own. This is rather basic stuff regardless of what you hear. If something else is going on (aerosols, sun dims, etc) it may neutralize or overwhelm the CO2 and cause cooling since there is only one way to look at forcings: the sum of them all.

    You can see here or here for instance on some of the “paleo facts.” There are others like Petit et al. or Fischer et al. as well…This argument is also addressed on many basic “skeptic rebuttal sites” like this or this or this or this where a lot of these other claims (like no trop warming, no warming in last decade) are addressed, and people can keep up to date on what is going on.

    #47 Jonde

    My problem is not that I am a radical, it is that I have problems with blatant manipulation of evidence like people reading the above studies and saying “Well, CO2 lags temp so it must all be wrong” when they both make it clear that feedback processes are required. Or when it is quite clear a 100 ppmv feedback over 100 years with

  55. Chris
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:30 AM | Permalink

    cont

    Or when it is quite clear a 100 ppmv feedback over 100 years with

  56. Chris
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:33 AM | Permalink

    with less than 1 C rise is impossible, and what we know about isotopic signatures and known fossil fuel emissions. Really, I’m not sure if the argument is supposed to read “CO2 rise is natural today because of temperature rise by something else” or “CO2 didn’t force initial changes then, so it won’t now” but in either case it is bogus. Or we had an El Nino in 1998 which made it a bit warmer, so you get people saying “the last decade didn’t warm because 1998 was warmer.” I guess some misinformation for laymen, but many experts actually take that serious (or pretend they are serious when they give talks or write papers). People who support AGW have done curious things as well. There is a lot (a bit too much) discussion on Mann et al. here. Bad method, and I’ve not kept up with the details on him giving out his data or what not, but clearly not as clean as one would hope. In this site, I don’t think such issues are put into proper perspective: when the corrections for 1934 U.S. temperature were brought up, this became a new skeptical argument to say now is not significant in 20th century context, or it is natural, or everyone in climate is a screw up, or whatever other nonsense they got out of it. RC did a much better job telling people what this meant. RC did not do a good job critiquing the Al Gore movie. This “battle of the blogosphere” is nice and dramatic, and people love it (I do as well), but it isn’t going anywhere in terms of advancing climate science or policy and more often than not leads to a lot of confusion, though both sites are educational.

    cont

  57. Filippo Turturici
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:34 AM | Permalink

    Sorry, previous post was cut.

    I meant, all differences, on peak years but not only them, even considering just ground stations, are

  58. Chris
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:34 AM | Permalink

    cont

    I do not think sea levels are going to rise 23 feet tomorrow night as some who watched Gore might believe; I *do not think* the world is going to end; I do not think this is the worst thing the Earth endured compared to say the PETM or Permian or dinosaur asteroid, and things like the Day After Tomorrow will not happen. I *do think* a geologist a million years from now would view this event like the coming or passing of an ice age, or maybe a significant enough deviation from the Holocene to give it a new name. I am worried about countries in Africa, South America, parts of Asia. I am worried about areas near glaciers which depend on water supplies which are threatened, and low lying coastal areas. I am worried about ecosystems up on mountains, at the poles, and many species which cannot adapt to even very small changes (Talk to a biologist here, not me). In most scenarios I have seen, the U.S. might get some agricultural gain at first, more problems later, Canada will probably be slightly better off, Europes main concerns are in terms of heat waves and sea levels. And low probability-high consequence events like THC shutdown. Other countries such Australia will suffer in terms of rainfall patterns or increased storms or droughts etc. But these countries do have the power to counteract a lot of the problems. The developing world I spoke of will be in a completely different way. Buy Mark Lynas’ “Six Degrees” for some perspective on what may happen, and even if you stop half way through the book where the chapters only go to 3 C higher, you might see my concern.

  59. Chris
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:36 AM | Permalink

    cont

    In this sense, I would prefer the term “alarming but not alarmist” and I hope not a “hardcore believer” because science is about the data that is there, not my personal preference or assumption or what makes me sleep better at night. I am a hardcore beleiver that pepsi is better than coke, I have no hardcore beliefs on topics in science like the realities of evolution or gravity or climate change. Climate Change just happens to be more connected to policy and the laymen than other issues, so naturally it receives more attention and scrutiny. In the real world of science, a joint statement by several scientific organziations, countless papers by NASA or NOAA and other reputable sources, reports by the National Academies or IPCC would be more than enough. You think other things like electron movement in an orbital gets this much study and analysis? No way, but no one questions it seriously because it isn’t very practical for them, for socio-economics, etc. Just a few papers concluding that man activity dominates natural forcings in the second half of the 20th century like Meehl et al (2004); Hegerl et al (2005); Barnett et al (2005); Ammann et al (2007) and others would be enough for a subject lke the electron orbital, but as I said this subject won’t be “bulletproof” until 100 years goes by and we either get disaster, or nothing. There are in betweens in that dichotomy, but if even “business-as-usual” projections are right, we’ll have big problems, and I think there is too much wishful thinking that everyone is wrong.

  60. Chris
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:37 AM | Permalink

    continued

    A lot of it is laymen falling for bad arguments (see the this, this, this, etc) but some experts are giving off crap science (google the Khilyuk and Chilingar 2006 paper or the ch. 4 swindle video with several scientists in that). In real life, I should be able to blog about those all day and they should get an equal amount of attention for the “questionable science” that this place gives Mann et al., but the reality is that the scientific and political world where academics meet no longer takes climate change skepticism too serious, and people that matter are seeing the need for change.

    Sorry for the long post, but wanted to get this cleared up. I also apologize for my rather “radical” tone, as well as comments I may have said to McIntrye or others that were out of line, but I do see the issue as a big problem, and I do take it personally when people question the motives of people I know personally, or communicate with frequently.– C

  61. Filippo Turturici
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:37 AM | Permalink

    Another cut post…
    Would I be able to explain measurement theory?
    Since 1998, almost all year measurements are different by less than 0.1°C, with a 0.1°C error range (uncertainty), which means that all measurements different by

  62. Filippo Turturici
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:37 AM | Permalink

    Another cut post…
    Would I be able to explain measurement theory?
    Since 1998, almost all year measurements are different by less than 0.1°C, with a 0.1°C error range (uncertainty), which means that all measurements different by

  63. Filippo Turturici
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:39 AM | Permalink

    different by

  64. Filippo Turturici
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:42 AM | Permalink
  65. Filippo Turturici
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:45 AM | Permalink

    All measurements different by

  66. Filippo Turturici
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 3:17 AM | Permalink

    If uncertainty is 0.1°C, it means we need >0.2°C difference to have really different measurements: unless they are compatible. And compatibility replaces equality concept in measurements: so, no more and no less, they are the same.

  67. Andrey Levin
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 3:24 AM | Permalink

    BTW, one stupid question. How current GCMs explain Ice Ages?

    I mean, for last 400 thousand years – or four glaciations, we have temperature proxies, CO2 proxies, data for volcanic dust deposition in ice of Antarctica (i.e. aerosol proxies), detailed calculations of Earth orbit and tilt, solar emissivity proxies, even proxies for GCR flux.

    I assume it would be natural to calibrate GCM climate sensitivity parameters for mentioned forcing factors, such way that GCM would simulate temperature (or CO2, for that matter) of Ice Ages if fed by data from the proxies.

    Any papers on the subject?

  68. Gaudenz Mischol
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:33 AM | Permalink

    Chris

    after your lengthy explanation I just have one question for you (and don’t point me to IPCC)

    the theory says troposphere has to warm more than surface (MT more than LT). If you look at MSU or RSS this does not seem to happen. So either GISS for surface data is wrong or the greenhouse theory is wrong. If we accept GISS (which shows a lot of warming for the past years) actual data of troposphere do not show what models output show. If we accept satellite data, then the warming must be much lower on the surface than what GISS shows and we would have to reject GISS surface data. This is a question I would like to have an answer

  69. JamesG
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:34 AM | Permalink

    It’s not “wishful thinking that everyone is wrong”, it’s just bitter experience of scientists going over the top time-after-time on issue-after-issue. We might have believed that BSE or bird flu was going to wipe us out. Either we dodged the bullet or scientists were overly pessimistic. BSE is actually a good example of scientific behaviour because for years the top scientists had been saying that there was no possible chance that BSE could transfer to humans. Then it was impossible to deny and they all flipped the other way, predicting catastrophe and inventing “prions” which likely don’t even exist. This is what scientists routinely do: They are either overly optimistic or overly pessimistic. You should read “Extraordinary popular delusions and the madness of crowds”. It’s not new and there are countless examples in every human endeavour.

    On this particular issue we have seen apparently well-qualified people predict a gulfstream shift due to meltwater. Not only was this nonsense, it was based on the basically wrong theory that the gulfstream warmed Europe. See Seager or Wunsch for the non-mythical version. We have seen other scientists blame the droughts in Africa on global warming which was such total nonsense even RC dismissed it. We see Hansen and (few) others predicting ice-sheets sliding into the sea collapse while ignoring that the ice-sheets are ringed by mountains. There are countless examples of loopy scientists predicting disasters while committing basic scientific errors like these. Such foolishness makes a sensible person skeptical.

    In climate science there is huge uncertainty and the models are obviously tuned to agree with observations, so saying they can predict anything yet is quite ridiculous. Everything they now correctly show has been a correction from a previous poorer model, because real life impinged. With luck they might manage to predict something in the future but history tells us it will likely it will be on the lower end of temperature range. What you believe depends on how pessimistic you are! And since more pessimism brings more attention, the scientists like to err on that side.

  70. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:47 AM | Permalink

    Boris says: The current CO2 is a forcing. And he says:
    They answer the question, what will happen in the future if CO2 keeps rising and natural forcings stay the same?

    There is no evidence in the geological record for your belief that CO2 just switches to a “force” “now” or whenever you say on a graph of “now”. Your forces and feedback powers for CO2 only exist
    in climate models. There is no physical evidence for “now” being “different”. And since when do things ever “Stay the same”. Which is it? You can’t have both: “Stay the same” but “now is different” and then disregard the geological record on top of that? Sheesh.

    That’s why the lag in the ice core data matters. What is written in the geological record is that CO2 lags temperature rise. Rise of it follows temperture, and maybe its just “there” following. Because what is written in the geological record is the C02 concentrations have been much higher than “now” and it still got cold. And what is written in the geological record is that CO2 concentrations have been lower then “now” and it still got warm. There is no evidence in the geological record that paints CO2 concentrations as the powerful “force” the AGW promoters say it is “now”.

    Chris says: “I *do think* a geologist a million years from now would view this event like the coming or passing of an ice age, ”

    Oh I see “Now” is a geological event.

    Chris says: “CO2 didn’t force initial changes then, so it won’t now” but in either case it is bogus. AND he said : CO2 is going to have a warming effect on its own. This is rather basic stuff regardless of what you “hear”.

    There’s that powerful “now” again and it is so power-full it disregards millions and millions of years of geological evidence you can “See” all over the world.

    Let’s all chant: Climate change is a choice, now now.

  71. Filippo Turturici
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:51 AM | Permalink

    Very important problem!!!
    I need your help!

    I was looking for RSS data decadal trend (lower troposphere).
    RSS site gives me +0.176°C/dec: http://www.remss.com/msu/msu_data_description.html#msu_decadal_trends .
    Another site, +0.13°C/dec: http://data.co2science.org/cgi-bin/msu.pl .
    A big difference.

    Looking at data: http://www.junkscience.com/MSU_Temps/MSUvsRSS.html (until 2006, UAH and RSS are almost the same, above all as trends: the site gives +0.14°C/dec for UAH)
    I tried to do-it-myself, “manually” and by MS-Excel(R): same results, about +0.14°C/dec (calculating on year means not month, but mathematically should be the same).
    Another person on another forum, doing-it-by-himself, had the same about +0.18°C/dec of RSS site, calculating month-by-month.

    So, who can help me?
    It could be a very important issue.

  72. Filippo Turturici
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 5:18 AM | Permalink

    http://science-sepp.blogspot.com/2007/12/press-release-dec-10-2007.html

    “Satellite data and independent balloon data agree that atmospheric warming trends do not exceed those of the surface. Greenhouse models, on the other hand, demand that atmospheric trend values be 2-3 times greater. We have good reason, therefore, to believe that current climate models greatly overestimate the effects of greenhouse gases. Satellite observations suggest that GH models ignore negative feedbacks, produced by clouds and by water vapor, that diminish the warming effects of carbon dioxide.”

  73. MarkW
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 6:13 AM | Permalink

    Chris: 2500 scientists??? Hardly. Closer to a hundred. Who then carefully selected the papers that they wanted to review. Mostly their own. And from this self selected sample, they then drew their conclusions.

  74. STAFFAN LINDSTROEM
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 6:13 AM | Permalink

    NOBEL PRIZE PEACE IN OSLO transmission on the web from NRK
    or SVT …it seems as Mark Lynas/Hard core Green Peace members
    and you name it has written the speech…Did I forget James
    Lovelock??? Pompous Pompous Pompous AND some things are direct
    lies as I see it. Genocide in Darfur is AGW-related that is we who are
    rich’s fault…Well I see some parallells in history some
    70 years back…difference is now it is not one country, it’s
    humanity and we now have 7 years 1 month 12 days 14 hours 12 minutes
    and 33,7 seconds to start fixing, repenting our SINS…

  75. STAFFAN LINDSTROEM
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 6:20 AM | Permalink

    #74 …SHOULD BE “…HAVE written…” (The more cooks
    the lousier the soup…)

  76. Philip
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 6:57 AM | Permalink

    Chris, according to the satellite data, the lower troposphere in the Antarctic has been cooling at a rate of 0.07° per decade since the measurements began, i.e. about 30 years.

    It’s the tiny part of the Antarctic (the West Antarctic Peninsula, which extends north of the Antarctic Circle anyway) which is warming that generates the press releases and gets everybody in a huff.

    But the models say it should be warming a lot (I guess this counts as a verification of the accuracy of the models then?)

    I’m sure, however, that there are some “team” approved hand waving explanations like there were for UHI in the IPCC report…

  77. Boris
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 6:59 AM | Permalink

    So the whole thing rests on that unsupported assumption — an assumption which no-one can validate by an ab origine calculation (that’s why there is such a wide range of choices used by the models).

    Wrong. Sigh.

    You know, there are also CS estimates based on observations. Just sayin’.

  78. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 7:02 AM | Permalink

    RE#22

    Where is that sense displayed?

    The IPCC does admit there is natural variation and doesn’t try to explain 20th century warming up to WWII, widespread 19th century glacial retreat, etc, as being CO2-driven from what I recall.

    But as far as GCMs go, they do seem to be pretty much CO2 driven.

  79. PaulA
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 7:17 AM | Permalink

    Given that the earth is some 4.5 billion years old, it seems to me that the concept of normal climate must embody, at the very least, reference time frames that span:

    1 year
    10 years
    100 years
    1000 years
    10000 years
    100000 years
    1000000 years
    10000000 years
    100000000 years

    At the state of current climate science, can “normal climate” be adequately defined both regionally and for the globe over each of the listed time frames?

    A further related question would be this: if there is indeed such a thing as “normal climate” and “normal climate change”, how do we go about defining “abnormal climate” and by inference “abnormal climate change”?

    Interesting question!
    Clearly we have far from perfect quality historic data with which to undertake this exercise.
    But despite that, one might hope that serious efforts might have been made to undertake a fourier transform type frequency analysis of the various contributors to the historic as well as the more recent time-record of global temperature. This is not something I’ve come across though (in any holistic sense), in two years lurking and taking an interest in the whole GW/AGW debate. If this is because I’ve missed it, I’d be interested in any references to work in this area. Thanks in anticipation!

  80. Boris
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 7:22 AM | Permalink

    there is no physical evidence for “now” being “different”.

    Your post makes no sense. It’s different because humans are adding CO2 “now.” That’s pretty different, wouldn’t you say, than CO2 rising slowly as the oceans warm and the permafrost melts?

    You might want to look up what a forcing is and what a feedback is.

  81. Spence_UK
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 7:23 AM | Permalink

    Re #71

    Fillipo, I’ve quickly calculated the trend from the UAH and RSS data (UAH from 12/78 to 10/07, RSS from 01/79 to 11/07):

    UAH trend = 0.144 deg C/decade
    RSS trend = 0.176 deg C/decade

    The differences probably derive primarily from the areal coverage of the “global” means. In both cases, the data are projected onto a long/lat grid, and then an average taken, but not over the whole grid. Some grid cells are quite unreliable and it seems RSS and UAH have different approaches on which to use; RSS average over 70S to 82.5N, whereas UAH average over -82.5S to 82.5N. Given that Antarctica currently has a sizeable cooling trend, effectively eliminated from the RSS assessment, it is unsurprising that the RSS trend is “warmer”.

    There is a significant difference between the two measurements in the last few months as well; this is mainly down to an issue with two of the satellites, which are creating a bias. I believe UAH have some code to fix this, but the code is not yet ready for release (it will be v6.0 I think, currently on v5.2?). They provided a press release to say that they are currently overestimating global temp by approx. 0.12 deg C.

  82. Spence_UK
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 7:26 AM | Permalink

    Re #81

    Oops sorry Filippo about the name typo, got the double letter mixed up!

  83. Boris
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 7:29 AM | Permalink

    But the models say it should be warming a lot

    Not really.

    The discrepancy between models and Antarctic data appears to be because of changes in the SAM theorized to be caused by ozone depletion. Further, GCMs are not very good at regional predictions, but do a good job with the global temperature anomaly. This is just another skeptic talking point.

  84. Filippo Turturici
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 7:44 AM | Permalink

    OK thank you Spence.

  85. fFreddy
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 7:50 AM | Permalink

    Filippo, if you want to use a < sign, you need to use the following four characters & l t ; (without the spaces). Otherwise, WordPress thinks you are opening a HTML tag, and eats the rest of your post.

  86. yorick
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 7:52 AM | Permalink

    So Boris,
    Why don’t you explain away the discrepancy between the troposphere temps and the surface temps for us? Or do you feel like all you have to do to win a point is to assert it? Usually, when one makes an argument that disagrees with another, it is only polite to give evidence that supports your position, and would help the other to see the error of their ways, or, just possibly, allow them to continue the discussion by supplying logic or evidence of their own.

  87. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 7:59 AM | Permalink

    23 77
    Boris, here’s what John V (a believer) said in 23:

    “A simple radiation balance shows a temperature increase of only ~1.1C. The remaining warming is caused by feedbacks which are much more difficult to quantify without a model. Steve McIntyre knows this but continues to ask for an answer without the use of a model. As some have said at CA, it’s like asking for the total lift of a Boeing 747 from first principles (no modelling allowed).”

    “The point is that Steve McIntyre’s request for the derivation of the climate sensitivity from first principles is basically impossible. There are two ways to determine the value:

    1. Empirically using CO2, temperature, and solar reconstructions;
    2. Numerically using computer models;

    Boris John V:
    The problem is these both represent a circular argument. They both require a belief that the warming is due directly or indirectly to CO2, so that is what they “show”. Surpise!

    If you assume that it is due to the sun, with feedback, the CS of CO2 drops to almost nothing.

  88. Philip
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 8:06 AM | Permalink

    Boris 83,

    Classic “team” explanation: divergence hand waved away by another hypothetical mechanism with no empirical evidence.

    And then, to top it off, the old “they don’t get the regions right but they get the sum of all regions right”. to paraphrase, every value is wrong but the sum of every value is somehow right.

    Please, show me a GCM which has made a good PREDICTION. The place to start would be a published “prediction” from 10 years ago corresponding with the 2005, 2006 and 2007 data to a statistically significant level of accuracy. actually, don’t bother. If you put enough spaghetti in the bowl, some of it is bound to be in the right place at the right time, just like Dr Mann’s spurious correlations, sorry I mean “teleconnections”… The data fitting exercises they do are nothing special, but trying to project them outside of the “fitting” range breaks a basic engineering principle: do not attempt to model outside of your data range (first-year engineering at my university).

  89. pjm
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 8:07 AM | Permalink

    White Christmas? Its just starting to get hot here ;)

    If I understand correctly, climate/weather systems are big complicated non-linear things and the nature of such systems can be to look periodic for a while on all sorts or scales, then to jump to something different. Of course periodic forcings such as day/night or summer/winter or Milankovic cycles put some true periodic behaviours on top of that, and we can observe them.

    How do the models cope with the chaotic behaviour? Or do they ignore it and just estimate the CO2 rise (from a possibly sloping baseline)?

    To observe CO2 forcing don’t we need observations showing that the earth is warmer than it would be otherwise. And don’t we need to guess the ‘otherwise’ first (eg by extrapolating from paleo data)?

    Incidentally when I first heard of the satellite record I asked whether they agree with the ground measurements in places where they overlap. I was told ‘yes’ (by John Daly, but we know what his biases were). I’ll ask again in this forum, and add the subsidiary question, do the two agree for pristine sites?

    Peter

  90. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 8:13 AM | Permalink

    44 Chris

    The models predict tropospheric warming. It’s not happening. Wrong.

    The reference you cite indicates that the way they were able to “predict warming” was to recalibrate/fudge the satellite data to match expectations.

  91. yorick
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 8:15 AM | Permalink

    John V,
    When the models get better at predicting the facts in the air, then come back with your climate sensitivites based on them. For example, there is a study out there that says, using their models, that aerosol forcings do a better job of modelling the temp drops in the LIA than does solar forcing. Well, isn’t that convenient for them? Would you call that a circular argument? I would.

    Numerical energy balance climate model calculations of the average surface temperature of the Northern Hemisphere for the past 400 years are compared with a new reconstruction of the past climate. Forcing with volcanic dust produces the best simulation, whereas expressing the solar constant as a function of the envelope of the sunspot number gives very poor results

    http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/abstract/206/4425/1402

    Funny too how one of the criticisms of the recent paper by McKitrick say that it would be normal for warming to follow economic activity since aerosols are known to cause warming. Tee hee hee.

  92. yorick
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 8:23 AM | Permalink

    OK, I will read Chris’s link in #44 on the subject of reconciling differences.

  93. Philip
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 8:25 AM | Permalink

    Maybe I should have said:

    Throw enough spaghetti at the wall and some of it will stick with the shape you are looking for.

    It’s the computer model equivalent of a million monkeys at a million typewriters

  94. yorick
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 8:32 AM | Permalink

    Paul A.

    Climate over a billion years is completely unknowable. For isntance, in a billion years, the Earth’s obliquity will have changed to such an extent that the Arctic Circle will cyclycally come down to somewhere around sixty degrees at some points (every 40K years, is my guess). This is due to the Moon’s orbit changing, as it has been doing for billions of years. There is an “arrow of time” in climate. A million years ago Milankovich forcings existed that will never be seen again on Earth.

  95. yorick
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 8:38 AM | Permalink

    Paul A.

    Climate over a billion years is completely unknowable. For isntance, in a billion years, the Earth’s obliquity will have changed to such an extent that the Arctic Circle will cyclycally come down to somewhere around sixty degrees at some points (every 40K years, is my guess). This is due to the Moon’s orbit changing because of the drag of creating tides on Earth, as it has been doing for billions of years. There is an “arrow of time” in climate. A million years ago patterns of Milankovich forcings existed that will never be seen again on Earth.

  96. Philip
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 8:48 AM | Permalink

    All this talk of spaghetti has got me thinking…

    Could the “hindcasting” of the GCM’s be bettered by taking a large number of series of smoothed random data and data mining it to select the series which most closely fit the temperature reconstruction? The BBC modelling exercise essentially did this with an enormous number of model runs, discarding the ones they didn’t like, and it would be enlightening to do essentially the same exercise but with random data.

    If better matches could be achieved with random data instead of expensive GCM’s it would certainly make a few faces red…

  97. MarkW
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 8:58 AM | Permalink

    All this talk of spaghetti has got me thinking …

    It’s time for lunch.

  98. Scott-in-WA
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 9:28 AM | Permalink

    welikerocks #70, PaulA #79:

    A very roughly-drawn pattern over the past 100,000,000 years could be described as follows:

    100,000,000 years ago – Temperature and C02 both at significantly higher levels than today with occasional periods of Glacial/Interglacial cycling.

    10,000,000 years ago – Temperature and C02 both at significantly higher levels than today.

    1,000,000+ years ago – Latest Glacial/Interglacial periodic cycle begins, temperatures trend strongly down.

    1,000,000 years ago – Temperature moves up/down within range of the latest Glacial/Interglacial cycle.

    100,000 years ago – Start of the latest Glacial, temperature trending down.

    10,000 years ago – Start of the latest Interglacial, temperature trending up from bottom of Interglacial range.

    1,000 years ago – Temperatures moving up/down within the latest Interglacial.

    100 years ago – Temperature trending up within the latest Interglacial.

    10 years ago – Temperature still trending up within the latest Interglacial.

    1 year ago – Temperature still trending up within the latest Interglacial.

    An easy hypothesis to speculate on is that over 100-million year time spans, including the great fraction of the latest 100-million year span, the planet earth is generally predisposed towards significantly higher temperatures and significantly higher levels of C02 than we experience today.

    If there is some scientific basis for the above hypothesis, then how one chooses to define “normal climate” may have to depend upon subjective factors, and also upon the particular basis one has for holding one’s own perspectives on the impacts of global warming.

  99. Murray Duffin
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 9:38 AM | Permalink

    Re 91
    I’ve seen the volcanic aerosols thing before. The problem is that we now have good evidence for how much and how long volcanoes affect surface temp. measurements, and there simply wasn’t even a a small fraction of the volcanic activity needed to force the LIA actually occurring. The historic volcanic record is quite complete and easily available on the internet if anyone wishes to check. I have no doubt that aerosols could cause a cooling like the LIA, but in the actual case there is no known source of the aerosols.

  100. Tom Vonk
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 9:46 AM | Permalink

    In most scenarios I have seen, the U.S. might get some agricultural gain at first, more problems later, Canada will probably be slightly better off, Europes main concerns are in terms of heat waves and sea levels. And low probability-high consequence events like THC shutdown. Other countries such Australia will suffer in terms of rainfall patterns or increased storms or droughts etc.

    Seems we have another undead lumbering by .
    Trenberth himself said that the climate models do NOT make predictions because they are not even initialised .
    They compare 2 numerical runs with random initial conditions where a single parameter changes , namely CO2 , everything else being equal .
    The results are called “sensitivity analysis” .
    Therefore it is an utter non sense to talk about “regional variability” .
    For obvious reasons the sensitivity analysis doesn’t deliver any skillful image of what can happen on the regional level what even IPCC rightly confirms .
    I know of NO other field in science where a theory refuses to be confronted to the only valid ultimate test – comparison of a prediction with a realisation .
    As long as it doesn’t happen and as it didn’t happen in 30 years it is likely to never happen, the climate models box in the same category as the tachyons or cold fusion .
    R.Pielke has published several papers that show that as far as regional precipitations are concerned , the models don’t even agree on the sign of the variation .
    “USA might get some agricultural gain” , “heat waves” on unresolved dimensions … sure , and ridiculousness doesn’t kill .
    I don’t know who brainwashed this guy , but it’s a real expert who did the job :)

  101. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 9:48 AM | Permalink

    This “unthreaded” thread is a stroke of genius! It’s also a good place for Chris, John V. etc to show what they’ve got. At this time, no one should cast aspersions on Chris/John V’s intelligence or integrity.

    Of course, if after 6 months of continuous engagement, they haven’t evolved their views beyond what they read at RC and IPCC reports, it may be time to create another category of “unthreaded–frozen POV” for stutter-postings.

  102. MarkW
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:07 AM | Permalink

    low probability-high consequence events like THC shutdown

    It’s been shown that the TCH has only a minor impact on European climate. So a THC shutdown would be a low probability-low consequence event.

  103. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:15 AM | Permalink

    re#83 Boris

    Further, GCMs are not very good at regional predictions, but do a good job with the global temperature anomaly. This is just another skeptic talking point.

    One problem is that people still hang their hats on the “regional predictions.” Take for example this proud Nobel Prize winner: http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/front/5364617.html:

    “…Texas won’t be so lucky.

    “A warmer, drier Texas is not very good for agriculture,” he said…The Edwards Aquifer, San Antonio’s main source of drinking water, would be significantly drier.…”

    He sounds pretty certain about “regional predictions,” down not only to the state of Texas, but to an aquifer with a total catchment area of 8,000 square miles. It’s relatively rectangular, but to put it into context, it’s the areal equivalent of an 89 mile x 89 mile square!

    Ok, so he doesn’t talk numbers, just the direction in which precipitation quantities will go. He’s being qualitative rather than qunatitative in the above quotes, at least. Are there GCM’s which suggest Texas and the Edwards Aquifer will be drier? Sure…but there are also conflicting models, such as the Canadian and Hadley ones circa 2000 http://www.usgcrp.gov/usgcrp/Library/nationalassessment/LargerImages/OverviewGraphics/SoilMoisture.jpg . The “Union of Concerned Scientists” acknowledges there are conflicting model results of wetter vs drier http://www.ucsusa.org/gulf/gcstatetex_cli.html across Texas.

    So we are to accept that “GCMs are not very good at regional predictions,” but when it comes to dire regional predictions, we are supposed to accept the scariest GCM scenarios as the most likely.

  104. jae
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:26 AM | Permalink

    72:

    “Satellite data and independent balloon data agree that atmospheric warming trends do not exceed those of the surface. Greenhouse models, on the other hand, demand that atmospheric trend values be 2-3 times greater. We have good reason, therefore, to believe that current climate models greatly overestimate the effects of greenhouse gases. Satellite observations suggest that GH models ignore negative feedbacks, produced by clouds and by water vapor, that diminish the warming effects of carbon dioxide.”

    Yes, and the reason the models demand the atmospheric values to be 2-3 times greater is that they use the bogus notion that the GHGs are radiating more energy to earth from about 5 km elevation. For some reason, these radiation models seem to forget all about water vapor and just consider CO2. I think this is because they assume that the water vapor effects are “background,” and the CO2 effects will be on top of this background. But I think that’s an improper assumption, because it’s actually cooler where there is MORE water vapor. The hottest spots on earth are in arid deserts. Average and maximum temperatures in July are hotter in Phoenix than over water in the tropics! This doesn’t make any sense, if you use radiative models for GHGs, since water vapor in moist areas is present in concentrations of about 30 times that of CO2. Where oh where is all that radiation from water vapor in the tropics?

  105. Jean S
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:34 AM | Permalink

    From Al’s speech:

    Last September 21, as the Northern Hemisphere tilted away from the sun, scientists reported with unprecedented distress that the North Polar ice cap is “falling off a cliff.” One study estimated that it could be completely gone during summer in less than 22 years. Another new study, to be presented by U.S. Navy researchers later this week, warns it could happen in as little as 7 years.

    Anyone has any idea what study he’s talking about? Anyhow, rather convenient timing to publish the results!

  106. Larry
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:40 AM | Permalink

    104, there’s a reason why they deal with CO2 and not H2O. It’s a fair assumption that CO2 is well-mixed, and the concentration is pretty much uniform spatially. Water vapor can vary dramatically from one mile to the next. There simply isn’t a good way to model three-dimensional water vapor concentration. This is one of the big holes in the models. Pretty hard to have any confidence that you’re doing water vapor right if you can’t look at its spacial distribution.

  107. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:40 AM | Permalink

    #104 jae:
    You have found a negative correlation between humidity and *surface* temperature. Does the correlation hold for tropospheric temperature? I don’t know the answer.

  108. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:41 AM | Permalink

    Filippo, it looks like you are trying to use the less than and greater than symbols in your posts. This blog uses those as special characters (e.g. the quicktags, but there are others). Just use l.t. or g.t. (the greater than probably worked because there was no previous opening tag, btw).

    Mark

  109. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:45 AM | Permalink

    #101 Al Fin:

    Of course, if after 6 months of continuous engagement, they haven’t evolved their views beyond what they read at RC and IPCC reports, it may be time to create another category of “unthreaded–frozen POV” for stutter-postings.

    Let me get this straight. Do you expect me to perform some basic research that undermines the IPCC consensus, and thereby changes my views, within the next 6 months? My understanding of AGW has been evolving with the science — what informs your understanding of AGW?

  110. jae
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:45 AM | Permalink

    105. I would say LOL, but there are too many people that actually believe this nut. Oh, well, it just hastens the day that proves that Gore has again made an idiot of himself. The AGW extremists are really hurting their cause with this kind of nonsense, since even those who don’t read much about AGW will sense that it is wrong. So, LOL, afterall.

  111. EW
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:46 AM | Permalink

    It’s a fair assumption that CO2 is well-mixed, and the concentration is pretty much uniform spatially.

    Is that so? I thought that placing the CO2 monitoring stations on the islands or shores occurred due to the very variable CO2 concns over the land (like those wildly differing data summarized in Beck, for e.g.)

  112. yorick
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:49 AM | Permalink

    Murray Duffin,
    They had that one good volcano in 1815, and that was quite enough for them to explain the whole four centuries, and they wonder why we are skeptical.

  113. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:51 AM | Permalink

    98 :

    “If there is some scientific basis for the above hypothesis, then how one chooses to define “normal climate” may have to depend upon subjective factors, and also upon the particular basis one has for holding one’s own perspectives on the impacts of global warming.”

    Yes and right on cue the Goracal speaks:

    “”It is time to make peace with the planet,” Gore said in his acceptance speech that quoted Churchill, Gandhi and the Bible. “We must quickly mobilize our civilization with the urgency and resolve that has previously been seen only when nations mobilized for war.””

    “”We, the human species, are confronting a planetary emergency – a threat to the survival of our civilization that is gathering ominous and destructive potential even as we gather here,” Gore said at the gala ceremony in Oslo’s city hall, in front of Norway’s royalty, leaders and invited guests.”
    ;)

  114. jae
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:53 AM | Permalink

    107:

    #104 jae:
    You have found a negative correlation between humidity and *surface* temperature. Does the correlation hold for tropospheric temperature? I don’t know the answer.

    The linearity of the lapse rate suggests to me that the correlation holds for the entire troposphere. If water is heating the troposphere, how could it help but heat the surface, too?

  115. jae
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:59 AM | Permalink

    109:

    Let me get this straight. Do you expect me to perform some basic research that undermines the IPCC consensus, and thereby changes my views, within the next 6 months? My understanding of AGW has been evolving with the science — what informs your understanding of AGW?

    Well, an awful lot of what Steve Mc, et. al. have done on this blog undermines the IPCC consensus in a big way. Maybe you should read some of this “basic research.” You might also look at the CO2science.org stuff. And Lubos Motl’s blog. And….

  116. EW
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 11:05 AM | Permalink

    We must quickly mobilize our civilization with the urgency and resolve that has previously been seen only when nations mobilized for war.””

    Gore is not alone – the climate war drums sound in the UK as well. War economy and strict consumption regulation are invoked by deep-green Guardian, as commented in “sp!ked.”
    Guardian’s Madeleine Bunting writes with an obvious gusto:

    “In the early 1940s, a dramatic drop in household consumption was achieved… by the government orchestrating a massive propaganda exercise combined with a rationing system and a luxury tax. This will be the stuff of twenty-first century politics – something that, right now, all the main political parties are much too scared to admit.’

  117. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 11:08 AM | Permalink

    104 jae

    A couple of comments, jae.

    I’ve been thinking a little about your dry-is-hot, humid-is-cool theme. I think that there are 3 main reasons, in this order:

    1. Cloud cover that comes with humidity, of , herecourse. Deserts get very little cloud cover, so the insolation is high. Humid areas get about 40-60% loss of insolation. This is probably the biggest reason.

    2. Precipitation is produced at altitude and is usually quite a bit colder than surface temperatures, so rain cools the air quite a bit.

    3. Evaporation. This I believe is the smallest factor. When the sun comes out after rain, the air warms up quite quickly, despite the increased evaporation rate.

    There is positive feedback, of course. A hot, dry area will continue to get few clouds because WV condensation is discouraged by both the the lower humidity and the higher temperature. Similarly, in a cool, humid area it is easy to reach the dew point at some reasonable altitude.

    You have obviously been thinking about it for quite a while. Does this agree with your conclusions?

  118. Boris
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 11:09 AM | Permalink

    Pat said:

    If you assume that it is due to the sun, with feedback, the CS of CO2 drops to almost nothing.

    You don’t get to have feedbacks for solar warming and none for CO2 warming. Feedbacks are feedbacks.

    Phillips sez:

    Please, show me a GCM which has made a good PREDICTION.

    GCMs do not generally make “predictions,” and when they do, as in the case of Hansen 1988, they cannot predict short term interannual variation. Models give estimates for climate sensitivity.

  119. M. Jeff
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 11:12 AM | Permalink

    #101, Al Fin, December 10th, 2007 at 9:48 am, says: This “unthreaded” thread is a stroke of genius! It’s also a good place for Chris, John V. etc to show what they’ve got. At this time, no one should cast aspersions on Chris/John V’s intelligence or integrity. …

    Also, at least one of the two has another admirable trait, the ability to admit that he does not know everything:

    #107, John V., December 10th, 2007 at 10:40 am, says: “… I don’t know the answer. …”

  120. Philip
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 11:19 AM | Permalink

    Boris 118,

    Your understanding seems to have come on leaps and bounds since Post 83, in which you said:

    Further, GCMs are not very good at regional predictions, but do a good job with the global temperature anomaly.
    Now you say, quite correctly, that they cannot make predictions.

    Which to you want? That GCM’s do a good job at predicting the global temperature anomaly, or that they do not make predictions??

  121. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 11:19 AM | Permalink

    118 Boris

    You don’t get to have feedbacks for solar warming

    I see. Feedbacks are not only possible for CO2, but are required — but no feedbacks allowed for solar. Ummmm….. Pseudo-science raises its ugly head, I think.
    Now tell me again what gets deglaciation going for 800 years before CO2 wakes up?

  122. Boris
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 11:35 AM | Permalink

    I see. Feedbacks are not only possible for CO2, but are required — but no feedbacks allowed for solar. Ummmm….. Pseudo-science raises its ugly head, I think.
    Now tell me again what gets deglaciation going for 800 years before CO2 wakes up?

    Way to quote mine. Pseudo-science indeed.

    Feedbacks are in response to warming, for example more WV in the atmosphere. This applies to both solar and GHG forcing. Your post said that solar climate sensitivity would be high with feedbacks. But those same feedbacks would have to apply to CO2 as well. That’s the paradox of the “Sun did it!” argument. In order for the sun to be responsible you need strong positive feedbacks. Strong positive feedbacks mean that the increased CO2 will have strong positive feedbacks as well.

    Milankovitch cycles appear to be the cause of the initial warming rebound from a glaciation

  123. jae
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 11:38 AM | Permalink

    117, Pat. Yes, I generally agree. Clouds are extremely important and may completely overshadow (nice pun!) the evaporative cooling effects. But, then, the energy released in the formation of those clouds has to come from somewhere, and I think it comes from evaporation of water at the surface, which takes a LOT of energy away from the surface. Maybe clouds amplify the cooling effect. My main point is just that I don’t see any way that water can exert a positive feedback, as assumed by the climate models. If water produced a positive feedback, then the tropics should be a LOT hotter than the deserts; whereas, the reverse is true. Water has to exert a negative influence, overall, unless I’m missing something (which is always very possible and why I like to discuss this). The importance of water is in it’s great heat storage ability (twice that of dry air). This is why the diurnal temperature variations are so small in moist areas, relative to dry ones, and why it’s so balmy on a summer night in the South.

  124. Boris
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 11:39 AM | Permalink

    Which to you want? That GCM’s do a good job at predicting the global temperature anomaly, or that they do not make predictions??

    They don’t PREDICT the future. They give estimates for what would happen if CO2 is doubled. People confuse it with a prediction because CO2 will double this century.

    Why is this so hard to understand?

  125. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 11:50 AM | Permalink

    #121 Pat Keating:
    That’s about the worst example of out-of-context quote mining I’ve ever seen.
    Boris was saying that feedbacks apply to both CO2 and solar. You quoted a partial sentence to make it seem like he said feedbacks don’t apply to solar. Either you misread what Boris wrote, or you intentionally misquoted him.

  126. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 11:54 AM | Permalink

    122 Boris

    But those same feedbacks would have to apply to CO2 as well.

    Not necessarily. I can think of at least two mechanisms that provide a lot more positive feedback to the solar effect than to CO2, and at least one process that short-circuits the CO2 effect, reducing its climate sensitivity. We won’t want to dilute this discussion with such distractions, though — it’s better saved for a different ‘sub-thread’.

    But OK, let’s split the warming response (from deglaciation, say) 50-50 between CO2 and solar and see what kind of fit we get.

  127. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 11:57 AM | Permalink

    #114 jae:
    I did a quick search for “lapse rate humidity” and found the following:

    http://www.enotes.com/earth-science/atmospheric-lapse-rate

    I can’t vouch for the quality of the site, but it states common lapse rates as:
    5 degF / 1000ft in “dry” air (RH

  128. Spence_UK
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:04 PM | Permalink

    Sheesh.

    This guy is just not on message.

    “We have this specimen that confirms the polar bear was a morphologically distinct species at least 100,000 years ago, and this basically means that the polar bear has already survived one interglacial period,” explained Professor Ingolfsson.

    “And what’s interesting about that is that the Eeemian – the last interglacial – was much warmer than the Holocene (the present).”

    Have no fear. The pro-AGW crowd will have him smeared on SourceWatch quicker than you can say “Exxon Mobil”.

  129. Reference
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:06 PM | Permalink

    Convenient Untruths – Deroy Murdock 10 December

    Readable overview of the skeptical position on AGW including mention of Steve McIntyre & Anthony Watts.

    Oslo’s applause notwithstanding, egregious errors, distortions, and lies have no place in what is supposedly unbiased scientific inquiry regarding one of Earth’s most controversial questions.

  130. JohnB UK
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:15 PM | Permalink

    Everyone discusses CO2 increase and its causes and effects. On those rare moments when a CO2 reduction is talked about the time scales for anything to happen seem to be very long.

    However: Over on the CO2 thread at #8 is a graph demonstrating a very close link on an annual basis between rate of CO2 increase and global temperature. Some forecasters are saying solar 24 and 25 are going to be weak and as a result global temperatures may fall sharply. Some talk of another Maunder minimum. Just for the moment let’s assume they are correct. If the CO2/temp relationship is as close as the #8 graph tells us, and global temperatures drop over the next 10/20/30 years, isn’t it possible we could also see a sharp decrease in CO2 at the same time?

    And if we did,what would that do to the AGW debate?

    And on that note: We are repeatedly being told that we should take action to reduce CO2 emissions even if the AGW science isn’t proved – because the “risk is too great” – On that same basis isn’t there a strong argument for preparing for another Maunder minimum? Here in the UK we are highly dependent on imported food and energy, with a population which is growing rapidly (some forecasts have population doubling in 80 years) – a harsh Maunder minimum would put food and energy supplies here under an impossible strain – It’s easy to imagine society collapsing under such pressures.

    I’d welcome thoughts – is it time my family and I thought about moving
    south?

  131. Steve Viddal
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:23 PM | Permalink

    On another note, on this dark day for Norway, Roger Pielke Sr seems to have opened up shop again. Without comments this time, but the comments section on his blog used to be dominated by noise from Bloom et al that contributed little if anything.

  132. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:24 PM | Permalink

    RE:#8 – 100M it starts to get very interesting. At that scale, you start to encounter very high variation in climate and even atmospheric chemistry. Get out into the 300 – 400M range and it gets downright frightening. The masses argue about a few hundred PPM of CO2, when in reality, there are natural things that could wipe us out over the span of only a few thousand years. More research needs to go toward that and less toward “killer GHG emissions.”

  133. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:27 PM | Permalink

    RE: #130 – Imagine for a moment a world of government imposed carbon scarcity. The PPM CO2 is going down. It goes past 300, 200, heading for 100. Then, something natural occurs, be it a Maunder Minimum or other unexpected event. It reaches 90 PPM. Ever read the Sci Fi book “Cities in Flight?” Not the same scenario, but, same result.

  134. Michael Smith
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:34 PM | Permalink

    Re: 133

    I don’t think you’ll have to wait for CO2 to fall. Government-imposed carbon scarcity will produce “Cities in Flight” long before we see any decrease in CO2 levels.

  135. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:35 PM | Permalink

    Global dust bowl / fungal spike / die off leads to intergalactic hobodom …

  136. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:35 PM | Permalink

    #133 Steve Sadlov:
    I doubt we will ever get CO2 below ~250ppm, since doing so would require not just stopping emissions but building sinks on a scale similar to the natural sinks.

  137. jae
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:46 PM | Permalink

    130:

    I’d welcome thoughts – is it time my family and I thought about moving
    south?

    Yes. I’m thinking of retiring in some place in Central America!

  138. yorick
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:46 PM | Permalink

    Spence_UK
    Not only did they survive that interglacial, which is a point I have been making forever on the web, but they survived the holocene optimum, when the variation of the obliquity of the Earth moved the Arctic Circle south, making for more direct sunlight at the poles, and longer summers, to boot. Somehow the bears survived that little episode as well, It seems unlikely that the polar ice cap survived summers at that time. The one where it got so warm that mile thick sheets of ice melted in fairly short order. But not Greenland or Antarcica’s ice sheet by the way. Check out the GRIP or DYE-3 boreholes for temps in Greenland for the Holocene optimum.

    Here is a graph of Milankovich forcings for one latitude band

    http://www.people.fas.harvard.edu/~phuybers/Inso/Summer_energy_75S.pdf

  139. Larry
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:49 PM | Permalink

    138, pedantic point, but the Arctic circle can’t move (neither can the tropics). It’s fixed by the tilt of the earth’s axis.

  140. -Chris Kaiser
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:51 PM | Permalink

    Has anyone had a chance to look at the potentially landmark paper, “A comparison of tropical temperature trends with model predictions.” by David H. Douglass, John R. Christy, Benjamin D. Pearson, and S. Fred Singer?

    http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/cgi-bin/abstract/117857349/ABSTRACT

    I don’t have access, and have only seen the abstract. From the press release at SEPP —

    http://science-sepp.blogspot.com/2007/12/press-release-dec-10-2007.html

    — it appears to be the “scholarly” write up of the Monckton article earlier this year that shows no CO2 – Greenhouse “fingerprint” in the real world data. Monckton was dismissed early this year as a quack by many. The claim at realclimate, if I recall correctly, was that the error bars of the data was large enough to hide the model fingerprint. I.e., don’t believe your lying eyes.

    I know Steve is busy, but I’m hoping someone can provide a critical review of the article. There is no one I’d trust to audit the math more than Steve, so I’m eager for his assessment, if he can get to it.

    -Chris Kaiser

  141. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 12:59 PM | Permalink

    #114 jae:
    My previous post got cut-off because I used the dreaded less-than character.
    I found a couple of sites with lapse rates for dry and wet air (wet air being saturated). Here’s a good link:

    http://www.aos.wisc.edu/~aalopez/aos101/wk9.html

    The dry lapse rate is 9.8 degC/km
    The wet lapse rate is 6.0 degC/km

    As I understand it, the relative humidity is generally higher as you go up. In wet areas the wet lapse rate will hold throughout the most of the troposphere. In dry areas, the dry lapse rate will be in effect until an altitude where the relative humidity is 100%. Basically, the difference between the surface temperature and the temperature at a given altitude is larger in dry areas.

    I humbly suggest you have a look at the tropospheric temperatures and see if your correlation is still valid.

  142. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 1:04 PM | Permalink

    125
    Ok, I scanned it too fast the first time through.
    However, show me a modeling study where the solar effects have been multiplied by a factor 3, as CO2 effects have been in many studies.

  143. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 1:06 PM | Permalink

    #26 bender:

    1. Steve M was a reviewer. My guess is he has read it.

    Since you brought it up, can you clarify what’s required to be a reviewer?
    Ny my understanding you only need to pay a fee and agree not to publically disclose anything from the draft versions.
    Is that correct, or do I have bad information?

  144. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 1:07 PM | Permalink

    #142 Pat Keating:
    The effect of CO2 is expressed in radiative flux in the models, as is the effect of solar variation. They all get the same feedbacks.

  145. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 1:13 PM | Permalink

    #143–In your understanding all a reviewer has to do is pay a fee and make a promise.—WOW, all the more reason to put all of our collective eggs in the IPCC basket. Great one JohnV

  146. jae
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 1:27 PM | Permalink

    141, John V. ?? I don’t understand what you mean by “tropospheric temperatures.” The surface temperature is also a tropospheric temperature. This temperature normally declines with elevation, as you note, so it gets colder faster as you increase in elevation in dry areas. At, say 5 km, water vapor provides a POSITIVE feedback in moist areas, due to condensation and release of energy. It’s different if you care about 5 km, than if you care about the surface. BTW, I agree that RH increases with altitude, but it is my understanding that the climate models assume that it remains constant. This is absurd, if it is true (need to check again).

  147. STAFFAN LINDSTROEM
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 1:29 PM | Permalink

    #133 Steve Sadlov…Do you have any rule of thumb about Hudson
    Bay freezing-over dates?? According to Wetterzentrale it’s a
    matter of hours if not already happened..When did it happen
    in 2003?? (The last chunks of ice left Hudson Bay in first
    week of September 2004…even Environment Canada admitted
    that was a record late event….)

  148. jae
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 1:33 PM | Permalink

    Ny my understanding you only need to pay a fee and agree not to publically disclose anything from the draft versions.
    Is that correct, or do I have bad information?

    No, I think you have to be invited. No fees, thank God, or Al Gore would probably have been a reviewer, too.

  149. jae
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 1:39 PM | Permalink

    John V: One of the things that really intrigues me in all this is that I can give you the a close estimate of the average temperature for a moist location if you give me the average solar insolation and the average absolute humidity. The correlation coefficient (r2) between the product of insolation (at the ground) and absolute humidity is 0.85. I don’t know why this happens, and it only happens for moist locations–all the way from Barrow, AK to Guam.

  150. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 1:41 PM | Permalink

    Let me get this straight. Do you expect me to perform some basic research that undermines the IPCC consensus, and thereby changes my views, within the next 6 months?

    C’mon John V, you’re reasonable…”IPCC Consensus?” You know there is nothing close to such a thing.

    They don’t PREDICT the future. They give estimates for what would happen if CO2 is doubled. People confuse it with a prediction because CO2 will double this century.

    So you’re saying the GCM’s don’t make predictions, just estimates for what would happen under a CO2 prediction. What you cannot see would be my eyes rolling.

    And much to your dismay, GCMs don’t simply “give estimates for waht would happen if CO2 is doubled.” GCM’s are run under many CO2 emission scenarios. The IPCC likes to use a 1% annual growth in CO2 emissions for some period of time, but GCMs are run under a variety of CO2 scenarios. Click on the IPCC “scenarios” here http://www.ipcc-data.org/ar4/gcm_data.html at the “Model output described in the 2007 IPCC Fourth Assessment Report (SRES scenarios)” page and note that the models aren’t simply run for 2XCO2.

  151. jae
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 1:43 PM | Permalink

    Nuts: 149 SHOULD say: The correlation r2 between TEMPERATURE and the product of solar insolation and absolute humidity is 0.85.

  152. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:04 PM | Permalink

    RE: #136 – this is clearly your blind spot. I sure hope there are not too many people with such a blind spot in positions of authority. One can hope ….

  153. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:07 PM | Permalink

    RE: #147 – all over the map. Due to most of the body of water being south of the Arctic Circle, and subject to tremendous weather and climate variation levels versus truely “Arctic” areas.

  154. jae
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:12 PM | Permalink

    New Junk Science article (emphsis mine):

    Climate warming is natural, not human caused, says new study
    International Journal of Climatology of the Royal Meteorological Society [DOI: 10.1002/joc.1651] (December 2007)

    Climate scientists at the University of Rochester, the University of Alabama, and the University of Virginia report that observed patterns of temperature changes (‘fingerprints’) over the last thirty years are not in accord with what greenhouse models predict and can better be explained by natural factors, such as solar variability. Therefore, climate change is ‘unstoppable’ and cannot be affected or modified by controlling the emission of greenhouse gases, such as CO2, as is proposed in current legislation.

    These results are in conflict with the conclusions of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and also with some recent research publications based on essentially the same data. However, they are supported by the results of the US-sponsored Climate Change Science Program (CCSP).

    The report is published in the December 2007 issue of the International Journal of Climatology of the Royal Meteorological Society [DOI: 10.1002/joc.1651]. The authors are Prof. David H. Douglass (Univ. of Rochester), Prof. John R. Christy (Univ. of Alabama), Benjamin D. Pearson (graduate student), and Prof. S. Fred Singer (Univ. of Virginia).

    The fundamental question is whether the observed warming is natural or anthropogenic (human-caused). Lead author David Douglass said: “The observed pattern of warming, comparing surface and atmospheric temperature trends, does not show the characteristic fingerprint associated with greenhouse warming. The inescapable conclusion is that the human contribution is not significant and that observed increases in carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases make only a negligible contribution to climate warming.”

    Co-author John Christy said: “Satellite data and independent balloon data agree that atmospheric warming trends do not exceed those of the surface. Greenhouse models, on the other hand, demand that atmospheric trend values be 2-3 times greater. We have good reason, therefore, to believe that current climate models greatly overestimate the effects of greenhouse gases. Satellite observations suggest that GH models ignore negative feedbacks, produced by clouds and by water vapor, that diminish the warming effects of carbon dioxide.”
    Co-author S. Fred Singer said: “The current warming trend is simply part of a natural cycle of climate warming and cooling that has been seen in ice cores, deep-sea sediments, stalagmites, etc., and published in hundreds of papers in peer-reviewed journals. The mechanism for producing such cyclical climate changes is still under discussion; but they are most likely caused by variations in the solar wind and associated magnetic fields that affect the flux of cosmic rays incident on the earth’s atmosphere. In turn, such cosmic rays are believed to influence cloudiness and thereby control the amount of sunlight reaching the earth’s surface-and thus the climate.” Our research demonstrates that the ongoing rise of atmospheric CO2 has only a minor influence on climate change. We must conclude, therefore, that attempts to control CO2 emissions are ineffective and pointless. – but very costly.”

  155. Philip_B
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:21 PM | Permalink

    I am worried about areas near glaciers which depend on water supplies which are threatened

    I am amazed that a statement so clearly false has gained so much traction just because people think the IPCC said it. In fact, the IPCC said ‘Water supplies stored in glaciers and snow cover will be reduced over the course of the century.’

    Which means melting glaciers and snow will result in more water in river flows and increased water supplies. Until of course the glaciers melt completely, at which point they will have no effect on river flows and water supplies (apart from a seasonal effect). Himalayan glaciers are generally cited as where the main impact will occur. The Himalayas have a huge summer rainfall peak. It’s called the Monsoon. Any reduction in summer river flows from glaciers that have dissapeared won’t be noticed because Himalayan rivers are in flood at that time of year.

  156. conard
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:36 PM | Permalink

    Philip_B

    I am worried about areas near glaciers which depend on water supplies which are threatened

    I ran into a statement like this in a comment at Tamino’s (whose blog I very much enjoy). The best part was the mention of the nuclear capabilities of nearby countries. It is not so much the carrot and stick that bother me, it is the assumption that I am an ass.

  157. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:48 PM | Permalink

    John V in comment #141 says:

    …the relative humidity is generally higher as you go up…

    I guess you are not a meteorologist and you are not used to look at the radiosoundings.
    May I suggest a link?

    http://weather.uwyo.edu/upperair/sounding.html

    Select the “GIF skew T” type of plot and you will soon see how humidity goes with altitude.

  158. yorick
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 2:54 PM | Permalink

    Larry 139,
    Look at the graphic. The obliquity of the Earth (tilt) changes on a 40K year cycle. You will see at the bottom of my PDF a graphic which shows it’s variation. During the Holocene optimum was the last time that it had moved to its most southern level. I don’t know orbital mechanics, so I am just taking people’s word on this, but apparently it has to do with the orbit of the Moon as well.

    I suppose it would not be that hard to produce a graph of the historic lattitudes of the arctic circle (90 – obliquity) and the tropics (obliquity). I use the term “obliquity” rather than tilt because it will get you where you want to go in google, whereas “tilt” might get you pinball.

    In any case, in one billion years (cue Dr. Evil or Carl Sagan) the tropics are expected to be north of the florida line. That is if we have found a credit scheme that will stop continental drift by then.

  159. yorick
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 3:09 PM | Permalink

    The effect of CO2 is expressed in radiative flux in the models, as is the effect of solar variation. They all get the same feedbacks.

    John V

    This is what is known as a simplifying assumption. I do not believe that feedbacks from solar will equal feedbacks from CO2. Solar varies in everything from TSI to UV. Solar can penetrate the ocean the entire photospere, CO2 can only feebly heat the ocean at the surface. How the two can be expected to be comparable is beyond me. What if you have black carbon on snow fields? Is an increase in TSI going to express itself there? What about an increase in CO2? Not buying it. Loehle didn’t buy it, and I would have to see some kind of proof that it was a physical reality, not just a convenient way of making solar fail to fit the climate history.

  160. UK John
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 3:15 PM | Permalink

    Anyone who wants to know how accurate Climate Models are need look no further than the Montreal Protocol, remember that one “save the ozone layer, and you will save the world”.

    Well the models were wrong, they predicted a return of the ozone by now but now the scentists say that ozone levels will not return to the antartic till 2065.

    The ozone hole over antartic keeps getting bigger, but man made ozone depleting chemicals in the atmosphere have decreased substantially. The scientists say that the return of the ozone is being masked by overwhelming natural processes and cooling of the atmosphere.

    So thats what you do when your models wrong, just put back the date that anyone might be able to judge whether your model is right or wrong, till you are all dead.

    http://www.wmo.ch/pages/prog/arep/gaw/reports/ozone_2006/pdf/exec_sum_18aug.pdf

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

  161. roconnell
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 3:16 PM | Permalink

    I thought I heard on the radio this morning that a ‘new’ survey of Antartica has shown that the ice sheet there has grown by 2 Million sq miles over the last year and half? Was I dreaming, can’t find any addtion information.

  162. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 3:22 PM | Permalink

    Come on all you deniers. Don’t you know that CO2 absorbs IR? Therefore, the most sensible answer is to ignore the rest of the system and attribute most or all the observed warming trend to CO2. It then goes without saying that the +.7C trend is caused by 100 ppmv CO2, and we are responsible for all of it, and we know the trend will continue. This is going to have disasterous effects upon our environment and so the release of CO2 must be halted and reversed now, at any cost.

    The science is setttled, global warming is real. Now is the time for action!

  163. Ellis
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 3:29 PM | Permalink

    Perhaps someone here could help me, I would like to know exactly how the GCM’s account for the cooling trend during the period 1940-1970.

  164. roconnell
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 3:33 PM | Permalink

    Sam Urbinto says “The science is setttled”

    No scientist would ever say ANY science is ever settled.

  165. MarkW
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 3:36 PM | Permalink

    Ellis,

    For the most part they declare that aerosols caused the cooling. Then they add enough aerosols to their model to get the affect that they are looking for.

  166. MarkW
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 3:37 PM | Permalink

    roconnell

    Urbinto is being sarcastic. Of course it’s hard to tell since his post is indistinguishable from the average alarmist’s.

  167. trevor
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 3:39 PM | Permalink

    Re #164: roconnell. Of course you right. And Sam actually agrees with you. If you had been here for a while you would know that he is being ironic in that statement.

  168. jae
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 3:42 PM | Permalink

    157, Paolo: Thanks for the link. Needless to say, I’m not a meterologist, either. Can you provide another link for interpreting the diagram? What is the “normal” variation of relative humidity with altitude? It looks like the diagram shows only specific humidity.

  169. Jim Clarke
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 3:43 PM | Permalink

    Ellis,

    The GCMs account for the coolong of the mid-20th century by blaming human emitted aerosols. (It is always our fault, don’t you know!) This is a hand waving argument for three (main) reasons. 1. We have no measurement of aerosols at that time. Al we can do is guess and make assumptions. 2. There is no agreement on whether human emitted aerosols into the troposphere cause warming are cooling. 3. We do know that human emitted aerosols were mostly in the Northern Hemisphere, yet both hemispheres cooled at the same time and the same (relative) amount.

    In essence, the models us the equivalent of a joker in a game of poker. The aerosol effect is proclaimed to be the value that is needed to give the models the appearance of skill, just like a joker is proclaimed to be the value that gives the holder a winning hand.

  170. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 3:52 PM | Permalink

    #145 Gaelan Clarke:
    Just because you get to be a reviewer does *not* mean that your comments will be included. Comments which can not be supported with science are left out. Steve McIntyre made many complaints about his comments being left out.

    =====
    #146 jae:
    I can assure you that climate models do *not* assume RH is positive. The atmosphere is divided into layers and each has its own conditions, including water vapour content.

    Maybe I should back up on this humidity correlation, and find out what you’re trying to say. If I undertand, you are saying that your negative correlation between temperature and RH means that water vapour is a negative forcing. In your opinion, what are the implications of your correlation? Are you stating that earth would be warmer if all of the air was completely dry?

    =====
    #157 Paolo M:
    Thanks for the link, but I don’t understand the “Skew T” plot. I realize that absolute humidity goes down with altitude, but is it wrong to say that relative humidity generally increases?

    =====
    #161 roconnell:
    Tamino wrote an interesting article on Arctic and Antarctic ice a couple of months ago:

    http://tamino.wordpress.com/2007/10/08/sea-ice-north-and-south-then-and-now/

    =====
    #163 Ellis:
    Primarily aerosols (“global dimming”).

  171. See - owe to Rich
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 3:56 PM | Permalink

    Just a few points on earlier postings.

    1. CO2 lags. These do not prove that CO2 does not warm the Earth, so let’s not say AGW is disproved by these lags. But they almost surely prove that they fail to warm it enough to prevent huge downturns which I presume to be orbital and solar effects.

    2. Gore’s stuff about the North Pole ice cap is reasonably credible if this year’s anomaly in September continued to trend in the same way. But because of a probable weak solar cycle 24 I am betting it won’t.

    3. Boris asserted that solar and CO2 feedback forcings must be equal. Keating said they don’t. I agree with the latter, as there is no reason why they have to work in the same way (except for albedo changes in ice melts, but surely that’s not all that’s going on).

    4. I am soon going to post a model of 150 years’ temperature data, with only 3 free parameters, which does not give CO2 doubling sensitivity in the IPCC favoured 2-4C range. I was hoping Steve would make a separate thread for it, but he hasn’t agreed yet (=reminder there, Steve).

    5. I must dispute the notion that all sceptics here are members of the illustrious Met and scientific organizations cited. I think it’s easier not to get brainwashed by being outside those orgs :-)

    Apologies for not having time to link back to those earlier articles,
    Rich.

  172. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:05 PM | Permalink

    JohnV if I wanted to subtract the anomaly due to volcanoes from 1880 to present, what’s the best source?

  173. Murray Duffin
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:09 PM | Permalink

    Re:163 Newbie?? Aerosols, without ever identifying the source of the aerosols. It’s a plug that works for the LIA too.

  174. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:12 PM | Permalink

    #172 steve mosher:
    Uh, thanks for asking, but I have no idea.
    My understanding is that each volcanic eruption will affect global temperatures for less than 5 years.
    I’ve got a feeling this is a trick question. You going anywhere with this?

  175. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:16 PM | Permalink

    A number of commenters have made predictions of a weak solar cycle 24.
    To any of you making those predictions, what’s your source?
    Does your source have a track record of predictions?

  176. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:17 PM | Permalink

    144 John V

    The effect of CO2 is expressed in radiative flux in the models, as is the effect of solar variation. They all get the same feedbacks.

    I don’t think so. For example, GISS Model II uses a fixed irradiance, no solar variation and no feedback that I can see.
    Please show me where your statement is true.

  177. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:27 PM | Permalink

    Sorry about the tone of my post above if it caused any confusion…. I just thought I’d save all the radical know-it-all pro-warmers some time if I just boiled down their argument to what they’re really trying to say. That way, the assumption / guess / opinion being made that’s put forth as fact doesn’t have to have all that obfuscatory hand-waving double-speak non-statements languge crafted into a few paragraphs. They can just point people to that post. See what a nice guy I am?

    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=2499#comment-174823

    I’m now waiting for somebody to claim “But that’s not what we’re saying at all, we know there’s more than CO2″ Or that I’m babbling nonsense about particulates. Speaking of that:

    Jim; aerosols (particulates). Does anyone really know how much of a cooling effect (actually, an IR blocking behavior vis-a-vis albedo) they have in the air at all, much less how that relates to whatever heating effects they have on the ground? I’d say that’s one huge unknown, if you look at the model’s output for each of the radiative forcings, given the margin of error the IPCC uses, they themselves are saying it.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Radiative-forcings.svg

    And as you can see here, CO2 is only half the story even ignoring everything but the 5 GHG they list (including ozone) And notice the solar irradiance margin they have….

    IPCC devotes a chapter to Aerosols: http://www.grida.no/climate/ipcc_tar/wg1/160.htm and here’s some model output: http://www.grida.no/climate/ipcc_tar/wg1/190.htm

    Hidden on this page http://www.grida.no/climate/ipcc_tar/wg1/214.htm#611 it defines what radiative forcing is:

    In the context of climate change, the term forcing is restricted to changes in the radiation balance of the surface-troposphere system imposed by external factors, with no changes in stratospheric dynamics, without any surface and tropospheric feedbacks in operation (i.e., no secondary effects induced because of changes in tropospheric motions or its thermodynamic state), and with no dynamically-induced changes in the amount and distribution of atmospheric water (vapour, liquid, and solid forms).

    Certainly not the complete picture.

  178. Ellis
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:28 PM | Permalink

    Thanks all, I thought so but just wanted to be clear. I believe it was Gerald Stanhill who is credited with coining the phrase “Global Dimming”. In case anyone was wondering what Mr. Stanhill is saying about the subject now,

    The cause of these large changes in Eg↓ is
    not known. The one most often suggested—
    changes in anthropogenic emissions of aerosols
    [Stanhill and Cohen, 2001]—presents a
    number of difficulties. First, the estimated
    negative shortwave forcing attributable to
    aerosol emissions is only one tenth of the
    measured reduction. Second, the recent
    widespread reversal of global dimming was
    measured at sites that have very low concentrations
    of anthropogenic aerosols as well as
    in areas such as China where such emissions
    are high and still increasing [Che et al.,
    2005]. Third, large changes in Eg↓ were found
    in the United States during the first half of
    the twentieth century, similar in size to those
    occurring in the second half, despite very
    different rates of aerosol emission [Stanhill
    and Cohen, 2005].

    And even more damning for the IPCCophiles

    The omission of reference to changes in Eg↓
    in the IPCC assessments brings into question
    the confidence that can be placed in a topdown,
    ‘consensus’ science system that
    ignores such a major and significant element
    of climate change.
    A separate and more fundamental question
    is whether scientific understanding of climate
    change is now sufficient to produce a useful
    consensus view. Is climate change a science or
    is it a trans-science, asking questions that can
    be stated in the language of science but that
    are currently beyond its ability to answer?
    The cautionary note global dimming and
    brightening sounds for climate change scientists
    is not a new one; rather it strikingly vindicates
    the two rules of climate change set out
    by Peter Wright 30 years ago [Wright, 1971].
    The first rule states that some feature of the
    atmosphere can always be found that will
    oscillate in accordance with your hypothesis;
    the second states that shortly after its discovery,
    the oscillation will disappear.

    So I ask again, how do GCM’s account for the 1940-1970 cooling trend without using the ad hoc assumption of aerosals, and more importantly, how can we rely on estimates, of the unknown future, by models that cannot accurately portray the known past?

  179. Richard Sharpe
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:29 PM | Permalink

    NASA Satellite Captures First View of ‘Night-Shining Clouds’

    “It is clear that these clouds are changing, a sign that a part of our atmosphere is changing and we do not understand how, why or what it means,” stated AIM principal investigator James Russell III of Hampton University, Hampton, Va. “These observations suggest a connection with global change in the lower atmosphere and could represent an early warning that our Earth environment is being changed.” (Emphasis added.)

    Interesting choice of words, rather than the more neutral “is changing!”

    It would seem that the intent is that this is just another example of evil human activity.

  180. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:38 PM | Permalink

    #176 Pat Keating:
    If the irradiance is fixed, then there is nothing to amplify. The climate sensitivity to CO2 doubling is a result of the models, not an input to the models. (It has also been calculated emprically from temperature and CO2 reconstructions). Increased CO2 leads to a change in radiative flux (in the correct frequencies). The net temperature effect is a result of the original CO2 increase and feedbacks such as increased water vapour, decreased albedo, etc.

    Similarly, an increase in TSI would cause warming which would be amplified by increased water vapour, decreased albedo, etc.

    One difference with CO2 is that it is itself involved in the feedback — as temperatures increase the CO2 levels increase further. I am not certain if this self-feedback is included in the sensitivity to CO2 doubling, but I do not believe it is.

  181. yorick
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:40 PM | Permalink

    Solar Cycle 25 peaking around 2022 could be one of the weakest in centuries.

    The first sunspot just appeared a few days ago, but the cycle is very late in starting and has not yet officially started.

    There is also that stupid cylce 20, which was pretty low, and corresponded to the aerosol cooling we see in the temps in the late sixties and early seventies, and the low cycle 23, which corresponds with the halt in the rise of troposphere and ocean surface temps. But these are meaningless. MEANINGLESS! Just like the Maunder minimum had nothing, NOTHING! to do with the LIA. It was caused by the black plaugue, which killed off enough people to cause reforestation and carbon sequestration sufficient, with the volcano of 1815, to cause the LIA. I am not being sarcastic here either, I am quoting the Wikipedia :)

  182. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:41 PM | Permalink

    171 Rich

    Boris asserted that solar and CO2 feedback forcings must be equal. Keating said they don’t. I agree with the latter, as there is no reason why they have to work in the same way

    Needless to say, I agree with you.
    CO2 works via the global temperature. The sun can work locally and therefore provide different forcing. For example, the direct solar radiation absorbed by clouds can disperse/reduce them, and thus change albedo much more effectively than can CO2. The diurnal effects are also different, which can provide different forcing if the effect is non-linear.

  183. Jim Clarke
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:41 PM | Permalink

    So I ask again, how do GCM’s account for the 1940-1970 cooling trend without using the ad hoc assumption of aerosals, and more importantly, how can we rely on estimates, of the unknown future, by models that cannot accurately portray the known past?

    Question #1: They don’t

    Question #2: Faith

    The answer to #2 by no means implies that AGW is a religion, just like model predictions are by know means ‘predictions’. You must think of these things in a more enlightened and compassionate way, or, in other words, irrationally!

  184. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:44 PM | Permalink

    Here is our local sounding at 00 UTC

    The red line is the vertical profile of temperature from the ground level to 15 km (less than 150 hPa); the blue line is for the dew point temperature. Usually the two lines diverge apart with altitude and you can find the equivalent plot of RH in the bottom left corner. If the two lines are close, the radiosonde is going through a cloudy layer.
    In the plot there is also the profile of wind (direction and intensity) in the right side.
    The 45° oblique lines are for temperature, from +40°C to -90°C. The dot lines are for the dry lapse rate and the dashed dotted lines for the wet lapse rate.

  185. Richard Sharpe
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:45 PM | Permalink

    Seems that the link to that NASA article did not get into my posting.

    NASA Satellite Captures First View of ‘Night-Shining Clouds’

  186. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:52 PM | Permalink

    180 John V

    If the irradiance is fixed, then there is nothing to amplify.

    That’s the point, the model includes no variations in irradiance, whereas you claimed in 144 that they were included (“as is solar variation”).

    The climate sensitivity to CO2 doubling is a result of the models, not an input to the models.

    It seems that you are trying to snow me again. This again is untrue — it is an intrinsic part of the model.

  187. jae
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 4:54 PM | Permalink

    170, John V:

    Are you stating that earth would be warmer if all of the air was completely dry?

    That appears to be a logical conclusion, but I have no way of knowing, because water vapor may have a special way of imparting heat to N2 and O2. If not, then yes for the AVERAGE temperature. But there would be one hell of a diurnal variation!

  188. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 5:08 PM | Permalink

    Is saying “CO2 != TEMP+ (or maybe CO2 == Temp+ (some))” the same as claiming the Earth is flat? Is it the same as denying humans have an affect on climate?

    Oh, and don’t forget; pretty much everything we talk about has both a time and space component to it (what the climate will be like during January in Oslo, or March in Buenos Aires, or August at Atlanta International Airport, for example)

  189. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 5:11 PM | Permalink

    #181 yorick:
    You’re making the (sarcastic) argument that climate science denies the effect of the sun on temperature. That is not the case. Of course the sun affects temperature, as do the greenhouse effect and aerosols.

    =====
    #182 Pat Keating:
    Ah, I thought you were talking about actual changes in the solar output, not the solar radiation reaching the surface. The former is an input to the climate. The latter is primarily an output of cloud formation but also of aerosols. Obviously, it’s difficult to define a feedback term on an output.

  190. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 5:16 PM | Permalink

    #188 Sam Urbinto:
    Nobody who knows anything is saying that CO2 is the only cause for temperature changes. That’s a classic distortion. On time scales too short for geologic or orbital effects but long enough to average out ocean cycles, and neglecting non-CO2 GHGs, I suppose it looks something like this:

    Temperature = A*log2(CO2) + B*TSI + C*Aerosol

    For the anti-AGW crowd, it looks the same except A approaches 0.

  191. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 5:30 PM | Permalink

    But I’m not distorting anything John. Making a generalization. I’m simply asking why it seems most everyone mostly focuses on CO2, when even though it’s modeled at an effect of 50% of the radiative forcing of the GHG (including ozone) it’s not the only (or even major) factor here. Or questioning if 100% of the observed increase is human caused. Why bringing up any questions on these subjects makes one a denier, it seems, in many cases.

    Show of hands; how many people here believe the effects of CO2 in the are over-rated and overly focused on? Care to make a percentage estimate of CO2 by itself in the observed +.7 C trend in the global mean temperature anomaly?

    I’ll start. Even if the current +.7 C trend is accurate and meaningful (I tend to think that number is a) meaningless and b) understated even if meaningful) the percentage of that caused by CO2 that’s caused by humans is perhaps 5-10% of that.

    Then my question would be why aren’t we focusing on the other 90-95% of whatever’s going on. Or is it just the human need to answer questions about everything even if it’s not answerable.

  192. jae
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 5:32 PM | Permalink

    184, Paolo: OK, thanks. Held and Sodden’s 2000 paper on Water Vapor Feedback and Global Warming, which is often cited in connection with climate models, says at page 444:

    In his attempt at quantifying the strength of water vapor feedback, Moller
    explicitly assumed that the relative humidity of the atmosphere remains fixed as it
    iswarmed. This assumption of fixed relative humidity has proven to be a simple and
    useful reference point for discussions of water vapor feedback. The alternative
    assumption of fixed vapor pressure requires that relative humidity H decrease
    rapidly as temperatures increase, the decrease being 6% of H per C of warming
    in the warmest parts of the troposphere, and 15% of H per C in its coldest parts.

    And on p. 445, he says:

    To model the relative humidity distribution and its response to global warming
    one requires a model of the atmospheric circulation. The complexity of the circulation
    makes it difficult to provide compelling intuitive arguments for how the
    relative humidity will change. As discussed below, computer models that attempt
    to capture some of this complexity predict that the relative humidity distribution
    is largely insensitive to changes in climate.

    I’m just trying to make sense of this. Does it make sense to you?
    This paper derives an estimate of 2.7 deg. increase for 2 X CO2, and the constant relative humidity assumption is critical, as I understand the article.

  193. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 5:32 PM | Permalink

    Hi JohnV.

    “Similarly, an increase in TSI would cause warming which would be amplified by increased water vapour,
    decreased albedo, etc.”

    what is the gain for TSI and Delta TSI? can temp increase
    between 1909 and 1940 be explained by C02 and TSI?

  194. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 5:46 PM | Permalink

    #192 jae:
    As I understand it, the models often predict constant RH as temperatures increase. That’s different than assuming constant RH with altitude.

    =====
    #193 steven mosher:
    Doubling CO2 (in isolation) causes a radiative imbalance of ~3.7 W/m2. If this results in a temperature increase of 2.5 degC, then a rough estimate for increasing TSI by 3.7 W/m2 would be about 2.5 degC. By the way, that would be a very large increase in TSI.

    To me it seems that the combination of increasing TSI and CO2 can explain the early century warming. TSI stopped increasing mid-century and has remained relatively constant since. The warming in the latter part of the century apears to have a non-solar cause.

  195. Mike Davis
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 5:58 PM | Permalink

    Sam:
    I think they have been looking the wrong and the past ten years of IPCC has been wasted money.

  196. Larry
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 6:04 PM | Permalink

    Doubling CO2 (in isolation) causes a radiative imbalance of ~3.7 W/m2.

    No, it doesn’t. Balance is maintained. Temperatures have to adjust, but balance is maintained.

  197. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 6:09 PM | Permalink

    #196 Larry:
    Yes you’re right. I should have said “Instantaneously doubling CO2 (in isolation) causes an instantaneous radiative imbalance of ~3.7 W/m2.” Temperatures would then increase to achieve steady state. That was my next statement. Without feedback, the temperature would increase about 1.1 degC to achieve balance.

  198. Larry
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 6:12 PM | Permalink

    197, that’s about all was can say with high confidence, but yes.

  199. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 6:13 PM | Permalink

    That’s my entire problem, John. 1.1 C without feedbacks, feedbacks we’re unsure of. 1.1 or 3.5 or whatever. It’s just a guess, just a rough estimate, just an idea. Not scientific certainty.

  200. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 6:42 PM | Permalink

    #199 Sam Urbinto:
    Of course you know that certainty is impossible in science. Keep in mind that the remaining uncertainty in the climate sensitivity to CO2 doubling is skewed toward the high end. The sensitivity is more likely to be 3C (or more) than 2C.

    =====
    Paolo M:
    Thanks for the explanation. Is it the norm for RH to fall with altitude?

    =====
    yorick:
    Thanks for the NASA link re solar cycles 24 and 25.

  201. steve mosher
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 6:52 PM | Permalink

    RE 200. JohnV we need to see that paper DERIVING the 2C or 3C or 64.3C sensivity

    Without using GCMs

  202. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 7:01 PM | Permalink

    I’m talking about “certainty” science-style; were we can at least know it’s more than just an indication of a possibility and we can reasonably expect something is true rather than either mainly a guess or conjecture. I can demonstrate a 5 pound ball will be affected by gravity. I can expect that when clouds warm it rains. I can’t show anyone reasonably that 100 ppmv of CO2 in climate causes an observved +.7 C rise in temp with any kind of confidence.

    It’s all I’m saying; it’s reasonable to question (or withold judgement) on this issue. I am questioning the people who say that it’s unreasonable. I’m not saying it’s not possible there is a link. That’s just my opinion about what faith I can put into the conclusion and how reasonable it is to have that opinion.

  203. Marine_Shale
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 7:19 PM | Permalink

    Re 185

    Richard,

    This stuff is priceless.
    In 2003 NASA attributed the “shiny clouds” to the space shuttle exhaust.
    They also gave a good overview of the reasons they are “shiny”.
    That was apparently not scary enough, so we are now fed another “Polar Bear Drowning” story.

    Have they no shame?

    Check out the link below:

    http://www.nasa.gov/centers/goddard/news/topstory/2003/0522shuttleshine.html

  204. yorick
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 7:25 PM | Permalink

    John V,
    I wasn’t being sarcastic, I was quoting the Wikipedia. If NASA is right on the predicted solar cycle, we will know for sure within a decade or so. I can wait.

  205. paddikj
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 7:32 PM | Permalink

    Susanne:

    In stopping by a few times over the last few weeks, it seemed that you were getting yourself up to speed for maybe starting your own climate blog. If that is the case, it would seem that the puckishness in this thread (although highly amusing) is too narrow for your purposes?

    That said, my vote would be for “Slapshot”.

  206. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 7:46 PM | Permalink

    201
    I would settle for a clear calculation of the 1.1C ‘bare’ value of climate sensitivity, not dressed with the feedback. However, one for the full, ‘dressed’ 2.5-3.0C version would be even better, tho’ I think John already said it wasn’t possible.

  207. bender
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 7:53 PM | Permalink

    #201
    You *do* know that’s impossible, don’t you? (Silly question. Let the running of the trolls begin.)

  208. Ellis
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 7:59 PM | Permalink

    John V, respectfully, I believe you are going to need a new paradigm in relation to TSI, as a relatively stable TSI since the middle of the last century does not explain the observed SW radiation at the surface. I direct you once again to Gerald Stanhill’s comments in Eos. In particular, his second table, 11 year running means, clearly shows trends of solar radiation measurements on the surface of the earth. This would clearly have the apperance of being at odds with a steady TSI at TOA, although I in no way doubt you that the TSI has been relatively stable for the past sixty years. I believe this to be a rather large paradox that you may choose to blame on aerosols, but clearly is not, unless of course, aerosol react differently over China than the ROW. It seems to me rather obvious that there is, as to now, some other process effecting insolation at the Earth’s surface, and until that process can be sorted out climate science is going to be at a standstill in explaining the roles of GHG’s.

    An analysis of many reports of
    global dimming over the land surfaces of the
    Earth yielded a total reduction of 20 W m 2
    (watts per square meter) over the 1958–1992
    period [Stanhill and Cohen, 2001]. This negative
    shortwave forcing is far greater than the
    2.4 W m-2 increase in the positive longwave
    radiative forcing estimated to have occurred
    since the industrial era as a result of fossil and
    biofuel combustion [IPCC, 2001]. This longwave
    heating caused by increased concentrations
    of the so called greenhouse gases is what
    provides the consensus explanation of global
    warming.

    Bold is mine. Ironically, if TSI marched in lockstep with observed surface SW radiation, it would make the theory of AGW plausible. As it is now stated, the theory does not match observations.

  209. Bill B.
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 8:19 PM | Permalink

    I’ve been lurking for quite a while now but haven’t had anything worth saying.

    But, at last, I have a question: What’s going on with the Troposphere? I know that, intially, it didn’t seem to show signs of warming. Then everyone seems to agree that there were problems with the data that needed to be corrected (global drift, etc.). I’ve seen some RealClimate type stuff that claims thet “there is no longer any disagreement” between the surface and tropospheric records. Is there any chance that that is actually the case?

  210. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 8:24 PM | Permalink

    208
    I’m not an expert on this, but I understand that they ‘recalibrated’/fudged the satellite data to get rid of most of the problem.

  211. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 8:29 PM | Permalink

    #207 Ellis:
    I am not overly familiar with the Stanhill paper. You may be aware already, but Real Climate has a small post about it (fwiw):

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2007/11/global-dimming-and-global-warming/

  212. jae
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 8:45 PM | Permalink

    207, Ellis: part of your quote:

    This longwave
    heating caused by increased concentrations
    of the so called greenhouse gases is what
    provides the consensus explanation of global
    warming.

    “So-called greenhouse gases” is an interesting phrase (for me, at least). All gases are really greenhouse gases, in that they store heat. I don’t agree with the idea that 2 X CO2 ADDS 3.7 w/m^2 to the system. If that were true, why doesn’t water vapor in the tropics ADD more heat to the surface than is added by the tiny amount of water vapor in the air over deserts? The whole concept doesn’t make sense, IMHO, even though the Arrhenius type math looks plausible. I think radiation theory is correct in determining the average temperature of the planet. But when you have to postulate some “layer” in the atmosphere where the net radiation balance suddenly changes, that’s a different situation. If such a “layer” exists, it changes by the second, due to solar input and convection. And that layer probably goes from 0 km to maybe 30 km–i.e., it’s a continuum. If there were some definite discrete “layer,” there would be a sudden change in the lapse rate at that elevation, no?

  213. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 8:47 PM | Permalink

    This link came in an email today from family (who live on an island; Ohau so sea level matters to them)

    Dissenters Are Left High And Dry In Bali

    By INVESTOR’S BUSINESS DAILY | Posted Friday, December 07, 2007 4:20 PM PT

    Environment: While global warming alarmists revel in self-importance at their 11-day forum in Bali, dissenting scientists are being shut out and credible charges are leveled that the U.N. has doctored sea-level data.

    … Nils-Axel Morner, former head of the paleogeophysics and geodynamics department at Stockholm University in Sweden. According to his June interview with the British Telegraph that was revisited on a Telegraph blog last week, the IPCC might have doctored data to show a sea- level rise from 1992 to 2002.

    “”It is a falsification of the data set.””

    James M. Taylor, a Heartland Institute senior fellow, says that there are more than 600 scientists in Bali who can debunk the climate change theory. But the U.N. has pushed them to the margins.”All are being censored,” said Taylor.

    We have a grudging admiration for the IPCC and the rest of the alarmists who have successfully turned global warming into the bogeyman of the 21st century. Their drumbeat of disaster has put them into a position from where they can shut out and shout down the opposition and not be challenged for it.

    It won’t last forever, though. At some point, the public will realize the sky is not on fire and begin to shrug at the believers’ antics. But the everyday man is never safe. Zealots, as they always do, will find another threat to hype, and they will swear that it will be worse than any of the faux cataclysms that came before.

    link

  214. Susann
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 9:04 PM | Permalink

    paddikj, you’re probably right. In the end, it might be something as simple as “climate wars”, or something a bit more symbolic. I liked some of bender’s suggestions. I was thinking of doing a blog that would acomplish two goals: chronicle my own studies in climate policy and condense the info I read on the “hockey stick” and other science controversies into a reasonable layperson’s/policy wonk’s guide. The guide would link all the relevant documents, seminal posts at both blogs (and other climate blogs) and the related investigations (Wegman, NAS), plus other climate change materials. I will have to see how much time I have to do it. I’m doing a lot of backkground research and think it might be useful for others who are interested in the issue from a policy perspective.

  215. Joel McDade
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 9:14 PM | Permalink

    #208, Bill B

    I’m no authority and others may correct me. My understanding is that a bona-fide error was found and that after reanalysis much of the disagreement between surface and satellite measurement disappeared. In terms of trend over the past two decades they are about the same. There are still some discrepancies, though, when looking at land or ocean. Also El Nino and volcanic events are more pronounced in the sat record.

    The point remains that the GCMs predict more warming in the troposphere relative to the surface. That prediction still fails.

  216. DR
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 9:15 PM | Permalink

    #124 Boris

    They don’t PREDICT the future. They give estimates for what would happen if CO2 is doubled. People confuse it with a prediction because CO2 will double this century.

    Why is this so hard to understand?

    There are issues difficult for me to understand. One is the rigorous standardized practices required in any industry in the the real world that doesn’t seem to apply to climate science, or at least with respect to climate models.

    When did predictions become to be known as projections? Is it a timescale issue? Or is it not unlike referring to gambling as an arbitrary investment return?

    Met O doesn’t seem to have a problem with using prediction in their news releases. In fact, I counted no less than seven times the use of the derivative of predict They seem quite confident in their predictions, and that their ‘new and improved model’ is right this time, but we’ll just have to wait until ~2014. In the meantime, policy makers will have a better tool to make decisions for the rest of us.

    http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/corporate/pressoffice/2007/pr20070810.html

    What event or series of events is Met O expecting to take place in order for their prediction of new record surface temperatures after 2009? An unexpected spike in CO2 levels?

    Why am I cynical? Because after 25 years of working in both the aerospace and automotive industry working with models, we would never expect to purchase software than gave us bad data and find it acceptable. Why doesn’t ‘Independent Verification and Validation’ apply to climate models?

    It appears to me that climate “science” plays by a completely different set of rules than does industry, but then I’m just a dumb engineer, not a climate scientist.

  217. Susann
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 9:23 PM | Permalink

    IBD is the source of the famous “Hansen paid off by Soros” lie that I pointed out on another thread. After that piece, I can’t take anything they write seriously. I’d like to see concrete evidence that there were 600 skeptics there who were shut out by the IPCC rather than just claims to that effect. Knowing the politics of the paper and the sources cited in it after a quick google, I am highly suspect of its objectivity on the subject.

  218. jae
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 9:29 PM | Permalink

    I’d like to see concrete evidence that there were 600 skeptics there who were shut out by the IPCC rather than just claims to that effect

    Me too.

  219. Ellis
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 9:34 PM | Permalink

    Thank you John, and if you don’t mind me saying so, you add alot to the CA dialog. Your ability to offer counterpoints to the arguments here are one of the reasons I prefer this blog to RC. I have actually had reasonable success in getting response from the scientists at RC, probably because they sense I am an easy mark, but for the most part the commentors at RC parrot the consensus of the scientist and that really adds no value to the actual progress of discourse. Dissent is important, even dissent from the dissenters. If I knew how to do the smiley face thing, I would insert one there. As to your link, I guess we will have to wait for Gavin to update the post with his actual response to Mr. Stanhill to see.

    Now, while I have your attention, I will ask you something which surely you will be able to answer, Stevensons’ screens. If I am in my backyard with a clear sky, why is the temperature under a tree more valid then in the direct sun? I looked up Stevenson screen on wiki and they state that its purpose, other than blocking percipitation, is to block direct heat radiation. Why? Does not the direct heat radiation add to the temperature? I don’t know if I am clearly asking my question, but wouldn’t having thermometers in the open have the added value of telling something of cloud cover and insolation. I realize that the screens have been SOP for a long time, and rereading this comment I am tempted to delete it, however, as they say, don’t ask don’t know. And really, who knew that the study of climate would be intimately tied with Long John Silver?

  220. Susann
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 9:37 PM | Permalink

    It appears to me that climate “science” plays by a completely different set of rules than does industry, but then I’m just a dumb engineer, not a climate scientist.

    With respect, I think that comparing academia and industry is like comparing apples and oranges, or at least, tangerines and oranges. The scientific method and the whole academic peer review / journal peer review process is not premised on the profit motive / accountability to shareholders, etc, which tends to set different performance standards than exist in a non-profit organization. I’m not saying that it’s a good thing, but that the difference between the two is understandable give the history and nature of both sectors. If you subjected almost any science discipline to the same scrutiny that climate science has received because of the politics of the issue, you would probably find just as many issues with data, etc. at some point in the discipine. That’s just a guess on my part, but I really do think that it has been the politicization of climate science that has brought these issues to light. Without the glare of publicity and the way this has become such a pubic and political issue, these paleoclimate and other climate papers would probably have been subject to the usual attempts at replication, errors would turn up and be retified in subsequent studies, conlcusions would be revised, new avenues of research opened, etc. JMHO. YMMV.

  221. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 9:51 PM | Permalink

    Susann: “Without the glare of publicity and the way this has become such a pubic and political issue, . . .

    Yes, the “fire down below” and all that . . .

    I apologize in advance . . .

  222. _Jim
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 9:53 PM | Permalink

    IBD is the source of the famous “Hansen paid off by Soros” lie that I pointed out on another thread.

    Jayson Blair – New York Times?

    Can we take ANYTHING (may I less-than-randomly pick as subject say … AGW?) written in the NYTimes as having any possible rational basis in fact (if I may use the above demonstrated standard of throwing in the babies with their accompanying bathing water?)

    I use sometimes perceived port-wing source as ref: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jayson_Blair

    I, too, like an embellished story, for the telling around the campfire, however.

  223. Ellis
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 9:59 PM | Permalink

    JAE, to make my position clear, I do not believe that the physics of equillibrium apply to the climate. How can a system that is not in equillibrium exsist and yet every point of that system be in LTE? Ah well, I know I am wrong because both sides of the climate change argument seem to agree that this makes sense, but for me I cannot wrap my mind around the concept. I also do not believe that Henry’s Law applies to the flux between CO2 and the ocean, but again am willing to accept that there are people alot smarter than me working on this problem, and if they are willing to look past the fact that Henry’s law explicitly does not apply to CO2 and salt water, than truly, who am I to disagree.

  224. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 9:59 PM | Permalink

    214

    It appears to me that climate “science” plays by a completely different set of rules than does industry, but then I’m just a dumb engineer, not a climate scientist.

    As a scientist, I think that the requirements in scientific research are quite different. The researcher is studying new phenomena, and it is valuable even to get half-baked ideas out into the public realm, since they may trigger new ideas in others.

    The problem is that people like AlG and Hansen are taking scientific research (and climate modeling is still research and half-baked, a long way from settled work) and using it as if the results are established engineering design data. AlG is a politician, but Hansen should know better.

  225. George M
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:00 PM | Permalink

    217 Ellis:
    The goal is to measure air temperature. Which was initially, a long time ago, expected to be relatively homogeneous. Direct radiation measurements are also performed for other purposes. Air temperature measurement is supposed to adhere to certain specific site parameters, to eliminate the type of effect you feel going from direct sun (radiation) to shade (mostly conductive from the air). I can tell you from personal experience around my property, finding a thermometer location which is not subject to some kind of bias is very, very difficult.

  226. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:03 PM | Permalink

    Re #215 and #216 – We know two that were ignored. You have to realize that the Summary for Policy Makers was not written by 1500 or 2500 “scientists”. The 1500 or so wrote comments on scientific studies. The final report was written by 200 approximate number of lead scientists from the various fields. That does not mean that all 1500+ reports were incorporated or used.

  227. jae
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:04 PM | Permalink

    comparing apples and oranges, or at least, tangerines and oranges. The scientific method and the whole academic peer review / journal peer review process is not premised on the profit motive / accountability to shareholders, etc, which tends to set different performance standards than exist in a non-profit organization.

    I suspect it is much more apples to apples than you think. There is a strong profit motive involved in academia, given the need for advancement and consulting opportunities. There is also the peer pressure type of “accountability” that is paramount in these institutions. The only BIG difference is that they live in an extremely sheltered environment where they know that they have tremendous freedom to do almost anything they what they want and say what they want, without fear of reprecussions, as long as their peers don’t get too upset (after tenure, of course). I have had government, academic, and industry employment, and the motivations are not all that different.

  228. Steve Moore
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:08 PM | Permalink

    RE 181:
    Yes, spots finally appeared a few days ago – for the first time in a month and a half or so. But, my understanding of the first sign of the onset of a Solar Cycle is the appearance of spots in the high latitudes. the ones I saw are near the equator. If my understanding is correct, we still have a long wait.
    Also, it’s my understanding that the longer the minimum, the less intense the cycle.

    RE 191:
    My hand was up!

  229. Chris
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:09 PM | Permalink

    I find it difficult to believe so many people can be so misinformed on rather basic issues like trop warming, antarctic cooling, CO2 lags, what “radiative forcing” means, what the models are actually showing, and then to have the nerve to bash scientists at RC who go over such issues. The citations to places like junkscience.com, the broad generalizations like “models show…” is rather disturbing.

    The real story is that there is good reason for some Antarctic cooling and accumulation in the interior, but the general trend over the last 50 years or so is warming; it is also *not true* that Antarctica is “expected to” get significantly warmer, and in fact will be rather stable compared to places like the Arctic. Second point is the troposphere IS warming, a bit faster than the surface. Comments like 209 “they fudged the data to correct this” reflect why so much misinformation is out there- read Mears and Wentz (2005) or the NAS report on data analysis. They did not “fudge” anything, they merely demonstrated the technological problems with earlier data from people like Christy and Spencer.

    If people cannot get their facts straight, they really have no business telling scientists like Gavin Schmidt that they are wrong.

  230. Bill
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:15 PM | Permalink

    Re: First View of ‘Night-Shining Clouds’

    I was listening to “Claire de Lune” when I clicked on your link and enlarged the second image. There are times when science is just plumb beautiful. Let ‘em worry that the sky is falling. Nice picture.

  231. _Jim
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:19 PM | Permalink

    With respect, I think that comparing academia and industry is like comparing apples and oranges, or at least, tangerines and oranges. The scientific method and the whole academic peer review / journal peer review process is not premised on the profit motive / accountability to shareholders, etc, which tends to set different performance standards than exist in a non-profit organization.

    Is it remotely possible that our beloved policy wonkette is not cognizant of the many international standards (e.g. ISO 2001) required to be met for testing, for qualifying product and metrology (instrumentation is required to meet NIST standards and bear ‘calibration’ labels indicating same) in ‘industry’, let alone the tax laws and rules of accounting and record keeping (Sarbanes-Oxley comes now to mind) the ‘business types’ are requried to operate under?

    What standard of quality are/is climate science required to meet … again (por favor – I may have missed that in the discussion above)?

    Not even Sarbanes-Oxley it would appear from the lack of data archiving for auditing purposes (data archiving, if not for auditing by others – what then? You cannot ‘take the data with you’ to the beyond!)

    But, again, as a previous poster put it: but then I’m just a dumb engineer, not a climate scientist.

    Link for elucidation and maybe edification:

    International Standards for Business, Government and Society

    **NEWSFLASH**

    Maybe there are some standards the climate scientist must meet –

    Standard number: ISO 14065:2007

    Greenhouse gases – Requirements for greenhouse gas validation and verification bodies for use in accreditation or other forms of recognition

  232. MarkR
    Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:21 PM | Permalink

    #50 Ooops. Should be retains, not generates.

  233. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:30 PM | Permalink

    @Ellis– 217
    With regard to measuring local temperature, the purpose of the thermometer is to measure the local air temperature. When you (or a thermometer) sit in the shade, you gain or lose heat only to the air. In the case of a thermometer, it’s temperature equilibrates with the air.

    However, if the thermometer is in the direct sun, it also gains heat from the suns rays. This is radiant energy, that does not come from the air. What happens is the thermometer temperature rises above that of the local air by some amount.

    So, in direct sunlight the thermometer measures something local, but that something is not the local air temperatures. So, if you want to measure the air temperature, you need a radiation shield.

    Sometimes, people also want a measure of insolation; when they do other measurement devices are placed at a measurement station. But using an unshielded thermometer gives the worst of both worlds. You don’t learn the air temperature and you don’t learn the amount of insolation.

    Susann– I mostly agree, but the comparison might be rabbits to oranges. :)

    The two processes are simply entirely different. The only two difficulties I see are:
    a) Some academics appear to suggest that peer review can and does catch the types of mistakes it is not designed to catch and worse, in a short time frame.
    b) Some other criticize peer review for not catching these types of errors quickly.

    Both positions are unreasonable. Of course, the criticism in (b) is hardly surprising when some academics claim (a). If some vocal academics claim peer review ordinarily catches these sorts of mistakes or problems in a short amount of time, why shouldn’t people who have never been involved in the process not conclude that part of the process is somehow broken?

    Yes, if you examined a huge number of peer reviewed papers under a microscope, you would find issues similar to what we are seeing. (Though, possibly you might find fewer. When a subject is less contentious, people have a bit more time to review data. Also, in other disciplines, people often collect their own data in laboratories. When results are ambiguous because you took too little data, you can often go back to the lab and collect more data. Also, when you actually collect your own data, researchers don’t need to be concerned they might be scooped by someone who publishes an important major results about hurricanes / past climate based on very similar publicly available data. )

    In any case, there may be problems with the way peer review is working in climate science — I don’t honestly know. But what I do know is there are things peer review was never meant to do. It doesn’t do them.

  234. Posted Dec 10, 2007 at 10:59 PM | Permalink

    Re 228 etc:

    I have mentioned before that I saw a nacreous cloud one night in mid-Atlantic and the next night, in the same area, noctilucent clouds. I have since assumed that one creates the other and that the former (it must have been at 60 to 80 kft) was the detached head of a particularly frisky cunim.

    JF

  235. bender
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 12:34 AM | Permalink

    #227
    Chris, if you can’t present a convincing argument then maybe you should question you own authority to comment here. Although the troposphere may be warming, it is not warming at the rate that the GCMs predict if well-mixed CO2 were the driver they say it is. The rate of tropospheric warming is 2-3 times too low. That’s quite a bit. What’s wrong? Why do the models diverge from reality?

    It’s easy to smear any group by cutting a weak one out of the herd and then committing the logical fallacy of guilt-by-association. Try to rise above that. Pick worthy targets if you’re really that well-informed.

    CA is not obsessed with RC. What CA is obsessed with is accountability – something RC scientists have been known to actively avoid.

  236. bender
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 1:08 AM | Permalink

    Susann. Seek equilibrium. Document your journey. It’s not about war, it’s about peace. Show people the way toward reasonableness. Civility is hip.

  237. Philip_B
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 1:14 AM | Permalink

    OK, I read the New Scientist’s report on Mears and Wentz.

    The world is not warming as fast as the 1.5 °C to 6 °C per century that models suggest, Christy says. “We all agree that warming is related to human effects, but it’s not as dramatic as models say.”

    BTW, his study in no way supports the ‘related to human effects’ claim.

    Is Antarctica warming?

    Mears and Wentz data shows the opposite. See CA link.

    Chris, you are sliding into the Realclimate practice of citing studies that don’t support your claims.

  238. kim
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 1:18 AM | Permalink

    Zen, and the Hockey Match of Climate Maintenance.
    =================================

  239. J. Peden
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 2:18 AM | Permalink

    Susann:

    The scientific method and the whole academic peer review / journal peer review process is not premised on the profit motive….

    I’m tempted to shoot back, “Well, if not, maybe it should be!”, but I think jae covered the situation better already.

    Btw, there is nothing wrong with a “profit” or economic balance sheet kind of cudgel to keep scientists, engineers, theorists, etc. honest. This would certainly apply to the whole AGW=disease, Kyoto Protocol=cure debate, especially since the “costs” of the Protocols are pointedly not analyzed at all by the ipcc: the alleged cure could therefore be worse than the alleged disease, and we would have had no comparable heads-up as to these costs compared to the much balllyhooed net “disaster” of AGW – although the “net” part of this has not been very well established, either, imo. Not much effort has been put into imagining or predicting the potential and likely benefits of GW.

    I come from a medical practice background and have been stunned that anyone thinks peer-reviewed articles published in a journal are therefore true or should be accepted as given truth. The peer reviewers of the journal, or the like, usually do a good job at whatever they want to do, but verifying the “truth” of whatever they decide to publish is almost never anything they presume to have done. I’ll bet that not many of the 2500 ipcc scientists would say that that’s what they have done.

    Instead, my interpretation of “peer-review” is that the real peer-review starts after the study or article is published, when everyone else who is a peer in some sense, and even their mother, can take a look at the article if they want to and see if it makes sense or works.

    In fact, I think that this is exactly what Steve McIntyre and many other alleged “deniers” have been doing. And, again, I see this as the real peer-review.

  240. Andrey Levin
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 3:15 AM | Permalink

    Re#130, JohnB UK:

    …isn’t there a strong argument for preparing for another Maunder minimum? Here in the UK we are highly dependent on imported food and energy

    Precaution measures for such unlucky cooling event are already done – on the next side of the Pond.

    To give you an example. US farmers grow corn with average yield of 10 ton/ga. Most recent genetically modified corn from Monsanto already produces about 13 t/ga. For comparison, record-high corn yield in France in killer-hot 2005 was 3.75 t/ga. The only thing UK need to double the production of meat and milk (corn is major component of cattle and poultry feed) and other food stuff is to allow UK farmers to plant GM seeds. Of course, it should be done gradually, to avoid catastrophic food overproduction. As an alternative, surplus grain could be used to produce first-generation biofuels, substituting no less than 10% of UK oil consumption, or agricultural acreage could be halved to get more space for forests and wildlife.

    Also, there are plenty of genetically modified agricultural crops optimized for colder climate, and of course – for hotter climate.

    Another example. Greenhouse grown of soft-skinned vegetables, like tomato, cucumbers, sweet pepper, lettuce. Couple of small municipalities around Toronto and “sunny” Vancouver produce 2/3 of North America greenhouse vegetables, and are near-monopolistic suppliers of such vegetables to NA market, including sunny California, and exporting it oversea, to Pacific Rim countries for example. Yield for tomato is about 500000 kg/ga per year, thanks for carbon fertilization (greenhouse operators routinely combust NG, cool the exhaust and vent it into greenhouses, rising CO2 concentrations to 750-1000 ppm). BTW, greenhouse baby sweet pepper is incredibly tasty.

    Spearheading of AGW is not the only stupid thing EU bureaucracy is doing.

    P.S. UK is practically energy independent.

  241. Gaudenz Mischol
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 3:29 AM | Permalink

    Chris 227

    Second point is the troposphere IS warming, a bit faster than the surface.

    please give any evidence of your claim on this subject.
    If you think people are so ill informed here, I would rather say, I’ts you who has no idea about the rate of tropospheric warming with respect to surface. Even if you take RSS, the warming at the surface is much too high compared to troposphere

  242. Gaudenz Mischol
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 4:04 AM | Permalink

    again 227

    junkscience is not my favorite read either. But their list of temperature anomalies for GISS, Hadcrut and tropospheric temperature is interesting. Don’t come to say the graphs there are fabricated, no they are just graphs made of the official data sets. So maybe you could inform yourself about tropospheric warming with respect to surface and the cooling in the troposphere over antarctica. And you will also see, that there is no warming in the tropics.
    here ist the link

  243. Gaudenz Mischol
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 4:06 AM | Permalink

    second try for the link:

  244. Gaudenz Mischol
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 4:07 AM | Permalink

  245. John A
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 4:41 AM | Permalink

    Climate Audit linked to on page 2 of this article in The Register.

  246. Michael Hansen
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 5:03 AM | Permalink

    Chris #227;

    Regarding the (lower) troposphere (in the tropics), Christie et al 2007 [1] doesn’t seem to agree with you:

    “Several comparisons are consistent with a 26-year trend and error estimate for the UAH lower troposphere product for the full tropics of +0.05 ± 0.07, which is very likely less than the tropical surface trend of +0.13 K / decade”

    Regarding the Antarctica, even IPCC acknowledges [2] that no overall warming has occurred, even though they express that in a very convoluted way:

    “Antarctic sea ice extent continues to show inter-annual variability and localized changes but no statistically significant average trends, consistent with the lack of warming reflected in atmospheric temperatures averaged across the region”

    Geotime has a good discussion of Antarctica [3]. Peter Doran is interviewed:

    “All the continents on Earth are warming except Antarctica, which could be just a delayed response. Our 35-year trend analysis highlights the heterogeneous nature of the trends in Antarctica, and the models need to catch up to match the mixed signals.”

    Geotime also mentions what used to be common knowledge that “most climate models predict that if global temperatures are going to change, the change will be noticed first at the poles”. And indeed. If one looks at IPCC TAR Figure 9.2 [4], it shows most of Antarctica warming in the first decade of this century, and more interesting, cooling around the Antarctic Peninsula and in the adjacent Weddell Sea. In 2001 the models got it exactly backwards from the observed trend, but, as you will probably tell us, all of this doesn’t really matter. The models have improved tremendously since 2001, and, in any case, the community has moved on to more challenging predictions…sorry, forecasts. Or is it scenarios?

    Anyway, you made at least to bold assessments – wrapped in a rather arrogant tone – that is very much debatable.

    [1] http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2007/2005JD006881.shtml
    [2] AR4, SPM page 9. (See also http://ipcc-wg1.ucar.edu/wg1/Report/AR4WG1_Pub_Ch09.pdf)
    [3] http://www.geotimes.org/mar02/NN_antarctica.html
    [4] http://www.ipcc.ch/ipccreports/tar/wg1/pdf/TAR-09.PDF

  247. JohnB UK
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 5:08 AM | Permalink

    #236

    Andrey, thanks for that “food for thought”(insert smiley here)

    On the energy front we became a net importer of fuel in 2004. 8% of production is based on nuclear stations which are approaching end of life and becoming unreliable – plans to replace are still not fixed.

    Renewable energy only contributes around 4%.

    So we are already an energy importer in a relatively benign climate.

  248. Phil
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 5:15 AM | Permalink

    They did not “fudge” anything, they merely demonstrated the technological problems with earlier data from people like Christy and Spencer.

    I read this sort of thing in the Royal Society’s “debunking” of objections to AGW – in fact I think there was a list of several such objections where subsequent research had shown there were actually flaws in the data. And all I could think was to wonder if similar due diligence had been shown to all the data which did appear to support AGW. Because in all seriousness what are the odds that the only flaws and misunderstandings happen to have supported the sceptic’s case…?

  249. MarkW
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 5:42 AM | Permalink

    Let’s see. We’ve only started to study these Noctilucent clouds. During this short time, these Noctilucent clouds have changed.

    Ergo. This change must be caused by climate change.

    Anyone else spot the logical disconnect here?

  250. MarkW
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 5:54 AM | Permalink

    Given the costs associated with AGW abatement. ISO 2001 is not a strong enough standard. The GCM’s should adhere to the full DO-178B.

  251. yorick
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 6:40 AM | Permalink

    Thes are the problems i have with Chris’s comments

    The real story is that there is good reason for some Antarctic cooling and accumulation in the interior, but the general trend over the last 50 years or so is warming;

    Assertion with no evidence provided.

    it is also *not true* that Antarctica is “expected to” get significantly warmer, and in fact will be rather stable compared to places like the Arctic.

    Assertion with no evidence provided.

    Second point is the troposphere IS warming, a bit faster than the surface.

    Assertion with no evidence provided.

    Then he cites a study without giving the slightest clue that he has read more than the title. He could easily summarize the relevant chart or argument, and save us all a bit of time. Instead, it is hard not to draw the conclusion that he hasn’t read it.

    Chris,
    Get off of the CO2 lag. Nobody says that it disproves CO2 warming. What it doesn’t do though, is PROVE CO2 warming. Gavin Schmidt, the “scientist”, put his oar in teh water on that one to defend this obvious lie by Gore, for political reasons. When scientists start getting in to politics, they are no longer scientists.. Where in the definition of scientist is the part about promoting an illogical argument? I would think that Gavin’s job would be to straighten out a politician like Gore on such an obvious point. Gavin chose politics.

    Compare that with the post #242. Arguments laid out clearly, sources cited. If you have a beef with his logic, he has given you a place to start.

    By the way Chris, I am glad you post here. I just wish you would bring up your game a bit.

  252. yorick
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 6:49 AM | Permalink

    Lubos Motl has a post on model agreement with observation, or lack thereof.

  253. Michael Smith
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 7:06 AM | Permalink

    jae, re 211:

    I don’t agree with the idea that 2 X CO2 ADDS 3.7 w/m^2 to the system. If that were true, why doesn’t water vapor in the tropics ADD more heat to the surface than is added by the tiny amount of water vapor in the air over deserts? The whole concept doesn’t make sense,

    JAE, perhaps the positive feedback of the water vapor in the tropics is overcome by the negative feedback (reflection of incoming radiation) of the low to mid level clouds so often associated with that abundance of water vapor. Is that a possibility?

    By the way, I, too, am not convinced that 2 X CO2 ADDS 3.7 w/m^2 to the system. As near as this non-scientist can tell, AGW theory is a classic case of the logical fallacy of begging the question, that is, it is arrived at by assuming the truth of what it purports to prove. To prove that a doubling of CO2 will cause a rise of 2.5 deg C — which amounts to proving that the positive feedbacks overpower the negative feedbacks – AGW proponents begin by calculating that 3.7 W/m2 forcing — a calculation that assumes the positive feedbacks overpower the negative feedbacks.

    This, I believe, is why Steve will never get an answer to his request for a non-model derivation of this number. The only way to generate the number in question is to make certain assumptions, and those happen to be the same assumptions they are seeking to prove by the 2 x CO2 = 2.5 deg claim.

    Just my impression, FWIW.

  254. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 7:06 AM | Permalink

    I find it difficult to believe so many people can be so misinformed on rather basic issues

    Me too. Sort of how some folks think there really was a 2,500 scientist consensus on the IPCC report.

  255. Susann
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 7:23 AM | Permalink

    There is a strong profit motive involved in academia, given the need for advancement and consulting opportunities.

    I was speaking of the economic concept of profit motive, but I suppose you could stretch the concept to include a “prestige” or “income” motive. I don’t think it has the same ultimate effect, because while the profit motive encourages efficiency, the “prestige” or “income” motive doesn’t necessarily do so. How many times have we seen an academic put out 5 versions of a paper on the same data, thus padding a CV? That’s the opposite of efficiency.

  256. Susann
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 7:30 AM | Permalink

    I’m tempted to shoot back, “Well, if not, maybe it should be!”, but I think jae covered the situation better already.

    Careful — do you really want science to be driven by the profit motive? If so, in the end it would produce only what “sells” the most and would be reduced to the shopping network variety and Walmart. :)

    I think that any science used to formulate policy should be subject to rigorous standards of audit, and that more formal data checking should be performed on such research. There is nothing wrong with the profit motive, but it should stay in the realm of economics. There are other means of ensuring high standards for non-profit orgs, professional bodies, etc,.

  257. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:08 AM | Permalink

    @Susann,
    Some science is driven by profit motives. These scientists file patents, get funding from entrepreneurs etc. They may also publish peer review articles in parallel.

    The result is, these scientists know peer review doesn’t do what other types or reviews do.

    On 251,

    because while the profit motive encourages efficiency, the “prestige” or “income” motive doesn’t necessarily do so. How many times have we seen an academic put out 5 versions of a paper on the same data, thus padding a CV? That’s the opposite of efficiency

    I knew people were jumping to conclusions when they assumed you thought the profit motive was necessarily bad. :)

    For the few who are wondering how to make smilies, you type a colon ‘:’ and then a closing parenthesis ‘)’ for the normal kind. The blog software will replace many conventional emoticons with the images.

  258. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:33 AM | Permalink

    The Ph.D. and post-doc publication requirements to get a professor position at a top-flight university have escalated immensely compared to decades ago. The same holds true for tenure. And, of course, having your name attached to anything notable (IPCC, for example) certainly helps when it comes to tenure.

  259. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:41 AM | Permalink

    #221 >> the fact that Henry’s law explicitly does not apply to CO2 and salt water

    Can you elaborate on what you mean here?

    #231 >> So, if you want to measure the air temperature, you need a radiation shield.

    But lucia, wouldn’t you also agree that measuring the temperature in the shade isn’t quite right either, since although you avoid the error of measuring the IR absorption of the thermometer in sunshine, you also avoid measuring the air in sunshine, which is actually what we want to measure.

    >> do you really want science to be driven by the profit motive? If so, in the end it would produce only what “sells” the most

    Don’t be naive, it is certainly driven by the profit motive. The only big buyers are the US government funding agencies. The sellers are research sweat shops, previously known as our institutions of higher learning.

  260. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:46 AM | Permalink

    255

    you also avoid measuring the air in sunshine

    That’s what the openings at the sides are for. If there is any kind of air-movement/breeze, air that is in the sunshine will move through the ‘hutch’ and be measured.

  261. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:51 AM | Permalink

    I’m a little late to a lot of statements. Apologies for being so far behind the conversation…

    =====
    #209 Pat Keating:
    [snip]
    =====
    #211 jae:
    You have made a few references to this magic “layer” where the net radiation balance changes. I don’t believe the greenhouse effect is dependent on such a layer. I think I know what you’re talking about, but please explain.

    =====
    #217 Ellis:
    Anthony Watts would be the right person to ask about Stevenson screens. If the thermometer is not screened, then the temperature would be *strongly* affected by direct sunlight and the colour of the thermometer. It could be like the difference between air temperature and the temperature of a black car parked in the sun.

    As far as I can tell, the Stanhill “paper” is not actually peer-reviewed. Eos is more of a newspaper than a journal (http://www.agu.org/pubs/eos.html). I have seen other papers that show global dimming turning to brightening circa 1990.

    =====
    #225 jae:
    In my limited time in academia, I found that most researchers are keen to make new discoveries rather than verify discoveries made by others. [snip]. That’s not a very convincing anti-AGW argument considering the funding available for the “contrarians”. I think it’s better to focus on the science instead of the funding.

    =====
    #255 Gunnar:

    Don’t be naive, it is certainly driven by the profit motive. The only big buyers are the US government funding agencies. The sellers are research sweat shops, previously known as our institutions of higher learning.

    I’m sure you realize that the current US administration is not a big supporter of research or results that support AGW. As I said to jae, it’s probably better to focus on the science.

  262. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:52 AM | Permalink

    >> That’s what the openings at the sides are for. If there is any kind of air-movement/breeze

    So right off, no wind = temp way too low. But also, as we know from personal experience, as soon as we step into the shade, big drop in temp. As soon as the air steps into the shade, big drop in temp.

    What about IR measurement?

  263. bender
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:56 AM | Permalink

    #234 Philip_B
    #237 Gaudenz Mischol
    #242 Michael Hansen

    On model lack of fit to relative rate of cooling of troposphere.
    The last line of alarmist defense is ad hom attack on John Christy.
    Coming soon to a theatre near you.

  264. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:58 AM | Permalink

    >> I’m sure you realize that the current US administration is not a big supporter of research

    I guess you thought I was making an anti-AGW argument with this statement? Hardly, I was just stating the truth about how science is done, and how our once fine universities have long ago switched to consider students as an annoying necessary evil, rather than customers. The university’s real customers are the funding agencies.

    And no, a new administration cannot change this, since it is congress that spends money, as you should probably know by now.

  265. Boris
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 9:14 AM | Permalink

    bender says:

    Although the troposphere may be warming, it is not warming at the rate that the GCMs predict if well-mixed CO2 were the driver they say it is.

    Evidence?

    Is there something that invalidates this report:

    Temperature Trends in the Lower Atmosphere: Steps for Understanding and Reconciling Differences. Thomas R. Karl, Susan J. Hassol, Christopher D. Miller, and William L. Murray, editors, 2006. A Report by the Climate Change Science Program and the Subcommittee on Global Change Research, Washington, DC.

  266. bender
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 9:18 AM | Permalink

    Manufacturing Consenus?

  267. Boris
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 9:21 AM | Permalink

    The last line of alarmist defense is ad hom attack on John Christy.

    What is John Christy’s estimate of climate sensitivity and how does he derive said estimate?

    His comment that CO2 is plant food is not convincing.

  268. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 9:29 AM | Permalink

    However, as pointed out elsewhere in the thread, these ‘recalibrations’ of data always seem to happen after the data show problems with the AGW position. [snip]

  269. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 9:30 AM | Permalink

    Is this “not a big supporter of research?” $9 bil from 2002 to Feb 2007?

    http://usinfo.state.gov/xarchives/display.html?p=texttrans-english&y=2007&m=February&x=20070207171758eaifas0.6189997

    That’s enough to pay $150k for each of those 5 yrs to 12,000 researchers. Or if every researcher needed a $150k salary and $100k in expenses each year (which would be a top-flight prof with a tremendously expensive workload), that’s enough for 7,200 researchers.

  270. bender
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 9:51 AM | Permalink

    His comment that CO2 is plant food is not convincing.

    Ever heard of the FACE experiments?

  271. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 9:52 AM | Permalink

    #263 P[snip]
    There have been many satellite temperature adjustments, and they have gone in both directions. Table 2.3 (page 43) in the report linked by Boris above (link below) shows the following adjustments for UAH:

    -0.03C/decade: Linear Diurnal Drift Correction
    +0.03C/decade: Removal of residual annual cycle related to hot target variations
    +0.10C/decade: Orbital decay
    -0.07C/decade: Removal of dependence on time variations of hot target temp
    +0.008C/decade: Non-linear diurnal correction
    -0.004C/decade: Tightened criteria for data acceptance
    +0.035C/decade: Correction of diurnal drift adjustment

    The net adjustment has increased the trend, but the incremental adjustments have gone both ways.

    http://www.climatescience.gov/Library/sap/sap1-1/third-draft/sap1-1-draft3-all.pdf

  272. bender
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 9:55 AM | Permalink

    What is John Christy’s estimate of climate sensitivity and how does he derive said estimate?

    Dunno, go ask him. Does he even have one? How does IPCC derive theirs?

  273. Mark T
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 9:59 AM | Permalink

    Measure temperature. Measure CO2. Find slope of temperature. Find slope of CO2. Divide. Oila, derived.

    Mark

  274. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:05 AM | Permalink

    re: 259/263
    Was the troposphere data being compared to the surface station data? (the data that needs correcting too?)

    re: 253 “I think that any science used to formulate policy should be subject to rigorous standards of audit, and that more formal data checking should be performed on such research. There is nothing wrong with the profit motive, but it should stay in the realm of economics. There are other means of ensuring high standards for non-profit orgs, professional bodies, etc,..”

    Adhering to the scientific method in the first place would help.

    What has the word “science” come to mean nowadays anyway?

    Science isn’t a person, place or thing or group, it is a set of protocols or “rules” if you will to explore the world around us and to at least FAIRLY explain to some degree humanly possible a certain process or phenomenon.

    I do not have a degree in science, but I certainly can follow the scientific method when I am looking at something. (Go SteveMac Go!) Yet, when you follow the scientific method and disagree with this global warming -THEORY- because some of the evidence claimed to support it , which is not proven into any kind of LAW what so ever, you are called horrible names. Even if you have a degree in science and are considered an expert in a field of science, even if that science pertains to areas of study involved in the GW Theory.

    AGW is getting special treatment here and now becoming policy. Many things about the data or the handling of it fly or skirt around the scientific method and also at the same time the word “science” and even “scientist” is elevated to mean something other then it should, which is: a set of protocols and people who follow those protocols… all hail the consensus and all that.
    (I don’t even know where computer models fit into all of this)

    I just heard a report on the radio this morning about how students from the United States do poorly in the areas of science and math compared to other modern nations yet they rate on self esteem much higher-in other words they do not think they do that badly in science and math. LOL

  275. bender
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:13 AM | Permalink

    Boris, #261 you ask for evidence.

    I’ve no time to play linkie wars with you. You can download the Douglas, Christy, Pearson & Singer paper from here: http://motls.blogspot.com/2007/12/douglass-christy-pearson-singer.html

    When you’re ready to talk facts, not links, let me know.

  276. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:16 AM | Permalink

    #260 welikerocks:

    Yet, when you follow the scientific method and disagree with this global warming -THEORY- because some of the evidence claimed to support it , which is not proven into any kind of LAW what so ever, you are called horrible names.

    That’s just not true. You get called “horrible” names when you cherry-pick data, distort the truth, repeat discredited theories as fact, and ignore the scientific method.

    If you “follow the scientific method” and publish your theories or results, then the science can move forward. Subsequent publications may disagree with yours and question the quality of your work (just as you disagreed with prior publications), but that’s how progress is made.

  277. Boris
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:18 AM | Permalink

    Dunno, go ask him. Does he even have one? How does IPCC derive theirs?

    Well, the IPCC derives theirs from theory, models and observations.

    But the reason I ask is that the skeptic scientists such as Christy and Ball never really present arguments about CO2’s effect. They simply make assertions. If they are so sure that climate sensitivity to CO2 is small shouldn’t they be able to delineate an argument? I’m not necessarily asking you to argue for them, but it’s just strange is all.

    And of course I meant that his argument about “plant food” does nothing to persuade me that doubling CO2 will not cause a rise of 3`C.

  278. jae
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:23 AM | Permalink

    257, John V:

    #211 jae:
    You have made a few references to this magic “layer” where the net radiation balance changes. I don’t believe the greenhouse effect is dependent on such a layer. I think I know what you’re talking about, but please explain.

    Look at the Held and Sodden paper I linked above. I think that’s what they are doing, but I could be wrong. Any help in understanding it is appreciated.

  279. bender
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:26 AM | Permalink

    the IPCC derives theirs from theory, models and observations

    Ohhhh. Thx for that.

  280. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:27 AM | Permalink

    jae, thanks for the link. I’m trying to improve my understanding as well.

  281. jae
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:28 AM | Permalink

    272, Boris:

    But the reason I ask is that the skeptic scientists such as Christy and Ball never really present arguments about CO2’s effect.

    Say WHAT? Do some googling, man.

  282. Larry
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:30 AM | Permalink

    257,

    That’s not a very convincing anti-AGW argument considering the funding available for the “contrarians”

    Specifically?

  283. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:30 AM | Permalink

    JohnV I understand your objections to what I said. Maybe the perspective I have is slightly different then yours. My husband was working on his masters when the first IPCC report was issued. We have it here in the garage in the box. NONE of his professors discussed it at any length with him and his fellows, but they had to mention it and look at it. They did not think it was worth discussing: too flawed, and the problems contained in them, are still the same problems they have in them fast forward 2007. My husband also was hired by the California EPA out of school; worked there for a little over a year and left to join the private sector because he was so disgusted with fudged data and sloppy science practiced there used to make policy. A lot of skeptics have grey hair (somebody mentioned this before) See my comment on US students. I think the science standards have changed. “Standards” as in the set place where we are all convinced.

    “Hockey Team” or “believer”is a horrible name? …compared to shill…do I have to list them all?

  284. yorick
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:31 AM | Permalink

    Boris,
    Here is a suggestion. Why not go over and explain to Lubos why your linked study is correct and the Douglas, Christy, Pearson & Singer paper is wrong? Or you could explain it to us with enough detail for us to understand your reasoning. Explain it, not assert it.

  285. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:39 AM | Permalink

    Rich in Az, yes, the places CO2 lives are at 100 percent of the total absorbtion and scattering of radiation transmitted by the atmosphere already. The idea is that whatever that 100% number represents is going to go up due to what CO2 is doing. Or in other words, more IR being absorbed, and (let’s say) 50% of what’s released going downward and raising the temperature more. The models (and looks into the past from papers like Craig’s) helps give us an idea of how to quantify things; how in reality the system is going to operate?

    The point being there’s much more for RC to be discussing and looking at, but we see how they are not exactly being critical of everything equally (and that there’s things they won’t discuss). Regardless of what it is.

  286. Boris
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:40 AM | Permalink

    270: The paper kept coming back “unable to connect” but from Lubos’ description it looks like they are talking tropical tropospheric trends. The uncertainty in the data does not allow a complete evaluation of the models, so I think we can agree that Lubos’ claims are ridiculous.

  287. Tom Vonk
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:41 AM | Permalink

    Is this “not a big supporter of research?” $9 bil from 2002 to Feb 2007?

    Of course that it is .

    Wanting to ignore the total dependence of the AGW theories on public money , true both for Europe and US , would be to ignore the vital fact that causes that studies are done , models financed , computers bought and politically correct results found .
    Of course science has often been funded with public money but generally the politicians and the public neither understood nor cared about general relativity or quantum mechanics .
    This is the first time that there is such a massive interdependence between politicians who leaned out of the window so far that they can’t go back anymore and a happy mix of scientists and pseudo scientists who gave them the argument to lean out so far .
    Specifically in France and in UK , the heads of state put their personal credibility and their political future on this one particular coin flip .

    Nobody would imagine a guy paid by public money coming to Mr Sarkozy (French president) and telling him that his politics is all wrong , his ideas are all wrong , his advicers got him in trouble and that he’ll loose the next elections because unfortunately the scientist team has just proven that the AGW theory was dead .
    The climate science is the only field of science where it became impossible or hypocrytical to separate scientific work and results from political strategies .

    I have always found ridiculous to the extreme when AGW faithful tried to deviate the argument by inventing giantic private funds secretly feeding anti AGW research .
    Of course that those secret teams with huge private fundings don’t exist .

    Anybody going in that direction I’d challenge him to take ONLY 10% of the public money , so 700 M$ , and find
    a SINGLE scientific team (about 500 top people , staff and material for this amount) doing research and publishing anti AGW scientific papers (for such a team it would be at least hundred publications a year) .
    And that only for 10 % of the public funding !
    As such a team can’t be found , that means for AGW faithful that it is surely secret .
    Of course hundred strongly anti AGW papers backed by runs of multimillion $ climate models a year … it wouldn’t stay secret very long :)

  288. bender
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:42 AM | Permalink

    Let me guess. Boris is John A’s sock puppet. Snip away.

  289. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:43 AM | Permalink

    >> And of course I meant that his argument about “plant food” does nothing to persuade me that doubling CO2 will not cause a rise of 3C.

    He expected you to make the next logical inference all by yourself, which is that the plant kingdom will probably expand to balance out humanity. After all, human C02 output only makes it appear like there is somewhat more animal life than there really is. Perhaps similar to when great herds of animals covered the earth. The overall natural trend is for humans to produce less C02 per capita.

    Another overall trend is population stabilization or decline. http://www.worldpress.org/Asia/1979.cfm Even the birth rates in India have been steadily falling and the growth of the middle class will ensure that this trend continues. This touches on yet another assumption of the catastrophic AGW scenario which is contradicted by reality.

  290. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:48 AM | Permalink

    >> Let me guess. Boris

    I don’t get what’s making you resort to ad-hom?

  291. M. Jeff
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:50 AM | Permalink

    re: #271, John V., December 11th, 2007 at 10:16 am, says:

    If you “follow the scientific method” and publish your theories or results, then the science can move forward.

    The science may move forward but often only with difficulty. The peer review that opinions on this site are subjected to is often more rigorous than the peer review procedure that mainstream articles are subjected to. And, even conventionally peer reviewed studies are not always politely received. My own experience, from more than 30 years ago, has some bearing on the issue.

    Peer reviewed articles versus established dogma: Once as an analytical chemist for a government regulatory agency, I was given the task of finding why a chemist’s results on a quality control sample varied from the results reported by most analysts. The automatic assumption was that the analyst had made a mistake, that the official method, (which had been peer reviewed and tested), could not be wrong. My preliminary findings were that the results varied depending upon the dilution factor used by the analyst. The analyst with the “wrong” results had used a dilution that was allowable, but the majority of other analysts had used a dilution that resulted in different results. When I first reported that the analyst was not at fault, that the official method was not perfect, the authorities were not receptive to the idea. I continued to investigate the issue and as a result published a co-authored peer reviewed article in a major analytical journal. My results were never challenged, but considerable effort was required before a cautionary footnote was added to the official method. The hostility I encountered reminds me of the hostility that AGW skeptics often encounter.

  292. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:51 AM | Permalink

    Christy, interviewed on CNN about sharing the prize with Gore:

    Miles O’Brien: I assume you’re not happy about sharing this award with Al Gore. You going to renounce it in some way?

    John Christy: Well, as a scientist at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, I always thought that – I may sound like the Grinch who stole Christmas here – that prizes were given for performance, and not for promotional activities. And, when I look at the world, I see that the carbon dioxide rate is increasing, and energy demand, of course, is increasing. And that’s because, without energy, life is brutal and short. So, I don’t see very much effect in trying to scare people into not using energy, when it is the very basis of how we can live in our society.

    O’Brien: So, what about the movie (“An Inconvenient Truth”) do you take issue with, then, Dr. Christy?

    Christy: Well, there’s any number of things. I suppose, fundamentally, it’s the fact that someone is speaking about a science that I have been very heavily involved with and have labored so hard in, and been humiliated by, in the sense that the climate is so difficult to understand, Mother Nature is so complex, and so the uncertainties are great, and then to hear someone speak with such certainty and such confidence about what the climate is going to do is – well, I suppose I could be kind and say, it’s annoying to me.

  293. bender
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:57 AM | Permalink

    #284 Ad hom?
    I’m not attacking Boris. I just can’t believe that somebody intelligent would assert something about a paper he hasn’t read. ‘I haven’t read the paper but Motl’s claims about it are ridiculous.’ I am suspicious that “Boris” is not an intelligent POV, but a device designed to bait informed skeptics. Hey, I could be wrong. I was wrong about TCO. I thought he was a sock puppet too.

  294. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:59 AM | Permalink

    No, TCO was just a bulldog.

    Boris is John A’s sock puppet.

    John A’s?

    Mark

  295. bender
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:00 AM | Permalink

    #286 My sympathy for the man grows.

  296. Larry
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:02 AM | Permalink

    289, it was obvious that in that last sentence, he was biting his tongue.

  297. bender
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:03 AM | Permalink

    #288 Yes, John A’s. If you want to spark a fight, you throw out some fresh meat and let the dogs go after it. Boris as bait-tosser. It’s not implausible.

    Boris, are you for real?

  298. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:05 AM | Permalink

    Well, the IPCC derives theirs from theory, models and observations.

    Let’s see:

    Theory: Steve M. has an open request for this and none has been forthcoming. It is not in the IPCC report for whatever reason. Must be so obvious everybody overlooked it.

    Models: Oh yeah. That’s a winning ticket.

    Observations: I already noted how that works, winning ticket number 2. We’ve got a circular argument going on here, since the theory is assumed, but never proved.

    Mark

  299. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:07 AM | Permalink

    OK, I just figured that since John A’s opinions are so diametrically opposite of Boris’ you may have mistyped the name (lot of John’s running around, too). I agree wholeheartedly, however, about the concept.

    Mark

  300. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:08 AM | Permalink

    #285 M Jeff:
    Your experience demonstrates that over-turning generally accepted science is difficult. It should be. Remember that it has taken years, even decades, for AGW to become a generally accepted fact. 25 years ago it was the new, untested theory that met lots of resistance. As the evidence has accumulated the confidence in its reality has increased. The core IPCC conclusions have moved from “more likely than not” to “very likely” in the last 15 years.

    The parts of AGW science that are wrong (and of course parts are wrong) will be resolved with new research. Some of the revisions will support catastrophic problems ahead, while other revisions will refute them. Our understanding will improve.

    Perhaps, if we’re *really* lucky, some new discovery will show that the current warming is entirely natural and will fix itself in a few years. Until that happens, the evidence overwhelmingly points to AGW being a reality.

  301. bender
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:10 AM | Permalink

    That’s the irony is that it’s the democrats, if anyone, that are undermining science in pursuit of a policy. ‘war on science’ indeed. ‘the science is settled’ means it’s time for scientists to pack up their game and find something better to do. The reality is that you can not adjust or adapt to climate change until you know what it is exactly you’re facing. But, no, Christy is the antichrist. It’s absurd.

  302. Wondering Aloud
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:11 AM | Permalink

    NO Sam that can’t be right if 100% is already absorbed that means increased CO2 will not produced increased absorption. So… no warming. The actual mechanism is more complicated but the reason everyone talks about CO2 doubling and not about quadrupling is that even the models don’t show much effect for a second doubling.

  303. yorick
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:13 AM | Permalink

    Boris,
    Here is the paper.

    http://icecap.us/images/uploads/DOUGLASPAPER.pdf

  304. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:16 AM | Permalink

    2 X CO2 —-) (.333333…) X 2.5 deg C.

  305. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:18 AM | Permalink

    #292 Mark T:
    SteveMc and you both know it’s impossible to calculate the temperature sensitivity to doubling CO2 from first principles. Models are required. Empirical analysis of past temperatures against CO2 concentrations and solar forcings are required (which themselves require models).

    I believe it was steven mosher who suggested it was like asking for a calculation of the lift on a 747 without using models. It could also be compared to deriving today’s high temperature from first principles (without a model or empirical patterns).

    I give Steve McIntyre credit for cleverly asking a question that seems simple, but is in fact not simple at all. It’s a great way to seed doubt.


    #293 Mark T:
    I assume you are implying that Boris is my sock puppet (since I’m the other John around here). I can assure you that’s not the case.

  306. Larry
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:23 AM | Permalink

    295, since we’re this far afield (and ripe for snipping), did anyone else notice the parallel between the IPCC ARs and the NIE report? Discuss.

  307. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:25 AM | Permalink

    But then…. A X H20 —–) -Y deg C and B X aerosols ——–) – Z dec C

  308. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:28 AM | Permalink

    I assume you are implying that Boris is my sock puppet (since I’m the other John around here). I can assure you that’s not the case.

    Tsk, tsk. There are several John’s around here, and the other last initial one is John M, whom bender has taken to task as an advocate in the past.

    SteveMc and you both know it’s impossible to calculate the temperature sensitivity to doubling CO2 from first principles. Models are required. Empirical analysis of past temperatures against CO2 concentrations and solar forcings are required (which themselves require models).

    No kidding. The point is that models are based on the observations, tweaked to fit so to speak. Anybody can set up some complex feedback system with some gain parameters and get a fit to the observations. It is a circular argument that is preceded by an unproven assumption there is a forced relationship with substantial gain. Without that assumption, you may just as well use a low-pass FIR with specified lag (in filter terms that means phase) and appropriate gain/attenuation.

    Mark

  309. Daniel Klein
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:31 AM | Permalink

    Over at Real Climate Gavin Schimdt explains how they decide what is good science worthy of their attention:

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2007/12/are-temperature-trends-affected-by-economic-activity-ii/langswitch_lang/bg#comment-75161

    “The seriousness of our attention goes in inverse proportion to how the authors spin their results.”

    So if spun as a catastrophe, a la non-science of Mark Lynas, it gets serious attention. Ross McKitrick downplays the catastrophe talk in a peer-reviewed journal, but his work must be unworthy. Real Science. Right.

  310. bender
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:38 AM | Permalink

    This implies they wait for “the spin” before contemplating the science itself. i.e. They are not acting as scientists but as consensus keepers.

  311. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:40 AM | Permalink

    John V,
    you asked: “Is it the norm for RH to fall with altitude?”

    I haven’t got a plot of a yearly averaged radiosounding but 12, one for each month.
    Here is January for the midday sounding:

    Of course this plot refers to Northern Italy, but if you look at soundings taken around the world, almost all show that T and Td diverge with altitude.

    Moisture doesn’t go up “motu proprio”. In fact high concentrations of humidity remain in the lower troposphere, close to its source. Strong uplifts are needed to carry it up as in the tropical convergence zone or at the boundary associated with the polar front. Outside these narrow zones, the rest of the latitudinal bands has, at a first appoximation, downward dispacement of dry, cold air.

  312. bender
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:47 AM | Permalink

    Actually I was thinking John V is John A’s sock puppet too! (And I knew that Mark T was thinking I meant to write John M)

    Anyways …

    Perhaps, if we’re *really* lucky, some new discovery will show that the current warming is entirely natural and will fix itself in a few years. Until that happens, the evidence overwhelmingly points to AGW being a reality.

    Cease this straw man argument. John V you well know that few here dispute A in AGW < 0. So it is not an existential question, but a quantititive one. List for me the posts where it is argued that GW is entirely due to things other than A.

    Take your straw man out to the trash can. Please. Now. You can leave your sock there too.

  313. jae
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:48 AM | Permalink

    No kidding. The point is that models are based on the observations, tweaked to fit so to speak.

    Reminds me of the old addage about the basic principle of engineering: Cut to suit, beat to fit, and paint to match.

  314. bender
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:49 AM | Permalink

    Stupid WordPress tag characters! Change < to > in #305.

  315. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:55 AM | Permalink

    Yeah, I’d prefer if WordPress used [] instead.

    Mark

  316. jae
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 12:01 PM | Permalink

    304, Paolo:

    Moisture doesn’t go up “motu proprio”. In fact high concentrations of humidity remain in the lower troposphere, close to its source. Strong uplifts are needed to carry it up as in the tropical convergence zone or at the boundary associated with the polar front. Outside these narrow zones, the rest of the latitudinal bands has, at a first appoximation, downward dispacement of dry, cold air.

    I’ve noticed this, but can’t figure out why it’s true. One would think HOH vapor would rise rather quickly, due to it’s low molecular weight, cf. other air molecules. What holds it down? Van der Waals forces?

  317. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 12:04 PM | Permalink

    >> WordPress tag characters! Change

    Ahh, that’s not WordPress, it’s basic html

  318. Larry
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 12:08 PM | Permalink

    309, entropy.

  319. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 12:10 PM | Permalink

    BB code uses []. The question then, is it possible to force WordPress to use BB code instead?

    Mark

  320. Boris
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 12:12 PM | Permalink

    bender,

    You claimed that tropospheric trends were out of whack with models. If you meant tropospheric trends in the tropics, then please be more specific, especially before you accuse me of not being rigorous enough.

    Are you for real? Do you have an estimate for climate sensitivity? If so, what is it and what is it based on?

  321. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 12:12 PM | Permalink

    bender:
    I often encounter the argument here that the A in AGW should be removed. (Some even argue that the W should be removed).

    Do I really need to prefix everything with exactly the right adjectives to be understood? Let a couple of things slide. Relax.

    Anyways, if we are *really* lucky it will be *entirely* natural or even mostly natural. Currently the evidence is that the majority of the recent warming is very likely anthropogenic.

  322. Boris
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 12:14 PM | Permalink

    Clearly, bender is Steve Bloom’s sock puppet. :)

  323. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 12:15 PM | Permalink

    >> is it possible to force WordPress to use BB code instead

    It’s naturally treating what we write here as html. The angle bracket is an html reserved character. It has nothing to do with WordPress.

  324. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 12:20 PM | Permalink

    >> I often encounter the argument here that the A in AGW should be removed. (Some even argue that the W should be removed

    Don’t forget the argument that the G should be removed. I personally believe in aGw. Others said “no G” (no global spatial average). :)

  325. jae
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 12:29 PM | Permalink

    Interesting paper on the possible pseudoscience behind the supposed evils of second-hand tobacco smoke. There’s a lot in common with some of the pseudoscience and politics associated with AGW.

  326. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 12:31 PM | Permalink

    JV says:
    “25 years ago it was the new, untested theory that met lots of resistance. As the evidence has accumulated the confidence in its reality has increased. The core IPCC conclusions have moved from “more likely than not” to “very likely” in the last 15 years.”

    “pushed” is more like it :)

    and 301:

    “Empirical analysis of past temperatures against CO2 and solar forcings are required (which themselves require models)”

    There’s the bugger geologically speaking. You can’t look at data in 50 yr or 100 yr tiny timescales(like the CWP) in the past and compare them to the CWP enough to say the words “unprecedented”

  327. jae
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 12:33 PM | Permalink

    Currently the evidence is that the majority of the recent warming is very likely anthropogenic.

    What EVIDENCE? Climate Models? Questionable radiative models? Hockeysticks?

  328. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 12:33 PM | Permalink

    er..the word not the words LOL

  329. Michael Smith
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 12:34 PM | Permalink

    re: 314

    Currently the evidence is that the majority of the recent warming is very likely anthropogenic.

    Do you consider the output of a model to be evidence?

  330. yorick
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 12:41 PM | Permalink

    Boris,
    I crossposted your comment on Lubos blog, but for starters, why is what he says “ridiculous”?

    At the key altitudes, reality is about 6 uncertainties of the mean (measured as the standard deviation of the model ensemble divided by the square root of 22-1) away from the models. If you include “submodels” or “realizations”, there are 67 of them and the discrepancy jumps to 10 sigma (this is why copying a model many times, as in the “consensus science”, will be used against you by the rules of science). If you count the discrepancy in the experimental standard deviations, they will exceed 5 sigma, too. Regardless of these numbers, the picture above says a lot by itself.

    The models and observations are compatible near the surface. However, about 5 kilometers above the surface (where the greenhouse effects starts to become relevant) in the tropical zones, models predict between 2 times and 4 times higher warming trend than what is observed. Above the altitude of 8 kilometers, the theoretical and empirical trends have opposite signs.

    In actual quantifiable terms. Or are you going to assert authority of your sources again. Are you just a cheerleader or do you really understand the statements you make?

  331. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 12:53 PM | Permalink

    Susann: The way it was put made it seem like Soros himself directly gave Hansen some money. Which was not the case. But there is a bit of a link: A fair way to put it would be that the Strategic Opportunities Fund/Government Accountability Project/Open Society Institute and the Soros foundations (which spent about 420 billion dollars in 2006!) provided legal and media advice to Hansen over the issue of officials at NASA ordering him to refer press inquires to the public affairs office and have a public affairs representative at any interviews. Then they credited this “campaign” as responsible for NASA deciding to revist its media policy, which Hansen (and obviously GAP) considered censorship. (123)

    They spent a total of 2.5 million on everything done in the OSI-Washington DC office so I can’t tell how much the “legal and media advice” that was provided was worth. (Or if those funds for the advice were part of the 700K for the politicization of science, or the 450K for legal infrastructure for global warming issues.) (145)

    Soros funding Hansen? Hardly. Hansen (or his lawyer) getting legal and media advice by the GAP, yes. (Sorry if you already went over this) But there is a link between the two, but there’s no evidence there was anything more than billing time for lawyers and media consultants indirectly provided to Hansen on the issue. And it hardly seems like a big deal anyway. Anything else is simply conjecture.

    Source: 2006 Soros Foundations Network Report

  332. Earle Williams
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 1:18 PM | Permalink

    Re #314

    John V.,

    Completely unsolicited snip-worthy observations…

    You say earlier

    Do I really need to prefix everything with exactly the right adjectives to be understood? Let a couple of things slide. Relax.

    a sentiment I entirely endorse. Yet it is completely at odds with the persona you are cultivating here at Climate Audit. You create havoc by micro-parsing other people’s statements and when things get contentious fall back on ‘Oh I misunderstood your statement.” A lot more letting things slide will cut down on the noise and allow you and the rest to focus on the science and the analysis of the data. Your wry observations such as

    I give Steve McIntyre credit for cleverly asking a question that seems simple, but is in fact not simple at all. It’s a great way to seed doubt.

    don’t have any basis in fact and are a simple projection of your inherent biases. You don’t strike me as an individual the least bit aware of your biases so IMHO the zeal with which you prosecute others for going against your conclusions relegates you to the troll-bin.

    Opentemp is a noble effort and I applaud your success at transparent and accessible analysis of the surface temperature data. But that doesn’t excuse the tendentious jibes. Anyone who wants their arguments to be taken seriously needs to keep the POV advocacy in check.

  333. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 1:30 PM | Permalink

    WA; I agree “The actual mechanism is more complicated”. 100% of current absorbtion and scattering with 1745 ppb methane mole concentration is not the same amount as 100% with 3000 ppb.

    Overall, forgetting that; what about the chemical interactions between the GHG and non-GHG? What does increasing and decreasing the cabonate or bicarbonate content of the oceans do? How do things act if the increased (non-wv) GHG are encountered by IR first before wv? What if the clouds/particulates block the IR to the lower GHG more or less? How much does an increase in nitrous oxide “push” wv out of the way and take over?

  334. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 1:45 PM | Permalink

    324 , Teresa Heinz, gave Hansen an award. little bit of cashy too. “Heinz Environment Award” 250k. And according to wikipedia also won the Dan David prize this year.

    “The Dan David Prize annually gives three $1 million prizes to honor achievements aimed at understanding or affecting the world. There are three categories of prize — the Past, Present and Future. The topics vary from year to year. Of the three $1 million prizes, each year the laureates donate 10 percent of the money for 20 scholarships around the world, and 20 scholarships at Tel Aviv University.

    The Prizes have been offered each year since 2002, making the Dan David Prize a relative newcomer to the arena of large global prizes.”

    The Dan David Prize was founded by international businessman and philanthropist Dan David

    -not saying bad or good just saying

  335. Boris
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 1:47 PM | Permalink

    In actual quantifiable terms. Or are you going to assert authority of your sources again. Are you just a cheerleader or do you really understand the statements you make?

    The uncertainties in the data do not allow models to be fully evaluated wrt tropical tropospheric conditions, so his conclusion that CS is off is not supported. Of course, I still can’t access the paper in question, so maybe Christy et al have added something new. I have serious doubts, however.

  336. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 1:52 PM | Permalink

    #325 Earle Williams:
    I generally try to carefully read what others post. When I’ve misunderstood I generally apologize and try to get back on subject. I certainly don’t try to micro-parse — any examples would be appreciated.

    Occasionally I’ll give a little jab, but nothing that even comes close to many of the statements about “the team”.

    As for the temperature sensitivity question, it’s been asked dozens of times and the answer is always the same — it’s not possible to answer from first principles. Those who ask already know the answer, so why do they keep asking?

  337. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 1:53 PM | Permalink

    It seems this un-threaded is starting to overheat.
    I’ll try to stay out of it for a while.

  338. yorick
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 1:55 PM | Permalink

    Boris,
    Here is the paper, same as I linked in 296

    http://icecap.us/images/uploads/DOUGLASPAPER.pdf

  339. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 1:59 PM | Permalink

    Yes, I’m just saying the non-hyped statement is that GAP provided legal and media advice to support Hansen after he said NASA’s information policy on press releases and interviews amount to censorship. The Foundation’s report itself didn’t say how much it cost, what the cost was accounted for under, if there was any cash involved at all, or even if Hansen was directly advised about either legal or media matters. Just sayin’. :)

  340. henry
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 2:00 PM | Permalink

    Discussion about the climate sensitivity going on over at Tamino’s blog:

    Question: “What paper or study (other than the IPCC), states the math or science behind the “3 deg C/CO2 doubling” claim?”

    If the conclusions compiled by the IPCC are not acceptable, people can start with the Charney Report from 1979:

    http://www.atmos.ucla.edu/~brianpm/download/charney_report.pdf

    Or they can read the 2001 NRC report:

    http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=10139

    Regarding climate sensitivity specifically, they can go to Barton Paul Levenson’s compilation of historical figures (with citations), which show them converging at about 3 degrees.

    http://members.aol.com/bpl1960/ClimateSensitivity.html

    Has anybody here seen the 61 studies listed in the last compilation? The chart he links to does show the average of all the studies centered around 3C.

    There is no _one_ paper or study that states this. There are actually hundreds, if not thousands. The IPCC reports are nothing more than glorified literature reviews. The IPCC does little research in and of itself, but instead compiles the published (in peer review literature) of, literally, thousands of others.

    About like Readers Digest…

    The physics of the greenhouse effect has a reasonably long history. The discovery that certain gases in the Earth’s atmosphere change its radiative balance goes back to Fouier (1824) and was built upon by Arrhenius (1896). Indeed Arrhenius first provided a quantitative estimate of climate sensitivity of 2xCO2 to give a temperature rise of 5-6 degrees C (his calculation was later shown to be wrong). However, his result was pretty good, given that it was made over 100 years ago!

    There have been others that have been wrong, too…

    I’m not going to do your research for you. However, if I weren’t so lazy, I could suggest a bizillion papers, books and the like for you to read up on. However, I reiterate my point that there is no _one_ paper that gives the “3 deg C/CO2 doubling” value. This value (well, a range of values of which 3degC lies somewhere in the middle) has come from the painstaking, methodical work of many thousands of scientists working across many different displines (meteorology, climatology, radiative physics, quantum mechanics, physical chemistry…). This value comes from tedious theoretical calculations, large sophisticated computer models, laboratory measurements and painstaking field work.

    Does statiscics fall into that listing of displines?

    I recommend that you glance in the bibliography of the IPCC, perhaps do a little googling. Here’s a start: Spencer Weart’s website on the “history of global warming”

    http://www.aip.org/history/climate/index.html

    So they tell us that there isn’t a “single” paper that states this value, but rather thousands of studies that average out to 3C (+/- 1.5C). So either RTFR, or agree with the IPCC and move on…

  341. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 2:03 PM | Permalink

    Btw, Steve Sadlov, the ever-present weather watcher, despite a late start, the CO snow season has kicked into high gear with some fury. Wolf Creek (SW mountains, San Juans) has gotten around 140″ in the last two weeks. It is snowing in COS as well, and the Northern mountains are getting their share, too (over 25% of their seasonal averages). La Nina snow seasons are unpredictable if anything… wait, they all are. ;)

    Mark

  342. M. Jeff
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 2:09 PM | Permalink

    re: welikerocks, #319, December 11th, 2007 at 12:31 pm

    There’s the bugger geologically speaking. You can’t look at data in 50 yr or 100 yr tiny timescales(like the CWP) in the past and compare them to the CWP enough to say the words “unprecedented”

    This may be too far off topic for even this unthreaded thread, but speaking of timescales, there is a new possibly significant as yet unpublicized mosasaur fossil being examined in my neighborhood, (which is presently over 500 feet above sea level). Extinction and change are the norm.

  343. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 2:21 PM | Permalink

    RE: #332 – I’ve sort of had my eye off the ball lately. Late fall is turning out to be cold for many and quite snowy for some. Last year we had a somewhat balmy late fall here in the central West Coast, but not this year. Since mid November it’s been pretty chilly, and getting more so now. Getting shots of Yukon air on a fairly regular basis. Doesn’t do squat for snow, y’all are getting it all. Well, I guess that’s the price we pay for great seasons such as 2004 – 2005 and 2005 – 2006. We can’t always expect to have things opening up before Halloween! At least they are open now.

  344. yorick
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 2:22 PM | Permalink

    From John V

    The core IPCC conclusions have moved from “more likely than not” to “very likely” in the last 15 years.

    Very likely what John V? That the sign of the effect is positive? Nobody is arguing that. Does this “Very Likely” assertion include the possibility that CS=1C? I will answer that for you, Yes it does. It includes the possiblility that CS = .1C, it is only about the sign.

    From what I can gather, you are of the belief that CS =2.5 to 5C, and that anybody who thinks it is, for example, 1.1 C and logarithmic, is a denier.

  345. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 2:24 PM | Permalink

    >> It seems this un-threaded is starting to overheat.

    I for one winced at the unnecessary ad-hom hurled in your direction. Let’s all try to be more civil.

  346. Boris
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 2:25 PM | Permalink

    anybody who thinks it is, for example, 1.1 C and logarithmic, is a denier.

    Is this your estimate? How did you arrive at this number?

  347. M. Jeff
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 2:34 PM | Permalink

    re: #337, Boris, December 11th, 2007 at 2:25 pm

    Is this your estimate? How did you arrive at this number?

    Because I agree with yorick, the number must have been arrived at by consensus.

  348. Michael Smith
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 2:45 PM | Permalink

    No: 328 John V:

    As for the temperature sensitivity question, it’s been asked dozens of times and the answer is always the same — it’s not possible to answer from first principles.

    John, I am curious about this statement. What does it mean to “answer from first principles”? Does that mean to “answer without making untested assumptions”?

  349. MarkW
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 2:45 PM | Permalink

    That’s settled. The ‘A’, the ‘G’, and the ‘W’ need to be removed from AGW.

    Really, JohnV, I’ve only seen one or two people argue that there is no A or W.

    Why do you insist on setting up these silly strawmen?

  350. MarkW
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 2:49 PM | Permalink

    The uncertainties in the data do not allow models to be fully evaluated wrt tropical tropospheric conditions

    That’s convenient. Keep the super secret error margins large enough so that no matter what the real world produces, you can claim that it is within range of the models predicted.

  351. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 2:51 PM | Permalink

    Re: #221

    Susann. Seek equilibrium. Document your journey. It’s not about war, it’s about peace. Show people the way toward reasonableness. Civility is hip.

    Decision time: A policy wonk or a policy wink.

  352. bender
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 3:00 PM | Permalink

    It seems this un-threaded is starting to overheat

    Said he with the drip torch. Hey, if you want the heat turned down, quit with the unsupportable propositions.

    I for one winced at the unnecessary ad-hom hurled in your direction. Let’s all try to be more civil.

    I was actually thinking Gunnar was yet another sock puppet in a John A puppet show. But his display of “civility” toward Jerry over in Svalgaard Solar Theory has me thinking this can not be the talk of any puppet.

    My mistake (if it is indeed a mistake) was an honest one, not an ad hom. [Sometimes you guys really do sound like puppets in a puppet show, you know.]

  353. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 3:03 PM | Permalink

    >> John, I am curious about this statement. What does it mean to “answer from first principles”? Does that mean to “answer without making untested assumptions”?

    I will answer for John, since we’ve been a bit too testy. No, it means that the relationship in question is not a direct causal one. For example, Voltage causes current to flow, so we can write V=IR. First Principles refers to basic science. However, a sensitivity is an attribute of an object. The object of course follows the laws of reality, but the parameter in question depends on the physical attributes of the object. For example, a car and MPG. You cannot derive what the exact MPG will be for a car by first principles. It depends on too many small variations in manufacturing tolerances, etc.

    Similarly, the sensitivity of the earth climate to solar radiation cannot be derived directly from first principles. It depends on the thermodynamic, physical and chemical attributes of the earth, and the details of the sun. The same is true for C02 climate sensitivity. Neither the sun nor C02 directly cause a certain temperature. It is something that should come from empirical data. Hence, I believe John V is correct about this. (Although I don’t agree that Steve M was being devious in the question, I think it’s an honest question about the alleged physics involved)

    >> That’s settled. The ‘A’, the ‘G’, and the ‘W’ need to be removed from AGW.

    Right, a dog exhaled C02, and after the heat of the air was accounted for, it caused localized cooling.

  354. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 3:08 PM | Permalink

    I argue that we need to focus on AGHGE (Anthropogenic Green House Gas Emissions). Then, we stack up AGHGE against all other processes involving GHGs. Then, we view GHGs as a forcing, one of several. Then, we look at feedbacks. Then, we try to answer the question, what is the actual set of impacts of AGHGEs?

  355. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 3:19 PM | Permalink

    yorick:
    The “core IPCC conclusion” I was referring to was that AGW is the dominant cause of recent warming.

    I’ve never called anybody a denier. I think that anybody who believes their evidence is stronger than the IPCC’s should present it. I came here looking for it. I’ve learned a lot, but not much that has changed my opinion about the core IPCC conclusions.

    BTW, logarithmic sensitivity is implicit in defining sensitivity in terms of CO2 *doublings* instead of linear CO2 increases. So you agree with the IPCC summaries on that point at least.

    =====
    MarkW:
    My point was that the prevailing scientific opinion is that AGW is the dominant cause of current warming (as I clarified about 20 posts ago). I’ll try to be more careful with my adjectives. For future reference if I write “AGW” I probably mean “significant AGW”.

  356. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 3:22 PM | Permalink

    Let me clarify the argument here. Lot’s of places to start, so let’s go with temp.

    We measure (sample) the air temp (thermometers in the open, in boxes to keep direct sunlight off of them but let in ambiant air, but discount the effects of wind or rain etc) At 5 feet off the ground, and a bottom on the box, that should discount the direct effects of the surface itself on the thermometer. So if all this is true, and the thermometer is correctly sited and calibrated and TOBS is taken into consideration, we get an Tmean of the area for the temperature of the air and assume this is indicative of the general area around the site. We then combine the rural locations, balance them against the non-rural, in a 5×5 grid of randomly situated sites, and come up with an average for the daily temperature / anomaly. We assume the random siting removes any bias in the number of sites and locations in the grid. This is averaged into a monthly mean anomaly of “land temperatures”.

    We measure with satellites the surfaces of “the seas” taking this average surface temp of the 2×2 grid as being indicative of the average behavior of that area of water. These are then adjusted to remove any land in the grid, processed to 5×5 to match the land and averaged into a monthly mean anomaly of “sea temperatures”.

    We then combine the two, and come up with a yearly anomaly, balanced against a 30 year period. We calculate an anomaly trend. That number is +.7C (5.6 milli/year)

    Sound correct and dispassionate so far? I’m trying to be complete without getting too complicated or too vague. And putting in just enough but not too much. Next issue a bit later.

  357. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 3:39 PM | Permalink

    Michael Smith — 339
    >>What does it mean to “answer from first principles”?

    Good question. On blogs (and even in real life) this can actually mean nearly anything. For some, even tested assumptions won’t cut it. If you solved the Navier Stokes equations for a fluid dynamics problem, the person asking would ask you to start from the Boltzman equation.

    But, in general, “answer from first principles” means solving from some set of equations that is accepted as ‘not an assumption’ in a particular field.

    In continuum mechanics, if a GCM solved the full compressible Navier Stokes down the the Kolmogorov scale, using the ideal gas law, applying the first and second law of thermodynamics, and, possibly tracking every raindrop,snow flake or piece of hail using some sort of Lagrangian scheme, and maybe adding in some sort of chemistry equations for any chemical reactions that might occur, this would be solving from first principles. (There is not enough computer power in the world to do this.)

    Simplify the boundary layer with a boundary layer parameterization, the solution will no longer be “first principles”. Add a sub model for the average behavior of raindrops? Not first principles. . .

    When someone asks you to answer from first principles, it’s generally wise to ask them to tell you what you mean before you begin trying to do it. They may mean something more modest that I described.

    Some problems can be done from first principles; some can’t. Correct solutions from first principles are considered beyond reproach. Others are approximate. An approximation may be good or bad, but it must be justified, and the possible deficiencies in predictive powers noted.

  358. Larry
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 3:48 PM | Permalink

    347, however, as you intimated, what’s “first principles” is context-dependent; i.e. you don’t need to consider quantum mechanics when designing an airplane. Newtonian mechanics is first principles, or to use your words “beyond reproach” only if you’re not trying to design transistors, or some other quantum-based device (or vacuum tubes, where you have to consider relativity). Whether Newtonian mechanics is “first principles” or not depends on what you’re trying to do.

    Alternatively, you can just say that Newtonian mechanics isn’t first principles, but is known to be good enough for a very broad class of engineering problems. It’s a little unnerving to tell people that airplanes are designed according to physics that aren’t rigorous, but that’s about what it boils down to.

  359. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 3:53 PM | Permalink

    309, jae:

    One would think HOH vapor would rise rather quickly, due to it’s low molecular weight, cf. other air molecules. What holds it down?

    Essentially atmosphere is stable and sinking motions are prevalent. The vertical profile in atmosphere are mostly due to dynamical reasons and not to diffusion or radiation. If you think that air goes up only over the Maritime Continent (around Indonesia) and goes down slowly on the rest of the globe, you are not too far from reality.
    Caps and inversions are largely distributed around the world and all comes from the bottom, there it remains.
    Of course, water itself is a very active player in determining the actual state of the atmosphere, so don’t think of water as a simple addendum.

  360. Larry
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 3:54 PM | Permalink

    We’re at the end of the product cycle. No more manufacturing. Maintenance mode. I think this is starting to dawn on the RC ops.

  361. DocMartyn
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 3:56 PM | Permalink

    “jae says:

    One would think HOH vapor would rise rather quickly, due to it’s low molecular weight, cf. other air molecules. What holds it down? Van der Waals forces?”

    When water is around it will stick to anything. Add a proton and you will get a protonated water cluster with 60 water molecules and one proton. You have dust, you get hydrated dust. Water will form vast hydrogen bonded structures in liquid water at 55 M, using ionspray mass spec you get to see some of these in a gas phase. Water is hardly ever, H2O, in the same way a proton is hardly ever H+.

  362. Larry
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 3:57 PM | Permalink

    Give me an “A”:

    “AAAAA”

    Give me a “G”:

    “GEEEE”

    Give me a “W”:

    “DUBYOO”

    What’s it spell?

    NOBEL!!!

  363. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 4:03 PM | Permalink

    @Larry 348- Yes. First principles is context-dependent. That’s a reason the question difficult to answer. With regard to AGW, some might really insist on GCM’s computing to atomic level, but I’ve rarely seen anyone mean that. I’m pretty sure I could pull up quotes on one of the threads where someone seems to say weather prediction models shouldn’t use boundary layer theory to model, the……. well, you know….. atmospheric boundary layer. Simulation of the full compressible NS down to the Kolmogorov scale seemed to be the minimum required.

    Now, I’ll agree that the boundary layer approximation is an approximation, and a turbulence parameterization is required when the BL is turbulent. However, as a practical matter, I’d guess you either use a boundary layer approximation or you run a model for a week to predict what happens tomorrow (or you do nothing).

    So… I’m just going to assume I didn’t understand what was said. (And hey, maybe I didn’t!)

  364. See - owe to Rich
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 4:06 PM | Permalink

    Weather not climate.

    meto.gov.uk is currently mentioning heavy rains in Australia, which are providing relief to droughty areas. Perhaps they’re going to have a summer like England’s! :-)

    In late October I mentioned a news article about Piers Corbyn predicting 3 severe gales for the UK. On each of the occasions he predicted, there were in fact some gales, but quite minor. The biggest gale recently in fact came a week after his last, just 2 days ago, 70mph gusts in Cornwall. But even so it wasn’t like the Great Storm of 1703 that he predicted, nor even of 1987 or 1990 or 1998… So, impressive timing predictions, but not good on the magnitude.

    Rich.

  365. Larry
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 4:21 PM | Permalink

    353, as you said, the scale that you need depends on agreement between model results and experiment; i.e. you can’t be absolutely sure a priori. Interesting conundrum. You can’t know ahead of time what’s “good enough”, so once you’ve determined what is experimentally, can you call that “first principles”? I really don’t think so, myself. I would say that first principles requires quantum calculations for all of the molecules in the atmosphere and oceans. Obviously, that’s not going to happen

  366. jae
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 4:26 PM | Permalink

    351: Thanks, Doc, that makes perfect sense. Water has a lot of unique properties, that’s for sure.

  367. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 4:39 PM | Permalink

    Off-topic question: I’ve been wondering this for quite some time but now I have time and energy to investigfate it… the RE (reduction of error) statistic is well known on this site in peripheral terms, but I have never heard of it outside of climate literature and cannot even find a definition of it using a google search. Can anybody mathematically define this statistic for me (or point me to a good reference)?

  368. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 4:45 PM | Permalink

    @Larry– For a fluids model in a GCM, I would call first principles full solution of the compressible NS everywhere . This would include the atmospheric boundary layer, nearly inviscid upper atmosphere, and the oceans. (I will refrain from speculating about what we do when the air gets so thin we can’t even use NS. We can leave that to the true nit-pickers.)

    I don’t consider a boundary layer model “first principles”, but somebody might call it that in some context.

    We all know quantum calculations of the whole planet aren’t going to happen.

  369. jae
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 4:49 PM | Permalink

    347: Lucia:

    Some problems can be done from first principles; some can’t. Correct solutions from first principles are considered beyond reproach. Others are approximate. An approximation may be good or bad, but it must be justified, and the possible deficiencies in predictive powers noted

    That is right on. Now, if IPCC would do what you say in the last sentence, matters would be a lot clearer. Like true error bars on model runs, instead of a spagetti graph of various model runs.

  370. John M
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 5:28 PM | Permalink

    Re #301 and 305

    Tsk, tsk. There are several John’s around here, and the other last initial one is John M, whom bender has taken to task as an advocate in the past.

    Actually I was thinking John V is John A’s sock puppet too! (And I knew that Mark T was thinking I meant to write John M)

    Guys, guys, guys.

    Not only are there a lot of Johns around, but there’s more than one John M. I started commenting here in about April 1996, but alas, interlopers have since appeared. The most recent has added a period to the M, which may have been the one in Bender’s crosshairs. As far as I know, I haven’t been dissed by the Gator.

  371. yorick
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 5:40 PM | Permalink

    John V,
    I went back and read the AR4 political summary, and I can’t disagree with you. Although I don’t think that AR4 is up to date on the science end any more. I was mixing you up with a guy who used to say 90% confident, and this was a sum of all of the probabilities for all of the positive climate sensitivities.
    So Many apologies.

    Boris,
    1.1C is the CS without feedbacks, as I understand it. On the assumption that the feedbacks are probably mostly negative, given that the climate seems to tend toward glaciation, and has never run away warm over billions of years. It also seems that feedbacks are added to the models by the following logic

    “Positive feedback?, might happen, better account for it!”

    “Negative feedback? Can’t count on it, better leave it out!”

    Also, it seems to be that the models agree with observations more closely when that value is chosen. It is a qualitiative argument, and I won’t try to defend it here.

    Just like you say, despite Lubos Motls’ clear expression in quantitative terms, including the methods that were used to calculate the uncertainties, that “they are too large, and his argument is ridiculous”

    The difference being of course, that we are both anonymous blog commenters, and Lubos is a world reknowned physicist of the first rank. It seems like, with his credentials, that one should show how he is wrong, rather than just saying it. But I am not the one trying to win people over, I am just trying to understand.

  372. Murray Duffin
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 5:43 PM | Permalink

    Re:175 (better late than never?)
    See http://solarscience.msfc.nasa.gov/papers/hathadh/HathawayWilsonReichmann2002.pdf Using an average of the first 4 methods described I come up with SSN = 93, with a range from 85 to 115. I think Hathaway is now using the idea that there is a 40 year delay in the solar conveyor, and that the SSN of 40 years ago will be the primary driver of this one, the prior magnetic knots having been revitalized by their passage through the deep sun. Seems an unlikely theory to me.

  373. John M
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 5:44 PM | Permalink

    Michael Hansen #242

    Antarctic sea ice extent continues to show inter-annual variability and localized changes but no statistically significant average trends, consistent with the lack of warming reflected in atmospheric temperatures averaged across the region

    But good gosh man, the penguins…THE PENGUINS!!!

    link

  374. Michael Smith
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 5:45 PM | Permalink

    Thanks to all for the clarification of what is meant by “answering from first principles”. Based on what you’ve said, I don’t think Steve is asking for proof of the “2 x CO2 = 2.5 deg C” solely from “first principles”. My interpretation is that he is simply asking for a clear, up-to-date and complete elucidation of all the assumptions and calculations used to arrive at the conclusion. Perhaps Steve will have time to drop in on this thread and elaborate on what he is requesting and whether he expects an “answer from first principles.”

  375. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 5:49 PM | Permalink

    Not only are there a lot of Johns around, but there’s more than one John M. I started commenting here in about April 1996, but alas, interlopers have since appeared. The most recent has added a period to the M, which may have been the one in Bender’s crosshairs. As far as I know, I haven’t been dissed by the Gator.

    Wow, way back before the intraweb was even popular, let alone this blog. ;)

    OK, now, even this was not my point. I was simply surprised that bender chose John A. given John’s fairly often asserted opinions on AGW theory. I missed the connection that bender was making (i.e. bait), and assumed that it must be some other John he was referring to. Once bender clarified, I understood his analogy. The one in particular that was in my head was indeed a John M., though that distinction was only because I had seen bender get a little testy with they guy. Which John I though it could have been was immaterial, since I assumed (incorrectly) that it must have been some other John.

    Phew, lots o’ posts about nothing! :)

    Mark

  376. John M
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 5:55 PM | Permalink

    Du-ohhh!

    Did I say 1996? Where’s my hearing trumpet by crackie. Meant 2006, of course.

  377. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 5:59 PM | Permalink

    yorick:
    There’s no need to apologize. Us “alarmists” all look the same, as do all the Marks. :) (I’ve mixed up the Marks in previous un-threaded conversations).

    Your comments on climate sensitivity treat it as an input to the models. It is in fact an output that arises from running a model with its various assumptions and parameterizations.

  378. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 5:59 PM | Permalink

    I figured either a typo or pure jest (we are the jesters, you know).

    Mark

  379. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 6:11 PM | Permalink

    ‘net’s been ’round since a’fore ’96 and was fairly popular (even before the WWW in ’91 and Mosaic, ’93) (depending on your job heh) then, but I suppose it depends on how you define popularity…

    I’d put it at around ’94 when it started leaving the academic and technical world.

    (Licklider came up with the idea of an Intergalatic Computer Network in ’63 and the first four interface message processors were connected in ’69 Then, ’71 email, ’73 ftp. Everything started out at a speed of about 50kbits on modems but supported up to 100kbps starting in ’70)

    Anywayz.

  380. yorick
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 6:20 PM | Permalink

    John V,

    No, I don’t, I just think that models that arrive at a CS of 1C fit observation better. Despite Boris’s constant refrain of there being so much uncertainty we can’t know the models are wrong, I am not buying it. I read Chris’s link in #44 and it came down to “All the models disagree so the satelite and radiosonde data must be wrong, and we will leave no stone unturned until we find the problem with the observation, because 10,000 Elvis fans, er I mean 62 models can’t be wrong.”

    It is interesting that they lean so hard on the word “uncertainty”. You should read the link, especially chapter 5. If it gives you a warm fuzzy about the state of knowledge on AGW, I would be shocked. A CS of 1C fits in there quite nicely, I think.

  381. Boris
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 6:48 PM | Permalink

    A CS of 1`C would mean slightly negative feedback and would mean that nothing we know of could explain the rebound from glaciation. Possible? Yes, but I definitely wouldn’t characterize that POV as fitting in with observations, especially considering the Mt. Pinatubo response.

  382. Boris
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 6:50 PM | Permalink

    Oh, I’ve been waiting for this report by the house oversight committee. Fire away.

  383. Larry
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 6:54 PM | Permalink

    Ok, guys. Stop arguing. The AGW problem has been solved:

    http://freecarbonoffsets.com/home.do;jsessionid=AC3CA351FE1925A11D5EE0F330FC72BC

  384. yorick
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 7:04 PM | Permalink

    would mean slightly negative feedback and would mean that nothing we know of could explain the rebound from glaciation.

    I don’t know, I think maybe the fact that the tilt of the Earth 10Ka ago exposed NH glaciers to more direct sunlight at the same time as they glaciers cooked under the heat of the NH summer being during perihelian, and the elipical nature of Earths orbit creating longer summers due to Kepler’s second law had something to do with glaciers melting.

    Most of the time the planet, over the past five million years or so, has not emerged from glaciation. Precisely my argument. When it does, it falls back in relatively rapidly. I think that a lot of climate model arguments are circular. For a while, there was even a Wikipedia entry that GCMs had proven that Malonkovich cycles could not have been the cause of cycles of glaciation.

  385. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 7:05 PM | Permalink

    So, given what I said about temperature, let’s continue this trip.

    First assumption: The temperature data is accurate.
    Second assumption: The temperature data has been combined correctly.
    Third assumption: The temperature data from year X can be compared year Y (They both reflect the same quantity)
    Fourth assumption: The global mean temperature anomaly reflects the energy balance of the planet.
    Fifth assumption: This rise in the energy balance has one or more man-made causes rather than being all or mostly natural variability.

    In that case, what are the things that have an effect upon energy balance levels? Then perhaps we can come up with an estimated quantification of the actions, reactions and interactions in the system (Model parameters?) by removing those that cancel. Whatever’s left is (are) the cause(s).

    Some to consider are cosmic rays, solar wind, sunspots. Solar output levels. Tilt of the Earth, behavior of its orbit around the sun and its own rotation. Gravitational effects of the moon. Volcanic erruptions. Burning of fossil fuels and the resulting A-GHG and particulates. Behavior of the magnetosphere, exosphere, ionosphere, mesosphere, stratosphere and troposphere, which is controlled by a number of other factors; Lapse rate, specific mixture of nitrogen, oxygen, water vapor, argon, carbon dioxide, methane, ozone et al, and how those react to each other and the clouds and particulates and IR at each level. Composition of the bit of Earth absorbing whatever sunlight it gets (dirt, water, ice) and amount of cover over the bit of Earth (from soot to water to concrete to tree canopy to clouds). Ocean heat and chemical composition at the various depths. The heat of the core, the release of materials from the core, and the strength of the dynamo vis a vis back up to the top of the magnetosphere and how that reacts to the extra-Earth effects first listed.

    80% of the mass of the atmosphere is troposphere, so it plays a very large part. Here’s how it’s described as functioning:

    The troposphere is the lowest layer of the atmosphere; it begins at the surface and extends to between 7 km (23,000 ft) at the poles and 17 km (60,000 ft) at the equator, with some variation due to weather factors. The troposphere has a great deal of vertical mixing due to solar heating at the surface. This heating warms air masses, which makes them less dense so they rise. When an air mass rises the pressure upon it decreases so it expands, doing work against the opposing pressure of the surrounding air. To do work is to expend energy, so the temperature of the air mass decreases. As the temperature decreases, water vapor in the air mass may condense or solidify, releasing latent heat that further uplifts the air mass. This process determines the maximum rate of decline of temperature with height, called the adiabatic lapse rate. It contains roughly 80% of the total mass of the atmosphere. 50% of the total mass of the atmosphere is located in the lower 5km of the troposphere.

  386. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 7:08 PM | Permalink

    371 Boris

    would mean that nothing we know of could explain the rebound from glaciation.

    Well, we know the rebound from glaciation continues for 800 years without CO2, so why not suspect the same mechanism for the whole deglaciation cycle? Let’s try the sun, the biggest source of energy of all in the solar system, instead of fixating on CO2.

  387. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 7:31 PM | Permalink

    Taking a short break out:

    Totaling 5*10^18 KG, dry air, of which about 90% is the top 3:
    Nitrogen
    Oxygen
    Argon

    Then everything not ~1% or over:
    Carbon Dioxide
    Neon
    Helium
    Methane
    Krypton
    Hydrogen
    Nitrous oxide
    Xenon
    Ozone
    Nitrogen dioxide
    Iodine
    Carbon monoxide

    fluorocarbons are not included

    Then wet air
    water vapor, totaling 1*10^16 KG

    Please note almost 100% of the atmosphere is under 100 KM, which makes this fairly interesting: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Atmosphere_model.png

  388. yorick
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 7:44 PM | Permalink

    I would be a lot more susceptible to Boris’s arguments re CO2 and ice ages if GCMs could model the LIA without the use of imaginary volcanos. Ok, “undocumented” volcanos.

    By the way. I was looking at the Law Dome borehole data, and you know what? It shows an MWP and an LIA. The temporal resolution isn’t great, but the signals seem to be global, since I can’t think of any mechanism that would teleconnect Antarctica with Greenland for hundreds of years that didn’t affect the whole globe. It just looks like more support for Solar to me. If a signal is supposed to be solar, it had better show up at both poles. I am wondering if the GCMs caught that?

  389. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 7:56 PM | Permalink

    GCMs? I doubt they did, Yorick.

    John V, #367. I’ve never considered you an alarmist. Not always as clear as you can be but that goes for everyone of course.

    I sometimes have a problem with your conclusions themselves (or how you phrase them or their strength) or the weight you give some of the factors, but I agree with what the IPCC said back in 2001:

    Human activities—primarily burning of fossil fuels and changes in land cover—are modifying the concentration of atmospheric constituents or properties of the surface that absorb or scatter radiant energy.

    Back to my missive:

    My issue is that for AGW to be true, we have to have the following:

    The A portion has to outweigh the non-A portion.
    The concept of a G has to be valid.
    The W has to actually be happening in reality.

    I’m holding off on my conclusions, although I will say:

    The A probably does outweigh the non-A.
    The concept of a G is less certain, or at least the validity of the application of the way we determine it.
    The W may or may not be something true in reality, but can’t be disproven it’s not around that number.

    However, even if we take all assumptions for granted, it remains to be seen if anyone can prove all the AGHG put together create/keep more heat in the GE than does land use change and pollution, much less remove all the non-human factors as cancelling each other out in the first place.

    So my tentative conclusion is that if I take for granted GW is real (accept that all things considered, the +.7 C is fairly reasonably some kind of indication of warming) and accept that overall the human contribution (land change, particulates, AGHG) provides for at least some part of it over and above what it would be from the non-human factors, AGW is a real thing.

    That leaves many issues even then:

    What is the percentage +/- of land use change, particulates and AGHG is which part of that +.7C
    What is the percentage +/- in the system that CO2 is of the AGHG part of the +.7C
    What would the instant halt of CO2 production and reduction from 400 to 300 do to its overall percentage of the temp increase (%CO2 of AGHG –> %AGHG of AGW)
    What would it do to the world economy (or any economy) to cut CO2 in the air 25% in a few years that it took 125 years to get to.
    What would the instant halt and reduction do to particulate levels and the other AGHG in the system, since one would have to postulate that to do that, an instant halt to all fossil fuel use and all industrial processes creating AGHG/particulates would have to occur
    What would such a thing as the end to using fossil fuels and industrial processes creating AGHG/particulates do to the world economy (or any economy)

    All this would apply to the other AGHG of course, but it seems CO2 is the only one anyone assumes we can “do anything about”.

    Good luck.

  390. Susann
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 7:58 PM | Permalink

    Susann: The way it was put made it seem like Soros himself directly gave Hansen some money. Which was not the case. But there is a bit of a link: A fair way to put it would be that the Strategic Opportunities Fund/Government Accountability Project/Open Society Institute and the Soros foundations (which spent about 420 billion dollars in 2006!) provided legal and media advice to Hansen over the issue of officials at NASA ordering him to refer press inquires to the public affairs office and have a public affairs representative at any interviews. Then they credited this “campaign” as responsible for NASA deciding to revist its media policy, which Hansen (and obviously GAP) considered censorship. (123)

    SS, from what I have read, SOF awarded GAP $100,000 in 2006 for its work defending whistleblowers. It also awarded UCS (union of concerned scientists) a couple hundred thou and some cell biology group a couple hundred thou for a total of $720,000 in 2006. I have a link to this somewhere on another thread. Apparently, that bastion of fair and balanced reporting, BID, picked up on the $720,000 figure and claimed Hansen was packaged by Soros by up to that amount. It’s clear weasel wording and an attempt at smearing Hansen. GAP received the money after it provided legal advice to Hansen, from what I’ve read. In other words, GAP mentioned having provided legal advice to Hansen in their grant application and Soros’ org SOF granted the money beause of that claim. I’m sure it would look good on the books to have funded the group that advised Hansen and that’s why the org funded GAP. The clear message to BID readers was that Soros either paid Hansen the amount (implying an outright bribe) or used it to “package” him, whatever that means. Given the evidence, that is tantamont to fibbing. :)

  391. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:00 PM | Permalink

    #376 Pat Keating:
    The rebound from glaciation starts for 800 years before CO2 starts to rise. Temperatures also start to drop while CO2 is still rising. Both behaviours are consistent with CO2 acting as a feedback and a forcing. Except for the small minority who do not accept the greenhouse effect (without considering feedbacks), CO2 does force temperature. The only question is how much.

    =====
    yorick:
    The MWP and LIA, if they were global (I have no opinion), were most likely driven by the sun. It certainly wasn’t AGW (since there were significant anthropogenic emissions), orbital changes (time scale too short), or continental drift (ditto).

    The GCMs will only reproduce solar-forced events if the solar forcing input is correct (obviously).

  392. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:09 PM | Permalink

    Susann; the stories I’ve read are full of inuendo, half-truths, and spin. Not surprising.

    As they said at Newsbusters, “may have received money from an organization funded by George Soros in order to politicize science”

    To which my reply is “Yeah, and?”

    I’d be interested in seeing the sequence of events (which came first, the chicken or the egg?) but it’s really not very interesting nor based upon any kind of in-depth reporting (mostly op-ed junk that “hasn’t been peer-reviewed”….) :D

  393. jae
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:10 PM | Permalink

    372, Boris, so far that is a “Proposed Report,” whatever that means in DC-speak. I don’t suppose (Henry Waxman) politics has anything to do with this, either, do you? LOL.

  394. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:10 PM | Permalink

    381 John V

    Both behaviours are consistent with CO2 acting as a feedback and a forcing

    No, they are consistent with CO2 being the result of warming, not the cause.
    You need to show me a mathematical analysis supporting your hypothesis before continuing to make that claim. I know it’s the gospel at RC, but I have never seen anything other than arm-waving. That does not cut it.

  395. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:11 PM | Permalink

    Question: I’m looking for Global Land-Ocean Temperature for Global Mean Temperarature as used in Hansen 2006. I’m hoping to get the 2006 data. I know one of ‘all y’all’ not only have the data, but know where it exists on line. So…link? Thanks. (Otherwise tips for the correct search terms would be nice.!)

  396. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:15 PM | Permalink

    Lucia, I’d think it would be from the time series for GHCN-ERSST

    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/gcag/gcag.html

    But I don’t know.

  397. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:20 PM | Permalink

    Re #385 lucia, here’s the GISS global anomaly table ( link ). See how that compares with the data in Hansen 2006.

  398. yorick
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:22 PM | Permalink

    Boris,
    Maybe you would have better luck hawking that report over at Kos or Josh Marshall’s place. I think Bush should have fired Hansen about seven years ago.

  399. Susann
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:25 PM | Permalink

    I’m sorry, Sam U, that was in response to your post not SS. Too many S names!

    I’m interested in any smear attempts, regardless of the side.

  400. Boris
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:54 PM | Permalink

    So, yorick, you are in the camp that politicians should interfere with climate scientists’ communication with the public. Good to know.

    As for your point about orbital forcings–they aren’t enough to explain the rebound from glaciation.

  401. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:55 PM | Permalink

    Thanks David– I’m looking for the actual Hansen data in his figure I’d like to recreate the plot and add a point. To do that, it would be nice to know the figures Hansen actually used in the figure he actually published. (Whether or not they are correct.)

    I’ll google with the Climate Audit search. I figure that SteveM’s Articles like “Free the Code” might include a link to Hansen data.

  402. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 8:59 PM | Permalink

    Sam– I think that may be it. (If not, both sets are still very useful.)

  403. yorick
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 9:15 PM | Permalink

    If I thought Hansen was a scientist, I would agree with you. He lost me way before he compared coal cars to trains carrying Jews to death camps. He is so invested in the politics that he can’t be trusted on the science any more. Maybe you should read some of his speeches. He left the role of scientific advisor to politicians behind some time ago. And your dismisal of orbital forcings is more circular argumentation based on your belief in models.

  404. John M
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 9:16 PM | Permalink

    Boris #392

    So, yorick, you are in the camp that politicians should interfere with climate scientists’ communication with the public. Good to know.

    Did yorick say that?

  405. Mark T
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 9:17 PM | Permalink

    Both behaviours are consistent with CO2 acting as a feedback and a forcing.

    No, John, even a non-feedback system can provide the same results. Phase delay does not occur simply due to feedback. You try hard to convince everyone that “climate sensitivity is not the result of first principles” then you go and make this statement which is based purely on first principles.

    Except for the small minority who do not accept the greenhouse effect (without considering feedbacks), CO2 does force temperature.

    There you go again. Unproven assertions. Prove it, John, please prove it. Yeah, I know “it’s almost impossible to prove,” but then again, it had to come from somewhere. Where did that come from if you’re so certain it exists?

    The only question is how much.

    The other half of that question is “if at all.”

    Mark

  406. yorick
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 9:20 PM | Permalink

    Hey, it worked! I was trying to use google graphs to graph the law dome MWP and LIA. I am not really sure if they are correct, so please don’t use the graph as a reference, but I created it using their api, and it wasn’t all that difficult.

    Google Charts

  407. yorick
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 9:28 PM | Permalink

    Before I go to bed and leave this thread on a bad note. How would you feel, Boris, if an oil company executive were placed in charge of reporting all climate data? You might feel the data could possibly be biased? Of course, I don’t get a point of view, I am a denier. Just think about that before you say anything really nasty.

  408. Boris
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 9:34 PM | Permalink

    396:

    You need a quick refresher in the study of ice ages. No one believed the earliest orbital arguments because they knew the forcing was too small–and it is really tiny for some of the Milancovitch cycles.

  409. bender
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 9:40 PM | Permalink

    jae, what are you, the high priest of denialism?

  410. Boris
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 9:48 PM | Permalink

    [snip - please odn't get involved in fraud discussions. I've asked people not to do so.]

  411. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 9:55 PM | Permalink

    Re: Sam Urbinto’s comments

    The greenhouse effect is not simply the absorption of IR radiation, but also includes IR emission from the same molecules and degradation of the absorbed energy to heat by collisions warming the atmosphere. To only mention the absorption is misleading. While many discuss how the greenhouse effect warms the surface, a more basic point is that it warms the atmosphere, convection is nowhere near strong enough to account for the observed temperature of the atmosphere.

    Points to consider include

    1. The CO2 asymmetric stretch at 4 microns is in a region where thermal radiation is low (see the figure Urbinto pointed to). The most significant CO2 absorption is in the bend at ~14 microns, near the peak of 300K blackbody emission

    2. The strongest overlaps at 14 microns are with the H2O (that’s dihydrogen monoxide to you) rotational bands. The bands are strong, but the lines are widely separated, esp as compared to CO2 (have to put up a post on that), so water vapor does not completely blanket the CO2 absorption in this region. The figure is at very low resolution so this cannot be seen.

    3. Nitrous oxide has an overlap with CO2, but its concentration is about a thousand times smaller than CO2, so it must be taken into account but its effect is much less than CO2.

  412. Susann
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:07 PM | Permalink

    @Susann,
    Some science is driven by profit motives. These scientists file patents, get funding from entrepreneurs etc. They may also publish peer review articles in parallel.

    The result is, these scientists know peer review doesn’t do what other types or reviews do.

    Yes, you are correct of course — there is plenty of science that is driven by the profit motive and that is fine as far as it goes. Science is not just a tool to produce knowledge for its own sake, but to produce useful knowledge. The profit motive tends to find unique ways to put that knowledge to use creating useful consumables, products, etc. However, if science was only driven by the proft motive, we would lose out so much. There has to be a realm of pure science carried on for its own sake, IMO. Keep profit out of it to keep it pure. That doesn’t mean that it should be sloppy with data, etc. or lack standards. When I was studying science as an undergrad, that importance of ethics and method and data quality was driven home to us. We couldn’t use pencils in our lab notebooks — had to use “biro” to ensure we didn’t “correct” our data. :)

    I knew people were jumping to conclusions when they assumed you thought the profit motive was necessarily bad.

    The proft motive gave me this lovely laptop and so many other toys and food and the standard of living I enjoy. I don’t think it is necessarily bad at all. However, I’d be short-sighted and ideological if I thought it was the only means of achieving anything worthwhile.

  413. Steve H
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 10:16 PM | Permalink

    In the medical field, the “double blind” process has been adopted to prevent fraud.

    With the “double blind” method, one set of scientists will obtain the raw data. Another independent set of scientists will evaluate the data, but they have no idea what the actual data is about.

    How can we implement the “double blind” methodology of scientific analysis for the study of environmental data?

    Can a set of unknown data points produce the same scientific results?

    Can historical environmental data be with replaced with stock market numbers?

    Can historical environmental data be inverted and still be analysed?

    Raw numbers are only numbers, and the source or type of data should never matter.

    Is it even possible to analyse environmental data using the “double blind” method?

  414. Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:08 PM | Permalink

    re #417: How about putting that in a link next time?

  415. MarkR
    Posted Dec 11, 2007 at 11:23 PM | Permalink

    #414 Eli Rabett. My definition of the Greenhouse Effect is the time delay the atmosphere creates before the ultimate loss of heat energy to outside the Earths atmosphere. With this definition it is clear that the atmosphere, and that includes CO2 is not “creating” any heat or energy. The CO2 (along with any other atmospheric molecule) is merely a kind of buffer which obstructs the path of photons, and redirects the energy at a different wavelength, in turn creating a time delay before the heat energy is lost. No new energy is created.

    I would be interested to know of any paper which quantifies the additional atmospheric heat storage capacity (if any) provided by any change or addition of CO2.

    Steve: Mark R, it’s completely idle to put forward your own “definition of the greenhouse effect”. Please stick to definitions within the literature. As I’ve said many times, I want to discourage people simply advancing their own theories on phenomena that have been well studied. If you want to comment on published literature on the topic, that’s fine and disciplines the discussion.

  416. Filippo Turturici
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 1:57 AM | Permalink

    Sorry, Conard #419 not #418.

  417. Andrew H
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 2:08 AM | Permalink

    Boris
    You need a quick refresher in the study of ice ages. No one believed the earliest orbital arguments because they knew the forcing was too small–and it is really tiny for some of the Milancovitch cycles.

    What if climate was dominated by negative feedbacks. Wouldn’t none climatic forcing like convection have larger changes? Richard Lindzen states the only way the gulf stream to stop is if the wind is to stop. I wonder how Milancovitch cycles influences energy distributional through changes in wind patterns.

  418. Andrey Levin
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 2:52 AM | Permalink

    The most significant CO2 absorption is in the bend at ~14 microns, near the peak of 300K blackbody emission.

    by Eli Rabbet, #414

    Isn’t it the reason why AGW does not work over Antarctica?
    I mean Antarctica is too cold to emit thermal IR wavelength where CO2 (and WV) GHG effect is working.

  419. Hans Erren
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 3:33 AM | Permalink

    re 452:
    No Antarctica has temperature inversion, which results in a CO2 emission spectrum and not an absorption spectrum. Adding CO2 increases the outgoing radiation, hence antarctica will be cooling, when radiation is balanced….

  420. Tom Vonk
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 4:07 AM | Permalink

    You can already drop this one Sam because it is demonstrably wrong .

    “Fourth assumption: The global mean temperature anomaly reflects the energy balance of the planet.”

    Proof :

    The 3 main drivers of the energy balance are :
    – the kinetic , gravitationnal and rotationnal energy of the Earth
    – the incoming solar energy
    – the energy radiated by the Earth

    For simplicity we’ll assume that the first 2 are constant so don’t perturb the energy balance of the planet on the time scales we are considering .
    We’ll define the global mean temperature anomaly as the difference 1/T {Integral from 1 to T [1/S Integral over the sphere
    of Earth radius of T(x,y,R,t) dxdy]dt} – the same integral over some period T0 of reference that is a constant .
    In words it is the time average of a surface average minus some value of reference .
    The choice of the period of integration or of the value of reference is actually not important for what follows .
    Dimensionnaly this integral difference is a temperature .

    Now as the above value is defined for z = R (Earth radius) the corresponding energetical parameter is the energy radiated by the Earth surface .
    To do the same comparison with the same periods of reference as those that define the global anomaly , we therefore must compute the difference of radiated energy between the same periods .
    For the sake of clarity I stress again that it still implies that the first 2 energy drivers can be considered constant for T (period when I measure the actual temperatures) and T0 (period of reference) .
    The Earth surface radiates in a good approximation like a black body .
    So the energy radiated by an infinitely small surface in an infinitely small time dt is dE = sigma T(x,y,R,t)^4 dx dy dt
    We’ll set sigma = 1 to avoid typing .

    So the difference in the radiated energy between the 2 periods will be :
    1/T {Integral from 1 to T [1/S Integral over the sphere of Earth radius of T^4 (x,y,R,t) dxdy]dt} – the same integral over some period T0

    Because of the high non linearity of the radiation law (T^4) this last difference is trivially uncorrelated to the first (“global mean anomaly”).
    There would be correlation only and only if the body was isothermal and the time variations strictly periodical .
    I will refrain from farther discussion about approximations and other things that one could do to these last integrals in order to make them computable because it doesn’t change the conclusion .

    This result is so obvious and easily demonstrable that it should not be necessary to mention it again .

    There are many things that are poorly known or even unknown about the climate but among the things that are not only known but really sure with a (trivial) mathematical proof is the fact that the “mean global surface anomaly” is not correlated to energy balance .
    It is actually correlated to nothing physical (like energy , impulsion etc) what leads many physicians to consider that the “global temperature” is unphysical even if it is well defined mathematically as an arbitrary integral of a physical parameter T(x,y,R,t).

  421. JamesG
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 4:11 AM | Permalink

    “I wonder how Milankovitch cycles influences energy distribution through changes in wind patterns.”
    I’d been thinking the same. Imagine the tilting Earth causes a North-South wind to go South-North or vice-versa. You’d see cold regions go hotter and hot regions go colder and no change in radiation is necessary. We see this effect in radiative heat transfer modeling, where the secondary convective effects are usually far more important than the initial radiation – just moving the radiation source slightly can cause convection current reversals quite easily. The odd thing about core samples is that scientists usually assume that the evident cooling/heating events must apply to huge areas when in fact it is more likely to be just a local effect. Notice that a cooling Antarctic and a warming Arctic is entirely consistent with convective changes, but not with radiative changes and apparently there haven’t been ice ages at both poles at the same time. Ok there is apparent evidence that hemispheres have gone cold together but, of course, only isolated spots were tested and it was assumed that the effect applied to the entire hemisphere which is probably extrapolating too much.

  422. T J Olson
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 4:21 AM | Permalink

    GCMs.

    How well do these perform in modelling recent climate data, where we have the best, most comprehensive data? I have often wondered about this question.

    Here we have an answer and some analysis. The results do not find much if any GCM predictive skill.

    This study uses global satellite, balloon, and surface data to evaluate the degree of divergence – predicted versus actual – in temperature change of the atmostphere. The lead author, Dr. David H. Douglass from the University of Rochester, asks ‘Can the models accurately explain the climate from the recent past?’ “It seems that the answer is no.”

    “Models are very consistent in forecasting a significant difference between climate trends at the surface and in the troposphere, the layer of atmosphere between the surface and the stratosphere,” said Dr. John Christy, director of UAH’s Earth System Science Center. “The models forecast that the troposphere should be warming more than the surface and that this trend should be especially pronounced in the tropics.

    “When we look at actual climate data, however, we do not see accelerated warming in the tropical troposphere. Instead, the lower and middle atmosphere are warming the same or less than the surface. For those layers of the atmosphere, the warming trend we see in the tropics is typically less than half of what the models forecast.”

    The 22 climate models used in this study are the same models used by the UN Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change (IPCC), which recently shared a Nobel Peace Prize with former Vice President Al Gore.

  423. MarkW
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 5:17 AM | Permalink

    Paolo,

    Essentially atmosphere is stable and sinking motions are prevalent.

    Then how does CO2 and other gases get distributed evenly?

  424. MarkW
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 5:20 AM | Permalink

    lucia,

    So when somebody claims that the GCMs are based on first principles, they aren’t being accurate?

  425. MarkW
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 5:22 AM | Permalink

    Paolo,

    Doc answered my question. Water molecules just don’t behave like other molecules.

  426. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 6:07 AM | Permalink

    So when does this AGW kick in? Its a cold So. Cal this morning. Less than 40° Surf City USA. High school surf competition this morning for my step daughter. Poor kids. Poor me. We are not used to this stuff.

  427. Jim Clarke
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 6:14 AM | Permalink

    After reading yet another ‘the Arctic is Melting’ news story, I journeyed over to Cryosphere Today to get the latest on the Northern Hemisphere sea ice. I was a little surprised to find that the amount of sea ice supposedly declined slightly in the last weak; not just slowed its rate if increase, but actually declined! I decided to go thorugh each region to determine where this decline was taking place. I was even more surprised to see that nearly EVERY region indicated a decline in sea ice sometime over the last 3 weeks!

    Most surprising was the Arctic Basin region which showed the sudden loss of half a million square miles of sea ice right around December 1! How did this happen without any direct sunlight? The Hudson Bay region was one of the few areas not reporting a loss of sea ice during this period, but the anamoly graph still showed the rate of increase falling behind the climatological normals. This also surprised me because I was reading that Central Canada has had one of it’s coldest falls in many decades, with temperatures routinely staying well below 0 (F). Just how cold does it have to be around Hudson Bay to have a ‘normal’ accumulaton of sea ice?

    So here’s the question: Are we looking at an actual decline in sea ice, almost simultaneously over the entire Arctic Basin, while the sunlight fades to nothing, or are we seeing a glitch in the measuring.

  428. tpguydk
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 6:33 AM | Permalink

    I’d suspect a glitch in the measuring, given that the last ice extent map showed most of what had melted as frozen as of December 10th.

  429. jae
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 7:22 AM | Permalink

    [Steve - I'm very reluctant to have people advance their own theories or definitions of the greenhouse effect. The main features of CO2 infrared behavior are proven beyond any caviling. If you want to discuss a published article and criticize or endorse things in that article, fine, but please mo personal theories. I don't have time to engage such theories and, all too often, despite my explicit statements that I'm not responsible for posts here, I end up being held responsible elsewhere for all opinions and theories expressed here or for not commenting on them. jae - if you want to progress your theory, you also have to integrate your opinion within known literature and show exactly what's wrong with papers that arrived at an opposite point of view.]

  430. Phil.
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 7:57 AM | Permalink

    Re #437

    A blast of warm Pacific air at the end of November with associated strong winds was the culprit. It was related to the system that brought 100+mph to the Pac NW I think. The thin ice that has formed over the last month is very suceptible to break up by such systems.

    Check out:

    http://www.accuweather.com/news-blogs.asp?partner=accuweather&blog=andrews

    Scroll down to ‘Freak Arctic Weather’ and ‘Arctic warming’.

    http://www.cdc.noaa.gov/map/images/fnl/sfctmpmer_01a.fnl.anim.html

    Shows T anomalies for 1st week December.

  431. Tom Vonk
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:04 AM | Permalink

    So when somebody claims that the GCMs are based on first principles, they aren’t being accurate?

    Well there are actually not tons of first principles .
    – 3 conservation principles – energy , momentum , and angular momentum
    – add the equivalence principle and the relativity principle
    And that’s about it – 5 first principles .
    On a particular note , the quantum mechanics is based on the correspondence principle which is very obscure but well … it works .
    Via the Noether theorem we know that conservation laws correspond to symmetries in the relevant equations .
    So about everything in physics translates the 5 above mentioned principles in local differential equations whose solution give the states of the studied systems and their evolution in time .
    That’s true for everything from Navier Stokes through general relativity .

    Now as the GCM say that they respect the conservation principles what is the least what one would ask from a theory , one could say that they are indeed derived from the first principles .
    Looking at this claim a bit closer , it is not so sure that they actually RESPECT the conservation principles .
    The GCMs don’t solve the continuous equations what would guarantee the conservation laws , they solve discrete equations with certain spatial and temporal steps .
    Of course those discontinuous “solutions” depend on the step used while such an artificial and arbitrary parameter can’t impact the conservation laws .
    So while a certain discrete solution with a given step may conserve energy , it is not sure at all that they would do so for any step used .
    In order to have a reasonable confidence that they do so it would be necessary to prove that the discrete solutions uniformly converge to the continuous solutions or at least that the energy (momentum etc) stays bounded and converges when the step goes to 0 .
    Such results exist partly for Navier Stokes but let’s recall that the GCMs don’t solve Navier Stokes and go far beyond the sole fluid dynamics .

    That’s why the question about the “first principles” is not a very interesting one .
    Of course that GCMs are built on the basis of the first principles .
    However it is not proven that they respect them really and even if there may be strong doubts that they do , the problem can’t really be solved because nobody knows the continuous solution of the climate system and nobody ever will what in turn makes the question of uniform convergence undefined .

  432. Tom Vonk
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:33 AM | Permalink

    Jae #430

    Steve – I’m very reluctant to have people advance their own theories or definitions of the greenhouse effect. The main features of CO2 infrared behavior are proven beyond any caviling. If you want to discuss a published article and criticize or endorse things in that article, fine, but please mo personal theories. I don’t have time to engage such theories and, all too often, despite my explicit statements that I’m not responsible for posts here, I end up being held responsible elsewhere for all opinions and theories expressed here or for not commenting on them. jae – if you want to progress your theory, you also have to integrate your opinion within known literature and show exactly what’s wrong with papers that arrived at an opposite point

    Jae Steve is right .
    However as I could read your post before it was snipped , I’ll give you a direction to look .
    Be ALWAYS very wary of averages when you deal with physical phenomenons that are local and non linear .
    If Average (X) seems to be correlated to Average (Y) it doesn’t imply anything about X and Y (unless it’s linear)

    Dry and humid don’t correlate trivially to hotter and colder .
    Actually at the same latitude and under clear skies you will have generally dry is hotter than humid during the day and dry is much cooler than humid during the night .
    For explanation look more at latent heat than at infrared photons .

  433. tpguydk
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:38 AM | Permalink

    I guess this is the right thread for this question:

    I read an assertion at the ‘progressive’ site I hang out at that stated the Eemian Interglacial was only, on average, 1 degree C warmer then today. (Contained within the assertion was that it’s all worse, the worst warming is in the pipeline, and the world is essentially at an end, etc.)

    Would anyone have any papers/sites other then wikipedia where I can find proof or disprove the assertion?

  434. jae
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:43 AM | Permalink

    Tom: I have done that, but can say no more now.

  435. Tom Vonk
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:54 AM | Permalink

    Tom: I have done that, but can say no more now.

    OK , then you know why Sahara is much cooler than Haiti during a clear night .
    If I remember well , this theme was already mentioned (not very long because the orders of magnitude between latent heat and IR
    nergy absorbed/emitted by trace gases in the first meters of atmosphere are rather different) at Climate Science , R.Pielke’s site .
    So if you have time and patience , go over there and find this discussion .

  436. jae
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 9:13 AM | Permalink

    430: Steve Mc: Fair enough.

    if you want to progress your theory, you also have to integrate your opinion within known literature and show exactly what’s wrong with papers that arrived at an opposite point of view.]

    I think I have been doing that, but maybe I need to pick specific papers.

  437. jae
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 9:18 AM | Permalink

    Tom V, 436: That latent heat has nothing to do with temperature, until it is released.

  438. Larry
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 9:30 AM | Permalink

    437, no, not really. You’ve been completely blowing off the most basic of physics in favor of a completely contrived intuitive approach. In physics, you don’t just see a composite phenomenon, and develop a simple semi-quantitative theory to explain it; you decompose the problem into its elements first. And you don’t just get to declare something (i.e. greenhouse effect = heat capacity) because it makes some specious sense.

    See Feynman’s lecture on “cargo cult science”:

    http://wwwcdf.pd.infn.it/~loreti/science.html

  439. jae
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 10:02 AM | Permalink

    439: We will see…

  440. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 10:10 AM | Permalink

    @MarkW — 425

    So when somebody claims that the GCMs are based on first principles, they aren’t being accurate?

    Well… Since I already said the use of the term depends somewhat on context, it depends precisely on precisely what they say, and in what context! And, we’ll also see small words matter. :)

    I think I’m about to explain the difference with a model being based on first principles and its solutions being obtained directly from first principles. (I’ll use short hand and call the second “solving from first principles”.

    GCM’s models are based on first principles, but they are not solved from first principles of continuum mechanics and thermodynamics.

    GCM’s certainly certainly rely on conservation of mass, momentum, energy (first law of thermo). (I don’t think they do anything directly with the 2nd law of thermodynamics. That gets used in high Mach number flows, but rarely at low Mach number. ) They certainly include well accepted constitutive relations where required: e.g. the ideal gas law, fourier’s law, newtonian viscosity etc.)

    In this sense, they are based on first principles irst principles of continuum mechanics and thermodynamics. ( But you didn’t expect they were based on Old Testament scripture or the US bill of rights — which would be first principles of some other field, now did you?)

    The problem is: In the atmosphere (and the ocean, and the water distribution system in your home) flow is turbulent. You know flow is turbulent on earth– you fell gusts of wind right? You see storms, right?

    Because flow is turbulent, conservation of momentum means “The Navier Stokes Equations” (NS). On earth, we know numerical solutions from first principles require creating a grid that captures all turbulent fluctuations down to the smallest scales. (These scales are might also be called the ‘dissipative length scale’ or ‘the Kolmogrov scales’).

    Now… to give you an idea how small these are: Have you ever stood outside in a storm? Can you feel the gusts or variations in the velocity? The reason you can feel them is some of the gusts have length scales about your height! (You can’t feel much smaller ones because they are averaged out over your skin. The much larger ones feel like sustained winds.)

    So, taken literally, the term ‘solving from first principles’, requires capturing gusts that are 6ft lin length or even smaller.

    That would take such a whopping huge amount of computer power I don’t even need to scour the literature to to know GCM’s don’t dothis. :)

    So, GCM’s can be said to be informed by or based on by first principles. But first principles themselves tell us we cannot solve this system of equations from first principles using the grid sizes that permit computations.

    So, the equations that were initially based on first principles only are parameterized— that is, the system of equations are replaced by approximate forms. In particular, some parameterizations are introduced for some phenomena that are known to have significant effects. (You couldn’t, for example, neglect the phenomena you parameterized and get good results. You need the sub-model to get good results.)

    As soon as we introduce the approximations, we have deviated from first principles.

    When GCM’s are coded and run, approximate, parameterized equations are solved. So, GCMs predictions are not obtained by solving systems of equations formulated from first principles alone. They use parameterizations.

    The between “based on” and “solve from” distinctions matters because when we can solve transport equations from first principles only using no parameterizations and accounting for all relevant physics the results are unimpeachable.

    Solutions based on parameterizations informed by first principles are respectable and interesting. Some can give quite accurate results particularly when used in the very specific situations where the parameterization applies. Or, parameterizations could give quite inaccurate results depending on the quality of the parameterization itself or how it is used. (The inaccuracies may be too large to permit us to predict what we wish to predict.)

    So, if you recall, Tom said:

    That’s why the question about the “first principles” is not a very interesting one .

    The questions about whether or not GCM’s are based on first principles are truly uninteresting. The models are based on first principles, but not solve directly from first principles. Nobody who knows anything would argue about these two things.

    So, with regard to your question:

    So when somebody claims that the GCMs are based on first principles, they aren’t being accurate?

    Here’s context: if you ask about parameterizations and someone answers: “Models are based on first principles.”, and you say “but about those parameterizations ” and they repeat the whole “First principles …” thing, the words they choose to utter are true. They are also not an answer; this sort of response is an example of ‘Clintonesque’ evasion of the questions.

    If you only ask: “What are GCM’s models based on?” They might say the models are based on first principles: conservation of mass, momentum and energy.” That answer is perfectly accurate, as far as it goes. It’s not particularly evasive. (At a cocktail party, one would rarely volunteer more. Otherwise, one would bore other people sipping cocktails.)

    So. I’ve written a blog post long answer. Does this answer your question? :)

  441. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 10:30 AM | Permalink

    #395 Pat Keating:
    I was a little clumsy with my wording. Let me re-word a little bit:
    CO2 lagging is consistent with CO2 rising as a result of warming. It is not inconsistent with CO2 also contributing to the warming.

    The global temperature difference between glacial and inter-glacial periods is about 4.5degC (10-11degC at the poles). If I remember correctly, the estimates I’ve seen attribute deglaciation as ~60% solar and ~40% CO2. Regardless of the exact percentages, you have to admit that rising CO2 would contribute something to warming, even if the temperature sensitivity (S) to doubling CO2 is only 1 degC, the effect of CO2 increasing from 180ppm to 280ppm would be ~0.65 degC (14%). If S = 3degC, then CO2’s contribution is ~1.9degC (42%).

    =====
    #406 Mark T:
    I did not say it was inconsistent with CO2 acting rising due to temperature alone. See my clarification above.

    As for CO2 forcing temperature, the non-feedback temperature increase from doubling CO2 is ~1.1degC. That comes from MODTRANS. I don’t think that’s controversial unless you doubt the basic physics of the greenhouse effect (minus feedbacks). As SteveMc said in #430, “The main features of CO2 infrared behavior are proven beyond any caviling”. (To be clear, I’m talking about CO2 without feedbacks — the feedbacks are another issue).

  442. JamesG
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 10:42 AM | Permalink

    Tom: I’d add the principle of conservation of mass to that list – pretty much essential in fluid calcs. And I find the minimum total potential energy principle to be pretty useful in non-linear systems which is equivalent to the maximum entropy principle in thermodynamics. With the separate minimum energy principal too, ie the 2nd law of thermodynamics, I get 8.

    Admittedly, the GCM’s don’t seem to use these either. I’m not even sure if they use Stefan-Boltzmann for the radiation (which of course most other radiative heat transfer software relies on). I say that because of the RC crowd, William couldn’t spell “Stefan”, Rasmus got the equation wrong and Gavin didn’t seem to know it could be used for gray bodies too; thus ignoring all our sterling work in verifying emissivities. It explains a lot about climate models if the modelers themselves seem to know squat about radiation.

  443. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 10:45 AM | Permalink

    I appreciate you clarification, btw. A simple FIR filter (low-pass, high-pass, all-pass) will also provide sufficient phase lag that CO2 could continue to rise after temperature begins to fall.

    As for CO2 forcing temperature, the non-feedback temperature increase from doubling CO2 is ~1.1degC. That comes from MODTRANS.

    I.e, the model output is used to determine the sensitivity. This is the same standard circular argument that is offered without proof that such a mechanism indeed exists. A consensus of people that don’t understand system theory and openly admit they have no idea how to model water vapor and clouds, is hardly convincing.

    I don’t think that’s controversial unless you doubt the basic physics of the greenhouse effect (minus feedbacks).

    What basic physics? The only basic physics that is proven is which bands of the spectrum that CO2 can absorb.

    As SteveMc said in #430, “The main features of CO2 infrared behavior are proven beyond any caviling”. (To be clear, I’m talking about CO2 without feedbacks — the feedbacks are another issue).
    Besides the appeal to authority, Steve said the features of CO2 infrared behavior are proven, but that does not provide any indication of what happens in the atmosphere and how that can impact temperature. This is where the thermo folks get involved, which is beyond my scope (and the reason I don’t debate the topic… there are arguments for and against, and eventually, one will win). Keep in mind, w.r.t. to the latter comment, I don’t disagree that adding mass to the atmosphere will necessarily increase its heat carrying capacity, but we’re adding other things, too.

    Mark

  444. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 10:46 AM | Permalink

    Aw crap… quoted that wrong. The part that begins “As SteveMc said…” and ends “feedbacks are another issue)” should be block-quoted.

    Mark

  445. Larry
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 10:47 AM | Permalink

    Lucia@441 – it’s an uninteresting question, but nontechnical people are trying to evaluate how bulletproof these models are, and when someone says “based on first principles”, it give the impression that it’s rigorous. To sum up that whole long post, if it’s “based on first principles”, that isn’t the same thing as saying that it’s rigorous. I think that’s the kernel that everyone’s looking for.

  446. Michael Smith
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 10:59 AM | Permalink

    Lucia, thank you for post 441. That was very informative.

    And after reading that explanation, I have this question for John V. In 442, you wrote:

    As for CO2 forcing temperature, the non-feedback temperature increase from doubling CO2 is ~1.1degC. That comes from MODTRANS.

    Does MODTRANS derive that 1.1 deg c from “first principles”?

  447. Larry
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 11:08 AM | Permalink

    Actually, based on my understanding (corrections welcome), MODTRANS doesn’t calculate temperatures. It is a program originally developed by the USAF for calculating IR transmission through the atmosphere for IR vision and targeting systems. It’s only a small piece of the calculation needed to arrive at temperature increase, and it contains spectra tables that are questionable.

    Just because it runs on a computer doesn’t make it a magic infallible oracle.

  448. Larry
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 11:10 AM | Permalink

    Uhh….that’s actually MODTRAN.

  449. JamesG
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 11:10 AM | Permalink

    JohnV
    I guess from your calculations above, that you didn’t finally accept that water vapour feedback should be rather more important than CO2 feedback in the ice-age cycles (if the popular GCM estimates for feedback are to be believed that is). That’s ok – water has funny properties. Amplifying CO2 forcing but not amplifying solar forcing might be one of them. Not so likely but who knows? However you must surely admit that you are trying to flog (albeit in exalted company like Trenberth, Schmidt etc) the rather less obvious scenario. This kind of reasoning has a name – “confirmation bias”. Where’s the data? Need I refer to Lowell Stott’s findings again?

  450. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 11:11 AM | Permalink

    The answer we keep hearing is that “only XX CO2″ can make the models work properly. The problem with that is they fail to consider that the null hypothesis is “maybe the answer lies in one of the many factors we don’t understand very well, or simply something we have not addressed” (the latter being unknowns unknowns). Also, “work properly” tends to translate to “gives the result we want” which is inherently biased.

    Mark

  451. jae
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 11:12 AM | Permalink

    444, Mark:

    Besides the appeal to authority, Steve said the features of CO2 infrared behavior are proven, but that does not provide any indication of what happens in the atmosphere and how that can impact temperature.

    That’s also my view.

    “The main features of CO2 infrared behavior are proven beyond any caviling”. (To be clear, I’m talking about CO2 without feedbacks — the feedbacks are another issue).

    That is also my view. I am not caviling the main features of CO2 infrared behavior.

  452. Tony Edwards
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 11:13 AM | Permalink

    Referring back to the discussion of the Douglas et al. paper, on page 8 in section 4.2 they say “There is an enormous ongoing effort to find errors in the observations that would reduce the disagreement with the models.” They go on, but given that, in my view, reality trumps guesswork every time, shouldn’t the enormous ongoing effort be in the direction of getting the models to agree with reality, rather than the other way round?
    But, trust me, I’m a real climate scientist!

  453. JamesG
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 11:18 AM | Permalink

    BTW: To support JohnV this time. That 1 degree C number has been calculated by Lindzen. Lubos concluded the same. Schwartz calculated it too. It’s not controversial.

  454. yorick
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 11:19 AM | Permalink

    tpguydk,
    Nobody can even agree on the global temp 800 years ago. How anybody can know the temp from the last interglacial to the nearest degree is beyond me. It was almost certainly warmer in Greenland as recently as 5K years ago, by a LOT, by direct measurement, than it is today, and it stayed that way for thousands of years. One might wonder why the polar bears never aren’t extinct, and Greenland’s ice shelf didn’t collapse then.

    This is a local temp, and not subject to arguments about the global nature of the rise, because it is measured directly from the ice sheet itself.

    http://www.gfy.ku.dk/~kka/icecores_palaeoclimate.pdf

    Check out figure three, the long term one. There is similar data for Antarctica, it hasn’t melted yet either.

  455. Larry
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 11:24 AM | Permalink

    454, and Shaviv.

  456. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 11:26 AM | Permalink

    Regarding H2O feedback:
    I am definitely not denying its importance. Any temperature increase (regardless of the cause) will probably increase water vapour which will probably increase temperature further. It’s included as an amplifier in any heating — solar, GHG, continental drift, etc. It’s probably the dominant feedback on short time scales, and possibly on longer time scales as well. However, it’s most likely only an amplifier of other temperature forcings.

  457. tpguydk
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 11:27 AM | Permalink

    #455:

    Thank you for both the link and the answer, yorick

  458. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 11:39 AM | Permalink

    #423 T J Olson (and others):
    The Douglass paper is very interesting. It does seem to demonstrate that the 22 climate models do a poor job of simulating upper troposphere temperature trends. I have a concern with the way the results are presented (of course):

    The way the results are presented in the paper it looks like none of the models are even close. It compares the *mean* temperature trends for the 22 models against measured trends. That in itself is fine, but in showing the *range* of outputs it actually shows the expected range of the *mean*. For example, the range of the model trends at 700hPa is 58 to 223mC/decade with a mean of 177mC/decade. The paper plots 147 to 207mC/decade, which is the mean plus or minus 2sd of the mean.

    I did a quick correlation between all 22 models and the RATPAC observed temperature trends. Below I plotted the best 3 and worst 3:

    Compare this to the published plot reproduced on Lubos Motl’s blog: http://motls.blogspot.com/2007/12/douglass-christy-pearson-singer.html

    The range of model trends is still outside the observed temperature trends, but the best models (particularly NCAR-CCSM3) actually do quite well. That’s useful information that the modellers can use to improve some aspects of the models.

    Again, I’m not saying the models don’t have problems modelling the tropical upper-troposphere temperature trends. They obviously do have problems.

  459. MarkW
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 11:41 AM | Permalink

    I find it interesting that many of the same people who dismiss the fact that the US now appears to have been warmer in the 30’s than it is today, by arguing that the US is just one part of the globe, and the fact that it doesn’t show the same trends as the rest of the world is irrelevant.

    Are the same ones who argue regarding the MWP, that since the proxies that we have aren’t in complete agreement, this proves that there never was such a thing as the MWP.

  460. MarkW
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 11:45 AM | Permalink

    #457,

    That’s only true if it turns out that H20, is a positive feedback. There are several new studies that find that H20 is a negative feedback.

  461. steven mosher
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 11:51 AM | Permalink

    RE 448. You are correct sir. Also see LOWTRAN.

    Basically in order to design better IR sensors and steathier platforms the LOWTRAN, MODTRAN and
    HITRAN codes were developed and used.

    They were ( are) primarily used in the design phase. USAF would demand a IR signature model
    based on say LOWTRAN or MODTRAN. The IR signature of a moving platform is a combination of Aeroheating,
    Hot metal, and exhaust ( afterburning and non afterburning) different bands for each of these
    I think 3-5micron and 8-12 were the windows we looked at. It’s been over 20 years for me.

    Anyway, we would call these models “cookie cutter” models. They would capture gross phenomema pretty
    well. But the innacurracies of these models is fairly well documented. Basically, at some point
    you actually fly the plane or sensor ( missile) and you correlate the feild test with the design model.

    I havent looked at the online version of Modtran. Does it have anything other than a standard day atmos?

  462. Phil.
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 11:52 AM | Permalink

    Re #448

    What do you think is questionable about the MODTRAN spectra?

  463. yorick
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 12:00 PM | Permalink

    John V
    Do you know what the CAR-CCSM3 gives for CS?

  464. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 12:05 PM | Permalink

    RE: #428 – More adjustments?

  465. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 12:10 PM | Permalink

    RE: #457 – “will probably increase water vapour which will probably increase temperature further.”

    No.

  466. PaulM
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 12:12 PM | Permalink

    Steve, please can we have a thread for the Douglas, Christy… paper.
    Preferably with a introductory post from you.
    Boris could then offer us more of his expert opinion. He might even read the paper.
    The paper can be found at icecap.

  467. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 12:17 PM | Permalink

    @Larry–
    Yes. I agree. But, I’m always word-y-er. Also, I think it’s important for people who ask this (or get diverted by this claim) understand precisely why those specific words are a problem. If you don’t know precisely what is said and what it actually means, you can’t know your real question is not answered. I think just saying “Based on first principles” is not enough to help people who don’t know how either “rigor” or “first principles” are used.

    By “uninteresting question” I don’t mean it’s a bad question. The problem is I know why MarkW asked that question. I know how the “first principles” argument is being thrown ‘out there.’ Sometimes, that word is thrown around either
    a) When modelers create their own strawman question or argument and then argue against the strawmen or
    b) When modelers intentionally distort the question that was actually asked in order to answer a strawman. :)

    BTW, it’s not only GCM modelers who do this. This is a classic problem. I don’t even know if people who argue against the strawmen know they are doing it. I think often they don’t but sometimes they do. ( There are, btw skeptics who also resort to logical fallacies. But, I’m just sticking to MarkW’s issue.)

    The truth is: GCM’s are based on first principles. But the actual equations solved contain parameterizations. (There is also a pesky initial condition issue that occurred to me as I am going through two Hansen papers at my blog. ) The parameterizations (and the initial value issue) means the solutions do not not come directly from first principles.

    The other truth: Parameterizations can be fine. They are used in many fields, tested etc. They also can break– and quite badly.

    Anyway, because I know the “science” part of it obscures things for people who don’t know how transport phenomena are modeled, I’m trying to think of a good non-science analogy. I hope I won’t offend anyone, but I’m going to use the Pope!

    Suppose we were arguing whether or not the current Pope’s thinking about AGW is based on the New Testament. Many consider The New Testament a “first principle” from a religious point of view.

    Well… I think we can safely say that his thinking is somehow based on the New Testament. Yet, if someone asked

    “Is the Popes position of AGW based on the New Testament”. You’d probably say, “Huh?”

    One the one hand, the answer is clearly yes. If saying yes seemed to support some other argument, maybe you’d answer that. But… well, so?

    Other people could read the New Testament and come up with entirely different answers that would could also be “based on the New Testament”.

    Carnac predicts we shall read news stories telling us what the New Testament advises with regard to AGW over the course of the next few months. Some spiritual leaders will disagree with the Pope.

    The problem is direct application of the New Testament (or first principles) does not give a definitive answer to AGW. Matthew, Mark, Luke and John didn’t get any good quotes out of Jesus on this one. Paul didn’t volunteer his views. Neither the Ephisians nor the Corinthians asked.

    You need to do construct a bunch of “what ifs” answer them based on the New Testament and then assemble some big complicated kit-and-kaboodle “model” to get “the answer”.

    Parameterizations area a bit like “what ifs”. People don’t just pull them out of nowhere, but you can end up with a range of plausible answers, and in the end come up with different answers to the big questions of our day.

    So, in this some sense “Is the Popes position of AGW based on the New Testament” is an uninteresting question, because it’s not the right question to get the answer anyone probably seeks. In the same sense, “Are GCM’s based on first principles” is not the right question.

  468. Mark T.
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 12:18 PM | Permalink

    BTW: To support JohnV this time. That 1 degree C number has been calculated by Lindzen. Lubos concluded the same. Schwartz calculated it too.

    This might be true… I wasn’t drawing any specific conclusions.

    It’s not controversial.

    That, however, means nothing to me. Nearly all of the AGW claims are supposedly part of “consensus view” which implies they are not controversial, yet here we all are.

    Mark

  469. Larry
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 12:31 PM | Permalink

    468, that’s a rather good analogy, although I’m sure others are possible (and maybe simpler). Bottom line is that in both situations, you can lay out the case both ways, and come up with credible arguments, even though both arguments are based on that same underlying postulates. If this were a legal case, this would be the kind of case that ends up going to trial, because it’s not obvious a priori how it’s going to pan out. And in the end, when you do take an indeterminate case like this to trial, and a defensible opinion could be written both ways, so it ends up being determined by the judge’s prejudices.

    Hence the need to review the evidence with a fine toothed comb, before we end up with a ruling that we’ll regret.

  470. Jaye
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 12:55 PM | Permalink

    mosher #462

    EO/IR sensor modeling has come a long way in 20 yrs. I’ll just leave it at that.

  471. Jaye
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 1:00 PM | Permalink

    I find it interesting that many of the same people who dismiss the fact that the US now appears to have been warmer in the 30’s than it is today, by arguing that the US is just one part of the globe, and the fact that it doesn’t show the same trends as the rest of the world is irrelevant.

    Are the same ones who argue regarding the MWP, that since the proxies that we have aren’t in complete agreement, this proves that there never was such a thing as the MWP.

    That is astonishingly convenient isn’t it. Any true religious movement works better if one gets to make up stuff as one goes along.

  472. steven mosher
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 1:16 PM | Permalink

    RE 471. Cool. you dont have to flight test the sensors any more? That saves on money.
    I’m searching for the last SPIE report I read on the model limitations, but alas google
    is not helping this time around. Anyway, I wouldnt be suprised in advances and I would be suprised by remaining
    issues.

  473. Larry
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 1:23 PM | Permalink

    Notwithstanding, assuming that you have an impeccable radiative model, that’s not the only thing you need to calculate the non-feedback temperature rise. You also have to model the fluid mechanics of the troposphere, because convection is a parallel process to radiation in the troposphere. You can bracket it between two limiting cases; 1. radiation dominating, and 2. convection dominating, and then model radiation the rest of the way out. I don’t know if this has been done in one paper.

    Then you have to do feedback.

  474. tpguydk
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 1:24 PM | Permalink

    468, lucia, that was a great post. And I also happen to work with models that model transport phenomena (as in cars, trucks, trains, etc.). They are based on, and validated against, real data, however, they require tweaking and the user can change scenarios based on “what ifs” if necessary.

  475. jae
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 1:27 PM | Permalink

    Notwithstanding, assuming that you have an impeccable radiative model, that’s not the only thing you need to calculate the non-feedback temperature rise. You also have to model the fluid mechanics of the troposphere, because convection is a parallel process to radiation in the troposphere. You can bracket it between two limiting cases; 1. radiation dominating, and 2. convection dominating, and then model radiation the rest of the way out. I don’t know if this has been done in one paper.

    Then you have to do feedback.

    We do agree on some things!

  476. jae
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 1:47 PM | Permalink

    476: Incidently, Held and Soden’s paper which I linked above discusses this issue under “Radiative-Convective Models,” on p. 445. They also reference Ramanathan & Coakley, 1979, “Climate modeling through radiative-convective models,” Rev. Geophys. Space Phy. 16:465-89. These models come up with 1.7 C water vapor feedback. An important assumption for these models is that relative humidity is constant. That’s why I’ve been asking about this assumption.

  477. Jaye
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 2:03 PM | Permalink

    RE 473

    Cool. you dont have to flight test the sensors any more? That saves on money.

    I don’t recall saying that…less testing is more like it.

  478. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 2:04 PM | Permalink

    @Larry- I refuse to believe anything important happens between 0.01

  479. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 2:07 PM | Permalink

    Shoot! screwed by a less than sigh!
    @Larry- I refuse to believe anything important happens between 0.0001 < Kn < 10000. I vote for just neglecting that bit. This will make the math much more beautiful and elegant and also eliminate some ad hoc parameterizations. :)
    Others if you don’t have a clue what I mean, please disregard. It’s a joke. Larry probably gets it.

  480. Andrew H
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 2:13 PM | Permalink

    John v
    The global temperature difference between glacial and inter-glacial periods is about 4.5degC (10-11degC at the poles). If I remember correctly, the estimates I’ve seen attribute deglaciation as ~60% solar and ~40% CO2. Regardless of the exact percentages, you have to admit that rising CO2 would contribute something to warming, even if the temperature sensitivity (S) to doubling CO2 is only 1 degC, the effect of CO2 increasing from 180ppm to 280ppm would be ~0.65 degC (14%). If S = 3degC, then CO2’s contribution is ~1.9degC (42%).

    Those are assumptions. If the iris effect is real and glacial and inter-glacial period is driven by convention then the negative feed back will be the largest forcing. Simply put heat from the poles goes to the tropics where it is released through the clouds. As I understand there is reason to believe that the tropics have not change temperature much. Simply put the whole climate debate is based on the assumption that the climate is a positive feed back system based on information from ice cores. Is there any proxies that measure tropical temperature during an glacial and inter-glacial period, it would be interesting to find out if the tropics warmed during the glacial period.

    Clouds are considered a positive feedback in models. What if clouds a positive feedback when there is snow/ice covered ground then becomes a negative feedback when it get above freezing. Will proxies like ice cores really give you the right answer.

  481. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 2:21 PM | Permalink

    442 John V

    CO2 lagging is consistent with CO2 rising as a result of warming. It is not inconsistent with CO2 also contributing to the warming.

    Ok, I think we agree a little more today than yesterday.

    If I remember correctly, the estimates I’ve seen attribute deglaciation as ~60% solar and ~40% CO2.

    Perhaps — it’s all guesswork on how much. However, it is worth noting that Hansen’s GISS Model II is so CO2-fixated that CO2 corresponds to about 12C.

  482. yorick
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 2:26 PM | Permalink

    What kills me about the GCM arguments re glaciation and LIA and MWP and sod all else is that the GCMs are used to prove the assumptions that are fed into the GCMs. Last time we had this many circular arguments, it was because the “consensus” was that God would only use circles in the orbits of the planets since they were the “most perfect shape”. How many centuries was Astronomy set back?

    Instead of insisting that the “uncertainties” show that the measurments must be wrong, despite the diversity of sources, radiosonde, mulitple satallites, why not try to reproduce the observation with the models and see where that takes us. Stupid question, I know.

  483. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 2:34 PM | Permalink

    #482 Pat Keating:
    Are you saying that GISS Model II gives a temperature increase of 12C for CO2 increasing from ~180ppm to ~280ppm? Yikes. Do you have a reference?

    =====
    #483 yorick:

    GCMs are used to prove the assumptions that are fed into the GCMs

    The inputs and parameterizations to the GCMs are at a much lower level than the results, so I think you’re going a little too far here. I suppose your statement could be true in terms of cloud parameterization.

    Instead of insisting that the “uncertainties” show that the measurments must be wrong, despite the diversity of sources, radiosonde, mulitple satallites, why not try to reproduce the observation with the models and see where that takes us.

    I agree, and I suspect the modellers are trying.
    Some effort has to go towards reconciling the differences between the measurements, but I think it’s likely that the true temperatures are bracketed by the measurements from different sources.

  484. MrPete
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 2:35 PM | Permalink

    (Lucia et al – to display a less than sign, type & < ; — three characters (no spaces) — ampersand, less-than, semicolon

  485. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 2:39 PM | Permalink

    John V
    No, I’m saying that CO2 going from around 300ppmv (don’t have the exact value handy) down to 1ppmv corresponds to a GISS Model II drop in temperature of around 12C into an ice age. No reference, unpublished work.

  486. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 2:55 PM | Permalink

    RE: #486 – We’d certainly run into deep trouble at 90 PPMV, if not some higher value.

  487. steven mosher
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 2:55 PM | Permalink

    Hey JohnV do you have any references for the 5.35*ln(co2/co2i) equation? It works nicely for
    post 1974. Also, any simple way to pull out the volcanic contribution from the anomaly record?

  488. Hoi Polloi
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 3:02 PM | Permalink

    Arctic summers ice-free ‘by 2013′

    According Professor Wieslaw Maslowski

    Discussing the possibility for an open Arctic ocean in summer months, he told the meeting: “A few years ago, even I was thinking 2050, 2070, out beyond the year 2100, because that’s what our models were telling us. But as we’ve seen, the models aren’t fast enough right now; we are losing ice at a much more rapid rate.

    “My thinking on this is that 2030 is not an unreasonable date to be thinking of.”

    Former US Vice President Al Gore cited Professor Maslowski’s analysis on Monday in his acceptance speech at the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony in Oslo.

  489. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 3:04 PM | Permalink

    Here is a project for someone who has got the know how, but first an explaintion:

    While discussing what accounted for the differences in temperature between
    various planets such as Mercury, Venus and Earth it struck me that we do have a
    proxy means to determine whether or not climate change on Earth is affected by
    human activity. One of the prime drivers of climate on Earth is the sun for
    without it temperatures would be hovering around absolute zero. The IPCC has
    claimed that the sun’s variations in output are negligible and therefore not a
    variable to consider in climate change.

    Our neighbor, the Moon, on average shares the same orbital path and distance
    from the sun as Earth. The Moon therefore on average (annual) should receive
    the same solar insolation as the earth. Even though the Moon has a 28 day
    period of rotation compared to Earth’s 24 hours, the amount of insolation is
    the same regardless. The Moon with no atmosphere is said to have the following
    temperatures:

    http://www.solarviews.com/eng/moon.htm

    Mean surface temperature (day) 107°C
    Mean surface temperature (night) -153°C
    Maximum surface temperature 123°C
    Minimum surface temperature -233°C

    Now doing some rough math using the data supplied I get the following: The GAT
    for the Moon is – 23 C ( – 9.4 F) and if the GAT for the Earth is 13.9 C (57
    F), that means roughly 36.9 C (66.4 F) difference that is attributable to the
    atmosphere.

    In order to come up with these “mean”, “minimum” and “maximum” temperatures,
    someone has taken periodic measurements of the Moon’s surface temperatures and
    maintained a data base. Does anyone have access to this data and can we get
    someone to run a time series in order to compare the annual change in GAT of
    the Moon to the GAT of the Earth? If the changes in GAT are similar showing
    coincident peaks and troughs, then solar output is a significant variable. The
    amount of change will obviously be different due to the Earth’s atmosphere’s
    ability to retain heat, but the timing of the change should be close or show a
    time lag due to the flywheel effect.
    —————–
    Reply from Dr. Pielke:
    This paper is relevant to your question.

    http://www.geo.lsa.umich.edu/~shaopeng/Huang07ASR.pdf

    Best Regards

    Roger
    ————-
    The paper has data from 1972 to 1975. I emailed Mr. Huang to see if there was more available. Waiting on his reply.

    If the Moon’s temperatures fluctuate on an annual (year over year basis) average basis then the only source of that fluctuation is the sun. If the Moon’s temperatures fluctuate, then Earth’s must also.

    The paper shows a seasonal variation which is due to the orbital influence on
    temperature on the Moon due from Earth’s non circular orbit around the sun.
    Earth is closer to the sun in it’s orbit in winter, than in summer. As a
    result, the Moon’s seasons as it were track the Southern Hemisphere. What is
    also extremely interesting is the 1.5 degree K drop in the minimum over the
    same period. So in effect, the temperature swing on an annual basis can be 5
    degree K. The only reason why the Northern Hemisphere has winter at this point
    of the orbit is due to obliquity.
    ——————

    In the meantime I found a potential data set on the Moon’s temperature.

    Here we go on the data from Christian Monstein:

    http://www.monstein.de/astronomypublications/MoonEnglishHtml/Moon2001V2.htm

    Phoenix-2 radiospectrograph at Bleien observatory

    http://www.astro.phys.ethz.ch/cgi-bin/showdir?dir=observations

    The data is in a gzip file format which I don’t have the program. Now we need some enterprising person who
    can crunch the numbers. Any takers????

  490. Andrey Levin
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 3:05 PM | Permalink

    Re#420, Hans Erren:

    Thanks for the graphs. I’ve seen them before, but did not connect the dots.

    Antarctica has temperature inversion, which results in a CO2 emission spectrum and not an absorption spectrum. Adding CO2 increases the outgoing radiation

    So, why on Earth anyone expect AGW to warm Antarctica? GCM applying “average global temperature” and “global radiative balance” to Antarctica?

  491. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 3:16 PM | Permalink

    487 SteveS
    Yes. The run was made that way to determine just how big a CO2 factor was built into the model. Incidentally, the average absolute humidity went down to 40% of its modern value.

  492. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 3:17 PM | Permalink

    #486 Pat Keating:
    Thanks for the clarification. That’s an unusual experiment though. 300ppm to 1ppm is about 8.2 “halvings”. If the logarithmic pattern for doublings works for “halvings” all the way down to 1ppm (which is probably not likely), then this result would indicate a temperature sensitivity of roughly 12C/8.2 = 1.5C/doubling. That’s actually on the low end.

    Did you run Model II yourself? What does it give for doubling CO2 from 300ppm to 600ppm?

    =====
    #488 steven mosher:
    I don’t have a reference for that equation — where did you see it?
    It corresponds to a temperature sensitivity to CO2 doubling of 3.7degC. That is, it’s the same as 3.7*log2(C/Ci). (But I’m sure you already knew that).

    Tamino did a post that included a way to remove volcanoes from the anomaly record:

    http://tamino.wordpress.com/2007/10/16/many-factors/

  493. Jeff A.
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 3:25 PM | Permalink

    Why are scientists even calling the warming effect of the earth’s atmosphere a “greenhouse” effect? It most decidedly is not. A greenhouse works by preventing heat convection out of the confined space due to glass (or whatever material) panes. The atmosphere warms due to the absorption of radiation, both directly from the sun and by reflected radiation off the earth’s surface. It’s not even a good analogy to say it’s “like a greenhouse.”

  494. Tony Edwards
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 3:26 PM | Permalink

    yorick, that’s more or less what I asked in #453, but I agree. Stupid question

  495. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 3:43 PM | Permalink

    >> A greenhouse works by preventing heat convection out of the confined space due to glass (or whatever material) panes.

    Actually, that’s not the distinguishing characteristic of a greenhouse. It’s merely a necessary pre-requisite. The distinguishing attribute of a greenhouse is that it lets radiation in, but not out. Our atmosphere is like that. It also meets the pre-requisite, since there is no convection with space. By your definition, a brick building could be a greenhouse, since it also blocks convection.

  496. steven mosher
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 3:57 PM | Permalink

    RE 493 Thanks on the tamino post.. I knew I saw it somewhere!

    the 5.35 ln…

    http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/research/seasonal/global/pdf/global_temp_2007.pdf

    but I’m pretty sure I’m doing something wrong. better read some more.

  497. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 4:48 PM | Permalink

    493 John V

    Did you run Model II yourself? What does it give for doubling CO2 from 300ppm to 600ppm?

    1. Yes.
    2. I haven’t tried that run yet. I will when I get time. I don’t think the model uses a logarithmic expression for CO2 because it didn’t barf on 0ppm.

  498. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 4:53 PM | Permalink

    494 496

    Actually, Gunnar, it is generally accepted that the real greenhouse operates as Jeff A describes, and that IR absorption does not play a significant role. Even the AGW supporters generally accept that.

  499. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 4:55 PM | Permalink

    Random Team paper:
    Earth’s Energy Imbalance: Confirmation and Implications (Hansen et al. 2005)

    Various folks. Why would you say water vapor is either a positive or negative feedback? Depends on where it is and what else is around.

    Ceteris paribus is a phrase that pays.

    Jeff A “Greenhouse effect” is just a phrase. Wikipedia sez

    “The greenhouse effect is the process in which the emission of infrared radiation by the atmosphere warms a planet’s surface. The name comes from an incorrect analogy with the warming of air inside a greenhouse compared to the air outside the greenhouse.”

    Andrew H Yep, lots of assumin’ goin’ on here. The whole subject is one big one.

    Jae Ah, the assumption there’s that a 1.7 C wv feedback being based on modeling the humidity as a constant. So what does that say about the model vs reality?

    Mark T. Some things are in such wide agreement as to be undebateable. I would tend to agree 1.1 C is one of them. Doesn’t make it true, but when so many folks calculate the same number… But regardless, it’s it’s an accepted number that can be used as a reference, correct or not; like assuming iid for certain statistical issues, regardless if the reality involves samples that are iid or not. But you make a great point in #451 about the null hypothesis (versus the AGW hypothesis). Regardless on the 1.1, it doesn’t matter, because CO2 it can’t be removed from the forcing and positive/negative feedback aspects of the system on its own anyway, so it’s meaningless.

    Tom Vonk You’re missing the point of making the assumptions I think. I’ve already made it clear I doubt the anomany has a meaning even if accurate. I made the assumptions for two reasons; to get to the discussion of what can effect the energy balance and to show that lots of assumptions have to be made to get there. Then the questions would be, if the anomaly isn’t the energy balance, is the anomaly even important, regardless of what’s causing it. And then the debate on what’s causing it becomes moot, anyway. Even if you could figure things out other than by using a model that also makes a lot of assumptions and is far too simplistic a way to look at this all. Your explanation is a better way of what’s obvious about the mass of the entire atomosphere, land and of the planet having its energy balance energy balance from temperature samples of water surface and air. But I don’t know of any other proxy we can use to operate from. So. It’s all we got. (Poor argument, but true. Gotta have something to go on to learn more.)

    Eli Rabett I don’t remember saying all there was is absorbtion. I sometimes limit my discussion to the absorbtion bands. You make a perfect point, there’s a lot more going on in the system. Actions, reactions and interactions is what I said. And “specific mixture of nitrogen, oxygen, water vapor, argon, carbon dioxide, methane, ozone et al, and how those react to each other and the clouds and particulates and IR at each level. ” (If I’ve said wv I mean co2 only absorbs someplace, I retract it.)

    CO2 absorbs IR photons that are at the frequency bands of varying sizes centered around about 2, 3, 3.5 and 18 micrometers (At least according to the atmospheric radiation transfer graph I’m using). These are the frequencies where molecular vibrations (stretching and bending oscillations) occur. Wikipedia sez elsewhere “it absorbs infrared radiation at wavelengths of 4.26 µm (asymmetric stretching vibrational mode) and 14.99 µm (bending vibrational mode)”

    As far as re-emission, it depends on what it’s colliding with as to what wavelength it transmits (emits, radiates).

    cross sections of electron collisions nist.gov/data/PDFfiles/jpcrd620.pdf

    Susann No problem, SS, SU… I didn’t even notice it at first anyway.

  500. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 4:58 PM | Permalink

    #498 Pat Keating:
    The models probably use a simplified version of MODTRAN (or similar) to calculate the radiative effects of changing concentrations. The logarithmic temperature sensitivity would come out of this. I doubt that the logarithmic effect works all the way down to 1ppm — it’s most likely valid for a limited range of concentrations.

    I think I’ve seen Model II climate sensitivity values of about 4degC for doubling CO2. I can’t find a a reference though.

  501. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 5:23 PM | Permalink

    Do we need to argue about the definition of a greenhouse?

    A greenhouse is a structure with a glass or plastic roof and frequently glass or plastic walls; it heats up because incoming solar radiation from the sun warms plants, soil, and other things inside the building. Air warmed by the heat from hot interior surfaces is retained in the building by the roof and wall. These structures range in size from small sheds to very large buildings.

    The glass used for a greenhouse works as a selective transmission medium for different spectral frequencies, and its effect is to trap energy within the greenhouse, which heats both the plants and the ground inside it. This warms the air near the ground, and this air is prevented from rising and flowing away. This can be demonstrated by opening a small window near the roof of a greenhouse: the temperature drops considerably. This principle is the basis of the autovent automatic cooling system. Greenhouses thus work by trapping electromagnetic radiation and preventing convection. Miniature greenhouses are known as a cold frame.

    Or the technical page

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_greenhouse_%28technical%29

  502. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 5:23 PM | Permalink

    Hansen et. al 1988 says the climate sensitivity of GISS II is 4.2C for a doubling of CO2. I’m looking at this and a followon papers, right now, but I”m trying to find a few numbers to make some figures to support a few comments.

  503. steven mosher
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 5:31 PM | Permalink

    RE 498..Well, there would be a check to make sure it didnt puke on zero.
    ( he said with no evidence whatsoever)

    Can you run it with C02= 280 from 1850 to present?
    With no variation in solar, and no variation in aerosals?

    Just wondering what the numerical drift is under constant inputs

  504. Larry
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 5:39 PM | Permalink

    498, 501, FWIW, I saw somewhere (don’t remember where) that Hansen took the model results and regressed them to an equation with the log of a quadratic. So the model results probably resemble that, though I saw no R^2.

  505. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 5:59 PM | Permalink

    I think the answer is unknowable, if there even is an answer. We just have a model that makes assumptions, and we end up with a non-quantified guess at something too complex to understand with any kind of certainty.

    So, some thoughts.

    http://www.windows.ucar.edu/tour/link=/earth/climate/greenhouse_effect_gases.html

    Water vapor is the most important GHG. Along with small water droplets in clouds, it produces somewhere between 66% and 85% of the greenhouse effect. The water (or hydrologic) cycle describes the movements of water through the Earth system. About 90% of the water in the atmosphere gets there as a result of evaporation; most of the remaining 10% comes from evapotranspiration. Roughly 95% of evaporation comes from the world’s oceans. Water vapor in the atmosphere condenses to form the tiny droplets in clouds or freezes to form ice crystals; precipitation in the form of rain, snow, sleet, hail, and so on removes the water from the atmosphere. The average “residence time” for a water molecule in the atmosphere is a surprisingly brief nine days. We’ll examine the role of the water cycle in climate further in the readings about “Global Warming, Clouds, and Albedo” and “Aerosols, Cloud Nucleation and Global Dimming”, as well as in the second week of the course which covers the hydrosphere.

    How do you model any of that even? Heck, you take out X and it’s y%, you only have X and it’s z% Anything more than an estimate of “maybe” is not possible. Only the search for better knowledge of what we do understand is possible.

    Why would an anomaly of +.7C be anything to worry about? Maybe it is, maybe it isn’t.

    Maybe this is more important to pay attention to. But can we qualify or quantify it?

    Air pollution comes from many different sources. Natural processes that affect air quality include volcanic activity, which produce sulfur, chlorine, and ash particulates, and wildfires, which produce smoke and carbon monoxide. Cattle and other animals emit methane as part of their digestive process. Even pine trees emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs).

    There are many forms of air pollution that are human-made. Industrial plants, combustion-fired power plants and vehicles with internal combustion engines generate nitrogen oxides, VOCs, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide and particulates. In most megacities, such as Mexico City and Los Angeles, cars are the primary source of these pollutants. Stoves and incinerators, especially ones that are coal or wood-fired, and farmers burning their crop waste produce carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, as well as particulates. Other human-made sources include aerosol sprays and gases leaking from refrigeration systems, as well as fumes from paint, varnish, and other solvents. Additional pollutants, like ozone and acids, are made in the atmosphere when human-made gases combine chemically.

    One important thing to remember about air pollution is that it doesn’t stay in one place. Winds and weather play an important part in transport of pollution locally, regionally, and even around the world, where it affects everything it comes in contact with.

    Sure. Sort of. Turn your oven on to .0056 C per year and leave it on 125 years. How do you feel? Then, Breathe from a bag you just sprayed a can of paint into for 5 minutes. How do you feel?

    I am quite aware N2O only has a .15 watts per square meter radiative forcing. And? It still doesn’t change the fact that these are estimates (model or not, who cares), as I’ve pointed out in my link to the modeled radiative forcing graph. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Radiative-forcings.svg

    Notice the error bars? What if the RF of CO2 is 1.5, the other gases (minus ozone) 1.0, ozone a forcing in both strat and tropo at ~.75, strat wv .25, land use at .25, aerosols at -.25 and -.25 and irradiance at .5

    And this ignores so many things, least of which is WV.

  506. Philip_B
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 6:14 PM | Permalink

    RE: “The enormous ongoing effort to find errors in the observations that would reduce the disagreement with the models.”

    I find the assumption that the errors are in the data rather disturbing. In the context of the models, the primary purpose of more and better data should be better testing and hence identification of errors and other problems in the models. More and better test data always throws up far more errors than people anticipate. For software of the size of these models we are talking about hundreds of errors.

  507. Larry
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 6:24 PM | Permalink

    506, the fact that they can’t pin down the the percent contribution of H2O to the GHE more accurately than 66-85% (and I’ve seen estimates outside of that range) is kind of disturbing. This is what passes for “settled science”?

  508. ShauneS
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 6:36 PM | Permalink

    Since we are starting to use Einsteins theories … I would like to propose the Climatology Theory of Relativity. The amount of Global Warming is constant regardless of the frame of the Climatologist observer. The Mannian transformations (…sorry Lorentz…) are used to understand the connection between warming and the historical proxies.

  509. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 7:07 PM | Permalink

    #508 Larry:
    The reason the effect of water vapour can not narrowed further is because it depends on how you ask the question. The absorption bands for different gases overlap, so there are many ways to ask the question. Do you remove the H2O and leave everything else? Do you remove everything else and leave the H2O? The results are different.

  510. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 7:10 PM | Permalink

    I’d like to see some references for the the “enormous ongoing effort to find errors in the observations that would reduce the disagreement with the models”. Where is the “assumption that the errors are in the data”?

    It’s clear that the models are being improved to better match observations. It’s true that the observations are being looked at to make them more consistent with each other.

  511. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 7:35 PM | Permalink

    #499, Pat, I stand by what I wrote in #496. What Sam quoted in 502 is exactly correct. Blocking convection is an attribute of every house, therefore it cannot be a distinguishing attribute of a greenhouse.

    >> Even the AGW supporters generally accept that.

    Of course, since they originated the distortion. Their argument is hurt by the greenhouse concept.

  512. jae
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:06 PM | Permalink

    No, Gunnar, Wiki is wrong on this one. Build two greenhouses, one out of glass, and one out of NaCl, which allows all IR to come and go. Shield the NaCl one with glass to keep the same amount of IR out that the glass greenhouse does. This way you have the same amount of solar radiation going into both greenhouses. You will see no temperature difference between the two, even though the NaCl one lets all the IR back out. The real greenhouse effect is simply a reduction in convection.

  513. bender
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:11 PM | Permalink

    It’s clear that the models are being improved to better match observations.

    It’s clear the models are being retuned to better match past observations.
    It’s not clear the models are being improved to better match future observations.
    John V, have you read Leonard A. Smith? You should.

  514. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:26 PM | Permalink

    http://www.lse.ac.uk/people/l.smith@lse.ac.uk/

  515. bender
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:29 PM | Permalink

    duke, I’ve been trying to post a comment on him all day, but for some reason it won’t take. thanks.

  516. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:30 PM | Permalink

    bender:
    I’ll try to find the time for Leonard A. Smith.
    Can you provide a link to a specific paper?

    To be fair, new models are more than just “re-tuning” of old models.

  517. bender
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:33 PM | Permalink

    John V, it’s gold bars vs. the enitre planet. You can find the time.

  518. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:35 PM | Permalink

    My pleasure, bender.

    I found this also:

    http://www.lse.ac.uk/people/l.smith@lse.ac.uk/publications.htm

  519. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:36 PM | Permalink

    @bender– 513
    Likely both tuning and real improvements are going on.

  520. bender
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:39 PM | Permalink

    John V, lucia,
    I agree that they are attempting to improve the models. I’m just spoiling for a fight tonight :(

  521. bender
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:42 PM | Permalink

    Re #518
    He has published twice with Hansen. He knows from whence he speaks.

  522. Philip_B
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:43 PM | Permalink

    John V, I was quoting from an earlier post.

    Referring back to the discussion of the Douglas et al. paper, on page 8 in section 4.2 they say “There is an enormous ongoing effort to find errors in the observations that would reduce the disagreement with the models.”

  523. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:47 PM | Permalink

    RE: #25 – Unforeseen negative feedbacks.

  524. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:49 PM | Permalink

    Smith, 1997:

    http://www2.maths.ox.ac.uk/~lenny/fermi96_main_abs.html

  525. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 8:52 PM | Permalink

    My last word on this is a quote. “Greenhouses thus work by trapping electromagnetic radiation and preventing convection.”

    ———————————–

    Gunnar, I like the analogy of solar radiation warming the things in the building, but then the heat can’t get out. It rather goes without saying that if you have a building where you turn on the stove, the building stops the heat from getting out. It doesn’t matter the source of the heat; if a structure stops it from getting out (more than it lets the outside get in) it stops heat from getting out.

    But let’s not postulate that the walls are made of cheese, please!

    —————————

    Larry, your comment on “66-85%” says it all. Sure, H2O as a gas is short lived. Sure, it’s not as “strong” as CO2. Sure, there’s only 400% more by weight in the atmosphere. Of course water is only the primary absorber of energy on earth in gas liquid and vapor forms and simply moderates the entire system and is a forcing and a negative feedback and a positive feedback. Water, hah, I laugh at it. It has no bearing on climate whatsoever.

    ——————–

    John V, you are correct and incorrect. Most things are different, remove vs only. I believe CH4 and N2O are both the same number if you remove them or leave them (others, I forget). But this is true, if ModelE is correct, about the others http://www.giss.nasa.gov/tools/modelE/

    Remove H2O = 64% absorption by the others
    Have only H2O = 66% by itself
    Remove O3 = 97% absorption by the others
    Have only O3 = 7% by itself
    Remove H2O and clouds = 34% absorption by the others
    Remove H2O and CO2 = 47% absorption of the others
    Take away none? WOW!!!! 100%
    Take away it all? WOWOWOWOWWOWWWW!!!!! 0%

    This is supposed to tell us something?

    ————–

    Jae, you’re forgetting the concept of Ceteris Paribus. Can you be run over in an airplane? Sure, if somebody smuggled a car onto the plane, or if one falls out of another plane above you and lands on top of you in your airplane. Salt, sugar, glass, plastic, whatever.

    ——————————-

    Lucia, CO2 can’t be coupled with a temp trend…..

    If it could (for the sake of argument!) a doubling of CO2 would be 2.1C (1880-2005 +33%=+.7C). A 200% would be 4.2C

    So what GISS II says is meaningless nonsense. Not science.

    YMMV

  526. trevor
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 9:13 PM | Permalink

    Thats pretty clear isn’t it Sam?

    Treating these data points as x,y pairs shows that it appears that you need an increase in CO2 of around 6-10 ppmv CO2 per decade just to maintain temperature. Let CO2 increase fall to just 2 ppmv CO2 per decade, and temperatures will fall. At CO2 increases of 14 ppmv CO2 per decade and above you get significant warming.

    There is probably an equation that expresses that, and I have had a go after brushing up my basic algebra at http://www.wtamu.edu/academic/anns/mps/math/mathlab/int_algebra/int_alg_tut15_slope.htm

    The graph I drew crosses the x intercept at -0.16 deg C and the y intercept at 9 ppmv CO2. If my maths is correct, the equation is y = 55x + 9, or x = (y-9)/55 where x is T expressed in deg C per decade and y is ppmv CO2 per decade.

    If this is right, then it says that all we have to do to maintain temperatures at current levels is hold CO2 increases to 9 ppmv per decade. If that is right, then it seems that the issue isn’t so much the quantum of CO2 increase as the rate.

    On the other hand, if we were to double atmospheric CO2 levels by 38 ppmv per decade (doubling of 380 ppm over 100 years), then the corresponding temperature increase would be 0.53 deg C per decade, or 5.3 deg over the next 100 years. :-)

  527. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 9:18 PM | Permalink

    504 Steve M
    I’m back from a dinner party.
    Yes, I can run that, and will do so when I get the chance.

    511, 512
    A greenhouse has a glass roof which let’s the sun’s energy in, that’s how it is different from a regular house.
    The experiment jae describes was carried out by a Brit scientist named Wood, back in 1909 (I think, don’t hold me to that date) and published Proc. Royal Soc.

  528. jae
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 9:58 PM | Permalink

    525: Yes, and the whole troposphere can be viewed as a really large glass greenhouse, except that there is no limit on convection. There is no “trapping” of IR going on. HOH and CO2 are just like the glass in a greenhouse; they intercept the IR, but that has nothing to do with heating the inside of the greenhouse. Convection rules. It really is that simple, IMHO.

  529. bender
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 10:17 PM | Permalink

    Hey John, welcome back!

  530. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 10:33 PM | Permalink

    bender:
    I hesitate to ask since you’re “looking for a fight”, but here goes:

    1. Gold bars vs the entire world?
    2. LA Smith papers to get me started? (“What might we learn from climate forecasts?” seems like a good one)

  531. bender
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 10:41 PM | Permalink

    #529 John V
    1. You haven’t seen AIT? Gasp! You ARE John A’s sock puppet. Kidding :)
    2. theduke already gave you a page full of them. Yes – definitely start with that one.

  532. John Creighton
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 10:43 PM | Permalink

    Cool, I’m remembered here. I’m glad to see some familiar faces. :)

  533. Geoff
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 10:48 PM | Permalink

    Re: Leonard Smith (bender, theduke, JohnV comments)

    Interesting quote from one of his recent Nature publications:

    Six of these model versions show a significant cooling tendency in the doubled-CO2 phase. This cooling is also due to known limitations with the use of a simplified ocean (see Supplementary Information) so these simulations are excluded from the remaining analysis of sensitivity.

    Ref: “Uncertainty in predictions of the climate response to rising levels of greenhouse gases”, D. A. Stainforth, T. Aina, C. Christensen, M. Collins3, N. Faull, D. J. Frame, J. A. Kettleborough, S. Knight, A. Martin, J. M. Murphy, C. Piani, D. Sexton, L. A. Smith, R. A. Spicer, A. J. Thorpe and M. R. Allen; Nature 433, 403-406 (27 January 2005) | doi:10.1038/nature03301; Received 4 November 2004; Accepted 20 December 2004

    Is that tuning?

  534. bender
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 10:49 PM | Permalink

    No. Cherry-picking.

  535. Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 10:52 PM | Permalink

    #530 bender:
    I did see AIT, once, on video.
    I don’t get my science from politicians.

  536. bender
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 11:03 PM | Permalink

    Well, then, you remember the scene where he had the balance with gold bars on one side and the entire planet on the other, suggesting action on GHGs was a moral decision?

  537. PaddikJ
    Posted Dec 12, 2007 at 11:48 PM | Permalink

    Glad to see “The Practice of Science” discussion revived above, since I missed the middle of this un-thread.

    My completely unoriginal take, often posted here & at other climate blogs, is that one of the big reasons for the contentiousness of the AGW thing is money – lots of it. Private sector Engineers are accustomed to merciless auditing of their work – if some consortium lays out $100M or more for a refinery or mining operation, it damn well better work. My guess is that the peer-review process in academic research is not nearly as harsh, and academic scientists have perhaps been taken aback by the intrusion of private sector review methods into their “collegial” world (ironic quotation because I spent enough time in academe to witness some unsavory bickering & back-biting).

    But I didn’t throw down my 2 cents just to re-state the obvious – I have a few related and long-standing curiousities. I wish I had the time to delve into these, but I don’t, and I don’t have a research background. But it appears that Susann the newly-arrived policy wonk does, so:

    Claim: There is tremendous pressure in academe & other public-sector institutions to toe the AGW party line. Dissenters are rewarded with overt hostility and funding cut-offs (my sources: Lindzen, Michaels, Pielke Jr.). Verify, quantitatively if possilble (ie: follow the money).

    Hypothesis: AGW has been the growth industry in public-sector science for the last 15 years or so. It has developed a powerful inertia. Prove or disprove, quantitatively if possilble (ie: follow the money).

    For the present discussion, I am interested only in how the above-mentioned issues have affected public-sector research, at least as far as can be disentangled from a burgeoning AGW industry in the private sector. For the latter, The Nation’s Alexander Cockburn – whose leftist creds are bullet-proof – smelled a rat, followed the money, and wrote a stinging series of articles last Spring.

    Any interest, anyone? (Susann?)

  538. peter
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 12:01 AM | Permalink

    trevor in #29

    It ought not to be linear. The effectiveness of CO2 increases falls off exponentially, so if you go from 300 to 400ppm it has far more effect than going from 500 to 600. I don’t know the formula. But temp rises should follow the same pattern unless there are complicated and non-linear feedbacks.

  539. JamesG
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 4:30 AM | Permalink

    JohnV/H2O feedback
    “It’s probably the dominant feedback on short time scales, and possibly on longer time scales as well. However, it’s most likely only an amplifier of other temperature forcings.”
    If solar was a forcing in the past then H2O would be an amplifier, by your own logic, which means that if the H2O heating effect is really 3 times that of CO2 then the CO2 effect was minimal in the past (where H2O feedback came first). However, you clearly include or exclude parameters, based only on biased guesses, in order to obtain a “CO2 rules” scenario, aided by a magic water vapour feedback that is important short term but unimportant long term. All the while ignoring Lowell Stott’s real data which disproves said scenario. You then have the cheek to talk about the error bars on other peoples work! Have you ever considered stepping back a bit and actually thinking about things in an unbiased way? That is, be scientific about it!

  540. Phil
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 4:48 AM | Permalink

    (John V)Your comments on climate sensitivity treat it as an input to the models. It is in fact an output that arises from running a model with its various assumptions and parameterizations.

    Actually isn’t our argument here that it’s both input and output – that CO2’s effect on climate is taken as an assumption to feed into a model which then assesses CO2’s effect on climate. One end may be an assumption of mechanisms to set parameters whilst the other may be a set of numbers derived from those assumptions but both could reasonably be described as ways of describing climate CO2 sensitivity.

  541. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:09 AM | Permalink

    Re: 42

    I’ve thought.

    Prudhoe Bay. Let’s say the ice thinning has gone on for ten years. The new area of open water is 460,000 miles^2. I can cover that with 6,000,000 litres of thin oil. Let’s say the initial area needed to start the process was a tenth of that, just the small area of open water that we started with. Then let’s say the process has been going on for ten years. 5 ml of thin oil will still one hectare.

    60,000 litres of oil per year. Multiply by a few for thick oil, degradation of oil sheen (very slow in the Arctic I bet) and unknowns.

    I wonder how much oil has been getting down the rivers into the Beaufort Sea over the last few years.

    More to the point, has anyone sampled the surface layer recently?

    So: oil sheen suppresses CCN production, ice warms and thins, becomes vulnerable to shocks. A weather shock tips it over and off goes the ice. Now we must worry about the cloud response. Normally the open water would generate enormous amounts of low cloud and fog. If the CCNs are depleted then this might not happen and the process could continue.

    Another illustration of the explanatory power of the Kriegesmarine hypothesis. Maybe someone could run a model?

    JF

  542. johnmccoy
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:52 AM | Permalink

    re #500 by Sam Urbinto

    CO2 absorbs IR photons that are at the frequency bands of varying sizes centered around about 2, 3, 3.5 and 18 micrometers (At least according to the atmospheric radiation transfer graph I’m using). These are the frequencies where molecular vibrations (stretching and bending oscillations) occur. Wikipedia sez elsewhere “it absorbs infrared radiation at wavelengths of 4.26 µm (asymmetric stretching vibrational mode) and 14.99 µm (bending vibrational mode)”

    As far as re-emission, it depends on what it’s colliding with as to what wavelength it transmits (emits, radiates).

    First post from a long time lurker, and probably a stupid question.

    A molecule in the atmosphere is transparent to incoming photons at certain frequecies and absorbs photons at others, so an incoming photon can pass through the atmosphere. This photon reaches the surface and is absorbed and remitted at another frequency. This is a frequency that can now be absorbed by the molecule so the photon cannot pass through the atmosphere so it is absorbed by the molecule which emits a photon at yet another frequency which returns to the surface. This is the basis of the greenhouse effect Yes?

    But is the Sun not emitting photons at the frequency that the molecules absorb too? Do they not absorb and remit incoming solar photons and not just those reemitted from the surface, in fact would there not be a lot more photons coming from the Sun than from the Earth’s surface?

    A real nooby question I’m sure but can someone explain why this does not matter.

  543. Tom Vonk
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 6:23 AM | Permalink

    First post from a long time lurker, and probably a stupid question.

    A molecule in the atmosphere is transparent to incoming photons at certain frequecies and absorbs photons at others, so an incoming photon can pass through the atmosphere. This photon reaches the surface and is absorbed and remitted at another frequency. This is a frequency that can now be absorbed by the molecule so the photon cannot pass through the atmosphere so it is absorbed by the molecule which emits a photon at yet another frequency which returns to the surface. This is the basis of the greenhouse effect Yes?
    But is the Sun not emitting photons at the frequency that the molecules absorb too? Do they not absorb and remit incoming solar photons and not just those reemitted from the surface, in fact would there not be a lot more photons coming from the Sun than from the Earth’s surface?

    It has been already said hundred times but I will say it again : “The only stupid questions are those that are not asked .”

    – Partly yes . The beginning is right , the end less so . Once the molecule absorbs the infrared pohoton it generally doesn’t reemit . The process has been explained a bit above . The collisions with other molecules happen much faster than the time to reemit . So the energy won by absorbing the photon is given away fast by collisions to other molecules . There is very little remission . But collisions being temperature , the other molecules warm a bit . This process is called thermalisation of radiation .

    – Indeed the Sun does . However the thermal spectrum (a curve that gives the number of photons emitted for every frequence) is very different for the Sun and for the Earth because the Sun is much hotter than the Earth . Most of the Sun energy comes at high frequency and there is very little above let’s say 5µ where the molecules absorb infrared . Most of the energy emitted by the Earth comes precisely at those IR frequencies . So there is more Earth IR photons than Sun’s IR photons . Yet you are of course right for this (small) part of the Sun’s photons that come in at the right frequency the process is exactly the same (thermalisation) . The IR active molecule makes no difference if the photon comes from the Sun or from the Earth .

  544. johnmccoy
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 6:49 AM | Permalink

    Tom Vonk 539

    Thanks, too much wine last night, I hadn’t thought of thermalisation. Are there any figures for the relative emission rates at the absorption bands for the Sun/Earth? Does this change over solar cycles? Is the Earths emmission rate variable depending on surface temperature? If it is mostly the Earth’s re-emission IR that is absorbed then doe… aaargh too many questions, I’m taking an asprin and a rest.

    John

  545. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 6:59 AM | Permalink

    538, 539: Don’t forget that about half of the suns energy is in the infrared portion of the spectrum.

  546. AlanO
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 7:04 AM | Permalink

    In today’s London times.

    Scorching decade claims eight of the hottest years on record

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article3045976.ece

    At the time of posting there are no comments on this Bali-fest article.

    Anybody willing to give it a go? Pleeeeese.

  547. Boris
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 7:19 AM | Permalink

    No. Cherry-picking.

    So they should use model results with known problems? Perhaps there is disagreement on the simplified ocean issue? Don’t want to read the supplemental information before making this claim?

    Perhaps we have different definitions for cherry picking.

  548. yorick
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 7:48 AM | Permalink

    The uncertainties are so large that no attempt should be made to fit the models to observations. Nothing is to be ganined there, all is known. If all of the models agree, the satelites and radiosonde must be wrong. I understand now. I love big brother.

  549. Jeff A
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 7:48 AM | Permalink

    re: Greenhouse. But the IR absorption is just that, not prevention of convection. Heat IS lost to space or life would bever have evolved, the planet would be hundreds of degrees all over.

    I still contend that it’s a completely incorrect analogy and shouldn’t be used in scientific discussions. You might as well call it the doghouse effect, would be just as correct, meaning not at all.

    BTW: Does anyone use the RSS feeds here? I’m not getting anything from them. I used the top level feed links, which should get me all comments and all posts, but nada.

  550. Gary Moran
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 7:48 AM | Permalink

    Boris #382

    A CS of 1`C would mean slightly negative feedback and would mean that nothing we know of could explain the rebound from glaciation. Possible? Yes, but I definitely wouldn’t characterize that POV as fitting in with observations, especially considering the Mt. Pinatubo response.

    Something I find odd about this statement, and in alarmist AGW assumptions: C02 has a non-feedback cs of 1.1c; the fundamental alarmist position comes about because increasing atmospheric temperature involves positive feedbacks, water feedback, clouds, albedo etc.. Now there doesn’t appear to be a special case for CO induced warming: so the past climate should be dominated by net positive feedbacks; in which case there really shouldn’t be a problem in rebounding out of glaciation; and we know temperature lead CO2 in these cases. I would think this would count double given that climate must be a non-deterministic system in which the manner in which multiple drivers combine would be unknowable.

    So either the climate is dominated by net positive feedbacks; or we don’t need CO2 to explain ice age terminations. Boris’ positions seems to be a case of wanting his cake and eating it.

    Any elucidation on this would be much appreciated.

  551. JohnB UK
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 7:55 AM | Permalink

    Julian #42

    Understood. Hey, it’s Christmas, maybe you’re both right…..

    (Insert smiley and sound of sleighbells here)

    Either way, if 24 and 25 are both as weak as some are suggesting we
    might get to know before too many years are up.

    Good luck with your work.

    John

  552. Larry
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 8:03 AM | Permalink

    509,

    The reason the effect of water vapour can not narrowed further is because it depends on how you ask the question. The absorption bands for different gases overlap, so there are many ways to ask the question. Do you remove the H2O and leave everything else? Do you remove everything else and leave the H2O? The results are different.

    It’s not an ill-posed question, you’ve simply proposed that you have to chose between two ill-posed answers. There is an exact answer to the original question.

  553. Tom Vonk
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 8:31 AM | Permalink

    Are there any figures for the relative emission rates at the absorption bands for the Sun/Earth? Does this change over solar cycles? Is the Earths emmission rate variable depending on surface temperature? If it is mostly the Earth’s re-emission IR that is absorbed then doe… aaargh too many questions, I’m taking an asprin and a rest.

    Absorption and emission rays/bands depend on the atom/molecule . For every different atom/molecule there is a different configuration of absorption/emission spectra . It is not only for IR , it goes all over the frequency spectrum .
    The IR has only this of particular that it excites what’s called quantum vibration/rotation states of certains molecules (so not all are significantly IR active) .
    Beyond those quantum mechanical effects you have another effect that’s called “thermal radiation” .
    Any form of matter radiates thermal radiation which is mostly represented by the Planck’s bell like curve of a black body which gives the frequency on X axis and energy (or number of photons) on Y axis .
    The form of this curve depends only on temperature and not on the nature of the matter – high temperature has most photons with high frequence and low temperature has most photons with low frequence .
    The Sun’s and Earth’s curve almost don’t superpose – Sun is far right (high T , high frequency) and Earth far left (low T , low frequency) .

    Now if you begin to ask more of such questions and are interested in the radiation basics , this board is probably not the best place for learning basics .
    I’d suggest to Google a bit and to print out some Wikis or even buy a book and spend some time reading all that in order to not to start from 0 .

  554. Tony Edwards
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 8:51 AM | Permalink

    The quote is from the Douglas paper, page 8, section 4.2 as I said in 453

  555. Tony Edwards
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 8:52 AM | Permalink

    Sorry, the above should have been addressed to JohnV 510

  556. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 9:02 AM | Permalink

    539 540

    Most of the Sun energy comes at high frequency and there is very little above let’s say 5µ where the molecules absorb infrared

    The first part of this sentence is certainly true, but I’m not at all sure that the second part is.

    If you compare the IR emission from a 300K body with the IR emission from a 2500K body, the latter will indeed emit most of its energy in the visible, but nevertheless it is so energetic that it will emit a lot more IR than the 300K body (same area, same solid angle). If you don’t believe that, put some numbers into the expression for Planck’s Law.

    The only reason I say I’m not sure in the first para above, is that the solid angles are not the same in the question posed.

  557. Larry
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 9:21 AM | Permalink

    551, but percentage-wise, it’s small. And that’s what matters comparing the incoming budget to the outgoing budget. The vast majority of the radiation incoming is visible, and most of it gets converted to IR when it hits a dark surface.

  558. yorick
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 9:29 AM | Permalink

    Gary Moran #3546

    Any elucidation on this would be much appreciated.

    Good luck. You will have to wait ’til Gavin the Mindguard puts out a slogan like “uncertainties!” You will then hear it endlessly repeated without further elaboration.

    As for your original statement. It makes perfect sense. I would like to hear an answer too. Not expecting one though.

  559. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 9:35 AM | Permalink

    552
    Yes, but the energy converted to IR can only be emitted at a rate determined by the earth’s temperature and emissivity. That’s a pretty slow rate compared with what the sun is doing in the IR.

    The only thing that makes the situation uncertain is the fact that the sun subtends a smaller solid angle to an air molecule than does the earth’s surface. Whether that compensates for the higher emission rate is not clear to me.

  560. Phil.
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 9:38 AM | Permalink

    Re #551

    The solid angles aren’t the same, however the earth receives the same amount of energy from the sun as it radiates out. So compared to the outgoing energy the incoming IR is very low.

    Re #552

    ‘The vast majority of the incoming radiation is visible’ is not true, try running a Blackbody calculator to verify:

    http://energy.sdsu.edu/testcenter/testhome/javaapplets/planckRadiation/blackbody.html

  561. yorick
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 9:38 AM | Permalink

    I am sorry about my “Gavin the Mindguard” quip. This site isn’t the place for that kind of stuff.

  562. Robinson
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 9:45 AM | Permalink

    546

    Is it worth quoting Freeman Dyson again?

    As a result of the burning of coal and oil, the driving of cars, and other human activities, the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is increasing at a rate of about half a percent per year. … The physical effects of carbon dioxide are seen in changes of rainfall, cloudiness, wind strength, and temperature, which are customarily lumped together in the misleading phrase “global warming.” This phrase is misleading because the warming caused by the greenhouse effect of increased carbon dioxide is not evenly distributed. In humid air, the effect of carbon dioxide on the transport of heat by radiation is less important, because it is outweighed by the much larger greenhouse effect of water vapor. The effect of carbon dioxide is more important where the air is dry, and air is usually dry only where it is cold. The warming mainly occurs where air is cold and dry, mainly in the arctic rather than in the tropics, mainly in winter rather than in summer, and mainly at night rather than in daytime. The warming is real, but it is mostly making cold places warmer rather than making hot places hotter. To represent this local warming by a global average is misleading, because the global average is only a fraction of a degree while the local warming at high latitudes is much larger.

  563. Bruce
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 9:45 AM | Permalink

    Greenland and Magma

    http://physorg.com/news116684418.html

    Scientists have discovered what they think may be another reason why Greenland ‘s ice is melting: a thin spot in Earth’s crust is enabling underground magma to heat the ice.
    They have found at least one “hotspot” in the northeast corner of Greenland — just below a site where an ice stream was recently discovered.

    The researchers don’t yet know how warm the hotspot is. But if it is warm enough to melt the ice above it even a little, it could be lubricating the base of the ice sheet and enabling the ice to slide more rapidly out to sea.

    “The behavior of the great ice sheets is an important barometer of global climate change,” said Ralph von Frese, leader of the project and a professor of earth sciences at Ohio State University. “However, to effectively separate and quantify human impacts on climate change, we must understand the natural impacts, too.

    “Crustal heat flow is still one of the unknowns — and it’s a fairly significant one, according to our preliminary results.”

    Timothy Leftwich, von Frese’s former student and now a postdoctoral engineer at the Center for Remote Sensing of Ice Sheets at the University of Kansas, presented the study’s early results on Thursday, December 13, 2007, at the American Geophysical Union meeting in San Francisco.

    Maybe Steve will report.

  564. Gary Moran
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 9:52 AM | Permalink

    #546

    So either the climate is dominated by net positive feedbacks; or we don’t need CO2 to explain ice age terminations. Boris’ positions seems to be a case of wanting his cake and eating it.

    Sorry this should be: either the climate is dominated by net positive feedbacks in which case we don’t need CO2 to explain ice age terminations; or the climate system is not dominated by positive feedback. Boris’ positions seems to be a case of wanting his cake and eating it.

    In fact the whole issue of CO2 cs above approx 1.1 appears to be a misnomer: surely if we accept the IPCC position of 2.5, we are essentially talking about 1.1 direct from C02 and 1.5 from general warming feedbacks which would apply equally to any positive forcing?

  565. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 9:53 AM | Permalink

    #535 PaddikJ:
    December 12th, 2007 at 11:48 pm

    You are talking about leaving the realm of metaphor and playing real hockey. I’m not sure Susann is up to it. Certainly, if there has been a corruption of public-sector science, it likely happened in the manner you (and your sources) describe. It would make a hell of a public policy paper.

    I read the columns by Cockburn at the time. Damning to say the least. He’s a guy who likes a good fight, but I think even he was taken aback by the nasty responses he got.

  566. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 10:11 AM | Permalink

    555
    Yes, the balance argument kind of settles the solid angle uncertainty that was in my mind.

    558
    I think you make a good point. Any non-localized forcing should get the same positive feedback as CO2. The sun is more localized in its effects and may well get more positive feedback than the widely distributed CO2.

  567. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 10:15 AM | Permalink

    552:

    551, but percentage-wise, it’s small. And that’s what matters comparing the incoming budget to the outgoing budget. The vast majority of the radiation incoming is visible, and most of it gets converted to IR when it hits a dark surface.

    Nope.

  568. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 10:18 AM | Permalink

    #536 JamesG:
    Let me go through your missive one sentence at a time:

    If solar was a forcing in the past then H2O would be an amplifier, by your own logic, …

    Absolutely. Water vapour is a feedback (amplifier) for all forcings. A 1% increase in solar, on its own, would yield ~1degC warming. Water vapour (and other feedbacks) amplify it.

    …which means that if the H2O heating effect is really 3 times that of CO2 then the CO2 effect was minimal in the past (where H2O feedback came first).

    Your logic is flawed.
    If solar warming is amplified by water vapour (which it is), then CO2 warming is also amplified by water vapour. There is nothing in those statements that defines the relative contribution of each. From a basic radiative balance, a 1% increase in solar is *roughly* equivalent to doubling CO2. Check the magnitude of the Milankovitch cycles — a 1% solar increase would be on the high end.

    However, you clearly include or exclude parameters, based only on biased guesses, in order to obtain a “CO2 rules” scenario, aided by a magic water vapour feedback that is important short term but unimportant long term.

    Actually, no. I did not way water vapour was unimportant long term. I said it was *dominant* on short time scales, and possibly on longer time scales as well. The effect of water vapour does not decrease on longer time scales, but other slow feedbacks become important (such as the melting of the ice which defines an ice age).

    I have also said that CO2 forcing is thought to be responsible for ~40% — hardly pushing a “CO2 rules” scenario.

    All the while ignoring Lowell Stott’s real data which disproves said scenario.

    Which scenario? CO2 forcing? Water vapour feedback?

    You then have the cheek to talk about the error bars on other peoples work!

    Do you have a problem with my critique of Douglas07?

    Have you ever considered stepping back a bit and actually thinking about things in an unbiased way? That is, be scientific about it!

    The irony is too much…

  569. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 10:19 AM | Permalink

    snip

  570. Larry
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 10:24 AM | Permalink

    555, I don’t download applets. Windows is too vulnerable.

    561, notice the units; w/m^2/cm. That’s waves, or photons, not energy. When you correct for energy, it ends up with a lot more w/m^2 in the visible range.

  571. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 10:35 AM | Permalink

    #544 yorick:

    The uncertainties are so large that no attempt should be made to fit the models to observations.

    You should really use a [begin sarcasm]…[end sarcasm] marker. :)
    Comparing the models to observations and using the differences to improve the models is valid. Incorrectly comparing the models to observations and concluding that the models are completely wrong (per Douglas07) is, uh, not helpful.

    =====
    #546 Gary Moran:

    So either the climate is dominated by net positive feedbacks; or we don’t need CO2 to explain ice age terminations. Boris’ positions seems to be a case of wanting his cake and eating it.

    Any elucidation on this would be much appreciated.

    A net positive feedback does not mean that temperatures continue to increase. It only means that the contribution from a given forcing is amplified. Using ballpark figures, a 1% solar forcing (more than a typical Milankovitch cycle) would impact ~1degC warming. For the sake of argument, let’s say this is amplified to 2.5degC. That’s still not enough to come out of an ice age. Something has to be responsible for the other ~2degC warming. (Ice age temperature swing is 4-5degC globally, 10-11degC at the poles).

    If the feedback terms are large enough to cause deglaciation without CO2, then temperature sensitivity to a given amount of solar forcing is quite large. Since the basic greenhouse physics (minus feedbacks) are well understood, this would mean that present-day CO2 forcing will lead to even more warming than expected.

    =====
    #547 Larry:
    In #508 you said “the fact that they can’t pin down the the percent contribution of H2O to the GHE more accurately than 66-85% (and I’ve seen estimates outside of that range) is kind of disturbing. This is what passes for “settled science”?”.
    That is, you implied that there was uncertainty in the GHE for CO2 and that therefore the science was not well understood. Since the difference in the estimates is actually due to different ways of posing the question, your statement was incorrect.

    =====
    #558 Gary Moran:

    In fact the whole issue of CO2 cs above approx 1.1 appears to be a misnomer: surely if we accept the IPCC position of 2.5, we are essentially talking about 1.1 direct from C02 and 1.5 from general warming feedbacks which would apply equally to any positive forcing?

    Yes, the general feedbacks would apply to any forcing. There are only a few forcings that we control though, and that’s the whole point of the A in AGW.

  572. Larry
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 10:39 AM | Permalink

    565, no. There exists a unique number that apportions the greenhouse effect correctly between H2O and the other GHGs. If it depends on how the question is posed, all but one of the questions is wrong. Unless you’re into this “many universes” quantum stuff, anyway.

  573. Jaye
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 10:49 AM | Permalink

    As a former Leftist with Trotskyite leanings back in the day,

    Sounds like Hitchens to me.

  574. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 10:50 AM | Permalink

    #566 Larry:

    If it depends on how the question is posed, all but one of the questions is wrong.

    I disagree. The question has to be asked precisely to get a precise answer. That’s always the case in a complex non-linear system. You’re probably familiar with this Real Climate post, but I think it’s a good explanation:

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php?p=142

    (Ignore the incendiary first paragraph to get to the science)

  575. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 10:51 AM | Permalink

    564: ?? You have to integrate. try this one.

  576. Larry
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 10:56 AM | Permalink

    Ok, John. It depends on what “is” is. How scientific.

  577. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:00 AM | Permalink

    Yes, the general feedbacks would apply to any forcing. There are only a few forcings that we control though, and that’s the whole point of the A in AGW.

    Do you agree that if CO2 causes a forcing, then so does HOH? They are both “greenhouse gases.” HOH is present in quantities of more than 25 times that of CO2 in a humid environment. But there is only about 7.5 times as much water vapor as CO2 in the deserts. So, why doesn’t all the extra “forcing” and “feedback” from the extra water vapor make the humid climates WAY hotter than the deserts in the middle of the day?

  578. Austin Spreadbury
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:07 AM | Permalink

    For info: BBC News is reporting that Hadley Centre claims 2007 will be 7th warmest ever.

    See here. Includes a repeat of the claim that 1998 was the warmest, and says that the 11 warmest years are all in the last 13.

  579. StanJ
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:17 AM | Permalink

    Yes just saw that.

    My first thought was that the year is not over and this is a cold December.
    Secondly, if this is the 7th warmest – doesn’t this indicate a cooling trend rather than a warming trend?

  580. Larry
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:20 AM | Permalink

    Do these people have any idea how long forever is? A bit longer ago than 1934.

  581. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:20 AM | Permalink

    #570 Larry:
    It’s analogy time again. This time I’ll use a mass-spring-damper with a natural frequency of 1 Hz. It’s being forced by two inputs with the same amplitude. Input A is at 2Hz, and by itself it causes a 10mm vibration. Input B is at 3Hz and by itself it causes a 5mm vibration. When the two are combined, there is a beat frequency at 1Hz causing resonance. The total vibration is 50mm.

    What fraction of the 50mm vibration is caused by input A?
    If we consider input A alone, it’s 10/50 = 20%.
    If we consider input B alone, it’s (50-5)/50 = 90%.

    There’s no “correct” answer to the un-specific question. The system is non-linear so you can not just remove one or the other to determine its net effect.

    The best answer is not to pick one or the other, but to give the range.

    =====
    #571 jae:
    Due to its short residence time, H2O is generally considered a feedback instead of a forcing. That is, surplus water vapour (at a given temperature) will precipitate and condense out of the atmosphere too quickly to force temperatures higher. If temperature is raised by some other forcing, water vapour will increase and amplify the original temperature increase.

    We’re not supposed to talk about your correlation. If possible, I think you should look at the RSS and/or UAH T2lt (lower troposphere) temperatures and see if the pattern still holds. My *guess* is that once you’re away from the ground, things might be different. That is, I *think* ground-level albedo effects are overwhelming atmospheric greenhouse effects (near the ground only).

  582. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:26 AM | Permalink

    #472 Austin Spreadbury:
    The BBC news story does not even use the word “ever”, and near the end of the story it talks about the instrumental record going back to 1850. Globally, 1998 was the warmest year.

    #474 Larry:
    See above about the word “ever”.

    #473 StanJ:
    An extremely hot 1998 does not make subsequent years a cooling trend. I don’t want to go over it all again, but do a trend on any 10 year period since the mid-1970s and they’re all going up.


    What’s interesting about 2007 is that it’s not an El Nino year. In fact, La Nina conditions are prevailing, but it’s still very warm. NOAA and NASA have it ranked second (behind 1998).

    Cue the complaints about the instrumental record being wrong.

  583. Larry
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:30 AM | Permalink

    575, nonsense. The real earth doesn’t have multiple solutions. Your abstract model may, but there exists one and only one number that describes the proportion of heat absorbed by H2O and Other GHGs put together. And BTW, Gavin isn’t claiming that it’s nondeterministic, in that link you posted. Uncertain, but not nondeterministic.

  584. steven mosher
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:30 AM | Permalink

    Warmest ever? Great! Here is what we know. When the world warms, humans thrive.

    Why are these guys economic science deniers?

    we migrated to warmer climes. we settled in warmer climes. we thrived in warmer climes. when we get flithy rich we
    buy islands in warmer climes. we are not polar bears. Bring on the hot stuff baby.

    PS. I recieve no funding from Bikini Designers.

  585. Larry
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:33 AM | Permalink

    576, want you cake and eat it too, don’t you? Either say that 1998 was the hottest year on record, or say that you can’t call the subsequent years a cooling trend. But not both. That’s cheap rhetoric.

  586. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:33 AM | Permalink

    It like trying to praise the 7th runner-up in a beauty contest. The PR guys can find a way to hype anything.

  587. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:43 AM | Permalink

    RE: #567 – I have more in common with Peter, although I do agree with the odd rare article by Chris.

  588. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:45 AM | Permalink

    Larry:
    I’m not saying it’s non-deterministic. The problem with non-linear systems is that, by definition, you can’t add component results to get a composite result. Overlapping absorption bands make GHGs non-linear.

    Cheap rhetoric? Cherry-picking single year comparisons to show a cooling trend is what’s cheap. You know that. It’s about long-term trends.

    For the sake of argument, let’s say 2010 is an El Nino year and is warmer than 1998. Let’s also say that 2011 through 2014 are cooler than 2010. By 2015, you’ll be claiming that global warming ended in 2010.

    Pick a data set (CRU, GISTEMP, NOAA, RSS, UAH) and show me *any* 10 year surface cooling trend since 1980 ((linear trend, not subtracting end-points).

  589. pochas
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:46 AM | Permalink

    Are there any figures on water evaporation rates from the earth’s surface, including the oceans, as calculated by the models? It would seem to be important to get this right, especially in view of Douglass et al.

  590. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:47 AM | Permalink

    #571 jae:
    Due to its short residence time, H2O is generally considered a feedback instead of a forcing. That is, surplus water vapour (at a given temperature) will precipitate and condense out of the atmosphere too quickly to force temperatures higher. If temperature is raised by some other forcing, water vapour will increase and amplify the original temperature increase.

    John, the water only has to be there for one day to evaluate the scenario I gave. If CO2 can absorb enough IR in one day to cause a “forcing,” so can HOH. As I recall, the average residence time for a water molecule is 8 days. Consider the tropics over the ocean, where the average temperature rarely exceeds 32 C. It’s hotter than that in Phoenix in the summer (34.2 C on a thirty-year average), at an elevation of 339 meters! If folks can’t explain why the scenario I provided above is flawed, then I don’t see how the GHG forcing idea holds water (little pun there).

  591. JamesG
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:50 AM | Permalink

    JohnV
    You originally stated “attribute deglaciation as ~60% solar and ~40% CO2″. I realise these numbers are just pulled out of a hat, but if H2O feedback is also important then was it included in the other numbers? If so, what is the real CO2 contribution, without the H2O feedback? 15% perhaps? Was albedo feedback included in the solar number? There are other ice-based positive feedbacks too – are they also in the solar number? Why not google Stott for yourself? It is important after all: From his data, he concluded that while CO2 is important, it clearly couldn’t have brought about deglaciation. AFAIK he is the only person who bothered to check the real data. Dogma was enough for everyone else.

  592. MarkW
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:51 AM | Permalink

    The sun transmitts some of it’s energy in the infrared. So CO2 must block a small portion of this infrared energy. What percentage of the sun’s energy is blocked by increasing CO2. Or is this amount so small that it’s smaller than the error bars?

  593. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:51 AM | Permalink

    #584 jae:
    Let me ask one more time — check if the correlation holds using the RSS or UAH lower-tropospheric temperatures. I suspect ground effects are overwhelming the greenhouse effect.

  594. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:54 AM | Permalink

    587: I don’t know how to do that, as I have to deal with specific locations and I have no data for temperatures above the standard met station measurement level (5 feet?). But if I apply standard lapse rates, the relationships would hold.

  595. Larry
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:57 AM | Permalink

    582, I never said you can add the effects together. In fact, I seem to remember arguing the opposite with you a while ago. What I said, is that when all is said an done, there is at any set of GHG concentrations, an exact percentage of the GHE that’s attributable to water vapor.

  596. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:58 AM | Permalink

    586: See this link for a qualitative look at CO2 absorption.

  597. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 12:01 PM | Permalink

    #585 JamesG:
    For the sake of argument, I’ll go with your numbers. Let’s say CO2 by itself caused 15%. That would mean that solar by itself caused ~23%. The remaining 62% is left for feedbacks. The 15% from CO2 is amplified by water vapour, albedo, etc. The 23% from solar is amplified by water vapour, albedo, etc.

    What does this show? Solar and CO2 are the *forcings*. CO2’s fraction of the forcing is 15/(23+15) = 40%. Solar’s fraction of the forcing is 23/(23+15) = 60%. The rest is feedbacks, which in broad terms are insensitive to the source of the forcing. Nothing changes.

    Regarding Lowell Stott, give me a link. He’s the *only* person that checked the data? That’s ridiculous.

    FYI, I don’t know of any *papers* that have claimed CO2 alone caused deglaciation. If that’s what you’re trying to show, you win. As I said before, the papers I’ve seen put the *majority* of the deglaciation forcing as solar. It seems pretty consistent with Stott’s conclusions that “while CO2 is important, it clearly couldn’t have brought about deglaciation” (your quote).

    So, what are we arguing about? I say CO2 accounts for 40% of the total deglaciation *forcing*. You say CO2 is important.

  598. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 12:04 PM | Permalink

    586: In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if the Sun provides enough IR to saturate all the CO2 in the atmosphere. If so, the IR from the surface doesn’t do anything but slowly go to space.

  599. MarkW
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 12:26 PM | Permalink

    It looks like CO2 should be less of a forcing than increased solar output. The reason for this is CO2 both tends to impeded IR from leaving the earth, and IR from arriving to the earth from the sun.

    As an aside. Some people seem to be dismissing a 0.1% change in the sun’s output as being too small to bother with. Since the sun’s basic output is sufficient to keep the earth’s surface at approximately 300K. A 0.1% increase, all other things being equal, will result in a 0.3K increase in temperature.

    0.3K is about half of the increase that has been claimed for the last 100+ years. That’s without any changes in clouds which might be caused by a stronger sun, and it’s without any further adjustments for UHI contamination.

  600. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 12:53 PM | Permalink

    I agree with Mr Mosh. A warmer world is a damn site better than a colder one but then again these idiots are too busy with their doom and gloom to have the brains to think about the advantages and to spend their trillions attempting to use change as a positive notivation. My opinion is that these guys were around when the dinausors died out, they died of doom and gloom.

  601. UK John
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 12:59 PM | Permalink

    #572 Hadley centre warmest years. 2007 seventh rank

    This statement by the Hadley centre doesn’t really mean much, most of their media statements don’t, its the seventh warmest compared to the 1961-1990 average, which was a cold period.

    As they predicted earlier that 2007 would be the warmest year ever! (70% certainty is what they said ) then they have to cover their tracks a bit. You would have done much better having a wild guess!

    Also I quite like it when they compare to the 1961-1990 period as average annual sunshine hours have increased by 15%-20% during this period, and in winter by astonishingly 40%. So this more than accounts for any warming, I have written to them, pointing this out, and you can detect them squirming in the replies I receive.

    They are always polite, but never say anything other than “CO2 causes climate change”, it is actually quite touching. They even told me once that the Climate of UK would soon be the same as South of France, in my reply I welcomed this but felt that Geography and Latitude might unfortunately intervene.

  602. steven mosher
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 1:06 PM | Permalink

    be clear about the trajectory of this argument. Lead the target.

    The fight over the climate science is just the start. It’s the grunt work.
    The fight against the “economic science” will be a cluster f**k, to use a technical
    term.

    I bet there will be no “economic science” consensus. Takers? 50 quatloos

  603. Boris
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 1:08 PM | Permalink

    I agree with Mr Mosh. A warmer world is a damn site better than a colder one

    Me too. Also, dying by a cocaine overdose is better than being burned to death.

  604. steven mosher
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 1:23 PM | Permalink

    and death by boredom, bore us?

    Here is a dollar.

    Go buy some game. Obviously the wit store was sold out when you visited there.

  605. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 1:36 PM | Permalink

    #593 MarkW:
    You don’t get to have your own theory of the greenhouse effect. The frequencies from the sun are primarily shortwave (SW). The frequencies from earth are primarily longwave (LW). CO2 is transparent to SW, but not to LW. Therefore, your little theory does not make sense.

    Since the outbound radiation from the earth is proportional to the temperature to the fourth power, your calculation for a 0.1% increase in solar output is wrong. The fourth root of 1.001 (a 0.1% increase) is 1.00025. Mutiply this by 300K to get 300.07K. So, a 0.1% solar increase would lead to about 0.07K temperature increase (excluding feedbacks), not 0.3K as you state.

    By the way, about half of the warming for the last 100 hundred years (1910 to 1940 warming) is commonly attributed to the sun. The solar pattern breaks down in the last 30 years though.

    =====
    #595 UK John:
    The choice of reference period makes absolutely no difference on the ratings of years. It’s just an average that is subtracted to get an anomaly. Since the same average is subtracted from every year it only shifts the yearly anomalies up or down together, as a group.

    =====
    #598 steven mosher:
    There’s no need to be a bully.

    I agree that warm could be very nice. If the world got warmer and everything else stayed the same, that’d be great. Heck, I’m a Canadian, I wouldn’t mind a few bonus degrees in the winter.

    The problem is that everything else will not stay the same. Precipitation patterns will change. Glacier fed rivers will not run all summer if there are no glaciers.

    It’s too bad that we built our cities where the water is now, instead of where it will be after climate change. It’s too bad about all the farms that will be in the wrong places.

    I know, I know. None of those things are certain. That’s not my point. My point is that the economic concern is not about warmth; it’s about the other changes that will come with the warmth.

  606. yorick
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 1:39 PM | Permalink

    From a basic radiative balance, a 1% increase in solar is *roughly* equivalent to doubling CO2. Check the magnitude of the Milankovitch cycles — a 1% solar increase would be on the high end.

    This is what I mean by circular arguments. The implicit assumption is that feedbacks are equal, or perhaps that radiative balance is the only mechanism by which feedbacks operate. To me, this would seem staggeringly unlikely. Solar is so much more efficient at warming water than CO2, which can heat only the thinnest skin, on the order of mm, of the surface, and requires mixing, which is a localized phenomenon too. Warm water sits at the surface, warm air rises away, insulating the ocean from thermal heating from the atmosphere. That is just one difference. What if the Cosmic Ray thing turns out to affect cloud formation by 1/2 of one percent consistently? If a correlation of cosmic ray flux to clouds held up for 30 years, then fell apart, do we dismiss it as chance when it is no secret that clouds are ill-understood and clues are few and far between?

    What is the physical rationalization behind the concept that all forcings have equal feedbacks?

  607. L Nettles
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 1:40 PM | Permalink

    I’m just looking for a World, where the temperature is just right, and I don’t mind wrecking the economy to get there.

    signed,

    Goldilocks

  608. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 1:43 PM | Permalink

    RE: #584 – Add to that issues caused by marine stratiform clouds and cumulonimbus clouds in all regions.

    RE: #594 – PG&E now price natural gas and electricity such that only an idiot would not try to conserve until it hurts. This situation is a result of a number of things. Firstly, they stupidly converted all their oil and coal fired generation plants to gas during the 80s and 90s. Secondly they failed to build new nuclear plants. Thirdly they did not build or convince others to build adequate new distribution infrastructure for either power or gas. Fourthly and most importantly, they are now complying with California’s new, draconian GHG laws. As a result we are cold and miserable in the dark, missing last year’s more balmy December. Note that the PG&E conservation schedule is a 10% Y/Y usage reduction in order to get optimal pricing. In order to continue a 10% reduction curve I will have to pursue costly home improvements. Of course, there would be an ROI even without PG&Es upside down price/volume curve and their Y/Y conservation incentives. Nonetheless, the generally illogical nature of all this is, in some small way, converting me to be a strict constructionist Von Mises devotee. At very least, future macroeconomists will view the current era as “interesting times.” Consider the behavior this is driving and its eventual implications for investment flows.

  609. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 1:47 PM | Permalink

    Since I clearly do not understand the whole “Climate Modeling” as evidenced by these recent posts at RC–

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2007/12/live-almost-from-agu%e2%80%93dispatch-3/

    Gaelan Clark Says:
    13 December 2007 at 11:37 AM
    #5 Ray, The observed trends do not fit the models—FACT. You cannot simply say the models are consistent with the observations, for if they were, then you would see the troposphere warming at a higher rate than the surface, in fact the models indicate that the troposhere will heat at a rate 2-3 times more than what the observations show. Please explain this inconsistency.
    And, there are many ways to illustrate current warming trends without anthropogenic causes, one simply has to turn the knobs on the models to illustrate this. Just because one accepts that warming is occuring, which undoubtedly it is, this does not mean that one HAS to accept that humans are causing it, or that the current warming is unprecedented.
    Now, since the models are wrong, and the only way that they could be correct about CO2 driving temperature would be to observe the troposphere heating in ways that it is absolutely not, should we not try to look to where “the energy driving that warming” is really coming from?

    [Response: This has as much logic as someone in a fog bank declaring that because they can’t see where the road goes, it must curve right. Weather noise obscures climate; observational inaccuracies obscure climate; model imperfections obscure climate. Sometimes a signal is clear, but not in this case. Insisting that it is - even when there are models that even less tropospheric warming over this period than the obs is foolish. - gavin]

    Ray Ladbury Says:
    13 December 2007 at 2:00 PM
    Gee Gaelan, the world is so simple when you don’t understand it, isn’t it? First, as Gavin has pointed out, you are looking for a signal in very noisy data. Second, some of the knobs on your little model have very little wiggle room, because they are constrained by multiple independent lines of evidence. Greenhouse forcine is among the most constrained parameters. Do yourself a favor and actually learn a little bit about global climate models. Start with the AIP history

    http://www.aip.org/history/climate/index.html

    and then read

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2007/04/learning-from-a-simple-model/

    I also recommend:

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2007/08/the-co2-problem-in-6-easy-steps/

    Y’all come back, hear?

    2 Things—can anyone explain to me what Gavin means, and can anyone point me to Climate Modeling 101?
    Thank you in advance.

  610. henry
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 1:58 PM | Permalink

    Don’t know if this has been linked yet, Article on NRO:

    CA and Watts are mentioned.

  611. Stephen Richards
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 1:59 PM | Permalink

    #572

    and next year will be the 11th warmest in the last 14. It indicates only that they need more years in their equations of warmth.

    Last year 9 of the warmest in ten, 10 of the warmest in 11. It’s media distortion and it help no-one except the media.

  612. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 2:00 PM | Permalink

    WARNING: Inflammatory Content Follows
    =====
    An open letter published in Canada’s National Post states, among other things, that there has been no warming since 1998 (link below). Here’s the relevant quote:

    “Consistent with this, and despite computer projections of temperature rises, there has been no net global warming since 1998. That the current temperature plateau follows a late 20th-century period of warming is consistent with the continuation today of natural multi-decadal or millennial climate cycling.”
    (from http://www.nationalpost.com/opinion/columnists/story.html?id=165020)

    This is not a big surprise. Although I like the National Post, they do tend to publish lots of letters and op-eds like this.

    The surprising thing is that the oft-referenced Dr. Wegman (of Wegman report fame) signed the letter. Perhaps Steve McIntyre, bender, and other statistics experts could weigh in with their opinion on the warming trend in recent years. Would you agree with Dr. Wegman on this one? Does this affect your view of his impartiality, as it does mine?


    Here’s a quick reference for the “no warming since 1998″ claim:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/global-warming-stopped-in-1998.htm

  613. yorick
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 2:08 PM | Permalink

    Great Lubos Motl climate posts that seem appropriate to this thread:

    Ocean Carbon Sinks and Henry’s law

    End of the last ice age, co2 innocent

    A post on Stephen Schwartz’s calulation of CS of 1.1C

    More 1.1C CS stuff

  614. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 2:10 PM | Permalink

    John V
    I guess your next remark is going to be that old standby, the oil-shill smear.

  615. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 2:11 PM | Permalink

    John V,#599

    None of those things are certain. That’s not my point. My point is that the economic concern is not about warmth; it’s about the other changes that will come with the warmth

    Those thing are not just uncertain, they are untrue. And your “second level” concern is based on untrue things.
    Of course you can have faith in model outputs, but that doesn’t change the proof of their unskilfulness in forecasting the future state of the climate system!

  616. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 2:19 PM | Permalink

    607
    Re your second link, it seems to me that an alternative explanation for deep ocean warming might be underground volcanic activity or other geothermal action on the seabed.

  617. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 2:21 PM | Permalink

    598: Sorry, it was far too early here in lil ‘ol NZ and I hadn’t had my wit quota or my coffee. I have just sent off my request to the government for my new wit quota and boiled the pot. In the meantime I borrowed some quota from a friend: When I die I want to go in my sleep like my grandfather, not screaming, like the passengers in his car.

  618. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 2:28 PM | Permalink

    599:

    593 MarkW:
    You don’t get to have your own theory of the greenhouse effect. The frequencies from the sun are primarily shortwave (SW). The frequencies from earth are primarily longwave (LW). CO2 is transparent to SW, but not to LW. Therefore, your little theory does not make sense.

    John, you are so busy arguing that you are not learning, anymore. Look at the links provided on this topic. Again, about HALF the energy from the Sun is in the infrared portion of the spectrum, and that includes lots of IR in those portions of the spectrum where CO2 and HOH absorb. Hate to keep repeating this, but you need to face this FACT. See link at 590.

  619. Bob Meyer
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 2:31 PM | Permalink

    Re John V December 13th, 2007 at 11:20 am

    Your analogy doesn’t work because the resonant system that you describe is linear and there will be no beat frequencies. If you inject a non-linearity into this system you can get beat frequencies and this is very well known and understood. It’s called AM modulation/demodulation. There is no range of description needed to build an AM receiver.

    What is important is not the amplitude of the swing, but the spectral distribution of energy. The energy out will be equal to the energy in (“energy out” includes damping losses in your example). The spectral distribution of the output energies will be different for different non-linearities but the total spectral energy will always be the same. The “contribution” of each input frequency to the total output can be measured.

  620. tpguydk
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 2:32 PM | Permalink

    Ok. Time for my stupid I-should-know-this-based-on-my-undergrad-degree question quota of the day: What the heck does “it’s in the pipeline” mean? I’m seeing this a lot lately…

  621. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 2:39 PM | Permalink

    614: No such thing as a stupid question. It is my understanding that they are referring to the energy that is absorbed that does not quickly get released. This is primarily, if not all, the energy absorbed by the oceans and other water bodies. The air quickly releases most of the energy it gained during the day at night. Water retains it longer. There are some folks that believe that some of this water-stored energy can be held for years.

  622. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 2:54 PM | Permalink

    #579, Larry, you are absolutely correct. However, I went over this ground with JohnV some months back, and he posted a graph with a trend line starting at the peak in 98, but he still managed to give it an upward trend. I said to myself, “now that is a true believer”.

    >> It’s about long-term trends.

    Saying that is starting a-priori with AGW as the premise. To me, it’s clearly stable temperature until the late 90s, when a very high solar minimum between cycle 22 and 23, a very active cycle 23, a warming ENSO event, and the lack of a volcanoe all combined to cause a step function up. The trend line length is an artifact of the trend line maker, not reality. The only thing we have to explain is an isolated step up in temperature. An isolated input of energy is all we need to explain that.

  623. jimdk
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 2:57 PM | Permalink

    Re 606
    John does the rate of warming exceed the natural rate of warming? Even your ref at skepticalscience shows no anomalous rate of warming.

    “In this case, a line of best fit calculates the temperature trend is 0.16°C per decade from 1998 until July 2007. This is a close match to the temperature trend over the last 30 years (0.15°C from 1975 to 2007). So even starting from 1998, we find the planet is still warming at the same rate.”http://www.skepticalscience.com/global-warming-stopped-in-1998.htm

    Contrary to the impression left by the IPCC Summary reports: – Recent observations of phenomena such as glacial retreats, sea-level rise and the migration of temperature-sensitive species are not evidence for abnormal climate change, for none of these changes has been shown to lie outside the bounds of known natural variability. – The average rate of warming of 0.1 to 0. 2 degrees Celsius per decade recorded by satellites during the late 20th century falls within known natural rates of warming and cooling over the last 10,000 years.

  624. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 3:11 PM | Permalink

    Pat Keating:
    Dr. Wegman has no relationship to the oil industry, so I do not understand your point. You are putting words in my mouth again.

    Dr Wegman is supposed to be impartial. The claim that warming stopped in 1998 can only be backed up by cherry-picking the start year and subtracting. Any sort of trend line shows continued warming. GISS and NOAA even consider 2005 to be warmer than 1998 (the difference vs CRU being that CRU ignores the extreme north and south).

    =====
    jae:
    I saw your link in #590. Here’s a graphic from Wikipedia that shows what we’re talking about in more detail:

    (from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greenhouse_effect)

  625. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 3:11 PM | Permalink

    Ok. Time for my stupid I-should-know-this-based-on-my-undergrad-degree question quota of the day: What the heck does “it’s in the pipeline” mean? I’m seeing this a lot lately…

    Say you put an small electric heater inside a big Gothic Cathedral. Then your develop a predictive model for the air temperature, but forget to include the heat transfer between the air and the cold walls of the cathedral.

    Your model will predict a quicker rise in air temperature than actually occurs. This is because as the air heats, some goes into the cathedral walls. Also, if this is a radiant heater, some of the heat is stored directly by the walls. Eventually though, the walls warm up, and if you turn the heater off, the cathedral walls heat the air. Using a very mixed metaphor, the heat in the cathedral walls is “in the pipeline”.

    Other ways one might express the problem is to say that the Cathedral has a certain thermal mass, or if you like time, it has a long response time for heating.

    What I’m finding confusing about this is: at least GISS II used a 1000 m deep 8 level ocean model. So, they didn’t “neglect the cathedral walls”. At worst, their walls might be too thin– but the model includes those walls in at least some sense.

  626. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 3:14 PM | Permalink

    611
    Paul, I would guess that the remark was not directed at you, but at a later post. But only the author of it knows for sure…….

  627. MarkW
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 3:15 PM | Permalink

    #599 JohnV,

    Do I have to get pendantic with you? The only way your statement could possibly disprove mine would be if you had just proven that the sun produced zero, zip, nada, output in the IR band.

    Since you didn’t. I expect you to either

    1) Produce such proof.
    2) Withdraw your insolent comment and apologize.

  628. MarkW
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 3:16 PM | Permalink

    JohnV,

    The only reason the pattern breaks down in the last 30 years is because of the PDO. We’ve been over this many times in the past.

    Your ability to ignore any factor that you don’t want to see is getting better with time.

  629. Boris
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 3:27 PM | Permalink

    Obviously the wit store was sold out when you visited there.

    Did you but this comment at your so-called “wit store”?

  630. MarkW
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 3:28 PM | Permalink

    Let me see if I have this straight. If I remember correctly, the surface of the sun is somewhere around 5700K. And accordning to JohnV, it has absolutely no output in the infrared band. At least if the chart he presented can be believed.

    JohnV, your ability to believe whatever is necessary has reached phd level.

  631. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 3:36 PM | Permalink

    618, John V: Great link. I hadn’t seen it before. It shows well the overlap between OCO and HOH, as well as the relative amounts of IR absorbed by these molecules. Note that water absorbs probably 5-10 times as much IR on a molar basis. When you look at the relative amounts of the two molecules in the air, then water probably absorbs 200 times as much as OCO (in humid areas). Therefore, if 700 ppm OCO can add 4 w/m^2, why can’t 10,000 ppm HOH add at least 14 X 4 = 56 watts/m^2 more in humid areas than in dry areas (I know this is greatly oversimplified).

  632. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 3:39 PM | Permalink

    618
    John V
    You were clearly trying to discredit Wegman. If past AGW history is any guide, that kind of thing soon gets to the ubiquitous oil-shill smear.

  633. Boris
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 3:39 PM | Permalink

    No comment on the supposedly independent Wegman? Hello?

  634. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 3:42 PM | Permalink

    OOps, excuse me, that plot is not on a molar basis. I guess it represents some sort of “average atmosphere.” But the basic argument remains the same. If OCO causes a forcing, then water should also cause a forcing. And that forcing would have to be much greater in humid areas than in the deserts. Which should make the tropics WAY hotter than the deserts. Which is not so.

  635. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 3:49 PM | Permalink

    624 Mark
    The solar and earth radiation curves in the graph are probably normalized so that the total energies are equal, reflecting input/output radiation balance.

  636. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 3:49 PM | Permalink

    >> No comment on the supposedly independent Wegman? Hello?

    You are confusing “no prejudice” with “no judgement”. To prejudge an issue is to make up your mind without examining the facts. There is every indication that he came into this with no prejudiced opinion, as any intellectually honest person would. After having been exposed to the facts, a rational intellectually honest person would have to follow the evidence.

    You are trying to smear him by claiming that he was prejudiced in the beginning just because he later formed an opinion, upon learning all the facts. IOW, after the trial, the judge is supposed to have an opinion. If he remained neutral even after the trial, he would be guilty of either being brain dead or intellectual dishonesty.

  637. Larry
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 3:50 PM | Permalink

    Ok, Boris. Fill us in. What’s the poop on Wegman?

  638. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 3:53 PM | Permalink

    631 Larry
    See #606 John V

  639. Boris
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 3:55 PM | Permalink

    Wegman signed a letter that touts the “global warming stopped in 1998″ canard. That doesn’t inspire much confidence in his judgment.

    Hans Erren signed it too. Hans, explain yourself.

  640. Larry
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 3:56 PM | Permalink

    624, I think the intent of that chart is to show that the respective white areas under the respective curves are the amount absorbed. For the incoming, it’s a relatively small amount. For the outgoing, it’s more than half. The colored parts are what didn’t get absorbed, and mirror-image the total absorption curve.

  641. Larry
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 4:00 PM | Permalink

    633, statistically speaking, global warming did stop in 1998.

    As I told John V., if you don’t want to live with that, don’t go around in the next breath claiming that 1998 was the hottest year ever. Pick one claim or the other. You can’t have them both.

  642. Phil.
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 4:02 PM | Permalink

    Re #572

    Since this is an audit site and accuracy is important the Hadley centre said the 7th warmest since 1850, not ‘ever’!

  643. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 4:04 PM | Permalink

    100 scientists speak out!

  644. kim
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 4:09 PM | Permalink

    Van der Veen et al consider magma flows creating hotspots to explain some of the Greenland glacier flowing. Hawkeye Jay Radar.
    =================================================

  645. Boris
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 4:10 PM | Permalink

    statistically speaking, global warming did stop in 1998.

    !

  646. jimdk
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 4:14 PM | Permalink

    re 638
    yes but if you factor in data uncertainties and model uncertainties bias and confounding effects, there is no discrepency between data and model

    To be sure, this isn’t a demonstration that the tropical trends in the model simulations or the data are perfectly matched – there remain multiple issues with moist convection parameterisations, the Madden-Julian oscillation, ENSO, the ‘double ITCZ’ problem, biases, drifts etc. Nor does it show that RAOBCORE v1.4 is necessarily better than v1.2. But it is a demonstration that there is no clear model-data discrepancy in tropical tropospheric trends once you take the systematic uncertainties in data and models seriously. Funnily enough, this is exactly the conclusion reached by a much better paper by P. Thorne and colleagues. Douglass et al’s claim to the contrary is simply unsupportable.

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2007/12/tropical-troposphere-trends/

  647. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 4:30 PM | Permalink

    642: Well, let’s see:
    None of the models predicted an 8-9 year leveling off of temperatures.

    All of the models predict more warming in the mid troposphere than at the surface, which did not happen.

    Many modelers admit that the properties of clouds and other water-based relationships are critical to the models’ performance, but are very poorly understood.

    Nobody seems to have any sense of the error margins for the models.

    How on God’s Blue Planet can anyone take these models seriously?

  648. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 4:33 PM | Permalink

    Random points in no particular order.

    ————————-

    Gaelan; some stuff in this post here will illustrate some of what Gavin means (spin). My opinion of course. But a deeper issue is how I can attempt to answer your question for you instead of spining the situation; what is causing “the warming”. Cities, roads, deforestation, and farms mainly, pollution on the ice and disolving in the oceans (offset to some extent by particulates reflecting IR and changing cloud behavior in an unknown ratio), AGHG to some extent (coupled with whatever water vapor is doing at a specific altitude and how the AGHG are acting and reacting). The models attempt to quantify all this. (I’m assuming we all know that water vapor does at times absorb/emit IR, at least the IPCC mentions that in the TAR, forget the specific ref)

    ————————-

    Paul, I certainly want to die screaming in terror like my uncle’s passengers. YMMV

    ————————-

    I’ll comment on Dr. Wegman. He looked at things and drew conclusions. How does not drawing the same conclusions as you do prove (much less suggest) he’s not impartial?

    ————————-

    jae; that chart has one issue; it doesn’t show altitude. What water (or whatever) does one place is not what it does everyplace. Where in the tropics? Where in the desert? 1000 feet up? 1000 meters up? 1 inch from the ground? 10 feet from the ground? So why can’t everyone be correct? :)

    ————————-

    Pat, yes, the core is hot (how hot) and releases materials (how much where). So I would certainly look inward from the deep ocean as well as outward from the atmosphere (magma, plates and magnetic field). Of course, as always, these are rhetorical issues, I’m not attempting to quantify things or prove anything. Just things to consider.

    ————————-

    I liked that, John V. We can only control a few feedbacks/forcings. And that’s the A in AGW. That’s why so much talk about CO2; the issue is the same thing that controls it controls the other parts of the system, the CFC, HFC, Methane, nitrous oxide, particulates….. And ignores what I consider the main force (80%?) driving whatever heating is happening; how we use the land. So if AGHG are 20%, what effects do the particulates have? What does reducing fossil fuel use do to that combination of AGHG and particulates? Nice spring analogy. (well, at least I liked it) Only two variables tho. :)

    But we can’t control the most powerful feedback/forcing, water. So where does that leave us?

    Ground effects are most certainly overwhelming the GE. However, once you get higher and the air is cold and dry, what does the CO2 do? Most up or most down?

    ————————-

    Solar. Again. If 100 is needed for equilibrium and it’s been at 101 since (pick year) it clearly can be causing warming without needing to have risen. Heck, if 100 is needed for equilibrium and it was 115 in 1850, it could be falling and still warming things. Anyone care to disprove that might be the case?

    ————————-

    Here’s my cheer! HOH! OCO! HHCHH!

    ————————-

    Why not just plot log trends instead of linear?

    Anyways. About the decade warm thing. Just go plot every decade on the 6-5 as I did. Or 4-3 or 1-0. Yawn. Numbers all change.

    Both 1966-1975 and 1956-1965 are flat. 1996-2005 is about +.1C per 1 ppmv for the decade (.22C trend and 20 ppmv added over the ten years).

    ————————-

    I always knew you were a dirty commie like me, Sadlov. The workers must control the means of production!

    ————————-

    Mosh. The plants like it warmer too, they migrate to higher CO2/H2O areas in their prefered temp range (and one would imagine sink more CO2 while doing so…) BTW, I think the store is permanently out.

    ————————-

    For the greenhouse effect questions, charts are the easist to see it on, and there are explantions with the graphics:

    Simplified basics of the GE

    Solar spectrum

    Atmospheric transmission

    Read also this, which is where the graphs are from:

    Wiki entry on the GE

    The basic jist of which (part of simplified intro) is:

    The Earth receives energy from the Sun in the form of radiation. The Earth reflects about 30% of the incoming solar radiation. The remaining 70% is absorbed, warming the land, atmosphere and oceans. For the Earth’s temperature to be in steady state so that the Earth does not rapidly heat or cool, this absorbed solar radiation must be very closely balanced by energy radiated back to space in the infrared wavelengths. Since the intensity of infrared radiation increases with increasing temperature, one can think of the Earth’s temperature as being determined by the infrared flux needed to balance the absorbed solar flux. The visible solar radiation mostly heats the surface, not the atmosphere, whereas most of the infrared radiation escaping to space is emitted from the upper atmosphere, not the surface. The infrared photons emitted by the surface are mostly absorbed in the atmosphere by greenhouse gases and clouds and do not escape directly to space.

    They then go into a more complex explanation involving convective and latent heat fluxes, which also goes into the atmosphere losing about 6.5C per kilometer of altitude. And

    The more opaque the atmosphere, and the higher the emission level of the escaping infrared radiation, the warmer the surface, since one then needs to follow this lapse rate over a larger distance in the vertical. While less intuitive than the purely radiative greenhouse effect, this less familiar radiative-convective picture is the starting point for most discussions of the greenhouse effect in the climate modeling literature.

  649. Gary Moran
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 4:36 PM | Permalink

    John V #565

    A net positive feedback does not mean that temperatures continue to increase. It only means that the contribution from a given forcing is amplified. Using ballpark figures, a 1% solar forcing (more than a typical Milankovitch cycle) would impact ~1degC warming. For the sake of argument, let’s say this is amplified to 2.5degC. That’s still not enough to come out of an ice age. Something has to be responsible for the other ~2degC warming. (Ice age temperature swing is 4-5degC globally, 10-11degC at the poles).

    If the feedback terms are large enough to cause deglaciation without CO2, then temperature sensitivity to a given amount of solar forcing is quite large. Since the basic greenhouse physics (minus feedbacks) are well understood, this would mean that present-day CO2 forcing will lead to even more warming than expected.

    this seems to be a rather simplistic numbers game. NH glaciation isn’t just down to global average temperatures, changes in THC must be an important factor, as must the innate variability of climate. It is obvious that in an ice epoch, that there must be some degree of climate instability, the inherent cause of which is probably down to positioning of the continents, this instability can surely work both ways? There appears to be an assumption that feedbacks during an ice age termination can be applied to today’s climate? I find it unlikely that we sit in a precarious balance between two temperature tipping points.

    On a similar note alarmists often state that if the climate is as naturally variable as say a Loehle reconstruction, that this simply means there is greater sensitivity to forcing; this seems very flawed to me, and shows a lack of understanding of complex systems.

  650. jimdk
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 4:37 PM | Permalink

    c’mon jae, if you factor in just the right amount of uncertainty a model’s predictive power is infallible, reality is behaving just the way models say it should

  651. John M
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 4:53 PM | Permalink

    I know this has been linked before somewehere, but as long as we have folks wordsmithing and commenting on motives and bias, I’m wondering what one is to make of an article entitled “2007 data confirms warming trend“, which contains a table that projects that 2007 will be the coldest year since 2001.

    John V, is a plateau allowed to be five years long?

  652. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:05 PM | Permalink

    MarkW:
    I find it amusing and distressing at the same time when *you* claim that *I* have a blind spot to evidence I don’t like. I may have a blind spot but you have tunnel vision. :)

    Looking back at #593, you said: “It looks like CO2 should be less of a forcing than increased solar output. The reason for this is CO2 both tends to impeded IR from leaving the earth, and IR from arriving to the earth from the sun.”

    When reading it the first time I thought you were going for the old CO2 saturation argument (saturated by incoming radiation). I can see now that you weren’t saying that, so I withdraw and apologize.

    IMHO, blanket statements like “CO2 should be less of a forcing than increased solar output” are not specific enough to mean anything. They have different units and different variability. A 1% increase in solar is definitely a larger forcing than a 1% increase in CO2, but solar is much more stable than CO2.

    In the early part of the 20th century, increasing solar was likely dominant.
    Presently, CO2 is likely dominant.

  653. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:12 PM | Permalink

    Sam:

    The more opaque the atmosphere, and the higher the emission level of the escaping infrared radiation, the warmer the surface, since one then needs to follow this lapse rate over a larger distance in the vertical. While less intuitive than the purely radiative greenhouse effect, this less familiar radiative-convective picture is the starting point for most discussions of the greenhouse effect in the climate modeling literature.

    Yes, as far as I can tell, this is the heart and soul for the CO2 effects in the models. Now, substitute water vapor for OCO into this little explanation. Then run a model for the tropics and compare it to a run for the desert. Since the greater amount of water vapor in the tropics makes the atmosphere much more opaque than the small amount does in the deserts, you must move that lapse rate even more in the tropics. That should produce a much greater “forcing” by water vapor in the tropics, leading to much higher temperatures. But that does not happen, even though the forcing from water vapor should be many times higher than for OCO. Maybe I’m missing something here, but I sure would like to know what.

    Also, they keep calling this a “radiative-convective” concept. Where is the “convective” part? In reality, I think they completely ignore convection, which is the Achilles heel of these “theories.”

  654. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:14 PM | Permalink

    Re: #648 “Presently, CO2 is likely dominant.”

    Pielke Sr. does not agree.

  655. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:14 PM | Permalink

    646: LOL.

  656. Larry
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:15 PM | Permalink

    We need a new unthreaded. This is like watching a nerf ball fight at the old folks home.

  657. Phil.
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:18 PM | Permalink

    Re #612

    John, you are so busy arguing that you are not learning, anymore. Look at the links provided on this topic. Again, about HALF the energy from the Sun is in the infrared portion of the spectrum, and that includes lots of IR in those portions of the spectrum where CO2 and HOH absorb. Hate to keep repeating this, but you need to face this FACT. See link at 590.

    Jae, 10% UV, 35% Vis, 55% IR

    Some absorption by CO2 and H2O on the incoming solar has absolutely no effect on the GHE since once it’s in the earth’s system it’s part of the energy balance. It makes no difference whether a photon is absorbed in the atmosphere or is absorbed at the surface and subsequently IR photons are emitted from the surface.

  658. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:22 PM | Permalink

    647: That’s called spin. If they had left the word “trend” out, it makes sense. Gee, the last few years were warmer. They could also show a downward trend from 1998, if they wanted to. The BBC and allied libs just can’t come to grips with this plateau.

  659. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:24 PM | Permalink

    Regarding Wegman and Cooling since 1998:
    The argument that it’s been cooling since 1998 is completely invalid. The *only* way to reach that conclusion is by cherry-picking endpoints and subtracting.

    Below is a plot of the yearly global temperature anomaly (GISTEMP Land+Ocean) and the trailing 5, 10, 15, and 20 year trends. If warming had stopped since 1998, the trends would be at or near zero.

    My concern is not that Wegman has changed his opinion regarding significant AGW. My concern is that there’s no statistically valid way to claim warming stopped after 1998. Dr Wegman, as a statistician, knows this — so why would he sign a letter claiming otherwise?


    BTW, Larry, you seem to be accusing me of claiming some significance for 1998 as the warmest year. I pointed it out because the original commenter seemed to think it was wrong. For CRU, 1998 was the warmest, but that does not mean much at all.

  660. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:27 PM | Permalink

    653: ?? I have no argument with that. I was just pointing out that about half of sunlight energy is in the IR part of the spectrum.

  661. yorick
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:38 PM | Permalink

    Here’s one for Borus.

    Establishing what caused Earth’s largest climatic changes in the past requires a precise knowledge of both the forcing and the regional responses. Here we establish the chronology of high and low latitude climate change at the last glacial termination by 14C dating benthic and planktonic foraminiferal stable isotope and Mg/Ca records from a marine core collected in the western tropical Pacific. Deep sea temperatures warmed by ~2oC between 19 and 17 ka B.P. (thousand years before present), leading the rise in atmospheric CO2 and tropical surface ocean warming by ~1000 years. The cause of this deglacial deep water warming does not lie within the tropics, nor can its early onset between 19-17 ka B.P. be attributed to CO2 forcing. Increasing austral spring insolation combined with sea-ice albedo feedbacks appear to be key factors responsible for this warming.

    Science Lowell Stott 1*, Axel Timmermann 2, Robert Thunell

  662. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:44 PM | Permalink

    RE: #679 – They ignore convection, assume that latent heat is emitted lower in the column than it actually is, and that not much of the latent heat goes out into space quickly and completely ignore the cooling effects of precipitation. When you read “H2O is a positive feedback” that should be deconstructed to read “our parameterization assumes that latent heat emission is as with an ideal parcel of air, slowly raised along an adiabatic lapse rate profile, the global average non condensing RH portion acts as a net outgoing IR retardant, the global average cloudiness takes the form of mid to high level stratiforms and acts as a weak lowpass filter to incoming insolation and as a net outgoing IR retardant. The average cloud is persistent and does not precipitate. It does not incur ionizing energy or electrical discharges. There are neither updrafts nor downdrafts in it.”

  663. Larry
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:49 PM | Permalink

    658, you don’t integrate, you simply multiply by the reciprocal of wavelength. You don’t need to do it, it’s already done in 618.

  664. M. Jeff
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:51 PM | Permalink

    re: #648, John V., December 13th, 2007 at 5:05 pm

    MarkW: I find it amusing and distressing at the same time when *you* claim that *I* have a blind spot to evidence I don’t like. I may have a blind spot but you have tunnel vision.

    Blind spot and tunnel vision possible symptoms of opthalmic migraine. Not unexpected considering the nature of the current debate.

  665. Phil.
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:52 PM | Permalink

    Re #626

    618, John V: Great link. I hadn’t seen it before. It shows well the overlap between OCO and HOH, as well as the relative amounts of IR absorbed by these molecules. Note that water absorbs probably 5-10 times as much IR on a molar basis. When you look at the relative amounts of the two molecules in the air, then water probably absorbs 200 times as much as OCO (in humid areas). Therefore, if 700 ppm OCO can add 4 w/m^2, why can’t 10,000 ppm HOH add at least 14 X 4 = 56 watts/m^2 more in humid areas than in dry areas (I know this is greatly oversimplified).

    That graph is just a cartoon, and while it gives a good overview it’s not possible to make these sort of calculations based on it, you need to use something like MODTRAN. There’s no indication on the concentration of H2O for instance.

  666. Michael Smith
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:53 PM | Permalink

    Not to get into the battle of the temperature graphs, but isn’t this the portion of the earth’s atmosphere that should warm first and most if AGW theory is correct?

  667. Michael Smith
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:56 PM | Permalink

    Well, I see my effort to use the “Img” button to embed and image failed. Here is a link to the graph I tried to post:

  668. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:58 PM | Permalink

    There is more water vapor in the atmosphere then there is CO2
    Atmosphere: 79% nitrogen, 20% oxygen, and 1% other gases.

    “Other gases” or Variable gases is where those fit in. And water vapor is in a much greater amount within that 1% “other gases” then CO2 is.

    Water vapor is the most important (and abundant) variable gas.

    And remember the O and the H in H2O

    /added for some perspective

  669. Michael Smith
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 5:58 PM | Permalink

    And now I see that my effort to use the “Link” button to imbed a link has failed. Well, here is the URL:

    http://www.junkscience.com/MSU_Temps/RSSglobe.html

    My apologies for the multiple posts.

  670. L Nettles
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 6:00 PM | Permalink

    The argument that it’s been cooling since 1998 is completely invalid. The *only* way to reach that conclusion is by cherry-picking endpoints and subtracting.

    Isn’t that exactly what they did, Picked 1998 and 12/07 as the endpoints and made a valid statement.
    You might disagree with the significance of the statement, but what is the magic in starting in 1970 or 1850?

  671. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 6:09 PM | Permalink

    662: Larry pay special attention to the integral sign here.

  672. Larry
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 6:24 PM | Permalink

    671, BUT you’re only interested w/m^2.

    I have to stand corrected by jae, what you need to do is integrate. When you do, there’s more area under the curve in the visible range.

    The more important point that everyone (except John V) seems intent on missing is that the IR tail from the sun is in the very near IR, and doesn’t get absorbed anywhere near as much as the longer waves from the earth.

  673. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 6:31 PM | Permalink

    When you do, there’s more area under the curve in the visible range.

    No, but I give up.

    The more important point that everyone (except John V) seems intent on missing is that the IR tail from the sun is in the very near IR, and doesn’t get absorbed anywhere near as much as the longer waves from the earth.

    I agree with this part.

  674. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 6:32 PM | Permalink

    661 Steve S

    The average cloud is persistent and does not precipitate. It does not incur ionizing energy or electrical discharges. There are neither updrafts nor downdrafts in it.

    LOL! I can tell you, from flying IFR, that there are ‘bumps’ from updrafts and down-drafts when flying into or directly under even a minor cloud.

  675. Phil.
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 6:44 PM | Permalink

    Re #672

    671, BUT you’re only interested w/m^2.

    I have to stand corrected by jae, what you need to do is integrate. When you do, there’s more area under the curve in the visible range.

    The more important point that everyone (except John V) seems intent on missing is that the IR tail from the sun is in the very near IR, and doesn’t get absorbed anywhere near as much as the longer waves from the earth.

    Which is exactly what I gave you, divide both numbers by 2pi if you like it doesn’t change the ratio!
    Those numbers are the result of the integration of the whole wavelength range and 0.4->0.7 microns respectively.
    As to the relative absorption of near IR I’ve posted about that several times above.

  676. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 6:49 PM | Permalink

    Side note: when you have to start calling BS on each other, it becomes apparent you’re losing your tempers. Why don’t you keep the debate about issues and ideas, rather than what amounts to ad homs? (As much as I hate to bring out the flippant butchering of Latin in trite logical-sounding phrases.) Can we all get some perspective here about arguing matters of OPINION?

    ————————–

    welikerocks, yes, but what does it mean that OHO has 400% more mass in kg in the atmosphere versus OCO? Or the fact that OCO is much more receptive to IR but in relative small bands compared to OHO?

    ————————–

    John V.
    Asking about the last 100 years. It’s obvious that OCO levels are up. It’s obvious the global mean anomaly is up. So? The fact is, ALL the AGHG follow the same pattern. What is NOT obvious is if they are all driving each other in some sort of cartel that raises them all similarly, or does something else cause them all to do that? Do you know? I don’t. Situation; I spray a can of paint into the air. Does it stay there?
    Your graph — It’s quite clear the trend is up over time. Painfully obvious from looking at it. Ignoring any questions on the meaning of the trend in the first place, is it true that off the ’98 high that it went back down to the level it was in ’90? So the trend is up, but periods between years go down. Why does it do that? Why is the ’98 temp the same as the last data point? Why did the trend go negative from 1896 to 1905? Why was the trend flat from 1956-1965?
    I’ll answer my own question; we don’t know.

    ————————–

    This space for rent

    ————————–

    Jae, the reason you’re having a difficult time is that you are trying to conceptualize a massive dynamic chaotic system in flux as a “thing” that can be understood. It can’t. It can be observed. It can be modeled. It’s not a thing (attach battery to wire to resistor to wire to light to wire to battery) that has an expected explainable observed behavior that can have individual parts taken out and stop working. Unfortunate, but we have no way to experiment on it directly, dang the luck.
    I was going to make an analogy with figuring out what a computer or a car is doing by looking at its behavior, but both of those can be drilled into and figured out (although some complex interactions in curcuits take a long time to understand from reading the schematics) but ultimately you can figure out how exactly an engine works in every component or how an ALU does math from the behaviors of the registers.

    The “problem” with the atmosphere is that water in solid liquid gas form can be a forcing, or a positive or negative feedback. How it does that when is a function of so many factors on its own, even before you start trying to understand and separate the other factors other than water; the land, altitude, wind, the other GHG and non-GHG gasses, amount of IR coming in, and so forth.

    So I imagine a big pipe, and ask these questions. Is the gas mixture, pressure and temperatures the same at ground, 1″, 5″, 5′, 20′, 100’….. Up and up. No. Humidity? Wind? How wide is the column, .0001″ or 10 feet or 100 feet etc. What about one column to the other going horizontally? How do you match those patterns?

    Anyway, the question is why is the desert a higher temperature than a grassy area the same size? How much heat does sand absorb and how fast does it let it go, and at what frequencies, compared to grass? How much water is there to be evaoprated? How much water is there in the air to hold in/transfer heat/IR? How much vegetation is there to absorb/deflect heat/IR? How is the air mixed and with what percentages of what? How many clouds form? Where are the particulates? How does a lack of plants in the desert affect the amount of GHG in the air — There’s nothing to absorb CO2 or release O2 in the desert. Nothing to stop sand from heating and releasing heat.

    This is not a water vapor issue; it’s a total difference in the system.

    Now, the models may ignore convection (I don’t know, I’m not a modeller nor am I particularly interested in them) but the principles are easy.

    Convective : bulk motion of fluids.
    Conductive : molecule by molecule transfer of energy through solid or fluid.
    Radiative : electromagnetic waves.

    Then you can break down the convection into either free or advective. As wikipedia sez:

    Natural convection is a mechanism, or type of heat transport in which the fluid motion is not generated by any external source (like a pump, fan, suction device, etc.) but only by density differences in the fluid occurring due to temperature gradients. In natural convection, fluid surrounding a heat source receives heat, becomes less dense and rises. The surrounding, cooler fluid then moves to replace it. This cooler fluid is then heated and the process continues, forming a convection current. The driving force for natural convection is buoyancy, a result of differences in fluid density. Because of this, the presence of gravity or an equivalent force (arising from the equivalence principle, such as acceleration, centrifugal force or Coriolis force) is essential for natural convection. Natural convection does not operate as it does on Earth in the micro gravity environment of the orbiting International Space Station, where other heat transfer mechanisms are required to prevent electronic components from overheating.

    Pretty boring and not under much debate, I’d think.

    Bottom line; the desert is hotter because it’s different. Why does a block of iron in the sun heat up more than a block of paper? Why can you light paper on fire with a match but not a block of iron?

  677. bender
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 7:33 PM | Permalink

    John V’s all crickets on #668 I see. Maybe those are the data Wegman was going by? Why don’t John V & Borus write Dr Wegman a nice letter asking him why he signed, instead of making presumptions? That’s what Steve M does when he wants to know something.

  678. Susann
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 7:56 PM | Permalink

    #535 PaddikJ:
    December 12th, 2007 at 11:48 pm

    You are talking about leaving the realm of metaphor and playing real hockey. I’m not sure Susann is up to it.

    Thanks for the vote of confidence, TheDuke. But you are correct. I am not up to it – now. Give me a few years. :)

  679. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 8:00 PM | Permalink

    #674 bender:
    I’ve been away. I assume you meant #667. If so, are you defending the practice of defining a trend by subtracting end-points? That seems out of character. What would you say if Al Gore argued that warming has accelerated by picking 2000 as the starting point?

    #667 L Nettles:
    You don’t determine trends by subtracting end-points. Even cherry-picking the starting year is frowned upon, but I won’t argue that point. Even starting in 1998, the *trend* is up.

  680. jae
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 8:32 PM | Permalink

    ————————–

    This space for rent

    ————————–

    Sam, it looks to me that with your view of the world, there would be no advancement of science at all. You start with a question: “why are the deserts hotter;” and you do your best to explain that. That’s all I’m doing. Is there something wrong with that?

  681. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 8:33 PM | Permalink

    #676 bender:
    “Al Gore” should have been Gavin Schmidt” — he’s a better comparison to Wegman.

  682. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 9:11 PM | Permalink

    @JohnV 655– Cover up the years before 1998– the trend is near zero.

    I’m not sure what that means, but there hasn’t been much movement since 1998.

  683. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 9:17 PM | Permalink

    # 618

    John V.,

    Could you express the absorption in terms of W/m^2 instead percentages? Every gas, or greenhouse gas, has a limit even if you say it absorbs 100% of the radiation received by it.

  684. bender
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 9:22 PM | Permalink

    I’m referring to the graph of Michael Smith in #666, John V. How about those dead flat tropospheric temperatures? What do the GCMs say should happen there? And what is actually happening there? And why the discrepancy? You have dodged once. You going to dodge again? You making pretenses at being qualified to judge a giant like Wegman is, frankly, laughable.

  685. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 9:25 PM | Permalink

    Susann, 7:56:

    “Thanks for the vote of confidence, TheDuke. But you are correct. I am not up to it – now. Give me a few years.”

    That’s the spirit! Believe it or not, I have faith in you.

    Just keep absorbing what is available her (and elsewhere).

    There was a very interesting op-ed in today’s San Deigo Union Tribune by Cary Lowe. Unfortunately, I can’t find it at their website. His argument is that AG Jerry Brown and the California legislature are now using global warming to seize control over growth and development in California from local authorities. A law has been passed by the legislature, the California Global Warming Solutions Act, which has created widespread uncertainty as to what is permissible in land use decisions in California, since the law was passed without detailed regulations. Numerous lawsuits by environmentalists challenging existing decisions have been filed since the passage of the law last year, since no one is clear what the law really says. It’s a disaster.

    Yet more evidence that the issues discussed here are of the utmost importance and why the science needs to be audited down to the last decimal point.

  686. Andrey Levin
    Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 10:35 PM | Permalink

    Re379, Nevket240:

    Ocean acidification, especially it influence on corals, is valid concern, subject to intensive research. Luckily, corals seem to be much more resilient (could it be other way?) than presented by alarmists:

    http://www.co2science.org/scripts/CO2ScienceB2C/subject/c/calcification.jsp

  687. Posted Dec 13, 2007 at 11:13 PM | Permalink

    # 684

    Andrey Levin,

    I agree. I was thinking on virus and other pathogens (bacteria and fungus) like the main cause of coral bleaching. We have detected pathogens for corals in dust storms that end at the oceans. I have witnessed red winds, but other investigators have studied black winds coming from Africa and Asia that are deposited in oceans. Here for terrestrial plants, and here for animals (especially celenterates like corals and medusas, and Echinoderms like urchins, sea-cucumber and starfish).

  688. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 12:50 AM | Permalink

    #606

    Consistent with this, and despite computer projections of temperature rises, there has been no net global warming since 1998

    i.e. 1998 is still the warmest year (HadCRUT3).

    The surprising thing is that the oft-referenced Dr. Wegman (of Wegman report fame) signed the letter. Perhaps Steve McIntyre, bender, and other statistics experts could weigh in with their opinion on the warming trend in recent years. Would you agree with Dr. Wegman on this one?

    Least-squares fit to 1998-present data yields a positive slope, yes. But who would make that kind of fit without a model for signal and noise? If you use the T=a*CO2+noise model, where El Nino’s etc are considered as noise, then yes, it is OK to fit a trend. But in that letter those people seem to indicate that this model is possibly very good. Or what do I know, didn’t sign the letter.

    The claim that warming stopped in 1998 can only be backed up by cherry-picking the start year and subtracting.

    Hmm, there seems to be some obsession to straight lines here. Maybe somebody just took the warmest year and noted that it was many years ago. At least it tells you something about SNR in the above equation.

  689. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 12:58 AM | Permalink

    #8,

    Normal Climate is at right angles to climate. It is useful therefor to consider normal climate to be an imaginary number.

  690. MJW
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 1:38 AM | Permalink

    I’ve heard many times that the response to CO2 is logarithmic, but I don’t think that’s correct. Supposedly it follows from Beer’s law, which is:

    A = a*b*c
    A = log10(i0/i1)

    Where:

    A is called the “absorbance”
    a is a material-dependent constant called the “molar absorptivity.”
    b is the path length (relatively fixed for the atmosphere).
    c is the concentration.
    i0 is the input intensity.
    i1 is the output intensity.

    The thing is, despite the name, the absorbance does not determine the amount of energy absorbed. The energy absorbed is determined by the difference between the intensity of the light going in and the light coming out; i.e, i0-i1.

    log10(i0/i1) = A = a*b*c
    i0/i1 = 10^(a*b*c)
    i1/i0 = 10^(-a*b*c)
    i1 = i0*10^(-a*b*c)
    i0-i1 = i0-i0*10^(-a*b*c)
    i0-i1 = i0*{1-[10^(-a*b)]^c}

    or, defining k = 10^(-a*b),

    i0-i1 = i0*(1-k^c)

    (Note, unlike the log, this is well-behaved and equal to zero at c=0 and approaches a limit as the concentration increases.)

    Therefore, the change in response for a change in concentration from c0 to c1 is determined by:

    i0*(k^c0-k^c1)

    (Correct me if I’m wrong, and if I am, I’ll eat a bug. — SCTV)

  691. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 1:48 AM | Permalink

    685 Correction,

    Letter:

    Recent observations of phenomena such as glacial retreats, sea-level rise and the migration of temperature-sensitive species are not evidence for abnormal climate change, for none of these changes has been shown to lie outside the bounds of known natural variability

    i.e. they think that the model is not very good.

  692. MarkR
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 2:29 AM | Permalink

    #687 MJW. Has anyone put those numbers into an atmospheric model to calculate what the retained heat addition would be relative to changes in CO2 level?

  693. Gary Moran
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 2:31 AM | Permalink

    #658 Yorick

    Yes, what both John V and Boris were trying to do was work out the numbers to explain the change in mean surface temperature: an energy budget view of the climate system; whereas in reality changes in conditions allowed synoptic changes sympathetic to glaciation or vice versa.

  694. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 2:37 AM | Permalink

    roconnell says: December 10th, 2007 at 3:33 pm

    Sam Urbinto says “The science is setttled”

    No scientist would ever say ANY science is ever settled.

    Perhaps the word you are looking for is not “settled” but Colonized.

  695. Filippo Turturici
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 2:58 AM | Permalink

    UN in Bali censored and closed by force interviews by “dissident” ICSC scientifical group:

    http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=prnw.20071213.DC09846&show_article=1

    But the UN secretary general, comes from South or North Korea?

  696. MJW
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 3:01 AM | Permalink

    MarkR (#689) I assume, if my comment was correct, that the GCMs already use the formula I gave (modified to account for changing CO2 concentrations at different altitudes). I don’t have much faith in the ability of models to predict the climate, but I certainly doubt they make fundamental physics errors.

    I am rather surprised that people always talk about the response in terms of a doubling of CO2 (which seems to imply a logarithmic response), but I assume that’s really just related to a doubling of the current CO2 level.

  697. Andrey Levin
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 3:03 AM | Permalink

    Re#45, Julian Flood:

    If marine oil pollution influences nuclei-forming aerosols, the effect should be most visible during WW2, and shortly afterwards.

    several outmoded operational techniques have been banned since the potential for oil to pollute was first recognised by the 1954 International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution of the Sea by Oil (OILPOL).

    — The convention prohibited the then standard technique of cleaning cargo tanks with water and pumping the resulting oil and water mix into the sea

    Currently most of oil ending up in the sea originates from land run-off (1995 data):

    Down the Drain: 363 Million Gallons
    Road runoff adds up every year oily road runoff from a city of 5 million could contain as much oil as one large tanker spill.

    Routine Maintenance: 137 Million Gallons
    Every year, bilge cleaning and other ship operations release millions of gallons of oil into navigable waters.

    Up in Smoke: 92 Million Gallons
    Air pollution, mainly from cars and industry, places hundreds of tons of hydrocarbons into the oceans each year.

    Natural Seeps: 62 Million Gallons

    Big Spills: 37 Million Gallons
    Only about 5 percent of oil pollution in oceans is due to major tanker accidents.

    Offshore Drilling: 15 Million Gallons

    http://seawifs.gsfc.nasa.gov/OCEAN_PLANET/HTML/peril_oil_pollution.html

    BTW, I’ve read the hypothesis that ocean oil pollution sewerely affects phytoplankton, which results in reduced oceanic carbon sink.

  698. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 3:36 AM | Permalink

    Susann asks:

    Careful — do you really want science to be driven by the profit motive?

    Seems like a good idea to me when large sums of money are involved.

    Think of a drug company for instance. Are they going to start producing a drug in mass quantities based on an uncorroborated study, with missing data, missing models, with significant factors in the model parameterized because they are not well understood or hard to model, and protocols not well defined?

    Profit keeps business at least semi-honest. If they produce a dangerous drug that is not effective they stand to lose a lot of money. Who do we sue if the IPCC is wrong? Who do we go to to get our tax money back?

    Who is at risk from wrong projections? Where can I get recourse if the AGW theory is a mistake? Which is why business must be more careful.

  699. JamesG
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 4:07 AM | Permalink

    JohnV : “What does this show? Solar and CO2 are the *forcings*. CO2’s fraction of the forcing is 15/(23+15) = 40%. Solar’s fraction of the forcing is 23/(23+15) = 60%. The rest is feedbacks, which in broad terms are insensitive to the source of the forcing. Nothing changes.”

    This is confused thinking. Only Anthropogenic CO2 is a forcing. Natural CO2 is just one of several positive feedbacks resulting from warming. Yes, additional CO2 causes additional warming (after a long time has elapsed) but it must be secondary to the faster feedbacks – albedo, H2O and others. These faster feedbacks must dominate as long as the solar forcing is still present. Only once the solar forcing ends can you say that the solar induced H2O positive feedback reduces and CO2 then has a greater influence due to residence time. Of course, without human influence, CO2 has only a 10 year lifetime, not the (mythical) 30-100 years ascribed to current CO2. The upshot is that you cannot claim extra feedback-boosted percentages for natural CO2 the way they do with Anthropogenic CO2.

  700. nevket240
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 4:25 AM | Permalink

    JohnV
    sorry if being a pest. Your good self appears to be focused on the BS report known as the Stern Review. when deciding that warming is a disaster for humanity.
    I would like to make my position on his work clear. It was not an economic document whatsoever. It is purely a Political exercise.It was designed by Blair & Brown to accomplish a number of things.
    1/get B & B off the front pages of the tabloids during the worst of the Iraq affair.
    2/it was to be Blairs swansong (high note) & Browns leg up to the Prime Ministership.
    It had VERY narrow terms of reference. Why would anyone setup a task such as this and only ask for the downside of an issue. Would not serious people ask for both sides. Especially one as divisive as this. Or maybe that was the idea.
    “The science is settled” has now been augmented by the economic arguement.
    The Stern review was pilloried by a greater number of economic writers who saw the politics in it, than it was supported.
    Only those who wish to pursue a course of “Power to the UN” gave it credibility.

    regards.

  701. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 4:44 AM | Permalink

    #273 Sam, (my daughter’s name is Sam)
    What does it mean? We don’t know.
    Two phrases that should be used way more often around here ;)

    I found this paper published in July ’07 (German)
    Might mess with a few heads here?
    I have no idea if its a good paper. LOL:

    “Falsification Of The Atmospheric CO2
    Greenhouse Effects Within The Frame Of Physics Version 1.0 (July 7, 2007)” Gerhard Gerlich, Ralf D. Tscheuschne

    It cannot be overemphasized that a microscopic theory providing the base for a derivation of macroscopic quantities like thermal or electrical transport coefficients must be a highly involved many-body theory. Of course, heat transfer is due to interatomic electromagnetic interactions mediated by the electromagnetic field. But it is misleading to visualize a photon as a simple particle or wave packet travelling from one atom to another for example. Things are pretty much more complex and cannot be understood even in a (one-)particle-wave duality or Feynman graph picture. On the other hand, the macroscopic thermodynamical quantities contain a lot of information and can be measured directly and accurately in the physics lab.

    It is an interesting point that the heat conductivity of CO2 is only one half of that of nitrogen or oxygen. In a 100 percent CO2 atmosphere a conventional light bulb shines brighter than in a nitrogen-oxygen atmosphere due to the lowered heat conductivity of its environment. But this has nothing to do with the supposed CO2 greenhouse effect which refers to trace gas concentrations. Global climatologists claim that the Earth’s natural greenhouse effect keeps the Earth 33◦C warmer than it would be without the trace gases in the atmosphere. 80 percent of this warming is attributed to water vapor and 20 percent to the 0.03 volume percent CO2 If such an extreme effect existed, it would show up even in a laboratory experiment involving concentrated CO2 as a heat conductivity anomaly. It would be manifest itself as a new kind of ‘superinsulation’ violating the conventional heat conduction equation. However, for CO2 such anomalous heat transport properties never have been observed. Therefore, in this paper, the popular greenhouse ideas entertained by the global climatology community are reconsidered within the limits of theoretical and experimental physics.

    The author’s rip into Al Gore and the IPCC a little bit as well.
    Link:here for pdf

    or this : for html version

  702. Jeremy Ayrton
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 4:58 AM | Permalink

    Re #273 – Welikerocks – this paper gets mentioned here quite frequently. Our host prefers that we do’t discuss it, however.

  703. Jeremy Ayrton
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 5:01 AM | Permalink

    Yes, well that should have been #697. Doh!

  704. kim
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 5:05 AM | Permalink

    WLR, the math is beyond me. Not so the discussion of it. It is so dense, only a few can understand it. I’ve read reports that wonder if it isn’t a hoax, an inside quant joke, and I’ve read reports that consider it the definitive critique of the IPCC conception of the Greenhouse Effect. Thermodynamics is wonderful, indeed.
    =====================

  705. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 5:07 AM | Permalink

    #699 Thanks. I didn’t know that. Well heck. lol

  706. Jeremy Ayrton
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 5:12 AM | Permalink

    #701 – no worries. BTW, I like rocks too, but for climbing up (or not, as is becoming more frequent).

  707. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 5:15 AM | Permalink

    #700 kim, thanks too. I get what you mean and yes it is. ;)

  708. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 5:16 AM | Permalink

    Boris says:

    The uncertainty in the data does not allow a complete evaluation of the models,

    Totally agree.

  709. Boris
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 5:40 AM | Permalink

    What do the GCMs say should happen there? And what is actually happening there?

    Models are not designed to “predict” short term interannual variabil—hey, wait a minute, you should know this since you supposedly know how bad models are. Why don’t you know this?

  710. Boris
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 5:43 AM | Permalink

    My 705 was in reply to bender’s 681.

  711. MarkW
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 5:47 AM | Permalink

    Could someone who doesn’t have blind spots explain something to me.

    How is it that a disconnect between temperatures and TSI over the last 30 years be proof that the sun has little effect on the climate.
    Yet at the same time, the even bigger disconnect between temperatures and CO2 over the last 150 years (and especially the last 10) be proof that CO2 is the major driver of the climate?

  712. Boris
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 6:03 AM | Permalink

    How is it that a disconnect between temperatures and TSI over the last 30 years be proof that the sun has little effect on the climate.

    It’s only proof that TSI did not cause the recent warming.

    …proof that CO2 is the major driver of the climate?

    To my knowledge, no one claims that CO2 is the “major driver” of climate.

    HTH

  713. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 6:06 AM | Permalink

    Tom Vonk says:

    This is the first time that there is such a massive interdependence between politicians who leaned out of the window so far that they can’t go back anymore and a happy mix of scientists and pseudo scientists who gave them the argument to lean out so far.

    You should look at ITER. Not quites as big a public fiasco but the same stuff applies. Just try being a supporter of research on some other more promising route to fusion and see what the ITER believers do. It ain’t pretty. You can show them peer reviewed papers and they will still discount the merits of your case.

  714. Tom Vonk
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 6:07 AM | Permalink

    WLR, the math is beyond me. Not so the discussion of it. It is so dense, only a few can understand it. I’ve read reports that wonder if it isn’t a hoax, an inside quant joke, and I’ve read reports that consider it the definitive critique of the IPCC conception of the Greenhouse Effect. Thermodynamics is wonderful, indeed.

    I stand currently in mail communication with Dr Gerlich & Dr Tscheuschner who are both well known and competent scientists . Stay tuned .
    As Steve , indeed , doesn’t wish this paper to be discussed for its content , I’ll respect that .
    I’ll only say one thing – it is rather lengthy and confusing even for a well informed scientific reader .
    What I try to understand is what they REALLY meant because several statements seem , let’s say , either dubious or incomplete (especially the quantum mechanical bit) .

  715. Tom Vonk
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 6:28 AM | Permalink

    You should look at ITER. Not quites as big a public fiasco but the same stuff applies. Just try being a supporter of research on some other more promising route to fusion and see what the ITER believers do. It ain’t pretty. You can show them peer reviewed papers and they will still discount the merits of your case.

    ITER doesn’t box in the same category as AGW .
    There is neither a UN body going to vacations in exotic places all over the world trying to establish control over any fusion research nor legislations being passed in many countries banning neutrons .
    There are neither stupidities rewarded by Nobel peace prizes nor hundreds of articles a day blaming floods , unemployment , cancer , species survival on ITER .
    Last but not least you or me are not likely to be affected in our every day’s life by hysterical laws having ITER for object .
    Now if you want to say that as there was much public money involved in ITER coupled to a radical green opposition , so the decision making had a strong political content , I of course agree .
    However 99,999 % of people don’t care and actually don’t even know what ITER is .

  716. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 6:30 AM | Permalink

    #331 Sam,

    Not to worry. Hansen was paid a nice fee by Enron for advice on how to profit from the fear of global warming. Hansen even told them there may be nothing to fear. Enron was hoping to use carbon trading to get it back in the black. Hansen did his best. Just not soon enough.

  717. Philip Mulholland
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 6:47 AM | Permalink

    ITER

  718. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 6:49 AM | Permalink

    Larry says December 11th, 2007 at 3:48 pm ,

    The rest mass of an electron is .51 MeV. Or 510 KeV. To get relativistic electrons in a tube requires plate voltages on the order of 50 KeV. Or more. I think you were referring to transit time vs light speed.

  719. Susann
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 6:59 AM | Permalink

    Seems like a good idea to me when large sums of money are involved.

    One thinks of ENRON and if one is wise, one thinks that maybe it’s not such a good idea. :)

    If science were solely funded and driven by the profit motive, there would be much research that was never undertaken because it didn’t produce any profit. Think about it. There are numerous “orphan” diseases where little or no research takes place now because so few are afflicted and it would cost too much to research and develop treatments. The only basic research that would be done would be along those avenues where a profit might be made. Bad idea.

  720. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 7:11 AM | Permalink

    Boris says: December 11th, 2007 at 6:50 pm ,

    What about the Carbon Traders Action Plan? GE is in on that.

    http://powerandcontrol.blogspot.com/2007/11/its-taxing-to-make-buck.html

  721. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 7:16 AM | Permalink

    Re 58 Andrey Levin

    My thoughts on the effects of oil and surfactant pollution are on my website. The WWII temperature blip is plainly seen on SSTs if, as I do, you doubt Folland and Parker’s bucket correction. This last is discussed in a thread on CA somewhere: look at the graph without the correction (there’s a link to one version at the bottom of my global warming page) and be amazed at the jump. If F&P are in error then the Kriegesmarine effect explains the jump nicely. If you look at the temperature record for Valentia you will see confirmation that the bucket correction is not necessarily definitive (polite English speak for ‘wrong’). Calibration using coastal stations should be a fairly trivial task.

    A model run using extra sunlight on the oceans as the primary warming driver is well worth trying — if one has the knowledge, computer and time. I look forward to the GCR people doing all the calculations. If their hypothesis goes Tango Uniform re nuclei formation, then all their work will be ready for cannibalisation by a different explanation for the reduction in cloud cover and the decrease in albedo. Waste not, want not.

    And don’t forget surfactant, it came as a surprise to me that surfactants have the same effect.

    I have sat in a cafe in Ibiza and seen a bay smoothed by the sun oil used by the bathers: the effect is astonishingly powerful.

    Re ice melting: there’s a major lot of oil exploration on the east coast of Russia. I wonder what the surface currents do there — maybe they are spreading oil in the same way that the wells at Prudhoe Bay are, decreasing stratocu cover, hence warming the Bering Sea which is getting up into the Chukchi Sea. Unalaska airport might have significant cloud and temperature records.

    Honesty compels me to admit that a major name in the anti-AGW camp has politely said that he doubts if the Kriegesmarine effect would be large enough to explain GW. I disagree — after all, he’s just 1000th of a Nobel laureate!

    JF

  722. tpguydk
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 7:29 AM | Permalink

    717: you’re kidding. I’ve actually read Cool It! and Lomborg actually accepts a lot of the IPCC’s conclusions!

    But because he adds nuance to his work, he’s the new Hitler. Bizarre.

  723. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 7:38 AM | Permalink

    #681 bender:

    I’m referring to the graph of Michael Smith in #666, John V. How about those dead flat tropospheric temperatures?

    Those do look pretty flat. Perhaps that’s what he meant.
    For completeness, here are the 5-year and 10-year trailing trends for UAH5.2 and RSS3.0 lower troposphere temperatures:

    I won’t argue that using the lower troposphere temperatures, the trend is slightly negative *right now*. The low-trend is expected because of the typical El Nino / La Nina cycle, plus the bottom of the solar cycle, but you don’t want to talk about that.

    However, I have to admit that there is a way to define a flat temperature trend since 1998.

    What do the GCMs say should happen there? And what is actually happening there? And why the discrepancy?

    The question was whether warming has stopped since 1998. The GCMs are a different question. Why the change of subject?

    Regardless, I believe the deviation between the GCMs and the measurements are largest in the tropical troposphere. I will assume that the GCMs predict more tropospheric warming than has been observed for the last 10 years.

    You have dodged once. You going to dodge again?

    What are you talking about?

    You making pretenses at being qualified to judge a giant like Wegman is, frankly, laughable.

    An appeal to authority and an ad-hom in one sentence — impressive.

  724. jae
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 7:47 AM | Permalink

    710:

    I stand currently in mail communication with Dr Gerlich & Dr Tscheuschner who are both well known and competent scientists . Stay tuned .

    Great! I, too, find the paper disjointed and confusing.

  725. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 7:52 AM | Permalink

    #695 JamesG:

    Only Anthropogenic CO2 is a forcing. Natural CO2 is just one of several positive feedbacks resulting from warming.

    There is no difference between anthropogenic CO2 and natural CO2. Once in the atmosphere they both have a long residence time and force the temperature. Once it’s in the atmosphere, the forcing is immediate.

    I see you disagree with the commonly accepted residence time. I’m not going to get into that.

    =====
    #696 nevket240:

    Your good self appears to be focused on the BS report known as the Stern Review. when deciding that warming is a disaster for humanity.

    Focused seems a little strong. I may have mentioned it once.
    Disaster seems a little strong as well, but that’s open to interpretation.
    I try to avoid the politics and economics for the most part, because they really get in the way of discussing the science. (I will dip into the subject when anybody claims that warmer can *only* mean better because that’s too one-sided).

    =====
    #697 welikerocks:
    The “Falsification” paper has been banned from discussion by Steve McIntyre. (Presumably because it is so riddled with errors). Since you brought it up though, here are a couple of rebuttals:

    http://rabett.blogspot.com/2007/10/loons-take-flight-as-halloween-nears.html

    http://atmoz.org/blog/2007/07/10/falsification-of-the-atmospheric-co2-greenhouse-effects/

  726. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 7:56 AM | Permalink

    #707 MarkW:

    How is it that a disconnect between temperatures and TSI over the last 30 years be proof that the sun has little effect on the climate.

    Strawman!
    The sun has huge effects on climate. It’s been the primary driver for virtually all past temperature changes. There has been an excellent correlation (and causation) between the sun and temperature for as long as instrumentation has been available.

    Until the last 30 years. And that’s what’s odd. Why are the last 30 years different than the preceding hundreds?

    Yet at the same time, the even bigger disconnect between temperatures and CO2 over the last 150 years (and especially the last 10) be proof that CO2 is the major driver of the climate?

    Strawman!
    CO2 is *a* driver of climate. Only in recent decades has it become the major driver.

    —-
    Let me repeat the IPCC position one more time:
    Many things drive climate. Historically the sun has been the dominant driver, aided by CO2 in the ice age cycles. In recent decades temperature has deviated from what would be predicted from the sun alone. CO2 is very likely the cause of the deviation.

  727. MarkW
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 7:59 AM | Permalink

    There’s an old saying. When you know you have lost, argue definitions.

    I see that JohnV and Boris are arguing definitions.

  728. MarkW
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 8:03 AM | Permalink

    Let me see if I have the right. The sun has a huge affect on climate, but the fact that it has disconnected in the last 30 years proves that it has had no part in the current warming, that has been going on for over 100 years?

    Also while CO2 has only a minor impact on climate change, the fact that it has risen over the last 100 years, while temperatures have gond up and down, proves that CO2 is the only explanation for the current warming.

  729. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 8:05 AM | Permalink

    Thought experiment: flip 1998:2006 temperature readings. Makes 2006 the warmest. Some people would argue against global warming with a negative trend 1998:2006, some would say there’s clearly global warming – last year was the warmest! And some would say that there has been no net global warming since 1998 (?) (Just a thought experiment!)

  730. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 8:06 AM | Permalink

    #655, JohnV, that’s a nice graph, but in the real world, the anomoly was at .78 in april of 98, and has been significantly lower since then. As of Nov 07, it’s only .21, not .6. Either your data is bad, or your averaging it to death.

    http://vortex.nsstc.uah.edu/data/msu/t2lt/uahncdc.lt

  731. Susann
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 8:08 AM | Permalink

    I don’t see that the argument has been won or lost. I see it as pointless to keep putting forward one side’s arguments when people here have rejected that side and its positions. It’s just sparring with no knock-out possible. Just a lot of cauliflower ears. :)

  732. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 8:13 AM | Permalink

    710 Tom

    either dubious or incomplete (especially the quantum mechanical bit)

    Could you indicate which section you are referring to here? I have a good background in QM (my thesis involved QFT) and would like to critique it.

  733. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 8:14 AM | Permalink

    #687 >> The energy absorbed is determined by the difference between the intensity of the light going in and the light coming out; i.e, i0-i1.

    What you say makes sense to me, since it implies a thermodynamic relationship (energy-temperature). The absurdity of the other view seems clear, since as you say, it’s not well behaved.

  734. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 8:18 AM | Permalink

    @Susann 715–

    There are numerous “orphan” diseases where little or no research takes place now because so few are afflicted and it would cost too much to research and develop treatments.

    I’m all for government spending on some research and in particular on some medical research. (Heck, I’m even for some climate research!)

    But, you picked the wrong public funding analogy. Public funding won’t solve the orphan disease problem. The government also doesn’t spend a lot of public funds on rare diseases, and they probably shouldn’t.

    Ideally, public money is targeted towards issues that affect many people (or at least issues that have the potential to affect many people). When huge amounts of money are targeted toward helping only a very few, taxpayers considered that wasteful. Why should the government spend loads on many very rare disease and neglect diabetes?

    Both climate science and weather forecasting are publicly funded because both grew to serve the public. Climate science originally focused on collecting longer term statistical descriptions that engineers could use to size furnaces and farmers could use to plan when to plant crops or harvest. These activities benefit many people but private companies weren’t going to invest to provide the information. The medical research analog to climate science is much more like studying the effect of diet or exercise on disease; it’s not the study of orphan diseases.

  735. JamesG
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 8:24 AM | Permalink

    JohnV
    “Once in the atmosphere they both have a long residence time and force the temperature”.
    Agreed but the question is by how much. If you had read the quote from Stott et al. above, you’d see that the latest data shows that it was likely a minor player. Something that was obvious to many of us. There is a (forced) difference between manmade and natural CO2 though in that one is a forcing for the GCM’s and the other isn’t.

    Ask Eli about CO2 residency time: He put me straight about it. The high value is due to the apparent inability of the system to cope with so much of it at one time (model based results of course). No man, no problem – 10 years.

  736. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 8:26 AM | Permalink

    #725 MarkW:

    The sun has a huge affect on climate, but the fact that it has disconnected in the last 30 years proves that it has had no part in the current warming, that has been going on for over 100 years?

    Strawman!
    No, it does mean that at all. TSI was increasing until about 1950, as was the global temperature. A significant fraction (perhaps most) of the warming prior to 1950 was likely caused by the sun. I’ve said as much many times.

    Since ~1950, TSI has been relatively constant.

    In the past, there was a very strong correlation between the length of the solar cycle and the temperature. That correlation is now gone (since the mid-1970s).

    Although the sun has been the dominant driver of temperature for a long time, the warming since ~1950 (and particularly since the mid-1970s) is not well-explained by the sun. There is another cause which you refuse to consider.

    =====
    #727 Gunnar:
    The graph in #655 is “GISTEMP Land + Ocean” (as indicated in the title). That’s why it does not match your UAH satellite lower troposphere data.

  737. Hasse@Norway
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 8:31 AM | Permalink

    Re723: John V

    Why are the last 30 years different than the preceding hundreds?

    James Hansen started measuring tempratures?? :)

  738. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 8:32 AM | Permalink

    #732 JamesG:
    The GCMs do not treat anthropogenic CO2 differently than natural CO2, other than that anthropogenic CO2 is added. They are well mixed and both cause the same radiative forcing. They are indistinguishable.

    Regarding residence time, it’s too late in this un-threaded and I’m not well-enough informed to get into it. Here’s a summary of my understanding, fwiw:

    http://www.globalwarmingart.com/wiki/Image:Carbon_Dioxide_Residence_Time_png

  739. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 8:34 AM | Permalink

    I’m going to be away for much of the day. If I don’t respond it’s because I’m gone.

  740. JamesG
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 8:35 AM | Permalink

    “In recent decades temperature has deviated from what would be predicted from the sun alone. CO2 is very likely the cause of the deviation”

    Of course H2O feedback was only introduced to the models because they couldn’t explain current warming with CO2 alone. Then they couldn’t explain the dips so they added aerosols.

  741. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 8:45 AM | Permalink

    Susann: I found that link:

    California’s Global Warming Law

    Above you ask: “Careful — do you really want science to be driven by the profit motive?”

    Given the article above, my question is: “Do you want the science (which is at best imcomplete) expropriated by authoritarian, no-growth types who will use it to prevent as much development as they can get away with regardless of the benefit to local communities and property owners?

  742. Philip_B
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 8:59 AM | Permalink

    John_v, speaking as a climate sceptic, I appreciate your efforts to keep us honest here. It is good work. Please keep it up.

  743. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 9:04 AM | Permalink

    In the past, there was a very strong correlation between the length of the solar cycle and the temperature. That correlation is now gone (since the mid-1970s).

    Although the sun has been the dominant driver of temperature for a long time, the warming since ~1950 (and particularly since the mid-1970s) is not well-explained by the sun. There is another cause which you refuse to consider.

    Mid-70s? PDO shift? :)

  744. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 9:27 AM | Permalink

    #733, JohnV, I know. You are cherry picking data sets. Btw, I second Philip_b sentiments in #739

  745. bender
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 9:29 AM | Permalink

    Although the sun has been the dominant driver of temperature for a long time, the warming since ~1950 (and particularly since the mid-1970s) is not well-explained by the sun. There is another cause which you refuse to consider.

    The lagged effect of the sun on the oceans?

  746. MarkW
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 9:31 AM | Permalink

    THe sun used to be a major driver of climate. But it stopped. Why? Perhaps because we now need to prove that CO2 is the primary culprit.

  747. bender
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 9:34 AM | Permalink

    Gunnar in #741 is correct, John V. You have repeatedly failed to explain the flatline in tropospheric temperatures. It is fatal to your argument. Will you now admit defeat?

  748. MarkW
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 9:34 AM | Permalink

    JamesG: It’s interesting that despite the fact that CO2 had no impact on the sun’s ability to heat the earth, up to 30 years ago. Now we see the opposite. The sun has no ability to impact CO2 ability to heat the earth.

  749. STAFFAN LINDSTRÖM
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 9:42 AM | Permalink

    EVERYONE…LINDSTROEM RURAL MOUNTAIN SERIES 2-4 KM…
    1. MT WASHINGTON NH USA …2007 JAN-DEC -2.8C…
    1998 -1.1 C (NASA-GISS) TBC (TO BE CONTINUED)

  750. yorick
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 9:43 AM | Permalink

    What bender said. The surface temps are suspect.

    By the way. I also appreciate John V’s comments very greatly, and always stop for his handle in the threads.

  751. jae
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 10:03 AM | Permalink

    Steve Miloy has an interesting article on models and the costs of “doing something.”

  752. yorick
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 10:04 AM | Permalink

    #746,
    I am not at all surprised about Mt Washington. I live a couple of hundred miles from there and it has been COLD here since before Thanksgiving(US). In fact, talk about teleconnections:), I have been seeing snow buntings, small white birds with black tipped wings that live on the tundra, for a couple of weeks now. As a rule, we never see them until the coldest bitterest weeks in late Janurary, Early Feb. It has to be very cold north of here to drive those tough little birds this far south this early (IMHO).

  753. welikerocks
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 10:06 AM | Permalink

    The surface temps are suspect.
    Seriously~ the temps in So. California are up to 10 degrees below normal right now.. It was in the 30°s F last night and this morning, its only 40 right now. And not a peep from the MSM or the powers that be. My hose is frozen solid. I tried to use it to melt the ice on my car windows.

  754. jae
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 10:15 AM | Permalink

    Trevor says in 82 in the AGU Day 1 thread:

    Having reached what seems to be serious agreement with you, I find myself puzzled as to why you then think that invoking the precautionary principle is the right thing to do:

    As noted in the Open Letter to the Secretary General of the UN:
    “Furthermore, it is irrational to apply the ‘precautionary principle’ because many scientists recognize that both climatic coolings and warmings are realistic possibilities over the medium-term future.” This really makes sense to me. To really apply the precautionary principle, we should do nothing, but adapt to whatever happens.

  755. Boris
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 10:20 AM | Permalink

    The lagged effect of the sun on the oceans?

    The problem with this hypothesis is that it implies a very long lag time and high climate sensitivity to a smallish increase in TSI. Forgetting that past observations don’t show such a lag, if the current warming were due to solar, then much more of the CO2 warming would still be “in the pipeline” with a high sensitivity. In that case, we should be more worried. I’m glad that this does not appear to be the case.

  756. Stephen Richards
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 10:20 AM | Permalink

    STAFFAN LINDSTRÖM

    Explanation in detail please ! Don’t leave us in suspense

  757. M. Jeff
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 10:24 AM | Permalink

    re: #715, Susann, December 14th, 2007 at 6:59 am, who says:

    One thinks of ENRON and if one is wise, one thinks that maybe it’s not such a good idea.

    If science were solely funded and driven by the profit motive, there would be much research that was never undertaken because it didn’t produce any profit. Think about it. There are numerous “orphan” diseases where little or no research takes place now because so few are afflicted and it would cost too much to research and develop treatments. The only basic research that would be done would be along those avenues where a profit might be made. Bad idea.

    A U.S. politician recently opined:

    … We don’t need 342 economic development programs or 130 programs serving at risk youth or 72 federal programs dedicated to ensuring safe water (according to a 2004 report). …

    The politician’s statement may have some applicability to the subject of government sponsored research. If government programs operated under the survival of the fittest principle that is prevalent in the free market system, there would be less concern about wasted money. ENRON is gone and officials were jailed. There is no equivalent cleansing force to encourage efficiency in the operation of government programs.

  758. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 10:25 AM | Permalink

    #741 Gunnar:

    You are cherry picking data sets.

    I showed all of the satellite data when it was brought to my attention, just as I showed the surface data.

    =====
    #743 MarkW:

    THe sun used to be a major driver of climate. But it stopped. Why?

    The sun is still a major driver, but right now it’s driving the climate to a steady temperature. No increase in TSI leads to no increase in temperature.

    You can see the effect of solar cycles in the atmospheric temperature trends above. It’s clear that the sun is able to quickly warm and cool the atmosphere. The underlying solar trend is flat since ~1950 but the temperature trend is not. To me that’s the clearest evidence of the current warming being non-solar.

    =====
    #742 bender:

    The lagged effect of the sun on the oceans?

    That’s a possibility but there are a couple of problems:

    1. The temperature rise should be fast at the start (1950s to 1970s) and slow down as a new steady state is approached;

    2. This would imply an atmospheric time constant of 30 years or more, which is inconsistent with many other results that show a faster response;

    =====
    #744 bender:

    Will you now admit defeat?

    I have already conceded that there is currently a negative decadal trend in the lower-troposphere satellite measurements. *If* that is what the letter in the National Post was talking about, then the letter is technically correct. The trend is negative using a single data source with an ideal starting point.

    There is also a strong positive trend in the surface measurements. There are a few differences in the trends:

    1. Lower troposphere temperature responds more strongly to solar cycles;
    2. Lower troposphere temperature responds more strongly to La Nina / El Nino;
    3. Satellite trends do not include the high arctic (above 82.5N and 70s);

    Will you accept the periodic nature of the trends? As we enter the next El Nino and come out of the solar minimum, which way will the trends turn? Is it really valid to state unequivocally that the temperate has been flat since 1998?

    =====
    #745 MarkW:
    I don’t understand what you’re saying. Please clarify.

    =====
    #747 yorick:

    The surface temps are suspect.

    Perhaps.
    The surface temperature is a different measurement than the lower-troposphere measurement, so differences are expected. I’m inclined to trust both sets of measurements until they are shown to be wrong. The differences in satellite results (UAH vs RSS) are difficult to reconcile so I think it’s fair to use their mean.


    Ok, back to work for me…

  759. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 10:25 AM | Permalink

    @John V 720

    However, I have to admit that there is a way to define a flat temperature trend since 1998.

    That’s better. Arguments are much better when you admit the obvious. Otherwise, the response is are you blind?

    Look, I believe AGW is happening. But, in reality, no matter what graphs you examine, there is not much of a trend since 1998. The reasons are either:
    1) A real trend exists, but it is masked by a known cyclic response, e.g. El Nino/ La Nina. (Note however, that if the cyclic response were fully know and predictable, we could correct for it. )
    2) The trend is too small to discern in the variability which we do not entirely understand. (So, we can’t quite correct for it.)
    3) There is no real trend in this time frame.

    You’re voting for (1). Nevertheless,, based on the time frame of 1998- now, you can’t prove a trend.

    Now, as it happens, I think I know where your argument with bender really lies.

    I suspect you, John V, consider the trend proven based on years prior to 1998 and it assume “everyone” believes it has moved into “null hypothesis” territory. Because of this , you likely believe the challenge is for bender to disprove an already proven trend. But for you to throw the burden of proof bender, you, he or the audience you are trying to convince, must absolutely, truly agreed the prior trend you believe in is proven.

    Otherwise, you really need to fall back to the null hypothesis is “there is no proven trend.”

    Now, as I see it, because, you are (for some mysterious reason) assuming that others here agree the trend is proven to exist based on earlier data, you aren’t even trying to prove its existence. (I say ‘mysterious reason’ because you know perfectly well others here don’t agree that trend is proven!)

    So let’s look at what is probably the earlier argument. If I’m not mistaken, the proof of the 1960-1998 trend generally rests on data taken in the previous 40 years (pretty much since the late 60s.) The temperatures certainly went up during that period. There really is no disputing that. The question is: is the change statistically significant? Or, is this just a statistical anomolie? So, the contention is:

    1) The apparent trend may be nothing more than a statistical anomolie resulting from large scatter in a signal with quite a bit of serial autocorrelation. (Due to cycles similar to El Nino / La Nina, but possibly with longer time scales. There are, after all only 6-7 El Nino/ La Nina cycles in there. The 30s, when CO2 was low, were also hot. The time scale of the oceans is thought to exceed 20 years. So, we don’t have a large number of full cycles in that data.)
    2) The apparent trend may be nothing more than the sort of run one can expect in this sort of data even if there are no cyclical variations. (What should the standard deviation be? If this were a quality control process in a factory, you would never to restrict yourself to calculating the standard deviation on the most recent 40 widgets when you know the scatter is larger than that based on the past 100 widgets!)
    3) Some of the underlying data are uncertain and have been adjusted upward or downward to correct perceived measurement biases. (The adjustment may be correct, but the fact that is thought to have been required normally is thought to be confirmation of uncertainty in the data.)

    If someone thinks the trend from 1965-1998 is not proven, the trendless behavior after 1998 tends to confirm (thought not prove) the previous apparent trend was a statistical anomolie. The argument is: The trend as never proven. More recent data tends to suggest it’s still not proven.

    Oddly enough, your argument that you can’t use the post 1998 data to disprove the trend because of the cyclic nature, is precisely the types of argument used to explain why the 1960-1998 trend was never proven in the first place! The cycle and scatter argument cuts both ways and, unfortunately for you, John V, in a purely empirical test, the traditional burden of proof lies on you, not bender!

    Zero trend was the null hypothesis in the first place, the skeptic argument has tradition on its side: We assume no trend until proven otherwise.

    Of course, you, JohnV, could try to support your argument for a real trend between 1967-1998 using GCM’s or other non-empirically based methods. But as you said:

    The GCMs are a different question. Why the change of subject?

    In my opinion, the case for AGW includes lots of bits of evidence that lean in favor of the theory. I lean heavily in favor of the theory. However, I haven’t seen any individual bit of evidence that is bullet proof.

    I don’t understand why people want to defend any individual one as bullet proof, but it appears they do. I actually think the argument is stronger when it is made truthfully: No individual argument is bullet proof. There is still a possibility the AGW is incorrect– of the A part is not so very dominant. But all in all, it seems more likely than not. And finally no I can’t begin to assign error bars to this! (And in fact, when it comes down to it, one rarely assigns error bars to whole theories. Error bars are assigned to individual studies — when possible. When the error bars are infinite, they are not shown.)

    (For balance, let me also say I also don’t understand the point in doing all the manipulations in comment 687. The math is all ok, but it’s obvious why taking the log of zero is never a real issue in that system. In experiments to measure absorbance, outgoing radiation equals zero (Io=0) only if incoming radiation is also zero (Ii =0. ) If Io is too small to resolve with your equipment, then you buy new equipment. So, one never tries to take the log(0). One doesn’t even try to take the log(Io/Ii) = log(0/0). The entire issue of radiation is irrelevant when there no incoming radiation in the first place. )

  760. Tom R
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 10:26 AM | Permalink

    Has a thorough independent audit been performed on Spencer and Christy’s latest UAH MSU research? If so, has the accuracy of the UAH MSU been compared to the accuracy of the RSS research to determine which of the two satellite methods most accurately measures tropospheric temperatures?

  761. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 10:29 AM | Permalink

    # 726

    UC,

    Not true… 2006 was not the warmer year:

  762. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 10:33 AM | Permalink

    #643 Sam, Thank you for parsing my comments and providing this scientific layman some insight. In a follow up post at RC I was provided with this comment:

    Ray Ladbury Says:
    13 December 2007 at 9:51 PM
    Gaelan, I’m not sure what you are asking me to comment on. The reply you link to is >4 years old. A more recent work by the same authors was the subject of a recent commentary here on RC. Soon et al. and others try to appeal to uncertainties, but the thing is we know the effect of adding CO2 to the atmosphere. It is constrained by several independent lines of evidence. So, regardless of how many other causes are identified, you still have the fact that in order for climate scientists to be wrong about CO2, they have to be wrong about many, many other things as well. So, yes, you may have a cause involving geomagnetic/heliomagnetic/GCR variations. And yes, aerosols may not be well understood. That doesn’t change the fact that we do understand ghg physics and that we’ve constrained its contribution pretty well.

    I am under the impression from my time here at CA that we do not fully understand the physics of GHG, yet at RC it appears that they have full comprehension of the dynamics of GHG’s.
    Am I missing something?

  763. bender
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 10:34 AM | Permalink

    Thank you for your reply, Boris #752. You say:

    The problem with this hypothesis is that it implies a very long lag time and high climate sensitivity to a smallish increase in TSI.

    1. The pathway between sun and ocean comprises many filters, filtering more than one energetic process. Your idea that the pathway can be indexed by something as simple as a total solar radiance index is a bit simplistic, don’t you think?

    2. And why is the long time-lag untenable? ["Because the models say so" is not a reasoned argument. As it is the models that are being questioned, such an argument would be circular.]

    You see now why I asked for a reply by someobody “informed”? Thanks all the same.

  764. JamesG
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 10:35 AM | Permalink

    Of course there are a number of people now saying it’s not the sun, or CO2, it’s soot. At least it’s real pollution.

    On a side note – Anyone seen this:

    http://researchnews.osu.edu/archive/wethring.htm

    “The rise of the Appalachian Mountains may have caused a major ice age approximately 450 million years ago, an Ohio State University study has found. The weathering of the mountains pulled carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere, causing the opposite of a greenhouse effect — an “icehouse” effect.”
    ………………
    “In this study, we’re seeing remarkable evidence that suggests atmospheric CO2 levels were in fact dropping at the same time that the planet was getting colder. So this significantly reinforces the idea that CO2 is a major driver of climate,” Saltzman said.

    I think I see a tiny flaw in the argument, mind you.

  765. bender
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 10:45 AM | Permalink

    Here’s a simpler one for Boris. How is it that the GCMers and EBMers can say they’ve correctly accounted for the internal dynamics of ocean heating, when the deep ocean temperature data are far more deficient than the land surface data?

  766. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 10:48 AM | Permalink

    #756 lucia:
    Thanks for the well-stated comment.

    I was not actually using the 1960-1998 trend in any way. I was merely looking at the 1998+ surface temperature trend, which shows a clear, statistically significant warming. When the satellite data was pointed out, I graphed it and admitted a negative trend from 1998 (#720).

    Given the known periodic nature of temperatures, with a very strong El Nino / La Nina component, I think a more reasonable choice of starting points would be the last La Nina (1995 or 2000-01). With either of those starting points there is a strong warming trend (0.04 to 0.19C/decade from 2000-01, 0.11 to 0.18C/decade from 1995).

    However, changing the starting point to 1995 or 2000-01 is changing the subject. The topic was the letter signed Dr. Wegman and there is no warming trend in the satellite lower troposphere temperature for the period indicated.

    I agree with you about none of the arguments being bulletproof. I get lazy and forget my qualifying prefixes sometimes. I *don’t want* significant AGW to be true. I *do* believe there are other possibilities. I *have* been looking for them. I just haven’t found any that are plausible to me.

  767. bender
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 10:57 AM | Permalink

    #763 John V. Another dodge of the fact of the troposhperic temperature record. Just sayin.

  768. MarkW
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 11:12 AM | Permalink

    The TSI stopped increasing in the 70’s (not that TSI is the only energy coming from the sun).

    The surface temperature stopped increasing in the late 90’s.

    Obviously the there is a 20 year lag in TSI to surface temperature. Case closed.

  769. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 11:19 AM | Permalink

    #765 MarkW:

    The surface temperature stopped increasing in the late 90’s.

    Surface temperature? Nope.
    An argument can be made that the lower troposphere temperature trend has been flat since the late 1990s, but not the surface temperature. See #655:

    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=2499#comment-177163

    (not that TSI is the only energy coming from the sun).

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but TSI stands for Total Solar Irrdiation.

  770. Boris
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 11:19 AM | Permalink

    1. The pathway between sun and ocean comprises many filters, filtering more than one energetic process. Your idea that I suppose you have a better idea. firethe pathway can be indexed by something as simple as a total solar radiance index is a bit simplistic, don’t you think?

    I suppose you have a better idea.

    2. And why is the long time-lag untenable?

    It’s possible, but why would the lag time apply to solar forcing and not CO2 forcing? Does the long lag apply to past instances of solar change?

    You see now why I asked for a reply by someobody “informed”? Thanks all the same.

    Well, when you repeatedly and erroneously accuse modelers of cherrypicking, groupthink and stupidity why would you expect them to give a tinker’s cuss about your opinion? Go hang with Lubos for all the answers, I guess.

  771. bender
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 11:20 AM | Permalink

    John V, Boris:
    MarkW #765 is asking you a question. Give him a reason to re-open the case.

  772. steven mosher
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 11:21 AM | Permalink

    Does anybody have TSI data from lets say 1850 on.. And a method of turn Delta TSI into Delta C.

  773. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 11:25 AM | Permalink

    MarkW (and bender):
    From the data I’ve seen, TSI stopped increasing ~1950. Temperatures started increasing in the mid-1970s. Without invoking aerosols or CO2, explain the delay.

  774. MarkW
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 11:25 AM | Permalink

    If a 0.1% increase in TSI would result in a 0.3K rise in temperature.
    If the rise in CO2 that we have seen so far would result in about a 0.5K rise in temperature.
    If we have seen a 0.6K rise in temperature over the last 100 years.

    Seems to me that 0.8K is greater than 0.6K. Doesn’t leave much room for any large positive feedbacks. Kind of implies negative feedbacks dominate.

    And this is without adjusting for any possible UHI or microsite contamination.

  775. MarkW
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 11:29 AM | Permalink

    The temperature increase of the mid-70’s is dominated by the PDO switch from cold to warm.

  776. Boris
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 11:35 AM | Permalink

    Would it were as simple as 765 makes it out to be. Alas…

  777. bender
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 11:37 AM | Permalink

    #770
    You misunderstand. The burden is on YOU to disprove the alternative, not me to prove it. I contend that something we don’t understand yet could be a contributing factor. I am uncertain within reasonable bounds of the data. You, in contrast, contend that you are certain of CO2 and certain it’s not solar or anything else. Make your case. And go recruit our friends at RC to help you. On what grounds do you decide what level of delay is reasonable? How have you determined how much “warming is in the pipe”? You say it is so. So prove it.

  778. bender
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 11:39 AM | Permalink

    #773 is a dodge of the question.

  779. bender
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 11:40 AM | Permalink

    Boris, John V:
    Admit defeat now, or recruit more firepower from the higher ranks.

  780. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 11:42 AM | Permalink

    # 769

    Naam. Read this page below the graph. I included the solar irradiance data from 1600 to date from Judith Lean reconstruction.

  781. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 11:52 AM | Permalink

    #771 MarkW:
    The 0.5K from CO2 and the 0.3K from solar, assuming they are correct, are inclusive of feedbacks. You use them to argue there are no feedbacks. There may be a mistake in your logic.

    =====
    bender:
    You take the convenient position of never making any claims or providing any evidence. It’s a nice place to be, but contributes very little.

    You have your theory that I will describe as “constant solar forcing in the last ~60 caused increased temperature 20-30 years after the solar forcing plateaued. CO2 and aerosols have little impact on temperatures during this period”.

    I have a theory that goes like this:
    Solar, CO2, and aerosols all force temperature. In the last ~60 years the solar forcing has been relatively constant. The pattern of aerosol concentrations (estimated) and CO2 increase (measured) seems to describe the temperature trend during this period of relatively constant solar activity.

    There’s nothing inherent in the theories that makes yours the null hypothesis. I’ve already explained my position. Explain yours.


    I’m going out for a while.

  782. yorick
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 11:53 AM | Permalink

    Bender #776
    You have as much chance of that as you would getting a parrot to explain what it is talking about.

  783. nevket240
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 11:57 AM | Permalink

    http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,22921996-11949,00.html

    Finally, cracking the whip. Thank goodness the “science is settled”.

    Just like the Arctic ice, the warmers case is cracking up.

    regards.

  784. Phil.
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 11:58 AM | Permalink

    Re #756

    Try reading: http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/articlerender.fcgi?artid=33755
    From the conclusions:

    “Consider the null hypothesis that the observed temperature fluctuations and atmospheric CO2 levels are independent: The probability that the hemispheric temperatures would fluctuate purely by chance in such a way to produce the observed coherences with CO2 is exceedingly low. Given that the records encompass more than a century, the probability is so low that one would not expect to see such an event by chance during the age of the earth. The probability of the observed coherence between atmospheric CO2 and changes in the timing of the seasons shown in figure 13 of ref. 2 without a causal connection is similarly low. Consequently one must strongly reject the hypothesis of independence between atmospheric CO2 and temperature. The alternative hypothesis, that increasing levels of atmospheric CO2 plus a slight change in solar irradiance are causally responsible for the observed changes in temperature, in contrast, results in test statistics that are ordinary in every way. Because major changes in climate as a response to human use of fossil fuels have been predicted for more than a century (39, 40), their detection can hardly be considered surprising.”

  785. Tom Vonk
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 11:59 AM | Permalink

    Here’s a simpler one for Boris. How is it that the GCMers and EBMers can say they’ve correctly accounted for the internal dynamics of ocean heating, when the deep ocean temperature data are far more deficient than the land surface data?

    On the same line .
    I have never been able to interest myself much for statistical treatements of incomplete time series using some kind of artificial construct called “global mean temperature” GMT .
    Whatever the curves show seems to be meaningless when one is interested by the DYNAMICS of the system .
    It has never been shown that this parameter GMT represents an adequate metrics for the system’s dynamics .
    If anything it has been shown that it is NOT and that the heat content of the oceans would be one much more reasonable (see R.Pielke) .
    It’s beyond me why people argue hours about statistical “trends” of GMT when not a single one is able to show a connection/correlation to some real physical process .

    Does it imply something for the radiated energy ? No , as I have already shown in this thread .
    Does it imply something for the dynamics of multidecadal events that demonstrably influence climate ? No , it’s the local parameters that do .
    Does it imply something for the convective transfer ? No .
    Does it imply something for the cloudiness or albedo ? No , see multidecadal events .
    Does it imply something for the CO2 cycle ? No , the ocean temperature , currents , concentrations and partial pressures do .
    Does it imply something for the precipitation quantities and latent heat exchanges ? No , they depends on so many local parameters that I’d need a page to mention them and I’d surely forgotten some .

    So what is it useful for if any supposed variation of this GMT may lead to an infinity of very different dynamical evolutions ?
    Of course beside of saying that it sometimes gets “hotter” and sometimes “cooler” whatever it may mean (where , when , how long , how much , will it change and where ?) .
    I find it symptomatic that AGW faithfull that are unbeatable to analyse “trends” at 0,01 % have never explained why GMT should represent anything physically relevant to represent dynamical evolutions of the system .
    I won’t hold my breath though , I know that I’ll never see a physical answer because there is none and certainly none that could be given by GCMs .

  786. Larry
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 12:00 PM | Permalink

    There’s nothing inherent in the theories that makes yours the null hypothesis. I’ve already explained my position.

    Wow. Apply that logic to r-l-g–n, and see where it takes you.

  787. bender
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 12:03 PM | Permalink

    You take the convenient position of never making any claims

    False. I strongly assert that the data are too uncertain to be making the kinds of claims that are being made by sheep like you.

  788. Boris
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 12:07 PM | Permalink

    You misunderstand. The burden is on YOU to disprove the alternative, not me to prove it.

    Yeah, skeptics never have to prove anything. How convenient. By your logic, you could run unthreaded to 20,000 posts proffering new theories to be disproved. But where does the evidence lead us? Now it’s my turn to make a statement that you can try to disprove. The past correlation between solar and temp. does not show a substantial lag. I’m not playing the runaround game to disprove your half-spun theories. You got a theory? You support it—just like everyone else has to.

    I contend that something we don’t understand yet could be a contributing factor.

    Fine. Now, I contend that something we don’t yet understand will make CO2 warming twice as high as current climate estimates. My statement is supported by as much evidence as yours is. Things we don’t know don’t get to support your worldview anymore than they support someone else’s. Let’s talk about what we do know.

    That’s why you never want to answer my climate sensitivity questions—speaking of avoiding questions. Because whatever estimate you have for CS it’s based on essentially nothing and is hardly better than a guess. Perhaps a statistical expert can explain how to put error bars on a guess. I, for one, haven’t a clue.

    I think I’ve had enough of unthreaded for today. Now, there’s some news we can both agree is good, right?

  789. bender
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 12:08 PM | Permalink

    one must strongly reject the hypothesis of independence between atmospheric CO2 and temperature.

    For the umpteenth time. Most serious skeptics do not dispute that A in AGW > 0. The issue is the quantitiative estimate of A. What is the uncertinaty around that bloody parameter? Why is is it so impossible to provide that one, single number?

  790. Larry
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 12:09 PM | Permalink

    Yeah, skeptics never have to prove anything.

    Now you’re catching on the the central idea behind science.

  791. bender
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 12:16 PM | Permalink

    You got a theory? You support it—just like everyone else has to.

    My theory, Bore-us, is outline fairly succinctly in #784. Note how I pre-empted your #785 in a crosspost. That tells you something. Your lemming lines are becoming amazingly predictable. The same way I pre-empted JEG on Loehle. You guys are sheep. You’ve stopped thinking about what you’re trying to assert. You don’t understand the structure of the argument. Listen to the jester. He’s trying to help you save face.

  792. Reference
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 12:20 PM | Permalink

    Open Letter to the Secretary-General of the United Nations – dated 14 December 2007 from 100 Prominent Scientists

    The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has issued increasingly alarming conclusions about the climatic influences of human-produced carbon dioxide (CO2), a non-polluting gas that is essential to plant photosynthesis. While we understand the evidence that has led them to view CO2 emissions as harmful, the IPCC’s conclusions are quite inadequate as justification for implementing policies that will markedly diminish future prosperity. In particular, it is not established that it is possible to significantly alter global climate through cuts in human greenhouse gas emissions.

  793. Larry
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 12:20 PM | Permalink

    Boris, here’s someone who knows science a tad better that the heroes of RC explaining how it’s supposed to work:

    http://wwwcdf.pd.infn.it/~loreti/science.html

    I think the educational and psychological studies I mentioned are examples of what I would like to call cargo cult science. In the South Seas there is a cargo cult of people. During the war they saw airplanes with lots of good materials, and they want the same thing to happen now. So they’ve arranged to make things like runways, to put fires along the sides of the runways, to make a wooden hut for a man to sit in, with two wooden pieces on his head to headphones and bars of bamboo sticking out like antennas — he’s the controller — and they wait for the airplanes to land. They’re doing everything right. The form is perfect. It looks exactly the way it looked before. But it doesn’t work. No airplanes land. So I call these things cargo cult science, because they follow all the apparent precepts and forms of scientific investigation, but they’re missing something essential, because the planes don’t land.

    Now it behooves me, of course, to tell you what they’re missing. But it would be just about as difficult to explain to the South Sea islanders how they have to arrange things so that they get some wealth in their system. It is not something simple like telling them how to improve the shapes of the earphones. But there is one feature I notice that is generally missing in cargo cult science. That is the idea that we all hope you have learned in studying science in school — we never say explicitly what this is, but just hope that you catch on by all the examples of scientific investigation. It is interesting, therefore, to bring it out now and speak of it explicitly. It’s a kind of scientific integrity, a principle of scientific thought that corresponds to a kind of utter honesty — a kind of leaning over backwards. For example, if you’re doing an experiment, you should report everything that you think might make it invalid — not only what you think is right about it: other causes that could possibly explain your results; and things you thought of that you’ve eliminated by some other experiment, and how they worked — to make sure the other fellow can tell they have been eliminated.

    Details that could throw doubt on your interpretation must be given, if you know them. You must do the best you can — if you know anything at all wrong, or possibly wrong — to explain it. If you make a theory, for example, and advertise it, or put it out, then you must also put down all the facts that disagree with it, as well as those that agree with it. There is also a more subtle problem. When you have put a lot of ideas together to make an elaborate theory, you want to make sure, when explaining what it fits, that those things it fits are not just the things that gave you the idea for the theory; but that the finished theory makes something else come out right, in addition.

    In summary, the idea is to give all of the information to help others to judge the value of your contribution; not just the information that leads to judgment in one particular direction or another.

  794. bender
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 12:20 PM | Permalink

    I contend that something we don’t yet understand will make CO2 warming twice as high as current climate estimates.

    Your proof?

    My statement is supported by as much evidence as yours is.

    Ah, no. Wide confidence intervals favors my argument and disfavors yours.

    Things we don’t know don’t get to support your worldview anymore than they support someone else’s.

    Correct. Which is why my argument is strong, and yours is weak.

    Let’s talk about what we do know.

    And dodge the question?

  795. Tom Vonk
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 12:20 PM | Permalink

    “Most serious skeptics do not dispute that A in AGW > 0.”

    Well as for me , while I don’t dispute the above (whatever the quantity > 0 could be) I dispute that the global mean temperature measures A or climate sensitivity for that matter .
    And I certainly dispute that its value is relevant for the future evolution of the system .

  796. bender
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 12:25 PM | Permalink

    Whoops. Parsed too quickly.

    Things we don’t know don’t get to support your worldview anymore than they support someone else’s.

    Incorrect. This goes to show you don’t understand my argument and why it is so much stronger than yours. You have to prove we are certain. I only have to prove we are uncertain.

  797. Gunnar
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 12:31 PM | Permalink

    bender, although your technical points may be correct, you are filling your posts with childish insults. That’s really distracting and lowers the quality. If you don’t feel someone is getting something, just say so, and bow out.

  798. yorick
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 12:35 PM | Permalink

    I am going to throw John V a bone here. Do you know what the number one industry in the backwoods Northeastern US was in the 18th and early 19th century? Burning the forests for potash. I can’t imagine how smokey it must have been for a long time. Of course this also means that the snow fields were covered with soot as well, likely as not.

    The midlands of the UK are still called “The Black Country”, on account of the soot that covered everything. I have even been to the “Black Country Museum” were you can still get fish and chips fried in beef tallow, which, if you ask me, tastes like fish ice cream.

  799. SteveSadlov
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 12:51 PM | Permalink

    RE: #684 – There is a human affecting pathogen called Valley Fever. Not sure if its range extends to where you are, we certainly have it in California. It’s a rare and scary syndrome, with no cure and a moderate fatality rate. It’s a rather fascinating issue, and much can be learned from it, applicable to non human organisms.

  800. Pat Keating
    Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 12:58 PM | Permalink

    781

    The alternative hypothesis, that increasing levels of atmospheric CO2 plus a slight change in solar irradiance are causally responsible for the observed changes in temperature

    Of course, the author conveniently forgot the other alternate hypothesis: that they are correlated because the temperature rise was the cause of the CO2 rise.

  801. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 12:59 PM | Permalink

    @JohnV– 763

    I was merely looking at the 1998+ surface temperature trend, which shows a clear, statistically significant warming.

    No, it doesn’t. There is a tiny upward trend if you fit a line. Have you done a t-test on that slope? Try it and see if you get 95% confidence! Or point to a paper where someone showed 95% confidence based on data after 1988 Or just take a piece of paper and cover up the bit to the left of 1998 and look at it. Does that still look like a statistically significant up trend to you? 1999 and 2000 are killers!

    One of these days, I need to do the beta test analysis of this… but seriously. You’re just never going to get “t” anywhere near 2 as required to get 95% confidence with less than two decades of data.

    Sorry, but those of us who believe AGW is likely are living in “beta error is high” when we only have 8 years of data.

    The topic was the letter signed Dr. Wegman and there is no warming trend in the satellite lower troposphere temperature for the period indicated.

    And you showed graphs, and there isn’t any.

    Your best argument against Wegman would be either “cherry picking” or “He’d disingenuous because he knows beta error is high for an 8 year span”.
    Yes, I agree El Nino’s and La Nina’s exist, but the fact that they do doesn’t mean we can just say that post 1998 data show a statistically significant uptrend.

    I’d have to read Wegman’s full argument to criticize him (or not). But there is no statistically significant trend in the post 1998 annual averaged data for anything.

    Picking post 1998 may seem cherry picked, but there is also a very valid argument for picking 1998 to test claims. Annual average temperatures after 1998 represent predictions after an important event.

    1) People were insisting this was both proven and certain in December 11, 1997, when Kyoto was agreed to.
    2) It makes sense to test their predictions using data collected after they made their claim.
    3) Annual average results for 1998 is the first year after Kyoto– a very public event. The date 1998 is, not to cherry picked. That’s precisely the first year of data that exist after Kyoto.
    2) The data collected after 1997 is not consistent with the claim made by those advocating Kyoto.

    In contrast, why do you pick 1950 to test your claim of a trend? Why not 1930? Or 1980? Or…? Can you give as good a reason (or excuse) as the one I gave (or concocted) for 1998? I bet not. (I’m actually pretty proud of thinking to google Kyoto and looking up the date! :) )

    Oh, I’ll grant you Wegman could pick some other year– like 1988 when Hansen wrote his first report making his ABC projections. But Kyoto was important and 1998 actually has a plausible enough sounding reason to be selected.

    @JohnV–755…

    #741 Gunnar:
    >>You are cherry picking data sets.

    I showed all of the satellite data when it was brought to my attention, just as I showed the surface data.

    Look back through the thread. Gunnar cited comment 733 and is clearly referring to your choice in picking the start data of 1950; see comment 733. You see cherry picking in 1998; they see it in starting in 1950 rather than say, 1930. What about 1930?

    ===== **************

    #742 bender:

    >>The lagged effect of the sun on the oceans?

    That’s a possibility but there are a couple of problems:

    1. The temperature rise should be fast at the start (1950s to 1970s) and slow down as a new steady state is approached;

    2. This would imply an atmospheric time constant of 30 years or more, which is inconsistent with many other results that show a faster response;

    With regard to both

    1: the temperature rise would not necessarily be faster at the beginning. One can easily assemble a simple one-dimensional system with two major components– air and ocean that experience time dependent forcing. It’s easy to come up with a system where the heat in the “ocean” comes out slowly, such that it shows up a long after the air responds to externally applied forcing..

    [I've done simple models for hydrogen gas percolating out of resin bead reservoirs in a containers. The beads held the hydrogen, and the air above it was well mixed-- but with a small amount of breathing in a container above. In a simplified analysis, the heat and hydrogen are both passive scalars, so they are sort of the same problem. In the utterly simplified system, there are two time constants. One slow (in the beads-- which would be like the ocean) one fast like the air above the beads or ocean. The problem was examined to explore how we might fix some potential safety issues by ventilating containers. The simplified problem ends up being an eigen value problem. But qualitatively, it behaves the way bender suggests happens in an ocean/atmosphere system.]

    With regard to 2: No, bender’s suggestion would not imply an atmospheric time constant of 30 years or more. The behavior he suggests would require these things:

    a) a massive deep ocean that can hold lots of heat (or cold) laying underneath a relatively thin atmosphere. (These appear to exist.)

    b) an oceanic time constant of 30 years or more (possibly even much more) coupled with an atmosphere with a short time constant. (These are consistent with values GCM modelers claim. More importantly, the long oceanic time constants is now being given as the reason the GCM’s over predict the CO2. It’s the “heat is in the pipeline” argument. If this argument applies to the earth’s response to CO2. An ocean time constant used to explain how the world responds to CO2 forcing should still exist if the forcing is solar.)

    and
    c) greater heating sometime in the past. (More than 1 or 2 time constants in the past will do, longer ago is better. Weird oscillations are ideal. With recent reductions could result in heat stored very deep in the ocean. This would take time to diffuse upward, but cause net heating once it got near the surface.)

    The only difficulties with bender’s argument I can see are:

    1) it is highly qualitative.

    2) if made quantitiative, if would only match data if the past forcing included periods of somewhat sustained solar heating that occurred at least 1 ocean time constant in the past, but likely no more than 10 ocean time constants in the past. (For a given set of characteristics of the ocean and atmosphere, different forcing histories will give you the qualitatite behavior I am describing. Some types would never exhibit this qualitative behavior. One and 10 are picked as round numbers. )

    3) making aquantitative argument would required some math, quite a bit of physical argument, and quite a bit of data describing solar forcing over the past 10 oceanic time constants.

    I suspect no one is going to do this problem because the simplified problem is not particularly enlightening and requires someone to make a range of estimates for vertical thermal transport in the ocean. Publishing it would be difficult for these reasons, and if it’s difficult to publish, it’s likely too much work for a blog post.

    But as qualitative arguments go, “it’s in the pipeline” appears to be as good as the argument for why the current temperature rise is due to heat stored in oceans as the RC argument for why CO2 lags temperature in the ice records. (Or have I missed the quantitiative or even semi-quantitative argument somewhere? )

    Numerical experiments for the full problem (either to confirm or refute) would require running a large scale GCM over at least hundreds of years using a full GCM. Either way, because people need precise values for solar forcing, volcano eruptions etc over time, the results would be (rightfully) questioned. So, I’m sure that hypothetical ain’t happenin’ on a GCM!

    Interestingly, not to make things even worse for the theory I believe in ……though bender himself doesn’t suggest this, bender’s suggestion might result in a drop in the ocean’s ability to entrain C02 as the warmer water moved up from deeper layers to the surface. I’m not sure about this because I don’t know how the absorption of CO2 is explained– but if the surface of the ocean is heavily involved, this argument could be maes. So…. even if the excess CO2 in our current atmosphere didn’t doesn’t come from the ocean, it could result from the newly injected stuff not being absorbed when otherwise it might have been absorbed.

    Honestly, I lean toward this relatively simple explanation:
    1) We are injecting CO2,
    2) There are pretty good physical arguments to expect, all other things being equal, more CO2 traps more heat.
    3) There are pretty good physical arguments to expect that if more heat is trapped for any reason more water is evaporated.
    4) We aren’t quite sure what the evaporated water does on average, but there are are pretty good physical arguments to believe more trapping is more likely than less. Totally negating the CO2 effect seems implausible, so it appears we are left with either a little heating or a lot of heating.
    5) Temperatures have been going up since 1988 when the claim of AGW was first forcefully made There isn’t much of it, and we are in the range of high beta error. So, while we can’t prove anything, failure to reject the null hypothesis doesn’t mean much either. (BTW. I’m betting for 1/2 the rise in AGW is ‘A’. That’s just for the bookies, not real science. Based on science, my guess is “don’t know the fraction”!)

    So, though we have little data, what little we have supports the fairly decent physical arguments. (Note, i do not include GCM’s in my list of pretty good physical arguments. I prefer the simple radiative balances like Gerry North discussed. You can see the holes– as far as I can determine, GCM’s as currently constituted, mostly share the same holes. )

    If this theory were a coffin, I would hardly call it nailed shut. But, I think the balance is in favor of it. I make similar assessments in engineering.

    It does concern me that I read and hear an awful lot of overblown defenses of the theory, claiming outrageous degrees of confidence not only in the theory overall, but in each little plank. Why not admit that the argument in favor of AGW is based on seeing a while lot of planks in place– but note that the planks are kind of wobbly? That’s often the case in science, particularly only a few years after “the experiment” begins. (Bag the Ahrehnnius business. The CO2 wasn’t there yet. The real experiment began when we started pumping in the CO2 into the atmosphere in massive quantities and everyone knows this. That’s why you pick 1950 for the start of your data to test the theory! )

    John V.

    I *don’t want* significant AGW to be true. I *do* believe there are other possibilities. I *have* been looking for them. I just haven’t found any that are plausible to me.

    We are in the same boat here. I can tell you many things that are sound in the criticism of skeptics. Unlike some who lean toward believing AGW is true, I admit it may be false. But, on the balance, I think it’s true despite the many chinks (or heck, missing pieces) in the armor. Do I think it’s certain? No.

    Boris, John V:
    Admit defeat now, or recruit more firepower from the higher ranks.

    As far as I can tell, the higher ranks don’t have any more firepower than JohnV or Boris. All they have is a large collection of slingshots. Lots and lots of slingshots. (That’s actually an argument in favor of their position.)

    In about 20 years, the data will either transform each slingshot into guns, or every slingshot will be shown to be nothing more than upside down wishbones. I’m betting they’ll turn into guns, but that is, once again, a bet.

  802. Posted Dec 14, 2007 at 1:06 PM | Permalink

    # 769

    Stephen Mosher,

    Naam. Read this page, data is below the graph. I included the solar irradiance data from 1600 to date from Judith Lean reconstruction. As for the algorithm to turn TSI into change of temperature use the next formula:

    deltaT = 15.2 W/m^2(ln [TSIf / TSIi]) / 3.77 W/m^2*K

    For example, in 1611 the TSI was 1365.8342 W/m^2 and in 1610 it was 1365.8477 W/m^2, introducing magnitudes:

    deltaT = 460.16 W/m^2 (ln [1365.8342 W/m^2 / 1365.8477 W/m^2]) / 0.378 W/m^2*K = -0.0045 (W/m^2)/ 0.378 (W/m^2*K) = -0.012 K

    In 2000 the TSI was 1366.662 W/m^2, while in 1611 it was 1365.8342 W/m^2; by the formula we have:

    deltaT = 460.16 W/m^2 (ln [1366.662 W/m^2 / 1365.8342 W/m^2]) / 0.378 (W/m^2*K) = 0.73 K

    It means that a change of + 0.8278 W m^-2 causes a change of temperature of ~0.73 K. BTW, the TSI has increased 3.67 W m^-2 in the last millennia, which has caused an increase of the mean temperature of ~2