Revkin on the Hansen Fiasco

Andrew Revkin of the New York Times writes here in a compacted story. Me versus Jor-El. I spent quite a bit of time saying that the errors mattered a lot at the individual station level and were “significant” for U.S. temperature. For example, consider this page at NASA which shows a comparison between temperatures by individual stations for 2000 and after. The majority of values on this graphic are wrong and the entire graphic will have to be replaced.

In an earlier note on this, also cross-posted at Anthony’s blog, I tried to hew my own line between the exaggerated claims in the right-wing blogosphere and the NASA claims of immateriality. Revkin mentioned in passing to me that Gavin Schmidt, while denying the more extreme blogosphere characterizations of the error, had admitted that everything that I had said about the matter had been accurate. Including the diagnosis of the Jor-El Complex, I presume.

Update:As to the claim of Schmidt and Hansen that 0.15 deg C does not “matter”, if they are prepared to stipulate this, then I would submit the graphic below showing U.S. temperature history (new NASA version) since the 1920s showing a trend increase of only 0.21 deg C in the 87 year period.

Source: New NASA Fig D data, August 2007. The t-value for the trend coefficient is only 1.24, which is not 95% significant even for i.i.d. (and there is lots of autocorrelation here.) There is a temperature increase before 1920 which would increase the trend estimate to 0.42 deg C.

Values in the 2000s are elevated and 95% “statistical significance” is not the only relevant metric for data analysis. However, if people are making claims of statistical significance, it’s fair enough to analyze these claims. The issues remaining to the validity of the NOAA and NASA adjustments remain outstanding. What impact do HO-83 hygrothermometers have on this? Has urbanization and microsite effects been properly accounted for – not just in the U.S. record but in Brazil and China and elsewhere? These issues remain outstanding.

Actually, if one plays with this a little, one can even sharpen Gavin’s point a little further. Gavin and Hansen say that a change of 0.15 deg C is not significant. The trend increase in the U.S. from 1930-2006 is 0.13 deg C., which, according to them, is not “significant”. I myself am expressing no views on the matter at this time – I’m simply reporting the implications of their claims.



  1. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Aug 25, 2007 at 11:01 PM | Permalink

    Henry writes over at Anthony’s blog:

    From the Hansen letters:
    “It is also a biblical paradigm that the Earth, Creation, is an intergenerational commons, the fruits and benefits of which should be accessible to every member of every generation.”

    Shouldn’t then, the data and results of one member’s research be available to all members of every generation? Hansen, give us the data, so that we can see what you do, so that we may all believe like you do.

  2. Posted Aug 25, 2007 at 11:30 PM | Permalink

    # 1

    Steve McInture,

    I’m perplexed because AAAS is also making alliances with religious denominations! HERE is a brief of one of the meetings and HERE a complete article.

  3. Posted Aug 25, 2007 at 11:34 PM | Permalink

    # 1

    Steve McIntyre,

    Intriguingly, AAAS is influenced on AGW ideas. (Sorry for “McInture” in my previous message)

  4. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Aug 25, 2007 at 11:34 PM | Permalink

    Please no discussion of religion. My remark was about availability of code – not just intergenerationally but to the present generation, so that Hansen cannot usufruct all by himself.

  5. Anthony Watts
    Posted Aug 25, 2007 at 11:48 PM | Permalink

    Well not quite religion, but the ten principles of climate monitoring as elucidated by Karl are on my blog now. Its worth a read.

    What is most telling about Karls 10 principles is how few of them are followed for the current measurement networks and data sets we have

  6. Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 3:09 AM | Permalink

    Since the Times mentions your promotion of fission I thought I would give you some good news on the fusion track.

    The Fusion project I have been pumping for:

    Bussard Fusion Reactor
    Easy Low Cost No Radiation Fusion

    Has been funded:

    Bussard Reactor Funded?

    I have inside info that is very reliable and multiply confirmed that validates the above story. I am not at liberty to say more. Expect a public announcement from the Navy in the coming weeks.

    I’ll give you a heads up when I get public confirmation.

  7. James Lane
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 3:10 AM | Permalink

    Actually, the NWT article is pretty fair, although like most of the commentary misses the main point – the reliability of the GISS record.

  8. Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 3:20 AM | Permalink

    The implication of #6 is that we will know in 6 to 9 months if the small reactors of that design are feasible.

    If they are we could have fusion plants generating electricity in 10 years or less depending on how much we want to spend to compress the time frame. A much better investment that CO2 sequestration.

  9. Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 3:32 AM | Permalink


    They left out the eleventh commandment. Increase the frequency of the data. There is no reason we couldn’t afford to have 1 GB/day of temp. humidity. etc. for 1221 stations. That would eliminate a lot of uncertainty and make TOB irrelevant.

    Haven’t these guys heard of modems? If there is electricity at a site there are phone lines. Worst comes to worse there are satellites.

    WTF don’t they just do it right even if it takes longer to roll out due to budget?

    One minute of phone time every day would suffice for a very large record. Even at “slow” modem speeds. Or it might take as long as 10 minutes per station.

    Why keep doing it the way it was done in 1898? Why is reporting “manual”?

  10. Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 3:44 AM | Permalink

    I should clarify. That would be 1 GB or so total for all stations. About 1 MB / station. At 56 K (assuming 5 K bytes a second due to UART overhead) that is 3 1/2 minutes. Or an hour and a quarter at 2400 bps. Depending on the quality of the phone line.

    The numbers of course are just for an indication of what could be done.

  11. Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 3:49 AM | Permalink

    pins.jpg doesn’t show up, can you post a copy?

  12. Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 3:52 AM | Permalink

    If all temps were recorded in Kelvins with a 511 deg range then you would get reporting to .008 deg K. with 16 bit numbers. The precision might be helpful in sorting out anomalies even if the accuracy was suspect.

  13. Jacob
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 5:07 AM | Permalink

    “In any case, he [Dr. Lawrimore] said, the evidence for human-
    driven warming remains robust. “Saying what they’re saying has
    just provided an opportunity for them to create doubt in
    people’s minds,” he said of the bloggers.”

    You can rely on the NYT to push hard their point of view,
    whatever the subject is.

  14. Stan Palmer
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 6:26 AM | Permalink

    Revkin doesn’t bring this up and I ahve not seen it elsehwere but doesn’t the Hansen affair severely damge teh entire idea of “peer review”. This was a major source of data that was marred by a careless blunder for six years.

    Was it submitted for peer review?

    Eve if it wasn’t why did no climate scientist find this blunder in six years of use? 2500 peer reviewers of teh IPCC document and no one picked up a careless blunder?

  15. TAC
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 7:03 AM | Permalink

    I am disappointed by Revkin. To begin, stating that

    McIntyre … has spent years seeking flaws in studies pointing to human-driven climate change

    is wrong on two counts.
    First, and most obviously, it is peculiar to say that McIntyre has been “seeking” flaws when in fact McIntyre has been finding flaws — nearly everywhere he has looked. The NAS and Wegman reports, and now NASA/GISS itself, confirm that McIntyre has been right on every point that he has raised.

    Second, and more important, I think Revkin is flat wrong about McIntyre’s motives. McIntyre was not seeking flaws; he was seeking truth. This required that he work through and understand the climate science literature. Where he encountered errors, he reported them — that’s what he did. This process actually has a name: It is called “Science” — an old-fashioned approach to learning about the natural world.

    If this cannot be understood by a New York Times reporter, we are indeed in serious trouble.

  16. bernie
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 7:29 AM | Permalink

    Welcome to the land of NYT and MSM skeptics.

  17. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 7:30 AM | Permalink

    #15. TAC, w as you well know, when I started looking at MBH, I was struck mostly by the fact that no one had ever performed proper (or any) due diligence on a study that had been widely relied on. Given that no one else had done such, I thought that I would, but my motive was simply that of doing a crossword puzzle. At the time I had never written an academic paper and I didn’t expect anyone to be interested. What amazed me and amazes me was how uninterested climate scientists were in recognizing and acknowledging errors or in trying to improve their methodologies. Mann’s PC1 has been used more frequently by 3rd party reconstructions after problems were identified than before (think Osborn and Briffa 2006, Hegerl et al 2006, Juckes et al.) It’s almost as though climate scientists have decided to thumb their noses at statistical culture.

    As to ongoing motives, there’s still a large component of doing crossword puzzles in what I do. I like trying to figure out the daily crossword puzzle that the tides of climate science throw on the beach every day – these days I’m looking at the GISS crossword puzzle. Do I do so “seeking” problems? In large part, I’m just trying to understand how the things work, since the authors themselves refuse to document them according to standards recognized off the Island.

  18. Larry Huldén
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 7:58 AM | Permalink

    #15 by TAC & #17 by Steve McIntyre

    I think these two posts explain exactly the real state of climate science today and most importantly: Steve’s impact on “settled” science.

  19. hans kelp
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 8:46 AM | Permalink

    The way that I read Revkin´s editorial I cannot help but get the impression that he is trying to convey to the reader the feeling that Steve McIntyre actually to some degree agree´s with the team on AGW and that´s kind of a hidden message to his readers. Revkin sadly is trying to downplay the importance of Steve McIntyres work with regard to the revelations of shoddy scientific work in certain parts within the climate science community. The good thing about the article is that Steve´s name is mentioned again in a broader perspective, and I think that people in general are getting more informed about what he stands for and learn to accept what he is doing!


  20. Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 8:58 AM | Permalink

    Whenever a journalist so blatantly misrepresents the motives of someone such as Steve, I can only assume they are doing so with hidden motives of their own. Revkin no doubt wants to keep all of his sources in the climate community, and may fear being labeled a “denier” himself if he presents the issue objectively.

  21. jae
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 9:01 AM | Permalink

    5: It appears that “getting it right” doesn’t appeal to many climate scientists. They just “move on.” Reminds me of a certain political party and a certain website.

  22. bernie
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 9:08 AM | Permalink

    I think the crossword analogy (or Suduko)works great for many of us rather than accusations that many “skepptics” have some ideological axe to grind. Climate science has data sets that are somewhat accessible and comprehendible – i.e., the crossword puzzle is in English rather than Chinese. On the other hand this initial “playful” approach probably drives the less secure climate scientists crazy.
    I find the differnet pyschological reactions of Pielke and Schimdt, for example, intriguing. More genrally, I am frequently struck by the use of numbers in the media that make no sense, reflect lack of understanding of probability or the requisite contextual facts, e.g., has it happened before, the number of possible cases, the size of Antarctica. What is astonishing is that some scientists are equally so off-handed in their use of numbers or statistical methods. As the biographies of many great scientists make clear, they are also human and are sometimes afflicted by the same frailities that encumber the rest of us, e.g., Newton, Hook, Crick.

  23. kim
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 9:13 AM | Permalink

    Blogs are discourse, MSM is narrative. One is interactive, one is unidirectional, centrally planned, if you will. Revkin was sustaining a narrative. Why didn’t he publish Hansen’s rant for the world to see. Wasn’t it fit to print?

  24. Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 9:16 AM | Permalink

    A copy of the missing picture is here:

    Could you please Steve change the URL so that the picture shows up in the main article? Preferrably with your main copy of the file. 😉

  25. jae
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 9:18 AM | Permalink

    Revkin made one serious mistake; he referenced Anthony’s site. A lot more people will probably look at it and get gobsmacked.

  26. Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 9:25 AM | Permalink

    Revkin didn’t say anything about the need to make climate data more available for audit purposes. I consider this to be a major lesson of the Hansen fiasco.

  27. Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 10:01 AM | Permalink

    #6 On Bussard fusion reactor. Not wanting to take this OT but that is great news! Was interested to read about the ‘stealth’ funding by DARPA to get it off the ground, for fear of being killed by the more powerful Tokamak lobby. Bussard seems to be one not to whine about peer review and get it done.

    Back to the post, its unfortunate that Rivkin portrayed this as a ‘lovefest’ between Steve and Hansen, and the clash as mere name calling. He has trivialized much more interesting point in the history of science IMHO. For example, I doubt the Stephen Swartz paper would have been even mentioned at real climate without Steves groundwork.

    On the name calling, Hansen mixed his metaphors, but Steve has invented an obscure name for are new but increasingly prevalent phobia – Carbophobia – or the morbid fear of Carbon dioxide.

  28. tetris
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 10:13 AM | Permalink

    Much to his credit, Steve wants to stay above the political fray. The “go-to” people quoted by the most mainstream media are unfortunately ver much “on message”.

    By way of example: in today’s Finincial Times of London [web edition] there is an article about the unusual weather pattern in Europe this spring and summer. In both the title and opening paragraphs this weather anomaly is directly attributed to a change in the jetstream, with a pretty coherent explanation.

    Halfway into the article however, between several quotes from the Met Office and the U of East Anglia, the jet stream has been downplayed, and the article is firmly on the “theme” of extreme weather patterns caused by AGW.

  29. C.A. Grant
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 11:25 AM | Permalink

    I read about your discovering an error in NASA’s data collection and your rating 1934 as being warmer than 1989.

    In 1934, there were some tremendous dust storms in the midwest. We were in the throes of the Dust Bowl, which was created by poor agricultural practices.

    To me, it makes sense that 1934 would be warmer based on the amount of dust in the atmosphere.

    And that, too, was man-made.

  30. Steve Moore
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 11:27 AM | Permalink

    From the NYT:

    Dr. Lawrimore, Dr. Hansen and other experts said that trends are far more important than particular years, and the recent widespread warming trend has been clear — and very distinct from the regional hot spell that drove up United States temperatures in the 1930s.

    These guys must have much better eyes than I do — maybe that comes with the Ph.D — but I don’t see that that period is/was distinctly different than the last 30 years.
    And I’m not yet sold on the “regional hot spell” idea, either.

    (OT regarding R. W. Bussard: The man is brilliant. The Bussard Ramjet ranks with the Dyson Sphere as an example of how truly outrageous creative thinking can be)

  31. Ian Bland
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 11:27 AM | Permalink


    In the Telegraph today there’s a dreadful article announcing a new Thames Barrier to save us from the sea. Phil Woolas, the minister for climate change (yes, here in the UK we’re entirely believers now from the top down) declares-

    This is no longer an academic debate. We have seen the floods in England and the extreme weather across the world. The public need to understand that the point of no return is seven and a half years away.

    All the usual. Any weather is blamed on AGW and apparently the science is now so exact that we’ve got the tipping point down to the nearest 6 months. Remarkable.

    Climate Audit readers may also enjoy this little statistical delight

    When the Thames Barrier was built it was built on the assumption that there was a one in 2,000 year chance that London would flood.

    “That estimate now is one in 1,000 years. In other words from 1983 to today the probability has doubled.

    What’s missing of course is any mention that no global warming signal has yet been observed in sea level rise.;?xml=/news/2007/08/26/nthames126.xml

    This is also interesting-

    …the current defence system at Woolwich which has seen a dramatic increase in the number of times it has been put into use. When it first came on stream it was closed on average every couple of years – but in 2003 it was used 19 times.

    Why is 2003 special? What happened in 2002, 2004, 2005, 2006? And how much have the criteria for closure of the barrier changed over the years, especially considering how much more cautious we are now (i.e. a heightened fear of getting it wrong and being blamed for a disaster)?

    Appreciate this has rambled off topic a bit, sorry.

  32. Igor Jasinski
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 12:09 PM | Permalink

    Thank you for a “common sense” approach to the “global warming” problem. Although it’s been pointed out that the differences are “insignificant” I beg to differ. A difference may be insignificant if taken alone and separated from all other factors. However, when the data with “insignificant” difference are extrapolated on a large scale the differences shown in results are significant indeed.
    But that, of course, is only one of many problems that I have with the “global warming” and “human factor”. The foremost is the wealth of data we possess – a mere 150 years of measurements, the extent and reliability of which are highly suspect. It’s like studying a drop of water and extrapolating from the data the properties of an ocean.

  33. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 12:16 PM | Permalink

    The NYT and Andrew Revkin have revealed more about their reporting efforts than was revealed about the quality of the GISS effort or Steve M’s efforts and points made. I think Steve’s understated approach should work well in initiating a reasonable discussion about the state of climate science and certainly better than the partisan over reactions I heard about the recent GISS error.

    Too bad the NYT and Revkin missed the important details of the story. I particularly chuckled at:

    Mr. McIntyre and the government scientists do agree on at least one more thing: the need to improve the quality of climate data gathered around the world, including in the United States, which has by far the planet’s biggest network of meteorological stations.

    Just my opinion, but I would swear that Revkin was spinning faster than Dean.

  34. TAC
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 12:18 PM | Permalink

    By the way, does anyone know where Revkin got the “quarter-degree” fix from? IIRC, the range was something like 0.15 to 0.18 for the mean adjustment — this is something that Hansen and McIntyre pretty much agree about, I think. So, did GISS change the numbers again? Is Revkin referring to something other than the change in post-2000 values? Does Revkin believe that 0.15 is “about a quarter”? Something else?

  35. fFreddy
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 12:22 PM | Permalink

    Re #31, Ian Bland

    When it first came on stream it was closed on average every couple of years – but in 2003 it was used 19 times.

    If you look at closures since the barrier was built, you see a completely flat trend with two very high years in 2001 (I think) and 2003. These were due to high rainfall on land leading to a lot of water going downstream, and backing up when it met the incoming tide.
    Apart from those two years, it is blatantly obvious that there is no trend whatsoever.
    This is not a secret – it was the subject of a Parliamentary question quite recently.

    But hey – got to keep the tax and spend bandwagon rolling …

  36. Richard deSousa
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 12:28 PM | Permalink

    Revkin seemed to have given Steve M a back handed insult when he called Steve a businessman rather than a mathematician with a BS degree from the University of Toronto…

  37. Harry Eagar
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 12:33 PM | Permalink

    ‘ his agency could probably do a better job of emphasizing the uncertainty surrounding its annual temperature announcements.’

    Easy to improve if your starting point is 0.

    However, I have been puzzled by the discussion. I can agree that small differences in the temperatures of, say, 1934 and 1998 are not too significant (especially since the data are so flimsy). But why is it not significant that half the warmest years are in the first half of the century and half in the second half?

    Isn’t that the distribution you’d expect if nothing much were going on?

  38. joshua corning
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 12:38 PM | Permalink

    “Saying what they’re saying has just provided an opportunity for them to create doubt in people’s minds,” he said of the bloggers.

    And bloggers could not have said it if you were not such a sloppy scientists. A slob, by the way, that is paid a salary from my taxes.

    Hansen is a such a jerk.

  39. fFreddy
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 12:38 PM | Permalink

    Re #35
    Here are the numbers from Hansard

  40. Roger Pielke, Jr.
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 12:49 PM | Permalink


    C vs. F


    I think Revkin’s story is pretty fair to all involved. Simply being reported in the NYT is a huge nod of legitimacy to Steve’s efforts. If you want to write your own news stories — get a blog! 😉

    Perhaps the most significant aspect of all of this is Steve making the data readily available to others. There was previously a very high hurdle to entry to analyze the datasets, this has been significantly lowered thanks to Steve. As a result expect more analyses, which is only good for the science.

    My advice to Steve (like he needs more advice) is to be sure that the data that he has collated is clearly made available from this site with its providence clearly stated so that it can be used for research purposes. Maybe a simple webpage with the data linked and explained?

  41. Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 12:51 PM | Permalink

    #34, TAC, If you look at the graph shown in the article, 2001 is pretty close to a quarter degree, 2006 is less so, but its pretty close. I originally thought they were saying a quarter instead of 1/6 because it sounds better, but the graph is showing pretty close to 0.25.

  42. Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 12:54 PM | Permalink

    #34, Of course Roger Pielke Jr. is right, its C vs F issue. Silly Americans.

  43. joshua corning
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 12:59 PM | Permalink

    but the graph is showing pretty close to 0.25.

    What graph? Link?

  44. Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 1:09 PM | Permalink

    #38, Joshua Corning, I do not believe that quote is from Hansen, it is from Dr. Lawrimore.

  45. Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 1:12 PM | Permalink

    #43, Joshua Corning, it is on the left side of the NY Times article, its embedded and I can’t link it. It shows up just fine with Firefox though.

  46. joshua corning
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 1:16 PM | Permalink

    it is on the left side of the NY Times article


  47. Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 1:21 PM | Permalink

    Yep, follow the 2001 line, it decreases ~0.25F – As RAP Jr. pointed out the difference from 0.15 to 0.25 is the difference from C to F.

  48. TAC
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 1:22 PM | Permalink

    Roger (#40):

    C vs. F

    That would do it! Thanks.

  49. John F. Pittman
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 1:43 PM | Permalink

    Steve, it is somewhat humorous that when you look at the graph and your 0.21 and 0.42, you are starting to get close to the Swartz prediction of warming from the present increase in CO2. If he were to use the new data you quoted perhaps the agreement would be closer. I wonder if he or someone could redo his autocorrelation using the new August 2007 data?

  50. Paul G M
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 2:14 PM | Permalink


    I think this is a good example of where your determined moderation gets the better of you. Whilst I would not suggest that you adopt of the opposite of the behavior of the likes of Hansen and Schmidt, being reasonable in the AGW debate just does not work.

    The comment “Suddenly, 1934 appeared to vault ahead of 1998 as the warmest year on record (by a statistically meaningless 0.036 degrees Fahrenheit). In NASA’s most recent data set, 1934 had followed 1998 by a statistically meaningless 0.018 degrees. Conservative bloggers, columnists and radio hosts pounced. “We have proof of man-made global warming,” Limbaugh told his radio audience. “The man-made global warming is inside NASA.” says it all.

    If the change is statistically meaningless, then so was the original assertion that 1998 was the “hottest in a millyun years” to paraphrase your good self. So what we have is no meaningful trend over the past 100 years or at least one that is drowned in measurement error as demonstrated by your work here and by Anthony Watts.

    You chose to use the device of the “leader board” as a “bit of fun” yet you must have known what reaction it would inspire. We all know and you have said what Hansen and Schmidt would have done had this correction been the other way.

    I also dislike your reference to “conservative” and “right-wing” blogosphere as terms of derision. Whilst no doubt there are some extreme bloggers and “shock jocks” like Limbaugh that are also fervent anti-AGWs, the use of the soubriquet “right-wing” is a typical description of any viewpoint that differs from the soft left and entirely failed dogma of what we know here in the UK as the “chattering classes” and typified in the US by the supposedly “influential” Huffington Post. I suppose this is getting too political for your usual taste but in many respects, it is the heart of the debate.

    Despite some $50 bn spent, there is still no proof (I refrain from using the adjective “scientific”) that the increase in CO2 has any measurable impact on warming. Of course I accept that there is climate change as we no longer have ice fairs on the Thames but despite all the propaganda, we still can’t grow vines in Yorkshire as the Romans did and Greenland is not as the Vikings found it 1,000 years ago.

    The farce of the Hockey Stick affair is that in the TAR, the IPCC were so determined to undermine the “really inconvenient” MWP and LIA that they and many other sensible people ignored the mass of historical evidence and chose to upon dodgy reconstructions. Despite the devastating critique produced by you and Ross, instead of accepting that “the science” was wrong, they quietly dropped the HS, only to replace it with increasingly defective model based “scenarios”. They continue to every short term result and attack any rational challenge.

    As I have said before, this junk science has taken complete control in the UK. Today in the Sunday Telegraph, we have the fatuous Met Office blaming their complete failure to forecast the torrential rain that wiped out our summer and a lot else besides on La Nina. I quote, “Experts have been stunned by the extreme weather and number of floods around the world this year. The devastation has however, provided scientists with an unprecedented insight into how the world’s weather is altered by la Nina’s effect and should assist them in predicting future disasters.”

    And even better.

    “There is anger at the Met Office’s misleading summer forecast… that said that the weather was likely to follow the trend of previous years, be warmer than average with an average year for summer rainfall. Officials have now admitted that their seasonal forecasting techniques are still in “their infancy”…La Nina had not emerged when they made their original forecast.”

    So Steve, occasionally the Team need a bloody nose. The next installment must surely be the complete undermining of the whole surface temperature record as the work of Anthony spreads. I just wish I had the funds to support it. It’s a pity that Warren has fallen under Bill and Melinda’s spell as a few of his billions would have helped.



    PS I wrote this before your addendum.

  51. steven mosher
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 2:21 PM | Permalink

    RE 40.

    Roger Jr. good to see you back here. The Idea of a climate science
    Data repository is a good one, With open standards, Open source requirements.

    Bottom line. Data, such as USHCN data, should be published with the following

    If you use our data, your analysis source code must be published.

  52. steven mosher
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 2:26 PM | Permalink

    RE 49

    John, didnt you read Annan, Schartz got the time constant for climate
    all screwed up…

    As some point it would be cool to have a thread talking about the time constant
    of the climate, how one estimates it, and what that says about controlling
    such as system

  53. Stephen Richards
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 2:26 PM | Permalink

    What is also interesting about Steve’s graphs is that they cover a cycle and a half of Gray’s/Tsonis’ climate oscillations when Gray states that this trend 0.21:0.42 is missing from many local and regional temperature data.

    It doesn’t matter how you cut it, all of these deliberations become wasted time, money and energy until someone listens to Steve and his sites’ contributors and sorts out the mess than is the temp measuring network worlwide. Keep on pumping up hill Steve

  54. Steve Moore
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 2:41 PM | Permalink

    Not sure if this completely OT or not:

    from RC: 24 March 2006

    Almost 30 years ago, Jule Charney made the first modern estimate of the range of climate sensitivity to a doubling of CO2. He took the average from two climate models (2ºC from Suki Manabe at GFDL, 4ºC from Jim Hansen at GISS) to get a mean of 3ºC, added half a degree on either side for the error and produced the canonical 1.5-4.5ºC range which survived unscathed even up to the IPCC TAR (2001) report.

    Always wondered where that range came from.

    “Reasoning” like this explains why .15C is not “significant”, while .12C is….

  55. Paul Linsay
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 2:49 PM | Permalink


    As my sons’ girl friends would say, you’re soooo NASA. You didn’t include error bars on your fits. Using the NASA data , I got the following fits to a straight line

    dT = a + b* year

    Coefficient values ± one standard deviation
    a =-2.7579 ± 4.52
    b =0.0015137 ± 0.0023

    Coefficient values ± one standard deviation
    a =-4.5626 ± 3.83
    b =0.0024249 ± 0.00195

    In the first case a negative slope is perfectly consistent with the data and the second is almost consistent with zero slope. If you plot up the extreme one sigma lines for either case you will find that they are at absurdly high values of ± 8 or 9 C.

    The real fiasco isn’t just Hansen’s failure to find bad data. It is also the failure to include any kind of errors in the presentation of the data. Just what are the true errors in the annual temperature anomalies? Don’t see any listed. Even at the lowest level, there’s a lot more that’s being swept under the rug than just bad data.

  56. Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 2:57 PM | Permalink

    Mr. McIntyre,

    As you are Canadian, I would have assumed you could draw a better hockey stick.

  57. EW
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 3:07 PM | Permalink


    So that canonical temperature range of CO2 influence is derived from averaging two MODELS? I surmised that there’s some sort of measurements…

  58. Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 3:13 PM | Permalink

    There is one other thing to note amid all this focus on NASA (and particularly GISS, which is a somewhat-independent research shop within NASA…):

    The “official” source of climate records in the U.S. (as mandated by Congress) is NOAA, not NASA.

    So doesn’t that mean that all the questions about what year is hottest, or not — and all efforts to sift surface-station data etc — should start with bedrock archives at NOAA, no? It is also NOAA, not NASA that has had the tendency to trot out press releases on 48-state trends (monthly, yearly, etc). It really is hard to find NASA doing so…

  59. John F. Pittman
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 3:16 PM | Permalink

    #52 Steven Mosher, the problem, is that Anna’s response other than what he admits is a trivial error, is that it is computer model that is used to refute Swartz. As far as the 68% interval goes, +- 34% one can’t always tell the differnence between an x and an x^2 relationship. Also, I did not know that Gaussian was necessarily a requirement. He uses

    An exponential fit to the first few years of such an experiment will look like there is a purely rapid response, before the longer response of the deep ocean comes into play. This is trivial to demonstrate with simple 2-box models (upper and lower ocean) of the climate system.

    There are several assumptions about time constraints that I don’t necessarily disagree with. However, if you use this same reasoning for CO2, then any claims about the CO2 equilibrium would be laughable. Just wished they would be consistant about their time constraints. Usually this is expected.

  60. joshua corning
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 3:20 PM | Permalink

    I love these graphs…can we get one from 1890 (or when ever the record starts) sometime?

  61. EW
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 3:21 PM | Permalink

    At least NOAA doesn’t seem to have such an AGW apostle as Hansen speaking for them.

  62. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 3:28 PM | Permalink

    Hi, Andy. I agree entirely that NOAA is the starting point for this. There is a big change in the U.S. history between Hansen 1999 and Hansen 2001 that resulted entirely from changes in NOAA methodology. The number of comments on this blog make it hard to keep with, but I’ve noted elsewhere that the NOAA adjustments introduced into the NASA methodology in 2001 are problematic.

    There appears to me to be an interesting interaction between NOAA and NASA adjustments that, in my opiion, may subvert that stated purpose of the NASA adjustments. The additional NOAA adjustments look to me like they bleed urban influence into the GISS-“unlit” stations, which has a substantial impact on the NASA reference sites, which no longer reflect the exclusive influence of unlit stations. I’ve got a bit of work to do on this.

    NOAA is very much on my radar screen. Now that you mention it, I haven’t been able to locate a digital version of the NOAA U.S. temperature history, although I’ve seen tables of the Top 25 years.

  63. steven mosher
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 4:02 PM | Permalink

    RE 63.

    If I were NOAA I would release data under the agreement that all analysis
    code be Open. If Nasa want to use NOAA data. fine. Free your code, you can use our data.

  64. John Baltutis
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 4:25 PM | Permalink

    Re: #59

    Mr. McIntyre, who has spent years seeking flaws in studies pointing to human-driven climate change, traded broadsides on the Web with James E. Hansen, the NASA team’s leader.

    When you correct that erroneous statement, in a follow-up article or correction, as noted in #15, maybe what you post here and at NYT might be taken seriously. Additionally, NASA should stay in the Space Studies business and leave the Oceanic & Atmospheric Studies to NOAA.

  65. steven mosher
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 5:31 PM | Permalink

    RE 55.

    That estimate is basis of gavins Prior.

    throbbing blood vessels…

    no snips….be calm….

  66. Paul Penrose
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 6:41 PM | Permalink

    Unfortunately many studies out there use GISS, and these same studies are quoted heavily by the IPCC. So in the broader discussion GISS is more important, although obviously the NOAA data are part of that.

  67. tetris
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 6:47 PM | Permalink

    Re: 59
    Andy R
    Your point about NOAA as the base source is correct.

    However, if NOAA and not NASA/GISS had openly political civil servants who hold forth at will with the media about AGW, give testimony to the Senate and publish “peer reviewed” papers, in the process producing conclusions and projections based on inconclusive/questionable data, we would be having this discussion about NOAA, and not NASA/GISS.

    Schmidt and Hansen can argue as they please that the changes made on the basis of Steve M’s questions are of no consequence. The not so inconsequential collateral damage of this GISS/NASA story is the reality that the media’s key “go-to” AGW reference source for purposes of credibility has “left the science building” and by virtue of his own writings, is now confessional.

  68. Ian Bland
    Posted Aug 26, 2007 at 6:47 PM | Permalink

    Paul GM #50

    I think Steve McIntyre’s “determined moderation” is unfortunately necessary, because he (and skeptics in general) is very much on the minority side, and any losing of cool, ranting, hyperbole or what-have-you will immediately be held as proof he’s a deranged crank. A test that isn’t applied to those on the “winning” side.

  69. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 6:06 AM | Permalink

    American Thinker has some fun with Revkin.

  70. bernie
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 6:22 AM | Permalink

    In case you missed it, I think this earlier American Thinker piece on Hansen’s Usufruct and Declaration article is even better.

  71. Jacob
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 7:30 AM | Permalink

    Re: #50
    “So what we have is no meaningful trend over the past 100 years or at least one that is drowned in measurement error as demonstrated by your work here and by Anthony Watts.”

    That’s correct. Gavin and Hansen are also correct: 0.15 deg C is insignificant. So is the whole 0.5 deg C trend reported by them for the last 70 or 100 years.

    We should thank Hansen for one thing: while the error margin seems to be pretty big, we can be relieved to know that the 0.5 deg is top, there is little chance that GW is even bigger than Hansen reports.

  72. Boris
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 9:25 AM | Permalink

    “Congress should direct $10 million to Steve McIntyre to investigate this program.”

    lol. No wonder Steve liked that piece 🙂

  73. Sam Glasser
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 10:27 AM | Permalink

    FYI: “Provenance” is the correct word for origin of data and its processing to conclusions; not “providence”, which refers to the future.

  74. Pete DeSanto
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 10:53 AM | Permalink

    Mr. McIntyre – Would it also be informative to compare the trends in US temperature before and after the correction was made? For the period of 1920 – 2006, the linearly fit trend before the correction was 0.031degC/decade. After the correction, the trend is 0.021deg/C, a significant effect indeed! However, for more recent periods during which there is corroborative temperature data(such as that covered by satellite observations, 1979 – present), the trends are 0.31degC/decade (before correction) vs. 0.26degC/decade (after correction), which appears to be much less significant. But this is only applicable to the US trends, whereas the global trends have changed by an even smaller amount over all time periods. It is this latter impact which is characterized as statistically insignificant. It seems you have been careful to characterize the correction as being significant to the US alone, but it also seems many commenters here miss this important point.

    In response to #55, the range of estimates as to the climate sensitivity of 2x CO2 are presented in the 2007 IPCC report and include the calculated values from several climate models with various forcings and feedbacks included. The 3 +/- 1.5 degC is not based on just two model results.

  75. JerryB
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 11:28 AM | Permalink

    Re #77,

    Just a word of caution: the recent change by GISS to their base versions of
    USHCN data cannot accurately be described, or characterized, as a “correction”.

    The change consisted of subtracting USHCN station adjustements of 1990-1999 data
    from the numbers for those years, and also from the numbers for previous years,
    regrdless of whether the amount subtracted was pertinent to the station’s history
    in those previous years.

    That’s not a correction; that’s just another ad hoc concoction.

  76. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 12:57 PM | Permalink

    I find a contrasting emphasis in the climate science consensus keepers between the US being not important to the global average temperature while the NATL is given prominence in discussing hurricanes and tropical storm frequencies and intensities almost to the exclusion of the global averages.

  77. jae
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 1:15 PM | Permalink

    78: Yeah, anything in the past that threatens the alarmists’ position is termed a “localized phenomenon,” like the dust bowl days, the Little Ice Age, and the Medieval Warming Period. But any old divergence that occurs these days is a true sign of AGW. LOL.

  78. Steve Moore
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 1:28 PM | Permalink

    RE #76:

    In response to #55, the range of estimates as to the climate sensitivity of 2x CO2 are presented in the 2007 IPCC report and include the calculated values from several climate models with various forcings and feedbacks included. The 3 +/- 1.5 degC is not based on just two model results.

    The quote was from Gavin, so why didn’t he say so? (What a quandary: if you can’t trust gavin, who can you trust?)

    Two models or a dozen makes no difference.
    Models is as models does.

  79. Murray Duffin
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 1:47 PM | Permalink

    I think we are all missing a real point. In Steve’s second plot above we see about a 1 degree C cooling trend from the early 1930s to the late 1970s and a ca 1 degree C warming trend from the mid 1970s to now. Both of these trends seem significant to me, even if there resultant is insignificant. If we go back to ca 1890 we will probably find a near 1 degree C warming trend to the mid 1930s or early 1940s. Recognizing that we appear to have 1 and 1/2 cycles of some so far unidintified effect would be a very significant step. Murray

  80. Paul Linsay
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 1:48 PM | Permalink


    Half a dozen trees in the Sierra Nevadas are sufficient to determine the global temperature a millenium ago.

    1200 weather stations over the entire US make only a minimal contribution to measurements of 20th century warming.

    Satellite measurements covering the entire globe weekly are irrelevant to temperature measurements of the last three decades.

  81. Pete DeSanto
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 2:03 PM | Permalink

    #80 – The RC quote states that this estimate survived…up to the IPCC TAR (2001) report. The rest of the paragraph states “Admittedly, this was not the most sophisticated calculation ever, but individual analyses based on various approaches have not generally been able to improve substantially on this rough estimate, and indeed, have often suggested that quite high numbers (>6ºC) were difficult to completely rule out. However, a new paper in GRL this week by Annan and Hargreaves combines a number of these independent estimates to come up with the strong statement that the most likely value is about 2.9ºC with a 95% probability that the value is less than 4.5ºC.”

    In fact, there are 13 different climate sensitivity estimates constrained by observational data tabulated in the 2007 IPCC report that have been published since 2001. On top of this, there are 19 AOGCM’s referenced in the 2007 IPCC report that give an average climate sensitivity of 3.2 +/- 0.7degC climate sensitivity to 2x CO2. There is an additional paper by James Annan et al., that you can find at his website, that further supports this.

  82. jae
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 2:20 PM | Permalink

    83 and previous: Soooo, do ALL the sensitivity numbers come from computer model simulations and NOT from any basic physical analysis?? If so, God help us! And no wonder Steve McI can’t locate a paper that details the physical explanation for so much warming from CO2.

  83. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 2:22 PM | Permalink

    No more climate sensitivity on this thread please.

  84. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 2:24 PM | Permalink

    #82. It’ good to keep remembering the caterwauling about proxy calculations without bristlecones – even as sensitivity. The Team is pretty shameless, aren’t they?

  85. SteveSadlov
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 3:09 PM | Permalink

    RE: #59 – Andy you have raised a key point. There seems to be an issue regarding roles and responsibilities. Has Goddard overstepped its bounds? And conversely, has NOAA failed to step up to the plate in terms of climate assessment? Questions in need of answers.

  86. steven mosher
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 4:22 PM | Permalink

    RE 59.

    The NYTs writes:

    ” There is one other thing to note amid all this focus on NASA (and particularly GISS, which is a somewhat-independent research shop within NASA…):

    The “official” source of climate records in the U.S. (as mandated by Congress) is NOAA, not NASA.

    So doesn’t that mean that all the questions about what year is hottest, or not — and all efforts to sift surface-station data etc — should start with bedrock archives at NOAA, no? It is also NOAA, not NASA that has had the tendency to trot out press releases on 48-state trends (monthly, yearly, etc). It really is hard to find NASA doing so…”



    Read much?

    In english?



    Took me 10 seconds.

    2005 Was Warmest Year in Over a Century
    Jan. 24, 2006

    The year 2005 was the warmest year in over a century, according to NASA scientists studying temperature data from around the world.

    Image to right: 2005 was the warmest year since the late 1800s, according to NASA scientists. 1998, 2002 and 2003 and 2004 followed as the next four warmest years. Credit: NASA

    Climatologists at NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) in New York City noted that the highest global annual average surface temperature in more than a century was recorded in their analysis for the 2005 calendar year.

    Some other research groups that study climate change rank 2005 as the second warmest year, based on comparisons through November. The primary difference among the analyses, according to the NASA scientists, is the inclusion of the Arctic in the NASA analysis. Although there are few weather stations in the Arctic, the available data indicate that 2005 was unusually warm in the Arctic.

    In order to figure out whether the Earth is cooling or warming, the scientists use temperature data from weather stations on land, satellite measurements of sea surface temperature since 1982, and data from ships for earlier years.

  87. steven mosher
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 4:38 PM | Permalink


    Sorry. It may have been hard for you to find nasa “doing this” press release thing.

    J school students. Steer clear of columbia. Medill rules.

  88. mccall
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 5:49 PM | Permalink

    Mr Revkin’s past work betrays him a drum-beater for AGW; however, this articles moves some toward center.

  89. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 6:38 PM | Permalink

    Re: #88


    Took me 10 seconds.

    2005 Was Warmest Year in Over a Century
    Jan. 24, 2006

    Maybe that’s the kind of “over-reacting” in blogging to which some print journalists object. In the good old days before the internet a journalist is not going to be embarrassed nearly instantaneously. You could do a letter to the editor and if the gate keeper decided on those rare occasions to print your reply it would be dated and might even allow the journalist an intervening alternative interpretation. Let us see if Andy R is a blogger with a reply or a hit and run journalist of the old school.

  90. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 7:05 PM | Permalink

    Iain Murray has a deconstruction of Hansen’s statement to the NYT:

    Dr. Hansen and his team note that they rarely, if ever, discuss individual years, particularly regional findings like those for the United States (the lower 48 are only 2 percent of the planet’s surface). “In general I think that we want to avoid going into more and more detail about ranking of individual years”; he said in an e-mail message. “As far as I remember, we have always discouraged that as being somewhat nonsensical.”

  91. cytochrome_sea
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 7:08 PM | Permalink

    Re: #88,

    Steven, to be fair on the press release point, he did say “48-state trends”.

    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 8:34 PM | Permalink

    #92 Steve McI …I think it’s more a destruction, thrashing…
    Also self-goal…Only 2 percent of earth’s surface but 7 percent
    of land surface which is 1/14, only Canada and Russia are bigger GWS
    #88 Steve Mosher …I think we’ll rename you “Masher” LOL
    It’s Andy Revkin’s own fault of course…Interesting time now
    only self-goals made …

  93. Armand MacMurray
    Posted Aug 27, 2007 at 10:12 PM | Permalink

    Re: #92
    Mr. Revkin has now posted a comment on Murray’s blog; it seems to be either a poorly-reasoned defense or a non sequitur.

  94. Deech56
    Posted Aug 28, 2007 at 3:29 AM | Permalink

    RE $50 “Of course I accept that there is climate change as we no longer have ice fairs on the Thames but despite all the propaganda, we still can’t grow vines in Yorkshire as the Romans did…”


  95. Richard
    Posted Aug 28, 2007 at 7:44 AM | Permalink

    Do the graphs depict the gridded temperature for the U.S., or the average of the U.S station temperatures?

  96. Hoi Polloi
    Posted Aug 28, 2007 at 8:04 AM | Permalink

    From Mr.Revkin’s article:

    “Dr. Lawrimore said that the government is preparing to build a climate reference network of more sophisticated, and consistent, monitoring stations that should cut uncertainty in gauging future trends.”

    In other words, the past information is uncertain. Uncertain information is disinformation.

    US digital climatology starts in the 21st century.

  97. MarkW
    Posted Aug 28, 2007 at 9:15 AM | Permalink

    Will start in the 21st century.

    It hasn’t started yet.

  98. JP
    Posted Aug 28, 2007 at 10:10 AM | Permalink


    Maybe we should revisit the USHCN ver 2 data. Steve posted a thread on it last Feb:

    Treating the 1930s like the MWP, the adjusted ver 2 data “cooled” the 1930s but warmed the 1990s. In any event, since NASA isn’t the gatekeeper of official climate data, perhaps the emphasis should be put on NOAA and its own efforts to adjust away inconvienent histories. It is quite confusing to keep up with so many climate databases; no one has anytime to know which version of what data is being used for any particular study. As long as a HS is churned out, all is well with the world. Can anyone imagine a public company having 6 different versions of thier financials, with each version having uniquely adjusted General Ledger entries?

  99. Posted Aug 28, 2007 at 10:18 AM | Permalink

    A few questions for Andrew Revkin and his editors at the NYT:

    1) The article uses the term “statistically meaningless” three times in reference to the correction. Yet the correction reduced the trend of temperature increase from 1930 to 2006 by 42% (from 0.21 degrees C to 0.12) – NASA had overstated the trend by a factor of 1.75x. If the correction is statistically meaningless, isn’t the trend itself similarly irrelevant? Also, if NASA had issued a correction that increased the trend by 1.75x, showing that warming was happening faster than previously thought, would the NYT have waited 2 weeks to report it, and would it be similarly intoning on a “statistically meaningless” correction?

    2) McIntyre is described as “a blogger and retired business executive.” Doesn’t this downplay his credentials somewhat? He is also a mathematician and regular contributor to peer-reviewed, academic articles on climate change including one debunking Michael Mann’s “Hockeystick Graph” work. For the sake of symmetry, why not introduce Hansen as “a Democratic political activist and mid-level bureaucrat directly responsible for the error.”

    3) Rush Limbaugh is mentioned twice. Why? This seems like an obvious attempt to link McIntyre to Limbaugh in an effort to discredit the former – the only association appears to be that Limbaugh commented on the story, just as the NYT finally has.

    4) The article claims “Mr. McIntyre… traded broadsides on the Web with James E. Hansen, the NASA team’s leader.” I’ve seen how Hansen responded to the correction almost immediately with personal attacks on Hansen (i.e. calling him a “court jester”). But I haven’t seen anything resembling a “broadside” directed the other way. To the contrary, everything McIntyre has said and written on the subject seems very measured and focused on facts.

    5) Why did it take the NYT two weeks to report this?

    6) Why the obvious contempt for the “blogger” who did some authentic work, when all the NYT reporter seems to be doing is regurgitating the ass-covering comments by some obviously conflicted bureaucrat.

    7) Andrew Revkin, the author, teaches “environmental journalism” at Columbia, wrote a book called “The North Pole Was Here,” and has lead the NYT’s coverage of climate issues since 1995. He regularly performs a song he wrote called “Liberated Carbon” at college talks on climate change. Selected lyrics:

    We yearned to burn more than dung and sticks.
    Then Satan came along and said, ‘Hey, try lighting this.’

    He opened up the ground and showed us coal and oil.
    He said, ‘Come liberate some carbon. It’ll make your blood boil.’

    Liberated carbon, it’ll spin your wheels.
    Liberated carbon it’ll nuke your meals.
    Liberated carbon, it’ll turn your night to day.
    Come on and liberate some carbon, babe, it’s the American way.

    Is it possible Revkin has a little too much professionally, emotionally, and ideologically invested a particular point of view on climate change to be an objective reporter?

  100. BarryW
    Posted Aug 28, 2007 at 10:21 AM | Permalink

    Re #88

    Enron financials maybe?

  101. steven mosher
    Posted Aug 28, 2007 at 10:39 AM | Permalink

    Re 94.

    Masher. Yes, I have been called that, not by young ladies, but rather by fellows who found
    their jerseys yanked over their pin heads by the enforcer.

    As far as I see I did not violate any part of rule 47.

  102. steven mosher
    Posted Aug 28, 2007 at 11:06 AM | Permalink

    Re 100

    Analogically speaking the 1930s is similar to the MWP…

    I think the interesting thing would be to look at the slopes appraching these peaks
    ( MWP, 1930s, 2005)
    to get a sense of the “gain” in the system.

    The issue isnt the max temp reached, the issue is the system response to a forcing
    ( cntrol input) and whether the system is self damping or not.

    AGW, essentially, says that the system is getting a contrl input that is clearly detected
    in the output signal ( rate of change in C) and that this rate of change in C is

    AND that nothing can damp this reaction ( like negative feedback ) so the control
    input ( C02) must be extinguished. otherwise, the system goes unstable.

    ahhh rambling

  103. NOAA sez
    Posted Aug 28, 2007 at 3:28 PM | Permalink

    NOAA has just restored order to all this nonsense:

    The 2000s are back where they properly belong!

  104. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Aug 28, 2007 at 5:28 PM | Permalink

    29 C.A. Grant: I think it safe to say we are well aware that particulates on the ground and in the air play a role, and that it’s probably a pretty big role, too. The point is we don’t specifically know, and have incorrectly been told, .000001 C or 20 C, what “the temperature” has done for a far too significant amount of time. The fact that soot or dust or whatever is “hiding” what’s going on is really rather unimportant (since we don’t know the entire effect, just that it’s masking things, both directions; on the ground on snow or in the air mixed up) One might get the impression the people that run things, don’t know how their stations are exactly contaminated or not, and won’t share their code, that sort of thing makes people wonder about their motives. It doesn’t mean they have bad motivations or not, but it makes some people wonder what else is being hidden (accidentally or on purpose it matters not).

    88 steven mosher: You didn’t capitalize “English”. Obviously you’re a crank, a wacko, out of control and not to be listened to. You dirty scumbag liar. 😀 Seriously, that was from the GISS section of the site… So who knows who crafted it (?) and is responsible for it, but technically it’s not on the “NASA” site, at least not the main one.

    101 Dirck the Noorman: I doubt any of that will ever be answered. The questions answer themselves and would be a bit too problematic to state the obvious. Pity, really.

  105. James Carson
    Posted Aug 28, 2007 at 7:17 PM | Permalink

    Per someone’s request above, the revised data from 1880 thru 2007:

    If you have the means, it is highly instructive to run this data thru an ARIMA procedure. ALL global warming significance utterly disappears completely. (redundancy intentional)

    To start, a simple trend model shows a .048 degrees C decadal increase with high signficance (t=4.59). However, the residuals show enough autocorrelation to question the result. Significant (t=2.22) autocorrelation in the residuals appears at lag 1. Nearly significant partial autocorrelations appear at other lags. Interpretation: there is too much going on in the data for a trend model to describe.

    An ARIMA(2,1,0) yields extremely significant (negative coefficients) results for lags 1 and 2 (t>6.0 for each). Moreover, the constant term, which is the drift attributable to ‘global warming’ doubles to .212 degrees C per decade, BUT the statistical significance of that is nil (t=.2518). Other ARIMA models work, too, with similar results.

    Another way to put this: changes in temperature anomolies are larger than expected under iid, have no significant drift, and have strong reversion. These are ideal conditions under which to observe spurious ‘trends’.

    When you similarly examine world temperatures of the lower troposphere, you come to a similar conclusion. Insignificant drift (GW) coupled with strong reversion terms. Here is a link to the Christy and Spencer data.

  106. Mark T
    Posted Aug 28, 2007 at 7:30 PM | Permalink

    NOAA has just restored order to all this nonsense:

    The 2000s are back where they properly belong!

    Since it’s listed as “in press,” I’m guessing this poor sot wrote his paper prior to the recent revelation. Hehe…


  107. TAC
    Posted Mar 12, 2008 at 4:59 AM | Permalink

    I heard Revkin talk last night at a gathering of MIT alums. I expected to hear something similar to what I heard 2 years ago when he spoke to a group of AAAS Congressional Fellows. I was stunned. Unless he calibrates his scientific opinions to his audience, he seems to have changed his mind about a lot of things. In particular, he backed away completely from the “science is known and there is not much to debate” position that I recall from 2 years back (I remember this pretty well because I had come to that meeting intending to talk with him and try to figure out why he was not reporting some of the interesting “skeptical” findings; however, having heard him talk, I decided it was not worth the bother — his mind was closed).

    What I heard last night was very different. The only part of the GW story that remained intact was a general acknowledgment that increased atmospheric CO2 will likely lead to a warmer planet (but no one knows by how much).

    Revkin specifically cited examples where his employer, the New York Times, has published stories that overstated links to GW (e.g. related to arctic melting and Katrina). He also jokingly ackowleged that the primary reason Hansen gets to talk so much is because Revkin has written so many stories about efforts to silence him.

    What other thoughts? Apparently Revkin does not expect the GW debate to change much in coming years. Nor does he expect the United States — regardless of who wins the elections — to do much about climate change. Apparently the U.S. citizenry has too many other concerns related to the war, the economy, debt, personal lives, etc. There is no room for another worry (a GW “Pearl Harbor” could change that, of course).

    He made some other interesting points.

    1) The United States is under-investing in science and technology — federal funding for energy research has dropped dramatically over the past 30 years;
    2) Solar and renewables are unlikely to make more than a tiny contribution to total energy needs (barring a dramatic change);
    3) He sees an inconsistency between concern about climate change and unwillingness to discuss nuclear power;
    4) “The North Pole was Here” — the title of his book — refers not to climate change but to the rapidity with which the ice cap moves around (something it has always done, apparently);
    5) There has always been open water at the North Pole; news reports that this was unusual (i.e. evidence of GW) misrepresented the science.

    Revkin did not mention CA, or hockey sticks, or any of the usual topics addressed here on CA. Nonetheless, the thought went through my mind that something must have influenced his thinking.

  108. kim
    Posted Mar 12, 2008 at 5:25 AM | Permalink

    Starting on January 24 of this year, Andy Revkin had a thread on global warming stimulated by the AGU’s pronouncement about a crisis in climate. He finally stopped the thread some six weeks and 1200 comments later. He got a lot of high-powered input, pro and con, and I believe he read all that stuff with understanding.

  109. kim
    Posted Mar 12, 2008 at 5:26 AM | Permalink

    Oh, his blog is DotEarth, and I think he’s beginning to wonder.

  110. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Mar 12, 2008 at 7:37 AM | Permalink

    Re #107 – Am I correct – Was the verification based on Model analysis??

  111. Posted Mar 12, 2008 at 11:42 AM | Permalink

    James Carson–
    Revised when? (No obviously, I’m going to have to run these numbers. . . )

  112. steven mosher
    Posted Mar 12, 2008 at 8:30 PM | Permalink

    RE 108 the entire ” there is no debate” meme is ironic. It’s
    a rhetorical tactic. (Coming from me that should not be construed as a criticism.) The problem
    with it as a tactic, is that… THERE IS A DEBATE. There is an attempt to change peoples behavior through verbal action: debate and propaganda. The whole notion of denying that there is a debate is
    Monty Python silly. It would be far better for the AGW crowd to actually LEARN how to convince people.

    Here are some clues.

    1. You dont convince people by calling them nazis
    2. You dont convince people by calling them stupid
    3. You dont convince people by threatening to jail them.
    4. You dont convince people by saying “everyone else believes”
    5. You dont convince people with fear
    6. You dont convince people by telling them to google something
    7. You dont convince people by being anonymous.

    Need I go on. To be sure, nothing I’ve said here goes to the truth of the matter.
    The notion that there is “no debate” is a marketing campaign and not a very effective one.
    Arguing that there is no debate is, well, rather ironic.

  113. JamesG
    Posted Mar 13, 2008 at 3:58 AM | Permalink

    It seems that Revkin has realized that the real issue of concern is not so much global warming but energy sustainability. In a world where Asia’s economies are expanding and will push earth’s resources to the limit, arguing sustainability is not actually contentious yet deals with the same need for new energy sources as AGW. Since we are mostly agreed on the urgent need for a sensible energy plan then it’s ok for ardent warmers to relax the rhetoric. I look forward to more of them realizing this.

    Maybe he’s also realized that all the shrill rhetoric hasn’t achieved anything. A good example is that regardless of all the hurricane and sea-level hype, people still kept moving to the southern coasts in droves. So either the public think the scientists are exaggerating too much or they think scientists are now so clever they can solve any problem.

  114. theduke
    Posted Mar 13, 2008 at 8:42 AM | Permalink

    Mosh: the following was quoted on CA some months back. Pay particular attention to the Conclusion (part 5.) It’s all there in black and white.

  115. theduke
    Posted Mar 13, 2008 at 8:43 AM | Permalink

    Whoops. Here’s the link:

    Click to access warm_words.pdf

  116. steven mosher
    Posted Mar 13, 2008 at 10:23 AM | Permalink

    re 116.

    very good stuff. Especially the non rational appeals. That’s magic for both sides

    free the code! hehe.

  117. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Mar 13, 2008 at 2:37 PM | Permalink

    Free The Code!!!!

  118. Bill
    Posted Mar 13, 2008 at 4:12 PM | Permalink

    The fact that Revkin can make conservative noises in front of a group of MIT alums shouldn’t surprise anyone. I doubt that he’s actually shifting to a more reasonable position himself. As Kim observes about Revkin’s February climate blog, he is accutely sensitive to anything that can be construed as “crisis”, and will take the opportunity to amplify it in his columns and blog. It’s been cool lately. Wait for the first drought of summer.

  119. Yorick
    Posted Mar 13, 2008 at 5:05 PM | Permalink

    Recently Revkin invited his readers to discuss the scientific claims of the Heartland Conference. He was clearly disappointed that the only thing the commenters cared about was the funding. Few of the readers of his “science” column appear at all interested in science. Besides, the weak attempted smackdowns by the midguards of AGW have been pathetic to anybody with any ability in the area of critical thinking. Look at Rasmus’s recent “criticism” of Shaviv. Rasmus got the number of arms in the Milky Way galaxy wrong. This stuff has to add up, even in a bubble like the NYT. Hey, I started out a warmer. I thought it would be fun to debate the anti science idiots who didn’t believe it in the same way I enjoyed debating the topic that shall not be named here. I soon found out that I could never get the better ofa na argument to my own satisfaction.

  120. steven mosher
    Posted Mar 13, 2008 at 6:16 PM | Permalink

    re 118. Sam U. have Anthony Watts send you my email. I’ll show you something that will make you smile

  121. Posted Jun 21, 2008 at 4:18 AM | Permalink

    This process actually has a name: It is called “Science” — an old-fashioned approach to learning about the natural world.

One Trackback

  1. […] 27th, 2007 · No Comments There is very interesting post over at Steve McIntyre’s blog about the recent changes to the NASA surface temperature data. […]

%d bloggers like this: