by Judith Curry
Believe it or not, a week ago today I started a draft post entitled “Is the climate blogosphere getting boring?” I hadn’t spotted anything interesting in awhile other than extreme weather events and forest fires being caused by global warming. I thought the summer doldrums had set in. What a difference a week makes!
Here is a collection of items that caught my eye this past week:
In Australia, some leading universities, together with governments and businesses, recently created a not-for-profit website, theconversation.edu.au, which is a daily newspaper with most of its pieces written by scientists and scholars. There is a section on energy and environment, which includes some very good essays on climate. Two essays that I liked:
- David Risbey: Speaking Science to Climate Policy
- John Wiseman and Lauren Rickards: From Probability to Possibility: Using Scenarios to Get our Heads Around Climate Change
The state of California has partnered with Google to develop a very impressiveweb site that is designed to explore and synthesize climate research of relevance to California and help the state adapt. A good article describing the site can be found here.
2 from Forbes
Of relevance to topics we have been discussing this past week:
William Pentland writes an article entitled the “Self-Corruption of Climate Science,” which is about the IPCC’s inability to constructively deal with the criticism from the IAC, particularly with regards to gray literature.
Pat Michaels has a blistering editorial on “pal review.”
Spring weather recap
NCDC put together a comprehensive recap of last spring’s weather posted on their webpage. While global warming is not mentioned in this analysis, a NYTimes article that includes an interview with Tom Karl with some sensible words:
“Looking at long-term patterns since 1980, indeed, extreme climatological and meteorological events have increased,” said Thomas R. Karl, director of NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center. “But in the early part of the 20th century, there was also a tendency for more extreme events followed by a quiet couple of decades.”
Presenting a new NOAA report on 2011 extreme weather, Dr. Karl said that extremes of precipitation have increased as the planet warms and more water evaporates from the oceans. He also said models suggest that as carbon dioxide builds up in the atmosphere and heats the planet, droughts will increase in frequency and intensity.
“But it is difficult and unlikely to discern a human fingerprint, if there is one, on the drought record of the United States,” he said.
Bonn Climate Talks
It looks like the climate talks in Bonn fell far short of hopes, see this article.
Two weeks of tense global climate talks wrapped up on Friday, with countries insisting they had made progress on technical issues but accepting they were still nowhere near agreement in the three key areas of finance, greenhouse gas emission cuts and the future of the Kyoto protocol.
Sea level data
The University of Colorado has released its new sea level analyses, see their web page here.
Welcome to the new webpages from the University of Colorado sea level group! We apologize for the delay in updating our sea level releases, but the transition to these new web pages took longer than we thought. In addition, we have made many improvements to our data (new orbits, new tide model, new corrections) which ultimately had little effect on global mean sea level, but brought us up to date with the latest advances in the field.
One important change in these releases is that we are now adding a correction of 0.3 mm/year due to Glacial Isostatic Adjustment (GIA), so you may notice that the rate of sea level rise is now 0.3 mm/year higher than earlier releases. This is a correction to account for the fact that the global ocean basins are getting slightly larger over time as mantle material moves from under the oceans into previously glaciated regions on land. Simply subtract 0.3 mm/year if you prefer to not include the GIA correction.
You may also note that rate of sea level rise over recent years has been less than the long-term average. This is believed to be due to the recent La Nina’s we have been experiencing, though research on this is continuing. We will soon add a plot to the web site illustrating this effect.
Sounds reasonable. But some people don’t like this, see this Fox news article. I would like to do a post on sea level, but I am no expert and it would require a lot of effort on my part. I would be most interested in a guest post on this topic.
Feminist philosophers and climate change
From this link:
Special Issue on Climate Change
March 15, 2012 submission deadline
Hypatia: A Journal of Feminist Philosophy seeks papers for a special issue on Climate Change. We welcome new feminist scholarship on the scientific, ethical, epistemological, economic, and cultural dimensions of current global climate change, as well as case studies that critically engage specific questions in local, regional, national, and/or global contexts. In addition to essays developing feminist analyses of the science, ethics, and politics of climate change, we encourage investigations of the gendered, neo-colonial, and other power-laden frameworks which shape the discourses and power flows that influence various parties’ understandings of and responses to climate change.
I am trying to think of angle for a paper on this (seriously), let me know if you have any ideas. Maybe Martha and i can write a joint paper :)