Week in review 1/20/12

by Judith Curry

A few things that caught my eye this past week.

Nature has an editorial entitled Face up to Fraud.  Excerpt:

Many people in science would rather not talk about the problem of research misconduct, much less act on it. After all, who directly involved would benefit from a serious crackdown? Certainly not the institutions at which the misconduct takes place — they are nominally responsible, but can face legal repercussions, embarrassing headlines and a public-relations disaster if they expose cheating academics. It is much easier to shuffle miscreants out of the side door with vague references and a promise of silence, effectively pushing the problem somewhere else, and onto someone else.

So it is perhaps a sort of progress that the British Medical Journal and the international Committee on Publication Ethics were able to organize a meeting on the subject in London last week, gathering representatives from universities, funders, journals and lobby groups to discuss how the problem could be tackled in the United Kingdom (see Nature http://doi.org/hmx;2012). The meeting broke little new ground, but its organizers do, at least, deserve credit for trying.

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Chip Knappenberger has a post at Master Resource entitled “Global Lukewarming: A Great Intellectual Year in 2011“.   An extensive overview of recent data and research from the lukewarmer perspective.

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This one is for Oliver:  Climate change: what would Eisenhower do?  The article itself doesn’t actually answer the question, rather it discusses a new book Exposing The Climate Hoax: Its All About the Economy.   From the blurb:

The possibility of global warming has spawned one of the most controversial debates of our time and opinions seem to fall along the political lines of thought. Whether it is or isn’t happening, human caused or natural, is still hotly debated. While some scientists can be politically motivated, math and physics can not. John P. Reisman takes the debate head on from a conservative perspective to separate wishful thinking from pragmatic reality. Take a thrilling journey into the perfect storm of politics, perspective, security, economics, psychology and science in “Exposing the Climate Hoax.”

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Fighting Climate Change Online at the Security & Sustainability Forum has this interesting quote from Al Gore:

“The architecture of the public square on the Internet is very similar to when the country was founded, when the print-based media were dominant. Individuals have easy access, almost no barriers to access, ideas matter”

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Tom Fuller has a new blog 3000 quads.  From the About page:

3000 Quads is about energy for the 21st century. The world’s population is now estimated to peak at between 9 and 10 billion people somewhere around 2075. If they use energy at the same rate as the average American, they will consume 3,000 quadrillion btus.

Regional issues

Some interesting articles contrasting issues and solutions in China, Australia, South Florida and Boulder, Colorado.

Report:  Climate Change Could Hamper China’s Rise.  Excerpt:

The effects of climate change could seriously damage the Chinese economy in the near future, according to the Chinese government’s latest research into the phenomenon. Both food and water supplies are threatened with critical shortages, while an increase in flooding and drought could ravage vulnerable areas.

The 710-page “Second National Assessment Report on Climate Change” [link to Executive Summary] was published last year, but only recently entered the public domain. Authored by teams of government-supervised scientists, the report builds on an initial assessment conducted in 2007 to provide evidence and forecasting which will shape, rather than set, government policy.

From Australia: Infrastructure Sector Highly Vulnerable to Climate Change.  Excerpt:

Australia’s infrastructure is not prepared to withstand the consequences of catastrophic climate change events such as floods, droughts, coastal erosion, tropical cyclones, fires and seal level rise. The report released today calls on all stakeholders to address regulatory frameworks gaps, which are acting as barriers towards effective climate adaptation. It analyses the extent to which existing regulatory regimes support action by major infrastructure sectors in adapting to climate change. 
The report addresses the regulation of pricing, performance and reliability of essential services provided by physical infrastructure – particularly, electricity, water, transport, communications and waste. It also examines the ability of planning regimes, environmental impact assessment and government procurement processes to take into account risks arising from climate change.

Florida counties band together to ready for effects of global warming, by Michael Lemonick Subheading:  While U.S. action on climate change remains stalled, four south Florida counties have joined forces to plan for how to deal with the impacts – some of which are already being felt – of rising seas, higher temperatures and more torrential rains.

Boulder’s Climate Action Plan: Inefficient, Ineffective.  Excerpts:

The Boulder City Council’s website touts a “Climate Action Plan” as one of its primary goals. “The current goal is equivalent to the Kyoto Protocol target – to reduce emissions to a level seven percent below 1990 levels by 2012,” it says. With the city’s carbon tax set to end early next year, it’s worth asking: Is reducing carbon dioxide emissions the best way to respond to global warming?

With or without global warming, people — especially those in developing nations –face threats from extreme temperature, coastal flooding, hurricanes, malaria, poverty, starvation, and water stress. While global warming may increase these risks, scholars including Indur Goklany and Bjorn Lomborg convincingly argue that directly reducing these threats and promoting prosperity save more lives at lower cost than attempts involving emissions reductions.


281 responses to “Week in review 1/20/12

  1. An important event was Obama’s blatantly political rejection of the Keystone XL pipeline from Canada, which was opposed by climate activists. This Canadian column discusses the article in the Washington Post attacking Obama’s decision.

    http://www.canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/44064

    • Don B,
      The quality of Obama’s decision on Keystone is on par with his claims during the 2008 election campaign about how under his wise leadership the Earth would cool and the seas stop rising.

      • The fact is that the environmentalists are going to take the fall for the Keystone affair. The mainstream news is that the concerns were over possible pipeline corrosion and leaking, and other environmental factors. Yet no one in the news mentions the issues of business and politics.

        But we know that the pipeline extension to the Gulf is really all about the profit motive. The profits will go to the Canadians and to the multi-national corporations that can share in higher priced oil across the Atlantic. Oil is cheaper in the USA, i.e. WTI versus Brent indices for just this reason, a glut of oil in the midwest.

        We all know that the oil can get shipped to refineries in the Midwest. Those pipeline are already in place.

        We all know that the tar needs basic refining before it flows through a pipeline.

        So why don’t the Canadians set up a refinery north of the border and do the refining in place? They have all the natural gas and water at their disposal and can take care of the by-products on their own dime instead of sending it down to the states. We don’t need those by-products. If we want heating grade oil, why flow that when we can use the natural gas that you essentially wasted on the tar sands to create the heating oil in the first place? Those natural gas pipelines are also already in place and they are useful for providing heat energy during the cold midwestern winters.

        Again, the environmentalists are taking the fall for this, much like the climate change scientists are taking the fall for our move toward alternative sources of energy.

        Climate change is only partially driving the change in energy policy. In fact, we all know that oil depletion is largely responsible for the change. The climate change skeptics take it out on the greens, as one can see by reading the comments on this blog.

        Same thing with natural gas fracing. Environmentalists are taking the heat, but we all know the short lifetimes of a fractured play (by god, I always throw up a little in my mouth when I have to use those industry buzzwords such as “play”). Those are going to go like dominoes, and they will be gone before any environmental concerns build up.

        Now we are seeing the same thing with Keystone. The environmentalists will get blamed for something that is pure business sense and best for the USA. Obama is being turned into a puppet of the environmentalists, and the right-wingers will do a victory dance. But we all know that the administration understands the issues and is adopting the smokescreen of “environmental concerns” just like they doe with climate change to subtly reinforce the global fossil fuel depletion reality. We want some of that oil, not send it to Europe!

        I hope the Canadians make the right moves, given the fact that Texas and Loiusiana actually don’t want the tar sands oil. I remember discussing what I thought were problems with mountain top removal in places like West Virginia with a Canadian oil man. He assured me that all that tar sands excavation will return the land to the same pristine state it was earlier, and he directed me to some aerial pictures of the before and after. It looked good, so I assumed the Canadians can do whatever they want with their land.

        I just have my doubts that digging up all those sands with those big earth movers, then moving it to a refinery, extra sand and all, and then refining it and disposing of the by-products, while reclaiming that land by pushing the sands back in place will be that big a net energy gain for them.

        But who knows, technology might save them and the efficiency gains will be made, and they won’t have to resort to leaving a pock-marked moonscape to achieve any energy gains. We don’t have that luxury in West Virgina, because once a mountaintop is removed for its coal, there ain’t no way that mountain is going to get reconstructed. Pushing stuff back is one thing, but pushing it back uphill is another!

        So Canada will be in good shape, independent of the decision. They will still send the oil to the USA. They can ship it to the Far East if they want to use their own land for a pipeline. They will get good prices there. We just don’t want to subsidize their cost so the Canadians and multi-nationals can make a few extra bucks at American’s expense.

        That is the real objective argument that I have been able to gather, based on reading the discussion at oil blogs. The jobs argument for refinery workers in Louisiana and Texas is pretty weak. I would like to see something stronger than that argument.

      • Web,

        Thank you so much for not practicing what you preach. Your long-winded, elliptical, over-analyzed, and introspective discussion of the the keystone pipe-line decision, was both very interesting and very informative.

        No sacrcasm. Please keep up the good work.

      • Thanks for your take on this, WHT. I understand that there is already a pipeline route from Canada to Oklahoma by a different route, and that extending that to Texas is approved. Why is there a need to make a new line through Nebraska to Texas? It would create temporary jobs, but would seem pointless otherwise.

      • Web – looks like the environmental groups are taking credit for shutting down the pipeline. They don’t need anyone else to blame them, they admit they did it. Maybe you should get out more!
        *****
        News releases
        ShareThis
        President Obama rejects the Keystone XL pipeline

        Posted Jan. 18, 2012
        Administration deals a blow to Big Oil and its cronies in Congress, takes a stand for Americans’ health and livelihoods, and a safe climate

        Washington, D.C. — Today, the Obama administration rejected the permit for the Keystone XL tar sands oil pipeline sought by Canadian oil firm TransCanada, determining that the project was not in the national interest.

        “President Obama has shown bold leadership in standing up to Big Oil and rejecting the Keystone XL pipeline,” said Erich Pica, president of Friends of the Earth. “The climate movement took on Goliath and won, demonstrating its growing strength. Sustained grassroots pressure aimed at holding the president accountable to the public interest proved more powerful than all the lobbyists and campaign cash the oil industry could muster.”

        This iconic David versus Goliath victory was fueled by years of persistent grassroots campaigning to stop the project led by indigenous activists, environmentalists, farmers, ranchers and youth climate activists. Americans submitted more than 250,000 public comments against the proposal, several thousand more turned out in small-town Nebraska, in Texas and in Washington, D.C. to testify against the pipeline in public hearings — and 1,253 people played a pivotal role in August by getting arrested during peaceful sit-ins on the president’s doorstep.

        Investigative efforts led by Friends of the Earth and allies exposed the State Department’s review process as hopelessly corrupted by conflicts of interest and oil industry cronyism in advance of President Obama’s call for a new review of the project in November.

        “Today’s announcement is a welcome example of President Obama following through on his promise that corporate polluter lobbyists will no longer set the agenda in Washington,” said Pica. “The Keystone XL pipeline would have been dirty at both ends, dangerous in between, and certainly not in our national interest. Big Oil and its bought-and-paid-for confederates in Congress couldn’t drown this dirty reality despite all of their threats and bullying.”

        http://www.foe.org/news/news-releases/2012-01-president-obama-rejects-the-keystone-xl-pipeline

      • Nice post, WHT – even if it was a bit long-winded, elliptical, and over-analyzed.

      • Good analysis Web, the pipeline itself could be useful though. Jobs short term of course. Also, if designed properly it would be beneficial to energy infrastructure. It is a lot easier to add another pipe with one than later. While the oil may not be needed now, it is leverage for the future.

      • You nailed it webby, it’s all about profits. What we need to do is take the profit motive out all these economic decisions and let the freaking government make the plays. We have a good model on how we can set this up. They used to call it the Soviet Union. You people are incredibly stoopid.

      • Web – Friends of the Earth are taking credit for killing the pipeline. Check their web site.

      • News releases
        ShareThis
        President Obama rejects the Keystone XL pipeline

        Posted Jan. 18, 2012
        Administration deals a blow to Big Oil and its cronies in Congress, takes a stand for Americans’ health and livelihoods, and a safe climate

        Washington, D.C. — Today, the Obama administration rejected the permit for the Keystone XL tar sands oil pipeline sought by Canadian oil firm TransCanada, determining that the project was not in the national interest.

        “President Obama has shown bold leadership in standing up to Big Oil and rejecting the Keystone XL pipeline,” said Erich Pica, president of Friends of the Earth. “The climate movement took on Goliath and won, demonstrating its growing strength. Sustained grassroots pressure aimed at holding the president accountable to the public interest proved more powerful than all the lobbyists and campaign cash the oil industry could muster.”

        This iconic David versus Goliath victory was fueled by years of persistent grassroots campaigning to stop the project led by indigenous activists, environmentalists, farmers, ranchers and youth climate activists. Americans submitted more than 250,000 public comments against the proposal, several thousand more turned out in small-town Nebraska, in Texas and in Washington, D.C. to testify against the pipeline in public hearings — and 1,253 people played a pivotal role in August by getting arrested during peaceful sit-ins on the president’s doorstep.

        Investigative efforts led by Friends of the Earth and allies exposed the State Department’s review process as hopelessly corrupted by conflicts of interest and oil industry cronyism in advance of President Obama’s call for a new review of the project in November.

        “Today’s announcement is a welcome example of President Obama following through on his promise that corporate polluter lobbyists will no longer set the agenda in Washington,” said Pica. “The Keystone XL pipeline would have been dirty at both ends, dangerous in between, and certainly not in our national interest. Big Oil and its bought-and-paid-for confederates in Congress couldn’t drown this dirty reality despite all of their threats and bullying.”

        “This defeat for Big Oil is a huge victory for the health and safety of Americans. It belongs to the indigenous communities who first sounded the alarm on the dangers of tar sands extraction, to the Nebraskan farmers and Texan ranchers who withstood TransCanada’s bullying in the name of their land and livelihoods, to the activists from across the country who were arrested on the president’s doorstep, and to all of us fighting for a safe climate and justice-fueled future,” said Pica.

      • Jim of CP –

        After reading that statement, all I can say is that we’re clearly on a path to complete destruction in the near future. With groups like Friends of the Earth maintaining such an vise-like grip on our country’s energy policy development, it’s only a matter of how long.

        I’m heading out to my bunker tomorrow. How about you?

      • However one rationalizes it, the decision to abandon the Keystone pipeline project was staggeringly stupid.

        The environmental “concerns” are largely overblown boondoggles, which can easily be addressed with simple technical solutions.

        The only “winners” here are OPEC cartel members and possibly the Chinese, who will now gain access to this oil..

        Losers are the USA, both from the energy security and jobs standpoint.

        Max

      • Governments and multi-nationals are competing here.
        On the one side is the USA administration
        On the other side is Canada and companies such as TransCanada and others

        The arguments are not just environmental but business and political.That is why we are seeing this corporate/governmental jockeying for position.

      • Mr. WebHub Madoff is taking moral high ground. Defends the misleading, rip-off, brainwashing the kids in school and university about the phony GLOBAL warming. The real problems are not addressed, to improve the climate 2] to build hydro dams for electricity and water to be used for irrigation – when that water evaporates – water storage, topsoil moisture, water vapour IMPROVE THE CLIMATE. Under the Warmist lunacy, WATER VAPOUR IS BAD FOR THE CLIMATE…?!!!

        Precursor of all evil are the organised extremist mobs, refereed as ”activist” they never take the blame for anything, on my blog it says: if it’s never environmentalist fault, then is definitely their father’s fault, for not using condom. That goes for you WebHub, also!

      • For christ’s sake Sefan, just give us the encrypted code for the rest of the climategate files.

        There must be some way to do it ,without ending up like Julian.

      • John Carpenter

        All the talk that the pipeline is dead is a little premature. The deal was killed as WHT said, but they are not going to go home now and just give up. The pipeline will be built in the long run. New permit applications are being prepared as we speak.

      • Markus, I didn’t need the ”Climategate emails” to know that they are lying. If you disregard for 3 seconds climate; ”if somebody tells you 3 times lies – you stop trusting that person”. With east Anglia / IPCC, after telling BIG lies constantly – you people are still stuck with everything they say / everything Al Gore says is published by ALL believers and Skeptics.

        When I point that: GLOBAL warming of the Whole planet is not possible; because oxygen + nitrogen are regulating the temperature, not CO2; as ”Infidel” in GLOBAL warmings, I get attacked in a crossfire from both camps. People from both camps have being challenged to find something wrong in my work / formulas – instead they ridicule my misspelling. Well, you people can spell perfect in English; why don’t you interpret my formulas?! UNLESS THE HURDLE OF DEBUNKING MY FORMULAS IS CROSSED – all the rest of the drivel is a ”sandpit fire-brigade job”

        My formulas exposed all the phony GLOBAL warmings; beyond any reasonable doubts b] Climategate interest is – dignifying the Swindlers. Long saga in promoting their importance. c] on my blog is ”METHANEGATE” if you read every sentence – you will see that bigger proofs are there. d] if you read all 8-9 pages on my blog = you will learn more truth, than 1000 climategates. One can only lead, but can’t make a horse to drink

      • Stefan, sure you’re right on the science but it’s “formulae” really not formulas, although I do believe that it’s come into common usage of late, it grates on those who’ve had the benefit of what the Brits call a “classical” education.

      • hey WHT,

        I have a hard time parsing the meaning of your original comment. Together with Jim Cripwell’s comment and your response about the price of gas I get an impression something like this:

        *US gov’t doesn’t want the pipeline right now because we have a glut of gasoline, we are exporting it. If the pipeline gets built now all that crude will wind up as gasoline overseas.
        *Canada and the oil companies want the pipeline right now so they can take advantage of cheap natgas prices to run the mining operations (except for the big mobile boys run on diesel, right?) and make big profits piping the oil to Texarkana for refining into gasoline for use abroad.
        *The cheap gas won’t last very long, b/c frack plays are going to be much shorter-lived than anyone is saying. Too short in fact to have any environmental consequences.

        did I pass the quiz?

      • billc,

        That clown does not have a clue. The Keystone decision was purely political. A bone thrown to the greenie activists. Obama needs the troops to be fired up for the election. If the pipeline could have been built and turned on this month, resulting in an increase in the supply of gas thus dropping gas prices, Obama would have turned it on. There are a lot more consumers of gasoline than there are rabid greenies. It was a purely political calculation, for SHORT-TERM political gain.

        It is ludicrous to believe that a $7 billion dollar private investment in an infrastructure project is not a good business decision for a government that is $15 trillion in debt and desperate to create jobs. It is just plain stupid to claim that people with $7 billion to invest, are going for short-term profit by investing in a pipeline project that will take more than a decade to reach break-even. These “progressive” types live in a freaking fantasy world.

      • WHT makes a big fuss over the idea the environmentalists will be blamed for the Keystone pipeline debacle as if it weren’t true. Who’s he kidding? Himself? Friends of the Earth are celebrating their “victory.” I guess WHT didn’t get the memo? Everyone except apparently knows the pipeline was put off so it didn’t endanger the 2012 election for Obama. The environmental objections are just a sideshow conveniently supported by opposition of groups like FOE, Obama’s base.
        Meanwhile, arcs-n-sparks sees no reason to regulate the nuclear industry. Is he high on Unicorn flatulence?
        As far as the pipeline goes, there is no need for the Fed to be involved at all. The businesses involved, the States, and the land owners can figure this out and should be left alone to do so.

      • The environmental objections are just a sideshow ..

        Yes, and I think that this turns the environmentalists into whipping boys and punching bags. They might not care, and actually want that position. My point, which you evidently agree with, is that the decision could be made on grounds having nothing to do with environmental concerns.

      • WHT – The fact that environmentalists want credit for derailing the pipeline in no way relieves them of blame. They do carry a lot of the blame for the onerous regulations under which we now live and from which we suffer. Paul Krugman notwithstanding, deficit spending and over-regulation is, in large part, responsible for the current plight of Europe.

      • wht says:

        “My point, which you evidently agree with, is that the decision could be made on grounds having nothing to do with environmental concerns.”

        That wasn’t your point, and he obviously doesn’t agree with it. You really don’t have a clue about this. What glut of gasoline supply are you talking about? The one that has caused gas prices to plunge? You are a joke. Explain what business reason that any government involved would have to nix this $7 billion privately funded project? Were their any people from Texas oil refineries, or tar sands workers from Canada picketing the White House? You must live in a freaking oil drum. You are just talking a bunch of naive and destructive anti-capitalist clap trap.

      • Explain what business reason that any government involved would have to nix this $7 billion privately funded project? Were their any people from Texas oil refineries, or tar sands workers from Canada picketing the White House? You must live in a freaking oil drum. You are just talking a bunch of naive and destructive anti-capitalist clap trap.

        Every barrel of oil being produced from the tar sands of Canada currently is going somewhere in Canada or the United States right now. No decision being made will change that. All the infrastructure is in place and will continue to meet flow rate needs gradually over time. Just like it has happened in the past. A side question is whether that old infrastructure needs maintenance updating to account for wear and tear, and to where to route possible new pipelines considering that the government is responsible for eminent domain questions. Constitutional property rights are evidently a big part of this “destructive anti-capitalist clap”. Are they not?

      • So, WHT. Now you are asserting existing pipelines are not maintained? From whence did you pull out that gem?

      • webbie,

        You did not even attempt to address the question. You contradict your self. You claim that they are going to invest years of construction and $7 billion in a pipeline for short-term profit, and now you claim that there are already existing pipelines that make this proposed pipeline superfluous. You better tell the people who are willing to spend $7 billion that they aren’t going to make any money, because all the pipelines that needs to be built has already done been built. You are a clown. No need to discuss this with you any further.

      • Regardless of all the double-talk justifying killing the Keystone pipeline for imagined environmental reasons, it is clear that the investors who were going to build this pipeline had calculated that it would save cost, thereby reducing the net cost of energy. There is no doubt that it would have created many new jobs, both in the USA and in Canada. It would also have increased reliability of supply. A final, unlisted, benefit is that it could have been used in the future to tie in oil produced from US oil shale deposits by extending the pipeline.

        If a new administration comes into office in 2013, this project (or a similar one) will again be on the drawing board.

        So I do not see the recent decision to block the pipeline as an irreversible disaster – it was just a stupid move made to placate a group of lobbyists whom the current administration apparently owed a debt.

        Max

      • You better tell the people who are willing to spend $7 billion that they aren’t going to make any money, because all the pipelines that needs to be built has already done been built.

        I said that originally. They want to get the Canadian oil to the Gulf so they can ship overseas so as to make more profit. Those would be the new pipelines. The pipelines in the USA are already available but they terminate in the midwest, and only need to be maintained for normal wear & tear.

        About the Bakken: Consider that the Bakken shale formation is spread out over a few large states. Watch what happens with the oil delivery mechanism in that case. Each hydrofracture well will have a lifetime of a couple of years; the trucks, trains and ground transport will have to carry the oil to all sorts of destinations, as North Dakota and Montana are huge states and the Bakken wells are dispersed. They won’t build dedicated pipelines for that.

        Like Keystone, this will eventually all get worked out, but it makes for an interesting discussion since the cost-benefits analysis is in a very gray area.

      • “Face Up To Fraud” would be a good editorial for the employees of Nature to keep handy for the day of reckoning when they are forced to face reality: Earth’s heat source is the same nuclear furnace that made our elements and spit them out five billion years (5 Gyr) ago.

        Models have become tools by which arrogant leaders of nations and sciences try to instruct and control reality. It won’t work.

        Pride goeth before the fall.

    • I only realized the other day one of the reasons for the urgency of the Keystone XL, and Northern Gateway pipelines. It has to do with the price of natural gas. The tar sands were just profitable when the relative price of oil and natural gas were at their historic levels. Now, however, the price of natural gas has dropped enormously. Since a lot of the cost of extracting oil from the sands is the price of burning lots of natural gas, the fall in natural gas prices means that Canadian companies can now make huge profits. We have no use for the oil ourselves; hence the requirement to get pipelines built so that we can sell it to someone else, and make lots of money.

      • Agree. Some of the political and business arguments are a lot easier to understand and come to an agreement on than the scientific ones. This is all basic financial book-keeping with an eye on where the short-term profits can be made. The Canadians have the long-term strategy locked up already, as they have the oil sands to themselves and it’s not like it’s going to walk away.

      • More utter stupidity:

        “This is all basic financial book-keeping with an eye on where the short-term profits can be made. ”

        Businessmen don’t make billion dollar investments in pipelines for short-term profits. You are a naive little clown. Stick to something you have a clue about. You are worse than josh. Don’t you people profit form your work? Even if you work for the government, or so “non-profit” NGO, you get paid. Right?

      • Jim,

        The Keystone project is not just a pipeline to Houston so that we can sell oil someplace else, That is BS. Unless you want to sound like an idiot-webby-read up on the complex and very capitla intensive project so that you have a basis for your opinions:

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

      • Game over for the planet:

        Starting in spring, 2011, environmental and global warming activist Bill McKibben took the question of the pipeline to NASA scientist James Hansen, who told McKibben the pipeline would be “game over for the planet”.[73] McKibben and other activists moved toward a new oppositional approach which coalesced in August with over 1000 nonviolent arrests at the White House. They promised to continue to challenge President Obama to stand by his 2008 call to “be the generation that finally frees America from the tyranny of oil”[citation needed] as he entered the 2012 reelection campaign. A relatively broad coalition came together, including the Republican governor Dave Heineman and senators Ben Nelson (D) and Mike Johanns (R) from Nebraska, and some Democratic funders like Susie Tompkins Buell.[74]

        On November 7, 2011, several thousand environmentalist supporters, some shouldering a long black inflatable replica of a pipeline, formed a human chain around the White House to try to convince Barack Obama to block the controversial Keystone XL project. Organiser Bill McKibben said, “this has become not only the biggest environmental flash point in many, many years, but maybe the issue in recent times in the Obama administration when he’s been most directly confronted by people in the street. In this case, people willing, hopeful, almost dying for him to be the Barack Obama of 2008.”[75]

        On November 10, 2011 four days after twelve thousand people encircled the White House, the culmination of months of protests, President Obama announced “the decision on the pipeline permit would be delayed until at least 2013, pending further environmental review”.[74] TransCanada stated they have been in conversation with the U.S. Department of State (DOS) and fourteen different routes were being studied, including eight impacting Nebraska. They included one potential alternative route in Nebraska that would have avoided the entire Sandhills region and Ogallala aquifer and six alternatives that would have reduced pipeline mileage crossing the Sandhills or the aquifer.[24]

      • Don Montford. Anyone who uses Wikipedia as a reference for this type of discussion, does not know what he is talking about. Who knows the source of the Wikipedia information. If you can quote who wrote it, and what his/her credentials are, let me know.

      • Jim Crip,

        I deliberately used Wiki, because it’s easy and presents the best case possible for the lefties. I wouldn’t want to be accused of using a biased source. I don’t need to prove anything to you. If you doubt what I have quoted, and you are intellectually curious, go find counter sources, and prove it to yourself. I really don’t care. Are we clear now?

      • We don’t yet have a way to burn nat gas in vehicles, do we? That will take a while. In the meantime, the more oil we have to turn into gasoline, the better.

      • Natural gas vehicles are available today and they operate more cost efficently that do gasoline powered cars.

        I am suprised that a car company is not more agressively marketing natural gas powered cars that you can fill up at home. As I understand it, you can give yourself the ability to fill up at home for about 2K

      • “We have no use for the oil ourselves”
        How is that? The US imports about 2/3 of the oil it uses. The oil from Canada could replace imports from other sources like Venezuela or the ME. It could be cheeper, safer, less vulnerable.
        It’s not Obama’s task to judge the economic sense of the pipeline. The Canadians proposed to build it with their own money, they think the American companies will buy the oil. The US government should not impose it’s economic judgement.
        The only possible reason for blocking the pipeline could be because of environmental concerns.

      • Rob – Yes, we do have nat gas vehicles. No, we don’t have nat gas infrastructure to support them if all were converted. I think nat gas for cars is a good idea – from economic considerations alone.

    • Thanks, Professor Curry.

      The public has received misinformation about the Sun’s origin, composition, source of energy, and influence on Earth’s climate for our decades.

      Now the deceivers and their paymasters are trapped in their own web of deceit.

      • Eearth’s climate for four decadess (1971-2011).

      • Please excuse my mistakes as I try to learn to use the Kindle Fire my wife brought with us on our vacation.

        Away from the usual routine, I hope to gain insight in communicating reality.

        Here’s an abbreviated summary of reality and the basic cause of our difficulties – selfishness.

        1. Man is complex.
        2. Reality is simple.
        3. Humility is required to see reality.
        4. Modern science is mostly fantasy.
        5. Modern religions are mostly fantasy.
        6. Buddha awoke to reality through meditation.
        7. Einstein awoke to reality through contemplation.

        8. The most powerful leaders of nations, sciences and religions are unable to see reality because reality is benelovent, powerful, and awe-inspiring. These are traits that cannot be seen by those filled with pride, anger, arrogance or other manifestations of selfishness.

        That seems to be the root of our problems today.

        Effulgent leaders

    • “One can only lead, but can’t make a horse to drink”

      My dear compatriot, A more jovial application of that phase in your new homeland is;

      You can lead a horse to water, but a pencil must be lead.

  2. Up top it looks as if you all are not taking things very lightly as you follow you business scientists rule of the fat thumb, when you follow your rules and ‘In case of an emergency, please feel free to break their glass’

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2089746/Bankrupt-Solyndra-caught-destroying-parts-worth-millions–despite-owing-taxpayer-half-billion-dollars.html

    Stop a train with a brown piece of paper? Not very likely.

    • Ron,

      Interesting link to a view of the eco-hustle business model on the back-end. The front-end view, on the other hand, might be glimpsed in the article on the Florida companies banding together, above. Link to the article and check out the attached comments for the estimable Bob Doppelt’s masterpiece of shameless spam.

      Indeed, the whole business might even prompt a passing thought or two, in those with a certain “mentality”, that the point of the drill, really, is to just hook-and-jab to get a taxpayer hand-out, take your cut from the up-front cash, and then to heck with the rest. Greenwash, rinse, and repeat until you get so tired of making an easy buck, you just gotta take a break. At least, that’s the sort of ungenerous, insensitive thought-crime musings you’d just know to expect from the likes of those gol’ darned conservative, old, white men with their anti-science world-views and all.

  3. This expression caught my eye –

    Australia’s infrastructure is not prepared to withstand the consequences of catastrophic climate change events such as floods, droughts, coastal erosion, tropical cyclones, fires and seal level rise.

    I think I may have missed something in my schooling – floods and droughts and cyclones are catastrophic climate change events?

    Eek – the world is going mad!

    With reference to recent conversations with WHT – this is where a quiet half hour of tonyb’s thoughtful ‘anecdotal climate history’ would be a perfect antidote to the lunacy, where theories and science and data would leave just as much madness as there was before.

    Veering O/T – “Digging in the Clay” has an amusing thread where catastrophological doomians can read about Armaggedonology.

    • Armaggendonolgy. Haven’t read that yet. Every culture likes to predict the end of time. None of them are very good at it. The Heaven’s Gate crew would be pretty embarrassed. It is better to predict the end long after your end, oh wait! they did predict their own end, but that is cheating.

      A lot of Christians like to predict the end. Since no man can predict the end, keep predicting the end enough and it will never come. That may be why I like the doomsday clock :)

    • “Eek – the world is going mad!” – sounds like your cynicism’s coming along nicely, Anteros – are we there yet? :-)

    • Anteros,
      The perversion of language and the use of what Orwell would recognize as editing history by the AGW community is not notable only because it is so frequently used by them to mislead people.

    • Anteros

      “floods and droughts and cyclones are catastrophic climate change events? ”

      The MSM in Aus (and elsewhere, I understand) have become impatient with the cautious views of science on attribution, so they have “progressed” the issue. Their experienced cynicism tells them that if they repeat this often enough, most people will eventually believe it

      No disagreement is permitted to be published except on websites such as this, which 99.999% of the population has never heard of and has no interest in

      This is how propaganda really works

      • ianl8888 For floods and droughts doesn’t need climate to change, floods and droughts are happening right now and always did. That’s why people used to build dams; to prevent floods and have extra moisture on the land for dry times. Warmist are against dams – for speedy deterioration of the climate. Because they cannot produce GLOBAL warming, at least the second worse; to make dryer climate = dryer climate is more extreme temperature between day and night – less raw material for renewal of ice

        Climate is in constant change, Warmist turned the therm ”climate change” as a gospel, to confuse the ignorant that the phony GLOBAL warming has something to do with the constant climatic changes. Water controls the climate, not CO2! Compare the climate in Sahara with the climate in Brazil; if you don’t know, ask the trees, which climate is better: in the Chilean desert, or around Kyoto city with 500% more CO2?!?! Ask Steven Mosher if I’m correct, or is he correct with the Warmist extremist fanatic gospel

  4. Nature about academic institutions: “It is much easier to shuffle miscreants out of the side door with vague references and a promise of silence.”
    The Catholic Church used to do just that with child-abusing priests. Until they had to stop doing that.

  5. I follow

    http://discover.itsc.uah.edu/amsutemps/execute.csh?amsutemps+002

    on a daily basis. The “brightness” temperature at 600 mb is showing values less than Jan 2011; which had a UAH anomaly of 0 C. If the current trend continues for the rest of the month, Jan 2012 could start out with a negative temperature anomaly. This would further confirm the idea that there has been no warming in the 21st century. Since CO2 levels are increasing the way they have for decades, the only inference I can draw is that, assuming climate sensitivity is positive, it’s value cannot be distinguished from zero.

    All the theoretical and hypothetical estimations espoused by Fred Moolton, Andy Lacis, and the other proponents of CAGW, are clearly shown to be wrong. In the “scientific method” I was taught in Physics 101, if the observed data disagrees with theory, then the observed data is correct and the theory is wrong.

  6. The fraud issue was admirably dealt with by the U. Connecticut:
    Red Wine Researcher Said to Falsify Data

    The University of Connecticut has notified 11 scientific journals that research on the potential health benefits of red wine led by one of its faculty members appears to contain falsified and fabricated data.. . . “We have a responsibility to correct the scientific record and inform peer researchers across the country,” said the university’s interim vice president for health affairs, Philip Austin, in a statement.

    Will climate science ever rise to this standard?

    • If climate science does rise to that standard, I will toast it with an Oregon Pinot Noir. Heart medicine, I understand.

      • Long before the U of Conn made a study on the health benefits of red wine, this was done in France.

    • I think the researchers got caught tripped up on “falsified” instead of “fasifiable”…..

  7. Lucia had an excellent analysis of the trends of individual climate model projections at The Blackboard: Year End Trend Comparison: Individual model runs 2001-2008. 21 January, 2009 (16:34)

    The way the statistical test is constructed, if we test at a significance of 5%, then we should expect to reject model runs as inconsistent with data when the truth is the runs are consistent with the data.

    However, instead, we are rejecting 61% of the time when compared with Hadley and 28% of the time when compared with GISS.

    This cannot be the outcome modelers would hope for.

    Recent global temperatures have not cooperated with “global warming.”
    e.g., see: HadCrut Nov: Lowest since…. February. :)19 December, 2011, especially the Hadcrut Jan 2001-Nov. 2011 trends – 0.058 C/decade compared to IPCC’s prediction of +0.20C/decade!

    How can we have > 90% likelihood of anthropogenic global warming, when the last decade is trending in the OPPOSITE direction? COOLING instead of warming?

  8. incandecentbulb

    –>”It is much easier to shuffle miscreants out of the side door with vague references and a promise of silence, effectively pushing the problem somewhere else, and onto someone else.”

    Exactly what the Catholic church was accused of doing and by analogy Mann would be the pedaphile priest of the global warming alarmists’ doomsday religion.

    • Taking your analogy, you are arguing that the whole of Catholicism is wrong because a priest didn’t practice it properly?

      • incandecentbulb

        The editorial is about an organization (administration, government, industry, movement, society, etc.) facing up to crimes commited by its members. And, of course there is fraud in the global warming alarmist movement but the real fraud is the inability of AGW believers to acknowledge a single fact that contradicts the dogma of their religion.

  9. Feeding The World Gets Short Shrift In Climate Change Debate Jan 20, 2012

    Food is getting elbowed out of the discussion on climate change, which could spell disaster for the 1 billion people who will be added to the world’s population in the next 15 years. That’s the word today from scientists wondering why food and sustainability get such short shrift when it comes to thinking about how humans will adapt to climate change. . . .
    developing countries are leery of any agreements that could limit their ability to convert forests to agriculture; and a schism between high-income and low-income countries, with developed countries pushing to put efforts into mitigation, while developing nations favor adaptation programs. Then there’s the question of who will pay.

    What is not mentioned is the strong benefit higher CO2 gives to increase food production. See CO2 Science – Agriculture
    e.g.

    Also working in Canada, Bootsma et al. (2005) derived relationships between agroclimatic indices and average grain yields of corn, soybeans and barley obtained from field trials conducted in the eastern part of the country and used them to estimate the impacts of projected climate change scenarios on the yields of these commodities for the 2040-2069 period. Based on a range of heat units projected by multiple climate model simulations, they determined that average yields achievable in field trials could increase by 40-115% for corn and by 21-50% for soybeans by 2040-2069, when “not including the direct effect of increased atmospheric CO2 concentrations.” Adding expected CO2 increases into the mix, along with gains in yield anticipated to be achieved through breeding and improved technology, these numbers rose to 114-186% for corn and 117-157% for soybeans. . . .
    For comparative purposes, the researchers also included one C3 species in their study — Hordeum spontaneum — and they report that it “showed a near-doubling in biomass compared with [the] 40% increase in the C4 species under growth treatments equivalent to the postglacial CO2 rise.”

  10. Of the week’s news items, one of the more important was the Chinese Government’s Assessment Report on Climate Change, which described potentially serious harm from continued global warming over the coming decades if not adequately addressed. The report is 710 pages long, in Chinese, and so we’re stuck with second hand accounts, but the description in the above-linked article is similar to ones I’ve seen from Chinese news agencies, so it is probably reasonably accurate. The main concern involves threats to agricultural productivity, but rising sea levels are also cited as a concern for coastal cities.

    I’ve been interested in this topic for a while, because any international effort toward climate change mitigation is unlikely to succeed if the Chinese perceive it to run strongly counter to their national interests. I’ve read several earlier reports estimating global warming impacts on Chinese agriculture. Like the current report, they estimated a net detriment if the stimulatory effects of CO2 fertilization are not accounted for. Unlike the current report, they tended to see CO2 fertilization as an approximately equal offset to the other adverse effects, so that there would be little net effect. The current report estimates that even CO2 fertilization as maximally estimated would fail to offset the harm from other global warming consequences. The reason for the difference is unclear. The earlier reports considered as adverse factors droughts, floods, and heat stress, but did not account for increases in insects and other agricultural pests, or increase in plant diseases, all of which are known to exert harmful effects. Whether these effects are in the current assessment can’t be discerned from the news summaries.

    What will be the impact of the new report on Chinese willingness to engage in international efforts? I have no idea, but I wouldn’t predict any immediate change. The report was released last year (although available to the public only recently), and so I assume it was known to the Chinese contingent at the recent Durban conference. China is conflicted on climate change – there is enormous demand in the provinces for accelerated industrialization, and popular demand for a more affluent lifestyle (more beef and less rice). At the same time, the government has been aware of potential long term adverse effects of climate change, and I suspect that the release of this report may have in part been motivated to prepare the public for some policy changes that may seem inconvenient and/or expensive. I don’t know how much of these will involve adaptation (irrigation systems, sea walls), and how much will be seen to require engagement in international mitigation, but the two approaches are synergistic, and so both may be contemplated.

    Although China will continue to resist coercion to submit to binding regulations, this report suggests that the government will be amenable to measures that allow it to participate in meaningful mitigative actions provided that these are not too onerous. This is likely to require more than a regulatory approach, and must include incentives of various sorts, particularly in regard to alternative energy technology. This is an area where I’m very poorly informed, and so I won’t make predictions for the near future (the next 5 to 10 years). Over the longer term, I think that Chinese recognition that climate change is a threat to China will ensure some form of participation in international efforts to limit greenhouse gas emissions. The timing and pace are unpredictable. If slow, the global effect may be trivial, whereas if more vigorous, mitigation of global warming by as much as 1 deg C before the end of the century, based on the analysis recently reported by Shindell et al in Science might be achievable.

    • I find it interesting that the last century, if we are to believe the AGW narrative, saw an unprecedented rise in temperature. And yet,and yet….. the agricultural production and population of the planet exploded. Is there a link? And if there is a link, why do we believe that further warming in this century will be detrimental? Even factoring in AGW, the UN still anticipates that the world’s population will continue to double over the next century. How can we have it both ways? CAGW and growing populations?

      • Jim – China is concerned of course with global warming threats to Chinese agriculture, and their latest assessment is one that estimates a significant threat if nothing is done to ameliorate it. If you want to try to find further information on their analysis, you might learn more details, but that will be hard in regard to a 710 page document written in Chinese that can only be summarized for us.

        Regarding the rest of your comment, the last century has seen “an unprecedented rise” only relative to recent past centuries, but not over the entire course of geologic time. During the past half century of so, agricultural productivity has increased enormously due to technological improvements, but population has grown and continues to grow. As a consequence, hundreds of millions are still hungry and undernourished. There have been a few recent studies indicating that warming has had a detrimental effect on productivity increases globally, and so the Chinese projections may not be unique. For more on this, you can visit an earlier thread on the topic. In particular, the Lobell et al study, while not conclusive, implies that agricultural productivity has been impeded compared to what it would have been without the warming. This doesn’t mean that productivity hasn’t increased – it certainly has – but that it may have increased less than expected in an unchanged climate. Since even an unimpeded increase may be insufficient to feed all the hungry, any slowing in the rate of increase would likely be harmful.

        Finally, the main point of my comment was to point to what China perceives to be a threat, and the fact that such a perception on their part may influence their receptivity to efforts to address climate change. They could be completely wrong, of course, but what they think will influence how they act.

      • Fred,
        Many hundreds of millions of people in the West fight the “threat” of obesity, not hunger. The US Govt. still pays farmers money to NOT grow food. Food scarcity, while a real problem among some in the West, is typically found in countries where economic freedom and respect for property rights are not respected. The “impeded increase” you mention cannot be seriously attributed to the perceived impact of global warming.

      • Jim – At this point, I have the impression that you aren’t interested in learning more about this issue but rather in stating a position. If that’s true, I won’t pursue it any further. If you are actually interested in expanding your understanding, I can direct you to some of the source material. Otherwise, I’ll just say that your last sentence is wrong and let you decide to keep believing it anyway if you choose to.

      • “….the Lobell et al study, while not conclusive, implies that agricultural productivity has been impeded compared to what it would have been without the warming.”

        Fred, this proposition cannot be falsified and is without merit.

      • Fred Moolten: Chinese are concerned for their agriculture, if nothing is done with CO2 increase.

        Fred, Chinese built another 53 coal powered power station only last year; just as many will be built this year. But that doesn’t mean anything to you… Fred, have some truth, in return for your doo-doo : Chinese PRETEND to be concerned, exclusively for two reasons: a] because of the constant arm-twisting by the western extremist. b] because China makes most of the solar panels on the planet – they need big SUBSIDISED markets by the western luny politicians, that are mortgaging their own countries – to buy windmills and solar panels from China – when one day they dump the American bonds they own on the market; without a grain of gunpowder – will create cannibalism on the west. Fred you are a good contributor to that scenario

    • You do of course realize Fred, that China will only agree to go so far. on reductions, relative to the West’s perception of its trading power.

      How well would you really know the mindset of Chinese elite? I’ve walked, talked and slept with some of them.

      They really do think we in the West are fools. And right now, there are playing mugs like you as fools. They know the physics of atmosphere and are going to take it to the bank.

      One thing as an international citizen I have observed. Most Americans think the world revolves around them.

    • John Carpenter

      “China is conflicted on climate change – there is enormous demand in the provinces for accelerated industrialization, and popular demand for a more affluent lifestyle (more beef and less rice). At the same time, the government has been aware of potential long term adverse effects of climate change, and I suspect that the release of this report may have in part been motivated to prepare the public for some policy changes that may seem inconvenient and/or expensive.”

      Fred, an interesting perspective, however I don’t think it rings true as a primary concern for the chinese. The Chinese communist party is probably much more concerned with how to maintain power in a burgeoning, wealthier society aware more than ever of the ways of the free world. However, I would not put it past a communist government to use the threat of ‘climate change’ to crack down on those seeking more freedoms.

      • John – I don’t know what the Chinese government expects from releasing the document. The study that went into it was commissioned by the government and was very extensive, with an extensive writeup. I assume the government is taking the results seriously, but how that will affect their actions is beyond my ability to predict.

    • “to participate in meaningful mitigative actions provided that these are not too onerous”

      Onerous or not – the fact is that no “mitigative actions” are available now. That is – there are no alternative sources of carbon free energy (except nuclear).
      What goes by the euphemist “mitigative actions” are wind mills and solar panels, that are a total waste of money, produce little energy, and no mitigation at all (no emission reduction). That is no science – that is plain arithmetic – counting the emission reductions acheived so far by the most active mitigators (Europe). That sum is zero.

      The Chinese report and all such “impact reports” are just empty, delusional, fashionable nonsense.

  11. I am currently reading Daniel Kahneman’s new book, “Thinking, fast and slow” and in one chapter he discusses the “Availability Cascade”. http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Availability_cascade
    I was struck by how well this explains the previous general acceptance of the AGW theory and the traction it had and the development of the whole “denier” label. The Wikipedia article is not nearly as good at explaining the concept as Kahneman’s, from the chapter Availability, Emotion, and Risk.
    “An availability cascade is a self-sustaining chain of events, which may start from media reports of a relatively minor event and lead up to public panic and large-scale government action. On some occasions, a media story about risk catches the attention of a segment of the public, which becomes aroused and worried. This emotional reaction becomes a story in itself, prompting additional coverage in the media, which in turn produces greater concern and involvement. The cycle is sometimes sped along deliberately by “availability entrepreneurs,” individuals or organizations who work to ensure a continuous flow of worrying news. The danger is increasingly exaggerated as the media compete for attention-grabbing headlines. Scientists and others who try to dampen the increasing fear and revulsion attract little attention, most of it hostile: anyone who claims that the danger is overstated is suspected of association with a “heinous cover-up”. The issue becomes politically important because it is on everyone’s mind, and the response of the political system is guided by the intensity of public sentiment. The availability cascade has now reset priorities. Other risks and other ways that resources could be applied for the public good, all have faded into the background.”.
    I found the whole paragraph fascinating.

    • Great paragraph! So true.

    • Shorter Phyllograptus:
      The band-wagon effect.

      Where is the band-wagon effect for climate theories that deem to explain the 33 degree C heating of the planet above that predicted in the absence of greenhouse gases? I keep track of a lot of the crackpot theories but I don’t see any traction behind any of these. Is that because we are getting on the band-wagon of the correct interpretation?

      By the way if you watch David Archer’s educational climate science videos, he has an interesting app that monitors his students responses to questions in real-time. Archer watches the bar graph as students change their mind as others gravitate to the correct answer.

      • I’m sure Goebbels would be proud of David.

      • John Carpenter

        “Where is the band-wagon effect for climate theories that deem to explain the 33 degree C heating of the planet above that predicted in the absence of greenhouse gases? I keep track of a lot of the crackpot theories but I don’t see any traction behind any of these. Is that because we are getting on the band-wagon of the correct interpretation?”

        WHT, strawman argument and you know it. You missed the point of that comment. Think alarmism wrt to the climate change debate and then you will see the light… it’s that simple, no need to bring in a false argument of whether people have alternative theories to the GHE… what’s alarming about that? How is that selling papers?

      • WHT brevity has its own charm and sometimes even is more revealing. However in this case your brevity misleads rather than enhances. The availability cascade is a cognitive problem relating to increased belief in a false or unproven thesis based on increased exposure and misunderstanding of the probability of true risk. Band wagon effect is a popularity contest and a need/want to be part of a winning group. I found the description of the availability cascade particularly relevant to the global warming belief system. Your comment regarding crackpot theories goes against the whole premise of the availability cascade. Crackpot theories are recognized as such and dismissed. The availability cascade deals with incorrect leaps in intuitive decision making nd beliefs regarding the probability around real or perceived risks

      • Looks like many skeptics are skeptical of both the Catastrophic part of CAGW and also the ATE hypothesis. Darn skeptics!

      • WebHub, you are hallucinating again. The earth is not warmer than the moon by 33degrees because of CO2 and water vapour; as brainwashing goes. But because is of many kilometres thick layer of Oxygen + nitrogen. They let the sunlight trough, because they are TRANSPARENT, same as glass on a normal greenhouse. Than when the sunlight warms the ground, the O+N as perfect INSULATORS are keeping the unlimited coldness 50km away. On the moon that unlimited coldness touches the ground. All of you Warmist are fed same crap – make same mistakes.

        On the earth, the geothermal heat is absorbed by the oceans. No geothermal heat on the moon or oceans. How come all of you are forbidden to notice the amount of insulating O+N, plus ALL the water Nobody can accuse you Telescope of comparing oranges with apples; because you are all comparing oranges with a watermelon! Do you know now why the earth is warmer by 33degrees, or you are not allowed to think what the mob doesn’t permit you?!

      • Actually, I think this time WhT makes a fair point – at least from an outside US point of view. I came to a skeptical position on AGW from careful examination of the scientific arguments, but a lot of skeptical points of views based in the US seem to be politically motivated against what is perceived to be some form of left-wing conspiracy.

        So, unfortunately, the skeptical positional, which from a scientific point of view is perfectly rational, is muddied by US politics. I have seen first hand how entrenched positions have become simply because if one side says something it must wrong by virtue of the belief that since everything believe is wrong, they must by wrong about this too. It’s like children squabbling.

  12. When earth warms, when oceans warm, at some point, Arctic Sea Ice melts and THEN Arctic Ocean Effect Snow does cause Ice to Advance, does cause Albedo to increase, does rebuild the Ice Packs and Glaciers and DOES COOL THE EARTH. THIS IS HAPPENING NOW!

    • John Carpenter

      “When earth warms, when oceans warm…”

      HAP, what causes them to warm?

      • Cooling, of course. Herman has the simplest theory of all. Cooling causes warming, warming causes cooling. There is some truth in it.

      • John Carpenter

        Edim, I am looking for HAP to explain what causes the warming…. the loss of energy, cooling, cannot cause warming… right?

      • John, HAP will explain when he sees your question. I think it has to do with (arctic?) sea ice dynamics and snow accumulation.

        My take is that, due to the Planck response, warmer Earth will radiate more to space and therefore cool. Warmer Earth will also recieve less net solar radiation (significant?).

  13. “Fred wrote: Of the week’s news items, one of the more important was the Chinese Government’s Assessment Report on Climate Change, which described potentially serious harm from continued global warming over the coming decades if not adequately addressed. ”

    I must ask, what “continued warming?” We’ve made it through the better part of 15 years now with no warming at all. So to be accurate, if global temps were to head higher over the next few years, it would be “renewed warming.”

    And yet, what are the chances of that with a cold PDO, an AMO that’s headed cold, and every reason to think the sun is headed for a long nap?
    I asked Joshua if he was interested in betting on what global temps would do in the next few years, but he declined. Maybe I should ask you, FRed. Any interest.?

    If CAGW were a lawsuit it would not meet the minimum standard of “the preponderance of the evidence.” WHich is to say, it would lose. NO wonder the warmists won’t debate. Or bet.

    • pokerguy

      Fred has a strange (IMO myopically fixated) notion of what is “interesting” when it comes to climate science.

      Reports by Spencer or Lindzen on climate sensitivity estimates based on satellite observations are of “low interest level”, while this Chinese-published yawner of poorly founded predictions for China’s future climate are of “high interest”

      As the French would say: “chacun à son goût”.

      Max

  14. The biggest joke of the week is NOAA’s desperate propaganda efforts regarding billion dollar disasters. I guess they gave up any pretense of self-respect a long time ago.

    • NOAA and the main stream news makes little mention of the major snow events around the northern hemisphere. NOAA had a Facebook story about the fuel delivery problem in Nome Alaska due to a severe storm. The story did not mention that the storm included record snowfall. Articles that talked about this in my newspaper were on pages 4 to 14. NOAA and the main stream news media don’t mention major snow events in Europe. They downplay almost everything that does not support the threat of manmade global warming.

    • Roger Pielke, Jr. blogged about this yesterday. He has not been impressed with NOAA’s lack of normalising data for inflation, economic and wealth growth, population movement into harm’s path, etc.

      http://rogerpielkejr.blogspot.com/2012/01/another-billionz-update-noaa-discovers.html

    • As the wheels on the speeding CAGW bandwagon (and gravy train) are beginning to squeak and wobble, the riders aboard (like NOAA) are getting shriller in their doomsday warnings – it’s all part of the show.

  15. My major annoyance of the week was the leak that the HadCrut v4 dataset will change the recent values so that 1998 is no longer the record high.

    http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/media/pdf/1/e/PresentationMOSAC_16.4_Gordon.pdf

    “if the facts change, I change my mind”. However, how can we argue sensibly about science if the facts keep changing, and the reasons for the changes are often not given? GISS is constantly altering values without explanation.

    It seems that only 5% of potential data has been digitised and made available for use, so values are bound to change as the percentage increases.

    Steven Mosher said in a recent thread that adding more data had the effect of cooling the past and warming the present. It would be interesting to know if there’s a technical reason for this, or whether it’s down to another source of potential pro-AGW bias: adding in data from areas of the world known to be warming disproportionately fast (for reasons natural or anthropogenic).

    It all reminds me of a philosophy-of-history book which I read years ago – “What is History” by E.H. Carr. He turned around the usual empirical way of looking at history as a series of changable controversies buzzing around a fixed set of facts. Instead, the controversies were fixed but the facts kept changing (in the sense of their importance to historians, or statistics upending anecdotal evidence).

    Is this what we have now in climate change? A fixed controversy with the facts constantly in flux?

    It means that most of the ammo that both sides hurl at each other on this and other blogs are blanks. “It hasn’t warmed for 15 years”; “It warmed as much in the 1930s/40s as the 80s/90s yet the attribution is different”; “you can see the influence of the volcanic eruption/ PDO change/ ENSO in the dataset”. Yep, but wait until the dataset changes again….

    (And before anyone says that my objection is only because the changes have a pro-warming bias, and I’d be fine if they went the other way, note that they say nothing about attribution).

    • The output of these complex statistical models are not empirical facts, they are theoretical results. There are relatively few empirical facts in the climate debate. More broadly, when you do $4 billion a year in science the facts should change.

    • cui bono

      My theory on this is simple: Despite continuous ex post facto corrections, adjustments and other manipulations, HadCRUT3 was no longer conveying the desired message, so had to be replaced with a record that would.

      Let’s see if the new record really does show more warming (particularly in recent years) than the old HadCRUT3.

      If so, we will know exactly why the record was changed.

      The 69% who believed last August that the data were being falsified will probably grow another few percentage points after this.

      http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/current_events/environment_energy/69_say_it_s_likely_scientists_have_falsified_global_warming_research

      An’ the beat goes on…

      Max

      • actually not.
        one of the shortcomings of CRU is the way it handles the arctic. The new stations added to hadcrut4 ( northern latitude) would have the effect you see: increasing the trend. The independent skepyics and lukewarmers who did their one temperature series have found the same thing. Hadcrut has been the outlier ( too cold). It’s good to see them improve their estimate

      • Max –

        I, reluctantly agree with Mosher here. The noticing of reluctance is important, and I reckon a good test of how objective we are. I think your tribalism has got the better of you when you say

        Let’s see if the new record really does show more warming. If so, we will know exactly why the record was changed.

        I think this is beyond healthy suspicion and into the land of unjustified paranoia. Another test – how do you feel about Spencer’s upcoming version 6? Because we know that it will reduce an alleged ‘warm bias’ – [or introduce a further cold bias, depending on your prejudice]

        Can you re-phrase your words above, to apply to Mr hardcore sceptic, and know “exactly why the record was changed”.

        I’m very glad there are more than one version of the temperature record. While they are in better-than-fair agreement I’m happy to let go of the angst and take an average [the Wti index for instance].

      • Ant:

        Have a look at the video I posted on sensitivity. By held’s estimate the
        importance of improving the estimate of sensitivity is 100s of trillions of dollars. And bang for the buck the most important research that can be done is in paleo.

        yet: we cannot afford to update proxies, or archive data, or improve that science.

        Imagine: Gavin and hansen both argue that paleo is the best grounds for sensitivity estimates. Held, shows the savings in mitigation costs to be enormous for modest improvements in sensitivity estimates.
        yet, are research dollars allocated on this cost benefit analysis?

        nope

      • Steven,

        “yet, are research dollars allocated on this cost benefit analysis?

        nope”

        Why not? Are Gavin, Hansen applying for grants to do more paleo climate research? Anyone else? Do they like the paleo data that they have already “analyzed”? They seem to be more interested in “it’s worse than we thought” research.

        I watched a bit of that video, but had trouble paying attention due to the sound quality, or the accent, laziness, whatever. Will try again after some scotch. Or maybe you wouldn’t mind doing a quick and effortless bullet point synopsis of the important bits :)

      • Actually Giss in the historical record is too warm.The effects of incorrect emperical paremertization in the Giss model with singularities( volcanic) is well evidenced in the arctic extrapolation ie the eurasian T were of the wrong sign.eg Stenchikov 2006.

        http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/gistemp-dts/from:1880/to:1900/mean:12/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1880/to:1900/mean:12/plot/best/from:1880/to:1900/mean:12

        As mosher suggests the observations are correct,then the physics are wrong almost surely.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        The annual averages smooth out important variability – it is largely a measure of the persistence of ENSO in any particular year. A better measure – I would suggest monthly with a 13 month running average – as Roy Spencer does – http://www.drroyspencer.com/wp-content/uploads/UAH_LT_1979_thru_December_2011.png

        It really tells us that that was some volcanic cooling from El Chichón in 1982 and Mt Pinatubo in 1991 and some warming and cooling associated with ENSO. Other than that – I think I can discern about a 0.7 degree C/decade ‘trend’. Which is of course the average in the instrumental record. Of course there was a step shift up after 1977 (the Great Pacific Climate Shift) and a step shift down after 1998 (the El Nino of the century) – both ENSO dragon-kings which are defined as extreme events associated with chaotic bifurcation. Both events associated with a change in cloudiness in the surface or satelite observational record.’

        Does it have much meaning unless you also know what’s happening in the oceans? Why do we persist at all with the insturmental record? Is it an emerency backup in case all the satelites get fried in solar storm?

        I am inclined with Max to think it a bad move by the warmists. Can you imagine the headlines? CRU does countback – 2011 not the 11th wamest year on record as first thought.

        It will be interesting to see where ENSO goes. “Stay tuned for the next update (by February 11th, IF ICOADS remains online in some fashion, more on this as soon as I find out about its fate, it does not look good right now) to see where the MEI will be heading next. La Niña appears to have staged a comeback similar to 2008, and consistent with expectations formulated right here more than one year ago: big La Niña events have a strong tendency to re-emerge after ‘taking time off’ during northern hemispheric summer. Based on current atmosphere-ocean conditions, I believe the odds for this La Niña event to continue right through early spring (March-April 2012) are just about 50%. Beyond that, it is worth noting that of the ten two-year La Niña events between 1900 and 2009, four ended up as a three-year event, so I would put the odds for this to occur in 2012-13 at 40% right now. The remaining six cases all switched to El Niño, leaving no ENSO-neutral case. It will be interesting to see how 2012 evolves, independent of my ability to keep the MEI alive. Again, more on this topic later this month right here.

        This is the worst news of 2012 – anyone have some influence in NOAA? The demise of COADS and Claus Wolters MEI is short sighted in anyone’s lexicon.

      • This whole issue is closely related to the significance of the global average temperature weighted by surface area trying to include the whole globe. This is what global average surface temperature is supposed to mean.

        Arctic areas including wide areas in Siberia are sparsely covered, but they do influence the true global average quite a lot, because the year-to-year variations are very large when the temperatures are below freezing. This is exemplified by the variability in Finland. The coldest and warmest Julies in record differ by 8 degrees while the coldest and warmest Januaries differ by 20 degrees. Further from the Atlantic and in even colder climate the variability is probably even larger. This is, however, to a significant part a surface effect related to buildup of a thin layer of temperature inversion under suitable conditions. Such variability is not in a straightforward way related to the global average.

        Adding more weight for the Arctic leads to a more correct global average, but doesn’t necessarily lead to a time series that describes the global changes of potential significance even as well as before the addition. In addition to the increased real variability (noise) in the time series also the uncertainties of estimation increase, when a small number of stations are used as representatives of wide areas of exceptionally large variability.

        The differences between GISS and HadCRUT time series are largely due to differing coverage of the Arctic areas. It’s a matter of taste, which choice is favored, but it’s certainly true that the true global average can be obtained only trough inclusion of Arctic and Antarctic areas as well. Moving into that direction is natural for HadCRUT, but it’s questionable, whether that will produce a genuinely more useful time series. This is an indication of the fact that global average temperatures by themselves are not of much deep significance. In particular the differences in short term behavior are of really little significance. The longer term trends of different surface temperature time series are in closer agreement with each other and certainly also more closely related to real warming defined by changes in the heat content of near surface heat reservoirs.

      • steven mosher

        Actually yes, steven.

        Rasmussen shows us that 69% of the public (admittedly including unwashed non-experts) perceive that the scientists are falsifying or manipulating the climate data

        HadCRUT3 has been adjusted and manipulated ex post facto several times, each time showing increased recent warming.

        As Anteros states, the reasons may be logical and can be rationalized, but the perception remains.

        Fool me once…

        Max

        PS Anteros, this has nothing to do with “tribalism”, just plain old healthy “skepticism”.

      • Max,

        I am afraid that the 69% who don’t trust climate scientists may have been unduly influenced by the STOLEN emails, in which the famous climate scientists revealed in candid discussions amongst themselves that their science is shaped by a warmista agenda. Maybe you have been similarly influenced.

        Don’t you think you should ignore what those emails revealed about the character of leading climate scientists, because the infamous so-called Climategate emails were PURLOINED? Are you being fair Max? I mean if we could HACK the emails of the leading geologists, wouldn’t we likely find that they are trying to nature-trick us about the rocks and minerals? Be honest Max.

      • steven mosher

        Don and others

        http://www.newton.ac.uk/programmes/CLP/seminars/120916101.html

        Don you asked for bullet points. Let me see if I can do this work
        some justice.

        Have a look at the slides if you cant stand to watch for an hour

        basically, given a range of sensitivity from 1 to 6C, you can calculate
        probable warmings ( PDFs) and given these PDFs you can generate
        PDFs for losses of GDP. ( losses in consumption due to mitigation)

        Then, looking at that result you can say that REDUCING the unceratinty
        in sensitivity from 1 to 6C to 1 to 5C, reduces your losses in GDP by
        1/4 to 1/2 of a percent. That information is worth TRILLIONS of dollars.

        The most important information is information that removes the long fat tails. two things will help there. focusing on paleo and vastly more accurate measurements from remote sensing.

        Models, are taking way too much of the research dollars.

      • Thanks Steven. I get the rationale for reducing the uncertainty, but I wonder if Gavin-Hansen et al are interested in doing research to reduce uncertainty. A reduction in uncertainty would likely reduce the scare factor. I have said it before, give a billion to you McIntyre, Judith, and others, who are not prisoners of the consensus, and let the real research begin.

      • I agree with Steve Mosher about priorities. Models are not going to get us to the post office with regard to narrowing the range of sensitivity. That I think is scientifically indisputable. There are very strong a priori reasons for that, but for those of a more emperical turn of mind just consider what has been noted by Schmidt, namely, that 40 years of “progress” on GCM’s has not narrowed the range of sensitivity significantly. The only way to reduce it is to get a much better understanding of current and future climate and that can only happen with much better data, not just remote sensing, but actual measurements of surface, ocean, and balloon data. The simple fact of the matter is that models seem to be overestimating warming, in some cases very significantly. This says to me that sensitivity might be lower than people are assuming.

    • steven mosher

      Cui

      ” GISS is constantly altering values without explanation.”

      you may not understand the data or the algorithms.

      First, GISS and Hadcru provide estimates, ESTIMATES, of the average global temperature. Those estimates will change and should change going forward. You need to understand two things.

      1. The datasets
      2. the algorithms.

      ‘ll suggest that you take the time to study both. The code and data is available. It’s available because people like Steve mc, WIllis Eschenbach and I badgered people to make it available. Now that everything is available I dont really have any patience whatsoever for commenters who talk about data they could look at but wont, or talk about code they could run, but wont.

      Let’s just take GISS.
      When GISS changes the algorithms they provide updates. Go look at the update pages. Clearclimatecode has been a great help here upstreaming fixes. With data you will find volunteers ( like Peter Oneil ) upstreaming
      fixes to GISS. GISS also try to upstream fixes ( pers comm Gavin) . Basically, GISS gets data from others. If the answers change that is due to 2 issues

      A. changes in the data they read
      B. Changes to the algorithms.

      Also, the GISS method is virtually destined to change the past with every
      coming month. that is a good thing. Don’t understand why? read the code and understand how the reference station method works. As more data becomes available
      certain station series have to change. I will give you a simple example
      Imagine two stations that are 3km apart. Imagine they each have
      20 years of data, but they only overlap by 15 years. In the Reference station method, neither will make it into the final data stream because the overlap is too short. As years progress and the overlap lengthens, then eventually all the data will come in. When all that data comes into the stream, the estimates will change. They change because you have more data. that is a good thing.

      • steven,
        Have the changes on balance tended to increase the present and immediate past and reduced the older end of the record or not?

    • cui bono | January 21, 2012 at 2:20 pm | Reply
      My major annoyance of the week was the leak that the HadCrut v4 dataset will change the recent values so that 1998 is no longer the record high.

      They are changing facts and re-wording, because they are pestered by the Skeptics. Same as the Japanese are saying that they kill whales for scientific reasons. If they were not pestered, they wouldn’t be doing that = it’s not their fault.

      When they lied that 98 was warmer than other years – they had a reason – the D/H that believed them are at fault. Now they change that the warmest is 2010, is same as saying: Santa is for real, but he doesn’t come via the chimney, instead trough the window. Why would that make any difference for you, bono?! Why are you throwing a tantrum?

      Real reasons why 98 was the warmest: 1] it was the year after the Kyoto Conference > to scare the crap out of the Urban Sheep. reason 2: when they realized that is going to be a LONG hard brainwashing; the more prudent ones in IPCC / East Anglia lowered the temperature for the few years after 98. Because if they kept increasing as much as they increased from 97 to 98 – there is still people than don’t buy their doo-doo, will notice in few years. As a bi-product of 98, the Warmist created water-pistols as present to the Skeptic D/H, to fight the Warmist. Well, bono, do you get the picture? Think for a minute, how do you look in the Warmist eyes; for believing that 98 was the warmest; than proving yourself even more ignorant, by complaining for them changing the year.

      For 98, they had the temperature data from 6 000m3 of air – the D/H were not able to use simple logic INSTANTLY, that: nobody is monitoring on 99,999999999% of surface area on the planet – there the temperature don’t go up and down simultaneously as on the few places where they are monitoring. Even less monitoring 123m – 567m – 2345m above the ground. Temperature distribution on the earth is 3 dimensional

      (on few occasions, on the street, I spend 1h to prove that 98 wasn’t warmer or colder than any other year; on the end the D/H say: but we have a proof that medieval ages was warmer!) Maps exist from medieval ages, half of the planet is not on those maps, more than half of the world didn’t exist; it was flat earth then; thermometer was invented 400y after – but they know the temperature for every hour in Argentina, Australia and temperature above all oceans…???!!! Don’t take it personally, half of the commenter on the net are same Sceptical D/H like you, Because they are scared to join me and be ”Infidel / non-believers” about the phony GLOBAL warmings. The cowards are scared not to be called crackpots for telling the truth, by the biggest professional Crackpots.

  16. Chip Knappenberger has a post at Master Resource entitled “Global Lukewarming: A Great Intellectual Year in 2011“. An extensive overview of recent data and research from the lukewarmer perspective.

    These Climate Models are actually Climate Curve Fits. To match data with irregular forcings, you must use high order curve fits. High order curve fits do match data very well but they do not extrapolate well.

    • steven mosher

      models are not curve fits.
      read the source code before you make another ill informed comment

      • mosher, those models have nothing to do with reality; they are models for playing on the sandpit. Unless the 3 dimensional heat is taken of the WHOLE troposphere, for every 10-15 minutes – is a shameless con.

        Only than will have solid starting point to calibrate from. Why the HOTTEST minute of the day is not at the same time every day – is a proof of taking hottest minute as data is a GROSS CON! If they do take for every 10-15 minutes data – from every cubic meter; the temperature will show that is overall SAME every day of every month, year and millennia.

        On the minute that was recorded for that day – if a unit of heat was in the topsoil, or 50m above the ground, is not recorded, but was in the SYSTEM!!! SAME AS SHIFTING LOTS OF DOLLAR COINS FROM ONE POCKET TO ANOTHER – It DOESN’T make you richer or poorer. If you can understand that – at leasts you can understand that you are a genuine crackpot – that would be a good start

        One cannot calibrate the Global temperature, by not taking into account 99,9999999999% of the tropospheric heat. If one does calibrate without it- it only shows what calibar liar / crackpot he is. Steven, you are already adopting some of my theories, by avoiding to endorse any more precise warmings by 0,05degrees. But you still support Hanson; who is lying that they know that WARMING OF THE WHOLE PLANET did happen by 0,7C for the previous few decades. Repent Steven, repent; you are in a bad company. Dreaming of billions of $$, money robed from the ignorant, from pensioners and from low paid; promised by IPCC.

        It’s exactly the same as when Muslim fanatic blows himself up – to get 8 virgins as reward. He doesn’t think that: in the explosion, his testicles end up on the other side of the street – even if he gets the 8 virgins, will be as penalty for him. How much did you get from the last 200 billion loot they spent? My proofs are out of the bag, Steven. When the truth is known, that you continued misleading even after I present the truth / facts / reality – you neighbours that have being robed / victims of the misleading propaganda; might make you to look funny without testis. Time is against your masters / brains-trusts in IPCC. My proofs will win. When you go to bed, think about it. The treads you use for brainwashing will not be fashionable for much longer

  17. Judith Curry

    The Nature article covering last week’s London meeting on research fraud points to a significant problem, which exists in climate science today, and which has not been adequately addressed.

    Fraudulent research sponsored by private interests (such as pharmaceutical companies) comes under scrutiny by various regulatory agencies already in place, but publicly funded work, such as most of climate research, does not.

    The article points out:

    Some fraudulent researchers might be sociopaths who don’t care about the rules, but many others simply believe that they can anticipate the outcome of a research project, and see no downside to fabricating the required results to save time, or tweaking results to achieve a stronger signal.

    In the case of climate science, I do not believe we so much have the ”sociopaths” at work (I would not classify strident activists, such as James E. Hansen or Michael Mann, into this category), but we do have the latter group.

    In fact, the ”consensus process” of the IPCC encourages scientists to find the ”proof” that the IPCC “consensus” of potentially alarming AGW is valid, rather than to find the ”truth” about what natural and anthropogenic forces make our climate behave as it does.

    Research findings that confirm the IPCC premise are eagerly accepted. Those that dissent from the IPCC view are written off as outliers or simply ignored. It has been documented that researchers who deviate too far from the “mainstream consensus” view have greater difficulty receiving taxpayer funding than those who do not.

    Even seriously flawed studies, which support the desired message, such as the Mann “hockey stick”, are accepted enthusiastically without much prior due diligence.

    The article is good, but I believe even more to the point, particularly with regard to taxpayer funded research and the ”practice of federal agencies to sometimes fund researchers who predetermine outcomes of their research to support government polices”, is the first comment by Dr. David L. Lewis, Director of the Research Misconduct Project, National Whistleblowers Center in Washington, D.C. (which I have copied below in its entirety):

    I agree that elected officials in the UK, USA and elsewhere need to get serious about the impact research misconduct is having on the quality of science. Institutional research misconduct, which occurs when government agencies, corporations and academic institutions engage in research misconduct to protect government policies and industry practices, should be at the top of the list. It often involves not only violations of basic principles of responsible and ethical conduct of research, but federal statutes as well. For example, in violation of the Federal Grants and Cooperative Agreement Act of 1977, federal agencies sometimes fund researchers who predetermine outcomes of their research to support government polices. Government agencies are highly motivated to support and protect their policies in various important areas of science.

    Researchers who threaten the interests of government agencies, corporations and academic institutions often find themselves targeted with false allegations of research misconduct. This too needs to be addressed at the highest levels of government. Scientific research has never offered greater hope for the future than it does now. This hope, however, will quickly fade if government agencies continue to manipulate the scientific enterprise with impunity.

    David L. Lewis, Ph.D., Director
    Research Misconduct Project
    National Whistleblowers Center
    Washington, DC 20007
    http://www.researchmisconduct.org

    I believe Dr. Lewis’ comment get right to the heart of the problem, as I am sure you will agree.

    Max

    • “many others simply believe that they can anticipate the outcome of a research project, and see no downside to fabricating the required results to save time, or tweaking results to achieve a stronger signal”

      Spot on.

      It’s nothing new, of course. Newton and Sir Arthur Eddington (the physicist who validated Einstein by measurements at the 1919 Solar eclipse) both produced results that they didn’t really have, because they *knew* they were right. They got away with it because they *were* right.

      The same is occurring in AGW. If they’re wrong, they’ve already anticipated the outcome in one of the CG emails: “they’ll probably kill us”!. :-)

      • Hourly we are moving towards a new perspective.

        Thus far, the science of atmosphere has rested on the paradigm of Greenhouse.

        It is a misinterpretation of the observations of the french scientist Baron Fourier by Arrhenius in 1896. It is that misconception, of previous known physical laws , that has polluted our perceptions of the earths atmosphere into the modern ages..

        To shift that invalid principal one has to offer a different perception born of observations and proved in the universal application of it in, within a symbolic syntax (maths).

        This is the crux of the matter
        The current paradigm demands our atmosphere is gas in an enclosed house.
        The correct principal is that the enclosure itself is the whole of the atmosphere. Consider the greenhouse roof to start at the earths surface and end at the top of our atmosphere.

        The invalid greenhouse principal is false when subjected to the principal of conservation of energy. They cannot explain why it is so except for the introduction of a new invalid principal.

        As we have always done, when our knowledge of the universe of physics reaches the end of our ability to predicate, we fear the unknown. We naturally conserve our existence and fear is a mechanism of this conservation.

        It must be so, that earth, water, air, are different forms of the manifestation of energy in mass. The perception of a greenhouse allows a supposition that the energy equation of the equilibrium of mass can be different in its different forms of manifestation.

        Baron Fourier would be aghast.

    • thanks max, v. useful for answering those integrity and responsibility questions in previous post

    • I think a lot of the problems would be addressed by the government requiring studies done at the public trough to be fully open to include all data, code, and any other work product. Public scrutiny could then be applied.

  18. Joshua | January 21, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
    I’m not headed to a bunker, I’m headed to the polls. We need to vote out the watermelons and get the government out of the energy arena, other than for nuclear which needs more regulation due to the nature of the fuel.

    • Arcs_n_Sparks

      “get the government out of the energy arena, other than for nuclear which needs more regulation due to the nature of the fuel.”

      And what nature is that? Radiation release? I think coal leads the pack, with radon from natural gas a close second. Proliferation? Sorry, but all military programs have been dedicated and separate from civilian nuclear power. This canard is getting very old…..

  19. Don Montford, you wrote “Jim,

    The Keystone project is not just a pipeline to Houston so that we can sell oil someplace else, That is BS”

    I get offended when anyone accuses me of writing BS, which I assume measn bullshit. Is that clear? What is written on Wikipedia could have been written by anyone. What I wrote was completely accurate

    • Jimmy,

      What you wrote is BS, and yes it means what you think it does. Pick the parts of the Wiki reference that you doubt and Google them. Get back to us if you find anything that supports your BS. I thought you had more sense than webbie.

    • Jim,
      The pipeline is to supply feedstock to Gulf Coast refineries. You are wrong.

      • hunter,

        The Keystone project is more extensive than that. Wiki has a reasonably accurate quick summary of the project and the fight over it’s construction:

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

        You will see that major parts of the project have already been completed. And it will carry oil to places other than the Gulf Coast, and will also carry US domestic oil.

        The Republicans are going to hammer Obamma and the Democrats on this:

        http://www.wday.com/event/article/id/57917/

        He will veto the bill if it passes, but Democrats will have to go on record as supporting or opposing the pipeline. And the decision to halt $7 billion dollars in job-creating private infrastructure investment will be featured prominently in anti-Ob/Dem ads. Billions of taxpayers dollars (borrowed) squandered on Solyndra and Chevy Volt, with about 4 jobs created or saved, but $7 billion job creating private investment kicked to
        the the curb to placate the radical greenies, who don’t anything built anywhere.

      • Montford, It looks like you are agreeing with lots of people but want to be argumentative. I said upfront that most of the pipeline work has been in place and being used. Conventional oil from places like the Weyburn oil field in Saskatchewan have been shipped south of the border for years and since the Weyburn is on the decline, there is capacity in place. Canada has something like 27,000 miles of pipelines. Oil is always an exercise in flow analysis, and the flow and flow capacity won’t change drastically.

  20. If you want to understand how important sensitivity is, and how many trillions of dollars depend upon figuring it out, watch this

    http://www.newton.ac.uk/programmes/CLP/seminars/120916101.html

    also, see the value of paleo work. Another reason why best practices are required there

    • steven mosher

      I just watched the video clip of Hermann Held trying to explain the economic evaluation of mitigation steps to hold global warming to 2 degC or less (EU).

      He starts off with differentiating between what he calls “knowns” = projected damages from “unknowns” = precautionary principle.

      This is a bad start IMO – because ALL of the projected future damages from AGW are “unknowns”.

      He goes from the basic assumption that AGW must be held to no more than 2 degC in order to avoid “tipping points”, an assumption that is not well founded (if at all).

      He then assumes that energy demand will increase to 3 to 5 times current demand by the end of this century. This is highly unlikely, if UN projections on population growth are anywhere near correct, as it would mean that every man, woman and child on this planet would use 2 to 3 times more energy

      As I understood it, he introduces a “happiness per generation” concept in order to justify a discount rate of 1, IOW no interest rate: today’s investment is valued the same as the avoidance of possible future “damages”.

      Held discusses uncertainty in (2xCO2) climate sensitivity (CS) – within a 2 to 6 degC range (but does not include anything under 2 degC).

      .He then gets into the importance of narrowing down CS so that 2 degC limit can be held with 75% probability.

      He states that with GDP at $50 to 100 trillion, the cost of added paleo-climate studies would be extremely small in comparison – so paleo research should get more [taxpayer funded] funding. [This seems like very convoluted thinking to me; one should first evaluate the “value” of paleo work: is this simply the subjective analysis of dicey data reconstructions from carefully cherry-picked time periods in our planet’s geological past in order to confirm an already pre-conceived hypothesis and why should we trust these studies of the far distant past if they cannot even find the MWP and LIA, which we know existed from historical records?].

      He then shows an estimated “loss” (from future “damages”) of a business as usual scenario compared with a scenario with drastic shutdown of CO2 emissions, pointing out that the net costs for “mitigation” investments are “low” in comparison.

      The premise here is that “mitigation” investments today will avoid “damages” in the future, while “adaptation” investments will not avoid them, but only partially reduce them.

      As far as uncertainty is concerned, if CS is very high (4.5 to 10 degC) the “damages” could be very bad. If future research work determines that this is the case, it could have a negative (“I don’t want to learn at all”) effect .

      [Held mentions what would happen if “research” studies were to confirm a higher CS, but does not mention actual physical observations of temperature and CO2 trends. He also does not mention what would happen if further research (or actual physical observations of temperature trends) confirms that CS is very low (0.5 to 2.0 deg C)].

      He then talks of a “climate coalition of the willing” [whodat?] who will use the “carbon price” and various other schemes to promote green energy.

      His conclusions (which left me a bit confused) were:

      – it is useful to have stylized economic analyses before stakeholder dialog
      – cost/benefit analyses are very difficult to make [AMEN! – particularly for specific actionable mitigation proposals]
      – the stakeholder dialog is too complex [as confirmed by Copenhagen, Cancun and Durban failures]

      To a question from the audience Dr. Held stated that a 2 deg C maximum target would cost (in his estimate, which he cannot confirm today) “no more than 2% of GDP”.

      [This would be $1 to 2 trillion, but does not check at all with the cost estimates made for various specific actionable proposals that have been made to date – these are in the range of $2 to 4 trillion per 0.1 deg C warming avoided by 2100, or $40 to 80 trillion for a theoretical and probably unreachable 2 degC].

      Steven, the presentation was interesting – so thanks for the link – but, frankly, it showed me how far removed from reality this whole AGW discussion has moved.

      Max

  21. US National Strategy Proposed to Respond to Climate Change’s Impacts on Fish, Wildlife, Plants Public encouraged to review and provide comments 01/19/2012 – news

    The draft National Fish, Wildlife and Plants Climate Adaptation Strategy, available for public review and comment through March 5, 2012, can be found on the web at http://www.wildlifeadaptationstrategy.gov . . .
    “The impacts of climate change are already here and those who manage our landscapes are already dealing with them,” said Deputy Secretary of the Interior David J. Hayes. “The reality is that rising sea levels, warmer temperatures, loss of sea ice and changing precipitation patterns – trends scientists have definitively connected to climate change – are already affecting the species we care about, the services we value, and the places we call home. A national strategy will help us prepare and adapt.”

    Compare the last decade’s temperature trend of 0.07C/decade – only a third of IPCC’s 0.2C/decade projections!

    How does that justify “The impacts of climate change are already here”?

  22. “Compare the last decade’s temperature trend of 0.07C/decade – only a third of IPCC’s 0.2C/decade projections!
    How does that justify “The impacts of climate change are already here”?

    Give a yourself a surprise. Match the stats of the increasing shrill of AGW with the decreasing time before peak oil. Truly, an astonishing correlation.

  23. incandecentbulb

    Mark Levin says, that utopianism and constitutionalism cannote coexist. He says, “Utopianism requires power to be concentrated in a central authority with maximum latitude to transform and control. Oppositely, a constitution establishes parameters that define the form and the limtis of government.”

  24. incandecentbulb

    The global warming hoax and scare tactics are tools used by the Government-Education bureaucracy to turn schoolteachers into masters and the productive into slaves.

  25. “While some scientists can be politically motivated, math and physics can not.”

    What about math & physics models? Assume uniformity. Assume homogeneity. Etc. Claim it’s necessary to make the problem tractable. If people complain it’s unrealistic, just come back with, “well, we have to do something.” The only sensible option is to steer clear of bad assumptions, including politically motivated ones. Cheers.

  26. It is the opacity of matter that reflects light, the potentiality of it, reflects radiation. It is the ozone of atmosphere that energises the rest.

    Markus.

  27. Judith,

    Do you know where science and scientists failed???

    In observed science, relativity and our current understanding of gravity has everything falling vertically. From poles to the equator it is observed the same. So, assumptions before technology and satellites generated the suns energy must be the same. Velocities was NOT considered as pressure generated this same phenomenon planet wide.
    Now start to include unobserved mechanisms of velocities, planetary tilting, suns heat on angles, planets shape, etc. and this is shown that our theories and LAWS are far from being accurate.

    But billions of dollars on bad science programs and “boys toys” for scientists has created a bias. So no matter what is shown or produced in the way of actual evidence and pure science will be shunned and ignored to protect the “current consensus of scientists”.

  28. India is freezing to death while the central planners are probably planning on adapting to warming. It would be funny if it were not tragic. See

    http://pielkeclimatesci.wordpress.com/2012/01/20/guest-post-by-madhav-khandekar-winter-2011-2012-another-cold-snowier-winter-for-india/

    This is indeed interesting, especially in terms of adaptation planning, which is the new UNFCCC big money game. I like to point out that believing the wrong forecast can be much worse than believing none and preparing for a range of possibilities. This extreme weather shows that India (and everyone else) would be wrong to just plan on warming. More broadly what is actually happening is more important than what the IPCC thinks will happen. That seems to be Madvav’s point.

    • bingo:

      ” I like to point out that believing the wrong forecast can be much worse than believing none and preparing for a range of possibilities. “

    • This is true beyond weather forecasting. Placing too much faith in any forecast (economic, etc.) has a long history of creating a host of problems. Having the wrong info is much worse than having no information at all. Those who believed nat gas would be expensive (previously) and cheap (currently) are good examples of what can happen.

  29. A modest proposal which might also catch your eye, Judith:

    Bart’s Law:

    The temperature of the surface of a planet with an atmosphere will rise until such a time as sufficient heat can be radiated away in the atmosphere to establish net radiative balance with its radiative heat source.

    It follows that surface temperature sensitivity to the addition of radiative gases is negative: the addition of more IR radiative gases will tend to lower the surface temperature. This is a sensitivity holding everything else equal – it does not preclude the possibility of feedback from other processes tending to resist the change, e.g., cloud albedo effects.

    Bart’s Law is justified by the following line of reasoning:

    The temperature rises to the Stefan-Boltzmann (SB) limit. The forward tail of the radiation distribution interacts with atmospheric emitters, creating back-radiation which raises the surface temperature, which is allowed by the SB relationship because of the increase in received energy, raising the peak of the radiation distribution according to Wien’s displacement law, which interacts with atmospheric emitters to create more back-radiation, which raises the surface temperature, and so on in a positive feedback loop. The process continues until the total outward atmospheric emissions plus surface emissions balance (At+Surf) with solar emissions plus back-radiation (Sun+Back), and any additional temperature rise creates more of the former than the latter.

    What happens when you add additional IR gases, which are the lowest energy emitters, to the atmosphere? Without them, you would have continued increasing surface temperatures until higher energy emitters limited the surface temperature. Therefore, they have limited the surface temperature to less than it would have been. It follows that, if you add more of them, you will pin the surface temperatures down to a lower level.

    IR emitters in the atmosphere do not heat the surface. They limit the surface to a lower temperature than otherwise would be the case. Adding more of them will further cool the surface.

    • markus,

      Are you, Bart? Or is Bart, you?

      In either case, have your maths been submitted as evidence here?

    • Bart,
      Perhaps you can change your handle to Capt. Obvious?
      Naming this non-discovery after yourself is somehow fitting, in an ironic sense.

  30. I am having an on-going discussion about this over at WUWT. A couple of clarifying excerpts from the latest:

    “Back-radiation allows the surface temperature to rise, which begets more back-radiation. This is classic positive feedback. Stability ensues when the overarching negative T^4 feedback balances the positive feedback.”

    “But, the greenhouse hypothesis is unstable, because reducing the back-radiation reduces the temperature, which reduces the back-radiation, and so on. There is nothing to prevent reversion to the ground state.”

    • Bart,
      You are discussing the Planck feedback without presenting any numbers. Because you don’t present any numbers you can also make wrong statemets as easily as correct ones. In this case your argument is simply wrong. The numbers have been calculated by very many people in different connections and the result is clear – your statement is wrong.

      • While the argument may be wrong, I don’t think that would disqualify it from being a potential winner in the hobby-horse sweepstakes!

      • I don’t think that math is his strong suit.

        Could this be Bart Verhegen, on crack?

      • steven mosher

        JCH
        its a really lame hobby horse. could be a contender

      • steven mosher

        Don. paragraphs are too long for somebody on crack.

      • “”The numbers have been calculated by very many people in different connections and the result is clear – your statement is wrong””.

        Like these Pekka?

        http://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2012/01/22/konrad-hartmann-experiment-to-determine-the-effect-of-pressure-on-temperature-in-earths-atmosphere/#comments

      • The message Steven Mosher just wrote a bit higher in this thread about the temperature time series is related to my message in the sense that we both emphasize the value of doing the actual analysis and presenting numbers. Whan that has been done many times by many people and when no indication of errors in the most recent numbers has been shown, comments that disregard the clear facts and present unjustified speculation are of no value.

        There are many questions where the conclusions are uncertain, but repeating claims that contradict clear facts is really only a stupid distraction that should affect the credibility of people who continue to do that.

      • “I don’t think that math is his strong suit.”

        Eh, Don. I don’t think questioning my mathematical recognitions in a single line, over 120 parameters, projected over 2 years, with a 2.8% variance, is a very strong argument.

      • Steven,

        LSD?

      • Pekka – it is very simple. Back radiation and surface temperatures form a positive feedback loop. Temperatures will rise until enough is radiating out to achieve balance. The point at which balance occurs depends on your lowest energy emitter.

        The rest of you guys – you are frankly a bunch of idiots.

      • Markus,

        Concerning that experiment the first question is. What’s the connection of the experiment and Nikolov – Zeller hypothesis? Why should that experiment give any evidence on the validity of the hypothesis?

        It’s not enough to notice that pressure occurs in both.

        One of the common ways of creating confusion in the web discussions is to throw in some observations that have no real connection to the matter, but claiming that they provide evidence. The nature of the connection is of course left open, because that makes it impossible to tell exactly, where the error is.

      • I must catch a plane, and will not be able to respond. I don’t have high hopes, based on the really stupid comments so far.

        This is a serious matter and deserves serious contemplation. I’ll look back later and see if any of you knuckle draggers are capable of it.

      • “The numbers have been calculated by very many people in different connections and the result is clear – your statement is wrong.”

        Pekka – I am not taking on any of the numbers. I am taking on the process. The greenhouse hypothesis is simply unstable at the higher temperature. Lower temperature lowers back-radiation lowers temperature, until the ground state is reached. There is nothing to prevent free-fall.

        What I am suggesting is stable mechanism for maintaining the higher temperatures. The positive feedback effect I have spoken of is undeniable.

      • Bart, you are short-circuiting the main loop by only considering the surface and atmosphere. The warming stops when the radiation to space matches the incoming radiation at the top of the atmosphere. The surface and atmosphere can’t warm beyond this point.

      • Jim D – ah, no. From the post above:

        “The process continues until the total outward atmospheric emissions plus surface emissions balance (At+Surf) with solar emissions plus back-radiation (Sun+Back), and any additional temperature rise creates more of the former than the latter.”

      • Bart, I don’t understand. If the former exceeds the latter, that would be a cooling effect on the surface.

    • I have to agree with Pekka. When you say, “adding more will cool the surface”, that is wrong. Adding more will increase the rate of other cooling fluxes though, still the net would be warming. That is why the spectral broadening is such an issue, how much and where thing.

      For example, if 40Wm-2 of radiant cooling is direct from the surface in the atmospheric window (AW) and the surface warms, the 40Wm-2 would increase as the surface temperature increases. That is a negative feedback that depends on the percentage of the GHG spectrum with respect to percentage AW spectrum, conduction/convection and latent. This makes the solution fun since one change impacts other changes which don’t have to change linearly. Spectral broadening of CO2 is more likely below the average radiant layer, which would reduce the change in the AW radiation but increase the conductive/convective cooling and latent cooling. The increase in latent cooling would increase convection, not impact conduction and reduce the impact of spectral broadening of CO2. More water with greater convection would increase AW cooling around the radiant layer where CO2 broadening is less likely.

      After a while, it starts getting complicated :)

      • “For example, if 40Wm-2 of radiant cooling is direct from the surface in the atmospheric window (AW) and the surface warms, the 40Wm-2 would increase as the surface temperature increases”.

        Captn,

        This is your commander here, get with it, the window of which you speak, covers the whole the Earths atmosphere.

        There is no magical greenhouse, and it certainly doesn’t have a frame around it.

      • CD – Think it through. The radiation out is a negative feedback, but the bacradiation – surface temperature loop is a positive feedback loop. Balance is achieved when these cancel each other out.

        With higher energy emitters in the atmosphere, and no IR emitters, the temperature would necessarily climb until enough was emitted by the high energy emitters to balance everything. The IR emitters reduce the temperature at which the positive and negative feedbacks balance.

      • marcus said, “This is your commander here, get with it, the window of which you speak, covers the whole the Earths atmosphere.” Well, that is going to requires lots of Windex :)

        It is simpler to call it a myth than to attempt to solve some portion of it, Commander :)

      • “It is simpler to call it a myth than to attempt to solve some portion of it, Commander :)”

        Listen officer, don’t be insolent. If you keep this nonsense up, I’ll throw you in the Brink.

      • markus,

        My reply to you got misplaced. Anyway, if your math is that stuff on tallbloke’s blog, I will have my deputy Mosher go verify your calculations, and if they check out, your Nobel Prize will be coming in the mail, in a plain brown paper wrapping. Congratulations, in advance.

      • Bart, I have thought about it a touch. The problem is that CO2 radiation can be cooling or warming. In fact it has to cool in order to warm, kinda screwed up sounding, but pretty much correct. It can’t create energy, only shove it around.

        http://redneckphysics.blogspot.com/2012/01/more-on-what-heck-is-down-welling-long.html

        First things I learned in Thermo 101, frame of reference, KISS and ASSume.

      • Bart

        You don’t need ane emitters in the atmosphere, if the radiation from the surface can escape unhindered. That alone would make the Earth very cold.

        Adding GHG adds backradiation, but it reduces more the direct radiation from surface to space.

        It’s very common in faulty arguments to look what happens to one variable and disregard larger changes in another. That’s the reason for insisting on numbers. If and when you do present numbers, then we can check whether they are correct and if not tell, where the error is.

      • steven mosher

        Don,

        Just another person who doesnt get back radiation. In fact to understand global warming you dont need to understand a single thing about back radiation. Its an effect of the “warming” not the cause. The cause is rather simple: GHGs raise the effective height at which radiation returns to space. Since they raise the effective radiating height, the net result is earth re radiates to space from a cooler place. That results in a surface that cools less rapidly. Its simply radiation physics and energy balance.
        back radiation is the effect of having a more opaque atmosphere, but the surface cools less rapidly (warms) because the spigot to space moves to a higher, colder position.

        When you see somebody who argues differently, when you see somebody who argues against fundamental working radiation physics and energy balance you know one thing: they have made a mistake…somewhere.

        Its like this. If I showed you 100 billion lines of code that
        took 3 and 2 as inputs and output 52 as the answer to the question
        “what is the sum of the two inputs” you would know that the program was mistaken. You might not be able to find the error, in fact I could make it impossible for you to find the error ( not give you the code, make it too big to check ) but you would know that the program is in error. You can and should rationally discount their work on its face. It’s not worth your time.

        The trillion dollar question is How much does C02 warm the planet. When skeptics realize that this is the vital question. When they begin to push on improving the science in this area, then folks should listen to them. There is a debate in climate science. That debate, is over sensitivity. Its not settled and the sooner more skeptics focus on that trillion dollar question the better. As long as skeptics associate themselves with cranks, protect cranks, promote cranks, then they just do damage to their standing when it comes time to join the real debate. That might seem unfair, but it is how people operate.

      • Steven Mosher,

        Do you have a link for this energy balance? You seem to be convinced of the GHG warming effect. Therefore you must know how Earth’s surface cools on average. How much of the surface total heat transfer is by radiation and how much by convection/evaporation? In other words, does the surface cool mainly by radiation? What is the percentage of the non-radiative heat transfer away from the surface?

      • Edim find the kiehl trenberth energy diagram with a web search engine, under images. It is quite well known, and the fluxes balance at the surface, in the atmosphere and at the top of the atmosphere.

      • Stephen,

        If they don’t get the basic radiative physics, then they are never going to buy that radiating at a higher, colder position part. They can’t believe that a relatively very few tiny itty-bitty molecules can have much of an effect. That is the first thing that came to my mind, when I heard about it. It seems counter-intuitive, to the mind lacking in physics training. It’s totally incomprehensible to the mind that is more like a rock than a sponge. If they have been thinking about this for more than a few days and they can’t get past the basic radiative physics, then they are rocks. It’s like trying to teach basic economics to a “progressive”.

      • Steven Mosher
        misspelling is not a sin, misleading the people is. Time for you to start learning from the basic: radiation comes from the other side of the troposphere, called; the sun. 2] infra-red radiation doesn’t reflect back trough the atmosphere. Heat is carried back by the oxygen + nitrogen. When you have an insulation wall of 5 inches with static air – prevents the escape of heat. (I have a coffee cup with double walls in my hand now) The heat stays for long time in, because of 5mm if O+N in-between THE HEAT CANNOT RADIATE OUT. From the ground to the edge of the stratosphere is much more of those two PERFECT insulators.

        Stevooo!!! the heat is transported by those two gases, they are 998999ppm in the troposphere. The warmer those two gases get > the more they expand and speed up the VERTICAL wind. Stefan’s suggestion: consult people with hang-gliders about the change in speed of VERTICAL WINDS! Stop with the outdated pathetic childish doo-doo that come from the professional Swindlers. They are 100% wrong – you are persisting with spreading their lies. You are confusing the sun’s radiation, which doesn’t bring heat, but the radiation is producing it here. When is converted into heat – it’s up to the O+N to TAKE IT UP and to get read of it. Clear your desk of all their doo-doo, Steven!

        So, can you dig it? stop confusing sun’s radiation with transport of heat by the gases that are a taboo for the professional Warmist Swindlers. You want to learn the correct way, just ask. Ridiculing the Skeptics is a childish tantrum; because you started to realize that I’m 100% correct, your skeletons in the Warmist closed starting to STINK more and more

      • Stefan, you have discovered convection, congratulations. Have you heard of convective-radiative equilibrium? This is a step towards understanding the tropospheric lapse rate which is a key part of AGW.

      • Stephan.

        climate 101 for you. Enroll

      • Jim D; half of my book is about convection by oxygen / nitrogen. Nothing to do with CO2. O+N are 998999ppm; on every blog I have been; always trying to point that CO2 has nothing to do with regulating the temperature!

        Warmist are trying to portray that CO2 is up there as a blanket – convection of heat from one CO2 molecule to another.Jim, In-between every 2 molecules of CO2 are 100000atoms of oxygen / nitrogen – those 2 gases are insulating in-between; talking CO2 convection is a sick joke for that reason. CO2 absorbs lots more heat during the day than O+N, then at night CO2 absorbs much more coldness during the night. THOSE TWO FACTORS CANCEL EACH OTHER!!! Unless one is a flat-earth believer, to believe that is sunlight 24h on the WHOLE planet. Avoiding one of those factors was used for ”Nuclear Winter for year 2000”; before you even defrosted, they dumped that factor and used now the other one for their phony GLOBAL warming; which is just as real as their nuclear winter. If I just discovered, why am I the only one keep repeating that O+N control / regulate the cooling; the warmer they get – the more they expand and go up into the unlimited coldness. Can some CO2 prevent them of expanding? It all narrows to that simple misleading

      • Stefan, water vapor is also important for convection. I hope you considered that. Water vapor is only ten times as abundant as CO2, but you certainly see its effect if it rains where you live.

      • Jim D It’s silly to talk water vapour and convection in a same sentence. Between every molecule of water vapour in the air are millions / billions of O+N atoms, as PERFECT INSULATORS’ therefore H2O molecules don’t pas the heat to each other.(unless they are in a pot and no air in-between

        The benefit of water vapour is: creates clouds / intercepts big part of the sunlight high up; where cooling is much more efficient. . b] rain from high up brings down coldness, but that coldness has being given to H2O by O+N atoms. 3] evaporation of water from the soul and the sea is refrigeration process. 4] Farmers irrigate when is hot / dry; that cools the soil; the Warmist are against saving extra storm-water in new dams.

        The leader of the green people in Australia, senator Brown made himself a name by denying hydro-electric dam to be built. That dam would have produced more electricity than all the panels on the planet. Since then, his ”Water Embargo on Australia” was introduced, dam was built no more, on the driest continent on the planet. because dams improves the climate.

  31. Pekka Pirilä | January 22, 2012 at 4:12 pm |

    “You don’t need ane emitters in the atmosphere, if the radiation from the surface can escape unhindered. That alone would make the Earth very cold.”

    But, you never have an atmosphere without emitters, so that is a faulty reductio. And, with emitters, the positive feedback loop ensures that surface temperatures will rise until balance is established.

    • Bart

      Emissivity is equal to absorptivity. When there is more emission there’s also more absorption. The change always together with equal strenght.

      • Yes, and water is wet. What is your point?

        The bottom line is this:

        If there are enough emitters at higher energy, then the lower energy emitters act to prevent surface temperatures running away to emit in the higher energy state. In that case, adding more low energy emitters actually decreases the temperature.

        If there are only the low temperature emitters, then the effect of adding more will depend on the saturation effect, and how much the energy distribution of absorbed wavelengths increases in height versus how much it increases in breadth. When the distribution gets higher, surface temperatures increase. When it gets wider, they decrease.

        You are right that numbers have to be put into it, but my sense is that there are significant (CH4) high energy emitters, and the CO2 band is nearly saturated, so adding more likely will increase the range of absorbed frequencies more than it will increase the height.

    • Bart,

      You are going to miss your plane.

    • Bart; when oxygen / nitrogen warm up; they go trough the wall of a hi-tensile hand-grenade. Do you believe them; that some smog will prevent them of expanding when warm up?! Heat doesn’t ”escape” heat warms up the two most prevalent gases in the troposphere – they expand and instantly on the way up, to release that extra coldness. CO2 in the atmosphere create some dimming during the day = less heat comes to the ground (their nuclear winter) than at night CO2 intercepts more coldness than O+N, reason CO2 is used to make dry ice. THOSE TWO FACTORS CANCEL EACH OTHER

  32. steven mosher | January 22, 2012 at 5:25 pm |

    “Since they raise the effective radiating height, the net result is earth re radiates to space from a cooler place.”

    That is begging the question. Who says it is a cooler place?

    Except for Pekka’s thoughtful comments, the visit here today was very disappointing, if not downright depressing.

    • Bart,

      Exactly what did you expect? You don’t know wtf you are talking about. This isn’t exclusively a forum for crackpot theories. We get tired of the foolishness.

      • You got something to say to me, Monfort. I am more than happy to separate a fool from his brains.

        Now get outside.

      • markus,

        You are even dumber than you look. You don’t want to know me like that.

      • Don, you do not even understand what I was writing about. Pathetic.

        Steve Mosher – you’re still begging the question. You have not thought this through.

    • Bart.

      The earth system re radiates energy to space from the ERL

      http://www.aos.wisc.edu/~aos121br/radn/radn/sld012.htm

      we measure this from space

      Adding GHGs moves this altitude up to cooler altitudes

      as the earth radiates from a cooler altitude, the surface MUST
      cool less rapidly ( warm)

      Not a big mystery.

  33. Jim D,

    Thanks. I know about the Trenberth’s energy budget. I wanted to hear from Steven what he thinks. Do you agree with that balance?

    So, at the surface:

    Radiative cooling: 396 – 333 = 63 W/m2 (39%)
    Non-radiative: 17 + 80 = 97 W/m2 (61%)
    Total: 160 W/m2

    According to Trenberth, Earth’s surface is predominantly cooled by non-radiative heat transfer. Do you agree Jim?

    • Yes, convection is important for keeping the atmosphere warm.

      • So we have an atmosphere, which is predominantly warmed by non-radiative heat transfer (60%, only 40% by radiation – not counting direct warming by solar radiation, which is 78 W/m2) and cooled by radiation only (100%). Actually, it’s not 40% radiative warming of the atmosphere, since 40 W/m2 of that 63 W/m2 go directly to space (the atmospheric window).

        If more CO2 enhances the atmospheric radiation, which predominantly cools the atmosphere, how can CO2 cause warming? Increased CO2 might reduce radiative cooling of the surface, but the non-radiative surface cooling will increase and even if surface slightly warms after all, more radiative active atmosphere will cool more easily.

      • GHGs cool the atmosphere and warm the surface. Ultimately it is the surface that sets the tropospheric temperature through the convective lapse rate. The stratosphere does cool, however, not being connected to the surface because convection doesn’t reach it.

      • So, CO2 cools the atmosphere. At which height does the cooling start? Close to the surface it must be warming, right?

      • Jim D,

        Ask him if the dominant GHG, water vapor, cools the atmosphere (net cooling)?

      • It is all the way to the surface, perhaps surprisingly.

      • Don, H2O and CO2 both cool the atmosphere radiatively. H2O helps to heat the atmosphere by condensation. Convection in general heats the atmosphere and balances radiation that cools it.

      • Sorry Jim, I meant to say ask him if water vapor acts any different than CO2, with regards to radiative transfer (other the spectrum thing)? If water vapor cools us off like they think CO2 does, it would be very cold around here. Wouldn’t it?

      • Most of the tropospheric cooling is from water vapor, but the average global rate is only a couple of degrees per day, which is easily offset by convective warming.

      • Jim,

        I will try it again. They seem to be saying that adding gas molecules to the atmosphere that intercept IR and re-emit it in all directions, including back at the surface, has a net cooling effect compared to a transparent atmosphere, where the IR would go directly to space. Help them Jim.

      • Don, beyond saying adding GHGs cools the atmosphere and warms the surface, I don’t know how I can help.

      • OK, maybe it is clearer to say that the GHGs add a radiative cooling rate to the atmosphere. However, the temperature of the atmosphere doesn’t cool because the surface warming drives more convection which ends up warming the troposphere. The tropospheric temperature is tied closely to the surface temperature by the lapse rate.

      • Don Monfort | January 22, 2012 at 9:07 pm |

        “They seem to be saying that adding gas molecules to the atmosphere that intercept IR … has a net cooling effect compared to a transparent atmosphere, where the IR would go directly to space.”

        NO! NOT COMPARED to a “transparent atmosphere”! Compared to an atmosphere with ample higher energy emitters which, without the IR emitters acting as floodgates, will draw the temperature higher.

        Try reading for comprehension.

  34. Hmm. So what is the net effect of CO2 on atmosphere near surface in your opinion?

    • It cools the atmosphere and warms the surface. This helps convection as a net effect and the surface is warmer than it would be without it.

      • Jim, global temperature indices are from measurement of air temperatures. They should cool with increased CO2? Is it why we are cooling now?

        If it helps convection, it also helps surface cooling by convection. Not to mention evaporation.

      • The temperature is measured at 2 meters. It is mostly representative of the surface temperature. The atmosphere warms because the surface warms, and the surface warms because of GHGs.

      • Now the atmosphere warms again! Make up your mind Jim. No wonder natural phenomena don’t agree with the CO2GW hypothesis. It’s not even wrong! If it were at least wrong, it could be falsified.

      • As I am trying to explain to Don, the radiative effect is a cooling rate, not an actual cooling, because convection from the warmer surface sets the tropospheric temperature. However when convection is not occurring, the radiative cooling rate is real and measurable, and the troposphere warms by convection and cools by radiation in cycles.

      • Maybe these boys are baseball fans. Coach gives the center fielder 100 balls and tells him to do the throw the man out at the plate drill, without hitting the cutoff man. Next drill, he gives the CF the same 100 balls and tells him to do it again but hit the cutoff man. Cutoff man throws about half of the balls to home plate and the others back to the CF. Any difference?

      • Assuming you mean CF is the surface, home plate is space, and the cut-off man is the atmosphere. The rule is that to get as many balls to home plate as you did without the cut-off man, you have to throw twice as many from CF. And it is the number going to home plate that has to be preserved. To throw twice as many balls, you have to be twice as hot at CF (so to speak).

      • I think the problem is the cutoff man is going to third some of the time :)

      • Who’s on First?
        ========

      • Jim,

        Actually, the cutoff man is an IR absorbing molecule. The atmosphere is the air/path of the ball from CF to home plate. The balls are horse hide covered IR photons. And yes the CF is going to get warmer, trying to keep up, in the drill where the cutoff man is throwing balls back at him. Now can you explain the part about the cutoff man cooling the atmosphere by throwing about half the balls back to CF, instead of letting them go directly to homeplate/space.

      • Don, interesting challenge. I would explain it this way. The tropospheric temperature is not proportional to the number of balls fielded by the cut-off man, but proportional to the CF temperature. This is a connection made by the convection.

      • The cooling would occur when the cut-off man runs into a deficit, as he wants to throw his balls at the same rate, while the CF only throws his when the surface is warm. The analogy fails when the cut-off man has to throw borrowed balls before he actually receives them, but that represents night-time cooling. Overall it balances out.

      • The coach is what, a potted plant? When the cutoff man starts throwing balls back to the CF, shouldn’t the coach introduce more balls?

      • And to HP.

      • randomengineer

        JCH, a lack of balls seems to be the bane of the coaching ranks today.

      • I don’t believe that IR intercepting molecules cool the atmosphere, Jim. That is probably why it is hard for you to explain.

      • Don, another way to think of it is that the atmosphere is between cold space and the warm ground. Cold space is what wins out when it comes to which direction the atmosphere goes when trying to reach radiative equilibrium with both of these. Why it wins out is because the atmosphere is warmer than it should be radiatively and that is due to convection from the surface warming it up.

  35. Jim D,

    So BAU is better than the predicted BAU. Convection is increasing at a greater rate than expected, the Mid and upper Tropo are warming at a rate lower than expected and temperatures at the surface are rising slower than expected. Other than that, everything is right on the money?

    So when does the range of sensitivity get the fat tail lopped off? If sensitivity is half of predicted, the natural variation would be twice what is predicted. Water vapor feed back about a third of predicted. Looks like Arrhenius nailed it on take two. The data is not all that great, but ARGO, the tropics and SH and that weird SH CO2 concentration thing, seem to support a little softening of the alarmism. Doncha know.

    • The changes in the temperature record are consistent with sensitivities between 2 and 3 degrees per doubling. I don’t think the upper limit of 4.5 looks likely, so I would lop that off unless somehow the ocean response is slower than expected and will catch up eventually.

      • ARGO seems to indicate that ocean response is faster than expected. Not great data of course, but the SH temps seem to support that.

        I guess then AR5 attention to detail will be the issue. Anywho, there are a couple of GW glossy charts and graphs in need of modification.

      • My hunch, a prolonged global recession would result in a pretty quick run up in OHC.

      • JCH, Over-Head-Cameras?

        https://maps.google.com/maps/ms?msa=0&msid=214769660919529725423.0004bde31d74fe6eb1ece&hl=en&ie=UTF8&t=m&ll=45.336702,-110.039062&spn=58.987964,112.5&z=3&source=embed

        Borrow the GT drone, Lets have some fun and peep on each other to save the children. We know who you are…
        Won’t cut class now, will you?

      • Jim, grandma’s advice: man has 2 ears and one mouth – should listen twice as much as talks. Can you take an advice?:

        You talk about GLOBAL warming of 2-5degrees. Did those people that educated you; told you that: if the troposphere warms up by 2degrees > will expand INSTANTLY by 1km extra UP. Can you imagine how much EXTRA COLDNESS in that extra km can intercept and redirect down? Q: why O+N expand much more when warmed by 4degrees, than by 2 degrees? If you can find answer on that question – you will understand that your convection crap is just that (nothing personal). Problem with you people indoctrinated in planet can get warmer is: they didn’t tell you the missing links. Didn’t tell you that the laws of physics regulate the temperature by O /N expanding when warmer / shrinking when get colder! NOT THE CLIMATOLOGIST, When they say: we will control only to 2degrees warming – is insult to human intelligence!!!

        Another shock for you: Q: do you know that: O+N don’t wait to warm up by 2degrees, before start expanding?! Therefore: unless some place on the planet is gone colder – your place CANNOT get warmer! Because where is gone colder – the atmosphere shrunk – to accommodate for the extra volume of air from your warmed area. otherwise, if is only one area / hemisphere gone warmer – without another getting colder – the EXTRA volume by warming of your area will go UP, intercept extra coldness in 3,5 seconds – will take few minutes to get down that coldness, to some other place – equalise – overall never Global warming. Jim, I know what you know; you don’t know what I know – therefore I have unfair advantage on you. It sounds silly to point to me the affect of water, or similar. If you can learn the affect of water – tell Australian politicians… P.s. under Warmist mythology, water supposed to be bad for the climate..The same people that educated you about ”convections” Jim, HO2 is a lousy heat conductor, CO2 has perfect conductivity Jim, do you want to know what I know? Before that; lecturing anybody with your ”convections” is only ”distributing Warmist doo-doo”’

      • Stefan, I think you have a lot in common with Lubos Motl. Maybe you can go over to his blog and try to convince him of your theory.

      • Lubos would eat Stefan alive if he tried to comment there, and Lubos is a skeptic. Both are kind of nasty, but Lubos has the cred to back it up.

      • Jim D; I heard a name Lubos Moti before; somebody with a ”string theory” is it the same guy, is he on some different name on the net? I never believed in string theory; would like to cross the swords with him

        By the way, you and the Telescope shouldn’t play with ball-bearings and plates, can heart yourself; stick to your fire trucks; wrrrm wrrrrrrrrm, wrrrm on the sandpit. If you are in longitude of Europe, at this time must be there 3AM… and active on the net with your albedo, convection, noise, observation… straight jackets shouldn’t be too expensive – send the bill to Al Gore and Ian Plimer.

        WebHub, in the beginning I was under impression that you have something to do with the Hubble telescope; looks like your telescope is much smaller calibre, for perving in the neighbourhood…? God bless everybody. from the ”infidel / the non- believer in B/S.”

  36. In my personal week, I discovered that Lynn Margulis, a noted biologist, died last month. I used to read her in “CoEvolution Quarterly.”

    As a young scientist Margulis presented the maverick theory that eukaryotic cells evolved not in the lineal “tree-of-life” manner of standard evolution, but from the symbiosis of multiple prokaryotic cells. She took much heat for this from orthodox biologists, but she stuck to her guns and eventually won the debate.

    Later in life Margulis observed:

    [P]eople are always more loyal to their tribal group than to any other abstract notion of ‘truth’—scientists especially… It is professional suicide to continually contradict one’s teachers or social leaders.

    The problem is that many fine scientists recognize genuine difficulties with the ‘standard model’ of evolution, so to speak. However, most lack the conceptual tools to solve the difficulties they legitimately recognize.

    Scientists, like anyone else, follow the money flow.

    All this sounds vaguely familiar.

  37. I never get tired of rereading the details of “hide the decline” and the “hockey stick”

    1) http://bit.ly/z74qbS

    2) http://bit.ly/ziS0w8

    3) http://bit.ly/y5HZ0v

    For sure, nothing will come near it in my life time as the most significant and the most fascinating story of the corruption of science.

  38. Chief Hydrologist

    ‘El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) is the most important coupled ocean-atmosphere phenomenon to cause global climate variability on interannual time scales. Here we attempt to monitor ENSO by basing the Multivariate ENSO Index (MEI) on the six main observed variables over the tropical Pacific. These six variables are: sea-level pressure (P), zonal (U) and meridional (V) components of the surface wind, sea surface temperature (S), surface air temperature (A), and total cloudiness fraction of the sky (C). These observations have been collected and published in ICOADS for many years.

    Stay tuned for the next update (by February 11th, IF ICOADS remains online in some fashion, more on this as soon as I find out about its fate, it does not look good right now) to see where the MEI will be heading next… It will be interesting to see how 2012 evolves, independent of my ability to keep the MEI alive. Again, more on this topic later this month right here.’

    Billions can be spent on nonsense and we can fail to keep ICOADS and the MEI alive?

  39. Judith,
    What errors did this experiment create?

    http://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2012/01/22/konrad-hartmann-experiment-to-determine-the-effect-of-pressure-on-temperature-in-earths-atmosphere

    Time of day?
    Angle of radiation?
    Density/Thickness of atmosphere?
    Latitude?
    Motion involvement?
    Oh, I get it, straight radiation from a light in a lab at a fixed location.

  40. I have read all the hypothetical estimations of climate sensitivity. We are supposed to believe that global temperatures are rising at a rate of a few degrees Celsius per century, or a few fractions of a degree per decade.

    We now have 10 years of daily “brightness” global temperature readings at 600 mb. Yesterday it was reported

    http://discover.itsc.uah.edu/amsutemps/execute.csh?amsutemps+002

    that on 20 January 2012, the temperature was the lowest ever recorded in this 10 year period.

    Why on earth should I believe the hypothetical estimations of climate sensitivity, when the hard measured data shows that global temperatures are simply NOT RISING AT ALL?

    • Jim,

      Do you know of an easy way to predict the outcome of the January anomaly?

      I got the raw info from Discover, but what I’m missing is the reference temp (1981-2010 absolute average) to convert the raw temps to anomaly.

      Bill

  41. FYI. This is how climate research is planned in the USA. They assume AGW, which yields a specific set of research questions. The carbon cycle is assumed to be paramount. Moreover, that want “a substantial expansion in the scope of the field” of carbon cycle research. Presumably at the expense of other question areas, such as natural variability, as there will be no overall budget growth for the foreseeable future. The answers may not be biased, but the questions certainly are.

    Here is the blurb:
    “The carbon cycle science community in the United States has finished its planning process for carbon cycle research for the upcoming decade, culminating in the publication of the new U.S. Carbon Cycle Science Plan. This reassessment of the U.S. carbon cycle science priorities was initiated by the U.S. Carbon Cycle Interagency Working Group (CCIWG) and Carbon Cycle Science Steering Group (CCSSG) in 2008. The new Plan is intended to provide guidance for U.S. research efforts on the global carbon cycle for the next decade. It outlines priorities for research in carbon cycle science, including a substantial expansion in the scope of the field. In addition to reaffirming the need for basic research and for continuing the current areas of research in carbon cycle science, the Plan outlines specific recommendations for new priorities.”

    Electronic copies of “A U.S. Carbon Cycle Science Plan” are available at: http://www.carboncyclescience.gov/carbonplanning.php

    • David,

      At a 35,000-ft reading of this (i.e. reading your comment only) I wonder why this is necessarily a bad thing? The carbon cycle could yield very interesting results, some of them pointing in the skeptical direction. I don’t see it as antithetical or even opposed to natural variability.

      • Think of it as a cognitive budget. The more attention you pay to the carbon cycle the less you can pay to, say, indirect solar forcing, which to me is perhaps the biggest research question in climate change. The chances that carbon cycle research will explain the sun-climate link are virtually zero, so deciding for one is deciding against the other. Decisions like this are the essence of research program management.

      • I should also note that the carbon cycle program already dominates the US climate research program, and always has. Making it even bigger just makes things even worse.

  42. If this goes wrong, I bet it makes “the week in review” posts on a whole lot of blogs.

    “Geothermal test will pour water into volcano to make power”

    http://www.usatoday.com/money/industries/energy/story/2012-01-22/geothermal-power/52702158/1

    Forcing water into rock formations to free natural gas – evil desecration of the Earth.

    Forcing water into rock formations to generate steam – good.

    It couldn’t be that the first is a endeavor by private enterprise, and the second yet another (primarily) government funded “alternative energy” boondoggle, could it?

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  48. The writer of the show, Ray McKinnon, was somewhat familiar with my case. His late wife, Lisa Blount was a friend of mine. She and I exchanged letters while I was on death row in Arkansas, and she even sang at a concert in Arkansas, along with Eddie Vedder, Patti Smith, and Johnny Depp, to help raise awareness about my plight.I heard that McKinnon also did research into the cases of other men who had been on death row and had been released or exonerated. It paid off. I can tell you from first hand experience that Rectify is a very realistic show

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