What if they are wrong?

by Judith Curry

Suppose it turns out that CO2 has essentially nothing to do with the earth’s climate. How will the history of this colossal mistake be written?

Mike Stopa has a provocative pair of posts on his blog.

Mike Stopa is a physicist specializing in computation and nanoscience in the Physics Department at Harvard University. His homepage at Harvard can be found here.  Mike is a  life-long, fiscally conservative Republican. In 2010, he was a first-time candidate for Congress in Massachusetts.

From his post What if they are wrong?

Because the theory of anthropogenic global warming (AGW) depends on a feedback mechanism between increase in CO2 and an increase in atmospheric water – a mechanism about which there is considerable, scientifically justified doubt – it is possible that CO2 has effectively no influence on global climate.

In an interesting admission the (British) Met Office and the University of East Anglia Climatic Research Unit have now admitted that the climate has ceased rising for the last 15 years.

Here I ask this. Suppose it turns out that CO2 has essentially nothing to do with the earth’s climate. How will the history of this colossal mistake be written?

They will say that a mechanism called the “greenhouse effect,” was postulated long ago (~1824 by Joseph Fourier) and gained adherents in the late 20th century. They will say that the theory was seemingly invalidated by the decrease in global temperatures from 1940-1975, but that the adherents patched this up by explaining the cooling with pollution, specifically sulfur, from industry

They will say that the theory was challenged by the noted vast gap between the amount of CO2 produced by civilization and the substantially smaller increase in CO2 in the atmosphere, but that the theory was patched up by examining the increased CO2 uptake by the hydrosphere and the biosphere.

They will say the theory was seemingly invalidated by the evidence that the atmosphere was already nearly opaque in the wavelengths that are absorbed by CO2 and so the additional CO2 could have, on its own, little effect, but that the theory was patched up by positing a feedback mechanism between the small temperature increases directly due to CO2 and the production of water vapor which is the main greenhouse gas.

They will note that the theory of anthropogenic global warming (AGW) proceeded much like any scientific theory (cf. Thomas Kuhn, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions) in that it was modified and patched up and adjusted to fit empirical challenges until it finally collapsed altogether under the weight of incontrovertible evidence. But, the scientific historians will have a new phenomenon to consider, and that is the social and political context of this particular scientific theory.

Kuhn describes very well the build-up of evidence that ultimately leads to the over-turning of accepted orthodoxy within the scientific community, of some particular theory. But AGW is intrinsically wrapped up with political ideology and, increasingly, with economics and government (cf. “Solyndra”).

Scientific revolutions are difficult and traumatic enough without the added inertia of government sponsorship. To put it more bluntly, scientists have difficulty enough admitting that they have egg on their faces. Throw in the Solyndras of the world and the United Nations and the entire anti-capitalist Global Left and the backing out of this theory will be nothing short of a fiasco.

Well, the truth of this issue should be apparent within about 15 years. . .

From his follow on post Global warming hysteria:

The main issue I am raising is not that the scientists who are at the front line of this research are blind or bellicose – not that they are unscrupulous or fraudulent. Most of the scientists working in the field are not trying to push an ideological position but are genuinely trying to get at the truth. If they can be accused of any moral failing, it is simply the tendencey to go with the flow when it comes to writing grant proposals and alluding to the possibility of global warming as a justification for supporting their research. Nothing horrible about that.

That does not say that there are not a few at the top and at the edges who are true believers – who think that behaving as deceivers is ethically the right thing to do given the gravity of the threat (that they perceive) and the ignorance of the masses to that threat (as they perceive).

Sound science will, unimpeded by the hysterics, lead to sensible public policy. It is my belief that the final conclusion will be that CO2 produced by humanity will be found to be of only minor importance for global climate and that it will be heavily outweighed by exchange of heat with oceans of evolving temperature and other factors such as solar-determined cloud formation. But I am open to evidence and, alas, a lot of global warming hysterics in the scientific community (and especially in the non-scientific, political community) have their ears stopped with gobs of wax.

In conclusion, global warming is an unchallengeable “consensus” only among those who deeply yearn to save the planet. The conviction of those politicians and activists and (few) scientists that debate is destructive is itself destructive. It arises from the dungeons and dragons psychodrama going on in the minds of those deluded saints – where they embody themselves as the White Wizards and the skeptics as the Morlocks.

The appropriate role for conservatives is to oppose the bias of hysteria and the “cautionary principle;” to demand every essential cost-benefit analysis and, understanding the daydreams of the holy, to insist that progress comes by first placing our feet upon the ground.

JC comments:  I tagged this under ‘scientific method’, since what intrigued me particularly was the impact of  the social and political context on the scientific process.  Scientific revolutions are difficult enough without the added inertia of government funding and social and political factors that are reinforcing the consensus.

So, is a scientific revolution underway and/or needed for climate change?  I don’t know, it is certainly possible that  the existing paradigm can be embellished as our understanding of the complex climate system increases.  However, as scientists, we need to acknowledge that the consensus needs to be continually challenged, and not dismiss anyone who challenges the consensus as ‘deniers.’  I think Stopa is about right when he says:  Well, the truth of this issue should be apparent within about 15 years

667 responses to “What if they are wrong?

  1. It is painful to learn but maybe Westerners are the descendants of monkeys and everyone else that is laughing at us behind our backs are just a wee bit smarter…

  2. Are there any somewhat similar scenarios from the past? Mental health, or general medicine? Those might be instructive in a meta way.

    • Examples of close-mincedness in medicine are legion–e.g., from washing hands before surgery and the need for better sanitation to prevent the spread of disease to the simple idea — although resisted by everyone — that bacteria causes ulcers not stress or diet.

      • Dude – you forgot plate tectonics.

        Oh. Sorry. Not medical. My bad.

      • There’s always Eugenics, my personal favorite example of an academic discipline and social movement beloved by legions of its contemporaneous cultural elite.

        “Eugenics became an academic discipline at many colleges and universities, and received funding from many sources…Eugenic policies were first implemented in the early 1900s in the United States. Later, in the 1920s and 30s, the eugenic policy of sterilizing certain mental patients was implemented in a variety of other countries, including Belgium, Brazil, Canada, and Sweden, among others. The scientific reputation of eugenics started to decline in the 1930s, a time when Ernst Rüdin used eugenics as a justification for the racial policies of Nazi Germany, and when proponents of eugenics among scientists and thinkers prompted a backlash in the public. Nevertheless, in Sweden the eugenics program continued until 1975…

        From the wholly untrustworthy Wikipedia, but probably roughly true history.

      • There’s always Eugenics,

        You forgot Lysenko.

        What about Lysenko!!??11!!

      • Lysenkoism was a national phenomenon, in the USSR. Eugenics and CO2-demonization are world-wide “scientific campaigns”. Transformation with scientific excuses is the game.

        The allure of absolute power corrupts absolutely.

      • Ah but there lots of evidencee that stress contributes to ulcers even if only by lowering the immune response! Multifactorial causality is the rule not the exception in complex systems such as disease or climate!

      • Could be beneficial as it is worked out: Gamow-Hoyle for instance. But neither side should suppress the other view.

      • @ Joshua
        “Dude – you forgot plate tectonics. Oh. Sorry. Not medical. My bad.”

        OK, how about “platelet tonics”? That would be medical… :)

    • Reny,
      Google “history of eugenics”.

    • Chris, and multifactorial causality, as you call it, IS the rule in climate. Look at the chart of forcings in the IPCC reports, or at

      http://data.giss.nasa.gov/modelforce/

      Do you see just one factor there?

    • Lysenkoism shows the link of science dogma and political tyranny:

      http://www.skepdic.com/lysenko.html

      A sense of oppressive political tyranny and dogmatic science is now sensed in many parts of the former Free West block of nations.

      AGW dogma is wrong: Climategate emails and documents (Nov 2009) continued a long pattern of government deception on the Sun’s origin, composition and source of energy that I observed after ~1972, when I was a Principal Investigator for NASA’s Apollo program and reported two sets of observations that were correct, but unfavorably received:

      http://www.omatumr.com/Data/1972Data1.htm

      http://www.omatumr.com/Data/1972Data.htm

      Here is a one-page summary of other experimental observations on the Sun that were ignored, misrepresented, or hidden over the next 36 years,

      http://dl.dropbox.com/u/10640850/The_Sun.pdf

      And a 1998 CSPAN recording of NASA belatedly releasing data from Jupiter that confirm Earth’s heat source is the same nuclear furnace that made our elements:

      http://dl.dropbox.com/u/10640850/The_Sun.pdf

      Today world leaders, leaders of the scientific community, and everyone else on planet Earth are in a social order that is collapsing into disarray from well-justified lack of confidence in:

      a.) Scientists who “fudged” experimental data, and
      b.) World leaders who encouraged them to find evidence for
      c.) Tyrannical government policies based on flawed, computer models of
      _c-1. Economics
      _c-2. Environment
      _c-3. Earth’s global climate
      _c-4. Earth’s heat source – the Sun

      Hidden beneath hugh government outlays for food stamps, (pseudo-) “science”, “research”, student loans, welfare, social security and unemployment are these simple facts:

      i.) Our economy is collapsing
      ii.) The dollar is dropping in value daily
      iii.) There are no “green” jobs for unemployed
      iv.) CO2 is not a dangerous atmospheric pollutant
      v.) CO2 is the symbiotic link between plants and animals
      vi.) There are no fusion reactors to meet future energy needs
      vii.) Earth’s climate is and has always will be changing, because
      viii.) Earth’s heat source is the violently unstable nuclear furnace (pulsar) at the Sun’s core that made our elements and spit them out five billion years (5 Gyr) ago.

      Both sides in the global climate debate need to work together to find leaders who can direct bankers, politicians and scientists away from computer models, to reality, and guide society out of its current demise.

    • Robert Bridges

      My favorite is the food pyramid and the recommendation for people to replace fat with carbohydrates in their diet. This has directly led to the diabetes and obesity epidemics that we see today. A high carb diet may also be responsible for the increase in certain cancers. Read Gary Taubes “Good Calories, Bad Calories” to get more background.

      Another health related item is dermatologists telling people to stay out of the sun. Some researchers now say that vitamin D is a hormone that is critical to human health, and that low levels of vitamin D are correlated with certain cancers, such as colon, breast, and prostate cancers.

      When people look back on these “scientific” recommendations, and realize just how wrong they were, and how much misery was caused by these scientists, I suspect the trust level for science will be damaged for quite some time.

  3. Perhaps AAAS, who are currently holding their Annual Meeting here in Vancouver, should have invited Stopa to participate in a live webcast they will be broadcasting tomorrow. [See Science is not enough … Invitation to an “exceptional” AAAS live webcast]

  4. Mainstream climate scientists only have themselves to blame if, say 15 years down the track, we find that the AGW hypothesis has well and truly been falsified, because they have had every opportunity to verify and validate the underlying science for the past 20 years or so and chose not to.

    • “Skeptics” only have themselves to blame if, say 15 years down the track, we find that the “skeptical” hypotheses have well been falsified, and they will have to confront the reality that they had every opportunity to understand that climate scientists were presenting a good faith estimate of probabilities and instead, for 20 years, they mischaracterized what climate scientists said and insisted on absolute proof for something that could not be proven absolutely.

      • True,

        except maybe for the last part of the last sentence.

        But that’s quibbling.

      • Credit where credit’s due.

        That was a good one.

      • Wait – was that a joke on the fact that the whole rant was one sentence, or, horror of all horrors, a statement of partial agreement?

      • No joke.

        It is the other side of the same coin and a valid point. I just thought that the part about skeptics insisting on absolute proof was a bit over the top.

      • tim –

        Thanks. I’m a bit gun shy around here.

        (But it would have been a good joke if you had intended it to be that way.)

        Sure – a bit over the top, but I do think that there is an element of truth. I constantly see in these pages that the AGW cabal is saying that the science is settled, that the impact of AGW is proven, etc.

        In fact, those arguments can be found among “realists,” but not nearly to the degree that they exist in the imaginings of “skeptics’ in the blogosphere.

        Mischaracterizing an estimate of probabilities as being an assertion of absolute proof is, in my view, tantamount to asking for absolute proof of something that can’t be proven.

        I think that makes sense.

      • Joshua, your statement that there are sceptical hypotheses which are capable of being falsified is fine with me because I take issue with both sides of the debate.

        Climate science should be more substantial than presenting a good faith estimate of probabilities while sceptics need to realise that their POV is also not necessarily supported by science.

        The whole debate should really be taken up by impartial scientists and experts from many disciplines, using an agreed praxis, and the facts about climate change established to the best extent possible with the tools that are at their disposal.

      • Peter –

        Thanks for responding to snark with non-snark. You’re a fine fellow:

        Climate science should be more substantial than presenting a good faith estimate of probabilities…

        I need more explanation of that. How would more than presenting a good faith estimate of probabilities (rooted in comprehensive analysis) be possible? Are you referring to “traceability,” open source code, dialog with “skeptics,” etc., or something else.

      • Peter Davies
        The whole debate should really be taken up by impartial scientists and experts from many disciplines, using an agreed praxis, and the facts about climate change established to the best extent possible with the tools that are at their disposal.

        YES!

      • You asked what more could have been done by mainstream climate science to support the AGW hypothesis. There seems to be quite a lot of things, including the things that you postulated, but to my mind, the best thing that could of happened would have been a more effective peer review process amongst the climate scientists themselves.

      • Thanks Peter.

        Peer review is problematic. Also problematic is that we don’t have anything better. Doesn’t mean it can’t be improved, however.

      • Joshua,
        Skeptics do not have an hypothesis. They have a critique showing problems in the AGW consensus.
        As to the good faith of the self-appointed climate team, surely you offer an attempt a joke?

      • Trying the Trenberth Twist again, huh? Fail. H0 is that climate changes experienced and expected are within the bounds of normal variability.

        Every attempt to disprove or even cast doubt on it has foundered on the rocks of observation. Read some Feynman to find out what that means.

      • Joshua: “Skeptics” only have themselves to blame if, say 15 years down the track, we find that the “skeptical” hypotheses have well been falsified,

        You ought to have ended there.

        In about 15 years time, I agree with Drs Stopa and Curry, someone will be eating crow.

        You say it will be the skeptics, Dr. Stopa says it will be the warmists. I am trying to maintain a sort of alert patience.

      • Matt –

        You say it will be the skeptics, Dr. Stopa says it will be the warmists. I am trying to maintain a sort of alert patience.

        It really is interesting how often I need to correct smart and careful people on issues like this. I don’t say it will be the “skeptics.”
        . In my view, we won’t know much either way in 15 years (although people will claim such). At any rate, I think that it is probable at some point in the long term, AGW with a sensitivity within the range estimated by the “consensus” is likely to be born out. Maybe somewhat less likely than the “consensus” estimates.

      • Joshua: I’m a bit gun shy around here.

        Now you are being stupid on purpose again.

      • Joshua: I don’t say it will be the “skeptics.”

        Fair enough. What you actually wrote is incoherent.

        Joshua: “Skeptics” only have themselves to blame if, say 15 years down the track, we find that the “skeptical” hypotheses have well been falsified, and they will have to confront the reality that they had every opportunity to understand that climate scientists were presenting a good faith estimate of probabilities and instead, for 20 years, they mischaracterized what climate scientists said and insisted on absolute proof for something that could not be proven absolutely.

      • Well, sorry Matt.

        If you read the other responses, it seems others were able to figure it out.

        I guess their standards for me aren’t quite as high as yours. Maybe you should lower your standards considering the source?

        You’ve posted a couple of times now how about how useless my comments are – so maybe you shouldn’t try so hard to make sense out of them. Just go for the big picture?

      • Matt –

        Now you are being stupid on purpose again.

        Wow! It looks like I’ve really taken up residence in your head.

        What’s your address? Maybe when I get back on line, I should order cable service?

      • Why would skeptics need hypotheses, Joshua?
        If scientists decide to posit that the earth is warming due to mankind’s increased CO2 output that is a departure from several million years of warming (often warmer than now) and cooling and several million years of higher CO2 (a lot higher than now) and not very much lower. They try to convince us — on nil practical evidence — that they can predict climate on the basis of between 30 and 100 years of (supposedly) reliable temperatures (100 years out of several million, remember) and on that basis I would have said that the skeptic position is the sensible and logical one and the climate scientists need to prove their case, something that over the years they have signally failed to do.
        Nobody, so far as I know, is demanding the “absolute proof” you claim we are seeking but you would think after all this time that we could have some evidence of whether or not the generally accepted affect of CO2 (absent any other forcings) is enhanced by feedback or diminshed by it.
        No assertions, no insults, no evasion, no handwaving: just some empirical evidence.

      • Feynman at a level appropriate to a bear of little brain:
        1. Guess
        2. Compute Consequences of Guess (Implications)
        3. Compare to Nature
        4. If the Guess disagrees with the Experiment, the Guess is wrong (The Key To Science)

        Feynman Chaser – The Key to Science

        or

        http://videosift.com/video/The-Scientific-Method-Richard-Feynman

      • @Joshua : … climate scientists were presenting a good faith estimate of probabilities

        This would be the “good faith” as revealed in Climategate. Hiding data, hiding declines, trying to stifle papers they didn’t like, deleting evidence of their own malfeasance etc etc – and generally sabotaging the science process so as to best serve their political paymaster.

        In short, the “good faith” of endemic, unrepentant dishonesty, aka political correctness.

    • No need to wait 15 MORE years. Didn’t Gavin say that if AGW was correct, temperatures could not remain flat beyond 15 years? Didn’t Trenberth raise this to 17 years after we reached 15 years?

      In two more years the number will need to be raised to 20 years, similar to Hansen’s highway flooding in 20 years. Twenty years on this same highway is still predicted to flood in 20 years.

      • Didn’t Gavin say that if AGW was correct, temperatures could not remain flat beyond 15 years?

        Yes. About five years ago, in reply to a question, he said he would have to rethink everything if the temperature remained flat for five more years. Has he done this? I don’t think so – and it’s much harder to ask non-truebeliever questions on RC now.

      • Steve Milesworthy

        Punksta,

        “…he would have to rethink everything”

        Not quite a promise to rethink everything. More like a qualified expectation:

        29th December 2007: “To answer your question though, 1998 will likely be exceeded in all the indices within the next five years – the solar cycle upswing into the next solar max will help, and the next big El Nino will probably put it over the edge. -gavin”

        Punksta: “Has he done this? I don’t think so – and it’s much harder to ask non-truebeliever questions on RC now.”

        It was asked, and got a brush-off:

        niemann says:
        9 Feb 2012 at 4:18 AM
        “While I´m well aware that temperatures are still rising, you appear to concede in the above statement that it´s now very likely that 1998 will not be beaten by 2013 in all global temperature indices. Does this indicate re your 2007 admission that the trend of warming might be overstated? Just curious.

        [Response: Well, since 2010 was warmer than 1998 in GISTEMP, NCDC and in the forthcoming HadCRUT4, I don't think I need to worry too much. - gavin]“

    • mike J –

      Nobody, so far as I know, is demanding the “absolute proof” you claim we are seeking

      Bear with me – it is a bit of a stretch. I often see “skeptics” saying that “the consensus” says that “the science is settled” (when I rarely see that said, the IPCC says 90% likely, etc.) Similarly, as an example of a similar phenomenon, I am told that I am absolutely certain that catastrophic warming will take place, or that AGW is certainly correct, although I’ve never said anything to support such projections.

      So – the way I’m seeing this is that mischaracterizing the certainty of what people do say is tantamount to demanding absolute proof. If you don’t accept a qualified estimate (leaving aside questions about the degree of qualification) for what it is, and you are seeing what is a qualified estimation as a statement of absolute certainty, and then saying “Well, a statement of absolute certainty is not validated by the data,” – then the only thing that you’re working with is a (false) statement of absolute certainty. By refusing to acknowledge anything less than a statement of absolute certainty (even though it exists), and stating that the only thing you see (absolute certainty) is not proven, you are in effect demanding absolute certainty.

      Not sure if it makes sense – I know it’s kind of vague. Just thought I’d throw it out there. It’s the advantage of being stupid – you don’t have to say things that make sense.

      • Joshua

        Glad to see that you’re back on top form. I thought you were looking rather battered the last few days of your mammoth (presumably sponsored?) blog fest on Heartland.
        tonyb

      • I get paid by the post, tony. The rate of compensation is greater when I can induce completely illogical thinking in response. The top rate is when people launch into content-less insulting. Climate Etc. has been a gold mine.

  5. Beyond one person’s musings about the future ( nice appeal to authority there, Judith – why would a Harvard physicist’s speculation about the future be any more valuable than you plumber’s?), it seems that this kind of speculation reveals an obvious agenda.

    Without a similar speculation (well, actually, we might hope for one that is more carefully researched and considered that this one), one What if they are right? of what real value is this essay? What is the point of considering one of those questions without the other?

    Oh.

    Right.

    I forgot. Red meat.

    • You can’t help yourself, can you Josh.

      Am I really supposed to believe that if faced with a plumbing issue you would be as likely to call a physicist (or accountant), rather than a plumber? Just once can’t you refrain from stock phrases (appeal to authority)? I know they get used all the time, but for me that tends to be a sign of a weak argument. No original thought required.

      Had you left that part out, we would have had a valid question. What if they are right? One potential problem with that is picking which “they”.

      • timg56,
        Joshua is getting sort of sad looking in this. Like he only has one idea and he flings around looking for new ways to dress it up.

      • tim –

        It was sarcasm.

        I’m making fun of Judith because of her selective “concern” about appeals to authority. She doesn’t consider expertise to be relevant unless she agrees with the opinions of the experts. She’s done the same appeal to the authority of Freeman Dyson a couple of times, and then she objects to others appealing to authority.

        In point of fact, I agree that expertise is relevant. I’m just trying to get her to own up to the selectivity of her reasoning. I completely agree that a lot of this nonsense about folks whining about “appeal to authority” is tiresome. It’s like kids in school when you give them some kind of a rule and they run around applying it everywhere without understanding relevance or context. Someone let loose a bunch of kids pointing at each other and saying “that’s a logical fallacy.” And sometimes they sound really sophisticated by using some Latin..

    • Joshua: why would a Harvard physicist’s speculation about the future be any more valuable than you plumber’s?

      Look at the elements of Dr. Stopa’s case, and tell us which of our plumbers can display that much scholarship relevant to the global warming science.

      As to the asymmetry (considering one question without the other), it’s easy to consult Ray Ladbury or Barton Paul Levenson over at RealClimate; or to recall the Oscar and Nobel Peace Prize awarded to an advocate of what you “seem” to believe is a neglected point of view.. It’s not like Dr Stopa is the only writer on this topic.

      • Matt –

        Look at the elements of Dr. Stopa’s case, and tell us which of our plumbers can display that much scholarship relevant to the global warming science.

        Dr. Stopa is offering his musings not only on the scientific probabilities, but also on things which are complete conjecture – how the world will react if “they” are wrong. To answer that question, I might as well ask my plumber. My plumber is very good at making predictions about human behaviors. He has a lot of experience in seeing how people behave when sh^t doesn’t flow in the way people expect.

        And besides, again, the point was to sarcastically note Judith’s selective attitude about “appealing to authority.”

      • Joshua: Dr. Stopa is offering his musings not only on the scientific probabilities, but also on things which are complete conjecture – how the world will react if “they” are wrong. To answer that question, I might as well ask my plumber.

        I get it. What Dr Stopa wrote that your plumber couldn’t is something you choose to ignore.

      • Matt –

        I get it. What Dr Stopa wrote that your plumber couldn’t is something you choose to ignore.

        No. That isn’t true, Matt. I don’t ignore it. In fact, I acknowledged its existence. I view those areas as important subjects for conjecture, and recognize that there are multiple viewpoints that, as someone not intelligent enough or knowledgeable enough to evaluate, seem plausible.

        But when seemingly plausible conjecture about the science is accompanied by useless political polemics, I note the latter and ask whether it influences the reasoning imbedded in the former.

        And Matt – you are much smarter than I am. You understand stuff I could never hope to understand. That is why I find it interesting when you, repeatedly, read things that I haven’t said into what I have said or, as in this case, build a conjecture that is in contrast to what I did say.

  6. Does Stopa have at least a rough estimate of the sensitivity of climate to doubling of CO2? Since he’s a physicist he presumably understands the physics, and is merely doubting it’s anywhere near as high as 3 degrees per doubling. But what is his estimate?

    If he doesn’t have one then he’s like a traffic cop stopping motorists for speeding without bothering to check their speed.

    • It really sounds like his estimate of the sensitivity of climate to CO2 is nothing. That is most likely right. CO2 has risen for seven thousand years while temperature cycled in the the same stable range.

    • That would be nice to know. Since he mentions water vapor not feeding back, that should put him in the 1C +/-0.5 range. Anyone running for office should have that on their resume :)

    • Why would AGW Theorists attempt stop economies with only models of reality to justify their actions?

    • See above. H0 is that natural variability controls climate and temperature. Take your Trenberth Twist and screw it in where the sun don’t shine. Nobody has to “disprove” a 3K rise will occur.

    • John Carpenter

      “But what is his estimate?”

      Vaughan, his question is a ‘what if’ question. ‘What if they were wrong’, not ‘They’re wrong’. If it was a ‘they’re wrong’ statement, I would expect him to have an answer to your question.

      • John, are you saying Stopa thinks there might be a 20% chance “they’re wrong” and is pursuing that possibility in the unlikely event it happens to be true?

        Based on everything Stopa writes I’m guessing closer to 99.99% or higher.

  7. It would be difficult to disagree with the view put forward especially as they are extremely similar to my own. The one thing sceptics should do is not politicise the debate by thinkIng in terms of right and left. The reason for this is simple. Charles Windsor, Branson , the Murdochs are not exactly card carrying members of the communist party.
    The alarmist can broadly be split into three camps, gullible fools, opportunists and green gravy trainers.

    • There are many camps–e.g., socialists (i.e., anti-capitalists), atheist fundamentalists (i.e., enviro-wacko anti-humanists), contra-cultural hedonists (trust fund liberals and other life-aborted victims of anti-Western science, ideology and Judeo/Christian ethics and morality), the purveyors of anti-Americanism (i.e., haters of the ideals of individual liberty and personal responsibility) …

    • Stacey –

      I don’t agree because I think the majority of people are alarmed simply because it is the default human setting when thinking about the future. People close their eyes, let loose their imaginations for about 3 seconds and voila! You have a fully blown doom-endian apocalypto-catastropher…

      The future is scary – to many people. The ‘climate’ is just a very convenient horse upon which to hang our fearful imaginings.

      I think Al Gore has a few psychological issues – messiah complex for one – but he believes in the apocalypse. Hansen too, and McKibben and Monbiot.

      OK, I’ll admit that Mann falls into at least two of your categories ( :) ) but most people can just see the terrible happenings of the future. Like real events!
      And of course, we can’t reason people out of the beliefs that they end up with, because they didn’t use reason to acquire them in the first place. People are by and large scaredy-cats. Always have been, always will.

      • Don’t forget the guilt along with the fear. The irony here is that some of the guilt comes from knowing that we do have a large effect on our future, that motivates most of our actions. Without that power, no guilt. A fair trade, methinks, but tools of unpredictable strength.
        ================

      • True enough.
        And there’s the link with old-style fire and brimstone religion. We’re bad; everything we do is bad; we should do less of everything to minimise our badness; our footprints are records of how very very bad we’ve been.

        Another way to cow the human spirit.

      • And drive the herd to madness.
        ===============

    • Green gravy? That’s gotta be unhealthy.

      :D

  8. Mike Stopa said,

    “Here I ask this. Suppose it turns out that CO2 has essentially nothing to do with the earth’s climate. How will the history of this colossal mistake be written?”

    —————

    Judith,

    The history of the colossal CO2 mistake will be written and treated like that colossal mistake of the late 19th century and 20th century called Marxism. Academically established scholars and authoritarian intellects will continue to support the colossal mistake in an orgy of obscure shape shifting. The rest of the people (like those who deal with the real world; that is ~99% of the population) will move on toward continuing human advancement and enlightenment.

    John

    • John- “The history of the colossal CO2 mistake will be written and treated like that colossal mistake of the late 19th century and 20th century called Marxism. ”
      Yes, they will hide for a while, then start to remove it from the history books, playing down the failure, then rewrite it as a success which was thwarted by those nasty capitalists. Those who ignore their history are doomed to repeat it. Compare the history of the American Revolution as taught in the first half of the twentieth century to the watered down and rewritten ‘history’ being taught now. Except for a few of the names, you would think they were written about two different countries. The revolution is usually less than two pages of the one chapter devoted to US history up through the nineteenth century, including the civil war. In my granddaughter’s 8th grade book, Valley Forge was one sentence.
      It will all be remembered, rewritten, forgotten, and, sadly, repeated.

      • The propagandization of education will only stop when conservatives realize they have to stop just building things and raising families, and start doing the things necessary to make sure this country isn’t allowed to forget its history. We have to start moving into the education establishment, elementary and high school level. We have to start running for school boards and local offices.

        The left controls academia because conservatives allowed themselves to be drummed out, beginning in the 60s. I spent years reading my kids’ text books and assignments so I could deprogram them as they went along.

        I remember one year, all three of my kids, in different grades, all had projects on Harriet Tubman. A magnificent woman, one who I learned about in high school in the early 70s, being taught history by one of the few conservatives I ran into in my educational career. Two of my own and one step child and – dozens of projects on Tubman, global warming, and slavery. Nary a one on Washington, Lincoln, or the Revolution in all their years of education. Oh wait, one had to do a report on Crispus Attucks, but that was it.

        The left decided long ago it had no chance of a genuine revolution here, so they changed their tactics. And education was where many of the brightest (like Bill Ayers) went. If we surrender the education of our children to them, we have no one but ourselves to blame if they come out ignorant of conservative principles and successes that made this country great.

      • GaryM,

        Good post. Change the names and you would be describing the situation in the UK today. Over here people are beginning to show signs of waking up. Whether they actually get as far as trying to do something about it remains to be seen.

      • Sadly Daniel, you are correct.

        Of course Dr. Curry is partially to blame, she contributes to the PC standard of “limits” to communication by goinf silent on the core of topics. While this is an engaging lead article she will avoid all statements about herself and peers that reveal the motives of co2 fraud.

        It’s only when AGW is correctly associated to Marxist idealism (that they can’t admit to themselves often enough) can social progress be achieved. (Really social decline be reduced is more honest).

        Our board shill Joshua is doing the “Hyjack Freak Show” but what is really more important and will be ignored is Dr. Curry will say nothing relating to her profession and their core views directly. This is a false confession article.

      • GaryM

        Yes the Texas State Board of Education doesn’t exist and we must hurry to create it, because it will do so much to promote historical and scientific accuracy thru out the educational system in the US.

  9. This one

    “They will say the theory was seemingly invalidated by the evidence that the atmosphere was already nearly opaque in the wavelengths that are absorbed by CO2 and so the additional CO2 could have, on its own, little effect, but that the theory was patched up by positing a feedback mechanism between the small temperature increases directly due to CO2 and the production of water vapor which is the main greenhouse gas.”

    has always been an issue with me. It’s what I recall from Atmospheric Physics class many years ago. I did get an explaination having something to do with secondary impacts and side radiation, but my physics – never that strong to begin with – wasn’t up to understanding it.

    I understand the argument that after eliminating other possible causes, CO2 with a positive water vapor feedback mechanism will get climate models to match past temperature records. Which is plenty of justification for continued funding and research to confirm that link and to continue to research other possible mechanisms. What I don’t see justification for is major political and economic policy changes.

  10. What if Newton was wrong?

    • Wouldn’t that have been picked up almost immediately?

      • Wouldn’t [Newton being wrong] have been picked up almost immediately?

        Wrong about what? About radiation? In fact he was wrong.

        In the 17th century Newton denied that light could be a wave on the ground that if it were one would see diffraction. It was not until the 19th century that physicists realized they could see diffraction. Had it occurred to Newton that the wavelength of light could be less than a hundredth of the thickness of a human hair, he might have realized that diffraction would look different than what he expected, and recognized that the glow around a coin held up to block the Sun was diffraction.

        So regarding the wave nature of light, (a) Newton was wrong and (b) it was not picked up “almost immediately,” far from it.

      • If Newton were wrong we wouldn’t have to pick up anything :-)

      • John Q. Lurker

        DocMartyn said: Newton never wondered why the sunlight reflected from a horseman riding towards him didn’t arrive before the rider physically did.

        Huh? It does arrive before the rider arrives. Newton, during much of his younger life, would probably have supposed the speed of light to be infinite, just the opposite of what you imply. That was the widely held view in those days.

        However, he lived for 50 years after Roemer had found evidence that it was finite, and not much less than 50 years after Huygens had estimated it to be about 133,000 miles/second, so it’s entirely possible that he came to believe that it was finite.

      • It’s too bad Huygens didn’t propose a wavelength for his wave theory of light, which Newton took strong objection to. Had Huygens guessed that it was anything like the 50,000 cycles per inch (i.e. the wavelength is 20 millionths of an inch) that it actually is, Newton might have looked at the question from that point of view and history would have turned out very differently.

    • Joshua, under certain frames of reference, Newton is wrong, or at least insufficient.
      But we are not talking about classical physics.
      And you are just trying to hijack yet another thread.

      • “under certain frames of reference, Newton is wrong”

        Really? If I hit a ball against a stationary wall the balls bounces off the wall at approximately the velocity it hit it with.
        If I hit a ball against a train going at 70 mph the ball bounces off at approach velocity + train speed.
        Newton is right about bouncing balls.
        When light bounces off a stationary wall the light bounces off the wall at EXACTLY the velocity it hit it with.
        If light bounces of the front of a train going at 70 mph the light EXACTLY has EXACTLY the same velocity it hit the train with.

        Newton never wondered why the sunlight reflected from a horseman riding towards him didn’t arrive before the rider physically did.

      • Doc,
        Your example is what I was trying to say, however poorly.
        One of the things I find interesting about the AGW believers is that they confuse basic physics with AGW.

      • One of the things I find interesting about the AGW believers is that they confuse basic physics with AGW.

        Not as much as you just confused me, hunter. I have no idea what you mean by this, please clarify.

      • Dr. Pratt,
        As Pielke, Sr. has said for years, AGW theory is not basic physics. It is an application of physics not dis-similar to an engineering program to test airplane design, for instance. A failure of the engineering model does not require physical laws to be violated or invalidated. It simply means that the model was incorrectly applying the physics.

      • It simply means that the model was incorrectly applying the physics.

        Understood, hunter, thanks for clarifying that.

        But this raises a new question. What was the error in applying the physics to the model? The 60,000 members of the AGU would love to know, as would the even greater number of members of the American Institute of Physics.

        It would a great embarrassment for physicists to learn that their physics was being applied incorrectly to such an important matter as climate.

    • Newton was wrong — but just as very high speeds and large energies.

      But if he were wrong in the day-to-day regime we could never have landed on the Moon.

      • But if he were wrong in the day-to-day regime we could never have landed on the Moon.

        Granted Newton’s laws of motion are among his fundamental contributions, but I would call light part of the day-to-day regime as well, and there he was very wrong! The moon landing depended critically on an understanding of optics and more generally electromagnetic radiation, the wave nature of which Newton got completely wrong.

        Certainly gravity plays a role in modern climate change, but radiation plays a much bigger role. So the fact that Newton was right about gravity is less relevant to climate change than the fact that he was wrong about the whole concept of wavelength, without which the whole theory of greenhouse gases would be toast.

        But I can see hunter salivating at the thought that someone will someday demolish the greenhouse theory by showing that Newton was right after all that light does not have a wavelength. Lots of luck with that, hunter. ;)

    • Joshua: What if Newton was wrong?

      We wouldn’t have interplanetary exploration, communications satellites, accurate ICBMs or men on the moon.

      He was accurate enough for that. He was indeed wrong on the precession of the perihelion of Mars, and didn’t even think about the bending of starlight by the Sun’s gravitational field.

  11. Willis Eschenbach

    First, let me applaud John Whitman’s comment above:

    Academically established scholars and authoritarian intellects will continue to support the colossal mistake in an orgy of obscure shape shifting. The rest of the people (like those who deal with the real world; that is ~99% of the population) will move on toward continuing human advancement and enlightenment.

    Second, I think it will be seen as a failure of the central paradigm. The current central paradigm is that temperature is a linear function of forcing, or as it is usually put,

    ∆T = λ ∆F

    where ∆T is change in temperature, ∆F is change in forcing, and lambda ( λ ) is a constant called “climate sensitivity”.

    I think this claim of linearity will eventually be seen as a ludicrous and almost childish oversimplification of a complex flow system with many thermostatic and homeostatic mechanisms operating at all spatial and temporal scales.

    And as you point out, Judith, the interesting thing is how this temptingly simple misconception took over a whole field of science …

    w.

    • “I think this claim of linearity will eventually be seen as a ludicrous and almost childish oversimplification of a complex flow system with many thermostatic and homeostatic mechanisms operating at all spatial and temporal scales.”

      Oh great, so a sudden doubling of CO2 could actually result in 10C warming afterall. Why don’t you go off now and warn all your skeptic pals at the possible catastrophe in the making?

      • …except that whatever empirical evidence has been gathered up to now suggests low sensitivity.

      • Ted Carmichael

        lolwat – “homeostatic” implies that negative feedback is dominant. 10C warming would imply positive feedback dominates. What you suggest, then, is the opposite of what Willis suggested. That is probably why he doesn’t warn everyone about the catastrophe in the making.

    • Willis –

      Just out of curiosity. The human body maintains homeostasis because as the result of evolutionary processes, we wouldn’t exist if it didn’t. There is a causal mechanism there. Living beings that aren’t homeostatic (at least at some level) don’t produce.

      Now you claim that the Earth maintains a homeostasis. In a sense, that could be evolutionary also – in that at some levels planets don’t exist if there aren’t some homeostatic balances at play. But certainly planets exist without anything near the type of law of homeostasis of climate variables that you assert. Planets don’t reproduce.

      Discuss.

      • Joshua,

        Five words.

        Fewer comments, lots more thought.

        “The human body maintains homeostasis because as the result of evolutionary processes, we wouldn’t exist if it didn’t?”

        “…at some levels planets don’t exist if there aren’t some homeostatic balances at play?”

        “Planets don’t reproduce?”

        I disagree with the vast majority of what you write, but at least it is usually intelligible. You are in overdrive in posting comments right now (16 of 59 so far), but how about translating this one?

      • Gary –

        Here’s what’s interesting to me about your comment.

        You have posted very long comments, at least 2 or 3 times, going into great detail telling others why they should not read my comments, and even more than that, why they should not respond to my comments.

        But yesterday you bothered to research my comments over a couple of days and write up a report of what I posted and when.

        And now, today, you’ve taken to counting the number of times I’ve posted.

        I’d like to get to your questions in this most recent post, but I’m having some trouble putting this all together, and I can’t get past the sequence of contradictory information contained in your previous comments to me.

        For example, why would you count my posts if you felt that they are not worth paying attention to?

        Why are you asking for an explanation from someone you have counseled others to ignore?

        First clear up my confusion and then I’ll attempt to clear up yours.

      • Fair questions. Why did I count your comments, and why did I respond to you?

        Now I have consistently responded to you on the rare occasion you post a comment on the subject of the thread, or a cogent question or comment to one of my own. But that obviously was not the case here.

        So as to why I bothered to count you comments: I have counted your questions exactly twice in my following this blog. On both occasions I simply scanned the thread to read the comments from start to finish, ie early in the thread. I got the impression that you were trying to dominate the thread, divert it, raise spurious questions of semantics etc., but before making that claim, I counted to make sure it wasn’t just my own visceral reaction to seeing so many of your comments.

        When you seem to be making a conscious effort to spam the thread, I see nothing wrong with pointing that out. And that was what I did.

        As to why I responded to your comments at all: The last two days you were doing your Rumpelstiltskin dance demanding that David Wojcik explain himself and his activities, based on a document that you yourself later admitted was “bizarre.” I suspected that particular document was a fake the moment I read it, but unlike you, did not begin posting challenges to the purveyors to explain their apparent duplicity.

        I don’t usually respond to your various insulting insinuations to others because I don’t notice them much. But I saw a history of Wojick being particularly polite to you, no matter how inane your comments to him. I must admit being taken aback by your rather boorish comments in demanding he explain why he was not guilty of the false charge implicitly made against him by that forged document. If you have apologized to him, I missed it.

        As to why I responded to your comment tonight, I explained why in my response. You are pedantic, tribal, often spam the thread and divert the discussion. You misrepresent sometimes what others write, and are generally annoying as hell. But not stupid.

        In point of fact, this time I assumed you had an actual question in mind and was curious as to what it was. So sue me.

      • > But I saw a history of Wojick being particularly polite to you, no matter how inane your comments to him.

        This looks like a claim
        based on an impression
        that would have deserved
        due diligence.

        And let’s note that
        David is polite while
        Joshua’s comments are
        inane, and Joshua is
        the tribal one.
        Check.

      • As to why I responded to your comment tonight, I explained why in my response. You are pedantic, tribal, often spam the thread and divert the discussion. You misrepresent sometimes what others write, and are generally annoying as hell. But not stupid.

        Oh. Now I see. You count my posts, research the history of what I say when, and post long comments to others about why they shouldn’t read my posts and shouldn’t respond to me, and then you repeatedly respond to my posts and ask me questions, because I am pedantic, tribal, a spammer, a diverter, who misrpresents what others write, and annoying as hell.

        Ok. Now that make sense. Sorry for needing that further explanation.

        Hilarious.

      • willard –

        David has ad hommed me many a time. Called me a liar, stuff like that. Sometimes he is quite civil, however, so Gary wasn’t completely wrong.

        I may have insulted David – but I think anyone would be hard pressed to find an example. The best Gary could find was exemplified in his insinuation yesterday that when I said that I didn’t think that David would be involved in an effort to dissuade teachers from teaching science, I was actually saying that I thought David was involved in an effort to dissuade teachers from teaching science.

        It takes a special kind of logic to figure that one out. Don’t bother trying.

      • And Gary –

        I just wanted to note this beauty:

        I got the impression that you were trying to dominate the thread, divert it, raise spurious questions of semantics etc.,

        So – you counted the number of posts I made, because the number returned would prove your subjective determination of what comprises “diversion” and subjective speculation on my intentions.

        You must be an engineer, Gary, or perhaps a scientist – but whichever, you’re clearly a “skeptic,” because no one else but an engineer or scientists “skeptic” could use objective data like that to prove conclusions that are, in their entirety, completely subjective by their very nature.

        I am not worthy.

      • Joshua, do you know what the main characteristic of all stable systems is? Stability.
        Richard Dawkins was trying to explain how ones view of what is stable depends on observer bias. With a 70 year lifespan your vies as to what is ‘stable’ or ‘normal’ is completely different from that of an entity that lived for 700,000 years.
        A watcher on the moon with a 100,000,000 lifespan would muse on the seasonal nature of life on Earth, complexity, extinction level even, slow recover, species blooming, new steady state, extinction level event.
        Mars has a stable temperature, Venus, Mercury, Jupiter to. All the damned planets have a stable temperature because if they were at a semi-stable state it would have collapsed sometime in the last 4 billion years.
        The Earth has been hit by rocks the size of mountains, had volcanoes big enough to cover the continental USA with 6 meters of ash and still bounced back. Now just why do you think that is?

      • doc –

        Richard Dawkins was trying to explain how ones view of what is stable depends on observer bias.

        I completely agree and that was part of my point. Temperatures on Mercury range from what, 800F to -300F?. What’s Venus, something like 800F all the time? How different was Mars’ climate in the past from how it is now? Looks like homeostasis is a relative term also.

        So maybe you can dumb it down enough to answer my question: we can see a causal mechanism between homeostasis in life forms – what’s the causal mechanism behind homeostasis in climate. Some people think it’s God – Willis isn’t a believer in the supernatural, so what other explanations are there? He offered a theory, but from what I an tell it is an awfully vague and theoretical peg to hang your hat on.

      • Joshua, you should shut up and come back in a few days.

      • Matt –

        Joshua, you should shut up and come back in a few days.

        Coincidentally, I will be gone for a couple of days. But don’t worry, I’ll be back again for you to insult me, tell others that my comments aren’t worth responding to, etc.Apparently you derive some enjoyment from those activities and I wouldn’t want to deprive you.

      • Joshua. take out the trash. learn to apply the right leverage. I’ve shown you how. so much to learn. watch willard, but not for an example.

      • “Now you claim that the Earth maintains a homeostasis. In a sense, that could be evolutionary also – in that at some levels planets don’t exist if there aren’t some homeostatic balances at play.”

        Of course the planets exist. Venus exists, it just isn’t like Earth.
        But could planet at Venus Sun distant be more earth like?

        What would planet with Mars’ mass be like at Venus distance?
        Or suppose Venus had life and/or plate tectonics.
        Or suppose Venus simply had 1/100th of it’s atmosphere.
        Maybe all Venus needs is to be hit with big enough impact at “the right”
        vector, which could blast off most of it’s atmosphere??

        Speaking of space rocks, earth must have a homeostasis, earth has scars from impactor larger than 170 km crater of the dinosaur killer rock.
        “Vredefort South Africa 300 km 2 billion years ago
        Sudbury Ontario, Canada 250 km 1.85 billion years ago
        Chicxulub Yucatán, Mexico 170 km 65 million years ago

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

        Now, earth is mostly covered with ocean- the two known impactor craters
        larger than Yucatán, are on the land. Plus plate tectonic which would erase some and other geological processes which could also obscure them.

      • I’m not sure I’ve ever seen anyone as obsessed as Mosher with telling everyone else how they should be more like him.

        The boy has issues.

      • A watcher on the moon with a 100,000,000 lifespan would muse on the seasonal nature of life on Earth, complexity, extinction level even, slow recover, species blooming, new steady state, extinction level event.

        We humans keep coming up with effective ways of extinguishing our own species. We were only able to avoid extinction by nuclear warfare because the danger was so clear, and even that was a close shave for those who remember the Cuban missile crisis.

        Eventually we’ll dream up some insidious method of extinguishing ourselves where the danger is so obscure we won’t react until it’s too late. A handful of scientists will see it coming, but the physics will be so much more subtle than a mushroom shaped cloud that the scientists will be ridiculed on a thousand blogs like this one.

        AGW may not be that method. But it seems to me that whatever effect we dream up that eventually extinguishes us as a species will be subtle to approximately the same degree.

        Several years of listening to debates on climate blogs have convinced me that the public’s ability to see a coming threat is on a par with their ability to see the same things through their binoculars that astronomers are able to see with the Hubble Telescope. Which is basically nothing. Scientists say they see something, the public looks and sees nothing, and accuses the scientists of crying wolf, or Ursa Minor or whatever.

        Denying global warming is like claiming that the Hubble images were all Photoshopped. Which people would do if there were anything at stake there, but there isn’t so they simply take the Hubble images on faith with no possible way of confirming their reality for themselves.

        Global warming makes a criminal out of everyone whose car emits CO2. “Who wants to be a criminal?” can’t hope to compete with “Who wants to be a millionaire?” So everyone who doesn’t want to be a criminal claims they can see more clearly than the scientists, who therefore must be blind as bats.

        As no doubt they are, wouldn’t you agree?

      • Vaughn,

        An interesting comment, but one that strikes me as overly pessimistic. With proper leadership–from the front and by example–people can be convinced of the hardest truths and inspired to the greatest sacrifices.

        The problem with the CAGW deal is that there has been no such leadership. Rather, preposterous carbon-piggie hypocrites have been in the forefront of the carbon scares. And always, these hypocrites urge sacrifice on us “little guys” while preserving for themselves their high-carbon good deals and toys.

        Likewise, the CAGW scare has been seized by make-a-buck hustlers and make-a-gulag “green economy” lefties for business and political advantage. Not inspiring stuff, you can imagine.

        And then there are the academics who claim special knowledge of the carbon peril who, nevertheless, jet about the world, for example, attending high-carbon conferences like the IPCC’s annual carbon pig-out parties. And do so even though video-conferencing is readily available for such confabs at enormous savings of carbon emissions and tax-payer dollars. Not such a good leadership example, I think you’ll agree, Vaughan.

        In other words, Vaughn, if you want to convince people of a peril–especially one difficult to dramatize–and move them to action, then you and your colleagues must lead from the front and BY EXAMPLE! And you also have to bite the hand that feeds you and ensure your betters are also leading from the front and by example–or are held up by you and your fellow academics to an unremitting public ridicule.

        In contrast, the current CAGW leadership model pursued by our betters and their smarty-pants courtiers, takes the form of some guys living it up in luxurious chateaux, far to the rear, calling-in exhortations to us snuffies at the front demanding that we die more bravely. Not surprisingly, those of us on the receiving end of such bold words are not too impressed.

        I mean, Vaughn, check out any military cemetery near you, if you want to see the sort of personal sacrifices Joe-Six-Pack is willing to make on behalf of a higher purpose. You don’t have to worry about “Joe.” It’s just that “Joe” is getting a little sick and tired of having his natural propensity to do the right thing cynically abused by shysters, shirkers, and wannabe commisars.

      • Joshua: Apparently you derive some enjoyment from those activities

        Your comments are a waste of time but a guilty pleasure. No one else here writes so totally nonsensically as you do.

      • Ka-ching!!

      • Michael.
        You clearly missed the point. I am not telling Joshua to be like me. He needs to learn to apply the right leverage. I showed you how, but its up to you to find your own way. And, it took almost no effort on my part. Just the right leverage, and a whole story flips. watch, you can do it too.

      • Michael,

        On another Bat-channel, Howard seemed to have missed the point too:

        > Mosher is pretending to apply rigorous scientific analysis and ethics to solve the worlds greatest mystery in another effort to hide a pathetic Napoleonic complex. At the same time, Joshua is pretending to be Rodney King playing the Wizard of Oz.

        http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com/post/17884498199

        The concept of leveraging deserves due diligence. It goes well with the intention of honestly brokering. Others might feel lukewarm about it, of course.

        ***

        Joshua,

        I agree with GaryM’s main point: monopolizing the dancing floor shows bad manners. If you need that much room practice, it might be better to seek other ballrooms. If memory serves me well, I already told you twice. Here’s one conversation:

        http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com/post/11908568084

        This leads me to a second point I’d like to tell you. You claim that David insulted you. But you only claim it: what about showing an instance? If you can quote David insulting you, we break the standoff between your words and GaryM’s.

        Moshpit knows this:

        http://rankexploits.com/musings/2012/ipcc-vs-mcintyre-round-2/#comment-89636

        When faced with paying due diligence and flipping scripts, due diligence becomes marginalia and flipping scripts becomes leveraging.

      • willard –

        You’re entitled to doubt my claim about David ad homming me if you so wish. (In fact, one of the times he did it, when I called him on it he tried that always amusing response of explaining to me that insulting me isn’t really an ad hom.)

        I’m not going to bother with the research involved. I know it’s true. That’s good enough for me.

      • Let me address two points you raise, in reverse order. Firstly, personal attacks are not inherently “ad hominem,” though your confusion is a common one. “Ad hominem ” is an argument that says “your idea is wrong, because you’re an idiot.” It is not “ad hominem” to argue “your idea is wrong, and so you are an idiot.”

        To answer your original question, I would have thought the answer was obvious. Earth does not display homeostasis because life evolved on it, but, rather, the opposite. We’re here to notice the homeostasis of Earth because it was that homeostasis that allowed us to evolve here. If Sagan was correct that technological civilizations live on four planets in our galaxy, I bet you every one of them is homeostatic–even if there are only four homeostatic planets in our galaxy to choose from.

    • Willis, it works if you AVERAGE the temperature 24/7/365, in the same way that you can safely put your head in a furnace as long as you are standing in a Dewer of liquid nitrogen. As long as your average temperature is 37 degrees, you will be fine.

  12. See CG2 #1682 and #2268 where this question is answered by Tommy Wils in a discussion about the McIntyre Problem and the separation of science and politics:

    “What if climate change appears to be just mainly a multidecadal natural
    fluctuation? They’ll kill us probably…”

  13. Willis Eschenbach

    timg56 | February 17, 2012 at 7:45 pm | Reply

    This one

    “They will say the theory was seemingly invalidated by the evidence that the atmosphere was already nearly opaque in the wavelengths that are absorbed by CO2 and so the additional CO2 could have, on its own, little effect, but that the theory was patched up by positing a feedback mechanism between the small temperature increases directly due to CO2 and the production of water vapor which is the main greenhouse gas.”

    has always been an issue with me.

    I’m more definite. I don’t believe that one in the slightest. It’s not like a black window which can’t get blacker. The issue is how many times the radiation is absorbed and radiated on the way to space.

    w.

    • WE: I’m more definite. I don’t believe that one in the slightest. It’s not like a black window which can’t get blacker. The issue is how many times the radiation is absorbed and radiated on the way to space.

      This reminds me of the Johnny von Neumann story where someone at a party asked him how long a fly would spend traveling if it left a locomotive traveling east at 50 mph 100 miles from one traveling west on the same track at the same speed, and flew back and forth between them until they collided. Von Neumann said “An hour.” The questioner said, “I see you knew the trick. Most people try to sum the infinite series.” To which von Neumann replied, “But that’s how I did it.”

      Von Neumann surely knew the trick and was just tweaking his interlocutor. But even so, summing certain particularly simple infinite series such as that one is only slightly harder, and he could without doubt have done it either way if pressed.

      In the case of radiation that is absorbed and re-radiated many times on its way to space however, Willis is just as surely correct that in this case the infinite series is far from simple.

      But it does not follow that there is no trick.

      The trick in this case is to ignore photons that fail in their attempted escape and to estimate only the quantity of successful photons. Some of them go straight from the ground to space, others straight from clouds and other aerosols to space, and a great many of them straight from GHG molecules to space. Knowledge of those alone is sufficient to estimate total OLR.

      Even that estimation is tricky, but it is far easier than attempting to compute what happens to radiation that is captured before it escapes and bounces around until it eventually does escape to space, the way Willis proposes to compute it.

      The key to the simpler method is to have a map of the temperature of the atmosphere at all altitudes and latitudes over all seasons of the year, and to apply the Stefan-Boltzmann law and Beer’s law corrected for limb darkening (since not all photons travel vertically).

      This map is not the sort of thing a theoretical physicist could arrive at from the laws of physics, as it depends on very hard-to-analyze details such as the distribution of ocean vs. land, and the distribution of altitude of the latter (it’s easier for photons to escape to space from Machu Picchu than from Lima), as functions of latitude, with the added complication of the seasons attributable to the 23.4 degree tilt of the equatorial plane to the plane of the ecliptic.

      And it also depends on the distribution of temperature of the atmosphere as a function of altitude and latitude. This latter information can be obtained from radiosondes that have been launched twice a day from more than a thousand locations around the Earth. Over the decades these have produced many millions of datapoints that can in principle be compiled to form such a map. A daunting task for sure, but one that Fleming et al did for us in 1988 (at least up to that time) and which Mark Jacobson has graphed in his book Fundamentals of Atmospheric Modeling in Figure 2.5 on p.26.

      I am particularly interested in hearing from those with more recent information of this kind, please don’t hesitate to Google and contact me.

  14. I think another physicist has observed this “lack of scientific integrity”.

    Richard Feynman from his 1974 address at CalTech (excerpts):

    “In the South Seas there is a cargo cult of people. During the war they saw
    airplanes land with lots of good materials, and they want the same
    thing to happen now. So they’ve arranged to imitate things like
    runways, to put fires along the sides of the runways, to make a
    wooden hut for a man to sit in, with two wooden pieces on his head
    like headphones and bars of bamboo sticking out like antennas–he’s
    the controller–and they wait for the airplanes to land. They’re
    doing everything right. The form is perfect. It looks exactly the
    way it looked before. But it doesn’t work. No airplanes land. So
    I call these things cargo cult science, because they follow all the
    apparent precepts and forms of scientific investigation, but
    they’re missing something essential, because the planes don’t land.”

    “For example, if you’re doing an experiment, you should report everything that you think might make it invalid–not only what you think is right about
    it: other causes that could possibly explain your results; and things you thought of that you’ve eliminated by some other experiment, and how they worked–to make sure the other fellow can tell they have been eliminated.”

    “We’ve learned from experience that the truth will come out.”

    Some physicists are good at spotting fake science – Mike Stopa and Richard Feynman are good examples.

    Here’s the link to the address – worth reading:

    http://www.lhup.edu/~DSIMANEK/cargocul.htm

    • Some physicists are good at spotting fake science – Mike Stopa and Richard Feynman are good examples.

      So? Some Republican Vice Presidents are bad at spelling — Dan Quayle and Nelson Rockefeller are good examples. Mike Stopa is to Richard Feynman as Dan Quayle is to Nelson Rockefeller. What’s your point?

      • Vaughan Pratt

        You ask Tom Kennedy

        What’s your point?

        As I read it, I believe Tom’s point was

        Some physicists are good at spotting fake science – Mike Stopa and Richard Feynman are good examples.

        To me this seemed pretty easy to understand.

        Max

  15. I don’t want anyone to worry, there are plenty of spots still available on the Sky Dragon Slayer team.

  16. All well and good….except we know that this is not a very plausible proposition;
    “Suppose it turns out that CO2 has essentially nothing to do with the earth’s climate.”.

    And suppose it turns out the solar system actually revolves around the earth……

    “They will say that a mechanism called the “greenhouse effect,” was postulated long ago (~1824 by Joseph Fourier) and gained adherents in the late 20th century”

    And suppose Mike had a better grasp of history…..
    He might have remembered Tyndall (1859) and Arrhenius(1896) and Chamberlain (1897), Callender (1938), Ewin and Donn (1956), Revell (1957), Keeling (1960)…etc etc.

    Oh, and “But AGW is intrinsically wrapped up with political ideology and, increasingly, with economics and government”.

    ??

    Someone better tell Mike the history of physics funding – you know, Office of Naval Research, DoE, DoD, govt’s all over the world.

    Yikes, this is banal stuff.

    Just what we need, another political ideologue projecting their biases and obsessions ( “the entire anti-capitalist Global Left”) onto climate science.

    Need it like we need a poke in the eye with a sharp stick.

    • What if all life on earth is just an experiment run by some aliens?

      Leftist aliens.

      I’ll bet you never thought about that.

      • OK. Now that was a good one.

        Extra bacon for you tonight.

        And if you jump through hoops like I made you did on the last thread, I’ll even give you a baco-treat.

      • Josh,

        Every time you post I give the possibility some careful thought.

        Another possibility is it’s being taken over by computers, like your namesake in Wargames. And your interminable posts are some vast Turing test to see if we spot the difference. :-)

      • Joshua

        How about rightist reactionary aliens?

        Have you ever thought of that?

        Max

      • If true, I’m betting that they produce sc-fi movies about how experiments with planted species on remote planets lead to the collapse of their civilization.

        And have politicians and others claiming all such experimentation must stop for disaster to be averted.

    • Michael

      We may know (?) that there is a GH effect, that CO2 is a GHG and that humans emit CO2.

      That’s about it, Michael.

      We have no notion how significant this effect really is on our planet’s climate.

      If we look at our past global temperatures and the past CO2 levels, we can estimate that a doubling of CO2 could possibly cause a warming of between 0.8 and 1.5 degC, depending upon how much of the past warming we attribute to natural factors. This would mean that CO2 has little to do with our climate..

      This is the point (a valid one) that Mike Stopa is making.when he writes:

      Suppose it turns out that CO2 has essentially nothing to do with the earth’s climate.

      A valid supposition to which there is no definitive answer as yet.

      Max

  17. What if they are wrong..

    Their forecasts have been wrong for 15 years.

    Their forecasts have been warmer, warmer warmest.
    It has not happened. It is very clear that they are wrong.

  18. And, what if they were right?

    “If man made global warming is indeed real, and it helps to prevent another ice age, this would be the most fortunate thing that has happened to our species since we barely escaped extinction from an especially cold period during the last ice age some 75,000 years ago.” ~Walter Starck

    • Thanks for that comprehensive treatise on “What if they were right,” Wagathon. It’s almost as comprehensive as the one that Judith posted on “What if they are wrong.”

      Would you happen to be a Harvard physicist, thought? Otherwise I’m afraid that yours isn’t as valuable as the other one.

  19. What if they are wrong?

    What if they are right?

    Sounds like the science is inadequate to answer either question. Huh.

    Andrew

  20. A more important question is why should Mike Stopa’s opinion matter when it doesn’t make sense.

    Mike Stopa argues that if AGW is wrong it will mean there is no greenhouse effect. Seriously?

    He also argues that if AGW is wrong it will mean CO2 rise is not caused by man.

    Neither of these arguments follow.

    There are factual errors too. He thinks there is “considerable, scientifically justified doubt” about water vapor feedback. No there isn’t. He’s confusing his feedbacks isn’t he? He’s thinking of cloud feedback.

    He also writes another factual error: “In an interesting admission the (British) Met Office and the University of East Anglia Climatic Research Unit have now admitted that the climate has ceased rising for the last 15 years.”

    No they didn’t.

    And what the hell is this:
    “They will say that the theory was challenged by the noted vast gap between the amount of CO2 produced by civilization and the substantially smaller increase in CO2 in the atmosphere, but that the theory was patched up by examining the increased CO2 uptake by the hydrosphere and the biosphere.”

    Doesn’t he know there is very strong evidence that the oceans and biosphere are net uptaking CO2? How on earth can an observed phenomenon be caused a “patch”.

    I mean why does this man’s opinion count for jack when it’s full of errors and makes no sense?

    • A more important question is why should Mike Stopa’s opinion matter when it doesn’t make sense.

      Because he’s a Harvard physicist?

      • Perhaps because he does physics:
        Michael Stopa

        http://www.people.fas.harvard.edu/~stopa/

      • Oh come on, there must be much more than a thousand physicists working at Cal Tech, Harvard, MIT, Stanford, Princeton, Berkeley, Cornell, and Chicago. If he was on Harvard’s faculty one might take him more seriously but he’s in an administrative position and the most recent climate-relevant paper in his CV was also his second one, in 1979 concerning Helium lines in the Sun.

        Assuming Stopa is among the top thousand in that cohort, why hasn’t even one of the other 999 come to Stopa’s defense?

        If you had 1000 data samples and one of them was as different from the other 999 as Stopa is from his colleagues, most people would consider it legitimate to discard the outlier (hope I spelled that correctly).

    • “He also argues that if AGW is wrong it will mean CO2 rise is not caused by man.”

      Durring the Eemian, CO2 rose 100ppm following temperature and then the interglacial ended.

      No SUV’s.

      • Bruce, PLEASE go read a few textbooks before you post again. Science is well aware that warmer temperatures can lead to higher CO2 atmospheric levels — in fact, the oceans seem to already be absorbing less CO2.

        You’ll note that today’s d(CO2)/dT is 10 times that of the ice ages….

      • David, the Eemian isn’t an ice age. Its an interglacial.

        And temperature rose over 10C. And CO2 rose 100ppm.

        http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/eemian.html

      • And, Bruce, d(CO2) is 100 ppm now, and dT = 1 C. That’s 10x the rate after an ice age.

        Sorry, I’m not good with era names.

      • 1C? Maybe. Measured from the coldest period in the Holocene.

        Maybe .3C at most over the non-CO2 peak in the 1940s.

        .3C is something like March 15th being as warm as March 18th in the UK. Not noticeable.

        And if the 35 year cooling after the 1944 peak is the pattern, we have 20 more years of cooling to go.

      • Bruce, the Eemian is merely the upper end of the most recently completed deglaciation cycle, out of several in the last million years. Every cycle is characterized by a fast 100 ppmv rise in CO2 from 180 to 280 ppmv taking 5 to 10 thousand years, followed by a much slower decline back to 180 ppmv taking around 90 thousand years. The Eemian is the upper part of the last completed cycle and lasted from 130,000 BP to 114,000 BP.

        That the CO2 rose 100 ppmv would be relevant were it not for the fact that the more than 100 ppmv rise from 285 ppmv to 394 ppmv over the past century or so was on top of the highest CO2 level reached by the Eemian. The 100 pmmv rise you speak of started at 180 ppmv and our current level of 394 ppmv is more than double that!

        So you’re being extremely disingenuous in ignoring the huge difference between the current CO2 level and the highest CO2 level reached at any time during the Eemian.

        And as others have pointed out you’re turning a blind eye to the unprecedented speed with which the rise from 280 to 394 ppmv was accomplished, about 50 times as fast as the rise from 180 to 280 at the start of the Eemian.

      • I thought CO2 cause temperature increases because of the rise, not the absolute amount.

        Therefore 100 on top of 190 should cause more warming than 100 on top of 290.

        Yet when it was 290 it was the Little Ice Age, the coldest period in the Holocene.

        Quite clearly temperature is leading CO2 rises in both the Eemian ahd Holocene.

      • I thought CO2 cause temperature increases because of the rise, not the absolute amount.

        Both are true, being governed by respectively transient and equilibrium climate sensitivity.

        Therefore 100 on top of 190 should cause more warming than 100 on top of 290

        Correct, as a consequence of the Arrhenius law that surface temperature depends logarithmically on CO2 level. If the current 394 ppmv level were to go back down to say 288 ppmv we might see a temperature decrease of perhaps 1.3 degrees.

        But if it were then to further go down from 288 to 190 ppmv over a similar time period the decrease might be more like 1.7 degrees, considerably more than 1.3 degrees.

        Yet when it was 290 it was the Little Ice Age, the coldest period in the Holocene.

        Why is this surprising given that 290 is nearly the lowest CO2 during the Holocene? The Holocene did get as low as 270 according to Indermühle et al Science 3 December 1999 Vol. 286 no. 5446 p. 1815, but went as high as 330. CO2 throughout the Holocene remained at the high end of a deglaciation typical of the last million years, and went nowhere near the 180 ppmv level typical of the bottom of a glaciation.

        Being the coldest period in the Holocene is not remotely like being the coldest period in any of the several 100,000 year glaciations that we can read off from the ice core records.

      • Its no surprise a small amount of natural warmer has occurred since the LIA. It is an embarrassment to science that con artists have claimed such a small rise is unusual.

        CO2 rising 100ppm did not save the Eemian from ending.

        CO2 didn’t prevent the drop in temps from 1944 t0 1956 – .435C.

        CO2 does nothing except follow temps.

    • “There are factual errors too. He thinks there is “considerable, scientifically justified doubt” about water vapor feedback. No there isn’t. He’s confusing his feedbacks isn’t he? He’s thinking of cloud feedback.”

      Even believers in AGW can’t agree how much vapor feeback there will be in the future.
      And can anyone say how much vapor feedback has already occurred, with current increase in CO2 levels?
      While on topic, how much warming is caused by irrigation- obviously one is adding billions or trillions of tonnes of water vapor each year.

      • While on topic, how much warming is caused by irrigation- obviously one is adding billions or trillions of tonnes of water vapor each year.

        Excellent question. There are two relevant points. First, as a fraction of the total, unlike the anthropogenic contribution to CO2 the contribution of irrigation to total atmospheric water vapor is a very tiny drop in the bucket. Second, unlike CO2, water condenses at a certain level of humidity to form clouds, and is therefore self-regulating. If you add more water that only results in earlier condensation, it doesn’t result in more total water vapor. When you add more CO2 however there is no condensation, it just accumulates.

      • Willis Eschenbach

        Vaughan, not true at all. See Christy or Kanamaru on the climate effect of irrigation in the California Central Valley.

        w.

    • He also writes another factual error: “In an interesting admission the (British) Met Office and the University of East Anglia Climatic Research Unit have now admitted that the climate has ceased rising for the last 15 years.”

      You have to love the fact that his cite for this “admission” was not a statement by the Met Office or CRU, it was an article in the Daily Mail, with no direct quotes from either.

    • lolwot

      You got it wrong.

      Mike Stopa has not thrown the GH theory under the bus, he has simply written:

      Suppose it turns out that CO2 has essentially nothing to do with the earth’s climate. How will the history of this colossal mistake be written?

      The word “essentially” is a key word here. Sure, there is a GH effect . Sure CO2 is a trace GHG. Sure humans emit CO2.

      But this all does not preclude “that CO2 has essentially nothing to do with the earth’s climate”.

      The model-derived strong positive feedbacks from water (as vapor or liquid droplets/ice crystals in clouds) are not supported by empirical data based on physical observations or reproducible experimentation, IOW they are “uncorroborated”.

      In fact, physical observations (Spencer+Braswell) seem to show that the net feedback from clouds is negative, rather than positive as assumed by the IPCC models.

      Without these postulated strongly positive feedbacks, CO2 increase will have “essentially nothing to do with the earth’s climate”.

      That’s the issue here.

      Max

  21. Judith, not there yet. This post is the closest to the truth, but not there yet. It will take much, much less than 15 years; for people to realize that: the laws of physics don’t permit GLOBAL warming. GLOBAL warming is zero, ZERO!

    I have proven ”beyond any reasonable doubt” that: oxygen + nitrogen control overall temperature on the planet to be ALWAYS the same; parts get warmer than normal – instantly other parts MUST get colder, equalize. 2] Hansen &Co were precise to 0,01C in fluctuation for the last 150y, even though 99,9999999999% of the troposphere is not monitored even today. 3] unlike the moon, earth’s temperature is 3 dimensional distribution in the troposphere. 4] temperature in the troposphere is not as in human body – when is 1C warmer under the armpit, to be same in the whole body. It wasn’t any GLOBAL warming, there is no missing heat. Water vapour makes MILDER CLIMATE – lack of it is, extreme climate – compare Sahara V Brazil. Same sunspots affect both places. Dryer / hotter days is not GLOBAL warming; because nights are colder. Not monitoring for EVERY minute, not monitoring on EVERY cubic kilometre of troposphere, is the biggest Organized Crime on the planet!!! The only reason Warmist are still prospering is because of the Fake Skeptic’s stupidity / ego. History will remember them as ” the destructive Skeptic clowns”
    My formulas are 100% correct; reason both camps are avoiding; the ”ostrich tactic” The truth will win, the sooner, the better for everybody

  22. It’s an odd scientist who’ll cite David Rose of the Daily Mail as his source for a statement that
    In an interesting admission the (British) Met Office and the University of East Anglia Climatic Research Unit have now admitted that the climate has ceased rising for the last 15 years.”

    Especially when Rose in turn gives no links or details.

    But it seems that the basis is this table which says that 1997 and 2011 had about the same global average temperature.

    For a scientist to spin it that way is plain dishonest.

  23. Judy – Mike Stopa stated “it is possible that CO2 has effectively no influence on global climate”, and concluded, “Well, the truth of this issue should be apparent within about 15 years.”

    You appeared to agree with the latter claim, stating ” I think Stopa is about right when he says: Well, the truth of this issue should be apparent within about 15 years”.

    Could you elaborate on why you believe the truth should be apparent within about 15 years? The term “should be apparent” signifies to me a claim for a reasonably high likelihood the truth will be apparent; it’s not a term one uses for an outcome that is only remotely possible. Why is it likely we will know with high probability in 15 years whether or not “CO2 has effectively no influence on global climate”?

    Specifically, in your personal opinion, what likely scenario will ensue over the next 15 years that will probably settle the issue with high certainty, and how will that scenario settle it one way or another by excluding alternative interpretations?

    • Fred, you are right, lets set up EXIT SCENARIOS to lend a helping
      hand to CAGW?IPCC. We are more delighted and motivated to do this work then them, colluding behind closed doors and grinding teeth….
      Make your first EXIT scenario proposal and we all join in the good work…
      JS

      • Well, I’m hoping Dr. Curry will answer my question, because it was she who endorsed Stopa’s statement that “the truth should be apparent” in about 15 years.

    • Easy! CO2 will continue to go up and Temperature will go down.
      CO2 has continued to go up and Temperature has continued to not go up for 15 years. They do say they need 17 years. That is well sooner that 15 more years.

    • Fred, while waiting for Judith, what would you think it would take? I would say with low solar, a cool PDO and a cool AMO, about -0.2 would do it pretty well.

      • Dallas – I’m less interested in Stopa’s claim than in Judy’s support for it, because I’m concerned about statements that sometimes seem to overreach.

        As to my own view, I won’t elaborate in this non-technical thread, but I think David Appell’s comment below offers a reasonable perspective.

    • Fred
      One example of “find out in 15 years” is to compare competing predictive models. e.g. See: Scafetta’s solar-lunar cycle forecast -vs- global temperature
      Scafetta has posited his model dominated by natural cycles with some anthropogenic warming, in contrast to the IPCC’s very dominant anthropogenic warming and very little in natural cycles.
      Or see Scafetta’s TESTING AN ASTRONOMICALLY BASED DECADAL-SCALE EMPIRICAL HARMONIC CLIMATE MODEL VS. THE IPCC (2007) GENERAL CIRCULATION CLIMATE MODELS including paper, graphs and comments.

      a simplified model that probably can be improved, but it already appears to greatly outperform all current GCMs adopted by the IPCC, such as the GISS ModelE. All of them fail in reconstructing the decadal and multidecadal cycles observed in the temperature records and have failed to properly forecast the steady global surface temperature observed since 2001.

      Fifteen years from now will be 27years from 2000. There should be a strong significant difference between the models by then (90% of the “30 years = climate” claim). Considering current trends, I expect that the statistics will show clearly well before then. Even ten years will show strong (non-overlapping) separation of 2 sigma ranges for the two models.
      e.g. See Lucia on The Blackboard:
      GISTemp Anomaly: January lower than December. and her graph:
      GISTemp Land and Sea Anomaly Trend Jan 2001-Jan 2012 shows Red Corrected 0.006C/decade – i.e., just 3% of IPCC’s 0.2C/decade mean trend. Lucia finds:

      The trend since 2001 is 0.006C/dec a decade and is positive but below the nominal multi-model mean trend of 0.2C/dec. If we use “red noise” to model the residuals from a linear fit, and test the hypothesis that the true trend is 0.2C/decade we would reject the a trend of 0.2C/decade as false based on falling outside the 2-σ confidence intervals. We reach the same conclusion if we use any ARIMA model up to (4,0,4) to model the residual or if we use an ARIFMA(1,d,1) model with the best estimate of d to model the residuals.

      Which I see as a statistical way of saying that IPCC models do not include natural oscillations and at least cannot model decadal trends.
      So I find Mike Stopa posts to make a lot more sense than the (non-scientific) “consensus”.

      • Scientists have readily admitted their models can’t do projections over a period as short as a decade. See:

        Santer, B. D., et al. (2011), “Separating Signal and Noise in Atmospheric Temperature Changes: The Importance of Timescale,” J. Geophys. Res., v116, D22105, 19 pp.

        http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2011/2011JD016263.shtml

        Santer et al. argue that “Our results show that temperature records of at least 17 years in length are required for identifying human effects on global-mean tropospheric temperature.”

      • David,

        Santer’s admission would have been far more convincing had it been made before 2011.

        Now, after a decade of minascule warming, you can’t blame sceptics for thinking it sounds a mite like an excuse.

      • c.b., again, you seem to expect climate science to have arrived complete and gift-wrapped, with no right to respond to new facts and new information.

        Of what other scientific field has that ever been expected?

      • David Appell
        Re: “Scientists have readily admitted”
        Please rethink what you said.
        You are implying that Scafetta is not a scientist.

        Note the difference that paradigm makes.
        Scientists that did not expect that natural cycles could dominate did not include the capability to model natural cycles.

        Conversely, scientists that sought to more fully understand how nature actually works, began by tracing, quantifying and incorporating natural oscillations and then incorporating non oscillatory changes of volcanoes and anthropogenic causes. Consequently Scafetta’s model appears to fit better and to be tracking better than the CAGW models.

        Why are you so eager to excuse Santer et al. rather than seeking the best combinations of all scientific discoveries?

      • David Appell | February 17, 2012 at 11:43 pm |
        “c.b., again, you seem to expect climate science to have arrived complete and gift-wrapped, with no right to respond to new facts and new information.”

        In its “State of the Climate in 2008″ report, the NOAA said about climate computer models “The simulations rule out (at the 95% level) zero trends for intervals of 15 yr or more, suggesting that an observed absence of warming of this duration is needed to create a discrepancy with the expected present-day warming rate.”

        So David Appell, have there been any “new facts and information” arising since 2008 (other than the inconvenient flat global temperatures) that allow the goal posts to be moved out an additional 15 years, say?

      • David Appell: “Scientists have readily admitted their models can’t do projections over a period as short as a decade.”
        Sounds like the Brooklyn Dodgers “Wait ’till next year”. But “next year”, like tomorrow, never comes.

    • Fred Moolten

      “The truth should be apparent in about 15 years”.

      Why?

      A good question, Fred.

      But one could just as well ask, “Why not?”

      Let’s assume (Case A) that the current trend of slight cooling goes on for another ~15 years. We will then have had a period of ~30 years with slight cooling instead of rampant warming (as we had the previous 30 years). And this will have happened despite CO2 levels continuing to rise and reaching new record levels. We can then essentially write off the CAGW premise as falsified by the facts on the ground.

      Let’s assume (Case B) that the warming resumes at the rate seen in the late 20th century, and continues for the next 15 years.

      Let’s assume for both Cases the subcase (1) where the ongoing CLOUD experiment shows conclusively that the already demonstrated cosmic ray cloud nucleation is significant enough to have caused all the past global warming, based on empirical results of reproducible experimentation at CERN and the observed physical changes in clouds and cosmic rays recorded over the period. We will then have a validated hypothesis to replace the CAGW premise.

      Let’s assume, on the other hand, that warming continues (Case B) but that CLOUD is a flop (subcase 2). And let’s assume that many of the uncertainties are cleared up, with AGW still the most logical cause of global warming. We would then probably have enough information, even if it is not all based on empirical data, to say for sure that AGW is the primary driver of our planet’s climate

      This makes sense to me as a rational skeptic of the CAGW premise today.

      Why does it not make sense to you?

      Max

      • There are many technical issues that have already discussed elsewhere and which I don’t want to readdress in a non-technical thread, Max. My particular interest was in learning the reason for Dr. Curry’s statement on this point. That was why my question was addressed to her rather than my more usual practice of not directing questions to specific individuals.

      • manacker wrote:
        Let’s assume (Case A) that the current trend of slight cooling goes on for another ~15 years. We will then have had a period of ~30 years with slight cooling instead of rampant warming (as we had the previous 30 years). And this will have happened despite CO2 levels continuing to rise and reaching new record levels. We can then essentially write off the CAGW premise as falsified by the facts on the ground.

        Where did you ever get the impression that anthropogenic CO2 is the only influence on climate change?

      • David Appell,

        Yr. “Where did you ever get the idea that anthropogenic CO2 is the only influence on climate change?”

        There was an article in Science magazine entitled “Atmospheric CO2: Control Knob Governing Temperature” by Lacis, Schmidt, et. al. That’s where I got the idea that the CAGW theory flows from a notion that CO2 “controls” temperature and anthropogenic CO2 puts the control knob on “bake” if we continue to add CO2 to the atmosphere via a water vapor amplification .

        Of course, the above paper does not maintain that “climate change” is the “only influence on climate change” nor does it even claim that CO2 is the “control knob” for “climate change.” But it does seem to maintain that CO2 is the “control knob” for global temperature and that the heightened temperatures predicted to be induced by continued man-made release of CO2 will induce “catastrophic” climate change.

        So is CO2 still the “control knob” for global temperature, as you understand the issue (if that was ever your understanding)? And if turning up the control knob doesn’t increase the temperature over a hypothetical span, is it still appropriate to consider CO2 as the “control knob” of global temperature?

        Please, David, I ask you to keep it simple, but if I’ve got the CAGW theory wrong, I very much want you to straighten me out–if I may impose on your valuable time.

      • David Appell,

        Sorry, my last should read “…hypothetical span of 30 years.” (the time-frame manacker used in his commment).

        Also, since I’m making another correction anyway please read the last line in my third para “…will, in turn, induce “catastrophic” climate change.

      • mike: someone should have taught you to read beyond a paper’s title. I suggest you read the entire article. Please note that it is about the greenhouse effect, and not ALL factors that influence climate — in particular, aerosols.

        Here is the paper’s abstract:

        “Ample physical evidence shows that carbon dioxide (CO2) is the single most important climate-relevant greenhouse gas in Earth’s atmosphere. This is because CO2, like ozone, N2O, CH4, and chlorofluorocarbons, does not condense and precipitate from the atmosphere at current climate temperatures, whereas water vapor can and does. Noncondensing greenhouse gases, which account for 25% of the total terrestrial greenhouse effect, thus serve to provide the stable temperature structure that sustains the current levels of atmospheric water vapor and clouds via feedback processes that account for the remaining 75% of the greenhouse effect. Without the radiative forcing supplied by CO2 and the other noncondensing greenhouse gases, the terrestrial greenhouse would collapse, plunging the global climate into an icebound Earth state.

      • mike: what does “catastrophic” mean? And where is it used?

      • David Appell,

        David, you’re the smart guy. Let me just keep this simple. Is it your understanding that increasing anthropogenic CO2 that it will induce increases in global temperature that will lead to catastrophic climate change? If so, what is the mechanism by which anthropogenic CO2 leads to catastrophic climate change? If not, what’s the fuss?

      • mike: What do you mean by “catastrophic?”

      • David Appell,

        I see you asked what “catastrophic” means and I didn’t answer your question directly. I’ll go with an “operational” definition of sorts: dead polar bears, melting polar ice caps, rising seas engulfing Tuvalu, increased cyclonic storms, desperate climate refugees, and all that sort of good stuff. You know, the sort of bad outcomes that are supposed to make predictions of CO2 induced climate change worth a worry or two and a whole lot of our tax dollars. You know, the sort of “catastrophic” things that are so dire, that we need to dramatically and immediately reduce our material lifestyles in order to prevent their occurrence. That’s the sort of thing I mean by “catastrophic.”

        And if my above attempt at a definition of “catastrophic” doesn’t quite ring the bell with you, then substitute whatever it is you think makes climate science worth all the bucks and bother that’s been devoted to it over the last two/three decades. Unless, of course, you’re convinced there are no “catastrophic” perils associated with anthropogenic CO2. if so, that’d be a relief to learn.

      • David Appell,

        Now that I’ve answered your “catastrophic” question, could you answer my question: Is it your opinion that increasing anthropogenic CO2 has a potential for inducing catastrophic climate change? If, so what is the mechanism of that catastrophic change? If not, why should we be spending vast amounts of private and public funds on climate science when those same funds could be diverted to issues with problems attached?

      • David,

        You know, I’m beginning to get the impression you’re not going to answer my questions. You’ve posed a question to me (twice) that I’ve answered, but not one of mine has been answered. So what kind of deal is that, David?

        I mean, like, David, when I first saw your comments on this thread, I looked you up on the internet and found out you are considered a real hombre “big-gun” in greenshirt circles. So I thought, Hey! here’s a super opportunity to take advantage of one of the “eco-greats” to educate myself a little! So I asked you a few questions, David–all in a real nice-guy form. And what did I get?

        -Your zippy little crack: “…someone should have taught you [moi] to read beyond a paper’s title.” You can imagine my surprise, David, when someone–yes, you David–whose bio had commanded my deepest respect and admiration turned out to be nothing but just another lecturing, testy, little prick on the eco-geek circuit.

        -And then, David, in lieu of answering my questions you started playing games. You know, playing dumb and all. You know, asking “what does ‘catastrophic’ mean?” Stupid evasive stuff, like that. Got me wondering about you David.

        -But I bit my tongue since I know you reprimanded one of the other commenters on this thread for being “rude” and threatened to break off discussions if he persisted in his rudeness. So I stayed all nicey-nicey since I figured you probably knew your stuff and I wanted some straight answers from you. And I mean by “straight answers”, you recall, David, “straight answers” as to whether you are of the opinion that increasing anthropogenic CO2 holds within it the peril of catastrophic climate change? And, if so, the mechanism? And, if not, then why should us taxpayers be forking over our hard-earned dollars for a bunch of high-priced climate science research?

        But my hopes have been deceived, David! I mean, like, I thought you, David, a real slugger in the green-team’s line-up would jump at a chance to provide answers to my questions. But what happened? Where’s David?–that’s what happened! Yah took a powder, David!

        So here’s how I see it, David. As you pursue this climate science deal of yours, David, it’s just a hobby with you. Right? I mean, with you, David, it’s just that you’ve got some sort of weird obsession with the value of global temperature sensitivity to a doubling of CO2 and all that sort of esoteric, dork-ball stuff. That’s all. I mean, David, we could just as well be talking about your mono-maniac pursuit of the perfect zit-cure or a dating-service that could actually find you a date. BUT WITH ONE BIG DIFFERENCE! You want my tax dollars, directly or indirectly (e. g. tax breaks for NGOs) to fund your freakin’ climate science hobby. Right, David?

        So, David, let me conclude by assuring you I think it’s great you have a nice little hobby. But just keep your hands out of my tax-payer pocket as you pursue your little avocation. O. K.? I mean, I fund my hobbies with my own dime and I expect you to do the same. Fair enough?

      • David Appell

        You ask me

        Where did you ever get the impression that anthropogenic CO2 is the only influence on climate change?

        Mike seems to have answered the question for me but let me add:

        NOWHERE did I ever get the impression that anthropogenic CO2 is the only influence on climate change.

        [I have personally come to the conclusion, based on all the scientific studies on the subject I have seen, that AGW is extremely unlikely to be the “only influence” on climate change – I would even have strong reservations whether AGW is the “most significant influence” on global average temperature.]

        But the point I made to Fred, was in response to his question to Judy regarding the presumption that we should know 15 years from today the answer to whether or not the IPCC premise is correct or not (i.e. the so-called “mainstream consensus” position) a) that AGW, caused principally by human CO2 emissions, has been the primary cause for global warming since 1950 and b) that it represents a serious potential threat for humanity and our environment.

        Fred questioned whether we would have this knowledge 15 years from now.

        I am more optimistic on this than Fred, and believe for the reasons I stated, that this it is very likely that we WILL have this knowledge.

        Do you have an opinion on this?

        Max

      • David Appell.

        RE: Where did you ever get the impression that anthropogenic CO2 is the only influence on climate change?

        How about from climate scientists? Are they not the people saying that climate change is driven “predominently” by anthropogenic CO2? If it turns out we experiance 30 years of flat temps, then the case for “predominently anthropogenic” becomes questionable. Which in turn calls into question all claims for catastrophy.

    • Steve Milesworthy

      Surely 15 more years of research, observations and improvements in computers would help to resolve the issues even if the climate doesn’t change significantly from either expectation.

      In truth though, the article is merely a fantasy scenario that is a setup for the final conclusion that we should do nothing till then.

      • Steve Milesworthy

        Yep. We shouldn’t try to solve a problem before we really know a) whether or not there is a problem at all, b) how to solve it, if it were real and c) what the unintended consequences of our “solution” might end up being.

        Seems pretty clear to me.

        It’s called “look before you leap”.

        Don’t you agree?

        Max

      • Steve Milesworthy

        manacker,

        There is problem. What we don’t know is whether it is our children’s or our granchildren’s generation that will suffer.

        Look before you leap also applies to novel ways of extracting and burning more fossil fuels.

      • Steve Milesworthy

        Gathering empirical data in order to minimize the great level of uncertainty regarding our possible impact on our climate seems to be the wisest approach for us today.

        Our children and grandchildren will be best served by this course of action, rather than if we charge off to drastically curtail the main driver of our past prosperity: the ready availability of inexpensive energy, without even knowing that this will have any perceptible impact on our planet’s future climate or what the unintended consequences of our actions will be.

        Max

    • The temperature of earth is stable in a narrow range because of water and all of its states.
      Ice, Water, Water Vapor! The temperature of earth has been stable in a narrow range for six hundred million years. That is because earth is blessed with a lot of water and ice and water vapor. When earth tries to get too hot, it snows and cools the earth. When it tries to get too cold, the water freezes over and the snow stops and the sun warms the earth again. There have been times in earth history that temperature was pushing the upper limit of this and there have been times in earth history that temperature was pushing the lower limit of this. In between these limits, there are more than twenty drivers of temperature that I could list. In the current configuration of earth and ocean level, the temperature has been in limited to plus or minus two degrees C for ten thousand years. Based on Arctic and Antarctic ice core data and modern measured temperature, for most of that time, temperature was within plus or minus one degree C.
      The ocean temperature that melts the Arctic Sea Ice determines the Set Point for Earth Temperature.
      When temperature is above the set point the Arctic opens and the snow cool earth.
      When temperature is below the set point the Arctic closes and the lack of snow allows the sun to warm the earth.
      The contribution of CO2 to the greenhouse effect is, by the way, tiny compared to the greenhouse effect of water vapor and clouds. Scientists on both sides do agree with this.
      Then the Consensus side throws in the carbon feedbacks.
      The science on CO2 is valid, I believe. There is no science on the carbon feedbacks. That is all based on flawed theory and gut feelings. That is where they have serious problems that are brushed over.

  24. Some months ago I suggested on this blog (if my memory is correct) that the global warming scare looked like a fraud and was heading for collapse and that the best model was a corporate fraud like Enron.

    I said we were at the stage when people were asking serious questions and the equivalents of the CFO and CEO were showing righteous indigantion at the questioning and obfuscating. I said that following that model things woulld get worse before they get better and that most of the criminal acts were yet to come. They come not as proponents behave blindly, stupidly or are misled but as they try to maintain support for the unsupportable and try to cover their tracks and enter a state of denial of the truth. It is a basic behaviour pattern that can be found in in criminology texts in describing some forms of white collar crime.

    Now we have seen amongst others a police raid and law enforcement activity of dubious legality on Tallbloke and others for the crime of aiding a whistleblower, greater exposure of the fraud in blocking publication of research questioning the concensus / dogma and now stealing documents from the Heartland Institute and because the documents do not say what is wanted the fraudulent fabrication of documents to harm that institute and the case against global warming.

    For me all that is left is to see whether this fraud disappears with a wimper like the iceage scare of the 1970’s or whether it finishes like a high profile corporate fraud where there are enquiries and some of its most extreme promoters are held to account while most just slip away and claim the were just misled or acted stupidly but in good faith.

    I hope it is the latter. Partly because the fraud has generally hit the world’s poor hardest to the extent of increasing starvation and death levels, not just poverty. Partly because the human institutions that should have protected us from this have been corrupted in the broader sense and desperately need repair or reform. All those that have thrown independence and scepticism aside and been captured and used as tools by left oriented pressure groups and those seeking increased political power. In particular the UN, scientific instiutions like the Royal Society (the reasons for “Nullius in Verba” as a motto have been too long forgotten and disregarded in the pursuit of government funding) and our so called free press where sections have been captured by pressure groups and unquestioningly promoted dogma, voodoo science and forged documents, not scientific truth.

    Finally science funding needs reform because its diversion of funds from the experimental in favour of the theoretical computer, Alice in Wonderland stuff has put climate science years behind where it should be and ground breaking work has been restricted to the brave and fearless who have been able to cobble together barely sufficient funding to continue, albeit much more slowly than optimal.

    • John the Kübler-Ross model has:

      Denial — “Short term fluctuations are hiding the long term signal.
      You need a 15, 19, 37 year period to detect the warming trend.
      Extreme cooling is shown in the global warming models.”

      Anger — “scientists like me who are trying to communicate the potential dangers of continued fossil fuel burning to the public as a threat. That means we are subject to attacks, some of them quite personal, some of them dishonest.”

      Bargaining — “If we had more computing power we could have higher resolution temperature estimating and convincingly show that snow in May is a result of rising CO2…”

      Depression — “I did think about it, yes. About suicide. I thought about it several times, but I think I’ve got past that stage now.”

      Acceptance — “Guilty M’Lud.”

  25. How could any generation of scientists in any field believe they have the final answers?
    In the meantime, just like those people in Casablanca, “we wait… and wait… and wait… and wait.”

  26. What if they were wrong?
    Then we have to set up, like the IPCC did, so-called possible Scenarios
    for how CAGW will get out of this lie…… Scenario A to Scenario Y which
    we can/should already anticipate…..proposals please….
    No doubt, that temps cannot increase any further above the plateau of the 21. Cty, therefore it is only a matter of 1. time span + 2. scenario, how this will happen in detail …. one can talk about how we got into CAGW and we
    should also, this is the other side of the coin, talk about how they get out….
    ……its not “if” but “when”….and I am sure that AGW/IPCC does (first in secret, of course) talk already, behind closed doors, their most favourable exit scenario…..
    lets lend AGW/IPCC a helping with best exit scenarios …
    JS

    • its not “if” but “when”….and I am sure that AGW/IPCC does (first in secret, of course) talk already, behind closed doors, their most favourable exit scenario…..

      Indeed. There are a number of indications – rather thinly-veiled (but not exactly “secret”) – that Pachauri and his army of IPCC-niks are already building bridges to the next level of scarification and monetarization (if there are such words, and if there aren’t, pls. consider them now duly … uh… coined).

      Both are neatly wrapped, in a tidy package, in the original cornerstone flag of “sustainable development”.

      For details, pls see Of hypocrites, high-level panels and … sherpas and silos

      But, in fairness, I should also note that IPCC chair, Pachauri – railroad engineer par excellence – did offer some advance warning signals, as I had written almost a year ago (my how time flies when those on the warm-side are in rapid descent!):

      A merchant in Venice: Pachauri’s “vision” for AR5

      • Hilary,

        Greatly appreciated your blog post “On hypocrites”. For what it’s worth you might want to look up Wikipedia’s “Green Economy” entry. Quite an eye-opener.

        And most curious of all, the venue for the Rio+20 fun-in-the-sun bash will be Brazil’s leading tourist destination. Wonder if there’s anything about Brazil in Wikipedia’s “Sex Tourism” entry?

        And, oh by the way, didn’t that Pachauri guy once write a smut novel? Seems like I read about that somewhere.

  27. Well, the truth of this issue should be apparent within about 15 years.
    We don’t have 15 years. The EPA will ruin our Economy with CO2 controls long before that. We need to get the science right really soon.

  28. “We need to get the science right really soon.”

    Herman, this assumes we have the resources to get it right. I wouldn’t make such an assumption.

    Andrew

    • They are gathering the right data. NOAA does not lie about data.
      NASA lies about climate data, but NOAA does not.
      The resources to gather the necessary data are there. They do that very well. We will look at the data.
      CO2 going up, up, up.
      Temperature not going up, actually going down.
      Ocean levels not going up, actually going down.
      Accurate, Trusted, Data is all that is needed. We are going to get that.

  29. I really don’t understand Stopa’s post — there is strong evidence of an increasing greenhouse effect:

    “Increases in greenhouse forcing inferred from the outgoing longwave radiation spectra of the Earth in 1970 and 1997,” J.E. Harries et al, Nature 410, 355-357 (15 March 2001).

    http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v410/n6826/abs/410355a0.html

    “Comparison of spectrally resolved outgoing longwave data between 1970 and present,” J.A. Griggs et al, Proc SPIE 164, 5543 (2004). http://spiedigitallibrary.org/proceedings/resource/2/psisdg/5543/1/164_1

    “Spectral signatures of climate change in the Earth’s infrared spectrum between 1970 and 2006,” Chen et al, (2007) http://www.eumetsat.int/Home/Main/Publications/Conference_and_Workshop_Proceedings/groups/cps/documents/document/pdf_conf_p50_s9_01_harries_v.pdf

    More papers on this subject are listed here:

    http://agwobserver.wordpress.com/2009/08/02/papers-on-changes-in-olr-due-to-ghgs/

    • David – those are good links. The last one, at the bottom of the page, also links to additional sources on DLR.

    • I do – it’s a statement of his political wish of what the science would be.

      • I can see the CO2 fingerprints all over these SW/LW fluxes

        http://isccp.giss.nasa.gov/projects/browse_fc.html

        If only we could explain how CO2 changes the TOA Albedo.

      • Why do you expect CO2 to change the atmosphere’s albedo? The spectrum of sunlight is almost all below the absorption bands of CO2. (That’s the point of the GHE.)

      • David Appell: Why do you expect CO2 to change the atmosphere’s albedo? The spectrum of sunlight is almost all below the absorption bands of CO2. (That’s the point of the GHE.)

        Here is how it could happen: increased CO2 leads to increased downwelling long-wave radiation. This, added to the sunlight that follows sunrise (in each longitudinal wedge each day), increases the speed at which water is vaporized, and increases the speed at which the water vapor is carried from the lower troposphere to the upper troposphere, which results in increased cloudiness and increased albedo during the time of day when insolation is greatest, a net increase in mean daily albedo.

        I didn’t make this up myself, I read it in a peer-reviewed journal article, so the idea is out there being discussed and researched by specialists.

        Whether it does happen this way is one of the scientific questions that I expect will be answered in the next 15 years.

        For a more thorough presentation of this idea, check out Isaac Held’s blog and some of the references:

        http://www.gfdl.noaa.gov/blog/isaac-held/2011/10/26/19-radiative-convective-equilibrium/

    • David Appell
      Re: “there is strong evidence of an increasing greenhouse effect”
      That evidence is only as strong as the contrary evidence that you compare it against and as the trends compared to a full evaluation of the uncertainties involved – including the systemic bias.

      I recommend you review the rest of the evidence shown by NIPCC that was ignored by IPCC.
      Similarly, ask why the global total optical depth of the atmosphere has apparently remained about stationary for the last 61 years. See Ferenc Miskolczi’s papers. e.g., the April 2011 presentation.
      Miskolczi uses the best evidence available over that six decade period. The opposing argument appeals to changes in sensors achieving faster responsivity. Compare those results/arguments with Scafetta’s natural cycles with anthropogenic contributions vs IPCC’s dominant CAGW models.
      When you are conversant with both sides of the arguments, then revisit how “strong” is the evidence for the increasing greenhouse effect. When you can acknowledge and address the different sides of the argument, you will be much more credible in your comments.
      At present I find the IPCC’s reviews and arguments to be selective, and unconvincing when you scientifically “kick the tires”, especially when comparing trends with natural causes and variations.
      A major issue is the very large uncertainties involved compared to the small trends claimed. Very few papers address the full systemic bias (Type B) uncertainties. Those can easily equal the conventional stochastic (Type A) uncertainties. For example, IPCC’s CAGW models have not incorporated natural oscillations, and thus claim higher confidence (>90%!) that does NOT hold up when compared with the actual decadal global temperature trends. See Scafetta’s models above.

      IPCC’s models seriously underestimate natural variations and persistence, and climate predictability. e.g., Study the publications by Demetris Koutsoyiannis and his group on climate.

      e.g. the Hurst-Kolgomorov effect.

      Does HK imply higher predictability?
      (in comparison to “roulette”climate)
      * Definitely no, particularly on climatic scales.
      *On the contrary, it implies much lower predictability on scales longer than 2-3 years. . . .
      HK dependence dramatically reduces predictability on climatic (e.g. 30-year) scales.

      Tsaknias, D., Statistical comparison of extreme observed temperature and rainfall with outputs of climate models, Diploma thesis, 128 pages, Department of Water Resources and Environmental Engineering – National Technical University of Athens, Athens, 2011.

      The statistical comparison indicated that the observed time series cannot be simulated satisfactorily. Therefore, serious concerns are risen about the use of climate models to hydrological applications.

      God and the arrogant species: contrasting nature’s intrinsic uncertainty with our climate-simulating supercomputers
      Antonis Christofides* and Demetris Koutsoyiannis

      . . .We explain that climate, like many natural systems, exhibits “Hurst-Kolmogorov behavior”, which means it is intrinsically uncertain, with real limits to the potential for attribution and prediction. . . .
      good communication leads to progress, progress is followed by arrogance, and arrogance is followed by loss of communication, which leads to stagnation, which is, we think, where science is now.

      Koutsoyiannis, D., Climate is changing … since 4.5 billion years ago, Climate change: natural or human-induced, Athens, Massachusetts Institute of Technology Alumni, University of Michigan Alumni, Athens, 2011.

      The hypothesis that recent changes (e.g. the increase of average global temperature by about 0.3°C in the last three decades) is anthropogenic, unlike the natural changes which always have taken place, is not supported by evidence. The climate models that have been used in support of this hypothesis, when tested in independent studies, have shown no skill in reproducing correctly the known past climate.

      See presentation
      (There is enough in English, with figures and references to follow the argument.) etc., etc. Listen to both choirs to fully appreciate “the music of the spheres.”

      Thus the IPCC’s CAGW case is “Not Proven”.
      Consequently, “come back in 15 years” to see how well IPCC vs Scafetta’s models do etc.

    • David Appell
      Re: “here is strong evidence of an increasing greenhouse effect:”
      How do you KNOW that?! See:

      We often see statements such as “90% of climate change is caused by X” and debates on whether the dominant cause of climate change is human activity, or the sun, or something else. However, in chaotic systems, it can be difficult to defend the meaning of such assertions, because if the “effect” occurs sufficiently later than the supposed “cause”, the relationship between the two is effectively lost because of the sensitivity of the “effect” to the initial conditions. In fact, although “A causes B” initially seems clear, closer examination of what it actually means reveals problems that have tortured philosophers for centuries. . . .we should be careful when we talk about causes, and that trends and shifts do not necessarily imply non-stationarity or a change in forcings: they can just happen.

      Causality in climate and hydrology
      Antonis Christofides* and Demetris Koutsoyiannis

      Can you guarantee we have a Newtonian climate with no chaotic elements?

  30. What if they are wrong? Well, of course they’re wrong. And you’re looking at the great big red ‘what if’ now. You’ll meet denial, sweat, true believers going to the stake without recanting, fake memos, blood, war, tears, death, apocalyptic horses and the whole shebanged up nine yards.

    Ain’t life grand?
    =====

  31. Dr. Curry, you say: “I think Stopa is about right when he says: Well, the truth of this issue should be apparent within about 15 years”

    That’s just about the only thing in your post that I’d take issue with. To repeat earlier posts, AGW is a shape-shifting monster. When the facts change, the believers will simply change the timescale, or the modus operandi of the warming mechanism, or find new hiding places for the missing heat, or say the cooling is temporary – wait till it all boils up (literally?) to fry us, or say whatever happens is what they predicted all along.

    To say “ok, we were wrong” is science. AGW is not science!

    PS: Joshua, welcome back to “Joshua, etc”.

    PPS: Before you ask, if the world warms until 2025, I’ll shut up about AGW being wrong or exaggerated. Until then, the believers are the ones with something to prove.

    • Science ALWAYS changes when the facts change. That’s the scientific process in action. No scientific idea was ever created whole and divulged to the word to be applied to all known problems. Science is always a narrowing in on the truth. It took 300 years to go from Newton to a full theory of gravity. Did that make Newton wrong, fraudulent, or craven? Or any of gravitational scientists between him and modern cosmology liars and frauds and cheats? Of course not. They adjusted their ideas as new facts came along, as new technologies enabled them to do new experiments, gather new data, and as new mathematics was developed to build with.

      Climate science, like all science, is an evolving process. It will get some things right, and some things wrong. It will adjust its theories as new data reveals new problems. What exactly do you expect?

      • David, in 50 years time I expect climate science to be far advanced from today. And still unable to make any sound predictions about the future.

      • Well, climate science really can’t make predictions about the future, because no one knows the future path of emissions, land use, etc. All is can make are projections based on scenarios. Models can back-predict, and that’s already saying a lot. And some basic calculations of basic models, like in Wallace Broecker’s 1975 Science paper, were pretty close to reality. And Gavin Schmidt wrote on RealClimate about a week ago that Hansen’s 1988 projection was not far off.

        Climate is the most complicated physical system science has ever tried to calculate. Not being able to do a good prediction is not a reason to ignore the problem. (Models are underpredicting Arctic melting, for example.)

      • David Appell
        Re: “Science ALWAYS changes when the facts change”
        True – but that is not the “consensus” on climate.
        Which is the foundational issue we face of dogma vs science. See Scafetta v. IPCC.

      • David Hagen: It looks to me that all Scafetta is doing is curve-fitting. What is that supposed to explain — that models have predicted more surface warming than observed over a mere 10-yr period? (And which IPCC scenarios is Scafetta assuming, anyway?) So what? We recently had a very strong La Nina. Scientists know full well their models aren’t perfect. This is from a recent paper by Hansen et al:

        “…Climate sensitivity, the eventual global temperature change per unit forcing, is known with good accuracy from Earth’s paleoclimate history. However, two fundamental uncertainties limit our ability to predict global temperature change on decadal time scales.
        “First, although climate forcing by human-made greenhouse gases (GHGs) is known accurately, climate forcing caused by changing human-made aerosols is practically unmeasured. Aerosols are fine particles suspended in the air, such as dust, sulfates, and black soot…. Aerosol climate forcing is complex, because aerosols both reflect solar radiation to space (a cooling effect) and absorb solar radiation (a warming effect). In addition, atmospheric aerosols can alter cloud cover and cloud properties. Therefore, precise composition-specific measurements of aerosols and their effects on clouds are needed to assess the aerosol role in climate change.
        “Second, the rate at which Earth’s surface temperature approaches a new equilibrium in response to a climate forcing depends on how efficiently heat perturbations are mixed into the deeper ocean. Ocean mixing is complex and not necessarily simulated well by climate models. Empirical data on ocean heat uptake are improving rapidly, but still suffer limitations.”
        — James Hansen et al, “Earth’s Energy Imbalance and Implications,” 2011,
        http://www.columbia.edu/~jeh1/mailings/2011/20110415_EnergyImbalancePaper.pdf (pg 1-2).

        (This paper is now published…somewhere. I have to check.)

      • David – see Earth’s Energy Imbalance. This published version is truncated from the original draft you cited.

      • Good — thanks Fred.

      • David, I disagree that climate sensitivity is known with “good accuracy.” I see that even at GISS, they have had trouble with that. Apparently, Hansen’s 1988 model had a sensitivity of 4.2K. According to Schmidt et al, the latest GISS model has 2.6K. The IPCC models have a much larger range. Schmittner has some peaks that are lower than 2K even though the central value is 2.3K. It has always struck me as strange that some people seem to think that we can know aerosol forcings and feedbacks and albedo effects from 26,000 years ago when the climate and biosphere was completely different than today when we seem to be unable to even determine the sign of aerosol forcings right now. Anyway, you just destroyed your credibility with me by citing Hansen, who has an obvious political agenda and has a pretty poor track record in the scientific arena. I believe his sea level predictions have also proven wrong. Let me know when the West Side Freeway is under water.

        In any other field where public policy was at stake, there would be strident demands for better science and more honesty and checks and balances. Just look at medicine for example. The checks and balances are much stronger than in climate science.

      • David,

        I’m just hitting the ceiling as a long reply with loads of citations just vanished in a puff of smoke when I hit ‘post’.

        So, just one thought. Trenberth says that the error bars of the predictions / projections for AR5 will increase over those for AR4 because:

        “Many of these models will attempt new and better representations of important climate processes and their feedbacks — in other words, those mechanisms that can amplify or diminish the overall effect of increased incoming radiation. Including these elements will make the models into more realistic simulations of the climate system, but it will also introduce uncertainties.

        So here is my prediction: the uncertainty in AR5’s climate predictions and projections will be much greater than in previous IPCC reports, primarily because of the factors noted above.”

        http://www.nature.com/climate/2010/1002/full/climate.2010.06.html

        This process will inevitably continue as more natural climate elements are factored in. That IS progress – less of this 0.n degrees C per decade stuff.

        We also discussed some things which could upset the applecart at this blog recently:

        http://judithcurry.com/2012/01/31/climate-scenarios-2015-2050/

        So, I don’t believe in any predictions, frying or freezing. We don’t know enough, nor perhaps will in our lifetimes.
        And that’s why I don’t believe AGW will be invalidated, however wrong its predictions turn out to be. Anyone can invent anything, and claim it fits the facts.

      • c.b., you keep using the word “predictions.” What predictions?

        And what is wrong with uncertainties? Do you want the science to be accurate or not? Uncertainty is part of science, and always will be. Accurately characterizing and including those uncertainties is important. As you’ll note, it’s been a crucial factor in the search for the Higgs boson at CERN.

        You seem to want something that science cannot currently provide. Is that the fault of science?

      • David Young: where did I say that climate sensitivity was known with great accuracy? I didn’t.

      • David,

        “You seem to want something that science cannot currently provide”.

        Absolutely the reverse! I want, since you mention it, the same attitude in climate (specifically AGW) that physicists have towards the Higgs. It may exist, it may not. We will do the experiments. We won’t announce it’s existence until we have at least 5 sigma certainty.

        I love uncertainty! Science thrives on it! Scientists in a perfect world always should say “I don’t know” if they don’t know.

        Can’t you see that AGW is the exact opposite of this? Propositions masquerade as facts, hypotheses as reality, computer models are more believable than empirical measurements, and every believer is absolutely certain that they are right (at least in public). I can’t imagine Hansen goes to bed pondering ‘what if I’m wrong’. The certainty of the True Believer is upon them. Sceptics are evil, not to be debated with or listened to. It is the frightening *certainty* of AGW which riles sceptics. (Well, that, and the vast expenditures on nonsense policies which have resulted from this certainty).

        What predictions? Come now, you just cited Hansens predictions (ok, projections) from 1988. The computer models predict. The scientists predict – “at least n out of the next x years will be the warmest ever”; “sea level will rise by n feet by 20xx – Manhatten will be flooded”; by 2050 average global temperatures will have risen by x; SSTs by x; no more polar ice by now+n years. Haven’t you noticed any of this? The predictions are endless. And, often, designed to scare.

        Scepticism simply says that nothing is that certain, that scientists should rediscover the joy of finding things out rather than pushing agendas, and that an ounce of empiricism is worth all the computer models ever fabricated.

        Science should go back to being science!

      • Oops. 5am over here across the pond. Way-y-y past bedtime.

      • Appell, You said “good accuracy.” I gave you some facts and data and you gave me a 1 line response that said nothing. No wonder people rank journalists only a little better than politicians and lawyers.

      • c.b. – No. I see a lot of uncertainty in climate science. The IPCC projection has a wide range of 2.5 C (I think), and that depends on scenario. Climate sensitivity has a large range of +/- 1.5 C at least.

        Maybe science can’t do any better. Climate is a nonlinear system subject to ergodicity. So that means we shouldn’t do anything? Is that how you run your own life — you don’t try to diminish risks just because you can’t calculate them?

      • c.b. – computer models don’t predict. They project. Got it?

      • David Young: Besides being a science journalist, I also have a PhD in theoretical physics.

        I didn’t see anything convincing in your “facts and data.” What did I miss.

      • This subthread can go nowhere without a definition of “climate sensitivity.” If you mean “equilibrium climate sensitivity,” that has no relevance to this century because we’re nowhere near equilibrium. If you mean something else, please define it. Otherwise for all we know you could be talking about ten different concepts with ten very different values.

      • David Appell
        Re: “It looks to me that all Scafetta is doing is curve-fitting”
        Then please study his paper to find out what he is actually doing. i.e. he identifies natural cycles from numerous sources. He quantifies their magnitude. Then he builds his predictive temperature model from those cycles combined with anthropogenic effects etc. That is a scientific phenomenological model which can accurately predict future changes to some degree even if all the micro physics is not understood quantified. Such models can well be more accurate than the supposedly “comprehensive” IPCC’s CAGW GWMs – which appear to be missing major physics.

        See my comments above on the major uncertainties missing in IPCC’s GWMs and the fundamental limitations on prediction in the face of natural variations with persistence – Hurst Kolgomorov dynamics.

      • David Appell: It looks to me that all Scafetta is doing is curve-fitting. What is that supposed to explain — that models have predicted more surface warming than observed over a mere 10-yr period?

        This is why we so eagerly await the results of the next 15 years of research. If the “mere curve-fitting” has proved by then to have made the more accurate forecast, that will be important.

        As to the “mere 10-yr period”, warming climate catastrophism ensued after only 5-8 years of warming; the knowledge that 30 years were necessary to establish a trend, or that 17 years were necessary to establish a change in trend, was only promoted after the warming catastrophism had become established. If we take contemporary standards of how many years are required, and apply them year-by-year to the record since about 1900, there has never been much evidence (by those standards) for much more than random alternations between short-term warming and cooling plus a modest upward trend.

        Thus, using the contemporary standards of what is necessary to establish trends, Scafetta’s curve fitting is the most scientific approach, and everything else is untested.

        But as I say, the real tests will all be much further along and more clear-cut 15 years from now.

      • Appell, The issue is the range of equilibrium sensitivity estimates. You said it was known with “good accuracy.” I disagreed and gave you some pretty good evidence that it was very uncertain. You said you saw nothing convincing. Would you care to actually address the issue in scientific terms?

        The other pseudo discussion that you chose to devote some attention to was the models and your assertion that they are solutions of partial differential equations that describe the earth system is a serious gloss on the real state of affairs. I offered you more information on other threads and you have yet to give evidence of any interest. So, what we have here is a failure to communicate. Rather a poor recommendation for someone who is a journalist I would say.

        I conclude that you don’t take people on this blog seriously. Perhaps I shouldn’t take you too seriously either.

      • Steve Milesworthy

        David Young,

        Appell’s “good accuracy” comment cited the paleo evidence. You pointed to the model evidence and I don’t think you referenced the paleo evidence. The model evidence is in line with the paleo evidence, but the current warming doesn’t constrain sensitivity much.

      • David,
        Your statement is correc. “Climate science is an evolving science”.

        Your site seems to imply a more nuanced position. Do you believe that consideration of additional sources of warming is warranted? It would seem that this search is consistent with evolution of the science?

        The “settled science” statement and the continued arguments that consensus mitigates further need for discussion is the problem.

      • Steve, My response contained a comment about paleoclimate.

        “It has always struck me as strange that some people seem to think that we can know aerosol forcings and feedbacks and albedo effects from 26,000 years ago when the climate and biosphere was completely different than today when we seem to be unable to even determine the sign of aerosol forcings right now. ”

        Appell didn’t respond to that either except to say he found it unconvincing. Well, that’s a substantive response for you. Clearly he was visiting in “drive by media” mode and not to understand or honestly interact. It’s a poor performance from someone who allegedly is a journalist and indicates just one more instance where politics prevents people from dealing honestly with the other side.

      • Steve Milesworthy

        The paleo evidence I’m aware of goes much deeper in time than 26000 years. eg comparison of glacial maxima with dinosaur era temperatures, or analysis of temperature/co2 levels back 400 million years. Of course there are uncertainties in any analysis, but given that it is reasonable to assume that uncertainties either way will average out, the fact is that the paleo evidence is relatively consistent.

    • cui bono

      Judith has opined that the“science” of CAGW might have advanced to a point by the next 15 years that it could provide empirical scientific evidence to either falsify (or validate?) the current “mainstream consensus” hypothesis, which has been promoted by IPCC.

      This seems reasonable to me, because I have concluded that the CAGW premise may well be falsified by other experimental findings and observational results (such as CLOUD at CERN, for example). If these confirm “it’s the sun, stupid” for most of the past temperature change, we can relegate AGW to a minor factor and thus falsify CAGW. This would be a “falsification by reproducible experimentation”.

      It might also be falsified, for example, by a 15-year continuation of the latest period of atmospheric cooling, accompanied by a slight cooling of the upper ocean,.despite continued CO2 emissions and levels reaching record heights. This would be a “falsification by actual physical observations”.

      If either or BOTH above events occur, the “science” will have spoken clearly (and Judith will have been right).

      You counter that the “politics” (or the “politically motivated beliefs” of some die-hard AGW believers or activists) may not have advanced to that point.

      This also seems like a reasonable assumption to me. Although some, like James E. Hansen, will have reached a venerable age by then, I doubt if these individuals will change their minds no matter what the “science” of the time really says.

      But I believe that, except for these few die-hards, the “science” will eventually override the “politics”, and that this will occur by the next 15 years.

      Max.

  32. I don’t think there is any risk that CAGW will be falsified in our lifetimes, no matter what temperatures do for the next 15-20 years; nor even AGW for that matter.

    I for one am not confident that the current temperature records are anywhere near as precise as we are told they are, let alone the paleo records. But assuming we can say with any certainty what the temperature trend is, 15 “more” years of cooling would not falsify the AGW or CAGW theories, it would only falsify the climate models used to sell those theories as a basis for public policy.

    As as skeptic I don’t think climate scientists understand the climate well enough to make long term predictions. I believe their models do not nearly replicate the complex chaotic climate of this planet. What is called natural variability to me is just another way of saying “stuff we can’t quantify.” That being the case, there is no way to falsify CAGW in my opinion because we don’t know enough about the climate to make our own predictions.

    As the next 15 years pass, the CAGW advocates will simply continue updating their models, changing their arguments, and finding new reasons to justify the government taking control of the energy economy.

    CAGW will never be falsified in the eyes of the advocates. But at some point in the future, assuming there is not significant additional warming (regardless of cause), the political power of CAGW will disappear, and with it the research and advocacy funding. At which point we will be inundated with the next human caused disaster scenario for which we must turn over control of the economy to progressives.

      • These scares keep continuing because their proponents keep being rewarded with funding and are never held to account or their credibility never questioned. I find it mind boggling to see some of the same names warning against an ice age in the 1970’s and only a few years later are stirring up the global warming scare.

        Sadly they may never stop until some of them or those who make much more money or gain much more influence through these scares are sent to jail as a warning to others that science based swindles will no longer be tollerated. The actions disclosed on blogs show that some people have moved from error or stupidity to outright fraud in actively silencing dissent and forging documents.

      • John Warner wrote:
        I find it mind boggling to see some of the same names warning against an ice age in the 1970′s and only a few years later are stirring up the global warming scare.

        Who?

        And please provide citations to their 1970s ice age warnings.

      • David – ok, you asked!

        (1) Conferences and warnings to governments: See: Implications of the Climatic Controversy for Global Society, Irving Kaplan, November 1980, “In 1972, a sizable group of climatologists meeting at Brown University issued letters to the governments of the world in which they warned of a global climatic disaster.

        In 1974, the International Federation of Institutes of Advanced Study issued a grave message to the community of governments from a meeting in Bonn.

        In 1976, a meeting of 85 climatologists chaired by the late Nobel Laureate Willard Libby and pioneer climatologist Cesare Emiliani put forth another warning which it had written in 1974 and which provided the same message in greater detail.

        Nature reported the consensus of the 1979 World Climate Conference: “that the world had entered a 10,000 year cooling, that the warming theory was complex and questionable and that the loss of life and economic substance to the climate would increase.”

        (2) See scientists cited in books:

        The Cooling, Lowe Ponte, 1976, “The cooling has already killed thousands of people in poor nations. If it continues and no strong measures are taken to deal with it, the cooling will cause world famine, world chaos, and probably world war, and this could all come about by the year 2000.”

        The Weather Conspiracy, Peter Kilroy, Alastair Clark and The Climate Impact Team, Heron Publishing/Ballantine Books (1977). ISBN 0-345-27209-9.

        The Weather Machine & The Threat Of Ice, Nigel Calder, BBC Publications, 1974, “Going by past form, the warm periods between ice ages last about 10,000 years and ours has lasted 10,000 years. One might therefore argue that there is a virtual certainty of the next ice age starting some time in the next two thousand years. Then the odds are only about 20 to 1 against it beginning in the next 100 years.”

        Climates Of Hunger, Reid Bryson & Thomas Murray, University of Wisconsin Press, 1979

        Ice Ages, Imbrie and Imbrie, 1979, Enslow Publishers

        Climate: Present, Past & Future, H. H. Lamb, Routledge 1977

        All warned of a coming ice age within decades.

        (3) See citations in articles:

        In 1975, Newsweek:”The Cooling World” – foretold the decimation of agricultural productivity based on a dramatic decrease in the Earth’s temperature.

        New York Times published the article “Scientists ask why world is changing; Major cooling may be ahead”.

        Gahh! Enough already!

      • c.b. – I don’t recognize any of those names as working in climate science today. That was your original claim — that people had changed their minds.

        And what if they had? Science has changed a great deal in 35 years. Can people not change their minds as new data becomes available? In the 1970s science barely knew about quarks, not at all about dark energy, or high-T superconductors, or a low-gene human genome, or about the ozone problem, or about acid rain, or HIV/AIDS, or the acceleration of the expansion of the Universe, it hadn’t discovered the W and Z particles, it didn’t know about quark-gluon plasmas… Need I continue?

        Science is a process, not a result. You seem unable to understand that, but seem to expect it to be delivered to your perfect the very first time.

        Have you read this:
        “The Myth of the 1970s Global Cooling Scientific Consensus” W. Peterson et al, Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 89, 1325–1337, 2008

        http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/abs/10.1175/2008BAMS2370.1

        http://tinyurl.com/yhzdf6q

      • David,

        You’re mising the point. Many climate ‘experts’ in the 1970s delivered apocolyptic warnings of global cooling because they extrapolated trend lines. Suppose we had acted on these, and tried to warm the earth by deliberately increasing CO2 levels? You’re suggesting that these people (and Steven Schneider is one who made the transition from cooling alarmism to warming alarmism) were ignorant, but *now* we know better. Are you sure?

        You cite some examples in physics. Good. Let’s take one – the expansion of the Universe. Until recently there would have been two possibilities – the universe has sufficient gravity to re-collapse, and no, it would continue to expand forever at an ever-slower rate. What was the outcome? Neither – the universe expands at an ever-faster rate. No-one saw that one coming.

        One more. 15 years ago solar systems around stars were easy – rocky bodies near the star, gas giants further out, ice worlds on the periphery. Easily explained by the physics of the solar nebula. Then other planets around other stars were found – gas giants whizzing around and virtually skimming the surface of the star. Back to the drawing board.

        On past form in science, there are going to be lots of things coming out of left field on climate in the next few decades. As of 2012, I think warming alarmism and cooling alarmism should be taken with a pinch of salt.

      • David,

        “Science is a process, not a result. You seem unable to understand that, but seem to expect it to be delivered to your perfect the very first time.”

        I understand that perfectly, having steeped myself in it’s history. It is ongoing. It is far from perfect now. It’s supposed to be that way.

        So why are the believers in AGW always sound so preternaturally confident that they’re right?

        Wouldn’t physicists in the 19th Century end a blog post saying “..and that is how we know the lumiferious ether must exist!”.

        PS: Computer models “project” (arithmetic);. People, especially climate alarmists, “predict” (statements about the future).

      • “David Appell | February 18, 2012 at 1:03 am |

        c.b. – I don’t recognize any of those names as working in climate science today. That was your original claim — that people had changed their minds.”

        In the 1971 essay, “Overpopulation and the Potential for Ecocide,” Dr. Holdren (Obama’s global warming promoting science czar Holdren) and his co-author, the ecologist Paul Ehrlich, warned of a coming ice age http://www.zombietime.com/zomblog/?p=873>. Dr. Holdren and Dr. Ehrlich wrote:
        “The effects of a new ice age on agriculture and the supportability of large human populations scarcely need elaboration here.”

        From: http://www.john-daly.com/schneidr.htm:
        “But what kind of person, what kind of scientist, is Dr Stephen Schneider?

        “Firstly, Schneider was not always promoting the idea of Global warming. Up to about 1978, Schneider was warning the world of an impending Global Cooling, leading to the next Ice Age !

        “It was only when global temperatures took an upward turn around 1980 that Schneider and others quickly made a career change and became passionate advocates of impending catastrophe, only this time from warming, not cooling. But then, opportunism is a trait of politicians rather than scientists.

        “During the Ice Age Scare of the 1970s, Schneider was one of it’s foremost advocates. He published a book titled “The Genesis Strategy” at this time, warning of the coming glaciation, and wrote glowing a testimonial on the back cover of a popular `Ice Age’ book of the time – (Ponte, Lowell. “The Cooling”, Prentice Hall, N.J., USA, 1976), in which the author claimed that the climatic cooling from 1940 to the 1970s was but the precursor to the main event – the coming Ice Age.

        Schneider was one of the first in the scientific community to warn of the impending Ice Age with this paper –
        Schneider S. & Rasool S., “Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide and Aerosols – Effects of Large Increases on Global Climate”, Science, vol.173, 9 July 1971, p.138-141″

        Need I find more? They can just their minds but for the sake of everyone else, I wish they would learn to avoid making erroneous claims and make the rest of us suffer from their errors.

      • John,
        AGW believers have been had.
        Think on it.

      • John,

        While not wishing to speak ill of the dead, it is typical that Schneider, who used every scare tactic in the book to get public attention for whatever message of doom (cooling, warming) he was pushing at the time seems to have become a hero to the AGW crowd, with prizes named after him, and memorial lectures.

        Someone called his tendency to exaggerate and scare for effect “ill-judged”; from a leading scientist I’d call it a disgrace. However, he leaves a powerful legacy – exaggeration and scare-tactics are now standard in AGW.

      • The point made by cui bono is

        a) that several climate scientists in the early 1970s warned us of a coming cold period resulting from human air pollution

        b) that one or two of these survived into the 2000s (ex. Stephen Schneider), changing their minds along the way

        c) that one or two climate scientists, who were skeptical of global cooling scares in the 1970s (ex. Reid Bryson, Richard Lindzen) are (or were) skeptical of the disastrous global warming claims of today

        d) that changing one’s mind as new facts are learned is a healthy sign of people (including scientists) who aren’t stuck in a paradigm

        e) that the latest lack of warming could begin to start changing some minds, especially if it continues for another 15 years

        f) that if that happens, we will know more about what doesn’t drive our climate – even if we have not found out yet what does drive it

        These all seem like very valid points to me.

        Max

      • “manacker | February 19, 2012 at 12:11 am |
        These all seem like very valid points to me.”

        These flips of opinion are fine in an academic or political debate but when each verson is sold to the world as if it is holy writ (the great concensus illusion), with statements that the debate is over and economies are severely damaged, development turned into a debilitating circus and trillions of dollars wasted on these transient opinions it becomes unacceptable and in some senses criminal in a broad sense.

    • “I don’t think there is any risk that CAGW will be falsified in our lifetimes, no matter what temperatures do for the next 15-20 years; nor even AGW for that matter.”

      Of course not; climate science, at least from its public inception through today, is axiomatic. “Anthropogenic CO2 is forcing the temperature of the earth to rise at an unprecedented rate and the consequences (at least 600 and counting: http://www.numberwatch.co.uk/warmlist.htm) of that rise will be (are) dire.” is its central axiom.

      Since axioms are not, by definition, falsifiable, all empirical climate data has been, is, and will be simply presented as confirmation of the central axiom.

  33. JC writes: “I think Stopa is about right when he says: ‘Well, the truth of this issue should be apparent within about 15 years.'”

    Ah, but instead of waiting about 15 years let’s go back about 15 years, to 1996, when Julian Simon wrote: “my guess is that global warming is likely to be simply another transient concern, barely worthy of consideration ten years from now.”

    http://www.juliansimon.org/writings/Ultimate_Resource/TCHAR18.txt

    So, look: If the data change then by all means let’s reconsider. But for right now the IPCC deserves the benefit of the doubt, at least in my mind. Decide for yourself whether Julian Simon was right or not: http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/graphs_v3/Fig.A2.gif

    PS. JC, make sure to cycle back (in less than 15 years!) to Murray Salby’s claim last year that “emission of CO2 from natural sources… plays a major role in observed changes of CO2″:

    http://judithcurry.com/2011/08/04/carbon-cycle-questions/

    Here’s the data so far on that one: http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/gmd/ccgg/trends/

    • Yoram,
      Yes, let’s give the benefit of the doubt to the IPCC which predicted that Himalayan glaciers were losing ice so fast they would be gone by 2035. And when this was pointed out to be likely too soon, their leader said the criticism was voodoo science. And now it turns out that the Himalayan glaciers have lost zip ice mass over the last decade.
      Let’s give the benefit of the doubt to an organization that still operates opaquely, ignores critiques, turns to non-experts for decision making and is run by a transportation engineer.
      Simon was right: It is 15 years later and the climate is doing nothing special.
      It takes a literal industry of spin meisters, fear mongers and huge efforts to suppress criticism to keep AGW alive.
      It takes “hide the decline”, intimidating science editors, ignoring climategate, fabricating documents about critics, denigrating skeptics, and billions of dollars to keep AGW alive.
      It takes rent seeking wannabe comedians to keep AGW alive.
      So heck yeah, let’s keep giving the benefit of the doubt to the biggest social disorder of the last 100 years.
      By all means.

  34. I have been waiting for this question to be asked – even if only rhetorically – for a very long time. Finally a legitimate blog has the nerve to do it and not surprisingly it turns out to be Dr Curry. I salute her for posting this question (and once again demonstrating her respect for the scientific method).

    I have been a skeptic from almost the very beginning although I would now more accurately refer to myself as a lukewarmer. It is essential that the politicians and zealots on all sides (not just both sides) engage this matter seriously and without agenda because – either way – the stakes are very high and we cannot afford, literally, to be wrong. Al Gore, the oil companies and the IPCC have demonstrated their unwillingness to confront the issues squarely. Only method based science and investigative integrity will bring us the information we need to serve the present and future of our world.

    • Look at the history and costs of the BSE cause new variant CJD. I am not allowed to give blood in the USA, the UK’s whole bovine and human based Pharmaceutical sector was destroyed, the NHS spends 10’s of billions of dollars per year on disposable surgical instruments and the beef sector has never recovered from the export ban.
      There has been no statistically significant increase in deaths from CJD, it is still 50 +/- 30 cases. The incubation time has been advanced from 5 to 50+ years. There have been no public health issues with CJD

      The man who started the scare has a knighthood.

  35. Willis Eschenbach

    Joshua | February 17, 2012 at 8:27 pm | Reply

    Willis –

    Just out of curiosity. The human body maintains homeostasis because as the result of evolutionary processes, we wouldn’t exist if it didn’t. There is a causal mechanism there. Living beings that aren’t homeostatic (at least at some level) don’t produce.

    Now you claim that the Earth maintains a homeostasis. In a sense, that could be evolutionary also – in that at some levels planets don’t exist if there aren’t some homeostatic balances at play. But certainly planets exist without anything near the type of law of homeostasis of climate variables that you assert. Planets don’t reproduce.

    Discuss.

    Curiously, the same thing is true for human bodies as for flow systems far from equilibrium (like the climate), as is shown by the Constructal Law, which can be stated as:

    “For a finite-size system to persist in time (to live), it must evolve in such a way that it provides easier access to the imposed currents that flow through it.”

    Discuss.

    w.

    • But Willis –

      Living beings that don’t maintain homeostasis don’t reproduce.

      There is a causal mechanism that links homeostasis to reproduction in living beings.

      Unless there is some supernatural being that I’m not aware of, I don’t see why there’s any reason to believe that a planet’s climate system would be homeostatic to the level of detail that you theorize. I mean sure, there’s a causal mechanism behind why there wouldn’t be storms or temperatures so extreme that they’d destroy the planet – but to keep temperatures stable? I don’t get that.

      The reason living beings are homeostatic is because of the phenomenon of reproduction. Planets don’t reproduce.

      I suppose there’s an answer in there somewhere in your response, but I’m not smart enough to pick it up. You’re going to have to break it down for me into tiny little pieces. No guarantees I’ll get it even then, though, of course.

      • Willis Eschenbach

        Joshua | February 17, 2012 at 9:29 pm | Reply

        … I suppose there’s an answer in there somewhere in your response, but I’m not smart enough to pick it up.

        Agreed … but then that’s hardly news.

        You’re going to have to break it down for me into tiny little pieces. No guarantees I’ll get it even then, though, of course.

        Thanks, but I’ll pass. The chances of success are too small to be worth the effort …

        w.

      • No doubt, Willis. But if at some point you decide to take pity on me, come back and explain what causal mechanism drives the homeostatic nature of our climate. You don’t seem like the religious type to me – so I’m sure that there must be a simple non supernatural causal explanation.

        Oh, and Willis, didn’t I read somewhere that you said that even the most complex phenomena should be easily condensed into a simple explanation that could be conveyed during an elevator ride? I thought I remembered some thread where you repeated something like that over, and over, and over, and over.

        I guess I must have just imagined that one, eh?

      • Oh, and Willis:

        The main criticism of constructal theory is that its formulation is vague. The constructal law states that “For a finite-size system to persist in time (to live), it must evolve in such a way that it provides easier access to the imposed currents that flow through it”, but there is neither a mention of what these “currents” are nor an explicit definition of what “providing easier access” means. As a result, constructal theory is very versatile, but often unconvincing: depending on the choices made for the currents and the “access” to them, it can lead to extremely different results.

        The second criticism of constructal theory is that there has been no attempt to prove it from first principles. Contrarily to alternative theories of non-equilibrium thermodynamics, there is no proof of constructal theory based on simplified systems of statistical physics. The claim that constructal theory is a fundamental principle of thermodynamics itself has also been disputed

        If you do decide to come back, maybe you can explain to me why constant temperatures would be an “easier flow” than temperatures that vary significantly, as we might see on other planets, for example?

    • Willis
      Re: “it must evolve in such a way that it provides easier access to the imposed currents that flow through it.”
      While Bejan makes alot of sense in his other natural models, here he runs afoul of Mendel’s laws which are far more accurate than Darwin’s. Appealing to hand waving doesn’t make it predictive science. See Mendel’s Accountant for more realistic models of the consequences of NeoDarwinian population models. See OMIM ® – Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man with about 21,000 records on 12,000 genes detailing the consequences of mutations. With the ability to sequence the genome in one day, this hard evidence will rapidly accumulate.

  36. Dr Stopa

    Thank you for your brilliant article.

    JC, thank you for posting it here.

  37. …it is possible that CO2 has effectively no influence on global climate.

    The above conclusion is supported by the observed global mean temperature (GMT) data => http://bit.ly/wzkYvi

    If CO2 had influence, the GMT band instead of two parallel lines (Purple & Cyan) would have been curves with increasing positive slope with increasing years.

    • Your conclusion is wrong, because CO2 is far from the only factor influencing climate.

      • CO2 is far from the only factor influencing climate.

        Much of what I’ve read strongly suggests that you are quite correct on this point. That being the case, where might one find the scientific emprical evidence (as opposed to computer generated simulations) of the validity and efficacy of the frequently heard message that the only path to the promised land of the future of our planet depends heavily (if not entirely, according to some) on immediate drastic reduction (and/or, as advocated by some, preferably capping and trading) of human-generated emissions of C02?

  38. Fred M.,

    I’ve noticed that warmists tend to get a little twitchy when someone so much as mentions some sort of common sense time limit on the CAGW hypothesis….a hypothesis that as near as I can tell is well nigh unfalsifiable.

    Granted, I’m not a scientist but I have two eyes, two ears, and a serviceable IQ. What I see currently is a 13 year span in which global temps have not gone up despite rising Co2 levels. If we add another 15 years onto that, we’d be knocking on the door of 3 decades with no warming. I think most reasonable people would argue at the very least, that this does not look good for the warmist case. And yet I get the sense you wouldn’t even be willing to grant that much…

    But suppose that over the next 15 years it not only doesn’t get warmer, the globe cools substantially. What would you be saying at that point? Would you be willing to concede that perhaps Co2 sensitivity has been over-estimated and that solar influence…assuming current predictions of a quiet sun prove correct… underestimated?

    I’ve asked you this once before and you weren’t willing to answer. Maybe you’ll do me the courtesy now. What would it take for you to begin to seriously question the whole AGW enterprise? 13 years of no warming isn’t enough. Nor it seems it I’m understanding you correctly, would another 15 years on top of that. So what would you need? 50 years? one hundred? 500 hundred?

    • Hi pokerguy – You’re right that I’m reluctant to answer such a general question on multiple technical issues in a non-technical thread – I think it would be diversionary. However, if you’ve read my commentary dduring recent months (and I believe you have), I think you’ll get a sense of my understanding of climate change, including the relevance of any future 15 year interval. I also refer you to David Appell’s comment here for some of the technical data.

      I’m afraid you’ll have to be satisfied with that, unless you are willing to follow my earlier suggestions to you in other threads that you begin to increase your understanding of the basic principles of climate change. At the time, I interpreted your response to indicate that you were satisfied with the level of knowledge you possess and felt no need to increase it or change your opinions. If you change your mind, please let me know.

    • > What I see currently is a 13 year span in which global temps
      > have not gone up despite rising Co2 levels.

      Really? The trend of the HadCRUT3 surface data over that time period is 0.043 +/- 0.042 C/decade (uncertainty is the 95% confidence level). GISS’s trend is even larger.

      In any case, this is only the SURFACE. There is much more to a planet than its surface. The UAH LT trend is 0.162 +/- 0.065 C/decade. And the top 700 m of the ocean is warming, and the top 2000 m is warming strongly:

      http://www.nodc.noaa.gov/OC5/3M_HEAT_CONTENT/

      So you are wrong that the planet isn’t warming.

      • @ David Appell: The trend of the HadCRUT3 surface data over that time period is 0.043 +/- 0.042 C/decade (uncertainty is the 95% confidence level). GISS’s trend is even larger

        David, the temperature is monitored on less than 0,000000000001% of the areas ESSENTIAL for knowing the correct temperature; but you talk about 0,043 /0,042… My advice to you is: you should ask for psychiatric assistance urgently, for your own benefit. Inaccuracy in temp report is plus / minus 3-4C, you believe in Swindlers that PRETEND to know in LESS than 1C…

        David, anybody who PRETEND to know the correct temperature; is either lying, or repeats other people’s lies. Unless is monitored for every minute in 24h – unless is monitored on every 10m3 in the WHOLE troposphere – is only for brainwashing people like you…

        Same goes for the seawater – whoever told you that the seawater is getting warmer in EVERY ocean – he / she told you a big lie. Ask him about the water temp for the last couple of years in south Atlantic and Antarctic oceans!!!

        Some places gets warmer – there are real / legitimate reasons for it, not CO2 and the skilful brainwashing. Other places gets colder… self adjusting mechanisms are avoided by the Warmist, and the Skeptic D/H, because the truth is boring and doesn’t bring spoils.

      • Global mean temperature FLAT for 15 years => http://bit.ly/wGSSK5

      • Stefan, stop being rude.

        You seem never to have heard of statistical sampling — in space or time — or to be aware that the reason Hadley, GISS, et al publish temperature *anomalies* is to compare them to the past and to the networks already established.

        I suggest you take a good course on statistics.

        Ask him about the water temp for the last couple of years in south Atlantic and Antarctic oceans!!!

        What is it, and what is its change? And why does the “last couple of years” matter for reasons of long-term global climate change?

        Stefan, if you continue to be rude I will ignore you.

      • Girma, that’s ONE dataset, that makes a certain assumption about the polar regions that everyone suspects underestimates the change there, and it’s only for the planet’s surface, and it’s for a time interval that is not climatologically significant. And what is the statistical significance of the trend?

        So what importance does your claim have?

      • <a href="http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1997/plot/gistemp/offset:-0.09/detrend:0.025/from:1997/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1997/trend/plot/gistemp/from:1997/trend"Girma's hadCRUtch3 in action."

        See that purple trend? That’s a planet called earth. The red trend is regional – CET plus.

      • David, you don’t have many choices, to admit guilt or run for cover; I have put the Warmist in check-mat position on my blog; with all the proofs, formulas and details.

        In my comment above I was pointing to you: .for ”statistic” to have any credibility – needs sufficient data. Otherwise is just harvesting from thin air, for which you Warmist are good at. David, do you doo palm readings also?

        1] Europe / USA have 70% of the monitoring places – Oceania has 2%. Oceania is 10 times (1000%) larger area than Europe + USA; needs to get warmer by 8C – in Oceania to get cooler by only 0,8C, to be equalised – their data available is just B/S fodder for believers and D/H Skeptics. 2] Even on the smallest hill, northern side is cooler than southern in N/H. Some have western side much larger than northern. 3] the ”warmth” at 10AM has same value as during the hottest minute of the day, but lasts much longer than the ”minute only taken in the account”! All 1440 minutes should be taken into account, because they are NEVER same for every day – because of that, statistic doesn’t work.

        5] If upper atmosphere is cooler – on the ground is hotter during the day – if you ignore (NOT HAVING ANY DATA FOR UPPER ATMOSPHERE) ground temp, by itself is meaningless. Statistic is for massaging the truth. That is for the last year and year before – they use ”statistic” for 19century… shame, shame!!! Look at their GLOBAL temperature charts for the last 1000years – they are confident that 1856 was warmer than 1855 by O,1C…..???!!!! David, you are in their camp > it makes you their bi-product / excrement, nothing personal. On my website is a list of damages they are doing – small example: they are against water vapour… against saving extra storm-water in new dams – because new dams improve the climate and save lives from floods and droughts – therefore; you are with the ”premeditated mass murderers” ”Ostrich tactic” is used by the people ashamed of what they are doing ”Cheers!

      • David Appell

        You wrote:

        The trend of the HadCRUT3 surface data over that time period is 0.043 +/- 0.042 C/decade (uncertainty is the 95% confidence level). GISS’s trend is even larger.

        Let’s do a quick “reality check” on that statement.

        http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1998/to:2012/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1998/to:2012/trend/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:2001/to:2012/trend

        If one looks at the new century as a dividing point (January 2001), one has a cooling trend of around -0.06°C per decade over a 11-year period.

        If one starts with the record warm El Niño year (January 1998), one has a very slight but statistically insignificant cooling trend over a 14-year period.

        Max

        PS These are not long-term trends (yet?) – but they do show slight cooling.

  39. Shamanism, sympathetic magic and doomsday cults have always been with us; Thermogeddon is just a manifestation of guilt-based religious urges.
    What I find most stunning is the way that one side has stolen the other sides clothing. We are all used to the fact that choice of language reflects bias, so it is common for the media to talk about ‘Conservative Hardliners’ when discussing Iranian clerics or Chinese Communists. In the case of CAGW proponents on one hand they use true conservative language and analysis; ‘the precautionary principle’. So change is bad and could have catastrophic consequences and yet on the other hand wish to enact revolutionary economic, social and most of all, political changes. So CO2 release; Precautionary principle, Nuclear power; Precautionary principle massive transfers of wealth into unproven technologies; a must.
    Fossil fuels supplied about 500 EJ last year (10^18 J), the cheapest way to replace this energy would be to build 7,500 new nuclear power stations. At about a billion a pop, we are looking at half of the US GDP. Developing the Uranium extraction technology and breeder programs would probably take about another 20 billion or so.
    So, all quite doable. Yet the one thing the great majority of CAGwers never want is an expansion of nuclear power, nor research into nuclear power.
    Odd that.

    • Doc,
      +1

    • Doc, they are painting themselves in a corner. In order to transition into nuclear or some other sustainable base load power generation they have either coal, natural gas or biomass. Choosing just one will causes problems, so a blend is unavoidable. Coal is a demon because of past performance in their mind so they push nat gas and biomass. Now they are beginning to realize nat gas and biomass also have demons.

      They are pretty much stuck with 50 more years of coal or building lower technology nuclear while they work out the kinks in their sustainable planning. Shame they pissed off the industries they will have to rely on for a while.

    • “Yet the one thing the great majority of CAGwers never want is an expansion of nuclear power, nor research into nuclear power.
      Odd that.”

      Nothing odd about it at all. All that is required is to discuss the underlying political need associated to co2 theory and it’s backers. It’s largely taboo or minimized or obfufuscated by preponents like Joshua. This isn’t in the Green central planning playbook. Rationing and controlling the population in the process is in the playbook.

      • cwon –

        It’s largely taboo or minimized or obfufuscated by preponents like Joshua.

        Really? Perhaps you could explain more to me about my views on nuclear power. Because from what you’ve described so far, it seems that my views are different than how I understand them.

        Ya’ just gotta love the methodology in how some “skeptics” reason.

      • Joshua: Perhaps you could explain more to me about my views on nuclear power.

        cwon used the word “obfuscated”. Some of us have pointed out to you how you have obfuscated your views.

        it seems that my views are different than how I understand them.

        I think that’s a fair statement, probably the best you have written.

  40. Judith Curry

    Thanks for posting a very interesting and provocative article by Mike Stopa.

    “We’ll know for sure in 15 years” sounds good to me, but it should be followed by, “so let’s gather as much data as we can in the meantime to clear up as many of the uncertainties that still exist and hold off from rushing into any remedial actions until we really “know for sure”.

    Max

  41. In an interesting admission the (British) Met Office and the University of East Anglia Climatic Research Unit have now admitted that the climate has ceased rising for the last 15 years.

    The above conclusion is supported by the observed global mean temperature (GMT) data => http://bit.ly/wGSSK5

    • @ Girma; they are admitting, only because they have being scrutinised / monitored themselves.
      Another truth, that they don’t need to admit yet, is: temperature wasn’t rising even for the last 150years; unfortunately, because the Sceptical D/H use 98 as the warmest…Warmist are laughing. Girma, 98 wasn’t warmer or colder than any other year; it was invented by the Warmist as warmest year – they know is a lie = but best proof to them of the Skeptic’s immaturity.

  42. What if cows could fly?

  43. What if Judith didn’t post wild speculations from Harvard physicists about what might happen in the future?

  44. “Models can back-predict, and that’s already saying a lot.” This says to me that the models are probably helping understand complex phenomena but back-prediction begs the question as to whether the models are starting to perform well or whether they are so flooded with data and variables that they can be manipulated to fit any pre-known dataset. Which it is is the $64,0000 question.

    • What about the models is “manipulated?” They are numerical solutions to the partial differential equations describing the underlying physics, chemistry, and biology.

      • Appell, I don’t have time to rehash the past 6 months of discussion about models on this blog. There are a lot of very technical issues that even the honest modelers acknowledge, see for example Paul Williams. Or just attend a fluid dynamics conference where there is a computational element. Oh, and you need to be skeptical about colorful fluid dynamics such as we see in climate papers. Some call it “continuous fraud and deceit” and they actually often sadly have a point.

      • No, David Young. “Manipulated” is a very loaded term that implies malfeasance. If you can’t support it other than with vague references, it does not stand up.

        I think it’s cowardly to accuse anyone of malfeasance without strong evidence to support your claim.

      • Appell, I didn’t mention the term “manipulated” someone else did. I’m making a different point. You need to slow down and think before typing. The point is amply dealt with on other threads here at this blog over the last 6 months. I have some posts on the recent ergodicity thread that touch on it. You will find that a drive by assault here won’t work. Some of us actually have credentials in fields relevant to climate and should be taken seriously. Look up the definition of prejudice some time and actually contemplate it for more than the time it takes to hit the post key.

      • “aerosols,” what? How are they manipulated?

        More than a one-word answer, please.

      • Can you even read? I did NOT use the word manipulated. You know as well as I do that the IPCC rates scientific understanding of aerosol forcing as low and the error bar on the forcing is 100% of the median value.

        The models are approximate solutions to a very approximate differential equation problem whose spacial resolution is very large compared to the dynamics of say clouds, turbulence, mountain range effects and dozens of other well known effects. Ever heard of the Rayleigh Taylor instability? If not, you should spend a little time on it.

        Paul Williams has a great video at the Isaac Newton Institute on the Leapfrog scheme used in most GCM’s. Basically, the solutions can be so approximate as to lose all dynamics very quickly. Paul has a great idea for fixing this problem.

      • David Appell, Are not aerosols one of the adjustments used in the models? Adjustments are things that are “manipulated”. In order to fit the models to the 1910 to 1940 temperature rise I believe there was low aerosol, high solar and even positive aerosol feed back for black carbon included in the adjustments/manipulations/tweaking of the models.

        Now that the Little Ice Age has a possible volcanic cause, how will that impact the models? BTW, there were 7 northern hemisphere volcanic eruptions between 1910 and 1940 and a couple were over VEI 4. Odd they didn’t have much impact on climate :)

      • I used the word “manipulated”. I do not know how they teach algebra these days but I was taught that one of the fundamental skills was to learn to manipulate sets of equations to find the unknown values of the variables of which they were comprised. My Shorter Oxford gives 3 meanings to the word. The first two effectively say handling with skill and dexterity. The last of the three says it can be used in the form you have suggested. With respect it seems you have taken the meaning least applicable to solving equations, partial differential or otherwise. Since you indicate they are numerically solved the old fashioned manipulative approach used for simpler sets of equations may not have been immediately obvious.

      • David,
        Why does GISS and others consistently find that the historical record needs to be adjusted in a way that increases the recent warming period?

      • David,

        An answer like this makes me question your honesty.

        Climate models require that certain assumptions and parameters be made about the “underlying physics, chemistry, and biology” that are not well understood. This is one way they can be “manipulated” – although I don’t know that Ilike that term.

        Another way is in how the data they crunch gets “massaged”. For example adding correction factors to certain data sets will effect a model’s output. Is this bad or dishonest science? No. But to think that models cannot be tweaked to get certain results is. Don’t most climate models have to assign a certain forcing value to water vapor in order to get CO2 increases to accurately model the historical temp data?

  45. What if they are wrong?

    Here is a relevant comment in the climategate emails:

    What if climate change appears to be just mainly a multidecadal natural
    fluctuation? They’ll kill us probably…

    http://foia2011.org/index.php?id=1632

    That is going too far.

    My wish for AGW advocates is to stop scaring the world until there is a clear evidence of AGW, like change in global mean temperature pattern => http://bit.ly/oembwR

    • So all of climate science should be condemned because one scientist once made an off-hand remark to a friend in an email? Is that what you’re saying?

      • No David, all they say is wrong. They lied about the Nuclear Winter for year 2000 – GLOBAL warming is exactly the same. The only reason the Warmist are still persisting is, because the D/H Skeptics believe in more phony GLOBAL warmings than the Warmist. Warmings or coolings are NEVER GLOBAL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • Stefan: They “lied” about nuclear winter? Really? You clearly have no clue what the phrase even means — IT WAS ABOUT THE CLIMATE IN THE AFTERMATH OF THE EVENT OF A NUCLEAR WAR.

        That’s two chances, Stefan, and you’ve blown them both. I”m done with you.

      • So all of what you say should be condemned because you once used hyperbole? Is that what I’m saying?
        ======================

      • @ David Appeal; wrong David wrong; you are misleading again! ”Nuclear Winter for year 2000” came up from this inspiration: there was believe that: if there was nuclear war, dust / SMOG will block the sunlight = therefore, if CO2 increases, will create similar affect, it’s called ”DIMMING EFFECT”

        They used the ”dimming effect” for their nuclear winter for year 2000 (as sun umbrella during the day) and overlooked ”the blanket affect from CO2 during the night”. Now they are using the ”blanket affect” (which they mislead as Greenhouse” but are ignoring the ”sun umbrella effect” during the day. THOSE TWO FACTORS CANCEL EACH OTHER = milder climate; similar as from water vapour affect; only H2O is much more than CO2. CO2 + water vapour are NOT greenhouse effect gases, but ”shade-cloth effect gases!!! All the lies have being already proven

        Reason 2: because CO2 can absorb much more coldness than O+N – was going to cool the troposphere ==== because they were intentionality ignoring the second factor: CO2 can absorb extra heat also – those two factors cancel each other. CO2 absorbs more heat high up during the day – where cooling is much more efficient = less heat comes to the ground. Then at night, the cooling is slower, because the proportion in difference of heat between upper atmosphere and the ground is less = cooler days / warmer nights (vertical winds are slower; as in Brazil comparing to Sahara). All has being proven, David; it’s on my website. Everything can be replicated in experiments now, not to wait 100y. The only reason the Swindlers are still prospering, is because of the Fake Skeptics / the Boot Leaker’s irresponsibly. The truth will win, sooner than you think.

  46. What will they say if they are wrong?

    IPCC 7 Summary for Policy Makers: oops

  47. I posted this over on the Heartland thread, but that one is dead now, so am reposting here:

    Getting Mickey the Kid (a “Western” tale)

    Cast:
    Lawman: Straight-shooter Steve
    Gunslinging young outlaw: Mickey the Kid
    Corrupt big landowner + cattleman: Big Jim
    Big Jim’s moll: Gangly Gabi
    Lady sharpshooter: Dead-eye Judy
    Supporting cast: Big Jim band members, Josh Bigosh, Kenny T, “Fastdraw” Phil, “Dry-gulch” Keith

    It is evening, but the sun has not yet set over the dry plains.

    Lawman Steve, wearing a large white sombrero, is slowly riding into a dusty Western clapboard town on a tall white horse. Down the mud road lies the town saloon, with the sound of piano music coming out.

    In the saloon, Big Jim and his boys are drinking whiskey, smoking and playing poker. Gabi is sitting on the arm of Big Jim’s large leather chair, watching the action.

    The door swing open and in runs Kenny T, shouting: There’s a lawman ridin’ inta town, boss – an’ they say he’s comin’ after Mickey ta take ‘im in!

    Mickey the Kid starts twirling his twin Colt 44s nervously, and says to Jim: Lemme ambush ‘im, boss –it’ll be easy.

    Big Jim brushes Mickey off and says: I’ll handle this..

    The doors swing open again and in walks Straight-shooter Steve, the lawman

    Big Jim asks the lawman: Are you “Straight-shooter” Steve, the federal lawman they say has busted more’n a dozen outlaws from El Paso ta Deadwood?

    Steve answers: Yep. That’s me. An’ I’m here ta git Mickey an’ take ‘m back ta Dodge City fer trial.

    BJ: Mickey’s one of my boys now, an’ I don’ reckon I wanna lose ‘im – so he ain’t goin’ nowhere.

    SS: I reckon I’ll have ta take ‘im in by force then, Big Jim.

    The crowd is tense – until Big Jim breaks the silence: Let’s settle this outside.

    The crowd all moves outside to the board sidewalk, while Steve and Mickey move to the dirt road for a face-off and shoot-out.

    Unbeknownst to Steve, two of Big Jim’s men, “Fast-draw” Phil and “Dry-gulch” Keith are hiding on two opposite balconies with Remington rifles pointed directly at him.

    A hush falls over the crowd, with only the distant sound of a dog barking, as Steve and Mickey stare at each other with squinted eyes.

    After several minutes (which seem like hours) Mickey finally goes for his Colt.

    Almost simultaneously, three shots ring out.

    Mickey falls to the ground and the two riflemen tumble down from the balconies.

    Everyone is astounded at the result.

    An oldtimer walks up to Steve (as he is holstering his Colt) and asks: How in the world did you do that, lawman?

    As “Dead-eye” Judy steps out of the shadows clutching her still-smoking Winchester rifle to her side, Steve says: In a tough spot ya sometimes gotta have help.

    The curtain falls.

  48. It has already “turned out” that CO2 does no warming and actually has a cooling effect as it absorbs some incoming solar radiation which is in the infra-red spectrum. No one ever debates this last point which the IPCC conveniently forgot about.

    My other posts, and my ‘radiation’ page on my website explain why.

  49. I was afraid of this when I saw the title of this post. We are attracting new poeple like Appell who haven’t looked at some of the more technical threads like the recent one on ergodicity. I’m not sure I have the time or patience to repeat the past.

  50. Judith –

    Well, the truth of this issue should be apparent within about 15 years

    My observation on this is that such things never actually materialise. They are said frequently and in good faith, but this is not how change occurs.

    What can you be sure of? That there will be a fierce tribal debate – with absolutely no prospect of resolution – in 15 years time. Of course the battleground may have moved or the emphasis changed, but the ‘debate’ will be exactly as it is now.

    To me, it is a mistake to think questions with an enormous moral and political dimension get ‘resolved’ – they morph, but their level of disagreement remains constant. This, bizarrely, is true even after the ‘debate’ has moved on to other things. The idea that people will be able to ‘look back’ and see who was right and who was wrong is erroneous – in this arena, everybody is already looking back and seeing that they were right.

    A good example – I recently referred somebody to the conclusion that the percentage of trees in Europe that died as a result of acid rain during the 80’s was zero – to the nearest 1 per cent. And given the fact that ‘leading scientists’ were predicting that more than 90% of forests would be wiped out, this showed that the acid rain scare [for trees, at least] was to all intents and purposes completely false. The response – to my mind – was staggering. The person claimed that the trees dying off was real and their saving was a result of policies of the 90’s that reduced acid deposition.
    In effect, the threat was real and without the policy changes, Europe would no longer have any forests.

    So, I think we can be sure that there will be no clear, definitive resolution on AGW in 15 or 115 years. Perhaps most obviously, it is impossible to have a resolution on an issue where nobody can agree as to what constitutes a resolution. We are dichotomous creatures, but AGW is about degrees [pun intended] – it completely misses the mark to imagine that an answer is ever going to be reached one way, or another. It is simply the wrong kind of debate for that.

    A final example – think of climate sensitivity. The estimate of it is an auto-correlated variable due to it’s imprecise nature. It isn’t going to “leap” from ~3 degrees to ~1 degree without spending time traversing the intermediate points. In 15 years? CS will still be estimated to be greater than 2 degrees even if global temperature remains completely flat. Which anyway is something nobody is prepared to put any money on.

    • Anteros

      You have stated your viewpoint on the validity of the statement:

      Well, the truth of this issue should be apparent within about 15 years

      I am less pessimistic (or cynical?) than you regarding this question.

      While I agree with you completely that the strong proponents of CAGW will not back down even if the empirical data show that this hypothesis has been completely falsified, I do believe that, if this were to be the case 15 years from now, these individuals would have become a “fringe group”, not to be taken seriously (like those today, who believe in past invasions by extraterrestrial aliens).

      But, then again, I have to admit that I may be wrong and you may be right, because it is a crazy world.

      Max

      • Max –

        You have a point – things may seem different, but in a way I think the forces and ideas ranged against each other will be the same, so although there may be a ‘shifting’, the landscape will look remarkable similar.

        I’m thinking about Paul Ehrlich’s apocalyptic predictions from 1968. The total failure of the predictions doesn’t stop the world from being littered with neo-Malthusians claiming that the crisis is upon us (or nearly upon us). In another way, even if temperature remains flat for another 15 years, there will still be outlets for the doomers about unsustainability etc. Peak oil will reappear, and the same arguments will rage, while some of the words may have changed.

        Remember, if 15 years ago someone had said, we’re now entering a period of experimentation and in 15 years time we’ll know for sure if this AGW idea is bogus or not… many people would have said yes – if there is no warming for 15 years, we can forget about it and worry about something else. Well, the zombie just got up again and started walking again!!

        In a way, I think it is never-ending. It is a feature of the ever-present. Except of course in the middle of a war or famine, when people have got something better to worry about. Periods of great superstition and concern about the future coincide with periods of general stability. The AGW worry is just another horse on which to drape the clothes of our fear about the dark.

      • > In a way, I think it is never-ending.

        More so if it’s an audit.

    • > To me, it is a mistake to think questions with an enormous moral and political dimension get ‘resolved’ – they morph, but their level of disagreement remains constant.

      Anteros, what do you feel about slavery?

      • To many people, it continues.

        The form has changed, but the underlying behaviour hasn’t.
        Think sex trafficking, sweat shops, indentured labour, child labour.

      • Oh, and my point applies to slavery – the arguments continue, with the sides much as they were before.

      • Anteros,

        There is more slavery going on in the world than there ever was:

        http://blog.ted.com/2010/03/29/how_to_combat_m/

        So I would agree with that claim, if that is what you mean.

        But that does not answer my question, which relates to we what we ought to do, and not to what we do. I hope we can agree that slavery is not a good thing, Do you agree with me that slavery ought not be practiced?

        Even if you could find someone who could claim that slavery is a good thing, I am quite confident that the proponents of slavery are rare, even (?) among denizens (?). If I am right in believing so, chances are that the opinion on slavery has evolved, to a point where people have reached a consensus on the question. That does not mean that everybody has the same opinion on the subject, or that there are not some areas of disagreement, or that slavery has stopped.

        So this example seems to refute your appeal to moral relativism. We could negotiate a softer claim, of course. But for that negotiation to happen, dodging should stop. While you think about your reply, I will note that moral relativism looks strange with the usual claptraps against po-mo stuff that surfaces from time to time in our auspices.

      • Willard –

        I’m not certain how to answer your question, particularly as it has moved to include morals and relativism [which I didn't understand you to be enquiring about in your first comment]

        In a sense I agree. Of course, because there is still slavery (though the debate or emotional engagement has shifted) something remains essentially unaltered.

        *****

        I’ll confess that my confusion is partly because a) I was unaware that I was invoking moral relativism in my original comment because I wasn’t making any moral claim at all – I was making an observation about human nature that I think is appropriate. b) I frequently am told that my views are morally relativistic. c) I usually mean something slightly different from the people I converse with when I talk of moral relativism.

        To try to unravel some of my own confusion… In a way, I think that if what we call ‘slavery’ persists, then there will be people defending the behaviour surrounding it – but they wouldn’t call it slavery. My over-riding observation is that we are dichotomous creatures and we line up on particular debates according to some very basic, fundamental dispositions. In the climate debate these are about fear, guilt, responsibility, our feelings about our own – and human – agency and so on. Even if the debate right in front of our eyes changes, the participants do not, so the new landscape has the same characters seeing the world in the same way as before.

        To be fair, slavery is way off my usually beaten track but it applies here I think too. The activists who are most against child labour and sex trafficking are the same personalities with the same dispositions as those who were most active in the campaign against what we now call ‘slavery’.

        Going back to my original point, one of the reasons I don’t think the debate about AGW will be readily or clearly resolved (ever) is because the perspectives that currently see it differently will always do so. Some are already looking back at proven disruptions to the climate, and others see vindication that it was a false alarm.

        It is common to find people saying at one point in time – “In X number of years this or that will become clear – we will know the answer”. I think history shows that this is almost never the case – something changes, something remaiins the same, and after the X number of years the are the same kinds of questions being posed by the same kinds of people imagining that in X number of years an clear answer will appear.

      • Willard –

        I’ve read through your comment, and perhaps there was a reason I was avoiding your question. My understanding on this topic often turns out to be incommensurable with the views of everybody who believes in ‘ought’.

        You say –

        Do you agree with me that slavery ought not be practiced?

        I don’t answer that question because i don’t ask it I don’t have that moral ought/ought not that makes the question meaningful.

        Do I like slavery? No – in the same way most of us don’t. I object to it. But what I would say that what means is that I have an emotional attitude towards it – there is no ought/ought not, involved. I can express my preferences in voting and I could, say, join and an anti child labour pressure group – with people who think it is wrong. But I don’t have a moral belief about it.

        You might ask “what is the difference?” To me the difference is that I’ve got two clear things that make sense to me – my feelings about the world, and also the recognition that when we ask whether we ‘ought’ to do something, we always need to know what the objective is. If we do that [often it is obvious] then there isn’t any need for ‘ought/ought not’.

        I wouldn’t answer your question (as it is) because it doesn’t make sense to me.

      • Anteros,

        Here is the sentence I commented:

        > To me, it is a mistake to think questions with an enormous moral and political dimension get ‘resolved’ – they morph, but their level of disagreement remains constant.

        Now you say:

        > I wasn’t making any moral claim at all [.]

        Please clarify.

      • Anteros,

        Perhaps there is a way to bypass any discussion about morality. I contest that questions with an enormous moral and political dimension never get ‘resolved’. I believe some do, and I believe the humaneness of slavery is such an example. It gets “resolved”, not because we have found a way to define it as an equation and found its analytical solution, so to speak. We resolved it because we don’t talk about it anymore. Human rights “settled” this a while ago.

        So resolution is possible even in the moral dimension. I suppose this allows progress in the political dimension too.

        That does not mean that this won’t resurface one day. But by the same token, nothing prevents us against a reform in elementary arithmetics too.

      • Anteros,

        Allow me a short post-scriptum: what you describe as your moral stance sounds like emotivism, which is a branch of cognitivism:

        http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/moral-cognitivism/

        So you’re not alone.

        Hope this helps,

        Thank you for your clarification, which I appreciate,

        Good night,

      • willard –

        Thank you for your thoughts.

        If you happen to pass by, I think we have a different interpretation of what this contains –

        To me, it is a mistake to think questions with an enormous moral and political dimension get ‘resolved’ – they morph, but their level of disagreement remains constant.

        I don’t think I’m I’m making a moral comment. I think I’m perhaps saying something that’s hard to justify – because there are certainly examples where conventions of what is acceptable do change. But I make no judgement about that. Perhaps that’s by-the-by. The subject of my not-very-astute observation was certainly the a topic which contains morality.

        Your mentioning of emotivism reminds me of a frustration I have encountered with this before. The label tends to either give the impression that the thinking I entertain is the result of belonging to some philosophical ‘school’, or that it is in some way a good thing, which is self-referential – and destructively so – because I ask the questions I do because I don’t recognise the existence of a quality of good in the first place.

        If someone asks me whether they should lie to get a job, I ask them the question “what do you want to achieve?”. The process can be a bit tortuous including involving aspects of the person feeling comfortable with themselves etc. Every so often they will ask “but is it ‘right?'” to which I have to respond “right, for what?”. There will always be that kind of question until someone works out what it is they would like to achieve. ‘right’ and ‘ought’ only appear to evaporate. I don’t believe they were there in the first place.

        The idea of ‘emotivism’ may be a convenient shorthand to communicate something, but it tends to carry implications that only make sense if ought/ought not are meaningful [outside of towards a particular goal]. I don’t ask questions like those above to be an emotivist – I actually want to know what the person wants to achieve – because then their question makes some sense!

        ***

        I’m still not convinced about slavery. If it is true that there is as much slavery as ever, how can we say that we have universally agreed to condemn it? Has it not morphed to another area where what we call slavery – in its new forms – is justified by the people who indulge in it?

        My point is that the kinds of people and disagreements still exist in exactly the same way, but the landscape in which these disputes occur looks different. It may appear that substantive developments have occurred, but underneath everything is much as it always was.

      • Anteros,

        I only have a short while for this time, but I believe I can pinpoint what I mean by responding to this:

        > If it is true that there is as much slavery as ever, how can we say that we have universally agreed to condemn it? Has it not morphed to another area where what we call slavery – in its new forms – is justified by the people who indulge in it?

        This is where we need to distinguish prescriptive from descriptive questions. There are many questions about slavery that implie moral and political dimension. The Declaration of Human Rights has settled the prescriptive one:

        > No one shall be held in slavery or servitude; slavery and the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms.

        The question is easily obtained by transforming this statement in the interrogative. I could also have invoked the Lincoln-Douglas debate. That will be for another time.

        We seem to agree that this does not settle the descriptive one: there still are many slaves on Earth, perhaps more that there ever was.

        Even if we admit that what you say does not entail any real moral questions, you have to agree that there are questions with moral and political dimension that gets settled. I believe I have proved this. If that example is not enough, it would be easy to find other ones in other fields: child abuse, tobacco advertizing, etc.

        Now, you could say that all the **interesting** questions with moral and political dimensions are very tough to solve. I’d have to agree with you on this one, because it would look like a platitude, although I would never, for the life of me, say that it **is** a truism. If that’s where this discussion leads us, I would still insist in distinguishing prescriptive from descriptive questions (even if morality was beyond what is possible to say) and ask you show how the AGW debate falls under this platitude.

        Thank you for your time,

        Only the best regards,

        w

  51. Stupefying sums of money spent on what amounts to a really poor solution (renewable energy) to a problem that may or may not exist. Adding injury to insult, all that money could have been spent on really simple measures (e.g. energy conservation) that can significantly help the economy by reducing energy costs and that puts more money in the consumers wallet to spend as they see fit, with the happy bonus of reducing greenhouse gas emissions at levels that vastly exceed anything renewable energy can achieve.

    Meanwhile, the corrupt politicians go along with the scheme to gain votes, thereby enriching themselves and their cronies. How will history judge this nefarious operation? It will be simply be rewritten to protect the guilty.

    • Keller, how much money is spent on renewable energy, vs fossil fuels? (And have you ever heard of Jevon’s Paradox?)

      Fossil fuels are already ENORMOUSLY subsidized, as their harm is socialized.
      Generating power with fossil fuels creates more damage than value-added. That’s the conclusion, at least, of Yale economist William Nordhaus in a recent paper:

      Muller, Nicholas Z., Robert Mendelsohn, and William Nordhaus. 2011. “Environmental Accounting for Pollution in the United States Economy.” American Economic Review, 101(5): 1649–75.

      http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/aer.101.5.1649

      http://nordhaus.econ.yale.edu/documents/Env_Accounts_052609.pdf

      Coal-based power is worst of all. In addition, the National Academy of Sciences estimates that fossil fuel use causes damages of at least $120 B/yr to health and the environment:

      “Hidden Costs of Energy: Unpriced Consequences of Energy Production and Use”
      National Research Council, 2010

      http://books.nap.edu/catalog/12794.html

      Of course, no one on forums like this wants to mention external costs, because including them makes it clear that we are all subsidizing fossil fuels by a huge amount through worse health and higher medical costs.

      People need to be educated about external costs, which are real even if they don’t show up on one’s monthly electricity bill. That doesn’t mean developing countries shouldn’t use it — they desperately need more energy — but it’s a reason why rich countries should stop using it and develop (and subsidize) better methods.

      • David, those estimates are based on business as usual coal. The EPA has new limits on coal. If you were to recalulate using the NEW coal standards and apply the same standards to biomass and the true impact of biofuels you would arrive at a totally different conclusion.

        Let’s keep the apples with the apples David :)

      • Indeed, and people need to be educated about external benefits too. Strange, that the sewage treatment industry’s contribution to welfare gets only value-added on the “benefits” side but gets external damages on the “cost” side. Especially strange, given that some economic historians estimate that public health improvements might account for as much as half of Western economic growth since the 1870s. Exceedingly strange, given that damages in the paper are based on the economic value of a life. All very unusual.

      • Just for clarification, I am talking about the Muller Mendelsohn and Nordhaus paper that Appell cites. Which is really awful.

      • I suppose that I wouldn’t care at all if all the lights in my neighborhood’s houses went dark and the streetlights went off. So long as my house has power, everything’s A-OK! No external benefits from electric power, nosiree!

        How stupid can an economics paper get.

      • David,
        Fossil fuels are not enormously subsidized by any normal definition of subsidy.
        I note with interest that this subsidy argument is nearly as pervasive as the VRWC myths floating around about skeptics.
        If you can show where fossil fuels are receiving anything more than the ability to do as every other profitable business, I would like to see the evidence.
        So far all I have found is nothing. No special operating subsidies, no special tax exemptions. Only expensing, depreciation and depletion and amortization. Just like any other business.
        Show me wrong.
        And do not redefine the term, please.

      • …we are all subsidizing fossil fuels by a huge amount through worse health and higher medical costs

        Yeah right! That’s presumably why we’re now living such short, unhealthy lives compared to a century or two ago. /sarc off

        That doesn’t mean developing countries shouldn’t use it

        So it’s fine for poor countries to wreck their health then????

        Fossil fuels are already ENORMOUSLY subsidized

        …which is pretty much standard comment for anyone trying to make an argument against something people do which they don’t like. Which conveniently ignores the rather obvious point that, even if it were true, we’re all subsidising ourselves.
        If even half of the “enormously subsidised” stories you hear are true, the human race would not be able to afford to pay for itself.
        And things which are genuinely hugely subsidised are ignored. Like solar power, for example, where consumers have their energy bills inflated in order to line the pockets of rich businessmen through feed-in tariffs.

      • David Appell: Of course, no one on forums like this wants to mention external costs,

        On this forum, external costs have been mentioned plenty of times.

      • Peter 317,
        The external costs tactic hides a few pesky things like the positive externals of cheap and abundant carbon based energy, the external costs of windmills and solar, the impact on the treasury from carbon energy vs. wind/solar, the unsustainable nature of alternative energy finance/economics (look at what is happening in Illinois with the real subsidies of wind possibly going away), etc. The subsidy tactic as used by the anti-carbon crowd is based on mis-defining the term ‘subsidy’ into something that is useful to their goal.

      • David Appell

        The concept of “environmental accounting” is not new.

        And yes, as you write, “coal-based power is worst of all.”.

        But to be correct, you should add “unless flue gases are treated to remove toxic pollutants and particulates”..

        This is generally the case today with modern coal-fired plants in developed nations, but there are still many old polluting coal-fired plants in operation around the world and even new ones being built in places like China, where environmental controls are still very lax.

        Max.

    • Capt Dallas: What new limits on coal? Coal production last week was only 0.3% lower than a year ago, according to the weekly numbers published by the EIA.

      http://www.eia.gov/cneaf/coal/weekly/weekly_html/wcppage.html

  52. What if the believers actually dealt with topics and didn’t whine to their mommies and hijack threads?

  53. If CAGW is wrong, the world would be a whole different place and it would mean that the fundamental scientific discoveries of the 20th century are wrong.

    You can call it a theory or a hypothesis if you want, but it really is an ICBST.

    It Can Be Shown That

    Follows directly from Quantum Mechanics and Thermodynamics.

    • Yes, Bob, thanks. AGW follows from the physics of the greenhouse effect. Many of you need to go read a textbook like Ray Pierrehumbert’s — or at least his Physics Today article that Judith mentioned here — and THEN come back and comment.

      • Bob and David

        Prove your point: the fundamental scientific discoveries of the 20th century are wrong.

        You can’t. So stop hand-waving such garbage.

        There is one discovery that is right but assumed not applicable by the IPCC, and that is the Second Law of Thermodynamics which they assume does not prevent backradiation from a cooler atmosphere warming a surface which is already getting hotter and hotter from net incoming solar radiation every sunny morning. Yes, that’s in those models.

        How in physics can you say that it is possible to warm it at an even faster rate with radiation from perhaps -30 deg.C or colder in the atmosphere without a heat transfer from cold to hot violating the Second Law?

        Answer that question for a thousand bucks.

      • Bob and David

        Prove your point: the fundamental scientific discoveries of the 20th century are wrong.

        You can’t. So stop hand-waving such garbage.

        There is one discovery that is right but assumed not applicable by the IPCC, and that is the Second Law of Thermodynamics which they assume does not prevent backradiation from a cooler atmosphere warming a surface which is already getting hotter and hotter from net incoming solar radiation every sunny morning. Yes, that’s in those models.

        How in physics can you say that it is possible to warm it at an even faster rate with radiation from perhaps -30 deg.C or colder in the atmosphere without a heat transfer from cold to hot violating the Second Law?

        Answer that question.

      • Doug Cotton: The greenhouse effect is real, and it is increasing. Measurements prove it:

        “Increases in greenhouse forcing inferred from the outgoing longwave radiation spectra of the Earth in 1970 and 1997,” J.E. Harries et al, Nature 410, 355-357 (15 March 2001).

        http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v410/n6826/abs/410355a0.html

        These findings have been confirmed:

        “Comparison of spectrally resolved outgoing longwave data between 1970 and present,” J.A. Griggs et al, Proc SPIE 164, 5543 (2004). http://spiedigitallibrary.org/proceedings/resource/2/psisdg/5543/1/164_1

        “Spectral signatures of climate change in the Earth’s infrared spectrum between 1970 and 2006,” Chen et al, (2007) http://www.eumetsat.int/Home/Main/Publications/Conference_and_Workshop_Proceedings/groups/cps/documents/document/pdf_conf_p50_s9_01_harries_v.pdf

        More papers on this subject are listed here:

        http://agwobserver.wordpress.com/2009/08/02/papers-on-changes-in-olr-due-to-ghgs/

      • Doug Cotton: The 2nd law only applies to adiabatic systems, which the Earth is most definitely not since it has a large external heat source (the Sun). Learn some physics.

      • “AGW follows from the physics of the greenhouse effect. Many of you need to go read a textbook like Ray Pierrehumbert’s — or at least his Physics Today article that Judith mentioned here — and THEN come back and comment.”

        Many of us have done a great deal of reading on this subject, even those of us who have science training and work in other fields. This appeal to authority does not impress or cower me with my ignorance.

        The green house effect is logarithmic and at or near saturation. The absorption spectrum of carbon dioxide is substantially coincident with water so the effect CO2 should be most felt at the poles or above high mountain ranges. So CO2’s all pervading theoretical influence is not above question. Using computer models and largely unsubstantiated positive feedback as a substitute for real world experiment and observations – yes they require considerable creative ingenuity in complex systems – will not work in the absence of a better understanding of real world phenomena. This is well demonstrated by the superior predictive results of Piers Corbyn who appears to use experimental observations and a comparison with earlier observations for prediction rather than current incomplete theories as to what drives climate as fed into climate models.

        Climate scientists need to get away from their comfortable computer centres and go out and observe and go back to basics to identify the significant climate drivers which are missing from their models.

      • Try the second law again.

        The change in Entropy with respect to time is greater than or equal to zero.

        Pay attention to the equal to zero part, it is important.

        Ignore that crap about heat not transferring from a cold to a hot part, it doesn’t violate the second law.

      • David Appell
        Re: “The 2nd law only applies to adiabatic systems”
        You may wish to enlighten yourself on mathematics Prof. Granville Sewell’squantitative extension of the Second Law to open systems.
        A Second Look at the Second Law
        Note also the difference in quality vs quantity of energy.

        Note also his earlier paper and the appendix to his text book:
        Granville Sewell, Can ANYTHING happen in an open system? The Mathematical Intelligencer 23 (4) (2001) 8–10, where he posits the tautology:

        If an increase in order is extremely improbable when a system is closed, it is still extremely improbable when the system is
        open, unless something is entering which makes it not extremely improbable.

      • David Appell: Yes, Bob, thanks. AGW follows from the physics of the greenhouse effect. Many of you need to go read a textbook like Ray Pierrehumbert’s — or at least his Physics Today article that Judith mentioned here — and THEN come back and comment.

        Some of us have pointed to gaps and imprecision in the knowledge, specifically citing pages in “Principles of Planetary Climate” by Raymond T., Pierrehumbert. Indeed, believing in AGW requires ignorance of much of the science, including the fact that all the mathematical laws (what one frequent poster called “pure physics”) are approximations, and have not been shown to have the accuracy necessary to the purpose.

    • bob,
      No, it would mean that a popular application of some physics were done incorrectly.
      The defense that AGW is a basic part of physics is childish on your part.
      AGW is not a bad belief system because radiative physics is wrong. AGW is a bad belief system because it is wrong about how radiative physics operates in the atmosphere.

      • Hunter,

        Do you have any interest in learning the applicable physics or would you like to continue playing with your toys, which would work a lot differently if AGW was wrong?

        Still waiting for you to make a post with some science in it, but I’m not holding my breath.

      • bob,
        AGW is a belief that the world is experiencing a climate crisis due to CO2.
        It is not, in reality. Therefor the belief is wrong.
        All of the spinning, all of the blustering, all of the lying, fabrication suppression, appeals to authority do not change that.
        The climate is doing nothing any more dangerously, anymore frequently, anymore extremely, hotter, colder, wetter or dryer than it has since records were kept.
        The good thing about holding one’s breath is that autonomic reflexes eventually kick in.

      • Hunter,
        You are arguing with no facts in evidence.

      • bob,
        You are bloviating.
        The facts are that flood, drought, storm, warm and cold spells are historically normal.
        AGW predicts otherwise.
        AGW is wrong.

  54. Curioius that Stopa, a physicist, does not seem to be big on the concept of evidence.

  55. David Appell

    Here are FOUR data sets showing FLAT global mean temperature trend for 15 years.

    http://bit.ly/AlDdl0

    • Girma: Those are just graphs of wiggly lines. What are the trends, and what are the uncertainties in the trends?

      And what forcings are they reacting to?

      Are you doing since, or art?

      • David Appell
        On uncertainties in trends, study statistician Lucia’s analyses at The Blackboard on data comparisons e.g.
        GISTemp Anomaly: January lower than December. 14 February, 2012 (12:50
        Perhaps you could enlighten us by expounding on:

        The trend since 2001 is 0.006C/dec a decade and is positive but below the nominal multi-model mean trend of 0.2C/dec. If we use “red noise” to model the residuals from a linear fit, and test the hypothesis that the true trend is 0.2C/decade we would reject the a trend of 0.2C/decade as false based on falling outside the 2-σ confidence intervals. We reach the same conclusion if we use any ARIMA model up to (4,0,4) to model the residual or if we use an ARIFMA(1,d,1) model with the best estimate of d to model the residuals.

        See earlier posts for evaluating the impact of duration, starting period etc. etc.

  56. Appell: our civilization (mankind) exists because of the use of fossil fuels. The same can not be said for your vaunted renewable energy.

    All these arguments on externalities invariably fall back on achieving a “zero-risk” world, which is a completely irrational concept but in keeping with the out-of-touch world of much of academia.

  57. Judith’s next post will be – ‘What if they are right?’.

    The denizens comments will be a sight to behold.

    • I actually think that would be a very interesting thread.

    • I’ll start off with an answer to that.

      What if they are right?

      Then I won’t have to spend money flying to Hawaii. I can siomply drive an hour to the Oregon coast to work on my tan and bask in warm waters.

  58. What if they are right? 15 years from now the temperature will be 0.3 degrees warmer than now, and the CO2 forcing will have increased by 0.5 W/m2. This would be in line with IPCC projections that lead to 3-5 degrees of warming in the 21st century. Scientists of the late 20th century would be recognized for having seen this coming as early as 1980, and unprepared nations will be blaming their governments for not listening to the scientists.

    • Somehow even the prospect of being on average 1/3 of a degree warmer than today fails to force even the slightest dampness in my knicker area. Nor does my BP change. No palpitations. Not even the slightest desire to run around the streets like a headless chicken in a panic…………

      The annual temperature range even within the largely temperate climate of the UK is about 50K. We survive without too many problems. I really cannot see how an average temperature change of about 2/3 of 1% of that range will cause us even to notice, let alone bring on severe damage.

      But maybe you can all remind me of what I am supposed to be terrified about?

      • It’s the disruption Latimer, the disruption.

        A disrupted climate system is one that is out of control – ushering in an irreversible period of weather weirding and mayhem. Mayhem I tell you!!

        We’re doomed! :)

      • In the environs of London, disruption is what we have when we get unusual winter snowfalls and the whole city grinds to a halt. As has happened (unusually) in last three years.

        So a general rise in temperature will lead to less severe and fewer snowfalls. Hence less disruption.

        Win Win – Bring it on!

      • Steve Milesworthy

        Latimer, a rise of 2 degrees won’t stop disruption due to snow in London as London will always be prone to receiving cold continental weather.

  59. Michael Larkin

    There’s being wrong, being known to be wrong, and acknowledging wrongness. Three different things that generally follow in sequence. The key thing is when the acknowledgement of wrongness happens. Only at that point can something wrong actually be abandoned. Before that point, things have a momentum of their own.

    Even if they are wrong; even if they are known to be wrong; that won’t stop them maintaining they’re right, or continuing to expend resources on it.

    Furthermore, eventual acknowledgement of wrongness may not be accompanied by explicit declarations of such by all concerned. Many culprits are more likely to quietly melt away, possibly in search of some other cause to be wrong about.

  60. The truth may not be clear even after 15 years. The earth has been in a long-term warming trend for at least 2 centuries. If that long-term trend reasserts itself during the next 15 years, scientists might still disagree as to the cause of the warming.

    • I think you can delete might from the phrase “might still disagree”. There is too much riding on it all, not the least of which are a lot of huge egos. There are some scientists who will hang on until they have bought the farm.

  61. John Warner – ideally, yes. But it’s all about the money. ALL about the money, and reputation, and tenure, and security. The club protects. Sorta like dirty cops. In for a penny, etc. Tragic.

  62. I have posted on a few forums and have been soundly criticized for suggesting that the heat emitted from our energy use might be a major factor in global warming. (All energy becomes heat finally). For example, in 2008 world energy use was 16TW. The mass of the atmosphere is 5.3x10E18 kg.If all the heat remained in the atmosphere alone, a temperature rise of 0.14*F would be expected. The actual “measured” rise was 0.04*. Some heat was absorbed by melting glaciers, cooling by photosynthesis, and heating of earth’s crust. As for climate sensitivity for CO2, much of the data used was that of the previous 400,000 years, when the temperature rise was the probable cause of CO2 rise, not vice versa as has been stated..The dialogue needs to be reopened to include heat as a probable cause. We need to determine the respective contributions of CO2 and heat, singly or jointly. The U.S. has granted permits for the first time since 1978 for the construction of nuclear reactors. If heat is a contributor nuclear power emits twice the total heat as its electrical output. Don’t you think all the plants using water for cooling are having an effect on ocean temperatures, particularly in the northern hemisphere, causing the glaciers to erode at the water line and dropping into the ocean. The arctic region is melting. No artificial means of sequestering CO2 should be imposed and no further permits for nuclear power should be approved until we are convinced that our generation of heat is not a factor in “climate change”

    • Total solar insolation = 683,000 TW
      Radiation at surface = 125,000 TW
      Passed to atmosphere as kinetic energy = 6,000 TW (due to Kleidon)
      Which implies the majority went back into space as IR

      So now you have 16 TW added to the atmosphere. Redo your calculation if 95% of the anthropogenic generated heat immediately gets radiated into outer space. The fractional increase doesn’t seem as large then.

      • “Total solar insolation = 683,000 TW
        Radiation at surface = 125,000 TW”

        Not sure where getting numbers.
        So at top of atmosphere at earth distance it’s the solar constant:
        1.361 kilowatts Or 1361 watts
        Earth radius is 6371 km. So disk area is 127.5 million sq km
        Or 127.5 x 10^12 square meters
        Which means it generally agree with wiki:
        it’s 173.5 x 10^15 watts.
        With a disk one would get about 1000 watts per square meter if clear sky
        at the surface
        So instead of 173.5 x 10^15 watts, it’s 127.5 x 10^15 watts
        Converting to TW [10^12]: 173,500 TW and 127,500 TW.

        Earth is not disk nor cloudless.
        Because it not disk and instead a hemisphere the amount sunlight
        reaching the surface will be less. But this has nothing do with
        total solar insolution [I assume you mean above the atmosphere].
        Roughly one could take cloud cover. If assume 30%, then it’s
        .7 times 127,500 TW. Which is 89,261 TW.
        And for hemisphere shape and the increase blocking of sunlight
        from going thru more atmosphere, i roughly minus say 20,000 TW.
        Giving 69,000 TW hitting the surface.
        With ocean and sun at low angle, large amounts sunlight will reflected, but this light has already been weaken fro going thru more atmosphere, so again roughly reduce by say 10,000 TW.
        So, have mostly the 59,000 TW hitting the surface 3 hours before and after Noon. How much of this is directly reflected. Probably not a high percent- less 10%??
        And if hitting the surface and not being reflected, how much is being absorb [or how much energy is going towards heating the surface] and also heating the air via convection? Or in other words just because sunlight is hitting the surface it does not mean the surface is adsorbing the energy by converting it to heat. Or cool sidewalk will absorb more energy than hot sidewalk- the cool sidewalk warm up and hot sidewalk stays around the same temperature.
        But even a cold surface doesn’t convert all the sunlight into heat, even if painted black, the surface doesn’t do this.
        You see this difference- compare light level of something in sunlight as compared to something in the shade. And compare the light level of something painted black in the shade with opening to of unlit cave.
        The human eye can not see IR, the bright day outside is not due to IR.
        If Earth was a black body- you would not be able to see it.
        But anyhow, it’s some number less than 59,000 TW being absorded by the surface.
        As for you point, yes, 16 TW is much less. But it mostly IR or direct heating- water biing used to cool some reactor, hot gases are being emitted, etc. And one other factor is this heat is being generated near where human live. But still it’s a rather puny number. It seems that UHI would probably be a bigger number, as the natural world- life, geologic activity, forest fires, etc.
        Though the whole concern about AGW seems related to rather small percentage, and in that ball game, could regarded as significant.

  63. Mike Stopa is as much of a rent seeker as any other academic scientist. His educational scientific background exactly mirrors mine (semiconductors, spectroscopy) and I know the way that they ask for funding. He is potentially projecting and thus had to include this paragraph in his blog post, or otherwise be exposed as a hypocrite:

    “The main issue I am raising is not that the scientists who are at the front line of this research are blind or bellicose – not that they are unscrupulous or fraudulent. Most of the scientists working in the field are not trying to push an ideological position but are genuinely trying to get at the truth. If they can be accused of any moral failing, it is simply the tendencey to go with the flow when it comes to writing grant proposals and alluding to the possibility of global warming as a justification for supporting their research. Nothing horrible about that.”

    In other words, it works this way:
    Climate Scientist: “My work seeks to explain how the earth’s climate evolves. Send me money”.
    Mike Stopa: “My work seeks to explain the quantum behavior of electronic nanostructures. Send me money”.

    So Mike Stopa is telling all you skeptics to lay off the climate scientists! They are just trying to seek the truth.

    • Web, At least he is not rent seeking on crap like AGW and peak oil.
      You are pathological.

      • Hunter has no command of the English language. Concepts on their own can’t rent seek, otherwise you have marginalized the entire idea behind free-market capitalism, which is manipulating the system to create wealth. He has created a tautological knot by a poor choice of words.

        Then he equates me to a study of a disease. He must think that corporations are people too.

        I can talk like that too. Watch.
        The stupid, it hurts.

      • WebHubTelescope: Then he equates me to a study of a disease.

        Actually, he did not. He equated you to a disease.

        Concepts on their own can’t rent seek,

        He did not say that they did. He referred to “rent seeking on crap like AGW and peak oil”, not that concepts were seeking rent. Clearly he was referring to people who are rent seeking.

        If you are going to correct someone’s use of language, you oughtn’t in the process make worse use of language.

  64. What if they are right?

    • The chance is zero!

      The hockey stick is fake so MWP was warmer than today.

      No troposphere heating so there is no evidence of greenhouse warming.

      The recent warming was due to reduced cloud cover, and the warming rate is similar to that from 1910-1940.

      There is oscillation in the global temperature due to PDO.

      Yes, the chance is nil.

      • 100% certain Girma?

      • Sorry Girma, since I am usually in agreement with you, but nothing like this could be zero chance and the four reasons are more inductive reasoning than deductive reasoning. You have put me in a horrible position of agreeing with Michael. Why did you do that? I feel so icky, I’ll have to take a shower.

      • Gotma,
        The GISS folks are busy cleaning up the historical record even now. Hansen and pals cannot allow a simple lack of evidence to keep them from being right. After all, “fake but accurate” is standard of the AGW movement.

    • Michael

      It is impossible to be 100% certain.

      But when the greenhouse-warming model indicates warming at 10km above the equator and it does not exist you must doubt the validity of the AGW theory.

      • > It is impossible to be 100% certain.

        Is that certain?

      • But when the greenhouse-warming model indicates warming at 10km above the equator and it does not exist you must doubt the validity of the AGW theory.

        Girma, the greenhouse model is that CO2 acts like a blanket to trap heat. Blankets work by making the inside of the blanket warmer, and the outside cooler, than when there’s no blanket.

        Somewhere in the middle of the blanket it will be neither warmer nor cooler than when there’s no blanket. Hence if the temperature is not changing at 10 km altitude this is consistent with the greenhouse model.

        What you haven’t shown is that 10 km is in the portion of the atmosphere that the greenhouse predicts is warmed by more CO2.

        A stronger criticism of the greenhouse theory as usually explained is that it gives numbers more appropriate for an equilibrium situation. Another way of saying this is that it assumes that the warming effect of CO2 is for all practical purposes instantaneous.

        Trenberth, Fasullo and Kielh take disequilibrium into account in the rightmost column of Table 2a, which would be all zeros when in equilibrium. The NRA disequilibrium figure of -13 W/m2 on row 2 is insane; were it anything like that, the “travesty of the missing heat” would be a huge travesty of the missing cold! The figure of 0.9 W/m2 that ISCCP-FD and the authors agree on is much more in line with the level of disequilibrium we would expect when the warming effect of CO2 takes 10-20 years to be felt, slowed down by the strong heat sink effect of the oceans, whose ASR (absorbed solar radiation) is 247.7 W/m2 as against land’s 216.8 W/m2 (using Trenberth et al’s figures in the last row for each of Global, Land, and Ocean in Table 2a). If it were up to the land, we’d be in heavy global cooling due to the land heating up and radiating strongly out to space. But because the ocean acts as a terrific heat sink it stays cool longer than the land, with the result that the Global NET down is very slightly positive, just enough to keep the surface warming.

        But the ocean is not an infinite heat sink, and eventually all that heat it absorbs will gradually raise its temperature. A wamer ocean then becomes a much longer-lived heat liability than the land for the planet as a whole, as well as uncomfortably warm for marine life, which will need to move away from the equator towards colder climes. On the other hand the decreasing pH caused by the rising CO2 is driving some marine life towards the equator. Temperature and CO2 act on marine life in opposite directions!

    • dennis adams

      I agree.

      I was flippant.

  65. I agree with the basic premise of the post that it’s still possible that warming due to CO2 will turn out to be of little significance. That view is even consistent with the range of possibilities as given by IPCC at some non-negligible level of likelihood. Thus the question presented is valid and worth discussing.

    An analog is offered by the case of swine flue vaccinations. Finland and Sweden were among countries that decided on a wide scale vaccination based on a new insufficiently tested vaccine as the other alternatives were not available on the same schedule. The outcome: some 200 cases of narcolepsia among children and youngsters. According to a very recent news the value of the whole exercise is no´w contested in Sweden and there has been a lot of controversy in Finland as well. The authorities may have done the right decision based on the knowledge and alternatives available at the time, but in hindsight it may well be that the vaccination campaign was an error.

    It is indeed right to think about both alternatives even when arguments for one seem strong.

    Having said that, I’m disappointed by the posting due to the practical examples chosen to illustrate the point. I see almost all such details to be most certainly in error. His proposed interpretation of history is obviously wrong and the future explanations presented in hindsight would most certainly be very different. The knowledge is not weak in the way he implies, there are uncertainties, but not in those places.

    • Thanks, exactly my thoughts. My hope was for a good discussion of the posed question and disappointment was the result of reading it.

    • Pekka –

      You are presuming a good faith attempt on the part of the author to address the question.

      Yes, asking the question is obviously important. Of course, asking this question without considering the answer in the context of the opposing question is not ultimately meaningful – but asking the question can be of value in an of itself.

      However, asking the question merely as an exercise of confirming political biases, as this essay was, serves no real purpose other than to feed some red meat to the pack of hungry wolves.

      Same as it ever was.

  66. David Springer

    Vaughan Pratt | February 18, 2012 at 3:43 am |

    “We humans keep coming up with effective ways of extinguishing our own species. We were only able to avoid extinction by nuclear warfare because the danger was so clear, and even that was a close shave for those who remember the Cuban missile crisis.”

    We have temporarily avoided it. There are still enough nuclear weapons to accomplish the task. What you said is equivalent to saying that you and I have avoided death. Well, so far, yeah.

    I remember the Cuban missile crisis. What I remember is virtually no casualties and no nuclear weapons launched. I wouldn’t call that a close shave with self-extinction by nuclear holocaust. Maybe if some some small fraction of the human race died, say 100,000,000 people and then the carnage stopped, that might be fairly characterized as a close shave but not inarguably because a 2.5% decline in population isn’t appreciable if that’s as far as it goes.

    • > What I remember is virtually no casualties and no nuclear weapons launched. I wouldn’t call that a close shave with self-extinction by nuclear holocaust.

      Post hoc, ergo propter hoc.

    • David,
      That claim of Dr. Pratt’s is silly.
      Population, last time I checked, is at all time record highs.
      Prosperity, despite corrupt governments operating at an unprecedented level worldwide, is growing worldwide. Life expectancy worldwide is growing. Infant mortality reducing.
      Dr. Pratt lives in the same social circle as Ehrlich and Schneider. I will bet his worldview has been severely warped by their delusions.

      • Population, last time I checked, is at all time record highs.

        Hunter, if you intended that as an argument against my point that “Several years of listening to debates on climate blogs have convinced me that the public’s ability to see a coming threat is [not strong].” then you haven’t turned me round just yet. ;)

        You seem to believe that the logic by which you can’t blow up a balloon forever is a false analogy because it doesn’t apply to humans. That may well be the case, but your point that the population is increasing seems to argue for rather than against the analogy. Your optimism is that of the investors in technology in 1999, who offered the technical argument “technology is advancing in leaps and bounds” and the economic argument “this time it’s different.” I don’t see anything different from those lines of reasoning in your arguments.

        The way Judith constituted this blog seems to have resulted in a strong bias towards optimism. I’m neither an optimist nor a pessimist myself, preferring to see a balance. If this blog were overly pessimist I’d find myself leaning towards optimistic observations.

  67. If we ermember Al Gore’s temperature vs CO2 graph, the thing he didn’t tell us (or maybe didn’t know) was that the CO2 curve lagged the temperature curve rather than the other way round. This means that a hotter earth would cause a greater atmospheric CO2 concentration.

    Thus, if there really was a significant positive feedback at work, the Earth’s climate would be impossibly unstable – more CO2 would raise temperatures, which would themselves raise CO2 some more ………

    This seems to suggest that any feedback is negative.

    • David,
      Gore and his handlers knew of the lag.
      It was very inconvenient, so they sort of skipped over it.
      After all, AGW belief cannot be bothered to deal with, as the AGW community demonstrates endlessly,
      If something needs to be hidden, ignored or just plain fabricated, and it helps the cause, then that is just part of the AGW mission.

      • AL Gore gave the BBC’s Roger Harrabin some grief for pointing that out (Harrabin a completley onside ‘climate concerned’ BBC journalist)

        Harrabin: “Well, the graphs do fit – but what Mr Gore fails to mention in the film is that mainstream scientists believe that historically the temperature shifted due to our changing relationship with the Sun, with warmer climes unlocking CO2 from the oceans, which amplified global temperature rise.
        I challenged Mr Gore about this in an interview for the BBC’s Newsnight programme in March.

        He responded, accurately, that scientists believe that CO2 is now driving climate change – but that was not what his misleading historical graph showed.

        And after the interview he and his assistant stood over me shouting that my questions had been scurrilous, and implying that I was some sort of climate-sceptic traitor”

        http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/7040370.stm

  68. I was going to save this until the next Week in Review, but maybe it is relevant here.

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

    Global “brightness” temperatures at 600 mb are, once again, at record low levels for the current date since records began in 2003. We have Jan 2012 temperature anomalies for satellites and GISS and NOAA. Temperature anomalies are the lowest in the 21st century, except for 2008. The reference I quoted indicates that Feb 2012 temperatures are also likely to be on the low side.

    The point I am trying to make is that the observed data shows absoluetly no sign that global temperature anomalies are on some sort of increasing trend. Maybe more likely the opposite.

    So maybe we will know in 15 years. As long as governments do not impose stupid restricitons on the use of fossil fuels, it may not matter anyway.

  69. Did anyone else notice, by the way, that one of the lines of defense for believers to dismiss Dr. Stopa is that he is merely a physicist?

    • I think it was more along the lines of – he doesn’t work in any climate-related feild, so pointing out he is a physicist comes very close to being an appeal to authority.

      At any rate, he offers us not a scientific perspective, but a personal political one.

    • Yes, as someone first trained in physics. Experimental physicists especially are such a nuisance wanting the GCMs to produce results consistent with real world obsrvations and be subject to proper testing in the real world instead of ever bigger computers.

    • Michael,
      Quite the opposite: It is an appeal by AGW apologists that only approved people are capable of having a valid opinion irt to AGW issues.
      So if someone is, say, an English major but believes in the AGW approved way, that opinion is powerful and hard hitting, according to the believers. But if someone who knows stats and applied physics and does cutting edge research on complex issues asks tough questions irt AGW, that person is not qualified to even ask the question, according to the believers.

  70. One thing about which there can be no question that Michael Mann is wrong about is his insistence that anyone who disagrees with him is guilty of an assault on science. The man is a very sad case with some serious issues.

    One way to separate the scientific wheat from the chaff would be to ask scientists for their reaction to the hubris of Mann and his claims.

  71. If they still claim the globe is warming when it is cooling (http://bit.ly/szoJf8), what would they say if it were really warming ( http://bit.ly/zA0a2j )?


  72. What if they are wrong?

    Return the Noble prize?

    Has this been done before?

  73. People looking for a technical explaination “What if they are wrong” are being the usual naive…..stupid…..or more likely than all contrived. The operative word in the sentence if “they” and what “they” believed the goals of AGW belief and promotion were.

    It’s all about “they” not the science abstractions.

  74. Tom Choularton

    The issue I have with these essays is that they are not in anyway a challenge to the consensus they are merely polemic. There is a reference to the Met ofice saying there has been no warming for 15 years. They have said no such thing. You follow the link posted and you don’t get a statement by the Met Office but a link to a UK Tabloid paper. I just do not see how posts like this can be taken seriously.

    • It’s all about the red meat. The wolves were hungry.

    • Tom, the point of the article is not to challenge the consensus (he does this to some extent, but not very effectively, IMO). Rather, the interesting point is that he raises an issue at the intersection of the philosophy of science and the politics of science (e.g. government funding). This deserves discussion, IMO.

      • Judith –

        If you post a polemic, what you get is polemical responses. How many times do you have to see that pattern repeated before you’ll catch on?

      • Joshua:
        This question ["how will history be written after it becomes worldwide
        known that AGW is only a money scam hoax"] put on the table by
        Judith is NOT POLEMIC but a reasonable neutral question put
        forward from an impartial spectators view, who watches the climate race…..
        ……..As you go along in life you have to stop once awhile, sidestep
        from your path and ask youself whether you are still on the right track or
        whether there are indications that your track selection gets doubtful
        and you better should turn around…..
        You should be open to self-criticism and not be obstinate….
        Even the Bible says that God is pleased ….that you confess
        your [CAGW] – sins and remorse…..
        JS

      • Flame wars are good for your page view stats.

        OTOH, they are a swift kick in the nuts to reasoned debate……but who cares about that?

      • On the weekend, I will sometimes post something that I expect will generate controversy; occasionally doing this lets off steam so that we can stay on track on the technical threads. But I certainly don’t post things to generate a flame war; I personally thought the issues raised by this post on the topics of philosophy and politics of science were quite interesting, and I hadn’t previously considered things in quite that same way.

        My blog statistics are doing just fine, thank you for your concern.

        p.s. For the last week, my post on Heartland generated the most hits, but just 1000 more than Trends, change points, hypotheses. The most comments (by far) were made at Trends, change points, and hypotheses. Draw your own conclusions about what generates hits and comments on my blog. It isn’t posts like this one. It mostly tends to be posts where I spend a lot of time generating original content. The other big hits come from some sort of controversy where I am mentioned in the MSM (something that I usually do not relish; e.g. I could have done without the BEST controversy).

      • michael –

        Flame wars are good for your page view stats.

        I don’t buy that as a motivation. I think that Judith is earnestly interested in a good discussion.

        Why she posts such shallow polemics is a bit hard to understand. Maybe she thinks that she’s serving some purpose by creating some balance because there aren’t enough right wing polemics in the world?

      • Josh,

        Then you’re left speculating on why Judith appears not to understand the most basic lesson of Blog 101; comments will always tend towards petty squabling and reiteration of set positions, influenced by the tone of the lead post and the type (or absence) of moderation. On popular/controversial topics (religion, evolution, politics, and now climate) this is almost guaranteed.

      • Getting high ratings for the site may be of little importance, but keeping the site alive is another matter. Even that requires regular postings that are of sufficient interest for the audience whose presence makes the site what it is.

        Finding postings that satisfy that requirement every few days must be difficult enough even relaxing a little the criteria for acceptance of the content.

        Furthermore Judith wishes clearly that the audience is varied (that’s really the main idea of the site as far as I understand) and choosing narrow criteria for the postings would work against that goal.

      • Pekka, thanks for understanding this. The quality of the posts is arguably mixed, this is a function both of my time as well as my initial judgment. Often threads go off on a very different tangent than I hoped. In any event I view it as my top priority to keep people such as yourself engaged in commenting at this blog; I am learning alot from many of the commenters, and without that I would be much less motivated to keep this blog alive.

      • “On popular/controversial topics (religion, evolution, politics, and now climate) this is almost guaranteed.”

        That is telling, AGW is very much like a religion. It’s based in political belief of the advocates as a starting point. Note Joshua going off the deep end (again) and Dr. Curry avoids details.

      • Joshua,
        If you could not make your shallow repetitive posts, you would have nothing at all to say.

      • Ka-ching!

      • Tom Choularton

        Judith,

        I understand your commment and I agree with your point, this is worthy of discussion. In my vew this article lost credibility in his comment about warming over the last 15 years. There is a comment about recent warming on the Met O website but instead of linking that he chose to link an article in the Daily Mail which clearly misrepresents it. I find it hard to take anything he says seriously in the rest of the article.

      • Pekka,

        Yes, of course, that’ another Blog 101 fundamental.

        To keep your audience, ie chasing eyeballs (if that is what you are after) you need to post regularly.

        And if you’re posting, not because you have worthwhile material, but just to keep the eyeballs engaged, quality takes a nosedive, and comments follow.

        Then you end up with a comments trainwreck.

  75. It is not only: “What if they are wrong…” the following part should
    be explained by all of you: “How will the history of this COLOSSAL MISTAKE
    be WRITTEN…?” and all this stirring in CO2 and subordinate aspects
    does not explain the question asked…..we need proposals and scenarios….
    JS

  76. Looking at GISS from 1961 to 2011 we have a rate of 0.014 and a SD of 0.1037.
    An SD bounds 68.3% of a normally distributed population, so 15.8% of the population are greater than the SD and 15.8% below the SD. If we have two populations with the same SD, changing the mean to where the two SD fail to overlap gives us two points where the probability of a point belong to the same two populations is (15.8%)^2 or 2.51%. So we can say with 95% confidence where a SD band on a trend falls outside the SD above zero, that it belongs to a different population.
    For the GISS dataset from 1961 to 2011 the minimum time it would take to recognize a change in the trend from 0.014 to 0 K y-1, is 14.8 years. For us to notice a halving of the rate would take 29.6 years.
    However, this does not take account of the back ground rate. From 1882-1947 (65y) the rate of temperature increase was 0.56 degrees a century and from 1948-2011 (65y) the rate of temperature increase was 1.06 degrees a century.
    What rate of warming is ‘normal’? Is it the 1918-1944 period when the temperature was rising at 1.39 degrees per century or the minus 0.16 observed between 1952 to 1972?
    There is an easy way to do it. Here is the plot of the GISS temperature anomaly from 1881 to 2011 (black). The rate of temperature change per century (over 16 years) is shown in red. The blue blocks are 16 year block averages of the rates, so that the last block represents 1988-2003.

    Scary rates aren’t they?

    • Doc Martyn: good post. How did you compute the rates? Derivatives of piecewise polynomial fits to some number of data? That’s not the only way, but it is one way.

  77. Judith (all): this was a great post and interesting comment string. I have some thoughts, but they’re extended. I’ve posted them at:http://www.livingontherealworld.org/?p=564.
    continuing best wishes. Bill

  78. I had exiled myself for 24 hours to avoid any more Heartland stuff and have come back to find nearly 400 comments on this new thread. Consequently apologies if someone has already made this point.

    Whilst the Met office may have confirmed there has been no warming, there are numerous people who claim the warming continues unabated.

    Either the climate is warming, static or cooling, people from different sides can’t claim diamterically opposite interpretations of the same data. So who is right?

    When I asked this question previously I got this response;

    Ollivet | February 9, 2012 at 11:06 am | Reply
    Trends since 1982 (30 years):
    – CRU data : +0.16°C/decade
    – GISS data : +0.17°C/decade
    – RSS data : +0.16°C/decade
    – UAH data: +0.16°C/decade

    Trends since 1997 (15 years):
    – CRU data : +0.01°C/decade
    – GISS data : +0.1°C/decade
    – RSS data : 0
    – UAH data: +0.09°C/decade

    Trends since 2002 (10 years):
    – CRU data : -0.09°C/decade
    – GISS data : -0.001°C/decade
    – RSS data : -0.09°C/decade
    – UAH data: +0.02°C/decade

    Trends since 2007 (5 years):
    – CRU data : -0.02°C/decade
    – GISS data : +0.02°C/decade
    – RSS data : +0.07°C/decade
    – UAH data: +0.02°C/decade

    Conclusion: trends are obviously decreasing far below IPCC forecast and we are heading to a plateau or even a slight cooling which may last until 2030 according to hypothesis II (change driven natural variability and more especially PDO, AMO, NAO… cycles).
    There is no cherry picking in this !
    another way to view it

    http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2010/08/on-liu-and-curry-2010-accelerated.html

    There was a link to a graph from each comment about trends but I don’t know if they will show up in this repost, if not I will do it separately.
    So what is the truth of all this and how can different people see the same data in such different ways?
    tonyb

  79. “Joshua | February 18, 2012 at 10:07 am | Judith –

    If you post a polemic, what you get is polemical responses. How many times do you have to see that pattern repeated before you’ll catch on?”

    AGW is largely a political polemic, it’s descended from 60’s eoc-radicalism. What interesting about the “circle” found on almost every thread is denial of political culture found in the AGW advocate community such as yourself Joshua. Worse though is Dr. Curry’s marginalization of political corruption associated to peers in the core AGW science community itself. Marginalization by silence on specifics. It’s disgraceful in fact.

    You Joshua are a mere warming troll here to hyperventilate any time a topic or post touches near the important political truth of AGW advocacy.

  80. Hunter writes: “Joshua,
    If you could not make your shallow repetitive posts, you would have nothing at all to say.”

    Joshua interests me. He seems to be an amalgam of contradictory traits. I like the fact that he’ll admit to being wrong at times. He’s actually offered me an apology twice now.. (I frame them and put them on the wall in my den, hoping some day I’ll summon the courage to ask him to autograph them.)

    But he’s also so nastily arrogant it makes me wince. (It’s true. I’m a tender flower).

    Josh, if you’re reading this, maybe now would be a good time to sum up your position on global warming. I know you’re rather talk about the unfalsifiable “climate change,” but that gets us nowhere. The thing is, you never really say anything of substance re the science as far as I can tell. Your usual m.o. is to jump on skeptical comments with the intention of showing us how smart you are. Which is to say your contributions here seem to be entirely reactive, and ultimately more about you than anything else.

    Fred, as usual, wouldn’t give me an answer as to what it would take for him to begin to doubt the AGW hypothesis. But what about you? What would have to happen in the real world for you to begin to have doubts? Or am I mischaracterizing your position on this? Maybe I can ask it this way, do you actually have a position?

    • pokerguy,
      Joshua has been nothing if not reticent to actually say what he believes. When he hits his rare phases where he actually communicates, he can actually have something interesting to say. But the constant tacky misrepresentation of what our host and so many others say, and his world class thread jacking just gets boring after awhile. And the source of boredom over time becomes annoying.
      But you ask the great question:
      After the literally tens of thousands of words Joshua has posted regarding AGW, does he even know what he believes, and if he does, will he state it clearly?

      • Hunter,

        If you avoid the political question that has driven AGW for the past 25 years, avoid discussing the nature of the “Teams” political center of gravity can you say that anyone is stating a clear view of what AGW represents?

        I would say no. Therefore all that Dr. Curry writes and posts is just as incomplete. Joshua is a board troll with an emotional political agenda, what’s Dr. Curry’s excuse? Be specific.

      • Steve Milesworthy

        Hunter your tens of thousands of repetitions of your boring point that all AGW people suffer from some sort of social mania has made all aware of what you believe. So you can stop making the point now.

      • Steve Milesworthy,
        I could stop, but I won’t. And since more and more people are finding social dysfunction a good description of AGW, It is worth pointing out to others, as it was to me.
        Now if you would like to counter my assertion with evidence of how healthy and robust the AGW movement is, please go to it.

    • Joshua is a hybrid of Gaia and Greenshirt. His mainfunction for the “cause” here is to muddy conversations that correctly link the Green/Neo-Marxist agenda of AGW in any conversation to something else. “It’s about science” being a common mantra. That’s why he is very active here and on the Heartland link, to distract.

      Dr. Curry just maintains a wall of silence on the key political questions which is a form of disinformation about the root driver of AGW advocacy. Why people beat up on Joshua is understandable but why skeptics say nothing when Dr. Curry ducks direct and signifcant political connecting to topics and individuals is another matter. It’s a contridiction.

      • I suspect Joshua is a computer program designed to pass the Turing test.
        For some reason Joshua is under the illusion that passionate belief in something is the same a moral authority. Because he cares more about humanity and the Planet than the rest of us, he is more morally pure than the rest of us.

      • to Cwon14:
        Could you please put your interesting reply in a more readable form…..
        One can easily read your quotes 20 times over without getting your
        message if there is any….
        It is more complicated to explain understandably to everyone than
        stirring expressions in a word soup……let me quote:
        ” he muddies a conversation….that links the AGW agenda…..in
        conversations…… to something else….???
        ….. I hope you don’t do this as well???….
        JS

      • While it is not my style to comment on personalities on this blog (or anywhere else, for that matter) I found cwon14’s comment quite clear to the effect that Joshua deliberately creates a distraction when Green/Neo-Marxism is linked to AGW but I don’t agree with that.

        I believe that Joshua just likes to have a good argument and that he is a lot brighter than he lets on. I am not all that sure he should be classified as either pro AGW or anti AGW because I think that he may just be pro science and anti logical inconsistency.

      • I sort of agree with Peter.

        Josh just likes to argue. For my taste he gets into nit picking over non essential points far too much of the time, but that’s just my view.

      • It appears that our Joshua may be Joshua Rosenau of the NCSE because he had been confronted at R Pielke Jnr’s blog and had failed to respond.

  81. We may be 15 years off understanding climate. But surely we are only a few good physics experiments away from understanding the role of CO2 in heat energy.

    What if heat energy liberated on the earth’s surface from chemical and nuclear potenial energy actually causes surface warming by adding Joules to the mass of earth? Would atmospheric CO2 concentrations correlate with potential energy liberated?

    What if convection is the dominant mechanism of transporting heat energy from the surface to the atmosphere? Would CO2 concentration impact convective heat transport?

    What if CO2 permits surface and atmospheric heat to be lost by IR to space? Would CO2 concentration make a difference to equilibrium surface temperature?

    What if solar activity is the dominant factor determining global mean surface temperature on earth? Do people consume more energy on earth and liberate more CO2 when buildings are hot?

    What if all other variables on earth and in the atmosphere do not affect global mean temperature unless they change albedo? Could CO2 concentration change albedo?

    Clearly, there is scope for a lot more research to drive climate change research funding demand.

  82. Hunter writes: “After the literally tens of thousands of words Joshua has posted regarding AGW, does he even know what he believes, and if he does, will he state it clearly?”

    Exactly Hunter. My palms are actually sweating with anticipation. Will he or won’t he? We denizens can only watch and wait.

    Josh?

    • If you’re expecting him to admit agw is part of a Green regulatory agenda/ambition you have as much chance as Dr. Curry defining Jim Hansen or the Team being anything more than “advocates” and maintaining the PC protocal of never defining the root AGW directly in political terms.

      They are both part of orthodox PC rituals and should be intolerable but only the minion Joshua is confronted. Why is this?

      • Hey Cwon,

        I don’t have the problem with JC that you seem to. I kind of get (it took me a long time) that she doesn’t want to engage in the politics, perhaps because it’s such a hopeless swamp.

        Now before you jump all over me, I understand that this in fact a political problem in many respects, more than a scientific one. But ultimately, I think she’s right in thinking (if I’m right about this) that she’s a more effective voice by maintaining a political neutrality as much as possible. She doesn’t want to be seen as one of “us” or one of “them.” She wants to be just Judith Curry, an advocate for honesty and integrity in science (as I see it.)

        As to Joshua, he invites attacks by his arrogance and sophistry…two qualities that have absolutely nothing to do with Dr. Curry.

  83. Steve Milesworthy

    If we are wrong it will be embarrassing for the scientists.

    If in the meantime we have bought into renewables in a big way based on our misconception, then we might be a little bit poorer than we would have been but the world economy won’t have collapsed, unlike what a lot of alarmists claim will happen.

    • Political Junkie

      Steve, some might be a lot poorer. Here’s a U.K. example of one of the many things already happening:

      “Yet, when a whole generation of would-be first-time buyers are having to reconcile themselves to decades of renting properties, the government is phasing in a new set of Building Regulations which will require that, by 2016, all new homes must be “zero carbon” in terms of energy-use and emissions.

      According to official estimates in the Code for Sustainable Homes, this will increase the cost of building a house by up to £37,793 or up to 66 percent in the case of a two-bedroomed starter flat of the type favoured by first-time buyers.

      And if this is not bad enough, the government is also eliminating a special “concession” known as the “Fuel Factor”, which relaxes the heating rules for new homes in places without access to the natural gas grid.

      Instead of being allowed to install oil or gas cylinder-fired heating, they will have to rely biomass-fired boilers or “heat pumps” – both of dubious efficiency, adding a further cost of between £11,000 and £18,000, for a target market which is less able to afford low-end housing than their urban counterparts.”

      • Torturous, tortuous, and tortious public policy right where you live.
        =========================

      • Are you writhing damagingly in your bed of pain?
        ==============

      • Steve Milesworthy

        The figures for the 2 bed flat look wrong to me – the cost analysis figures I found say 28% (of the building cost, not the market cost). The other figure relates to a detached house (so about 10% of the market value based on typical detached house costs of 300K or more). The figures neglect the reduction in stamp duty. The figures are also for the gold standard “zero-carbon” level which is being back-tracked from already.

        The tenants and buyers of these houses will benefit from very low energy bills, more comfortable homes, and thereby a lower risk of cold-weather related illness. Anyone who thinks that a 10% rise in building costs (relative to market value) will equate to a 10% rise in rents and house costs knows nothing about the UK housing market.

        I suspect the analysis largely ignores the ability of volume builders to cut costs as they did when the 2006 standards came in, with techniques such as Space4.

        Of course, your average rural, off-grid, new-build is *not* done for low-end housing given that the typical cost of an off-grid plot is in the 100s of thousands of pounds!

        All in all, very alarmist (that was for hunter)

    • Steve,
      Nice attempt to claim the term ‘alarmist’, but it won’t fly.
      So called renewables are mostly failures only staved off by tax payer money and time.

  84. Cognitive dissonance, the great educator!

  85. Bill Hooke picks up on the What if they are wrong? theme, with an interesting post

    http://www.livingontherealworld.org/?p=564

    • Tom Choularton

      Now that is an excellent essay by Hooke carefully thought through and sourced. Very thought provoking, much better than the post that opened this discussion

      • Well the value added by Climate Etc. was finding the essay and bringing this topic up, so that Bill Hooke could expand on it :) Hooke’s blog Living on the Real World is one of my favorites, I often cite it.

      • Thanks for the kindness,..Gotta say that Judith’s keen eye for material from whatever source (including her own insights) that will energize a useful discussion is nothing sort of amazing. Newton said about himself: “I was like a boy playing on the sea-shore, and diverting myself now and then finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me.” Judith somehow comprehends that ocean of truth and brings it to our attention.

      • meant “short” not “sort.” :)

    • Hooke’s essay is excellent – but so is the lead essay here by Mike Stopa.

      What will people 100 years from now think about our blogs, our debates, the essays or even the IPCC reports with their predictions of how their world would look?

      I just had a dear lady friend and distant relative die two days after her 102nd birthday.

      At that occasion she told a group of well-wishers about the world of her pre- and post-WWI early childhood.

      I can only imaging how someone back then would have predicted our world of today.

      And then I chuckle at the thought that IPCC has been so presumptive (even arrogant) to try to forecast our climate 100 years from now.

      Albert Einstein is credited with having said: “The only thing more dangerous than ignorance is arrogance”.

      Amen.

      Max

      • Manacker: “We will chuckle over the IPCC in the [distant?] future”…
        Chuckeling is not all: We have the German liberal historian Gustav
        Freytag (about 1860) and he evaluated the course of science:
        There not only exist historical periods of positive scientific advances, the development of science can also be negative, periods in which science is “sick” ["Siechtum der Wissenschaft" - as he called it 1860]…… and we are in such a period, the IPCC/AGW “science” being “siech” – sick, sickdom ……
        …….Future generations will not only chuckle, they will put the bad guys
        into the category “climate villains” and will add them to all the other
        villains of the 20. Cty….
        JS

      • J. Seifert

        Yes. German philosophers can be quite serious.

        But I believe that this scientific aberration will be seen fifty years from now as a rather silly episode rather than something sinister and threatening.

        I could be wrong, of course, if it turns into an excuse for global taxation and oppression.

        But, in view of what is happening most recently – both with awareness and with our climate – I do not believe that this is a serious threat anymore.

        But maybe I’m an optimist.

        Max

    • I think we need a Godwins Law for Lysenko.

  86. It would all be deja vue to Alfred Wegener!

  87. Pokerguy writes;

    “As to Joshua, he invites attacks by his arrogance and sophistry…two qualities that have absolutely nothing to do with Dr. Curry.”

    I hear and respect your point, I just don’t agree. If we ask if the “Team” and in fact the greater Climate Science community are more inclined to socialist politics and leanings you can’t get pass when you are an insider. It is sophistry in what she does.

    You’re holding Joshua to a higher standard because he has no status and is a minion. I also realize when Dr. Curry uses the term “advocate” the coded term sends rage across the uber left AGW community. A vein in Michael Mann’s neck triples in size and he’s ready to suffer road rage. Invitations to the Sierra Club get cancelled. Regardless of all this the obfuscation of the political situation is protecting the core of the Team from the larger and frankly more important community that both sides are seeking to impact. It’s a PC protocal that is worse than all of Joshua’s simple minded troll tactics.

    Dr. Curry has to give up the code and the indirect references like “advocacy” messaging and speak directly. While there are many actors, even contradictions found on either side at the core of the AGW effort is statist globalization movement to increase authority based on a contrived and dubious justification to regulate carbon interests in the private sector. You may remember or not the early days far from the peak of say 2006 when greens would say; “we could be wrong but the world will benefit from carbon reduction anyway”. As it exposed the bias and intent it would dropped as “they” grew closer and closer to the regulatory goal in the the decades to follow. Time to talk honestly about who “they” are.

    AGW is a green movement creature, the core of the climate science community aren’t just “advocates” they are dedicated greens or highly sypathetic and many engage in exactly the kind of obfuscation that Dr. Curry resorts to here with the apathy and support of many imagined “Libertarians and skeptics” who don’t seem to see the lack of progress in reforming the debate by this practice. Dr. Curry is subsidizing circular inconclusive debates and preserves a level of illogic that permits Joshua to exist in this empty space as just one small example of harm. The real damage is that she is supporting the Team and Greens even while presenting herself as dissent to climate science excess. It’s a form of deception. Dr. Curry matters, Joshua does not.

    • cwon14

      Please leave JC alone.

      Are not you grateful she does not have a BoreHole (http://bit.ly/znRgcT) like in RealClimate who don’t post opposing views?

      At realcimate, you are lucky if your post is sent to the BoreHole, as it is usually simply deleted. They love deleting, for the “cause”.

      • One day, some might wake up to the fact that no one has any right to post whatever nonsense they want on someone else’s blog.

        That’s why you can start your own blog, and rant and rave to your hearts content.

      • Banning me would be no worse than simply avoiding the content and the point that I make which is valid even if you or she may disagree.

        I give her credit for not censoring me. Comment on the content but I really don’t care about summary statments like “leave her alone”. RC is of no objective importance for the reasons you state. Dr. Curry is less important for the reasons I’ve stated and the silence maintained.

  88. After reading Mike Stopa’s post I started reflecting on the mental image of the Colossal Ruins that was once the so-called mighty consensus edifice of the IPCC centric theory of catastrophic AGW by CO2. This poem, first read when I was ~13 (almost haf a century ago), comes to mind:

    “I met a traveller from an antique land
    Who said: “Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
    Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
    Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown
    And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command
    Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
    Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
    The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed.
    And on the pedestal these words appear:
    `My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings:
    Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!’
    Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
    Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
    The lone and level sands stretch far away”.

    Ozymandias, by Percy Bysshe Shelley

    John

    • John

      Beth Cooper quoted that poem just a few days ago on this blog and I have quoted it in one of my articles. It is very evocative isn’t it, of inevitable ruin and decay of great civilisations?
      tonyb

      • tonyb,

        Poems can be so useful to aid our mental images of real world events.

        Glad to hear that others have similar images about current events.

        John

      • tony b

        You’re right. Poems can be both meaningful and beautiful.

        Here’s an ode to the IPCC.

        Behind the tipping point prediction
        Unswayed by those who question it
        Lies the greenhouse warming fiction
        Loved by those who benefit.

        Straightforward are the ones who teach it
        High and true are their ideals
        Inciting panic as they preach it
        To one and all their creed appeals.

  89. Across the antique crowd at the antique fair,
    I see her face so vulnerable and young.
    Enclosed in the antique silver frame,
    She seems to ask, ‘Why am I here?’

    Cherished daughter, held in the silver frame,
    A whisp of venetian lace caught at her throat
    With real pearls, she seemed secure within the family walls
    But here she is, alone, without a name.

    We all seek certainty but there’s none,
    Except the certainty that things must change.
    We collect antiques, shore up the family home,
    But dynasties fall, plans soon come un done.

    • A face is found in
      Climate Sci’s batty attic:
      Faut dolor and grey.
      =============

    • Chief Hydrologist

      ‘I believe Icarus was not failing as he fell, but just coming to the end of his triumph.’ Jack Gilbert

      Yours? Perfectly wistful.

    • Beth,

      I have a mental image of what the CAGW centric believers must see as their ’cause’ fails; fails in significant part because of their own faulty strategies. That image is described in the first stanza of Yeats’ poem ‘The Second Coming';

      Turning and turning in the widening gyre
      The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
      Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
      Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
      The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
      The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
      The best lack all conviction, while the worst
      Are full of passionate intensity.

      Toast to poetry!

      John

  90. Marcel Kincaid

    What if they are wrong about 1+1 being 2?

    Judith Curry is now a full fledged denier and this site is no better than WUWT. Her flock of regulars will rejoice at that.

    • Her flock of regulars will rejoice at that.

      Are you calling me a denier, Marcel? :)

    • Marcel you write “Judith Curry is now a full fledged denier ”

      How I wish that you were right about this!!! Judith is anything but a denier of CAGW. She is a strong supporter of this hypothesis.

      • For the record, I see no evidence of C. A main part of my effort has been trying to figure out the % of A over the 20th century (the IPCC attribution statement of most >50% is way overconfident, and A may very well be 50% or less)

      • Many “lukewarmers” have all the skepticism of run of the mill skeptics. But most skeptics are conservative, and conservatives are considered icky by progressives, including progressives who call themselves “moderates,” “independents,” and “libertarians.” So they do not consider themselves skeptics, but lukewarmers who just happen to hold skeptical opinions.

        It’s all in the name. A neanderthal, knuckle dragging, troglodytic conservative by any other name….

    • When you have ten shades of radical fringe, Full-Moon unit #8 gets to shout names at Partial Moon unit #3 who they think are “too moderate”.

      AGW and Greens in general are filled with such false debates.

      Dr. Curry is a warmist, just not a foam at the mouth AGW member (from what is disclosed or not). It makes her more dangerous of course in the mainstream debate.

      • Put another way, Dr. Curry is a Climate Science Insider who will undoubtedly endeavour to remain an Insider, whatever the actual science turns out to be, if any actually happens.

        Andrew

      • Actually, I aint too popular with Mike Mann and the IPCC crowd (see emails, etc) but I frankly could not care less. And I am interesting to others because I have broken “rank.”

      • cwon –

        Does the 14 in your name denote Pluto-bound total-paranoia unit #14?

        Or are you Joshua in disguise creating a strawman version of a lunatic fundamentalist “skeptic” with which to ridicule everybody else?

      • “curryja | February 19, 2012 at 1:52 pm | Actually, I aint too popular with Mike Mann and the IPCC crowd (see emails, etc) but I frankly could not care less. And I am interesting to others because I have broken “rank.””

        Endorsing “no regrets” with a climate rationalization net helps the Team, even if they whine and cry in the process. It’s poliitical theater. You will an official rank breaker when you own up to the core politics that drives the AGW science consensus. I don’t mean metaphorically “own up” either, I mean specifically in plain old English. No nonsense about “advocates” and coded PC talk. No complaining about the Sierra Club or Greenpeace. I mean just say it, the AGW Team and consensus is an eco-left enclave that compromised itself for a specific political goal to advance weak science to achieve a common insider cultural desire; more power for government authority and themselves in line with their political ideology.

    • I’m afraid we are anything but a flock. We’re more like a debating society.

    • I was ridiculing Marcel Kincaid in this case, her view is crazy wing-nut. Using the term “denier” is a good first clue.

    • Escaped supervision once again, I see.

  91. Kim, strange things are often found in attics, but some are more sane in their upper storeys than others.

    • Anyone care to compare the Statue of Liberty at the end of Planet of the Apes with Ozymandias? Granted “your huddled masses yearning to breathe free” sounds less tyrannical than “Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair,” but ultimately both boil down to the same kind of vain hubris Jean-Paul Sartre loved to write about.

      Not that I’m any fan of JPS, his friend Albert Camus is much more to my taste. Camus saw in Sisyphus what we all confront in our daily lives, and saw nothing wrong there. Neither do I.

    • And some lurk in their basements
      And live without light

  92. Agendas and opinions are not science. The warmists have rode the AGW horse for over 30 years, changing their hat as the rest of us caught on to their charade. First it was global warming, and then it was climate change. Next came climate disruption all the time predicting catastrophic consequences. They seemed to have an insurmountable position as they morphed their belief into a theory that attributed all weather extremes – hot or cold, wet or dry, snow or no snow, glacial advance or retreat, greater or weaker hurricanes, changes in sea levels, and more to atmospheric CO2.

    At the same time real science, real data, observations and reality caught up with these extremists. None of the catastrophes that they have predicted have come to pass. The earth’s temperature, as measured by NASA’s Aqua satellite clearly shows stable to declining temperatures for at least the last 15 years.

    One might suspect that the end is near for these eco-terrorists and might even hope that the most egregious of them would be held accountable for the harm they have done to the earth’s peoples and economies. But I am afraid that this will never happen.

    Within the next year or two, the world’s elitist environmental police, led by the UN, will seamlessly slide into a new meme, still proclaiming the same dire consequences and demanding the same draconian sacrifices this time not in the name of global warming but now in the name of sustainability.

    • Agendas and opinions are not science

      Couldn’t agree more. Would you say the rest of your post consisted of science or opinions?

      No need to ask about your agenda, which the rest of your post made very clear.

  93. I think the big fear is the once this Global Warming rubbish is well and truly exposed for the blatent fraud it is there will be a massive backlash and good science will be scorned for years to come. The real culprits here are the investigating jounalist that never bother to investigate. I suppose I should not leave out the Royal Society of Idiots

    • Your “big fear” is misplaced, jimheath. You should be worrying about whether a new generation of skeptics will step up to the plate to take your place when you’re gone.

      At the rate those on the opposite side of the debate are working to educate the next generation about how AGW works, your side is going to wind up with hardly anyone to fill your shoes. Heartland and David Wojick understand this, but they’re like King Canute commanding the tide to retreat.

      To stem that tide will take nothing less than the Tea Party, on whom the prospects for climate skepticism rest today.

      • I suspect climate will be convincing enough of its own manifestations.
        =================

      • Vaughan Pratt | February 19, 2012 at 4:15 am | wrote: “At the rate those on the opposite side of the debate are working to educate the next generation about how AGW works, your side is going to wind up with hardly anyone to fill your shoes. Heartland and David Wojick understand this, but they’re like King Canute commanding the tide to retreat.”

        Accurate or not, this is a very interesting & provocative comment.

      • There is a tide in the affairs of Man, and there is a tide in the affairs of Nature.
        ========

  94. A single participant has written by now 43 comments. And worse, they are particularly uninteresting. It is an obvious case of abuse and total lack of self-control. I think it would be a great improvement of the blog to prevent such a commenting diarrhea.

  95. To put plazaeme’s comment in perspective, the top four commenters on this post up to this point are

    Joshua 44
    David Appell 44
    hunter 30
    manacker 21

    At most five more are still in the two-digit range.

    • Yes, Vaughan Pratt among them (23 with the last). But I didn’t say Pratt’s comments where obviously uninteresting. I just tried to mention the very recommendable practice self-control.

  96. The AGW hypothesis is definitely wrong. Hansen, trenberth, etc are either lack of indepth appreciation of thermodynamics, radiations, gas properties or milking the public funds for their own living conditions. Shame on IPCC, AMS, NASA, RS, etc.

  97. They are wrong for sure. The hope is, humans will learn something from it.

  98. What if they are wrong ?
    History will ask how did this happen ? It was a mass hysteria that cost x lives and very few voices were raised against it. The people in charge seemed to condone it or turn a blind eye and some people did very very well out of it.
    The only evidence produced was inadmissable and unverifiable hearsay and the authorities acted on this flimsy evidence because it suited their purpose and was ‘deemed’ to be the right thing to do.
    No one will forget Salem 1692

    • I suppose it could the biggest example of “groupthink” in history – will keep students of management entertained for decades….

  99. G’day Chief,
    WH Auden also writes about Icarus in his poem, ‘Musee des Beaux Arts’ another perspective on time.
    Then there’s Horace, Carpe Diem:
    ‘While we’re talking, envious time is fleeing: pluck the day
    put no trust in the future.’

    Hmmm, maybe my poem does verge on the pessimistic.
    Jest too many perspectives, sometimes a simple cowgirl don’t know what to think…..

    • Laelius on Scipio: Fire and water themselves, to use a common expression, are not of more universal use than friendship.

      H/t Cic.
      ====

  100. Any competent science historian of the future with access to relevant materials will conclude that climatologists were slow to recognize the seminal importance of the following paper:

    Le Mouël, J.-L.; Blanter, E.; Shnirman, M.; & Courtillot, V. (2010). Solar forcing of the semi-annual variation of length-of-day. Geophysical Research Letters 37, L15307. doi:10.1029/2010GL043185.

  101. Global warming has produced several ways of looking at the world. Here’s one:

    If you take the highest temperature of a day (Tmax) and add the lowest temperature of that day (Tmin), you get a number. Divide that number by two and you get an average for the day. If you add up the numbers for a month and plot them on a chart and compare it to the previous year, you get a better idea. If you add up all the numbers for a year and compare it to previous years, you get the chart below:

    http://bit.ly/yiQjcK

    Or do you? What if the temperatures are taken with different thermometers and thermocouples, and some of them are near a hot piece of asphalt and others have been moved to a busy airport? What if the first part of your series isn’t thermometers at all, but from estimates of temperature derived from analysis of the thickness of tree rings? And what if those estimates are suspect, declining during a period when we know temperatures rose?

    The chart above was used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in their 3rd report on the state of the Earth’s climate, called TAR and published in 2001. Its dramatic shape and view—that temperatures were rising faster than they ever had—that we were moving into uncharted and dangerous territory. That we needed to act now…

    Here is another way of looking at the world (http://bit.ly/5pcHs6)—and it’s the way we looked at temperatures for close on to 40 years, before worries about global warming made the previous chart popular.

    CLIMATEGATE
    THE CRUTAPE LETTERS
    Page 11-12
    Steven Mosher
    Thomas W. Fuller

    Which view is winning at the moment?

  102. Joshua | February 17, 2012 at 7:39 pm | Reply “Skeptics” only have themselves to blame if, say 15 years down the track, we find that the “skeptical” hypotheses have well been falsified, and they will have to confront the reality that they had every opportunity to understand that climate scientists were presenting a good faith estimate of probabilities and instead, for 20 years, they mischaracterized what climate scientists said and insisted on absolute proof for something that could not be proven absolutely.
    =============
    Sorry, but I do not agree with any of this. The skeptics did not hide data and meta data, refuse to engage in reasoned debate, attempt to control the peer review process through intimadation and career threatening actions aimed at both individuals and scientific journals, make grossly exaggerated claims of disasters of epic scale, etc, etc. So, even if the CAGW proponents were in the end proved correct, they would have provided a classic case of how NOT to win a debate and influence people.

    Beyond that, even if they were proven correct in the middle range of the projected degree of warming, then also the disasters projected from said warming would also have to occur, and furthermore the consequences of their proposed solutions would have to be weighed against the result then occuring and the cost of mitigating those, verses destroying the worlds economy and the potential wars that could result from such drastic actions as the likes of Jim Hansen and others have proposed.

  103. Ode To CAGW Faithful

    Shuck and jive,
    Bob and weave,
    Let your comments loose.
    Build them to deceive.

    Don’t answer the question.
    Don’t admit you’re wrong.
    Mealy-mouth your words well
    As you suck your climate bong

    Never admit an error.
    The crowd cannot be wrong.
    Because science is not important,
    It’s about the social song.

    Lynch the unbelievers and
    Burn the guys you hate.
    Make sure they are ignored as you
    Kill their work and guard the gate.

    Argue with all the passion
    That consensus lends your case.
    You must ignore the facts in front of you
    As you know you’re off the base.

  104. Marcel Kincaid,

    You said [February 18, 2012 at 9:41 pm]

    “Judith Curry is now a full fledged denier and this site is no better than WUWT. Her flock of regulars will rejoice at that.”

    Au contraire, mon ami. My thought is that Judith Curry is becoming a participant in the reformation and re-enlightenment of science during the decline of the damaging post-CAGW centric era of science. As is WUWT, Climate Audit, Bishop Hill and many other independent thinker (aka skeptic) oriented ‘salons-de-blog’ (or is that ‘salons-du-blog’).

    Cheers to Judith!!!

    John

  105. ” O what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive.” Sir Walter Scott

  106. Vaughn Pratt writes:

    “Your “big fear” is misplaced, jimheath. You should be worrying about whether a new generation of skeptics will step up to the plate to take your place when you’re gone.

    At the rate those on the opposite side of the debate are working to educate the next generation about how AGW works, your side is going to wind up with hardly anyone to fill your shoes. Heartland and David Wojick understand this, but they’re like King Canute commanding the tide to retreat.

    To stem that tide will take nothing less than the Tea Party, on whom the prospects for climate skepticism rest today.”

    IN my opinion, this represents a profound lack of understanding of what climate skepticism is all about. For me and most others I know, it’s ultimately about the failing models. I’m a liberal Democrat and consider myself an environmentalist, and yet I’ve become convinced CAGW is a crock. It’s your side that’s under pressure, which explains the recent desperate act of falsifying a document. Say what you want about the source of the climate-gate emails, none of them were faked. They didn’t have to be. They were so damaging they couldn’t be improved upon.

    Truth is much, much more damaging than fiction.

  107. Vince Whirlwind

    Curry is getting embarrassing. She quotes this:
    “In an interesting admission the (British) Met Office and the University of East Anglia Climatic Research Unit have now admitted that the climate has ceased rising for the last 15 years.”
    …and links to….a Daily Mail article which the Met Office says was completely wrong.
    The Met Office *doesn’t* say what Curry says Stopa says the Daily Mail says the Met Office says.

    How hard is it to just use primary sources? Why did you stop doing science and stoop to this absolute nonsense?

    And why would you want to provide oxygen for any of Stopa’s nonsense, anyway? What’s the point of that? He’s not publishing anything, so it’s an irrelevant distraction from the real work being done properly by real scientists.

    • Markus Fitzhenry.

      “”from the real work being done properly by real scientists.””

      How many times do I have to hear that nonsense statement?

    • Vince Whirlwind,

      You said, ” . . . He’s [Stopa] not publishing anything, so it’s an irrelevant distraction from the real work being done properly by real scientists.”

      So, please let me know which scientists (name 10 examples) you consider real and what work (name most noted examples) it is that they are doing properly. And we will see if they have not been found to be critically lacking in reviews by anybody. They will have been if the scientific process is still intact. Remember the Team’s nefarious efforts to keep work out of the IPCC that doesn’t support their own work in the IPCC. Are any of you real scientists and their proper works in that group?

      John

      • John,
        The basic ad hom culture of AGW belief is that anyone who agrees with them, no matter if they are technical or not, are brilliant sciencey thinkers. And anyone who even questions, much less disagrees, no matter how technically educated, is not a ‘real’ scientist at best.

      • Steve Milesworthy

        A “What If…?” scenario based on wild fantasies about what people said and a realm in which the physical laws are different is not very compelling because it suggests that the author has not researched his subject sufficiently to be trusted to give a balanced or reasonable view of anything.

        A compelling example of “real work being done properly by real scientists” could of course be much of the work being done by many of the contributors to the temperature datasets whose work is now apparently being validated by BEST efforts. The fact I say that to rub your nose in it is beside the point. If you can’t be critical of the people on your “own side” when they say something stupid then don’t criticise other people for allegedly suffering the same character flaw.

  108. Prof. Dr. Fritz Vahrenholt who has long been a famous AGW theory proponent and IPCC supporter in germany (where he was chancelor scientific advisor for issues related to renewable energies and climate) is now claiming claiming IPCC was wrong as having significantly underestimated natural variability due to the sun and to oceans’ oscillations…

    http://www.thegwpf.org/international-news/4932-the-cold-sun-why-the-climate-catastrophe-wont-happen.html

    http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,813814,00.html

    • “I don’t claim that I know precisely whether the sun is responsible for a 40, 50 or 60 percent share of global warming. But it’s nonsense for the IPCC to claim that the sun has nothing to do with it.”

      The IPCC doesn’t say the Sun has nothing to do with it.

      “There are two effects: the declining solar activity, as well as the fluctuations in ocean currents, such as the 60-year Pacific oscillation, which was in a positive warm phase from 1977 to 2000 and, since 2000, has led to cooling as a result of its decline. Their contribution to the change in temperature has also been wrongly attributed to CO2. Most of all, however, the last sunspot cycle was weaker than the one before it. This is why the sun’s magnetic field has continued to weaken since 2000. As a result, this magnetic field doesn’t shield us against cosmic radiation quite as well, which in turn leads to stronger cloud formation and, therefore, cooling. What else has to happen before the IPCC at least mentions these relationships in its reports?”

      The IPCC does mention those relationships in it’s report.

      In short Vahrenholt is another one of these fools who doesn’t understand the subject and just pushes strawmen.

      • Markus Fitzhenry.

        “”In short Vahrenholt is another one of these fools who doesn’t understand the subject and just pushes strawmen.””

        Wasn’t a fool when in your camp lolwot, was he?.
        Besides fool , it’s not nice to call people names.

      • “Wasn’t a fool when in your camp lolwot, was he?.”

        Never heard of him before. So much for him being “famous”. Maybe he was in Germany.

        Or maybe skeptics are making up stories yet again trying to turn nobodies into famous scientists.

        I remember when deniers tried to pretend Alan Titchmarsh, UK TV gardening presenter, was an experienced scientist.

      • lolwot :
        Here is Vahrenholt curriculum for your information.

        http://www.rwe.com/web/cms/en/66234/rwe/curriculum-vitae-prof-dr-fritz-vahrenholt/

        I guess he knows IPCC reports a little bit better than you.

      • obviously not, he doesn’t appear to know what is in them. Twice in the interview he wrongly claimed something was or wasn’t in the IPCC report.

        You claimed he was “a famous AGW theory proponent and IPCC supporter in germany”

        What evidence did you have for that claim?

      • Markus Fitzhenry.

        Warmists call Jim Hansen a famous scientist, when he is really a fruit-loop, deluded, misanthropist, Greenie.

        Talk to Donna Laframborse about IPCC experienced scientists.

      • “Warmists call Jim Hansen a famous scientist”

        Because he is. http://pubs.giss.nasa.gov/authors/jhansen.html

        It sounds like you are defending Eric Ollivet. Lets see if Ollivet can provide the basis for his claim that Fritz was “a famous AGW theory proponent and IPCC supporter in germany”.

        Perhaps Eric was just forwarding a false rumor he’d picked up from the usual spin of “skeptic” blogs. Or perhaps he actually has evidence to justify his claim.

        What do you think will be the case?

      • Markus Fitzhenry.

        The sum total of your intelligence is to go off on a unsupported premise that Vahrenholt isn’t important in the greenie ideology of Germans. Read DER SPIEGEL, lolwot.

        Come back with that intelligence and we’ll talk.

      • lolwot :
        IPCC has always claimed, based on nice climate models (which are formally invalidated by comparison to climate data !) that manmade CO2 emissions were climate driving parameter :
        “It is very unlikely that the 20th-century warming can be explained by natural causes.”
        [...]
        “The models fail to reproduce the observed warming when run using only natural factors.”
        [...]
        “Numerous experiments have been conducted using climate models to determine the likely causes of the 20th-century climate change. These experiments indicate that models cannot reproduce the rapid warming observed in recent decades when they only take into account variations in solar output and volcanic activity.”
        [...]
        “The human influence on climate very likely dominates over all other causes of change in global average surface temperature during the past half century.”
        [...]
        “Most of the observed increase in global average temperatures
        since the mid-20th century is very likely due to the
        observed increase in anthropogenic GHG concentrations.
        This is an advance since the TAR’s conclusion that most
        of the observed warming over the last 50 years is likely to
        have been due to the increase in GHG concentrations”

        See IPCC AR4 WG1 FAQ9.2

        OrIPCC AR4 Synthesis Report especially p39

        Yet, as Vahrenholt and many others (Latif, Scafetta, Lindzen, Spencer, Christy…) pointed out, IPCC totally failed recognizing the leading role of natural variability (especially sun and oceans’ cycles), systematically underestimating this role while (manmade) CO2 influence was systematically overestimated. IPCC is obviously plain wrong !

      • Eric claimed Vahrenholt was “a famous AGW theory proponent and IPCC supporter in germany”

        Do you support that claim? If so where’s the evidence?

        And no the spiegel interview doesn’t provide it. Why does this matter? Because I smell a rat. Are skeptics going to be caught making stuff up again for spin?

      • Markus Fitzhenry.

        You’re such a uninformed big mouth, lolwot.

        You can read about the new book just published in Germany that is causing an uproar in the German green establishment here. The response is so vitriolic that one is newspaper TAZ is headlining “Skeptics are like viruses“. Greenpeace Germany has now gotten into the act, denouncing Varrenholt (formerly a champion of the global warming cause) as an Ice Cold Denier.

        Vicious losers in Germany are out in droves but the public has had a gut full and are not buying any more deluded spin from warmists..

      • “Yet, as Vahrenholt and many others (Latif, Scafetta, Lindzen, Spencer, Christy…) pointed out, IPCC totally failed recognizing the leading role of natural variability (especially sun and oceans’ cycles), systematically underestimating this role while (manmade) CO2 influence was systematically overestimated. IPCC is obviously plain wrong !”

        I disagree. Based on current science the IPCC’s statements are very likely correct. It’s Vahrenholt that is likely wrong. He’s clutching at weird straws. The cosmic ray-cloud hypothesis is still at testing stage. The sign of any the contribution to recent global temperature hasn’t even been quantified let alone the magnitude. Yes it might turn out that cosmic rays have cooled the climate in the past 50 years. Yet Vahrenholt seems almost convinced that they have contributed significant warming and thus the IPCC have underestimated their contribution. He also falsely claims cosmic rays are not in the IPCC report when they are.

        The IPCC say as you quoted: “most of the observed warming over the last 50 years is likely to have been due to the increase in GHG concentrations”

        They don’t, as Vahrenholt implies, say it’s all CO2. They don’t, as Vahrenholt claims, say that the Sun has no role.

        On the otherhand look at one of Vahrenholt’s own claims. He says:

        “I don’t claim that I know precisely whether the sun is responsible for a 40, 50 or 60 percent share of global warming. But it’s nonsense for the IPCC to claim that the sun has nothing to do with it.”

        Vahrenholt says he doesn’t know whether the sun is responsible for 40, 50 or 60% of warming. Interestingly though why does he assume that much? Why not 20%? Or even 10%? Or even a cooling?

        The fact is that Vahrenholt has no evidence that the Sun has contributed such a significant level warming. There is no scientific basis for Vahrenholt’s claims. And it’s the same deal with his PDO claims.

      • We still haven’t got to the bottom of this claim:

        ““a famous AGW theory proponent and IPCC supporter in germany””

        The Spiegel gave him an introduction:
        “He is typical of someone who came of age during the student protest movement of the late 1960s, and who fought against the chemical industry’s toxic manufacturing plants in the 1970s. His party, Germany’s center-left Social Democratic Party (SPD), chose him as environment senator in the city-state of Hamburg, where he incurred the wrath of the environmental lobby by building a waste incineration plant, earning him the nickname “Feuerfritze” (Fire Fritz). He worked in industry after that, first for oil multinational Shell and then for wind turbine maker RePower, which he helped develop. Now, as the outgoing CEO of the renewable energy group RWE Innogy, he is about to embark on his next major battle.”

        Nothing there about AGW or IPCC support.

        So what is the basis of this claim: ““a famous AGW theory proponent and IPCC supporter in germany””?

        How is he famous as an AGW theory proponent? What did he do to achieve that fame?

      • “The models fail to reproduce the observed warming when run using only natural factors.”

        In other words the models are wrong!!!!!!!!
        That means that the Theory is wrong!!!!!!!

    • Markus Fitzhenry.

      lolwot, you are the best advertisement for how much Warmists are deranged, please stick around.

      Do many of the AGW protagonists approve of your idiotic behavior, done in their name?

      • Markus,
        There is an emerging pattern of believers scoring own goals. It seems to be a pattern that is increasing in frequency.

    • According to the news Vahrenholt was the CEO of the renewable energy development unit of the large power company RWE. In that position nobody has the full freedom to express his views but must follow the guidelines that the company sets for him. Thus it’s not possible to tell what he has thought earlier.

      Another issue is the IPCC SSREN report on renewable energy that he tells as the reason for his change of heart. That sounds even plausible. The report is indeed for certain essential parts terrible and the main reason for that is in the German leadership in its writing. I can easily imagine that an insider of the German energy scene feels that the whole process has been very severely corrupt. I don’t believe that much of IPCC is as bad as parts of SSREN, but the SSREN experience tells that anything is possible.

  109. Sam NC | February 19, 2012 at 5:33 am | Reply
    “The AGW hypothesis is definitely wrong. Hansen, trenberth, etc are either lack of indepth appreciation of thermodynamics, radiations, gas properties or milking the public funds for their own living conditions. Shame on IPCC, AMS, NASA, RS, etc.”

    Edim | February 19, 2012 at 5:39 am | Reply
    “They are wrong for sure.”
    ——————————————————–
    Well, there you go. the science is settled.

    • Owen,

      I am sure thermodynamics, radiations, and gas physical properties are well proven, well tested, well settled. Not settled with those irrational back radiations imaginaed by these people who challenged tradtional radiations with low temperature bodies can heat up high temperature bodies. Only those well educated idiots think that 0.4% CO2 content can have any significant effect on warming of the atmosphere. They are worse than those gullibles who have no brains to think.

      • CO2 is 0.04% of the atmosphere, even less than you said.

      • YES! With 4000ppm (0.4%) will not have any significant effect on warming, 400ppm or 0.04% is nothing in the atmosphere! Increased CO2 content helps cooling the atmosphere trivially.

    • Owen,

      It is MY take that they are wrong. From the evidence (and their pseudo-scientific behaviour) it seems VERY likely to me that they are wrong. I can’t see how they could be right.

  110. Markus Fitzhenry.

    “”Well, there you go. the science is settled.””

    It will never be settled, Owen. However, recent studies have enlightened our knowledge, to the extent, Anthropogenic Global Warning is not a material factor in determining climate change predictions.

    Back radiation is a fallacy. Science is never a fixed paradigm. Let us move on. The Stefan- Boltzman BB calculation does not reflect the phenomenon of Earth’s irradiation.

    Solar radiation ‘T’ increases with altitude, BB’s are those that absorb and radiate with same intensity ans corresponding T.

    Real colourful bodies reflect, scatter, absorb, convert and emit radiation energy according to the incident radiation direction, spectrum and body matter reflectivity, absorptivity, emissivity and view factors.

    The rate of EMR energy transfer from hot body is, TH, is Q, W=5.67 He (th + 273)4. But it may not be absorbed by all bodies that intercept it, as GHG’s theory assumes in particular hotter radiating bodies do not absorb colder radiation and emits it more intensely, as GHG black radiation the theory assumes.

    Hit for you Owen. Hansen’s 15 + 18 is an effect of, not the cause of Earth’s Temperature. The force of pressure acts to uniformly distribute heat in Earths static, dynamic and thermodynamic systems.

    • perhaps you should get some of your denier friends to accept your tall story before trying to sell it to us “alarmists”.

      From my point of view what you claim is greenhouse effect denying twaddle.

      • Markus Fitzhenry.

        You’re unbelievable, lolwot. You have nothing but a big mouth spilling crap. Give me a little bit of your IPCC science, so I can knock your block off.

      • Sorry I don’t take people who deny backradiation or the greenhouse effect seriously.

      • Markus Fitzhenry.

        “”Sorry I don’t take people who deny backradiation or the greenhouse effect seriously.””

        You don’t know about the science do you lolwot, you never have, just another deluded warmist pushing the Co2 religion.

        Your mob are quickly becoming outcasts.

      • I think you’ll find you are the outcast. Not many global warming skeptics around here will buy into your backradiation denial and “hotter radiating bodies do not absorb colder radiation” BS. It’s just loony.

      • lolwot,

        back radiation is bs that is settled.

      • Lolwot,
        But they do buy into that loony talk. You see, for them to say nothing is a form of agreement. Other casual readers here see only a few of us occasionally complaining, with us operating under the mistaken impression that they will clean up their own. Yet they don’t, and that is OK by them as it serves effectively to propagate FUD.

        The business of Heartland, Wojick and others is to breed FUD.
        These crackpots are not outcasts as much as they are dependable foot-soldiers delivering the FUD.

      • Both you and lolwot are craas well.

      • crackpots, lol.

      • All alarmists are crackpots, lol.

      • Markus Fitzhenry

        To say hotter bodies radiate more after consumption of radiation from a cooler body is crack pottery. WHT and lolwot know all about crack pottery.

        On their head did it crack.

      • WHT

        You have opined:

        The business of Heartland, Wojick and others is to breed FUD.

        And what was the “business” of AGU ethics “chair” Peter Gleick when he faked Heartland documents?

        Max

      • The construction of coherent sentences is obviously not Markus’s and SamNC’s forte. I think lolwot and I must have hit some nerve that reduced you guys to blubbering. You so desperately want to be accepted by the other skeptics, and refuse to believe that you are being used like toilet paper.

        And then you have Manacker butting in because he doesn’t have the conviction WRT scientific honesty to call the lesser crackpots on their weird theories.

  111. John Whitman,
    the vision of the alarmists’ vision of the enemy, us?

    When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
    Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert
    A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
    A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
    Is moving its slow thighs , while all about it
    Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.

    • Beth,

      : )

      John

    • Markus Fitzhenry.

      Every part able, active, receptive, without shame or the need of shame

      Air, soil, water, fire, these are words,
      I myself am a word with them—my qualities interpenetrate with theirs—my name is nothing to them,
      Though it were told in the three thousand languages, what would air, soil, water, fire,know of my name?

      A healthy presence, a friendly or commanding gesture, are words, sayings, meanings,
      The charms that go with the mere looks of some men and women are sayings and meanings also.

      The workmanship of souls is by the inaudible words of the earth,
      The great masters, the sayers, know the earth’s words, and use them more than the audible words.

      Syllables are not the earth’s words, Beauty, reality, manhood, time, life—the realities of such as these are the earth’s words.

      Amelioration is one of the earth’s words,The earth neither lags nor hastens,
      —————————————

      I wonder if Walt Whitman would consider Anthropogenic Global warming a Earth word.

  112. Two skeptics. Two made up claims.

    Mike Stopa: “In an interesting admission the (British) Met Office and the University of East Anglia Climatic Research Unit have now admitted that the climate has ceased rising for the last 15 years.”

    False. The Met Office never claimed this.

    Fritz Vahrenholt: “I don’t claim that I know precisely whether the sun is responsible for a 40, 50 or 60 percent share of global warming. But it’s nonsense for the IPCC to claim that the sun has nothing to do with it.”

    False. The IPCC never claimed this.

    If the skeptic case is so good, why do they feel the need to make up stuff like this?

  113. Regarding the question put, well for starters we can all agree on the adjective “colossal”. I suggest that makers of colossal mistakes who also engage in colossal arrogance and run and hide from a colossal apology will be regarded by history as colossal buffoons or colossal frauds. Science’s Judas’s and Benedict Arnolds. Gollum’s without any sympathy, grasping precious nothing at all as they fall into the fires of history’s incinerator of reputations.

  114. “…alluding to the possibility of global warming as a justification for supporting their research. Nothing horrible about that.” Nothing? Everything more like. If scientists are going to start a cycle of funded research with deceit and predeterminism, what makes us believe they’ll be neutral with their research methods, results and interpretation. It is this widespread collective deceit that has propped up politician’s and environmentalist’s preconceptions and so exacerbated this whole sorry affair.

  115. Bill Hooke has a follow on essay “What if they are right?” Check it out.

    http://www.livingontherealworld.org/?p=568

  116. The patent for irresponsibility, which is given to eugenic and egoistic people, it must lead to disaster. This is the one with a reliable mechanism for history.
    Dr Elsar Amos Orkan

  117. The patent for irresponsibility, which is given to eugenic and egoistic people, it must lead to disaster. This is the one with a reliable mechanism for history.

    http://eorkan.blogspot.com/

  118. Not quite eugenics, but I think that Stephan Jay Gould’s “The Mismeasure of Man” is a good exposure of the misapplication of science.

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

  119. Hooke’s “What if They Are Right?” essay ends with the words:

    In particular, we are underinvesting in public math and science education.

    That’s one forecast. Others could be constructed. What’s yours?

    With regard to “science education”, the word “public” is redundant, as far as I’m concerned, but the rest sounds OK.

    I’d see the government’s role here in supporting NASA space exploration activities, for example, which in turn would open well-paying jobs in science. “Underinvesting” would be equal to the current US government policy to dramatically reduce NASA appropriations for space exploration, for example.

    Also let’s make sure we do not equate “science education” with brainwashing with particular politically motivated “mainstream consensus” AGW group-think, when it comes to “climate science”.

    And let’s rely on the scientific method rather than simply on computer model outputs.

    Max

    • Max

      Of course if you fund NASA you would need to be very careful regarding what it gets spent on. It could mean more funding for Hansen. Realistically, when the US is spending roughly 35% more than it is taking in from revenues, there will be no money for many things you would like.

      • Rob Starkey

        That’s why I specifically stated “for space exploration”.

        I consider Hansen et al. way “over-funded”, but the latest US government proposal to reduce NASA space exploration (NOT Hansen et al.) is a case of setting wrong priorities IMO.

        Agree that US federal government spending overall needs to come down to same level as US federal government income.

        But I would argue that turning over leadership in space exploration to China in order to keep multi-billion dollar entitlement programs going full steam does not make long-term strategic sense (even if it might be politically shrewd on a short-term basis).

        Just as I would argue that shutting down the US military and thereby turning over global military leadership to China (or anyone else) also would not make sense.

        Those of us who live outside the USA have gotten an (essentially free) defense shield paid for by the good will of US taxpayers, starting with WWII. One could argue that there should be some reimbursement for this, but I don’t think anyone in his right mind (except Ron Paul and his isolationist supporters, apparently) would argue that it should stop.

        The USA has become the “policeman” of the world – and we should all be thankful that it is the USA – not China (or Russia)- or Nazi Germany at the time – who has taken up this role.

        But this is all a bit beside Hooke’s point on the future US policy as it relates to “promoting science”

        Max

    • This is a great comment…I can see why you would think the word “public” should be redundant in referring to science education. However, I wanted to make clear that I was referring to education for everyone, not an elite few who could afford private schooling. And I was referring to general education, not professional preparation for a career in science. In a representative democracy, the public needs an education to hold both scientists and political leaders accountable. And I quite agree that education is distinct from brainwashing…:)

      • Bill,

        I too agree with this sentiment:

        “In a representative democracy, the public needs an education to hold both scientists and political leaders accountable”

        One reason I’ve been involved with this organization for over 16 years.

        http://www.beoutside.org/

      • William Hooke

        Thanks for your response.

        I liked your article BTW.

        And “education for everyone” is a good premise.

        This does not necessarily equate to FREE (i.e. taxpayer-funded) education through university level “for everyone”. But I agree with you that it should mean access to education through university level for those who are qualified and want it.

        Yes. It is said that the USA needs more scientists and engineers (and fewer lawyers?) to maintain its lead in scientific advancement.

        But, as long as the legal profession pays extremely well and the legal system is so set up to enhance the need for legal advice at every turn, it will be hard to change the present trend.

        The USA has twice as many lawyers (1/406 per capita) as the EU (1/862) or Japan (1/864), over three times as many as France (1/1,391) and thirty times as many as China (1/12,000).

        A possible root cause for this: the District of Columbia has one lawyer for every 12 inhabitants.

        Similar data for engineers and scientists are hard to find, but the USA has roughly three times as many lawyers as scientists and engineers together (1/138).

        But yet, the USA spends more than other nations for R&D.

        A 1997 study by NAS states:

        http://www.nas.edu/21st/research/research.html

        The federal government currently spends more than $70 billion a year on research and development, but about half that amount goes to preliminary production, system development, evaluation, and testing of existing technologies, as opposed to creation of new technologies.

        In 2004 the total US federal spending for R&D was estimated to be around $90 billion or 0.8% of GDP.

        http://www.cbo.gov/ftpdocs/82xx/doc8221/06-18-Research.pdf

        The lion’s share of R+D expenditures (over $220 billion) was funded by private industry (rather than the government). This portion is dependent to some extent on the state of the economy on a short-term basis. But on a longer-term basis it is also dependent on the overall business climate in the USA (taxation, regulation, etc.)

        A 2007 study tells us that the 2007 R+D expenditures were the highest in the world at $369 billion total, or 2.6% of GDP.

        http://www.nsf.gov/statistics/seind10/c0/c0s3.htm

        The United States remained by far the single largest R&D-performing country. Its R&D expenditure of $369 billion in 2007 exceeded the Asian region’s total of $338 billion and the EU’s (EU-27) $263 billionThe U.S. 2007 total broadly matched the combined R&D expenditures of the next four largest countries: Japan, China, Germany, and France.

        All discretionary expenditures will be analyzed in order to try to avoid a Greek-type debt spiral in the USA, I’m sure, and R&D expenditures will be no exception.

        I just hope that the USA does maintain its lead in R&D investments, despite these pressures.

        And I think it will probably do so with private industry continuing to take the lead, as long as the USA remains a “good place to do business”.

        So the trimming of government-funded R&D work does not concern me that much in itself. I would think that a more important emphasis should be on keeping the USA a “good place to do business” so that private industries continue to invest in R&D there.

        Max

        PS Sorry for the long response, but there are several factors at play here, as you know better that I do.

  120. “I would think that a more important emphasis should be on keeping the USA a “good place to do business” so that private industries continue to invest in R&D there.” Generally business will invest in R&D to the point where the risk-adjusted rate of return is similar to that on alternative uses of funds. The regulatory environment, prospective economic conditions in domestic and other markets and the quality of competition are obviously critical factors in determining the potential return to R&D, and will affect the assigned risk factor. A pro-business government will encourage business R&D and innovation, a government which has no concept of how business works (cf Australia) will discourage it.

    It’s worth noting that R&D and invention is a very small part of successful innovation. Australians are very inventive, but poor at commercialisation, in part because we’re a small economy remote from major markets – interaction between producers and end-users is critical in successful innovation.

  121. Whether the issue of the effect of the CO2 or lack of same can be resolved in the next 15 years depends upon the duration, in global climatology, of an independent statistical event. Global climatologists have yet to identify this duration for their field. The idea of a statistical event seems foreign to their thinking as evidenced by the absence of this idea in the 2007 report of IPCC Working Group I on “the physical science basis” for the IPCC’s conclusions.

    The duration of an independent statistical event can be no less that the period in which climatological variables are averaged in defining climatological outcomes. According to the World Meteorological Organization, the “classic” period is 30 years. If it is 30 years, though, no more than 1/2 of an independent statistical event can be observed in a given 15 year period.

    Going back to 1850, no more than 5 independent statistical events of 30 year duration can have been observed. Five of them is far too few for the purposes of: a) assigning numerical values to a climate model’s parameters and b) statistically validating this model. To increase the number from 5 to 6 does not resolve the problem. Thus, if the global temperature time series is truncated for lack of data before 1850 and the period of an independent statistical event is taken to be the WMO’s “classic” period, the issue of the effect of the CO2 concentration or lack of same will not be resolved in the next 15 years. 3000 years is a more reasonable estimate.

    • Terry Oldberg

      We have two distinct issues here.

      1. The statistical verification or falsification of the IPCC “mainstream consensus” claim, i.e. a) that human GHG emissions (principally CO2) have been the primary cause of global warming since 1950 and b) that this represents a serious potential threat to humanity and our environment, with global temperature rising by several degrees plus sea levels rising by feet (rather than inches) by 2100 if CO2 emissions are not reduced dramatically.

      2. The general perception of the validity of the above IPCC “mainstream consensus” claim

      I would agree with your assessment that issue #1 can probably only be verified or falsified with several hundreds of years of data, although I would say (for practical purposes) once we reach the year 2100 and there has been no significant warming above the trend of the past 150years and no abnormal rise of sea level as predicted by IPCC, we would have a pretty substantial scientific falsification).

      Issue #2 will be resolved more quickly. I would predict that if we have another 15 years or so of no significant global warming despite continued human CO2 emissions and growth of atmospheric CO2 levels, CAGW will “de facto” be a dead issue, and no politician will be foolish enough to try to tax carbon or anything else in this direction.

      Wouldn’t you agree?

      Max

      • manacker:

        Thanks for taking the time to reply. Based upon past experience, I can venture a guess on the number of observed independent events that would need to be in hand for the development of and validation of a predictive model for the global average surface air temperature as a function of the CO2 concentration and pertinent other independent variables. The minimum number is about 200.

        If the duration of an independent event is 30 years then the minimum period of observation of the global average surface temperature is 200 * 30 = 6000 years. The minimum period varies inversely with the duration of an independent event. Thus, for example, if the duration is 1 year, the minimum period is about 200 * 1 = 200 years.

        The period of observation of the hadcrut3 global average surface temperature time series is 162 years. Thus, using the hadcrut3, the duration of an event can be no more than about 162/200 = 0.8 years. If a model were to be developed and validated that predicted global surface temperatures over 0.8 years this model would be useless for the purpose of predicting global average surface temperatures over a greater period. For example, it would provide us with no clue to the global average surface temperature in 30 years. However, 30 years is about the period in which a power producing facility is written off the books of an organization such as an electric power generating facility. It can be concluded that the hadcrut3 provides us with no basis for allocating capital.

      • Terry Oldberg

        Thanks for reply.

        You’ve looked at this question from the statistical standpoint, and I can certainly not argue with what you’ve said concerning the time it would take to have a statistical falsification of the CAGW premise.

        But thinking outside the purely statistical box (which you have described), I do not believe we have to stay in limbo on whether or not the IPCC CAGW premise is valid for hundreds of years (IOW that the premise is not falsifiable in practical terms).

        In addition to the purely scientific/statistical falsification there is the (let’s call it) scientific/political/public opinion standpoint.

        And I would submit to you that a continuation of the latest trend of slight cooling (at around 0.06 degC per decade) for another 15 years despite continued business-as-usual emissions of CO2 (and increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations to record levels) would provide enough serious doubt regarding the IPCC scientific claims that they would be “de facto” falsified.

        A second possibility (which is not to be discounted): if another mechanism for the observed warming other than GHGs can be experimentally validated and a robust correlation between this effect and global temperature can be demonstrated based on real-time physical observations, then this new mechanism will become the new “paradigm”, thereby replacing the CAGW premise. [I am thinking here primarily of the solar/cosmic ray/cloud hypothesis of Henrik Svensmark et al., which is now being tested experimentally at CERN - but it could just as well be something else].

        So I see either of these possibilities as “de facto” falsification of the currently prevailing CAGW premise of IPCC, which could occur within 15 years.

        Max

      • manaker (Feb. 22, 2012 at 1:46 am):

        While acting under the constraint of logic, with the duration of a statistical event fixed at 30 years and with the global temperature time series stipulated to be the hadcrut3, it would be impossible to either validate or falsify a predictive theory in less than about 6000 years. While acting outside this constraint, it would be possible to reach either conclusion. The IPCC has reached its own conclusion via an extensive use of doublespeak, with consequent violation of the law of non-contradiction.

        Terry

      • To Manacker and Terry: let me quote: “”The new mechanism…… replacing the CAGW premise. [I am thinking here primarily of the solar/cosmic ray/cloud hypothesis of Henrik Svensmark et al…..[] but it could just as well be SOMETHING ELSE…..
        And toTerry: “””Validation for over 6,000 years…..””
        Both is already available…on German Amazon.de: ISBN 978-3-86805-604-4 (in German)….
        ….comprizing transparent straightforeward calculations for everyone,
        no simulations models, instead: validating calculations covering over 50.000
        years of paleoclimate, more than your 6.000 years proposed….
        Max, there are over 30 graphs included and in your place there
        should easily be a German speaker in the neighbourhood…
        JS

  122. Please strike “that” and substitute “than” in the second paragraph of my previous posting.

  123. I will put in my own “well…” here:

    Well, the proponents of it were themselves supposed to challenge their own hypotheses, in their own, papers. They were supposed to recognize the possible reasons why it may be wrong, why causes other than CO2 are not included, and point out the evidences that seemed to indicate otherwise – and explain WHY all of those were excluded from the gestalt they were putting together. It never should have been necessary for skeptics as a group to even exist. They should have been their own devil’s advocates.

    They did not fail in leaving these out. All that contradictory evidence existed, and they consciously excluded it even from discussion. Excluding it all was not an accident. They presented only the favorable side of the arguments, and in doing so they defrauded the entire process of scientific inquiry on the subject.

    They also KNEW that others would sooner or later pick up these counter-evidences and question their thoroughness. When this came to pass, they marginalized the honest questioners and created a we-they conflict which never should have existed.

    But the freaking government grant moneys were just so lucrative, they couldn’t pass them up.

    I almost NEVER use the word “shame,” but I have to:

    Shame on them.

    • f2tf

      You have described how true scientists would have addressed the problem.

      Unfortunately, the process was not driven by “true scientists” following the process of scientific inquiry, which you have described.

      Instead, it became a “consensus process”, driven by IPCC for political motives, with a “mainstream consensus” group of scientists/advocates defending their paradigm and closing their eyes and ears to any studies or hypotheses, which conflicted with their own.

      And, yes: Shame on them

      Max

      • manacker –

        Conclusions were jumped to, starting long before Hansen, but he seems to be the one whose statements before Congress brought on the furious irrationality we are dealing with today.

        I could literally talk for a week straight on what is wrong with their thinking, but I just heard a 21-minute presentation by former warmist Matt Ridley (his own admission) that really nails it all. http://tiny.cc/t5cf6 He is a helluva speaker who keeps it moving at an amazing pace, and he covers a huge lot of ground.

        I honestly don’t see the CAGW thing as so much of a political thing as most skeptics do. I see it as some gonzo bearded tree-huggers who all gravitated to environmental sciences, and who are fairly monolithic among themselves. That certainly is not surprising. They got it into their heads, long before they got their degrees, that industry is, by definition, the devil, and they are the Prophets of Doom who are going to carry their placards till they drop, and throw the fear of God into everyone. To them, their lives aren’t complete without destroying all industry. CO2 is just their foot in the door for doing that. They needed a whipping boy, and CO2 is it. They were too late to attack real pollution, because the Western world already dealt with that – and our skies are so much cleaner than when I grew up. I know: I was involved with designing and building and installing pollution control equipment. CO2 was not a pollutant then and it isn’t now.

        I had not realized how actually insane Hansen is and has been. In 1986 he was predicting that the oceans were going to boil over – in testimony to Congress, no less. And his latest rants are just as disconnected to reality. The man is certifiable.

        Nuff sed for now. Sorry I hadn’t seen your comment earlier.

        Steve

      • Ridley in words for those who’d rather read than listen. Also there is a link to pdf with some slides.

        http://www.bishop-hill.net/blog/2011/11/1/scientific-heresy.html

  124. to Feet2 and Max……
    your both replies put together explain the real
    scientific misery of our times….both together should be taken
    as one unit of encyclopedial analysis, where nothing more is
    to be added or subtracted…. Every word so spoken should be remembered to
    eternity…
    JS

    • Please JS.
      Write in sentences and paragraphs. This …… stuff is a pain in the brain. I’m close to skipping all your posts, which would be unfortunate, as some are rather good.

  125. ……as well: shame on them….

  126. This AGW has a hypothesis: Predictions of distant future temperatures in the atmosphere based on past states are not valid, because the Navier Stokes equations are nonlinear, chaotic, and show sensitive dependence on initial conditions.

    That leads to the following policy recommendations: Rather than have a centralized government and bureaucratic response to predictions of global warming that are theoretically invalid, and may be true, but may not be, perhaps we need a paradigm shift to decentralized private and market responses to actual local measurements. The reaction could be fast, as it would not have to move through various layers of bureaucracy and governments. A process that does not depend on predictions would have the theoretical benefit of never being based on incorrect data.

  127. “Well, the truth of this issue should be apparent within about 15 years.”

    The EPA can ruin our Economy, easily, in much less than 15 years.

    We need to know as soon as possible.

  128. Before we consider what “backradiation” contributes, let’s say that at 11am on the Equator on one side of the Earth the Sun is shining and delivering 900 W/m^2 to the surface, of which 300W/m^2 is leaking out again into the atmosphere, let’s say 120W/m^2 by evaporation and diffusion followed by convection, and the remaining 180W/m^2 of it by radiation. So we have a net overall inward flux of 900 – 300 = 600W/m^2, this being 900 – 180 = 720W/m^2 net radiation inwards less 120W/m^2 outwards by other processes, ie 720 – 120 = 600W/m^2.

    Let us suppose this overall net 600W/m^2 has warmed the surface by 6 deg.C since dawn.

    Now the models make out that, let’s say an extra 150 W/m^2 of backradiation from the cooler atmosphere also does some extra warming. So perhaps the increase in temperature has been an extra 1.5 deg.C making a total of 7.5 deg.C since dawn. After all, there is certainly net radiation into the surface.

    Does anyone really believe this extra 1.5 deg.C of warming from the cold atmosphere would not have been in violation of the Second Law of Thermodynamics?

    This surely must be the weakest argument and the most blatant travesty of physics in the whole (radiative) greenhouse conjecture..

    See the ‘Radiation’ page on my site http://climate-change-theory.com for more explanation of how and why the absorptivity goes to zero when the temperature of the source gets down to that of the target.

  129. Topic: Precaution, Post Normal Science & Possible Cooling.
    (You may have to log on as a Forum “member”, but membership is free and immediate.)

    http://solarcycle24com.proboards.com/index.cgi?action=gotopost&board=globalwarming&thread=1948&post=80698

    Applying PNS and PP criteria, the correct (“no regrets”) policies are to abandon regulatory mandates for fossil fuel reductions and encourage unbiased, more comprehensive climate research. Citizens, on the other hand, are at liberty to choose adaptive actions such as more efficient automobiles, insulation, sealing and heating and cooling systems when and if they find it desirable.

    What follows in the PDF below does not require that either cooling or warming scenarios be “scientifically proven”. Indeed, each scenario requires opposite policy actions under the Precautionary Principle and Post Normal Science.

    A summary and link has also been posted here:

    http://judithcurry.com/2012/03/26/a-science-policy-research-agenda/#comment-190106