Cool first, warm later

by Judith Curry

From an article in the New Scientist by Fred Pearce, written in Sept 2009:

One of the world’s top climate modellers said Thursday we could be about to enter one or even two decades during which temperatures cool.

“I am not one of the sceptics,” insisted Mojib Latif of the Leibniz Institute of Marine Sciences at Kiel University, Germany. “However, we have to ask the nasty questions ourselves or other people will do it.”

Some additional excerpts from the article:

Latif predicted that in the next few years a natural cooling trend would dominate over warming caused by humans. The cooling would be down to cyclical changes to ocean currents and temperatures in the North Atlantic, a feature known as the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO).

Breaking with climate-change orthodoxy, he said NAO cycles were probably responsible for some of the strong global warming seen in the past three decades. “But how much? The jury is still out,” he told the conference. The NAO is now moving into a colder phase.

Latif said NAO cycles also explained the recent recovery of the Sahel region of Africa from the droughts of the 1970s and 1980s. James Murphy, head of climate prediction at the Met Office, agreed and linked the NAO to Indian monsoons, Atlantic hurricanes and sea ice in the Arctic. “The oceans are key to decadal natural variability,” he said.

Another favourite climate nostrum was upturned when Pope warned that the dramatic Arctic ice loss in recent summers was partly a product of natural cycles rather than global warming. 

This statement by Latif was widely discussed in the blogosphere.  Thingsbreak has a good article describing the controversy.

A comment on one of the recent threads reminded me of this article, and I was struck by several things.

First, Latif is correct IMO in his statements about natural climate variability.  These are words that are not often enough heard in venues such as the UN Climate conference.  Kudos to Latif.

Second, the UN Climate Conference was in Sept 2009, about two months before the Climategate emails.  It is interesting to speculate whether Latif would have made these same statements say in Jan 2010. In Jan 2010, what Latif really ‘thinks’ is explained to us by Joe Romm in this article, since Latif’s statements were given new life post Climategate.

The main point of this post, however, is to explore the following statement:

“I am not one of the sceptics,” insisted Mojib Latif of the Leibniz Institute of Marine Sciences at Kiel University, Germany. “However, we have to ask the nasty questions ourselves or other people will do it.”

IMO this statement is enormously telling in terms of the debate surrounding climate science:

  • Asking questions is at the heart of the scientific method, and science has been characterized as ‘organized scepticism.’
  • The questions are referred to as ‘nasty’, since presumably they are inconvenient for the audience (the UN).
  • Not wanting to be identified as a ‘sceptic,’ in spite of the fact that the perspective that he presents is consistent with with what many sceptics say.
  • There is a ‘we’ versus ‘other people’ , in terms of who is acceptable in terms of asking questions.  If this doesn’t define climate tribalism, I don’t know what does.

On issues of climate projection for the next few decades and late 20th century attribution, I suspect that there is little that Latif and I would disagree on.  The big difference is that Latif has maintained his status in the climate community that identifies itself with UN programmes (e.g. IPCC, WCRP) by insisting that he is not a sceptic.  Whereas people are increasingly labeling me as a ‘denier’ because I engage with sceptical individuals from outside the UN climate community.

Tempterrain sums it up perfectly in this comment on the PBS Ombudsman thread:

Judith,I’m not saying that you actually are a scientific denier, in fact I’d say you obviously aren’t if you scientific publications are a true guide, but rather that you “come across” or givethe impression , as you admit happened on the PBS show, that you are siding with them.

Hmmmm. . . .  I can’t resist making a comment about tribalism here.  The tribalism is alive and well amongst the enviros, as per the reaction to the PBS show.   The issue was not so much with Watts said, but the fact that someone from the other ‘side’ was allowed any air time at all.  Joshua is always complaining that I don’t talk about tribalism on the sceptic side.  The defining characteristic of tribalism is to keep people out.  The sceptics are trying to get ‘in’ in terms of getting their ideas accepted by the main stream and their papers published in refereed journals.

Latif’s comments were made prior to Climategate.  I think that Climategate was a watershed event for climate science in the sense that the UN tribe of climate scientists started to realize that ‘other people’ were important in the public debate about climate change.   And that some of the questions being asked were important questions.  Some climate scientists are starting to engage with ‘other people’ in the blogosphere.  And some institutions, notably the UK Met Office, have been actively engaging with the ‘other people.’

So just when I thought some progress was being made here, we see the outrage of Watt’s airtime on PBS.  I suspect that the bigger significance of Watts statements on PBS is that people will start to realize that sceptics are asking legitimate questions about climate science and their methods.

And Latif is correct in that there is no getting around those nasty questions, no matter who asks them.

626 responses to “Cool first, warm later

  1. Please, may we collectively have the social and scientific sense to actually figure out the anthropogenic component of global warming during this cooling hiatus?
    ===============

    • Let us hope so, but as the great Richard Feynman at least once said:

      > You’re a helluva long way from the pituitary, man!

      http://neurotheory.columbia.edu/~ken/cargo_cult.html

      • Great link willard! I just had my students watch some Feynman and Sagan video clips the other day in my “Process of Science” class for non-science majors.

      • Bill, Professor Curry has concisely defined the “Process of Science”

        Asking questions is at the heart of the scientific method, and science has been characterized as ‘organized scepticism.’

        Failure to question leads to totalitarianism, as Orwell warned in 1948 and subsequent events have confirmed:

        http://omanuel.wordpress.com/about/#comment-1127

      • Thanks, Willard, Carl Sagan became my friend in 1980 by publishing information that the community of consensus scientists wanted to hide in their sixty-four year march from Hiroshima to Climategate (2009- 1945 = 64 yrs)

        “The enigma of helium and anomalous xenon”, Icarus 41, 312-315 (1980).

        Eighteen years later in 1998, CSPAN news captured NASA’s continuing effort to lead us to a tyrannical one-world government by hiding this fact after the Galileo probe entered Jupiter and confirmed: All primordial helium (He) was tagged with “strange” xenon (Xe) at the birth of the Solar System

      • Spartacusisfree

        Feynman taught us to think problems through in as simple a way as possible.Here is the first part of the fraudulent IPCC ‘consensus’.

        Have a look at this: http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/ccr/aboutus/staff/kiehl/EarthsGlobalEnergyBudget.pdf

        In Figure 1, to 63 W.m^2 net UP IR is added 333 W/m^2 ‘back radiation’, making 396 W/m^2, claimed as the true UP IR. In reality 333 W/m^ is what you measure with a ‘pyrgeometer’ facing up and 396 W.m^2 what you measure with a pyrgeometer facing down.

        These are the S-B levels for 3.7 °C and 16 °C respectively, the ‘Poynting vectors’ {PV]. 63 W/m^2 is the vector sum, as defined by Poynting’s Theorem, the most basic axiom of radiation physics, to be the real energy flux.

        The IPCC fraud is based on switching UP PV – DOWN PV with UP PV – DOWN PV + DOWN PV. A very clever scam which has escaped the gaze of virtually all observers, but not us.

        Taking account of the other mistaken boundary condition, the assumption the DOWN emissivity at TOA =1 when it has to be zero, you get 94.5 W/m^2 extra warming, a perpetual motion machine.

        This is offset by imaginary cloud cooling in the hind-casting. The net result is to create the imaginary positive feedback.

        There is another scientific bait and switch in the cooling by polluted clouds.

      • The most exciting movie of the 21st century — starring Richard Muller in, The Scientist Who Came In From The Cold — not since, Cat On A Hot Tin Roof, has the weather been this sexy.

      • No link has been played out more often on skeptic sites than the one you shared with us. Please – if all you’ve got is Feynman, you really aren’t offering anything that hasn’t been put out there years ago now. Of course, Feynman was right, but just trotting out his words in every thread does not add to the debate.

      • Spartacusisfree

        Sorry, it’s just that Feynman is one of my heroes and I have taken his mode of thinking to drill through climate science to see what mistakes were made, when they were made and who made them.

        This simple analysis shows that the whole construction is based on a false assumption, cleverly disguised as to be plausible to most except heat transfer specialists, of which I once was.

        My success is probably defined by the absence of attacks on my analysis by a usual suspect! Or has boredom set in?

    • David L. Hagen

      Re: “However, we have to ask the nasty questions ourselves or other people will do it.”
      True – but he was at least a decade late in starting to ask the questions let alone formulating a theory to explain it.
      “Sceptics”/”Realists” have been modeling and predicting such changes for the last decade and longer. e.g., In 1999, Don Easterbrook was formally predicting a change in decline in the rate of warming or possible cooling.
      “Tribalism” is a major cause of self imposed scientific “blinders”. See Stephen Kuhn, the Structure of Scientific Revolutions

  2. This seems to link to a 2009 article. Interesting that they say ‘this year’ (2009) had much less Arctic melting than 2007. Little did they know.

    • And yet, it cools.
      ===========

      • RC tried to make a bet on this with Keenleyside and Latif. They did not take it, but they would have lost – badly.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Cooling now – perhaps cooling later.

        ‘Stay tuned for the next update by 12 October 2012 (hopefully sooner) to see where the MEI will be heading next. La Niña is clearly over, but the burgeoning El Niño event of 2012 may be shorter-lived than expected, given its current weakness, and an overall environment that appears to favor La Niña conditions since 2006. Nevertheless, it would be unprecedented to see a switch back to La Niña before 2013. ‘ http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/enso/mei/

        The ‘current environment’ favours La Nina for a decade or three more. As most of the recent warming was factors other than AGG – especiailly ENSO – longer term cooling seems entirely feasible. The recently published high resolution ENSO proxy from Law Dome shows La Nina dominant over most of the last milennium.

      • I agree that right now it is not looking like a strong El Nino. But all it takes to set a new high is a bunch of side steppin’ neutral and an itsy bitsy El Niino.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        To quote myself – rude I know. The Pacific multi-decadal pattern involves modulation of the frequency and intensity of the ENSO. This can most easily be seen in the multivariate ENSO index (MEI) of Klaus Wolter in Figure 1. A bias is seen towards La Niña (blue) conditions prior to 1976/77, a shift thereafter to an El Niño (red) bias and a subsequent shift after 1998 back to a cooler bias. The MEI is based on six observed variables over the tropical Pacific. These six variables are: sea-level pressure, zonal and meridional components of the surface wind, sea surface temperature, surface air temperature, and total cloudiness fraction of the sky.

        http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/enso/mei/

        The risk in focusing on a specific index is that the woods will be obscured by the trees. A 2007 study by Anastasios Tsonis (http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2007/2007GL030288.shtml) – ‘A new dynamical mechanism for major climate shifts’ – shows that ENSO is part of a global and chaotic system. There are tremendous energies cascading through powerful systems. However, given the dramatic changes in upwelling of cold water on interannular to decadal and millennial timescales in the eastern Pacific – this is what drives most of the changes in global average surface temperature, hydrology and marine biology. Tsonis (2009) (http://www.springerlink.com/content/0m68l33852847467/?MUD=MP) observed in a sediment record from a South American lake (http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=ENSO11000.gif) a ‘chaotic bifurcation’ from La Niña to El Niño dominated conditions 5000 years ago. This resulted in the drying of the Sahel and changed the path of human cultural development. Professor Jonathon Nott of James Cook University was interviewed by the ‘The Australian’ newspaper in the tense day before cyclone Yasi hit. Cyclones in Australia are much bigger and much more frequent in La Niña years than otherwise. He said that ‘what the record shows is we go through extended periods, hundreds of years, of high activity and extended periods of little activity.’ God help us – the past 150 years have been a period of little activity. There is little to suggest that we have more than skimmed the surface of Pacific Ocean variability.

        Here is a new ENSO proxy (http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/abs/10.1175/JCLI-D-12-00003.1?journalCode=clim) that confirms millennial and centennial ENSO variability. – http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=Vance2012-AntarticaLawDomeicecoresaltcontent.jpg

        We are in a cool Pacific mode (http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=8703) which brings increased frequency and intensity of La Niña.
        ‘During the past 400 years, climate shifts associated with changes in the PDO are shown to have occurred with a similar frequency to those documented in the 20th Century. Importantly, phase changes in the PDO have a propensity to coincide with changes in the relative frequency of ENSO events, where the positive phase of the PDO is associated with an enhanced frequency of El Niño events, while the negative phase is shown to be more favourable for the development of La Niña events.’ http://www.agu.org/journals/abs/2006/2005GL025052.shtml

        We are cooling for a decade or three more – but these indices merely capture a standing wave in the underlying dynamic of Earth’s climate system. Most recent warming was natural and millennial such that cooling is entirely possible – but that isn’t how climate works. Climate works abruptly through multiple positive and negative feedbacks. The next climate shift may be mild or serious and there is no way of knowing beforehand.

      • In other words, this theory has no predictive value on any time scale. It is wait and see, and add another parameter to the fit if the temperature rises, and so on until you have a string of as many parameters as there are decades in the fit.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        I have heard this objection before and I don’t really understand it. If it is so then climate behaves in certain ways and prediction using other models is likely to be misleading.

        It is like the drunk searching for car keys under the streetlight because the light is better. We are not likely to find the car keys if they are not under the street light.

        looking in the right place is likely to be more rewarding.

        http://www.pnas.org/content/105/38/14308.full

      • Chief Hydrologist

        ‘Qué Será Será

        Have you been applying the Principles? If so, you should have found your object by now.

        But occasionally, Fate chooses to separate us from one of our possessions. When that seems to be the case, it’s time to call off the search.

        Your missing object may eventually turn up. Until then, accept that you are being offered a lesson: in patience…or humility…or nonattachment to the things of this world.

        And if not, so what? Lost keys, books, eyeglasses—even elephants!—can be replaced. Such losses are inconvenient and vexing. Yet surely they have their place in the inscrutable economy of the Universe.’

        I like it.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        The 13th principle that is.

      • “capture a standing wave”
        What a phony poseur. A standing wave is stationary and will not transform over time. Chief just makes up garbage when he’s not copying&pasting.

      • Chief,

        I was trying to find the Quine quote about Que Sera Sera, but stumbled upon something even better:

        > Life is what the least of us make most of us feel the least of us make the most of.

        http://u15357647.onlinehome-server.com/resources/99.pdf

        It fits even better.

      • Most recent warming was natural and millennial such that cooling is entirely possible…

        I think recent warming was almost entirely anthropogenic; in fact, I think almost all of the warming in the 20th Century was anthropogenic. Show me where Tsonis, the smarter of the two, says I’m wrong.

      • JCH is right, where is this warming coming from? We can understand that some cooling can come from the depths of the ocean, but the surface of the ocean is right there and it is warm already.

        Weird stuff this guy is smoking.

      • ‘Proxy and instrumental records reflect a quasi-cyclic 50-to-80-year climate signal across the Northern Hemisphere, with particular presence in the North Atlantic. Modeling studies rationalize this variability in terms of intrinsic dynamics of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation influencing distribution of sea-surface-temperature anomalies in the Atlantic Ocean; hence the name Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO). By analyzing a lagged covariance structure of a network of climate indices, this study details the AMO-signal propagation throughout the Northern Hemisphere via a sequence of atmospheric and lagged oceanic teleconnections, which the authors term the “stadium wave”. Initial changes in the North Atlantic temperature anomaly associated with AMO culminate in an oppositely signed hemispheric signal about 30 years later.’ Wyatt, Marcia Glaze , Sergey Kravtsov, and Anastasios A. Tsonis, 2011: Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation and Northern Hemisphere’s climate variability Climate Dynamics: DOI: 10.1007/s00382-011-1071-8.

        Wyatt et al call it a stadium wave to stress the interconnectedness. It is a standing wave as well because of persistence of patterns of sea surface temperature and atmospheric pressure. These are particularly useful for seasonal to decadal hydrological forecasts.

        Starting from more recent times – it is clear that CERES shows cloud radiative forcing changes that are ENSO related. Prior to CERES, ERBS and ISCCP-FD – this for instance – http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/abs/10.1175/JCLI3838.1 – that warming in the short wave and cooling in the IR.

        ‘In summary, although there is independent evidence for decadal changes in TOA radiative fluxes over the last two decades, the evidence is equivocal. Changes in the planetary and tropical TOA radiative fluxes are consistent with independent global ocean heat-storage data, and are expected to be dominated by changes in cloud radiative forcing. To the extent that they are real, they may simply reflect natural low-frequency variability of the climate system.’ IPCC 3.4.4.1

        Cooling of about 0.5 W/m^2 and warming in the IR and 2.1 W/m^2 in the SW. And yes the low frequency variability is real. As are longer term variability as seen in the cosmogenic record – e.g. http://iopscience.iop.org/1748-9326/5/3/034008 – or indeed in the ENSO proxies – http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/abs/10.1175/JCLI-D-12-00003.1?journalCode=clim

        Please – I have linked to many bits of science all over this if you would approach things with an open mind. Most recent warming does not seems to be natural in origin, we know what the mechanisms are, solar is involved in long term temp. variation, solar activity peaked late last century – http://lasp.colorado.edu/sorce/data/tsi_data.htm#plots – in a 1000 year grand maxima.

        It is not however as simple as all that – dynamical complexity means that everything is up for grabs. Where is your science?

      • I am a big fan of Wyatt’s work, I will post on this once her next two papers are in press.

      • A fan of *MORE* discourse

        Cherry-pickers who glean low-frequency climate fluctuations surely will find some, eh?   :roll:   :roll:   :roll:

        Yet on the other hand …

        Canada’s Arctic ice shelves breaking up fast

        “These unique and massive geographical features that we consider to be part of the map of Canada are disappearing and they won’t come back.”

        When billion-ton ice-structures, that have been stable for many thousands of years, suddenly disappear …

        … well it kinda makes yah think that James Hansen’s scientific climate-change worldview might be fundamentally right, eh?   :shock:   :shock:   :shock:

      • Chief Hydrologist

        I was a bit in a hurry… we do not know all the mechanisms…it is silly to state that we do.

        We should therefore be wary of dogmatic assertions.

        Most climate science is incorrect because – paradoxically- it is too simple. The science that deals with complexity in climate – such as the Wyatt paper linked to above is more correct in principle.

      • Wow, did you catch this, Fan?

        “Copland said mean winter temperatures have risen by about 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit per decade for the past five to six decades on northern Ellesmere Island.”

        Multiplying that out, it means winter temperature has increased between 9F and 10.8F total the last 5-6 decades. That is either a misstatement or a very large change.

  3. Judith, you write “I suspect that the bigger significance of Watts statements on PBS is that people will start to realize that sceptics are asking legitimate questions about climate science and their methods.”

    I find this to be one of the most significant things you have ever written on Climate Etc. I have always had the deepest respect for you and your ideas; this has just been increased by an order of magnitude.

    May I refer people to Max Anacker’s summary of the points we skeptics made on the thread “Skeptics: make your best case. Part II”. And then to Louise’s comments stating these were just crank comments. Out hostess is now stating clearly that these were not crank comments, and Louise was just plain wrong.

    Might I suggest a series of subjects for new threads in the future. Just pick one of the points we skeptics made on the recent thread, and let us discuss the science in detail. Let us start with just one, and see what happens. It could be highly instructive.

    • (Misthreaded above. This comment system is tiresome)

      captdallas

      So this 100ka stuff is just the handwaving of an amateur? There’s nothing at all in the literature supporting your position?

      Nothing at all?

      • BBD,”captdallas

        So this 100ka stuff is just the handwaving of an amateur? There’s nothing at all in the literature supporting your position?

        Nothing at all?”

        Yes, the threading can be a pain, sorry I missed this. I said nothing I am aware of. Not being a current member of any societies, I don’t have the access I would like. That isn’t really a problem though, because I am more experimenting with techniques than looking for results.

        Non linear system have a number of easily recognizable patterns in their time series. A saddle node, looks like a small “m” or “w” and has a minimum standard deviation point. So you can “read” a time series to note a change of state at the onset instead waiting for the “event” black swan or dragon king etc. Since this is pretty easy to isolate with sequential standard deviation, it is a good thing. I then noticed that sequential liner regressions seem to improve the predictability of the shift or break point.

        All it is is a simplified method to isolate locations to focus more resources on. In the same vein, I have a simplified thermo model that while it appears to violate a lot of rules, it tends to highlight areas of interest and produce pretty accurate results. I am just using the 100ka deal to test the model.

    • Jim, I look for your comments on all threads. Discussing the science issues, as you suggest, would be instructive. Assuming some consensus emerges, does this new “consensus” theory require its own climate model before it can generate testable predictions?

      • pjb253, you write “its own climate model before it can generate testable predictions?”

        Sorry, I do not understand the question. No model is any good for doing predictions unless and until it has been fully validated. The only way to validate a model is to test it’s predicitons aganst what actually happens. It is simply impractical to use any model to predict anything in the future that seems ot be of interest. I believe we will never be able to use models; we must rely on the empirical data, as physics has done, successfully, for centuries. We dont need models to determine if CAGW is correct. It is the proponents of CAGW who attempt to use models to frighten our populations and politicians into doing something about restricting the amount of CO2 we produce.

        All I was trying to suggest to our hostess was that if she is really serious about providing a forum where the legitimate concerns of us skeptics can be addressed, we have already provided a number of subjects which we feel need discussing.

      • If we discuss one of these subjects and wish to test any conclusions against empirical data, can that be done without building a new model to implement the conclusions? Can you foresee discussion of a limited topic leading to anything testable against empirical data?

      • pjb253, you write “Can you foresee discussion of a limited topic leading to anything testable against empirical data?”

        The answer to this question is a definite yes. If you will see what my main point has been for some time is to try and get a measure of total climate sensitivity from the empirical data. Total climate sensitivity ought to be the Holy Grail of CAGW. If it could be measured, then the question of whether CAGW is real would be settled for all time. To date so far as I can ascertain, the only people who have attempted to do this have been some of us skeptics. This work has been done with extremely limited funds, by amateurs like myself. I would, hope that if the sort of funds that are available to the proponents of CAGW were committed to this subject, we might be able to make progress. But this is merely one of the subjects that I suggest are legitimate, and are not being addressed.

        As to models, as I have noted, the main use of non-validated models is the help design the next experiment. It is completely unscientific to try and use any non-validated model to predict what will happen in the future.

      • – Jim Cripwell
        “No model is any good for doing predictions unless and until it has been fully validated. The only way to validate a model is to test it’s predicitons against what actually happens. It is simply impractical to use any model to predict anything in the future that seems ot be of interest. I believe we will never be able to use models; we must rely on the empirical data, as physics has done, successfully, for centuries.”

        and

        “Total climate sensitivity ought to be the Holy Grail of CAGW. If it could be measured, then the question of whether CAGW is real would be settled for all time.”
        ———————————

        I tend to agree with your view regarding models. This is not limited to the issue of climate change, but the overuse and abuse of models in these times is another matter. I also agree that more attention to observation is key for how we get beyond the present sorry stalemate. However, I part ways with you with the assertion that the climate sensitivity is the Holy Grail regarding CAGW. That might seems like heresy but I mean it this way: the climate sensitivity is a composite entity in that it has dependencies*, and then cannot be a fundamental (All Holy Grails must be fundamental). And that takes us back to the need for a ‘model’. It it does not have at least one dependence on a physical variable, how can it be applied?

        * From another perspective it is a generalized rate and is not a fundamental variable.

        Good comments–made me reflect. Some related comments and questions offered in the spirit of refining thoughts:

        1.) As a matter of record t use of models for prediction in a ‘regulatory’ context is already practiced in similar ‘post-normal’ [cringe] situations, e.g., USEPA Superfund (CERCLA) activities. The problems share many extreme attributes with the climate change issue. I think that a big difference is that in cases like my example there has been considerable effort expended (and still ongoing) developing guidance for dealing with using models in these contexts. Again the key here is there is at least there is the attempt at guidance on use of models, uncertainties, limitations, communication, etc. This not just the EPA, but other agencies, and of course it is not just the US, but other countries as well. This point here, however, is that models are used for future predictions in regulatory context.

        2.) Can you explain in a bit more detail just how the question of CAGW is settled by an empirical (or even parametric) model of climate sensitivity (CS)? As is your comment above is a simple assertion. (BTW to me ‘Everyone is trying to calculate it’ is not a sufficient justification.)

        3.) Does not the very concept of climate sensitivity depend on a model at some level.? Are multiple definitions for climate sensitivity currently in use?

        4.) Empirical data are interpreted, and this would to seem to require a conceptual model at a minimum and possibly infer something more. For example, maybe you might use a statistical model or a table of conditioned probabilities–that is, you need a way to determine that you have a ‘Holy Grail’ edition of the CS.

      • mwgrant. Thank you for your comments, but I think you are trying to read too much into mine. I have a rather simplictic approach. First I have nothing against models. I just point out that until a model has been fully validated, it cannot be used for predicitons. I am not familiar with the models you are talking about, so I have no idea the extent to which they have been validated. I can see no reason why they cannot have been validated. The two types of models that I know have been validated, are what I call “engineering” models; those used to calculate the wind loading of new structures, and those used to deploy explosives for the implosion of buildings. Basically, if a PE will put his/her signature on the output, then the model has been fully validated. If models have been validated, then there is no problem. It is impractical to validate climate models to make predicitons decades in advance.

        As to climate sensitivity, I also have a very simplistic approach. There is no question that at the moment the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere is increasing. We also have instrumentation that can measure this increase with considerable accuracy. We are, therefore, carrying out an “experiment”. The hypothesis of CAGW specifies that as CO2 concentrations increase, global temperatures increase. Since we now have satellite measurements of global temperatures with enough accuracy, we can observe the change in global temperatures, and if we can prove that an observed increase was caused by the increased concentration of CO2, then we have a direct measurment of total climate sensitivity. No models, nothing else. Just a dependent and independent varaible. The rise of CO2 is the independent variable, and the rise in temperature is the dependent variable. Quite starightforward and simplistic.

        My observation is that since no-one can prove that any rise in global temperature has been caused by the rise in CO2 concentration, and that there is no discernable change in trend in any temparature/time graph since we had good records, and even before we had good records, therefore the total climate sensitivity of CO2 must be indistinguishable from zero.

      • Hi Jim. Thanks for your response. I didn’t think you had anything against models—I was just making comments from my perspective on models and reacting to the language used. I recently retired after a few decades of environmental modeling and am currently ‘refactoring’ my views on the topic. Comments on the modeling process are of interest.

        The sentence “It is simply impractical to use any model to predict anything in the future that seems to be of interest” in particular caught my eye. Regarding climate change—I am not comfortable fitting a model with data from ~1970 through 2010 and then applying that model to post 2010 predictions—interpolate, don’t extrapolation. Here the real rub is predicting the future behavior of the one or more independent variables in a model. This applies to any model—physical, statistical, simple complex. Also this wrinkle is not a matter of v&v—it more a range and domain kind of thing. Enough said.

        FYI the models I was thinking of are groundwater transport models applied to predictions of future concentrations down-gradient at potential receptor locations. In these problems one has spatially varying properties, uncertain (stochastic in time and space) boundary conditions and initial conditions. And you want to predict for times from tens of years to thousands of years from the present. So as you can see that these situations are similar in nature to to climate variability. These models can be and are implemented with extensive QAed verification and validation. (I did not mean to imply that that was a problem if I did so.) I had mentioned these models earlier (item 1.) more for perspective—other modelers have similar issues as those seen by the climate folk but still bravely or foolishly muddle ahead. No alternative approaches have taken root in practice. This is still a topic of debate and special issues of journals, as should be the case.

        Thanks for the note regarding the simple model : you might want to think about any CO2 lag facet to the observations fits in. Anyway, have fun.

  4. If 2012 is part of a cooling trend due ocean circulations, then it’d have to be an outlier on that trend.

    As would 2011.

    And 2010.

    And 2009.

    http://woodfortrees.org/plot/gistemp/last:384/plot/gistemp/mean:11/mean:13/last:384/plot/gistemp/from:1980/to:1997/trend/plot/gistemp/from:1997/trend

    While we won’t know this Latif prediction failed for a few years yet, the thought that this rising period is the cool phase of ocean circulations, and we have a warm phase coming in a couple of decades is at the least an interesting thing to think about.

  5. If a natural cycle (NAO) is enough to outweigh the “greenhouse effect” during its current cooling phase, by symmetry wouldn’t one expect that it was responsible for over half of the positive temperature change during its warming phase? Especially as greenhouse forcing is larger now than it was earlier. Or is this too simplistic?

    • It averages to around zero, and is responsible for almost nothing.

      Almost all of the changes in direction, the so-called shifts, in the 20th Century were caused by natural variation; the entire temperature rise was likely anthropogenic.

    • Look for yourself here
      http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/data/teledoc/nao_ts.shtml

      Although eyeballing, I can’t see any decent correlation between NAO and global temperature. When it’s positive or negative doesn’t seem to line up with whether global temperature is rising or falling.

    • Chief Hydrologist

      It is a global system – these modes – PDO, ENSO, AMO, etc are expressions of the behaviour of the underlying system. Most of the warming was entirely natural.

      More recent work is identifying abrupt climate changes working through the El Niño Southern Oscillation, the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, the North Atlantic Oscillation, the Southern Annular Mode, the Artic Oscillation, the Indian Ocean Dipole and other measures of ocean and atmospheric states. These are measurements of sea surface temperature and atmospheric pressure over more than 100 years which show evidence for abrupt change to new climate conditions that persist for up to a few decades before shifting again. Global rainfall and flood records likewise show evidence for abrupt shifts and regimes that persist for decades. In Australia, less frequent flooding from early last century to the mid 1940’s, more frequent flooding to the late 1970’s and again a low rainfall regime to recent times.

      Anastasios Tsonis, of the Atmospheric Sciences Group at University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, and colleagues used a mathematical network approach to analyse abrupt climate change on decadal timescales. Ocean and atmospheric indices – in this case the El Niño Southern Oscillation, the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, the North Atlantic Oscillation and the North Pacific Oscillation – can be thought of as chaotic oscillators that capture the major modes of climate variability. Tsonis and colleagues calculated the ‘distance’ between the indices. It was found that they would synchronise at certain times and then shift into a new state.

      It is no coincidence that shifts in ocean and atmospheric indices occur at the same time as changes in the trajectory of global surface temperature. Our ‘interest is to understand – first the natural variability of climate – and then take it from there. So we were very excited when we realized a lot of changes in the past century from warmer to cooler and then back to warmer were all natural,’ Tsonis said.

      Four multi-decadal climate shifts were identified in the last century coinciding with changes in the surface temperature trajectory. Warming from 1909 to the mid 1940’s, cooling to the late 1970’s, warming to 1998 and declining since. The shifts are punctuated by extreme El Niño Southern Oscillation events. Fluctuations between La Niña and El Niño peak at these times and climate then settles into a damped oscillation. Until the next critical climate threshold – due perhaps in a decade or two if the recent past is any indication.

      To many people for too long been committed to a particular theory – and it seems stuck in a rut.

  6. Judith: What I always seem to find is that when engaged in discussions of climate, the alarmists are so overwhelmingly sure of themselves, and so nasty in their accusations, that I end up (against my own position as a lukewarmer being concerned about rising CO2) getting polarized and taking a position in the debate of more extreme skepticism than I really feel. I think that you have been thrust into a similar situation.

    • Yes, i commented on this phenomena in my mixing politics and science paper re hurricanes and global warming, when in 2005 we were polarized into joining the consensus camp

      • Not wanting to be identified as a ‘sceptic,’ in spite of the fact that the perspective that he presents is consistent with with what many sceptics say.

        Here’s a thread over at WUWT, Judith – there Latif’s views are discussed.

        http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/01/11/ipcc-scientist-global-cooling-headed-our-way-for-the-next-30-years/

        Some 321 comments, no doubt mostly from “skeptics.” Take a look at what they said in those comments, and see if how many expressed agreement with Latif’s views on climate change. See how many agree with your assessment that actually, he’s “skeptic” — but is just in denial because of his tribal loyalties.

        Then get back to me.

        We’ll talk.

      • Pointing at others doesn’t change the reality you yourself are in. Additionally, I do not think confirmation bias is interchangeable with tribalism. Tribalism can reinforce confirmation bias, no doubt about that, but I believe they are two separate phenomenon.

    • And there it is, DR; the alarmist rhetoric and tactics have been authoritarian from the gitgo. We junkyard dogs gotta bark.
      =================================

    • Donald:

      Judith: What I always seem to find is that when engaged in discussions of climate, the alarmists are so overwhelmingly sure of themselves, and so nasty in their accusations, that I end up (against my own position as a lukewarmer being concerned about rising CO2) getting polarized and taking a position in the debate of more extreme skepticism than I really feel.

      This is interesting. So when you read blogs and blog comments, what you see is overwhelming confidence only on the part of “realists?”

      Perhaps you might consider what Judith might do to prevent misinterpretations of her position. Certainly, there is no justification for the mischaracterization of her position in that PBS piece. Even a cursory investigation of her views would be enough to show that she doesn’t think that all recent warming is due (definitively) due to natural variation.

      It isn’t necessarily her responsibly to prevent her views from being mischaracterized. In some respects, it would be futile for her to try to prevent it from ever happening. But perhaps if she were more more stringent in applying standards on both sides of the debate, she could minimize the extent to which she is “thrust” into a particular position.

      Consider my own situation here at Climate Etc. My perspective is constantly being mis-characterized. Now I could certainly take steps result in that happening less: I could be more vocal about the problems I see resulting from tribalism among “realists.” I would guess that if I did that more, my views would be mis-characterized less. But I make a choice in that regard. I accept that in criticizing “skeptics,” tribe will rally around to mis-characterize my views, insult me, etc. No notice that I never complain about that. That’s because it is entirely to be expected.

      So here’s what I suggest. If it really bothers that Judith is mis-characterized, then she should take steps to try to make it happen less: specifically, she could apply her standards to both sides of the debate.

      If it doesn’t bother her, then she shouldn’t complain.

      • Joshua

        Isn’t it that you believe that she should do it more or in your view more forcefully. What were her comments regards the Shy Dragons? There are many examples

      • You are misappropriating the term ‘realist’, Joshua, and applying it to ‘modelists’. We realists object, really.
        ====================

  7. Judith said:
    “So just when I thought some progress was being made here, we see the outrage of Watt’s airtime on PBS. I suspect that the bigger significance of Watts statements on PBS is that people will start to realize that sceptics are asking legitimate questions about climate science and their methods.”
    _________

    Do people realize how hard it is for Watts to turn loose of his notion recorded temperatures have a warm bias?

    • MaxOk

      There have been a number of EU funded studies to look at the early instrumental temperature records. This was carried out by, amongst others, Briffa Jones and Camuffo. There is a very good but highly tecnical book edited by Phil Jones in which these records are discussed. The old records are generally believed to have a ‘warm bias’ and are adjusted accordingly down. Many of these records in turn are used to reconstruct others that are not so long, so the warm bias reductions gets replicated.. The amount of adjustment can be considerable.It may or may not be justified but it happens

      Phil Jones mentioned the warm bias in his presentation here ;
      http://www.clivar.org/sites/default/files/imported/organization/etccdi/etccdi4/talks/PJones.pdf

      Temperature records are rather unreliable for a varietry of reasons and should not really be the basis fo far ranging policy decisions

      tonyb

      • I should have said “warming bias” not “warm bias.”
        A bias in recorded temp, warm or cool, shouldn’t affect trend.

      • Untrue. It depends upon the type of bias. As an example a temperture sensor in an area that changed over time from largely rural, to a large city would most like have a warming bias.

      • He meant a ‘constant bias’ which of course will not effect trend, but that is not what is being alleged with Jones’ and Briffa’s downward revision of historical temperatures in Europe or with the downward revision of last century’s worldwide and US temperatures. What is alleged is a finding of a past warm bias adjusted downward to make recent warming appear more dramatic, an exaggerated warming trend.

        People are on the case of more recent adjustments, but who will ever check the perversions of Briffa and Jones to the historical European temperatures? And why did they feel the need to do it in the first place?

        Guilty, guilty, guilty, and the jury is still out. It’s a wonder.
        ================

      • Kim

        I’m checking on the early instrumental records but as I don’t have the 6Million Euros that Jones et al were given for the ‘Improv’ project it is difficult to put in the same degree of work.

        One way to try to correlate the diligent detective work carried out by such as Jones and Camuffo is by looking at contemporary observational evidence linked to scientific studies that WHT enjoys so much.
        tonyb

      • Rob Starkey said on September 23, 2012 at 11:58 am |
        “As an example a temperture sensor in an area that changed over time from largely rural, to a large city would most like have a warming bias.”
        _____

        Well, the sensor is recording the temperature that’s there, so if it’s accurate, it’s not biased. But I know what you mean. A sensor could be affected by (a) warming from increases in population density and energy use (b) warming from natural causes, and (c) increases in CO2.

        So sensors in areas with rapidly increasing population density, the suburbs, should show faster warming than nearby rural areas and urban areas that haven’t experienced increases in population density. I am not familiar with studies on this. What do they show?

    • He will eventually as will I with a bit more persuasion from published work. I think he will be honest if his latest does not show it as he was in the earlier Fall paper. If there were papers that said only 1/3 of the warming or only 10% +/- 5% was due to UHI effects I would have no trouble believing it. It is this absolutely zero effect that is hard to believe.

      But I’m supposed to believe that you can characterize the temp. of the entire planet by a single number, make meaningful conclusions over 100 or 150 years with different measurement techniques and large error bars and averaging Tmin and Tmax with all kinds of corrections.

      The apparent fact (I have not gone to the NOAA site to verify myself) that the size of the increase is very similar to the size of the corrections makes me want to wait for additional verification.

  8. Judith –

    You might consider an important aspect of Latif’s statements w/r/t the reaction to his take on the potential for cooler temps short term. It is unfortunate that, once again, you pick and choose from what he has to say, and highlight only part of it leaving behind very important context.

    Joshua is always complaining that I don’t talk about tribalism on the sceptic side. The defining characteristic of tribalism is to keep people out.

    I disagree. I think that the defining characteristic of tribalism is an overriding loyalty to one’s own group. Keeping the “other” out is one manifestation of tribalism. There are others as well. For example, in this context, it manifests as a selective approach to looking at the evidence and the contributions of one’s own group members.

    When WUWT, and other “skeptical” combatants, inaccurately spun his statements to trumpet that a leading climate scientist was predicting “global cooling,” Latif spoke about his concern that “skeptics” would fraudulently exploit short-term trends primarily influenced by natural forcinngs to diminish the potential harmful impact of ACO2 long-term.

    I remember that situation quite clearly – as at that time I was hanging at political blogs and saw one “conservative” after another show up to cite Latif’s comments as proof of “global cooling.” When I looked into it further, I was quite surprised to see how widespread were those inaccurate claims. It was quite surprising how quickly out-and-out fraudulent interpretations of a scientist’s work became an ubiquitous talking point in the political arena – let alone in the “skeptosphere.”

    It was a real eye-opener for me. I read Latif’s comments about how if his name weren’t Mojib Latif, it would be “global warming,” andI began to realize that the controversy over climate change was not merely because some scientists held a minority view on how the evidence should be interpreted. There was obviously much more. Thus, when I started reading justifications from “realists” to explain the tribal behavior revealed in climategate – while I rejected those explanations as justifications, I realized that anyone who takes a selective approach to assessing AGW tribalism is merely seeking to confirm biases.

    That kind of spinning from WUWT is exactly what undermines the arguments of “skeptics.” I think a focus on quantifying uncertainty is certainly valid. I think that many of the arguments that “skeptics” present – such as problems or overconfidence w/r/t the validity of statistical modeling – are legitimately rooted in the principles of scientific skepticism. The problem is when “skeptics” fail to be skeptical.

    Anthony Watts is a serial spinner. The most recent example was the inaccuracy in how he portrayed what Zwalley said. That you would not only fail to call him to task for that inaccuracy, but instead echo the exact same inaccuracy, is unfortunate.

    I am not one who is in the slightest bit bothered by “skeptics” getting air time. Despite constant claims that I’m trying to “distract” or “divert” or “silence” (all ridiculous claims for which there is zero evidence), I’m all for opening up the discussion. But merely opening up the discussion is not sufficient. I would suggest that if you want to see more progress, you might begin by applying your standards on both sides of the debate.

    • And btw – Judith –

      In the name of providing meaningful context – perhaps you should also discuss what Latif had to say about the validity of “predictions” more generally. I thought what he had to say in that regard was very interesting, and very important w/r/t understanding tribalism in the climate debate.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        ‘Using a new measure of coupling strength, this update shows that these climate modes have recently synchronized, with synchronization peaking in the year 2001/02. This synchronization has been followed by an
        increase in coupling. This suggests that the climate system may well have shifted again, with a consequent break in the global mean temperature trend from the post 1976/77 warming to a new period (indeterminate length) of roughly constant global mean temperature.’ Swanson and Tsonis 2009 ‘Has the climate recently shifted’

        We rely on multiple sources and mutiple approaches. That distinguishes the scientific from the AGW space cadet groupthink. A broad view rather than a narrow rejection of anomalies one by one.

    • Joshua | September 23, 2012 at 11:01 am:
      “..
      That kind of spinning from WUWT is exactly what undermines the arguments of “skeptics. …”

      Can I say it? It is this kind of $h!t that starts wars … citeless*, baseless, continuous swipes. Just the usual string of warped ‘perceptions’ from those I would assert posses as limited experience-base as if there were any involved with observing anything, scientifically or otherwise.

      Further elucidation on my part would be a waste of time; I might request that cite management caution certain posters, owing to repeated demonstration to frame their argument within known factual boundaries that failure to do so in the future would simply result in wholesale deletions.

      .

      * Nary a link … EVAH!

      .

      • If you want a link, all you need to do is ask:

        http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/01/11/ipcc-scientist-global-cooling-headed-our-way-for-the-next-30-years/

        This false representation of what Latif had to say took place all over the “skeptosphere.” It was picked up an echoed in comments by “conservatives” all over the blogosphere. The complete lack of accountability in that regard is what makes it obvious that we have many “skeptics” in our midst masquerading as skeptics.

        Look at how Judith failed to fully represent Latif’s reaction to how his views were distorted.

        Look at how Anthony distorted what Zwalley said, and how Judith “parroted” that distortion.

        Anytime you doubt something I say, please ask for verification. As a skeptic, I would expect such challenges.

        Or, you could just call again for me to banned. Up to you. But FWIW, I think that calling for me to be banned is rather pathetic. It’s the sort of thing I’d expect from Anthony, who made a false charge against me over at his website and then put me into moderation rather than let my comment explaining his facile and false charge get posted.

      • Say it isn’t so!!!!!!

        Our dear ‘skeptics’ misrepresenting?

        But Judith thinks Watts is an important guy in the ‘debate’!……………….bwahahahahahha!!!!!!!!

      • He is important. Just not quite in the way that Judith envisions.

        He is important as an example of how “skepticism” is mixed with skepticism, and how some folks stick their heads in the sand rather than acknowledge such or try to deal with how “skepticism” undermines validly skeptical viewpoints.

      • Sorry – I upon rereading I should correct an error. You didn’t call for me to be banned, just that I (among, no doubt, a select group of others you don’t agree with) should be subjected to a test of whether you are in agreement. and otherwise subjected to “wholesale deletions.”

      • To be fair to Judith she did link to the Things Break post which demonstrated that Latif’s views were misrepresented. She might want to note though that this is hardly the only case where this has happened, and consider that it might be easier to scientists to discuss the uncertainties in climate science honestly and openly if they did not worry about their words being pounced on and misrepresented in exactly the way that happend to Latif.

      • AA —

        To be fair to Judith she did link to the Things Break post which demonstrated that Latif’s views were misrepresented.

        Yes she did.

        But she failed to address how what Latif had to day was misrepresented by folks such as Watts (even as she spoke about Watt’s input in the very same post as when she discussed Latif), she failed to note what many, many “skeptics” said about Latif’s viewpoint (as evidenced by the WUWT thread I linked – making it abundantly clear that as “skeptics,” they certainly did not share his views), and she went on to condescendingly indicate that Latif agrees with “skeptics” even though he says that he doesn’t, and that his saying he isn’t a “skeptic” was merely tribalism.

        She might want to note though that this is hardly the only case where this has happened, and consider that it might be easier to scientists to discuss the uncertainties in climate science honestly and openly if they did not worry about their words being pounced on and misrepresented in exactly the way that happend to Latif.

        Bingo!

        And she might, just once, note that the “skeptics” that she regularly defends contribute to the tribalism by misrepresenting scientists when they do talk about uncertainties.

        I’ve been waiting for that to happen since I came to Climate Etc. Don’t remember seeing it yet. Given the topic of this post – perhaps now would be a good place for her to start. Let’s see if she thinks it worthy to talk about how Latif’s views have been misrepresented.

        I’ll start holding my breath now.

      • consider that it might be easier to scientists to discuss the uncertainties in climate science honestly

        If you don’t believe that ‘the truth eventually finds a way’ then you don’t belong in science.

        Science got itself into trouble by leaving the discussion as to uncertainties to those least qualified to have the discussion.

        Anyone with eyeballs can see an approximately 0.2C sine wave(negative from 1880 to 1900 and negative again from 1940 to 1960) going thru the long term temperature record. Failing to explain it fully or attempting to make it go away didn’t help climate science one bit.

      • Harry –

        Science got itself into trouble by leaving the discussion as to uncertainties to those least qualified to have the discussion.

        I think that is true to some extent. But there is relevant context. Part of the relevant context is that what climate scientists have said about uncertainties has been fairly uniformly misrepresented – for a variety of reasons (and singled out for denigration when the problems with discussing uncertainties are universal phenomena).

        A balanced view must acknowledge the full context. That isn’t offering an excuse.

      • harrywr2,

        Science got itself into trouble by leaving the discussion as to uncertainties to those least qualified to have the discussion.

        Well that depends to an extent on one’s assessment of the extent and nature of the uncertainties. I don’t know your view but Judith thinks the IPCC and those who support its conclusion have understated the uncertainties. I disagree – I think they just have a different view of the to her. The well known IPCC attribution statement which Judith believes to be overconfident seems to me to be extremely conservative.

        Anyone with eyeballs can see an approximately 0.2C sine wave(negative from 1880 to 1900 and negative again from 1940 to 1960) going thru the long term temperature record. Failing to explain it fully or attempting to make it go away didn’t help climate science one bit.

        I think the onus is firstly on those who propose such a cycle exists to actually demonstarte it is the case – it seems a pretty tenuous claim to me. Girma keeps trying to demonstrate something similar and hasn’t convinced many people.

  9. A cooler world is a better world. Cool is refreshing. That’s why air-conditioning is so popular.

  10. Latif predicts cooling for a decade due to natural variations when we have already had that decade, and the next one has natural variations just as likely to add to global warming. There are two sides to the natural variations coin, and it is a zero-sum game overall.
    Look at the trends
    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/gistemp/mean:12/from:1979/plot/uah/mean:12/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1979/mean:12
    We are due for another spike, and more record temperatures, not cooling.

    • In fact the last of those spikes was shortly after his 2009 remarks, which may be why he wasn’t paid much attention to until this La Nina period.

    • Zero sum game over what time period? You guys just can’t grasp the complexity of fluid dynamics. The deep oceans take 100,000 years to cycle through one mixing. There are 20,000 year overshoots during that mixing cycle and 1000 to 2000 year minor fluctuations on top of that. Those are normal pseudo-cyclic periods for a non-ergodic system the size of Earth. Look up harmonics some time.

      • You forget the importance of radiative cooling. Look at how fast the heat of El Nino is lost to space. There is a very strong damping on any variation from radiative imbalance that keeps natural variations in the plus or minus 0.1 degree range on decadal scales.

      • capt. d, you prove the point. It is so much easier to change the atmosphere and land temperature than the ocean. It responds faster and bigger to changes and we see the land and sea-ice is changing most, which has an immediate impact on the atmosphere.

      • Yes Jim D, within a few years we could see another global temperature spike, perhaps even more pronounced than the one in 1998. I wouldn’t bet either way.

        Since the 1998 temperature was unusual, I was curious about what the trends would be if we left 1998 out, and looked at 1978-97 and 1999-2012.The later period had a much faster rise in temperature than the earlier period.

        http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/uah/from:1978/to:1997/plot/uah/from:1978/to:1997/trend/plot/uah/from:1999/to:2012/plot/uah/from:1999/to:2012/trend/plot/none

      • JimD, a large portion of the El Nino heat is lost to space quickly. A portion still migrates toward the poles and into the deeper ocean levels. You have to think in four dimensions. A better example of longer term heat transfer impacting decadal climate would be the 1945ish super duper la nina.

        http://redneckphysics.blogspot.com/2012/09/super-duper-la-nina.html

        The ENSO cycle has a longer term 60ish year peudo cycle where is get stuck, in the la nina mode for a number of years, kinda like the current trend indicates.

        When one of those pseudo cycles is complimented by a solar minimum or in this case a prolonged solar minimum, there is a larger impact than when the pseudo cycles are out of phase. That is the whole non-linear dynamics 101 premise right there, thermal inertia and symmetry of perturbation.

      • For a skeptic, you seem to fervently believe in a 60-year ocean circulation cycle, and that it is not an illusion given other factors, such as solar, aerosols, CO2 at various times. I would be highly skeptical of anything that looks like a regular cycle based on less than two periods of data, just from the mathematical common sense viewpoint in looking at any varying series.

      • 60ish, JimD, The period of that pseudo-cycle is dependent on various other pseudo cycles. When the system of pseudo cycle reach a hetroclinic cycle, that combination of various cycles, where there is a region of somewhat stable operation. The NAO cycle is just a combination of cycles of different periods passing through.

        If you are into statistics, there would be a reduction in variance of one or more parameters as the system approaches a heteroclinic cycle. Weaker less obvious parameters would increase in variance as they combine in the heteroclinc oscillation.

        So I am not counting on any “known” pseudo-cycle, just trying to determine the probability of a new bifurcation and the general direction of the new slope of the various parameters. Kinda fun puzzle really.

      • Skepticism would allow you to think that other factors than the ocean are at play in the global mean temperature, some more significant in terms of forcing, like aerosols (aka global dimming), and solar (sunspot activity increase in early 20th century). The best the oceans can do is rearrange and delay things in the temperature trend (raise it here while lowering it there, push this trend further in the future) with no net effect.

      • JimD, the thermal mass of the atmosphere is virtually negligible with respect to the oceans.

      • Oops. 3:10pm response above.

      • JimD, the point is that climate “sensitivity” varies and the models need to consider much more internal variability than they do now. From where we are now, “Sensitivity” is about 0.8. From where Arrhenius was, it would have been about 1.6. If you select the wrong baseline, you get the wrong answer. Water vapor feedback is more a function of ocean oscillations than CO2, at least at this point in the interglacial. In a non-linear system though, that can change :(

      • Chief Hydrologist

        ENSO is non-stationary and non-Gaussian.

        Here is a proxy I linked to above – http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=Vance2012-AntarticaLawDomeicecoresaltcontent.jpg

        And one I have linked to often – http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=ENSO11000.gif

        The rejection of science in favour of an odd narrative is a defining characteristic of AGW space cadets.

    • Pissant Progressive

      I don’t in any way see how that graph shows we are due for a spike. We could get one, and there are indicators to think we will, but that graph does not tell you that.

    • You any good with race horses?
      I find this predicting thing real and people FAITH in predictions fascinating.

      Here is the Earth temperature measured by satellite;-
      http://www.drroyspencer.com/wp-content/uploads/UAH_LT_1979_thru_Aug_2012.png

      Now a drop in temperature, over a year, of 0.4 degrees is nothing.
      A monthly anomaly change of 1 degree over a month is nothing.
      Now we know that the bulk ocean depths have not warmed or cooled in a month, so logically we can state that the air has changed by about a degree in about a month.
      The input from the sun is not change, nor is the IR efflux at the top of the atmosphere.
      So that gives us about three choices;
      1) the conversion of ocean heat into atmospheric temperature has changed
      2) where sunlight evades cloud cover and hits the heterogeneous surface changes so that we alter the average albedo of the exposed surface.
      3) the amount of sunlight intercepted by clouds has changed.

      1) means we need to know where heat enters the oceans, moves and is then liberated. 2) and 3) mean we need to know the way winds form and clouds are formed.
      We have no idea why water masses move in the direction they do, at the speed they do and for how long they will carry on moving in that direction.
      We have no idea why atmospheric masses move in the direction they do, at the speed they do and for how long they will carry on moving in that direction.

  11. Tribalism is built-in. We are looking at mutually exclsive approaches to existence. In science, we can have respect for the scientific method or we can reject that method. Similarly, in economics, we can have free enterprise or we can reject it. The people whe reject the scientific method in science are the same people who reject free enterprise in economics — 47%’rs –i.e., moochers vs. the productive.

    • I accept free enterprise for myself. I love it. However, I reject free enterprise for my competitors. That’s because I want to make more money than them.

      • Blame business, blame Bush, blame America first — that and not science is what underlies the perpetuation of the global warming hoax.

      • None of that has anything to do with me making money.

        Are you a capitalist or a whiner?

      • Are you a capitalist for a day? The finance function is the maximization of net present value. NPV is the mathematical equivalent of acknowledging there’s value in thinking about the future as well as today.

      • You sound like an arm-chair capitalist. A thinker, not a doer.

        I’m the real deal. I laugh at arm-chair capitalist.

      • Sounds like something out of Mao’s Little Red Book.

      • I doubt Mao ever said anything like that, but feel free to quote him if you think I’m wrong.

        One of my favorite quotes is “Competition is a sin” – John D. Rockefeller Sr.

        I interpret it to mean competing with me is a sin and my competitors are evil.

  12. I would try to explain it to a child like this.

    If we put a large pot of water on the kitchen range and turn the burner on real low, the water will gradually get warmer. The burner is like man’s activities making average global temperature rise. Now if we throw a cup of ice water in the pot, the water in the pot will get cooler before starting to warm again. On the other hand, if we throw a cup of boiling water in the pot, the water in the pot will warm faster. The cups of cold water and warm water represent natural variations in climate.

    • The burner is like man’s activities? Who is the child in this story?

    • Max_OK you write “I would try to explain it to a child like this. ”

      Your analogy is a good one. The only thing wrong with it, is that someone forgot to put the burner on. So the temperature of the water depends exclusively on how much ice or hot water is added to it.

      • I thought everyone here knew CO2 is a GHG.

      • Max_OK you write “I thought everyone here knew CO2 is a GHG.”

        Of course CO2 is a GHG. Of course, as we add more and more CO2 to the atmosphere, it will cause global temperatures to rise. Where there is strong disagreement is how much does the additonal CO2 added from recent levels cause to global temperatures to rise. Such little empirical data as we have strongly suggest that adding more CO2 to the atmopshere has a negligible effect on global temperatures; the total climate sensitivity is indistinguishable from zero. Therefore, this is the same in you analogy as someone forgetting to turn the stove on.

      • If you turn the burner up and throw cold water in the pot at the same time, the water in the pot will be cooler for a while.

    • Max,

      A better demonstration of the matter, because far more faithful to the actual scientific underpinnings of the CAGW scam, but that is still accessible to the understanding of a child would be this:

      You take a pot of water from the ‘fridge and set it in the sun–the water will warm up. Then you direct an infinitesimal spew of CO2 at the water-surface and–presto!–you produce an instant Catastrophic Anthropogenic Gravy-Train Rip-Off Effect in which your little youth-master, brainwash-the-vulnerable-kids-profiled-for-their-susceptibility-to-hive-approved-pseudo-science “experiment” is swarmed by every derelict, loser hustler within a hundred miles who proceed to harass the neighborhood with a door-to-door shake-down pitch demanding money or all the kids will die, which scares the daylights out of the kids you’ve been carefully grooming and cultivating on behalf of the hive and, like, totally freaks-out their parents who come and snatch-up their kids leaving you looking like a complete idiot standing around there with your CO2 cartridge in hand next to your stupid pot of warm water and surrounded by your con-artist parasite pals, all of them pissed that all they scored was a couple of miserly bucks from the eccentric weirdos living in the house with the “Obama” sign out front.

      And then the police show up…

  13. And speaking of predictions, here’s what I predict.

    Combatants on this thread will argue in many posts back and forth about what Latif predicts, or about which kinds of predictions are supported by his work.

    And all the while, they will skip over this quote from him:

    “we don’t trust our forecast beyond 2015.”

    And this one, of course as well – that his work:

    “does not allow one to make any inferences about anthropogenic global warming,”

    Same ol’ same ol.

    • In the thread where she got this, which came from Girma, I posted this as a response, which is from Latif:

      Excerpt from interview with Latif:

      Focus: But does your result not give support to those skeptics who have since long maintained that natural factors have greater influence on the climate than greenhouse gases produced by human activities?

      Latif: No. Those skeptics only show that they understand nothing of the physics of climate.

      Focus: Does the IPPC now have to revise its prognoses because of your new results?

      Latif: The IPCC doesn’t have to revise anything at all. With the present increase of worldwide greenhouse gas emissions we have to count on an increase of global temperature of around 4 degrees Celsius until 2100, as the IPCC has indicated in its latest report. This change is much greater than the natural variability of about plus/minus 0.5 degrees in the last few centuries.

    • Well it does allow one to make inferences about global warming, specifically the attribution of the late 20th century warming. If there is a substantial fraction of that warming that is associated with natural internal variability (e.g. NAO), then the sensitivities derived from climate models and observational analyses based on external forcing are too high. And that the predictions of global warming for the 21st century could also be biased too high.

      • Latif doesn’t carry his thoughts to your logical conclusion, Judy. That would be ‘nasty’.
        =============

      • “If there is a substantial fraction of that warming that is associated with natural internal variability (e.g. NAO)”

        Why assume that? NAO isn’t a 30 year cycle. It shows no obvious trend over the late 20th century so while it’s contribution over a decade might be significant, it’s contribution over eg 50 years could easily be negligible.

      • actually assume is the wrong word, I mean conclude.

      • Lolwot, there is one coupled ocean-atmosphere model being run on millenial timescales and it seems to show long-period natural variability:
        http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2012/2012GL052107.shtml

      • Lolwot, the AO / NAO appears to have a solar UV (co)driver and that component might change over long periods of time :
        http://www.iac.ethz.ch/people/stefanbr/workshop2006/Labitzke_Gwatt2006.pdf

      • The Skeptical Warmist (aka R. Gates)

        Judith,

        What about the potential effects of anthropogenic warming on such things as the NAO? At some point, just like in extreme weather event attribution, doesn’t it get a bit more complicated? Certainly the potential exists for increases in greenhouse gas levels to have effects that begin to alter the patterns of natural variability, such that the way the NAO behaved over the past 100 or 500 years might be far different than the way it will behave in the next 100, with CO2, methane, and N2O at the highest levels in at least 800,000 to a million years.

      • Well the climate shifts hypothesis implicitly integrates these things together, and the NAO isn’t like sunspots, if it is truly an internal mode then it may change substantially or even disappear.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Hypothesis? How quaint of you Judith. Let’s do as the NAS Committee on Abrupt Climate Change do and call it the new climate paradigm.

        ‘The new paradigm of an abruptly changing climatic system has been well established by research over the last decade, but this new thinking is little known and scarcely appreciated in the wider community of natural and social scientists and policy-makers.’ Let alone the blogosphere I might add.

      • Judith,

        Regardless of whether you or Latif are correct on this question I think this demonstrates that your above claim that “on issues of climate projection for the next few decades and late 20th century attribution, I suspect that there is little that Latif and I would disagree on” is not really correct.

      • It doesn’t seem like the GCMs are doing all that well.

        http://rankexploits.com/musings/2012/how-are-models-tracking-gistemp/

    • Pissant Progressive

      Joshua,

      Yes, above your post, indeed above your first post we see examples of the jello flinging on both sides already.

      Also, without accusing JCH of doing it in his reply to you, I note that the 4C is probably not intended to represent Latif’s estimation of sensitivity.

    • Some of us just think that it may be possible that 10% is due to UHI effect and 1/3 may be due natural variation and natural warming. So 60% might be due to man. And/or that the natural variability and lag from the oceans will make the temperature increases and sea level rise occur more slowly than the worst case scenario. And that 1.5 C over 120 years will not be nearly as bad for critters and not too hard for man to adapt to. And so we don’t want us to panic and rush into stupid and costly solutions. If the temp.’s had accelerated or stayed on the same course the last 15 years instead of flattening I might be more worried.

      As I always say, let’s continue to study and learn the next 15 years and as Hansen (and others) have said, only do those things that it makes sense to do anyway.

      I know thinking this way makes me a denier funded by big oil who believes in alien abductions, or a crypto-nazi or something.
      And I should probably be in jail for “denying” that the warming is apocalyptic, 100% due to man, and that spending trillions on windmills is not the best approach.

    • Of the 0.7 C in the 20th century, I think 0.9 C was CO2+other GHGs, 0.2 C was solar mostly before 1940 and -0.4 C was aerosols mostly after 1950. So CO2 more than accounts for it. No need for oceans.

    • Chief Hydrologist

      ‘Using a new measure of coupling strength, this update shows that these climate modes have recently synchronized, with synchronization peaking in the year 2001/02. This synchronization has been followed by an increase in coupling. This suggests that the climate system may well have shifted again, with a consequent break in the global mean temperature trend from the post 1976/77 warming to a new period (indeterminate length) of roughly
      constant global mean temperature.’

      Swanson says that warming will resume – http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2009/07/warminginterrupted-much-ado-about-natural-variability/ – more an article of faith than a proof.

    • Chief Hydrologist

      Initialised models suffer from the divergence problem. The real question is – can it be trusted over as much as a decade?

  14. For those interested in learning more about the manner in which ocean currents affect global temperatures a good place to start would be ‘The Great Ocean Conveyor’ by Wally Broecker.

    As far as I’m aware there is no equivalent book on the Atmospheric equivalent-The Jet stream-as between them the two systems probably hold the key to understanding the generalties of climate, if not the specfics.

    tonyb

    • The Skeptical Warmist (aka R. Gates)

      Yep, highly recommended.

    • Chief Hydrologist

      Broeker described greenhouse gas emissions as poking a stick at an angry beast.

      I think the polar vortices and teleconnections to surface pressure in both polar regions are more fundamental. In the NH this drives changes in the position of the NH jet stream just as it does in the region of the world that really matters.

      I have introduced SAM the climate dog before – to great amusement. The question is why SAM varies. The answer may be top down modulation in part – e.g. http://iopscience.iop.org/1748-9326/5/3/034008 – but I suspect also insolation variance.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G-S-YmE-Lkc

      Try this one – http://squall.sfsu.edu/scripts/shemjetstream_model.html

      • Chief,

        You do realize that recent increased frequency of SSW’s (sudden stratospheric warming) events have been shattering the polar vortex in the heart of winter and causing extreme outbreaks of cold air at lower latitudes. (happened in both January 2009 and January of 2012). This shattering of the polar vortex has been modeled and observed to be caused by vertically directed Rossby waves penetrating from the troposphere into the stratosphere. These vertically directed Rossby waves begin as part of the subtropical jet and seem also to be connected to the MJO, at least in terms of timing. Most importantly, the models that show long-term reactions to increased greenhouse house gas concentrations indicate a more active MJO as one of the processes for dissipation of the extra heat in the subtropical regions. Thus, we see heat moving poleward and upward, from troposphere to stratosphere in the dead of NH winter.

        In your free time, you might want to study an interesting series of events related to all of this that occurred in January of 2009. Early
        January saw a “Pineapple Express” (MJO event) stretching across the Pacific bringing major heat and moisture from the subtropics to higher latitudes with significant flooding along the NW Coast of the United States. Mid-January saw this pulse of heat and moisture move higher into the troposphere and into the stratosphere over the Arctic, raising the stratospheric temperatures over the Arctic rapidly and dramatically as the polar vortex is shattered into two lobes (and thereby reversing the direction of the Arctic jet over Europe). Late January into February saw a severe outbreak of cold over Europe. These three events: The Pineapple Express (MJO), the shattering of the Polar Vortex (Sudden Stratospheric Warming), and the extreme outbreak of cold in Europe are all related, and they all have as their basis the advection of heat and moisture from the subtropics upward and poleward during the heart of the NH winter.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        You will need to reference in the usual way – otherwise it is all just narrative.I don’t see any especial problems – but I like to learn. The other link I had was for top down modulation – there are many things happening at once.

        Orther than that is all really – like – connected – cosmic man

        https://www2.ucar.edu/news/backgrounders/weather-maker-glossary#AO

        The Madden-Julian Oscillation transits the equatorial oceans west to east at 4 to 8m/s. It sometimes brings rain to the US west coast. A quirky little beast. Last I had a really close look – cause it is important for Australian rainfall in the north – no one had quite figured out quite what causes it.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Spoke too soon – thanks.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        This ones pretty spectacular.

  15. The tribalism certainly exists on both sides. But it seems to me that it’s more acute in the US due to the nature of the politics there, which is so deeply partisan. I feel pretty sure that a great deal of certainty expressed from both sides about this issue has to do with the fact that the other ‘side’ believes the opposite and must therefore be wrong.

    Then the other problem is, the skeptic viewpoint is so badly mischaracterized, and sometimes by those claiming to be skeptics themselves, often motivated in their ‘doubt’ by politics, but most especially by warmists who refuse to acknowledge any disagreement amongst scientists over any issue on climate change, and denouncing those that do as ‘lone-voices’ or ‘contrarians’ or ‘discredited’. This must be why Latif couldn’t bring himself to admit that what he was saying was merely healthy scientific skepticism.

    Now, the healthy questioning of the orthodox view has come to be seen as part of the tribal warfare in which science and good reason. I agree with Dr Curry, the response to the PBS documentary is most unfortunate from the point of view of reasoned discussion that seemed to have been emerging out of the morass.

    I think the middle ground is very thin, and the slope is slippery going both ways. I think it is possible to be right for the wrong reasons (politically motivated skeptics) and wrong for the right reasons (moderate warmists whose concern is born out of a sense of responsibility for the world they live in). I think the suspicions of ulterior motives of both sides of one another are justified a great deal of time in the US, but much less so elsewhere.

    Elsewhere, it seems to be a blind faith in consensus, or the appearance of it that keeps hold of those who refuse to acknowledge more nuanced views, just based on my conversations with ‘believers’, and others less convinced or skeptical. Politics rarely gets a mention.

    I personally use ‘motivated reasoning’ as a coarse filter to skip replies on Climate Etc. Those that engage in it don’t really interest me.

    • If you ignore Al Gore and you also ignore 15-year old Kristen Byrnes (Ponder the Maunder) who was attacked for writing a term paper showing Al Gore was spreading propaganda then all you are saying is that you have no convictions.

    • “Moderate” skeptics have a sense of the responsibility for the world they live in, too.

      (1) It hurts future generations to waste money on useless remedies for a problem that doesn’t exist.
      (2) It does even more damage to drag science itself through the dirt. See Climategate.

    • Agnostic,

      Politics in the U.S. is more partisan than in Europe because we still actually have conservatives here. Outside the eastern Europeans (who have actually experienced the wonders of a state controlled economy that most western Europeans pine for), there aren’t really many conservatives there to be partisan.

    • @ Wagathon: I don’t know who Kristen Byrnes is. I ignore Al Gore for what I would have thought was pretty obvious reasons. The only ‘conviction’ I have is that convictions often turn out to be wrong.

      @ Tununak: I am not talking about moderate “skeptics” – I am talking about the political difference between libertarianism and liberalism. The first argues for personal freedom, and the second for collective responsibility.

      FOI’s motivation for releasing the climategate emails is much the same as my concern about GW alarmism. Investing so much time, money and effort into something so uncertain when there are real problems and real ‘catastrophes’ occurring right now in the world seems utterly perverse.

      @ GaryM: Yes that is my point – the debate is deeply partisan in the US, but the discussion rarely gets political when I discuss Climate issues from anyone that is not from there.

  16. This is an excellent post and really highlights many issues related to true scientific skepticism, and what is clearly anti-science, and that is tendency toward “tribalism” that you’ve highlighted so frequently.

    Certainly any true scientist must resist joining a “tribe” and always keep that true skeptical mindset. But one’s own confirmation bias can also be a form of a tribe, by seeing and looking for only what one expects. However, once the data consistently indicate that something is more likely than not, it is appropriate for a skeptic to accept something as provisionally true, and then focus on anything that might prove otherwise. I think many warmists and even so-call lukewarmists do have a valid point that there exists a certain breed of fake skeptics who consistently argue against basic physics and endlessly spin the same talking points that are accepted by honest skeptics as provisionally true and have been for quite some time.

    I think this all goes back to the absolute necessity of unbiased honest attribution research, that can look at the full mix of natural cycles, natural forcings, and anthropogenic forcings from a unbiased viewpoint. The Arctic in particular is an area this could prove most valuable as it certainly is on the front line of where we are seeing the most rapid changes. Knowing how much is natural versus anthropogenic might assist in telling us how rapid the changes will be in the future. But in attribution, caution should be used when looking at percentages. Just because, for example, natural factors are 60% and anthropogenic are 40% in any given circumstance, doesn’t mean that you’ll only get an effect that is equal to that ratio. A 40% increase in some metric can be enough to initiate a single or multiple feedback processes that wouldn’t have happened otherwise, initiating dragon-king events and new regimes. Sometimes just a “little more” of something creates effects that are far greater than than some simple linear process might see.

    • R. Gates you write “However, once the data consistently indicate that something is more likely than not, it is appropriate for a skeptic to accept something as provisionally true, and then focus on anything that might prove otherwise.”

      I agree, if and only if, you will add one word, namesly “empirical”. If you write

      “However, once the EMPIRICAL data consistently indicate that something is more likely than not, it is appropriate for a skeptic to accept something as provisionally true, and then focus on anything that might prove otherwise.” (My capitals and insert)
      then I agree with you 100%.

      • The Skeptical Warmist (aka R. Gates)

        The assumption all along would be that the data would be empirical and not therefore derived from models. Model output is NOT acceptable as empirical data. The best of all worlds of course is when measured empirical data and model output closely agree. Due to the nature of natural variability, this can only happen for fairly short model runs, unless one is willing to input natural variability factors (including anthropogenic variability) into model inputs and run the model over some previous time period as way to validate the general accuracy of the model. When doing this, models can become extremely accurate, and can be a great way to find the proper attribution of forcings for previous climates. Recent attribution studies using this technique give great confidence to the role of anthropogenic greenhouse forcing of the climate since about 1960.

        One side note, to demonstrate a recent perfect example of model output being validated by empirical data is the case of CryoSat-2 empirical data validating the model output of PIOMAS related to the rapidly declining Arctic sea ice thickness. This was a big deal—a very big deal, though unfortunately it seemed to get very little play on some blogs professing to otherwise be “skeptical”. Anytime empirical data validates a model it’s a very big deal and those previously skeptical about the model ought to move at least closer to accepting the dynamics and theory going into the model as “provisionally true”. The further confirmation of the Standard Model in particle physics this summer by the empirical data related to the Higgs Boson is another example of this process. It’s how normal science works—or suppose to work.

    • Are those who believe we cannot allow government to reject the scientific method and then dictate how the people shall live, simply engaging in tribalism?

  17. J.Curry:
    If there is a substantial fraction of that warming that is associated with natural internal variability (e.g. NAO), then the sensitivities derived from climate models and observational analyses based on external forcing are too high. And that the predictions of global warming for the 21st century could also be biased too high.

    Couldn’t say if I agree or not, since I know next to nothing about ‘climate models’ or ‘sensitivity’, but I would say that about the ‘natural variability’ in the North Atlantic I know at least as an average reader of this blog, which sort of entitles me to say that underestimating role of natural variability is common within officially accepted science.
    Looking on scale of a decade or two is not good enough, even centenary may only revel degree of presence. There is far too little research done and it is left to the ‘lunatic fringe’ to stumble through the undergrowth of science in searching for an as yet unfathomable cause.

    • vukcevic you say “Looking on scale of a decade or two is not good enough, even centenary may only revel degree of presence.”

      Boy am I glad to see someone who knows what he is talking about make this sort of comment. I argue from signal to nosie ratio physics, and I know that noise does not cancel out unless the time period over which the signal is being detected is long compared with the time constants of the noise. Until we know the amplitude and time constants of all the noise of natural variability, then it is impossiblke to state with any certainty that any CO2 signal has been detected.

  18. Dr. Curry,
    I admire and commend your willingness to “call it as you see it.”

    As one who spent far too many years observing (and suffering the consequences of opposing) the herd behavior that goes on in large human organizations/institutions, I am all too familiar with the dangers of failing to conform.

    Seek truth from facts.

  19. MattStat/MatthewRMarler

    I suspect that the bigger significance of Watts statements on PBS is that people will start to realize that sceptics are asking legitimate questions about climate science and their methods.

    You suspect. I hope. Catastrophists fear.

    Dr. Curry, this was one of your best posts, in my opinion. Most writers to PBS complained and the ombudsman agreed that Anthony Watts was the wrong person, not that anything in particular that he said was false. Even PBS may have perceived the existence of unanswered questions and unrebutted points.

  20. A fan of *MORE* discourse

    Judith Curry’s Great Truth  “First, Latif is correct IMO in his statements about natural climate variability. These are words that are not often enough heard in venues such as the UN Climate conference. Kudos to Latif.”

    Judith asserts a Great Truth … meaning that its opposite is a great truth too, as articulated (for example) by Naomi Oreskes

    Naomi Oreskes’ Great Truth  “Scientists are too reticient to really talk about dramatic, worrisome, and potentially alarming results.”

    Question  Whose Great Truth will triumph: Judith’s or Naomi’s   :?:   :?:   :?:

    Here Feynman has the right of it: “Nature cannot be fooled.”

    If Nature affirms that James Hanson’s worldview is scientifically correct, for example by giving us “acceleration of sea-level rise this decade,” then Naomi Oreskes’ Great Truth will triumph.

    Conversely, if Nature unwinds the effects of recent decades of warming, by giving decades of cooling, then Judith Curry’s Great Truth will triumph.

    That is why James Hansen and colleagues are entirely correct to affirm the crucial importance of more accurate, more nearly global observations, and more in-depth theoretical analysis, so that we may more accurately assess earth’s energy imbalance and its implications.

    Provisional conclusion  The Great Truth articulated by (for example) Naomi Oreskes and James Hansen is triumphing over the Great Truth articulated by (for example) Judith Curry and Anthony Watts.

    The triumph of the Oreskes/Hansen Great Truth originates (to a lesser degree) in the larger/longer/more-cited body of peer-reviewed analysis by Oreskes and Hansen, and (to a greater degree) in the plain fact that Nature’s accelerating warming has been affirming the Oreskes/Hansen scientific worldview.

    So deciding the Great Truths of science isn’t complicated, eh? Nature decides!   :!:   :lol:   :!:

    • ‘Nature’s accelerating warming’? You might get a bigger audience for your play by play commentary if you called ‘em as you see ‘em, rather than as you wish ‘em.
      ==================

      • A fan of *MORE* discourse

        Consistent with the Oreskes/Hansen Great Truth, and inconsistent with the Curry/Watts Great Truth, Nature affirms warming is accelerating   :shock:   :shock:   :shock:

      • I should have known not to follow your links; I’ve been warmed. I’m sorry, Son, Seeker of Great Truths, that is not a link to accelerating warming. I’m sorry about teasing you about your vision.
        =============

      • Naomi who? Is she a climate scientist? She seems (now I could be wrong) more like a propagandist.

        The idea that Hansen and many others have not been alarmist enough (do you read newspaper stories?) is
        so alarmingly ridiculous that I really have no response
        that can possibly accomplish anything. If you really believe this, you are a lost cause already. This is like saying the republitards don’t invoke religion enough or interfere with people’s private lives enough or that the proglodytes don’t believe in the power of gov’t enough.

      • A fan of *MORE* discourse

        Bill, perhaps you missed an earlier objective analysis?

        Comparative assessment of advocacy in two recent articles by James Hansen et al and Anthony Watts et al

        Method  Two recent, high-profile articles by James Hansen and Anthony Watts were searched for the word “if” used in a conditional sense. Purely rhetorical usages of “if” (example: “bad if not worse”) were not regarded as expressing a conditional assessment.

        Summary of Results  Anthony Watts and colleagues write as advocates; James Hansen and colleagues write as scientists.

        ——————————

        Data — Hansen The article by Hansen et al Scientific Case for Avoiding Dangerous Climate Change to Protect Young People and Nature was found to contain numerous conditional usages of “if” including:

        • If emission reductions begin this year the required rate of decline is 6%/year to restore Earth’s energy balance, and thus approximately stabilize climate, by the end of this century.

        • If emissions reductions had begun in 2005, the required rate was 3%/year.

        • If reductions are delayed until 2020, the required reductions are 15%/year.

        • If the sun were the dominant forcing, the planet would have a negative energy balance in 2005-2010, when solar irradiance was at its lowest level in the period of accurate data, i.e., since the 1970s

        • Earth’s energy imbalance is the single most vital number characterizing the state of Earth’s climate [because] it defines how much we must reduce greenhouse gases to restore energy balance and stabilize climate, if other forcings remain unchanged.

        • If Earth’s energy imbalance is 0.75 W/m, CO2 must be reduced to about 345 ppm to restore energy balance

        If it is decided in the future that CO2 must be sucked from the air and removed from the carbon cycle (e.g., by making carbonate bricks or storing the CO2 in underground reservoirs), the effect of the atmospheric CO2 reduction will decline as the negative CO2 increment becomes spread among the carbon reservoirs.

        • How fast atmospheric CO2 declines if fossil fuel emissions are instantly terminated (Fig. 3B) is instructive.

        • What we have shown in this paper is that time is rapidly running out. The era of doubts, delays and denial, of ineffectual half-measures, must end. The period of consequences is beginning. If we fail to stand up now and demand a change of course, the blame will fall on us, the current generation of adults.

        Note  For reasons of space, multiple additional examples of non-advocacy “if” usages by Hansen and colleagues are not cited.

        ——————————

        Data — Watts The article by Anthony Watts et al An area and distance weighted analysis of the impacts of station exposure on the U.S. Historical Climatology Network temperatures and temperature trends was found to contain only two conditional usage of “if”:

        • Even if stations are initially placed at pristine locations, i.e. “well-sited”, the station environment can change, altering the characteristics of surface temperature measurements over time.

        • Siting differences directly affect temperature trends if the poor siting compromises trend measurements or if changes in siting have led to artificial discontinuities.

        Note  Neither of two usages of “if” by Watts’ et al are associated to science/advocacy disambiguation.

        Conclusion  Purely on the textual evidence, as objectiely assessed by the standards of Scott & Rachlow … Anthony Watts and colleagues write as advocates, while James Hansen and colleagues write as scientists.   :)   :grin:   :lol:   :!:

        It is a pleasure to assist your understanding with verifiable facts, Bill!   :!:   :!:   :!:

      • A broad, general view of things suggests gradually accelerating warming modulated by natural variability.

  21. And now — after a while and years of skepticism — it is reasonable to say that global cooling is now predicted. Many before now believed it is not a matter of IF but when will the cooling trend stop! And, when it becomes impossible to deny that global cooling happens, shall prospects of global cooling also be considered a disaster?

    Nikola Scafetta forecasts a stabilized climate “or cool until 2030-2040,” the result of ‘physical mechanisms’ and the ‘collective synchronization of coupled oscillators,’ like ENSO effects and solar activity. Qing-Bin Lu believes that, “a long-term global cooling starting around 2002 is expected to continue for next five to seven decades.”

    If cooler weather is coming or is here – and if climate cycles last 30, 50 or 500 years — despite whatever the challenges may be it will be a free people that will most effectively adapt. People who are free to think and care for their own needs will not be worried about non-problems like drilling for oil and digging coal nor will they entertain the hubris to believe humans are capable of heating the globe when their homes need heating and there’s crops that need seeding and the children need feeding. Who do you think cares about your life, you or the government? The trouble with our liberal friends is not that they are ignorant, but that they know so much that isn’t so. (Ronald Reagan)

    • Wagathon | September 23, 2012 at 12:45 pm :


      “If cooler weather is coming or is here – and if climate cycles last 30, 50 or 500 years — despite whatever the challenges may be it will be a free people that will most effectively adapt. People who are free to think and care for their own needs will not be worried about non-problems like drilling for oil and digging coal nor will they entertain the hubris to believe humans are capable of heating the globe when their homes need heating and there’s crops that need seeding and the children need feeding. Who do you think cares about your life, you or the government? …”

      I don’t want to play the flip side to this card, but central planning has it’s upside such as the capability and demonstrated track record of picking winning industries (wind, solar, fuels) technologies including near-all-electric cars (e.g. GovtM Volt) and of course extending into the older internal combustion engine technology with new ‘fuel’ mixes (e.g. E15 Ethanol) but also the ‘working-model’ by which a civilization may be gainfully employed (via the SEIU for commercial day-day building services as Andy Stern demonstrated with direct-ties to the executive branch to granting labor unions ownership of the very institutions they were employed by as was demonstrated by the short-circuiting og GM bond-holders by the federal govt during GM’s ‘bankruptcy’).

      These important projects, technology ‘picks’ and labor models go far in rewarding those with vision, the vision to observe who is in power and controlling the public purse, persuading congressman, senator and president alike to ‘invest’ (bankroll, through grants and loan guarantees) in those loss-leaders that provide jobs for production of needed equipment like wind generators (produced by our MFN trading partner China) and extending into the need to replace early worn-out older makes of cars and lawnmowers and boat motors, chains saws that may not be capable of ingesting a 15% Ethanol blend.

      Progress is not a commodity bought cheaply. While we continue to enjoy ever-cleaner air and mull over the possibility of creating a veritable Garden ‘o Eden between our E and W shores served interstate by Amtrak and regionally by new federally-granted bullet trains we should marvel at the eptness, foresight and vision our top leaders, cabinet secretaries and agency heads express each and every day through the plethora of rules and regulations promulgated by agencies, bureaus, administrations the congress has both directly and indirectly fostered via either direct action (or inaction).

      /load-‘o-bull

      .

  22. The questions are referred to as ‘nasty’, since presumably they are inconvenient for the audience (the UN).

    It’s as good a guess as any; I wonder what he really meant. One thing we can all agree on: this debate is nasty, not the scientific content, but the tone and the behavior of some of the players. It looks like WWF wrestling, but really vicious, not just pretend.

  23. One faction of Climate Scientists say the Earth will cooi for the next 20 years and its all due to increased CO2 forcing the Climate to change unnaturally and due to global warming.
    Another faction of Climate Scientists say the Earth will warm for the next 20 years and its all due to increased CO2 forcing the Climate to change unnaturally and due to global warming.
    It looks like IPCC science will be proved correct in all circumstances.
    The capacity to be tested and faulsified is the classic test of whether a body of knowlege can claim to be a science.
    IPCC science fails.
    Could one of the supporters of the IPCC science position say just what would convince them that IPCC science bases on CO2 increase is completely wrong?
    Otherwise I will regard it as being a religion and therefornot subjectto therules of science

    • A fan of *MORE* discourse

      Bryan asks  “Could one of the supporters of the IPCC science position say just what would convince them that IPCC science bases on CO2 increase is completely wrong?”

      Bryan it is a pleasure to answer your question, with a link to the most recent asking of that question here on Climate Etc   :!:   :!:   :!:

      Bryan, as a natural next step in your program of self-enlightenment, please consider Naomi Oreskes’ brief explanation: Why are climate scientists so conservative?

      Oreskes’ common-sense conservative-science insights will be satisfying to you, Bryan!   :!:   :!:   :!:

      • A fan of *MORE* discourse says

        “Bryan, as a natural next step in your program of self-enlightenment, please consider Naomi Oreskes’ brief explanation:

        Why are climate scientists so conservative?”

        Dr David Viner – the University of Easy Access climatologist responsible for the most-read-ever story in the Independent when, in 2000, he famously deployed his meteorological expertise to tell us:

        “Children just aren’t going to know what snow is.”

        Britain recently has had a series of very cold winters with record amounts of snow.

        Where did “Nostradamus” Viner go?
        Well, for a time he was in charge of disseminating climate change propaganda at taxpayers’ expense for the British Council.

        Dr. Hansen’s prediction in 1988, now in 2012, 24 years later if true the sea level rise should be about halfway up the side of Manhattan Island by now.

        Mann’s Hockey Stick………and so on.
        Moderate conservative predictions?
        I don’t think so !
        .

      • Here are two quotes from Dr. Viner reported by the Independent in one article:

        “Children just aren’t going to know what snow is,” he said.

        Heavy snow will return occasionally, says Dr Viner, but when it does we will be unprepared. “We’re really going to get caught out. Snow will probably cause chaos in 20 years time,” he said.

        http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/snowfalls-are-now-just-a-thing-of-the-past-724017.html
        _______

        Either Dr. Viner is contradicting himself or the Independent didn’t do a good job of reporting. Obviously if snow returns occasionally, and causes chaos, children are going to know what snow is.

        Of course denier blogs made a big deal out of the first quote, without questioning the contradiction.

      • Bryan said in his post on September 23, 2012 at 6:55 pm

        “Dr. Hansen’s prediction in 1988, now in 2012, 24 years later if true the sea level rise should be about halfway up the side of Manhattan Island by now.”
        ______

        That was a “what if ” prediction, not an unconditional prediction. A writer asked Hansen how much the water woud rise if CO2 doubled in 40 years.

        It would be kinda like you asking me how much $1,000 would be worth in 40 years if you could earn 10% per year by investing it. Just because I can give you an answer on the amount doesn’t mean I am predicting you will actually earn 10% per year.

      • @Max_OK

        Viner has had over ten years to object to the content of the article and has not chosen to do so. Neither have any of the ‘great and the good’ of the climate establishment.

        And it seems a trifle over the top to try to blame ‘denier’ blogs for the simple fact that a leading light (from the ‘Unversity’ of East Anglia – quelle surprise) was talking total bollocks. His mouth, his words, his crap.

    • The Skeptical Warmist (aka R. Gates)

      Bryan,

      No fraction of climate scientists say the whole planet will cool for the next few decades because of CO2. Regionalized cooling because of alterations in atmospheric or ocean circulation is far different than planetary cooling,

  24. One faction of Climate Scientists say the Earth will cool for the next 20 years and its all due to increased CO2 forcing the Climate to change unnaturally and due to global warming.
    Another faction of Climate Scientists say the Earth will warm for the next 20 years and its all due to increased CO2 forcing the Climate to change unnaturally and due to global warming.
    It looks like IPCC science will be proved correct in all circumstances.
    The capacity to be tested and falsified is the classic test of whether a body of knowledge can claim to be a science.
    IPCC science fails.
    Could one of the supporters of the IPCC science position say just what would convince them that IPCC science based on CO2 increase is completely wrong?
    Otherwise I will regard it as being a religion and therefore not subject to the rules of science.
    Sorry about previous post as I hit the send button before checking

  25. Finally, to that we have to add the general failure of what few predictions have come from the teraflops of model churning in support of the AGW hypothesis. We haven’s seen any acceleration in sea level rise. We haven’t seen any climate refugees. The climate model Pinatubo prediction was way off the mark. The number and power of hurricanes hasn’t increased as predicted. And you remember the coral atolls and Bangladesh that you and the IPCC [and Dr. Trenberth] warned us about… the ones that were going to get washed away by the oncoming Thermageddon? Bangladesh and the atoll islands are both getting bigger, not smaller. We were promised a warming of two, maybe even three tenths of a degree per decade this century if we didn’t mend our evil carbon-loving ways, and so far we haven’t mended one thing, and we have seen … well … zero tenths of a degree for the first decade… (Willis Eschenbach)

  26. A while back, I took a look at whether the possibility of cooling contraindicates fossil fuels restrictions. The take-away was that we should not impose policies that restrict energy sources when there are indications that cooling is in the offing. In fact, the precautionary principle and post-normal science argue against such policies.

    Topic: Precaution, Post Normal Science & Possible Cooling (March 28, 2012)
    http://solarcycle24com.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=globalwarming&action=display&thread=1948

    Sections: Indications of a Cold Spell
    – The Sun is in a funk (h/t Watts)
    – Global Temperatures are flat or declining
    – ENSO, PDO and AMO Indices are in a cold phase (at that date)
    – A Dalton Minimum is possible
    – The effects of a Cold Period are harmful
    – IPCC Warming Scenarios are not happening

    Each item has a summary explanation, links to sources and diagrams, and some quotes from sources. Some timeline diagrams are referenced to sources that are updated monthly. However, evidence of possible cooling since 3/28/2012 are not included. A PDF is available.

  27. Oh great. Dr. Curry mentioned Joshua by name in a primary post. Now we will never hear the end of the lack of asymetry in the climate debate of tribalism/motivatedreasoning/bias, or whatever the latest nom du jour of his one note symphony may be.

  28. > The sceptics are trying to get ‘in’ in terms of getting their ideas accepted by the main stream and their papers published in refereed journals.

    If only.

  29. John Vonderlin

    Dr. Curry,
    As a generalized knowledge sponge I have found your excellent blog a source of much valuable information on many subjects. Thank you for your Labor of Love. However, just when I was going to graduate from being a longtime lurker and bring my outrageous life experiences in the Sciences and independent research (Ever snorted real Moon Dust or committed massive organized treason in the hi-tech Defense Industry? ) to your discussion, I was subliminally, and perhaps demonically attacked by your site. A small black box popped up on the lower right corner of the screen commanding me to FOLLOW CLIMATE ETC. Being left eye dominant, with a cataract developing in my right eye, I suspect its placement in my peripheral vision was intended to maximize its subconscious power over my oatmealish brain. It then ordered me to “Get every new post delivered to your inbox.” Worse, but most significantly, it demanded I join 666 followers; that’s right the NUMBER OF THE BEAST!!! followers, by entering my email address and begging to Sign Up. .Frowny face. Frowny face. Frowny face. (Lo-Tech emoticons) A Cold Day in Hell is more likely, (Hmm. can we expect Afterlife myths to get colder if the world warms catastrophically? I smell a thesis, although it might just be one of my brain farts.)
    I realize being a skeptic, I tend to have wild conspiracy ideation and therefore have tried to analyze this situation statistically and logically. And while I believe, as Abe Lincoln so wisely stated, you can’t believe everything you read on the Internet, a quick websearch reveals that of the 23,456,789 blogs in English, yours is the only one with 666 followers. Can you explain this linkage? (I just love that word, it is powerful and popular, just like all of us want to be)
    While you might argue you aren’t the Queen of the Coven, and that 67.89% of statistics from the Internet are made up on the fly, until you can prove a negative, I shall follow the wisdom of Groucho Marx, or whoever he stole it from, in rumbling, I’ll join no club (coven) that would have me as a member.
    Oh wait, I am a follower already. Never Mind all my previous assertions. Now the question is, who was #666? I’ve got my theories. John Vonderlin P.S. I’ll be back, Oh Queen, and the unbelievers will tremble in fear of my multi-faceted oatmeal wedgies. Amen.

    • John: “A Cold Day in Hell is more likely, (Hmm. can we expect Afterlife myths to get colder if the world warms catastrophically?” Already taken: Inferno, Circle 9. ;-)

  30. I remember listened to the whole talk at the time and I saved the link. It is still active:
    http://www.wcc3.org/wcc3media/mp3/WCC3_PS3_ClimatePredictionScience.mp3
    Latif was the second speaker after Tim Palmer.
    The interesting quote from the Pearce article was even more interesting. Here is a transcript I made:
    “We really need good models and everybody who knows me is aware of the fact that I am definitely not one of the skeptics; if my name was not Mojib Latif, my name would be global warming; however, we have to ask the nasty questions ourselves, or, some other people will do it;”
    To say that your name would be ‘global warming’ is tribalism at its best.

    Marcel

  31. Facts are facts.

    We see that global warming alarmists continue to support MBH98/99/08 (aka, the ‘hockey stick’ graph), despite the fact it has been proven to be scientific fraud. Early on, Von Storch called it ‘Quatsch,’ as would any statistician. McShane and Wyner observed, “it is hard to argue that a procedure is truly skillful if it cannot consistently outperform noise- no matter how artfully structured.”

    So, isn’t it obvious? Global warming alarmists also are frauds!

    • wagathon

      This is an argument from false equivalence. The Mannean hockey stick does not represent the multidisciplinary consensus on AGW.

      If we take the Mannean hockey stick out of the debate and ritually burn it (over coal, of course) nothing changes. The scientific consensus on AGW doesn’t collapse. It rests on lots of boring atmospheric physics and a deeper perspective on paleoclimate encompassing – at the very least – the last 700ka.

      • But nothing about the false equivalence you use in your argument.

      • The ‘hockey stick’ is a fraud detector. You hold it you own it and it speaks for you no matter how much you want it to shut up.

      • But I’m not holding it. I’m saying that it’s irrelevant. *You* are the one clutching it to your breast and making a fuss. But that’s just false equivalence, so it doesn’t matter.

      • Wasn’t it the IPCC and Western academia that has bedn clutching and making a big fuss about it? Everyone sees it that way. Not you?

      • As I keep suggesting, the multi-disciplinary scientific consensus is not based on the Mannean hockey stick. If you take it away, the radiative physics does not change.

      • Nothing has changed. Nominally, it’s the sun, stupid.

      • sun (son)
        n.

        1. often Sun A star that’s 93 million miles away from Earth.
        2. A star that is the center of a planetary system.
        3. The radiant energy that is emitted by the sun—e.g., heat and visible light—i.e., sunshine.
        4. A sunlike object, representation, or design.
        5. That independent variable that somehow exerts its influence on everything else.
        6. A mass of incandescent gas that doesn’t just cause different things to be related it accounts for it.
        7. A place where no thing lives that we cannot live without.
        8. A fearsome nuclear bomb.
        9. A place so hot – the temperature is millions of degrees — even metals are gases.
        10. Key independent variable responsible for global warming and cooling–nominally, it’s the Sun, stupid.

        “ …we should recognize that we are dealing with a coupled non-linear chaotic system, and therefore that long-term prediction of future climate states is not possible.” (IPCC 3rd Assessment Report; Section 14.2.2.2, p. 774).

        What caused fear of global warming? A gaming mentality invaded Western academia — schoolteachers using computers to filter, mix, manipulate, adjust, cut, optimize, remix (i.e., playing games with) data — all in a godawful quest for personal relevance in the cipher age.

      • Dear cowardly anonymous nincompoop,

        The earth’s surface cools predominatly by evaporation and convection not radiation. Analysis of radiative transfers is a red herring for that portion of the earth we’re most interested in. You focus on radiation because likening the earth to an approximate gray body is easy but in reality it’s like the proverbial guy who lost his keys in a dark alley and he’s looking for them under a street lamp because that’s where the light is. Duh.

      • I believe that plain stupid beats anonymous nincompoop.

        “The earth’s surface cools predominatly by evaporation and convection not radiation.”

        This guy thinks energy is transferred to outer space by evaporation and convection?

        Grade: F-

      • Grade: F–

        No one thinks energy is transferred to space by evaporation and convection. The SURFACE however does cool predominantly by non-radiative fluxes (59%) and secondarily by radiation (41%). The atmosphere of course cools exclusively by radiation (100%).
        http://science-edu.larc.nasa.gov/EDDOCS/images/Erb/components2.gif

      • David Springer

        Webhubtelescope is dishonest. He knows exactly what I meant and purposely misinterpreted it. No wonder he won’t use his real name. He doesn’t want it associated with the stupidity and dishonesty of his handle here. I bet it already is though.

      • Edim said:

        “No one thinks energy is transferred to space by evaporation and convection. The SURFACE however does cool predominantly by non-radiative fluxes (59%) and secondarily by radiation (41%). The atmosphere of course cools exclusively by radiation (100%).”

        Edim is the clown that believes that the current atmospheric levels of CO2 is solely due to it following the temperature. When you make mistakes as blatant as that, you have lost all credibility. Yet the fact that Edim did some disambiguation of the FUD Springer stated, does show that he or she can make some sort of advancement toward scientific enlightenment.

        Grade: C+

      • No, it’s you who is dishonest and trying to sabotage the discussion. Everybody can see that. Or you’re not very smart.

        Regarding the atmospheric CO2 levels, I have been pointing out that the accumulation of CO2 in the atmosphere is a global temperature integral and doesn’t correlate with the anthropogenic emissions. In order to estimate the CO2 accumulation over a period of time, all you need to know is the temperature levels during this period. Nature will demonstrate.

      • This is for Webby.

      • Everybody can see that.

        Edim, you do not speak for everybody. So don’t.

      • You’re right.

      • David Springer

        Edim | September 25, 2012 at 11:07 am | Reply

        “No, it’s you [webhubtelescope] who is dishonest and trying to sabotage the discussion. Everybody can see that. Or you’re not very smart.”

        Stupid and dishonest are not mutually exclusive. The former tends to limit the success of the latter which handily explains why Web’s lies are not very convincing.

      • Berényi Péter

        More like 61% – 39%, at least according to IPCC AR4 WG1 FAQ. Even that 39% is misleading a bit, because 24% goes to outer space directly through the atmospheric IR window, only 15% of the heat flux leaving the surface is transferred to the atmosphere radiatively. And most of it is absorbed in the first several hundred meters, I must add.

        Radiative heat transfer only starts to dominate in the upper troposphere.

      • David Springer

        Grade A+

      • The evaporation/condensation cycle is an energy conserving cycle, dumbass. You are trying to make a second-order effect look like a major factor, dumbass. You people need to be called out for what you are, dumbass.

      • WHT

        Your claims (right or not) would look much more convincing if you left off the “ad homs”, dumbass.

        Max

      • “manacker | September 25, 2012 at 7:51 am | Reply

        WHT

        Your claims (right or not) would look much more convincing if you left off the “ad homs”, dumbass.

        Max”

        Hey SwissMiss, Not my problem that the threading is broken.

        Somebody may have deleted Springer’s original comment, which said:

        “David Springer | September 25, 2012 at 6:37 am | Reply

        The surface of the earth not the surface of the atmosphere dumbass.”

        I am not going to stand idle when accusations like that are thrown about, especially from a dumbass such as Springer. Are we square now?

      • WHT

        OK. You’re right this time. (I missed the first post as it appears to be gone.)

        (Dumbass says as dumbass does.)

        Max

      • Chief Hydrologist

        No one wants to defend Springers ad homs – certainly no more than the websters habitual abuse. It is all a bit tedious.

        If I correct an obviously incorrect statement – then I am a poseur and worse. Not really worth it.

        Evaporation and condensation is an energy conserving system. It doesn’t really work in a dissipative, non-equilibrium system. Latent energy is taken into the troposphere – and sometimes into the stratosphere – by convection. At higher latitudes the energy is lost more easily to space. Convection is one of the extensive procesess that modulate energy flows within the non-equilibrium system.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        That was meant to have a question mark – evaporation and condensation is an energy conserving system? Energy is always conserved – what matters is the production of entropy – which is not simple in a non-equilibrium system.

      • “Evaporation and condensation is an energy conserving system. It doesn’t really work in a dissipative, non-equilibrium system. “

        What is that supposed to mean? What doesn’t work? The 1st law of thermodynamics doesn’t work because it is non-equilibrium? That’s nonsense, and why I consider you a poseur. When you are not blindly copying & pasting stuff from arbitrary research articles, you make a mess out of the conventional understanding. This is all part of your plan to introduce FUD into the conversation. Congratulations on your fine work :(

      • Chief Hydrologist

        QED

        ‘That was meant to have a question mark – evaporation and condensation is an energy conserving system? Energy is always conserved – what matters is the production of entropy – which is not simple in a non-equilibrium system.’ At least have the honesty to quote the correction.

        I was of course questioning your statement of energy being conserved in a simple cycle. Of course it is so – but trivially so. Evaporation and convection is a large part of energy flow of the system – an extensive property of the system influencing the production of entropy. One of many processes in the system that influence the degree and direction on energy flows.

        To paraphase Albert Einstein – in a nonequilirium system the 2nd law is ‘indeed not completely suspended, but yet complicated.’

        Tomas is of course right in that you are an electrician with negligible understanding of modern physics – or any other branch of science.

      • Every system that is solved with Fokker-Planck, Navier-Stokes, etc is a non-equilibrium system. And you think that makes it somehow intractable. Engineers and scientists are solving these problems every day of the week. Go back to digging ditches and designing latrines in your job as a sanitation engineer, Chief Wallaby.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        So what we get is a quite vicious attack on a hapless and civilised engineer and environmental scientist. But I thought I would upload this just for the hell of it.

        http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=LT2010.png

        Navier-Stokes equations are of course the partial differential equations of fluid motion – and describe turbulence that is in principle the essence of nonequilibrium thermodynamics in the climate system. As a water specialist – hydrologically and in terms of biogeochemical cycling – this equation is core business. It is solved numerically across a finite element grid in general circulation models and in many areas where we are interested in fluid flows.

        But just because it can be solved doesn’t mean that the solutions carry much weight. In climate it is because of uncertainties in data, in the number of processes modelled, in couplings between system components and in large grid size compared to the scale of important processes such as convection and cloud formation. The grid size is limited by computing power. In models it is because the equations are themselves chaotic – they were for instance at the core of Lorenz’s convection model when he rediscovered chaos theory in the early 1960′s. Solutions diverge exponentially with time because of ‘sensitive dependance’ and ‘structural instability’. – http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=sensitivedependence.gif – There is a very good – if difficult – discussion of these issues by James McWilliams here – http://www.pnas.org/content/104/21/8709.full.

        So no – solving an equation is not the same the modelling the process unless the model is demonstrably correct. Throwing a name at something is not the same as understanding it.

        The dishonesty, ignorance and abuse is however abundantly clear.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        http://judithcurry.com/2012/09/22/cool-first-warm-later/#comment-245149

        No just a little over your misguided off the cuff comments, shooting your mouth off before putting engaging your brain, grand descriptions that don’t amount to a hill of beans and the habitual abuse and contempt.

        The limits of climate phase space over the past 2.58 million years is about 5 to 8 degrees. This is the difference between farming corn and glaciers hundreds of meters deep across what is now the US. Many of these changes can happen within decades and are quite natural and have little to do with carbon dioxide as more than a factor amongst many.

        Natural processes are insignificant? :lol:

      • ” Many of these changes can happen within decades and are quite natural and have little to do with carbon dioxide as more than a factor amongst many. “

        The currently accepted explanation over millions of years is that something exogenous triggers the changes, most likely emanating from the external solar system and potentially internally from the earth’s core. The high climate sensitivity does the rest, with the synergistic feedback behavior of the GHGs the root cause in the effective flattening of the Earth’s potential energy well. As this well flattens out, the climate is more able to wander from the energy minimum.

        We are currently in the process of releasing demons locked in the core of the earth — those figurative demons are the not-easily-sequestered CO2 that will provide an exogenous stimulus able to change the earth’s radiative properties. That qualifies as an external stimulus, guided by an artificial source — that of mankind’s technology.

        Analyze that, you knob .

        All I do is paraphrase conventional science, and you get quite upset, forcing you to head for the fainting couch while reaching for the smelling salts. Your delicate disposition can’t deal with scientific reality, apparently.

      • There are anomalies, those pesky little rascals, that indicate that internal dynamics can trigger entry into and exit from glaciations. Generally solar variation drives the system, but with ~21ka solar cycles and changing internal cycles, the period of glaciations is a touch unpredictable. The exit from the last glacial maximum had less solar “nudging” that any of the more recent exits. The likely internal boost is the Eastern Pacific heat capacity and an abrupt change in the CPC. That is the main heat sink of the Earth doncha know with the Drake Passage opened. Ocean thermal mixing is pretty much at the mercy of the rate of flow through the Drake Passage. Damnedest thing, I would have expected the oceans to act like some slab of metal, not some dynamic monstrosity :)

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Do we know what the flow through Drakes Passage is? Cause I think it is fairly important in the scheme of things.

      • Know? About 600 times the Amazon. The scour pattern should provide a long term record and comparing the Tropical Eastern Pacific to the Southern Oceans proxies a fair indication of diverted flow. I still have a bunch of reconstructions to peruse but there looks like enough to put a paper together if someone cares to run the gauntlet.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Broken thread – ‘In most years the Humboldt current brings relatively cold water northward along the west coast of South America, an effect increased by upwelling of cold water along the Peruvian Coast. The cold water then flows westward along the equator and is heated by the tropical sun. These normal conditions make the western Pacific about 3°C to 8°C warmer than the eastern Pacific. However, in El Niño years the central or eastern Pacific may become as warm as the western Pacific.’http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/glossary/elnino/elnino.shtml

        These currents are driven by storms spiralling off the Antarctic circumpolar winds. These storms are constrained to higher latitudes with a positive SAM and let loose with a negative SAM. I have introduced SAM the climate dog before to much merriment. In the positive phase there must be less flow through Drake’s Passage and more in the Humboldt Current.

        In the normal course of events there is a warm layer floating on the surface of the ocean. When this gets displaced or diluted by the Humboldt Current I presume it is easier for the surging and turbulent sub-surface currents to surface. This produces wind, cloud and pressure feedbacks and La Nina propagates across the central Pacific.

        It is a physical mechanism linking solar activity and ENSO.

        http://dornsife.usc.edu/labs/jeg/documents/JEG_AGU2005_talk.pdf

      • In addition to the solar ENSO link, there are some interesting longer term oscillations with different settling times, which I am finding entertaining.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dansgaard%E2%80%93Oeschger_event

        https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-bC0cuO2h2Kc/UGOxs3GU3AI/AAAAAAAAD80/1JDJnV_Ygz8/s925/Tierney%2520cycles.png

      • Chief Hydrologist

        You make a silly comment about evaporation/condensation being a closed cycle. Everyone is at least a step beyond that but instead of saying OK you simply step up the attacks and distractions hoping that the original inanity will get buried in the in the verbiage.

        What caused rapid changes in the Quaternary? Thisis an old study (1999) but quite a good one. ftp://meteor.geol.iastate.edu/data/2005/stuff/adamsetal99.pdf

        If you and others read it you might get an idea of the sort of transitions being have occured and the potential mehanisms.

        The CO2 is easily sequestered in many sinks – or captured and turned into liquid fuels. You got something against science and technology webster? :cool: :cool: :cool: :cool:

      • Chief Hydrologist

        ENSO is non-stationary and non-Guassian – it is not a simple oscillation but varies over all timescales of interest.

        ‘ENSO causes climate extremes across and beyond the Pacific Basin, however evidence of ENSO at high southern latitudes is generally restricted to the South Pacific and West Antarctica. Here we report a statistically significant link between ENSO and sea salt deposition during summer from the Law Dome (LD) ice core in East Antarctica. ENSO-related atmospheric anomalies from the central-western Equatorial Pacific (CWEP) propagate to the South Pacific and the circumpolar high latitudes. These anomalies modulate high latitude zonal winds, with El Niño (La Niña) conditions causing reduced (enhanced) zonal wind speeds and subsequently, reduced (enhanced) summer sea salt deposition at LD. Over the last 1010 years, the LD summer sea salt (LDSSS) record has exhibited two below average (El Niño-like) epochs, 1000-1260 AD and 1920-2009 AD, and a longer above average (La Niña-like) epoch from 1260-1860 AD. Spectral analysis shows the below average epochs are associated with enhanced ENSO-like variability around 2-5 years, while the above average epoch is associated more with variability around 6-7 years. The LDSSS record is also significantly correlated with annual rainfall in eastern mainland Australia. While the correlation displays decadal-scale variability similar to changes in the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation (IPO), the LDSSS record suggests rainfall in the modern instrumental era (1910-2009 AD) is below the long-term average. In addition, recent rainfall declines in some regions of eastern and south-eastern Australia appear to be mirrored by a downward trend in the LDSSS record, suggesting current rainfall regimes are unusual though not unknown over the last millennium.’
        http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/abs/10.1175/JCLI-D-12-00003.1?journalCode=clim

        http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=Vance2012-AntarticaLawDomeicecoresaltcontent.jpg

        Or try these.

        ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/cv/cv_pubs/moy2002.pdf
        http://www.geo.cornell.edu/ocean/eas3530/papers/ENSO%20Chaos.pdf

      • Thanks for the reference to McWilliams’ paper. I found his exposition far easier to follow than for Tomas’ post in the Sceptics Make your best Case thread. While I don’t pretend to fully understand everything that was said, McWilliams’ point about chaotic bifurcations having the potential for grouping in larger blocks for discretising purposes is quite intuitive.

      • David Springer

        manacker | September 25, 2012 at 7:51 am | Reply

        WHT

        Your claims (right or not) would look much more convincing if you left off the “ad homs”, dumbass.

        Max

        No, his opinions would still lack substance. They’d lack color too if he wasn’t an anonymous mud-slinging coward.

      • “If we take the Mannean hockey stick out of the debate and ritually burn it (over coal, of course) nothing changes”

        Well it does actually.
        We need to know if the wobbliness we are observing now is similar to, or very much different from the past. Mann’s reconstruction showed that the past was flat, not at all wobbly, so we were living through an UNPRECEDENTED wobbly period. If, on the other hand, the past was shown to have a similar degree of wobbliness, or even more wobbliness, then we could be sure that we could not attribute the present day weather record to sky-pixies, CO2 or some other mechanism.
        Thus, the variability in the temperature of Mann’s hockey-stick is crucial for people to pull the UNPRECEDENTED.

        The same is true of the more recent, and much more rapidly debunked, reconstruction of the Southern Hemisphere’s temperature by Gergis et al .
        Here the poor little lambs tried to get rid of the wobbles and the Medieval Warm Period, but the data actually defeated them.

      • I’m not aware of any widely accepted global reconstruction showing that the MWP was *warmer* than the C20th average or indeed warmer than the mid-C20th average. This being the case, the argument that modern warming post-1970 is unprecedented remains unfalsified.

        Personally, I would avoid this controversial line. I would simply say that the Mannean hockey stick is an irrelevance when we are considering the cause of modern warming and the most likely value for climate sensitivity to 2 x CO2.

        I would add that the obsessive focus on an obsolete paleoclimate reconstruction from 1998/9 is tactical, not scientific, in nature. This is an unavoidable conclusion arising from the fact that the Mannean hockey stick is an irrelevance. We can take it away and the radiative physics remains unchanged. As I believe I may have mentioned once or twice above. While people dispute this, nobody has show why this statement is *incorrect*. Unless and until that happens, the Mannean hockey stick remains an irrelevance to the multi-disciplinary scientific consensus on AGW and those making a fuss about it are clearly engaged in false equivalence and tactical misrepresentation.

      • “I’m not aware of any widely accepted global reconstruction showing that the MWP was *warmer* than the C20th average or indeed warmer than the mid-C20th average. This being the case, the argument that modern warming post-1970 is unprecedented remains unfalsified.
        Personally, I would avoid this controversial line.”

        Lucky I didn’t make that claim or argument then isn’t it.

        “I would simply say that the Mannean hockey stick is an irrelevance when we are considering the cause of modern warming and the most likely value for climate sensitivity to 2 x CO2″

        Unless we are just living through a bit of wobbliness that just happens to look like warming. In that case climate sensitivity is near to zero.

        “I would add that the obsessive focus on an obsolete paleoclimate reconstruction from 1998/9 is tactical, not scientific, in nature. ”

        I bet that argument has a posh Latin description; your opponent has a mental health issues (obsessive) with respect to, by your definition, obsolete data (displacement activity), however we are motivated by not by a search for truth (science), instead we are engaged in a battle and employ argument as a tactic.
        Now I am sure you are a very nice person who doesn’t want to smear people haphazardly, but you really think you doggerel is a particularly fair response to my point?

        “We can take it away and the radiative physics remains unchanged”

        Well of course we can poppet, because the two are not linked in any way, shape or form. No argued that should Mann fall, all physics will crumble; you are thinking of Einstein not Mann.

        “Unless and until that happens, the Mannean hockey stick remains an irrelevance to the multi-disciplinary scientific consensus on AGW and those making a fuss about it are clearly engaged in false equivalence and tactical misrepresentation”

        If it were the only piece of crap in the peer-reviewed body of work that makes up the ‘multi-disciplinary scientific consensus on AGW’ you would be correct. However, the arguments for cAGW are like vampires, hold them up to the light and they die and crumble to nothing.

      • You do not show that the Mannean hockey stick is relevant to the scientific consensus, so you remain guilty of tactical misrepresentation and false equivalence simply by going on and on about it.

        Saying stuff is not substantive argument. For example, this isn’t worth the power it takes to pixellate it:

        If it were the only piece of crap in the peer-reviewed body of work that makes up the ‘multi-disciplinary scientific consensus on AGW’ you would be correct. However, the arguments for cAGW are like vampires, hold them up to the light and they die and crumble to nothing.

        Conspiracy theories and delusions. If you have nothing concrete to say, then say nothing.

        Unless we are just living through a bit of wobbliness that just happens to look like warming. In that case climate sensitivity is near to zero.

        Oh dear. Let’s actually think about this shall we, poppet?

        If CS were near to zero, then the climate would be profoundly unresponsive both to internal and external forcing. Internal variability over short time scales would be attenuated; smoothed out. Externally forced climate change over long time scales would be flattened.

        The MWP would disappear. The LIA would disappear. And orbital forcing would not be capable of terminating glacials simply by reorganising spatial and seasonal insolation at high northern latitudes.

        See the problem with your ‘reasoning’?

      • “If CS were near to zero, then the climate would be profoundly unresponsive both to internal and external forcing. Internal variability over short time scales would be attenuated; smoothed out. Externally forced climate change over long time scales would be flattened.”

        This is clearly wrong. The net forcing is unknown. See the problem with your ‘reasoning’?

      • ” BBD
        You do not show that the Mannean hockey stick is relevant to the scientific consensus, so you remain guilty of tactical misrepresentation and false equivalence simply by going on and on about it.”
        Going on and on. Two posts in response to you.

        “Conspiracy theories and delusions. If you have nothing concrete to say, then say nothing”

        There goes the constitution.

        “If CS were near to zero, then the climate would be profoundly unresponsive both to internal and external forcing”

        What is a ‘forcing’? some sort of definition would be useful here.
        When you talk about the ‘climate’ do you by any chance mean air temperature? You see the thing is that temperature is just one manifestation of heat. It is possible to have a complex system with a relatively constant steady state heat content and yet have an heterogeneous temperature distribution, both spacially and temporally.
        You appear to be under the illusion that heat and temperature are the same thing, indeed, you reasoning can only make sense if temperature was the one and only manifestation of energy in the system. However, temperature isn’t a measure of the heat in the system and we also know that globally heat is both stored, moved around the planet and then released. This storage, movement and release is what Roy Spencer’s wobbly temperature of the Earth shows.

        Now pop along to Lucia’s blog and have a look at models vs. reality.

      • What is a ‘forcing’? some sort of definition would be useful here.

        If you do not know the standard terminology, you have no business arguing against the scientific consensus on a climate blog. Or perhaps you are being disingenuous to avoid having to engage substantively. Whatever the case, I am not going to educate you. Google it.

        When you talk about the ‘climate’ do you by any chance mean air temperature?

        No, I mean ‘the coupled ocean-atmosphere climate system’.

        You see the thing is that temperature is just one manifestation of heat. [...] You appear to be under the illusion that heat and temperature are the same thing, indeed, you reasoning can only make sense if temperature was the one and only manifestation of energy in the system.

        What a lot of diversionary waffle to try and conceal the fact that you said something fantastically stupid about CS and got nailed for it.

        Now, if CS is ‘near to zero’, how do we explain everything we know about the behaviour of the climate system? How do we get interannual wiggles from internal forcing? How do we get centennial-scale climate change as observed? How did we get an MWP/LIA? Why is everything not smoothed away? And – the biggie – how does Milankovitch forcing terminate glacials?

        You see, poppet, everything we know about the behaviour of the climate system could not happen if climate sensitivity was ‘near to zero’. Those MWP ‘wiggles’ you mentioned – they couldn’t have happened either. I sense profound confusion, but let’s press on anyway.

        How do you square known climate behaviour with an insensitive climate system?

        No more diversionary waffling now ;-) Straight answers please.

      • BBD you write “What is a ‘forcing’? some sort of definition would be useful here.
        If you do not know the standard terminology, you have no business arguing against the scientific consensus on a climate blog.”

        Ok let us try something. CO2 from fossil fuels is agreed to be a forcing. If this additional CO2 causes the atmosphere to warm, and as a result the oceans get warmer, thus releasing CO2 into the atmosphere, is this ocean CO2 a forcing or a feedback? And if it is a feedback, how do we distignuish between those CO2 molecules which are a forcing, and those that are a feedback?

      • Jim Cripwell

        CO2 emissions are a forcing (carbon removed from a geological sink and injected into the climate system). Outgassing of CO2 from the ocean, or permafrost is a carbon cycle feedback. It doesn’t matter whether we tell the molecules apart. That’s an irrelevance.

      • ” It is possible to have a complex system with a relatively constant steady state heat content and yet have an heterogeneous temperature distribution, both spacially and temporally.”

        And by that argument, it can have a relatively constant average temperature.

        You just QED’d yourself, DocMartyn.

      • Doc said:

        “However, temperature isn’t a measure of the heat in the system “

        Well, it is a measure of the thermal excitation of the system, which is how temperature is used in statistical mechanics.

      • Is Cripwell finally getting it? He is dangerously close to understanding the CO2 multiplier effect.

      • This is clearly wrong. The net forcing is unknown. See the problem with your ‘reasoning’?

        No, because there isn’t one. There is no evidence for any major change in forcing associated with the MWP or the LIA. Small changes in solar output *maybe*. So if one argues for a global, synchronous MWP and LIA, then one is arguing for a moderately sensitive climate system responding to small changes in forcing, be they internal or external.

        I’m not suggesting we can quantify the sensitivity because the type and strength of forcings involved is unclear. But the existence of this kind of variability is incontrovertible evidence that the climate system is at least moderately sensitive.

      • “There is no evidence for any major change in forcing associated with the MWP or the LIA”

        Effect without cause is normally a good reason for scientists to rethink their model; in climate science is generally means that one has to come up with a way to change ones data.

      • It’s not effect *without* cause. That is an egregious misrepresentation. It’s effect with *minor* cause, in other words, proof that the climate system is sufficiently sensitive that it responds quite strongly to fairly small changes in forcing.

      • BBD, we don’t know the solar ‘forcing’ during the MWP or the LIA (we have estimations though). We just connect the longer-term solar minimums with the known climatic cold periods. The absolute quantities are unknown. There’s a lot of evidence it was global. People already gave you the links.

      • OK, I will assume that you are attempting to argue in good faith, and that you believe that temperature is directly coupled to incoming influx and efflux.
        Take a look at the summer of 1989.

        http://www.drroyspencer.com/wp-content/uploads/UAH_LT_1979_thru_Aug_2012.png

        Why did the Earth cool by 0.3 degrees in the two years leading to the summer of 1989 and then warm by 0.3 degrees in the two years following the summer of 1989 ?

      • OK, I will assume that you are attempting to argue in good faith, and that you believe that temperature is directly coupled to incoming influx and efflux.

        Nope. Strawman. I never said this. I specifically mentioned both external and internal forcing here. That’s the second gross misrepresentation of something I said in just a couple of comments (I called you on the first here). Stop it.

        Internal forcing (aka short-term natural variability) explains the 1989 temperature change and all the other little interannual wiggles. The bigger stuff is voclanism and ENSO, obviously. Note how natural variability +0.3c then -0.3C cancels itself out over time. Been having trouble with this on another thread.

        Now, you dodged the question and replied instead by asking me a question. Naughty that. Enough evasiveness. Let’s have a straight answer out of you:

        Everything we know about the behaviour of the climate system could not happen if climate sensitivity was ‘near to zero’. Those MWP ‘wiggles’ you mentioned – they couldn’t have happened either.

        How do you square known climate behaviour with an insensitive climate system?

        Poppet.

      • The climate is very stable. It’s the weather that isn’t.

      • Poppet, indeed. You don’t know the forcings nor the sensitivitiesI(note plural) to them.
        ============

      • Is this a very stupid remark? Let’s have a quick look at C20th climate ‘stability’.

        Yup. Very stupid.

      • kim

        Read this. I particularly draw your attention to the final paragraph.

        The rest of your comment is obfuscation. For the purpose of this exercise it is only necessary to know that there has been a change in T corresponding to a small change in forcing.

        Sensitive climate system. Sic probo ;-)

      • So you know the forcings for the Millenial scale changes a la MWP & LIA? How stupid of me not to know then. Please inform.
        ========================

      • Hah, hah, absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. You don’t know the forcings, you ol’ obfuscator, you.
        ========================

      • kim

        You don’t understand this, do you?

      • I understand that you don’t know the forcings. I understand what you’ve presumed about the forcings. I understand what you don’t understand.
        ===============================================

      • BBD, I don’t know the forcings, either. I suspect a stronger solar influence than you presume at least partly because a greater solar influence would explain a lot of things that presently remain mysterious. So maybe we should explore your presumption. Got your ticket ready?
        ========================

      • May the forcing be with you, kim.

      • “I specifically mentioned both external and internal forcing here”

        But didn’t define them. Lucky that. A forcing has units of W/m2, so an internal ‘forcing’ is what exactly?

        What internal energy source is providing or sucking away heat to cause these wobbles?

      • BBD, “So if one argues for a global, synchronous MWP and LIA, then one is arguing for a moderately sensitive climate system responding to small changes in forcing, be they internal or external. ”

        Yes. Since you mention internal and external forcings, Think radiative and non radiative forcings and you have answered your own questions. The southern oceans absorb most of the solar energy Wm-2, external forcing. That energy is transported internally as Joules per gram. When the energy is absorbed, there is lost due to evaporation and entropy. When that energy is lost to the atmosphere at some distant time and place, there more efficient transfer to the atmosphere. If that energy is lost in a region with lower thermal mass, i.e. higher land percentage, the atmosphere is more sensitive to the gain of that heat, latent plus sensible.

        There is no “forcing: involved internal, just redistribution of energy to a region more sensitive to change in energy. A 0.1 C change southern hemisphere ocean temperature would result in a 0.4 C change in northern hemisphere land temperature. Since land use and CO2 amplify changes then the result could be 0.6C impact in the northern hemisphere.

        Amplification works both ways. Since ocean mixing of energy is more like a lava lamp than a slab model, the energy stored could be the result of decades or millennia old influences.
        Ampl

      • DocMartyn

        I can’t believe you’ve got the gall to pitch up again asking *me* more questions.

        How do you square known climate behaviour with an insensitive climate system?

        Answer. Now.

      • kim

        BBD, I don’t know the forcings, either. I suspect a stronger solar influence than you presume at least partly because a greater solar influence would explain a lot of things that presently remain mysterious. So maybe we should explore your presumption. Got your ticket ready?

        Do some reading, dear kim. Research centennial scale Be10 and C14 isotopic proxy reconstructions of solar variability. The sun didn’t vary very much, whatever you might ‘suspect’. Go ahead and explore your presumptions about the data. I dare you ;-)

        But no more saying stuff, please. You embarrass yourself.

        If there really was a global, synchronous and *warm* MWP (which seems very unlikely), then it is an excellent demonstration of moderately high climate sensitivity. And there is *nothing* you can argue that changes this. The only way out is to accept the consensus position that the MWP was most pronounced in the NH, and consisted of regional warm events spread out over ~400y and counterbalanced by cooling in central Eurasia, the American North West, and the tropical Pacific. Global average temperature was no higher than the mid-C20th *before* the anthropogenic signal began to emerge in the 1970s.

      • “How do you square known climate behaviour with an insensitive climate system?”

        The amount of energy trapped by raising the concentration of CO2 from 280 ppm to 560 ppm is going to be somewhere between 0 and 5 Watts/m2.
        In terms of temperature, this will be between zero and about 1.5 degrees.
        The wobbliness of the system, as measured by temperature, has nothing to do climate sensitivity. The size of waves on the ocean have nothing to do with the tides on Earth; overall we know there are high and low tides, but peak to tough of the average wave can be either bigger or smaller than the tidal rise.

      • BBD, I know enough about the isotopes. Sure, TSI didn’t vary much; I suspect something else did. Other things solar do, you know, but what and how those variations impacted climate, I don’t know.

        You presume in ignorance, I merely suspect.
        =================

      • No MWP, eh? So where’s your sensitivity argument? You’ve got a contradiction.
        ===============

      • kim

        I suspect something else did. Other things solar do, you know, but what and how those variations impacted climate, I don’t know.

        More saying stuff. It’s worthless waffle and we both know it.

      • No MWP, eh? So where’s your sensitivity argument? You’ve got a contradiction.

        No, foolish kim. *You’ve* got a choice ;-)

        If you were really paying attention, you would have understood that.

      • So did the temperature change as you earlier claimed, or not? Choose wisely, my obfuscator.
        =================

      • Crap response, DocMartyn

        You need to explain how an insensitive climate system can display the interannual internally-forced variability that we see.

        You need to explain how it can display the multi-decadal responses to changing forcings that we see.

        You need to explain how millenial-scale climate change (MWP/LIA) happens.

        You need to explain how a mere spatial and seasonal reorganisation of high latitiude NH insolation can terminate glacials.

        None of these things can happen in an insensitive climate system because insensitive climate systems are dominated by negative feedbacks which damp down the response to external and internal forcing.

        The result would be an invariant climate, with hardly any wiggles and trends. This is not what we see.

        So, point by point now, how do we square known climate behaviour with an insensitive climate system?

        No waffling please.

      • It is worse than waffling to both affirm and deny an MWP. Well, was there one or wasn’t there?
        ===============

      • kim

        So did the temperature change as you earlier claimed, or not? Choose wisely, my obfuscator.

        I left that open as a choice for readers like you, dear kim:

        There is no evidence for any major change in forcing associated with the MWP or the LIA. Small changes in solar output *maybe*. So if one argues for a global, synchronous MWP and LIA, then one is arguing for a moderately sensitive climate system responding to small changes in forcing, be they internal or external.

        Attentive readers, unlike you, dear kim, will have spotted the italics.

        You are nit-picking, and it’s boring. Try to answer the questions I am asking DocMartyn. The exercise will do your brain a power of good.

      • I note your explanation Cap’n. That might explain a lot, too.
        ===================

      • There is no evidence for any major change in forcing associated with the MWP or the LIA. Small changes in solar output *maybe*. So if one argues for a global, synchronous MWP and LIA, then one is arguing for a moderately sensitive climate system responding to small changes in forcing, be they internal or external.

      • It only works, BBD, if you presume small forcings. I repeat, you don’t know the forcings. I purposely use the plural because you conflate various sensitivities to various forcings into one. That’s ignorant, too.
        ===============================

      • kim

        No, it works generally. You can experience this for yourself. Try to answer the questions I am asking DocMartyn. All of them.

      • The fun part about this is that imbecilic ‘sceptics’ never seem to realise that by *insisting* on a hot, global MWP they are *insisting* on a fairly high climate sensitivity.

      • BBD, you are making my argument for me. I repeat, absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. You don’t know the forcings involved in the millenial scale temperature changes. You presume, from the mere evidence of TSI, that the forcings were small.
        =====================================

      • No, BBD, in ignorant true believer fashion, you are ‘insisting’ on a small forcing. You don’t know that, do you?
        ========================

      • BBD it’s just one of the myriad of contradictions they make.

        The other one is where they claim global warming is down to a conspiracy of climate scientists corrupted by grant money. But then they deny there’s a consensus of climate scientists. They want to have it both ways.

      • kim

        The forcing was relatively small. Slightly increased solar and decreased volcanism look likely as triggers for the MWP, with a permanent La Nina and strongly positive NAO, possibly operating together in a positive feedback loop existing from ~1050CE to ~1400CE. A moderately sensitive climate system remains an absolute requirement for all of this to happen.

        Why you think I’m ‘ignorant’ when the flow of information in this conversation is entirely one-way is a mystery.

        Now, you are nit-picking again. This is a sign of a weak mind under stress. You need to relax and look at the bigger picture. Answering the following questions will help you:

        1/ How can an insensitive climate system can display the interannual internally-forced variability that we see?

        2/ How it can display the multi-decadal responses to changing forcings that we see?

        3/ How can millenial-scale climate change (MWP/LIA) happen in an insensitive climate system?

        4/ How can a mere spatial and seasonal reorganisation of high latitiude NH insolation terminate glacials in an insensitive climate system?

        Your killer problem is that none of these things can happen in an insensitive climate system because such are dominated by negative feedbacks which damp down the response to external and internal forcing.

        They are dull, boring, invariant climate systems wholly unlike our own, with hardly any wiggles and trends.

        So, point by point now, how do we square known climate behaviour with an insensitive climate system?

        There’s so much more to this that just the MWP ;-)

      • Heh, so now the forcings were ‘relatively small’. You don’t know whether they were small or large. That’s the ignorance.
        ===================

      • BBD, you simply assume the forcings are known. They’re not. An insensitive climate system is your idea.

      • Only the truly desperate would try to make an issue out of the use of ‘small’ and ‘relatively small’. The problem *you* have got here kim is that I know what the Be10/C14 isotopic proxies reveal about solar variability. It didn’t vary a great deal. The changes could reasonably be described as ‘relatively small’. There’s nothing else that could have forced climate apart from a change in aerosol loading and/or GHGs so the *evidence* supports what I am saying. Which is why I am saying it.

        You on the other hand are reduced to denying the validity of the evidence and insisting on ‘mystery forcings’ including unknown solar behaviour which has left no trace in the isotopic proxy record.

        This is feeble. You have no argument. Stop pretending I’m the one with an evidential problem here. It’s almost funny.

      • Oh and kim – answer the questions please. You are far too prone to whiffle. Let’s see some actual thinking for a change.

        1/?
        2/?
        3/?
        4/?

        I’m going to bed now as this is intensely boring. But I look forward to reviewing your detailed and considered responses in the morning.

      • Edim, he hasn’t detected the dissonance he has from believing in a high sensitivity and not in an MWP. He conflates all forcings into one, and all sensitivities into one. And he clings so bitterly to his TSI as if it impacted a static globe.

        He cannot see past TSI and isotope evidence. He believes nothing else could ‘force climate apart’ except aerosols or GHGs. I should point him to a cloud.
        ================

      • BBD

        There’s nothing else that could have forced climate apart from a change in aerosol loading and/or GHGs

        That’s an “argument from ignorance”: i.e. “we can only explain this if we assume…”

        To assume that you are aware of all the mechanisms and forcings that can influence our planet’s climate would be not only ignorant, it would also be arrogant (see Einstein).

        Kim’s right, of course.

        Max

      • ” … the climate system is sufficiently sensitive that it responds quite strongly to fairly small changes in forcing.”

        Good point BBD. The skeptics don’t understand that climate sensitivity is a double-edged sword. Invoking it to explain MWP and LIA does you no favors when that same climate sensitivity works much the same way with rising CO2 levels.

        Consider this. As it gets hotter, more CO2 gets released from the oceans, and then the GHG effect gets stronger. A rather obvious positive feedback that makes climate sensitivity higher than it normally would seem. We have a flat, shallow potential energy well that we are sitting in.

        Will skeptics understand this? I think not.

      • kim

        No answers? Well, what a surprise that is ;-)

        I had a little bet with myself last night that you would be unable to answer those four questions and that this morning I would still be looking at this:

        1/?
        2/?
        3/?
        4/?

        There’s so much more to this than the MWP. You need to think about the big picture. That’s why the four unanswered questions above span climate behaviour from interannual wiggles to the ~100ka deglaciation cycle under orbital forcing.

        But you cling, cling, cling to the MWP – and I’ve already explained that whether it was large, medium or small, for *anything* much to happen requires at least a moderately sensitive climate system.

        And you speak of cognitive dissonance! Foolish, foolish kim. Where is your sense of irony?

        Now, answers please.

      • WHT

        Funnily enough, I pointed our friend steven at this RC article by Kyle Swanson (of Swanson & Tsonis 2009 ‘climate shift’ fame) which is worth quoting here:

        It first needs to be emphasized that natural variability and radiatively forced warming are not competing in some no-holds barred scientific smack down as explanations for the behavior of the global mean temperature over the past century. Both certainly played a role in the evolution of the temperature trajectory over the 20th century, and significant issues remain to be resolved about their relative importance. However, the salient point, one that is oftentimes not clear in arguments about variability in the climate system, is that all else being equal, climate variability and climate sensitivity are flip sides of the same coin.

        [...]

        A climate that is highly sensitive to radiative forcing (i.e., responds very strongly to increasing greenhouse gas forcing) by definition will be unable to quickly dissipate global mean temperature anomalies arising from either purely natural dynamical processes or stochastic radiative forcing, and hence will have significant internal variability. The opposite also holds. It’s painfully easy to paint oneself logically into a corner by arguing that either (i) vigorous natural variability caused 20th century climate change, but the climate is insensitive to radiative forcing by greenhouse gases; or (ii) the climate is very sensitive to greenhouse gases, but we still are able to attribute details of inter-decadal wiggles in the global mean temperature to a specific forcing cause. Of course, both could be wrong if the climate is not behaving as a linear forced (stochastic + GHG) system.

        Will ‘sceptics’ understand this? I doubt it.

      • SkepticalScience has very poor sources. It is untrustworthy. They use internet polls for their science.

      • yes it’s sources are peer reviewed scientific papers which are obviously wrong because they don’t say what Anthony Watts wants to believe.

      • Peer reviewed science

        Levictus 2012 Ocean Heat Content study
        http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2012/2012GL051106.shtml

        The heat content of the World Ocean for the 0–2000 m layer increased by 24.0 ± 1.9 × 1022 J (±2S.E.) corresponding to a rate of 0.39 W m-2……….The heat content of the World Ocean for the 0–700 m layer increased by 16.7 ± 1.6 × 1022 J corresponding to a rate of 0.27 W m−2

        Hansen 2005 referencing Willis et al 2004
        http://pubs.giss.nasa.gov/docs/2005/2005_Hansen_etal_1.pdf

        The observed annual mean rate ofocean heat gain between 1993 and mid-2003 was 0.86 +- 0.12 W/m2 per year for the 93.4%
        of the ocean that was analyzed

        http://www.geo.utexas.edu/courses/387h/PAPERS/willis_jgr_04.pdf
        The time series of globally averaged heat content
        contains a small amount of interannual variability and implies an oceanic warming rate of 0.86 ± 0.12 watts per square meter of ocean (0.29 ± 0.04 pW) from 1993 to 2003 for the upper 750 m of the water column.

        Scientific Journals are debating forums. Peer review simply implies the point being raised in a paper is worthy of ‘broader debate’. It doesn’t imply the establishment of an absolute fact.

      • harrywr2

        Levitus et al. (2012) gives the value for the period 1955 – 2010. Willis et al. (2004) estimates a value for the period 1993 – 2003.

  32. Are we heading into global cooling?

    “Claims have recently surfaced in the blogosphere that an increasing number of scientists are warning of an imminent global cooling, some even going so far as to call it a “growing consensus”. There are two major flaws in these blog articles, (i) there is no scientific basis for claims that the planet will begin to cool in the near future, and (ii) many of the listed scientists are not predicting global cooling.”

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/future-global-cooling.htm

    • Chief Hydrologist

      ‘On regional scales and for periods of a decade or two, natural climate variability has an impact comparable to greenhouse gas induced climate change. These impacts include decadal-scale changes in drought and extreme weather events, including hurricanes. Thus, it is crucial to understand the mechanisms and climatic relevance of decadal variability, and to assess whether such decadal variability is predictable. Furthering our understanding of decadal variability also enhances our ability to differentiate human-induced climate change from natural climate variability.’ http://www.gfdl.noaa.gov/amoc-decadal-predictability

      ‘Although the first promising steps towards decadal prediction have
      been made, much more work is required. Two problems deserve special attention. First, a sufficient understanding of the mechanisms of decadal to multidecadal variability is lacking. The atmospheric response to mid latitudinal SST anomalies, for instance, is still highly controversial and future research should treat this as a key topic. Second, model development is still an issue. One the one hand, state‐of-the‐art climate models suffer from large biases. On the other hand, they are incomplete and do not
      incorporate potentially important physics.’ Mojib, Latif and Noel S.Keenlyside, A perspective on decadal climate variability and predictability, Deep–Sea Research II, doi:10.1016/j.dsr2.2010.10.066

      The most that I say is that there is a cooling influence for a decade or three more. As a sufficient understanding of the mechanisms is lacking – prediction – especially about the future – is difficult. It is a mistake however to think that these are dependable and repeatable cycles of warming and cooling. They are not – they vary substantially over decades to millennia. And they are not cycles.

    • lolwot

      “Are we heading into global cooling?”

      Your quoted response sounds good, but then I see that it comes from “SkepticalScience”.

      The fact of the matter is that NOBODY knows what our climate is going to do in the near future (even less so in the more distant future).

      The current cooling trend just confirms that climate predictions, such as those of 0.2 degC/decade warming as made by IPCC, are totally worthless.

      Some scientific studies have concluded (and outfits like the UK’s Met Office have grudgingly agreed) that we may have a few decades of slight global cooling ahead of us.

      For those of us (like you or James E. Hansen) who appear to be worried about the anticipated ravages of man-made global warming, this should bring a great sigh of relief: something out there is counteracting the deleterious effects of our sinful additions of CO2 to the atmosphere and we may be saved, despite our transgressions.

      [Rejoice!!!]

      For those of us who look at it a bit more rationally and have no such worries it’s pretty much a déjà vu situation – every 30 years the pattern has switched from warming to slight cooling, all with an underlying net warming trend of 0.6 deg C per century (see Girma’s curves).

      [Yawn!]

      For those who are concerned about a possible longer term cooling of our planet, which could eventually lead us into another colder long-term period, such as the Little Ice Age, there is less consolation, except to point out that ALL projections of future climate are to be taken with a large grain of salt, whether it’s these or those made by IPCC.

      [Don't worry, be happy, dah dee dah dee dah dah...]

      Max

    • The globe cannot cool in its current circumstance. It is gaining energy. 2 meters above the surface, hey, have a good time with that distraction.

      But the guys who are best at measuring it, the 2 meters above the surface, continue to find even it is warming. The guys who are worst at it, find flat stuff, even minor declines, but that is because they ain’t good at it, which is why Max et al flock to them.

      I say almost all of the recent warming was anthropogenic, and that most, if not all, of the warming in 20th Century was anthropogenic. Show me where Tsonis, Swanson, Wyatt, etc. say I’m wrong.

      • It’s the other way around – the globe cannot warm in its current circumstance. What would cause the warming? CO2?

      • Not now, maybe later, much later.

      • Today; tomorrow.

      • JCH, The global atmosphere can cool while the global oceans warm and vice versa. There are two major system components with several different “change” and “discharge” rates. This total will average out over time, but the time constant for the oceans depends on the layer and the rate of mixing both from above and from below. For all practical purposes, the system is non-equilibrium on time scale less than 20k years.

        Just to add a little complexity to the problem, the internal oceans have different rates of “charge” based on the solar isolation, cloud cover, turbidity and albedo at depth, and the rate of discharge varies between polars and both hemisphere orientations. The North Atlantic is warmed primarily by the South Atlantic and the South Atlantic warming is regulated by the Circumpolar Current and the surface winds generated by the temperature differential between the southern tropics and the wickedly cold Antarctic.

        Other than these minor issues, your concept of climate is right on time :)

      • JCH

        I say almost all of the recent warming was anthropogenic

        Nice to have your opinion on this.

        I say you don’t have an earthly notion what % of the recent warming was caused by what.

        And until you can show me empirical scientific evidence (Feynmen) to support your premise, I say it’s just hot air.

        Max

      • Sorry for typo – it’s Feynman, of course

      • Cite somebody who isn’t dead. Feynman might think you’re full of chit. He can’t defend himself against your misuse of his reputation.

        I cite Tsonis, who says all of something during 20th Century was natural.

    • I’m going to withdraw my earlier comment that the MPT might be explained by a change in the circumpolar current. It was thoughtless of me.

      • Dearie me, I’m not doing very well tonight.

        I’m going to withdraw my earlier comment dismissing the idea that the MPT might be explained by a change in the circumpolar current. It was thoughtless of me.

      • Hey, BBD, want another try?

        “Third time’s charm”, you know…

        Max

  33. Joe Bastardi is regularly tarred by the CAWG crowd, but one of his guides for forecasts is ocean cycles. Looks like he might get a laugh out of this one.

  34. I think it’s actually fairly clear that Watts accurately noted that temperatures read warm due to UHI. What he didn’t believe was that they would still capture a warming trend, something that BEST shows did occur.

    • thomaswfuller2

      So, as I understand it, there WAS global (surface) warming and BEST (which only looked at land instead of global temperatures) at least confirmed that the land portion warmed. It was pretty inconclusive, however, on the UHI effect (its estimate that UHI actually resulted in a net cooling artifact is not tenable and can be discarded a priori as invalid).

      So BEST has confirmed some REAL warming (on land) plus an (unknown) artifact caused by UHI and “nothing new” for the remaining 70% of the globe.

      As they always add at the end: “Much work remains to be done…”

      Max

  35. “However, we have to ask the nasty questions ourselves or other people will do it.”

    “What if climate change appears to be just mainly a multi-decadal natural fluctuation? They’ll kill us probably.”

  36. Judith

    seems to me that this is a time where use of temperature to measure warming or cooling gets the wrong result. If temperatures measured by land based thermometers show a rising trend i would suggest this indicates that the heat batteries of the earth system (the oceans) are discharging some of their energy. The thermometers record the passage of that energy on its journey into space. At that point the earth system is cooling. I love the smell of irony in the morning.

  37. And when the nasty questions are asked in the light of day and without fear of retribution, then perhaps climate science will once again regain some of its lost integrity.

  38. ” I suspect that the bigger significance of Watts statements on PBS is that people will start to realize that sceptics are asking legitimate questions about climate science and their methods.” – JC

    Yeah, “legitmate questions” – is it all a fraud by scientists wanting tomake jobs for themselves, or to impose regulation and taxes??

    Perhaps the legitmate question is – which one is it??

    LOL

  39. “I am not one of the sceptics,” insisted Mojib Latif of the Leibniz Institute of Marine Sciences at Kiel University, Germany. “However, we have to ask the nasty questions ourselves or other people will do it.”
    ….
    On issues of climate projection for the next few decades and late 20th century attribution, I suspect that there is little that Latif and I would disagree on. The big difference is that Latif has maintained his status in the climate community that identifies itself with UN programmes (e.g. IPCC, WCRP) by insisting that he is not a sceptic. Whereas people are increasingly labeling me as a ‘denier’ because I engage with sceptical individuals from outside the UN climate community.”

    Latif doesn’t say he is not a skeptic, he says he is not one of those skeptics.
    Yes this is tribalism, or what goes on elementary schools everywhere in the world.
    Primitive. Childish.
    Perhaps somewhat endearing in children.

    And it should noted, embarrassing evidence that many who have been educated, have not actually been educated.

    But Latif can’t be so poorly trained, that he does not know that to be a scientist, he must be skeptical.

    He got a problem. His group has been arguing it’s all about CO2. It’s an idea very dear to the group- it’s the sustenance of their life. And addition Latif knows he not talking to a truly educated group of people- they may erupt into a mob, if the group is not first appeased with firm assurance that he is loyal member.

  40. Chief Hydrologist

    ‘In summary, although there is independent evidence for decadal changes in TOA radiative fluxes over the last two decades, the evidence is equivocal. Changes in the planetary and tropical TOA radiative fluxes are consistent with independent global ocean heat-storage data, and are expected to be dominated by changes in cloud radiative forcing. To the extent that they are real, they may simply reflect natural low-frequency variability of the climate system. ‘IPCC 3.4.4.1

    Yep – we pretty much think it is real and the ‘radiative physics’ is cooling in the IR (0.5W/m^2) and warming in the SW (-2.1W/m^2)

  41. Confusing, sure but that’s art. even if not the winner of the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art’s “Awards in the Visual Arts” competition,[1] which was sponsored in part by the National Endowment for the Arts, a United States Government agency that offers support and funding for artistic projects.

  42. Cool first – yep, for sure (we’ve already had 15 years of cooling)

    Warm later – maybe yes, maybe no – who knows? (No one.)

    Based on the past record, I’d bet on a continuation of the cyclical trend (~30-year cycles with ~ +/- 0.25C amplitude with a slight underlying long-term warming trend of 0.06C per decade) as Girma has plotted it.

    So, yes, the underlying long-term warming trend we’ve seen since we have been coming out of the LIA will probably continue, with maybe some help from human GHGs (but don’t count on much help there, it might not come).

    Max

    • “Cool first – yep, for sure (we’ve already had 15 years of cooling)”

      Max_not from OK, for sure you can’t count.

  43. Folks, don’t get impatient – we have 24 more months left to wait.

    Ben Santer has told us that it takes 17 years for a climate trend to become “statistically significant”.

    We have had 180 months (since July 1997) of slight cooling despite unabated human GHG emissions and CO2 levels reaching all-time highs, so there are still 24 months to go until we have 17 full years and the CAGW premise will have been falsified.

    Sure, we’ll very likely follow Girma’s sine curve and resume warming again (all on an underlying long-term warming trend since 1850 of around 0.06C per decade).

    And climatologists will scratch their heads at this “unexplained” observation.

    But the case for the claim that “most” of the observed warming since ~1950 can “with a likelihood of at least 90%” be attributed to increases in human GHGs is fast fading, day by day.

    24 months to go and the clock’s ticking, folks…

    Max

  44. “IMO this statement is enormously telling in terms of the debate surrounding climate science:…..” – JC

    Most likely, he was thinking of how science gets reported in the media, and wanted to forestall egregiously wrong reporting of his statement.

    At least he tried……

  45. Not wanting to be identified as a ‘sceptic,’ in spite of the fact that the perspective that he presents is consistent with with what many sceptics say.

    I mean seriously, Judith. That’s like saying that my opinions about the climate debate are consistent with yours because we both end sentences with periods.

    Latif has a fundamentally different view on climate change than “skeptics.” That is why he says he isn’t a “skeptic”: Because he disagrees with them about the science.

    How can you be so condescending and so judgmental? Perhaps tribalism may be the answer?

    • I made the mistake of reading a Joshua comment and as always find myself at an utter loss. Condescending and judgmental? Are you kidding me? I’ve been reading Judith’s blog for a couple of years now, and have sees no evidence of either.

      You on the other hand are often an expert practitioner of both. In that regard, I admire our hosts forbearance greatly.

      YOu don’t see that Latif has in certain significant ways broken from the orthodoxy? How many climate scientists are predicting temporary cooling? How many are willing to postulate a significant role for natural drivers in the arctic sea ice melt. How many are willing to say that “NAO cycles were probably responsible for some of the strong global warming seen in the past three decades?”

      Honest to God Joshua, I sometimes get the impression you have some sort of difficulty with reading comprehension.

      • Pokerguy –

        How many climate scientists are predicting temporary cooling?

        Follow the link that Judith provided to “thingsbreak.”

        Then read what Latif had to say about whether he was making predictions.

        Then get back to me.

        We’ll talk.

      • Joshua, its a classic case of prisoner’s dilemma, one of the best gamed game in game theory.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prisoner%27s_dilemma

        As long as they all sing from the same, ‘we are going to be burnt to a crisp’ script and approve each others papers and grants they can keep the train going forward. However, at some stage the whole thing is going to become so ridiculous that they can’t go any father forward; the only way to have future warming is to make the past still colder.
        The people who jump ship first get to captain the next ship, and the next ship is going to be a lot smaller than the present one.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Hi pokerguy,

        Over the course of this thread I have made numerous links to science of all kinds. Including actual papers from Latif and Keenleyside. Is the problem that there is complexity (in the dictionary sense), a lack of knowledge of fundamental climate processes and uncertainty in the trajectory and variability of climate. Opposed to this is the insistence – and I think it is most naive scientifically – that is all simple and obvious.

        If really it was only that they were scientifically naive – that they were simply unaware of the nuances and shades of grey (how can we possibly use that expression again with a straight face) of mainstream science that get lost with gross oversimplifications – then it would not matter. My problem is that we have wasted a generation of opportunities on a debate that is stuck at 1990. The great question is how to get back on track to a vision of the future such as we once had. The great tools of western civilisation – our energy, our scientific innovation, our enterprise – have fallen into disrepute. How do we regain our future?

        Robert I Ellison
        Chief Hydrologist

      • lurker passing through, laughing

        pokerguy,
        Joshua is doing a self-parody and rather well.

    • If you paid attention to the climate gate e-mails at all, Michael Mann is very vindictive. At least that is what his colleagues and co-authors seem to think. I don’t know the guy. There are a few others like this.

      If you can read, you can see that anyone who expresses even a luke-warmer opinion is looked upon as potentially an idiot and potentially a denier. Things do run in fads and fall into camps in science, even in areas that are not heavily politicized. And it is common to have to cite a paper you don’t agree with or even think is that good, in case that person ends up being a reviewer on your grant or paper. Often, if you leave them off, they will suggest you add some of those references to your paper.

      So it is common to see papers in the literature on climate that add the obligatory statement about potentially catastrophic AGW even in a paper that does not seem to warrant such a statement (like having conclusions that suggest it won’t be catastrophic). This may be to help ease the way through peer review or just good salesmanship. You need to sell your paper as important and make it interesting. That’s just human nature.

      This is a bit like saying that many employees at a company said favorable things about the company in interviews. Duh, they don’t want to lose their jobs. It doesn’t always mean what it looks like if taken at face value.

  46. SCIENTIST EXPLAINS EARTH’S WARMING PLATEAU
    November 22, 2009

    Research shows that over the past several years, Earth’s temperature has not been heating up. Climate change skeptics claim this as evidence that global warming is overexaggerated. But the man who did the research, climate and ocean scientist Mojib Latif, says “not so fast.” Latif talks to host Guy Raz about the Earth’s temperature plateau and what it means for global warming.

    GUY RAZ, host:
    But a best-case scenario? Well, if you read the research done by Professor Mojib Latif, a climate-change researcher at Kiel University in Germany, you might conclude that the Earth is actually cooling, and in fact, many climate change skeptics have, and they’ve cited Latif’s research as evidence, except that Latif says his study has been misinterpreted and that global warming is just temporarily on hold.

    Dr. MOJIB LATIF (Climate and Ocean Scientist, University of Kiel): What we are experiencing is a kind of hold; temperatures are more or less steady and remain at relatively high levels. The last record was in 1998.

    RAZ: So we’re not getting hotter from 1998 right now.

    Dr. LATIF: We are not getting hotter but not colder either, and so, you know, the situation is more or less steady, but this is nothing unusual.

    RAZ: What is causing this? Why hasn’t there been an increase in the Earth’s temperature since 1998?

    Dr. LATIF: Well, we believe that a change in ocean current, especially in the tropical Pacific and in the southern oceans on the Southern Hemisphere, cooled the sea surface temperature, and this then led to an offset, you know, to global warming, and so the net effect is basically that there was no additional change.

    RAZ: So based on your research, if I have this right, climate change, particularly a warming of the Earth’s climate, is still the trend. It’s just been slowed down for the last few years because of ocean currents, changes in ocean currents.

    Dr. LATIF: Exactly. So – and this is the reason, because we have the short-term climate fluctuation, therefore, it doesn’t make sense to look at short periods to assess the human impact on climate. So you have to consider several decades. Only then you see basically the long-term warming trend, and therefore, we can’t really draw any inferences from this hold in the last 10 years or so, you know, with regard to global warming.

    RAZ: So when do you expect the Earth to start warming again at an accelerated rate, what year?

    Dr. LATIF: Well, we did only forecasts for the time until 2015. However, if we look further, then we have some indications that there are after, say after 2015 or 2020, you know, global warming will accelerate again.

    RAZ: And how much warmer do you estimate it will become over the next sort of two or three decades?

    Dr. LATIF: I think maybe .2 or .3 degrees, but it may accelerate thereafter. So it basically depends on, you know, how we behave during the next decades, right? So if we emit – or if we continue to emit these greenhouse gases at the present rate, you know, then the warming trend will be faster.

    RAZ: Now, your research, Dr. Latif, has been cited by climate change skeptics here in the U.S., by for example, George Will, a conservative columnist with the Washington Post, to show that the Earth actually goes through natural warming and cooling trends and that climate change is really being overhyped. Do you think your work is being misused?

    Dr. LATIF: Yes. It is misused. I must say this, unfortunately, because these changes we are talking about, these short-term changes, you know, their amplitudes are much smaller than the long-term warming trends. So we are talking about a hold, okay, in the last 10 years. We are not talking about a net cooling to, say, (unintelligible) temperatures, (unintelligible), you know, which we observed 100 years ago or so. Okay, and also what we predicted for the future is basically that this hold may continue for another 10 years or so, okay, but we did not predict a cooling. We basically said that we would stay for some more years on this plateau.

    RAZ: Just to clarify, you are not a climate change skeptic.

    Dr. LATIF: If my name was not Mojib Latif, my name would be global warming. So I really believe in Global Warming. Okay. However, you know, we have to accept that there are these natural fluctuations, and therefore, the temperature may not show additional warming temporarily.

    RAZ: That is Mojib Latif, also known as Global Warming. He’s a professor for climate physics at the Leibniz Institute of Marine Sciences at Kiel University. He spoke with me from Hamburg, Germany.
    Mojib Latif, thank you so much.

    Dr. LATIF: I thank you.

    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=120668812

    • Heh heh, he said ‘prediction’, heh, heh.
      ======================

      • Chief Hydrologist

        I must say that is very mature Kim. Keep it up if you want to be known as a gutter mouth. Mind you – if my name weren’t Chief – it would be climate castastrophist (in the sense of Rene Thom). Such a mouthfull – I think I will leave well enough alone.

        Well done Girma – will it get warmer later? I don’t think that is at all obvious.

    • peterdavies252

      I dont believe this. The guy is trying to have his longer term predictions take precedence over his shorter term predictions when it is obvious that both time periods are way too short for any predictions at all.

    • You fit the temperature series and the models and claim that CO2 is the only ingredient that can make it work, and also that this proves the human cause. Then when temperature plateaus, you claim that it is because of the ocean oscillations, and don’t worry it’s still CO2 in the future. But then why have you not gone back and redone the temperature-model fits including the past ocean oscillations?

      Girma is the one who should be thanking Latif.

  47. I think the CAGWers here have a point. Latif is no skeptic.

    He is just, consciously or otherwise, buying the movement another couple decade in case we don;t all melt before then.

    If things start getting noticeably warmer in the next few years…well, of course it’s CAGW. If it doesn’t, well…it’s consistent with CAGW, and someone even “predicted” it in 2012. (In the CAGW lexicon, only a projection that bears out becomes a prediction. Shoot, even two wrong projections can be combined to equal an “accurate prediction” ala Hansen ’88)

    Win win for the cause.

  48. Decadal changes, in Melbourne sometimes hourly changes in weather.
    I well remember walking by the sea with my nephew, aged three.
    He looked up at the sky with his bright blue eyes ) and said:
    The white clouds are shifting
    The blue sky is lifting!

    Cool, eh?

    • Chief Hydrologist

      Beth mo bhanacharaid,

      Sky eyes for wonder, sweet, fragrent, warm joy for nuzzling.

      A friends toddler insisted on sitting on my knee recently. She was smelly, snotty and sticky – but they are all so beautiful. Such is life.

      Have fun
      Robert

  49. ‘Latif predicted that in the next few years a natural cooling trend would dominate over warming caused by humans.’

    Latif may be right in predicting a cooling trend due to natural variability including the NAO. However the CO2 effect was very powerful until 1940 – powerful enough to work its way through the oceans and produce a second permanent heat and temperature rise between 1970 and 2000. Nothing like this has happened before in recorded history, so why should it happen now? While the NAO may slightly modulate the post-2000 temperature, I do not see it as powerful enough to have a major influence.

  50. “However, we have to ask the nasty questions ourselves or other people will do it.”

    This short statement looks to be just another way of saying “We need damage control here”. He is clearly driven more by an agenda short on science than by the truths revealed by strict scientific methods. Grants are at risk and that is unacceptable.

    Trenberth’s missing heat isn’t missing – it is on hiatus. Keep the grants coming!

  51. peterdavies252

    OT (sort of) but for everyone an online test of your knowledge of global warming.

    http://www.geocraft.com/WVFossils/GlobWarmTest/end.html

    Can our sciency friends check the answers for correctness. I scored 9

  52. Ahem peterdavies, I took the global warming test andd scored 10 ; )I have become an avid reader of the graphs and commentaries, some of which I understand.
    Thx peter fer the tech support which I read after me nephew got me back on line.
    Beth

    • peterdavies252

      Well done Beth, I understand and accept that people can be better than me at most things :) It never matters to me because I just don’t need to prove otherwise.

    • Wal, Ah cain’t talk as purty as Beth, but Ah scored 10, too!

      Shore am mighty proud.

      Wunner if “tempterrain” er “lolwot” took the “global warming test”?

      Max

  53. Reblogged this on Sparks ~Engineering and Science. and commented:
    “I am not one of the sceptics,” insisted Mojib Latif even tho he predicts a natural cooling trend would dominate over warming caused by humans.

  54. It seems if have couple decades of global temperatures remaining the same or declining, that there will be enough time left in the century for temperatures to rise high enough to the levels warmth during Holocene Thermal Maximum and instead remain around the temperatures of the Medieval Warming Period.
    But if get such levels of warming, it seems likely that nearly all the glacier ice formed during the Little Ice Age should have melted.
    It also seems possible that even though, we remain at around same temperature or it declines over next couple decades that extent polar sea may continue trending downward and by the end of this century have one or more summers which are “ice free”. But even if we get such ice free conditions in the arctic it’s unlikely to have much affect shipping or use of arctic region. This region may have more exploitation but not because it’s being caused by having less polar ice in the summer.
    Nor does seem like treelines will extend much further poleward, or farming could occur much further northward. Though such thing may occur in the 22nd century.

    • Though unlike IPCC and Latif’s ideas of cooling, it seems possible to me that we could get what could called serious cooling, say more than .5 C of cooling, mainly due to a prolonged low solar activity, and it seem such serious cooling could cause glacier to advance, rather than retreat.
      There also possibility of large volcanic eruption [over 100 cubic km of ejecta]. So we could have things, the cooling due to NAO, the continued low levels of solar activity, moving to little to none solar activity next couple decade, plus get some big volcanic eruption within the coming 1 to 3 decades.
      Such unfortunate combination of events seem more likely than dragon king type warming event. And aren’t really unpredictable. NAO is predictable, lower solar activity is said to quite possible, and having such eruption within 30 year period probably exceeds a 10% chance- history indicates it.

      Now, with some volcano tossing so much dust in the atmosphere, you could ocean fertilization. Put it this way, humans would very hard time putting 1 cubic km of dust in the ocean. So that means we could an natural fertilization “program’ that dwarfs anything we do if wanted to spent trillion of dollars doing it. Since it’s “natural” one can’t blame anyone for possible bad consequences of such a reckless program. But points is it could work fairly well sucking out the global CO2- like remove all CO2 said to be caused by humans, plus some.
      But we had two of these size eruptions during the 19th century, so unlikely it will end the world to have one within the next 30 years. But also perhaps there was less than the 290 ppm or 260 ppm thought to be the CO2 level prior to 20th century. Someone should check to see if these past eruption had any effect upon global CO2. At present time the effect could much bigger, because we dumping in something 32 billion tonnes per year and only add about 16 billion, so we have a kind of “built up a capacity” to absorb CO2 and that capacity could get big bump form ocean fertilization.
      China is “apparently” having huge forest growth and the US is also having large forest growth, plus add in the massive amount of farming.

  55. Presumptions of a cooling globe from jumped – up, – non – consensus, – can’t – get – their- papers- published -in – Natiure, – non – CAGWists? WE THE CONSENSUS dismiss theirr cooling as man made ‘insolence variation’

  56. This is something I have been proposing for a long time. Have a look at:
    http://www.climatedata.info/Discussions/Discussions/opinions.php?id=5505161221680733484
    What is interesting is the implications. If the AMO (I think it is more likely than the NAO) in cooling phase is powerful enough to combat the future effects of CO2 it follows that much of the temperature increase over the last few decades was due to the AMO in warming phase. Not, as implicitly asumed by AOGCMs, due to GHGs only.

  57. Is Latif unaware that models are already generally lagging temps?

  58. lurker passing through, laughing

    Cool-First-warm-later is just a way for climate kooks to pretend they are right despite the facts.
    At first it was 30 years for climate vs. weather.
    Then, when things warmed up some, the climate kooks claimed it was ten years.
    Now they are back to about 17 years.
    Now we see decades of non-cooperative weather, and the climate kooks are back to ~30 years.
    It is so much fun to watch the self-declared climate enlightened follow the expected path of false prophets and con-artists.

  59. One of the world’s top climate modellers said Thursday we could be about to enter one or even two decades during which temperatures cool.

    Could be? Well well see. But I’d just make the point that what happens in the next 10 or 20 years isn’t that important. Its the next 100 or 200 years that matter.

    But, on the other hand, if these modellers are correct, we’ll have 10 or 20 years of climate skeptic/deniers telling us “we told you we were right” even though they haven’t been and won’t be right in the longer term either.

    I’m not sure how well I’ll be able to cope with that :-)

    • tempterrain

      I’m not sure how well I’ll be able to cope with that

      Reckon you’ll just have to get used to it, TT.

      Max

    • @tempterrain

      I’m sure that your sunny optimistic devil-may-care approach that used to be the defining characteristic of Australians will see you through with a merry quip and a jolly jest.

      But if not, you may need refresher instruction from Private Frazer

    • I don’t see “deniers” saying “I told you I was right,” but rather “it’s the sun, and don’t be so quick to discard the scientific method because its use interferes with the politically correct result you want, stupid.”

    • tempterrain | September 24, 2012 at 8:53 am | Reply

      “But, on the other hand, if these modellers are correct, we’ll have 10 or 20 years of climate skeptic/deniers telling us “we told you we were right” even though they haven’t been and won’t be right in the longer term either. I’m not sure how well I’ll be able to cope with that.”

      When you’ve had all the coping you can stands, and you can’t stands no more, this guy can help you.

    • tempterrain,

      Thank you for so promptly confirming my prediction above:

      “I think the CAGWers here have a point. Latif is no skeptic.

      He is just, consciously or otherwise, buying the movement another couple decade in case we don;t all melt before then.

      If things start getting noticeably warmer in the next few years…well, of course it’s CAGW. If it doesn’t, well…it’s consistent with CAGW, and someone even “predicted” it in 2012.”

      It hasn’t been a “few years,” only a few hours, and here you are making the anticipated argument already.

      Thanks.

  60. Pacific Ocean Showing Signs of Major Shifts in the Climate
    January 20, 2000



    the satellite images do indeed signal the beginning of a new climatic regime in the Pacific, there will be “fewer and weaker El Niños and more La Niñas,” said Dr. Bill Patzert, a research oceanographer at the Pasadena laboratory.

    In the natural weather phenomenon known as La Niña, sea-surface temperatures in the eastern tropical Pacific are lower than normal.

    This sets off a train of atmospheric events that affect weather patterns around the globe, especially in North America in the winter.

    Sea surface temperatures in general have a major effect on atmospheric circulation patterns, and in large measure govern where storms develop and cold and warm air masses go.

    El Niño is marked by abnormally high sea-surface temperatures in the tropical Pacific, which touches off a different set of winter weather consequences, often including heavy rains across the southern tier of the United States.

    La Niña and El Niño typically last a year or two, but there is also a longer-term natural oscillation going on in the Pacific, this one involving a flip-flop in sea-temperature patterns on a scale of decades.

    When the ocean flips from one of these states to another, Dr. Patzert said, “it resets the stage for the climate system; it provides a new background on which smaller events like El Niño and La Niña can occur.”

    In one of these alternating states of what is called the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, sea-surface temperatures are higher in the eastern equatorial Pacific but lower throughout much of the rest of the Pacific basin. That pattern predominated from the mid-1970’s through most of the 1990’s.

    It was also a period of more frequent and stronger editions of El Niño.

    Now, for the last two years, the opposite pattern has appeared: cooler water in the eastern tropical Pacific but warmer elsewhere.

    That pattern last predominated from the mid-1940’s to the mid-1970’s

    While Dr. Patzert and other scientists said they believed that a flip from one phase of the oscillation to another had occurred, they also said it was too soon to tell whether it represented a true shift from one multidecadal regime to the other.

    “There simply has not been enough time” since the shift took place, said Wayne Higgins, a senior meteorologist at the government’s Climate Prediction Center at Camp Springs, Md.

    Five to 10 additional years of data may be required, Mr. Higgins said.

    The shift is only two years old and whether it will last for a full 20 or 30 years remains to be seen.


    http://nyti.ms/lVpyNW

    Now it is 12-years since the above story, and the global mean temperature looks like this => http://bit.ly/nz6PFx

    Has the shift occurred, Wayne Higgins?

  61. Strange that it apparently only occurred to Latif to “ask the nasty questions” just as we were coming to END of a decade of falling temperatures that had not been predicted.

  62. Most of the “cool first, warm later(?)” prognoses cite the slowdown of solar activity as a major factor (it’s the sun, stupid…).

    There appears to make a lot of sense, as NASA tells us:

    http://solarscience.msfc.nasa.gov/predict.shtml

    The current prediction for Sunspot Cycle 24 gives a smoothed sunspot number maximum of about 76 in the Fall of 2013. The smoothed sunspot number (for 2012/02) is already nearly 67 due to the strong peak in late 2011 so the official maximum will be at least this high. We are currently well over three years into Cycle 24. The current predicted and observed size makes this the smallest sunspot cycle since Cycle 14 which had a maximum of 64.2 in February of 1906.

    Solar cycle 14, way back in 1906?

    Let’s put this into perspective.

    While IPC only attributes 7% of the observed past warming to the sun, several solar scientists have concluded that at least half of the observed warming of the 20th century can be attributed to the unusually high level of 20th century solar activity (highest in several thousand years), with over half occurring in the first half of the century. [Stockwell 2011, Shapiro et al. 2011, Scafetta + West 2006, Solanki et al. 2004, Shaviv + Veizer 2003, Lockwood + Stamper 1999, Geerts + Linacre 1997, Lean et al. 1995]

    There is no question that solar activity increased sharply over the 20th century and has peaked since then.
    http://www.warwickhughes.com/agri/Solar_Arch_NY_Mar2_08.pdf

    The Wolf number (maximum sunspot number) for the five solar cycles 10-14 (1860-1906) averaged 88, while the average for the last five solar cycles of the 20th century, 19-23(1957-2008) averaged 147 or 67% higher. Solar cycle 23, which just ended in 2008, was already much weaker and NASA now predicts that solar cycle 24 will end up being weaker yet at around 67.

    So it’s clear a) that the impact of solar activity on climate change is underestimated by IPCC and b) that solar activity has declined since the late-20th century, and is projected to continue to do so at least over the current solar cycle 24.

    Max

    • No mechanism here, fellas and shielas, but Livingston and Penn are worth following closely. If Cheshire Cat Sunspots presage global cooling, like the last time that cat faded from the visual spectrum, then we may have a century or more of cooling.
      ===================

      • Kim
        I wouldn’t put much money on L&P effect. Sun exerts its variable influence on the Earth via CMEs and the geomagnetic storms.
        “NASA’s fleet of THEMIS spacecraft discovered a flux rope pumping a 650,000 Amp current into the Arctic. “The satellites have found evidence for magnetic ropes connecting Earth’s upper atmosphere directly to the Sun,” says Dave Sibeck, project scientist for the mission at the Goddard Space Flight Center. “We believe that solar wind particles flow in along these ropes, providing energy for geomagnetic storms”. Even more impressive was the substorm’s power. Angelopoulos estimates the total energy of the two-hour event at five hundred thousand billion (5 x 10^14) Joules. That’s approximately equivalent to the energy of a magnitude 5.5 earthquake.”
        vukcevic: How would you evaluate the L&P impact (if any) on the strength and frequency of CMEs
        l svalgaard (co-author of L&P paper and the most passionate promoter of the effect): To first order: none [so far]
        see also my post further below

      • They cling so bitterly to their TSI, as if it impacts a static world.
        ======================

    • check your numbers. there hasnt been much of any secular increase in TSI. our climate doesnt count spots. It certainly doesnt care about various spot definitions that are contingent upon counting methods and instruments. It cares about Watts input. That hasnt changed much since the LIA. If you think small changes in Watts In drive big changes in temperature then you believe in a high sensitivity number.

      • You don’t know what’s and Watts changed since the LIA.

      • http://www.geo.umass.edu/faculty/bradley/lean1995.pdf

        And are all watts the same? In terms of work done [warming].
        Simple: a 100 kilowatt engine may or may not move a train.

        1 watt of UV may have more effect in terms of warming, than 1 watt of IR.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        http://lasp.colorado.edu/sorce/data/tsi_data.htm#plots – for graph for TSI from 1800 has been shifted down considerably but otherwise the shape is still the same. The asumption that cloud doesn’t change seems unlikely. Low level marine stratocumulous is for instance correlated with sea surface temperatures.

      • Hi Mosher
        Didn’t see you there (see also my post further below)
        Here is what Dr. Fred Pearce said to me in an email dated May 19, 2003
        John Hoyland, the letters editor at New Scientist, has passed to me your short but intriguing item on global warming and the Earth’s magnetic field.I am the magazine’s consultant on environmental sciences. I must say I find this rather intriguing. A couple of questions:
        Do you have any data for the magnetic field for the period since 1980?
        Have you had any response from journals or other scientists about the idea?
        …………
        What I think is very necessary now is for you to get some up to date figures taking the magnetic field graph up to at least the end of the last decade. If the fit persists, then you would have something worth saying.
        Regards
        Fred Pearce

      • vuk

        theres definitely something in your studies which you need to put into a succinct and logical format for others to comment on

        tonyb

      • Hi Tony
        I am one man operation, conducting a private war on AGW , ‘hit and run’ guerilla tactic suits me fine.
        p.s. to ripen your green toms wrap them in tissue and store in a dark place for few days, they’ll go red.

      • vuk

        too late, the slugs have got them
        tonyb

      • One word, moshe; clouds.
        ==============

      • OK, more words. You presume constant TSI, or nearly so, implies constant Watts in. You presume in ignorance.
        ==================

      • Steven Mosher

        check your numbers. there hasnt been much of any secular increase in TSI. our climate doesnt count spots.

        A bit presumptive, Mosh.

        There’s very likely more to the sun’s influence on our climate than TSI alone, as IPCC assumes – maybe it DOES count spots in a way you and I just don’t understand, but that has influenced our climate in the past (Maunder, Dalton, etc.).

        As stated above, several independent solar studies have concluded that around half of the 20th century warming has come from the sun, while IPCC estimates this at only 7% (limited to TSI).

        Who’s right?

        Who knows?

        Max

      • Humans tend to fool themselves. (Scientists – in this case climatologists, computer scientists, etc. – are no different than anyone else.)

        They come to believe that they can explain many natural phenomena – and some they really can.

        But our planet’s climate is one area where the “unknown” is still greater than the “known” – and particularly vexing is the “unknown unknown” (Rumsfeld). Our hostess has touched upon this topic.

        Nassim Taleb wrote (about experts making predictions) that it is not so important what the expert knows – it is what he/she does not know.

        Here we have a perfect example.

        Climate “experts” armed with multi-billion dollar computers “think” they know what causes our planet’s climate to behave as it does (and they undoubtedly do know a lot.

        It’s all about “mechanisms” – and they truly believe that they have these all figured out.

        With this knowledge they start to make attribution estimates – “over time period A we can with likelihood B attribute more than C% of the observed temperature change to D.”

        Here these “experts” have already entered the “slippery slope” of uncertainty, as our hostess has pointed out.

        This is because they have made this estimate based on everything they know, but obviously have not been able to consider what they do not know – and certainly not what they do not even know that they do not know.

        But they do not stop there.

        They now actually think that they can make predictions (which they will call “projections”, but which they will use in the media as “predictions”) of what our planet’s climate is going to look like far into the future based on a myopic fixation on those mechanisms that they think they know</em, while ignoring those they do not know.

        Judith refers to this all as “uncertainty” (and there is no doubt that that is what it is.

        But I’d add that it’s also ignorance and arrogance (check Einstein).

        Max

      • Steve: Some time ago I was curious about what Total Solar Irradiance (TSI) really was. I looked up the wavelengths measured by each satellite and overlaid the Electromagnetic (EM) Spectrum with the spectrum actually measured. “TSI” is not total.
        http://solarcycle24com.proboards.com/index.cgi?action=display&board=globalwarming&thread=468&page=3#18678
        “The observed range (“Coverage”) is 0.05 to 100,000 nanometers within an Electromagnetic Spectrum of 0.000001 to 100,000,000,000 nanometers. This implies that these instruments do not yet measure Gamma Rays, Hard X-Rays, Far Infrared, Microwave and Radio.
        “Emphasis is currently on Solar Spectral Irradiance (SSI), the current, instrument-based satellite observations. These began in 2001 with TIMED and continue with SORCE. (Kopp, 2007 p 6)”

        The unmeasured long wavelength EM (Far Infrared, Microwave and Radio) can be ignored, since it has low power. In my opinion, the unmeasured short wavelength EM is another matter. “At wavelengths shorter than about 300 nm, there is a relatively large variation in the Sun’s extreme UV and x-ray output (greater than 1%), but the Earth’s atmosphere is nearly opaque at those wavelengths.” From this I infer that it is absorbed.
        http://solarcycle24com.proboards.com/index.cgi?action=gotopost&board=globalwarming&thread=468&post=12065

        (After the post was complete, SDO was launched. It has approximately the same range as the others.)

      • David Springer

        @mosher

        Sunspots are a proxy for solar magnetic field strength not TSI. You know about Svensmark and CLOUD. Why are you playing stupid?

    • There are number of the TSI reconstructions with variability of 0.1% across 3-400 years span. However the Earth’s magnetic field bi-decadal variability is of order 3-4%, further more it is well correlated with changes in the TSI, or more accurately with the solar flux to which is TSI directly related.
      http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/TMCa.htm
      I have been going on about this for some years now, ‘a voice in wilderness’ (S.M)
      Not any longer, I have a company of a lady from no less than the JPL.
      I shall give her last word, not only because she is a lady , but also she speaks with far more gravitas than I ever could.
      May I introduce Dr. Jean Dickey of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena.
      Dr. Jean Dickey:
      One possibility is the movements of Earth’s core (where Earth’s magnetic field originates) might disturb Earth’s magnetic shielding of charged-particle (i.e., cosmic ray) fluxes that have been hypothesized to affect the formation of clouds. This could affect how much of the sun’s energy is reflected back to space and how much is absorbed by our planet. Other possibilities are that some other core process could be having a more indirect effect on climate, or that an external (e.g. solar) process affects the core and climate simultaneously.
      http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.php?release=2011-074
      http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/profiles.cfm?profile=472

  63. Science is reverse engineering of the natural world.

    When I reverse engineer a black box, or grey box as the case may be, I do it by forming hypothesis about what is transpiring inside the box. I “ask” probing questions by whatever means are at my disposal and I accumulate answers that eventually become correlated and a perfectly predictive theory emerges. I must also isolate variables so that questions are pointed and answers lack ambiguity. Sometimes I don’t have jack schidt to go on in the beginning and just start probing at random until a pattern emerges in the responses. I have done this for a living almost every day of my adult life. This is how you debug the most difficult problems in modern computer hardware and software. You almost never have complete information about it. It’s a conglomeration of black boxes. Hell the first part of the job is often just isolating which black box it is that is not behaving the way you expect. Earth’s climate is a lot like that. A whole buttload of black (or shades of grey) boxes. Worse there are black boxes we haven’t even discovered yet i.e. things we don’t know that we don’t know. When there are things you don’t know that you don’t know you have little recourse but to probe at random and hope like hell a pattern emerges before you run out of time.

  64. Anyone find it peculiar that the PBS piece brings up Watts’ funding from Koch sources, but one of PBS Newshour’s own sources of funding is from a Koch (David i think?).

  65. I’ve found this in a Heat Transfer textbook!

    “The sun that shines from heaven shines but warm,
    And lo! I lie between that sun and thee:
    The heat I have from thence doth little harm,
    Thine eye darts forth the fire that burneth me;
    And were I not immortal, life were done
    Between this heavenly and earthly sun.”

  66. Actually, it could very well be the sun for a substantial part of what we observe. Take a look at this:
    http://www.sec.noaa.gov/SolarCycle/sunspot.gif
    or this:
    http://solarscience.msfc.nasa.gov/images/ssn_predict_l.gif

    Then, before you tell me that the sun has minimal influence, take a look at this cyclic heat sink, which does:
    http://bobtisdale.wordpress.com/2012/09/03/everything-you-every-wanted-to-know-about-el-nino-and-la-nina-2/
    But if you don’t want to spend 8 bucks, then
    http://bobtisdale.wordpress.com/2010/11/17/multidecadal-changes-in-sea-surface-temperature/

    • Bob’s on it.
      =======

    • This reply is posted in the wrong place. It should be at
      Wagathon: http://judithcurry.com/2012/09/22/cool-first-warm-later/#comment-244056

      • At least we know what it isn’t …

        My topic today sounds humorous but unfortunately I am serious. I am going to argue that extraterrestrials lie behind global warming. Or to speak more precisely, I will argue that a belief in extraterrestrials has paved the way, in a progression of steps, to a belief in global warming…

        …I want to discuss the history of several widely-publicized beliefs and to point to what I consider an emerging crisis in the whole enterprise of science—namely the increasingly uneasy relationship between hard science and public policy…

        ~Michael Crichton, “Aliens Cause Global Warming,” Caltech Michelin Lecture, January 17, 2003

  67. “So just when I thought some progress was being made here, we see the outrage of Watt’s airtime on PBS. I suspect that the bigger significance of Watts statements on PBS is that people will start to realize that sceptics are asking legitimate questions about climate science and their methods.”

    The issue of Tribalism, the meaning of the labels, and the News Media’s incompetence/inability to properly report on this complex topic all speak to the need for a Media/Press Kit that just covers the facts.

    I’m uncertain if a Press Kit has ever been developed to cover a topic but it would be an extremely valuable fact checking tool if it was representative of the entire scientific debate. Its of no benefit if its a representation of half-truths and spin.

    Progress will continue to be difficult until this tool is in place. Activism, Alarmism, disinformation, and misrepresentation are the tools of the Alarmists.

    Anthony self-labeled his views as “Pragmatic Skeptic” during the interview and proceeded to cite pragmatic concerns. It was odd that PBS invented Dr. Curry’s position which triggered a request for correction from Dr. Curry.

    I’m very disappointed with the PBS response to the viewer discontent. PBS has a responsibility to deliver a balanced program and is clearly more concerned with their audience than their professional integrity.

    Journalists used to question the “ax people had to grind” before responding.

    • The debate over the definition of the various factions in the climate science debate has been going on for quite a while.

      In 2005, “Roger Pielke Jr., a professor of environmental studies at the University of Colorado in Boulder and the author of an excellent science Web log called Prometheus” point to this article.

      Climate Skeptics Split Into Two Factions
      http://www.spacedaily.com/news/climate-05zo.html

      Professor Pielke then decided to take a stab at “the actual political and policy agendas at play”. Its an interesting read and adds greatly to the factions I’ve already encountered. It also helps to frame the realization that its not in the best interest of many of the factions to expose a factual account of the current state of the science.

      A Taxonomy of Climate Politics
      http://cstpr.colorado.edu/prometheus/archives/climate_change/000398a_taxonomy_of_climat.html

      I thought that it might be worth focusing on the actual political and policy agendas at play. Please consider the list below as food for thought, experimental, subject to change and not definitive.

      proposed factions:
      Climate realists.
      Scientizers.
      Energy Policy Free Riders.
      Free Market Free Riders.
      International Relations Free Riders. There is undoubtedly a larger set of “free riders” who have sought to hitch their own favored agendas (e.g., species preservation, Bush Administration bashing, etc. etc.) to the climate issue, but these seem to be the most significant.
      Those who Suffer Climate Impacts.

  68. Guess the ocean didn’t get the memo about global cooling
    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadsst2gl/from:1970

  69. Judith,

    “Whereas people are increasingly labeling me as a ‘denier’ because I engage with sceptical individuals from outside the UN climate community.”

    No I wouldn’t agree that this is the only , or even the main, reason. I’d go further and agree that scientists like yourself should engage with those who claim to be ‘sceptics’.

    Its good that you’ve challenged the ‘skydragons’ on the GH effect but I would say there is more you can do along those lines to challenge some of the sillier ideas of climate sceptics.

    However, he main reason, IMO, why the denier/skeptics very much approve of you and also the reason why you are often, erroneously, accused of being one of them involves the issue of scientific uncertainty; or, particularly, the way you present it. I’m not qualified to say if you’re right that uncertainty is being underestimated. You may well be, and I would say that there are very probably many scientists in the mainstream consensus who would agree with you.

    So why aren’t they labelled deniers too? I would suggest they would qualify their comments in the manner ‘of course, increased uncertainty doesn’t necessarily mean a better outcome. It’s just as likely that it will be worse’.

    You don’t say that. If you did, and I’m sure you could think of other similar ones, you’d find all charges of ‘denierism’ would quickly be dropped. Try it sometime and we’ll see.

    • Chief Hydrologist

      Which ones? Dynamical complexity?

      ‘In principle, changes in climate on a wide range of timescales can also arise from variations within the climate system due to, for example, interactions between the oceans and the atmosphere; in this document, this is referred to as “internal climate variability”. Such internal variability can occur because the climate is an example of a chaotic system: one that can exhibit complex unpredictable internal variations even in the absence of the climate forcings discussed in the previous paragraph.Climate and climate change:
      some background science.’

      The Royal Society Climate change: a summary of the science I September 2010 I 2

      Those damn sceptics at The Royal Society. Why do you care who is wrong when threre is a log in thine own eye?

      • Chief,

        Chief,

        I’m not quite sure why this comment is relevant as a reply to mine but its good that you are looking at the Royal Society’s website.

        Quotes are good but do they sometimes give an inaccurate impression of the whole article? You wouldn’t want to do that though, would you Chief?

        You could have chosen this if you wanted to give a different impression.

        “There is strong evidence that changes in greenhouse gas concentrations due to human activity are the dominant cause of the global warming that has taken place over the last half century. This warming trend is expected to continue as are changes in precipitation over the long term in many regions. Further and more rapid increases in sea level are likely which will have profound implications for coastal communities and ecosystems.

        Mind you it always good to include the actual link of your reference. It makes it a bit easier to look at the whole thing, which is what principled people like yourself would always recommend.

        http://royalsociety.org/uploadedFiles/Royal_Society_Content/policy/publications/2010/4294972962.pdf

      • Chief Hydrologist

        The quote was referenced – it is a google away. The significance is that this sneaked in as aside in with all the usual claptrap. Have they understood the implication?

        ‘Thinking is centered around slow changes to our climate and how they will affect humans and the habitability of our planet. Yet this thinking is flawed: It ignores the well-established fact that Earth’s climate has changed rapidly in the past and could change rapidly in the future. The issue centers around the paradox that global warming could instigate a new Little Ice Age in the northern hemisphere.’

        Damn sceptics at the WHOI.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        ‘Researchers first became intrigued by abrupt climate change when they discovered striking evidence of large, abrupt, and widespread changes preserved in paleoclimatic archives. Interpretation of such proxy records of climate—for example, using tree rings to judge occurrence of droughts or gas bubbles in ice cores to study the atmosphere at the time the bubbles were trapped—is a well-established science that has grown much in recent years. This chapter summarizes techniques for studying paleoclimate and highlights research results. The chapter concludes with examples of modern climate change and techniques for observing it. Modern climate records include abrupt changes that are smaller and briefer than in paleoclimate records but show that abrupt climate change is not restricted to the distant past.’ Abrupt Climate Change: inevitable surprises.

        Damn sceptics at the NAS.

      • CH

        The abrupt paleoclimate changes referred to here arise from interruptions to northerly heat transport by the AMOC arising from freshening of high NH latitude waters. This seems to require a very large NH ice sheet under peak orbital forcing. No analogue exists today. My sense is that you are pushing the paleoclimate analogy much too hard and much too far here. You are not alone in that, as your references show, but AFAIK the AGW=NH abrupt cooling meme is not considered credible these days.

      • The WHOI article is a plea for funding for the WHOI.

      • There are many hypothesis’ for abrupt change – see for instance – http://www.nature.com/scitable/knowledge/library/abrupt-climate-change-during-the-last-ice-24288097 It includes snow and ice feedback as a basic mechanism – but what is the trigger?

        Simple narratives are rather silly especially when it results in rejecting the NAS and WHOI out of hand. There are many studies – and each may be neglected one by one on the basis of nothing much at all. But a picture of both complexity and uncertainty emerges.

      • CH

        You say:

        There are many hypothesis’ for abrupt change

        There are many hypotheses for abrupt climate change during glacial conditions that are *irrelevant* 11.5ka into the Holocene. As I said, unambiguously above:

        The abrupt paleoclimate changes referred to here arise from interruptions to northerly heat transport by the AMOC arising from freshening of high NH latitude waters. This seems to require a very large NH ice sheet under peak orbital forcing. No analogue exists today. My sense is that you are pushing the paleoclimate analogy much too hard and much too far here.

        Pointing to DO events and saying ooh look, mystery abrupt climate change and *implying* that something similar might be happening now is profoundly misleading.

        Does this bring the necessary clarity?

  70. Chief Hydrologist

    My prediction is that conservation farming will sequester so much carbon in the next decade or so that people will start to worry about alkaline oceans – and demand more burning of oil and gas. Technological innovation will exacerbate the problem by providing cheap and abundant non-carbon based energy.

    The argument can continue here with one side claiming low, negligible or negative sensitivity and therefore it made no difference at all. The other side will claim high sensitivity and therefore they were instrumental in saving the world for future generations.

    As a climate catastrophist (in the sense on René Thom) – I can claim to be correct whatever climate does or doesn’t do.

    How long can you keep this up Judith? My theory is this is all a sociological experiment and Judith is sitting back taking notes. There is a book deal in the offing.

  71. Reading Mojib Latif’s article breaking with climate change orthodoxy reminds me of a study I did in Chinese history at university, of three literati
    analysing the underlying causes of China;s political and social upheavals, from1895 to 1911. Seeking to understand the breakdown of a 3,000 year civilization, they examine its roots in Confucian culture, and while upholding the Confucian Four Books, their revision replaces their central concepts of moral order and harmony with values of change and progress. These fundamental changes in thinking indicated, that while these transitional thinkers still felt emotional attraction to tradition, they were no longer able to accept it intellectually.

    Is there, perhaps, an analogy here with Mojib Latif’s cooling and NAO cycles observations?

    • What Mojib cooling? The one that didn’t happen or the one that ain’t gonna happen?

      • ‘Using a new measure of coupling strength, this update shows that these climate modes have recently synchronized, with synchronization peaking in the year 2001/02. This synchronization has been followed by an
        increase in coupling. This suggests that the climate system may well have shifted again, with a consequent break in the global mean temperature trend from the post 1976/77 warming to a new period (indeterminate length) of roughly constant global mean temperature.’ Swanson and Tsonis 2009 – Has the climate recently shifted.

        The one that peer reviewed science keeps telling us about. Damn those sceptics.

      • According to Swanson, you are misrepresenting his work:

        What do our results have to do with Global Warming, i.e., the century-scale response to greenhouse gas emissions? VERY LITTLE, contrary to claims that others have made on our behalf. Nature (with hopefully some constructive input from humans) will decide the global warming question based upon climate sensitivity, net radiative forcing, and oceanic storage of heat, not on the type of multi-decadal time scale variability we are discussing here. However, this apparent impulsive behavior explicitly highlights the fact that humanity is poking a complex, nonlinear system with GHG forcing – and that there are no guarantees to how the climate may respond.

        Emphasis as original.

      • There is a difference between quoting the work verbatim and misrepresenting science. ‘… humanity is poking a complex, nonlinear system with GHG forcing – and that there are no guarantees to how the climate may respond…’ is exactly what I am saying.

      • And the fact remains that the latest climate ‘shifts’ will result in no warming for a decade or three more – i,e, ‘indeterminate length’ – http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2009/07/warminginterrupted-much-ado-about-natural-variability/ – you should really give the source of the quote you use.

      • And the fact remains that the latest climate ‘shifts’ will result in no warming for a decade or three more

        Swanson is cautioning that the *hypothesised* flattening in warming trend not be over-interpreted/blatantly misrepresented by contrarians. My reading of your comments above is that you are very keen to talk about anything that distracts from the big picture – which is *exactly* what Swanson was objecting to.

        These hypothesised shifts are not a ‘fact’ and therefore nothing ‘will’ happen. That is a misrepresentation too.

        I did link to the source – ‘Swanson’ is a clickable link.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        The changes have happened – they are in seen in physical and biological systems around world. But are especiially significant in the Pacific. – http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=8703 – This is not just a hypothesis – I don’t predict anything but a continuation of current conditions as the basis of past persitence. I have been saying this for years – http://www.americanthinker.com/2007/11/enso_variation_and_global_warm.html – although the mechanism for atmospheric warming or cooling is incomplete. Beyond that climate shifts to warmer or cooler conditions is unpredictable.

        Much ado about natural variability? A decade or three more of no warming is significant both scientifically and politically.

      • You make a prediction based on a hypothesis – fair enough. We shall see. My point (and Swanson’s) remains deftly unaddressed. Let me repeat what he said in the RC article I linked above, this time with my own emphasis:

        What do our results have to do with Global Warming, i.e., the century-scale response to greenhouse gas emissions? VERY LITTLE, contrary to claims that others have made on our behalf. Nature (with hopefully some constructive input from humans) will decide the global warming question based upon climate sensitivity, net radiative forcing, and oceanic storage of heat, not on the type of multi-decadal time scale variability we are discussing here.

        Does this bring clarity? First, your statement quoted below is flatly contradicted by the scientific consensus on the effects of a long-term increase in CO2 forcing:

        Beyond that climate shifts to warmer or cooler conditions is unpredictable.

        I will make a prediction derived from the scientific consensus: even if there is a sustained *flattening* of the warming trend, warming will resume within a decade or two. The next ‘climate shift’ (if such hypothesised events exist) will be a resumption of the warming trend. On a centennial scale, warming events will dominate and the centennial trend will reflect this unambiguously.

        Second, Swanson’s statement directly cautions against making either political or scientific capital by under-emphasising the transient, short-term nature of the hypothesised hiatus in warming. But that is exactly what you are attempting to do:

        Much ado about natural variability? A decade or three more of no warming is significant both scientifically and politically.

        As I said earlier, you are misrepresenting Swanson’s work here.

      • I have no problem with Tsonis and Swanson, etc. I think their work is brilliant, ground breaking, etc. It truly is.

        “But if we don’t understand what is natural, I don’t think we can say much about what the humans are doing. So our interest is to understand — first the natural variability of climate — and then take it from there. So we were very excited when we realized a lot of changes in the past century from warmer to cooler and then back to warmer were all natural.” – Tsonis

        What’s he saying? That all of the warming during the 20th Century was natural? Lol.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Elsewhere Tsonis removes these decadal wiggles and is left with a residual of about 0.1 degrees C/decade. Many other people have done the same in different ways – including Girma – to ghet similar results. Swanson does it by removing ENSO dragon-kings – leaving a residual that he ‘presumes’ is the global warming signal. I don’t think so. I think cloud radiative forcing was by far the major signal in the period. However – 0.1 degrees/decade? What is the huge and imminent problem?

        I call myself a climate catastrophist (in the sense of Rene Thom) – climate is likely to shift in surprising ways. The question of rational responses to anthropogenic emissions then arises . eprints.lse.ac.uk/27939/

        I have repeated that particular Tsonis quote often – http://www.quadrant.org.au/blogs/doomed-planet/2010/02/ellison

        The debate needs to shift – and there are a lot of people who will need to eat some humble pie to return some sense to the question and get on an effective decarbonisation trajectory. The CO2 is by no means the significant problem of the century – but we can effectively address it with policies that have multiple objectives.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        :lol:

    • Beth Cooper

      Mojib Latif seems, indeed, to have wandered off of the orthodox path, as you point out..

      You mention the upheaval of Chinese civilization from 1895 to 1911 and the conflict with 3,000 year old tradition. Having lived in China for a few years and worked with many Chinese there, let me give you my observation for what it’s worth..

      We, in the “West”, have been taught from childhood to “challenge” the status quo – be this in science or any other field (this may be changing as some teachers think it is more important to “indoctrinate” rather than to educate kids to “think for themselves”).

      Chinese scholars, however, do not look for radical challenges to the status quo; instead, once a scholar has attained a certain seniority or status, he/she can allow him/herself to interpret the works of the accepted masters in a slightly different fashion, adding a new nuance.

      Our “scientific method” calls for the ability of a hypothesis to successfully withstand all falsification attempts as it progresses from an “uncorroborated hypothesis” to “reliable scientific knowledge”.

      Empirical scientific data, such as those obtained from actual physical observations or reproducible experimentation, are required to falsify -or verify – a hypothesis.

      The AGW theory, per se, has not yet made this transition.

      It is difficult to “falsify” – is it, therefore, “unfalsifiable”? (“Bad news” for a “scientific hypothesis”.)

      The “CAGW” premise (as expressed by IPCC AR4) is even more difficult to “falsify” (“wait until year 2100 to see if global temperature rose by 2 to 6 degrees and “assume” AGW was responsible for X% of this”?)

      The IPCC “prediction” of 0.2 degC per decade early 21st century GH warming has already been falsified by the facts on the ground.

      Yet AGW proponents are denying this by using various rationalizations (“its was only a ‘projection’, not a ‘prediction’, AGW signal is there, but is temporarily overriden by natural climate variability, Chinese aerosols, Solar Cycle 24 or what-have-you; or, maybe, it’s being hidden in the deep ocean, where we just cannot find it, etc.”).

      This doesn’t sound like “science” to me.

      Max

  72. Monotonic warming, with the trend concave upward?
    Monotonic warming, linear trend?
    Flat line trend for the last few years?
    Cooling trend for the next ten-twenty years?

    No matter; all trends, up, down, or flat line are predicted by climate models and all absolutely confirm that climate change is driven by anthropogenic CO2.

    When you are a scientist and ALL data confirms your theory, life is good.

    For the moment, unfortunately, that only applies to Climate Scientists.

  73. “Latif predicted that in the next few years a natural cooling trend would dominate over warming caused by humans. The cooling would be down to cyclical changes to ocean currents and temperatures in the North Atlantic, a feature known as the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO).”

    Looks to me like another attempt to explain away the lack of warming in the twenty-first century. I set no store by ill-defined cycles that lend themselves to ambiguous interpretations. Fact is, global mean temperature as defined by the ENSO cycle center line has been simply flat, not just in the twenty-first century but also in the eighties and nineties. Any claims to the contrary have been illegitimate attempts to use the 2010 El Nino peak as a high point when mean temperature, defined by the center point of 2008 La Nina and 2010 El Nino, should be used. Recently Steve Milloy posted GISTEMP, NCDC, and HadCRUT3 temperature curves with monthly resolution for the satellite era on his web site. I had already analyzed the satellite data which revealed that the global mean temperature did not change from 1979 to 1997 and that the twenty-first century global mean temperature likewise was flat. I treated the three additional curves exactly like I had done with the satellite data in my book “What Warming?” It turned out that both GISTEMP and NCDC temperature curves yielded the same horizontal flat segments present in the satellite data. As I pointed out in in 2010 there was no warming whatsoever in the eighties and nineties. This is now confirmed by both GISTEMP and by NCDC data. But global temperature curves from Hansen to Müller feature a “late twentieth century warming” in this time slot. These have become standard. But they are erroneous in showing a warming that does not exist. This is not a trivial matter because this “late twentieth century warming” is taken to be the beginning of the alleged global warming today. Not only that, but Hansen testified to the Senate in 1988 that anthropogenic global warming had started. This claim is now clearly false and should be withdrawn. Checking temperature details we find that there were five warm El Nino peaks within that period. 1988 just happened to be the peak year of one of these. It was followed in succession by the cool 1988/89 La Nina, the 1991 El Nino, the 1992/93 La Nina and the 1995 El Nino. The three El Ninos were identical and the La Ninas in between cooled them down. Permanent real warming did not start until a super El Nino arrived in 1998, ten years after Hansen claimed that warming had started. It brought much warm water across the ocean and as a result global temperature rose by one third of a degree above the mean of the eighties and nineties. It was a step warming, it lasted only four years, and then it stopped. This, and not some greenhouse effect, is the cause of the very warm first decade of our century. It was also the only warming during the entire satellite era of temperature measurements. The new HadCRUT3 temperature curve still had the upward slope in the eighties and nineties that I had noted in my book. I have no idea how this slope was manufactured but it took the twenty-first century temperature up high. And then an even more strange thing turned up. Having reached a high point at the beginning of the twenty-first century their global mean temperature in the twenty-first century has a steep downward slope all the way to 2012. Neither one of these slopes is real because UAH satellites, RSS satellites, GISTEMP, and NCDC all show that these temperature segments are horizontal – no warming at all. It is such false temperature data that are apparently the source of the bogus “late twentieth century warming.” This warming should be eliminated because it gives justification to the bogus claim that this temperature segment shows warming.

  74. COOL FIRST, WARM LATER

    …the presence of vigorous climate variability presents
    significant challenges to near-term climate prediction (25, 26),
    leaving open the possibility of steady or even declining global
    mean surface temperatures over the next several decades
    that
    could present a significant empirical obstacle to the implementation
    of policies directed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions

    http://deepeco.ucsd.edu/~george/publications/09_long-term_variability.pdf

  75. In times of post normal ‘uncertain facts, values in dispute, high stakes and demand fer urgentdecisions, we can still enjoy a laugh about Tony’s tomotatoes and those evil slugs! :-)

  76. Communicating Climate Science
    Mojib Latif

    There is a broad scientific consensus that the climate of the 21st century will warm in response to the anthropogenic emission of greenhouse gases (GHGs) into the atmosphere, but by how much remains highly uncertain. This is due to three factors: natural variability, model error, and emission scenario uncertainty. We as climate scientists should stress this uncertainty when talking to the public. Dealing with uncertainty is an integral part of our daily life, and we are used to assess the risk of certain steps we take. Nobody would board, for instance, an aircraft that will crash with a probability of only ten percent. Emphasizing in the public discourse too much the consensus – which is an artificial construct – can be very dangerous, and the climate research community can lose its credibility when not clearly stating publicly the uncertainties.

  77. Say, Girma, what is that sound? You and i think we hear it, maybe Mojib Latif hears it too … overhead the sound of beating wings…

  78. The Skeptical Warmist (aka R. Gates)

    Here’s another reason to re-think the notion that natural variabilty plays any significant role in the recent Arctic sea ice decline.

    http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/files/2012/09/naam-ice-031.jpg

    It’s charts like this that give me a high degree of skepticism about an overall roll of natural cycles. Anthropogenic factors (both black carbon and of course CO2, methane, and N2O) seem much more likely factors.

  79. We do not know what the next climate shift will be … sound of beating wings … Chief H raises the problem of possible cooling whereby growing crops for a global population becomes an immediate and pressing problem. This is where our focus should be, not worrying about a possible two degrees of warming, about the difference in Australian average temperature between Mellbourne and Townsville.

  80. “Webhubtelescope is dishonest. He knows exactly what I meant and purposely misinterpreted it. No wonder he won’t use his real name. He doesn’t want it associated with the stupidity and dishonesty of his handle here. I bet it already is though.”

    You were the one that made a detached comment that seemed to be directed to some “Dear cowardly anonymous nincompoop”. How is that for being ambiguous and open for misinterpretation?

    The reason that Springer is a climate clown is that he believes in such weird stuff as asserting that the surface of the ocean is a green-house effect generator. Throwing out all sorts of assertions is the hallmark of an intelligent design advocate. They are so fixated at finding some sort of order to the world that they will throw all sorts of nonsense against the wall, in the vain hope that something sticks.

    • David Springer

      Calm down, WebHubTelescope. I don’t matter and neither do you. Once you get that through your pointy little head you can learn to relax and not take yourself so seriously.

      • I am not the one trying to find his role in the universe. Leave that up to the ID believers, I am sure you will figure something out, in your own very special condescending way.

  81. Waiting for the warming that never came

    But the wise men with their oracles had promised great warmth.

    I waited, as I shivered.

  82. [This got posted in the wrong place so am re-posting]

    Waiting for the warming that never came

    But the wise men with their oracles had promised great warmth.

    I waited, as I shivered.

  83. David Springer

    Desperation time. CO2 increased by 8% since 1998. Average temperature of the lower troposphere was flat or declining while it happened. Since 2010 average temperature of the lower troposphere cratered by 0.3C. Travesty squared.

    • Since 2010 average temperature of the lower troposphere cratered by 0.3C. Travesty squared.

      That was a record-strength La Nina, you buffoon ;-)

      Do you *really* not know this, or are you just trying it on?

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Of course increased intensity and frequency of La Nina is part of the pattern – this is quite well understood. – http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=8703 -

      • 2010 is reported to be the 2nd strongest La Nina in the record. Failed to beat out a WW1-era La Nina for the top spot. Gee, I wonder if there was a regime shift to a warming phase after that humdinger La Nina?

      • David Springer

        Oh I’m sorry. I didn’t know that global average temperature declines caused by a La Nina didn’t count as a global average temperature decline. Can we erase the 1998 El Nino from the record books too or do we only discount ENSO on the cold side as not counting.

        You really don’t know how ridiculous you are , do you? LOL

      • It’s an *oscillation*. Goes up, goes down, goes up. That’s why it’s called the El Nino Southern ‘Oscillation’, or ENSO for short. Clue’s in the name.

        Dearie me – I almost hoped you were trying it on. Turns out you are simply a buffoon :-)

      • Yes, it’s an oscillation just like the other global temperature indices (PDO, AMO, various GTAs, GSSTs…). But it still has trends on various timescales. ENSO has a positive trend since the middle of the 20th century.

      • ENSO does not have a ‘positive trend’. It’s a positive phase. You are muddling the terminology but doing it in such a way as to insert the idea of a trend into ENSO phases. This is highly misleading.

        It seems that you are yet another cyclomaniac who needs to cure himself of the erroneous belief that modern warming is being driven mainly by natural variability. The principal driver is a sustained imbalance in the planetary energy budget, as it must be. Natural variability does not trend; it is self-cancelling over time.

        Once again, I recommend Huber & Knutti (2011) Anthropogenic and natural warming inferred from changes in Earth’s energy balance:

        We find that since the mid-twentieth century, greenhouse gases contributed 0:85C of warming (5–95% uncertainty: 0:6–1:1C), about half of which was offset by the cooling effects of aerosols, with a total observed change in global temperature of about 0:56C. The observed trends are extremely unlikely (<5%) to be caused by internal variability, even if current models were found to strongly underestimate it. Our method is complementary to optimal fingerprinting attribution and produces fully consistent results, thus suggesting an even higher confidence that human-induced causes dominate the observed warming.

      • Correct captdallas, ENSO has phases, not trends. Google it. And FFS, no more of your junk graphs.

      • BBD, FFS, one person’s trash is another’s treasure :)

        http://redneckphysics.blogspot.com/2012/09/when-is-trend-and-trend.html
        Especially when looking for patterns in non-linear somewhat chaotic systems. The settling time following perturbations are an indication of the sensitivity and dampening of the system. You don’t find it interesting that the Tropical Eastern Pacific temperature “trend” since 1900 has been been remarkable stable?

      • Joshua, I saw that, :( A sad day for bacondom. That is what we get for using all that surplus grain for making ethanol. It was a plot to get our bacon bubba!

      • Use the extended MEI and your argument doesn’t work.

      • Edim

        Can you see a ‘trend’? Incidentally, do you know what the MEI is? Here’s a clue. First paragraph.

        But if we must talk about ‘trends’, then might I suggest Nicholls (2008)?

        Trends in the seasonal and temporal behaviour of the El Niño–Southern Oscillation over the period 1958–2007 have been assessed using two indices of the phenomenon, NINO3.4 and a non-standardised Southern Oscillation Index (SOI). There is no evidence of trends in the variability or the persistence of the indices, nor in their seasonal patterns. There is a trend towards what might be considered more “El Niño-like” behaviour in the SOI (and more weakly in NINO3.4), but only through the period March–September and not in November–February, the season when El Niño and La Niña events typically peak. The trend in the SOI reflects only a trend in Darwin pressures, with no trend in Tahiti pressures. Apart from this trend, the temporal/seasonal nature of the El Niño–Southern Oscillation has been remarkably consistent through a period of strong global warming.

        If you are genuinely interested in attempts to quantify the effects of ENSO on recent climate change, I strongly recommend Foster & Rahmstorf (2011):

        Finally, we list the linear trend in the signals due to ENSO, volcanic forcing and solar variation in table 3. The magnitudes of these trend contributions are quite small compared to the overall trends. In fact the net trend due to these three factors is negative for all data sets except UAH, for which it is zero. Hence these factors have not contributed to an upward trend in temperature data, rather they have contributed a very slight downward trend. Except for UAH data, the trend which is attributable to global warming is therefore very slightly greater than that which is observed in the unadjusted data.

        See F&R11 Fig. 7

        It’s not ENSO.

      • Yes, really. MEI isn’t a coastal weather station. You are conflating a temperature station trend and the MEI.

      • Either this is in jest, or it is unhinged:

        Then again, it could be because the Tropical Eastern Pacific wanders up and down a few degrees all the time, on occasion with a little spike above or below that range. Generally, those spikes means something is changing. About 125 thousand years ago, there was a little off the chart spike. Might be time for another spike. 1998 might have been that spike. So what happened after the spike about 125 thousand years ago? Not much.

        Please confirm that you are pulling my leg. Please.

      • BBD, Sorry, Clinton done it was pulling your leg. There is a common under dampened decay curve. That paper I link you to http://amselvam.webs.com/earlsel/socpp.PDF

        has a method without an application. So I have been looking at the anomalies between the solar cycle, a non-ergodic system and Earth climate, IMHO and non-ergodic system. They share common frequencies but not exactly, so you get misleading similarities. So I have been using the shift from ~41ka to ~100ka to find the divergences. There does appear to be internal dampened oscillations in the oceans initiated by solar with different decay periods.

        The 1470year +/- 500 year pseudo cycle is a internal settling not directly linked to solar except for the initial perturbation. The same decay can be seen in the 60ka Lake Tanganyika reconstruction by Tierney.

        http://redneckphysics.blogspot.com/2012/09/the-southern-oceans.html

        So I hate to bust yer bubble, but there is some natural osckilating going on :)

      • That Tropical Eastern Pacific SST ‘spike’ 125ka was within the Eemian climatic optimum. The Eemian being the last interglacial resulting from orbital forcing and associated feedbacks. You are *way* off on your own here. Just as you were when you muddled up the MEI with a weather station.

      • BBD, yes it was. The current one is in the middle of the modern climate optimum. The MEI is based on the ESNO region and the Galapagos is at the source of the ENSO, changes in cold water diversion from the Drake Passage.

        The CPC is the main heat sink of the planet since over 800ka ago and variation in surface winds and sea ice extent change the efficiency of the sink and the abysmal depth mixing. Depending on the depth of mixing (related to the efficiency of the sink and the heat capacity) the changes impact different depths with different time lags. The 2C wandering is due to ~2C freezing point of salt water and 0C of a fresh water dominated regime. The excursions beyond 2C are the anomalies, not the wandering.

  84. Cool first, warm later

    As it has done for 130 years => http://bit.ly/Rey6fD

  85. Folks, please play the ball not the man.

    • Sorry doc; it’s power ball.

    • Of course Girma. First let’s dispense with the obsolete HadCRUT3 dataset and use NOAA global and GISTEMP instead. Then let’s lose the OLR trend lines and fit polynomials to get a clearer impression of what is happening. Et voilà! The emergence of the anthropogenic signal in the 1970s shows up clearly.

      • BBD

        That is your interpretation of the data.

        This is mine and Latif’s and Swanson’s => http://orssengo.com/GlobalWarming/GmstModel.png

      • I doubt those two scientist would go near you. They’re nothing like you. You deny AGW; they do not.

      • That is your interpretation of the data.

        No, no, Girma. I’m merely a humble observer pointing to the scientific consensus view of what the data indicate.

      • BBD – one of the things I’ve noticed is people seem to think mid-century cooling will repeat in the same fashion, which was a pronounced cooling trend that lasted for decades. On GISS the peak was 1944. 1944 was not topped until 1980.

        It appears to be an assumption: that the ~1998-induced shift will do about the same thing as the ~1944-induced shift.

        Assuming 1998 was the equivalent peak kicking off the current two to three decades of cooling, what follows to date looks nothing like the middle of the 20th Century.

        Negative slope for the 1st 14 years of the mid-century cooling. 1944 was not topped until 1980.

        Positive slope for the 1st 14 years of the current global “cooling”. In my graph, Dec through November 1998 topped three times in the first 14 years; 1998 topped twice and equalled once.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        It is impossible for the pattern to repeat – as there is no pattern. It is chaotic bifurcation on decadal scales. To assume that the 20th century pattern will repeat is where everyone falls down.

        Here is an 11,000 year ENSO proxy – extracted from Tsonis’s Minoan paper – http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=ENSO11000.gif Red shift = El Nino

        Here is a new 1000 year proxy – http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=Vance2012-AntarticaLawDomeicecoresaltcontent.jpg – based on sea salt from Law Domes ice cores. More salt = La Nina

        ENSO is non-stationary and non-Gaussian on all timescales of interest.

        We can assume that ENSO is a resonable indicator of many aspects of climate – when viewed as an interconnected network node. That is it captures an aspect of the underlying dynamic climate system. What triggers this long term variability? I would lay odds on the sun.

      • JCH, Like Chief says, it won’t be a repeat, just a shift toward less warming to cooling. It should take another nudge, prolonged solar minimum, volcano or Antarctic ice extent shift, to make real cooling.

        http://redneckphysics.blogspot.com/2012/09/battle-of-hemispheres.html
        There is a chart at the end of that with the solar cycle on a longer scale, short term could be similar on a smaller scale, but there is solar impact that varies with current conditions. Different oceans can do their own thing until they synchronize. The Atlantic influences the most land based thermometers and has the greatest swings so while “global” temperature will eventually follow the bulk of the oceans, but who knows what blips will happen in the short run.

      • Like Chef says? Lol, this is the point I have been hinting at since Juday’s article about the climate shifting, which had to be a tear ago.

        We’re not cooling. We are not cooling for a decade or three.

        What we are doing is not warming quite as much, and that means the .1C per decade is HS.

      • And, I’m the only one here who said the climate could shift at any time.

        “Recent work (Tsonis et al, 2007), suggests that this variability is enough to account for all climate change since the 19th Century.” – Tricky Dickie Lindzen

        They have professors at MIT who can’t read. Who knew?

      • JCH, no trend, when a warming trend is predicted, is a trend. I really didn’t know why you avoid looking at the real climate driver, the oceans. The southern oceans have taken a cooling turn and the NH oceans will follow with the typical delay. It takes time to move that much energy around, so if you want to predict, you find the main thermal inertia that won’t stop on a dime and there ya go, a reasonable indicator of future climate. Or are you the kinda guy that buys on trends without doing your homework?

        http://redneckphysics.blogspot.com/2012/07/there-are-no-steps-it-is-constant.html

        “Until now, the decadal-scale variations and the ENSO events have been described individually, which implies independence from each other. However, from the results of the present study, we may suggest that an interaction between the regime shifts and the ENSO events takes place, i.e. the regime shifts are phaselocked in the ENSO events, like the ENSO events are phase-locked in the seasonal cycle of the climate system. This would induce the characteristic features of the regime shift: fluctuation of time intervals between the shifts, an abrupt change like a step function, and an ENSO-like spatial change pattern, as mentioned in the following.”

        ftp://ftp.wmo.int/Documents/PublicWeb/amp/mmop/documents/JCOMM-TR/J-TR-13-Marine-Climatology/REV1/joc1172.pdf

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Although I have quoted S&T 2007 above to the effect that the period is indeterminate – over 400 years the periodicity has been approximately bidecadal. http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/pubs/biondi2001/biondi2001.html

        The periodicity ranges from some 20 years to 40 years – in tree rings, corals, rainfall, and biology. The multi-decadal periodiity is also apparent in the sea salt ice proxy from the Law Dome.

        I am inclined to think cooler at the next shift – less insolation with the perhaps linked more La Nina. Also just on the basis of reversion to the mean.

      • David Springer

        captdallas2 0.8 +0.2 or -0.4 | September 25, 2012 at 10:13 pm |

        “JCH, Like Chief says, it won’t be a repeat, just a shift toward less warming to cooling. It should take another nudge, prolonged solar minimum, volcano or Antarctic ice extent shift, to make real cooling.”

        +1

        I consider the anthropogenic background warming to be a good thing that lengthens NH growing seasons. Moreover, the main driver of the warming, CO2, has other beneficial effects outside the lengthening of growing seasons in that it fertilizes the atmosphere making plants grow faster and enables them to use less fresh water per unit of plant growth.

        IN ADDITION, as if the above benefits weren’t enough, the modest warming is a hedge that will moderate expected (climatology) or unexpected (volcanic, solar) cooling events making them less disastrous to agriculture should they occur. It’s like an insurance policy against the next Little Ice Age or, God Help Us, the end of the Holocene Interglacial.

      • That’s a nice visualisation JCH. Thank you. I may even steal it ;-)

  86. BTW – Judith.

    I don’t “complain” that you don’t talk about tribalism among “skeptics.” I point it out, and suggest that your efforts would be more fruitful if you weren’t so selective in your focus.

  87. Edim, this is for you:

    I have been pointing out that the accumulation of CO2 in the atmosphere is a global temperature integral and doesn’t correlate with the anthropogenic emissions. In order to estimate the CO2 accumulation over a period of time, all you need to know is the temperature levels during this period.

    Unfortunately, the evidence does not back you up on this one iota.

    The evidence on CO2 rise being anthropogenic is absolutely cast iron.

    It’s quite simply a proven fact that anthropogenic emissions have cause the near 40% rise in atmospheric CO2 concentration from pre-industrial.

    Consider
    – the mass balance; atmospheric rise in concentration is ca 50% of known emissions
    – there is an increase in ocean acidity; ocean CO2 is increasing.
    – the isotopic evidence shows this is from fossil fuels
    – there is a corresponding decrease in atmospheric oxygen

    There’s no way around these facts. Trying to argue that CO2 isn’t anthropogenic is just not serious. It’s a fantasy.

    • VeryTallguy, thanks for your reply. First, I don’t accept any splicing of the ice core records (accuracy very questionable) with the direct continuous measurements of atmospheric CO2. I accept the latter. I am not convinced of any ~constant pre-industrial CO2 level of ~280 ppm. The change since ~1960 to present is ~80 ppm (395 – 315). That’s a 25% rise.

      It’s true that the airborne fraction (AF = ∆CO2/E) has a ~flat trend since observations of CO2 began at ML, with variations depending on temperature levels and human emissions. The average (since 1960) fraction of anthropogenic emissions which remain in the atmosphere (AF) is ~42%.
      http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/gmd/co2conference/posters_pdf/jones1_poster.pdf

      The annual atmospheric change itself (∆CO2) has risen from ~0.85 ppm/year in the 60s to ~2 ppm/year in the 2010s. It correlates with the global temperature levels. Longer than annual changes also correlate with the temperature levels. ∆CO2 = f(Ta). You don’t need emissions to estimate/calculate the accumulation. That’s all I’m saying.

      Again, yes I agree that E > ∆CO2.

  88. Latif predicts that a cool phase PDO may cause global temperatures to drop in this century, but it doesn’t seem to occur to him that a warm phase PDO may have contributed to the warming in the end of the last century.

    • Boy, I should have read more of the drek down here at this end of the comments before I bothered leaving one. Lesson learned.

      • Ya noticed! We are in wonderland. Everything that goes up, must barely go down, and then go way up again. And it’s all natural!

  89. Berényi Péter

    Well, at the current rate (~2 ppmv/annum), in two decades from 2008, that is, by 2028 atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration would increase to 425 ppmv (from 385 ppmv in 2008). That’s 14.3% of a doubling. With the standard IPCC value of climate sensitivity (3°C/doubling), it would imply 0.43°C warming in 2 decades. If natural cycles are able to counteract it for an extended period, what is more, can turn it into cooling, they must be powerful indeed. So much so, that in a period when natural cycles had a warming effect (in the last 2 decades of the 20th century) and overall warming was about the same (~0.4°C), simply no room is left for carbon dioxide induced warming.

    Therefore if there will indeed be cooling in the next couple of decades as Latif insists, it is absolutely inconsistent with a climate sensitivity to well mixed Tyndall gases as high as 3°C, in other words, the alleged (threefold) water vapor amplification built into computational climate models is simply non-existent in the real world.

    So. No matter what Latif says about his allegiances, he is in fact a skeptic and has no place on the team.

    • If internal variability is powerful, then why is the temperature at the end of the 20th Century not within the implied range. Instead it is significantly higher.

      How did internal variability fail to cool the surface air temperature?

      • Berényi Péter

        Dear JHC, you don’t have a firm grasp of the concept ‘variability‘, do you?

        As temperature varies, it can either go up or down, often erratically. At the end of the last century it happened to go up. So what?

        If range of variability due to influences other than well mixed Tyndall gases is commensurable on decadal scale to the warming observed, it is inconsistent with a high sensitivity to changes in IR optical depth in narrow frequency bands caused by said gases.

        If you thought it was the other way around, you should explicate it, especially what you’ve meant by ‘implied range’. Implied by what? Experiments? Propositions describing the statistical behavior of 4 thousand DOOM runs? Or?

    • Berényi Péter

      Excellent point.

      Thank you

      • Hey Girma, how did all powerful natural variation fail to cool the surface air temperature, let’s see, around .1C per decade? What, it ran out of freon, but not out of coal? Lol.

      • JCH

        Sooner or latter you will admit that climate sensitivity of 3 deg C is an exaggeration

      • Since I will not be alive when our grand little atmospheric experiment with the only planet we have is over, I will never know.

        But I suspect they will be saying, “Whoops, our bad!”

      • Heh, the anthropogenic aliquot will still be around at the onset of the next glaciation. So waddya tink o’ dat?
        ===============

      • JCH

        Only 5 to 10 years are required to see the 1970’s conditions repeat. I hope we will all be still on earth to witness it.

      • Girma, you do not get it. Repeating the 1970s SAT says nothing about climate sensitivity.

      • According to the 60-year cycle we should be at 1952 temperatures now. We are 0.7 C warmer. Oops, what went wrong with that theory? Or perhaps something else is going in that is bigger.

      • JCH

        Recent warming phase => 0.16 deg C per decade warming

        Long term Observation trend => 0.06 deg C per decade warming

        The recent warming phase is transient. As a result:

        IPCC Magnification Factor = 0.16/0.06 = 2.7

        True Climate Sensitivity = IPCC Climate Sensitivity/IPCC Magnification Factor = 3/2.7 = 1.1 deg C for doubling of CO2.

        There has not been any change in the global mean temperature trend of 0.06 deg C per decade since 1850 => http://bit.ly/Aei4Nd

    • David Springer

      Berényi Péter | September 25, 2012 at 5:40 pm | Reply

      “the alleged (threefold) water vapor amplification built into computational climate models is simply non-existent in the real world.”

      Bingo! Water vapor amplification is a fabrication invented to turn a welcome degree of CO2 warming into a catastrophic degree of warming. But that’s not the end of it. Due to the physics of water its response to downwelling longwave infrared the amount of non-amplified CO2 warming calculated at 1.1C/doubling is a maximum value only obtained over dry (including frozen) surfaces. This handily explains why most of the observed secular warming is over land in the higher latitudes in the winter. Over land in the higher latitudes the surface is frozen for a significant fraction of the year and thus the latent path is not available to carry away the energy from surface so the radiative path takes up the slack and it does so by rising surface temperature as opposed to speeding up the water cycle. Neat, huh?

  90. max manacker @25/o9 11.26am:

    Thx fer yer response Max, you lived in China, you have valuable observations to offer on political transitions in that fascinating country.

    What you so clearly note re C/AGW ‘Science and falsification doesn’t sound like ‘science’ to me either but more like ‘theory inocculation,’ as Karl Popper describes it. Seems ter me that this was partly what the three Chinese literati, K’ang Yu-Wei, Liang CH’-ch’ao and Yen Fu were doing after China’s defeat in the Sino-Japanese War, in their nuanced reappraisal of the Confucian Four Books. But in trying to find equivalences to western dynamism within Chinese culture they were transforming Confucianism into something it was not.

  91. Chief Hydrologist

    No one wants to defend Springers ad homs – certainly no more than the websters habitual abuse. It is all a bit tedious. Frankly I have ceased reading either.

    • David Springer

      Oh I’m sorry (not) to have offended your dainty sensibility with ad hominems. I thought you Aussies were made of sterner stuff. I guess I was wrong in that regard eh, creampuff?

  92. Chief Hydrologist

    That was meant to have a question mark – evaporation and condensation is an energy conserving system? Energy is always conserved – what matters is the production of entropy – which is not simple in a non-equilibrium system.

  93. “Edim | September 25, 2012 at 11:07 am | Reply
    No, it’s you who is dishonest and trying to sabotage the discussion. Everybody can see that. Or you’re not very smart.

    Regarding the atmospheric CO2 levels, I have been pointing out that the accumulation of CO2 in the atmosphere is a global temperature integral and doesn’t correlate with the anthropogenic emissions. In order to estimate the CO2 accumulation over a period of time, all you need to know is the temperature levels during this period. Nature will demonstrate.”

    You are a waste of space, Edim. Just look at the outstandingly pathetic drivel that spews from your keyboard:
    “I have been pointing out that the accumulation of CO2 in the atmosphere is a global temperature integral and doesn’t correlate with the anthropogenic emissions.”

    That is an assertion, with no scientific basis for its validity. That’s why you are on the clown list. You have zero intuition when it comes to scientific phenomena, and your specialty is to act as the knee-jerk contrarian for the skeptic team.

    http://tinyurl.com/ClimateClowns

  94. Chief Hydrologist

    So what we get is a quite vicious attack on a hapless and civilised engineer and environmental scientist. I thought I would upload this just for the hell of it.

    http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=LT2010.png

    Navier-Stokes equations are of course the partial differential equations of fluid motion – and describe turbulence that is in principle the essence of nonequilibrium thermodynamics in the climate system. As a water specialist – hydrologically and in terms of biogeochemical cycling – this equation is core business. It is solved numerically across a finite element grid in general circulation models and in many areas where we are interested in fluid flows.

    But just because it can be solved doesn’t mean that the solutions carry much weight. In climate it is because of uncertainties in data, in the number of processes modelled, in couplings between system components and in large grid size compared to the scale of important processes such as convection and cloud formation. The grid size is limited by computing power. In models it is because the equations are themselves chaotic – they were for instance at the core of Lorenz’s convection model when he rediscovered chaos theory in the early 1960’s. Solutions diverge exponentially with time because of ‘sensitive dependance’ and ‘structural instability’. – http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=sensitivedependence.gif – There is a very good – if difficult – discussion of these issues by James McWilliams here – http://www.pnas.org/content/104/21/8709.full.

    So no – solving an equation is not the same the modelling the process unless the model is demonstrably correct. Throwing a name at something is not the same as understanding it.

    The dishonesty, ignorance and abuse is however abundantly clear.

  95. In response to Chief Hydrologist | September 26, 2012 at 2:06 am

    Viciousness against the hapless, huh? You are now trying to play the role of the victim instead of a purveyor of FUD.

    Chief is delusional when he implies these bifurcations are anything more than small perturbations on the significant thermal bath, ~300K, that we are sitting in.

    To a puny human being, sure they look large, but step back and take a long view and one realizes the natural process are insignificant. What matters is the forcing function. That fact is at the heart of observational science from the molecular level all the way up the ladder.

  96. Edim 24/09 12.14pm quotes Shakespeare:
    ‘The sun that shines from heaven shines but warm,
    And lo! I lie between that sun and thee:’

    And Pooh Dixie, 24/09 1.47pm:
    ‘Actually it could well be the sun for a substantial part of what we observe, cites Bob Tisdale.

    … and clouds fer cooling albido, Palle’s Earthshine Study:
    http://www.bbso.njit.edu/Research/EarthShine/

  97. On Klimazwiebel, I posted a link and a comment with a focus on the aspect of tribalism, which is IMO at the heart of J.C.’s remarkable post. In case you are interested in an anthropologist’s take from a German perspective, please have a look here: http://klimazwiebel.blogspot.de/2012/09/the-end-of-tribalism.html

  98. David Springer

    Stupid WordPress broken threading!

    Berényi Péter | September 25, 2012 at 6:17 pm | Reply

    More like 61% – 39%, at least according to IPCC AR4 WG1 FAQ. Even that 39% is misleading a bit, because 24% goes to outer space directly through the atmospheric IR window, only 15% of the heat flux leaving the surface is transferred to the atmosphere radiatively. And most of it is absorbed in the first several hundred meters, I must add.

    Radiative heat transfer only starts to dominate in the upper troposphere.

    Grade A+ for Berényi Péter.

    Extra credit for having the cojones to attach his real name to his opinion like we should expect in a civil debate amongst responsible adults.

  99. Chief Hydrologist

    Here’s one from – A perspective on decadal climate variability and
    predictability 2010 Mojib Latif,NoelS.Keenlyside – http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=LT2010.png

    There are a few here unwilling to ask the hard questions.

  100. David Springer

    Chief Hydrologist | September 25, 2012 at 11:18 pm | Reply

    “‘That was meant to have a question mark – evaporation and condensation is an energy conserving system? Energy is always conserved – what matters is the production of entropy – which is not simple in a non-equilibrium system.’ At least have the honesty to quote the correction. ”

    What matters is that evaporation, CONVECTION, and condensation insensibly transports buku energy from the surface to the cloud deck. What matters is that this mode of energy transport is unaffected by greenhouse gases restricting the radiative pathway between ground and cloud because greenhouse gases don’t absorb and re-radiate latent heat. What matters is that we live and breath and grow crops on the surface not in the cloud layer. What matters is that restricting the radiative surface cooling path does not increase surface temperature when the latent pathway is free to take up the slack. What matters is that non-condensing greenhouse gases only have the maximal effect raising surface temperature over dry and/or frozen land. What doesn’t matter is that the lapse rate between ground and cloud is reduced and clouds form 100 meters higher as a result of a CO2 doubling over water and constantly wetted land.

    • Chief Hydrologist

      Yes David – I think everyone understood that except the webster. I m sure I mentioned someting of the sort. I think you should keep the bleeding obvious to kiddies climate sites and the narrative to story time.

      • Second order effects are not as strong as first order effects and not as obvious. There you go.

      • The Earth’s surface cooling fluxes:

        Evaporation: 45%
        Radiation: 41%
        Convection: 14%
        Total: 100%
        http://science-edu.larc.nasa.gov/EDDOCS/images/Erb/components2.gif


      • Edim | September 26, 2012 at 7:27 am |

        The Earth’s surface cooling fluxes:

        Evaporation: 45%
        Radiation: 41%
        Convection: 14%
        Total: 100%
        http://science-edu.larc.nasa.gov/EDDOCS/images/Erb/components2.gif

        The Earth’s heating flux: Radiation ~ 100%
        The Earth’s cooling flux: Radiation ~ 100%

        I don’t need a reference book to tell me that, as there are only four forces operational in the universe, electro-magnetic, gravity, and the strong and weak nuclear forces.

        The interaction between the earth’s surface and the top of the atmosphere allows some redistribution of the heat, and modifies the frequencies of the electromagnetic radiation that is allowed to more easily escape. That is why the earth’s surface cooling fluxes are of second order. They only act as a correction term to allow the frequency bookkeeping to be done more accurately. To first order, Planck’s radiation law will generate the overall 33C difference between the earth without GHGs and that with GHGs. (To be fair, some believe the 33C is even higher, but the second order correction factor pulls it down to only 33C)

        This is at the heart of the knowledge that goes into a book such as Pierrehumbert’s Principles of Planetary Climate

        You should follow conventional science sometime. But then again its possible that you know all this, and only portray a contrarian attitude to increase FUD..

      • The Earth’s cooling flux: Radiation ~ 100%

        Yes and interestingly only ~9% of the total planetary cooling flux comes directly from the surface (the window), the rest (~91%) is atmospheric radiation. Radiatively active gases enhance atmospheric radiation.

      • That’s why Edim is on the Climate Clown farm report.
        http://tinyurl.com/ClimateClowns

      • Webster 100% radiant at the radiant surface which is somewhere above my house. The bulk of the heat is not stored in that surface. An object cannot emit more energy that can be transfer to its radiant surface. Physics is funny like that. So the emissivity of the “surfaces” is dependent on the internal thermodynamics of each and every little thermodynamic layer of the object. Damn fluid dynamics :)

  101. David Springer

    BBD | September 26, 2012 at 5:47 am |

    “No, no, Girma. I’m merely a humble observer pointing to the scientific consensus view of what the data indicate.”

    Yes, yes, BigButtDonk. Ad populum fallacy. We know.

  102. Just sounds like a scientist re-positioning themselves, folks should read up on Festinger’s cognitive dissonance theory, we will soon see a lot of warmists entering the belief diconfirmation paradigm. Prepare for the wailing and gnashing of teeth.

  103. Chief Hydrologist

    ‘In most years the Humboldt current brings relatively cold water northward along the west coast of South America, an effect increased by upwelling of cold water along the Peruvian Coast. The cold water then flows westward along the equator and is heated by the tropical sun. These normal conditions make the western Pacific about 3°C to 8°C warmer than the eastern Pacific. However, in El Niño years the central or eastern Pacific may become as warm as the western Pacific.’http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/glossary/elnino/elnino.shtml

    These currents are driven by storms spiralling off the Antarctic circumpolar winds. These storms are constrained to higher latitudes with a positive SAM and let loose with a negative SAM. I have introduced SAM the climate dog before to much merriment. In the positive phase there must be less flow through Drake’s Passage and more in the Humboldt Current.

    In the normal course of events there is a warm layer floating on the surface of the ocean. When this gets displaced or diluted by the Humboldt Current I presume it is easier for the surging and turbulent sub-surface currents to surface. This produces wind, cloud and pressure feedbacks and La Nina propagates across the central Pacific.

    It is a physical mechanism linking solar activity and ENSO.

    http://dornsife.usc.edu/labs/jeg/documents/JEG_AGU2005_talk.pdf

  104. BBD –
    The MWP is not only conclusively proven by physical evidence but is also amply documented in the historical record. To deny that it happened is a lie. Denying it is nothing but political hackwork, not science, and expresses an abiding contempt for truth and honest dealing.

  105. Judith said,
    “So just when I thought some progress was being made here, we see the outrage of Watt’s airtime on PBS. I suspect that the bigger significance of Watts statements on PBS is that people will start to realize that sceptics are asking legitimate questions about climate science and their methods.”

    Watts is not raising legitimate questions. His major claim, which he has been making for years, is that the increase in global temperatures shown in all 6 of the scientific data bases, is an artifact of the UHI, and poor quality weather stations. This has been shown to be false by about a dozen papers by experts in the field, even before Muller’s study appeared. His ballyhooed announcement of his new paper, and the publication he released, is clearly false and has fallen apart. His paper has been sent back to him for revision, because his claim rests on using RAW data from good rural stations, as the basis of his claim. It is known that this data needs to be corrected for changes in “time of observation” from afternoon to morning, or else a substantial cooling bias is introduced.

    The PBS interviewer is at fault for not omitting to ask about this during the interview. Watts is not a genuine skeptic. If you frequent his blog, you would find out that no argument against AGW, no matter how foolish is met with approval.

  106. There’s a prediction of cooling until 2027 which I archived on 22 August 2011 on this page which has not been altered since that date …

    http://www.earth-climate.com/home.html

    It reads …

    From 2003 the effect of El Niño had passed and a slightly declining trend has been observed. This is the net effect of the 60-year cycle starting to decline whilst the 934 year cycle is still rising. By 2014 the decline should be steeper and continue until at least 2027. (This statement was archived 22 August 2011 here)