Playing God

by Judith Curry

With efforts to halt climate change on life support, scientists are looking at some radical options to save our planet.  But could the cure be worse than the disease? – Gernot Wagner and Martin Weitzman

Foreign Policy article

Gernot Wagner and Martin Weitzman have a provocative article in Foreign Policy entitled Playing God.   Some excerpts:

All seven billion of us human beings are “free riders” on a planet that is heating up. We put billions of tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere every year, and largely aren’t required to pay for the privilege. There’s too little incentive to stop polluting.

“Free riding” also plagues relations between countries. Some, like the European Union have a cap or tax on carbon pollution. Most are still waiting on the sidelines. Why should any single country cut its carbon emissions when it knows that its reductions will only be a drop in the bucket toward solving climate change — and other nations aren’t asking their citizens to pay their fair share?

“Free riders” are only half the problem. “Free drivers” may be as important. The allure of geoengineering derives from the simple fact that – given what little we know about it at the moment – it appears to be a comparatively cheap way to combat climate change. And it doesn’t take a global agreement to act. It takes one actor – one country – in the driver’s seat.

That’s what makes the “free driver” effect so powerful. Geoengineering is seductively cheap, and it doesn’t take the collective will of billions of people – or policies guiding those billions – to have a major effect. Anyone capable of flying a fleet of planes at high altitudes could conceivably have a go at altering the planet’s atmosphere, and do so at a fraction of the cost of decreasing carbon dioxide pollution. But here’s the catch: Nobody knows the costs of potential unknown and sometimes unknowable side effects, and there could be grave political and legal repercussions when someone starts playing God with the climate.

It doesn’t take much imagination to see that pumping one pollutant into the atmosphere in an attempt to offset the effects of another could backfire. It may also be impossible to demonstrate which adverse climate events were caused by which single geoengineering intervention. That throws a wrench into the traditional research model: It’s one thing to study the effects of a past volcanic eruption or to fiddle in a lab with self-contained experiments. It’s quite another to devise an experiment that could be conducted in the real world. It would be all too easy to blur the line between experiment and deployment. That and many other questions need to be answered, lest we enter wholly unchartered territory when it comes to playing with the atmosphere of our shared home.

Talk of geoengineering inevitably leads to the question of “moral hazard.” Will the exploration of these technologies lull humanity into thinking that it need not act responsibly and cut carbon emissions? Perhaps. Seat belt laws may make some drivers feel so safe that they drive more recklessly. Still, that is hardly an argument against those laws.

The worst we can do is fall into the trap of thinking geoengineering is a panacea to our climate change problem. While its initial costs may be seductively low, no one knows the unintended consequences of trying to alter the planet’s atmosphere. Just as it seems to cost almost nothing to emit carbon – leading all of us to emit more than we ought to – geoengineering may appear cheap at first, only to leave humanity and nature to foot a much larger bill later on. “Free riding” turns out not to be cheap after all. “Free driving” may face the same conclusion.

The fact that climate change’s effects are distributed unevenly around the globe may also lead some nations to experiment with geoengineering on their own. All it takes is a single actor willing to focus on the purported benefits to his country or her region to pull the geoengineering trigger. The task with geoengineering is to coordinate international inaction while the international community considers what steps should be taken. The fate of the planet cannot be left in the hands of one leader, one nation, one billionaire.

“Free riding” and “free driving” occupy opposite poles of the spectrum of climate action: One ensures that individuals won’t supply enough of a public good. The other creates an incentive to engage in potentially reckless geoengineering and supply a global bad. It’s tough to say which one is more dangerous. Together, these powerful forces could push the globe to the brink.

Unintended consequences

OilPrice has an article entitled How Far Should We Go To Battle Climate Change?   The article reminds us of examples of unintended consequences of human engineering of natural systems:

  • Rabbits were deliberately introduced to Australia, but years later a fence had to be built across the whole continent to keep them at bay, and when that didn’t work diseases were released to try and cull the overwhelming population. 
  • The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers spent one century straightening waterways to make them more navigable, and the next century putting them back the way they were to prevent flooding.
  • The European wild boar was intentionally introduced into California for sport hunting, only to become an agricultural pest that farmers pay now hunters to remove from their vineyards.
  • •    Salt cedar and tamarisk were deliberately planted by early environmentalists in order to help reduce erosion, and are now being laboriously hand-removed by a new generation of environmentalists to restore the native habitat.
  • Suppression of small fires in national forests both interrupts the life cycle of fire-dependent species and leads to mega wildfires that destroy instead of restore. 
  • Scientists trying to study the effects on animals of a nuclear war under laboratory conditions created killer bees, which escaped and have proven impossible to fully exterminate.
  • Westerners put in charge of environmental preservation on the island of Komodo forbade the natives from practicing a religious custom of feeding the Komodo Dragons, resulting in the hungry dragons eating people.

The Gilded Age of Weather Modification

American Heritage has a fascinating article entitled Part III What can we do about it?  (I can’t find the first two parts).  The subtitle is:  For more than 200 years, Americans have tried to change the weather by starting fires, setting off explosions, cutting trees, even planning to divert the Gulf Stream.  The question now is not how to do it, but whether to do it at all.

The article provides fascinating historical anecdotes, here are a few:

RAIN MADE TO ORDER: PRELIMINARY EXPERIMENTS IN TEXAS PROVE SUCCESSFUL . The headline might be yesterday’s, but in fact it appeared in August 1891. At that time, an expedition funded by Congress was traveling through the drought-stricken Southwest trying to make rain by aerial explosions. Its early reports exuded optimism, as though the United States, its land frontier erased, had now begun the taming of the weather.

Once a week, [Espy] proposed, let a string of small timber lots, stretching from the Great Lakes to the Gulf along the Western frontier, be set ablaze. On that chosen day, each week, a long line of rain showers would be formed and would make its way eastward across the states, until it broke over the Atlantic. The passage of this curtain would wring the moisture from the air, and the rest of the week would be clear. The plan, said Espy, would banish all the inconveniences of the fickle weather: drought, floods, “oppressive heats” and “injurious colds,” hail, tornadoes, and “violent wind.” It could be done at a cost of half a cent per citizen per year.

The most widely publicized proposal for climate modification followed a major disaster, the sinking of the Titanic in April 1912. (One of the victims was John Jacob Astor; only in his fictional world had icebergs been banished from the seas.) In September a New York engineer named Carroll Livingston Riker proposed that the government should construct a jetty across the Grand Banks of Newfoundland, blocking the southerly flow of the cold Labrador Current and allowing the Gulf Stream to proceed with its full force into the Arctic. The expected results would more than justify the price tag of two hundred million dollars: the ice of Greenland and the Arctic would melt, fogs be banished from the coast, and the northern lands of America and Europe be made not only habitable but pleasant.

JC comments:  In the 1970’s as a student, I had courses in weather modification (cloud seeding) and inadvertent weather modification (pollution, urban heat islands, etc).  Cloud seeding is an excellent example of the challenges of producing the desired effect and of documenting that your action had some causative component (it aint easy).  The unintended consequences (e.g. downstream droughts or floods) introduce a legal nightmare into such activities.  The fundamental challenge is that even now, there are many things we still don’t understand at a quantitative-predictive level about basic cloud microphysics and its interplay with cloud dynamics in producing precipitation.

While I don’t object so much in principle to carbon sequestration, I view modification via atmospheric particulates to be potentially Frankenstein stuff, with possibly horrible unintended consequences.  The free driver issue is a substantial and growing concern.

I’m in favor of research into geoengineering options; this provides a practical focus for learning more about how our atmosphere and climate system works, and its useful to have these options in the back of our mind to counter other policy options that are potentially worse.  But the line between research and implementation is fuzzy if actual experiments are undertaken in the atmosphere.

And finally, I suspect that 100 years from now, at least some of our geoengineering ideas will look as silly (or dangerous or ineffective) as the 1912 plans to modify the Gulf Stream.

415 responses to “Playing God

  1. “…given what little we know about it at the moment – it appears to be a comparatively cheap way to combat climate change.”

    This phraseology could be applied throughout the climate debate.

    Given what little we know about it at the moment – ACO2 could be driving up global average temperature to a catastrophic level.

    Given what little we know about it at the moment – ACO2 could be having negligible impact on GAT (assuming we can even calculate it).

    Given what little we know about it at the moment – we can’t really say with any confidence what the climate will be like in 20, 50 or 100 years.

    Given what little we know about it at the moment – maybe it would be a bad idea to use climate as justification for decarbonizing the global economy.

    Given what little we know about it at the moment – maybe it’s a lucky thing that the ultimate decision will be made by all those stupid voters, rather than the climate “scientists” whose hubris leads them to think they can control global climate.

  2. Without the cost of the Grand Banks jetty , the quality of life in America could be imroved by erecting paywalls around absurdist climate blogs to keep the cranks in.

    • Heinrich the Norwegian Elkhound

      Not only that – there were millions of fish on the Grand Banks in 1912.

      That was before the factory ships – Before we started playing cod.

      • If only someone could come up with a good idea to eliminate all of those free-riding humans, the planet would be a paradise. No one to bother all the little fishies and other creatures.

  3. Heinrich the Norwegian Elkhound

    Gernot Wagner and Martin Weitzman:

    But here’s the catch: Nobody knows the costs of potential unknown and sometimes unknowable side effects, and there could be grave political and legal repercussions when someone starts playing God with the climate.

    Judith Curry:

    While I don’t object so much in principle to carbon sequestration, I view modification via atmospheric particulates to be potentially Frankenstein stuff, with possibly horrible unintended consequences.

    Alarmists.

    The irony here is so thick you have to cut it with naptha to pump it through the intertubes.

    • Yr: “The irony is so thick…”

      It’s irony
      Maintains “Hiveprick”
      That “dogs” this blog
      In measure thick

      And irony,
      Yes, here is found
      But not as thinks
      Our dear elkhound

      The irony
      Is rather he
      Would lift his leg
      And with his pee

      Mark the post–whiz!–
      On this fair blog
      Called “Playing God”
      While “playing dog”

    • Judith Curry:
      ”While I don’t object so much in principle to carbon sequestration, I view modification via atmospheric particulates to be potentially Frankenstein stuff, with possibly horrible unintended consequences.”

      Nonsense, Judy- see Igor’s guest post at Junk Science Judo

  4. That’s interesting. Imagine Frankenstein works fine, and we could really choose a preferred “global mean temperature”. Not everything is done; you have some questions to answer first. Such as…

    – What GMT, and for what reasons?

    – When are we sure the pre-Frankenstein temperature is anthropogenic and dangerous, and we have to act?

    My guess is it would change some alarmist perspectives and “consensus”.

  5. Our hostess writes “While I don’t object so much in principle to carbon sequestration,”

    I object very strongly indeed to carbon sequestration. Once again, Judith has chosen some of her references which assume that CAGW is real. There is absolutley no solid scientific evidence to prove that CAGW is real. The recent thread on the Sunday Mail shows just how little solid scientific evidence any of the proponents of CAGW can bring forward. Satellite observations confirm that the earth is greening, and this is probably due to all the CO2 we are adding to the atmosphere. I have no objection to carbon dioxide recycling, but sequestration is an entirely different issue.

    It once again shows that our hostess believes in CAGW. We still have not convinced her that CAGW is a hoax,. Oh well! We just have to keep on trying.

    • Heinrich the Norwegian Elkhound


      The recent thread on the Sunday Mail shows just how little solid scientific evidence any of the proponents of CAGW can bring forward.

      A whole blog-thread with no scientific evidence?

      That’s impossible.


      It once again shows that our hostess believes in CAGW. We still have not convinced her that CAGW is a hoax,. Oh well! We just have to keep on trying.

      Stay focused.

      Once you have her believing in the global conspiracy, it will only be a matter of time before all the rest of the scientific evidence falls like global temperatures.

  6. I am not particularly religious, but here there is a certain utiiity to:

    “Man proposes, God disposes.”

  7. On both sides one wonders how will the earth’s homeostatic processes hold up.

  8. Judith, you say “I’m in favor of research into geoengineering options…”
    The problem is they will do it with computer models, and we all know how good that is…

    • Eval Porat

      As long as they ONLY “do it with computer models”, that’s fine.

      Computer games never killed anyone.

      Max

  9. Interesting group of articles given all that is being written and debated these days about GMOs – which is essentially another form of geo-engineering that is perhaps fraught with similar long-term potentiality for unintended consequences.

    Particularly interesting because it’s fun to watch partisans scrambling about trying to figure out which potential long-term consequences to be “concerned” about and which ones to ignore. Reminds me of watching the ants when I turn over a rock in my garden.

    • You have a point, but I think geoengineering via injecting sulfate into the stratosphere has a big leg up on GMOs in terms of global geopolitical consequences. Of course, I can envision a scenario where GMOs led to war etc. as well, I just think there’s a lot more inertia to overcome. I think I disagree with Judith on the Frankenstein analogy. Maybe it seems that way to climate scientists, Judith included. Which then starts one asking how important climate is, etc. etc.

      I still favor tinfoil-hatting the north pole (for solar radiation management) as a better way.

      • Using sulfates to cool warming from CO2 makes sense as long as you don’t consider ocean acidification a potential problem.

      • well, tinfoil hatting won’t help with ocean acidification either. but as I’ve said before I have a hard time thinking that AGW and ocean acidification must necessarily be addressed on the same time scale.

      • Sorry Bill, I wasn’t clear, the sulfates would make sulfuric acid. It would compound the problem. Even if there really wasn’t a problem now they could cause there to be one.

      • You have a point, but I think geoengineering via injecting sulfate into the stratosphere has a big leg up on GMOs in terms of global geopolitical consequences.

        Probably – but I also think that much partisanship hides behind a screen of “untended consequences.” Perhaps the scale is different – and I’m not characterizing the information that is available so far – but it isn’t hard to imagine scenarios where the unintended consequences of GMOs could be quite severe. No actions are free from unintended consequences.

        Geoengeering has unintended consequences, and the decision to not implement geoengineering due to potential unintended consequences also has unintended consequences.

        IMO, the point is not to just be “alarmed” about potential unintended consequences but to be open to investigation. What I see is a lot of rhetoric about unintended consequences that is based on a binary mentality. In other words, the notion that some bioengineering in the past has had unintended consequences can be given an oversized influence in our analysis of proposals for new bioengineering. The full context needs to place the questions in full context. It reminds me of when people create lists of when scientific “consensus” was wrong- without placing them in the context of how often the “consensus” has been right. (Another popular example is that since government actions in the past have had unintended consequences therefore government should be drowned in a bathtub.)

        Concern about unintended consequences of geoengeering needs to be grounded in full context – otherwise we need to just all commit mass suicide. Was widespread use of CFCs geoengineering? Should they have never been used? Were the global changes made to reduce the ozone hole not a form of geoengineering? Should we have not made changes because there might have been unintended consequences of reducing the ozone hole?

        I just think there’s a lot more inertia to overcome.

        Sure. But what biases correlate or cause inertia?

        I still favor tinfoil-hatting the north pole (for solar radiation management) as a better way.

        Have you considered the unintended consequences of manufacturing so much tin foil? If the price skyrockets what will we use to line the bottoms of our grills and broilers?

      • As I said, I agree that it’s easy to think up potential GMO scare stories. However, I think sulfate geoengineering is a conceptual order of magnitude higher in terms of impact from whenever it’s implemented. It could be done essentially instantly and changes the properties of the affected “natural” system globally far more than most GMO technology that is anticipated (specifically excluding bioweapons). The inertia I was referring to was in the natural systems. I think tinfoil is cheap, but it’s probably not strictly the best material for the application ;).

      • PS I meant to say, I think too often the element of time is forgotten. Time makes a big difference between a problem and an emergency! (If you thought it was a problem in the first place).

      • John Carpenter

        China is performing the sulfate aerosol experiment already…. No? Why not let it continue?

      • Sulphates? You will have to fight the EPA.

        EPA. “SO2 Reductions and Allowance Trading Under the Acid Rain Program.” Governmental. Clean Air Markets, April 14, 2009. http://www.epa.gov/airmarkets/progsregs/arp/s02.html

        Dr. Curry writes: “I’m in favor of research into geoengineering options….”
        Assure that the researchers are charged with including an “UnDo” option.
        More so if their schemes can be weaponized; cf Normandy, Battle of the Bulge, Retreat from Moscow, etc.

    • Joshua
      In your opinion, how does partisanship play into supporting any potential geoengineering? It does not seem to jump out at me that a particular political position/party would necessarily be more likely to favor or not favor this idea. It would seem to be more of a notion of potential unexpected consequences and risk vs. reward.

      • Rob –

        I’m using partisanship with a broad meaning – not necessarily along political or climate debate divisions. I think your frame of approach to risk may be most relevant here – but what’s interesting is to see how principles of how to approach risk can get thrown overboard to protect other partisan loyalties.

        For example, someone for who focuses on the potential of unintended consequences w/r/t GMO might not focus on the potential of unintended consequences w/r/t climate-related geoengineering. Now if that individual delves deeply into the science in both areas there might be a sound basis for the differing approaches to risk, respectively – but keep in mind that the evidence shows us that the more people study these issues the more likely they are to only confirm their biases.

      • Joshua

        You wrote- “but keep in mind that the evidence shows us that the more people study these issues the more likely they are to only confirm their biases.”

        I am not aware of the study or survey to confirm that analysis. Can you reference?

        It would seem more logical that access to greater definitive information would skew people’s positions to the decision that would be shown to achieve the desired goal with the least unintended consequences. Now defining the desired goal is subject to debate/discussion certainly. If further information pointed out a higher likelyhood of negative unintended consequences, are you thinking that people ignore that?

      • Rob –

        There is a lot of literature on the topic. Look up confirmation bias, motivated reasoning, cultural cognition, and belief perseverance. Look up Kahan’s work – some specifically related to the climate debate (read Judith’s post about his study related to climate change specifically – the one where she ignored the significant findings to focus on the insignificant findings). Look up the work of Kahneman – in particular where he discusses what leads “experts” (those who study subjects in the most detail) to make errors in analysis. Consider why so many Republicans (perhaps as opposed to many libertarians) flip-flopped on the individual mandate.

        An overview from Kahan:

        http://www.scienceandreligiontoday.com/2011/05/04/what-is-motivated-reasoning-and-how-does-it-work/

        Not directly parallel, but watch this video and consider whether having more information enables you to overcome your biases.

        It would seem more logical that access to greater definitive information would skew people’s positions to the decision that would be shown to achieve the desired goal with the least unintended consequences.

        That would be the outcome of a logical approach, no doubt. I wish that it were what we see more commonly.

      • Steven Mosher

        Seriously Joshua, you take that Kanan, overview as something informative?

        Do you even see the fundamental problem with the tests of how people view controversial calls in a football game? I shouldn’t have to point it out to you, you’re bright enough to see it. Its the same fundamental issue with every bit of this approach. think. what could it be?

      • Honestly, Steven – I didn’t look at it in any detail. I saw that it was a broad overview and figured it might be a useful entry point if Rob was completely unfamiliar with Kahan’s schtick. Now that you bring my attention back to it – it will be interesting to look at its flaws. I will offer a preemptive “my bad” contingent on what I find.

  10. I have a simple plan to save our planet.

    1) If you believe in AGW prove it and stop burning fuels that give off CO2.

    2) If you don’t believe in AGW don’t change your behavior.

    • So you’d allow anyone who believes discarded hamburger containers are a civic asset to drop them where they please?

    • “I view modification via atmospheric particulates to be potentially Frankenstein stuff, with possibly horrible unintended consequences. ”

      Well yes, of course.

      But as the ‘ possibly horrible unintended consequences’ are difficult to predict in advance, at least with any degree of precision, wouldn’t your uncertainty monster be telling you there would be no reason not to go ahead and make the modifications anyway?

  11. http://prosperouswaydown.com/hair-of-dog-limits-technology/

    Thanks for this thoughtful description of potential outcomes. The issues are complex and require systems thinking, which is in short supply these days.

  12. The Skeptical Warmist (aka R. Gates)

    Geoengineering will be among the most controversial topics in the coming decades. Will the “cure” be worse than the disease? Does any nation, group, corporation, or individual have the right to alter or experiment on the climate of the entire planet, regardless of how well intentioned? Do we know enough about the climate system to experiment?

    A whole new generation of radicalized eco-activists are just now beginning to focus their attention on this topic, but oddly, might find some unlikely allies in those who don’t even think humans have been altering the climate, but don’t want anyone messing up a system that simply goes through natural changes. This might lead to an even stronger case for adaptation being the best overall strategy, to minimize the unknown risks for geoengineering gone-wrong, or wasted resources on trying to fight something that need not be fought.

    Again, by the mid-2020’s I expect geoengineering to be at the top of list of “hot” global topics as our current rather docile near surface temperatures are spiking once more.

    • R. Gates

      I would agree with you that “geoengineering” will be a “hot topic” (especially for computer jockeys, the governing class and industrialists, hoping to turn this craze into tax-payer funded profits).

      And, hey, computer games are fun. Anything goes in the “virtual world” of computer models.

      But there will be no implementation of these schemes in the “real world”, as the tax-paying general public becomes aware that a) it has not warmed in a while and b) that nothing bad is happening as a result of past warming.

      Look for the CAGW bubble to burst (all bubbles eventually do.)

      AR5 may even accelerate this.

      Max

      • The Skeptical Warmist (aka R. Gates)

        Of course Max, you believe that anthropogenic greenhouse gases are not causing any noticeable climate change, and I’d be on the other side of the fence on this. This “flat” period of near surface temperatures (flat at near instrument high records) you believe will stay level or move lower and I believe is simply a pause before a continued march to even higher temperatures of both atmosphere and oceans.

    • “Geoengineering will be among the most controversial topics in the coming decades”

      Why?

      We already know how to suck CO2 out of the atmosphere and make transportation fuels.

      http://www.lanl.gov/news/newsbulletin/pdf/Green_Freedom_Overview.pdf

      It’s somewhat pricey but liquid fuels already carry a large price premium. Getting to ‘carbon nuetral’ is almost certainly easier then Geo-engineering.
      IMHO geo-engineering will only come into play if somehow climate sensitivity has been seriously underestimated.

      • The Skeptical Warmist (aka R. Gates)

        Their might well be some who don’t want to “suck” CO2 out of the air at any cost or via any technology. They could even argue that we’re preventing this interglacial from ending by keeping CO2 at a certain level. Some could argue that their is some optimum level we want CO2 to be at to not get the planet too cold or too hot. This is geoengineering at it’s “finest” in that we create the optimum climate. The big issue will be, do we think we know enough, or are we best to just adapt to whatever comes our way, like we have for millions of years?

      • Both, but not yet. I do think we’ll understand climate enough to manipulate it safely and effectively before the end of the Holocene. But we gotta get real here.
        ============

      • The Skeptical Warmist (aka R. Gates)

        Kim,

        I tend to think you might be correct, and that we’ll know what we ought to do to create a perfect climate, but I actually think that this interglacial Holocene already has become the Anthropocene (unwittingly) and that the only difference in the future will be that we’ll consciously and knowingly geoengineer the planet. At least, that’s my optimistic side. On my darker days I think we’ll never get enough consistent agreement on what to do or make some huge blunders along the way before we know fully what to do, and things will get pretty awful in terms of our ability to supply the many billions of us with adequate food and clean water. So, in short, I’m a bit conflicted about the future…

      • Yes, excellent thoughts. I don’t believe we’ll ever geo-engineer a ‘perfect climate’ because we’ll never get management subtle enough to deal with the tempero-spatial chaos, nor the social consensus on ‘perfection’. I’m optimistic though that we may be able to prevent the next Ice Age. I suspect a safer method for doing that will be importing energy rather than manipulating the atmosphere. Importing it will allow much more subtle control, too.
        ==========

      • The Skeptical Warmist (aka R. Gates)

        Kim,

        Importing energy? Not sure what you mean by this, but I think harnessing fusion, or even thorium fission more reasonable, but please explain.

      • By microwave from satellites gathering solar energy. Technically feasible now or soon. Not cheap. High school debate talked about this last year.
        ====================

      • Oh, sure, nukes for energy need, imported energy to stave off the ice age and for energy use. On the scale needed, huge, it might be more cost effective to manipulate the atmosphere, but it seems riskier because of the lack of such minute control that an importing system would have.

        This is the border of science fiction, but we’ve got to get unreal before the next glaciation.
        ============

  13. Reading that list of unintended consequences from the Oilprice article makes me wonder how many large-scale human engineering effort produced significant benefits and relatively few detrimental effects to the environment. One might suggest some large dams such as the Hoover or Egypt’s Aswan would qualify, although there are arguments against them. Reservoirs in remote places (like the NY Catskill ones supply New York City water for example) seem to qualify. Making the case for geo-engineering requires a list of successes that outweighs the failures to convince me and most people that it’s a good idea.

    • Seriously? What scale do you consider to be the diving line? Is building national highways systems geoengineering? Flood protection in Holland? Irrigation for agriculture? Water management for drinking water? Geoengineering typically refers to global-level efforts, but if you scale it down as in the linked article, to human engineering of natural systems, do you really think there’s much question about the benefits in balance?

    • Dams have drawbacks.

      Shallow impoundment leads to significant methane release.

      Dams create a buildup of silt, flood salmon breeding streams, change the makeup of a river’s food chain.

      But they also bring a lot of benefits.

  14. Judith Curry

    The “free rider” proposition is flawed.

    All pant and animal life on this planet (including us humans) is surviving as a result of the natural environment around us (i.e. we are all “free riders”). Plants need CO2, H2O and sunlight; animals need O2 and nourishment (from plants or other animals).

    While other species have evolved and adapted to survive in very harsh environments, humans are the only species that has been able to modify the elements locally in order to thrive in otherwise inhospitable regions, largely through the use of available energy sources (including fossil fuels).

    By the use of readily available low-costs sources of energy, humans have been able to expand and thrive, raising their quality of life and life expectancy beyond anyone’s imagination. Human who live in regions that have not yet made this transition live a much harsher and shorter life.

    So we have “geoengineered” our planet locally and regionally, by building dikes to create polders, clearing forests to create agricultural land, creating irrigation systems for otherwise arid deserts, etc., and – as a result – have thrived.

    But, attempting to control the global climate by purposely messing with the atmosphere we have is chasing a will o’ the wisp in order to fight an imaginary hobgoblin.

    Not only would such actions be a complete waste of time and money. They could well result in “unintended consequences” (as you write), which we cannot even visualize today.

    Shooting sulfuric acid into the stratosphere? What a totally arrogant and absurd idea!

    Finally, carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) has been shown to be a very costly way to achieve nothing. It is even less cost effective than other specific CO2 mitigation proposals.

    http://curryja.files.wordpress.com/2011/03/rutt_bridges_article.pdf

    A scheme to do this in the Antarctic with “CO2 snow” was shown by Peter Lang on an earlier thread to be even less cost effective:

    http://judithcurry.com/2012/08/24/a-modest-proposal-for-sequestration-of-co2-in-the-antarctic/#comment-232638

    And, most importantly of all, we do not even know whether or not higher atmospheric CO2 levels at slightly warmer overall temperatures, particularly at higher latitudes, would not be a net benefit for mankind (larger agricultural land surface area, longer growing seasons, enhanced plant growth resulting in increased crop yields, etc.).

    “Playing God?”

    Fuggidaboudit, folks – go back to your computer games.

    Max

    • Heinrich the Norwegian Elkhound


      Shooting sulfuric acid into the stratosphere? What a totally arrogant and absurd idea!

      Alarmist.

      Maybe what we need is some sort of international agreement that intentionally modifying the atmosphere is an arrogant and absurd idea.

      Could you write that up ASAP, and send it out to the scientists?

    • David L. Hagen

      Manacker
      Skeptic PhysicistRobert Cohen provides a pragmatic strategy:

      a few years ago I helped an old friend and colleague launch a privately funded start-up in CO2 air extraction technology . . . But why do this if the CO2 issue is a non problem? Well, I am quite sure that that it is a non problem, but there is a small but finite probability that I am wrong. Thus, it might make sense to have a viable, cheap insurance policy on the table. However, the favored government measures of cap-and-trade and carbon taxes are absurdly expensive; the policy premium is larger than the risk being insured. Geoengineering is also absurd. The air extraction venture could be such a cheap policy, though much R, D & E remains to be done, and right now none of your tax dollars is paying for it.

  15. Salby’s Relationship between CO2 Concentration and GMST:

    GMST = Rate of Change of CO2

    http://bit.ly/XmUDK0

    Salby’s excellent presentation => http://bit.ly/QuwRth

    Conclusion: The increase CO2 concentration in the atmosphere is natural

    • CO2 concentration in the atmosphere depends on GMST, not human emission of CO2 =>

      http://bit.ly/XmUDK0

    • Girma

      For someone to claim that all of the increase in atmospheric CO2 is natural is laughable and imo makes leads readers to being skeptical of the other theories offered by such a person. We do know that humans are releasing vast amounts of CO2. We know this is something that is different in the system. We do not know what percentage of the total increase is due to the human release, but writing that it is all natural is just silly.

      • Rob

        Are you going to say human emission of CO2 varies as follows? => http://bit.ly/XmUDK0

      • Girma

        I am not making any claims except that it is silly and unsupportable for you to write that the rise in CO2 is all natural. It would also be silly and unsupportable for someone to claim that they know that all of the rise in CO2 levels is due to human emissions.

      • …all of the increase in atmospheric CO2

        He said 96% is natural.

      • That is an unsupportable and in all probability an inaccurate claim based on available information. There is no alternative natural emissions source that can be reasonably accurately shown to have increased its emissions by such an amount to have so dwarfed the human emission increase.

        Girma

        Please a little common sense.

      • The chart shows an annual CO2 increase of up to 3ppm and a minimum of about 0.5 ppm. When the temperature drops, the released CO2 also drops. When the temperature increased, the released CO2 also increases. This variation can mainly happen if it is from natural sources, mainly from the oceans.

      • I should not return to the same old issue again but once more:

        The variability is natural. It’s driven mainly by ENSO and it’s mainly due to weather related variability in the land based vegetation. Nothing in that can feed the continuing increase that’s due to human influence and mainly from use of fossil fuels.

        Oceans act as a sink where roughly half of the anthropogenic releases go.

        Insisting that the variability and the increase should have a common origin is just stupid.

      • Girma

        Yes natural emissions do increase when temperatures increase. That does not mean that 96% of the total increase is natural.

      • The ocean acts always as a sink, not a source. Increased temperature makes it a little weaker sink, but when all factors are taken into account the share of CO2 that goes to the ocean has remained essentially the same over several decades.

        In future the ability of the oceans to take CO2 may be reduced which would speed up the rate of increase of atmospheric CO2 concentration.

      • pekka

        did you literally mean that oceans are always a sink for co2, or that taking outgassing and intake into account the net result is that they are a sink?
        tonyb

      • Of course I’m am considering the net effect. In this connection that’s the only one that counts. The gross transfer of molecules between atmosphere and oceans has been taken up only to confuse the discussion and to promote untruths.

        There are other issues where the gross flows are important. One example of that is in the interpretation of changes in isotope ratios.

      • Pekka said:

        “Insisting that the variability and the increase should have a common origin is just stupid.”

        Except it’s not just variability. The accumulation of atmospheric CO2 is the integral of the temperature over the period of observation. Lower the temperatures, lower the increase.

      • Rob Starkey “There is no alternative natural emissions source that can be reasonably accurately shown to have increased its emissions by such an amount to have so dwarfed the human emission increase.”

        Do you have a source showing human CO2 emissions exceed oceanic outgassing? No feedback scenarios, please.

      • Pooh

        No-obviously I do not. Do you have any data to show how these emissions have increased over the relevant timescales? No you don’t do you?

      • Well, then we have another known unknown. :-)

      • Oceanic outgassing? That has not happened for quite a while and is certainly not happening now as the amount of CO2 in oceans is increasing all the time.

      • Pooh

        So you are agreeing with my point to Girma. He can identify no other natural source that is even reasonably likely to be the cause of the 96% of CO2 increase that was claimed.

  16. Like most rational humans I want my environment to be clean and hazard free and then to leave it that way for future generations. If I can, I’d like to clean up some of the mess my elders left behind so that our habitats would be even better places to live in. However, in my opinion, CAGW has bastardised many environmental issues and stolen money that should have been used to clean up the environment, make our use of raw materials more efficient and reduce our impact upon our environment while enhancing the quality of life for all the inhabitants of this planet. It has gone instead to enrich a few carbon entrepreneurs and their political cronies, such as Al Gore, fund university programmes that have little impact on enhancing our quality of life while defunding programmes to educate, feed and house our poorest people. Worst of all it has made people doubt the validity of our scientists, just at time when medical and physical sciences where producing real benefits to the populations around the world. It is no wonder that I personally loathe many, so called, climate scientists. No only the ones who have contrived in this scam but all the others who jumped on the bandwagon and put the grab for funding before their own ethical mores.
    I just hope to live long enough to see the core cabal lose their pensions, qualifications and do jail time for this mass hoax.

    • Heinrich the Norwegian Elkhound

      Like most rational humans I want my environment to be clean and hazard free and then to leave it that way for future generations – but I’m far too busy being victimized by Al Gore and hippies and those loathsome climate scientists (but not Dr Curry, of course!) to do anything but post blog-comments referencing bandwagons, cabals, and hoaxes instead.

      • Well as a teacher educator I get to do way more than that!

      • Heinrich the Norwegian Elkhound

        Lucky students.
        I’m sure their fond memories of your fascinating personal opinions will serve them well in graduate school.

        Teach the controversy.

      • Heinrich the Oslo Lap-Dog:

        You can thank the environmental profession and all manner of engineers and technicians that have, at risk to life and limb, significantly improved the environment of the US and Europe. Cleaner air, cleaner water, more forested acreage, cleaner industry, cleaner cars, fisheries bouncing back, etc, etc. The Baby Boomers and Gen-Xers have made the world a much cleaner place for their children and grandchildren after all of the excessive pollution created during the first 3/4 of the 20th century. In defense of the “Greatest Generation”, a lot of that pollution in the US was created in an effort to defeat Hitler and Tojo and stop Stalin from expanding the Iron Curtain into Western Europe.

        You Are Welcome!

        Of course, people like you want to live in a hazard free environment! Living in a perfect world using technology developed in the US and protected by the US Military for the past 70-odd years has raised your expectations of the minimum standards you require that others provide for your Utopian Fantasy Island..

        However, hazard free does not exist in this universe. Thank God it can be dangerous and ugly, otherwise how would we ever know the thrill of accomplishment and love of beauty?

      • Hazard free huh?

    • “I just hope to live long enough to see the core cabal lose their pensions, qualifications and do jail time for this mass hoax.”

      I’m 68 so am unlikely to join you in the celebrations, unfortunately. It’s so entrenched now it’ll take a generation to leech out of the system. Even when we’re knee deep in snow, the IPCC will say it’s all covered in the models.

    • It has gone instead to enrich a few carbon entrepreneurs and their political cronies, such as Al Gore, fund university programmes that have little impact on enhancing our quality of life while defunding programmes to educate, feed and house our poorest people.

      When I read comments like this, I wonder what goes through the minds of those who object so vehemently to the hypothesis that there is some correlation between climate skepticism and conspiracy theorists (please note, my friends, that I said nothing about causality).

      Judith and company do their best to marginalize the “Sky dragons,” (although with no validated data or consistent criteria, as far as I’ve seen), but don’t seem concerned about marginalizing folks like our friend beesaman. I wonder why that is?

      • Joshua

        You wrote- “hypothesis that there is some correlation between climate skepticism and conspiracy theorists”

        When you wrote the key words “some correlation” it is likely you are correct, but it is not necessarily meaningful if the correlation is relatively low. The specifics are critical.

      • Rob –

        but it is not necessarily meaningful if the correlation is relatively low. The specifics are critical.

        Absolutely.

        But my point is that it seems that many people don’t want to explore whether there is any correlation, or simply reject the notion outright without any attempt to validate their conclusion.

        I think it is important for skeptics to be diligent in differentiating themselves from “skepticism.” (And, of course, the same principle applies on the other side of the debate). I appreciate skepticism – it what drew me to this site in the first place. Because I heard Judith discussing the impact of tribalism, I expected to see a thorough treatment of the subject. But I have been disappointed in the degree to which folks on the “skeptical” side of the debate here examine tribalism.

      • Joshua
        I guess I tend to look at it differently and am more concerned with having more solid information upon which to base conclusions. I do not think initial biases are very import when the data clearly conflicts with the preconceived bias. People who initially thought smoking improved their life, now have changed their position with more and better data.

        That said, I agree that I am somewhat more data driven and neutral than some.

      • I do not think initial biases are very import when the data clearly conflicts with the preconceived bias.

        The data say otherwise (please look at the data) – which is interesting since you are data-driven.

        People who initially thought smoking improved their life, now have changed their position with more and better data.

        My guess is that the number of individuals who first felt that smoking was healthful and then changed their view is relatively small compared to those who held on to their beliefs. More likely people who initially thought that smoking improved health largely maintained that opinion and died as a result (addiction is a very powerful influence on reasoning – consider the aspect of “denial” and how it affects reasoning as it relates to addiction). Folks who think that smoking is harmful are likely to have had information indicating that conclusion when they first starting forming their opinions on the topic. Imagine how few people would switch in that perspective should suddenly the data indicate otherwise. It is hard to think of a more striking example of motivated reasoning than people who maintain that drinking isn’t damaging their lives despite their lives crumbling around them.

      • Alarum! Conspiracy! You just got nuthin’ left, eh J?
        ================

      • Pretty funny considering the % of comments at this site directed at exactly those subjects.

        Whole lotta nuttin goin’ on.

      • Heh, I was referring to your recent thematic journey twixt Scylla Alarum, and Charybdis Conspiracy. Tie down the tiller, man.
        ===============

      • Heh, I was referring to your recent thematic journey

        You’re seeing things again (like when you connected dots to explain how you saw Obama’s “Muslim sympathies”).

        My theme here remains the same – pointing out the hypocrisy I see amongst “skeptics.” Sometimes the specific focus change – as in focusing on the hypocrisy about “alarmism.” You have to admit, “Oh my god, no scientists will be able to express any opinions again.” thread was pretty funny.

      • I gotta admit, your discussion of ‘alarmism’ on that thread was pretty amusing, as is your and Lewandowsky’s attempts to find conspiracy believers clustered in skeptics.

        Similarly, the tribal crap. Skeptics are a remarkably diverse bunch.
        ============

      • as is your and Lewandowsky’s attempts to find conspiracy believers clustered in skeptics.

        So says the “skeptic” who talked of “connecting dots” to see Obama’s “Muslim sympathies.”

        I gotta say, kim, I simply love your posts.

      • ‘The future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Allah’, spoken as an attack on the 1st Amendment and in support of a deliberate lie about the cause of the Benghazi attack, a planned al-Qaeda event. A twofer for the Constitutional Scholar.

        However, I’ll agree that with ever more dots, his identity and sympathies become ever more clouded, not ever more clear.
        ===================

      • kim,

        You didn’t really just truncate that quote, without even the insertion of ellipses, did you? Did you even bother to read what came after you thrust down your cleaver?

        Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the work of a spectacular “skeptic.”

      • Heh, he blew off the attack, took a rest, then flew to Vegas.
        ===============

      • Joshua,

        I am not familiar with beesaman’s other posts but the post you are objecting to seems fairly innocuous. Don’t you object to cronyism and boondoggles that waste money, do NOT do what they set out to do (in this case come up with viable solar projects), and could have been spent on projects in our country or the third world that would have saved or improved poor people’s lives? Sounds like he is just skeptical of politics as well as catastrophic AGW. Now, if it turns out he thinks the same actions, if performed by a republican are great, then that would make him a hypocrite. But, just being against wasting money, which Solyandra, for example, clearly did is not by itself evidence that he believes in conspiracies.

      • Bill –

        Don’t you object to cronyism and boondoggles that waste money, do NOT do what they set out to do (in this case come up with viable solar projects), and could have been spent on projects in our country or the third world that would have saved or improved poor people’s lives?

        Absolutely. The difference between what you describe there and what was contained in the post is, IMO, the difference between skepticism and “skepticism.”

      • k scott denison

        Joshua, it does not take a conspiracy for Gore and others to use power and influence, and alarmism, to accomplish their end goals of enriching themselves. All it takes is a theme that will frighten many and a bit of clever politicking.

        Your fault, if I may say so, is that you don’t see that many, some would say most, of the alarmists are spreading the alarm while at the same time benefiting largely from that alarm. That isn’t a conspiracy. It’s greed.

        Tragically lost amongst the greed are the few dupes who are genuinely concerned but don’t realize they are being played like fine violins. This is the same recipe as used by Bernie Madoff, which also was not a conspiracy.

  17. I thought all this stuff that’s happening now is ‘unprecedented’? Seems the records don’t go back to 1891, or am I being too cynical?

    “The plan, said Espy, would banish all the inconveniences of the fickle weather: drought, floods, “oppressive heats” and “injurious colds,” hail, tornadoes, and “violent wind.” It could be done at a cost of half a cent per citizen per year.”

  18. Re: Why starve the poor to buy green indulgences?
    We desperately need to increase agricultural productivity to keep up with growing global population. Three billion poor in developing countries live on less than $2.50/day of which one billion are desperately poor surviving on less than $1.25/day.
    Carbon dioxide is PLANT FOOD.
    Increasing CO2 generally increases plant productivity.
    See CO2Science.org for the documented evidence.
    Fossil fuels are stored solar energy. Using them helps development and returns our atmosphere to towards the greater productivity of previous ages.

    Global warming alarmists focus on the impacts of rising sealevel on a few, and have not seriously addressed the potential for reducing CO2 growth geoengineering to starve the many.

    The foundational principle of public policy (tracing back to the Hippocratic Oath) is:
    First DO NO HARM (Primum non nocere).
    Why are we intentionally harming the ability of the poor to increase food productivity on the very uncertain projections of climate models – which we already know are predicting systemically biased high temperature trends?
    See Lucia’s Data Comparisons at The Blackboard.

    Until there are verified and validated climate programs, and there is clear lower probability of prospect of starving the poor than benefiting them, I strongly recommend NOT doing ANY geoengineering – and strongly urge you to raise this issue with your legislators.

    Study closely Mao’s Great Leap Forward. That grandeous effort caused 60 million people to be starved or not born in China’s great famine as the unintended consequence. Geoengineering holds prospects for easily starving hundreds of millions of poor in developing countries from its consequences.

    Re: “Playing God”
    Insurance companies have strong reasons for excluding “Acts of God.”

    Re: Geoengineering “is a terrible option.”
    I strongly agree! Don’t do it.

  19. Is the following chart the nail in the coffin of AGW?

    http://bit.ly/XmUDK0

    • Note that human emission of CO2 has been increasing monotonically.

    • Heinrich the Norwegian Elkhound


      Is the following chart the nail in the coffin of AGW?

      You mean the ‘final’ nail, don’t you?
      If so – Yes.

      Fourth ‘final’ nail in the coffin this week.
      I’m already looking forward to the next one.

  20. Warmer is good, sustaining more total life and more diversity of live. Colder is bad, the opposite of warmer. Given this is the late Holocene, any geo-engineering contemplated is madness unless it is geo-engineering to the warmer side. If only we had something that could do that gently, ultimately reversibly, and provide other benefits, like nourish the plant kingdom. That would not be something to regret.

    Oh, my goodness, we’ve got! Too bad it’s not enough to stave off the next Ice Age. Let us pray, or alternatively, beam microwave energy from extraterrestrially.
    =========

    • David Springer

      Kim every time I hear the phrase “Let us pray” this rant from Coach Rig during half time in the movie “Necessary Roughness” comes to mind.

      Coach Rig: Now, let’s analyze what’s been working for us.
      [Long pause]
      Coach Rig: NOT A G0D D@MN THING’S been working for us. Like this godd@mn suit doesn’t work for me… and this stinking tie… and this godd@mned shirt. IT DOESN’T WORK FOR ME. YOU KNOW HOW TO PLAY WINNING HARD-NOSED FOOTBALL? YOU PLAY FOOTBALL LIKE ED GENERRO PLAYED FOOTBALL. A guy who gave his life for this football team. He was a 140-pound halfback, and HE PLAYED LIKE A GODD@MN WILDMAN! NO! LIKE A GODD@MN RAMPAGING BEAST! And that’s the way you got to do it! YOU GO OUT THERE! YOU TEAR THEIR FVCKING HEADS OFF, AND YOU SHlT DOWN THEIR NECKS! Let us pray.

  21. Surprised nobody has mentioned this yet:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/19/science/earth/iron-dumping-experiment-in-pacific-alarms-marine-experts.html

    (Or maybe they have? I just Cntrl+F’d for “plankton”)

  22. I’ve heard of conformity, but they want to same the planet? :)

  23. “That’s what makes the “free driver” effect so powerful. Geoengineering is seductively cheap, and it doesn’t take the collective will of billions of people – or policies guiding those billions – to have a major effect. Anyone capable of flying a fleet of planes at high altitudes could conceivably have a go at altering the planet’s atmosphere, and do so at a fraction of the cost of decreasing carbon dioxide pollution. But here’s the catch: Nobody knows the costs of potential unknown and sometimes unknowable side effects, and there could be grave political and legal repercussions when someone starts playing God with the climate.”

    When I read this I feel like I’m back teaching my 16 year old to drive. “Son, I love you but you need to pull over right now. Your hands are all sweaty, you’re nervous as hell and you’re going to get us both killed. We can do this again after a couple more Driver’s Ed sessions. You just need a little more training and time to let it all settle.” He eventually turned out to be a fine driver and a great guy. I’m sure these people will turn out OK too if they just look up a bit, take a few deep breaths and realize that what they don’t know is at least as great as what they think they do know. They just have to let go of the MUST FIX NOW fixation (but pun intentional).

  24. “[Climate] scientists are beginning to look for a Plan B. There are two distinct approaches under consideration — sucking carbon out of the atmosphere, or creating an artificial sun shield for the planet. The former, which involves reversing some of the very processes that are leading to the climate problem, is expensive. The latter just sounds scary.David Keith, a leading thinker on geoengineering, calls it “chemotherapy” for the planet. “You are repulsed?” he says. “Good. No one should like it. It’s a terrible option.””

    We need to start a fund so we can get these fools some desperately needed psychiatric help

  25. CAGW advocates are focused upon lowering atmospheric CO2 content. All of the research they promote presumes that the CAGW theory is correct.

    I am alarmed that so little research is directed towards determining optimum levels for CO2 and at what point does lowering atmospheric CO2 become dangerous for the biosphere.

    Are we really that stupid? I see us closing in on the Fallen Angels scenario.

  26. Agasin, Dr. Curry, you abdicate your responsibility to take a stand against the alarmists and liars promoting CAGW. What a shame – and frankly, what an act of pusillanimity on your part this is. You know damn well that it’s a lie, why don’t you respond accordingly? All you’re doing is continuing to give credence to that lie. Kick me off this blog for saying this, if you like, but it’s plain from other posts here that I’m not the only commentator thinking so.

    • Well, everyone is entitled to think what they want about what I said, but I have said nothing condoning CAGW here or on any other thread, or to support geoengineering policies. Saying that I don’t have a strong objection to something, relative to something that I do have a strong objection to, should hardly be interpreted as an endorsement.

    • Chad,

      I think Dr. Curry has been sufficiently consistent in her luke-warm position to have no responsibility to abdicate anything. She has found that appropriate “sweet spot” in between, where both the true CAGW side and the true denialists seem extreme. Taking a “side” against either would cause her to need to shift toward the other side. Bettter to live in sweet-spot being guided by her reasoned and honest approach to looking at uncertainty square-on.

      In the long-run, one of the sides may prove to be more correct than the other, but that should not cast a negative light on those who stayed in the safe and neutral middle.

      • Twice in one day I agree with you R. Gates. I try to be extreme, but ignorance keeps pulling me back to the safe and neutral middle.
        ==============

      • Which makes Judith Curry the ideal choice to replace the current incumbent of the IPCC chair who is grossly unsuitable for the position he holds given his clear bias towards one side of the science.

    • Steven Mosher

      Chad

      Put down the thesaurus. Just put it down and kick it over here. Slowly…
      Now, interlace your fingers behind your head and face the wall.

      ‘ pusillanimity’ ? talk about a word I had to blue pencil a thousand times in freshman composition. Jeez dude.

      Also, in standard outrage prose we dont “give credence” we “lend credence”

      So, if you want your outrage prose to really resonate you need to

      1. read wagonthon more closely, he has the style down
      2. avoid the counterfeit 10 dollar words.

    • David Springer

      Chad Wozniak | October 25, 2012 at 1:41 pm | Reply

      “Kick me off this blog for saying this, if you like, but it’s plain from other posts here that I’m not the only commentator thinking so.”

      You’ll need to step up your game to get kicked off this blog. I’m like the Larry Flynt of blog comment journalism i.e. if I haven’t been banned then the rest of y’all are safe. :-)

  27. “I suspect that 100 years from now, at least some of our geoengineering ideas will look as silly (or dangerous…”

    100 years ago, if you were to tell people that a large majority of the population lives next to roads were multi-ton steel boxes, guided by distracted drivers zoom by pedestrians at unprecendented speeds every second, they would be freaked out. Indeed, tens of thousands of people die every year from autombile collisions.

    100 years ago, if you were to tell people that your (or the military’s) private correspondences could be stolen and revealed by a teenager living thousands of miles away, people would be freaked out.

    -> Living in a non-static Modern society means dealing with the good and the bad. It means taking advantage of cars and emails to make our lives better, and working out counter measures to minimize the bad. Nobody could have foreseen the neccecity of pedestrian overpasses, anti-virus programs etc. when the motivating technology was first introduced. The point is, we can’t expect perfect implementation for any societal-wide technology. That doesn’t mean we should arrest our development.

  28. David Hagen –
    Youre right – what the CAGW people are promoting is the next Holocaust – millions of avoidable deaths from perpetuated third-world (and renewed first-world) poverty. Oh, but isn’t that “a necessary step in reforming society,” as one of my former history professor colleagues claimed (with regard to Lenin’s and Stalin’s murder of 80 million)?

  29. “free riders”

    Typical misanthropic drivel. Man as ‘cancer’ or ‘virus’ on the planet. Kooky.

  30. beesaman –
    Great comment – I’m with you on all this. Let’s put them all in prison for the duration
    And obviously the CAGW tyrannists don’t give a rat’s kiester about the environment. They have to know what they’re doing hurts, not helps, the environment, and they could care less.

  31. dennis adams | October 25, 2012 at 9:51 am wrote

    quote
    On both sides one wonders how will the earth’s homeostatic processes hold up.
    unquote

    What makes you think they are holding up? My guess is that it is likely (as likely as the CO2 warming scenario) that we have disrupted the balancing mechanisms of the Earth. I can think of 2 ways this might happen, modification of the ocean/atmosphere interface and alteration of the oceanic biosphere. I choose these 2 because they are world-wide in their effects, unlike e.g. deforestation. No doubt, however, there are other ways.

    Dr Curry writes

    quote
    In the 1970′s as a student, I had courses in weather modification (cloud seeding) and inadvertent weather modification (pollution, urban heat islands, etc).
    unquote

    The latter is not only possible, but likely. Surely it would be more sensible to see if we are doing the latter before going for broke on the former.

    Incidentally, with your expertise in aerosols, what would you expect to the result of aerosol depletion? I’d guess the precipitation levels would stay the same but be more concentrated, less drizzle, more flash floods.

    JF

  32. “JC comments: In the 1970′s as a student, I had courses in weather modification (cloud seeding) and inadvertent weather modification (pollution, urban heat islands, etc)”

    I was under the impression that urban heat islands were product of the fevered imagination of ‘deniers’.

  33. Here is an example of a minor Soviet geo-engineering.

  34. The co2 alarmists are running out of time and looking increasingly likely to find themselves caught between a rock and a hard place.

    On the one hand if they don’t get a geo-engineering scheme up and running soon, mother nature may well beat them to it, with obvious reductions in temperature as we inexorably move to towards the solar low.

    On the other hand if they do get a geo-engineering scheme going and temperatures drop precipitously, then they risk being accused of endangering whole populations by precipitating the next glaciation, even if it’s really just a drop into the next minimum.

    Either way round the $100 billion gravy train will come to a lurching halt.

    The only possible exit strategy I can see for the co2 cultists is to claim that ‘the peoples’ failure to act has led to an alternative tipping point which they will claim was predicted all along by their climate models without of course offering any proof of that.

    The 64 million dollar question is of course whether the bulk of ‘the people’ will then be as gullible as they have been so far.

    We could be, but a few short tantalising years away from this scenario.

    • David Springer

      I think “the pause” is due to compact fluourescent light bulbs.

      Mission accomplished! :mrgreen:

    • Whoever claimed climate skeptics weren’t just conspiracy theorists by another name?

      • Chief Hydrologist

        I don’t think it is a conspiray. I think it is groupthink. Objecting to absurd excesses from the cult of AGW groupthink space cadets is not irrational but quite neccessary.

      • k scott denison

        Not conspiracy at all. Just a few clever, bad people understanding how to use fear and some clever politicking to enrich themselves. Think Bernie Madoff… played of people’s fears of missing out on profits that were, it turns out, too good to be true. And his early investors were there to be his unwitting dupes, vouching for him every step of the way.

        I see many parallels to the CAGW phenomenon.

  35. David Springer

    Wow. What fresh new thinking! No one has ever before thought about controlling the weather. What’ll this guy think up next, cloud seeding?

    /sarc

    • David Springer

      I guess I should’a read the whole article. It seems Curry beat me to the rainmaking efforts. However, she didn’t mention the Native American rain dance. I think the climate boffins ought to study that and see if maybe they can improve on it. Just don’t try the Texas two-step as that appears to make it NOT rain. ;-)

  36. Let’s see, globally, soil is estimated to hold between 1100 and 1500 petagrams of CO2, that is in the ballpark of 8 petagrams per million kilometers squared. Roughly 20 million kilometers squared of global soils are considered, severely depleted. So that is about 80 petagrams if that severely depleted 20 million kilometers of soil lost 50% of its CO2. You know, before long that could add up. Perhaps, some novel land re-nourishment program might be effect as a geo-restoration project? Hmmm?

    Nah! Let’s build CO2 freezers in Antarctica.

  37. Chief Hydrologist

    ‘Carbon Dioxide Removal (CDR) techniques, which remove CO2 from the atmosphere. As they address the root cause of climate change, rising CO2 concentrations, they have relatively low uncertainties and risks. However, these techniques work slowly to reduce global temperatures.

    The best way to take carbon from the atmosphere is with conservation farming.

    ‘The development of agriculture during past centuries and particularly in last decades has entailed depletion of substantive soil carbon stocks created through long-term evolution. Agricultural soils are among the planet’s largest reservoirs of carbon and hold potential for expanded carbon sequestration (CS), and thus provide a prospective way of mitigating the increasing atmospheric concentration of CO2. It is estimated that soils can sequester around 20 Pg C in 25 years, more than 10 % of the anthropogenic emissions. ‘ http://www.fao.org/nr/land/sustainable-land-management/soil-carbon-sequestration/en/

    If you look at the other benefits – it is a no brainer. It could be done much faster and to greater effect than the FAO suggest. In combination with other paths – black carbon and tropospheric ozone reduction, development and education, safe water and sanitation, conserving and restoring ecosystems – it provides an immediate and significant opportunity for mitigation.

    It is of course relatively easy to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

    Here is a shortlist – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virgin_Earth_Challenge

    This one is intriguing – http://www.carbonengineering.com/

    Join it with this one – http://www.ga.com/nuclear-energy/energy-multiplier-module – to produce an endless supply of liquid fuel.

    • Chief

      Personally I like the idea of sequestering carbon by digging in the dirt. It seems to satisfy some bygone pleasures.

      What has me concerned: the large land grant institutions of USA, think Big Ten, they are cutting back on Agriculture Extension. The so called boots on the ground who go to the farmer’s field, obtain samples, and make recommendations. Its one thing to amass the pertinent information, it is another to disseminate such wisdom. Agriculture Extension is not just for those farmer’s within the purview of that University’s state legislature, Agriculture Extension pertains to outreach to off shore countries where basic information can transform depleted land to fertile.

      Another point in this narrative, the development of improved (read genetically modified) seeds. Currently, the USA drought’s effect has been substantially mitigated by GM seeds. The harvest of corn, soybean, etc are greater than expected as farmers planted varying pollinating seeds in the same field so that the entire field did not get wiped out by lack of rain one week and abundant rain the next.

      Conservation farming is just beginning globally. It will take Agricultural Extension experts to make such magic happen. This is not the time to defund the Extension programs. One-on-one information can occur in a myriad of languages, dialects, educational levels and we all are better for it.

  38. judith

    whilst not aware of the 1912 suggestion to modify the gulf stream there was an American suggestion to do that in 1936 , much to the consternatio f us Brits, as this Pathe news reel demonstrates

    http://www.britishpathe.com/video/gambling-with-gulf-stream-aka-gambling-on-the-gulf/query/Labrador

    tonyb

  39. Max, Jim, David, Chief, Tony etc

    96% of the increase in CO2 concentration in the atmosphere is natural, says Salby.

    Proof :

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/uah/from:1978/compress:12/normalise/plot/esrl-co2/from:1978/derivative/compress:12/normalise

    Is this one more nail in the coffin of AGW?

    The chart shows an annual CO2 increase of up to 3ppm and a minimum of about 0.5 ppm. When the temperature drops, the released CO2 also drops. When the temperature increases, the released CO2 also increases. This variation can happen if it is from natural sources, mainly from the oceans.

    Human emission of CO2 does not oscillate like the above variation; It has been increasing monotonically.

    Watch his excellent presentation => http://bit.ly/QuwRth

    Please watch it and let us know what you think.

    • Chief Hydrologist

      Salby says nothing of the sort. I have seen it – it is suggestive but not much to hang a hat on. The 96% is most probably the % of human emissions compared to average natural fluxes. There are interesting points but to then claim there is something fixed and fast in this is nonsense.

      • Chief

        He probably meant that 96% of the CO2 cycle is natural and that the human contribution is only 4% of this cycle.

        Maybe I misunderstood what he said or maybe he did not express himself clearly.

        I did NOT take home that only 4% of the increase in atmospheric concentration is caused by human CO2 emissions, nor is that what I meant to say in my summary notes.

        Hope this clears it up.

        Max

    • Girma

      Prof. Salby’s lecture is interesting.

      Much of what he said has been said in one way or another elsewhere, but the key points for me were:

      – models are programmed such that CO2 is the principal control knob, real world is different
      – regional temperatures have often varied significantly from the global average and from each other (CA vs. NSW)
      – using GCM outputs to make policy or investment decisions is bad business (Sydney desalination plant built because of LT drought predictions)
      – underpinning physics show that CO2 is only a very minor player
      – ERBE satellite observations show that discrepancies (errors) in GCMs versus observations (both in LW and SW radiation) are orders of magnitude greater (20-30 W/m^2) than the 2xCO2 impact (~4 W/m^2)
      – the heat capacity of the ocean is so much larger than that of the atmosphere, that a 1 degC change in atmospheric temperature (as expected from a doubling of CO2) would change the ocean by only 0.0005 degC.
      – IPCC GCMs have everything else changing in lockstep with CO2, 800 ppmv by 2100 = 3 degC warming; real world does not work that way
      – during 1980s and 1990s there appeared to be a CO2/temp correlation; since 1998 this correlation is no longer apparent
      – 96% of CO2 is natural; 4% is human
      – CO2 levels fluctuate with temperature, not the other way around
      – science is never “settled”
      – if hypothesis disagrees with observations, it’s wrong (Feynman): observed CO2 temperature correlation since 1997 disagrees with GCM projections; real world is always right over GCMs
      – blindly accepting model outputs at face value and selling this to government bureaucrats to set policy is not “science”

      During Q+A period Prof. Salby answered

      1. Why more CO2 at warmer temperature? [ Outgassing, plus other natural factors we do not understand well.]
      2. Scientists all use same data – why different interpretations? [Data get massaged, adjusted, corrected, etc. differently. Example: global surface temperature record. Prefers satellite record (100% coverage, no massaging) to surface record (30% coverage, lots of massaging).]
      3. What is position on [Australian] carbon tax? [Basis for tax is GCM outputs, which do not reflect real world.]
      4. How can we get back to a more balanced discussion? [IPCC is a basic part of problem; it gained scientific respectability during late 1990s, based on good CO2 temperature correlation over 1980s/1990s (up until the end of 1997) reaching a high point when AR4 came out in 2007 and declining since then. IPCC essentially shut down free speech. This is what needs to be restored in climate science today.]
      5. How do CO2 sinks work? [We do not understand all the workings of the various natural CO2 sinks and cannot quantify - most CO2 fluctuations are natural, not man-made.]
      6. How do you view the IPCC “consensus” position; how are you accepted by “consensus” colleagues? [Consensus is not science; the science is not settled. I get invited, so I must be accepted by somebody.]
      7.Seeing the major differences between CA and NSW past temperature trends, is the globally averaged temperature a meaningful index? [Questionable value. Certainly not meaningful for making regional decisions.]
      8. a. Isn’t 100 years of data a bit short? b. What about decreasing ocean pH? {Yes. 100 years is short. We do not really know from spotty measurements of upper ocean how ocean pH is changing. Ocean circulation patterns turn over hundreds of years.]
      9. Climate science is politicized today. How did it get into this mess? [IPCC was set up with the mission to find and assess the risk of human induced climate change. This is not a scientific mission - if no danger from human climate change could be found, IPCC would have to close down. Back to Feynman: make a guess, compare it with actual observations; if hypothesis disagrees with observations, hypothesis is wrong. That's science.]

      I may have missed a few points, but that’s what I “took home” from his lecture.

      Max

      • Max

        Thanks for your summary.

        1. Why more CO2 at warmer temperature? [ Outgassing, plus other natural factors we do not understand well.]

        Here is the data that supports the above statement =>

        http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/uah/from:1978/compress:12/normalise/plot/esrl-co2/from:1978/derivative/compress:12/normalise

      • Salby’s presentation is a prime example of how a presentation may mispresent the subject avoiding (mostly) outright falsehoods. It’s so full of dirty tricks that’s unbelievable that a professor can allow that for himself.

        The worst is, not unexpectedly, in the handling of the relationship between temperature and CO2. That’s absolute crap as it was in his previous presentation one year ago. That’s, however, not at all the only place in the presentation where he leaves out the essential facts and replaces them by a misleading narrative that’s equivalent to a lie even when every sentence may be true taken one by one.

        I have never liked lectures as a tool to present a view on controversial issues. There’s not enough time to tell everything important. That leaves the presenter the freedom to choose what he tells and what not. When it’s presented at higher pace than Salby does the listener does not have time to think what was left out and after the presentation it’s difficult to know whether to believe all, most, some, or nothing from what was told. Salby was slow enough to allow time to think and to allow anyone with knowledge on the issues to notice that he was systematically misleading to the extreme.

        One of the most terrible presentations I have seen.

      • Pekka

        You say that Salby’s presentation was One of the most terrible presentations I have seen.

        In view of all the hoopla that has been said about AGW, that’s a pretty strong statement.

        It appears that you disagree with Prof, Salby on one of the first points he has made, namely that CO2 is NOT the climate control knob in real life, while it has been programmed into the models cited by IPCC to be so.

        The second part of Salby’s statement above (CO2 programmed in at high climate sensitivity) is, no doubt, correct. (IPCC models use a mean CS of 3.2C). As a result, models show temperature moving in lockstep with atmospheric CO2 concentration (with the assumption that other factors also move in lockstep with atmospheric CO2).

        So we are down to a disagreement regarding the real 2xCO2 climate sensitivity. Salby says it is low; you disagree.

        I’m afraid that this disagreement is one that exists across climate science today (Dr. Curry’s “uncertainty monster”).

        Then Salby makes some (for me) confusing remarks about human CO2 as a %-age of the entire CO2 cycle, stating that human CO2 represents only 4% (vs. 96% “natural” CO2). He shows that annual increases in atmospheric CO2 levels correlate closely with temperature, relating this (partly at least) to “outgassing” of CO2 from a slightly warmer ocean. IOW temperature drives CO2 level (not the other way around),

        [I have analyzed the same data in a slightly different fashion: comparing the change in annual temperature from the previous year with the %-age of the "emitted CO2" which showed up as "increased CO2 concentration". I also got a very close temperature CO2 correlation.]

        This argument goes back to another lecture Salby made earlier concerning the CO2 cycle and human impact on it, which was controversial.

        This is another key point where you disagree with Salby’s “insinuation” that humans play a minor role in higher CO2 levels.

        Finally, there is Salby’s point that the “lack of warming” over the past 15 years has essentially “falsified” the notion of a high 2xCO2 climate sensitivity (several threads here have covered this, as well).

        Are there any other specific points, where you would disagree with Salby?

        If so, what points, and on what basis?

        I am not baiting you, Pekka, I am really interested in your telling me precisely where you disagree with Salby so intensely that you would have written your scalding statement I quoted above.

        Thanks in advance for your response.

        Max

      • Max,
        I made my statement because I think that most of the presentation is seriously misleading.

        It’s really a piece of propaganda built following guidelines for making propaganda.

      • Pekka

        Another (possibly controversial) point made by Prof. Dalby in his lecture was that “errors” (discrepancies between models and ERBE satellite observations) in both the SW and LW outgoing radiation measurements are high: 30 W/m^2 and 20 W/m^2 respectively, compared to a total 2xCO2 forcing of only 4 W/m^2.

        [The wording here seemed strange to me: (using the Feynman logic) the "error" would appear to me to be a false assumption in the models, rather than a false observation of the satellites.]

        What is your take on this?

        Thanks.

        Max

      • typo: that’s Salby, of course…

      • Pekka

        Thanks for quickie reply.

        I know that, but what I would be interested are the specific points of disagreement, as I listed them, with your idea of what is “wrong” in Salby’s talk, and what is “right” in YOUR opinion.

        I am truly interested in your view.

        Thanks in advance,

        Max

      • Max,
        What disturbed me most was that he presented systematically everything having in mind how to discredit most standard understanding and to promote views that are at best questionable and at worst outright wrong. Even the short passages where he presented correctly some basics appeared to be built in a way that allows using them later for misleading purposes.

        The presentation was not only wrong. It was obviously built with much care to be so wrong.

      • If it was that Salby news conference from a while back, I agree that it was pretty bad, the equivalent of a crackpot skeptic comment to Climate Etc.

        I read stuff on the origin of excess co2 carefully since I have the most sophisticated model available, imo. The origin of excess atmospheric co2 follows conventional diffusional statistical physics so closely that it is textbook material.

        The fact that Salby is Australian may help explain things. It’s that Larrikin streak in play.

      • The worse Aussie is definitely Vaughan Pratt.

      • Pekka

        Thanks again for reply.

        You write that Salby’s presentation was not only wrong. It was obviously built with much care to be so wrong

        IOW it was purposely so presented to convey a falsehood. Strong words, if not very specific.

        A asked you to please tell me which specific points made by Salby were, in your opinion, wrong or false.

        First, there was the statement that human CO2 was only 4% of the total. I would agree that this statement, as made, was not clear. I took it to mean that the amount of CO2 emitted by humans represents only 4% of the total CO2 circulated in the system (which, itself, seems strange, since the figures I have seen indicate that the natural plant-animal CO2 cycle is 220 GtCO2 versus around 33 GtCO2 added into the cycle by human emissions). Since Salby does not define this in more detail, it leads to confusion.

        But the point he makes comparing CGM outputs with real life seems valid, unless he is presenting false data (high discrepancies between models and ERBE satellite observations on both outgoing SW and LW radiation)

        He then states that the models essentially use a high 2xCO2 climate sensitivity. This is true. You and I both know that the average of the IPCC climate models is 3.2C, a high value.

        He states that models show temperature rising in lockstep with CO2 concentrations, whereas the past record does not show such a direct lockstep correlation.

        He then states that observations show that 2xCO2 climate sensitivity is much lower than the models assume. This is a point of contention among climate scientists today, with scientists such and Lindzen and Spencer supporting the conclusion that 2xCO2 CS is only around 0.7C (rather than 3.2C, as assumed by the IPCC climate models and other “consensus” climate scientists). It appears that you agree with the IPCC “consensus” position.

        But, unless you can support this with empirical evidence (Feynman) it is essentially a matter of differing opinions of different scientists and nobody is “right” or “wrong”. (You might argue that you are “more right” and Salby is “more wrong”, but again that would need to be validated by some empirical evidence.)

        Salby cites the past 15 years of no warming (the “pause”) despite unabated human GHG emissions and CO2 reaching record levels as empirical evidence that CO2 is not the principal driver of our climate.

        Here many have objected that 15 years is too short. I suspect this may be the basis for your objection, as well. But I think there is no question that this (plus the poor warming forecasts of Hansen 1988 and TAR/AR4) should raise doubt in the minds of many regarding the high 2xCO2 climate sensitivity of the models used.

        But since you have not told me specifically why you think Salby’s lecture “presented systematically everything having in mind how to discredit most standard understanding and to promote views that are at best questionable and at worst outright wrong” I can only guess why you believe this is so.

        Again, please tell me specifically which points of Salby’s lecture you found wrong or misleading and why.

        Thanks again in advance.

        Max

      • Max,

        I’m not discussing specific points, I’m discussing the whole presentation.

        The chosen style is a very slow pace. That’s used to first present long cherry picked lists prepared to ridicule those with opposing views. Then a series of subjects are chosen, each presented using a narrative that leads listeners to a particular path of thinking. This is applied to present something that doesn’t give anything close to a neutral view.

        All this is done systematically subject after subject. Slides are carefully scaled, not to inform but to misinform, etc. This is not a presentation of science, this is presenting well prepared political propaganda, something our communists were taught to present in their special schools for presenters of political propaganda.

        It doesn’t make sense to go further to discuss any particular point of such a presentation.

        (I don’t think that the presentations has much influence. Those who agree already may find confirmation for their views, those who disagree, continue to disagree as they notice early enough that the presentation is just propaganda.)

      • David Springer

        Nice demonstration of how you earned the nick Pekka “The Weasel” Pirila. I listened to the 60 minute lecture and found it pretty much unassailable so it’s a given you can’t possible accept it.

        So you think the connection between temperature and CO2 he made was crap. Specifically, how so? What was wrong with it? What data that he presented was erroneous?

        I have the popcorn ready. Wriggle away weasel.

      • David Springer

        Pekka Pirilä | October 26, 2012 at 9:30 am |

        “It doesn’t make sense to go further to discuss any particular point of such a presentation.”

        ROFLMAO

        You can’t refute a damn bit of it so you’re going to wave your feminine finnish fingers and say pooh pooh on the whole thing.

        Classic. Is that how science is done in Finland? I can’t say I’m surprised.

      • David Springer

        WebHubTelescope | October 26, 2012 at 8:32 am |

        If it was that Salby news conference from a while back, I agree that it was pretty bad, the equivalent of a crackpot skeptic comment to Climate Etc.

        I read stuff on the origin of excess co2 carefully since I have the most sophisticated model available, imo. The origin of excess atmospheric co2 follows conventional diffusional statistical physics so closely that it is textbook material.

        The fact that Salby is Australian may help explain things. It’s that Larrikin streak in play.

        willard (@nevaudit) | October 26, 2012 at 8:54 am |

        The worse Aussie is definitely Vaughan Pratt.
        ——————————————————————————–

        Salby’s not an Australian you dingbats. If you’d bothered listening to the lecture you’d probably know that. He got his PhD at Georgia Tech before our hostess moved there. He’s only lived in Australia for four years and hasn’t a hint of any Austrailian accent. He’s American with no hint of any regional American accent either.

        ROFLMAO

        You can’t refute a damn bit of it so you’re going to wave your feminine finnish fingers and say pooh pooh on the whole thing.

        Classic. Is that how science is done in Finland? I can’t say I’m surprised.

      • David Springer

        manacker | October 26, 2012 at 9:15 am |

        Pekka

        You write that Salby’s presentation was not only wrong. It was obviously built with much care to be so wrong

        IOW it was purposely so presented to convey a falsehood. Strong words, if not very specific.

        A asked you to please tell me which specific points made by Salby were, in your opinion, wrong or false.
        ————————————————————————————-

        Weasels are seldom specific. This is a classic demonstration of why I nicknamed him Pekka “The Weasel” Pirila some months ago after just a brief introduction to his weaselly words. The fact of the matter is that Salby is a heavyweight climatologist, author of atmospheric physics textbooks, was very specific, and the impotent weasel is simply at a complete loss in refuting any point Salby raised.

      • Girma is also in Australia and I kind of doubt that he is a native.

        The point is that Australia is a hotbed of contrarian thinking when it comes to climate science, and disproportionately represented on this comments section. Salby smartly realized that he would be welcomed with his contrarian perspective down there, whereas in the USA he wouldn’t get the royal treatment.

        Vaughan Pratt somehow managed to escape from Australia. He also has a bit of a contrarian streak, but is also curious and is a firm believer in logic. That is the perfect mix for a scientist.

      • David Springer

        Contrarianism is hardly welcomed in the land of the carbon tax. You should really try to control that kneejerk response to write the first stupid thing that comes into your head.

      • The launching premise for all of subsequent Salby’s views is that he believes that excess atmospheric CO2 is not anthropogenic. Unfortunately, he does not understand the physics that turns a molecule’s sequestration response from a residence time into an adjustment time.

        This is basic diffusional physics. Time responses to diffusional process are fat-tailed and don’t have a single time constant that leads to a residence time. Time responses to first-order kinetics are often exponentially damped and this does generate a residence time.

        To summarize:

        First-order responses go as exp(-time/tau), where tau is a time constant. This time constant is referred to as a residence time. CO2 sequestration is not first order.

        Diffusional responses go as 1/sqrt(time), which does not have a traditional time constant but is instead considered “fat-tail”. We call it an adjustment time to indicate that it continually adjusts and will never completely sequester. CO2 sequestration is diffusional, and therefore has an adjustment time.

        It’s really not my problem that Salby does not understand the basic diffusional principles that physicists and electrical engineers and related disciplines get drilled into their heads.

        What follows from Pekka’s important remarks, is that after Salby gets his initial premise completely wrong is that he further embarrasses himself by launching into all sorts of other falsehoods and garbage. I think what Salby is doing is to leave a trail of FUD to hide the fact that his original research was debunked. Evidently no one would publish the paper that he claimed to have written. The guy has crashed and we are seeing his credibility go up in flames.

      • Max
        Thanks for trying. I also was curious about what might evoke such a strong but very general negative characterization. Thanks for throwing out some strawmen to mull over.

        Pekka
        With all respect, I am a little disappointed you missed a teaching moment. This one just rankled you…oh, well–been there myself.

      • Salby got it wrong, but that is not very difficult to do in a system with longer term fluctuations of not easy to determine magnitudes. That may mean he got some of it right, just not all of it.

        http://www.usc.edu/uscnews/stories/14288.html

        Stott though seems to be heading in the right direction. He does have a hypothesis that longer term ocean mixing regimes can cause caltrate rich deep water to impact the rate of outgassing/uptake. That would also cause pH fluctuations like are being seen in the Pacific Northwest. A 1300 to 1500 year lag would make things interesting.

      • Pekka, you look bad here. One with another viewpoint might say that the IPCC Summary for Policymakers was a carefully contrived propaganda piece. How about answering Max’s questions?
        ==================

      • What the fake skeptics have in spades is vigilance.

        What they completely lack is diligence..

        They are willing to knee-jerk spew whenever they see the slightest questioning of their own premises, with Salby’s super-weak presentation as evidence.
        Yet actually doing the scientific diligence it takes to understand and formulate the actual physical principles involved?
        Fat chance.

      • Kim,

        I repeat. Most of the problems are in the way everything is presented and how the selection on what to present are made.

        Even a presentation that has no errors in any detail may be seriously misleading. The most important thing that I dislike in Salby’s presentation is in that area as I have already explained. In addition it has a few outright errors of which the misrepresentation of the factors that determine the increase in CO2 concentration is serious while the others are rather minor issues (although they are also used to help in the general misrepresentation of knowledge). But as I wrote, the errors are not the main reason that I dislike the representation so strongly.

      • Webster, “Yet actually doing the scientific diligence it takes to understand and formulate the actual physical principles involved?”

        You mean reading other flawed papers or assuming infinite heat sinks? The Stott papers are pretty interesting. It appears that the deep oceans warm prior to a glaciation. Your diffusion model doesn’t consider feedbacks that limit the rate of diffusion. I was promoted to Fraud and Buffoon for pointing that out, because something that counter-intuitive has to be the ultimate in “crackpottery.” Non-equilibrium non-linear dissipative systems will make a bunch of folks look like idiots..

      • Kim you write “How about answering Max’s questions?”

        To Kim and Max. I have been through this with other alarmists. They are NEVER going to address any questions which can be used to show that CAGW has no scientific basis. They will always avoid any direct answer on such issues. The best we can hope for is that we make them feel a little uncomfortable. However, the threads on the Pause, and this one on the same subject essentially, have made it crystal clear just how little real science there is to support CAGW. It will take time, but we can anticipate that in the not far distant future, Mother Nature, who is a bitch, will provide us with all the ammunition we need the show that CAGW has definitely not been proven. I doubt we can ever prove that it is wrong. However, the political will to reduce carbon emissions seems to have just about completely disappeared, so we dont really need to worry about what the alarmists think, say or try to do. The world is safe from anyone “Playing God”.

      • The captain wants to know a physical process model that limits the amount of diffusion. That would be the Ornstein-Uhlenbeck model. This places a negative feedback drag term on how far a particle can walk away from an originating plane.

      • Crip, in case you didn’t notice, this discussion regarding Salby is on fundamental aspects of climate science not even remotely related to CAGW.

        When skeptics can not get the fundamentals right, they get branded as fake.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        ‘In mathematics, the Ornstein–Uhlenbeck process (named after Leonard Ornstein and George Eugene Uhlenbeck), is a stochastic process that, roughly speaking, describes the velocity of a massive Brownian particle under the influence of friction. The process is stationary, Gaussian, and Markovian, and is the only nontrivial process that satisfies these three conditions, up to allowing linear transformations of the space and time variables.[1] Over time, the process tends to drift towards its long-term mean: such a process is called mean-reverting.’

        Unfortunately for the webnutcolonoscope climate is non-stationary, non-Gaussian and non-Markovian. It is simply not an applicable concept – especially not when it is applied weirdly to glacials and interglacials. The guy is a liar a fraud and an idiot and remains utterly clueless about the range of processes in play.

      • Webster, ” That would be the Ornstein-Uhlenbeck model. This places a negative feedback drag term on how far a particle can walk away from an originating plane.” Actually, it is more like the distance it can travel changes. If the origin is the thermal equator, the distance it can travel is the edge of the sea ice extent. Where that “edge is, would be where the maximum downwelling would be located. The highest rate of downwelling would have the greatest relative turbulence and the greatest mixing. Beneath the sea ice would be the most laminar downwelling, least mixing.

        So you have an interesting range of possible variations. With minimum sea ice extent, you would have the longest distance, the coldest average temperature at the termination and the greatest turbulent mixing. At maximum sea ice extent, you would have the warmest average temperature at termination, a narrower band of turbulent mixing and a larger area of cold laminar downwelling. Since we live on a sphere, the nonlinear change in the area of that mixing band or latitude, convergence, would be unstable.

        The Antarctic convergence, has a change of around 8 C degrees in less than 5 degrees of latitude. So the temperature of average termination could change from around 10C to 2 C, with 4C looking like the current happy median.

        The Northern hemisphere doesn’t have as stable of a convergence zone which would make it rather difficult to predict.

        The Antarctic though, with that minimum deviation from mean, would make it a somewhat predictable indicator to future climate.

      • mwgrant,

        > Thanks for trying.

        I like that line.

        ***

        David Springer,

        Thank you for trying.

      • There are a pair of pseudo-scientists on this commenting list who like to play gOd and so choose authoritarian titles such as Chief and Captain.

        Each one thinks that scientific word salad is the way to make everyone fall in line. Don’t fall for it.

      • Webster, I am sorry that it is too complex a topic for you to grasp, but if deep water warms before the surface, your Fickian is Ficked. :)

      • Pekka

        It appears that you do not want to answer my question with specifics.

        The big bone of contention appears to be Salby’s bombshell statement from last year regarding the human versus natural cause of increasing CO2 concentrations.

        Without going into all the complexities of Webby’s objection, I simply conclude, as an engineer, that when humans add X Gt per year of CO2 back into the atmosphere that originally came from the atmosphere but has been tied up in fossil fuels for eons, and the increase in atmospheric concentration shows an average annual net increase of X/2 Gt, then the human input must have had something to do with the increase, regardless of the size of the overall CO2 cycle or the amount of net ocean outgassing/absorption.

        So we probably agree on that point (and both disagree with Salby).

        However, I think the more pertinent part of Salby’s latest lecture is the point that climate models do not reflect reality in that they operate with a 2xCO2 climate sensitivity that is not reflected in the real world observations.

        One example given is the poor ability of climate models to forecast temperature (Hansen’s 1988 projection, the failed decadal projections of TAR/AR4).

        A second example cited by Salby is the major discrepancy in outgoing SW and LW radiation between ERBE satellite observations and the models, which are an order of magnitude greater than the estimated 2xCO2 forcing of ~4W/m^2.

        These are real statements, which are either correct or false I had hoped to get your specific position on these points. Is Salby lying or not? Are the observed physical data wrong or are the model assumptions wrong?

        Then Salby states that the current “pause” , which hardly anyone (except maybe lolwot) denies, is a de facto falsification of a high 2xCO2 climate sensitivity, as assumed by all the models cited by IPCC.

        Here I would have expected you to object, stating for example that the 15-year “pause” cited by Salby is still too short a time period to be statistically significant or conclusive, adding that, in your opinion, it would take a “pause” period of “X” years before this would be conclusive, thereby representing a defacto falsification of the high climate sensitivity. IOW how long a “pause” would it take in your scientific opinion before the climate sensitivity of the IPCC models was falsified?

        Pekka, I know you approach the entire quandary from a more theoretical angle than I do (scientist versus engineer, if you will). As an engineer and a rational skeptic, I think that hypotheses are important but the only thing that really counts in the end is empirical evidence (Feynman).

        To me it sounds like the little bit of empirical evidence that we really do have (from actual physical observations) all points into the direction of a much lower 2xCO2 climate sensitivity than the one resulting from IPCC’s climate models.

        This was also Salby’s point, and I had hoped to get your specific objections (or agreements) to the specific points he made, as I outlined them in bold face type above.

        Unfortunately you have not yet addressed these key points of Salby’s lecture, but I still hope you will give me a specific response and thank you in advance for it.

        Max

      • Pekka, how about answering Max’s questions? Be bold, don’t fold.
        ======================

      • Manacker,
        Until Salby recants his belief that CO2 increase is not caused by man, everything else he says is suspect.

        First rule is that you don’t follow lunatics down rabbit holes.

      • Max,

        I have discussed the issues that you bold in other connections.

        Salby’s presentation adds nothing to the discussion on these points. If he or anybody else wishes to discuss seriously any point then he must avoid the style and the errors of Salby’s presentation.

        There’s no reason to repeat here again what I have written on those points.

      • Web, we’re not talking anymore about what Salby said, but what Max said, and what Pekka doesn’t say, to his shame.
        ====================

      • It’s sort of a comedy sketch. Max is standing directly in front of Pekka, asking Pekka a direct question, and Pekka is answering him as if he’s a man in another room. I wouldn’t want to be a member of any debate that would have me.
        ===========

      • No, we are talking about what Salby says. He is one of yours and you need to address his claims.

        He essentially thinks that none of the excess co2 is anthropogenic. That claim alone suggests that everything that comes after is beyond our control.

      • Pekka

        As other denizens here have noted, you have lambasted Prof. Salby’s presentation as “propoganda”, but when I have repeatedly listed four controversial claims made by Salby (which attack the very basis of CAGW), politely requesting you to give your specific comment to these points, you are unwilling (or unable) to refute these with any scientific evidence, except to opine that this was “one of the most terrible presentations I have seen”.

        That’s pretty weak, Pekka, and I am disappointed in you.

        “nuff said. Let’s move on.

        Max

      • Web, it is obvious that Max has stripped out the CO2 origin question and is asking Pekka the bold, tough questions. It’s just as obvious that Pekka’s faking umbrage in order to dodge the bold, tough questions.

        How about you answering Max’s questions, since Pekka’s retired to the ‘No Mas’ corner? These are excellent, critical questions, and the response so far has been a form of ad hominem.
        ============

      • Heh, didn’t see your 9:17 Max. Pekka’s moved on, but his Merry-Go-Round will circle around and around to the same wonderful questions. Put another nickel in.
        ===========

      • Besides, we now have Paul K, and his damning of Wigley and others. The IPCC could have calculated a figure for climate sensitivity from empiric results and instead chased phony Bayesian priors. If that was not deliberate, why wasn’t it?
        =================

      • Kim, “Besides, we now have Paul K, and his damning of Wigley and others. The IPCC could have calculated a figure for climate sensitivity from empiric results and instead chased phony Bayesian priors. If that was not deliberate, why wasn’t it?
        =================”

        Actually, Paul K can calculate an estimate of “sensitivity” based on comparing the models to empirical data which Wigley and others could have done. They are still scratching their heads over why the models show non-linear sensitivity on a similar period of the natural internal oscillations :)

      • Salby is the guy you have to go after.

        Here is a very good analysis takedown of Salby:

        http://skepticalscience.com//news.php?f=salby_correlation_conundrum

        Please, oh please fake skeptics, can you at least be as diligent in your analysis as vigilant in your gotcha games?
        When all you have is vigilance, you necessarily become a vigilante. That’s why I a can’t take this junk. You basically ignore, scoff at, or break scientific laws, just like a conventional law-breaking vigilante.

      • David Springer

        Great writeup, Max. I was inspired to spend an hour intently listening to the whole thing.

    • Hi Girma,

      You wrote: “The chart shows an annual CO2 increase of up to 3ppm and a minimum of about 0.5 ppm. When the temperature drops, the released CO2 also drops. When the temperature increases, the released CO2 also increases. This variation can happen if it is from natural sources, mainly from the oceans.”

      Your chart doesn’t show this, and is in fact incapable of distinguishing between the yearly increases in the actual Mauna Loa series, and for that series with a large linear trend subtracted so that overall the CO2 concentrations go down over the period. This property of your analysis therefore makes it unable to support your attribution statement.

      You wrote to Pekka, who’d also pointed out that your analysis was flawed: “I strongly disagree. Show me why it is …?”

      In your chart, you’ve plotted the UAH lower trop. series after it has been compressed (12 sample) and normalised, alongs with the Mauna Loa CO2 series which has been compressed (12 sample), had its derivative taken and then normalised.

      Notice that in the case of the UAH series, you’ve plotted the normalised derivative of a time-series. A simple mathematical property of the normalised derivative of any time-series is that it’s identical to the normalised derivative of that time series with any linear trend added or subtracted (added or subtracted prior to taking the derivative and normalising) .

      An outline proof of this property:
      ——————————-
      Say we have a time-series F(t) (F(t) notionally corresponds to the compressed Mauna Loa CO2 series, but this is meant as a general proof)
      Define G(t) to be a detrended version of F(t), so G(t) = F(t) – A.(t – C) where A and C are constants, A determining the amount of detrending (A cannot be 0), and C determining at what time the detrended series intersects the original series. The Wood for Trees detrending algortithm allows A to be set, and automatically sets C to be the start date of the series being detrended.

      So G(t) = F(t) – A.t – A.C

      Now take the time derivate of F(t) and G(t) :
      Derivative[F(t)] = Derivative[F(t)] (by definition)
      Derivative[G(t)] = Derivative[F(t) - A.t - A.C)]
      Derivative[G(t)] = Derivative[F(t)] – A

      Therefore the derivative of a detrended version of F differs from the derivative of F only by the detrending constant A.

      Now we know from the definition of normalisation, that for all time series f(t) and constants K, Normalise[f(t) + K] = [Normalise(f(t)] .
      Therefore Normalise[Derivative[F(t)]] = Normalise[Derivate[G[t]] (for all values of the detrending parameters A and C), which is the result we wished to prove.
      ———————————-

      In the example of your chart, we can check on the Wood for Trees site that your processing does indeed produce identical charts for very different curves which differ from each other by the addition or substraction of large linear trends.

      Consider these three CO2 series (compressed as you’ve compressed them). One is the actual Mauna Loa series compressed, the other two are the Mauna Loa series detrended so that the first order CO2 change over the period is about 0, or negative (CO2 ppm falls from about 335pm in 1978 to about 290pm in 2011) :

      http://tinyurl.com/three-very-different-CO2-plots

      Now we take their derivatives – you’ll see that they differ only by a constant.

      http://tinyurl.com/derivatives-of-those-3-CO2-gfx

      Now we normalise them – you’ll see the curves are identical (I’ve added very small offsets otherwise the plots would perfectly overlay each other and it would appear as a single line) :

      http://tinyurl.com/normalised-derivates-for-the-3

      • A problem with the Wood for Trees site is that anyone can play with it without proper understanding of the underlying statistical basis of each time series in the database and the problems inherent in comparing differing series in simplistic and misleading ways and then jumping to conclusions.

        The Wood for Trees site should be locked up in something similar to my gun safe and access should be restricted to people with appropriate background knowledge of statistics and who understand the limitations of its use for prediction purposes.

        A little knowledge can often be dangerous in the wrong hands.

      • > A little knowledge can often be dangerous in the wrong hands.

        Do you have an example in mind?

      • David Springer

        barf

      • David Springer

        You should have the key to your gun safe taken away.

      • Peter,
        Not exactly. You can’t restrict anyone from accessing practical tools that have no entry criteria for use. That would prevent some budding young scientist or curious amateur from using them, and that would be a shame.

        So what you do is point out who is incompetent and you keep hammering that home.

        Girma has a facility for using a computer and that is about it. Nothing he says should be taken seriously.

        That is why I maintain The Field Guide to Climate Clowns, where I describe the antics of skeptics with crackpot approaches:

        http://tinyurl.com/ClimateClowns

        So instead of having to go through a horrendously long debunking of something stupid that Girma has said, we can just refer the causal reader to this link.

        oneuniverse did a wonderful job with his debunking comment, but that is just one comment out of the torrent of comments that Girma will continue to unleash on us.

        The point is that diligence is the only defense we have to combat The Stupid.

        We can also choose to ignore the garbage and sit back and watch this site dissolve into a cesspool of incompetence.

        Yet we can also choose to go the oneuniverse route and present some thoughtful and practical analysis that really advances the yardstick of knowledge.

      • Guns can dangerous if little children can play with them. Just sorry to see so many well meaning commenters spend so much time explaining where an analysis has been poorly done and to see these efforts falling on deaf ears.

      • DONT TAKE MY GUNS

      • oneuniverse

        The point is that there appears to be a temperature correlation between the amount of CO2 “remaining in the atmosphere” from human emissions and temperature.

        I found a correlation between a) the change in temperature from the previous year (i.e. did it warm up or cool down on average?) and b) the %-age of the CO2 emitted by humans that “remained in the atmosphere (on an annual basis).

        In years that warmed, the %-age “remaining” in the atmosphere was higher (up to 85%) than in years that cooled (as low as 15%). The long-term average was around 50% (with the other half apparently absorbed by the biosphere, oceans, etc.).

        Salby shows this in a different way, but it is the same principle.

        Max

      • Max,
        The correlation is true and it has been shown to correspond to changes in land vegetation that reacts to weather (and ENSO that affects weather). There’s nothing mystical in that and the variability has nothing to do with the overall trends of CO2 and temperature.

      • oneuniverse

        The analysis I made uses hard published data only (HadCUT3 global temperature, Mauna Loa for annual CO2 increase, CDIAC for CO2 emissions from fossil fuels, other sources as cited for cement production and deforestation).

        It may not be “scientific”, but it is uncomplicated and shows an apparent year-to-year temperature/CO2 correlation.

        Max

      • Pekka

        Thanks for your response.

        Interesting.

        I also suspected that differences in plant uptake might also play a role, but glad to hear your confirmation.

        In addition, could there be possible differences in ocean net uptake or outgassing, which could also have a temperature dependency (but then probably more on upper ocean temperature rather than atmospheric temperature at the surface)?

        (This seems unlikely in my mind because of the much smaller annual net changes in ocean temperature, due to its much higher heat capacity compared to the atmosphere, as Salby also pointed out.)

        Max

      • ENSO does certainly affect ocean surface temperatures and that has some influence on the net transfer of CO2 between atmosphere and ocean, but the temperature of the surface water does not change the balance so much that this would be a major effect, the influence on land vegetation is stronger.

        The details of the carbon cycle are not known accurately but they are known well enough to tell which effects are most important and which less.

      • A quick correction to my comment (26 Oct, 8:42am), the 4th paragraph, “UAH lower trop. series” should of course be “Mauna Loa CO2 series”.

        Max, I’m on the train so my apologies if this is brief.

        My comment was directed at Girma’s WFT analysis on this thread, from which he (wrongly, in my view) concluded that “The increase CO2 concentration in the atmosphere is natural” (Oct 21, 11:21 am) and that “CO2 concentration in the atmosphere depends on GMST, not human emission of CO2″ (Oct 25, 11:35am).

        I don’t think these are conclusions that you’re drawing from your (different) analysis?

      • What Pekka says is correct.
        There is a physics based correlation between CO2 and temperature. It is well understood that the gaseous form of CO2 is activated by temperature shifts.

        This is operational in a biological setting whereby organisms will increase their metabolism at higher environmental temperatures and therefore “activate” the release of CO2.
        This is also operational in a non-biological setting whereby water will “activate” the release of CO2 with increasing temperatures. This is referred to as out-gassing.

        Both of these processes have roughly the same activation energy, roughly 0.2 to 0.3 electron volts.

        So what we are seeing is a correlation of slight changes in the CO2 levels with slight changes of a gradually increasing global temperature. It is a testament to the quality of the measurements taken at Mauna Loa that we can actually detect this shift.

        Go the end of this blog post to see how well slight CO2 shifts at Mauna Loa correlate to SST temperature near the equatorial Pacific region just south of Hawaii.

        http://theoilconundrum.blogspot.com/2012/03/co2-outgassing-model.html

        The end result is that this positive feedback is only a small relative percentage of the overall CO2 signal. If was the whole thing, the activation energy would need to be much higher than 0.3 eV, which is impossible from the basic physical chemistry principles of CO2, Henry’s Law, etc

        If you have problems with the analysis why don’t you try debunking it?

        The only guy that will give the debunking a college try is Bartemis, but he only makes an appearance about once in a blue moon.

        One thing good that has come out of this discussion is that Max Manacker has finally corrected his previous CO2 table, which contained a bad data point.

        Diligence and vigilance is what it takes.

      • Web:Girma has a facility for using a computer and that is about it. Nothing he says should be taken seriously.

        Web:What Pekka says is correct.
        There is a physics based correlation between CO2 and temperature. It is well understood that the gaseous form of CO2 is activated by temperature shifts.

        Pekka:Max,
        The correlation is true and it has been shown to correspond to changes in land vegetation that reacts to weather (and ENSO that affects weather). There’s nothing mystical in that and the variability has nothing to do with the overall trends of CO2 and temperature.

        Web, are not you contradicting yourself?

      • Here is the correlation between global mean temperature and CO2 concentration in the atmosphere.

        http://bit.ly/XmUDK0

        When the temperature goes down, so does the CO2 concentration. When the temperature goes up, so does the CO2 concentration. In the longterm, the CO2 increases because of the overall warming trend.

        For a long-term cooling trend, the CO2 concentration should decrease.

      • Girma, You have not the least bit of interest in applying the science correctly.

        Correlations can exist but is the size of the correlation that matters. If you were weighing an elephant and you correlated the fact that the elephant weighed more when it was wet then when it was dry, you would be correct. But then to go and crow about the fact that you have shown that a perspiring elephant weighs more than a sleeping elephant would not be good for your credibility.

        OTOH, your credibility has long been shot down, so that is not saying much.

      • Very good, Girma!

        I will match this correlation with the one between Facebook growth and the Greek crisis:

        http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/correlation-or-causation-12012011-gfx.html#

        In that same page, you can see that I raise you with five other interesting correlations, including the the NSF R&D funding budget and the average temperature and the housing price index and the number of babies named Ava.

        I am sure the one about the NSF will appeal to my fellow denizens.

      • Girma, you wrote above: “Here is the correlation between global mean temperature and CO2 concentration in the atmosphere.

        http://bit.ly/XmUDK0

        When the temperature goes down, so does the CO2 concentration. When the temperature goes up, so does the CO2 concentration.”

        No – in your graph, when the temperature was going up [or down], it’s the normalised rate of change of CO2 concentration that was (roughly speaking) also going up [or down], NOT the CO2 concentration. Please note that this corrected form of your statement no longer logically leads to your conclusions that “The increase CO2 concentration in the atmosphere is natural” or that “CO2 concentration in the atmosphere depends on GMST, not human emission of CO2″.

        If you’d wanted to plot a graph to potentially support or disprove your conclusions (hypotheses), you should’ve plotted Mauna Loa CO2 vs UAH T, instead of Derivative[Mauna Loa CO2] vs UAH T (normalised or otherwise). (to stick with the datasets that you’d chosen). That’s simple enough to do by making a minor adjustment to your WFT chart :

        http://tinyurl.com/normalised-CO2-vs-normalised-T

        The graph shows your statement, and your conclusions, to be wrong: the annual mean CO2 increased monotonically – whether T was going up or down, CO2 was going up. (Here’s the same graph with the other WFT global T indices added (HadCRUT4, GISS LOTI and RSS). The same result holds for all the T datasets : http://tinyurl.com/norm-CO2-versus-multi-norm-T )

      • Oneuniverse

        You are making very good points.

        But what I am saying is the trend for the GMST and rate of change of CO2 are identical as shown =>

        http://bit.ly/PafSwC

        Look at your trend line for CO2 (red curve) matches the trend line for GMST (blue line).

        The trend for the GMST came from the oscillating GMST where on average the warming side of the saw tooth shape is greater than its cooling side.

      • Girma will now be on this kick for eternity.

        His credibility has long been shot, and this just confirms the fact that he completely lacks physical insight.

      • Webby, As a known fake alarmist, you’ll let us know if you ever decide to attempt an, you know – actual argument (gasp!) – won’t you? Perhaps put some asterisks near the top, so busy thinking folks here will know to not routinely ignore your posting.

      • David Springer

        Max,

        If the ocean is warming or cooling it’s impossible for it to NOT change CO2 exchange rate with the atmosphere in response to temperature change. Salby MUST be correct in principle if not in magnitude. Salby takes a pass on the magnitude question saying that we don’t know how much ocean temperature is changing because we only have the means currently to measure 20% of its total volume and out instruments don’t have the precision to discriminate global average change in thousandth’s of a degree which is the order of temperature change the correlates with atmospheric concentration changes.

        Salby is a very accomplished atmospheric physicist. He’s the author of graduate atmospherics physics texts that wannabe atmospheric physics PhDs have to study to become PhD’s forcrisakes. He literally wrote the book on this subject. To see comparatively uneducated chumps like Pekka “The Weasel” Pirila and webcolonoscope the electrician discount him out of hand is preposterous. His peers need to answer him and none of those post in these comments. Curry is his peer and her reaction over a year ago was:

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

        “If Salby’s analysis holds up, this could revolutionize AGW science. Salby and I were both at the University of Colorado-Boulder in the 1990′s, but I don’t know him well personally. He is the author of a popular introductory graduate text Fundamentals of Atmospheric Physics. He is an excellent lecturer and teacher, which comes across in his podcast. He has the reputation of a thorough and careful researcher. While all this is frustratingly preliminary without publication, slides, etc., it is sufficiently important that we should start talking about these issues.”

        I linked to a video of Salby uploaded last month which includes the slides and graphs so Curry should have another look at it.

      • What you say about Salby one can also say about Claes Johnson.
        Another professor that writes perfectly good regurgitated textbooks, but when it comes to original cutting-edge research, they have gone insane.

        BTW, Where is Salby’s paper? Is it possible that it got rejected by his peers?

        More here on Salby and his chicanery:

        http://www.skepticalscience.com/salbyratio.html

      • David Springer

        Webcolonoscope

        Maybe nobody told you but blogs aren’t legitimate references. Encyclopedias are a step up and even those are supposed to be used only to point you towards peer reviewed literature.

      • David Springer

        Webcolonoscope

        Salby put it into the second edition of his graduate textbook on atmospheric physics. Here ya go:

        http://www.cambridge.org/us/knowledge/isbn/item6453547/Physics-of-the-Atmosphere-and-Climate/?site_locale=en_US

      • David Springer

        Webcolonoscope

        You compare this guy to Claes? Use Skeptical Science for a review? Are you completely out of your mind or just denser than the neutron core of our sun? ROFLMAO

        About the book:

        ——————————————————————————–

        Editorial Reviews

        “The first edition is a classic. As a textbook it is unequalled in breadth, depth and lucidity. It is the single volume that I recommend to every one of my students in atmospheric science. The new edition improves over the previous edition, if that is possible at all, in three aspects: beautiful illustrations of global processes … from newly available satellite data, new topics of current interest … and a new chapter on the influence of the ocean on the atmosphere. These changes make the book more useful as a starting point for studying climate change.” – Professor Yuk Yung, California Institute of Technology

        ” … an informative and insightful tour through the contemporary issues in the atmospheric sciences as they relate to climate. … a valuable resource for educators and researchers alike, serving both as a textbook for the graduate or advanced undergraduate student with a physics or mathematics background and as an excellent reference and refresher for practitioners. … a welcome addition to the field.” – Professor Darin W. Toohey, University of Colorado at Boulder

        ” … an essential reference for researchers and graduate and advanced undergraduate students who wish to have a rigorous source for a wide range of fundamental atmospheric science topics. Atmospheric and climate scientists will find this book to be an essential one for their libraries.” – Associate Professor Hampton N. Shirer, Pennsylvania State University

        “I recommend it as a foundation for anyone who wants to do research on the important open questions about aerosols, radiation, biogeochemisty, and ocean-atmosphere coupling.” – Professor Jim McWilliams, University of California, Los Angeles

        Book Description

        Murry Salby’s new book provides an integrated treatment of the processes controlling the Earth-atmosphere system, developed from first principles through a balance of theory and applications. This is an ideal intermediate-level undergraduate textbook and reference text for graduates and researchers, supported by student problems, with detailed solutions provided online for course instructors.

        About the Author

        Murry Salby holds the Chair of Climate Science at Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia. He was previously a Professor at the University of Colorado, where he served as Director of the Center for Atmospheric Theory and Analysis. Before that he was a researcher at the US National Center for Atmospheric Research and at Princeton University. Professor Salby has authored more than 100 scientific articles in major international journals, as well as the textbook Fundamentals of Atmospheric Physics (1996). His research focuses on changes of the atmospheric circulation in relation to global structure, energetics and climate. Involving large-scale computer simulation and satellite data, Salby’s research has provided insight into a wide range of phenomena in the Earth-atmosphere system.

      • In his book, Salby says that CO2 is a result of “Production by Surface and
        Anthropogenic Processes”.

        So he says one thing in his textbook and another in his press conference “research”.

        My oh my, what a duplicitous crank.

      • David Springer

        You wrote me:

        Max,

        If the ocean is warming or cooling it’s impossible for it to NOT change CO2 exchange rate with the atmosphere in response to temperature change. Salby MUST be correct in principle if not in magnitude.

        The first word in your sentence tells it all: it’s the BIG word “IF”.

        Can we say with any certainty that the upper surface of the ocean (which would come into contact with atmospheric CO2) is, indeed, warming perceptibly?

        There were no comprehensive measurements of the upper ocean temperature until 2003, when ARGO measurements were started.

        These have shown no warming (team leader Josh Willis has called it a “speed bump”).

        Of course, there are charts showing ocean warming prior to 2003, but these are based on very spotty measurements by expendable XBT devices (which introduced a “warming bias” according to Willis), and before that on even spottier measurements.

        Salby points out that a 1degC warming of the atmosphere (as could be expected fom the added radiative forcing of doubling CO2 alone) is equivalent to an imperceptible 0.005degC warming of the ocean due to the greater mass and higher heat capacity (I haven’t checked his arithmetic on that, but it sounds plausible).

        So, until Salby releases the basis for his claim that most of the CO2 increase is “natural”, we are stuck with this:

        – Humans are emitting “new” CO2 into the environment.

        – On a year-to-year basis this fluctuates wildly, but on average only around half of this is “remaining” in the atmosphere.

        – This average has decreased by five percentage points since Mauna Loa records started, i.e. less is “staying” in the atmosphere and more is being absorbed (by the oceans and biosphere) as the atmospheric concentration is increasing.

        – There is also an apparent correlation between the %-age of the human emission “remaining” in the atmosphere and the change in overall global temperature from the previous year (as I plotted).

        – The equilibrium solubility between atmospheric CO2 and ocean water is temperature-related

        – Cold sea water absorbs CO2, when this is transported to a warmer location, it releases the CO2 again. This is an ongoing natural cycle, involving the absorption and outgassing of very large quantities of CO2..

        – Salby suggests that the observed increase in atmospheric CO2 is coming from more net outgassing from a slightly warmer ocean.

        – Whether the very small increases in average global ocean temperature (which are not physically measured but only surmised) are causing a significant change in atmospheric CO2 concentrations is questionable in my mind.

        This got rather lengthy, but it is complex with several apparent variables at play.

        Max

      • Josh Willis has since dispatched the “speed bump”. It no longer exists. It was a mistake.

        Which is why max keeps bringing it up.

      • “… Salby releases the basis for his claim that most of the CO2 increase is “natural””

        Keep on pushing this claim, Max.
        Salby will eventually have to retract his assertion.

      • Max has got the same result.

        So there is nothing wrong with woodfortrees derivative calculation.

      • Oneuniverse

        Thanks for your response.

        To check the woodfortrees calculations, I have calculated the smoothed rate of change of CO2 concentration outside of woodfortrees, and I have found woodfortrees calculation is correct.

        What I did was find the difference in the CO2 concentration between successive data points and then smooth this result with 12 months moving average. I don’t believe there is anything wrong with this procedure.

        Here is woodfortrees result => http://bit.ly/RlaF4O

        Here is my result => http://bit.ly/Vu8FFN

        As a result, I stand by my statement based on Salby’s observation:

        When the temperature drops, the released CO2 also drops. When the temperature increases, the released CO2 also increases. This variation can happen if it is from natural sources, mainly from the oceans.

        Human emission of CO2 does not oscillate like the above variation; it has been increasing monotonically.

        According to this observation, the increase CO2 concentration in the atmosphere is due to the overall warming trend, not due to human emission of CO2.

        In the saw tooth CO2 concentration pattern, the increase during the warming is generally greater than during the cooling, and this results in the overall increase in CO2 Concentration.

        If the long-term global mean temperature trend had been cooling, we would have seen a decline in the CO2 concentration

      • Oneuniverse

        Here is the smoothed rate of change of CO2 in the atmosphere

        http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/esrl-co2/from:1978/derivative/mean:12

        Note that the rate of change has been positive, showing the monotonic increase in CO2.

        If you don’t agree with the above result, please show me your rate of change of CO2 in the atmosphere.

      • Hi Girma, sorry if this lacks structure as it is written in somewhat in haste:

        No-one’ disputed the integrity of the WFT procedures for reliably calculating trends, derivatives and so on. Also, no-one has suggested that it’s wrong to calculate the derivative or difference series of a time-series. Rather, here, it’s your interpretations of the calculations and charts, and the conclusions you’ve drawn from them, that are in error.

        You’d written: “When the temperature goes down, so does the CO2 concentration. When the temperature goes up, so does the CO2 concentration.”
        As noted earlier, the data you used shows your statement to be plainly wrong. It’s not clear to me whether you’ve taken this on board yet, much less admitted it.

        re: your comment of Oct 26, 10:39pm

        Your statements in italics:
        When the temperature drops, the released CO2 also drops. When the temperature increases, the released CO2 also increases. This variation can happen if it is from natural sources, mainly from the oceans.

        May I ask what data you’re using to determine “released CO2″? Are you deriving this from the atmospheric CO2 concentration, or Max’s ratio of anthropogenic emissions : atmospheric CO2, with some unstated assumptions to allow you to derive “released CO2″ ?

        Human emission of CO2 does not oscillate like the above variation; it has been increasing monotonically.

        The oscillations are of secondary significance at most. The rate of change of CO2 concentrations remains postive throughout the oscillations.
        (Also, contrary to what you say, the annual anthropogenic emission of CO2 hasn’t been increasing monotonically.).

        According to this observation, the increase CO2 concentration in the atmosphere is due to the overall warming trend, not due to human emission of CO2.

        The trend for both anthroppgenic emissions and temperature are postive over the period under examination. Furthermore, anthropogenic contributions have been postive throughout the period, whilst temperature has both risen and fallen. You’ve presented no basis for your conlcusion.

        (By the way, you’re now comparing the “overall warming trend” with the monotonic annual increase in atmospheric CO2, it seems that you’ve conceded that you were wrong in your earlier conclusion that “When the temperature goes down, so does the CO2 concentration. When the temperature goes up, so does the CO2 concentration.”?)

        In the saw tooth CO2 concentration pattern, the increase during the warming is generally greater than during the cooling, and this results in the overall increase in CO2 Concentration.

        As already mentioned, the annual CO2 concentration has been increasing during both interannual warming and the cooling periods.

        If the long-term global mean temperature trend had been cooling, we would have seen a decline in the CO2 concentration
        This is merely your assertion. All the interannual cooling periods we have over the instrumental record (for CO2 and T) record CO2 as increasing.

        re: your reply at October 27, 2012 at 2:24 am & 2:28am
        You wrote : “the trend for the GMST and rate of change of CO2 are identical as shown” and “Look at your [sic] trend line for CO2 (red curve) matches the trend line for GMST (blue line).”

        Anyway, it’s not surprising that the trend lines “match”, because you’ve normalised them. If you normalise any trend line over a particular period, it will end up in exactly one of three states – flat (from 0 to 0), postive (from -0.5 to 0.5) or negative (from 0.5 to -0.5).
        It follows that if you normalise two trend lines over the same period, they will match exactly if both are positive/flat/negative (both CO2 and T have positive trend lines for the period in question).

        (By the way, your red curve isn’t the trend line for CO2, it’s the actual annual CO2 concentrations, although it does increase in a close-to-linear fashion over the period. Also, you used tropospheric T, not GMST.)

  40. We are not seeing unprecedented warming so why even consider geo-engineering?

  41. Carbon sequestration seems fine, but what happens if we can’t turn it off? Isn’t the threshold where life cannot exist on Earth around 170ppm?

  42. For warming the super greenhouse gas SF6 could be produced en mass and pumped into the atmosphere. A single location will do, it’s inert and would spread throughout the atmosphere over time. It’ll only take about 70 million tons of the gas to be equivalent to a doubling of CO2, or 19,000 tons a day for 10 years.

    Current SF6 production and emissions are about 5000 tons a year (up from about 1000 tons a year in the 1970s). Given it’s used for specific niche uses I am sure production could be scaled up considerably with minimal effort and cost. The consequences of emissions so far already obvious.

    Production and emission would only have to take place in one location in the world as the gas is inert and would rapidly spread around the world of it’s own accord (as it already has).

    • lolwot

      But why? (Nature has already given us some very welcome slight warming, and we’ve given Nature a boost in the essential plant food, CO2 – and, beside, plants won’t benefit from your “super GHG”).

      Max

      Max

      • well 70 million tons of SF6 vs 500 billion tons of CO2.

        Which is easier to produce for the same warming?

  43. @David L. Hagan: “Geoengineering holds prospects for easily starving hundreds of millions of poor in developing countries from its consequences.”

    Since the ‘sustainable living’ environmentalists and climate scientists routinely warn that the maximum sustainable human population is around .5-1.5 e9, wouldn’t the above be considered a ‘feature’ rather than a problem?

    After reading the subject article and other similar screeds over the past few years, it is becoming increasingly obvious that ‘belief in CAGW’ (and if the ‘C’ is unwarranted, why the frantic demand to ‘do something right now’?) is long overdue for inclusion in the DSM Manual.

  44. Berényi Péter

    The first thing to do before venturing into dubious geoengineering jobs is to set up the scientific background. It goes like this:

    1 build experimental devices that
    1.1 are only coupled to their environment radiatively
    1.2 operate far from thermodynamic equilibrium
    1.3 have a surface layer, semi-transparent for both short wave & thermal IR radiation
    1.4 have an enormous number of internal degrees of freedom (using fluids in the surface layer helps a lot)
    1.5 have lots of tunable parameters (chemical composition, spectral distribution of transparency, emissivity, reflectance, rate of rotation, etc.)
    1.6 have considerable internal heat capacity
    1.7 approximates local thermodynamic equilibrium well for the bulk of device
    2 look into the physics of this system
    2.1 identify variational principles for its nonequilibrium steady states
    2.2 measure spatio-temporal distribution of entropy production rate
    2.3 identify its attractors as a dynamical system, map their geometry in phase space
    2.4 look for signs of self organized criticality, measure scale invariant fluctuations around its critical point(s)
    2.5 try to apply insights gained in study of sandpile avalanche dynamics
    2.6 identify mechanisms of self regulation
    2.7 whatever else you can come up with
    3 make a computational model of the experimental device based on its physics
    2.1 run lots of experiments both with constant and variable parameter settings
    2.2 see if you can predict what will happen in individual experimental runs using your computational model
    2.3 see if you can predict statistical properties of trajectories measured in multiple experimental runs with a fixed parameter setting
    2.4 see if you can predict how the system’s behavior will change if a single parameter is given a different value
    4 repeat 1-3 until a sufficient understanding of quasi-steady states of closed, radiatively coupled non-equilibrium thermodynamic systems is attained
    4.1 verify your understanding by comparing predictions against experimental runs with parameter settings other than used while establishing theory and creating the computational model based on it
    5 publish all your results
    5.1 detailed technical specification of the device is to be published
    5.2 make all experimental data available in easy-to-parse format on the web
    5.3 publish all metadata available
    5.4 publish your theoretical results in peer reviewed journals on the condition they are also made accessible on your website with no paywall
    5.5 publish source code and full documentation of your computational model in a proper revision control system
    5.6 ensure publicly accessible archives are maintained indefinitely
    6 apply your expertise to the climate system as a special case of a non-equilibrium thermodynamic system in quasi-steady state, coupled radiatively to its environment
    6.1 you may even venture into some large scale geoengineering project, if all the political prerequisites are given
    6.2 no matter what you do to a complex global system, there will be both winners and losers

    That’s how science is done, not the other way around, that is, by fitting multiple computational models to a single run of a unique instance.

    You will need:

    a) a large vacuum chamber (a volume of not more than 1000 cubic meters should likely suffice)
    b) the experimental device itself, mounted on a thermally well insulated rotating table, with dimensions of several meters
    c) good surface insulation of device against vacuum, which is nevertheless permeable to radiation
    d) external cooling for the walls of vacuum chamber to a very low temperature (77 K, liquid nitrogen should suffice)
    e) an intense short wave radiation source with tunable radiation flux and spectral properties to be directed to the experimental device
    f) due to small dimensions limited by costs, effective temperature of the device is best kept well above room temperature, probably at several hundred °C
    g) you may need special fluids that have phase transition close to the operating temperature of the device

    Would it cost money? Yes. However, much less than experimental devices in particle physics or planetary exploration. And if it is done in the way described above, it would worth every penny of hard earned taxpayer’s money spent on it.

  45. Free riding and driving ideas are mostly so vague as to be useless. That we should waste resources on such foolishness just because a UN body of largely anonymous scientists should tell us we are doomed if we don’t, makes us look likr a lynch mob.

    The lack of warming over the last decade or so has been quickly labelled a ‘pause’, but no one has been able to provide a convincing argument as to why. The same thing happened after 1940 but the IPCC chose to ignore it rather than explain it. The truth is nobody understands climate. The public knows that, so it is futile for Don Quixote like charges at the evaporating problem.

  46. According to Goklany, there isn’t even a disease as the FIA1 scenario will make people very wealthy, healthy and longliving. Efforts to limit this will therefore result in more poor, sick and early dying people.

  47. Dr Curry,

    A few weeks ago you asked “What is the best climate question?” How about “What is the best climate?” assuming we could control the climate (and ignoring for now whether it is possible, safe or moral) how hot would we like it?

    One thing that has puzzled me about the recent climate debate is that nearly everyone is ready to assume that any degree of warming is bad. But back in the 70s everyone was equally sure that cooling would be bad. It seems unlikely that the optimum temperature, either for humans or for life in general, lies in the fairly narrow range that occurred between 1965 and 1998.

    To me it seems much more plausible that cooling would be bad. A lot of the Earth’s surface is frozen tundra. A lot is desert, but of course we know that a desert is defined by low rainfall not high temperatures. We really would not want the world to be cooler and drier than the late 20th C range. It seems to follow that some degree of warming would probably be beneficial. A warmer wetter world would almost certainly support more life. Would we really want to reverse the late 20th C warming (whether or not is is anthropogenic in origin)? The possibility of geoengineering will force us to ask this question.

    (I find it interesting that the only way to make a disaster movie about climate change it to have it getting much colder. (The Day After Tomorrow). A world that is a bit warmer just isn’t scary).

    I think a lot of the force of the AGW scare story comes from the idea that for humans to change the climate, whether accidentally or deliberately, is “playing God”. But much of that force is lost when you learn how much climate has varied in the fairly recent geological past.

    The Gaia theory (the Earth knows best) is surely refuted by the glaciations of the past 3 million years. Whether you think the glacials or interglacials are optimal for life, the Earth Mother seems to be having some difficulty.

    On that time scale the Earth’s climate is unstable. The glaciations look to me to be getting deeper and longer, and it is easy to imagine, after a couple more cycles, the climate flat-lining in the glacial state for millions of years. Do you think it would be possible to get global agreement that stabilising the climate in the interglacial state would be preferable to letting “nature take its course”?

    The biggest problem with geoengineering is political: whatever the optimal climate is taken to be, there will be winners and losers. (And there is a certain cost to change, even if the end state is better). If everyone does their own thing, that will lead to conflict. On the other hand, if countries acted as rational agents it would be possible to compensate the losers, and leave everyone better off.

    The first stage would have to be an international agreement that no one acts alone. Then a protocol would have to be devised to decide how much warming to allow, or how much to reverse it (or even how much to increase it), and how to calculate the compensation payments. Any takers?

    • lurker passing through, laughing

      Good insight.
      A less personal yet much larger Frankenstein’s monster.
      +1

    • Gareth, your first questions mirror the question askedhere: Does anyone know what the optimum global temperature should be?

      The best answer given was: “The optimum global temperature for humanity is clearly the temperature at which the current civilizations infrastructure developed. A significantly warmer, cooler, wetter, or dryer climate would have resulted in different locations of cities, agriculture, etc.”

      “I think a lot of the force of the AGW scare story comes from the idea that for humans to change the climate, whether accidentally or deliberately, is “playing God”. But much of that force is lost when you learn how much climate has varied in the fairly recent geological past.”

      How come? The recent warming is large compared to the recent geological past and if it continues it will surpass it. Even low climate sensitivity from CO2 will take the Earth to warmer mean temperatures than it’s been for millions of years.

  48. RiHo08 @6.13am says,
    ‘Personally i like the idea of sequestering carbon by digging in the dirt.’

    Personally I do to, and the cure ain’t worse than the disease.
    We don’t need a radical Plan B fer God’s sake!

    .

  49. There seems to be no limit to the stupidity of such proposals. Ferenc Miskolczi has proved that carbon dioxide greenhouse effect does not exist. It follows from the observation that when you increase the amount of carbon dioxide in the air by one fifth the infrared absorptivity of the atmosphere does not change at all. And no absorption means no greenhouse effect, case closed. This is an empirical observation of nature that overrides any calculations from theory that do not agree with it. And the calculations predicting dangerous warming they want to fight are specifically overridden by Miskolczi’s observations. In defiance of this fact they now want to spend more dollars on geoengineering that will not work any better and may be more dangerous than emission control and green energy programs that are already costing billions of dollars of taxpayer money. The hustlers who sold this to the public and to governments should be charged with crimes against humanity.

  50. “I view modification via atmospheric particulates to be potentially Frankenstein stuff, with possibly horrible unintended consequences. ” ,/em>

    Well, yes, of course.

    But as the ‘ possibly horrible unintended consequences’ are difficult to predict in advance, at least with any degree of precision, wouldn’t your uncertainty monster be telling you there would be no reason not to go ahead and make the modifications anyway?

    PS Sorry about the duplication. This appeared in the wrong place previously.

    • tempterrain

      The “uncertainty monster” shouts one golden rule:

      “When in doubt, wait it out.”

      – We know that temperatures have been rising for at least 160 years and, based on many indicators, for much longer than that in a “slow thaw” (as Tony Brown calls it, recovering from a past period of much harsher weather we have called the Little Ice Age.

      – We know that this has not been a smooth straight line recovery, but rather a cyclical one, with multi-decadal periods of rapid warming following by similar periods of slight cooling.

      – Most recently we have just had two statistically indistinguishable warming periods of ~30 years each, in the early and late 20th century.

      – The last warming cycle ended after 2000 (some say after 1998, but that was an unusually warm year due to a very strong El Nino). Since then there has been very slight global cooling, but this trend is still too short to be statistically significant or conclusive, according to cimate scientists.

      – We have an atmospheric CO2 record that only goes back to 1959; however we do have ice core data from which we can make estimates of earlier CO2 levels. From this record we can construct a very gradual increase of CO2 until after WWII, when this began to accelerate. It has now leveled off at an exponential rate of increase of around 0.5% per year.

      These are the observed “facts”. Now to the future.

      – We have GCMs that attempt to simulate our planet’s climate. These are programmed to show global temperature rising in lockstep with the assumed major climate “control knob” (CO2), although the past correlation has not been statistically robust in the real world.

      – Model attempts to project future temperature based on human GHG emissions and concentrations (Hansen1988, IPCC TAR and AR4) have been very poor (Hansen off by a factor of 2; IPCC not only get magnitude wrong, but also sign).

      IPCC models project that atmospheric CO2 will increase to 600-800 ppmv by 2100, raising global temperature by 1.8 to 6.4 degC. If CO2 continues to increase at current exponential rate, 600 ppmv could theoretically be reached; the higher estimate seems exaggerated.

      – More serious is the discrepancy between modeled and observed CO2/temperature response described above.

      This is the real “uncertainty monster”.

      It yells at us that IPCC’s future projections of global warming are likely to be exaggerated by at least 2:1 (as were Hansen’s projections using the same model assumptions on CO2 climate sensitivity), and that increased CO2 is unlikely to cause a temperature increase of more than 1.5 degC by 2100, an increase that would be inconsequential (and arguably likely beneficial to mankind).

      And it also yells at us:

      “When in doubt, wait it out.”

      IOW be prepared for any climate changes nature throws at us, if and when it appears that they are imminent.

      Max

  51. Say, why don’t we hear it fer soil biomass carbon sequestering from Joshua, lolwot, tempt et al ?

    o sweet spontaneous
    earth, how often have
    the
    doting
    fingers of
    prurient philosophers pinched
    and
    poked
    thee

    has the naughty thumb
    of science prodded
    thy
    beauty how
    often have religions taken
    thee upon their scraggy knees
    squeezing and
    buffetting thee that thou mightest conceive
    gods

    ( but
    true
    to the incomparable
    couch of death
    thy
    rhythmic
    lover
    thou answerest
    them only with
    spring!)

      • Chief Hydrologist | October 27, 2012 at 11:55 said: ”‘In general, soil carbon sequestration during the first decade of adoption of best conservation agricultural practices is 1.8 tons CO2 per hectare per year. On 5 billion hectares of agricultural land, this could represent one-third of the current annual global emission of CO2 from the burning of fossil fuels”

        Chief, no wander your braves don’t follow you – you are more ignorant of them…

        1] carbon sequestration is not to clean the atmosphere, but to waste money and keep proving / insinuating that carbon is producing GLOBAL warming gas = very expensive ad for the Warmist / to corrupt the farmers; paid by the taxpayers.

        2] when is more CO2 in the soil -> BIGGER BIOMASS in next crop -> in 6 months is harvested – that biomass is rotted by the fungi -> in 9 months, that same CO2 back into the atmosphere. Because of dumb idiots like you – > they can keep the fear alive and fleece the Urban Sheep. I hope your diploma has being printed on soft paper – to have some positive use.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Stefan you are a wack job – same as webby. You have not the slightest clue about anything at all but simply fulminate and denounce like some crazed, tin foil hat wearing maniac with not the slightest inclination to understand any science at all. Why don’t you go away and not try to imagine that you have anything useful to say at all.

    • Beth Cooper,

      Carbon sequestration into the soil is worthwhile but it isn’t a simple fix. There just isn’t enough soil worldwide to soak up the CO2 excess on a long term basis.

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

      • Oh really? I thought 1000 petagrams was a pretty big number. You know there is about 20 million kilometers squared of land considered to be severely depleted? Each one of those 20 million kilometers squared once contained about 8 petagrams of carbon, not CO2, carbon. Last I looked, mankind is dumping around 30 million tonnes of carbon dioxide in the air per year. How many petagrams is that?

      • ….30 gigatonnes.

      • yep you beat me to it Micheal, I typed million instead of billion.

      • Stupendous, mind-boggling quatities when you think about it.

        A gigatonne is the equivalent of something like 1000 aircraft carriers.

      • Latimer Alder

        @michael

        ‘Stupendous, mind-boggling quatities when you think about it.

        A gigatonne is the equivalent of something like 1000 aircraft carriers’

        And even more stupendous when you consider that the total mass of the atmosphere is about a million times bigger again than that.

        You may find it amazing and hard to imagine, but I’m still not losing any sleep over CO2. Not even if the temperature is rising at the the enormous rate of 0.03C per decade (only eight times lees than predicted).

        But I’d like it to be a bit warmer in UK right now. We have our first ‘global warming induced cold snap’ today. It’s early this year….probably yet another sign of being colder because its getting hotter………weather is funny old stuff ain’t it? How many die from global warming induced shivering?

      • Lati,

        The fraction, in terms of the radiative physics, doesn’t matter so much as the quantity. Optical depth is the issue.

        The massive quantities of additional CO2 would have anyone really concerned about geoengineering screaming ‘mitigation,now!’.

      • > Optical depth is the issue.

        A nice metaphor.

      • Michael, “The massive quantities of additional CO2 would have anyone really concerned about geoengineering screaming ‘mitigation,now!’.”

        There are quite a few things that scream, in fact “mitigate now” screams “double check QUICK!” The soil/biomass carbon is in the same order of magnitude of the additional CO2 that is screaming.

        http://soils.usda.gov/use/worldsoils/papers/land-degradation-overview.html

        Also focusing on land use likely has more benefits and fewer “Rut Rows” than most of the “screamer’s” solutions.

      • soil cabon is a nice idea, but it’s been heading in the wrong direction for a long time.

        In theory it can be a major player, but in practice one of the major constraints on soil carbon is soil moisture, so trends of increasing evaporation and drought will make it quite difficult for it to be the silver bullet that some wish it to be.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        In practice one of the major benefits of carbon farming is water conservation. Infiltration increases. A 1% increase in organic matter on a hectare removes 100 tonnes of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

        There are 5 billion hectares of agricultural land.

        It not only sequesters carbon and conserves water and soil – improving downstream environmental outcomes – but increases productivity by the 70% needed to feed the world in 2050. It is happening and it is a no brainer.

      • Michael, as Chief pointed out, conservation farming improves moisture retention. Beween the moisture retention and ground cover, the average soil temperature also decreases by a degree or two.

        Soil conservation has been headed the wrong way for a long time, but if we plan to feed a couple extra billion, that would need to be changed. Then if that doesn’t change, the attrition would tend to reduce co2 emissions.

      • As skippy says- it’s a no-brainer.

        We’ve known for yonks that it’s important for yields and soil conservation……yet we’ve keep driving soil carbon downwards.

        I hope we start improving this for all the reasons stated, but hoping it will offset the massive amounts of ACO2 is just magical thinking.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        ‘In general, soil carbon sequestration during the first decade of adoption of best conservation agricultural practices is 1.8 tons CO2 per hectare per year. On 5 billion hectares of agricultural land, this could represent one-third of the current annual global emission of CO2 from the burning of fossil fuels.’
        http://www.fao.org/ag/ca/doc/CA_SSC_Overview.pdfIn general, soil

        This is totally conservative. A 1% increase in soil organics is 500Pg.

        It is quite bizarre that something so simple and promising should meet such resistance from the space cadets.

      • Good gawd. The stuff grows and then it rots.
        It’s zero sum knucklehead.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Webby – you are such a moron. Seriously – why don’t you try to have somthing sensible to say instead of just opening your ignorant mouth and just sprouting the first idiocy that comes out. That is why there is a literature. So you can get educated on a topic and have an educated opinion. This doesn’t involve going with your stupid gut. You and Stefan have much in common – two of the biggest wack jobs on the interweb.

      • Chief thoughtfully reminds everyone of his association with Stefan the Denier and all the other fake climate skeptics from down under.
        http:/tinyurl.com/ClimateClowns

        One of the ulterior motives of the provocateur crackpot is to keep the level of FUD high. Both you and Stefan share that trait.

      • David Springer

        WebHubTelescope | October 28, 2012 at 1:02 am |

        “Good gawd. The stuff grows and then it rots. It’s zero sum knucklehead.”

        Exactly. I’d go a little further and say it becomes coal, oil, and/or methane and then it burns and then it becomes plant food. It’s a zero sum game indeed, knucklehead.

        Is it true you still live in your mom’s basement?

      • Chief Hydrologist

        ‘Although the soil C cycle is complex, the concept of C sequestration for mitigating the release of greenhouse gases is relatively straightforward. Carbon stored in soils ties up C that would otherwise be released to the atmosphere as C-containing greenhouse gases, particularly carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4). Scientists are keenly interested in determining the extent to which atmospheric carbon can be diminished by storing C in soils.’ http://www.extension.umn.edu/distribution/cropsystems/M1273.html

        The webster is a genuine moron.

      • And again the emotive fake alarmist Web produces a baseless, content-free outburst.

      • Agricultural carbon sequestration.

        http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/ghgemissions/usinventoryreport.html

        The US land area is a net carbon sink. About 12% of total emissions are offset by land management practices, mainly tree farms in the southeastern US. Just by including one crop in a rotation that has high usable biomass, for something other than fuel, that 12% can be nearly doubled. That does not include soil sequestration, unless that is were the usable biomass is left as mulch, biochar or deeper than 30 cm biomass, roots. The EPA accounting does not appear to include biomass deeper than 30 cm. Interesting.

        “Global SOC storage in the top 3 m of soil was 2344 Pg C, or 56% more than the 1502 Pg estimated for the first meter”

        http://biology.duke.edu/jackson/appl002.pdf

        That could be a significant error one would think.

  52. Joe's World(progressive evolution)

    Judith,

    Nuke the Sun…problem solved of ever having ANY warming again!

  53. I fergot the hat tip …e e cummings ..

    • really
      i
      would
      have never
      guessed

      such
      fine frases
      found in
      fudith’s flog

      sorry bef fooper
      I
      am
      frail

      ;O)

  54. mwg,
    Aren’t we all?

    Joshua,
    Thx fer article on crop rotation reducing need fer chemicals. Article doesn’t include the added benefit of carbon sequestering from conservation farming practices. That’s the added bonus. Good news fer a change!

    • Just like the inane subject article, you take it as assumed or proven that carbon dioxide is harmful, and should be “sequestered”. All real-world evidence is entirely to the contrary.

      The “free riders” of the article should properly be regarded as philanthropists. “Lovers of humanity”, who boost the life giving gas concentration a bit further above famine levels.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Feeding the world is a more immediate reward from sequestering carbon in agriculturl soils. But your argument otherise amount to an argumentum ad ignorantum.

  55. http://bit.ly/XqdF2b

    The above data shows whenever global mean temperature decreases, CO2 concentration decreases. Whenever global mean temperature increases, CO2 concentration increases.

    The above data shows CO2 concentration appears to be directly related to change in global mean temperature. This result suggests the observed increase in CO2 concentration in the atmosphere is from the oceans, not from human emission of CO2.

    This is because human emission of CO2 is monotonically increasing, not oscillating as shown above.

  56. I find the topic of geoengineering quite exciting. I think that it could provide enormous benefits to mankind.
    One idea I have, is to select crop-seeds such as wheat, corn and rice and replant those that show the promise of higher yields. Perhaps, one day, we may even see entire allotments devoted to just one type of plant!
    Another idea that I have is that instead of going out for week-long, boys-only hunting trips to acquire game for the pot we could create colonies of animals such as goats, tigers, sheep and unicorns that we would keep together by geoengineering fences and other things to stop them running off and eating our crops.
    I’ve got lots of other ideas too but don’t want to stray too OT with references to my recent musings on the “Stone Sun and its implications for public policy” and my seminal “Yes, we’re calling it a wheel but what colour should it be?”
    Me love geno-engineering. Think it may just catch on:)

  57. Ok, strike the Unicorns off the list. Their meat’s a wee bit tough and tasteless anyway so no hardship there. I do object to your use of arcane mathematical arts to demolish my arguments. Given the recent NZ judicial pronouncements, you are clearly not a climate scientist and are thus excused expert-witness privileges!

  58. What are we talking about here…? Americans are to be the society in the test tube and the rest of the world to be the control group?

    And, what’s the test? To see if years from now we all learn that Leftist schoolteachers had the guts to risk the future of America’s productive on the desperate gamble to prove to all the rest of humanity mostly living in India and China that American schoolteachers must be listened to ?

    Will the message to India and China be that they should destroy their economies too or risk destrouying the world?

    Oh, looky here: we’ve turned ourselves into a third world nation so now it is up to you India and China to do something to solve the non-problem of runaway global warming and deep, disastrous climate disruption and listen to us Western schoolteachers who have destroyed our own societies.

  59. lurker passing through, laughing

    Wag,
    If you read Richard Rhodes very thorough “Dark Sun”, a history of the H bomb, you will see a long list of names of very bright people who thought similar unilateral behavior would be rewarded.

  60. Say, Judith – speaking of playing god – looks like Sandy is going to pass directly over my house. I tend to get a lot of water in my basement and I’m really not looking forward to two days of pumping water. Any chance you can use your hurricane expertise to nudge Sandy 100 miles or so to the east?

    • I hear that they make things called automatic bilge pumps. Not quite as good as playing dog though.

      • Yeah – I’ve been too freakin’ lazy to pour a sloped floor, dig a sump, and put in a pump. Because two 24 hours days of using utility pumps will be so much less work. :-(

      • Pour a sloped floor? Do they floors without a slope?

      • My house is 150 years old. The basement floor has peaks and valleys. It would be an improvement to just dig a sump somewhere and install a pump, but not too efficient if I don’t get the water to flow to one or two central locations. I’d be left with puddles maybe an inch or two deep in various spots.

      • So you’re the one with the shovel ready project!

      • Joshua

        We had a 400 year old house with timbers reputedly rescued from the Spansh armada. One of the bedroom floors was so out of true that you could roll eggs down it.

        The plumber came to install a central heating radiator and after several minutes of head scratching asked if we wanted the radiator to be level according to the spirit gauge or according to the eye-two very different things!
        Tonyb

  61. Don’t get too over-exercised Wagathon.The US has never been backward in putting itself into the test-tube.
    Yup, the rest of the world mostly holds back in the vitreous challenge stakes, but despite frequent setbacks you ‘Mericans just keep going forward!
    Forget the ‘Leftist schoolteachers’, the existence of whom is more a vindication of the inclusivity of the US than a condemnation, you guys and gals still set a standard that is worthy of emulation.
    In my head anyway, FWIW!

  62. Best wishes Joshua but, sadly, Judy is but a messenger not a director of events.

  63. Say, Brian H @9.30pm,

    Do not assume that I assume it’s ‘proven that carbon dioxide is harmful
    and should be “sequestered.” ‘

    Au contraire, Brian H, a coupla times I’ve posted on Climate Etc,
    Primo Levi’s paean ter carbon dioxide as the stuff of life.*

    I’m also well aware that carbon in the atmosphere can get dangerously
    low. As the chiefio, EM Smith says, and as Freeman Dyson, in the
    above video points out, fer example, a field of corn can scrub the atmosphere a metre above it of CO2 in jest five minutes …. JEST
    FIVE MINUTES.

    But fer the carbon doomsayers out there I’m saying we can sequester carbon without adopting some goddam’ Plan B (with potential
    unexpected consequences,) by improving soil bomass and feeding
    more people at the same time…whiistling Dixie while we stand on our heads, yer might say, BH.

    If CP2 gets too low we’ll have ter think about introducing national and global, annual BBQ Folk Festival Week Celebrations and maybe
    sub – sid – ize* new ‘save the planet’ sustainable food and drink industries like ‘smoked’ salmon … and whisky )

    * Periodic Table. Primo.Levi.
    * Fer god’s sake, BH, don’t start up about my suggesion of subsidies
    … I’m being ir – on – ic..

  64. Can we all at least agree that fear of runaway global warming is as much mysticism as worshipping a Golden Calf?

  65. Beth;
    Point taken!
    My suggestion for the corn (and other crops) btw: Use trickle irrigation, pumping soda water! ;)

  66. BH +1 Bring some sparkle back into yer life :-)

  67. ”sucking carbon out of the atmosphere, or creating an artificial sun shield for the planet”

    1] carbon is needed in the atmosphere.

    2] Warmist to avoid jail, can blame the 18000 satellites; that are selfishly spreading those big solar panels and creating shade for the planet.+ the hips of junk orbiting, is reflecting lots of sunlight… they will create global cooling, BOO!!!… don’t panic, don’t panic!!

    P.s. if they put any junk in the stratosphere -> satellites re-entering will look as being hit by a shotgun. Is that modern science or what? Instead of the Fakes admitting that they have being duped by bigger liars than themselves -> Warmist would have spited the dummy and admitted that was all a big expensive lie. Instead, Warmist must waste big money on stupid make belief preventions; so that when everybody realizes that is no such a thing as global warming -> Warmist to state that: they prevented it – everybody must worship them, and the born losers / the Fakes must keep financing them forever. Who is the guilty one; the Warmist /Shearers or the Fake /suckers?

  68. Somewhat o/t

    One way to get some direct experimental evidence of agw theory, would be to measure outgoing radiation from the earth, and see if it is inversely correlated with both CO2 concentrations and temperatures. (This was alluded to recently I think by Brandon).

    In particular, has there been a rise in outgoing radiation that matches up with the current 16-year temperature plateau? Because if there is no such match, that would presumably mean that one or both of the measurements is unreliable.

    • Montalbano,
      The satellites cannot measure the total amount of outgoing radiation accurately enough for a direct test. There are difficulties related to the calibration of the instruments but perhaps the largest difficulties relate to getting the total over all parts of the globe over all times during the chosen interval to all directions and at all wavelengths. The technology and the number of satellites is not at the required level for a precise determination of the outgoing radiation.

      Many partial results can be measured and they are consistent with known physics and present understanding of the atmosphere.

  69. Chief Hydrologist

    It is nonsense to suggest that the most advanced and stable instruments to be deployed in low earth orbit are not useful to some degree.

    Here for instance is a graph from Norman Loeb – http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=CERES_MODIS-1.gif

    It shows the change in reflected shortwave anomlies and the connection to changes in cloud. The change in anomlies is an order of magnitude more accurate than absolute values. It is the calibration problem in the latter. But anomalies are very useful in determining the factors that are changing in TOA radiative flux. You can be sure it would be trumpeted from the rooftops if it told the right story. Indeed it still is – as the famous missing energy. Suffice to say that it was all in the shortwave.

    The question of outgoing IR is not however properly formulated. The addition of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere results in a decrease of the mean free photon path for photons of certain frequencies resulting in a warmer atmosphere – but in a warmer atmosphere the conditional equilibrium at the top of atmosphere is restored. As it must because ultimately energy in must equal energy out. To observe the greenhouse effect one needs to observe photon scattering by observing through an aperture. This has been done. http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v410/n6826/abs/410355a0.html

    It is conditional because there is the radaitive flux at toa changes all the time for many reasons and there is no radiative equilibrium and therefore the planet is always warming or cooling.

    Pekka seems a little old and august to be a space cadet – but space space cadet he nonetheless is.

    • Chief,
      I wrote that a direct measurement of the type Montalbano asked for is beyond our present capabilities. I don’t think you disagree with that.

      I do certainly agree that satellites provide much useful information even when they cannot answer that particular question.

    • So the consensus then seems to be we cannot yet experimentally confirm that rising CO2 levels are correlated with reduced outgoing radiation from the planet.

      Similarly, we do not yet have a reliable grasp of ocean temperatures.

      So besides the surface atmospheric temperatures, what reliable relevant experimental data *do* we have for or against AGW ?

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Again you misunderstand – there is no permanent imbalance as a result of increases in greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Instead the atmosphere warms and the conditional equilibrium is restored. This is not measurable at TOA.

        However – what is measurable is the increased scattering as in the Harries link I provided. This is quite conclusive in terms of showing an increase in the greenhouse effect in the atmosphere.

        The ARGO data is short term but mirrors CERES for the increase in ocean heat. As I said the effect of greenhouse gases may not neccessarily show up in the flux at TOA – merely scattering. What CERES is showing is the variability of cloud.

        With increased concentrations of greenhouse gases – more energy is stored in the atmosphere. A question which seems to disturb and perturb many is how long it takes for the atmosphere to warm to the higher state. The answer is that these molecules start at a very high temperature and cool down to the new local thermodynamic equilibrium state.

        This one’s for you webby – just in case you want to be a moron again.

      • Montalbano

        That’s about it.

        And, leaving aside any doubts regarding the accuracy of this record (UHI distortions, poor SST coverage, poor surface station siting, shut down of a large %-age of stations in 1990s, etc.), this record does not tell us anything about the attribution of the observed temperature change and hence the impact of trace greenhouse gases (GHGs), i.e. the big “uncertainty”.

        IPCC itself tells us that its “level of scientific understanding of solar (natural) forcing is low” and that “cloud feedbacks remain the largest source of uncertainty”.

        These two statements essentially tell it all.

        We all know from daily experience that warming comes from the sun and that clouds block this warming during the day as well as keep temperatures from dropping too much at night – so NOT knowing the impact of the sun and clouds means we cannot really know the relative impact of a trace GH gas like CO2.

        Dr. Curry’s big, bad “uncertainty monster”.

        Max

      • So even though greenhouse gasses cause the atmosphere to warm, there will nevertheless be no increase in radiation from the warmer atmosphere out into space?

      • Chief Hydrologist

        There is a limit on energy out to approximate energy in. There are two processes counteracting. The decrease in the mean free photon path and the increase in the rate of emission at a highe temperature.

      • - IR from the earth encounters greenhouse gasses
        – greenhouse gas (molecules ?) absorb the IR, warm up, re-emit it in all directions (scattering effect), and cool down again
        – scattered IR encounters other greenhouse gas molecules
        – ad infinitum ..

        So by this (first approximation) account, the greenhouse effect is entirely a warming of the atmosphere, with no radiation of IR out to space ? (Which rules out using changing spacebound IR as a measure of the changing greenhouse effect).

        And the next approximation would be that small amount of IR at TOA does actually head out to space, and another small amount at the earth’s surface encounters and warms the earth (land and oceans) – aka backradiation ?

      • Chief Hydrologist

        ΔS = Energy in – energy out by the 1st law of thermodynamics

        ΔS is the change in global warming

      • Chief
        As I said the effect of greenhouse gases may not neccessarily show up in the flux at TOA – merely scattering.

        But if greenhouse gasses cause scattering – of which we do have experimental evidence you say – impeding the path of photons out to space, surely this must necessarily, both
        – warm the atmosphere
        – reduce flux at TOA

        The problem being that flux at TOA changes for various reasons, not just greenhouse changes? Like albedo changes I suppose. The net result being, that measuring outgoing radiation offers no hope of experimental validation/refutation of (c)agw ?

      • Chief Hydrologist

        The atmosphere is warmer but the emmission of IR at TOA stays the same – as a result of a warmer atmosphere. IR does indeed change as a result of cloud changes – but it is not to do with albedo. The latter is a measure of SW reflectance.

        Observing outgoing IR through an aperture and comparing to earlier observations does indeed validate the greenhouse effect in the atmosphere.

      • The atmosphere is warmer but the emission of IR at TOA stays the same – as a result of a warmer atmosphere.

        Observing outgoing IR through an aperture and comparing to earlier observations does indeed validate the greenhouse effect in the atmosphere.

        Are these two statements not in conflict ? ie if the emission of IR at TOA remains constant, how can it validate a changing greenhouse effect ?

      • Chief Hydrologist

        TOA flux is restored at an increased temperature. That is an application of the Steffan-Boltzmann idea in one sense – although the SB formula even modified for a greybody strictly doesn’t quite apply.

        The scattering of photons increases with increased greenhouse gas concentrations – all directions including up. The operational phrase is viewing through an aperture.

  70. Five years ago, in 2007, Czech President Vaclav Klaus warned us tyranny now engulfs the planet [1].

    He had lived under Communism and was one of the first to recognize its character.

    Here’s the rest of the story: http://omanuel.wordpress.com/

    I deeply regret that I could not decipher what was happening until I observed the strange response of world leaders and leaders of the scientific community to 2009 Climategate emails.

    [1] Vaclav Klaus, Blue Planet in Green Shackles (Competitive Enterprise Institute, first edition, 2007) 100 pages: http://tinyurl.com/5z4j6g

  71. Geo-engineerin’

    We don’ need no geo-engineerin’
    It’s not warmin’ that we’re fearin’

    Cold is what we jes’ don’ need
    Got 10 billion folks ta feed

    So keep dem S-U-Vs a’puffin’
    An’ keep dem coal-fired plants a’huffin’

    All dem plants luv C-O-2
    It’s good fo’ me, an’ good fo’ you!

    (Chorus)
    We don’ need no geo-engineerin’
    It’s not warmin’ that we’re fearin’

    Max

  72. Heinrich the Norwegian Elkhound

    The Great Ice Age is just around the proverbial climate corner.

    When I look at the whole range of data from the solidification of the earth’s crust to yesterday at tea-time, I find that we are very probably in a 4.5 billion-year cooling trend.

    I predict more cooling for the next geological epoch or three.

    You read it here first.

    • So, it sounds like you’re saying the polar bear fur may hit the fan. And also that given the cost of money and the need to efficiently allocate resources, society has better things to do with its wealth than waste it on more and more filing cabinets full of global warming junk science.

    • Russian empire in Siberia was built during LIA on the fur exports, when the fur was worth its weight in gold.

    • Hound dog

      When a Norwegian tells me the Great Ice Age is coming, I take note.

      I check past data, and then find out that it comes every year up there.

      You Laplanders (‘scuse me, Sámi) up there start to move your reindeer herds across the snow to their winter grazing grounds, much like the Swiss drive their cows down from the Alpine pastures before winter.

      Only differences: the reindeer have smaller bells and it’s about 30°C colder.

      And I rejoice that I do not live there.

      Max

  73. David Springer

    This video is “unlisted” according to youtube so my link to it above may not be operable. It’s only accessable if you have the direct link to it, they explain. Weird.

    It’s Murry Salby’s lecture given in September 2012. All the slides are presented. I know Curry was interested in the slides last year and may not have seen them yet.

    http://www.youtube.com

    /watch?v=ZVCps_SwD5w&feature=player_embedded

    Connect the two pieces of linkage together put it in the address bar of your browser.

  74. Jay Lehr, senior fellow and science director of The Heartland, claims Climatism is driven by money.

    http://news.heartland.org/newspaper-article/2012/09/08/climatism-driven-money-truth-will-prevail

    Obviously greed drives The Mad, Mad, Mad World of Climatism, but a reincarnated Stalin is the captain.

    http://omanuel.wordpress.com/

    • Sorry, Dr. Jay Lehr, senior fellow and science director of The Heartland Institute, reviewed Steve Gorman’s book, The Mad, Mad, Mad World of Climatism [ http://tinyurl.com/9vzvdc3 ] and concluded Climatism Is Driven by Money, but Truth Will Prevail

      Yes, Truth Will Prevail and selfishness is the root problem:

      a.) The Captain is a reincarnation of the USSR’s Joseph Stalin, and
      b.) The closest associates resemble the USA’s most hated capitalists

      http://omanuel.wordpress.com/

      The absence of debate about AGW in debates among major candidates for the upcoming presidential election probably means that both major parties will continue to promote policies handed down by the UN’s Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD) in advancing the UN’s Agenda 21:

      http://www.un.org/esa/dsd/agenda21/

  75. See, Easterbrook Graph… A 10,000 year cooling trend. The species from which humanity descended barely survived the period before that. Needless to say, even with our huge brains — that the god of natural selection must look upon with a smirk given its variance from what’s needed for simple survival — humans in the Western world are not yet smart enough to know they don’t control the climate. All our increased intelligence is pretty much wasted if our survival as a species ever actually depends on the level of scholarship that is demonstrated in the field of climatology that outside Western civilization is likened to the science of ancient astrology.

    • The graph’s wrong. The “present temperature” line is false. Present temperature is much higher than that.

      • Still a clear negative trend since ~8 ka BP.

      • The more significant is the AGW signal at the end.

      • The so-called ‘hidden incline’ is massively exaggerated.

      • Or this one:

      • Pekka, that’s another consensus trick. The AGW signal at the end is actually for the most part the warming since the cold period of the LIA. The AGW signal, if at all, can only be since ~1960.

      • Edim,
        My comment was just a reaction to your previous comment.

        In reality the Central Greenland time series has no direct significance. It may have indirect relevance when used as one piece of data over longer periods in search for general understanding. Using it as an argument like that is only an attempt to cheat.

      • Edim,

        You are right about the 1960 date for the major influence of AGW to begin showing up, but even that doesn’t show up in the garbage Easterbrook graph.

      • Edim how is the hidden incline “massively exaggerated”.

        It seems an odd response, it’s as if you are completely unsurprised the incline was hidden.

      • Perhaps it’s still worthwhile to add some facts:
        – the Easterbrook graph is based on ice core data, whose last data point is from year 1855. The whole minimum at the end is essentially from the little ice age.
        – the most recent peak is from MWP. Easterbrook has mislabeled the positions of LIA and MWP.

        To the extent the 8000 thousand year decline is taken seriously it does, indeed, emphasize the exceptional nature of the recent warming and makes it thus more difficult to understand, how it could have occurred without AGW. The present temperature in central Greenland seems to be at least as high as the MWP peak of the curve, but not as high as in the graph linked to by Lolwot.

      • R. Gates

        Great curve you posted.

        Look at it more closely.

        Tells a story.

        prior to 1910: not much going on with CO2; temperature bounces up and down, but has a multi-decadal downward trend

        1910-1940: CO2 increases still very slowly, but temperature increases rapidly

        1945 (after WWII) to 1975: CO2 increases rapidly; temperature cools slightly

        1975-2000: CO2 continues to increase rapidly, temperature increases rapidly (same as 1910-1940)

        after 2000: CO2 continues to increase rapidly, but temperature cools slightly (current “pause”)

        The story is: the correlation between atmospheric CO2 concentration and surface temperature is not statistically robust and the temperature trend seems to be a “random walk”.

        Thanks for posting it.

        Max

      • Present temperature of what, Cancun?

    • Waggy,

      That Easterbrook graph is complete garbage…especially current temperatures, but also the MWP relative to today, and the little bump in temperatures between the MWP and today that shows warmer temps than today. What is Easterbrook smoking to produce this kind of nonsense?

      • What do the Roman and Minoan periods and the MWP have in common? They all were warmer than today. Recent research indicates the Roman was much hotter than previously known. It was hotter 4000 years ago…
        studying air trapped inside Greenland ice cores researchers updated and corroborated their previous findings. The Earth has actually been cooling for thousands of years. Temperature changes during the 20th Century were just a tiny blip among many such blips over the years. The last 4000 years includes ups and downs — cooling trends followed by warming trends, etc. — and even a Little Ice Age lasting hundreds of years from before the time of Charles Dickens to when George Washington crossed the Delaware. But, that is what climate change is all about: it changes!

      • Charles Dickens -> Charlemagne ?

      • Charles Dickens, February 7, 1812 – June 9, 1870

      • –and even a Little Ice Age lasting hundreds of years from before the time of Charles Dickens (1812-1870) to when George Washington crossed the Delaware (1776).

        Taks

        clearly not Charlemagne, mea culpa on that point…I kludged LIA amd MWP in major brain cramp. But what caught my eye and triggered the question of what you meant was Charl….(beginning in 1850’s) to GW(end (1770’s)) along with thinking of 16th and 17th century paintings, e.g. Brueghel and earlier collapse of Norse settlements in Greenland. )Figured Charl… was autocompleted.)

      • You’ve got it: the Little Ice Age that occurred from about the mid thirteenth century to the 1860s–Dickens wrote about a “White Christmas” and our vision of Washington is crossing the Delaware afloat with chunks of ice…

        Let’s look at the issue of academic honesty. The medieval warm period (WMP) existed in the IPCC’s 1990 report. However, in its 2001 report the IPCC wiped the WMP from the graph. Instead, they printed Mann’s `hockey stick’ graph (depicting an absolute flat level of average global temperature until the last 60 years) knowing full well that it was wholly erroneous. Moreover, the IPCC showcased Mann’s graph and reproduced it over and over again, even after Mann’s graph had been thoroughly debunked. It is obvious that the IPCC deals only in the politics of fear and from the beginning was never driven by truth and honesty.

      • “What do the Roman and Minoan periods and the MWP have in common? They all were warmer than today.”

        I doubt it.

      • Why should the productive have to pay for your doubts?

      • mwgrant | October 26, 2012 at 5:12 pm |

        Wagathon | October 26, 2012 at 5:43 pm said:
        Charles Dickens, February 7, 1812 – June 9, 1870, bla, bla..

        Hi fellas, to put you both out of misery and suffering – for everything in details on the subject, step by step, read my post: http://globalwarmingdenier.wordpress.com/2012/08/25/skeptics-stinky-skeletons-from-their-closet/

      • @stefanthedenier

        Cool your jets sweetpea. There is no misery here. My original comment to Wagathon simply was intended to get clarification on the extent of the LIA in the context of his comment. Seeing the characterization “from before the time of Charles Dickens to when George Washington crossed the Delaware” and realizing the Mr. Dickens lived AFTER Mr. Washington, I reflexively presumed there was an typo involved, i.e., typing began as “Charle…” autocompleted as ‘Charles Dickens’. [Autocompletion, the bane of my existence.] Because in my mind the MWP and LIA concepts are and shall remain linked I thought ‘Oh, he must have meant Charlemagne. A little early to my tastes, but given the state of knowledge, what’s a century here or there.’ So boom! I compounded the confusion by bringing up ‘Charlemagne’ though it is now clear the reference to Dickens and Washington was meant to indicate the time in a representative sense. Appreciate Wagathon’s response, I replied with a mea culpa on the Chuck thing and with a bit of an explanation as a cleanup; and then let it go. Life is short.

        About your blog and style here–you need to decide whether you really want to communicate or pursue a career howling at the moon.

      • Good advice to Stefan mwgrant. Its all about being effective. No good to be perceived by all and sundry as a nutjob.

      • Hey, Peter Davies. You’ve still got me thinking over the co-variation of CO2 and temperature. Thanks, again.

      • mwgrant | October 27, 2012 at 1:40 am said: ”Because in my mind the MWP and LIA concepts are and shall remain linked”

        Yes they are ”linked” because both are concocted lies. b] for few days being colder than normal around London / river frozen – turned into few hundred years of GLOBAL cooling LIA = Liar’s Lie, c] few imprints of warmer than normal for few days some other places; turned into a PHONY ”MWP” phony GLOBAL increase of temp for hundreds of years You and the other clowns were in Australia, Antarctic, Patagonia, spreading thermometers, hundreds of years before James Cook discovered Australia. Warmist are blushing when you people tell those lies; because their lies are much smaller and they have purpose and benefit. Why are you lying about concocted fairy-tales? You don’t know what was last year’s temp; but are lying about temp 300-400-800years ago; disgrace of humanity

        So, don’t play naive, warmings / coolings are NEVER global; global warming is NOT possible = Warmist don’t have a case – the only reason for them prospering, is because they are fanatically supported by clowns as you and him = therefore: any crime, injustice the Warmist do – you, the Fakes are 70% guilty of those crimes. i hope they are rewarding you enough, for persisting with the cheapest / most destructive lies; which have being proven that are lies – even the leading Warmist are embarrassed of using them – so, don’t play naive

      • mwgrant yes, interesting question isn’t it? Ice core studies show 800+ yr lags of CO2 to movements in T. Any ideas as to what may be the source of the covariance? Solar activity? Magnetic polarity flip flops? Tectonic activity at the ocean floor? If so are any predictable? Probably not, most likely due to the respective systems being chaotic and non ergodic by nature.

      • stefanthedenier | October 27, 2012 at 2:28 am |

        Hmmm…I have never been accused of being a part of a conspiracy before. It’s kind of exciting, but alas is not true. And I don’t get paid. I do all this great waste of time pro bono!

        Anyway, you really can relax. I have no stake in whether the MWP and LIA are real or never occurred, whether global or regional, whether striped or polka-dotted, etc. To me real or imaginary MWP and LIA are linked because one follows close on the heels of the other—nothing more and nothing less.

        Anyway g’day and be of good cheer.

      • Peter Davies, yes it is interesting. Its late in the game and I’ve just been just pre-noodling with numbers anyway. For now, in a nutshell the 800 year lag , a 1000 yr – 2000 yr deep ocean turnover (my words), and the occasional short term lags (~ 1 yr) suggested in some of the curves thrown around yesterday and today–all in a system of coupled rate processes known and unknown (to me anyway), is a tease. I wonder what’s behind the paywall with respect to really nitty-gritty mass transfer models development—and where do GCM fit into a more generalized theory? Speculation. Even just playing with the data looks interesting. I’m getting an urge to do a little bootstrap–take it around the block so to say. ;O) Not optimistic, however.

        “Probably not [predictable], most likely due to the respective systems being chaotic and non ergodic by nature.” I’m definitely not an expert here but am inclined to agree with you. I think of things in terms of evolving finite duration order, far-from-equilibrium appearance of order (Prigogine-esque?) It been a long time but I think of ergodicity in terms of both averaging and visiting all of phase space over time—both stat. mech and mechanics perspectives. Then I look at the earth and think, ‘my brain hurts’ (Ain’t young anymore,) Just can’t stitch it together.

        Something you didn’t mention that I mull over is the fact the the system is an open system. It is regrettable the the word ‘equilibrium’ has established currency…just confusing language for some discourse. In some ways open system can be non-intuitive since so much of our formal experience is with closed and equilibrium systems.

        3:35 AM…not sure what I’ve written…catch up later.

      • mwgrant there certainly are lots of unknowns, both known and unknown, that impinge on the Earth’s climate. The concept of equilibrium has its uses, particularly for purposes of analysis of the effect of various negative feedbacks and in the light of what I consider to be quite remarkable stability of Earth’s climate over millions of years. It is true that in the shorter term, the systems in play do not behave linearly and that any trends are quite difficult to discern and are unreliable for longer term prediction.

      • R. Gates

        Carbon-dated tree remains recovered under receding glaciers way above today’s tree line tell us that it was warmer than today several times in the past, most recently during the MWP and the Roman Optimum (when Hannibal crossed the Alps with elephants – not woolly mammoths).

        Glaciologists also tell us that the maximum extent of the Alpine glaciers was around 1850, when modern records started.

        Max

      • The Skeptical Warmist (aka R. Gates)

        Max,

        Perhaps the MWP was as warm in near surface temperatures in some parts of the globe, but very doubtful if the warmth was a widespread as today. Regardless, Easterbrook’s charts have no relationship to the data but rather, to some fiction in his own mind.

  76. It is arrogant to imagine we know enough about climate to be able to conduct geo-engineering on a large scale without adverse effects occurring. If we can’t foresee the inevitable side effects it is just asking for the law of unintended consequences to come round and bite us with catastrophic consequences. Unfortunately Governments around the world are turning a blind eye to ongoing geo-engineering experiments and some are even concealing the magnitude of such experiments from the public. Certain plans of said experiments are available, but remain largely tucked away on the internet away from the eyes of the public (ie you won’t see THOSE plans in newspapers/tabloids such as the Daily Mail, might upset people’s tea)

    • How can anyone knowing the great increases in temps at the beginning of our regular interglacials and the consequences, the melting of gazillions miles high ice and raising of sea levels around 350 feet, look at the graph you’ve posted and not realise that it depicts a scam?

      If all these dramatic rises in temps were when carbon dioxide levels are claimed to “have not changed for hundreds of thousands of years”, then all this shows is that carbon dioxide levels irrelevant. And, the “rise of carbon dioxide levels now unprecedented” are also therefore irrelevant, no matter what silly projections made.

      But, shrug, some will continue to take their information for “rising levels” from data originating from a man who could establish a trend of rising man-made production in less than two years of supposed tracking of a substance indistinguishable from the volcanic production all around him, while sitting on the world’s biggest active volcano surrounded by immense volcanic activity.

      The scam survives because what?

    • lolwot

      It is arrogant to imagine we know enough about climate to be able to conduct geo-engineering on a large scale without adverse effects occurring.

      I rarely agree wholeheartedly with you, lolwot, but this time I do, on two counts.

      – It is a pipe dream to think we can alter our planet’s climate substantially with any exorbitant geo-engineering schemes.

      – It is folly to think we can estimate or prevent all the unintended consequences, that might be much worse than the potential problem we are trying to avoid in the first place.

      Max

    • Myrh,

      So are you claiming the increases in global CO2 levels come from volcanoes, not man? Do you have any proof of this?

      • Sullivan and Myrrh

        No “proof” (doesn’t exist in “science”).

        BUT, Iam Plimer indicated in his recent book Heaven and Earth (p413)

        “Volcanoes produce more CO2 than the world’s cars and industries combined.”

        (To much derision from climate pundits and journalists.)

        Plimer does not cite a reference, and the conventional wisdom is that volcanoes produce less than 1% of the 30+Gt CO2 produced by humans.

        http://www.agu.org/journals/ABS/2001/2001RG000105.shtml

        But Plimer is a geologist, so maybe he is telling us something.

        First of all, volcanoes have been emitting CO2 for billions of years and human industrial activity has only been going on for around 200 years, so the cumulative CO2 impact of volcanoes has certainly been much higher than that of humans.

        In addition, we really only know of the volcanoes that are above land (less than 30% of Earth’s total surface). Wiki states that there are 1,500 active volcanoes world-wide (listing only fifty underwater volcanoes).

        Over 5,000 active underwater volcanoes have been identified, but many more than that may still exist.

        http://www.universetoday.com/28862/underwater-volcanoes/

        A study by Hillier & Watts (2007) indicates the existence of more than 3 million volcanoes worldwide (two thousand times as many as are currently known!).

        http://www.earth.ox.ac.uk/~tony/watts/downloads/HillierWatts2007GL029874.pdf

        And a survey of several studies concludes:

        http://carbon-budget.geologist-1011.net/

        Based on this brief literature survey, we may conclude that volcanic CO2 emissions are much higher than previously estimated, and as volcanic CO2 contributions are effectively indistinguishable from industrial CO2 contributions, we cannot glibly assume that the increase of atmospheric CO2 is exclusively anthropogenic.

        If we add to that deep underwater fissures in the Earth’s crust, which also spew CO2, SO2, etc. into the ocean (“magmatic CO2 degassing”) it is quite possible that we are only counting a very small percentage of the total “CO2 from volcanic activity”, which enters the ocean/atmosphere system from inside Earth’s crust (and Plimer’s claim is correct).

        Max

      • First of all, volcanoes have been emitting CO2 for billions of years and human industrial activity has only been going on for around 200 years, so the cumulative CO2 impact of volcanoes has certainly been much higher than that of humans.

        The preindustrial balance was based on all those emissions and the compensating mechanisms. Only a really dramatic increase in volcanic activity could lead to a sudden increase in CO2 levels. While all details of underground volcanism are not known, such a major change could not be unnoticed. It would also be necessary that the increased level started to make it’s influence in the first half of 20th century and that it had been steady over the whole period of Mauna Loa measurements.

        Furthermore: Where would all the anthropogenic emissions have disappeared?

        Max, You cannot seriously think that anything like that is credible.

      • Pekka

        You write of Plimer’s premise that the TOTAL CO2 contribution of ALL magmatic CO2 de-gassing from ALL presently known (and unknown) suboceanic and subarial volcanoes and fissures in the Earth’s crust could easily equal or even exceed the CO2 entering the atmosphere from humans fossil fuel combustion:

        Max, You cannot seriously think that anything like that is credible.

        adding:

        While all details of underground volcanism are not known, such a major change could not be unnoticed. It would also be necessary that the increased level started to make it’s influence in the first half of 20th century and that it had been steady over the whole period of Mauna Loa measurements.

        I have not said that I necessarily “bought” Plimer’s premise, just that it cannot be dismissed without more knowledge, which we presently do not have.

        All that CO2 “could very well go unnoticed”, as it would be occurring in the depths of the ocean where nobody is watching and adding to an oceanic carbon pool that is over a thousand times greater than all human emissions with chemical and biological processes going on that we are unable to quantify.

        So Plimer’s suggestion that volcanoes emit more CO2 than humans today is “credible” (as the scientific studies I cited concluded), even if there is no empirical evidence to support it, and it is, therefore, a non-corroborated hypothesis (sort of like IPCC’s CAGW premise).

        Max

      • Max,

        If you cannot say anything on the issue it might be better to give some weight to the well known specialists. They tell that human emissions are about 130 times the volcanic ones. How could they all err by more than 100. One man (Plimer) can do that, not the profession.

  77. If humanity caused global warming… who is playing God and hiding THE INCLINE?

  78. “The IMPERIAL PRESIDENCY” ?

    See this report from Eric Cantor in the Office of the US House of Representatives Majority Leader on “The IMPERIAL PRESIDENCY”

    http://majorityleader.gov/TheImperialPresidency/#creating-laws

  79. We will all be losers if the upcoming election succeeds in perpetuating the system that brought us irrefutable evidence of corruption of science in the:

    a.) Climategate emails released in Nov 2004, and

    http://joannenova.com.au/global-warming/climategate-30-year-timeline/

    b.) CSPAN tape of NASA hiding isotope data from Jupiter in Jan 1998 [1], instead of giving us a chance to vote for constitutional government.

    [1] CSPAN Records NASA in Action (Jan 1998)

  80. When skeptics can not get the fundamentals right, they get branded as fake.

    And when believers cannot get the fundamentals right, they get the Nobel PC prize.

  81. Another aspect of geo-engineering is the time frame – when do we need to start?
    I think. even the alarmists agree that the worst consequences of CAGW will take a few hundred years to develop (eg. the melting of Greenland).

    It’s far too early to start geo-engineering. In a hundred years, the means and the technology at our disposal will be totally different from what we have now.
    Any geo-engineering “solution” proposed now, will probably be irrelevant later.
    So, yes, sit back and do nothing.

    • “I think. even the alarmists agree that the worst consequences of CAGW will take a few hundred years to develop”

      The real ones maybe. The fake ones (the other 99%) profess concern for their grandchildren.

      • Memphis | October 26, 2012 at 6:10 pm said: “I think. even the alarmists agree that the worst consequences of CAGW will take a few hundred years to develop”

        WRONG again; they are saying that, because: 1] they are realizing that is no such a thing as CAGW -> to get themselves out of trouble for billions spent, but no sign of warming – they are ”delaying it for after they are gone, called ”Nostradamus Tactic”. 2] they are saying that: because they know that there are lots of ignorant idiots like you, to fall for their trick

    • “So, yes, sit back and do nothing”

      all roads lead to rome

      • I never understood the alarmist hysteria: “act now!… right now!…tipping points are near!… it’s too late already!….”
        Do any silly, ineffective and expensive “solution” right now!!! This very moment!

      • Utterly classic ‘train is leaving the station’ fear mongering. Fueling the fear with unnecessary guilt was just the boot in the butt to catapult you onto the train.
        ===========

    • The Skeptical Warmist (aka R. Gates)

      Jacob said:

      “I think. even the alarmists agree that the worst consequences of CAGW will take a few hundred years to develop (eg. the melting of Greenland).”

      ——
      Given both the rapidity from a geological perspective of the 40% rise in CO2 and the inability of natural feedbacks to function under such a short time horizon it is actually not unreasonable to expect some of the worst effects to occur within decades rather than centuries through a series of dragon king events where atmospheric, cryospheric, and hydrosperic systems undergo regime changes. Once these occur, humanity will be forced to adapt to them, and thus, centuries from now (assuming we’ve adapted successfully) we may have the worst behind us. This also of course assumes we wise up and realize our widespread affects on the planet and begin to responsibly manage them.

      • Given that this CO2 emitting is going on at least 50 years (since 1960), and we have so far not seen any big change in climate, no disaster at all, it isn’t reasonable to expect a sudden big change within the next few decades. Temperature increase hasn’t accelerated (it has slowed down), sea level increase hasn’t accelerated. Even the IPCC doesn’t predict a sudden apocalypse in the next few decades.
        You speak of “dragon king events”, “regime changes”, Hansen calls them “tipping points”. Strong words, but where is the evidence ? These are just words.

  82. So ‘WebHubTelescope’ finds ‘Captain Dallas’ and ‘Chief Hydrologist’ imperious.
    You just couldn’t make this stuff up.

    • Chief Hydrologist

      Yep. I did another two years in clown school for a Msters in Clowning – but I am named after my hero Ceci. As webnutcolonoscope well knows because he complains on his ‘clown list’ that my handle derives from Springfields Chief Hydrological and Hydraulical Officer.

      The guy has a few roos loose in his top paddock as we say in Oz.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        ..ah…that is Masters and Cecil..but I trust you get the point.

      • Aw, c’mon Chief, we luv ya (you bring a bit of class and new insight here to counter the nerdo-sarcastic b-a-a-a-a-ing of the flock).

        An’ Beth likes ya, too…

        Max

    • Don’t even have to point out the obvious. The cartoonish “Chief Hydrologist” will do that on his own.

  83. The Global Warming Theory is essentially a ‘science’ without mathematics. Sort of like the sun without the heat … or vice versa.

    Abstract: Mathematics is regarded as our most developed science, and yet philosophical troubles surface as soon as we inquire about its subject matter partly because mathematics itself says nothing about the metaphysical nature of its objects.

    Taking mathematics at face value seems to favour the Platonist view according to which mathematics concerns causally inert objects existing outside space-time, but this view seems to preclude any account of how we acquire mathematical knowledge without using some mysterious intellectual intuition. In this book, I defend a version of mathematical realism, motivated by the indispensability of mathematics in science, according to which (1) mathematical objects exist independently of us and our constructions, (2) much of contemporary mathematics is true, and (3) mathematical truths obtain independently of our beliefs, theories, and proofs. The ontological component of my realism is a form of structuralism according to which mathematical objects are featureless, abstract positions in structures, or patterns, and like geometric points, their identities are fixed only through their relationships to each other. Structuralism is also part of my epistemology in that material objects `fit’ simple patterns, and in doing so, they `fill’ the positions of simple mathematical structures.

    We may perceive the arrangements of objects but we cannot perceive their positions i.e. the abstract, non-spatiotemporal mathematical objects, and the problem then consists in explaining how we can form beliefs about them. Answering this question introduces a central notion of my epistemology, that of a posit: by representing and designing patterned objects our ancestors posited geometric objects as sui generis and started describing them by describing the patterns in which they are positions. Since positing mathematical objects, like positing new scientific entities, is an activity similar to making up a story, one might wonder how such an activity can lead to mathematical knowledge and truth, but I believe that our ancestors were justified in introducing mathematical objects and we are justified in retaining them, by pragmatic and global considerations: mathematics has proved immensely fruitful for science, technology, and practical life, and doing without it is now virtually impossible. This account of justification introduces a further problem: if our justification for believing in mathematical truths is global and pragmatic, then it might turn out that one is not justified in accepting a mathematical claim unless it is accepted by science, and this is clearly at odds with the practice of mathematics where we hardly ever invoke such global considerations in order to justify a mathematical claim. In mathematics, we usually employ a local conception of evidence made up mainly of a priori proofs.

    However, arguing from the perspective of a Quinean epistemic holism, I claim that this feature of the practice should not make us conclude that mathematics is an a priori science, disconnected evidentially from both observation and natural science, for observation is relevant to mathematics, and technological and scientific success forms a vital part of our justification for believing in the truth of mathematics.

    (Resnik, MD. Mathematics as a science of patterns. Oxford, 1999)

    • Mathematics as a science of patterns.

      This is what the “science of patterns” says about future warming => http://bit.ly/TIVGEJ

      • The use of patterns is natural–it comes before mathematics–it’s just a part of the way humans think. But, part of being a science is accepting the need for validation. The IPCC projection is simply an advertisement of their inverifiable preconceived notions about humanity causing runaway global warming.

  84. Tempterain 25/10 @ 10.33 pm:
    Re enough land to manage carbon sequestering, see Freeman
    Dyson video, 25/10 @ 7.24pm. Conclusion that carbon in the
    atmosphere is a problem of land management rather than
    meteorology.By increasing soil biomass of available land by
    .o1% per annum, 1 inch per century,we can solve our ‘problems’
    of excess atmospheric carbon.

    Eswaran,Lal and Reich, 2001 show that land degradation in all
    continental land mass except Australia and Europe exceeds 70%
    In Australia and Europe it exceeds more than half the land mass.

  85. “Scientists trying to study the effects on animals of a nuclear war under laboratory conditions created killer bees, which escaped and have proven impossible to fully exterminate.”

    That has the usual ring of ‘research’ that might have been done and/or reported by Greenpeace.

    I did see that SF-movie with huge mutant ants the size of a Jumbo-jet in the desert, and quite enjoyed it when I was young. Perhaps that’s what they were thinking of.

  86. Lauri Heimonen

    Girma:

    ”Mathematics as a science of patterns.”

    This is what the “science of patterns” says about future warming => http://bit.ly/TIVGEJ

    Wagathon :

    ”The use of patterns is natural–it comes before mathematics–it’s just a part of the way humans think. But, part of being a science is accepting the need for validation. The IPCC projection is simply an advertisement of their inverifiable preconceived notions about humanity causing runaway global warming.”

    I appreciate highly what Tom V Segalstad says, http://www.co2web.info/Segalstad_CO2-Science_090805.pdf : ”The rising concentration of atmospheric CO2 in the last century is not consistent with supply from anthropogenic sources. Such anthropogenic sources account for less than 5% of the present atmosphere, compared to the major input/output from natural sources (~95%).”

    I appreciate highly, too, what Murry Salby says; http://judithcurry.com/2011/08/04/carbon-cycle-questions : ”The strong dependence on internal properties indicates that emission of CO2 from natural sources, which accounts for 96 per cent of its overall emission, plays a major role in observed changes of CO2.”

    Based on findings in reality, they both, as clearly open-minded, seem to be able to scrutinize the multiscientific warming and cooling of climate crossdisciplinarily enough.

    On the basis of Salby’s further link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZVCps_SwD5w&feature=player_embedded I found I can agree with him that the CO2 content in atmosphere is controlled by all the CO2 sources and by all the CO2 sinks together; Based on laws of nature I have written in my earlier comment http://judithcurry.com/2011/08/04/carbon-cycle-questions/#comment-198992 :

    ”As far as I am aware the CO2 content in the atmosphere is controlled together by both all CO2 emissions from sources to atmosphere and by all CO2 absorptions from atmosphere to sinks. After any change of CO2 emissions from sources or of CO2 absorptions to sinks makes the atmospheric CO2 content strive for a new level in order to reach a new dynamic balance between the CO2 emissions and the absorptions. As to the influence of human CO2 emissions on the atmospheric CO2 content it is determined by the proportion of the human CO2 emissions to the total CO2 emissions. Nowadays when the yearly total CO2 emissions are little over 200 GtC (CO2 as carbon) and the yearly human CO2 emissions are about 8 GtC, the influence of the human CO2 emissions on the CO2 content in atmosphere is approaching 4 % at the most. For instance, when the CO2 content in the atmosphere is 390 ppm, the manmade share of it is about 16 ppm at the most”:

    1)Thus the anthropogenic share of CO2 in atmosphere is only 16 ppm. Instead IPCC assesses that during the industrial period since year 1750 the anthropogenic share of CO2 has increased a little bit over 100 ppm.
    2)Further even the share of anthropogenic CO2 in the recent yearly increase of the CO2 content in atmosphere is only about 4 % . As the recent total increase of CO2 content in the atmosphere has been about 2 ppm a year, the anthropogenic share of it is only about 0,08 ppm.
    2)In addition a further quote of my comment above:”Media have introduced that during the year 2010 the yearly increase of anthropogenic CO2 emissions has rised from about 3 % to about 6 %. It means that, in the yearly human emissions of about 8 GtC, there has arisen a new yearly recordbreaking increase of about 0,5 GtC in the manmade CO2 emissions. As at the same time the increase of CO2 in atmosphere have been about 4 GtC per year, one can find that the increase of 0,5 GtC CO2 in the manmade CO2 emissions is not able to explain the rise of carbon dioxide in atmosphere, not even though all the anthropogenic CO2 increase (0,5 GtC) of emissions would remain in the atmosphere. In reality the share of manmade CO2 emissions per year remaining in the atmosphere is only about 2 % from the yearly increase of human emissions of about 0,5 GtC, as consistent with what the yearly total CO2 increase of about 4 GtC in atmosphere is in relation to the total yearly CO2 emissions of little over 200 GtC, expressed in procentages. The 2 % from the mere manmade increase of 0,5 GtC per year of CO2 emissions causes only an increase of 0.01 GtC i.e. 0.005 ppm CO2 in the atmosphere. Nowadays only the sea surface warming expressed by Endersbee seems to make higher portions of manmade CO2 in atmosphere possible, as the warming of the as sinks acting sea surfaces at the higher latitudes makes absorption of CO2 from the atmosphere become slower. For instanse, in the latest yearly increase of 4 GtC CO2 in the atmospehere there is a portion of 0.16 GtC of human CO2 i.e. 0.08 ppm CO2 as presented above.”

    Any one of these three issues can be used as an evidence against the believed role of manmade CO2 emissions as the dominating reason in the recent increase of CO2 in atmosphere.

    Judith Curry:

    ”With efforts to halt climate change on life support, scientists are looking at some radical options to same our planet. But could the cure be worse than the disease? – Gernot Wagner and Martin Weitzman”

    Surely there will ” the cure be worse than the disease”. As you see above there are no proper reason and no ‘costeffective’ measures to control human CO2 emissions.

    • So when Man’s emissions so far add up to about 200 ppm, and the CO2 has gone up 100 ppm, you don’t think these are related?

      • Lauri Heimonen

        Jim D:

        ”So when Man’s emissions so far add up to about 200 ppm, and the CO2 has gone up 100 ppm, you don’t think these are related?”

        They are not related, even though IPCC ‘scientists’ so assumes; a quote of my comment:

        ”Thus the anthropogenic share of CO2 in atmosphere is only 16 ppm. Instead IPCC assesses that during the industrial period since year 1750 the anthropogenic share of CO2 has increased a little bit over 100 ppm.”

        There is not any proper evidence for the assumption of IPCC according to which all the increase of CO2 in atmosphere during the industrial period could be anthropogenic. Uncertain parameters of climate models adopted by IPCC are replaced by inverse calculations to make models support manmade warming. This kind of measures can called circular argumentations.

  87. Congratulations, Professor Curry, on the progress made since Climategate emails were released in late Nov 2009!

  88. Placing a ‘marker’ if you will; I have some ideas on how to break a ‘cap’ (capping layer or capping inversion layer if you will) to initiate convective activity using an orographic-lift kind of trick … turns out, quite a bit of the time we have the ‘right’ conditions for T-storms were it not for a Cinh (capping inhibition) layer or ‘cap’ for short preventing the breech of warm, moist low-level air masses above a cap into cooler, dense air aloft.

    Viola! Break the cap and initiate the convection and let it rain!

    _Jim

  89. To those who would play God, I posted messages in the countdown to the 2012 presidential election on:

    Sunday: http://omanuel.wordpress.com/about/#comment-1595

    Monday: http://omanuel.wordpress.com/about/#comment-1615

  90. For anyone interested in future predictions, this book had a go at the next fifity years of computers, given the facts of the first fifty. “Beyond Calculation”. Each chapter gives a different expert’s opinion on the future on computing.

    http://www.springer.com/computer/book/978-0-387-98588-6

    One of the authors wrote that given the intractable problems in the middle east, it is just as likely for there to be a global thermonuclear war before we see another 50 years of computers.

    • “future predictions” Why would anyone be interested in predictions made in the future? Present predictions are the issue.

      Predictions of the past are another matter …

      >:p

  91. I think you made a few rather interesting points. Not too many people would really think about this the way you just did. I am truly impressed that there is so much about this subject that has been revealed and you did it so nicely, with so considerably class. Top-notch one, thank you.