New perspectives on climate sensitivity

by Judith Curry

Here is a summary of some important new papers on the topics of climate sensitivity and attribution.

Time-varying climate sensitivity from regional feedbacks

Kyle Armour, Cecilia Bitz, Gerard Roe

Abstract. The sensitivity of global climate with respect to forcing is generally described in terms of the global climate feedback—the global radiative response per degree of global annual mean surface temperature change. While the global climate feedback is often assumed to be constant, its value—diagnosed from global climate models—shows substantial time-variation under transient warming. Here we show that a reformulation of the global climate feedback in terms of its contributions from regional climate feedbacks provides a clear physical insight into this behavior. Using (i) a state-of-the-art global climate model and (ii) a low-order energy balance model, we show that the global climate feedback is fundamentally linked to the geographic pattern of regional climate feedbacks and the geographic pattern of surface warming at any given time. Time-variation of global climate feedback arises naturally when the pattern of surface warming evolves, actuating regional feedbacks of different strengths. This result has substantial implications for our ability to constrain future climate changes from observations of past and present climate states. The regional climate feedbacks formulation reveals fundamental biases in a widely-used method for diagnosing climate feedbacks and radiative forcing—the regression of the top-of-atmosphere radiation flux on surface temperature. Further, it provides a clear mechanism for the ‘efficacies’ of both ocean heat uptake and radiative forcing.

Paper submitted to J. Climate [link]

Paul K has a guest post on this paper over at the Blackboard, some excerpts:

The implications of this paper are important and wide-ranging.   It sends a number of sacred cows to the abattoir without being too concerned about the religion of the owners.  In a certain sense it offers a unifying theory which should allow extremists on both sides of the climate sensitivity debate to moderate their views, and bring some calm reflection to the question of observation vs model results.

If one accepts that the curvilinear response is a real world phenomenon and that it is sufficient to bring into question the common assumption of constant linear feedback,  one can reasonably conclude  that a zero-dimensional linear feedback model should never be used by either skeptics or mainstream scientists – other than for local feedbacks or short-term feedbacks – and yet this is a common  assumption that has been broadly applied to global response in hundreds of climate science papers.    Here are just a few of the possible inferences to be drawn from Armour 2012:-

  • Effective climate sensitivity increases with time and temperature largely because of polar amplification and the relatively long response times of the high latitude regions.
  • The many previous papers which have sought to explain this phenomenon in terms of changing ocean heat uptake efficacy, changing forcing efficacy, varying negative cloud forcing or local non-linear temperature effects in feedback response are debunked or devalued.
  • Dozens of key papers which assume a linear global feedback to analyze the AOGCMs are just plain wrong or are heavily compromised (e.g.  all of the landmark papers which partition and attribute  feedbacks based on the assumption of a linear model and many of the regression methods applied to net flux and temperature  from the GCMs).
  • Many other papers which estimate climate sensitivity directly from observational data are testing only a short-duration secant of the curvilinear flux response – valuable for comparative purposes over the same time and temperature scales perhaps, but underestimating the longer-term sensitivity.
  • The paper sets a new hurdle for assessing the reliability of estimates of ECS from the GCMs.  As a necessary (but still not sufficient) condition the relationships between net-flux and temperature and between temperature and time in each latitude band need to be consistent with observed data;   ideally this should be true for land and sea separately.  Matching just global average temperature is revealed to be a very weak test of model validity.

JC comment:  A light bulb went off in my head when I read this paper. A lot of my thinking about feedbacks and sensitivity have focused on the Arctic, and I have used a regional approach related to local temperature (or even sea ice conditions) that is conceptually similar to Armour et al.   I find this formalism immensely useful, and explains how my blogospheric discussions about sensitivity with others using the conventional global energy balance approach seem to be talking past each other.  I think this is a very important paper, and I find this approach to be vastly preferable and potentially much more informative than the conventional approach.

Using data to attribute episodes of warming and cooling in instrumental records

Ka-Kit Tung and Jiansong Zhou

Abstract: The observed global-warming rate has been nonuniform, and the cause of each episode of slowing in the expected warming rate is the subject of intense debate. To explain this, nonrecurrent events have commonly been invoked for each episode separately. After reviewing evidence in both the latest global data (HadCRUT4) and the longest instrumental record, Central England Temperature, a revised picture is emerging that gives a consistent attribution for each multidecadal episode of warming and cooling in recent history, and suggests that the anthropogenic global warming trends might have been overesti- mated by a factor of two in the second half of the 20th century. A recurrent multidecadal oscillation is found to extend to the preindustrial era in the 353-y Central England Temperature and is likely an internal variability related to the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO), possibly caused by the thermohaline circulation variability. The perspective of a long record helps in quantifying the contribution from internal variability, especially one with a period so long that it is often confused with secular trends in shorter records. Solar contribu- tion is found to be minimal for the second half of the 20th century and less than 10% for the first half. The underlying net anthropogenic warming rate in the industrial era is found to have been steady since 1910 at 0.07–0.08 °C/decade, with superimposed AMO-related ups and downs that included the early 20th century warming, the cooling of the 1960s and 1970s, the accelerated warming of the 1980s and 1990s, and the recent slowing of the warming rates. Quantitatively, the recurrent multidecadal internal variabil- ity, often underestimated in attribution studies, accounts for 40% of the observed recent 50-y warming trend.

The paper is published by PNAS, link to abstract [here]. Link to complete papere [here]. Here are additional excerpts from the text:

The presence of multidecadal internal variability superimposed on the secular trend gives the appearance of accelerated warming and cooling episodes at roughly regular intervals. Below we give a consistent explanation of the four centuries of climate variation based on the assumption that much of the AMO is natural and recurrent.

Almost no sunspots were observed during a 70-y interval (1645–1715) called the Maunder Minimum (1). Large volcano eruptions—Huaynaputina (1600), Parker (1641), and Long Island (1660)—contributed to the cold LIA at the beginning of the CET record. An unusual series of five large volcano eruptions from 1660 to 1680 probably prolonged the cold into the Late Maunder Minimum. A negative phase of the AMO accentuated the cold further in Late Maunder Minimum, reported in Europe (1), although it was thought that the cold CET was only “locally representative” (37). Our current work argues that it is probably global because the AMO has in-phase global manifestations (Fig. 3). There were no major known volcanoes from 1680 to 1707 [although there were some unknown ones (38)], and it started to warm. Although commonly attributed to the Sun (1), the rapid warming of ∼1 °C at the end of Maunder Minimum is 10 times greater than our understanding of the solar radiation change (39) can explain but is within the range of a speculative theory (40) if we remove 0.4 °C as due to the AMO. The timing of the warming, however, appears to precede the increase in total solar irradiance (TSI) (39, 41) by 20–30 y and favors the reduced volcanic aerosol loading as the main cause for the warming—the rebound. The 20-y small dip in temperature near 1810 coincides with the solar Dalton Minimum, but is probably caused by a negative excursion of the AMO. The rising AMO cycle in the first half of the 19th century produced a warming, despite the eruption of Tambora (1815), the largest in the past four centuries. The next rising phase of AMO  led to the often cited early 20th-century warming in the global mean (1910–1940) of 0.4 °C, but it happened to occur during a period of increasing mean solar irradiance, leading some to attribute it, incorrectly, to solar forcing. The observed warming rate for that period lies above the range of all model responses to combined anthropogenic and natural forcing com- piled by IPCC AR4, even after correcting for a discontinuity in the wartime data, corroborating the suggestion here that it is mostly caused by internal variability. The cooling experienced in the 1960s and 70s is seen as occurring in the negative phase of the AMO. The period after the 1970s shows a secular increase in global-mean temperature. The rising AMO half-cycle gives the appearance of an accelerated warming that lasted until 2005 (discounting the warm El Niño of 1998). Recently, there have been debates about the slowing of the warming rates since 2005, with explanations ranging from increases in stratospheric water vapor and background aerosol to increased coal burning in the emergent economy of China of the past 20 y. If one accepts the conclusion that the AMO is recurrent, and because this period coincides with the start of the descending phase of the AMO, one can suggest that the AMO is a more likely explanation.

For the first half of the 20th century, the solar contribution to the linear trend was less than 10%. It does not support the much larger role (>50%) for the Sun in the observed warming, obtained by Scafetta and West by attributing early 20th-century warming to solar forcing. The observed solar- cycle response suggests that it is a response to radiative effects of the TSI, amplified by the same climate feedback factors as for the greenhouse radiative forcing. There were no consecutive large volcanic eruptions in the 20th century, and none that could have caused the recent slowdown in the rate of global warming.

Various fitted linear trends in global-mean temperature up to 2005 were presented in the IPCC AR4, with the recent 25-y trend (at 0.177 °C/decade) larger than the 50-y trend (0.128 °C/decade), which is in turn larger than the 100- and 150-y trends (0.074 and 0.045 °C/decade, respectively). The phenomenon of “accelerating warming trends” is still present. The fitted 25-y trend is not robust, being sensitive to the addition or subtraction of a single-year end-point datum and so will not be discussed further here. A 50-y wavelet low-pass filter is applied to the data points. It is seen by eye that the smoothed curve captures the main episodes of warming and cooling in the past 162 y that are present in the raw data as it agrees with the simple running mean. In particular, one can see that there is a low-frequency oscillation present in the data. We reprocess the data after re- moving the oscillatory component, defined by the 50- to 90-y wavelet band, the AMO. The removal of the AMO in the determination of the anthropogenic warming trend is justified if one accepts our previous argument that this multidecadal variability is mostly natural. Linear trends are then fitted to the resulting data points in Fig. 4B in the same way as in the IPCC AR4. It is visually apparent in Fig. 4B that removing the oscillatory AMO from the raw data organizes the data points into a monotonic band and yields a more stable linear trend, converging to the 50-y trend of 0.08 °C/decade. We argue that this is the long-term anthropogenic trend, forced by greenhouse gas increases offset by tropospheric aerosol cooling, which also increased along with industrialization. Comparing Fig. 4B with Fig. 4A, we see that the internal variability accounts for 40% of the observed 50-y trend. 

The same anthropogenic trend since 1979 of 0.17 °C/decade is obtained. However, one can see clearly that a 70-y oscillation is still present in the residual (see the orange running mean). In Fig. 5B, we add the AMO Index (16) to the multiple linear re- gression analysis. The 33-y net anthropogenic warming rate obtained, at 0.07 °C/decade, is less than half of Foster and Rahmstorf’s. In fact, the net anthropogenic warming trend has been remarkably steady for the past 100 y at 0.07–0.08 °C/decade.

Although there is a competing theory that the observed multi- decadal variability is forced by anthropogenic aerosols during the industrial era, our present work showing that this variability is quasi-periodic and extends at least 350 y into the past with cycles in the preindustrial era argues in favor of it being naturally recurrent and internally generated. This view is supported by model results that relate the variability of the global-mean SST to North Atlantic thermohaline circulation  and by the existence of an AMO-like variability in control runs without anthropogenic forcing . If this conclusion is correct, then the following interpretation follows: The anthropogenic warming started after the mid-19th century of Industrial Revolution. After a slow start, the smoothed version of the warming trend has stayed almost constant since 1910 at 0.07–0.08 °C/decade. Superimposed on the secular trend is a natural multidecadal oscillation of an average period of 70 y with significant amplitude of 0.3–0.4 °C peak to peak, which can explain many historical episodes of warming and cooling and accounts for 40% of the observed warming since the mid-20th century and for 50% of the previously attributed anthropogenic warming trend (55). Be- cause this large multidecadal variability is not random, but likely recurrent based on its past behavior, it has predictive value. Not taking the AMO into account in predictions of future warming under various forcing scenarios may run the risk of over- estimating the warming for the next two to three decades, when the AMO is likely in its down phase.

The present finding that the low-frequency portion of the regional data agrees with the global mean (with a scaling that is slightly larger than 1) during the 162-y overlap period supports the notion (but does not prove) that a single time series can, in fact, be used to represent the global mean variation.

Using CET as supporting evidence, we have shown here that these same 2.5 cycles in the global data are a part of a recurrent oscillation going back at least 350 y, and it is unlikely that they can be attributed to volcanic aerosols, whose eruptions were not periodic nor aligned with the troughs.

JC comment.  This  paper seems to be the most advanced attribution analysis that I’ve seen that includes multi-decadal oscillations plus secular trend  (see the previous thread Trends, Change Points and Hypotheses.)  One critique is that the analysis seems overconfident of our knowledge of solar variability over this period.   This paper also raises the issue of the representativeness of local measurements; in this instance the CET, but this assumption is also heavily used in global paleo reconstructions using only a few sites.

The upper end of climate model temperature projections is inconsistent with past warming

Peter Stott, Peter Good, Gareth Jones, Nathan Gillett and Ed Hawkins

Abstract.  Climate models predict a large range of possible future temperatures for a particular scenario of future emissions of greenhouse gases and other anthropogenic forcings of climate. Given that further warming in coming decades could threaten increasing risks of climatic disruption, it is important to determine whether model projections are consistent with temperature changes already observed. This can be achieved by quantifying the extent to which increases in well mixed greenhouse gases and changes in other anthropogenic and natural forcings have already altered temperature patterns around the globe. Here, for the first time, we combine multiple climate models into a single synthesized estimate of future warming rates consistent with past temperature changes. We show that the observed evolution of near-surface temperatures appears to indicate lower ranges (5–95%) for warming (0.35–0.82 K and 0.45–0.93 K by the 2020s (2020–9) relative to 1986–2005 under the RCP4.5 and 8.5 scenarios respectively) than the equivalent ranges projected by the CMIP5 climate models (0.48–1.00 K and 0.51–1.16 K respectively). Our results indicate that for each RCP the upper end of the range of CMIP5 climate model projections is inconsistent with past warming.

Published in Environmental Research Letters, link [here].

JC summary:  these papers are providing useful contributions to the methodologies of estimating climate sensitivity and attribution of climate change.  Collectively they demonstrate the structural uncertainty, or ‘meta-uncertainty’ of the methodologies upon which our sensitivity and attribution analyses depend.  This kind of structural uncertainty does not get included in IPCC confidence levels.
Moderation note:  this is a technical thread; comments will be moderated for relevance.

495 responses to “New perspectives on climate sensitivity

  1. Judy,
    Thanks a lot for the information and links. We count on your information links and professional input.
    Scott

    • Vaughn’s interpretation of the first paper seems to imply yet another positive feedback (increasing temperature increases sensitivity) which would result in a runaway greenhouse if true. Yet another knee-jerk “it’s worse than we thought”. The paper itself appears more a reaction to the recent spate of lowered sensitivity estimates based on observation making it through pal review by impeaching all attempts to base sensitivity estimates on observations which of course places models back where they belong with the ability to trump reality. Other than that, I’ve always held the sensitivity is not a constant. But it’s close enough to enough to a constant on a global average basis sans major climate shifts like glacial/interglacial to estimate it from observations. In other words paper #1 is a copout.

      Paper #2 echoes what I’ve been saying for going on ten years although I think 0.7C/decade anthropogenic still overestimates it by a factor of two. That’s probably true for higher latitudes over continental interiors but elsewhere it’s too high. It acknowledges AMDO but that isn’t the only natural variation that inflates AGW. There’s still the matter of lapse rate feedback observations being larger than expected through modelling. That lapse rate feedback is what I’ve been on about for over a year saying that CO2 warming is greatly retarded wherever there is ample surface water to drive evaporation and convection. In that case the warming that would otherwise have occured at the surface instead occurs in a higher level of the atmosphere where there is far less restriction to radiative cooling.

      The third paper just states the obvious (high end of global warming projections via models is too high) and one might wonder why the obvious needs peer review and publication. What’s next a peer reviewed paper stating the wind is blowing when trees are swaying?

  2. A fan of *MORE* discourse

    JC summary:  “These papers are providing useful contributions to the methodologies of estimating climate sensitivity and attribution of climate change.”

    Extended summary:  All of these papers either assert or imply that longer-term effective forcing (centennial and longer time-scales) is generically larger than short-term (decadal and shorter time-scales).

    Observation:  This is the same conclusion that James Hansen and colleagues advocate.

    Prediction:  As the scientific evidence strengthens that Hansen’s climate-change worldview is correct globally and in the long run, Hansen’s opponents will focus upon local climate-change variations, short-term modeling uncertainties, and decadal-scale economic valuations.

    Question:  Should we vote as citizens who pay taxes yearly? Or should we consider our grandchildren’s generation of 150+ years from now?

    Conclusion:  Economic and political considerations dominate in the short-term; moral and humanitarian considerations dominate in the long-term.

    Thank you for these fine, thought-provoking articles, Judith Curry!

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    • Bruce Cunningham

      “All of these papers either assert or imply that longer-term effective forcing (centennial and longer time-scales) is generically larger than short-term (decadal and shorter time-scales).

      Observation: This is the same conclusion that James Hansen and colleagues advocate.”

      What utter nonsense. Hansen has repeatedly given predictions of the effects of global warming that are going to occur by such and such a date. Manhattan roads under water by 2020 or so, temperature rise of such and such each year from his congressional testimony in 1988. Almost none of his predictions have been accurate to any degree that I can see. If Hansen only believes in long term forcing and effects, then he should keep quiet about short term predictions, which of course he hasn’t.

  3. More of the “if all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail”

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

  4. The consensus attribution is not true anymore?

  5. “Although commonly attributed to the Sun (1), the rapid warming of ∼1 °C at the end of Maunder Minimum is 10 times greater than our understanding of the solar radiation change (39) can explain but is within the range of a speculative theory (40) if we remove 0.4 °C as due to the AMO.”

    This is the kind of reasoning that causes engineers to break out in hives.

  6. “The anthropogenic warming started after the mid-19th century of Industrial Revolution. After a slow start, the smoothed version of the warming trend has stayed almost constant since 1910 at 0.07–0.08 °C/decade. Superimposed on the secular trend is a natural multidecadal oscillation of an average period of 70 y with significant amplitude of 0.3–0.4 °C peak to peak, which can explain many historical episodes of warming and cooling and accounts for 40% of the observed warming since the mid-20th century and for 50% of the previously attributed anthropogenic warming trend.”

    So even if we would reduce CO2 emissions to the 1910′s level (basically zero compared to today), we would still have the same anthropogenic warming.

    • My point below. Doesn’t make sense, does it?

      • It is difficult to make sense of an analysis which attributes all warming to GHGs.

        1. Doesn’t explain millenial scale Holocenic changes.

        2. Backfires the Arrow of Time throughout paleontology.

        3. Absolutely begs for the question of where human society would be without that warming.

        Besides begging all other attribution questions. As if there is a control knob on temperospatial chaos amid clear rhythms.
        ============

    • Edim >So even if we would reduce CO2 emissions to the 1910′s level (basically zero compared to today), we would still have the same anthropogenic warming.

      Yes. There is more to the A than CO2. Black carbon, wind erosion and land use all impact the water and ice cycles. There are two hemispheres with different thermal characteristics. Change one and you shift the thermal equator which can shift the westerly wind patterns.

      http://www.gfdl.noaa.gov/bibliography/related_files/jrt0901.pdf

      Larger land areas free of ice and used for agriculture would tend to make regional high and lower pressure centers more stable, skewing the ITCZ more northward with decreasing land ice. That requires a pretty long time scale.

    • David Springer

      Edim | March 10, 2013 at 12:19 pm | Reply

      “So even if we would reduce CO2 emissions to the 1910′s level (basically zero compared to today), we would still have the same anthropogenic warming.”

      Only if the total concentration in the atmosphere dropped back to 1910′s level too. The more CO2 already in the atmosphere the less effect there is in adding more. It’s called diminishing returns which is something that happens in a great many processes both natural and artificial. In this case the best analogy I’ve come up to explain it to the proverbial barmaid is that the photons are like apples and CO2 molecules are like apple pickers. If you’ve got one picker per tree then each picker has enough apples that he can pick at the fastest rate possible. If you’ve got 100 pickers per tree they’ll crowd each other out and some won’t be able to pick any apples at all.

  7. My first thoughts.
    Re: the Armour et al. paper. That’s what I have been talking about. The global warming is not uniformly distributed, nor is it expected to be. Sensitivity studies on current transient warming cannot be used to infer sensitivity easily because of this. Models get the equilibrium sensitivity with special long equilibrium runs that allow the ocean effects to play out completely. Hansen has also referred to the response function to an impulse in global climate with various time scales in it.
    Re: the Tung and Zhou paper. I saw this linked before, so I responded then. Strangely I prefer Vaughan Pratt’s analysis to this because at least he used a physically based CO2 curve as the background, while here they seem to be saying that even a century ago the anthropogenic component was 0.07-0.08C per decade (with only 10% of the current global CO2 production). This is an extreme sensitivity to the early addition that no one can explain scientifically. I think this paper has done wrong exactly what the Armour paper warned against. But they do arrive at 0.7-0.8 C anthropogenic warming in the century which is almost 100% attribution to anthropogenic CO2 despite their current low sensitivity compensating for their early high sensitivity.
    The last paper also needs to be cautious about transient versus long-term sensitivity, but I haven’t seen much of what they did.

    • I don’t think it was 10% a century ago (probably around 1%), it was 10% half a century ago (roughly).

      • My rule of thumb that fits the data is that anthropogenic production has been doubling about every 33 years (similar to VP’s estimate), so in 100 years it is a factor of 8.

      • I should say this fits the CO2 content in the atmosphere, not necessarily the production numbers, which I didn’t look at.

    • JimD, but Vaughan was using CO2 as an anthropogenic tracer and comparing it to HADCRU3 which has a larger “land” influence. If he had used SST, he would have found the same secular trend but a different “sensitivity”. Then had he used northern extent, tropics and southern extent, he would have found the same secular trend with different regional impacts. Only that underlying secular trend would have been consistent.

      But he was looking for ~3C per doubling of CO2 and found exactly what he was looking for.

      • He added a delay to account for all this. Yes, a delay is a single parameter that is too simple, but it was an effort at getting to this issue.

      • JimD, “He added a delay to account for all this. Yes, a delay is a single parameter that is too simple, but it was an effort at getting to this issue.”

        I don’t have a problem with simple. Jumping to conclusions is another thing. The ~15 year lag is more easily explained by solar with a 4 to 5 year lag. It takes time for currents to carry the previous cycle peak surface warming to the higher latitudes. That produces a more pronounced peak every other solar cycle because of the long/short combination in the Hale cycle.

        That lag of ~28 to 29 months also influences the Quasi-Biennial Oscillation which is one of the triggers of the SSW events. It is anon-linear system.

      • David Springer

        Vaughn Pratt’s paper was bogus on the face of it. It ignored the last 15 years of data by using a 22-year filter. The past 15 years of temperature data is the smoking gun and he buried it.

    • Your thinking and mine are overall not dissimilar as first impressions.

      The first paper is so like my own intuitions that I’m automatically more skeptical of it, to balance any bias I might bring due the natural human tendency to like better what agrees with us. However, it also establishes wrinkles and nuance no one’s intuitions seem to have anticipated, which tends to improve my initial opinion of it.

      The second paper strikes me as mere puff, due the patent overconfidence of its authors in what are, after all, very limited methods. That Vaughn Pratt’s approach — right or wrong, warts and all — so challenges Tung and Zhou’s conclusions requires a much better answer than their paper provides, or any reasonable extension of their methodology seems likely to furnish. They consider some things which would be well worth considering, were the data of better quality and more global. But we don’t use what we have as if it were what we wished we had, and so they profoundly err.

  8. Our Hostess writes:

    JC summary: these papers are providing useful contributions to the methodologies of estimating climate sensitivity and attribution of climate change.

    Precisely. The key word is “estimating”, because the only way anyone has of arriving at a numerical value of climate sensitivity is to estimate it. It is IMPOSSIBLE with current technology to MEASURE climate sensitivity. So it is impossible to say whether any particular value is any better than any other. The value of climate sensitivity is almost certainly more than zero, and less than some upper limit. Until we get an actual measurement from empirical data, that is all that is known for certain.

    Until the warmists agree to this simple fact, discussion of this issue will get us nowhere.

    • Jim Cripwell | March 10, 2013 at 12:41 pm |

      It took me the better part of a week and many thousands of words of close Q&A to extract from you the whole rejecting-science-because-nothing-is-a-direct-measurement-existential-angstness at the foundation of your claims.

      Once I realised what a dead end the claims were based on, I moved on, and urged you to as well.

      Climate Sensitivity isn’t just one estimate. It’s several, as of the latest research, which suggests not only is the figure dependent on time scale, but also on regional conditions at any one time. However, the estimates are pretty robust, and trying to shout them down on the basis of their non-instrumentality forgets that thermometers themselves do not represent temperature directly, nor do watches and clocks represent time. Thermometers measure volume changes in fluids, or deflection of bimetallic coils, or some digital count of some property of some material, all correlated with temperature and calibrated for use appropriate to estimation of temperature.. which itself is not a real thing but a quality emergent from interactions of energy and materials. We’ve been through this.

      And you still repeat the claim as if no one walked you through it all, although I was not the first to attempt it, nor the last to revisit it, with you.

      There is a huge amount of empirical data used to derive figures of global temperature sensitivity to CO2 level; this data and these derivations have been used repeatedly to derive values on varying time scales and for varying conditions. It’s true that no one single Climate Sensitivity figure is very meaningful on its own without context.

      The most meaningful such figure must be century-scale or longer Climate Sensitivity, as the general agreement is that global baseline CO2 levels share that time profile.

      And what are the likely values for Climate Sensitivity on timescales of longer than a century given an interglacial world with substantial vestigial glaciers and polar ice caps? Certainly no less than 3.4, because 3.4 is the millennial Climate Sensitivity empirically derived from ice core data, and ice albedo plays such a significant demonstrated role in global temperature, so a world where we go from 6% to 2% ice coverage as a feedback response to CO2E would be one losing 2/3rds of its ice albedo.

      Can you move on from your old phrasing of “never addressed” now to something, I dunno, true?

      • Thank you Bart R. for your long response. I have read it carefully, and I will not move on from this issue. I will state this as a fact. No-one has measured climate sensitivity. If there was an actual measurement of climate sensitivity, this blog, WUWT, RealClimate etc. would no longer exist. There would be no need for any more discussion. We have excellent data on how much CO2 levels will rise in the future, and with an actual measurement of climate sensitivity, with a proper accurcay, we would know with considerable precision what the rise in global temperatures is going to be over the next decades.

        The mere fact that we are having this discussion, shows that no measurement has been made. The implications of this fact are, I believe, enormous, but that is another issue.


      • The mere fact that we are having this discussion, shows that no measurement has been made.

        Argumentum ad argumentum.

        The mere fact that this blog exists shows that the burden of proof is a cosmic teapot.

    • Jim Cripwell | March 13, 2013 at 3:29 pm |

      Okay. We’ll go through the painstaking Q&A approach yet again. Oh joy.

      1. A) Do you acknowledge that there are many potential values for global temperature sensitivity to CO2 doubling; and, 1. B) these values largely appear to depend on time scale and initial conditions of regions?

      2. Do you acknowledge there is no direct observational evidence of temperature at all; all such measurements being calibrated measurements depending on intermediate physical properties (such as volume or deflection or resistance) at certain temperatures?

      3. Do you acknowledge there is no direct observational evidence of time at all; all such measurements being calibrated measurements depending on intermediate physical properties (such as pendulum motion or spring deflection or inferred frequencies) at for certain durations?

      4. Do you acknowledge that there is no direct observational evidence of CO2 concentration in the atmosphere at the PPMV level, and all such measures are derived indirectly from physical or chemical properties?

      5, If 2-4 are correct, then do you recognize how your claim is weaker than these more fundamental claims, being more remote a connection to the phenomena involved?

      6. Do you acknowledge of any two of 2-4 are correct, that such concepts as lifespan, heart rate, body temperature, engine tuning, brain activity, battery charge, cooking instructions, etc. are rendered meaningless; conversely if all of these examples are meaningful to you, then your claim is rendered false?

      • Bart R. Here are my answers to your questions.

        1. I have no idea.

        2. I dont understand the question. I have seen all sorts of peer reviewed reports which record measurements of temperature, and I assume the authors know what they are talking about.

        3. Same as 2. with respect to time

        4. Same as 2. with respect to CO2

        5. I dont understand the question.

        6. I dont understand the question.

        All I claim is that there is no reference, peer reviewed or otherwise, which has proved that adding CO2 to the atmosphere from current levels, causes global temperatures to rise, and measures the relationship between the amount of the added CO2, and the rise in temperature. If you can provide me with such a reference I will be convinced that a measurent of climate sensitivity has been made.

    • Jim Cripwell | March 13, 2013 at 8:16 pm |

      That simplifies this.

      In particular, your answer #2 is in no meaningful way different from the answer everyone else has given you about Climate Sensitivity, then, is it?

      2. I dont understand the question. I have seen all sorts of peer reviewed reports which record measurements of temperature, and I assume the authors know what they are talking about.

      There are many peer reviewed reports which derive global temperature sensitivity to doubling of CO2. The authors of these reports in no qualitative way are different from authors of peer reviewed reports recording measurements of temperature, with the possible exception that measurements of temperature are so taken for granted that the authors put less thinking into it. (In that way, Climate Sensitivity is a more, not less, meaningful metric.)

      All I claim is that there is no reference, peer reviewed or otherwise, which has proved that adding CO2 to the atmosphere from current levels, causes global temperatures to rise, and measures the relationship between the amount of the added CO2, and the rise in temperature.

      Then your claim is false. Kyle Armour, Cecilia Bitz, Gerard Roe have shown in Time-varying climate sensitivity from regional feedbacks submitted as http://earthweb.ess.washington.edu/roe/GerardWeb/Publications_files/Armouretal_EffClimSens.pdf for review.

      While the paper relies on GCMs as intermediaries, the GCMs are built from empirical data, and reflect climate sensitivity in a valid and verifiable way, addressing every part of your claim.

      You can no longer make your claim. But then, you’ve already been presented with previous reasons you could no longer make your claim, and continue to make it.

      • Bart, you write “Then your claim is false. ”

        Fair enough. I have not read the report in detail, but I found no proof that when CO2 is added to the atmosphere from current levels, it causes global tempratures to rise. Could you give me the specific words in the report where this proof is established?

      • Generalissimo Skippy

        ‘More famously, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report (21) shows the spread among climate models for global warming predictions. One of its results is an ensemble-mean prediction of ≈3°C increase in global mean surface temperature for doubled atmospheric CO2 concentration with an ensemble spread of ≈50% on either side. The predicted value for the climate sensitivity and its intermodel spread have remained remarkably stable throughout the modern assessment era from the National Research Counsel (NRC) in 1979 (22) to the anticipated results in the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report (foreshadowed, e.g., in ref. 3) despite diligent tuning and after great research effort and progress in many aspects of simulation plausibility. An even broader distribution function for the increase in mean surface air temperature is the solution ensemble for a standard atmospheric climate model produced by Internet-shared computations (23), but there is a question about how carefully the former ensemble members were selected for their plausibility.

        In each of these model–ensemble comparison studies, there are important but difficult questions: How well selected are the models for their plausibility? How much of the ensemble spread is reducible by further model improvements? How well can the spread can be explained by analysis of model differences? How much is irreducible imprecision in an AOS?

        Simplistically, despite the opportunistic assemblage of the various AOS model ensembles, we can view the spreads in their results as upper bounds on their irreducible imprecision. Optimistically, we might think this upper bound is a substantial overestimate because AOS models are evolving and improving. Pessimistically, we can worry that the ensembles contain insufficient samples of possible plausible models, so the spreads may underestimate the true level of irreducible imprecision (cf., ref. 23). Realistically, we do not yet know how to make this assessment with confidence.’ http://www.pnas.org/content/104/21/8709.long

        It seems pretty sure that Bart specialises in not asking the important but difficult questions.

    • Jim Cripwell | March 13, 2013 at 9:29 pm |

      I have not read the report in detail, but I found no proof that when CO2 is added to the atmosphere from current levels, it causes global tempratures to rise. Could you give me the specific words in the report where this proof is established?

      But this is bait and switch, a form of straw man.

      Now you add “from current levels”. Does this narrowing of your conditions mean you accept global temperature sensitivity to CO2 increase below current levels, but reject that this property of the climate has some universality? That where doubling of CO2 through some rule on some time scale given some set of regional parameters will generally lead to some global temperature rise up to current levels, but not past?

      Why the bad faith rejection of this fundamental scientific precept all of a sudden. Are you rejecting Newton’s Principia? Aristotle’s Logic? Plato’s Reason? Just how much regress in fundamental and widely-accepted thinking will you take us through?

      Further, this supposed “have not read the report in detail..” “..give me specific words” is too disingenuous. The report is built on generations of previous papers, with highly nuanced technical details and definitions. You cannot ‘pick apart’ the specific words at this level of development, especially as you have already consented with, “I assume the authors know what they are talking about,” with regards to temperature, a precept in no qualitative way distinguishable from Climate Sensitivity as regards what the authors know. Either you accept Climate Sensitivity on the basis of Authority, or you have provided no rationale (however weak) for accepting temperature as meaningful.

      Which is it?

      • Generalissimo Skippy

        ‘Lorenz was able to show that even for a simple set of nonlinear equations (1.1), the evolution of the solution could be changed by minute perturbations to the initial conditions, in other words, beyond a certain forecast lead time, there is no longer a single, deterministic solution and hence all forecasts must be treated as probabilistic. The fractionally dimensioned space occupied by the trajectories of the solutions of these nonlinear equations became known as the Lorenz attractor (figure 1), which suggests that nonlinear systems, such as the atmosphere, may exhibit regime-like structures that are, although fully deterministic, subject to abrupt and seemingly random change.’ http://rsta.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/369/1956/4751.full

        If Bart ever emerges with a probabilistic forecast based on systematically designed model families – he might have some credibility. As it stands he simply puts the cart before the horse and proceeds on either blind faith or bad faith. He is a fool or a liar.

      • Bart, you write “Now you add “from current levels”.”

        I have always asked for climate sensitivity to be measured from current levels. I agree that at low concentrations, say 20 ppmv, adding CO2 to the atmosphere causes global temperatures to rise. Once CO2 is “saturated”, it no longer adds any measurable warming.

        All I am looking for is really very simple. You add X amount of CO2 to the atmosphere from current levels,and then some report proves that this causes the global temperatures to rise by Y+/-Z in appropiate units. Where has anyone measured X, Y and Z?

    • Jim Cripwell | March 14, 2013 at 6:47 am |

      So, pretty much as predicted, you’re Socratic-Methoding and equivocating, not discussing meaningfully.

      What a waste of all our time.

      • Well here’s he pot calling the kettle black. What we have is a monumental waste of time and space with his appalling pretensions, silliness, maladroopism – defined as a cross between malapropism and OMG not him again – and infinitely teased out bad faith.

      • Bart R

        Jim Cripwell is correct is saying that the only question that is interesting in a practical sense is whether or not humans adding CO2 to the atmosphere in the past (for example, since Mauna Loa measurements have given us a representative estimate of atmospheric CO2 concentrations) has caused a perceptible rise in globally and annually averaged land and sea surface temperature, as measured at both the surface and in the troposphere.

        Hypothetical deliberations of how much theoretical warming might have been caused by the first 20 ppmv or the estimated pre-industrial 280 ppmv have no practical importance (getting into the “how many angels can dance on the head of a pin?” category).

        And to determine the impact of human CO2 one has to be sure that all the natural forcing mechanisms and variabilities (as well as any other anthropogenic forcing factors other than CO2) have been taken into consideration. An therein lies the great uncertainty, as our hostess has pointed out.

        Recent studies have been made, based on the past CO2 and temperature record, to estimate the 2xCO2 climate sensitivity at equilibrium in degrees C. These indicate that 2xCO2 ECS is very likely to be around 1,6C (or around half the previous model-predicted mean value cited by IPCC).

        But even these estimates had to rely on “guess-timates” for the impact of natural forcing and variability, and by considering direct solar irradiance as the only estimated solar forcing, have very likely underestimated natural forcing and, thus, overestimated the 2xCO2 ECS.

        But they are the best estimates we have to date (until we can get better empirical data for the various natural factors involved).

        Max

        .

  9. Uh huh, I agree Tung and Zhou seem intuitively correct, with your caveat about the sun, too. And all along I thought it was the PDO. Why didn’t I listen more carefully to Bob Tisdale?
    ==============

    • I can even explain the steadiness of the Anthro effect for the last century of 0.07 deg. C/dec; it’s the diminishing logarithmic effect, even as absolute concentration rises.
      =======

      • We keep circling back to Max’s point: We can’t, rather won’t, release enough AnthroCO2 to raise the temperature of the earth more than a coupla deg. C. It’s a buffer against the next glaciation, and a brief bloom for the whole biosphere, during which we may wisely gather wealth for the coming cold.
        ===================

  10. I asked this question regarding ENSO on a previous thread, which was never actually answered, but the Tung and Zhou paper raises the same question for me with respect to the AMO.

    “The underlying net anthropogenic warming rate in the industrial era is found to have been steady since 1910 at 0.07–0.08 °C/decade, with superimposed AMO-related ups and downs that included the early 20th century warming, the cooling of the 1960s and 1970s, the accelerated warming of the 1980s and 1990s, and the recent slowing of the warming rates.”

    From NOAA for the AMO: “Models of the ocean and atmosphere that interact with each other indicate that the AMO cycle involves changes in the south-to-north circulation and overturning of water and heat in the Atlantic Ocean.”

    The question is, why should a weather phenomenon of internal variability affect the global average temperature at all?

    From NOAA for ENSO: “In normal, non-El Niño conditions (top panel of schematic diagram), the trade winds blow towards the west across the tropical Pac:ific. These winds pile up warm surface water in the west Pacific, so that the sea surface is about 1/2 meter higher at Indonesia than at Ecuador.”

    Both the AMO and ENSO involve the concentration or circulation, within the existing global climate, of energy/heat that is already here. The AMO circulates heat within the Atlantic, and ENSO results from trade winds concentrating heat in the Pacific to the west.

    But neither adds heat to the system. So why should global average temperature increase or decrease dependent upon an El Nino, a La Nina, or a change in the Atlantic circulation pattern? How can the movement of energy/heat within the system alter the “average” temperature of that system? How can movement of heat from one part of the Pacific to another, and then to the atmosphere, affect the average temperature of the system as a whole?

    When climate scientists speak of removing the AMO or ENSO from temperature records, as in the paper above, they do so because they claim the oscillations “mask” “global warming.” But they, like the paper above, still accept them as affecting the GAT. They do not claim that the oscillations create spurious increases and decreases in the global average temperature, ala UHI.

    Why does the effect of the AMO have to be removed from the temperature records ONLY for purposes of attribution? Why should it not be removed (along with ENSO changes) completely from the GAT for the simple purpose of accuracy?

    • Well, yeah, Vulkans march to the fore, and Jupiter only beams bashfully, but the millenial scale changes still have not attribution.
      ===============

    • AMO is nothing special – it’s just an oscillation/variation in temperatures (North Atlantic) and we find the VERY similar oscillation everywhere (global, global SST, global land, NH, SH…).

      • That just begs the question. Why should an oscillation within the system, affect the average of the system?

      • I don’t quite get the question, but it oscillates at all timescales and it can have trends at all timescales, IMO.

      • Gary M. “That just begs the question. Why should an oscillation within the system, affect the average of the system?”

        Sometimes the oscillations just impact the average of the measurements not really the system. Trying to “average” global temperature on a short time scale is like herding cats, (feral cats for the tabby owners). Small lags have a bigger impact on the temperature average because the hemispheres are out of phase.

        The real impact is the hemisphere imbalance. The southern hemisphere is a better heat sink than the Northern so it maintains a cooler average SST despite the higher winter solar insolation. Change the meridional heat flow a little and there is a pretty large change in real energy in the system that can take decades to stabilize since ocean currents are pretty slow and ocean mixing much slower.

    • And don’t mess with the data! Don’t ever, ever, ever change it to make it fit what you want to see.

    • GaryM, it is because the surface temperature is not a measure of the total energy in the system. Yes, the total energy shouldn’t change so much as it is constrained by the energy balance, but it oscillates as warmer or colder water come to the surface and affect GAT. AMO, PDO and ENSO are redistributions of energy that affect the surface temperature, but somewhat like in the uncertainty principle, larger energy blips can last less time because of the underlying long-term energy balance constraint.

      • Heh, what about ‘missing heat’ or energy that can slip in and out of the system and stay for long periods. You assume constancy where Nature calls the change.
        ==========

      • Jim D,

        Why should warmer or colder water coming to the surface cause the “total energy” to “oscillate,” if the GAT accurately measures the sea component of GAT already?

        If you have a house, with numerous rooms, heat can flow from one to another making one room warmer or colder. The temperatures in any given room can thus oscillate. But the average temperature of the house as a whole should not oscillate at all, unless heat is being added or subtracted.

        And forget the difference between energy and temperature. The entire climate debate is about “global warming,” the increase in GAT that will have various allegedly catastrophic impacts on climate.

      • GaryM, with the surface temperature, you are only looking at the temperature in one room in your analogy. This does not measure the house temperature. AMO, PDO and ENSO are the flows between rooms.

      • kim, there is an energy balance which is more constrained on longer time scales. We know the components (solar input minus solar reflected, and IR output). If you can think of something else, let me know.

      • Jim, it’s the ~same oscillation everywhere. Here the (already detrended) AMO and detrended HADCRUT4.

        http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/esrl-amo/plot/esrl-amo/trend/plot/hadcrut4gl/detrend:0.755/plot/hadcrut4gl/trend/detrend:0.755

      • Vaughan Pratt had a good representation of that oscillation too.

      • Jim D,

        If the oscillations only affected surface temperature records, then that would be true. But the whole point of my question is that the oscillations also affect the reported global average temperature.

        Global average temperature is supposed to represent the average temperature of land, air and sea. At least that is how it is presented. That is the source of the “missing heat in hidden in the ocean” claim.

        You can’t calculate any meaningful “global average temperature” without including the average temperature of the oceans. And if you have included those averages, then a transfer of heat between the ocean and atmosphere should not change the average at all.

        Here are a couple of graphs showing “land-sea average temperature”:

        http://www.columbia.edu/~mhs119/Temperature/T_moreFigs/

        In the Columbia graphs, notice that both land and sea surface temperatures spike in 1998. Why? Unless an El Nino represents heat added to the climate, why would the average of land and sea temperatures both rise? Where did the added heat come from?

      • When I refer to surface temperature it is the global average. This is also not the full story because the deep oceans can store energy that only appears at the surface with the ocean circulation changes. The deep oceans are the other “rooms” in the analogy.

      • Figure 6A in the Armour paper tells a succinct story.

        If one wants to see the immediate extent of AGW, look at a time series such as BEST, which focuses only on Land-based data

        Consider an analogy with a PC’s heat sink. If you don’t attach a heat sink directly to the computer chip, the chip will still get hot. If the heat sink is attached by a lower thermal conductivity path, the chip will only reduce its thermal load by a relative amount.

        Same thing with the land; it is not intimately attached to the ocean so the land will show warming more immediately. I like to compare against BEST because that is transiently nearer the equilibrium climate sensitivity (ECS) that is most frequently cited.

        What probably should be done is generate a totally land-based temperature metric (which is available) and then a totally ocean-based metric, in line with Figure 6A of Armour. That would better represent the variable heat sinking characteristics of the earth. Then you get both the transient views and the slower equilibrium views instead of hybrids such as Hadcrut and GISS, which adds to the confusion in understanding..

      • Webster, “Consider an analogy with a PC’s heat sink. If you don’t attach a heat sink directly to the computer chip, the chip will still get hot. If the heat sink is attached by a lower thermal conductivity path, the chip will only reduce its thermal load by a relative amount.”

        Yep, and with the oceans the sink temperature is roughly fixed at -1.9C. so with an average ocean temperature of about 4C, SST below 4C would be part of the path to the sink. How well you mix that zone would influence the thermal path. In the southern hemisphere there is a little over 40 million kilometers square of pretty well mixed sinkage. In the northern hemisphere there is only about 17 million kilometers of not as well mixed sinkage, a fair amount is covered with ice most of the time. The meridional energy flow from the equator to the southern sink is pretty steady at 140 Wm-2 and to the northern sink it oscillates like crazy averaging about 120 Wm-2. There is a 20 Wm-2 difference in merdional heat flux which might produce a substantial oscillation magnitude if given the opportunity. Since the thermal equator for the ocean heat capacity is right at 5 degrees north latitude, tugging it one way or another so the Coriolis effect can grab a handful might be pretty easy. Heck, that’s darn near 4 C degrees of potential fluctuation right there.

    • I am perfectly prepared to learn that I am missing something. But I am using the consensus own definitions of the oscillations, and the consensus’ own descriptions of how they affect global average temperature records to formulate the question.

    • In the climate shifts hypothesis, AMO, ENSO etc are not easily separable from the external forcing, which may project onto the modes of natural internal variability

      • Dr. Curry,

        What I don’t understand is why they have to be separated at all? Not for purposes of attribution, but for purposes of determining how much the globe is actually warming. If they reflect an actual increase or decrease in the average temperature of the globe, where did the heat come from or go to?

        It seems to me that either it is a mistake not to simply control for the oscillations, or someone should be able to explain why and El Nino, for example, raises the global average temperature.

        I can understand how solar input could raise or lower temperatures. I can understand how the green house effect could cause global average temperature to rise, by slowing the radiation of energy from the atmosphere.

        But how do the oscillations raise or lower global average temperature?

        I guess it comes down to how does “internal variability” of any kind change the total heat content of the global climate? Which is what the whole AGW/CAGW debate is about, the warming of the globe as a whole.

      • Gary, the internal oscillations do two main things:
        • reorganize heat in the ocean-atmosphere system (total heat content remaining the same)
        • rearranging cloud patterns which influences the amount of radiation leaving the earth atmosphere system (changes the total heat content)

      • Gary, IMO it’s all externally caused with maybe some internal oscillatory response. ENSO is simply more constrained because it’s on equator (or further from the poles) than the other, more global oscillations.

      • Dr. Curry,

        Is there research that shows that the oscillations affect cloud cover so much that they account for the spikes in global average surface and ocean temperatures recorded in El Nino years? As shown in the graphs I linked to above?

      • Dr. Curry,

        And doesn’t rearranging cloud patterns also influence the amount of radiation entering the earth atmosphere system, thus also changing the total heat content in a negative direction? All depending on where the clouds are, time of day, the season etc.

      • yes, the cloud impact depends on location (latitude), underlying surface (reflectivity), time of day and season

      • Judith Curry

        If I understand your comment #301527 to Gary M, ENSO, AMO, etc. can only change the overall planetary energy balance by affecting cloud formation, which can have the dual effect of varying incoming SW radiation by changing the overall albedo or varying the outgoing LW radiation by varying the absorption and re-radiation of LW energy (GHE).

        If so, this would appear to be a form of “external forcing” in itself (or, at least, would be very difficult to separate from “external forcing”, as you write).

        Did I understand this correctly?

        Has anyone done any work to identify the mechanisms that may be at work behind AMO, ENSO, etc.?

        I seem to remember some studies that showed a solar link – is this plausible?

        Thanks.

        Max

      • manacker, Spencer thought ENSO was tied to cloud forcing, but he had to say the clouds preceded ENSO, otherwise it would look like a negative feedback. However, he did resist saying clouds caused ENSO, despite his own conclusion. It was part of the mess he got into arguing with Dessler about cloud feedbacks and ENSO.

      • sorry …for “negative” read “positive”.

      • Jim D

        Yeah. I remember that there was a Dessler/Spencer spat.

        Clouds as a separate forcing (rather than just a feedback)?

        Why not?

        We all know that clouds play a major part in controlling our climate by reflecting incoming SW radiation (12 times as “potent” as the theoretical warming from 2xCO2) and also, to a smaller extent, by absorbing and re-radiating outgoing LW radiation (the GHE). We also know that, on average, some 50% of our planet’s surface is covered by clouds.

        That is why the Svensmark hypothesis is being tested at CERN – so far we know that there is a GCR cloud nucleation mechanism in the presence of certain naturally occurring aerosols, but more experimental work is planned under controlled conditions simulating our climate to validate and quantify (or falsify) the Svensmark et al. hypothesis that this mechanism could be a major solar-driven natural forcing factor of our climate.

        So the “science is still not settled” on that, and we’ll have to wait and see whether Dessler or Spencer were right.

        Don’t you agree?

        Max

      • David Springer

        curryja | March 10, 2013 at 2:44 pm |

        “• rearranging cloud patterns which influences the amount of radiation leaving the earth atmosphere system (changes the total heat content)”

        Rearranging cloud patterns also influences the amount of SW radiation entering the ocean which also changes total heat content.

      • yes, ‘leaving the earth’ also includes SW reflected radiation

      • manacker, clouds can’t be a separate forcing because they are short-lived. They have to be reacting to something. I would not hold out any hope for GCRs coming to the “skeptics” rescue because people have looked for GCR effects in the solar cycle that modulates cosmic rays quite a lot, and they have not found anything to be excited about.

      • Jim D

        “Clouds can’t be a separate forcing because they are short lived”

        Why not?

        Each individual cloud (or each individual molecule of liquid or solid H2O in the atmosphere) may, indeed, be “short lived” before it precipitates out as rain or snow, but the overall amount of cloud cover may not be (Palle et al.)

        If this overall amount of cloud cover is being influenced by an external factor, such as changes in galactic cosmic rays caused by changes in solar activity (as Svensmark et al. suggest) then we have a separate forcing mechanism which is directly tied to clouds.

        Right?

        Lot’s of IFs there, but so are there in the hypothesis that GHGs are the climate “control knob”.

        Let’s just call it “uncertainty” (as our hostess does).

        Max

        .

      • manacker, the measured variations in albedo come as much from ice and snow cover, and aerosols (volcanic and manmade) as clouds. You are going to need a big cloud change to overcome these other things that are all doing more measurable things to the albedo.

      • “‘leaving the earth’ also includes SW reflected radiation”

        The importance of storm track cloud systems in mid latitude is greatly understated especially in the SH (with its O3 problem )

        Ramanathan and Weaver suggest that over oceans they are responsible for 60% of the -18wm^2 global net”forcing”

      • David Springer

        curryja | March 10, 2013 at 6:57 pm |

        “yes, ‘leaving the earth’ also includes SW reflected radiation”

        Some energy blocked by clouds is neither reflected nor reaches the surface.

        For example, UV radiation:

        http://www.cotf.edu/ete/modules/ozone/ozatmo.html

        Thick clouds absorb uv radiation effectively. However, cumulus clouds can sometimes have the opposite effect as uv radiation is scattered at the edges of these clouds and subsequently reaches Earth’s surface.

        The same thing happens in the near infrared which is also both absorbed and scattered maybe reaching the surface and maybe not but definitely entering the earth/atmosphere system and having a thermal effect in some layer because it’s absorbed by the cloud not reflected.

      • From Generalissimo Skippy above quoting Lorenz “‘Lorenz was able to show that even for a simple set of nonlinear equations (1.1), the evolution of the solution could be changed by minute perturbations to the initial conditions.”

        The AMO, PDO, cloud formation, ocean current flow, atmospheric flows, the changes in the magnetosphere, coronal mass ejections, nearly ad infinitum, are all non-linear functions. Theirr interactions can easily evolve into unpredictable(because we cannot measure every variable at the atomic level) attractors. In fact, the climate system is so complex I don’t know of anyone who has been able to plot a phase space for it.

        Since the earth is subject of external influences from the sun, magnetic, mass ejections, changes in emissions, changes in solar frequency distribution, which affect the weather and all the heat flows.

        The changes in the Pacific are a good example. El Nino collects large amounts of heated surface water in the eastern Pacific, moves it to the west, where it is split erratically into the Indian ocean and the north Pacific where it can stay for some time, affecting weather over North America. The La Nina occurs on a different time scale and may or may not balance things outs. When it doesn’t, another El Nino can repeat and increase the temperature, enough at some point to start raising the global temperature.

        For the last several million years the climate has been caught in one attractor- fairly regular fluctuating glaciations with much shorter, warmer inter-glacial periods. As far as I know no climate model even begins to show the glaciations and the causes for the inter-stadial periods. So it seems pretty presumptuous to makes predictions, even as short as a hundred years when we don’t understand the current climate for the last 2 million years.

    • Look up the difference between extrinsic and intrinsic properties of a system.

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

      Temperature is closer to an intrinsic characteristic while cumulative heat ( i.e. thermal energy) is an extrinsic measure. The total heat of the earth is increasing over time while a positive incoming energy imbalance holds. We could actually calculate this heat quantity accurately if we had thermometers placed everywhere, along with estimates of heat capacities in the specific locations.

      This is why the ocean heat content shows a nearly monotonic increase over time. In contrast, the land and atmosphere temperature varies enough to measure, as it exchanges heat via turbulent mixing with the ocean. The differences in heat capacities are enough to make the temperatures fluctuate on land.

      The issue is that weathermen record and report temperatures because this is what people can relate to. Humans don’t live under the water or in underground caverns, so those locations don’t go into the mix.

      This is really pretty elementary stuff.

      • Yes it is elementary, and has absolutely nothing to do with the simple, shall we say elementary, question I asked. Which has still not been answered.

        Why should internal variations in climate have any impact, let along the dramatic impact of El Ninos, on global average temperaure?

        Either the reported temps are as poor as I think they are, or there is some mechanism that creates a real increase in global temp at the same time as the oscillations occur.

        The cloud cover impact suggested by Dr. Curry would be one plausible explanation for a real increase in temps, IF the effect of retarding radiation from the Earth exceeds by a drastic enough margin the effect those clouds have of reflecting incoming radiation.

    • Thank you Ka-Kit Tung and Jiansong Zhou

      a revised picture is emerging that gives a consistent attribution for each multidecadal episode of warming and cooling in recent history, and suggests that the anthropogenic global warming trends might have been overestimated by a factor of two in the second half of the 20th century.

      Thank you.

      This is why:

      http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut3vgl/compress:12/plot/gistemp/compress:12/offset:-0.08/detrend:0.04/plot/hadcrut4gl/compress:12/offset:-0.03/detrend:0.02/plot/hadcrut3vgl/mean:732/plot/hadcrut3vgl/mean:252/plot/hadcrut3vgl/mean:252/offset:0.2/plot/hadcrut3vgl/mean:252/offset:-0.2/plot/hadcrut3vgl/scale:0.000001/offset:2/plot/esrl-co2/scale:0.003/offset:-1.03/detrend:-0.22/from:1982/plot/hadcrut3vgl/mean:252/offset:0.015/plot/hadcrut3vgl/mean:732/offset:0.015/plot/esrl-co2/scale:0.003/offset:-1.03/detrend:-0.22/from:1982

      Which shows the 30-year warming rate is twice that of the secular warming (long-term, non periodic) rate for the recent warming phase.

      Climate sensitivity = IPCC Climate Sensitivity / 2 = 3/2 = 1.5

      • Ka-Ching! Another thing we keep circling back to, that the anthropogenic component has been exaggerated, by that odd and important factor of two. Hey, I tried to tell Andy Revkin in 2008 that the water vapor feedback was wrong. It wasn’t as if I came up with the idea on my own, either.
        ============

    • Girma

      Looks like Tung & Zhou are confirming an anthropogenic forcing of around half of the previously assumed level, with solar (TSI only) at less than 10% and internal variability at around 40% (with a 0.3-0.4C peak to peak amplitude).

      The authors have estimated anthropogenic forcing at 0.07C-0.08C per decade, which appears very close to the conclusion you have reached by just doing an analysis of the temperature record.

      T&Z have pretty much eliminated human aerosols as a significant forcing factor over the long-term period.

      As far as forcing from other GHGs is concerned, IPCC have estimated that these represented around 43% of the total GH forcing since pre-industrial time (at a total of 1.25 W/m^2 compared to 1.66 W/m^2 for CO2), leaving 57% for CO2. Let’s assume CO2 increased to ~70% of the total GH forcing from 1910 to today.

      Then GH warming due to CO2 forcing was: 0.7 * 0.75 = 0.51C

      Atmospheric CO2 concentration was an estimated 295 ppmv in 1910 and is a measured 393 ppmv today

      So the estimated 2xCO2 temperature response was:

      0.51 * ln(2) / ln (393/295) = 1.2C

      But, according to IPCC, we must add in the warming “still in the pipeline” waiting to reach “equilibrium”

      IPCC (AR4 WGI SPM, Table SPM.3) estimates that 0.6C warming are still “in the pipeline” (the anticipated warming from today to year 2100 with no added GHG concentrations). This was estimated based on a model-predicted 2xCO2 ECS of 3.2C, which appears too high by a factor of 2:1, so let’s reduce it by this factor to 0.3C left “in the pipeline”

      This would make the revised 2xCO2 ECS 1.2 + 0.3 = 1.5C

      Or very close to other recent observation-based estimates and around half of the previous model predictions of IPCC in AR4.

      Do you agree?

      Max

      • Max

        Yes. The observational based estimate of climate sensitivity is about 1.6 deg C for increase in CO2 by 280 ppm.

      • “The authors have estimated anthropogenic forcing at 0.07C-0.08C per decade”

        Forcing is measured in wm-2, not C/decade

    • Steven Mosher

      read the first paper to see why your calculation is a poor way to estimate the quantity you are estimating

      • Steven Mosher

        The first paper simply tells us that ANY estimate of a GLOBAL 2xCO2 climate sensitivity at equilibrium is silly, because it’s all happening regionally or locally.

        So it tells us that the way the IPCC models have estimated the 2xCO2 ECS “is a poor way to estimate this”.

        I’d agree,

        Now to the second paper.

        It tells us that IPCC have OVERestimated the GH impact by approximately 2:1. This is the paper, which essentially comes to the same conclusion as Girma (or as the recent observation-based estimates of 2xCO2 ECS, which have been cited elsewhere).

        The third paper doesn’t tell me very much about ECS, except that the “upper end of climate model temperature projections is inconsistent with past warming” (IOW that model estimates are exaggerated).

        Max

      • “The first paper simply tells us that ANY estimate of a GLOBAL 2xCO2 climate sensitivity at equilibrium is silly, because it’s all happening regionally or locally.”

        Figure 6A sure looks silly, sarcasm intended. According to Armour’s figure, the climate sensitivity shows up in land-based records (such as BEST) almost immediately, with no appreciable time lag

        That is why the fit to a 3° C per doubling of CO2 works so well in modeling the currently observed land-warming trends:

        #WHUT’s up wid dat hockey stick, eh?

      • WHT

        Reading tea leaves or animal entrails is an old art.

        Looks like you are pretty good at it (if you see a confirmation of a global 2xCO2 ECS of 3.2C in the first paper).

        Congrats!

        What do you see in the other two papers?

        Max

      • Steven Mosher

        manaker. It does not say the measurements of sensitivity are SILLY.
        First, sensitivity is nothing more than the response in C to a change of forcing in watts.
        When the sun goes down, you get a change in watts and a change in C.
        And, you therefore have a measure of sensitivity. However, such a measurement would not be a good representation of the equillibrium response. Such a measurement of sensitivity is still a good measurement, it’s just unwise to generalize from it. its limited and potentially misleading.

        You might look at the global temperature over 2 centuries
        and note that forcing has changed by 2 Watts and temps have change by 1 C.. and here too you have a measurement of sensitivity, but again, the measurement could be biased ( if sensitivity is temperature dependent for example)
        You might look at the change in forcing from the holocene to the LIA and look at the change in temperature. This also give you a measurement of sensitivity.

        There are many measurements of sensitivity. They are easy to make.
        Harder, is the interpretation of them.

        Noting that sensitivity might be spatially dependent and temperature dependent, and temporally dependent does not make measurements of it Silly. It makes them hard. It makes them more uncertain. That uncertainty is not your friend.

        True, In a debate over
        “whats the exact value” that uncertainty is your friend. If the question is
        “do we know the exact value for sensitivity?” then the methodological challenges are friendly to the skeptical position.

        But ECS is directly related to risk, and from a risk assesment perspective uncertainty is not your friend.

      • One thing that is certain is that warmer is better until a temperature point or at a rate of rise we seem incapable of causing. When the benefits of warming are properly accounted for, then uncertainty eases. Uncertainty only becomes problematic again as the borders of expected future reality are crossed.

        moshe, the hobgoblins still beset you.
        ===========

      • Steven Mosher

        kim you seem certain about uncertainty.

      • I got it all figured out, moshe, but you gotta read the blogs; even I can’t remember it now.
        =========

      • kim you seem certain about uncertainty.

        The only future almost surely is that is it is uncertain.The irreducibility of CS over the last 30 yrs suggest it is indeed irreducible

        Negative proofs a very doable eg Hannart

        http://www.atmos.ucla.edu/tcd/PREPRINTS/Hannart&co-Uncertain_future-2cols.pdf

        The inability to predict the divergence of the metrics ( El Jardín de senderos que se bifurcan” Borge ) is the sensitivity to the parameters.

  11. The underlying net anthropogenic warming rate in the industrial era is found to have been steady since 1910 at 0.07–0.08 °C/decade, with superimposed AMO-related ups and downs that included the early 20th century warming, the cooling of the 1960s and 1970s, the accelerated warming of the 1980s and 1990s, and the recent slowing of the warming rates.

    A statement that supports my graph=>

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut3vgl/compress:12/plot/gistemp/compress:12/offset:-0.08/detrend:0.04/plot/hadcrut4gl/compress:12/offset:-0.03/detrend:0.02/plot/hadcrut3vgl/mean:732/plot/hadcrut3vgl/mean:252/plot/hadcrut3vgl/mean:252/offset:0.2/plot/hadcrut3vgl/mean:252/offset:-0.2/plot/hadcrut3vgl/scale:0.000001/offset:2/plot/esrl-co2/scale:0.003/offset:-1.03/detrend:-0.22/from:1982/plot/hadcrut3vgl/mean:252/offset:0.015/plot/hadcrut3vgl/mean:732/offset:0.015/plot/esrl-co2/scale:0.003/offset:-1.03/detrend:-0.22/from:1982

  12. Good to see JC immediately noticing the assumptions about solar variability implicit in Tung and Zhou. It would be fascinating to see this work extended with some hypothetical forcings due to UV and GCR variation.

    • Frank Knarf

      You bring up an interesting point.

      T&Z have only considered direct solar irradiance as a solar forcing impact and have stated that this represents less than 10% of the total forcing (in AR4 IPCC had previously relegated total solar forcing to only 7% of the total forcing since pre-industrial time).

      The CLOUD experiment at CERN has validated the galactic cosmic ray cloud nucleation mechanism in the presence of certain naturally occurring aerosols. So an experimentally validated mechanism exists.

      But the scientists working on this have cautioned that more work is needed under controlled conditions simulating our climate to either corroborate and quantify (or falsify) the Svensmark et al. hypothesis that this mechanism would act as a natural forcing in our climate system.

      By only considering the solar irradiance impact, the study by T&Z essentially assumes that this continued work will result in a falsification of the Svensmark hypothesis.

      On this basis one can calculate a 2xCO2 ECS of around 1.5C.

      IF (the BIG word) Svensmark et al. is, however, corroborated by the CERN experiments and quantified to represent a significant solar climate forcing factor, then the 2xCO2 ECS will be shown to be even lower than 1.5C.

      So we can essentially look at a 2xCO2 ECS of 1.5C as an upper limit.

      Max

      • Max

        We should point out that the 1.5 deg C warming for doubling of CO2 is due to the sun that its increased activity increases the global mean temperature and that in-turn increases the CO2 concentration in the atmosphere.

        http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut3vgl/mean:732/to:1965/normalise/plot/sidc-ssn/mean:1052/normalise

      • No Girma, you are so incredibly wrong that it belies belief.

        The excess atmospheric CO2 is due to unsequestered carbon pumped out by man-made emissions dating back to 1800. The following chart is a direct statistical convolution of carbon emissions with the commonly cited impulse response to sequestering:

        This also includes a thermally activated (0.21 eV) outgassing of CO2 which generates a positive feedback on top of a warming ocean (that is, if one accepts principles of physical chemistry). It’s a small fraction of the overall CO2 increase but one that can grow with further warming.

      • WHT

        Atmospheric CO2 is increasing.

        Humans are emitting CO2 into the atmosphere.

        The two are very likely related.

        OK so far.

        Your CO2 curve to Girma starts in 1850.

        The ice core estimates prior to Mauna Loa in 1959 are dicey.

        Start the record in 1950 and you see that the annual change in the amount of CO2 measured in the atmosphere has very little to do with the annual human CO2 emissions, but that over longer periods it appears that only around half of the emitted CO2 “remains” in the atmosphere.

        On a year-to-year basis the amount “remaining” in the atmosphere seems to correlate with the annual change in global temperature from the previous year (discussion we had earlier).

        Nobody really knows where the other half is going. It is ASS-U-MEd that most of it is going into the ocean, but (as you say) a warming ocean should be de-gassing CO2 rather than absorbing it (of course in equilibrium with atmospheric concentration plus temperature).

        It is very likely that vegetation is growing more rapidly with higher CO2 concentrations, so a part of the “missing CO2″ may also be going into increased plant growth.

        The interesting part is that the %-age “remaining” in the atmosphere has decreased by around 1% per decade (from ~55% average over the longer-term period 1959-1990 to around 50.6% over the period 1990-today).

        This would indicate that something in the biosphere is “gobbling up” an increasing portion as concentration increases and temperature increases slightly, which would point to increased absorption by plants.

        Will the %age of the emitted CO2 “remaining” in the atmosphere continue to decrease decade after decade as it did since Mauna Loa started?

        If so, where is it going?

        Unanswered questions. Right?

        Max

      • Steven Mosher

        Unfortunately Svensmarks work cannot be corroborated by any CERN experiment. the CERN experiments can determine if it is wrong. They say nothing whatsover about the real world. In the real world there is no relationship between GCR and cloudiness. None. Zip. Nada. zero.
        Put another way nothing they find at CERN can change the observations of the past which show no relationship. Nothing they can find can change the current observations which show no relationship.
        The best you can hope for from CERN is a result which confirms the theory, and then YOU STILL HAVE THE SAME PROBLEM: real world fiend measurements dont show the effect. And worse, even if you were able to show a relationship, you’d have the attribution problem that the IPCC faces with c02. You cant rule out unicorns.
        Put another way, if the unicorn defense works for skeptics against C02
        ( the warming could be caused by other things ) then the unicorn defense works for anti GCR folks. think about that next time you want to employ the unicorn against C02. it works against all science. which is why it is ‘anti scientific’ to use it.

      • The skeptics are so wrong about the evolution of excess CO2.

        The essential carbon-cycle physics says that the changing CO2 is naturally governed by a base level which changes with ambient temperature, but with an additional impulse response governed by a carbon stimulus, either natural (volcano) or artificial (man-made carbon). The latter process is described by a convolution, one of the bread and butter techniques of climate scientists:

        CO_2(t,T) =  CO_2(0,T) + \kappa \int_0^t C(\tau) I(t-\tau) d\tau

        The impulse response looks like this:

        when you convolve the historical carbon outputs as archived at the CO2 Analysis Center with the above fat-tailed impulse response, it matches the measured CO2 from the KNMI Climate Explorer like thus:

        No unexplainable loss of carbon to be seen. This is all explainable by diffusion kinetics into sequestration sites. Diffusional physics is so well understood that it is no longer arguable.

        If you do this analysis incorrectly and use a naive damped exponential response ala Segalstad, Salby, Manacker, and other misguided skeptics, you do end up apparently believing that half of the CO2 has gone missing. This is what the response looks like, given the skeptics view of a 6.5 year CO2 residence time:

        The obvious conclusion is that if you don’t do the statistical physics correctly, you end up with nonsense numbers.

        Pretty clear, eh, Manacker, Girma, Edim?

      • Unicorns caused the millenial scale changes seen through the Holocene, moshe? Why, yes they did.
        ==============

    • Generalissimo Skippy

      The half missing of course is the difference between emissions and accumulation in the atmosphere. Got no idea what webby is on about – but it seems the typical confabulation.

      There are dozens of compartments in the carbon cycle of course and many unknowns to greater than 20% error in the estimates. These errors are far greater than the emissions. There are many changes in the carbon cycle that are far from limited to human emissions and ocean solubility. Until and unless there are better estimates of natural fluxes and the physical and biological reasons behind them – there is little point in applying simplistic methodologies to the problem. No better than a guess at a parameter in a curve fitting exercise that gives the shape that you are looking for. Far less credible science than a physically unrealistic two compartment curve fitting exercise – for which little to no reliable data exists on which to fit a realisitic curve.

      The 6.5 year residence is a straw man – of no account. It assumes there is a turnover of molecules between sources and sinks and the atmosphere relatively quickly and may well be the case.

      CO2 flux responds to warming in a number of ways. Biological activity increases on both land and in the oceans with warmer temperatures and the question remains as to what degree natural warming contributed to higher atmospheric concentrations of CO2. It is a legitimate scientific question and one that webby is worlds away from answering.

      • Compluh – compluh – compluh – cated climate change,
        There are ‘many changes in the carbon cycle that are far
        from limited ter human emissions and ocean solubility,’
        human omissions could be a factor. BTW, generalissimo,
        was thinkin’ of sendin’ out a search party. Thought yer were
        mebbe caught up in the barricades at Byron Bay. )
        B C

      • The absurd sockpuppet clown Chief Hydrologist is back:

        “The half missing of course is the difference between emissions and accumulation in the atmosphere.”

        That’s not the half that skeptics are talking about. Skeptics such as Segalstad want to see the residence time down to around a 6 year half-life, which is a non-sequestering carbon-cycle period. However, when they make this assumption, and they wrongly remove carbon out of the environment that quickly, they then assert that only half of the excess carbon is accounted for and the rest is likely natural.

        But of course, and as it it turns out, the skeptics don’t understand how diffusion works and they mistakenly believe CO2 sequestering follows first-order rate laws and thus has that fast damped response.

        There are dozens of compartments in the carbon cycle of course and many unknowns to greater than 20% error in the estimates.

        A diffusional solution admits an infinite number of compartments, and a stochastic distribution of diffusivities models the variability of the rates. This approach works for many physics problems.

        The bottom-line belief that skeptics hold in a small 6 year number is that it means that we can hold off carbon emissions in case global warming is a real bear. In that situation society would only have to wait about 6 years for the CO2 growth to subside.

        In reality, diffusional responses have a fat-tail and that means the excess CO2 has a huge inertia and we won’t be able to increase the uptake rate simply by cutting emissions. The sequestering will take its time, and the world will continue warming. It is actually a fantastic bit of detective work that climate scientists have been involved in.

        Yet because Chief never learned any of that in school, he has to rant about the unfairness of it all. And of course the Chief and his fellow Aussies will spend the rest of their day flooding the comments with gibberish while us logical types get some sleep. The lack of immediate responses will prove to themselves that they are right. Yawn.

      • This fellow, this somnolent logical type, dares to hold the master race up to ridicule? He has called us fearful squelchers of free speech, now he calls us gibberers?

        Actually, he’s got a point. We do tend to gibber, especially as the weekend wears on. I have, in fact, indulged in every kind of gibbering foolishness in the course of my life – barring one! I have never aspired to model the world’s climate. If I ever get to that level of educated dopiness…shoot me, Aussies! It will be a mercy.

      • Can’t help it. I automatically exclude Aussies from the conversation because of their larrikin habit of hoaxing and pulling pranks as a means of mocking any kind of authority, scientific or otherwise. If that is not the case for you, its not my problem that several of your countryman have let you down.

      • Well, gibber me giblets. Arrrggghhhahaha.
        =============

      • Generalissimo Skippy

        I can of course neither confirm or deny the identity of Generalissimo Skippy. It is a secret of the climate war.

        Webby’s insults gibber on but there is very little rational science involved.
        The turnover of CO2 in the atmosphere is obvious and the result of very large natural flux. The unrelated question as ever is how much of the increase in CO2 in the atmosphere is natural and what will be the future dynamics from very large scale and changeable processes.

        It is not a question that can be answered – especially by the likes of webby. Who is someone who eschews complexity and creates out of whole cloth a self beguiling simplicity. Webby simplifies – and I noted somewhere recently about ‘getting the math right’ and ‘doing the statistical physics’. The problem is that the math is basic – curve fitting – and the statistical physics for climate are not available. So what is it that webby does? The curve fitting is achieved by inventing a function for a physically unrealistic concept. There is much more than diffusion and solubility involved.

        Again, the question is what governs the apparent sequestration of half the volume of anthropogenic CO2 emisions and can that change? I am innately suspicious of simple answers to complex problems – so put that in the known unknowns category.

      • Generalissimo Skippy

        Oh – and if we are looking at numerical solutions of diffusion one might use finite element methods. It takes a slice at a time – which again is physically unrealistic as the slices in nature do not stay as still as the atoms in a heat sink. It is not the same as a multi-compartment model at all.

        For carbon – the compartmens are shown here as carbon stores and the flux between stores as arrows. Each of the stores in this simpified diagram has multiple and hugely complex processes going on internally.

        Webby has 2 compartments in his wholly confabulated diffusion function. Ocean and atmosphere – another slice of ocean doesn’t equate to multiple compartments.

      • The troll sockpuppet chief applies verbiage whereas I apply direct stochastic analysis.

        Whatever happened to the Aussie Murry Salby with his great paper supposedly debunking the role of anthropogenic CO2?

        I am sure he got cold feet.

        Sending the Chief into a jealous rage is par for the course. He hates to see anyone simplify the physics. It is essentially an anti-science POV he holds.

      • Generalissimo Skippy

        Odd projections of jealous rage. How can my measured tone and closely argued points be mistaken for rage?

        Albert Einstein – “Things should be as simple as possible, but no simpler.”

        There is a pactical limit to Procrustean simplification that webby is unaware of. It is truly bizarre that he imagines that curve fitting using confabulary functions could be mistaken for science.

        con·fab·u·late (kn-fby-lt)
        intr.v. con·fab·u·lat·ed, con·fab·u·lat·ing, con·fab·u·lates
        1. To talk casually; chat.
        2. Psychology To fill in gaps in one’s memory with fabrications that one believes to be facts.

        He has things tha he believes to be facts about the far future in such a comlex system. He believes he alone has methods of viable statistical climatics that gos well what anyone else has been able to achieve. So obviously definition 2 applies.

      • The Chief gets upset that we can use first-order physics to explain stuff. Notice that he did not let out a peep against the Direct Statistical Simulation post. As they showed in their research, there is always room for simplification.

      • Generalissimo Skippy

        I suspect that he means from first principles rather than first order physics. Either way it is simply not true that there is a viable mechanical statistics of climate. It is simply not the case anyone has come close – and confabulated curve fitting isn’t on the same planet.

        A statisitics of turbulent flow might solve 2 problems of climate models. The problem of processes occuring at scales far less than the grids on which solutions are calculated and the problem of nonlinear divergence of the Navier-Stokes equations over time.

        How close might we then be to replicating the physics of the system at a far flung point in the future – when if ever the method is perfected – is a matter for future contemplation.

      • Of course we can get close to the current climate by invoking nothing other than statistical mechanics. The Stefan-Boltzmann Law is simply the statistical mechanics of black-body radiation. To first-order, we get to close to the current average temperature by applying S-B. Other first-order perturbations to the black-body distribution make up most of the remaining 10% difference.

        Unfortunately, I have come to realize that the Chief Proctologist can’t follow this kind of reasoning, likely stemming from his constant struggle to understand something as simple as dimensional analysis.

      • Generalissimo Skippy

        ‘As a result, the Earth’s actual average surface temperature is about 288 K (15 °C), which is higher than the 255 K effective temperature, and even higher than the 279 K temperature that a black body would have.’ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stefan–Boltzmann_law#Temperature_of_the_Earth

        279 K is the S-B temperature for a black body – 255 K is the temperature for a 30% reflective (grey) body such as the earth currently – 288 K seems closer to the actual average.

        Albedo changes constantly – which seems a difficult concept for some. So much so that they imagine that the earth is a black body.

      • Isn’t it funny how predictably the Chief will twist the information that comes his way?

        I said: “Of course we can get close to the current climate by invoking nothing other than statistical mechanics. The Stefan-Boltzmann Law is simply the statistical mechanics of black-body radiation. To first-order, we get to close to the current average temperature by applying S-B. Other first-order perturbations to the black-body distribution make up most of the remaining 10% difference.

        While Procto Chief says

        “Generalissimo Skippy | March 11, 2013 at 10:11 pm |

        279 K is the S-B temperature for a black body – 255 K is the temperature for a 30% reflective (grey) body such as the earth currently – 288 K seems closer to the actual average.”

        This is the small percentage difference that I am talking about, which is essentially statistical mechanical perturbations to the S-B distribution involving notches to infrared absorption due to CO2 and other GHG’s such as water vapor. This has to occur to balance the steady radiative energy flows of the earth. Any transient changes are accommodated by thermal statistical properties of the bodies, such as heat capacity.

        Our steady-state average climate is just about all due to considerations of the statistical mechanics of large numbers of photons interacting with the extensive properties of the constituents (atmosphieric, land, and aquatic) of the earth.

        The Chief of course has to twist this explanation completely beyond recognition so that he can attain the grade of F he is seeking in the earth sciences course that he can never seem to pass.

  13. Not taking the AMO into account in predictions of future warming under various forcing scenarios may run the risk of overestimating the warming for the next two to three decades, when the AMO is likely in its down phase

    Translation:

    IPCC’s “0.2 deg C/decade warming for the next two decades” is wrong.

  14. The trends that have to be explained are the long term trends in OHT. Until these are explained any attributions of long term trends are questionable.

    http://www.nature.com/ncomms/journal/v3/n6/fig_tab/ncomms1901_F5.html

  15. The mainstream media’s definition of a very smart person: a secular socialist who thinks Christians and Jews are all idiots who need to be told how to think and what to do by public school teachers and Leftist politicians that believe they can control the Earth’s climate by rewriting the Constitution.

    • Wagathon, Too hard to rewrite the Constitution. Easy to ignore it and count on surpreme court to refrain from acting. Also impossible to measure impacts of controls to be initiated. If one tried small carbon control first and tested the result before any big changes one could think the effort is supported by logic. reduce Mercury, NOx and SOx, coal slag ponds and stream pollution from mine wastes. Then plant trees and tall grass praries and see how the low hanging fruit solutions work.

      Imagine the smog coontols in Bejing being the first essential step and let the CAGW people work on them. Nothing in the US can have any impact until convince China and India to control the massive carbon emissions. China already exceeds US and is on a trajectory to double us. They build one 500 MW coal plant a week while we have not started one in 20 years.

      But the result of controls in the US will be major corporate restrictions on free enterprise. Free enterprise keeps popping up no matter how hard the statists push to demonize fossil fuels. Control of earth’s climate by passing laws is the preferred warmists solution and giving public funds to favored donars like corporate bundler Solyndra.

      • ” … and count on surpreme court to refrain from acting”

        Nah, too risky to rely on. Just stack it

  16. Matthew R Marler

    Time-varying climate sensitivity

    The title itself is a breath of fresh air. And thank you Prof. Curry for linking to the whole paper.

    and regional feedbacks

    Another improvement over the global balance approach.

    To me, this looks like a very good step forward.

  17. Matthew R Marler

    The Tung and Zhou is the latest in a long line of multivariate time series modeling exercises, at least it is the latest presented here. The authors have been careful and thorough, but it is all post-hoc model fitting. Thus, though the authors could be correct, the test, as with all other models, will come as its updated (aerosol estimates, etc updated) model forecasts are compared to future data. It is intriguing that they do not identify the “anthropogenic” effect exclusively with CO2.

  18. How concerned should we be about the unabashed government funding of AGW pseudoscience and agencies like the EPA acting on it? This is not something that the market takes care of: this is political and social science not science and economics. Should we be concerned about those in academia who are taking our money as they cast their votes against the survival of Americanism and capitalism? And, what do their votes portend for Western civilization and the future of humanity? We now see public education in its current state of development is being used for the purposes of state propaganda and bringing about a compliant disarmed public that is kept in a perpetual state of fear, and dependency on government hand-outs, in times of both war and peace.

  19. Recently, there have been papers using observations to calculate climate sensitivity and it comes out on the low side. Naturally, it’s just my conspriatorial thinking, but why is it that a paper like this come out just after these others? So, no, we can’t use observation to determine climate sensitivity. Talk about moving the goal posts ;)

    • jim2

      The first paper essentially tells us what you’ve written (so it is really inconclusive regarding 2xCO2 ECS).

      But the other two seem to add evidence in support of the latest observation-based 2xCO2 ECS estimates of around half of the previous model-based predictions cited by IPCC in AR4, but generally in line with the previous observation-based estimate (Forster et al. 2006).

      This appears to be emerging as the new “consensus” – although it is not clear whether or not IPCC has “gotten the word” yet.

      Max

      • “But the other two seem to add evidence in support of the latest observation-based 2xCO2 ECS estimates of around half of the previous model-based predictions cited by IPCC in AR4″

        The second paper doesn’t say anything about ECS because it doesn’t factor in equilibrium. It essentially attributes 90% of 20th century warming to man for exmaple.

    • David Springer

      The OP discusses three papers. You are only commenting on the first like you didn’t read the whole article. Moreover it’s only Paul Vaughn’s interpretation of the first not the paper itself that suggests “It’s worse than we thought”. I can’t find any support in the paper for his interpretation of increasing sensitivity with increasing temperature. In fact observation suggest just the opposite with more warming over continental interiors at high latitudes in the coldest months. I’m not at all sure the paper itself justifies the suggestion that global average sensitivity is not amenable to calculation from observation. Maybe not to the hundredths of degrees but when environmental conditions are crudely constrained to glacial or interglacial, and we’re talking about marginal increases in CO2 not quadruplings or more then I think it may be as you suggest – it’s a biased reaction to the recent spate of lowered sensitivity estimates derived from observation. Global warming science is nourished by the proverbial FUD (Fear Uncertainty and Dread) so in the face of mother nature showing us a certain benign level of sensitivity they must somehow impeach it or risk losing hard won prestige and power in the world.

  20. David Springer

    Paul Vaughn’s analysis appears to be a knee jerk “it’s worse than we thought” where it talks about sensitivity increasing with temperature. I’ve always held the climate sensitivity isn’t a constant but found little agreement among warmists with the exception of Pekka Pirila who had a moment of clarity. However Vaughn’s interpretation of the paper, not sure how he got it, if true creates a runaway effect which is inevitable if temperature increase causes sensitivity increase. There’s little evidence of any positive feedback that raises temperature aside from ice melt and most of the ice was melted at the beginning of the Holocene.

    The second paper pretty much echoes what I’ve been saying for years except I think it still misses a long term smaller linear increase in temperature that’s been ongoing since the end of the LIA that is solar-magnetic in origin a la Svensmark. I think anthropogenic contribution is less than the 0.7-08C/decade by about half. Because CO2 warming on the surface is limited by a smaller environmental lapse rate. A higher layer of the atmosphere experiences the warming in proportion to how much water is available at the surface to evaporate and carry the heat insensibly to a higher atmospheric layer where there’s less restriction for radiative emission to space.

    The third paper saying upper end of climate model temperature projections is like “No schit, Scherlock?” and should thinking people everywhere to shudder at the prospect that scientific papers stating the obvious should be published. That’s akin to getting a patent issued for using water to put out a fire.

    • David,
      I assume you are referring to my article rather than one by Paul Vaughn?

      “Effective Climate Sensitivity” is not the same as climate sensitivity. It is a mathematical construct generally attributed to Murphy in the early 90′s. Net flux is plotted against temperature for a constant forcing scenario. The Effective Climate Sensitivity represents the intercept on the temperature axis ( net flux = zero) of a line drawn from the initial forcing value through a temperature value in the dataset. If the dataset is a straight line, then the Effective Climate Sensitivity doesn’t change. If the dataset is curvilinear, then it does change.
      To say that the Effective Climate Sensitivity increases with time and temperature is exactly equivalent to saying that a plot of net flux vs temperature for a constant forcing scenario exhibits curvilinear behaviour with a gradually shallowing of the gradient of net flux with respect to temperature. .
      In practice nearly all of the AOGCMs do exhibit this curvilinear behaviour. The Armour paper offers an explanation for why this behaviour exists (in the models).

  21. I find the Armour et al paper to be an important insight. For example the ice ages and interglacials are caused by regional changes in insolation and albedo. However, I think it calls into question the use of climate models for virtually anything of importance since they are poor at predicting regional effects.

  22. There are many lines of converging evidence, from systemic GCM errors to Observationally constrained estimates, that place ECS well below AR4 at 3. Which was itself an admitted high side estimate. See me previous guest posting.
    If the data now look like about 1.5, then the CAGW debate needs to be shifting to the so what’s. Perhaps there are some, still. Perhaps not.perhaps adaption becomes better than precautionary mitigation.
    Beyond the science, remember this politicized debate is still about real policies than can have real consequences.

  23. Armour et al.:

    In observational studies, the time-variation of eff impedes our ability to place constraints on the long-term evolution of global climate. Our results, and most others we are aware of (Williams et al. 2008; Winton et al. 2010), show Teff < T2, which raises the possibility that observed estimates of climate sensitivity from the modern climate state might also represent an underestimate of the true equilibrium value.

    • I love the word “might.” The far more important point I think is about the models. The problem is nonlinear feedbacks like albedo. However, I would assume that as albedo feedbacks recede as ice melts, the temperature response would be less and not more. What are the nonlinear feedbacks that would increase the response?

      • Misthreaded below:

        Observed estimates of climate sensitivity from the modern climate state are depressed by SST data. Since the sensitivity that matters uppermost to us landlubbers is that sensible at the land surface there is no comfort in Armour et al. See their Fig 6 (a). And BEST.

      • non linear feedbacks can be negative.We can see this in the SO with the southwards drift of the storm-tracks and increased westerly winds (the so called ring collar) where increased seapspray provides cloud nuclei and a negative feedback greater then the GW forcing. eg

        http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1029/2009GL041320/abstract

      • David Springer

        There’s a large difference in sensitivity in going from ice at 32F to water at 32F. Another feedback from that phase transition is the surface area of the ocean increases and decreases. Landlocked ice melt in sub-polar or polar regions doesn’t have to expose lower albedo rocks. The additional water entering the ocean covers up rocks in temperate and warmer zones with even lower albedo ocean. Change in ocean surface area is important for global heat budget.

      • David Springer

        BBD | March 10, 2013 at 6:50 pm |

        “Observed estimates of climate sensitivity from the modern climate state are depressed by SST data.”

        Yes and no. Ocean temperature below the mixed layer is 3 degrees C more or less constant everywhere. The volume below the mixed layer is 90% of the total basin volume.

        The mixed layer warms or cools faster than the bulk of the ocean below it. So if mixed layer temperature is above 3C and warming then it warms fast and cools slowly as it mixes down making short term sensitivity higher than equilibrium. The opposite doesn’t happen because once the mixed layer goes below 3C it sinks and that’s what drives the oceanic conveyor belt for the most part.

        So you basically have it backwards. Stratification in the ocean makes instant sensitivity higher than equilibrium sensitivity.

  24. And by the way, that calls into question a lot of the IPCC projections too, based as they are on the GCMs. I do recommend the blackboard thread on Armour. It’s an interesting read.

  25. Pedants’ corner.
    JC wrote “A light bulb went off in my head”. That would make things darker.

  26. Observed estimates of climate sensitivity from the modern climate state are depressed by SST data. Since the sensitivity that matters uppermost to us landlubbers is that sensible at the land surface there is no comfort in Armour et al. See their Fig 6 (a). And BEST.

    • Yea, but so what. That is true in all climate states. Why is it a bigger effect as we warm? The oceans will warm as climate warms and will delay the response. Try to avoid name calling since Judith is pretty good at moderating your diatribes.

      In any case, the Blackboard thread is very good on this and addresses the issues. Basically, see the update at the end and Nic Lewis’ observations. Why don’t you try to make your point over there?

      • Yea, but so what. That is true in all climate states. Why is it a bigger effect as we warm?

        :-)

        Something to do with the heat capacity of land vs water perhaps?

      • Why do *you* think land warms faster than the ocean?

        ;-)

      • I don’t think the relationship of specific heats changes much with small temperature changes. In any case, what Armour are talking about is related to polar amplification and regional response not to SST and observational estimates of ECS. So, I ask again, what is your point and why does it have anything to do with nonlinearity in the climate system.

        A far more important point is that if their observations are true, it seems to call into question GCM’s and their accuracy since they are rather bad at regional climate which Armour point out is critical to all predictions.
        the issues are discussed at the Blackboard.

      • I don’t think the relationship of specific heats changes much with small temperature changes.

        .

        But it does. See Armour fig 6 (a) and data.

      • David, do you reject an ECS of ~2.5C – ~3C to 2 x CO2?

        If so, please provide your references.

      • BBD, You are being extremely disingenuous, rather par for the course for you. I provided this data to you on another blog. Sort term memory acting up?

        Myles Allen is now talking about 2.0C for ECS. Nic Lewis’ estimate has been pretty thoroughly vetted at Real Climate and James Annan’s blog. Didn’t see any real objections, but some quibbling about aerosols that seemed inconclusive to me. Annan himself has a new paper with a last glacial maximum linear sensitivity of 1.7, in almost exact agreement with Lewis’. Now Annan says the CO2 sensitivity must be higher because of “nonlinear effects.” But I’ve seen no detail that would make that claim believable. Schmidt now says various versions of the GISS model have an ECS of 2.4-2.8. There are lots of estimates now that are trending lower. Most people can see that. By the way, BBD, why don’t you just say 3.0 instead of saying 2.5-3.0. Was the IPCC wrong about the central value?

        But the point of the Armour paper is that these numbers may not be that meaningful. The distribution of temperature change and regional feedbacks (which climate models fail to model well) are more important and that’s certainly true for us and ecosystems. You will note Armour shows about 1C for the tropical oceans and 3 C for land, dominated I suspect by high latitude Northern hemisphere land. That’s not nearly as scary as a uniform 3C change.

        So, lets not focus too much on these numbers. It seems to me that Armour, if its not circular by using climate models which do poorly exactly the effects they conclude are critical, tells us that we need much better understanding of regional feedbacks. I am quite skeptical that global circulation models will help much here. We should shift our research investment priorities.

      • BBD, You are being extremely disingenuous, rather par for the course for you. I provided this data to you on another blog. Sort term memory acting up?

        And I explained to you what was wrong with it and why. Short term memory acting up?

        People like you do not get to throw around accusations of disingenuity.

        The Armour paper doesn’t say what you think it does. It says this:

        In observational studies, the time-variation of eff impedes our ability to place constraints on the long-term evolution of global climate. Our results, and most others we are aware of (Williams et al. 2008; Winton et al. 2010), show Teff < T2, which raises the possibility that observed estimates of climate sensitivity from the modern climate state might also represent an underestimate of the true equilibrium value.

        That’s why Lewis’s stuff is borked. Pay attention and you might learn something.

      • Myles Allen is now talking about 2.0C for ECS.

        Is he? Where? Link please.

      • Myles Allen heself, @ 1:25 PM, ’13, on the Bish’s 3/9/13 Lindzen thread.

        It would be useful for you, BBD, to make a tour of the whole thread of such skepticism.
        ===========

      • Observational estimates of ECS are aproaching zero slowly…

      • Edim, I expect we’ll be able to argue about it until the carbon cycle swallows our meager manly offering.
        ==========================

      • Thanks Kim

        It turns out that you and DY have misrepresented Allen quite seriously. Here’s what he actually wrote at BH:

        On the science side, I’m happy to accept that studies comparing simple models with observations of the recent record, of which several have been published recently, suggest a climate sensitivity in the region of 2 degrees (although this isn’t the only line of evidence). But even a two degree sensitivity, if we do decide to burn all available fossil carbon, which would take concentrations well over 1000ppm, would be more than enough for 4+ degrees of warming. The real question, therefore, is whether 4+ degrees is OK. That’s what we need to be discussing, and unfortunately, because once again it was side-tracked onto irrelevancies, the debate didn’t go there.

        To claim that MA *endorses* an ECS estimate of 2C is simply dishonest. Both of you please stop it. I have emailed MA drawing this to his attention.

      • It appears to me Myles Allen is saying observational estimates of 2C are reasonable.

        That is not the same thing as him concluding ECS is around 2C.

      • Transient and equilibrium sensitivities are dropping like flies, and lo, we find that climate sensitivity varies, too.
        ==========================

      • BBD, this is friendly advice, because I actually like you. Read the whole Lindzen column at the Bish’s and the many ensuing comments. I believe Myles Allen does have a ‘New Perspective on Climate Sensitivity’. I take your paragraph from him quoted above. He makes his stand at 4 degrees C, assured that that will surely cause catastrophe, or at least no easing of concern.

        Well, I’m more with Max, thinking that we’ll only get around 2 degrees C from Anthro CO2, and it isn’t going to be enough to effectively buffer us from the coming glaciation.

        Do you see the icy cliff next to which Myles makes his stand?
        ======================

      • Steven Mosher

        “That’s why Lewis’s stuff is borked. Pay attention and you might learn something.”

        I suppose then you throw out a bunch of studies then.
        One can’t simply remark in 2013 that data and methods relied on in Ar4 are borked because the answer changes. Live by the sword, the saying goes.
        So, if a Lewis type approach is borked, then folks insistence that AR4 was right needs some adjustment.

      • JCH, with the time required to reach an “Equilibrium Climate Sensitivity” on the order of 300 to 400 years per degree C, the point is that there is a little bit of time available to pursue various options. That puts CAGW in the same basket with Asteroid strikes and the machines taking over.

        Since the “New Perspective” is both regional and timing,

        http://redneckphysics.blogspot.com/2013/03/on-relative-importance-of-meridional.html

        There is even a link to data.

      • Meanwhile, in the real world, the most likely value for ECS remains in the range ~2.5C – ~3C.

        Emissions controls are necessary to avoid significant warming (especially land surface) later this century and beyond.

        CO2 won’t magically *stop* at 550ppmv. We have to *do something* to make that happen. And we’re *still* going to be stuck with ~2.5C or more warming.

        And few enough people these days think we’ll stabilise at 550ppmv. So the usual figure of about 3C warming remains by far the most plausible estimate.

        Just because you lot don’t like it doesn’t mean it’s going to go away.

      • You can lead a hoarse to sooth.
        ================

      • …And as usual when confronted with the unwelcome realities of CC, kim retreats into nonsense…
        ;-)

      • blueice2hotsea

        bbd – To claim that MA *endorses* an ECS estimate of 2C is simply dishonest.

        No. The claim is simply incorrect. BTW, is it honest to attribute “endorses” to kim & DY?

        JCH – It appears to me Myles Allen is saying observational estimates of 2C are reasonable.

        Yes. Or it’s an acknowledgment that 2C papers exist. I can’t tell.

      • David Springer

        BBD | March 10, 2013 at 7:43 pm |

        “Why do *you* think land warms faster than the ocean?”

        The correct answer is for the same reason that the ocean mixed layer warms faster than the abyss.

        The ocean abyss is 3C. It has many times the heat capacity of land or ocean mixed layer. In long term equilibrium situations it will pull colder surface temperatures upward to 3C and warmer temperatures down to 3C. Given the earth’s average surface temperature is in the neighborhood of 14C the abyss causes a lower long term equilibrium temperature.

      • I hesitate to jump in here as BBD is up to his usual taking quotations out of context, saying he has refuted something when he has said nothing about it except to parrot IPCC doctrine, and telling people what they are and are not permitted to say. Kind of a dictatorial sort, as such people often are.

        1. The big picture here is that estimates of sensitivity using similar methodology have been coming down in some cases dramatically. Nic Lewis’s is a rework of an earlier paper that under IPCC uniform prior recalculation was much higher than Nic’s.

        2. Myles Allen is as I said “talking about 2C sensitivity.” BBD, pay attention to my actual words, not what you say I said. It is right there on Bishop Hill. I don’t know what he thinks the most likely number is, but he like the rest of us doesn’t know it with much precision anyway.

        3. What is it with this magic 550ppm number you keep pulling out of your hindquarters? You have no way of knowing if we will get there or whether its important. What is a “safe” temperature change? We don’t know and Armour if anything makes an important point. The distribution of temperature change is what counts, not some simple number such as 4C. If in fact the warming is most strong at high lattitudes in the northern hemisphere and relatively mild for the tropical oceans, it will be much quite palitible.

        4. I concede that Armour implies that long term ECS may be underestimated by observationally constrained estimates. But probably not LGM estimates as these are based on large changes in forcing and temperature. But I do wonder whether Armour is circular. They find that a climate model exhibits a behaviour that they find impacts ECS, but the effect is critically dependent on regional climate predictions, at which the models are conceded to be poor. In any case, there is more work to be done here before we can conclude much. Also, it looks like Nic Lewis has a good point about the assumptions by Armour being contradictory to the model results for regional feedbacks.

        So, BBD, I suggest you go to the Blackboard or respond directly to Nic Lewis here or at Real Climate if you really want to engage the issue. My best wishes to you in dealing with your anger and obsession with the purity of your prescious bodily fluids.

    • Steven Mosher

      the sensitivity that matter most to landlubbers depends on there proximity to water.

      • Steven Mosher, speaking of proximity to water, how’s that coming?

      • Steven Mosher

        Im presently bogged down in.

        A. helping various researchers get the data they want. Basically, folks want the ability to easily pull data from gridded and station data with
        geographical “joins” or “filters”. Looks like I need to build infrastructure for a serve yourself download/subsetting functionality. big job done right.
        B) working on extremes with some rather unique data sources. I get to do body counts which is always pleasant.
        C) 6 or so UHI projects all in partial states of completion.

        the distance from water stuff is a part of C.

    • approaching. Nature rules.

    • blueice2hotsea

      bbd – Observed estimates of climate sensitivity from the modern climate state are depressed by SST data.

      Yet, Earth is not 100% land. The great ocean greenhouse fluid (tm DS) steadies the system. If earth did not have an ocean, then yes, ECS would be higher.

  27. Germany Cricket

    I find myself chirping faster therefore warming.

  28. Germany Cricket

    Vaughn’s interpretation of the first paper seems to imply yet another positive feedback (increasing temperature increases sensitivity) which would result in a runaway greenhouse if true. Yet another knee-jerk “it’s worse than we thought”. The paper itself appears more a reaction to the recent spate of lowered sensitivity estimates based on observation making it through pal review by impeaching all attempts to base sensitivity estimates on observations which of course places models back where they belong with the ability to trump reality. Other than that, I’ve always held the sensitivity is not a constant. But it’s close enough to enough to a constant on a global average basis sans major climate shifts like glacial/interglacial to estimate it from observations. In other words paper #1 is a copout.

    Paper #2 echoes what I’ve been saying for going on ten years although I think 0.7C/decade anthropogenic still overestimates it by a factor of two. That’s probably true for higher latitudes over continental interiors but elsewhere it’s too high. It acknowledges AMDO but that isn’t the only natural variation that inflates AGW. There’s still the matter of lapse rate feedback observations being larger than expected through modelling. That lapse rate feedback is what I’ve been on about for over a year saying that CO2 warming is greatly retarded wherever there is ample surface water to drive evaporation and convection. In that case the warming that would otherwise have occured at the surface instead occurs in a higher level of the atmosphere where there is far less restriction to radiative cooling.

    The third paper just states the obvious (high end of global warming projections via models is too high) and one might wonder why the obvious needs peer review and publication. What’s next a peer reviewed paper stating the wind is blowing when trees are swaying?

    -David Springer

  29. “While the global climate feedback is often assumed to be constant, its value—diagnosed from global climate models—shows substantial time-variation under transient warming.”

    During the diornal cycle, clouds provide both negative and positive feedback. There is no reason to suppose the average should be constant over longer periods which the authors expose as a property of many climate models. The IPCC has often said it does not understand clouds, so how can it support climate models that depend on clouds for their accuracy?

    I believe it is risky io include in models effects that cannot be modelled. Clouds are an example but suspected cyclic events, like the AMO or the SOI shoud not so long as they are not understood. The pupose of climate models is to predict climate, but not to solve other mysteries.The SOI (Nino) is certainly important, but should remain outside until it can be modelled and I suspect the sane should apply to the AMO. On the other hand the taxpayer funded IPCC should avoid wild goose chases after cycles that have no particular relevance to their task.

  30. Dr. Curry, shouldn’t it be Paul K not Paul Vaughan?

  31. A belated Part 2. It doesn’t take account of anyone else’s comments. I would add to my first comment that while the authors push some blue-sky proposals for rural prosperity, they don’t mention the biggest boost to it in recent deacdes, GM seeds.

    If there are health gains “from reducing black carbon emissions and dealing with low-level ozone” and potential rural prosperity from “increasing the soil’s carbon content,” then they should be pursued in their own right. Talk of “new, local industries that will spring up making plastics and other organic chemicals out of biomass rather than oil,” however, is just pie-in-the sky speculation without serious investigation of the prospects for such projects. It takes entrepreneurs and financiers to develop untested new ventures, and they will do so only if they are convinced that risk-related returns exceed those in alternative activities.

    The next points are total nonsense: “Work to convince people that the global economy will never run properly again unless the benefits of using all scarce resources are fairly shared.” The global economy has never operated on this basis, it’s been driven by people taken risks from which they hope that they and their families will benefit. There is evidence that humans have an innate tendency to share with closely-related or mutually-supportive small groups (cf, for example, Natalie & Joseph Henrich, “Why Humans Cooperate, OUP 2007) but not to support “fair sharing of all resources globally” – whatever that means. Who determines what is fair? Similarly with ”Support the setting up of a Global Climate Trust so that the scarcity rent from fossil fuel use gets properly allocated.” Which resource owners are likely to subscribe to that? Have you canvassed it in Beijing or Zimbabwe?

    Personally, I think that most humans can be “better than they are,” in the sense that they can overcome self-centred craving and aversion and develop loving-kindness and compassion for other beings – but this depends on properly-directed individual effort, you can’t magic it into existence with a “Global Climate Trust” for which there is no basis in observed behaviour of the peoples of the world and their national rulers.

    “Leaving the effects of climate change aside, the main danger that humanity faces is that it will not invest enough of the fossil energy it can extract with a reasonable net-energy gain into making the transition to renewable energy sources.” Including climate change, the main dangers faced by humanity are poverty, lack of clean water, sanitation, health services and education, being subject to tyrannical kleptomaniacs and having no freedom of expression. These are real, here-and-now problems, many of which would be exacerbated by attempts to reduce fossil fuel emissions. Left to itself, humans will make individual decisions which lead to the best use of existing energy sources and the development of viable new ones. That is the beauty of markets, I don’t understand how the authors, or anyone, can think that they can out-perform them. The evidence is against this, many attempts to regulate or direct behaviour – cf the USSR and its satellites – have been disastrous. In its 1991 World Development Report, the World Bank cautioned that “the countless cases of unsuccessful intervention suggest the need for caution. To justify intervention it is not enough to know that the market is failing; it is also necessary to be confident that the government can do better.” There is vast evidence that governments and others pursuing central direction lead to adverse outcomes compared to well-designed markets.

    The authors advocate that we “move on to the positive position that no costs, and no self-denial are involved. Instead, rationing energy use in order to share out its benefits is essential for the proper working of the economic system and will create millions of jobs and commercial opportunities now.” There is not a shred of evidence to support the viability or merit of such an approach, and plenty to refute Stern’s assessment of costs and benefits – cf my post at http://judithcurry.com/?s=The+costs+of+tackling+or+not+tackling+any+anthropogenic+global+warming .

    As for Clive Hamilton, he is a failed economist and alleged ethicist with a distorted view of the world driven by his own complexes. By all means, ignore anything he says, it has no merit.

    The authors contend that “there are strong grounds for believing that the climate crisis can be overcome and that many people’s lives, particularly in the poorer countries, could be materially better than they are now because of the work the production of biofuels and biochemicals to replace their fossil equivalents should bring, coupled with the additional fertility that biochar should create. Since the alternative is industrial and societal decline and, after increasing unrest, an eventual collapse, there’s every reason to think the system will incline the right way.” I can’t imagine any basis for any of these propositions, they are not part of the world as I understand it. I haven’t yet read the paper to ascertain what basis is proffered for such views. But I can definitely disagree with the statements that “the twin myths that there’s plenty of energy and that economic growth can continue must be exposed. If climate campaigners can get that message over, their battle would be as good as won.” The main driver of growth is an inexhaustible asset – the innovativeness, entrepremeurialism and adaptability of humans. These will not be diminished by climate changes, fuel shortages or any other changes in a world in which constant change is the norm.

  32. Sorry, I posted on the wrong thread. Big oops.

  33. Is it immoderate to suggest that the real unifying theory is government-funded prognosticators of pglobal warming doom will become even more sensitive to UHI-corrupted data? UHIs are not going to go away. And, the Left will never admit they’ve been wrong, had or corrupted or take responsibility for the damage to society nor is anyone fearful of being held accountable.

  34. “A light bulb went off in my head”

    I’ve never heard of this before. When you get an idea, a light bulb goes on. What happens when a light bulb goes off? You mean you lost an idea you had?

  35. Over the years many deluded societies have fallen prey to bubbles, manias, derangments and hoaxes–e.g., long ago there was the Tulip mania, the Gin bubble and the Piltdown Man hoax. Not long ago, there was the dot-com bubble, Bush derangment, the housing bubble and gold mania. Now we have the free lunch-debt bubble, the global warming hoax, disruptive climate change mania, the Apple bubble and the liberal Utopian alternative energy delusion.

    • Yup, ca change, yup, c’est la meme chose.
      ===

      • CHEERS! Common sense says, this too will pass.

      • I thought that was the Bible. Oh, well, what foolishness.
        =============

      • hI thought it was an example of Sufi wisdom like that of Mulla Nasrudin–e.g., The mullah was earning his living by running a ferry across a lake. He was taking a pompous scholar to the other side. When asked if he had read Plato’s Republic, the Mullah replied, “Sir, I am a simple boatman. What would I do with Plato?” The scholar replied, “In that case half of your life’s been wasted.” The Mullah kept quite for a while and then said, “Sir, do you know how to swim.” “Of course not,” replied the professor, “I am a scholar. What would I do with swimming.” The Mullah replied, “In that case, all of your life’s been wasted. We’re sinking.”

  36. Judy: you are getting lost in a morass of climate modeling papers and need a reality check. Extricate yourself. There are some interesting facts in these papers but they all purport to have models that explain various aspects of climate variation. Unfortunately none of them are valid because imbedded in these complex models is the basic fallacy of greenhouse warming. Climate does vary and they bring up some interesting points about it but they are very far from explaining it. None of these guys have heard of Ferenc Miskolczi or they pretend that they have not heard of him. Let me remind you that his work is not just theory any more which numerous opponents have vilified but is now experimentally verified. I have put out numerous comments on it in various blogs and will put some recent ones together for you when I get to it. Basically, it turns out that the vaunted greenhouse effect simply does not exist and anthropogenic global warming is a myth. This does not mean that carbon dioxide is not absorbing infrared radiation. It does mean that water vapor nullifies it by negative feedback, the opposite of what you were taught about it. This of course requires us to find independent reasons for observed changes in climate, and there are plenty of mysteries left for us to solve. And there are also crooked people who change global temperature curves to show more warming. I am particularly puzzled by the way oceanic phenomena can suddenly change global temperature. There are two periods when this caused a global temperature rise. One was in 1976. It was then called the Great Pacific Climate Shift but later it was associated with the phase shift of PDO from cool to warm temperatures. By 1979/80 this climate shift was over but global mean temperature did not go down again and remained constant until 1997. To me PDO is still poorly defined but apparently taken seriously by many people. Another such step warming was started by the super El Nino of 1998. In four years it raised global temperature by a third of a degree and stopped. And again, that new, raised temperature level became permanent. The unusual warmth that makes twenty-first century a record-breaker is due to this fact, not to any greenhouse effect as Hansen keeps harping. We do know the source of the warmth in this case – the huge amount of warm water the super El Nino carried across the ocean. But we have no idea what maintains it after twelve years have passed since the end of the event. Super El Ninos like that are rare and this one one was the only one in the twentieth century. The twenty-first century high, a seven year high temperture platform it created, was followed by a resumption of the ENSO oscillations that had been interrupted. To the best of my knowledge the global mean of this oscillation is lined up with the twenty-first century high. Tung and Zhou speak of a multidecadal oscillation extending back into the preindustrial era. No way can any of those computer simulations explain that. The authors suspect that it might be related to the variability of the thermohaline circulation. This, in my opinion, is worth following up because I too have been speculating about whether it could sustain an oscillation. What set me off was Müller’s temperature curve going back to 1535. The eighteenth and nineteenth centuries show a global temperature oscillation that has an envelope almost identical to a damped harmonic oscillation. Müller knew something was happening but thought that some unknown volcanoes were somehow involved. The oscillation almost cries out for the existence of some violent event in the sixteenth century or before that set the ocean waters oscillating. The period of this oscillation is 25 years. The earliest peak is 0.9 degrees Celsius high and this slowly decreases to 0.25 degrees by 1900. The only oscillation we do know something about is the ENSO. Its basic period is about five years and its path length is the width of the Pacific at equator. An oscillation with a period five times longer would need a path length five times the width of the Pacific and the only thing I could think of that comes even close is the length of the thermohaline circulation, from the Arctic to the Northern Pacific. Pacific SST temperature pictures always show a cold spot west of Kamchatka that I associate with the end point of the thermohaline circulation. And if that is the case it is likely that the PDO will somehow fit into this picture. This of course is speculation and I forgot about it because It seemed too fantastic to me at the time. But maybe somebody with resources could look into it.

    • Steven Mosher

      “None of these guys have heard of Ferenc Miskolczi or they pretend that they have not heard of him.”

      Huh. we read the internet of course folks have heard about his mistakes.
      even bloggers know the errors.

      http://bartonpaullevenson.com/Miskolczi.html

      • Generalissimo Skippy

        Ferenc Miskolczi posits certain physical laws that simply are not – but then when questioned will revert to the position that it is based on clear sky radiosonde measurements. The latter are not sufficiently accurate to prove the thesis. So what are you to do?

      • Generalissimo Skippy

        On the other hand the prospects of Rossby waves causing the PDO is dim as the period is far too great for any interbasin cause.

    • Arno, if there is a PDO cycle, why did it not show up sometime between 1850 and 1910? No, the temperature rise of about 0.5C between 1970 and 2000 is fully explained by the 1910 to 1940 rise, which stopped in 1940, but was carried vety slowly under the oceans until it appeared again in 1970, warming the atmosphere by about a further 0.5C by 2000. This fully explains the temperature rises of the 20th and 21st centures and the flat temperature since. See my website undelined above.

    • Lauri Heimonen

      In so far as I understand, Arno Arrak has openmindedly stated due points of view, from which the anthropogenic warming can be regarded as insignificant. I trust he can duly understand what Ferenc Miskolczi says; http://judithcurry.com/2013/03/10/new-perspectives-on-climate-sensitivity/#comment-301625 :

      ”Basically, it turns out that the vaunted greenhouse effect simply does not exist and anthropogenic global warming is a myth.”

      I agree with that view, too. As I have expressed in my comment http://judithcurry.com/2013/02/24/open-thread-weekend-9/#comment-298808 natural factors have controlled the recent warming, and the increase of CO2 in atmosphere has followed warming, in which any influence of anthropogenic CO2 emissions has not been empirically found. This indicates that even the total increase of CO2 in atmosphere does not control the warming. As the share of Anthropogenic CO2 in the total increase is minimal, it is easy to understand why any influence of man-made CO2 emission can not be empirically found:

      ”Even politicians as laymen can easily understand that the anthropogenic CO2 emissions do not dominate the increase of CO2 content, as they learn to know the natural laws that control the CO2 content in atmosphere: the CO2 content in atmosphere is controlled together by both all the CO2 emissions from sources to atmosphere and all the CO2 absorptions from atmosphere to sinks. The CO2 sinks determine how much CO2 from the total amount of the CO2 emissions stays in atmosphere, in which a share of single CO2 emission is proportinal to the total quantity of all the CO2 emissions. As to the share of the anthropogenic CO2 emissions it is only about 4 % of the total CO2 emissions. For instance the human CO2 emissions control, at most, only about 4 % of the total content of CO2 in atmosphere, and even only 4 % of a total recent increase of CO2 content in atmosphere. IPCC is totally wrong as there in the model simulations all the increase of CO2 content in atmosphere is regarded as anthropogenic.”

      The assessments of climate sensitivity are based on climate models – and not on any evidence in reality. The results of climate models indicate only what kind of assumptions for parameters are needed that the recent warming could probably be caused by the increase of CO2 content in atmosphere.

      I agree with Jim Cripwell; http://judithcurry.com/2013/01/16/hansen-on-the-standstill/#comment-286869 as he says that the total climate sensitivity is indistinguishable from zero. That is true already on the total CO2 increase, and the human share of that is only about 4 %.

  37. The Armour et al. paper is a valuable contribution into the mechanics of how sensitivity plays out, and their toy model is very illustrative. By having three area types (land, low-latitude ocean, high-latitude ocean) with different feedbacks and heat capacities they can represent the main behavior of sensitivity with time. They can explain the behavior of GCMs in these terms, and to represent their regional effects, models only need to distinguish these categories of surface, which they can. They note that simplistic feedback estimates ignore these effects to their cost. A useful piece that raises the bar for sensitivity studies.

  38. A simple layman’s take is that understanding of many aspects of climate is constantly expanding, often in directions which raise more questions, and with findings which suggest that prospective warming has been over-estimated by the IPCC et al. Therefore, in saying for many years that the science is settled, there is 90+ chance of dangerous warming etc, the basis of the warning projectors was inadequate and exaggerated possible outcomes. That is, those who advocated we should not rush into expensive anti-emissions schemes until we had better understanding, and that we should focus effort on better understanding rather than immediate reductions, have been vindicated. Correct?

  39. Yesterday at Jim Cripwell | March 10, 2013 at 12:41 pm | I claimed that climate sensitivity has never been measured. No-one has responded, not even the usual litany of “Jim Cripwell does not know what he is talking about”. Let me try again.

    We are seeing how science works with the Higgs boson. First you have the theoretical estimations; then you get the actual measurements, and a measurement of accuracy. Once the measurements are made, the theoretical estimations are unnecessary. There is only a place in science for theoretical estimations if there are no measurements. Once measurements are made, the need for estimations disappears. Sure, for CS, there have been all sorts of estimates using observed data, including mine, but these are not measurements.

    Our hostess is surely at the centre of the science of climate change. If she, in March 2013, can seriously still be discussing the latest ways of estimagting climate sensitivity, then it must be, res ipsa loquitur, that no measurements have been made.

    Why is is so difficult to warmists to agree on the obvious. There have been no measurements of climate sensitivity

    • ” I claimed that climate sensitivity has never been measured. No-one has responded”

      Cripwell, you can’t prove that no one responded. And you can’t prove that anyone has even read what you wrote, when you wrote what you wrote.
      In any case, you are wrong, because I have responded.

      Must be tough living in that provability trick-box your have decided to occupy. It’s kind of small in there.

      • Hey Web,
        An objective observer …there must be a few left somewhere…would look at this exchange and decide that Jim C. looks more credible. He made a statement, which was really a challenge, and no one responded to that challenge. You’ve tried to obscure that fact with a drive-by sneer. Looks weak Web. Very weak.

      • “prove”

        I love it when a Warmer sez “prove.”

        You “prove.”

        Andrew

      • Webby, you write “In any case, you are wrong, because I have responded.”

        This brings up two points. I checked my post of yesterday, and there are no responses. So far as I am concerned, this means no-one, including yourself, responded.

        But much more important, and I must have missed it, you write, “you are wrong”. Fair enough. But now we come to the nub of the issue, WHY am I wrong? What was your response?

      • “Jim Cripwell | March 10, 2013 at 12:41 pm |
        I claimed that climate sensitivity has never been measured. No-one has responded”

        I was applying the CRIPWELL CRITERIA. Nothing can be proven according to Cripwell, because any observations or measurements made by man may be just a trick of our imagination. We can’t prove that we are not living in a dream state according to the CRIPWELL CRITERIA. Somehow prove that this is not a dream state, and only then can we further reason according to the criteria.

        Note that this interlude is meant to convey how ridiculous Jim Cripwell sounds, and the reason why he is locked in that trick-box of his.

        We could reach 10,000 PPM of CO2 and live in a hothouse, and still Cripwell will be laying down the law that we have not proven anything. The difference between a 400 PPM environment and a 10000 PPM environment is meaningless according to Cripwell, because direct measurements are not possible.

        I really don’t understand why Cripwell has not applied his criteria to my model of how excess CO2 evolves due to industrial carbon emissions. This model is described further up in the thread:

        http://judithcurry.com/2013/03/10/new-perspectives-on-climate-sensitivity/#comment-301637

        Why hasn’t Cripwell responded to this model of sensitivity of CO2 to man-made carbon emissions? Is he scared? Are the rest of you scared too?

      • Apparently Jim Cripwell is not OK with estimates, only actual measurements. You can estimate the size of a room and figure whether it is large or small, but until you have the actual exact feet and inches, Jim Cripwell won’t be happy. He needs to specify what a climatesensitivitiometer looks like, otherwise he is just building a wall around himself.

      • The wall Crip builds around himself forms the confines of his trick-box. He can’t even prove his own existence because he cannot measure it.
        When confronted as to why he can’t measure it, he will state something to the effect that it is “obvious”.

      • JIm D., Maybe I can talk sense to you; Webby is just plain rude. You are adderessing the second question before dealing with the first one. The first question is, can climate sensitivity be measured? The answer is no; but no warmist will admit it.

        The point is that if something can be measured, it is GUARANTEED that you can ALWAYS answer the question, is the measurement accurate enough for what is being done? If the accuracy is good enough, then it becomes engineering. If it is not good enough, then a more accurate instrument must be made before it becomes engineering.

        If we only have an estimate, the situation is completely different. My wife was a very successful real estate agent. She could look at a room, and tell the dimensions to less than 1 inch. Sure we put a tape measure down before any legalities were involved, but it wasn’t really necessary. If the estimate is good enough, then there is no problem. I am not against the use of estimates.

        But if all we have is an estimate, then we must deal with the question, is the estimate good enough for the problem being addressed? That is the issue you are addressing. The IPCC claims that the estimate is good enough. I dont agree with them, and that is the issue I would like to see discussed.

        But the point I am trying to make is neither that the IPCC, nor any warmist, has admitted that CS cannot be measured. And the IPCC discussion of whether the estimate is good enough, is, IMHO, totally inadequate.

    • David Springer

      “Our hostess is surely at the centre of the science of climate change. If she, in March 2013, can seriously still be discussing the latest ways of estimagting climate sensitivity, then it must be, res ipsa loquitur, that no measurements have been made.”

      Evidently no adequate measurements. I shudder to think how many astronauts NASA would have lost if our NASA rocket scientists had acted like NASA climate scientists. Even the astronaut corps itself is flabbergasted. Fifty former rocket scientists, astronaut/scientists, and just plain astronauts even put their John Hancock’s on a letter of protest.

      http://washingtonexaminer.com/astronauts-condemn-nasas-global-warming-endorsement/article/469366

      In an unprecedented slap at NASA’s endorsement of global warming science, nearly 50 former astronauts and scientists–including the ex-boss of the Johnson Space Center–claim the agency is on the wrong side of science and must change course or ruin the reputation of the world’s top space agency.

      Challenging statements from NASA that man is causing climate change, the former NASA executives demanded in a letter to Administrator Charles Bolden that he and the agency “refrain from including unproven remarks” supporting global warming in the media.

      “We feel that NASA’s advocacy of an extreme position, prior to a thorough study of the possible overwhelming impact of natural climate drivers is inappropriate,” they wrote. “At risk is damage to the exemplary reputation of NASA, NASA’s current or former scientists and employees, and even the reputation of science itself.”

      The letter was signed by seven Apollo astronauts, a deputy associate administrator, several scientists, and even the deputy director of the space shuttle program.

      Unfortunately the damage has been done. Our manned space program is gone and you can’t lose respect for something that doesn’t exist. The unmanned stuff is still respectable. No one can match NASA in unmanned space exploration. Mars rovers have been stunning successes. Earth observation hardware is beyond reproach. Where the reproach starts is the interpretation of the data the earth observation hardware delivers.

      • David, you write “Evidently no adequate measurements. ”

        Forgive me for picking a nit. It is not that there are no “adequate” measurements, there are no measurements at all. The IPCC is supposedly a scientific organization, but this vital fact is not mentioned anywhere in any of it’s reports. Or rather, I cannot find any such statement. If anyone has a reference where the IPCC specificly states that climate sensitivity has not been measured, I would be grateful.

  40. An interesting presentation on why ocean heat transport matters.

  41. David Springer

    Jim D | March 10, 2013 at 12:28 pm | Reply

    “Strangely I prefer Vaughan Pratt’s analysis to this because at least he used a physically based CO2 curve as the background, while here they seem to be saying that even a century ago the anthropogenic component was 0.07-0.08C per decade (with only 10% of the current global CO2 production). This is an extreme sensitivity to the early addition that no one can explain scientifically.

    My emphasis.

    Pratt’s paper explained nothing scientifically. It was numerology.

    YOU can’t explain it scientifically. I and many others can. The ability of CO2 to capture upwelling longwave infrared and direct a portion of the captured energy back down at the source diminishes as the concentration of the gas increases. As it happens anthropogenic growth of CO2 emission almost exactly parallels the diminishing efficacy of CO2 energy capture so what we actually see in the record is a linear increase in global average temperature pretty much starting, near as I can tell, not long after the steam engine was invented circa 1750. Other things than CO2 that come with coal-burning also contributed especially black carbon (soot) which makes its way onto every open solid surface and darkens it causing that surface to absorb more sunlight.

    I’ve described the effect of black carbon and diminishing efficacy of CO2 for going on ten years now. BC effect has been in the literature a long time and James Hansen 25+ years ago was among the first to describe it. Diminishing efficacy of CO2 to capture energy has been in the literature for 150 years and was first described by the great experimental physicist John Tyndall in a collected work “Heat: A Mode of Motion” published around 1860 IIRC.

    So warming from fossil fuel combustion turned out to be linear helped along in the earlier days by black carbon from unfiltered coal smoke which became increasingly less common since about 1964 when the USA passed the Clean Air Act which required certain particulates and aerosols to be filtered out of smokestacks and exhaust pipes. Land use change is another factor that added to AGW as well as methane emissions from agriculture (rice and cattle) which all accelerated commensurate with fossil fuel consumption.

    On top of all that is natural variation some of which is periodic like AMDO, solar cycles of various lengths, orbital parameters, and some aperiodic like major volcanic eruptions and GCR flux density from exploding stars. The second paper acknowledges a few of these things and that’s a wonderful start to unwinding the climate science PR disaster created by the usual suspects named in the climategate emails and promoted by uncritical scientists everywhere in tribal knee-jerk defense of the academic institutions of science. The stink of this will live on for a long time.

  42. What Climate Sensitivity, this is another study that shows that CO2 increases Lag Temperature, not the other way around.

    http://climaterealists.com/index.php?id=11292

  43. The wavelet graph in Tung and Zhou is very orderly. Presumably this is due to fact that this is a geographically limited record and last but not least becuse there are strong cyclic signals in the record. ie it is not just AGW plus stochastic “noise”.

    Having thoroughly discussed the 70 year pseudo cycle, it is a little surprising that they reject significant solar, since the wavelet plot shows an equally strong and persistent signal at just over 20 years. The amplitude of this does reduce somewhat in 20th c. but seems to remain stable in phase and period.

    Could this reduced amplitude reflect increased CO2 or water vapour effects ? It has been noted that most of the warming change is due to warmer winters. It would appear from this graph that it also corresponds to a reduction in the extemes of the circa 21year cycle.

    One of the things that came out of my article here this time last year and the ensuing discussion with John Kennedy was that Hadley processing was removing about 2/3 of the variability from the SST record prior to 1920 using largely speculative bias “corrections”.

    The fact that this apparently stable, long term land record also shows greater variability on a decadal scale pre-1900 again brings into question whether the supposed bias corrections are not , in fact, simply attenuating real climate variation in that part of the record.

    http://judithcurry.com/2012/03/15/on-the-adjustments-to-the-hadsst3-data-set-2/#comment-188237

    Other than that is it encouraging to at least see some different thinking getting published. This idea that , at least tropical zones, would have a different sensitivity seems almost trivially obvious in view of the strong negative feedback that tropical storms represent.

    • For years, I’ve watched the modelers try to keep their toys on circular tracks, on the ceiling.
      =====

      • The same ol’ mistakin’ the map fer the territory, Plato blueprint
        thing? Feedbacks in a recursive world where multiple feedback
        loops lead ter more interactive events … I know how they feel …)

  44. Stephen Wilde

    What you are seeing there is the negative system response to a multitude of competing forcing elements including GHGs, solar and oceanic.

    Whenever any forcing element seeks to disturb the system energy content set by mass, gravity and insolation the entire global air circulation reconfigures as necessary to cancel out the forcing elements and retain radiative balance at top of atmosphere.

    I have been drawing attention to just such a process for the past 6 years.

  45. Re the Armour paper, as I commented last month on Paul K’s article at Lucia’s blog, it seems to be based on a GCM that has the opposite latitudinal pattern of net feedback strength to most other GCMs. I wrote:

    “Armour et al cite Bates (2010, Climate Dynamics, Climate stability and sensitivity in some simple conceptual models), but fail to point out that its zonal models (zone 1 tropics 30S-30N, and zone 2 both extratropics combined) are based on the opposite pattern of zonal radiative response coefficients to that implied by Armour et al, and reflected in Paul_K’s final model. Bates’s model explicitly involves meridional heat transport, which is a major factor in climate stability. He explores extratropics lamda_eff high (he says most authors agree that the extratropical coefficient is close to the blackbody value) and tropical lambda_eff low, even negative. He cites GCM simulation based evidence for this latitudinal pattern.

    I can’t find a free version of Bates paper, but presentation slides are available at http://www.ima.org.uk/_db/_documents/Bates.pdf

    and

    “I find the fact that their CCSM4 GCM seems to have exactly the opposite pattern of latitudinal variation of the climate feedback parameter to what I understand to be the correct pattern (lambda higher in the extratropics) very disconcerting. If both their GCM and their 3-zone model results are based on the opposite of the actual latitudinal pattern of lambda, why should one think they are correct?”

    and later:

    “The models have only small negative, or even positive, feedback in the tropics, as with constant relative humidity the water vapour feedback is extremely strong there. Water vapour feedback decreases much faster than temperature feedback with latitude, and net feedbacks become, on the whole, increasingly negative towards the poles.”

    Figure 3 in Zelinka and Hartmann, 2012,
    http://www.atmos.washington.ed…..n_2012.pdf , shows these effects for all the CMIP3 GCMs that gave the necessary data.

    Paul K and I agreed that if Figure 3 in Zelinka is valid, many models explain polar amplification not with a low relative magnitude feedback – as claimed by Armour – but with a high magnitude feedback and an enhanced meridonial heat flux.

    • Nic,
      A key point made by Armour (in his response to my letter to him) was that the Zelinka feedback values calculated by latitude are based on local changes in radiative forcing, but global average temperature change. In my final response to you, I did emphasise the importance of this point.

      Since writing the article I have built a latitude model with full (matrix) solution so I could solve for meridonial flux. I used it to match the Zelinka values for the “average AOGCM” resultsin terms of meridonial flux and feedbacks calculated as per Zelinka. The attached graphic shows some early results.
      . http://img402.imageshack.us/img402/8500/prelimresults13zonemode.jpg

      These illustrate that you can still show a curvilinear flux response with these data. Moreover this system retains its linear characteristics. I still believe that Armour’s explanation is essentially correct. Indeed the fact that the GCMs retain a linear relationship between forcing and ECS imposes a severe restriction on possible explanations for the curvilinear behaviour that they display in net flux-temperature plots.

  46. Regarding the existence of the AMO, Delsole et al (2011): A Significant Component of Unforced Multidecadal Variability in the Recent Acceleration of Global Warming, J. Climate, found an Internal Multidecdal Pattern that he identified as being closely related to the AMO (see his Fig.4).

    Delsole also found the 1946-2008 forced-only trend was 0.1 C/ decade, differing little between the sub-period up to 1977 and the sub-period after 1977.

    Admittedly Delsole only used 160 year long data, but his results seem supportive of the Tung and Zhou paper.
    A free version is available at
    ftp://cola.gmu.edu/pub/delsole/dir_ipcc/dts_jclim_2010.pdf

    • The natural Internal Multidecadal Pattern is estimated at +-0.08 C/decade for a 30 year trend. As we are now around an IMP maximum and in 2100 around a minimum, the estimated temperature in year 2100 would then be just

      0.1 C/decade * 8.8 decades – 2*3*0.08 C

      = 0.4 C higher than today.

      That would be even closer to zero, if we clean up black carbon – for excellent health reasons, of course.

      Now guess what happens, if Steven Wilde and dozens of solar/climate link papers are right.

      • The difference between IMP maximum and minimum is of course 3*0.08C=0.24C and not the double.
        The temperature in year 2100 would then be 0.64 C higher than today.

        As black carbon forcing of 1.1 C/W2 is almost half of the total forcing given by the IPCC, its removal would reduce the increase to about 0.3 C.

        All given no solar influence, despite evidence, and continued exponential burning of fossile fules.

        That indicates, how difficult it may be to surpass holocene “climate optimum” temperatures at all, even if we burn all fossile fuel we may ever find..

  47. So AGW a shade less than 1C/century? Perhaps something to worry about in 4-5 generations’ time then.

  48. Tomas Milanovic

    Skippy

    279 K is the S-B temperature for a black body – 255 K is the temperature for a 30% reflective (grey) body such as the earth currently – 288 K seems closer to the actual average.

    Youd should have said more.
    1) No irradiated sphere is anywhere near to a black body. Their behaviours are completely different.

    2) Do you want to measure the difference between the Moon and a black body? Easy.
    A black body is by definition isothermal. The Moon’s temperatures are anywhere between 100K and 400 K.
    So the specific emissions (W/m²) of one half and of the other half (simplifying) of the sphere differ by a factor 200 !
    That’s how far from a black body is the Moon’s real distribution of temperatures.

    3) The difference between a black body and a planet (be it the Moon or the Earth) is the biggest factor explaining their temperature distributions. Using the SB law would give an answer that would be wrong by a factor 200 .
    Of course it is trivial to show that the difference between the spatially averaged temperature of ANY real planet and a black body emitting the same energy may be whatever house number.
    Depending on the speed of rotation, conductivity and rotation axis orientation it may even be rather small under some symmetry assumptions.
    This trivial and irrelevant observation allows obviously no clue to find the real temperature distribution anyway.

    I know of only one desperate case on this blog who could believe that irradiated spheres’ dynamics are 90% black bodies (e.g isothermal) and 10% white noise. Taking intentionnaly the stupidest model I could think of.
    This kind of stupidity amounts to believe that an elephant can be approximated by a rabbit because they run approximately at the same speed and on top both have big ears.
    But as this guy has a mathematical understanding of an oyster, he processes also the same kind of substances.

    • Generalissimo Skippy

      Tomas,

      Yes the modified grey body S-B doesn’t allow calculation of the earth’s temperature to within 33 degrees. Orders of magnitude greater than the ‘signal’ they are looking for. Other means are used to derive the average temperature. It is not about S-B however, but the delusion that S-B povides justification for the gross simplifications he indulges in. They are chalk and chese. S-B has an empirical basis – webby’s curves are pure fiction.

    • You two clowns can throw out all accepted black-body and radiative physics if you desire — Stefan-Boltzmann, Planck’s Law, Modtran and Hitran libraries, whatever suits your fancy. It won’t get you anywhere.

      • Generalissimo Skippy

        Simply thowing around names means nothing at all. No one dismisses anything – least of all simple radiative physics. Just that the precision required to make sense of climate change is not available with these simple ideas. Hence the need for climate models – and the inevitable limitations of these deterministically chaotic systems.

        There is no method to reliably project temperatures far into the future at all. The climate system is too complex for simple approaches and complex approaches are non-linear. The horns of the dilemma.

        I don’t predict. We are in a cool decadal mode and these last for 20 to 40 years in the proxy records. Beyond that? I have quoted this before – and webby simply eyeballed in the ENSO modelling and said something quite at odds with the paper. It’s as if they don’t want to know.

        Figure 12 shows 2000 years of El Nino behaviour simulated by a state-of-the-art climate model forced with present day solar irradiance and greenhouse gas concentrations. The richness of the El Nino behaviour, decade by decade and century by century, testifies to the fundamentally chaotic nature of the system that we are attempting to predict. It challenges the way in which we evaluate models and emphasizes the importance of continuing to focus on observing and understanding processes and phenomena in the climate system. It is also a classic demonstration of the need for ensemble prediction systems on all time scales in order to sample the range of possible outcomes that even the real world could produce. Nothing is certain.’ http://rsta.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/369/1956/4751.full

    • Tomas, While I agree with most of what you said, I disagree with the potential accuracy you can get with a “blackbody”. You do have to allow for internal heat distribution within the sub-surface that is the actual source of the “blackbody” energy and allow for the partial “shell” areas, but you can claw out a pretty reasonable blackbody approximation.

      http://redneckphysics.blogspot.com/2013/03/ideal-versus-observation.html

      That is just the ocean area, but I was pretty impressed how close the “ideal” compared to the observations.

  49. Judy,

    Thanks for the link of the nice papers.

    I personally like the Armour et al. paper very much, particularly their discussion about the effective forcing concept now widely used in the community.

    My concern is about their assumption that local feedback parameter ( lamda r) is time invariant. They did not make a very strong point on it, though proving it could be technically very easy, i.e., by showing the parameter (Fig.4) for different time periods.

    I was also surprised not to see the singular points is Fig.4. While global averaged temperature increase with CO2 forcing, there are also regions with temperature decreasing so there must be points that local temperatures has no change, then we would expect very large (lamda r) at some points in Fig. 4.

  50. The first law of climate science: If you have two climatologists, they disagree with one another (unless they are paid to further climate alarmism). The second law of climate science: They are both wrong. A student in an earth sciences class fell asleep. The professor banged on her seat and she woke up with a start. He said: “answer my question”. She said: “I did not hear the question, but the answer is that it was due to rising CO2″. Never before in the history of science have so many firm conclusions been drawn by so many climate scientists, based on so few data. A little humility would go a long way. A lot of humility would be even better. One paragraph sound bites do not explain what is happening in the earth’s climate. Neither do 20 page journal articles.

  51. Generalissimo Skippy | March 14, 2013 at 12:46 am |

    Topic, keeping on. Look it up.

    Germane. Look it up.

    If you want to talk about Lorenz, start a new thread, instead of injecting into a thread on Not Lorenz.

    Illustrate the chaotic nature of centennial scale climate sensitivity, if you hope to make your assertions relevant to centennial scale climate sensitivity.

    As it is, Armour et al. have only demonstrated that short term temperature sensitivity might be subject to initial conditions in a way that conforms to Lorenz. You have a substantial burden to get from that point to yours.

  52. Here’s a good starting point for asking the questions Jim Cripwell might wish to be asking, if he were serious about getting somewhere:

    http://ceres.larc.nasa.gov/documents/STM/2007-11/ce0711151330Roe.pdf

    Of course, six years have advanced some of the answers, but everyone has to start somewhere.

    And here’s why we don’t care how low your climate sensitivity guess might be:

    http://www.pnas.org/content/107/18/8108.full.pdf+html

    A nice paper. Short. Thought-provoking. Check it out.

    • Generalissimo Skippy

      ‘The standard economic calculus for decision-making under uncertainty rests on consideration of the expected discounted utility. Under this calculus, in the face of risk aversion, a premium accrues to policies that avoid the risk of high-cost outcomes even when they are highly improbable. In an nfluential paper, Weitzman (5) pointed out that analyses that do not explicitly incorporate uncertainty about future climate change fail to account for this risk premium and thereby understate the benefits of aggressive policies that avoid future risk. Further, using a previous theoretical result (6), Weitzman showed that the combination of a heavy-tailed probability distribution for temperature change and a common model of risk aversion implies that the risk premium for avoiding climate change is infinite. Although the practical policy implications of this result are unclear, it clearly calls into question analyses pointing to a moderate policy response.’

      To return to Swanson and Tsonis for moment – the ‘tail’ is unpredictable and may surprise on either the warm or cool ends of the spectrum. So indeed things may be much warmer and a chaotic climate much more sensitive. This should not be all that difficult a concept. Things may be worse than anticipated by even the direst catastrophist.

      There are 2 questions to emerge. The first is on the management of the politics of mitigation in a world that is in a multi-decadal cool mode. This has been my question to alarmists for years – wtf do you think will happen to the politics if the world fails to warm for a decade or so hence. Just practical realpolitics.

      The second is of course is on the nature of rational ways forward that acheive multiple objectives . A path that has evaded us for far to long in favour of intransigence in insisting on one simple path being taxes or caps.

      ‘The Paper therefore proposes that the organising principle of our effort should be the raising up of human dignity via three overarching objectives: ensuring energy access for all; ensuring that we develop in a manner that does not undermine the essential functioning of the Earth system; ensuring that our societies are adequately equipped to withstand the risks and dangers that come from all the vagaries of climate, whatever their cause may be.

      It explains radical and practical ways to reduce non-CO2 human forcing of climate. It argues that improved climate risk management is a valid policy goal, and is not simply congruent with carbon policy. It explains the political prerequisite of energy efficiency strategies as a first step and documents how this can achieve real emissions reductions. But, above all, it emphasises the primacy of accelerating decarbonisation of energy supply.

      This calls for very substantially increased investment in innovation in non-carbon energy sources in order to diversify energy supply technologies. The ultimate goal of doing this is to develop non-carbon energy supplies at unsubsidised costs less than those using fossil fuels. The Hartwell Paper advocates funding this work by low hypothecated (dedicated) carbon taxes. It opens discussion on how to channel such money productively.

      To reframe the climate issue around matters of human dignity is not just noble or necessary. It is also likely to be more effective than the approach of framing around human sinfulness -which has failed and will continue to fail.

      The Hartwell Paper follows the advice that a good crisis should not be wasted.’ Hartwelll Paper 2010

    • Bart R

      The “heavy upper tail” has pretty much been laid to rest, Bart.

      The observation-based estimate for 2xCO2 ECS, which was included in IPCCs AR4 report was that of Forster et al (2006), which concluded:

      A climate feedback parameter of 2.3-1.4 W m-2 K-1 is found. This corresponds to a 1.0–4.1°K range for the equilibrium warming due to a doubling of carbon dioxide

      Other estimates cited by IPCC were all based on model predictions rather than actual observations of the past record.

      As you know, IPCC ended up citing a value of 3.2°C ± 0.7°C (AR4 WGI Ch.8, p.633), but the various estimates leave a “fat tail”, extending well beyond 4°C.

      Since IPCC was published there have been several studies, which show a lower ECS.

      Schlesinger et al (2012) estimate it at 1.45°C to 2.01°C, based on several past temperature records

      Nic Lewis (2012 article, study not yet published) estimates it at 1.6°C to 1.7°C also using the past temperature record

      A recent Norwegian study by Berntsen et al (2012), using the observed record up to 2010, estimates that global warming from a doubling of CO2 concentration would lie between 1.2°C and 2.9°C.

      van Hateren (2012) estimates 1.5°C to 2.5°C using reconstructed record of past millennium plus actual past record

      Schmittner (2011) calculates 1.4°C to 2.8°C, using reconstructions of Last Glacial Maximum

      Lindzen & Choi (2011) calculate it at around 0.6°C to 1.0°C, using CERES satellite data.

      Four of the above six new studies use the actual observed record or actual satellite data as the basis for their estimates, rather than simply model predictions, with one additional study using both the recent record as well as reconstructions of the past millennium. So these data (unlike earlier IPCC model predictions) are largely observation-based.

      The average range of these recent studies is 1.3°C to 2.2°C, with a mean value of 1.7°C, or about half of earlier model-based predictions cited by IPCC..

      And with all these new data popping up, James has opined on James’ Empty Blog:

      http://julesandjames.blogspot.ca/2013/02/a-sensitive-matter.html

      ”It’s increasingly difficult to reconcile a high climate sensitivity (say over 4C) with the observational evidence for the planetary energy balance over the industrial era.”

      Bye-bye, fat tail.

      Max

      • manacker | March 14, 2013 at 3:52 am | Reply

        You cite, what, EIGHT guesses in various states of contextlessness?

        There are hundreds of Climate Sensitivity papers, peer reviewed and published. You cite EIGHT figures from a salad of cherry-picked partial sentences, and call it “laid to rest”?

        What skeptic would accept such a nonsensical premise as you offer?

      • Temperature risin’, soooooo alarmin’
        models show un-precedented warmin’,
        say, that’s what yers git … when yers
        fall fer the hockey-schtick spinners.

    • Bart, you write “Here’s a good starting point for asking the questions Jim Cripwell might wish to be asking, if he were serious about getting somewhere:”

      These articles do not even come close to addressing my question. Let me explain again. In physics, it is quite normal to think in terms of an independent variable, and a dependent variable. In the case of climate sensitivity, the increase of CO2 from current levels is the independent variable and the global temperature is the dependent variable.

      If we add X amount of CO2 to the atmopshere from current levels, then someone needs to prove that global temperatures rise by Y +/- Z; in appropiate units. Where has anyone measured X, Y and Z? A simple questiosn, for which there should be a simple answer.

      • Jim Cripwell | March 14, 2013 at 9:38 am |

        How can you say what is quite normal in physics, having so thoroughly demonstrated next to no knowledge of physics with so many and such absolute claims of having no idea and not understanding even the most basic questions (http://judithcurry.com/2013/03/10/new-perspectives-on-climate-sensitivity/#comment-302448)?

        I get that you’re playing us all for fools. I’m insulted by it, but it’s pretty transparent where you feign ignorance to further your cause, feign lack of response when you’ve been responded to so many times as to challenge tracing of your current and previous “but no one responded” threads, when you ask deeply and profoundly advanced questions illustrating sophistication then pretend even straightforward explanations are beyond you.

        Let’s get some terminology straight. The one ‘article’ is a peer-reviewed paper cited some 275 times. You don’t think it and the 275 articles citing it address your beloved, but impossible to pin down because you add conditions to it every time it’s answered, question? You even deny understanding the nature of measurement when it’s convenient to you to throw it up as a roadblock to communication. Sometimes you have to do the work for yourself of going from what a paper says to fill in your own blanks.

        How is measuring climate sensitivity different from measuring temperature in such a way that disqualifies climate sensitivity while allowing you to admit to temperature measurements?

        Be specific.

        Be precise.

        Your last explanation was along the lines of “a lot of authors do it so they must know what they’re talking about,” which applies equally to both climate sensitivity and temperature.

        If your answer is “I don’t know,” then we must take that to mean you find no difference.

        If it’s “I don’t understand the question,” then we’re done, as failing to grasp this question makes it impossible for you to grasp the answer you seek.

        If it’s another invalid, weak or false answer, I’ll be sadly proven right about what you’re doing here.

      • Bart,I asked you a simple question, namely “Where has anyone measured X, Y and Z? “. Forget your long winded answers. All I require is a simple answer as to whether this has happened or not. . Will you answer the question or not?

      • Jim Cripwell | March 14, 2013 at 11:30 am |

        You demand impossible perfection. Has anyone measured the Y and Z that will result in the current world under its current conditions of a value of X that has not happened in over ten million years? How could anyone have accomplished this feat?

        Do they have a time machine?

        Do they have infinite Earths under microscopes?

        You’re talking pure nonsense.

        There _is_ no answering you on the terms you set out.

        Stop pretending there is.

      • Bart R, you write “You demand impossible perfection.”

        I disagree. I demand the normal requirements of the scientific method to prove a hypothesis. I have agreed many times that CAGW is a perfectly viable hypothesis, with a great deal of theoretical and hypothetical evidence, together with some empirical data, to support it. But it still is, and until the technology changes, will remain, a hypothesis.

        The objection I have is the IPCC assessment of certainty and probability it ascribes to the conclusions that it gives in SPMs of the AR4. http://www.ipcc.ch/publications_and_data/ar4/wg1/en/ch9s9-7.html In the absence of any actual empirical data to show the when CO2 is added to the atmopshere from current levels that it actually causes global temperatures to rise, with which you seem to agree, then my reading of this part of the AR4 is that it is sheer and utter nonsense. I think this is an issue that has received far too little attention.

        Do you really believe the >90% and >95% probabilities that the IPCC gives it’s conclusions? In the absence of any proper empirical data on the vital issue of climate sensitivity, I certainly do not.

      • > I demand the normal requirements of the scientific method to prove a hypothesis.

        Citation needed.

      • willard, you write “citation needed.”

        Well you are not going to get one. What I rely on is what my mentor, Prof.Sir Gordon Sutherland rammed into my head when I studied Physics 101 in Cavendish Labs, over 65 years ago; supplemented by what the rest of the professors did as well. If we need to provide a citation to describe what the scientific method is, then there is no hope for science. CAGW has broken it irrevocably.

      • He’s just being an ass. I thought I had that schtick covered.
        ==========

      • I suspect Professor Sutherland would recognize the defect in your reasoning and suggest you instead be reasonable. There is one lab and one experiment, and it is ongoing. Unless some ingenious person builds a mini earth, atmosphere, sun, etc., it’s not going to change.

      • Jim Cripwell,

        Please acknowledge that you have no empirical evidence that could help us trace the normal requirements of the scientific method to prove an hypothesis.

        Don’t you feel the irony?

        Gordon Sutherland provides a nicer touch than Popper or Feynman, but it only shows that the requirements you have in mind sit right next to the book of the unwritten rules of baseball.

        Thanks for playing,

      • Narrative or Enlightened Method? The choice is ours, again.
        ======================

      • I notice the usual tactics by the warmists of introducing red herrings, so that there is no discussion of the main issue; the IPCC claims of high probabilities in the AR4. This tactic will, of course, win out in the near term. But the issue is not going to go away. One of these days there will be a proper discussion; with no red herrings.

      • Baseball Jim demands the normal requirements of the scientific method to prove a hypothesis, but can’t point to these requirements.

        In that case, perhaps Baseball Jim’s own demands are red herrings.

        Red herrings in, red herrings out.

        You’re out, Baseball Jim.

      • Jim Cripwell | March 15, 2013 at 9:15 am |

        You do your mentor great wrong.

        If this is what he taught, the fault is in him.

        If this is indeed the lesson you took from him, the fault is in you.

        What you are claiming is utterly absurd. You have already robustly asserted (http://judithcurry.com/2013/03/10/new-perspectives-on-climate-sensitivity/#comment-302448) complete ignorance. It must be imagined this clear deception on your part points to a fault in your character, not in the mentor you so basely defame.

        You’ve lied to us repeatedly. You’ve misrepresented yourself repeatedly. You’ve been caught doing this, and now go on to blame your teachers of long ago for your conduct. Well, that won’t wash.

        You’ve called for citations, and then denied they’ve been presented. You’ve equivocated. You’ve changed your requirements and your story. You’ve made false claims. It takes little for anyone to trace through the threads here at CE to verify the truth of this.

        If you have the education you claim, then you ought have the obligate skill to trace through to the paper in the field with which you have trouble, point to the line in that paper you feel is not specifically supported in its arguments and references and premises, and explain this.

        You do not even pretend to take up that minimal requisite of the academic you claim to be, and you blacken the whole field with your conduct.

      • A very sincere Thank You, Bart, for your remarks. I know how competent I am, so the fact that you think a few things I wrote on a blog, means I dont know what I am talking about, does not concern me in the least. I dont know what it was, but something I wrote must have got under your skin, otherwise I would not warrant your spending all that effort writing such vitriol. I hope I remain a burr under your saddle for some tome to come. Thank you.

      • Willard

        You have asked Jim Cripwell for a citation describing the “scientific method”, as it applies to climate science. He referred to a physics professor he had several years ago but did not give you any specifics.

        From his comments here, I have concluded that Jim Cripwell is a “rational skeptic” (or “scientific skeptic”) in the classical sense, when it comes to the ongoing scientific debate on AGW. Since I also consider myself to be in this category, let me give you my thoughts, to which he can either reply with his agreement or not.

        But first let’s walk through the logic.

        An argument, which is invalid in science (Feynman), is the “argument from authority”. This has been used in climate science, as follows: “90% of climate scientists believe that AGW is potentially dangerous, so it must be true”, or “the NAS or RS have endorsed the premise that AGW is potentially dangerous, so it must be correct”.

        This is a logical fallacy, as Wiki tells us:

        Appeal to authority is a fallacy of defective induction, where it is argued that a statement is correct because the statement is made by a person or source that is commonly regarded as authoritative.

        A second invalid argument, which has been used in climate science, as well, is the “argument from ignorance”. This has been used by IPCC to argue for the anthropogenic forcing (for example, AR4 WG1 Ch.9, p. 685):

        Climate simulations are consistent in showing that the global mean warming observed since 1970 can only be reproduced when models are forced with combinations of external forcings that include anthropogenic forcings.

        and (p. 686)

        No climate model using natural forcings alone has reproduced the observed global warming trend in the second half of the 20th century. Therefore, modeling studies suggest that the late 20th century warming is much more likely to be anthropogenic than natural in origin

        This goes in the direction of “our models can only explain the warming if we include anthropogenic forcing”

        Again, Wiki tells us that an “argument from ignorance” is a logical fallacy, which states that a proposition is necessarily true because it has not been proven false, in that it excludes a third option, which is: there is insufficient investigation and therefore insufficient information to provide evidence that the proposition is either true or false.

        In this case, the “insufficient information” is the complete knowledge of all natural climate forcing factors and their impact on our climate (a point that Dr. Curry has also made, pointing out that there is large “uncertainty” in this regard).

        So we have identified two logical fallacies sometimes used in the climate debate to support the so-called “mainstream consensus” position as supported by IPCC.

        But how about the scientific method?

        A key part of this method, and of science in general is the “argument from empirical evidence”

        An essay “An Introduction to Science” discusses the application of the “scientific method” as follows:

        http://www.indiana.edu/~educy520/readings/schafersman94.pdf

        The scientific method is practiced within a context of scientific thinking, and scientific (and critical) thinking is based on three things: using empirical evidence (empiricism), practicing logical reasoning (rationalism), and possessing a skeptical attitude (skepticism) about presumed knowledge that leads to self-questioning, holding tentative conclusions, and being undogmatic (willingness to change one’s beliefs). These three ideas or principles are universal throughout science; without them, there would be no scientific or critical thinking.

        The scientific method involves four steps geared towards finding truth (with the role of models an important part of steps 2 and 3 below):

        1. Observation and description of a phenomenon or group of phenomena.
        2. Formulation of a hypothesis to explain the phenomena – usually in the form of a causal mechanism or a mathematical relation.
        3. Use of the hypothesis to quantitatively predict the results of new observations (or the existence of other related phenomena).
        4. Gathering of empirical evidence and/or performance of experimental tests of the predictions by several independent experimenters and properly performed experiments, in order to validate the hypothesis, including seeking out data to falsify the hypothesis and scientifically refuting all falsification attempts.

        How has this process been followed for AGW?

        Step 1 – Warming and other symptoms have been observed.
        Step 2 – CO2 has been hypothesized to explain this warming.
        Step 3 – Models have been created based on the hypothesis and model simulations have estimated strongly positive feedbacks leading to forecasts of major future warming
        X Step 4 – The validation step has not yet been performed; in fact, empirical data that have been recently observed have demonstrated (1) that the net overall feedbacks are likely to be neutral to negative or at least significantly smaller than predicted by the models, and (2) that our planet has not warmed recently despite increasing levels of atmospheric CO2, thereby tending to falsify the hypothesis that AGW is a major driver of our climate and, thus, represents a serious future threat; furthermore, these falsifications have not yet been refuted scientifically.

        Until the validation step is successfully concluded and the hypothesis has successfully withstood scientific falsification attempts, the “CAGW” premise (as outlined by IPCC in its AR4 report) remains an “uncorroborated hypothesis” in the scientific sense. If the above-mentioned recently observed falsifications continue for a statistically significant period of time and cannot be scientifically refuted, it may even become a “falsified hypothesis”.

        So the flaw of the “dangerous AGW” hypothesis is not that several scientific organizations have rejected it, or that it is not supported by model simulations, but simply that it has not yet been confirmed by empirical evidence from actual physical observation or reproducible experimentation, i.e. it has not been validated following the “scientific method” .

        And this is a “fatal flaw” (and IMO there is no sound scientific basis for wrecking the global economy with draconian carbon taxes and caps as long as this “fatal flaw” has not been resolved using the scientific method).

        Max

      • Max, you write “to which he can either reply with his agreement or not.”

        Thank you Max. I could not have taken the time to have written what you did; so brilliantly. I agree with everything, but feel I must add one fact, which I tried to get Bart R. to agree with, but he wouldn’t.

        Current technology dictates that it is IMPOSSIBLE to validate CAGW according to classical scientific methodology. We simply cannot do the controlled experiment, whereby adding CO2 to the atmosphere is the independent variable, and we control everything else, so that any rise in global temperatures can be proven to be due to the increase in CO2. This is the problem the warmists faced, ab initio.

        As I have stated many times, I have no objection to CAGW being put forward as a hypothesis. What I object to is the IPCC and the warmists claiming that, using physics, they have established the conclusions of the SPMs in the AR4 with a high degree of probability. They have not, and to claim that they have is an insult to science and true scientists.

      • Max, The problem I have trying to write what you wrote, is that I have known it for 70 years. It is part of my being. In my whole career, I have worked with hundreds of scientists, all of whom are the same as myself. The subject was NEVER discussed. So I find it difficult, if not impossible, to write what you wrote.

        It was not until I started blogging on CAGW, that I came across scientists who think differently. The only thing I can assume, is that they are so convinced that CAGW is correct, that they are prepared to throw the scientific method under the bus. It does not seem to matter that the scientific method is an essential and integral part of doing science. Since you cannot prove CAGW without abandoning the scientific method, then it is essential to abandon the scientific method.

        While I find this difficult to believe, it is the only explanation that I can find.

      • Here we go again.

        I point at this:

        > You have asked Jim Cripwell for a citation describing the “scientific method”, as it applies to climate science. He referred to a physics professor he had several years ago but did not give you any specifics.

        And I point at this:

        > An argument, which is invalid in science (Feynman), is the “argument from authority”. [...] Appeal to authority is a fallacy of defective induction, where it is argued that a statement is correct because the statement is made by a person or source that is commonly regarded as authoritative.

        That is all for now.

        Later we might have to yet again distinguish the appeal to ignorance from an inference to the best explanation, explain that MiniMax’ conception of falsification is a demand of impossible perfection in desguise, and finish off with a note on the tense of the word “to validate”, and show how this criteria has the power to exclude almost all scientific results, perhaps including formal ones.

      • A short note. If one accepts both

        (1) Falsificationism is true.

        and

        (2) We cannot prove X without abandoning the scientific method.

        we have to conclude that nothing can be proven without abandoning the scientific method.

        In other words, (1) and (2) are logically incompatible.

        Baseball Jim against strikes out.

      • Willard

        I gotta admit.

        You excel in meaningless doubletalk.

        Congratulations.

        Max

      • Willard

        The rational (or scientific) skeptic insists on empirical evidence (see Feynman) before accepting the validity of a hypothesis.

        This evidence does not yet exist for the CAGW hypothesis, as outlined by IPCC in its AR4 report.

        Therefore, this premise remains an uncorroborated hypothesis.

        Statistical analyses have shown that the past correlation between CO2 and globally and annually averaged temperature has not been very robust; there are prolonged periods of warming when there was hardly any increase in CO2 and periods of cooling when CO2 increase was significantly higher. The 30-year alternate cycles of warming and slight cooling, all on a slightly tilted axis, show no correlation with the CO2 trend. The temperature trend seems to be more of a random walk.

        IPCC has chosen the period after around 1970 as its “poster period”; up until the end of the 20thC this showed sharp warming as GHG concentrations also rose exponentially.

        Latest actual physical evidence (the CO2 and temperature records) indicate that any past correlation between atmospheric CO2 and globally averaged temperature may have broken down – if this trend continues for another decade or so, it will become statistically significant, and the CAGW hypothesis will essentially have been falsified.

        It’s all up to Mother Nature now, Willard.

        (It actually always was, although IPCC apparently failed to recognize it.)

        Max

      • > The rational (or scientific) skeptic insists on empirical evidence (see Feynman) before accepting the validity of a hypothesis.

        Let MM be a rational skeptic as defined by the above quote.

        MM crosses the street.

        MM sees a car converging on him.

        Onlookers hypothesize that it will hit him in three seconds.

        MM keeps walking, confident that it won’t hit him.

        Why?

        Lack of empirical evidence.

      • Jim Cripwell | March 14, 2013 at 9:38 am |

        If we add X amount of CO2 to the atmopshere from current levels, then someone needs to prove that global temperatures rise by Y +/- Z; in appropiate units.

        Where has anyone measured X, Y and Z?

        The first problem we encounter is “from current levels“. Isaac Newton set out the principle of universality 300 years ago, which any competent physicist ought be able to recite from memory. “The qualities of bodies, which admit neither intension nor remission of degrees, and which are found to belong to all bodies within reach of our experiments, are to be esteemed the universal qualities of all bodies whatsoever.”

        Does CO2 saturate with regards any of its properties relevant to global warming?

        The clear answer is no.

        CO2 is nonsaturating.

        We know this from experiments on CO2 under stringent laboratory conditions measuring its spectral profile.

        We know this further because once a photon leaves a CO2 molecule in the atmosphere in whatever arbitrary direction it essentially has the same atmosphere to transit as when it encountered the CO2 molecule, merely ever so slightly delayed (if at all) and in effect randomly reoriented in path.

        Even if we treat the atmosphere not as molecules and photons, we can see we must model it like shells arranged as the layers of an onion; as any inner layer approaches saturation the next layer again acts as an entirely new barrier.

        The effect of “levels” is not very relevant. At one CO2 molecule in the whole atmosphere doubled to two CO2 molecules in the whole atmosphere, “levels” is germane. Once we begin measuring in the appropriate units of ppmv, until we reach Venus-like conditions, we have no reason to hypothesize “levels” to mean much.

        So we may remove the condition “from current levels” from Jim Cripwell’s premise, or at least take it as written that we are not discussing trivial cases, and move on.

        Since we’re discussing CO2, it’s tempting to assert that CO2, Jim Cripwell’s X, has been measured, meeting that part of his terms. However, we ought note before we do make this assertion that Jim Cripwell has performed a bit of bait-and-switch here. He goes from saying “someone needs to prove” about a rule to discussing measurement of terms that are part of the rule.

        The nuance of this slight shift of terminology allows Jim Cripwell to indefinitely prolong the discussion by switching back and forth from one side of the ambiguous phrasing to the other.

        However, we can be certain that, insofar as CO2 levels may be globally measured, there have been many measures of CO2 levels that are more or less valid for various uses.

        Today, satellites trace CO2 levels on grids at various heights from the surface — however there hasn’t been much consistency in the effort to obtain such telemetry, almost as if successive governments have failed to want to know the answer.

        At Mauna Loa a group measures a consistent baseline. Ice core data from northern glaciers and the Antarctic cap — now synchronized in a recent study to resolve from an 800 year lag to a significant 10-year +/-160 year correlation of CO2 level with inferred temperature. There is plenty of measurement of CO2.

        There is a massive literature of CO2. In the decade or so since Jim Cripwell first pronounced his opinions, there have been hundreds of papers arriving at a monumental consensus about CO2 measurement in the atmosphere — one, incidentally, not as portrayed by the Idsos’ many websites cherry picking and spinning the literature. So we have many answers as to where X is measured.

        Likewise, we have many measures of temperature. Pick one. The general quality of the curves derived by computing Climate Sensitivity over and over again with different datasets, time scales, correction factors, show remarkable tendency toward a range near 2.8 on 30-year climates, and 3.4 on centennial climates; sometimes negative, sometimes above 4.5, but the statistical likelihood that a ratio of two uncorrelated measures should return to so narrow a range so regularly approaches the infinitessemal.

        Likewise, we know from chemistry and biology what the correlation ought be, were CO2 level driven by temperature but temperature not driven by CO2 level, and it is too far below 3.4 or 2.8 or even 1.6 or 1.2 for us to consider temperature not driven in some fundamental way by CO2 level.

        And Jim Cripwell knows these facts, or ought. And he mendaciously repeats pseudo-Socratically his plaint, “no one has proven..”

        It’s useful to do the ab initio research for oneself about this question. The evolution of Climate Sensitivity questions has been exciting and radical in the past few years. BEST has delivered unexpected and unprecedented global temperature clarity from that shambles of improvised weather records they had to work with, and may yet furnish a meaningful land-and-sea global temperature dataset fit to use.

        It’s a great time to be looking at this question from first principles.

        It’s also prudent to ask the question skeptically, as if fresh each time, perhaps saying, “I know what the answer was before the latest report, but when I ask for the meaning of Climate Sensitivity to be explained taking into account what the latest report tells us, do I obtain a new or better answer?”

        Because Isaac Newton also teaches, “In experimental philosophy we are to look upon propositions collected by general induction from phenomena as accurately or very nearly true, notwithstanding any contrary hypotheses that may be imagined, till such time as other phenomena occur, by which they may either be made more accurate, or liable to exceptions.

      • Willard

        You should know better.

        There is no “proof” in science.

        But there is empirical evidence, which can either corroborate or falsify a hypothesis (Feynman, Popper).

        And that is what is missing for the CAGW hypothesis, as outlined by IPCC in AR4.

        It has not (yet) been falsified, but it also remains an uncorroborated hypothesis.

        Too many uncertainties. Too many unknowns. No hard data.

        Certainly no sound basis for wrecking the world economy with draconian carbon taxes or goofy geo-engineering schemes..

        Looks like it’s “back to the drawing board” for the IPCC consensus group, Willard.

        Max

      • Willard

        Are you stupid or just acting so?

        SEEING (and HEARING) an oncoming car is about as good empirical evidence as you can get.that it is fast approaching.

        Duh!

        Max

      • Thank you, Bart, for your long dissertation at March 16, 2013 at 2:44 am I understand the meaning of every word you have written, but you sure know how to make a simple problem, highly complicated. I suppose it just shows my ignorance, but I have no idea what you are talking about. With respect to the saturation of CO2 IR absorption, you might be interested, but my guess is that you are not, in the relationship between jet engines, the CO2 emission and absorption 4.2 micron line, and something called “red spike, blue spike”, which can be measured to 5 significant digits. Other than that, I give up

      • Seeing a car is one thing, MiniMax.

        Seeing a car approaching is another.

        Inferring from your observations that it will hit you is not an empirical observation.

        This information relies on a model, which in turn is built upon a theory.

        This model and this theory are not solely constructed upon observations.

        Checkmate.

        Thank you for playing, MiniMax.

      • David Springer

        “Checkmate”

        sayeth the pigeon.

        Perfect. Thanks.

      • Jim Cripwell | March 16, 2013 at 9:19 am |

        So, you claim CO2 is saturated, and this just happened to occur by pronoiac coincidence only now at current levels?

        That’s an extraordinary claim.

        Extraordinary claims require extraordinary, and might one suggest, lucid and detailed, proof.

        So, citations required. ab initio. Prove it.

      • Bart R. you write “So, you claim CO2 is saturated, and this just happened to occur by pronoiac coincidence only now at current levels?”

        I cannot prove it. CO2 saturates at much lower levels than those that are current. I cannot give you a reference. I am going from memory when I studied IR absorption under Prof. Sir Gordon Sutherland. It only takes a few meters for water to absorb all the IR at 8 microns. CO2 is similar. When we used IR spectroscopy, the spectrometer had to be filled with dry nitrogen in order to have enough energy at the absorption bands of CO2 and H2O.

      • Jim Cripwell, you need to look at radiative transfer programs like MODTRAN, which is similar in effect to those in GCMs. This shows why CO2 is not saturated, mainly because near 15 microns there are many vibrational rotational states, making this a broad absorption region, the outer parts of which expand with more CO2, while only the center is saturated. With your background you have a hope of understanding this, I would think.

      • > But there is empirical evidence, which can either corroborate or falsify a hypothesis (Feynman, Popper).

        Falsificationism is ill equipped to talk about corroboration, according to which no amount of white swans can corroborate the proposition that all swans are white.

        Is there another kind of evidence than an empirical one?

      • Jim Cripwell | March 16, 2013 at 3:32 pm |

        I cannot prove it. CO2 saturates at much lower levels than those that are current. I cannot give you a reference. I am going from memory when I studied IR absorption under Prof. Sir Gordon Sutherland. It only takes a few meters for water to absorb all the IR at 8 microns. CO2 is similar. When we used IR spectroscopy, the spectrometer had to be filled with dry nitrogen in order to have enough energy at the absorption bands of CO2 and H2O.

        This will not wash. You have been sticking to exactly this claim for the better part of a decade. It is an extraordinary claim, flying in the face of the very commonplace field of thermographic imaging, which we know allows us to see images from exactly the bands you claim are saturated at much lower than present levels.. and which we can see progressively blocked as much higher than present CO2 levels are interposed between sensor and target thermal source.

        You claim you rely on memories that when you first made these extraordinary claims were over half a century old. You have had many years during which you have publicly, loudly, intransigently protested your claims in which to refresh your memory or make your knowledge current.

        You have clearly chosen not to avail yourself of even a modicum of current knowledge of the field, and are remembering things that either never were true or were true in utterly inapplicable ways. Red spike, blue spike indeed; CO2 absorbtion peaks fill windows left by H2O, methane, ozone and NOx. Indeed, methane and ozone and NOx fill some windows left by H2O and CO2 in some conditions.

        Again, this has in the past been explained to you. You cannot now honestly claim it has never been explained to you. You cannot honestly claim it has never been proven to you, as the proof is patent, else thermography would not work. You cannot apply the Socratic Method with honesty, and honesty is fundamental to the Socratic Method, as the first lie undoes all good. (Socrates had a greek epigram for that. Plato wrote it down. Look that up sometime.)

        Your conditional clause, “at current levels” is thus defunct and inoperative. Its continued use can only be construed as malicious.

        Will you insist on claiming you do not understand some part of this?

        Because if you do, again, insist, then I must insist you READ HARDER.

      • Once again, Bart, an even more sincere thank you for what you wrote. When a confirmed warmaholic like yourself can only write a viscous personal attack on myself, with no science to back it up, I am completely convinced that the science I have presented is absolutely correct. I am encouraged tio go on writing what I have done previously. Unlike yourself, I write under my personal name, not a cowardly pseudonym, and I am proud of what I write.

      • Jim Cripwell | March 17, 2013 at 8:02 am |

        When a confirmed warmaholic like yourself can only write a viscous personal attack on myself, with no science to back it up, I am completely convinced that the science I have presented is absolutely correct.

        Let’s examine some of the problems with this statement.

        1. I’m not a warmaholic.

        Indeed, temperature is not my issue at all.

        While I concede that the vast body of research indicates AGW is real, the warming is not what I’m interested in; warming is merely one more symptom of CO2 level rise as a new forcing on the global climate due waste and corruption in lucrative human emission and land use. See, I’m not even opposed to efficient and honest emission and land use.

        Until BEST, I considered global warming to be about 90% probable based on the available evidence. BEST and other advances in research have raised that above 99.5%, and still other research has at the same time so clearly demonstrated the link of human agency to warming effects as to leave denial of the IPCC position on anthropogenicity irrational, but still not my concern.

        My issue is with extreme events. Mathematically, they are an inevitable outcome of the CO2 forcing, compounded by land use changes. Which events exactly, pure Mathematics does not predict. However, we see arguments such as Dr. Jennifer Francis of Rutgers make illustrate clearly how some of these extremes are realized.

        So call me an extremaholic, and my position deduced from Mathematics has been confirmed by empirical research.

        2. I am not making a vicious, or a personal, attack. I speak to what you have said, and to the strengths or weaknesses of your reasoning in what you have said, for the main part. And I observe that your character is seriously in question, given that so much of what you have said can be ascribed no other cause than malice on your part. I do not advocate any action be taken due the malice you exhibit. I merely make a statement of fact well-sustained by your record of statements.

        Still, given the character traits observed, it’s hardly surprising to hear this false allegation against me by you.

        3. “..science to back it up..” Of the two of us, I’m the one who has provided citations, and you’re the one who has referred to the power of an authority’s name without referring to their published work. I’m the one who has made the effort ab initio to engage in scientific discourse, and you’re the one who has replied with “I have no idea,” and “I don’t understand,” at every turn, ducking and dodging anything that might lead to progress. What exactly do you have no idea about? Which part don’t you understand, specifically? Of the two of us, I’m the one who has earnestly attempted to move forward in resolving this sceintifically, and you’re the one playing silly pseudo-Socratic dialectics with a smidgeon of contempt for anyone who engages you tossed in.

        4. There is no science you have presented. Not a single original study or new analysis has come from you. Citations absent entirely. Formulae absent. Equations absent. Observations pertinent to the topic absent. Parts of phrases obscurely couched in generalities do not exhibit science. Red spike blue spike indeed. Dr. Seuss is as close as you’ve come to science here.

        I am encouraged tio go on writing what I have done previously. Unlike yourself, I write under my personal name, not a cowardly pseudonym, and I am proud of what I write.

        In other words, you’re intransigently regressing to repeating false claims, as you have time and again. How does this make you proud again? Writing deceptions, writing without acknowledging the work and efforts of others, writing traps and tricks, writing to dodge inquiry and obscure fact?

        I don’t make the mistake of writing for pride. I write not about personalities but for ideas and in search of truth. Both of which your writing appears bankrupt.

      • Bart, I see your vendetta against me was censored on the obesity thread. Might I suggest, in both our interests, that, in the future, you dont attack me, personally, as you have been doing.

      • Bart

        The comment of yours I am replying to is so far down the thread that I do not know of this will end up anywhere near

        You mention Extreme events as being a consequence of enhanced co2

        I have now looked at tens of thousands of records dating from the 10th century to the modern day with most of them concentrated in the period 1150 to 1750. I have a particular project to try and find the transition from the mwp to the lia so have a further area of concentration in the period 1250 to 1400

        Material comes from a wide variety of places including the met office library and archives, Scott polar institute, Exeter cathedral, Devon archives and many other locations. We are fortunate in this country to have original weather diaries and other references to the climate on Paper and original hide scrolls dating back to the 1200′s. I am currently trying to find a small amount of funding to get some records translated relating to the period 1350 to 1450 that are in their original Latin and have never been translated from the day they were written

        One thing I can say with great certainty is that our ancestors suffered ‘extreme events’ on a totally different scale to those suffered today. Whether snow, flooding, heat waves, winds the weather they endured puts our current era into its proper perspective as one that is highly benign.

        I shall recount some of these in part two of ‘the long slow thaw’ but please don’t go around believing that the extreme events of today have any resemblance to those in the past as they mostly don’t. The worst events seem to occur in the colder periods not the warmer ones.
        Tonyb

      • Jim Cripwell | March 17, 2013 at 2:42 pm |

        You must be mistaken. The obesity thread is under heavy moderation; for each reply to your off-topic and unproven and untrue remarks in that thread I made, another remark entirely technical, on topic and proven (and thus nothing to do with you) was also moderated off.

        Please don’t feel persecuted personally. That would be an illusion, and I would not wish you to suffer under such self-deception. I do not think about people on blogs personally. To me, my correspondents do not have arms and legs and faces: they have posts which share ideas and seek truth. Or they, as yours do, lay traps and seek to throw up barriers to truth.

        It’s nothing personal. And it’s not about you.

        How petty and childish it would be to develop such emotional attachments.

      • Tonyb | March 17, 2013 at 3:36 pm |

        It is always a pleasure to correspond with you, and I hope your ongoing researches continue to advance.

        You mention Extreme events as being a consequence of enhanced co2..

        This is, while close, not what I intended to convey.

        In complex systems, it is a general property of new external forcings with some characteristics (which CO2E shares) to perturb the state of the system. While Chaos Theory can make some predictions about the nature of the state changes, it does not pretend to make reliable weather predictions, for example, or to determine how individual hornets in hornet nests will behave.

        There have of course historically been extreme weather events. It’s absurd to conjecture that extreme weather events will not happen in future whether anthropogenic perturbations are felt or no. And we cannot reliably predict much about future extreme events, nor even show much direct causal link between any individual molecule of CO2 emitted from some chimney and any particular snowflake in a blizzard or raindrop in a hurricane or whatnot in a superstorm.

        However, Chaos Theory can show us that state transitions would be accompanied by what in weather we call extreme events, and that state transitions are increased under the influence of external forcing. This is a mathematical certainty. Tomas or Chief or a dozen other denizens can facilitate with explanations and references; the literature on the topic is vast and has great mathematical clarity on this issue.

        The interviews Dr. Francis has been giving since months before Sandy, the empirical evidence supporting her scientific conjecture, translate into the language of science what the symbols of mathematics revealed decades ago: you can’t pump CO2E into the atmosphere without causing extreme weather events.

        As always, I’m grateful for this opportunity to discuss this question.

      • Bart R. you write “Please don’t feel persecuted personally. ”

        a la prochaine.

  53. Generalissimo Skippy

    My comment was inspired by yours on models being the basis of Armour et which having sublime correspondence to reality as the finest minds understand it have much to say about ‘sensitivity’ and the futue trajectoty of climate.

    My quote from Tim Palmer and Julia Slingo is not so much about Lorenz as the chaotic nature of models – the lack of a single deterministic solution – and the unpredictability of regime like structures in the atmosphere.

    The paper itself – if you care to look at it – provides a millennial scale discussion of ENSO as well as the intimation – quite obvious when you think about it – of the gaps in knowledge that limit the plausibility of models.

    ‘Figure 12 shows 2000 years of El Nino behaviour simulated by a state-of-the-art climate model forced with present day solar irradiance and greenhouse gas concentrations. The richness of the El Nino behaviour, decade by decade and century by century, testifies to the fundamentally chaotic nature of the system that we are attempting to predict. It challenges the way in which we evaluate models and emphasizes the importance of continuing to focus on observing and understanding processes and phenomena in the climate system. It is also a classic demonstration of the need for ensemble prediction systems on all time scales in order to sample the range of possible outcomes that even the real world could produce. Nothing is certain.’ http://rsta.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/369/1956/4751.full

    In the terms of the McWilliams quote – your assessment of the usefulness of model in this context is utterly simplistic and misleading. It is deliberate or an inability to read and understand – or at least to dispassionately consider – any of these leaders in the field. Is there another option than for me to conclude that you are a liar or a fool?

  54. Hi all,

    I am interested in opinions on how this paper impacts the results of the Lindzen/Choi theory, which also uses a zero-dimensional linear feedback model.

    1) Lindzen/Choi purportedly show that linear regression of delta Flux on delta SST always exaggerates positive feedbacks and underestimates negative feedbacks, for reasons quite independent of Armour et al’s criticism. Is that conclusion in conflict with, or supportive of, or simply unrelated to Armour et al.’s findings? I suspect “unrelated to” but would be interested in other opinions. Does it follow that the Lindzen/Choi lead/lag method also lacks physical meaning, considering their focus on the mostly ocean covered tropics?

    2) If the Lindzen/Choi results are accepted at face value, their result shows (LC11 table 3) that their lead-lag method for estimating the global feedback factor shows nature behaving in an entirely opposite manner than found in GCMs – including the CCSM model used by Armour et al. So while Armour et al. may have a novel and potentially very useful formalism for analysis, it hardly follows that their conclusions about time-varying Teff versus T2xCO2 are in any way independent of the model they used – yes?

    3) Following on from the above point, Paul K. asserts that “climate sensitivity increases with time and temperature largely because of polar amplification and the relatively long response times of the high latitude regions.”

    Is he correct here? Aren’t we essentially required to trust the CCSM4 model to arrive at this conclusion?

    Kind regards,
    Alex Harvey

    • Hi Alex,
      I think the Lindzen and Choi 2011 paper must stand or fall on its own merits. It is unaffected by Armour’s conclusions. LC2011 is attempting a model-to-observation comparison. Armour 2012 is seeking to explain why a particular phenomenon – a curvilinear flux response to temperature change – occurs in the (vast majority of) AOGCMs.
      Armour 2012 does not tell us anything about how well the AOGCMs match observations. However, one of the corollaries of the Armour.paper is that the validity of an ECS estimate from any AOGCM is only as good as its ability to match regional data. It is the latter which controls the degree of curvature in the flux-temperature relationship and hence the relationship between the short-term observable change and the extrapolated change to ECS. The LC2011 results and previous work by Koutsoyiannis suggest that the AOGCMs taken as a whole should not inspire any confidence in this regard.

      With respect to your last question – are we required to trust the CCSM4 model in order to accept Armour’s basic conclusion – I think that the answer is no. In my response to Nic Lewis above I showed that the conclusions were not incompatible with the “average AOGCM” values from Zelinka

      http://judithcurry.com/2013/03/10/new-perspectives-on-climate-sensitivity/#comment-303267

      However, this is not definitive and it would be nice to have this confirmed by repeating the work using the specific regional flux and temperature data from additional models; I know that Armour is pursuing this line of research.

      • Paul_K, I am concerned that Armour might be circular. They say that regional changes cause nonlinear responses that make linear sensitivity estimates too low. But, they use GCM’s to show this and GCM’s have little skill at regional climate. I think that’s a problem.

    • Lets assume that Paul_K is correct about polar amplification and sensitivity, namely, that its nonlinear and causes a linear sensitivity to be an underestimate. In this case, lets consider the LGm vs. today. Polar amplification has been at work and its nonlinear effect must be included in the difference. Therefore, LGM estimates of sensitivity will not suffer from this underestimation problem. They include the nonlinearity.

      This is why I think Annan’s recent estimate may be important. The finite difference sensitivity is 1.7K. What nonlinear has been left out? I can’t think of one.

      • David,
        I mostly agree with you re the LGM. It is worth noting however that even if we accept Annan’s estimate of a reduced temperature change during the LGM, there is still a large uncertainty range in sensitivity arising from estimates of effective forcings. Annan is also cautious about his sensitivity estimates because of Hargreave’s observation that most models show asymmetry between warming and cooling. http://www.clim-past.net/prefaces/preface4.pdf

        As for circularity in the Armour paper, I think it manages to sidestep the issue quite neatly. It proposes a simple conceptual model to explain how the curvilinear behaviour in flux-temperature arises in the models, and it flags the possibility rather than the certainty that observational data might yield an underestimate of sensitivity. It uses expressions like “has implications for” and “might”. If it was arguing that the curvilinear relationship between net-flux and temperature was a known quantity, then, given the very poor regional calibration of the models, I would have to agree with you.

        For the record, I will state that I have seen no evidence outside the models to support a pronouncedly curved net flux-temperature relationship, but application of first principles (high heat capacity in the polar oceans, latent heat requirements for icemelt, low polar Planck response as a starting point, high potential for positive feedback and polar temperature amplification) suggests that we cannot rule out the possibility.

      • Thanks Paul, I agree that all estimates of sensitivity from the LGM should be treated with caution. What is interesting about the Annan estimate is that it is so much lower than previous estimates, calling into question Hansen’s estimate for example.

      • A couple of other points:

        1. Asymmetry between warming and cooling is not applicable here because Annan compares LGM to today and that is a warming.

        2. I actually believe that Annan is hedging his bets and says so. He basically wants to err on the high side. And then we must not forget that he probably doesn’t want to get too askew with the team who have been known to punish dissenters. Annan’s discussion of uniform priors is rather couragous however and seems to point to the IPCC estimates being quite a bit too high.

  55. Tomas Milanovic

    BartR

    Illustrate the chaotic nature of centennial scale climate sensitivity, if you hope to make your assertions relevant to centennial scale climate sensitivity.

    BartR yours is a very ill defined question. It probably means that you don’t really know how non linear dynamics work.
    It is not a parameter (sensitivity, temperature, pressure, whatever)that is said to be chaotic, it is the system’s dynamics that are or are not chaotic.
    This has nothing to do with time scales at all.
    If you take a turbulent flow or the Lorenz convection, if they are in a chaotic regime, you may observe them for 1 day or 1 million years and they will still stay chaotic.
    What you may mean with “scales” is actually “averages” implying that a system in a chaotic regime may have some invariant time window above which an average of some (all ?) state parameters stop being chaotic.
    This is not even wrong.

    As you want an illustration, I will sketch a proof (detail available in every good textbook on non linear dynamics) that if a system is chaotic then all time averages are chaotic too.
    The definition of a chaotic system of dimension N (there are N independent degrees of freedom) is that there exists at least one positive Lyapounov coefficient.
    This translates mathematically what the popular wisdom calls the “butterfly effect”.

    Then for at least one Xn(t) we have :
    Xn[Xn(0)+δX,t]-Xn[Xn(0),t] = g(Xn(0) ).e^(λ.t) with λ positive (Eq1)
    This the fact that 2 dynamical orbits that start with a small difference δX in the phase space will be exponentially diverging with a rate which is the Lyapounov coefficient λ.
    Of course when the distance between the orbits reaches the size of the attractor, other folding processes kick in.
    But we are interested here only by the sign of λ not by the description of the whole dynamics.
    g(Xn(0)) is some function of the initial conditions.
    Now let’s define a time average of this variable Xn over some arbitrary time interval T by : XAn[Xn(0),t]=1/T∫ Xn(τ)dτ
    taking the integral from t to t+T what makes a running average

    Last compute XAn[Xn(0)+δX,t] – XAn[Xn(0),t] which is the difference between 2 averages of 2 orbits starting initially δX apart.
    And you will find that :
    XAn[Xn(0)+δX,t] – XAn[Xn(0),t] = f(Xn(0)) . e^(λ.t) where f is some function of the initial conditions.
    But this is nothing else than Eq1 for the time average XAn of the variable Xn.
    And as λ is positive, the time averages are also chaotic independently of the averaging time period. This is what means the often told and seldom understood statement : A chaotic system is chaotic at all time scales

    While this indeed proves the impossibility to predict averages of chaotic systems any better than the instantaneous values, it doesn’t say anything about eventual invariant stochastical properties (but to understand this addendum one must know what are chaotic and ergodic systems.

    Translated to weather (which is a chaotic system), this illustrates why time averages of weather are also (necesssarily) chaotic.

    • What a bunch of irrelevant nonsense.

      Take a pot of water and place it at room temperature. It essentially just sits there. Start heating it up and then it will start to boil and roil.

      It doesn’t matter what the miniscule chaotic perturbations are as long as we do not put extra energy into the system. When we do absorb the external energy, that’s when larger excursions take place. Number one, things get hotter, and number two, we can watch the fluctuations get more extreme. This works on all scales, from a pot of water to the large object we call the earth.

      I am a fan of math but not of “foo fud” math, written only to clutter and deceive.

      I could easily take the example of a random walk process and show how the variance goes to infinity. This has nothing to do with chaos, but is just as mathematically valid. In the real world, random walks usually have a reversion-to-the-mean such that the variance of the process is bounded (see Ornstein-Uhlenbeck).

      Tomas is wrong on both accounts: not getting the intuitive behavior correct, and cherry-picking the math to sway opinion. If some viewpoint required proof that monkeys could spontaneously fly out of a human’s rear end, Tomas would volunteer with nonsense math to show that not only could it happen, but the number of monkeys is unlimited!

      • A fan of *MORE* discourse

        WebHubTelescope opines  Tomas’ [post] is wrong on both accounts: (1) not getting the intuitive behavior correct, and (2) cherry-picking the math.

        LOL … your post is correct on both counts, WebHubTelescope!

        By adding a third count “(3) discounting scientific consensus as the conspiracy of a cabal” we concisely summarize the primary elements of hysterical denialist cognition (of which this week’s frothing Watts/WUWT denialist hysteria is a prime example)!

        Meanwhile, Nature is speaking to us loud-and-clear, eh?

        Kudos to the scientists who are listening to her!

        \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

    • I rather think that only a few would understand how non-linear dynamics work. I am puzzled as to why WHT gets so angry when Tomas makes a comment because the new areas of potential research that is opened up has the potential to make considerable progress in a very deadlocked area of science.

      It must be something to do with his frustration at the lack of acceptance given him for his ideas to date. While I indeed find many of his thoughts to be interesting and worthy of consideration, his general attitude to the ideas of other contributors has in fact alienated him from the debate.

      I have visited his website from time to time and note with some bemusement that he has seen fit to include me in his list of climate clowns, on the basis of my thoughts on Tesla and the 2nd Law of TD which has little to do with any crackpot theory on climate change that I can determine.

      Nevertheless, I am indeed flattered to be included on this list because there are quite a number of people on there whose views I sincerely appreciate and whose personalities (as shown by their comments) are more amenable to that of mine.

    • Tomas Milanovic | March 14, 2013 at 8:36 am |

      With all due respect, you mistake in your interpretation what I suggest, as even a pot of boiling water example calls this kettle black. (Though I thank you for your very learned discussion of what you believed I said.)

      To clarify: I do not propose that a.) somehow systems at longer time scales make component systems at lesser time scales “unchaotic” as your (very unkind, I hope unintentionally) straw man suggests and then very compellingly disproves; but, b.) that larger systems characterized by longer time scales which never themselves have the property of being chaotic are not automatically chaotic regimes because shorter time scale component phenomena within them are.

      A pot of water (a) taken as a whole when treated with respect to heating is in the simplest cases not chaotic as a whole. It takes a very long time, relative to the timescales of the paths of bubbles (b) roiling within it, for the pot to come to a boil, which time is predictable if inputs are known, even while the paths of bubbles are very likely unpredictable in any dimension other than the vertical.

      Clearly, a global climate regime on a time scale of greater than a century and involving the mixing and cyclic properties of weather in some 50 smaller regions is not the same as the 50 smaller regional weather regimes or any pairwise teleconnections of such regional weather regimes, and we do not yet know if for such a global climate system initial weather conditions greatly alter climate outcomes for fixed inputs, all other things held equal. It’s a mistake to equate a system of subsystems with the subsystems themselves, or to hold that even the chaotic nature of the subsystems is inherited by the system.

      Likewise, while we cannot contemplate predicting the path of any one bubble in a boiling pot of water, only some of the properties of the bubbles could be said to be chaotic. Certainly the tendency of bubbles to grow until they pop as heating time increases is ascertainable, as is the upwards tendency due bouyancy; the optical properties of bubbles is not affected by the horizontal chaos of their trajectory through the fluid. We’re not obliged to give up the things we can know because there are things we can’t.

    • The global coupled atmosphere–ocean–land–cryosphere system exhibits a wide range of physical and dynamical phenomena with associated physical, biological, and chemical feedbacks that collectively result in a continuum of temporal and spatial variability. The traditional boundaries between weather and climate are, therefore, somewhat artificial. The large-scale climate, for instance, determines the environment for microscale (1 km or less) and mesoscale (from several kilometers to several hundred kilometers) processes that govern weather and local climate, and these small-scale processes likely have significant impacts on the evolution of the large-scale circulation (Fig. 1; derived from Meehl et al. 2001). Hurrell et al 2009

      I refuse to even contemplate boiling water as a climate analogy.

      Chaos is a not a theory of cause and effect – there is no chaotic mechanism that causes warming or cooling. It is an approach to understanding the behaviour of complex and dynamical systems. In the real world the climate system has many interacting components as James Hurrell says – and the continuum of spatial and temporal variability on very small to immense scales change the energy dynamics of the planet. It does this as ice, cloud, snow, dust and biology interact and respond chaotically to small variations in energy inputs producing abrupt and nonlinear change in the system. Ice, snow, rain, vegetation changes in abrupt shifts into and out of glacials is the prime example – although there are smaller and less persistent shifts in the instrumental record.

      Weather has been known to be chaotic since Edward Lorenz discovered the ‘butterfly effect’ in the 1960’s. Abrupt climate change on the other hand was thought to have happened only in the distant past and so climate was expected to evolve steadily over this century in response to ordered climate forcing.

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

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

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

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

      I quite like math – but much prefer data. And especially as much of climate – and scienc and engineering more generally – goes beyond what can be mathematically characterised by simple means. As Einstein said – much of what can be counted doesn’t and much that can’t be counted does. This is really a matter of a drunken Bart giving up looking for his keys under the lamp post. Instead – it suggests some more realistic methods for finding the climate key.

      • Robert I Ellison | March 14, 2013 at 5:52 pm |

        You may find, eventually, that a joke no one but you laughed at the first forty times you told it doesn’t get funnier to other people the next forty times. There certainly are enough examples within your posts for you to develop a probability distribution function on how you miss the mark that way.

        Likewise, you may find, eventually, that increasing obscuritanism does not increase the clarity you would hope to communicate.

        You’re not posting cleverly witty ripostes. Just insults, and not even apt ones. You’re not posting clear references and examples, just inappropriate and indecipherable digressions. Your refrains are repetitive without being rhythmic or poetic.

        Put another way: TL/DR.

      • Bart – there is no ad hom here at all – on my part at least. The reference is of course to the drunk looking for keys under the lampost because that is where the light is. .

        The implication of course is that you are looking in the wrong place for an uderstanding of climate.

        The meaning of the parable is that the application of innaplicable methods in science simply because those are the methods we have – guarantees failure.

        But I note that your insulting and dismissive comment is in the usual tone of your comments to any denizen.

      • And too long/didn’t read is deeply ironic for a person of your garrulous proclivities. But it is not all you Bart.

      • That is not all about you. Is that a surprise? So sad too bad.

  56. Just a short comment on Tung and Zhou’s paper where they say:

    “For the first half of the 20th century, the solar contribution to the linear trend was less than 10%. It does not support the much larger role (>50%) for the Sun in the observed warming, obtained by Scafetta and West by attributing early 20th-century warming to solar forcing.”

    This is non-sense.

    They arrive to such a conclusion by using the AMO signal as a regression constructor of the temperature. This is physically inappropriate because the AMO signal is part of the climate system and, even worst, of the temperature network itself, not an independent forcing of the climate system. It is like as if somebody uses as regression constructor, instead of the AMO index, the temperature of China and then concludes that the sun does not matter because most of the variability of the global temperature would be reproduced by the Chinese temperature record!

    In my recent publication that Tung and Zhou does not cite, I provide evidences that the natural oscillations of the climate system such as the quasi 60-year oscillation of the AMO index is a typical astronomical/solar oscillation. Thus, the origin itself of the AMO oscillation (as well as many other climatic oscillations) is very likely due to solar activity.

    See here for details:

    http://people.duke.edu/~ns2002/#astronomical_model

    Just a few articles on the topic:

    Scafetta N., and R. C. Willson, 2013. Planetary harmonics in the historical Hungarian aurora record (1523–1960). Planetary and Space Science

    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0032063313000081

    Scafetta N., 2012. Multi-scale harmonic model for solar and climate cyclical variation throughout the Holocene based on Jupiter-Saturn tidal frequencies plus the 11-year solar dynamo cycle. Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics 80, 296-311.

    http://people.duke.edu/~ns2002/pdf/ATP3581.pdf

    Scafetta N., 2012. Testing an astronomically based decadal-scale empirical harmonic climate model versus the IPCC (2007) general circulation climate models. Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics 80, 124-137

    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1364682611003385

    Scafetta N., 2010. Empirical evidence for a celestial origin of the climate oscillations and its implications. Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics 72, 951-970.

    http://people.duke.edu/~ns2002/pdf/ATP3162.pdf

    • I agree. The multidecadal oscillation is very similar everywhere (global, SST, AMO, global land, NH, SH or China). It’s in the plain sight.

  57. Tomas Milanovic

    BartR

    I do not propose that a.) somehow systems at longer time scales make component systems at lesser time scales “unchaotic” as your (very unkind, I hope unintentionally) straw man suggests and then very compellingly disproves; but, b.) that larger systems characterized by longer time scales which never themselves have the property of being chaotic are not automatically chaotic regimes because shorter time scale component phenomena within them are.

    Sorry but you make less and less sense.
    Why instead of writing pages of words talking about bubbles in a pot (what is totally irrelevant to what I wrote), you don’t put a few equations?
    It would be much shorter and absolutely non ambiguous.

    For instance what I have proven (and it is really basic textbook knowledge of non linear dynamics) was that IF a system is chaotic THEN it is chaotic on all time scales (e.g to spell it clearly, on large time scales too).
    So what this proves is exactly the contrary to what you wrote in your a).
    It proves that if a variable Xn (think temperature, pressure etc) is chaotic at a short time scale then its average at a large time scale is chaotic too.
    E.g weather is chaotic (short time scale) so weather time averages (large time scales) are chaotic too.
    The fact that you so completely misunderstood the proof actually suggests that you are either very confused about the issue or that you didn’t read my post. Which is it?

    Now to your b).
    This is magical thinking but one shared by several posters here.
    It says basically that regardless of what’s happening with the system’s dynamics, there may be (is?) a magical time scale (in your case a century) where the natural laws stop working and are substituted by some other contradictory laws.

    For instance you write larger systems characterized by longer time scales which never themselves have the property of being chaotic.
    This is not even a correctly formed let alone true statement. The time scales have no chaotic or non chaotic properties, the dynamics of the system do or do not.
    What that means is what I wrote in Eq1. Do you see any “time scale” in Eq1? No you don’t. What you see instead are the dynamical degrees of freedom (Xn) and the Lyapounov spectrum.
    What these do in time (Xn(t)) is what defines the dynamics. In other words the chaotic property of a system’s dynamics is independent of time scales.
    The natural laws (in our case Navier Stokes and radiative transfer) are always local. When you want to know what happens at large space and time scales, you integrate the local laws. This is what the radiative transfer does, this is what the GCM do, this is what every physicists does. So what happens at large time and space scales is always given by a process of integration starting with small spaces (dV) and small times (dt). As the chaotic property (e.g Eq1) is independent of time and space scales, it is conserved by integration.
    A typical example showing how this works or doesn’t work is statistical thermodynamics. It starts with molecules and fundamental conservation laws. It adds an isotropy and homogeneity hypothesis (technically energy equipartition) and derives f.ex the Maxwell Boltzmann macroscopic velocity distribution. From the process emerge new macroscopic variables of state (temperature, pressure) which are of course related to the microscopic properties of individual molecules (velocity, energy) and to their distribution.
    But now try to drop the isotropy and homogeneity hypothesis and everything crashes down – the MB distribution works only when the isotropy and homogeneity are a reasonable approximation for the system we consider.
    Of course with the weather and its averages we are not at all in the same situation and that’s why analogies to statistical thermodynamics only show deep misunderstanding of physics. The attempt at a treatment analogous to statistical thermodynamics has already been made 70 years ago by Kolmogorov and it failed so one would expect that people who pretend to talk about physics had enough time to read and learn these basics.
    Why it failed? Well because fluids’ degrees of freedom are neither isotropic nor homogeneous. Navier Stokes shows a cascade of vortexes which exchange energy and momentum. But these vortexes are not molecules. There is no equivalent to MB velocity or energy distribution. In some extremely limited cases and on small space scales it allows to treat turbulence statistically but this is anecdotic. Just get it – fluid dynamics and statistical thermodynamics are totally different domains.
    So now if you want to understand all that precedes and have an informed discussion about non linear dynamics in general and chaotic systems in particular, do your home work – start with Hamiltonian mechanics and finish with a good textbook on chaos theory.
    If you don’t want to do that then avoid please writing really meaningless sentences like your a) and b) I quoted. They only mislead gullible people and make laugh the rest.

    • Tomy said

      “and make laugh the rest”

      Ha ha ha ha. Tell Peter Davies I am not angry, I am laughing.

      • English is one of several languages that Tomas is conversant with and like any reasonable person I let any grammatical errors go through to the keeper. Bart is correct in noting that civilised discourse should always endeavour to move the debate forward and that the exercise of some degree of empathy by blog readers would normally be in order. WHT has again demonstrated that he is an unreasonable person who has absolutely no empathy whatsoever.

      • Tomy he funny, ha ha ha.

        I am laughing not about his grammar but on the ruse that he is perpetrating on a small cross-section of people interested in this topic.

        Chaos is a perturbation on the characteristics we are measuring, and turns out to be a zero-sum game. The external forcing stimulation is what will set things in motion in a specific warming direction. Chaos can be gathered under the disorder heading and quantified by PDFs and other uncertainty quantification approaches.

        So why does he say this about what Bart wrote “They only mislead gullible people and make laugh the rest.”, other than to divert attention from the perpetual motion machine he is creating with his unbounded chaotic mechanism?

        Does not everyone laugh at perpetrators of perpetual motion machines? The chief, tomass, and all these other cranks have you pranked. On this commenting site, cranks pull pranks, and they have got you going — going to the extent that you will actually defend them.

      • Webster, “Chaos is a perturbation on the characteristics we are measuring, and turns out to be a zero-sum game.” I likely is over the right time frame, for all practical purposes, but it doesn’t have to be. The issue is the timing of the ocean mixing which can create the century and longer pseudo-cycles.

        http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/1324186/

        http://www.gfdl.noaa.gov/cms-filesystem-action?file=user_files/a1g/deboer_jpo_feb-2010.pdf

        http://www.gfdl.noaa.gov/bibliography/related_files/jrt9502.pdf

        So if you are looking for the ocean “pipeline” 300 to 700 years down the road, you are likely to be in a totally different “regime” due to orbital variations which are considered chaotic. 312 years for the oceans to warm 0.7 to 1 C degree is just a touch outside most of the model estiamtes.

    • Tomas Milanovic | March 15, 2013 at 7:04 am |

      You make excellent sense, and I applaud your call for the sort of rigor I am not demonstrating. Indeed, my comments are not mathematically robust. They’re only ordinary comments to the ordinary standard of daily communication among laymen. Which is a different standard.

      For instance, in ordinary communication among laymen, it is conventional to extend goodwill when interpreting that what is written — where ambiguous — has a meaning that favors the apparent argument of the writer, not one that is abstracted and made so unlike that original author’s patent intention as to become a straw man. While mathematicians tolerate, and even applaud, the practice of enforcing rigor by attacking ambiguity shamelessly, ordinary laymen don’t conduct themselves in this way in good faith.

      Frustrating, I know. Took me years to learn this lesson of social graces outside of the rigor-loving halls of academic mathematics and sciences. I still, clearly, struggle with good faith reading and goodwill issues. It’s not easy to overcome the habit of decades just to write in a way that will move discussion forwards among others who do not have such habits.

      I believe our host has made a similar transition, as I observe her goodwill toward what is, after all, a completely rigor-free, logic-free, reason-free mish-mash at WUWT allows Dr. Curry to listen to and consider and even sometimes agree with such opposite-to-predicated conclusions as she is from time to time noted to publish and testify to.

      Nevertheless.

      Any mathematician who argues that he has effectively communicated a model of a physical phenomenon or class of phenomena in an equation or set of equations while specific, clear and patent examples of the phenomena diverge from the mathematicians results has failed. What you claim makes no sense. What I claim, though lacking rigor and equations, might be wrong.. but you’ve failed to show that as your argument is invalid.

      You have assumed similarity of weather with climate, creating a straw man, in your argument. The world is full of examples of case after case after case where your assumption is demonstrably false. Your equations, for all their narrow rigor, are true only within your invalid assumptions and false premise.

      Likewise, you make a bold and false claim about the conventional treatment within mathematics of time properties. We know — at least I assume you know; lacking examples of your broader writings in the field, I am bereft of basis to conclude any mathematical expertise on your part and that basis thins with every posting you make — from the study of time series that time scale is a signature property of smoothed curves, reliably differentiating noise from signal, filtering the chaos-spawned deviations of shorter spans from the orderly and predictive trends of longer in some cases, or revealing orderly progressions at shorter spans to fail to correspond with long term predictability.

      The bad faith application of a well-crafted equation is no more enlightening than the bad fail application of ordinary language.

      Since you ask it in the form of an equation:

      Let A be a member of the set of all statements that inherit invalidity. Let inherent invalidity be a property of all statements derived from the operator “->>” or “based only on”.

      A ->> B

      Therefore, B is a member of the set of all statements that inherit invalidity.

      If you have trouble following that, I refer you to Halmos’ Naive Set Theory.

      • BartR I consider that blog discourse is not an appropriate place for the type of rigour with which that Tomas has explained himself and that he should leave this type of discussion for an academic paper or thesis.

        I agree with your views on good faith in blog writing and in giving the other guy a fair go at putting his views across. We cant all be right all the time.

      • “is not an appropriate place”

        PD is a concern troll. Anyone who uses the word “appropriate” in a subjective sense is a concern troll.

      • Tomas wrote in one of his comments

        Of course when the distance between the orbits reaches the size of the attractor, other folding processes kick in.

        This is the key and this makes essentially everything else that he has written in this thread rather irrelevant. Those who believe that we can project changes in climate think that the size of the attractor is small enough for that.

        That the system is chaotic in the mathematical sense described by Tomas does not mean at all that the chaoticity is relevant for all issues. In particular it’s relevance may be highly different for issues considered at different time scales. That the relevance depends on the time scale is what ordinary people (i.e. non-sophists) mean, when they consider chaoticity as dependent on time scales or combinations of time scales and spatial scales.

        Noting that the atmosphere is a chaotic system does not by itself tell at all, how relevant that observation is. To be more specific:

        - It’s not an essential impediment for short term weather forecasts.

        - It’s a very essential impediment for long term weather forecasts.

        - It may or may not be essential for climate projections. It’s very likely that it’s not an as essential impediment for them as for long term weather forecasts, but how badly it affects our ability to find out the relationship between forcings and future climate is not well known.

      • Another important issue is the interplay between stochasticity and chaoticity. While a purely chaotic system that follows exactly certain dynamic equations is non-ergodic, a little stchasticity may turn it ergodic. That’s likely to be true for a simple attractor but not necessarily for every case. In practice we may expect that averages do, indeed, behave much less chaotically that momentary values. Here again the pure mathematics of Tomas is just misleading. The real world does not follow chaos theory.

        Furthermore the essential properties of a chaotic system may be perfectly predictable for practical purposes, while those of another non-chaotic system may be highly unpredictable for various reasons. Whether a system is chaotic or not is not the most important factor for predictability.

      • WHT is IMO a true troll of the worst kind; operating under the cloak of anonymity and contributing very little of value to Judith’s blog. He trawls through the commentary looking for irrelevant points upon which he finds some sort of pathological satisfaction in using them to try to disrupt the thread. In fact, I find WHT is an inappropriate person to discourse with and he (?) now joins a very short list of other obnoxious nonentities that I avoid like the plague.

      • Pekka, Non-ergodic and ergodic systems can coexist. That would lead me to believe you need to pick your battles wisely. The ocean dynamics are eating the models alive.

      • Peter davies

        +!

      • ‘This is the key and this makes essentially everything else that he has written in this thread rather irrelevant. Those who believe that we can project changes in climate think that the size of the attractor is small enough for that.’

        The language of chaos can be extremely misleading abstract. Folding and tearing are euphemisms for regions of chaotic bifurcation – see for instance – http://www.scholarpedia.org/article/Chaos_topology

        Here is an image of the Lorenz strange attractor. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Lorenz_attractor_yb.svg

        Each point represents a solution to a set of equations as the solution evolves through time. The solution shifts from now and then from one phase space – the wing of the butterfly – on the topology of the strange attractor to the other through the fold bifurcation. Climate behaves like these nonlinear equations in the sense that it is a chaotic system but climate is not a set of equations and analogising from equations to climate is likely to be utterly misleading. Climate has physical dimensions for instance – clouds, ice, snow, biology etc – in which stochasticity has no validity. There is no randomness in reality but always cause and effect.

        Pekka is suggesting that climate may not bifurcate in the coming century – but to look at that theory is insufficient and we need to interrogate the data of climate change.

        The timing of climate shifts – bifurcationn – in the modern era is discussed here – http://www.quadrant.org.au/blogs/doomed-planet/2010/02/ellison

        Lorenz has another surprise for those who would predict – the models are based on nonlinear equations and thus within the region of feasible inputs and breadth of coupling there are many solutions and forecasts can only be based on the breadth of the solution space and the probability of any particular solution within it. Models can only plausibly produce a probability distribution function in ways that have not yet been perfected.

      • Pekka, I believe you are right. Chaos does not necessarily imply unpredictability. However, it probably does imply significant uncertainty. The question is how do we find out? I see no work on this in the climate science community. Indeed there seems to be some evidence that as climate models become more complex, the uncertainty may be growing. This is easy to explain. If the system becomes more nonlinear and has more parameters, then its likely that tuning those parameters becomes more complex exponentially and the chances of bifurcations increases. Further as the scales of the processes modeled become smaller, computational cost also goes through the roof.

  58. ‘Any mathematician who argues that he has effectively communicated a model of a physical phenomenon or class of phenomena in an equation or set of equations while specific, clear and patent examples of the phenomena diverge from the mathematicians results has failed.’

    Arm waving doesn’t count as specific examples. All time series in climate are non-stationary. Mean and variance shift unpredictably. The situation is shown by Ghil here.

    Loking at some real ENSO data over 11,000 years.

    Means shift on decadal scales – eg http://www.documentation.ird.fr/hor/fdi:010048189

    But they also shift on much longer scales as seen in the Moy 2002 proxy.

    Perturbations in the climate system cause planetary energy budgets to change as ice, snow, cloud and biology change across the planet. Reflected shortwave is a nonstationary series as albedo shifts in abrupt and non-linear steps.

    Here some cloud and SST in the northe east Pacific – http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=Clementetal2009.png

    Cloud changes stepwise with the PDO in the 1970′s and at the end of the century. So the mean and the variance is different for different periods. Global hydrology changes stepwise and much for the same cause.

    Will climate evolve steadily over this century – as in the Ghil Figure a? Very unlikely.

    • Call him Chief RainMan. He thinks he’s an excellent driver.

      • In general this shows an inability to consider physical data on the climate system – and a well understood propensity to shoot his mouth off before engaging what passes for intellect. The perfect confabulation.

        What’s the matter webby – can’t sleep? To many Chiefs to correct on the interweb?

        It is 4.23pm here on a Saturday afternoon – I have my laptop on my lap and an entire season of Primeval in the video. I’m good to go – I think I will grab a drink. I have a six pack of nice boutique cider in the fridge. Feel free to continue your sleepless raving while I grab one.

      • Be careful when you grab something out of the refrigerator.

        You might burn yourself.

        What a putz.

      • No – nicely chilled thanks to the wonders of modern life. Thanks for your concern and for the monster raving.

      • Chief is pulling the prank that adding a warming stimulus will create a higher albedo (i.e. insolation reflecitivity) and thus cause a cooling.

        This is the wrong direction for land albedo changes. The cloud albedo changes are less certain but at best they can only reduce the positive feedback of the increasing GHG effect of higher water vapor concentrations (specific humidity) with increasing temperature.

      • The slowdown of MOC seems likely with potential ice an snow feedbacks. Clouds have varied in recent decades considerably more than theoretical values of greenhouse gas forcing. These are secular changes related more to sea surface temperature than oherwise.

        There are feedback mechanisms that cause sudden shifts from warm to cool conditions. What these are is not known with much depth – but they must exist. Nearing a precessional minimum – conditions are in place for a sudden shift in climate.

        We are on the threshold on Bond Event Zero – a 1000 year high point. Webby’s simplistic silliness doesn’t mean much at all.

      • What an alarmist you are.

        “Nearing a precessional minimum – conditions are in place for a sudden shift in climate. “

        So generate a derivative to show how fast this is changing. You imply that this is happening at an alarming rate.

        Skippy Peanut Butter is the pranking doomer alarmist.

      • The orbital parameters set up conditons for runaway feedbacks in the climate system. At a point a small change in a control variable will result in a discontiuous shift in behaviour.

  59. ‘Since you ask it in the form of an equation:

    Let A be a member of the set of all statements that inherit invalidity. Let inherent invalidity be a property of all statements derived from the operator “->>” or “based only on”.

    A ->> B

    Therefore, B is a member of the set of all statements that inherit invalidity.

    If you have trouble following that, I refer you to Halmos’ Naive Set Theory.’

    I can follow it but it goes round and round in circles and I get dizzy and fall over.

  60. ‘So why does he say this about what Bart wrote “They only mislead gullible people and make laugh the rest.”, other than to divert attention from the perpetual motion machine he is creating with his unbounded chaotic mechanism?’

    Chaos occurs in systems that have multiple subsystems – they are complex – and that evolve dynamically through time. One subsystem changes impacting on another and the changes propagate through the system. The result is abrupt and nonlinear change. The system flucuates wildly and then settles into a new state. There are tremendous energies cascading through powerful subsystems. This is the core of climate behaviour – this is how it works as opposed to linear ideas of ‘control knobs’. The two ideas are utterly incompatible and only one can be correct. It seems fairly evident on overwhelmng evidence that chaos in climate at all scales in time and space is the new climate paradigm.

    Ironically – this implies large sensitivity at points of climate shifts. Ongoing changes – such as CO2 – push the system past a threshold and the entire system – including the energy dynamics at toa – shifts. It is impossible to know how the system will respond to a steady incease in greenhouse gas forcing. The idea that on average it will be warmer does not hold water if the chaotic, nonlinear changes overwhelm warming. For instance – with
    a couple of percent change in albedo. There are risks at both extremes of warming and cooling. If the warmists understood this – that would be something at least and perhaps we might then move on.

    Once you have the data it is possible to do statisitical analysis but it is impossible to predict at this stage when shifts will occur or to what state. There are some approaches – e.g. Dakos et al 2008.

  61. Tung and Zhou reinforce the old adage that mathematicians cannot be relied upon to make geophsyical attributions. Starting from a naive acceptance of HADCRUT4 and CET as unflawed representations of temperature variations on global and regional scales they rely upon model results of the impacts of solar and variability. What is is most surprising, however, is their lack of greater mathematical circumspection re their working hypotheses that anything beyond multidecadal cycles constitutes an “anthropogenic trend.” Surely as mathematicians they must be be aware thas irregular quasi-millenial cycles would be difficult to distinguish from such “trends. “

    • John S. I don’t they they are. They are focusing so hard on one tiny piece of the puzzle they are missing the big pieces.

      • But even their assumption that multidecadal oscillations of CET can be used to extend the AMO series temporally and then be projected globally flies in the face of empirical evidence. The cross-spectral squared coherence between CET and AMO at the corresponding frequencies is only ~0.6, which scarcely makes for reliable extrapolations. And CET itself is even less coherent with globally averaged temperatures.

      • At issue here is the multidecadal oscillations, which are very weakly represented in the systematically biased BEST reults.

      • JohnS. “At issue here is the multidecadal oscillations, which are very weakly represented in the systematically biased BEST reults.”

        Actually, BEST Tmin does the multi-decadal oscillations justice. CET and some of the BEST locations near the oceans or on islands with prevailing winds off the oceans make very good proxies for the “global” long term trends. They do seem to have problems in the far southern hemisphere where i would think interpolation across latitudes would be a pure beyatch, but on the whole I think BEST is pretty impressive.

        Most of the noise is in the Tmax in all the surface station data sets . Once Mosher get through checking dirty laundry, he may fine time to do a near water surface station data set that should be interesting.

      • Capt. D:

        The results of cross-spectrum analysis undermine your contention of BEST “doing multidecadal oscillations justice.” Not only are those oscillations severely muted, compared to results from validated, largely intact, century-long station series world-wide, but the coherence is unimpressive and the phase is shifted in a way strongly suggestive of corruption by aclimatic UHI effects. Such systemic discrepancies cannot be remedied by the means you suggest.

      • JohnS, i guess that depends on what one considers the real natural oscillations.

        There is roughly a 60 year pseudo-cycle on a 100 plus year secular trend of about 0.7C degrees from what I see. The 60 year trend has a range of about 0.3 C globally, higher in the North Atlantic since it is THC related.

        That is BEST Iceland

        and Kaplan not detrended AMO

        The THC fluctuations are mainly driven by the Antarctic Circumpolar Current and have a pretty long deep time scale and a faster near surface time scale the creates a lot of unpredictability.

        If you use BEST “Global” it is not all that great because of the Southern polar region, but regionally it is pretty solid.

        If you want a real “global” temperature, that would be from 90N to 55S because of the Antarctic thermal isolation.

        http://redneckphysics.blogspot.com/2013/03/the-isolation-of-southern-pole.html

        It is fun to watch a few climate science folks try to make the Antarctic behave though :)

      • Captn. D:

        I base my stated conclusions on quantitative measures, not qualitative impressions, diligently obtained by analyzing bona fide station records, rather than statistically manufactured time series such as BEST’s. The multidecadal oscillations srongly evident in world-wide station averages are by no means ubiquitous throughout the globe. What is nearly ubiquitous are the many discrepancies of cycle and trend surreptitiously introduced by BEST’s methodology, which assumes a spatial homogeneity of (offset) regional time series that exists only in academic dreams. Their results cannot be relied upon for serious scientific work.

        It is a mistake to attribute the various multidecadal oscillations evident around the globe to THC. Even in the North Atlantic, the poleward heat transport and attendant long-term variations of SST are not density-driven. Along with the upwelling off Antarctica and the great oceanic gyres in both hemispheres, the driving force comes from surface winds. Not wishing to take this discussion too far off-topic, I will not comment further here on points that you raise.

  62. Let’s break down the drum Jim Cripwell’s been beating for the past decade:

    410
    Physicist F. James Cripwell, a former scientist with UK’s Cavendish Laboratory in Cambridge who worked under the leading expert in infra red spectroscopy — Sir Gordon Sutherland – and worked with the Operations Research for the Canadian Defense Research Board, recently dissented from man-made climate change fears. “It seems fair to believe that this new model (from the UK’s Climate Research Unit) assumes that if CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere increase, temperatures will go up. Since some of us know this is wrong, it seems quite likely that the 2008 forecast will be as badly wrong as the 2007 one was. What will the media do then? Maybe if the Northwest Passage does not open up this summer, as seems quite likely, people may start to realize that AGW (Anthropogenic Global warming) is a myth,” Cripwell wrote to CCNET on January 8, 2008. In a note to CCNET on April 7, 2006, Cripwell explained, “I am reminded of a quite well-known commercial in North America from Wendy’s, ‘Where’s the beef?’ When it comes to the [UN] IPCC claim that the increased level of CO2 in the atmosphere is the cause of global warming, where’s the science?” Cripwell continued, “Throughout the discussion of doubling the concentration of CO2, there is absolutely no reference to the concentrations of CO2 in the atmosphere over which the increased amount of radiative forcing is supposed to increase linearly when the concentration of CO2 doubles. Presumably if you halved the concentration of CO2, you would decrease the radiative forcing by some linear amount. If you go on halving the CO2 concentration, then as the concentration of CO2 approached zero, it would appear that the CO2 was rapidly cooling the earth!! Clearly any claim that the doubling of the CO2 concentration results in a linear increase in the level of radiative forcing can have no credibility unless the range of CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere, over which the relationship is claimed to exist, is clearly established from sound scientific principles.” Cripwell concluded, “If there is no scientific basis for the claim that doubling the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere increases the radiative forcing linearly, then any claim to put a numerical value on this increase has no basis in science. Such a number, e.g. 4 Wm-2, is irrelevant and meaningless. I am reminded of a discussion I had many years ago on the differences between astronomy and astrology. Both use the same data of the relative positions and motions of the earth, sun, moon, planets and stars; both have long complex calculations; both result in numerical answers. In the case of astronomy, the numbers have a scientific meaning; in the case of astrology, they do not. It seems to me that this claim of doubling the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere resulting in a linear addition to the radiative forcing is more akin to astrology than it is to astronomy.” (LINK) In another interview in 2005, Cripwell said, “Whatever is causing warming, it is not an increase in levels of carbon dioxide. A more plausible theory is that it is water put into high altitudes by aircraft; this would have roughly the same time line,” Cripwell said. (LINK)

    (source: http://able2know.org/topic/44061-834)

    Jim Cripwell is demanding ab initio reconstruction of the definition not just of the term “Climate Sensitivity”, but also of “measurement”, “current”, and pretty much every syllable of any statement regarding any claim discussing Climate Sensitivity.

    Outrageously, over the same duration Dr. Cripwell has mendaciously abandoned his ability to recognize AGW, with the full implication of Risks of a non-catastrophic nature, vulnerabilities of a key but non-catastrophic type, or any other topic associated with AGW that doesn’t equal world doom.. yet he has never demanded ab initio evidence from those who changed his religion from orthodox AGW denial to reform CAGW obstructionism.

    To be a bit fair, Jim Cripwell has come a long way of late in altering his intransigent position. He’s moved from denying that an increase from 0 ppmv to 20 ppmv CO2 would have any effect on global temperature to acknowledging that it might. That’s progress. If only he would detail how the physical rules that he accepts from 0 to 20 arbitrarily cease to apply just because the current CO2 levels are the levels that are taking place today during his own lifetime. Is this Cripwell Thermal Abjuration Effect a quality of Time, Space, or Jim?

    Jim Cripwell assures us he is confident of his competence. It’s not his competence that his conduct draws into serious question across the blogosphere; his campaign calls into question only the character of a man so biased as to make unreasoning demands, deceptive demands, time and again, ducking at every point any effort on the part of those who make the time and take the trouble to engage him in his sophistic and sophomoric attempt at imposing the Socractic Method on people who are not his students and have not invited him to pretend to discuss while merely toying with them under false pretenses.

    Rule One of the Socratic Method: You May Not Lie. You can stage a question in such a way as to lay a trap, but you must yourself not engage in fallacy. Jim breaks, time and again this simple stricture. I get that he intends to ‘teach’. But his method is broken. And intrinsically rude when not performed upon students by explicitly acknowledged teachers.

    That’s the burr under my saddle. It’s that Jim, after all these years of living in the heart of Lanark, has not absorbed Canadian courtesy and fair play.

    Ab initio Climate Sensitivity? Absolutely there are issues with measurement of the components used in determining this ratio, little uniformity in definition, and little sign of consensus on how to arrive at a reliable systematic data gathering regime to address obvious concerns.

    Nor is there reason to believe vastly improving data gathering will ‘fix’ what may be an inherently uncertain ratio. Certainly some derivations of climate sensitivity show some fraction of slightly negative values based on observed CO2 concentrations and observed global temperatures. However, it is also possible to apply valid rules based on known mechanisms that deliver an adjusted Climate Sensitivity that is extremely robust statistically.

    It’s easy to feign ignorance and cling to fallacy. It’s also a black stain on one’s character to be a fake who annoys others for no good reason.

    • Meanwhile, as usual (Feynman),Sutherland is unable to comment. We have no way to know what he would say.

      He had students; they had students. How many of them are Jim Cripwells? One, apparently: Jim Cripwell.

    • “If you go on halving the CO2 concentration, then as the concentration of CO2 approached zero, it would appear that the CO2 was rapidly cooling the earth!!”

      Thanks Bart, interesting find.

      This is the work of the intentional misleaders. I suppose everyone has seen the fake proofs of how “1+1=1″.

      The halving argument is easy to dismiss, as the sensitivity always reduces to
      log(1+C/C0)
      for small enough C. One doesn’t see the lead factor in most cases, as it gets in the way of doing a quick doubling calculation.

      Isn’t the following also the most bizarre assertion, considering how persistent Cripwell is about “proving” a phenomena?

      “Whatever is causing warming, it is not an increase in levels of carbon dioxide. A more plausible theory is that it is water put into high altitudes by aircraft; this would have roughly the same time line,” Cripwell said.

      Facsinating the depths that they will go to and the time that they will spend spreading FUD and FOO to get their ya-yas out.

      • Web

        The halving argument is easy to dismiss, as the sensitivity always reduces to
        log(1+C/C0)

        “Always”?

        Let’s do a quick sanity check on that, Webby.

        As you can see, the observed past correlation using your equation is anything but robust.

        Differences between 30-year average temperatures follow a clear sine curve on a slightly sloped axis, while the log(1+(C1/C0)) CO2 concentration shows a gradual increase, accelerating from the mid-1960s to the 1990s and then increasing at a constant rate (figures after 1959 are based on actual Mauna Loa measurements, prior to 1959 on less reliable IPCC AR4 ice core estimates).

        About the only correlation you can see is that both CO2 and temperature have started out at a lower point and ended up at a higher point – but they followed totally uncorrelated paths getting there.

        Moral of the story: 2xCO2 sensitivity may be a factor, but there is something else driving global temperature, which is much more significant.

        Max

      • Max, You are injuring yourself with that analysis.

        The unity term is meant for the Co2 when it is closer to 1 PPM than 300 PPM.

        Try doing the integral of 1/x starting from zero rather than 1/(c+x).

        It is the result of avoiding a singularity that woul never actually exist !

        Pointless to teach a schleptic anything.

      • Webby

        Duh!

        You toss out an equation relating CO2 to climate sensitivity and then resort to back-pedaling when it turns out that this equation is bogus.

        Even your revised equation would show the same lack of robust correlation between CO2 concentration and global temperature, simply because your equation ignores natural forcing and variability factors which are much more significant than CO2.

        That’s the problem, Webby.

        And, no, you don’t have to “teach me” anything, pal.

        Just get your figures straight.

        Max

      • Webby

        Here’s the curve with your revised equation.

        The correlation between CO2 and temperature is still lousy to non-existent.

        The only common denominator is that they both start out lower than they end up.

        But they follow totally different paths getting there.

        Sort of a random walk.

        Max

      • Max, This is what the curve looks like using actual data and a 30 year average: http://img15.imageshack.us/img15/1821/logco230year.gif

        This assumes historical records of carbon emission together with sequestering response and a 3°C doubling to CO2 sensitivity. I compared against the BEST temperature reconstruction with 95% confidence intervals shaded.

        So that was my attempt at reconstructing a CO2-warmed history applying a 30 year averaging smoother.

        This is the BEST team’s equivalent simple fit model, which includes volcanic perturbations and only a 10-year average. http://berkeleyearth.org/images/decadal-with-forcing-small.png

        Please explain where both I and the BEST team have gone wrong. I believe my confidence intervals are bigger than BEST’s and so will have to update the data sets from their site.

      • Webby

        I’m not going to get into a “your curve versus my curve” p***ing contest with you.

        Sure, you can take 30% of the global temperature record and torture the CO2 data to try to make it fit (I’ve seen all these charts for the faithful on SkS, RC and other “believer” sites).

        But I simply took YOUR equation and plotted it, showing that YOUR CO2 log (C1/C0) versus dT on 30-year average global temperature did not correlate.

        ‘Nuff said.

        Max

      • Its Remarkable how best gets the timing wrong for Krakatau and Tarawera and miss the large elnino in the former.

        Krakatau whose forcing is twice that of Pinatubo 6WM^2 VS 3 and its effects are minimal in other datasets suggest there is a problem with either the datasets or the physics

      • Max, You better give me the source of the data that shows a CO2 bulge between 1930 and 1950.
        This does not show up in the carbon emissions data and if it is real, will exaggerate the temperature anomaly during the 1940′s.

        I hope that you wt try to hide this data.

        Also fix up your log co2 axis because the scaling does not make any sense.

      • Webby

        As you know full well, the CO2 numbers prior to Mauna Loa in 1959 are “fantasy numbers” derived from ice core data, so are not to be taken too seriously. All I had is the estimate below, which I simply interpolated to get annual values:

        1850: 285 ppmv
        1900: 290
        1910: 294
        1920: 298
        1930: 302.5
        1940: 307.3
        1950: 312.2

        If you have something better, let me know.

        It won’t make any difference as far as the correlation is concerned because the end points are fixed and there are no big “bumps” in the curve.

        There is still no robust correlation between CO2 ppmv log (C1/C0) and dT degC (30 year averages).

        Max

      • Max, You have this bad habit of fudging numbers.

        How can an interpolation on a monotonically rising set of numbers give an inflection point?

        Once again you are spewing garbage data. This is the worst act of data manipulation I have ever seen.

      • Webby

        Have you got that better data for the pre-Mauna Loa CO2 record, or are you just blowing hot air again?

        Max


      • manacker | March 19, 2013 at 11:58 pm |

        Webby

        Have you got that better data for the pre-Mauna Loa CO2 record, or are you just blowing hot air again?

        Max

        I took the estimated man-made carbon emissions from the CO2 Information Analysis Center and then performed a convolution on that data to get the non-sequestered CO2. This generates a monotonic rise in the man-made component, which is an important part of the whole theory. The entire theory has to make sense otherwise it will fall apart.

        That said, if I can now add that bulge in CO2 that you seem to think existed between 1930 and 1950, this will help to explain an extra warming bulge.
        This is logical from your data that you volunteered

        “1850: 285 ppmv
        1900: 290
        1910: 294
        1920: 298
        1930: 302.5
        1940: 307.3
        1950: 312.2″

        and then according to your plot, the CO2 decreases until 1960. Yet the first CO2 measurement from Mauna Loa in the late 1950′s is clearly above the value in 1950 that you state. Which means it shouldn’t go through an extra inflection as you show.

        So you clearly manipulated the data. Why did you do that? Huh, Max?

        Why are you a serial data manipulator? That’s why (like Willard does), I try to document the atrocities from your side. And I can bring up any previous times that you have done this.

        Now I understand why Willard gives you the name “MiniMax”.

      • Webby

        Take a pill.

        Try to get over your paranoia.

        No one has manipulated the data.

        I gave you the estimated pre-Mauna Loa CO2 estimates, which I used, asking you if you had better ones. I no longer have the reference for my figures, but they are very close to the Siegenthaler et al. 1986 results.

        You are not using the IPCC data for pre-Mauna Loa CO2 concentrations but a calculated figure based on CDIAC estimates of CO2 emissions, which IMO is even dicier that the ice-core data used by IPCC.

        If you have no better data on pre-Mauna Loa atmospheric CO2 concentrations, why not simply just admit it, rather than spouting off silly accusations that I have manipulated data?

        Get serious, Webby – otherwise you look like a flake.

        The conclusion is simply that observed dT degC (30-year HadCRUT averages) bears no correlation with your CO2 ppmv log(C1/C0), as you had claimed. Looking at the two curves one sees a random walk.

        And that was my point, which all your silly bloviating about manipulating data cannot change.

        So I’m finished discussing this subject with you.

        Bye.

        Max

      • Web

        Although I stated I would not add to this exchange with you, I think I now see where you are confused when you write:

        according to your plot, the CO2 decreases until 1960. Yet the first CO2 measurement from Mauna Loa in the late 1950′s is clearly above the value in 1950 that you state. Which means it shouldn’t go through an extra inflection as you show.

        So you clearly manipulated the data.

        No, Webby, My plot is NOT the CO2 concentration, it is the log(C1/C0), which YOU STATED represents the rate of change of the CO2 concentration, taken over the same 30 year time period as the temperature

        Get the difference, Webby?

        Rate of change versus concentration. Not rocket science.

        So I did not say that “the CO2 decreases until 1960″ as you imply.. You made that up, because you didn’t understand the graph, even though it was clearly marked.

        Duh!

        And, I suspect that the apparent reduction in the rate of change of CO2 concentration around 1959 where the splice occurs has more to do with the fact that there are two sources of data, and the first source is more dicey than the second.

        But since you are unable to provide me with a better estimate of pre-Mauna Loa atmospheric CO2 concentration than the one I cited, we’ll have to stick with the one I have.

        But stop your silly accusations of data manipulation, when you do not even understand what the data are, which you claim are being manipulated!

        Got it now?

        Max

      • Max,
        Your facility with math has totally left you, if you had any in the first place. You go on about log(C/C0) which is nothing more than log(C)-log(Co), and since the second term is a constant, it can be ignored. I think that is fifth grade math.

        Next, you have an inflection point in log(C). If f(x) = log(C(x)) then f’(x)= C’(x)/C(x) by the chain rule. An inflection point is where f’(x)=0 so C’(x) also equals zero. Yet the real data does not have that inflection point, which means you made up the data

        What a loser dead-ender. Nobody should believe a thing you say because people that manipulate data like you have are less than useless. Time to hang it up, your playing days are over.

      • Webby

        You are wrong.

        I thought you were a bit smarter, but apparently you STILL don’t get it.

        I used the pre-Mauna Loa CO2 data set I cited above. (I subsequently asked you if you had a better data set, and you did not respond.)

        This data shows steady increase, with a bit of a downtick in acceleration in the 1930s/40s (depression, WWII?) and an uptick after WWII. The “splice point” is 1959 at 315 ppmv, and from there on the data are from Mauna Loa.

        Then I compared the log(C1/C0) where Co was for 30-years prior to C1, just as the dT was the difference between the 30-year average temperature 30 years prior to the date and that of the date, for example:

        In 1970 I showed C1 = CO2 concentration in 1970, C0 = CO2 concentration in 1941; dT was the difference between the 30-year lagging temperature in 1970 and that in 1941.

        No data manipulation at all, Webby.

        You ASS-U-ME that I have “manipulated” the data, and accuse me of this.

        But this is untrue.

        Check the data yourself. They are published (and the links are provided on the graph I posted).

        Before you make false accusations based on something you have ASS-U-MEd, it is wise to check what you are talking about.

        Keeps you from looking stupid (even if you really aren’t).

        Max

      • Dig it deeper. You are showing your ineptitude.
        You are going to have a hard time crawling out.

        Hint: log functions

      • Webby

        Once you get to the specifics, your argument runs out of steam, so you can only resort to silly double-talk and wild accusations.

        Go through the data and the arithmetic. You will be able to confirm that there is no robust correlation between your log(C1/C0) on CO2 concentration over 30-year periods as compared to dT the change in 30-year average temperatures over these same time periods.

        Don’t toss in silly curves comparing CDIAC CO2 emissions (whazzat got to do with it?) with a temperature curve, based on some other hypothetical gobbledygook on 2xCO2 ECS value, etc., etc.

        Just stick with the physical data that are available (HadCRUT, Mauna Loa) plus the ice-core estimates I cited for pre-Mauna Loa CO2 measurements.

        This is my last comment on this until you do the arithmetic and include it in your comment.

        Sorry, you lose.

        Game over.

        Max

      • Max, You have so messed up your analysis as to be beyond repair.
        I did my interpretation completely correctly as I used the standard climate sensitivity of 3C per doubling of CO2, which agrees with Hansen’s 1981 fast transient profile and with BEST’s simple analysis.

        The small residual error is due to natural fluctuations in the temperature record, as can be seen here:

        The bulge at 1940 is barely observable amongst the possible red noise excursions (see noise model curve), which appear to be limited to 0.2C.

        Isn’t physics neat when you do it correctly?

      • Webby

        Isn’t physics neat …?

        Yeah.

        And you need to take one (as in definition 2: “lower intestinal purge”).

        Keep smilin’

        Max

      • Webby

        Since yew wuz kind enuff ta de-di-kate an Elvis song ta me, Ah reckon Ah oughta do the same fer yew (ta the tune of “Raw Hide”):

        Trollin’, trollin’, trollin’
        Keep ol’ Webby trollin’
        Keep them insults rollin’
        Raw lies!

        Webby drops them A-bombs
        An’ tosses out them ad-homs
        But there ain’t no substance in his lies
        Cause he cain’t figure even when he tries.
        Raw lies!

        (back to chorus)

        Cheers!

        Max

      • Webby

        Jes seen thet it wuz Bart over on the other thread that done dedicated thet Elvis song ta me – but yew kin keep this-un ennyhow.

        Max

      • Yes, I used CO2 as derived from the CO2 Information Analysis Center carbon emissions, but this was verified against the proxy and direct measurements available from the KNMI Climate Explorer data set.

        You see, this is how science is done. These are all interlocking pieces that have to fit tightly together or else there is weakness in the overall model.

        I did this piece to combat the krankpot theories of Murry Salby who believes that excess CO2 is natural, This theory has followers from quite a few skeptics here such as Edim, Girma, Bartemis, amongst others.

        It takes work to combat the onslaught of the FMTA.

      • Webby

        Get serious, man.

        You’ve got an actual record of atmospheric CO2 concentrations since 1959, based on Mauna Loa measurements.

        Prior to this, you have an estimate cited by IPCC, based on ice core data, going back to pre-industrial times. There has been one summary of this by Siegenthaler 1986, but there are also others.

        Why would any sane person ignore the record we have and try to replace it with a theoretical artifact created from the estimated human CO2 emissions, as you have done?

        Duh!

        Just a dumb thing to do, when you have actual data at hand, Webby.

        Max

      • “Why would any sane person ignore the record we have and try to replace it with a theoretical artifact created from the estimated human CO2 emissions, as you have done?”

        How righteous to be able to shred an opponent such as yourself.

        The excess CO2 has to come from somewhere and what the CDIAC does is estimate the total Carbon being emitted from anthropogenic sources.
        The next step is to convert that Carbon into CO2 (which is a constant scale factor) and the last step is to apply the impulse response function to model how much of that CO2 stays in the atmosphere, as any climate scientist (or physicist or engineer) would do.

        I really have not done anything new, but apply an alternative more-concise impulse response function. Hey. Look at me. I’m AUDITING!
        I am an auditor just like McIntyred is! And the Carbon emitted maps to excess CO2, just as climate scientists predicted. Who’d have thunk it?

        “Just a dumb thing to do, when you have actual data at hand, Webby.”

        With that kind of logic, the only scientific software anyone would ever require is an interpolation algorithm.

        A one-round knockout of Max Schmeling. Down for the count.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Human emissions of carbon dioxide are a small proportion – some 3% – of the natural flux. Constant scale factor? It is of course related to the atomic weights of the elements.

        Webb’s ‘more-concise (sic) impulse response function’ is one of the more stupid bits of blog science. It has ocean and atmosphere and ignores the unknowns, the 20% plus errors in estimate and the large number of other factor.

        e.g. – http://www.gfdl.noaa.gov/anthropogenic-carbon-cycle

        We really have a right to consider that webby is about as scientific as a gerbil.

      • David Springer

        “We really have a right to consider that webby is about as scientific as a gerbil.”

        And he accuses me of being uncivil.

        I’ve seen megaplex movie theaters with less projection!

        Physician, heal thyself.

        LOL

      • webby has had ample opportunity to behave in a civiised manner – as have you. I am no hypocrite – as i said – I will enter into the spirit. But it is a waste of time and is simply partisan rhetoric. Apart from you DS – nobody likes you.

      • Chiefio, Go ahead and attack the role of anthropogenic CO2 in the measured CO2 rise. This is a key building block in the entire AGW theory. If it wasn’t for this, all forcing functions would be natural and the issue would be moot.

        “Webb’s ‘more-concise (sic) impulse response function’ is one of the more stupid bits of blog science.”

        No, it moves the yardstick. It is a simple representation that allows others to build on and use as an intuitive justification.

        http://unfccc.int/resource/brazil/workshop/pres/oneill.pdf

        Abstract. The response of atmospheric CO2 concentrations to an incremental increase in emissions is usually measured using an impulse response function.

        The following paper just came out this year:
        “Carbon dioxide and climate impulse response functions for the computation of greenhouse gas metrics: a multi-model analysis”

        http://www.atmos-chem-phys.net/13/2793/2013/acp-13-2793-2013.pdf

        What exactly do you find wrong with the science of applying impulse response functions, Chiefio? Are you going on the offensive alongside your Aussie buddies Salby and Girma?

      • Chief Hydrologist

        O’neill uses multiple compartments and is a bit long in the tooth – the other uses computer model of presumably varying conmplexity. You use two compartments and fantasy physics to areive at an ‘efective diffusion’. Linking to papers that don’t remorely relate to your stupid function is a pointless and misleading exercise. Typical of you in other words. You are in other words an idiot and no one is remotely interested in building on this nonsense.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        I need to check my spelling. I just a little bored that this goes around in circles. The point is that it is a minor impulse in a huge and uncertain system. To model this means understanding all of the complex, nonlinear and uncertain physics and biology of the carbon cycle. Guessing it is stupid.

      • Diffusion by definition is multiple compartments. It builds on the definition of divergence of flow out of an infinitesimal compartment, and then you stack the multiple components together and solve for that.

        The other thing that you seem to miss is that there is an average diffusion that essentially describes the flow at the scale one is interested in, but then there is also a stochastic spread of diffusivities around this which forms a prior. And this is not some uniform prior but a prior based on maximum entropy considerations.

        It is an interesting approach that has basis in Christian Beck’s work on superstatistics, Didier Sornette’s work on disorder in natural phenomena, Mandelbrot’s work on fractals, and others.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Compartments are of course – in this context – the various sources and sinks of carbon in the environment. Nothing to do with finite elements in any computation.

        In a simplified ay – e.g. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Carbon_cycle.jpg

        You have one source and one sink and link these with an ‘effective diffusion’ for which data is not available – even if you wanted to put it into a black box model.

        This system is as well largely biological and so is hugely non-equilibrium. Maximum entropy is not an applicable concept your fantasies about Sornette, Beck and Mandelbrot notwithstanding.

    • Bart R

      “Outrageously, over the same duration Dr. Cripwell has mendaciously abandoned his ability to recognize AGW, with the full implication of Risks of a non-catastrophic nature, vulnerabilities of a key but non-catastrophic type, or any other topic associated with AGW that doesn’t equal world doom.. yet he has never demanded ab initio evidence from those who changed his religion from orthodox AGW denial to reform CAGW obstructionism.”

      You are pontificating, Bart.

      Why not just stick to the subject matter?

      It’s “new perspectives on climate sensitivity”.

      Got any?

      Max

      • manacker | March 17, 2013 at 2:34 am |

        From the perspective of the new pontiff, who chose the patron saint of humility, I’m getting mixed messages from you.

        But then, I’ve never considered your expertise to be in matters of humility or of perspective.

    • The obvious difference here is that Jim Cripwell is arguing on the classic basis of empirically substantiated physics, whereas Bart R is arguing on the “new age” basis of unsubstantiated conceptual conjecture. I.e., one proceeds from experience in actually doing quantitative science , while the other proceeds polemically from mere reading knowledge.

      • John S. | March 18, 2013 at 7:02 pm |

        You’ve got that one backwards there, John S.

        Jim Cripwell, BA, proceeds from things he sorta kinda remembers being told, but not exactly, but since the guys telling him some five to seven decades ago were pretty bright, he’s sure of himself so shuts down considering fact, refuses to do or look at new experimental results, even spouts Socratic gibberish about ‘negative evidence’ that is mere argument from invincible ignorance.

        Me? I accept that human frailty affects memory — including my own — too much to rely on, that skepticism is the due defense against invalid claims by direct experiment, and that new things to be learned await the receptive mind thus defended.

        Sure. If this “new age” of yours dawned 300 years ago, “mere reading knowledge” includes reading meters and gauges, and “conceptual conjecture” is mathematics, that description might fit me. The description of Jim Cripwell by no means fits him, as he doesn’t substantiate his claims on an empirical basis, denying that any measurement is possible at all.

  63. ‘It’s easy to feign ignorance and cling to fallacy. It’s also a black stain on one’s character to be a fake who annoys others for no good reason.’

    Self mockng irony? Not sure this particular serial pest is capable of it.

    • Skippy | March 15, 2013 at 10:07 pm |

      Sixteen minutes? I’m disappointed. I’d expected you to ring the same old bell in under three.

      • What the one about you being a garrulous and pretentious twit with no redeeming qualities? Sorry to disapoint – history appears to repeat with you endlessly. But I’m sure the words are new if the sentiment is not novel – as your character has ot eactly improved with time. Simply repeating that I am repeating is just one of your bloody minded ploys – gamemanship that you are not very good at and simply descend into impotent rage at length because you lack the linguistic or intellectual nimbleness to match wits with a potato.

      • I’m going back to pasting from word.

  64. Dr Curry,
    Thanks for the plug. I apologise for joining this thread so late, but I have only just got back from China, where I found that internet access was somewhat restricted. I will try to respond to a few of the questions raised about my article in Lucia’s.

  65. Tomas Milanovic

    Skippy

    One subsystem changes impacting on another and the changes propagate through the system. The result is abrupt and nonlinear change. The system flucuates wildly and then settles into a new state.This is the core of climate behaviour – this is how it works as opposed to linear ideas of ‘control knobs’. The two ideas are utterly incompatible and only one can be correct. It seems fairly evident on overwhelming evidence that chaos in climate at all scales in time and space is the new climate paradigm.

    Yes, you are right. And yes, your are right that some will never get it.
    There is a book about severe problems many people (a large majority) have because they are only able to think “linearily”. Interesting read.

    Applied to climate dynamics :

    A generic guy with little physics understanding : “Climate dynamics = global warming + natural variability”
    This is typical linear thinking.
    The generic guy postulates independence between global warming and natural variability.
    The generic guy is only able to conceive an additive model.
    The generic guy then also believes that natural variability doesn’t matter using a myriad of variations on “it averages out anyway” theme.
    The generic guy can only live in equilibrium worlds where all transients always finish at fixed points and stay there forever.
    The generic guy, confronted by reality which doesn’t behave like that, invents magical arguments mostly involving magical time scales at which, at last, the world must start to behave in a linear way.
    The generic guy also assimilates by ignorance chaotic systems to randomness where anything goes.

    A physicist familiar with non linear dynamics :
    “Climate dynamics = f (global warming,natural variability) where f is some non linear function
    The physicist knows that the dynamical parameters are not independent.
    He also knows that the dynamical orbits of the system are inside an attractor which allows for an infinity of different dynamical states.
    He knows the corollary which is that there are no fixed points and no equilibriums – for a given value of global warming the system can and will take an infinity of possible states. Some of them may be more probable than others but the PDF is unknown and may well be non invariant and unknowable.

    Even if a physicist agrees with the trivial computation of the “global warming” which is only basic radiative transfer after all, he knows that this value does not simply add to some white noise with a 0 average.
    And most importantly a physicist knows that this non linear behaviour stays true at all time scales.

    So yes, you are right, only one of these paradigms may be true. Both observation and theory provide an overwhelming evidence that for that complex system which is the weather and its averages, it is the non linear paradigm which is true.
    In HEP it is well known that in presence of strong coupling the perturbative methods don’t work anymore.
    In climate the “radiative transfer” and the “natural variations” are strongly coupled.

    But the generic guy unless he is able to get out of the linear thinking will never understand that C=A+B and C=f(A,B) are 2 very different paradigms where in presence of strong coupling the former can never be an approximation of the latter.
    They actually deny most of the modern physics which shows that chaotic behaviour of complex systems is the rule and not an exception.

    • Poor Tomy, he appears intentionally ignorant about how we deal with complexity

      Say that f is a log function and effects are multiplicative, then f(a*b) = f(a) + f(b).

      That’s how we work with entropy. There are still many many apparently complex situations that we can simplify.

      Read this for example:

      http://theoilconundrum.blogspot.com/2013/03/standard-atmosphere-model-and.html

      Tomy is a dead-ender who hates to see progress as it interferes with his negative world-view.

      • David Springer

        Hey Webby, you had another moment of clarity. It seems as if these might be coming along more often. Maybe ignoring the snow and the cold and the falling line lately is taking its toll on your ability to fudge the numbers day by day making up data the old hard way. Say hello to the boys at M4GW for me, if you can dig out of the snow and cold that is…

      • Web, That was a nice post, So with the standard atmosphere if you have 150 Wm-2 as delta S at the equator, you would have 150Wm-2 N, 150Wm-2 S. and 150Wm-2 up if the hemispheres are symmetrical.

        Currently, the symmetry is off by 20 Wm-2, the average southern meridional flux is 160 Wm-2 and the northern is 140 Wm-2. Also currently at 60W between 65S and 55S there is a flux imbalance of 20Wm-2 W to E and at 65N to 55N there is 30 Wm-2 imbalance E to W. Those imbalances exist because the liquid oceans transport energy much slower than air plus the transport mechanism, currents, have choke points at the Drake Passage and the Bering Strait.

        You would have a range of To with different response times. Since Cp is fairly uniform, what would happen?

        http://www.atmos.colostate.edu/ao/ThompsonPapers/ThompsonBaldwinSolomon.pdf

        That is for the southern hemisphere, the northern has more and stronger events.

      • Web BTW,

        You can double check my math, but that is the coefficient of correlation for the Pacific and Atlantic southern oceans across the Drake Passage. The 150 to 160 month major dips might just be the 15 year lag that Pratt was looking for. There appears to be a long term trend and the Northern Hemisphere has a mirror image trend. That I believe is long term natural variability due to ocean mixing dynamics related to ENSO/PDO cycles plus a touch longer pseudo-cyclic recurrence.

        New perspectives on climate sensitivity is looking at the differences in regional responses and I think hemispheres N-S and E-W are a reasonable starting point.

    • David Springer

      Chaos is just a code word for inability to predict system response due to intractible complexity of the system under study. It’s analogous to the n-body problem n in the thousands. We can’t solve it but nature solves it every moment of every day. To us perterbations appear chaotic but this is simply an illusion borne of ignorance.

    • Tomas,

      Both idiots predictably turn up like rats on cheese. F is a log function? For Christ’s sake. A theoretical solution for the arbitrary n-body probem is possible with a Taylors series expansion.

      I sometimes call it dynamical complexity in the hope that that makes a difference – or deterministic chaos. It is all deterministic – merely incalculable.

      ‘Sensitive dependence and structural instability are humbling twin properties for chaotic dynamical systems, indicating limits about which kinds of questions are theoretically answerable. They echo other famous limitations on scientist’s expectations, namely the undecidability of some propositions within axiomatic mathematical systems (Gödel’s theorem) and the uncomputability of some algorithms due to excessive size of the calculation.’

      http://www.pnas.org/content/104/21/8709.long

      But of course the bahaviour is very real – climate behaves with the properties of any other chaotic system. Importantly – slowing down and ‘dragon-kings’.

      We have been over all this before – e.g. http://judithcurry.com/2011/02/03/nonlinearities-feedbacks-and-critical-thresholds/

      http://eprints.port.ac.uk/3527/

      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18787119

      http://arxiv.org/abs/0907.4290

      https://pantherfile.uwm.edu/aatsonis/www/2007GL030288.pdf

      webby’s just a total moron and a lost cause. DS hasn’t quite got that it is the system behaviour – bifurcation – that is most of interest. This is of course quite different to the dictionary definition of chaos. And bifurcation – according to Tsonis – happens on decadal scales.

      ‘We construct a network of observed climate indices in the period 1900–2000 and investigate their collective behavior. The results indicate that this network synchronized several times in this period. We find that in
      those cases where the synchronous state was followed by a steady increase in the coupling strength between the indices, the synchronous state was destroyed, after which a new climate state emerged. These shifts are associated with significant changes in global temperature trend and in ENSO variability. The latest such event is known as the great climate shift of the 1970s. We also find the evidence for such type of behavior in two climate simulations using a state-of-the-art model. This is the first time that this mechanism, which appears consistent with the theory of synchronized chaos, is discovered in a physical system of
      the size and complexity of the climate system.’

    • Tomas,
      These two predictably turn up like rats on cheese.

      F is a log function? For Christ’s sake. Of course – a theoretical solution for the arbitrary n-body problem is possible with a Taylors series expansion but it is chaotic but what does this mean?

      I sometimes call it dynamical complexity in the hope that that makes a difference – or deterministic chaos. It is all deterministic – merely incalculable.

      ‘Sensitive dependence and structural instability are humbling twin properties for chaotic dynamical systems, indicating limits about which kinds of questions are theoretically answerable. They echo other famous limitations on scientist’s expectations, namely the undecidability of some propositions within axiomatic mathematical systems (Gödel’s theorem) and the uncomputability of some algorithms due to excessive size of the calculation.’

      http://www.pnas.org/content/104/21/8709.long

      But of course the behavior is very real – climate behaves with the properties of any other chaotic system. Importantly – slowing down and ‘dragon-kings’.

      We have been over all this before – e.g. http://judithcurry.com/2011/02/03/nonlinearities-feedbacks-and-critical-thresholds/

      webby’s just a total moron and a lost cause. DS hasn’t quite got that it is the system behaviour – bifurcation – that is most of interest. This is of course quite different to the dictionary definition of chaos. And bifurcation – according to Tsonis – happens on decadal scales.

      ‘We construct a network of observed climate indices in the period 1900–2000 and investigate their collective behavior. The results indicate that this network synchronized several times in this period. We find that in those cases where the synchronous state was followed by a steady increase in the coupling strength between the indices, the synchronous state was destroyed, after which a new climate state emerged. These shifts are associated with significant changes in global temperature trend and in ENSO variability. The latest such event is known as the great climate shift of the 1970s. We also find the evidence for such type of behavior in two climate simulations using a state-of-the-art model. This is the first time that this mechanism, which appears consistent with the theory of synchronized chaos, is discovered in a physical system of the size and complexity of the climate system.’

      https://pantherfile.uwm.edu/aatsonis/www/2007GL030288.pdf

      • some other links –

        http://eprints.port.ac.uk/3527/

        http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18787119

        http://arxiv.org/abs/0907.4290

        Just in case they feel like doing some reading – and come back with some relevant points. Shall I hold my breath?

      • Yes, I reference Sornette’s book on critical phenomena and use it to check math. Citation #271 in my most recent book.

        Doesn’t matter to a prank crank like yourself.

      • ‘We have presented supporting evidence for the concept that meaningful outliers (called “dragon-kings”) coexist with power laws in the distributions of event sizes under a broad range of conditions in a large variety of systems. These dragon-kings reveal the existence of mechanisms of
        self-organization that are not apparent otherwise from the distribution of their smaller siblings. This leads to two consequences, one pessimistic
        and the other one more optimistic. The first one is the unavoidable evidence that extreme events occur much more often than would be predicted or expected from the observations of small, medium and even large events. Thus, catastrophes and crises are with us all the time. On the other hand, we have argued that the dragon-kings reveal the presence of special mechanisms. These processes provide clues that allow us to diagnose the maturation of a system towards a crisis, as we have documented in a series of examples in various systems. We have emphasized the use of the concept of a “phase transition – bifurcation – catastrophe – tipping – point,” which is crucial to learn how to diagnose in
        advance the symptoms of the next great crisis, as most crises occur under only smooth changes of some control variables, without the need for an external shock of large magnitude.’

        Your usual obsession is with power laws for everything. Dragon-kings stand outside of these as noisy bifurcations. If you are not looking for chaos in Sornette you have missed the point as usual. But by all means explicate in some sensible fashion.

      • David Springer

        Chief Kangaroo Ellison of no distinction whatsoever thinks he’s got a novel handle on the most complex system humanity has ever tried to characterize.

        Uh yeah, right, Einstein. You’re just an unrecognized super genius.

        ROFLMAO

  66. Tomas Milanovic

    Chaos is just a code word for inability to predict system response due to intractible complexity of the system under study. It’s analogous to the n-body problem n in the thousands

    It is not analogous. It is identical. Any N body system (starting with N=3) is chaotic as we know since Poincarré.
    That was 100 years ago.
    And it also is no “code word” – it is an important branch of physics which is called non linear dynamics. Chaotic systems are just a part of systems that it studies.
    Last but not least – the complexity is not intractable. On the contrary it is pretty much tractable but only by people who have studied and have a good mathematical understanding of the necessary tools.
    That’s precisely the purpose of every new theory – understand better systems that were poorly understood previously.

    • David Springer

      Bullschist. Deterministic chaos is simply a system that defies prediction because of either incomplete information about the initial state or its evolution is too numerically difficult to calculate. That’s if philosophical determinism is true of course. The Copenhagen Interpretation of QM says it’s false but I believe quantum uncertainty is a deficiency in the observer not a property of the observed. Spare me Bell’s Theorum proving otherwise. Physics is incomplete. It’s lacking a quantum theory of gravity and doesn’t have a clue what constitutes 75% of the stuff that makes up the observable universe (dark matter) which is observed solely through what appears to be an anomaly in gravity that’s causing the expansion of the universe to itself accelerate across vast distances.

      • This is spooky action at a distance weird – becasuse quantum mechanics is so wildly irrelevant. And much as I like talking about the Copenhagen Interpretation versus the Many Worlds – it serves only to confuse and distract. Suffice to say that the collapse of the probability distribution function propagating through time with the Schrödinger Wave Equation is thought – under the Copenhagen Interpetation favoured by most physicists – to be merely maths with no correspondence with multiple universes.

        There are three great ideas in 20th century physics – the very big, the very small and the very complex. Relativity, quantum mechanics and chaos theory. Climate is very complex.

        ‘Abrupt climate changes were especially common when the climate system was being forced to change most rapidly. Thus, greenhouse warming and other human alterations of the earth system may increase the possibility of large, abrupt, and unwelcome regional or global climatic events. The abrupt changes of the past are not fully explained yet, and climate models typically underestimate the size, speed, and extent of those changes. Hence, future abrupt changes cannot be predicted with confidence, and climate surprises are to be expected.

        The new paradigm of an abruptly changing climatic system has been well established by research over the last decade, but this new thinking is little known and scarcely appreciated in the wider community of natural and social scientists and policy-makers.’ http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=10136&page=1

        I proffer that 17 of the world’s leading climate scientists put this forward in 2002 – it is not novel and I came to it much later.

        Here’s graphically a situation where a change in a control variable passes a threshold and the system behaviour changes abruptly –

        bifurcation.

        DS has lost the plot. Thank you – thank you very much.

      • Tomas Milanovic

        Deterministic chaos is simply a system that defies prediction because of either incomplete information about the initial state or its evolution is too numerically difficult to calculate.

        This is not even wrong. But if it suits you, then be my guest. Why should I spend time to teach you physics ?

        Spare me Bell’s Theorum proving otherwise. Physics is incomplete.

        Sure. Bell Theorem’s gone. Aspect’s experiments gone. Neutron scattering gone. We could do without any pesky geometry and mathematical logics while we’re at it too.
        As you surely know better than Bohr,Feynman and Maldacena united, be my guest.

        It’s lacking a quantum theory of gravity and doesn’t have a clue what constitutes 75% of the stuff that makes up the observable universe (dark matter)

        It is not lacking a quantum theory of gravity. It has rather too many of them – String Theory and LQG being just 2 of the most researched.
        Dark matter (pretty much per definition) is not part of observable Universe and it is not 75% of the “stuff” but rather 85% of the matter and 25% of the energy.
        Smart physicists of quantum gravity to whom you don’t belong (neither do I) have a rather good idea about what the dark matter is – Supersymetric partners.
        The same people (those who have a clue) even say that the first supersymetric partners will be experimentally observed at the LHC in the next years.

        However like Skippy, while I would enjoy a discussion about QM interpretations (QM was my major), I do not think that this is the right place and (most) posters here are not the right interlocutors either.

  67. I’m delighted to see multi-decadal variability addressed. Finally, we might have some insight into missing variables. A “Sensitivity” factor derived by consensus of interested parties have seemed suspect.

    A while back, I posted a suggestion http://judithcurry.com/2013/02/24/open-thread-weekend-9/#comment-298340
    referencing the thread http://judithcurry.com/2013/01/21/macroweather-not-climate-is-what-you-expect/#comment-298314

    Re: “Today, we still use the 30 year ‘normal’ period”
    “I suggest we also need to re-define or newly define a “climate” as what we should expect during the service life of roads, dams, buildings / houses, breakwalls, levees, etc.
    This could include averages, “standard” deviations, and extremes. To do so, we could use a 70 or 75 year “period” to accommodate long term swings in solar, PDO (index), ENSO and NAO cycles.
    Another benefit could be to exclude intra-cycle upswings as justification of “climate change” as a political tool.”

    I omitted the AO. Sorry.
    This seemed related to some other articles I ran across:

    • Gray, L. J., S. Crooks, C. Pascoe, S. Sparrow, and M. Palmer. “Solar and QBO Influences on the Timing of Stratospheric Sudden Warmings.” Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences 61, no. 23 (May 10, 2004): 2777–2796. http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/pdf/10.1175/JAS-3297.1

      The interaction of the 11-yr solar cycle (SC) and the quasi-biennial oscillation (QBO) and their influence on the Northern Hemisphere (NH) polar vortex are studied using idealized model experiments and ECMWF Re-Analysis (ERA-40). In the model experiments, the sensitivity of the NHpolar vortex to imposed easterlies at equatorial/subtropical latitudes over various height ranges is tested to explore the possible influence from zonal wind anomalies associated with the QBO and the 11-yr SC in those regions. The experiments show that the timing of the modeled stratospheric sudden warmings (SSWs) is sensitive to the imposed easterlies at the equator/subtropics. When easterlies are imposed in the equatorial or subtropical upper stratosphere, the onset of the SSWs is earlier. A mechanism is proposed in which zonal wind anomalies in the equatorial/subtropical upper stratosphere associated with the QBO and 11-yr SC either reinforce each other or cancel each other out. When they reinforce, as in Smin–QBO-east (Smin /E) and Smax–QBO-west (Smax /W), it is suggested that the resulting anomaly is large enough to influence the development of the Aleutian high and hence the time of onset of the SSWs. Although highly speculative, this mechanism may help to understand the puzzling observations that major warmings often occur in Smax/W years even though there is no strong waveguide provided by the QBO winds in the lower equatorial stratosphere. The ERA-40 data are used to investigate the QBO and solar signals and to determine whether the observations
      support the proposed mechanism. Composites of ERA-40 zonally averaged zonal winds based on the QBO (E/W), the SC (min/max), and both (Smin/E, Smin/W, Smax/E, Smax/W) are examined, with emphasis on the Northern Hemisphere winter vortex evolution. The major findings are that QBO/E years are more disturbed than QBO/W years, primarily during early winter. Sudden warmings in Smax years tend to occur later than in Smin years. Midwinter warmings are more likely during Smin/E and Smax/W years, although the latter result is only barely statistically significant at the 75% level. The data show some support for the proposed mechanism, but many more years are required before it can be fully tested.

    • MacMath, Jillian. “What’s Causing All the Warm Weather?” Scientific. AccuWeather.com, March 22, 2012. http://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/whats-causing-all-the-warm-wea/63076

      Though its undeniable that temperatures are far above average in many areas, the debate rages on between meteorologists as to what exactly is causing it.
      ….
      “If the proposition is that Earth’s climate is changing – and most people say warming – this is how it might manifest,” he said. But he believes the unusual weather may be caused by a sort of “perfect storm coincidence” related to North Atlantic oscillation, Atlantic oscillation, the Pacific/North American pattern, El Nina and La Nina.

      “What happens in the oceans is undoubtedly very important to what happens on land,” Andrews said. “It may well be that the state of the ocean water temperature surrounding North America is just in an ideal arrangement to maximize warmth over North America.”

      Expert Senior Meteorologist Alex Sosnowski believes it’s a culmination of causes.

    • “Global Warming To Bring Colder/Warmer Winters.” Scientific. Watts Up With That?, February 8, 2013. http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/02/08/global-warming-to-bring-colderwarmer-winters/#comment-1220661

      It seems that every time we get some snow, another “scientist” is wheeled out to explain that, no matter how cold it gets, it is all down to global warming.

  68. David Springer

    Tomas Milanovic | March 19, 2013 at 12:15 pm |

    “This is not even wrong. But if it suits you, then be my guest. Why should I spend time to teach you physics ?”

    Because you can’t.

  69. David Springer

    @Tomas Milanovich

    Controversy over determinism is apparently over your head, Tomas Milanovich. The question is information theoretic. If a chaotic system is unpredictable even in principle then it cannot be time reversible i.e. knowing the present state cannot predict past and future states. Thus the universe loses information when the chaotic system evolves. In particular information describing the past state of the system is lost.

    This is background for the long debate and famous wager between Stephen Hawking and John Preskill. Hawking took the position that information is destroyed, or at least forever hidden from the observable universe, when consumed by a black hole. Leonard Susskind famously sided with Preskill and Kip Thorne with Hawking.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thorne%E2%80%93Hawking%E2%80%93Preskill_bet

    After ten years, in 2004 Hawking conceded he was wrong and paid off the bet to Susskind. I suggest you closely study the links below before shooting your mouth off any further on deterministic chaos. Your metaphysical and philsophical grounding is sorely lacking and your knowledge of the controversy which raged over it for a decade appears missing in action as well.

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

    Do Black Holes Destroy Information? by John Preskill.

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

    My bold below. Please take note of it as your idea of chaos contradicts exactly what Susskind (and I) think about it.

    The Black Hole War: My Battle with Stephen Hawking to Make the World Safe for Quantum Mechanics is a 2008 popular science book by American theoretical physicist Leonard Susskind. The book covers the black hole information paradox, and the related scientific dispute between Stephen Hawking and Susskind.[1] Susskind is known for his work on string theory and wrote a previous popular science book, The Cosmic Landscape, in 2005.[2]

    Hawking proposed that information is lost in black holes, and not preserved in Hawking radiation.[2] Susskind disagreed, arguing that Hawking’s conclusions violated one of the most basic scientific laws of the universe, the conservation of information. As Susskind depicts in his book, The Black Hole War was a “genuine scientific controversy” between scientists favoring an emphasis on the principles of relativity against those in favor of quantum mechanics.[1] The debate led to the holographic principle, proposed by Gerard ‘t Hooft and refined by Susskind, which suggested that the information is in fact preserved, stored on the boundary of a system.[3]

    http://taper100.hubpages.com/hub/The-Black-Hole-Information-Paradox-Explained

    http://calitreview.com/790/susskind-quashes-hawking-in-quarrel-over-quantum-quandary/

    Interview with Leonard Susskind, 2008

    My bold.

    Stephen Hawking once said something about black holes that apparently upset you. What was it?

    Stephen said that when a bit of information falls into a black hole it is permanently lost to the outside, despite the fact that he also proved that black holes evaporate and eventually disappear. That claim touched off a crisis in physics, a clash of basic principles like no other since Einstein was young.

    The problem that upset me is that the most basic principle of physics—the principle that underpins everything including classical physics, thermodynamics, quantum mechanics, energy conservation, that physicists have believed for hundreds of years—is that information is never truly lost. It can be scrambled beyond recognition, but it is never completely erased.

    Hawking’s claim was outrageous, but he had very good reasons for it. So good that it took more than two decades to figure out why he was wrong. And the question led to a tremendous paradigm shift in the way we think about space, time, matter, and bits of information.

    • David Springer – ‘Expert In Everything’™

      You are so funny sometimes!

      ;-)

      • David Springer

        I was blogging on this topic years ago at Uncommon Descent. I’m not an expert on this subject but i know what the top physicists have to say about it. Let me assure you that Tomas Milanovich is no Leonard Susskind. Nor is he a Kip Thorne, a Stephen Hawking, or a John Preskill. He parrots Prigogine without any deep understanding of the metaphysical underpinnings. Any claim that information is not a conserved property is quite extraordinary as Susskind points out and I’m quite sure that Tomas Milanovich is in no position to dispute Susskind.

    • Chaotic systems are fully deterministic – thus in principle predictable although in practice incalculable. Again -it is not remotely concerned with quantum mechanics. It is a property of the system itself – control variables and multiple negative and positive feedbacks.

      Abrupt shifts are caused by the interactions of the feedbacks as the system evolves though time. MOC changes snow and ice, canges hydrology and biology, changes cloud , etc.

      • David Springer

        Skippy | March 19, 2013 at 3:28 pm | Reply

        “Chaotic systems are fully deterministic – thus in principle predictable although in practice incalculable.”

        Try telling that to Milanovich.

        “Again -it is not remotely concerned with quantum mechanics.”

        Agreed. Statistical thermodynamics is the go-to science. QM in this case is the last resort of scoundrels.

        “Abrupt shifts are caused by the interactions of the feedbacks as the system evolves though time. MOC changes snow and ice, canges hydrology and biology, changes cloud , etc.”

        Abrupt shifts are caused by large asteroid impacts. It’s a matter of perspective. An abrupt shift to a human is not an abrupt shift on a larger scale. The difference in global average temperature between glacial and interglacial periods is less than the temperature change between day and night in Austin, Texas.

        I view glacial/interglacial cycles, which are the biggest naturally occuring climate shifts we know about, as like a bell that was struck by a hammer. It’s ringing between two tightly constrained states. It’s just a very, very large bell with a resonant frequency of some 100,000 years.

        I’d like to know what served as the hammer 4 million years ago that started it ringing. It was stable for tens or hundreds of millions of years before that.

      • Tomas knows pefectly well that the sysyem is deterministic. It is you who went off on some mad and irrelevant rant.

        There are many abrupt shifts at all scales in the climate system

        ‘According to the Committee on Abrupt Climate Change of the National Research Council:

        There are essentially two definitions of abrupt climate change:

        In terms of physics, it is a transition of the climate system into a different mode on a time scale that is faster than the responsible forcing.

        In terms of impacts, “an abrupt change is one that takes place so rapidly and unexpectedly that human or natural systems have difficulty adapting to it”.’

        So we have a working definition that you would do well to learn before plodding in with your own vacuous interpretations.

        The propensity to shift between glacials/interglacials starting in the Quaternary – some 2.58 mllion years ago – is varioulsy attributed to such things as tectonic uplift in the Himalayas or the closing of the Ishmus of Panama when combined with orbital cycles. But the timing and extent of the shift – any climate shift – is determined by feedbacks.

  70. Tomas Milanovic

    Let me assure you that Tomas Milanovich is no Leonard Susskind. Nor is he a Kip Thorne, a Stephen Hawking, or a John Preskill. He parrots Prigogine without any deep understanding of the metaphysical underpinnings.

    Well if you can read (what is doubtful), then you will notice that I already freely admitted that I don’t belong to those who will talk about quantum gravity with a good mastery of the mathematical tools.
    Neither do you. A very good string physicist estimates the number of scientists who know what they are talking about in this domain at 500 what is a very small fraction of the 7 billions of individuals on Earth.

    The difference being that when I comment about non linear dynamics or QFT, I know what I am talking about, namely physics while you have not a clue and talk about metaphysics
    Be very sure that Prigogine has nothing to do with that.

    It is painfully obvious for anybody who studied physics that your statements show only a fascinating depth of ignorance which you don’t even realize.

    “Chaotic systems are fully deterministic – thus in principle predictable although in practice incalculable.”
    Try telling that to Milanovich.

    Such dynamics are called “deterministic chaos” for a reason. The Lorenz equations are fully deterministic yet the solutions exhibit chaotic behaviour. This is a basic introduction to non linear dynamics. Determinism and calculability are 2 completely different concepts. You fail.

    I suggest you closely study the links below before shooting your mouth off any further on deterministic chaos.

    The black hole information problem (and the Hawking radiation) are far above your head. They have nothing whatsoever in common with deterministic chaos. You are irelevant and fail.

    It’s lacking a quantum theory of gravity and doesn’t have a clue what constitutes 75% of the stuff that makes up the observable universe (dark matter)

    There are many quantum gravity theories and I gave you 2 – string theory and LQG. Obviously you ignore everything about that.
    You have not a clue about what dark matter could be. I gave you a possible explanation ( supersymetric partners) but you can’t understand that either. You fail again.

    The only thing that could be interesting is why don’t you start learning some real physics? Do you only realize how irrelevant and wrong your comments are ?

    • David Springer

      I said it was above your head and you confirm it in your reply. Information lies at the heart of everything. It’s conserved. If a chaotic system could not be perfectly predicted at least in principle then it violates conservation of information. Go argue with Susskind if you think you know better than him. Better yet, try getting them published somewhere other than blogs. ROFLMAO

  71. David Springer

    “It is painfully obvious for anybody who studied physics that your statements show only a fascinating depth of ignorance which you don’t even realize.”

    Speaking of studying physics I can’t seem to find anything you’ve done except write blog comments. Got any links to your work that might indicate you’ve actually done something in the field? Or in ANY field of science or engineering for that matter? The following, not surprisingly, draws a blank.

    http://scholar.google.com/scholar?sourceid=navclient&ie=UTF-8&rlz=1T4LENN_enUS461US461&q=t+milanovic

    Even Chief Kangaroo Ellison shows up on a google scholar search. I say you only play a physicist in blog comments and in the real world you’ve done nothing at all significant.

    • Springer, The blog’s owner knows that “Tomas Milanovic” is a pseudonym and also apparently knows his real identity. I am sure that he has published stuff under his real name.

      It’s a smart strategy, pick a pseudonym that is a plausibly real and fool people that way.

      BTW, I make no bounds about why I use an obviously cartoonish handle. I am not trying to fool anyone.
      .

  72. Generalissimo Skippy

    I can of course neither confirm or deny my true identity. It is a secret of the climate war – known only to a cowgirl with a lasso. It is a hard destiny that we must face the steely glint in an enemies eyes – at least metaphorically.

    It is 5.00am here for God’s sake and I have far more serious and pressing things to attend to – but the dogs barking at the heels of Tomas are really too funny to ignore.

    The ninja Springup insists that chaos theory is impossible because information is destroyed. This is quite a revision of 20th century physics – so we would like to see a mathematical proof. Something on the back of a bar coaster with a few squiggles and a misquoted Clausius–Clapeyron relation will do fine. He can ask webby for some help if this is beyond him – if webby is not too busy with mad conspiracy theories and his own brand of fantasy physics. Don’t forget a graph. We can have information on one axis and chaos on the other with an inverse relationship.

    • David Springer

      I didn’t say chaos theory was impossible. Milanovic didn’t like how I characterized chaos when I wrote that chaos is code word for systems that are either too complex to predict and or there is too little information about them to make predictions. I predicate this on the proposition that information is a conserved property in the universe thus no system can evolve in a such a way that information completely describing any past state is lost i.e. given sufficient information about its state and sufficient computing power no system is unpredictable. To back up my assertion that information is conserved I quoted one of the greatest living theoretical physicists today Leonard Susskind. If information cannot be lost in the chaos of Hawking radiation tunneling through the event horizon of a black hole then it sure as hell can’t be lost by being part of the earth’s climate system.

      That’s it. That’s all I wrote. If there exist mathematical shortcuts that offer approximate solutions for the systems characterized above (“chaos” theories of varous stripe) that’s a separate issue and I’m not arguing that any such shortcut does or does not exist. Again all I’m arguing is that all such systems are predictable in principle if not in practice. Given that they are all predictable in principle then shortcuts that approximate their evolution probably also exist because they are not intrinsically unpredictable.

      If Milanovic wants to agree with that characterization then fine. If he disagrees then he doesn’t know enough about information theory to reach a valid conclusion and I understand why because Tomas Milanovic is no Leonard Susskind nor any noteworthy theorectical physicist. I can’t imagine anyone in Susskind’s league fooling around arguing with pikers in blog comments. Can you? Do you think the world’s greatest scientists slum around in blog comments with the likes of you or I or webhubtelescope? Don’t be ridiculous.

      • Chie Hydrologist

        ‘Chaos is just a code word for inability to predict system response due to intractible complexity of the system under study. It’s analogous to the n-body problem n in the thousands. We can’t solve it but nature solves it every moment of every day. To us perterbations appear chaotic but this is simply an illusion borne of ignorance.’

        Deterministic chaos is a theory of complex and dynamic systems. Nothing to do with the dictionary definition of chaos, quantum mechanics, black holes or dark matter. We can btw solve the n body problem both analytically and numerically. This is still not the case for climate.

      • David Springer

        Chie Hydrologist | March 22, 2013 at 4:50 pm |

        “Deterministic chaos is a theory of complex and dynamic systems” that are too complex for conventional analysis.

        Fixed it for ya!

      • Chief Hydrologist

        You miss the point of comments and go off on mad rants about unnconnected things, ignore the norms of civilised discussion, miss humour and cultural references, have a delusion of intellectual competence, falsely attribute thoughts or motives to other people, refuse to admit error… here’s a test… many technical people are aspie spectrum.

        http://www.rdos.net/eng/

        The point with chaos – stated by both Tomas and myself – is that regression is invalid. Linear tinking n a nonlinear world We need to apply appropriate methods – e.g. http://www.pnas.org/content/105/38/ – and I did link to this above.

      • David Springer

        You’re projecting.

        Again.

        Just like you missed my point about chaos and you accused me of saying Chaos Theory was impossible when I never suggested any such thing but rather said chaotic behavior is an illusion due to insufficient information or insufficient computing power. The universe isn’t chaotic it just looks that way. You are the one confused about the mathematical meaning of chaos, not me. I specifically stated it was analolagous to the n-body problem where n is in the thousands. Milanovic went farther and said it wasn’t analogous the n-body problem IS chaos.

        So let’s have a look:

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/N-body_problem#Three-body_problem

        Specific solutions to the three-body problem result in chaotic motion with no obvious sign of a repetitious path.

        Got that? What do you think is meant by chaotic motion if not unpredictable because there’s no obvious sign of repetition?

        This all boils down to whether or not the universe is computable i.e. deterministic. You’ve agreed that it is deterministic in principle then you babble on with inananities just to hear yourself talk and pretend you’re talking down to me. You couldn’t talk down to me from the International Space Station I’m afraid.

        Here’s you. Check it out:

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

        LOL

      • David Springer

        Thanks for link to Aspie quiz but it only confirmed what I already knew. The only thing I have in common with Aspergers is intellectual talent. I”m neurotypical in all other respects. Let’s see if the image embedding works…

        ————————————————————————————–

        Your Aspie score: 79 of 200
        Your neurotypical (non-autistic) score: 143 of 200
        You are very likely neurotypical
        [img]http://www.rdos.net/eng/poly12c.php?p1=89&p2=45&p3=62&p4=43&p5=33&p6=32&p7=28&p8=44&p9=16&p10=10&p11=17&p12=11[/img]

        Aspie talent

        This group contains intellectually related Aspie traits. Typical traits are related to interests (e.g. having strong interests; hyper focusing; having periods of contemplation; collecting information; good long term memory related to interests; figuring out how things work; making connections between things; strong-willed; stubborn). Other traits are related to information processing (e.g. noticing details; finding patterns; unusual imagination; solving problems in unusual ways; unique ideas). Some people have special talents (e.g. numbers; language; computers; music).

        Diagnostic relation

        None, but a high score is related to giftedness.

        Your group score: 8.9 of 10 (above average)

        ———————————————————————————–

        Sorry to disappoint you but you must be very accustomed to making such blunders by now so I won’t feel too sorry.

      • David Springer

        Let’s see if the image embedding works…

        Nope. But the naked link does:

        http://www.rdos.net/eng/poly12c.php?p1=89&p2=45&p3=62&p4=43&p5=33&p6=32&p7=28&p8=44&p9=16&p10=10&p11=17&p12=11

      • Chief Hydrologist

        You must be a sociopath then. The old smartest person in the room syndrome. Lecturing and hectoring and shouting down others. You need 3 comments to respond? Quite typical behaviour.

        What I said was that you went off on a mad rant about quantum mechanics, string theory, black holes and dark matter. You are now insisting on something – not the nonsense you commenced with – as if it news to anyone or of any particular import.

        ‘It is not analogous. It is identical. Any N body system (starting with N=3) is chaotic as we know since Poincarré.

        That was 100 years ago.

        And it also is no “code word” – it is an important branch of physics which is called non linear dynamics. Chaotic systems are just a part of systems that it studies.

        Last but not least – the complexity is not intractable. On the contrary it is pretty much tractable but only by people who have studied and have a good mathematical understanding of the necessary tools.

        That’s precisely the purpose of every new theory – understand better systems that were poorly understood previously.’ Tomas

        Again – chaotic systems are fully deterministic – thus in principle predictable although in practice incalculable. Again -it is not remotely concerned with quantum mechanics. It is a property of the system itself – control variables and multiple negative and positive feedbacks.

        Abrupt shifts are caused by the interactions of the feedbacks as the system evolves though time. MOC changes snow and ice, canges hydrology and biology, changes cloud , etc.

        If you were capable of admitting error, listening to others or had less than an overweening need for self aggrandisement – you wouldn’t be such a dyed in the wool idgit.

  73. David Springer

    One response to your message. One response after taking a long Aspie quiz that you suggested. One response to provide a link that didn’t work in a previous response. That’s diagnostic of something? Spare me.

    You don’t know enough about information theory to understand how it is understood by many physicists that the bit, a single unit of information, is the fundamental particle of the universe. Matter and energy are incidental. This is as deep as it gets in theoretical physics. Everything, including chaos, is explained by information theory. Properly understood this provides insights such as chaos is ultimately predictable because information can neither be created nor destroyed. Any system wherein it evolves in such a way as to lose a perfect description of past or future states violates the conservation of information. Chaos theory is just a shortcut like statistical mechanics for systems that are intractable in a bit by bit analysis.

    I’m casting pearls before swine, evidently.

    Try the following links for some fundamentals:

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

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

    And don’t obssess over “code word”. It’s just a figure of speech in this case meaning chaos doesn’t mean chaos in the normal sense of the word but rather means a deterministic system that appears to be random but isn’t really random. This perfectly expresses my understanding which has not changed since you started babbling about how I didn’t understand chaos:

    http://www.csuohio.edu/sciences/dept/physics/physicsweb/kaufman/yurkon/chaos.html

    in technical literature, the term chaos means something that appears to be random and disordered but is actually deterministic in nature, meaning that it is precisely controlled by natural laws.

    Now think hard about this: If something appears to be random but it really isn’t then the appearance is an illusion. It’s actually not random it is just so complex and/or sensitive to small variations that computation is intractable. I’ve never said more or less than this. I’ve only said that ‘chaos’ is a misleading name i.e. it’s code word for systems that are computationally intractable. Write that down.

    • No it the the long winded and completely irrelevant justifications.

      ‘It’s a baffling psychosomatic disorder, as being the smartest person in the room doesn’t mean that you’re actually the smartest person in the room. Only that you believe you are. It’s not so much about being smart as much as feeling you’re always right. Immune to the challenge of facts.

      SPIRD symptoms include, but are not limited to: thinking you should know all the answers, thinking you have all the answers, bulging forehead blood vessels, shouting down the opposition and an impulsive need to demonize or ruin your adversary.’

      Bullschist. Deterministic chaos is simply a system that defies prediction because of either incomplete information about the initial state or its evolution is too numerically difficult to calculate. That’s if philosophical determinism is true of course. The Copenhagen Interpretation of QM says it’s false but I believe quantum uncertainty is a deficiency in the observer not a property of the observed. Spare me Bell’s Theorum proving otherwise. Physics is incomplete. It’s lacking a quantum theory of gravity and doesn’t have a clue what constitutes 75% of the stuff that makes up the observable universe (dark matter) which is observed solely through what appears to be an anomaly in gravity that’s causing the expansion of the universe to itself accelerate across vast distances.

      Philosophical determinism gives you insights into predictability of chaos? Deterministic chaos is and never has been random and neither Tomas nor I said so. You are a raving idiot.

  74. David Springer

    Okay Sybil. Whatever. Babble on.

  75. You spend – what months – disparaging deterministic chaos in climate? Then pretend you know something about it – that it’s deterministic – that no one else knows by reference to 5 irrelevant other things that you know nothing about either. Utterly pathetic almost covers it.

    • David Springer

      I’ve been dissing it because it’s trivially true that weather is chaotic (in the physical sense) to some degree. For instance we don’t know what the temperature on August 1, 2013 will be Austin, Texas but you can bet your bottom dollar it won’t be below freezing due to any butterfly effects. Maybe a major asteroid strike or supervolcano which is pretty frickin’ far from a butterfly.

      What you can’t seem to get through your thick skull is that climate is not chaotic. Climate has been tightly constrained for billions of years in a temperature domain that allows life to flourish with a few rare episodes where it hit a floor that left most if not all land and ocean surface covered in ice. A snowball earth is probably not possible anymore because solar power constantly increases in the main sequence of G-type stars and ours is no exception having grown some 10% over the last few billion years.

      This stability persists despite major insults to the system such as supervolcano eruptions and major asteroid strikes. It always remains tightly constrained and returns to one of two semi-stable ground states. The two ground states are set by the phases of water and the available energy from the sun. This is not rocket science nor is it chaotic. Solid phase water has a very high albedo. Liquid phase a very low albedo. The vapor phase has very high albedo (clouds). By a factor of 10:1 climate is locked in the liquid phase between the low albedo of liquid water and the high albedo of clouds. Rarely, and the current period is one of those rare episodes, it is close to the point where it transitions into the state where it’s locked between the solid and liquid phase thus we observe a very regular cycle of glacial/interglacial periods.

      All climate changes appear explainable by major forces not butterfly effects. Patterns abound. That behavior and those bounds are NOT diagnostic of chaos. Even today in the midst of the most rapid climate change within those bounds the earth is ringing like a bell between glacial and interglacial periods. A bell’s ringing is not chaotic. A butterfly landing on a church bell doesn’t change jack diddly squat (write that down).

      I suppose my disdain for chaos theory applied to climate is it appears to be the last resort of a class of scoundrels sometimes called climate catastrophists who believe that a little nudge from anthropogenic CO2 could cause the earth’s climate to go into a death spiral that ends up with a Venusian-like hell-on-earth. I dispute this vehemently because climate is not chaotic. It’s predictable. It’s computable. It’s digital physics. Current climate models are simply what computer science professionals such as myself call “toy models”. They are over-simplified, poorly parameterized, and grossly lacking or mistaken in the physics of at least one key area – clouds. What remains to be seen is when and if these deficiencies can be remedied.

      Likewise chaos theory applied to climate is the last resort of some scoundrels in the camp called denialists. These claim that because climate is chaotic it is forever beyond the reach of long term prediction so climate models are an exercise in futilty.

      A pox on both those houses of climate chaos is what I say. Climate is not chaotic it’s merely not currently computable for the reasons described above.

      The following is instructive particularly the quoted paragraph. Try to learn from it. I can spoonfeed this to you but you’ll have to stop making faces and spitting it out.

      http://www.aip.org/history/climate/chaos.htm

      My bold.

      Most scientists agreed that climate has features of a chaotic system, but they did not think it was wholly unpredictable. To be sure, it was impossible to predict well in advance, with any computer that could ever be built in the actual universe, that a tornado would hit a particular town in Texas on a particular day (not because of one guilty butterfly, of course, but as the net result of countless tiny initial influences). Yet tornado seasons came on schedule. That type of consistency showed up in the supercomputer simulations constructed in the 1980s and after. Start a variety of model runs with different initial conditions, and they would show, like most calculations with complex nonlinear feedbacks, random variations in the weather patterns computed for one or another region and season. However, their predictions for global average temperature usually remained within a fairly narrow range under given conditions. Critics replied that the computer models had been loaded with artificial assumptions in order to force them to produce regular-looking results. But gradually the most arbitrary assumptions were pared away. The models continued to reproduce, with increasing precision, many kinds of past changes, all the way back through the ice ages. As the computer work became more plausible, it set limits on the amount of variation that might be ascribed to pure chance.

      In conclusion I fart in your general direction which may, according to chaos theory, result in another severe drought in Australia on the other side of the globe. Let’s call it The Fartifly Effect. Try not to lose sleep over it Chief Kangaroo Skippy “Sybil” Ellison or whoever your muddled psyche has at the helm in this moment.

      • David

        I was going to take issiue with you for saying that the climate wasnt chaotic, but then read further and agree that it is the weather that is chaotic-it is useful to make the distinction between the two.

        For example this March looks like being the coldest for many years in the UK. Last year we were basking in temperatures in the 70′s. This year a high pressure system is sitting over us in such a position it is feeding in bitterly cold northerly/easterly winds, last year it was in such a position the winds were a warm southerly. Chaotic weather.

        Climate however tends to keep within more respectful parameters as eventually the chaotic weather equals itself out. Here is CET showing 10 year and 50 year trends.

        It often goes up and down wildly from decade to decade but eventually forms a reasonably ordered pattern round a relatively small temperature change.

        The CET temperatures have dropped sharply in the UK over the last decade and are currently somewhere around the point we were in the 1730′s, 1640s and 1540′s . At its peak it appears to have been slightly cooler than the period around 1000AD to 1215 AD.

        The most recent CET chart shows a distinct-and worrying-cooling hockey stick

        http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/hadobs/hadcet/

        tonyb

      • David Springer

        Tonyb, you’re a reliable voice of reason and civility in the wilderness of science blog commentary. Thanks for your considered opinion which I find agreeable enough that I’d have to resort to nitpicking to raise an issue with it.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        You are an utter fool with a reference to aip and a narrative that goes well beyond your usual shallow, bombastic and facile standard. If you would learn to stfu and listen you might become a reasonable human being but that’s not happening any time soon is it.

      • David Springer

        Why do you care whether I’m a reasonable human being or not?

        I couldn’t care less if you dropped dead tomorrow or continued babbling on blogs. You’re irrelevant either way. Maybe you should just ignore me if you can possibly resist. I say you can’t. Your bombastic nature just doesn’t allow you to ignore any antagonist. I play you like a fiddle. [shrugs]

    • Chief Hydrologist

      Wharever you do or don’t do is of course entrely irrelevant. I merely anticipate that you will go through the same obnoxious rant time and time again. I will ignore you if I want – which is most of the time – if not you will have to get used to me calling you on your profoundly ignorant narrative. So sad too bad. The only person you are playing with is yourself.

  76. Thanks tonyb for the graphs and data.
    Scott

  77. Chief Hydrologist

    It is useful to make the distinction between digital models and the analogue world. These models have at their core the Navier-Stokes partial differential equations.

    ‘In 1963, Lorenz published his seminal paper on ‘Deterministic non-periodic flow’, which was to change the course of weather and climate prediction profoundly over the following decades and to embed the theory of chaos at the heart of meteorology. Indeed, it could be said that his view of the atmosphere (and subsequently also the oceans) as a chaotic system has coloured our thinking of the predictability of weather and subsequently climate from thereon.

    Lorenz was able to show that even for a simple set of nonlinear equations (1.1), the evolution of the solution could be changed by minute perturbations to the initial conditions, in other words, beyond a certain forecast lead time, there is no longer a single, deterministic solution and hence all forecasts must be treated as probabilistic. The fractionally dimensioned space occupied by the trajectories of the solutions of these nonlinear equations became known as the Lorenz attractor (figure 1), which suggests that nonlinear systems, such as the atmosphere, may exhibit regime-like structures that are, although fully deterministic, subject to abrupt and seemingly random change.’ http://rsta.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/369/1956/4751.full

    ‘AOS models are members of the broader class of deterministic chaotic dynamical systems, which provides several expectations about their properties (Fig. 1). In the context of weather prediction, the generic property of sensitive dependence is well understood (4, 5). For a particular model, small differences in initial state (indistinguishable within the sampling uncertainty for atmospheric measurements) amplify with time at an exponential rate until saturating at a magnitude comparable to the range of intrinsic variability. Model differences are another source of sensitive dependence. Thus, a deterministic weather forecast cannot be accurate after a period of a few weeks, and the time interval for skillful modern forecasts is only somewhat shorter than the estimate for this theoretical limit. In the context of equilibrium climate dynamics, there is another generic property that is also relevant for AOS, namely structural instability (6). Small changes in model formulation, either its equation set or parameter values, induce significant differences in the long-time distribution functions for the dependent variables (i.e., the phase-space attractor). The character of the changes can be either metrical (e.g., different means or variances) or topological (different attractor shapes). Structural instability is the norm for broad classes of chaotic dynamical systems that can be so assessed (e.g., see ref. 7). Obviously, among the options for discrete algorithms and parameterization schemes, and perhaps especially for coupling to nonfluid processes, there are many ways that AOS model equation sets can and will change and hence will be vulnerable to structurally unstable behavior.’ http://www.pnas.org/content/104/21/8709.long

    Failure to understand that is at the core of most misundrstandings about sensitivity

  78. Chief Hydrologist

    ‘Recent scientific evidence shows that major and widespread climate changes have occurred with startling speed. For example, roughly half the north Atlantic warming since the last ice age was achieved in only a decade, and it was accompanied by significant climatic changes across most of the globe. Similar events, including local warmings as large as 16°C, occurred repeatedly during the slide into and climb out of the last ice age. Human civilizations arose after those extreme, global ice-age climate jumps. Severe droughts and other regional climate events during the current warm period have shown similar tendencies of abrupt onset and great persistence, often with adverse effects on societies…

    ‘Researchers first became intrigued by abrupt climate change when they discovered striking evidence of large, abrupt, and widespread changes preserved in paleoclimatic archives. Interpretation of such proxy records of climate—for example, using tree rings to judge occurrence of droughts or gas bubbles in ice cores to study the atmosphere at the time the bubbles were trapped—is a well-established science that has grown much in recent years. This chapter summarizes techniques for studying paleoclimate and highlights research results. The chapter concludes with examples of modern climate change and techniques for observing it. Modern climate records include abrupt changes that are smaller and briefer than in paleoclimate records but show that abrupt climate change is not restricted to the distant past.’ http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=10136&page=R1

    The butterfly effect is of course not an actual butterfly but suggested by the topology of the ‘strange attractor’ of the Lorenz equations. – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Lorenz.png The solution space of the 3 body problem has a different topology – http://www.scholarpedia.org/article/File:3body_problem_figure6.gif – but has similar behaviour in abrupt and nonlinear shifts.

    Climate is a system with multiple positive and negative feedbacks evolving through time. The reality is that climate shifts abruptly as these feedbacks interact and out of proporton with the original forcing on all scales from decades at least to eons. The idea of predicting summer after 16 degrees cooling in a decade is feasible bt meaningless in terms of either weather or climate.

    Weather has been known to be chaotic since Edward Lorenz discovered the ‘butterfly effect’ in the 1960’s.Abrupt climate change on the other hand was thought to have happened only in the distant past and so climate was expected to evolve steadily over this century in response to ordered climate forcing.

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

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

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

    Four multi-decadal climate shifts were identified in the last century coinciding with changes in the surface temperature trajectory. Warming from 1909 to the mid 1940’s, cooling to the late 1970’s, warming to 1998 and not warming at least since. The shifts are punctuated by extreme El Niño Southern Oscillation events. Fluctuations between La Niña and El Niño peak at these times and climate then settles into a damped oscillation. Until the next critical climate threshold – due perhaps in a decade or two if the recent past is any indication.

    James Hurrell and colleagues in an article in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society stated that the ‘global coupled atmosphere–ocean–land–cryosphere system exhibits a wide range of physical and dynamical phenomena with associated physical, biological, and chemical feedbacks that collectively result in a continuum of temporal and spatial variability. The traditional boundaries between weather and climate are, therefore, somewhat artificial.’ Somewhat artificial is somewhat of an understatement for a paradigm shift in climate science.

    We are ued to simplistic and dogmatic argument in the climate war – but real understanding depends on more than a superficial internet search of blog science.

  79. Meanwhile, back in the real world…

    AMSU’s Aqua channel 5 (600mb) is currently showing an unprecedented in the satellite record for March, precipitous decline in global average temperature of 0.5degC (circa 3%) in just 8 days! Channels 6 (400mb) and 7 (250mb) echo similar if not quite as extreme & unusual declines.

    Is the first recorded super tropospherical cooling event evidence of chaotic abrupt climate change? Or is the STC evidence of a direct inverse relationship with record high CO2 ppm? Inquiring minded Bunnies would like to know…

    • Chief Hydrologist

      Everything is unprecendented? ENSO, cooling, warming, snow? Glad you specified in the satellite era. The weather is of course chaotic – but perhaps the pattern causing unusual weather in Europe in responsible. It is certainly showing in the CET Tony linked to above.

    • David Springer

      Gras Albert | March 23, 2013 at 11:08 pm | Reply

      “Meanwhile, back in the real world…”

      Good one. Who knew an entire pretend universe could be constructed of babble?

    • David Springer

      Per Roy Spencer AMSU channel 5 has drifted 0.2C high so when comparing it to prior years offset it by that amount.

      I compared it to March for 2002 – 2012 and it is indeed a bit omimous for a drop that large in March when most years it’s steadily rising by now.

      But who needs satellites when most people north of the 40th parallel are still getting clobbered by winter storms and just have to look out the window to know it’s unseaonably cold.

      Kiddies in the UK haven’t quite forgotten what snow is yet have they?

  80. precipitous decline in global average temperature of 0.5degC (circa 3%) in just 8 days!

    Applying sophisticated statistics and trend analysis projects the world will be in an ice age in 80 days.

    Seems like we’ve passed the tipping point.

    Now that really is something to be concerned about.

    • 97% of tropospheric heat content would like the last of the 3% that left last week to turn the lights out

      Oh wait

  81. David Springer

    The universe isn’t likely to be analog in any grand unified theory of everything. The only way to avoid infinities where classical physics break down is for time and distance to be quantized along with everything else. It all boils down again to information theory. A deterministic universe is a computable universe whose evolution can be programmed with a universal turing machine. It can be perfectly described. An analog universe is non-deterministic because no perfect description is possible. There will always be further decimal points in a never ending succession. Classical physics breaks down when infinities are reached. The only way to resolve it is quantum everything. Quantized time and distance has no infinities and is thereby computable.

    At any rate the jury is still out. Nobody knows whether the universe is analog or digital and that most certainly includes Chief Kangaroo Skippy “Sybil” Ellison whose background in cosmology is sorely lacking.

  82. Chief Hydrologist

    What we know about climate is temperature, velocity, time, flux, etc – all determined by analogs. So the world itself is not an analogue of itself – but what we know about it is by analogy. This is contrasted of course to numerical simulations.

    Nothing of springers comment makes any sense. It is just classically insane. The world is not infinite – everything is deterministic – physics doesn’t break down except at the big bang and perhaps in black holes – a universal turing machine for climate is impossible – the universe is certainly not digital in any reasonable sense.

    From Boswell – A Life – ‘After we came out of the church, we stood talking for some time together of Bishop Berkeley’s ingenious sophistry to prove the nonexistence of matter, and that every thing in the universe is merely ideal. I observed, that though we are satisfied his doctrine is not true, it is impossible to refute it. I never shall forget the alacrity with which Johnson answered, striking his foot with mighty force against a large stone, till he rebounded from it — “I refute it thus.”‘

    You wonder how people get so caught up in their own cogitations that they lose all sense of reality.

    • David Springer

      You should really do a little reading before shooting your mouth off. You’re wrong once again. Singularities can form at any radius down to Planck length and any mass down to Planck mass (22 micrograms). Below that threshold our physics breaks down. We don’t know WTF happens at those scales because we have no theory of quantum gravity. We have untested hypotheses of quantum gravity.

      Leo Smolin, writes:

      http://www.edge.org/3rd_culture/smolin03/smolin03_p3.html

      My bold.

      In quantum theory, distance is inverse to energy, because you need particles of very high energy to probe very short distances. The inverse of the Planck energy is the Planck length. It is where the classical picture of space as smooth and continuous is predicted by our theories to break down, and it is some twenty powers of ten smaller than an atomic nucleus.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        ‘Amazingly, singularities are indeed allowed in general relativity and, moreover, they occur in a wide range of realistic models, notably at the beginning of an expanding universe such as ours (a “big bang singularity”) and in the interior of black holes, even those formed through realistic non-symmetric collapse. This has been established in a number of celebrated mathematical theorems called singularity theorems – the first and most famous obtained in the mid-sixties by Roger Penrose and Stephen Hawking.’ http://www.einstein-online.info/spotlights/singularities

        ‘The Planck mass is approximately the mass of the Planck particle, a hypothetical minuscule black hole whose Schwarzschild radius equals the Planck length.’

        It’s stil got sfa to do with climate and you are still a pointless idiot.

  83. After nearly 500 comments, has the central estimate and confidence intervals for climate sensitivity been agreed?

    • David Springer

      No, that’s too hard of a question. We’re working on easier things like reconciling quantum mechanics with general relativity to come up with a Grand Unified Theory of Everything. Perhaps climate sensitivity will be subsumed by a theory of everything but I tend to doubt it.

    • Steven Mosher

      ya, central estimate hasnt changed in a long time. 3C,
      the lower end bound is easy, higher end bound is less easy, but tractable.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Thought that was the central value form opportunistic ensembles.

        ‘In each of these model–ensemble comparison studies, there are important but difficult questions: How well selected are the models for their plausibility? How much of the ensemble spread is reducible by further model improvements? How well can the spread can be explained by analysis of model differences? How much is irreducible imprecision in an AOS?

        Simplistically, despite the opportunistic assemblage of the various AOS model ensembles, we can view the spreads in their results as upper bounds on their irreducible imprecision. Optimistically, we might think this upper bound is a substantial overestimate because AOS models are evolving and improving. Pessimistically, we can worry that the ensembles contain insufficient samples of possible plausible models, so the spreads may underestimate the true level of irreducible imprecision (cf., ref. 23). Realistically, we do not yet know how to make this assessment with confidence.’ http://www.pnas.org/content/104/21/8709.long

        Simplistic, optimistic, pessimistic or realistic? Which are you mosh?

      • This is how well the central estimate works:

        http://theoilconundrum.blogspot.com/2013/03/stochastic-analysis-of-log-sensitivity.html

        Any plateauing in temperature is statistically accountable by the red noise fluctuations that have always been a part of the temperature record. Red noise is different than white noise in that up and down fluctuations take time to revert to the mean. As the mean continues to increase, the assumption is that the red noise fluctuations would remain approximately the same in terms of an RMS value.

        The addition of a downward noise fluctuation with an increasing trend is essentially a compensation effect. If one wants to call this a “pause” or a “standstill”, I suppose that is fine to use that as concise description;
        but over the historical record, the global yearly averaged temperature has always fluctuated, so the concept of the temperature ever pausing is not borne out by the empirical evidence.

        If the coming 10 years, if the noise does not start reverting back to the upward trending mean, and instead stays flat, we will know that the climate sensitivity is likely less.

        As of now, the naive observers who think that every fluctuation means something are essentially noise riders, ready to go for an up and down ride. These are the same people who think they could hit a knuckleball.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        ‘It is hypothesized that persistent and consistent trends among several climate modes act to kick the climate state, altering the pattern and magnitude of air-sea interaction between the atmosphere and the underlying ocean. The middle panel in Figure 1 shows that these climate mode trend phases indeed behaved anomalously three times during the 20th century, immediately following the synchronization events of the 1910s, 1940s, and 1970s. This combination of the synchronization This combination of the synchronization of these dynamical modes in the climate, followed immediately afterward by significant increase in the fraction of strong trends followed immediately afterward without exception marked shifts in the 20th century climate state. These shifts were accompanied by breaks in the global mean temperature trend with respect to time, presumably associated with either discontinuities in the global radiative budget due to the global reorganization of clouds and water vapor or dramatic changes in the uptake of heat by the deep ocean. Similar behavior has been found in coupled ocean/atmosphere models, indicating such behavior may be a hallmark of terrestrial-like climate systems.’ S&T09

        The shift in 1998/2001 seems to have been accompanied by a quite significant shift in cloud cover.

        It is quite obvious that the oceans are in a cool mode – see for instance http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=8703 – and that these last for 20 to 40 years in the proxy record. Far from being noise it is discernible as a coherent climate pattern.

        These decadal shifts are associated with shifts in ENSO frequency and intensity. So taking ENSO as a proxy of climate – quite reasonable – it is apparent that the frequency and intensity changes over very long periods – it is technically a nonstationary series – and the meme that these cancel out over decadal periods is obvious nonsense. Here is an 11,00 year record.

        http://s1114.photobucket.com/user/Chief_Hydrologist/media/ENSO11000.gif.html?sort=3&o=89

  84. Chief Hydrologist

    ‘…the future evolution of the global mean temperature may hold surprises on both the warm and cold ends of the spectrum due entirely to internal variability that lie well outside the envelope of a steadily increasing global mean temperature.’ S&T09

    Models are chaotic and solutions can only be stated probabilistically in a way that is currently not feasible. ‘Lorenz was able to show that even for a simple set of nonlinear equations (1.1), the evolution of the solution could be changed by minute perturbations to the initial conditions, in other words, beyond a certain forecast lead time, there is no longer a single, deterministic solution and hence all forecasts must be treated as probabilistic.’ S&P11

    Even if the models captured the physics – most unlikely – we still don’t have a probability distribution that is useable.

  85. David Springer

    A Turing machine that can calculate the climate is indeed possible. It’s not practical. The Turing machine is a simple machine that can compute anything in finite time. Finite time is the key. The simple machine might take longer than the age of the universe to reach the end of the calculation which is still a finite amount of time. In theory a machine with the same complexity as the climate can compute the evolution of the climate in the same span of time that the actual climate evolves. The limit of a universal turing machine is computing the evolution of a system with the same number of fundamental particles in it as the actual universe. In the case the universe and the machine are one and the same.

    I suggest you actually spend some time, if you are capable of understanding this stuff in a finite amount of time of course, familiarizing yourself with the range of thinking in digital physics. This is high brow stuff formulated by the top theoretical physicists this world has produced. Maybe they’re just all idiots. Waving your hands and calling things you don’t idiotic seems to be your go-to response, Ellison, so I expect that’s what I’ll get in response to the suggestion you do a little reading:

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

  86. Chief Hydrologist

    ‘In physics and cosmology, digital physics is a collection of theoretical perspectives based on the premise that the universe is, at heart, describable by information, and is therefore computable. Therefore, the universe can be conceived of as either the output of a computer program, a vast, digital computation device, or mathematically isomorphic to such a device.

    Digital physics is grounded in one or more of the following hypotheses; listed in order of decreasing strength. The universe, or reality:

    - is essentially informational (although not every informational ontology needs to be digital)
    – is essentially computable
    – can be described digitally
    – is in essence digital
    – is itself a computer
    – is the output of a simulated reality exercise’

    ‘Turing machines, first described by Alan Turing in (Turing 1937), are simple abstract computational devices intended to help investigate the extent and limitations of what can be computed.’ http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/turing-machine/#Definition

    Agan the immense irrelevance of any of this casts serious doubts on your sanity. And to think that a 14 billion year computer program is possible removes any possible doubt.

    • David Springer

      Computer science is irrelevant to climate analysis?

      Is that willful ignorance or is it just so far over your head it all appears as gibberish?

      Don’t bother responding. That’s rhetorical. Babble on, Garth.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        The digital universe is irrelevant – as is black holes, quantum mechanics, Turing machines, dark matter, etc. You now blabber something about cmputers being relevant. King of the bleeding obvious but still utterly disengenuous.

  87. David Springer

    WebHubTelescope | March 24, 2013 at 10:11 am |

    “If the coming 10 years, if the noise does not start reverting back to the upward trending mean, and instead stays flat, we will know that the climate sensitivity is likely less.”

    You blinked. Waivered that is. Hesitated. Questioned your beliefs.

    I didn’t think you had it in you to actually come out and say it’s possible that climate sensitivity might be less than the usual suspects say it is.

    I consider this a great achievement for you. Did it hurt a lot?

    • Yeah, that struck me too, but then I got distracted by what he was saying about the cause of the upward trending mean, as if he knew.
      =======

  88. Chief Hydrologist

    James Hurrell and colleagues in an article in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society stated that the ‘global coupled atmosphere–ocean–land–cryosphere system exhibits a wide range of physical and dynamical phenomena with associated physical, biological, and chemical feedbacks that collectively result in a continuum of temporal and spatial variability. The traditional boundaries between weather and climate are, therefore, somewhat artificial.’

    The discussion was about weather and climate being a chaotic system. If it is chaotic at the scale of weather it is choatic over longer time frames. The distractions from this simple idea are legion ranging from perpetual motion to the idea that deterministic chaos is deterministic. The former just nonsense and the latter a statement of the obvious.

    The signifier of deterministic chaos in climate is in the idea of abrupt climate change. This is defined as climate change that occurs faster than and out of proportion with the original forcing. How can this be? It is as a result of interacting and still poorly defined feedbacks. Abrupt climate change – as defined – is evident everywhere in the record. It applies as much to hydrology as temperature when thinking about climate.

    • The disappearance of Arctic sea ice is one example of such a thing. Its speed is a step function in climate terms, as is our current warming rate.

  89. Pingback: Meta-uncertainty in the determination of climate sensitivity | Climate Etc.

  90. Pingback: Good news about climate change! | Fabius Maximus

  91. Pingback: Climate Science’s Constant Appeals To Authority Only Confirm Its Total Fallacy

  92. Pingback: Why Won’t Climate Scientists Show The Data That Proves Their Theory That CO2 Is The Primary Culprit Behind Climate Change? | Power To The People

  93. Oooh, thanks, Ed Caryl, for ‘calamitology’. Consider it stolen.
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