Impact of climate, population and CO2 on water resources

by Judith Curry

Increasing CO2 may actually help relieve the water stress associated with increasing global population.

The importance of population, climate change and CO2 plant physiological forcing in determining future global water stress

Andrew Wiltshire, Jemma Gornall, Ben Booth, Emily Dennis, Pete Falloon, Gillian Kay, Doug McNeall, Carol McSweeney, Richard Betts

Future levels of water stress depend on changes in several key factors including population, climate- change driven water availability, and a carbon dioxide physiological-forcing effect on evaporation and run-off. In this study we use an ensemble of the HadCM3 climate model forced with a range of future emissions scenarios combined with a simple water scarcity index to assess the contribution of each of these factors to the projected population living in water stress over the 21st century. Population change only scenarios increase the number of people living in water stress such that at peak global population 65% of people experience some level of water stress. Globally, the climate model ensemble projects an increase in water availability which partially offsets some of the impacts of population growth. The result is 1 billion fewer people living in water stress by the 2080s under the high end emissions scenarios than if population increased in the absence of climate change. This study highlights the important role plant-physiological forcing has on future water resources. The effect of rising CO2 is to increase available water and to reduce the number of people living in high water stress by around 200 million compared to climate only projections. This effect is of a similar order of magnitude to climate change.

Citation: Wiltshire, A. J., Gornall, J., Booth, B. B. B., Dennis, E., Falloon, P., Kay, G., McSweeney, C., McNeall, D., and Betts, R. A.: The importance of population, climate change and CO2 plant physiological forcing in determining future global water stress., Global Environmental Change 2013.

From the UK Met Office press release:

  • Higher carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations in the future will change the way plants use water, and might help relieve the water stress caused by a larger global population and climate change. 
  • Population growth is projected to be the main driver of an increase in the number of people experiencing water stress in 21st Century.
  • Climate change is projected to be less important, and may actually decrease the global number of people in water stress – although regionally there will be winners and losers.

A new modeling study led by Met Office scientist Andy Wiltshire attempts to link changing population with the impact of climate change and carbon dioxide (CO2) on 21st century water resources. This study found an overall increase in the levels of water stress over the 21st Century.

This increase is mainly the result of population growth, with around 65% of the population projected to be exposed to some level of water stress at the time of peak population. By the end of the century it is estimated that around 4 billion people will live in regions of high water stress due to population change. 
 
Climate change will affect both rainfall and evaporation – both important factors influencing available water. Overall, this study found up to 1 billion less people living in high water stress by the end of century than would have been the case without climate change. However, there are winners and losers in this study as climate change acts to increase water availability in some regions and decrease it in others.
 
The increase in CO2 in the atmosphere is one of the main contributing factors leading to climate change. However, CO2 also affects plants directly. One of the side effects of increasing atmospheric CO2 is to reduce the amount of water plants need to grow. This ‘CO2 effect’ increases the amount of water available for human consumption. 
 
When you include the CO2 effect, the number of people living in a state of high water stress is reduced by around 200 million compared to population growth and climate change alone. Importantly, the ‘CO2 effect’ leads to fewer people living in water stress for most of the regions of the world, unlike the effects of climate change which lead to large regional differences in water availability.
 
This research shows that there are potentially important implications from the particular mix of greenhouse gases and the future level of warming on the impacts of climate change. There may be some benefits of climate change in the face of rapid population growth, most strongly felt if the climate change is driven by increasing atmospheric CO2 rather than other greenhouse gases (GHGs).  If CO2 is mitigated at the expense of other GHGs it may be that the benefits of CO2 on water resources are reduced but the impacts of climate change are still felt. This has implications for global GHG emissions targets that aim to limit climate change according to temperature targets alone.

JC comments:  This paper illustrates the importance of considering multiple factors when assessing climate change impacts (particularly AGW).  In my 2010 Congressional Testimony, I alluded to the water resource issue in terms of climate change winners and losers:

A view of the climate change problem as irreducibly global fails to recognize that some regions may actually benefit from a warmer and/or wetter climate. Areas of the world that currently cannot adequately support populations and agricultural efforts may become more desirable in future climate regimes.

Arguably the biggest global concern regarding climate change impacts is concerns over water resources. This concern is exacerbated in regions where population is rapidly increasing and water resources are already thinly stretched. China and South Asia (notably India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh) are facing a looming water crisis arising from burgeoning population and increasing demand for water for irrigated farming and industry. 

“The consensus of AR4 models . . . indicates an increase in annual precipitation in most of Asia during this century; the relative increase being largest and most consistent between models in North and East Asia. The sub-continental mean winter precipitation will very likely increase in northern Asia and the Tibetan Plateau and likely increase in West, Central, South-East and East Asia. Summer precipitation will likely increase in North, South, South-East and East Asia but decrease in West and Central Asia.” [From the IPCC AR4]

Based on the IPCC’s simulations of 21st century climate, it seems that rainfall will increase overall in the region (including wintertime snowfall in Tibet), and the IPCC AR4 WGII does not discuss the impact of temperature and evapotranspiration on fresh water resources in this region.

It is good to see integrated studies such as the Wiltshire et al. paper; it remains to be seen whether the IPCC AR5 assessments of such impacts will be an improvement over the AR4 assessment, and whether the possibility of winners as well as losers will be acknowledged.
 

326 responses to “Impact of climate, population and CO2 on water resources

  1. Warming is good? Look at the catastrophic warming since the end of the Little Ice Age.
    ===========

    • David Springer

      The physiological effect CO2 has on plants is not modeled so any arguments about climate models being unreliable are irrelevant. Plants exchange gases with the atmosphere. During photosynthesis they take in CO2 and release O2. They exchange gases through iris-like openings in the leaves called stomata. The lose water to evaporation when the stomata are open. If the CO2 level in the atmosphere is higher the gas exchange happens faster. When the gas exchange happens faster the stomata are not open as much. When the stomata are not open as much less water is lost to evaporation.

      Again this is not modeled it’s botanical knowledge gained from experience and experiment. It is not recently acquired botanical knowledge. The rate of CO2 increase in the atmosphere goes on regardless of what climate sensitivity to it turns out to be.

    • But the quote is: “Overall, this study found up to 1 billion less people living in high water stress by the end of century than would have been the case without climate change.” What it doesn’t say is that there would be more than 12 billion inhabitants by 2100. Any place they live may not be ‘high water stress’, but that doesn’t equate to ‘adequate food availability’ !!

  2. Pissant Progressive

    Christ, this thread should be heavily moderated for relevance. Any skeptics who comment should stipulate that GCMs are suspect and refrain; and warmers need to refrain from “but temperature, extreme weather, etc.!”

    • Agreed. Following this thread will likely provide much amusement.

    • I got as far as “In this study we use an ensemble of the HadCM3 climate model”
      and stopped reading; including what our hostess wrote. I have no intention of commenting further, unless some warmists posts something stupid.

    • MET office, Models, Long term Forecast Need I say more?

    • but temperature, extreme weather, etc.

      • lolwot

        Looks like you fell into the trap.

        Congratulations!

        Max

      • Pissant Progressive

        thread summary thus far:

        Skeptics – the models suck!
        Warmists – there must be something wrong with this study! It’s worse than we thought!
        Joshua – takes JC to task on equal treatment of skeptics
        Mosher – shows up to tell Joshua how he is wrong

        thanks anyway lolwot

      • Steven Mosher

        Progressive

        its interesting how the same archtypal scenes are played over and over again through out drama, and its still enjoyable

    • CO2 fixation by Ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase oxygenase (RuBisCO) has been studied in detail, we knew most of its enzymology in the stone age when I was an undergraduate.
      It is terribly inefficient at low [CO2], and the steady state level of CO2 in the atmosphere in the past few hundred million years has been determined by how much photosynthetic biotica can rip CO2 and inorganic carbon from the various reservoirs.
      At low CO2/DIC the more energy is needed to maintain the carbonate pumps and the more energy loss to RuBisCO mis-firing.
      RuBisCO has evolved to give it the lowest km for its mechanistic route, the turnover reflects this, a big, complicated and very expensive enzyme that has been undergoing evolution for more than a billion years in the archaea, crenarchaeota, prokarya and eukarya. This protein has been around a looooog time, and its genes are ever so promiscuous having been passed up, down and sideways, and isn’t going to get better or different anytime soon. RuBisCO is typically 50% of a leaf mass and is a huge investment for a plant.
      It’s not difficult, its just biochemistry. High CO2, less waste of reduction potential.

      • David Springer

        The level of CO2 in the atmosphere has not been steady for the past several hundred million years. You need to check what you write for accuracy when it falls outside your expertise.

      • Dave, he doesn’t say it’s been steady. That was my first thought, but I read it again.
        ============

      • David, plot the atmospheric [CO2] against the evolution of plants; from the conquest of the land during the Devonian Period to present and the effect of mass extinction events on atmospheric [CO2].

      • David Springer

        DocMartyn | August 14, 2013 at 7:56 am |

        “David, plot the atmospheric [CO2] against the evolution of plants; from the conquest of the land during the Devonian Period to present and the effect of mass extinction events on atmospheric [CO2].”

        This still doesn’t make pCO2 anywhere near steady since the Cambrian explosion. The spikes at extinction events have a wide range of peak amplitudes so it’s not the pCO2 doing it but rather the spike is caused by something. A supervolcano would do nicely I should think or a comet/asteroid that sets all the combustable material on the earth’s surface alight at once.

        So we’re still left with life thriving over a wide range of pCO2 and mostly several times greater than today and no polar ice caps. Which is exactly what I said.

    • Matthew R Marler

      Pissant Progressive: Any skeptics who comment should stipulate that GCMs are suspect and refrain; and warmers need to refrain from “but temperature, extreme weather, etc.!”

      Agreed. This paper is important to people who believe that the GCM forecasts are accurate enough. So far they have not been shown to be accurate, so there is no good reason to have any confidence in these model results either.

  3. Indeed, CO2 is the ‘green greenhouse gas of life’ as explained today by Paul Driessen at MasterResource: http://www.masterresource.org/2013/08/co2-gas-of-life/

    • Yes, we should certainly listen to what the public policy director at Enron has to say about resources.

      Enron was headquartered in Texas. How are the citizens feeling about the decision to use water from aquifers for fracking instead of for agricultural purposes?

      It’s actually a vicious cycle. Farmers don’t have lots of water to get good yields so sell off the water rights they own to make some money. There goes the aquifer maybe permanently, because the water used gets injected into shale, never to be recovered again.

      The Rio Grande and Colorado are at critical levels. For the first time, the Glen Canyon Dam officials are planning to reduce the outflow of water to customers downstream.

      These are real stories that you can find in the news this week about resource crises. These are not the artificial crises that Enron tried to game the system with.

      My question is why is this Rob Bradley tossing off these softballs? Is he that much of a glutton for punishment?

      • Webby

        On one hand we have anti-frackers screaming about frack water polluting the ground water and then you tell us “the water used gets injected into shale, never to be recovered again”.

        (I personally believe you’re right on that one.)

        Since agriculture uses about 240 times as much water as fracking, it doesn’t sound to me to be a very big problem for agriculture.

        http://theenergycollective.com/jessejenkins/205481/friday-energy-facts-how-much-water-does-fracking-shale-gas-consume

        Max

      • Webby

        (This comment got lost so am re-sending.)

        Anti-frackers are screaming about frack water polluting the ground water and you write “the water used gets injected into shale, never to be recovered again.”

        (I personally believe you’re right on that one, based on the info I’ve seen.)

        But how much water is diverted from agriculture for fracking?

        Apparently agriculture uses 240 times as much water as fracking, so this does not seem to be a major problem. (Even in drought-prone Texas, fracking only consumes 3% as much water as agriculture, and companies are working on methods to use LPG or other hydrocarbons as fracking fluids.)

        http://theenergycollective.com/jessejenkins/205481/friday-energy-facts-how-much-water-does-fracking-shale-gas-consume

        Max

      • Manacker, The issue is dry Texas (Eagle Ford), and not wet Pennsylvania (Marcellus). This isn’t Switzerland where you can tap a spring off a mountainside pasture and fill a trough for your dairy cows.
        This is about borrowing a local well and using that water for fracking instead of for conventional needs. The blog post you linked to says that in so many words, if you would have cared to read it.

        The short-term gains of Eagle Ford makes this a devil’s deal as well. A typical Eagle Ford well has the following profile that I recently modeled, which is super disappointing from a long-term return perspective.

        What a trade to make — short-term gains trading off depletion of the water supply. The locals may regret it, just like many regret the fact that they treated Enron in good faith.

      • Webby

        I read the article (but apparently you did not).

        Here’s the summary on Texas water usage for fracking:

        Summary: All shale gas wells drilled and completed in Texas in 2011 amounted to less than 1 percent of all water withdrawals in the state of Texas. That figure could grow roughly three-fold by 2020 as shale production rises, although other developments could reduce the amount of freshwater consumed per well.

        Hope this helps.

        Max

      • David Springer

        I live on a Texas lake formed by the impoundment of the Colorado. It’s not as bad, yet, as it was in the decadal drought of the 1950’s. This is simply a repeat of 60 years ago. I’m amazed that it isn’t worse given that far more water customers are served by the same impoundment than were served 60 years ago. The foundation from an old farmhouse that was here before the lake is high & dry for the first time in half a century. I now own the land where the farmhouse once stood. You basically don’t know your ass from your elbow when it comes to Texas and pretty much about anything other than Texas too. Most people here are pretty frickin’ happy about fossil fuel in Texas as it brings hundreds of billions of dollars into the state economy. We’re doing far better than any other state approaching our population. If you were smart you’d want Rick Perry for president as he has certainly done a wonderful job steering Texas through recession for a dozen years. If Texas was a country it would have the 11th largest national economy in the world. Minnesota wouldn’t make the top 100.

      • I remember the old joke about cutting Alaska in half and making Texas the third largest state.
        ============

      • Webster, “Yes, we should certainly listen to what the public policy director at Enron has to say about resources.”

        There is no reason to not listen to anyone. There is more reason to verify things said by some people, but every squirrel can kind a nut from time to time. Heck, we even listen to you once and a while.

      • Anecdotal evidence from SpringyBoy. Since he is OK over in Austin, everything must be just fine.

        Texas won’t have the oil riches for long. Statistically they are getting by on production from marginal returns off of stripper wells, reservoirs long past their prime, and rapidly depleting fracked resources such as at Eagle Ford and the Permian basin.

        The latter is illusory Red Queen behavior where the number of new plays has to continue to accelerate to compensate for the declines of the existing wells.

      • David Springer

        http://droughtmonitor.unl.edu/monitor.html

        Open mouth, insert foot webby. US is doing fine on average with regard to drought. This is exactly what to expect from back-to-back La Ninas and a cooling Atlantic. Austin is in a drought region which in turn is restricted to a half dozen or so southwestern states. I can explain how the jet stream bulges northward in western to midwestern US to cause this weather pattern in La Nina conditions. I can spoon feed this stuff to you if you’d stop making faces and spitting it out.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Here’s an interesting site.

        http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/precip/CWlink/ENSO/box_whiskers/index.php

        But you need to think about longer term factors as well.

        http://s1114.photobucket.com/user/Chief_Hydrologist/media/USdrought_zps2629bb8c.jpg.html?sort=3&o=41

        ENSO event frequency and intensity varies with the PDO state.

        ‘This study uses proxy climate records derived from paleoclimate data to investigate the long-term behaviour of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) and the El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO). During the past 400 years, climate shifts associated with changes in the PDO are shown to have occurred with a similar frequency to those documented in the 20th Century. Importantly, phase changes in the PDO have a propensity to coincide with changes in the relative frequency of ENSO events, where the positive phase of the PDO is associated with an enhanced frequency of El Niño events, while the negative phase is shown to be more favourable for the development of La Niña events.’ http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1029/2005GL025052/abstract

      • The start of this thread was in comparing Rob Bradley’s Texas-based Enron creating artificial crises to rip people off, and the real crisis (of as yet unknown magnitude) of water being used for fracking in the drier parts of west Texas, causing farmers and residents to be concerned of the future of their local aquifers.

      • David Springer

        Water wars in Texas are never-ending. If water can be more profitably used for production of natural gas than for cotton or corn then that’s where it will go. Texas is the #2 state in the union for agricultural output and I’m pretty sure it can continue to manage its own affairs quite well.[shrugs]

  4. David L. Hagen

    NIPCC Interim Report includes: The Chapter 4
    Observations and Projections: Cryosphere, Ocean Dynamics, and Hydrology; PDF (0.7 MB)
    It similarly reviews articles showing benefits.

  5. People have been very quick to claim to KNOW the net impacts of more CO2 being negative over the long term. Apart from sea level rise, which doesn’t appear to be rising at any type of scary rate; it seems pretty difficult to make a creditable case that more CO2 is that harmful.

    • And maybe less so. For example, virus mutation appears to be slower during mild winters (certainly was slower/almost no change over 2007-11), with very many fewer cases of influenza reported.

      • Most ‘new’ flu viruses come from dicing and splicing avian, porcine and human variants of flu. Where you have peasant farmers who live with their pigs and duck you have a breeding ground for new varieties.

  6. Judith, studies considering broader inter-relationships (as here) are welcome. But this one is problematic because of the use of water stress. Moderate stress (UN definition) is human consumption of 40% of available water. Consumption includes agriculture, that is, irrigation, which is typically 2/3 of available water use.
    The problem is that the UN definition of available water (rivers, lakes, groundwater) excludes effective rainfall, that is, precipitation during agricultural growing seasons. About 80% of all arable land is naturally watered. Worldwide, only about 20% is irrigated. This leads to very distorted notions of water stress, on a highly regional basis, in a way that may suit UN development agendas but is very far from ground truth. The Indian subcontinent provides graphic illustrations.
    There is just no way a faulty definition of water stress, plus suspect climate models that also do not downscale regionally, can say much of anything meaningful on the topic of regionally supportable future populations.

    The study also did not include virtual water considerations (importing food from better watered regions). A good multifactor study would get consistent definitions, and then consider all major factors affecting its conclusions, rather than just some. So even though the result here is perhap welcome counteralarmism, the quality is poor and that is disturbing.

    • Thanks Rud, good points

      • What is up with this Rud character? I think he is smartly playing both sides of the issue.

        From his writings, he thinks basic sustainability issues are the most pressing, yet here on this site he bashes climate science almost exclusively.

        Does Rud’s Gaia have limits when it comes to resources, but not when it comes to climate?

        If the aquifers disappear does that simply mean that people move away from those regions and toward regions that have sufficient rainfall?

        The environment and the climate are interwoven to such an extent that it is amazing how Rud can walk his fine line. Very similar to how Bjorn Lonborg walks his.

        I believe that Rud thinks that climate scientists are impediments to revealing the dim hopes that face us in regards to energy and Gaia’s Limits (which is the name of his book) —
        “She will reliably provide whatever outcome we end up choosing, via action or inaction”

        He should really state what he thinks when he comments here instead of pussyfooting around. We are in the midst of an energy transition and he should really spell out clearly why he thinks climate science is irrelevant.

    • Rud Istvan | August 13, 2013 at 3:09 pm |

      ..the quality is poor..

      I agree, and that’s enough reason to place the study itself very low in the discussion of what is otherwise a worthwhile and interesting topic.

      I also agree, alarmism (and many other Isms) have little place in serious discussion of water.

      Which I wish you luck in finding. Perhaps carry a lantern?

      • If you had read the book in which the above facts are detailed, you would know that water is one resource I think we need not worry about at a global level, ever. All UN water stress hype to the contrary.
        Diogenes carried a lantern. I carry only an abiding desire for truth.

      • ‘Water, water every where
        And all the boards did shrink …’
        H/t Ancient Mariner.

      • In AZ you MUST have a guaranteed 100 year supply of water to build a house. We are still building houses.

    • Rud Istvan | August 13, 2013 at 11:05 pm |

      Talking about global water is like talking about global grammar or global medicine.

      Virtually no conversations talking about the floods in Calgary overlap with the water table contamination under Lac-Megantic, the problems of drought in Texas or water management in Tuvalu, African water rights wars, fracking in Pennsylvania, the monsoons in India, in very meaningful ways. And maybe some of those conversations or the ten thousand other local water issues that have made the media in the past decade have little art or truth; this doesn’t make them less serious.

      However, there are global rules that apply to some facets of grammar or medicine or water, and I’m not seeing those illuminated by your wick, either.

      • Bart R

        Talking about global water is like talking about global grammar or global medicine.

        Yeah.

        Or like talking about “global warming”.

        Max

  7. I never thought I would see the day.

    If we don’t increase CO2 emissions, hundreds of thousands of more people will starve. It’s a moral imperative to not cut back such emissions! PLEASE, PLEASE tell Paul Erlich!

    Well, OK, in real fact, this formerly implausible finding now must be considered along with all the other possible effects.

    We sure have seen a lot of good news lately, though, haven’t we?

  8. Rud Istvan

    Independent studies seem to indicate that higher atmospheric CO2 concentrations will increase the yield and decrease the effects of water stress of most C3-type crop plants (such as wheat and rice) significantly.

    http://research.eeescience.utoledo.edu/lees/papers_PDF/Amthor_FieldCropRes2001_wheatCO2review.pdf

    http://naldc.nal.usda.gov/download/40976/PDF

    Less data are available for C4-type plants (less than 5% of the total, but including major crop plants, such as corn, sugar cane, etc.). These also show a beneficial effect of higher CO2 concentrations, but this effect is less pronounced.

    http://cdn.intechopen.com/pdfs/18412/InTech-C4_plants_adaptation_to_high_levels_of_co2_and_to_drought_environments.pdf

    So it appears that the news are generally “good” (for those concerned about negative impacts of higher CO2 levels on agriculture).

    But as you commented, there are still many unknowns and the quality of model studies linking “changing population with the impact of climate change and carbon dioxide (CO2) on 21st century water resources” is still poor.

    As they say: “more work is needed…”

    Max

    • Max, you fail to rasp the full implications of the source that you cite.

      Here’s the money quote

      “Usually modest warming (1-4C) counteracted positive effects of doubled [CO2] on yeild.”

      and

      “Predictions of effects of rising [CO2] on wheat yield carry with them intrinsic uncertainty”

      • Bob Droege

        “Intrinsic uncertainty”.

        That was my point.

        (Higher CO2 levels generally look positive for agriculture, but there is still considerable “intrinsic uncertainty”, i.e. “more work is needed…”)

        Max

      • @Bob Droege…

        “Usually modest warming (1-4C) counteracted positive effects of doubled [CO2] on yeild.”

        The problem with this is that there are many varieties of wheat, adapted for different temperatures. Higher temperatures can be met with new strains adapted for them.

      • AK,
        except that even if there are strains of wheat adapted to warmer temperatures, the average farmer will decide to grow corn if it is warm enough.

      • except that even if there are strains of wheat adapted to warmer temperatures, the average farmer will decide to grow corn if it is warm enough.

        Let’s see… would that be because of higher yields?

      • Yeah, because it’s corn which doesn’t get as much of boost in elevated [CO2] because it’s a C4 plant.

        Or mainly cause a farmer will grow corn if he can so he can have it turned into ethanol to feed his SUV rather than the starving hordes in the third world.

      • Bob, most farmers are going to plant whatever produces the best income and rotate crops so that they can keep doing that. Prior to the Whiskey Rebellions, farmers produced a lot of alcohol to fuel their lives until the government wanted a cut. Left alone, most farmers can do a damn fine job of taking care of their own business and are pretty good about staying out of other peoples.

      • Captain, I agree with you for the most part, corn rotated with beans, farmers will do that if possible.

      • One of my Kansas neighbors uses a corn and soy beans rotation where he plants two passes with the planter in beans, and the next two passes in corn. The corn helps keep the air moisture levels up for the beans, and the shorter beans let more air flow through the corn, the result is higher soil and air moisture, and increased CO2 content for the faster growing corn.
        The next year he plants the corn where the beans were, and beans where the corn was, leveled the field to get rid of wet/dry spots, and it gives him twice the turn radius with the combine. yields of both crops are almost 10% higher than if grown in separate fields.

    • Manaker, mostly I agree with you. But C4 photosynthesis plants are actually now about 15% of terrestrial biomass rather than 5% ( a quibble, especially since about half of photosynthetic biomass is oceanic and all of that is C3.) There is some evidence that C4 only evolved a few million years ago in response to lower Pleistoscene CO2 levels. As you point out, C4 plants derive less benefit from increased CO2 than C3, primarily through different efficiency of secondary evapotranspiration losses. A quibble on a quibble.

      None of this addresses major possible human carrying capacity limitations I have previously published that have little to do with climate change.
      Regards

      • [...] about half of photosynthetic biomass is oceanic and all of that is C3.

        IIRC there are several large clades of oceanic C4 photosynthesizers.

      • Rud Istvan | August 13, 2013 at 8:30 pm |

        I have to agree and disagree with you, Bob Droege, and AK, here.

        Typical of manacker | August 13, 2013 at 3:50 pm | his reading of the reports is almost exactly backward of what the authors say, as Bob says.

        There is a great deal of literature that goes much further on field studies, looking into effects of increased CO2 on soil microbes, exhaustion of other nutrients in the soil like nitrates and phosphates, loss of plant ability to deal with heat by evapotransportation (which cannot be ‘bred out’ of crops by selection, and I’ve yet to hear of a gene modification that alters the basic temperature-response of plant chemistry), hormone changes in plants such as loss of plant ability to express dwarfism, and diversion of plant vigor into producing stem and limb mass with inferior protein profiles. And many of those, too, have a high degree of uncertainty yet. I’m guessing you’re far more conversant with this than am I.

        And yes and no on C3 for the oceans. It’s unlikely planktons are complex enough to fully express the C4 pathways many (about half) have some of the genomics for, so they are by default C3 so far as we know, or have much reason yet to care.

      • “Ulva prolifera, a typical green-tide-forming alga, can accumulate a large biomass in a relatively short time period, suggesting that photosynthesis in this organism, particularly its carbon fixation pathway, must be very efficient. Green algae are known to generally perform C3 photosynthesis, but recent metabolic labeling and genome sequencing data suggest that they may also perform C4 photosynthesis, so C4 photosynthesis might be more wide-spread than previously anticipated. Both C3 and C4 photosynthesis genes were found in U. prolifera by transcriptome sequencing”

        http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0037438

        C4 Diatoms
        On 26 October 2000, Nature reported the discovery of both the C3 and C4 pathways in a marine diatom. In this unicellular organism, the two paths are kept separate by having the C4 path in the cytosol, and the C3 path confined to the chloroplast. The presence of a C4 pathway probably reflects the frequent low concentrations of CO2 in ocean waters.

        http://users.rcn.com/jkimball.ma.ultranet/BiologyPages/C/C4plants.html

        Possibilities for the manipulation of plants
        to decrease the amount of photorespiration include the introduction of improved Rubisco from other
        species, reconfiguring photorespiration, or introducing carbon-concentrating mechanisms, such as inor-
        ganic carbon transporters, carboxysomes or pyrenoids, or engineering a full C4 Kranz pathway using the
        existing evolutionary progression in C3 –C4 intermediates as a blueprint. Possible routes and progress
        to suppressing photorespiration by introducing C4 photosynthesis in C3 crop plants will be discussed,
        including whether single cell C4 photosynthesis is feasible, how the evolution of C3 –C4 intermediates
        can be used as a blueprint for engineering C4 photosynthesis, which pathway for the C4 cycle might be
        introduced and the extent to which processes and structures in C3 plant might require optimisation.

        https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0176161712005044?np=y

      • jim2, well ain’t that the darnest thing! Those little suckers are flexible.

      • And, Capt’n Dallas, I am still blown away by the cyanobacteria that can be so finely tuned that they can make ethanol, gasoline, or diesel at the whim of the Gene Meister. Throw in all the other technological threads and we might have ourselves a really decent space suit!

      • What about modifying plants to produce their own nitrates?

      • Plants have a standing supply /trade agreement with their microbial manufacturers,

      • Bart R

        Looks like you are confused again.

        Read the articles I cited (and please don’t simply “cherry pick” out single sentences out of context – makes you look silly).

        The net overall positive effect of higher CO2 levels on most C3 plants is significant; on C4 plants it is less pronounced.

        Max

      • Given the subsequent discussion, I went ahead and tracked down the Nature letter jim2 referred to:

        Nearly 50 years ago, inorganic carbon was shown to be fixed in microalgae as the C3 compound phosphoglyceric acid(ref.1). The enzyme responsible for C3 carbon fixation, ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase (Rubisco), however, requires inorganic carbon in the form of CO2 (ref. 2), and Rubisco enzymes from diatoms have half-saturation constants for CO2 of 30±60 mM (ref. 3). As a result, diatoms growing in seawater that contains about 10 mM CO2 may be CO2 limited(ref. 4). Kinetic and growth studies have shown that diatoms can avoid CO2 limitation(refs. 5-7), but the biochemistry of the underlying mechanisms remains unknown. Here we present evidence that C4 photosynthesis supports carbon assimilation in the marine diatom Thalassiosira weissflogii, thus providing a biochemical explanation for CO2-insensitive photosynthesis in marine diatoms. If C4 photosynthesis is common among marine diatoms, it may account for a signficant portion of carbon fixation and export in the ocean, and would explain the greater enrichment of 13C in diatoms compared with other classes of phytoplankton. Unicellular C4 carbon assimilation may have predated the appearance of multicellular C4 plants.

        Another important point is the fact that many eubacteria, including a large proportion of cyanobacteria, posses carboxysomes, which also concentrate CO2 in the vicinity of RuBisCo, although (IIRC) they don’t use the C4 pathway.

    • David Springer

      Water stress is independent of C3/C4 photosynthetic pathway. It’s a purely mechanical effect. Higher pCO2 causes gas exchange to happen faster. Stomata are open less of the time as a consequence and less water is lost to evaporation during the gas exchange. Both C3 and C4 plants accomplish gas exchange in the same manner.

      • Wrong! Photorespiration reduces the efficiency of carbon fixation, thus requiring more CO2 under conditions of abundant sunlight. The C4 process almost eliminates photorespiration, so CO2 is used more efficiently, so stomata don’t have to be open as far, so less water vapor is lost to the environment.

        That’s why C4 grasses are particularly well adapted to hot, arid and semi-arid environments.

      • David Springer

        Nope. C3/C4 pathway makes no difference in how long stomata must remain open for gas exchange. It’s exactly as I described.

        http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1066124/

        Plant Physiol. 1983 April; 71(4): 789–796.
        PMCID: PMC1066124

        Stomatal Sensitivity to Carbon Dioxide and Humidity

        A Comparison of Two C3 and Two C4 Grass Species

        Abstract

        The sensitivity of stomatal conductance to changes of CO2 concentration and leaf-air vapor pressure difference (VPD) was compared between two C3 and two C4 grass species. There was no evidence that stomata of the C4 species were more sensitive to CO2 than stomata of the C3 species. The sensitivity of stomatal conductance to CO2 change was linearly proportional to the magnitude of stomatal conductance, as determined by the VPD, the same slope fitting the data for all four species.

  9. This is a “modeling study.” Are (ahem…) contrarians now going to accept such things if they give the result they want?

    It’s just difficult to keep up with all the shifting standards…. One day the measuring stations were all biased, the next day there were OK since they showed a 15-yr hiatus.

    • Fear not, the denizens here pretty much criticize everything

      • Fear not, the denizens here pretty much criticize everything

        Can you point to any who have criticized the “pause” argument because the recording stations are unreliable?

      • Aren’t we talking about satellite reported temps? Hazy on this, but it’s my understanding guys like Spencer are using NOAA satellites to update global temps

      • Good point.

      • Yeah, but you know, those satellites can drift, are subject to solar storms, you gotta watch em’!!

      • Steven Mosher

        Joshua | August 13, 2013 at 10:03 pm |

        Can you point to any who have criticized the “pause” argument because the recording stations are unreliable?

        Since most of them are aware of the arguments about the unreliability of the record, they would understand why it has little to do with the pause.

        1. The first argument about the unreliability of the record is that adjustments
        have COOLED THE PAST. since the pause happens outside this period of
        adjustment it’s really orthogonal to the question of the pause which has to
        to do with the last 15 years of the record and not the earlier parts of the record. Thats math they understand that you dont.

        2. The second argument has to do with UHI. This is harder to untangle since the effects is believed to evolve over time, but generally they worry about rural stations ( in the past ) that become urban in the present. Once a station is urban it can still measure a trend accurately. Its the switch from rural to urban
        that matters

      • Steven Mosher,

        There are more than two arguments about the “reliability of the record.”

        There is the lack of coverage, the use of anomalies as a proxy for average temperatures, the problems of biases etc. inherent on models (including the models used to generate “global average temperatures”), the claims to precision of sometimes hundredths of a degree, the labeling of land surface air temps as global average temps, and then the UHI and prior adjustments.

        I always refer to the “pause,” rather than the pause, because of the fact that it is highly unlikely anyone actually knows what the global average temperature of the Earth as a whole is to within tenths of a degree at any given time.

        And then we have the laughable claims of similar precision for paleo proxies.

      • Joshua

        I could point to some who denied the “pause” for a while, but almost all of these have now come around to accepting it.

        Max

      • The accepted ‘mean global temperature’ has apparently changed with time: From contemporary publications in 1988 and 1990 it was 15.4°C:

        Yet in 2011 we hear:

        “Globally-averaged temperatures were estimated to be 0.40°C above the 1961-1990 annual average of 14°C” (refs on link))

        And: 2013 Wikipedia: Absolute temperatures for the Earth’s average surface temperature have been derived, with a best estimate of roughly 14 °C….

        1988: 15.4°C
        1990: 15.5°C
        1999: 14.6°C
        2004: 14.5°C
        2007: 14.5°C
        2010: 14.5°C
        2012 14.0°C
        2013: 14.0°C

        references here: notrickszone[.]com/2013/04/21

      • David Springer

        Joshua, “the pause” is completely contained within the satellite temperature record. Few skeptics argue with the accuracy of the satellite temperature record. The land based thermometer record dating back to the 19th century is a different matter. But that’s not relevant to a pause which began near the beginning of the 21st century. Good thing you’re an anonymous coward otherwise the stupidity you exhibit here would be part of your resume and not a good part either.

      • Judith

        If you look at the most frequent commenters I think it is not just a matter of being critical of everything but that they like an argument. Preferably about things of no importance or deconstructing and parsing thoughts to an infuriating degree.

        Perhaps you can have an emergency ‘stop arguing’ button along the side bar that links to the ‘argument’ sketch from monty python

        Tonyb

      • ” markx | August 14, 2013 at 3:31 am |

        The accepted ‘mean global temperature’ has apparently changed with time: From contemporary publications in 1988 and 1990 it was 15.4°C: ”

        Yeah, as far as I know 15 C is a guess.
        And the there is no methodology that really makes sense of how to determine this number.
        Do you adjust for elevation?
        Because lapse rate temperature drops as one goes to higher elevation.
        So the weather station at south pole is 2,835 meters above sea level
        and the lapse rate in that cold air is about 10 C decrease per 1000 meter elevation rise. So if measure the temperature and it’s -40 C.
        Would accurate to adjust that temperature by added 28.35 C?

        Anyway it appears that only Jim Hansen knows he correct way to determine what average temperature is. And first he said it was 15 C then later said 14 C was better number to use:

        http://www.americanthinker.com/2012/11/fourteen_is_the_new_fifteen.html

        But probably a better way to measure the average is pick some high elevation, say 5000 meters above sea level because most places are lower than this. Problem being we measure temperature 5 feet above the ground in a shaded white box.

        It quite amusing when two decimal places are used, as in “14.64C”

        Though another way would to just measure the ocean surface temperature as it’s always near sea level. Wiki says it’s 16.1 C:
        “This value is well above 16.1 °C (60.9 °F), the long term global average surface temperature of the oceans”

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

      • GBaikie

        The global average is constantly changing.

        Callendar was one of the first to make an estimate of such temperatures back in the 1930’s and the Mitchell curves were widely used for the same purpose.

        This recent article from the Met office shows the global average to 1850 (excluding the polar regions)

        http://www.met.reading.ac.uk/~ed/home/hawkins_jones_2013_Callendar.pdf

        What is especially interesting is that the pause-indeed actual cooling- can be noticed from around 2000. So the world cools whilst the arctic warms up? In this case therefore the arctic is amplifying something that is no longer happening in the res of the world . Presumably due to the thermal inertia in the oceans which are in effect ‘trapped’ in the arctic region.

        tonyb

      • Joshua, I have criticized the pause argument on the basis that we have two pauses in the recent historical record. Nobody screamed at me. Nobody called me names. Wonder why that is?

      • Steven Mosher

        GaryM

        I should have said two GOOD arguments, yours are stupid

        “GaryM | August 14, 2013 at 12:02 am |
        Steven Mosher,

        There are more than two arguments about the “reliability of the record.”

        “There is the lack of coverage,

        This is false. the spatial coherence of the temperature field is such that one can reliably estimate the entire field from very few stations. At the extreme you can take one reliable station ( CET) and estimate the whole globe. lower spatial coverages dont impact the reliablility, the impact the uncertainty. One simple way to look at this is by sub sampling. We start with 39000 stations to compute the field. randomly select 100 stations from that field and you will get the same answer.

        ##################################
        “the use of anomalies as a proxy for average temperatures, ”

        This is demonstrably false.
        1. An anomaly is a offset that is TREND INVARIANT
        2. At Berkeley we compute on temperatures not anomalies and
        we get the same answer as those who compute on anomalies
        Algebra is a great thing. learn it.

        ##############

        “the problems of biases etc. inherent on models (including the models used to generate “global average temperatures”), ”

        Since there is no specific claim here and just hand waving, I will wave back and say NOPE. specifically, you havent specified a source of bias. They are limited, pick one and I’ll destroy your argument.

        #############

        “the claims to precision of sometimes hundredths of a degree,”

        Wrong. Nobody claims this sort of precision. When we say

        “the average temperature is “12.345” what is meant ( if you understand the math ) is that this estimate minimizes the error.
        You can also prove this by doing out of sample testing.
        Like so.
        Take 39000 stations. create two piles. 18500 in one, 18500
        in another.
        Compute the ‘average” say you get 10.1256787C
        What that means is this.
        Pick ANY station from your unsampled pile. compute the following

        A) abs(10.1256787 – your sample)
        B) abs(10 – your sample)

        A will be smaller than B. it minimizes the error of estimation

        #########################

        “the labeling of land surface air temps as global average temps, ”

        This is not an argument about bias and the pause.

        “and then the UHI and prior adjustments. ”

        These are the two i mentioned. the good arguments

        ######################

        “I always refer to the “pause,” rather than the pause, because of the fact that it is highly unlikely anyone actually knows what the global average temperature of the Earth as a whole is to within tenths of a degree at any given time.”

        Well, unless you know the temperature you cant say its unlikely that anyone knows it. Think that through.

        ##################################

        And then we have the laughable claims of similar precision for paleo proxies.

        Utterly unrelated to my point.

        skeptics are stupidier than I thought

      • MOSH

        I am still in shock after your comment here. Judith, come and witness this…

        ‘At the extreme you can take one reliable station ( CET) and estimate the whole globe.’

        Now that YOU have said it we know it to be true whereas when I said it that was merely unfounded speculation.. I have safely stored your comment in a bullet proof safe protected by security devices and armed guards and will examine it at frequent intervals. No doubt it will also get regular outings on this blog.
        tonyb

      • tonyb,

        Don’t get too excited. Mosher frequently takes both sides of an issue, depending on the point he thinks he will win in the debate of the moment. See my earlier comment and his hilarious response on an earlier thread where he introduced the term “obscurantist” to the debate.

        http://judithcurry.com/2013/07/15/why-libertarians-should-support-a-carbon-tax/#comment-344518

        See his having it both ways on:

        estimate vs. measure
        ground truth vs. modeled data
        “CO2 always warms” etc.

        On a completely different note, notice that all his answers to my objections above rely on modeling. My favorite is this:

        “We start with 39000 stations to compute the field. randomly select 100 stations from that field and you will get the same answer.”

        No matter which of our models we use, we warmists (who created and constantly adjust those models) keep getting the same answer we claimed has been right all along. So the models have to be right, despite the weakness of our data.

        This is proof of the validity of the models? Which brings to mind a paper someone linked to earlier.

        http://sciencepolicy.colorado.edu/admin/publication_files/resource-1891-2005.49.pdf

        A great report of interviews showing the almost touching faith of modelers in their own product. Mosher’s entire blog persona is based on his defense of climate models. Expecting him to admit publicly to the extent of their weaknesses is like asking a five year old on Christmas Eve to admit there is no Santa. It ain’t gonna happen, there is too much at stake.

        A final note, none of what Mosher wrote was even relevant. There is no question that models can produce a temperature average – to an infinite number of decimal points. The question is their precision. Comparing models to models is just hand waving when it comes to whether they accurately reflect the real “global average temperature” sufficient for the global decarbonization the CAGWers support.

        Which is of course what Mosherist obscurantism is all about.

    • David Appell, “One day the measuring stations were all biased, the next day there were OK since they showed a 15-yr hiatus.”

      Let me check. . .; Nope, still using HADCRUT 4.2.2 perhaps after the first of the year if version 5.x.x appears sans pause.

      • mosher –

        How does this make you feel about Don?

        Well, it “makes me feel” that he is heavily biased by motivated reasoning, because he reads into evidence to see unsubstantiated conclusions. So it “makes me feel” that (at least in that case), he applied “skeptical” reasoning and not skeptical reasoning. But I’ve seen the same from him previously. Many times. So it is a bit hard to say what it actually “made me feel” because it more just fit into a pattern of well established behavior on his part.

        Do you trust Don
        Should you trust Don
        If I tell you to trust Don, will you listen to me.

        Trust w/r/t what? I don’t know him. I’ve never met him. Would I trust him to babysit my partner’s grandkids? Probably, as much as I’d trust any stranger I’ve never met. Would I trust him to control for his motivated reasoning? Not particularly, as he has a well-established track record of doing so.

        Now, if michael mann called you an oil shill and you knw you wren’t what would your reaction be? what reaction would be justified?

        Justified? I try not to think in such moralistic terms. Probably I’d react by explaining the fallacious reasoning he was employing. Would I react by feeling some sense of vindication about victimhood, and in so doing imitate the same behavior and use a pejorative like “warmist” or “alarmist” or “fraud?” Nope.

        These are some things to think about. just that.

        Sometimes you write quotes that do give me something particularly worth thinking about. In fact you did that once earlier in the thread (although PG essentially made the same point earlier, and more succinctly).

        In that comment? Nope. Not particularly. In fact the entire comment struck me as rather banal.

      • Joshua, this then begs the question: how large is the bet you are willing to place again with, Don?

      • Steven Mosher

        Joshua,

        “Well, it “makes me feel” that he is heavily biased by motivated reasoning, because he reads into evidence to see unsubstantiated conclusions. So it “makes me feel” that (at least in that case), he applied “skeptical” reasoning and not skeptical reasoning. But I’ve seen the same from him previously. Many times. So it is a bit hard to say what it actually “made me feel” because it more just fit into a pattern of well established behavior on his part.”

        And what helps you here is that you think you have better access to better information. That is you think you know yourself better than Don knows you. Note that your motivating reasoning may be seeing a pattern where there is no pattern.

        ######################################

        Do you trust Don
        Should you trust Don
        If I tell you to trust Don, will you listen to me.

        Trust w/r/t what? I don’t know him. I’ve never met him. Would I trust him to babysit my partner’s grandkids? Probably, as much as I’d trust any stranger I’ve never met. Would I trust him to control for his motivated reasoning? Not particularly, as he has a well-established track record of doing so.at

        What would be the signs of somebody who “controls for” their motivated reasoning? What do you look for?

        #######################################

        Now, if michael mann called you an oil shill and you knw you wren’t what would your reaction be? what reaction would be justified?

        Justified? I try not to think in such moralistic terms. Probably I’d react by explaining the fallacious reasoning he was employing. Would I react by feeling some sense of vindication about victimhood, and in so doing imitate the same behavior and use a pejorative like “warmist” or “alarmist” or “fraud?” Nope.

        I think you misunderstood my question. I’m not talking about moral justification, I’m talking about rational justification or warrant. You said your reaction would be to explain to him the fallacious reasoning he was using. How, by asserting that you were not an Oil Shill? by asserting that you are not anti christian? See how well that worked with Don? Now, you told me how you would not feel, but I’m more interested in what you actually feel. How do you feel when Don accuses you of something which you know is not true. And when you point out his fallacy he asserts that you really havent provided evidence. And note, not everybody who was called an Oil Shill played the victim card.
        Some did the exact opposite. its funny that you cant help but only see the folks who played the victim card. I’ll give you a hint. When some people call folks oil shills they get punched in the nose metaphorically. No point in name calling.

        ##################

        In that comment? Nope. Not particularly. In fact the entire comment struck me as rather banal.

        Thats ok. I found your reaction ” i would not play the victim” to be quite telling. You’ve missed out on an entire mode of skeptical behavior.

      • steven –

        What would be the signs of somebody who “controls for” their motivated reasoning? What do you look for?

        More banality? There might be many things. The most obvious is not drawing conclusions for which you have no evidence.and in particular, without acknowledging uncertainty Another would be if you had done so (we all do it at times), using additional information to correct for the error. Perhaps not ignoring obvious counterarguments to start out with, and even if you had, taking them into account once they are offered. There is a long list of obvious choices, steven, was there one or two in particular you were looking for?

        <blockquote?I think you misunderstood my question. I’m not talking about moral justification, I’m talking about rational justification or warrant.

        I’m afraid I still don’t understand. When I think of “justification,” I think of “just” or “justice.” I don’t see how what is “just” or “justice” is relevant here. Perhaps you could use a synonym?

        <blockquote? How, by asserting that you were not an Oil Shill?

        Perhaps. Again, this seems awfully banal. There might be any number of ways that I might present counterarguments, or information that might have been overlooked, or show how conclusions were drawn w/o there being evidence, or how uncertainty was unacknowledged.

        by asserting that you are not anti christian? See how well that worked with Don?

        I have no way of controlling what will or won’t work with Don. None. That is his determination. I also have no way of actually knowing how it worked in any meaningful sense. What is the criterion you use to determine what works? That he stop calling me a bigot? That might be one. There might be others. For example, maybe he read my counterargument and new inside he was wrong, that he made a conclusion with no evidence, that he failed to acknowledge uncertainty, but lacked the integrity or accountability or flexibility or strength of character to acknowledge his error in a forthright manner. I could have no control over that. So I do what I think is right and I accept the results. Not sure what else there is to do. It isn’t as if this is some matter of significance. Someone I don’t know, and who doesn’t know anyone who knows me, calls me a bigot? So what? It doesn’t affect my life or anyone else’s in any significant manner.

        Now, you told me how you would not feel, but I’m more interested in what you actually feel.

        Really? I doubt that you’re really interested in knowing how I would feel. My guess is that you’re probably more interested in making a point. But at any rate, you are correct, I didn’t say how I feel, but what I would think. The first feeling I would have (had) would perhaps be frustration with my inability to be acknowledged, and then I would contemplate on the circumstance and realize that was beyond my control. If I am satisfied that I have done what is appropriate to be heard, then at a certain point I have to let it go. I think of it like teaching. Sometimes you have to repeatedly help a student to explore a concept before they will understand. It can be frustrating when they don’t get it, and as a teacher it is easy to personalize that frustration as a sort of failure. And sometimes it is a failure and you realize how to correct for the error. But as a seasoned teacher, I came to understand that sometimes a student just needs to explore a concept many, many times before they are developmentally ready to integrate the concept. So maybe you tell them the fifth or sixth time, of the 500 times they needed to hear it before they learned it. And you can learn to be content that if you hadn’t done it that fifth and sixth times, someone else would have had to and the learning would take place that much longer. And you let the personalization go and allow the student to have the dignity of being the executive of their own metacognition.

        And note, not everybody who was called an Oil Shill played the victim card.

        Perhaps. Can you provide some examples?

        Some did the exact opposite.

        its funny that you cant help but only see the folks who played the victim card.

        Actually, I haven’t really spoken so much about people playing the victim card, but about people who feel justified in a sense of victimization – because they see this as an “us” versus “them” zero sum game situation, and they need to bolster their sense of victimization to reinforce their sense of identity. It’s about “the other.”

        I’ll give you a hint. When some people call folks oil shills they get punched in the nose metaphorically. No point in name calling.

        From the standpoint of not justifying a sense of victimization, I don’t see the difference. Both reactions have the same goal – to reinforce the sense of “us” and “them.”

        It is no different in the climate wars than myriad other polarized debates.

        ##################

        In that comment? Nope. Not particularly. In fact the entire comment struck me as rather banal.

        Thats ok. I found your reaction ” i would not play the victim” to be quite telling. You’ve missed out on an entire mode of skeptical behavior.

      • btw – steven –

        After some thought, I realized I should add something that relates to this comment of yours:

        Note that your motivating reasoning may be seeing a pattern where there is no pattern.

        There is no doubt that my reasoning, like anyone else’s is “motivated.” One of my “motivations” is to find ways that people seek to vindicate a sense of victimhood – because being a “victim” is one way that people seek to reinforce their sense of identity.

        I don’t doubt that I might see that happening, I might see that pattern, in places where it doesn’t exist. After all, pattern recognition is a basic building block of our cognitive processes, and it often leads to constructing patterns artificially.

        Anyway, after some thought, I realized that in my earlier comment, ironically, I did not acknowledge uncertainty. I spoke of the “us” verses “them” as a predominant paradigm without acknowledging uncertainty. I let my language get ahead of my thinking – as I certainly recognize that I could be entirely wrong. It is a pattern that I think best explains my observations of the climate wars, and other polarized issues that I think are similar in style and content, and even in patterns related to conflict more generally. But certainly my conjecture is speculative, and undoubtedly my conclusions are biased by my “motivations.”

      • Finally, steven –

        Just curious. Do you ever get tired of “Yes, but Michael Mann?”

    • One day AGW was going to produce a hot psot and El Ninos were going to become more frequent and stronger, the next the missing heat was exploding in the deep ocean abysses at the rate of four Hiroshima bombs per second. Try to be more serious, apple. Judith is running a decent blog here. Do you see how long it took joshie to chime in to support your folishness? That is a sure sign that you are a clown.

      • Oh yeah, and ALL that was after the big cooling scare of the ’70’s. Before that we were clueless and happy, now we are clueless and neurotic.

      • Speaking of old tricks. joshie. Haven’t you used that before? It’s even more stupid the second, or is it the third time around. Can’t you find a picture of a dog with a cross hanging around it’s neck? You could kill two birds with one stone.

        We (except lollywot and maybe willie) have to wonder about your parents, joshie. They must be uber progressive reformed public school union soft-socialist activist types. No grades, no discipline, no respect, no religion, no code of conduct. And no clue. It’s too bad the Army never got a hold of you, joshie. You coulda been a man.

      • David Springer

        The Army can’t work miracles.

      • OK, Marines.
        ==========

      • “The Army can’t work miracles.” Of course they can, first sergeants have to all the time.

      • Ok Don,

        Since you’re curious, i’ll tell you. Sure, my parents were lefties – civil rights activists. i suppose that’s a black mark (no pun intended) in your book, but I consider it a proud legacy.

        My father was a promising student, but had to drop out of school (he entered college at 15) because he had to work to support his mother and sister. He had a fairly successful career in business – although he did have a setback when he had to close a printing business he started after one of the employees embezzled a great deal of money. My father left a very big mark in the community in which i grew up. He was a founding member of a community co-op which has grown into quite a large enterprise. He was elected president of that co-op many times as a reflection of the respect he earned and an urban farm was started by the co-op (with funds donated in his memory), and named after him, shortly after he died. It is a common event for me to run into people who, after learning my name, tell me of the respect they had for my father and the large influence he had on them.

        My mother was a very independent and gregarious woman. After graduating college (a bit unusual in her day) she worked for many years for a variety of social service organizations – along with raising three boys. She was also very involved in community organizations, and like with my father, it is very common for people I meet to tell me how much they admired and respected my mother.

        I, too, respected my parents a great deal – which is why I took care of both of them when they were ill and dying. I think of that as being an extension of the “code of conduct” they taught me – basically, to do the right thing. I also took care of my brother, who was mentally ill, for 20 years before he died this last November. When people said to me that it must be very hard to do something like that, I told them that it was certainly sometimes hard, but it was the right thing to do, and that it was ultimately rewarding in balance because I knew that it was what my parents wanted and it was how they taught me to live life.

        So, now that I’ve responded to your wonder, I though maybe you’d address a question for me: I am wondering why you enjoy humping on my leg so much?

      • “So, now that I’ve responded to your wonder, I though maybe you’d address a question for me: I am wondering why you enjoy humping on my leg so much?”

        I can answer that JOsh, because you keep sticking it out there.

      • I can answer that JOsh, because you keep sticking it out there.

        That might answer why he does it, but it doesn’t explain why he enjoys doing so (which was my question).

      • Our mention of wondering about your upbringing was rhetorical, joshie. But in response to your outpouring:

        Points to your parents for being civil rights activists and for being active in the commune. Did they teach you your anti-Chrisitian bigotry and your disdain for all humans not of the left-wing looney type? Or is that something you developed on your own?

        You don’t mention other aspects of the lefty culture that your parents might have enjoyed. Soviet sympathizing and agitating for unilateral disarmament/surrender. Making up excuses for Stalin and Mao. Waving Viet Cong flags and calling American soldiers baby killers, etc.

        You are the hump, joshie. And a very smarmy little hump at that.

      • You don’t mention other aspects of the lefty culture that your parents might have enjoyed. Soviet sympathizing and agitating for unilateral disarmament/surrender. Making up excuses for Stalin and Mao. Waving Viet Cong flags and calling American soldiers baby killers, etc.

        None of the above, Don. None. Just fabrications of your overactive imagination – as are your claim that I’m an anti-Christian bigot, a claim that you’ve made over and over and which I’ve explained to your your error over and over.

        And like your delusions of my anti-Christian bigory, just more evidence of a non-skeptical “skeptic’ – immune to analysis and steadfast in holding to evidence-free beliefs.

        You are the hump, joshie.

        And so now that explains it. You really do get your rocks off thinking about me, eh? I think even you’d have to admit that’s kind of creepy, Don.

      • Our mention of wondering about your upbringing was rhetorical, joshie.

        Interesting, and more evidence of the same. So you asked a question in wonder about my parents not because you wanted information but because you wanted to make a rhetorical point that was based on conclusions devoid of any evidence. And when the evidence was provided, you showed your lack of interest.

        Some things never change. But I have hope for you as an exception, Don. If you keep humping on my leg this much, eventually something might rub off on you.

      • Wow, joshie. It doesn’t take very long for your little wobbly knees to jerk when I pull your strings. Anybody can see that you are an anti-Christian bigot. No need for me to provide evidence. And you are not endearing yourself to any sensible observer with that “skeptic” affectation of yours. You are smarmy little obsessed agitator. Look! I think I saw Judith. Go chase her!

      • No need for me to provide evidence.

        Indeed, the mantra of “skeptics.”

      • The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse

        Don Monfort:

        No grades, no discipline, no respect, no religion, no code of conduct. And no clue. It’s too bad the Army never got a hold of you, joshie. You coulda been a man.

        Oh, how very Christian of you, Don.
        If that’s being Christian, a little anti-Christian bigotry might be good for your eternal soul.

        Meanwhile – You obviously have no problem with anti-atheist bigotry.

        It’s too bad the Spirit never got a hold of you. You coulda been saved.

      • Did I say I am a Christian, Revy? You assume that one has to be a Christian to be against anti-Christian bigotry. I am an atheist. That doesn’t stop me from being tolerant of religion. Clear?

      • The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse


        Clear?

        Yes – thank you very much.

        You may now return to saving the world from smarmy agitators.

      • “That might answer why he does it, but it doesn’t explain why he enjoys doing so (which was my question).”
        Law of the playground. There are cool kids and kids who let their weakness show. A cool kid never would have answered that question about his parents. PLus, your style is off-putting. Or should I say “off-putting.”

      • The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse

        Joshua – I feel for you, man.

        A smarmy anti-Christian bigot agitator – AND – a non-cool kid with a disagreeable stylistic flair.

        Remember, you read it on Climate Etc. first.

      • pokerguy:”Law of the playground. There are cool kids and kids who let their weakness show. A cool kid never would have answered that question about his parents. PLus, your style is off-putting. Or should I say “off-putting.”

        Joshie is a lot of fun. He gets all indignant and calls his idealized description of his beloved parents “evidence”. We can be sure they were not Soviet sympathizers, cause joshie says so. I will remind the smarmy one of that the next time he demands “evidence” from the “skeptics/Creationists”.

      • Steven Mosher

        Joshua.

        It might be interesting to reflect on your experience.
        Don is calling you an anti christian bigot
        You know in your heart of hearts that this isnt true

        How does this make you feel about Don?
        Do you trust Don
        Should you trust Don
        If I tell you to trust Don, will you listen to me.

        Things to think about.

        Now, if michael mann called you an oil shill and you knw you wren’t what would your reaction be? what reaction would be justified?

        These are some things to think about. just that.

      • Oh Steven, you can’t trick joshie. In his heart of hearts he knows that he is an anti-Christian bigot. And surely “skeptics” can’t be any purer of heart than joshie. Therefore, “skeptics” are big oil shills. Period. It’s settled science.

      • ::grin:: Joshua, imagine how you’d feel if I called you a Green Shill.
        =====

      • “but I consider it a proud legacy”

        Hence, his motivated reasoning. O but the shackles are strong, aren’t they Joshua?

        Andrew

      • The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse

        This “The-True-Essence-of-Joshua’s-Heart-of-Hearts” sub-thread is a sparkling treasure trove of intention-guessing narratives, psychological profiling, and identity politics. Joshua’s essence is like the white area of the Italian flag.


        Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.

        – Eleanor Roosevelt

        But then, what did ol’ Eleanor know about blog-science?

      • Bad,

        Yeah, civil rights and tolerance is his legacy. You notice how joshie implies that I must be a Tea Party/Creationist/ Racist, even though he professed his love for me just days ago. He also believes in his little heart that I am anti-semitic, because sometimes I call him josh-ua to jerk his chain. I must have been really drunk, when I married my half black half Jewish wife.

      • The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse


        I must have been really drunk, when I married my half black half Jewish wife.

        Some of my best friends have wives.

      • Well, I’m of three minds about that.
        ========

      • I think Joshua may be under the false impression that his Leftist Culture is superior to other political cultures. This would have to be the product of indoctrination, because real-life experience would have taught him otherwise.

        Andrew

      • Well, I’m of three legs about that, averaging the two and the four.
        ===========

      • “I think Joshua may be under the false impression that his Leftist Culture is superior to other political cultures.”

        Bad Andrew,
        It’s the very thing that keeps the AGW cause alive despite the increasingly crushing weight of evidence to the contrary. Obama on down to the fraudsters like Mann and co., know precisely what they’re doing when they call skeptics “deniers”. In the liberal mind, this resonates deeply with long held convictions of moral and intellectual superiority. Liberals who might otherwise change their minds, simply will not listen to opposing viewpoints, which they dismiss out of hand as neantherthal drivel.

      • The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse


        Obama on down to the fraudsters like Mann and co., know precisely what they’re doing when they call skeptics “deniers”.

        And, likewise, you deniers know precisely what you are doing when you call a scientist a “fraudster”.


        In the liberal mind, this resonates deeply with long held convictions of moral and intellectual superiority.

        Here we have a supposed expert on the ‘liberal mind’ chastising through the use stupid tropes of the sort one encounters repeatedly on blogs.

        But this is definitely NOT an example of a non-liberal presuming moral and intellectual superiority. That would be impossible.

      • I’ve a heart of many colors about that.
        =========

      • Quite fascinating how many people here seem to just love fantasizing about me:

        Anybody can see that you are an anti-Christian bigot.

        Nope. And you have no evidence.

        A cool kid never would have answered that question about his parents.

        And you think I care about being a “cool kid?” And you think I’d put any stock in your evaluation even if I did? Nope.

        He gets all indignant and calls his idealized description of his beloved parents “evidence”.

        Just because I elaborated on your misconceptions in no way means that I was indignant. I don’t particularly care what you think of my parents – they’re dead, you never met them, and I don’t put any stock in your opinion. I do like, however, displaying your evidence-free process of analysis, because it helps prove my contention about “skeptics.” You are right, however, me explaining to you about your misconceptions about my parents couldn’t rightly be called evidence. But if you doubt the veracity of my description, let me know and we’ll arrange a wager. You might have seen the another “skeptic” duck and hide for cover when I made a similar offer recently – as indeed you have done in the past also.

        So anyway, nope.

        Therefore, “skeptics” are big oil shills. Period. It’s settled science.

        I’ve never said anything resembling that. Ever.
        So, nope.

        You notice how joshie implies that I must be a Tea Party/Creationist/ Racist, …. He also believes in his little heart that I am anti-semitic, because sometimes I call him josh-ua to jerk his chain

        Nope, nope, nope, nope and nope. I never suggested that you were a Tea Partier, creationist, or racist. I did say that you might consider being involved in the civil rights movement as a “black mark,” as indeed, many lefties that you seem to revile were. I have no reason to assume that you are a racist. I pointed out your implications that I am a self-hating Jew, and showed the specious reasoning behind that. In fact, it is an insult frequently used by jews, and in no way implies antisemitism. It implies specious reasoning. And I had no idea why you call me josh-ua and still don’t. What does that have to do with antisemitism?

        I think Joshua may be under the false impression that his Leftist Culture is superior to other political cultures.

        Well, I appreciate the acknowledgement of uncertainty – something rare for a “skeptic.” Still nope, however. I don’t think that people of any particular political orientation are in any way superior to people of other political orientations.

        Carry on, boyz (well, and kim?). Let’s see some more fantasizing. This is fun (if a bit creepy).

      • Steven Mosher

        ‘Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.”

        and idiots quote eleanor

        i loved the unintended irony of your comment.

        lets discuss unintended irony

      • PG –

        Law of the playground. There are cool kids and kids who let their weakness show. A cool kid never would have answered that question about his parents. PLus, your style is off-putting. Or should I say “off-putting.”

        This is getting a bit repetitive, but I’ll try one more time. You still haven’t answer the question. You did, perhaps, answer the question of why Don is humping my leg so much (I doubt the answer, but be that as it may…). You still haven’t answered, however, the question of why he enjoys it.

        Try one more time. See if you can answer the question.

      • The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse


        and idiots quote eleanor

        Stay classy, coach.


        i loved the unintended irony of your comment.

        The irony is a figment – unless you assume acknowledging the source of a quote is “discussing”. Oh well. Try for the field goal.


        lets discuss unintended irony

        I would love to, coach – You’re obviously an expert on that subject too.

        I have an even better idea – Let’s discuss unintended unintended irony.

        Wait. Actually, I’ve suddenly been overcome with an acute attack of indifference.

      • joshie, joshie

        “I don’t particularly care what you think of my parents – they’re dead, you never met them, and I don’t put any stock in your opinion.”

        Yes, we can all see that you don’t care. And just a couple of days ago you claimed that you were glad I was back, and that you loved me. You are a shameless putz, joshie.

        And yeah, I have seen you repeatedly brag about your childish blog wagering challenges. What is your point? That you are an idiot pencil-neck blowhard? We get that, already. If you want to wager about something, let’s dispense with the “show me your evidence, mine is bigger than yours” BS and have a little boxing match. That would have an unambiguous and resounding result.

        Why don’t you give it a rest. You are overwrought and overexposed.

        (It’s really funny that you can’t tell that you are being manipulated by lowly “skeptics”.)

      • Steven Mosher

        Nice duck Rev.

        I suppose your comment about people discussing people is not discussing people.

        And staying classy? is that discussing people?

        Discussing people is not categorically different than discusssing ideas.

        Now gossip, that’s different.

      • …”see if you can answer the question…”

        Hi Josh…See here we are again, this is not a cool guy query, why Don likes to hump your leg. Lots of people like to hump your leg, as you put it. It’s actually more the law of the jungle than the playground. Strong dominates weak. Why? Because it can…

        But why do you care so much? Don’s tough, but generally fair. And yet you go after J.C. like a rabid dogs at times. Over literally just about nothing. Live by the sword, etc etc…

        That’s about it. In a nutshell so to speak. I mean “nutshell.”

      • Steve Mosher says to the Reverend:” I suppose your comment about people discussing people is not discussing people.”

        Ouch. Not pretty Reverend. I almost feel badly for you.

      • pokerguy: You got any “evidence” that I am only generally fair?

        Joshie doesn’t know dookey from Shinola, and he doesn’t know the difference between “humping” and “peeing”. The latter is particularly frustrating for him.

        Reminds me of a story about Gen. Lopez de Santa Anna (I don’t remember his thirteen other names). Anyway, he was an intermittent hero to the Mexican people. He would win a battle, lose a battle, run from a battle and then glorify himself no matter what the reality of the respective situations. He lost a leg in one battle and was honored by having his leg buried with ceremony in a place of honor. Later on, for some reason I don’t remember, the people got mad at him, dug up his leg and unceremoniously peed on it. Now joshie will call me a racist again.

      • Steven Mosher

        PG.

        ya Rev is funny. perhaps willard will come along and pull of few fleas off him. where is the groomer when you need him.

        i will say that watching don hump joshuas leg beats watching him hump my leg and definitely beats watching joshua pulling judiths pigtails.

        reminds me of the joke.. what do you do when a pitpull humps your leg?

      • David Springer

        Hah. Ask little Joshie if someone who believes in macro-evolution is intellectually superior to someone who believes God created it all 10,000 years ago.

        Compare how he answers against the following standard (my emphasis):

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

        Bigotry is the state of mind of a bigot: someone who, as a result of their prejudices, treats other people with hatred, contempt, or intolerance on the basis of a person’s ethnicity, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, disability, socioeconomic status, or other characteristics.

      • Springer –

        Hah. Ask little Joshie if someone who believes in macro-evolution is intellectually superior to someone who believes God created it all 10,000 years ago.

        Here – read these posts and my comments.

        http://www.culturalcognition.net/blog/2013/6/19/what-does-disbelief-in-evolution-mean-what-does-belief-in-it.html

        http://www.culturalcognition.net/blog/2013/6/21/how-religiosity-and-science-literacy-interact-evolution-scie.html

        Find me on another thread if you still don’t know that I think about your question and are still curious about my opinion.

      • And just a couple of days ago you claimed that you were glad I was back, and that you loved me.

        And nothing has changed. I still love you, Don – and I am enjoying that you’re sticking around and following me from thread to thread like a puppy with a hard-on – just like I asked you to do. Thanks for complying with my request.

        let’s dispense with the “show me your evidence, mine is bigger than yours” BS and have a little boxing match.

        Wow! Internet tough guy. Impressive, Don – and one of the reasons why my request that you stick around is paying off. One of the many. Do “keep it up” (well, given your love of humping, we knew you were going to do that, anyway. Bwahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!).

      • That was a nice post Joshua.
        | August 14, 2013 at 8:10 am |
        I’m being serious. You covered a number of positive things. Your code, goodness and your family.

      • Interesting family background Joshua and while I can empathise with your well developed sense of duty, I suspect that a few other blog readers will not find this information of interest at all. They are simply intent on pulling you down to their level.

      • Ragnaar and Peter –

        Thanks.

        Peter – I suspect that although Don and Co. won’t admit it, they might take in a little info that helps them see that they can’t generalize about someone’s respectfulness, morals, values, or character simply on the basis of political orientation. They won’t admit it, of course, and they’ll use anything personal that I divulge to try to ridicule me – but I’m a big boy.

      • Big boy, joshie? You got a couple of them fooled. Day in and day out you incessantly prove that you are a mean spirited little juvenile. Carry on.

  10. I don’t imagine a degree or two Celsius is Minnesota’s greatest concern. It’s our precipitation.

    This map of Minnesota,

    I think it shows Minnesota’s reliance on the Gulf of Mexico for its precipitation and agricultural income. The gulf is able to move its humidity North to at least the edge of Canada. I don’t think that its so good at moving it to the Dakotas which are to Minnesota’s West, with the map showing dryer as you go West. So moving West to East across Minnesota, the Gulf becomes a more reliable source of precipitation. Our weather casters up here will show us expected and actual precipitation tracks, and farmers upon seeing these, will recalculate their economic situation. Our hope is that we will be told that our precipitation will stay the same or increase and the gulf will continue to be a reliable source for Minnesota’s agriculture production, especially for its more vulnerable Western regions.

    If the subject is adapting to climate change such a change in how much gulf moisture ends up on Minnesota farm fields, farmers can adapt by changing crops. Dryer long term conditions might mean switching from Corn to Wheat. Wetter conditions might mean the reverse if you are in our more northerly Wheat belt. A Corn to Wheat shift generally results in a less intensive farming, but also a less profitable farming.

  11. Judy, this is off topic but you could feature von Storch’s three points, now that this study has been trashed as good news as sadly unsupported as previous bad news.
    ======================

    • kim

      Here they are (from Bishop Hill)

      In recent years, the increase in near-surface global annual mean temperatures has emerged as considerably smaller than many had expected. We investigate whether this can be explained by contemporary climate change scenarios. In contrast to earlier analyses for a ten-year period that indicated consistency between models and observations at the 5% confidence level, we find that the continued warming stagnation over fifteen years, from 1998 -2012, is no longer consistent with model projections even at the 2% confidence level. Of the possible causes of the inconsistency, the underestimation of internal natural climate variability on decadal time scales is a plausible candidate, but the influence of unaccounted external forcing factors or an overestimation of the model sensitivity to elevated greenhouse gas concentrations cannot be ruled out. The first cause would have little impact of the expectations of longer term anthropogenic climate change, but the second and particularly the third would.

      This could be an interesting topic for discussion here, if Judith agrees.

      Max

      • Yep, he lays out the dilemma for the alarmists in stellar fashion. I suspect all three are at play, and the third is practically demonstrated. von Storch understands. moshe clued me in to von Storch a long time ago.
        ==============

  12. Spartacusisfree

    Ludicrous: the key error in the ‘consensus’ is to forget that the planet adapts to the need for a minimum rate of production of radiation entropy consistent with OLR = SW IN. There can be no significant CO2-AGW!

  13. Chief Hydrologist

    Since GPCP provides precipitation values over the globe, it is able to produce spatially complete estimates of mean global annual precipitation rate, a fundamental parameter for the study of global climate. The GPCP data provide a distinct advantage over estimates based solely on land-based gauges for the global mean daily precipitation rate, P. The estimate of P in the GPCP data is 2.61 mm/day (Adler et al. 2003). Interestingly, estimates for the more recent part of the record, (1988 – 2003), which include PMW data absent from the first part of the record, result in the same the global average value, 2.61 mm/day, as the entire 1979 -2003 period…

    It can be argued from global energy considerations that, to first approximation, P should have remained more or less constant over the 25-year observation period discussed here. In particular in an analysis of global energy budgets and current model simulations Allen and Ingram (2002) suggest that the range of observed and modeled changes in temperature is too small to even identify the relationships between greenhouse related temperature and precipitation changes. http://www.gewex.org/reports/2008AssessmentGlobalPrecipReport.pdf

    If we drill down to regional changes – decadal changes are much more clearly associated with decadal and longer patterns of ocean and atmospheric circulation. Th current multi-decadal – looking forward – US drought associated with the AMO and and PDO states for instance. The greening of the Sahel with changes in decadal ENSO patterns – as with renewed flooding in Australia, Indonesia and China.

    Longer term these ocean and atmospheric patterns – causing changes in the top of atmosphere global energy budget – have centennial and millennial variability. There is little doubt that paleo rainfall variability exceeds considerably that we have seen in the past century. The proxy records includes mega floods and mega droughts.

    This for changes in ENSO and Australian rainfall for instance.

    http://s1114.photobucket.com/user/Chief_Hydrologist/media/Vance2012-AntarticaLawDomeicecoresaltcontent.jpg.html?sort=3&o=70

    ENSO has of course global effects and La Nina intensity and frequency is greatest in cool PDO modes. Is this a pattern for the millennial future?

    Water stress is defined as a per capita annual water availability of less than 1700 cubic metres per person. Obviously population impacts on this calculation. Projections of changes in rainfall are a little problematic. Predictions of changes in net evapotranspiration have to be all over the place.

    Individual plants have physiological responses to CO2 that reduce water loss. What actually seems to be happening – especially in water limited areas – is that total plant biomass increases to use the available water resource. ‘The fertilisation effect occurs where elevated CO2 enables a leaf during photosynthesis, the process by which green plants convert sunlight into sugar, to extract more carbon from the air or lose less water to the air, or both.’

    “In Australia, our native vegetation is superbly adapted to surviving in arid environments and it consequently uses water very efficiently,” Dr Donohue said. “Australian vegetation seems quite sensitive to CO2 fertilisation.

    This, along with the vast extents of arid landscapes, means Australia featured prominently in our results.”

    http://www.csiro.au/Portals/Media/Deserts-greening-from-rising-CO2.aspx

    So is all this utterly beyond our control? The role of development, health programs, education, safe water and sanitation in helping to limit population growth is obvious. These are precisely the sort of programs behind the Millennium Development Goals and focus in making these more effective and funded to the extent committed to would go some way to reducing population growth.

    Building the organic content of soils by ecosystem restoration and agricultural soil conservation and rehabilitation conserves water, increases groundwater supplies and supply reliability and increases agricultural productivity. As well as protecting downstream environments and sequestering carbon.

    This goes well beyond the energy equation and should really be the focus of global attention in the interim while energy technologies evolve.

    • Chief, the Israelis were worried about international pressure stopping them extracting water from aquifers and the possibility of Lebanon/Syria diverting water from the river Jordan before it entered Galilee. A decade ago they began building reverse-osmosis desalination plants, and soon these will be power by electricity derived from the newly exploited gas fields of the coast.
      In just one decade, ending in 2014, Israel will have all of its potable water supplied from desalination.
      As they have de-stressed their traditional water supplies, they will be able to carry on with all their forest planting and carry on greening the desert.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        1700 cubic metres/year is certainly doable at about $2500/year for large scale desalination. Many people don’t have that option and and you still need a source of salty water. Pumping more than a couple of hundred km’s is usually too expensive to contemplate.

  14. Impact of climate, population and CO2 on water resources…

    population explosion has a great impact on water resources; BUT CO2 has none – putting those two in the same basket, not informative

    higher population = needs more water storages built; that can prevent floods also. In Australia for the ”Warmist” building a ”new dam” is a taboo

  15. Y’know, when people build new thermal power plants, coal, oil, or gas fired, (or nuclear), they ought to build the technology to reuse the waste heat for distilling sea water.

    • Something else to consider: solar power can be used for pumping purified water without having to worry about its intermittent nature. Pumping can be done intermittently.

    • AK,

      Statements like this are meaningless unless you provide the costs. Solar energy is about five times more expensive than conventional baseload power. If you want to run the desalination plant at about 15% of its capacity you’ll need massive overbuild of solar generating capacity (to provide sufficient power when the sun is not high in the sky) and the desalination plant will cost around seven times (1/0.15) more costly for the same output as it would be if it was powered by a reliable continuous power supply. All in all, your water would cost around 5 x 5 x 7 = 175 times more than if the plant was powered by a reliable baseload power supply.

      Advice: crunch the numbers.

      • Solar energy is about five times more expensive than conventional baseload power.

        For the moment. Stay tuned.

        If you want to run the desalination plant at about 15% of its capacity you’ll need massive overbuild of solar generating capacity (to provide sufficient power when the sun is not high in the sky) and the desalination plant will cost around seven times (1/0.15) more costly for the same output as it would be if it was powered by a reliable continuous power supply.

        Good point. I just don’t understand what it has to do with my suggestion that desalination facilities ought to be built using waste heat from “thermal power plants, coal, oil, or gas fired, (or nuclear)”. Of course, once it’s purified, pumping it to the end user can use intermittent energy. Solar or off-peak traditional. You would have to overbuild your pumping facilities somewhat, but not 7:1.

        Advice: crunch the numbers.

        Considering how much they’re going to change, and how little we know about the extent of those changes, “crunch[ing] the numbers” would be an exercise in fantasy.

      • AK,

        Advice: crunch the numbers.

        Considering how much they’re going to change, and how little we know about the extent of those changes, “crunch[ing] the numbers” would be an exercise in fantasy.

        Your idea is the fantasy. You can make up any fantasy you like if you don’t consider the costs.

      • @Peter Lang…

        Your idea is the fantasy. You can make up any fantasy you like if you don’t consider the costs.

        Is it a “fantasy” that combined power/desalination plants are actually being built?

        The 1,025MW Ras Laffan B combined-cycle power plant in Qatar has a seawater desalination plant that produces around 27,500 cubic metres of drinking water per day. Project construction began in September 2005 and the plant was officially opened in March 2008.

      • Peter Lang, “Your idea is the fantasy. You can make up any fantasy you like if you don’t consider the costs.”
        If graphene works half as well as advertised a lot of dreams will come true.

        http://www.lockheedmartin.com/us/news/press-releases/2013/march/lockheed-martin-achieves-patent-for-perforene-filtration-solutio.html

        Graphene is also used in fuel cells and electrolysers and can be tailor made for various fuels, H2, methane, methanol, ethane, ethanol, amides. There is even a graphene based artificial photosynthesis process.

        http://phys.org/news/2012-07-artificial-photosynthesis-efficiency-boost-graphene.html

      • If graphene works half as well as advertised a lot of dreams will come true.

        And anybody who “crunch[ed]the numbers” without taking them into account will look pretty obsolete.

      • AK,

        If you haven’t already done so, I’d urge you to read the excellent book by David Mackay “Sustainable Energy – without the hot air“. In the preface he says:

        I am concerned about cutting UK emissions of twaddle – twaddle about sustainable energy

        You can read it online here: http://www.withouthotair.com/

      • @Peter Lang…

        I’m probably wasting my time with you, but I actually started reading the work you recommended, and got as far as note 39 on page 47, referencing figure 6.18. Here he is justifying his claim that “Typical solar panels have an efficiency of about 10%; expensive ones perform at 20%.” This is based on the assumption that it works without concentrators, using a single-junction photovoltaic (PV). He mentions a couple of new research results where multi-junction PVs get 40% efficiency, then asks “What multiple-junction devices are available on the market?” And goes on to discuss something with an efficiency of 5%.

        This seems precisely the same attitude you demonstrate, assuming that something in the lab will continue to be in the lab, and not on the market, 10 years from now. His book, like your calculations, is clearly nay-saying fantasy.

      • I need to move some dehumidifiers in the Sahel, and my Nunavut warehouse is overstocked with Frigidaires.

        I want the name of the guy who sold solar to Germany.

      • Pissant Progressive

        we got to move these refrigerators. we got to move these color tv’s.

      • I want the name of the guy who sold solar to Germany,

        He’s up in the Arctic tight now, selling refrigerators to the Eskimos.

        Max

      • I would side with AK on this. Having worked a PhD researching heterostructure and multilayer semiconductor material, I can say that the field is still expanding.

        Years ago the saying was that “gallium arsenide is the material of the future, and always will be” but that has changed big time (just google the saying). Today it is used in optoelectronics and high speed cellular applications routinely.

        The same can be said for PV material. We are making progress with material quality that is horrendous, amorphous or filled with dislocations, but make further breakthroughs in bandgap engineering and materials processing and efficiency will continue to improve while the costs come down.

        MacKay does point out that the solutions are achieved by aggregating fractional partial solutions. A little PV here, a little nuclear there, some wind over there. Pretty soon the cumulative effect is enough. But first we have to acknowledge the reality of the transition away from fossil fuels.

      • AK,

        You seem to be mixing things up. You were making up stuff without costs. I said “Statements like this are meaningless unless you provide the costs.” You can make up scenarios but they are meaningless if you don’t estimate the costs.

        You then said the costs change so much there is no point estimating them (or words to that effect).

        Now you introduce desalination with CCGT and trying to connect it to nuclear. It’s just a pile of nonsense. As I said at the start, unless you deal with the costs, you can make up anything you like. It’s meaningless.

        I could say more about the potential for desalination combined with nuclear power, but so far you’ve said nothing to suggest you have understood my point, and nothing to suggest you’d take any notice. So I’ll leave it at that. If you demonstrate you are capable of providing realistic costs for your scenarios, the discussion could move to a more meaningful level.

        Right now, it seems the thread of conversation is so disjointed it is broken. And I cannot be bothered summarising it to get back on track.

        If you want to, go back to your comments at
        @ August 13, 2013 at 7:22 pm
        @ August 13, 2013 at 7:26 pm
        and my reply at:
        @ August 13, 2013 at 7:53 pm
        Then yours at:
        @ August 13, 2013 at 8:09 pm

        Considering how much they’re going to change, and how little we know about the extent of those changes, “crunch[ing] the numbers” would be an exercise in fantasy.

        If that’s the way you think, I see no point in carrying on.

  16. Well, I’m skeptical about this study, but it’s good to hear someone hawk the good things about CO2, if this is for real, that is. Speaking of CO2, fossil fuels, and water usage; here is an article about Charlie Munger’s thoughts on crude oil. It appears he may not know about Joule Unlimited – and I bet there will be more energy sources we haven’t even dreamed of yet – and those won’t be coming from wind and solar PV – government sponsored BS that we have now.

    “”Oil is absolutely certain to become incredibly short in supply and very high priced. The imported oil is not your enemy, it’s your friend. Every barrel that you use up that comes from somebody else is a barrel of your precious oil which you’re going to need to feed your people and maintain your civilization. And what responsible people do with a Confucian ethos is suffer now to benefit themselves and their families and their countrymen later. The way to do that is to go very slow in producing domestic oil and not mind at all if we pay prices that look ruinous for foreign oil.

    It’s going to get way worse later …

    The oil in the ground that you’re not producing is a national treasure … It’s not at all clear that there’s any substitute [for hydrocarbons]. When the hydrocarbons are gone, I don’t think the chemists are going to be able to just mix up a vat and create more hydrocarbons. It’s conceivable that they could, I suppose, but it’s not the way to bet. We should spend no attention to these silly economists and these silly politicians that tell us to become energy independent.”

    http://seekingalpha.com/article/1631292-charlie-munger-thinks-oil-is-absolutely-certain-to-become-incredibly-short-in-supply

    • He probably does, and did not invest. The biotechnology is impressive, but the production scaling problems are horrendous. A few acre test system in New Mexico is not exactly a commercial pilot line even if called one. My bet is will end like Range Fuels, which worked in the “lab” but did not scale, thereby burning a total of about $300 million, half your tax dollars.
      All these advanced biofuel schemes can be deconstructed, and have some flaw. Coskata has the ‘stover shed’ problem. Saphire has the input scale problems for both water in open raceways and CO2. And so on.
      The multifactor systems view Judith advocated for in this post is sadly wanting in evaluation of most of these schemes.
      That said, Kior does seem potentially viable. The pilot line worked. Let’s see if the full scale plant in Mississippi now under construction does. Is hopeful, because a clever variant on a process already scaled in petroleum refining.
      Regards

    • The good things you hear about CO2 are true. The bad things you hear about CO2 are really junk. Anything that makes green things grow better with less water while it is still only a trace in our atmosphere is wonderful and more is better. Any trace gas that is only a trace compared to water vapor can only provide a trace of warming compared to water in all of its states as water in all of its states does regulate the temperature of the Earth. You do not regulate the temperature of a huge system with a trace of anything. You do regulate the temperature of a huge system with a huge amount of water in all of its states. Water is abundant and it changes state to bound temperature on earth. CO2 has no set point. Polar Sea Ice and Ocean Water does have a Set Point and it snows more when Polar Water is Warm and Wet and it snows less when Polar Sea Water is Cold and Frozen and this provides the adjustments to Albedo of Earth to keep the Thermostat set and keep temperature well bounded.

  17. JC Comment:

    This paper illustrates the importance of considering multiple factors when assessing climate change impacts

    Another factor that should be considered, but generally isn’t in scientific papers, is that thew world will be much richer. It will have better and cheaper (in real terms) energy and water supplies. We have unlimited water in the oceans and virtually unlimited energy (in uranium and thorium). We’ll be able to supply water to where it is needed.

    The mire wealthy the world, the better for all. Therefore, we should stop wasting money on high cost projects that will provide no benefits and retard economic growth: like carbon pricing and renewable energy.

  18. Essentially, plants uptake water for two categories of reasons: transport of nutrients (including the water itself), and transport of heat.

    CO2 has extensive hormonal effects on plant development, which significantly cripples most plants’ ability to take in water, among other things.

    This doesn’t much matter to plants so long as the plant doesn’t get overheated, and nutrients are available in higher than usual concentrations.

    If nutrients are exhausted, such as by drought or flood or overstimulation of competing soil microbes, or heat rises (night or day), then the expected effect on plants might seem ‘healthy’ in a contrary way, as the plant puts more of its vigor into becoming more bitter, woody, thorny, and leggy, to make some of its leaves larger and then draw back nutrients from them causing premature aging, and of course to have less flowering and fruiting bodies, notably misshapen.

    A plant may die of thirst in an abundance of water. Indeed, it might also get root rot while refusing to uptake its normal allotment.

    But hey, how can any of those things not be beneficial?

    • Bart R – the eternal pessimist.

      • Bart R – the uninformed eternal pessimist.

      • jim2 | August 13, 2013 at 10:22 pm |

        Au contraire. I’m an eternal uninformed optimist.

        I have no basis to believe some people will ever get their facts straight, but I seem unable to give up hoping they’ll change their ways someday.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        An overblown fantasy with no hint of balance or rational science. Utterly unhelpful.

    • Interesting comment on the plants, barty. (he he he)

      But if I may move on to a more serious , if slightly off topic, topic. EEU environmental officials have issued a warning for esteemed EEU citizens and visiting foreigners to not take a dip in waters off the coast of Denmark, sans swimsuit. That would obviously not apply to our lady denizens and joshie, barty, lollywot et al

      • Don Monfort | August 14, 2013 at 2:20 am | has become the pacu of Climate, Etc.

        Some advice, from someone who’s spent time in the Amazon: no one in the Amazon trusts swimsuits for protection from fish: they know they don’t work. Also, there are worse threats, but you shouldn’t let scary stories prevent you from taking a bath every once in a while.

        And what’s this constant repetition of associating names like a mantra that isn’t spiritual, a meme that isn’t a meme, or a club that isn’t a club. I’m unaffiliated, wouldn’t join any group that would have me, and don’t see the similarity of the supposed “et al”.

        Perhaps you’ll fall for anything, hook, line, and stinker.. but don’t insult the readers of Climate Etc. by pretending they ought to buy your fish tales.

    • “CO2 has extensive hormonal effects on plant development, which significantly cripples most plants’ ability to take in water, among other things”
      Complete and utter bollocks. Hormones are merely signalling molecules and induce cell specific, cellular changes.
      Evolution is blind, not dumb, if you think that plants do not have sophisticated environmental sensors and tactical and strategic responses to environmental stimuli you know damn all about botany.
      Your simplistic view of what the effect of a modest rise in CO2 will have on soil microbiology and plant resource allocation is complete and utter toss. Perhaps a few years of study into biology or ecology would rid you of such simplistic cause-effect foolishness.

      • DocMartyn | August 14, 2013 at 7:51 pm |

        Then perhaps you have a suitable Darwinian thesis to explain how raising CO2 can reduce plant uptake of the medium of evapotransport while being shown to correspondingly reduce plant tolerance to heat?

        What’s the path?

        What’s the sensor?

        What’s the tactical, strategic reason a thirsty plant dying of heat exhaustion won’t take up available water and use it to cool off?

        And really, simplistic?

        I’m familiar with the logic of cause and effect, but logic only informs consistency of cause and effect statements, not validity. For validity, I’m good with experimental evidence, which so far tells me not to increase CO2 for plants if I’m expecting an exceptionally warm season, or if the soil is nutrient depleted.

        By the way, there are THREE, not TWO, categories of reasons plants take up water. Go ahead. Show us your botanical brilliance, and identify the third one I intentionally ignored.

  19. If one is going to speculate about any one thing, then one might as well speculate about everything. It is good for parties, good for a publications lists (unfortunately), fodder for blogs–but does it provide discriminating insights for timely decision-making? Probably not.

  20. I looked at this map on water consumption per capita by country

    http://www.waterfootprint.org/?page=files/WaterFootprintsNations

    It appears that two factors account for higher consumption: warmth (see the gradient in Europe for example) and development level (US v China for example). The world demand is increasing in both these areas regardless of population growth. I hope the paper takes these other factors into account, as they should be significant.

  21. mwgrant,

    but does it provide discriminating insights for timely decision-making? Probably not.

    Your comment got me musing. Perhaps the time has passed when we need to make major policy decisions about climate policies.

    – 20 years of UN climate conferences and negotiations have gone nowhere
    – Kyoto Protocol arguable achieved nothing of benefit
    – Chicago Carbon Exchange collapsed
    – EU ETS is looking like its doomed (down from $38 to $5 in a few years)
    – Australian carbon tax dumped
    – Australian ETS likely to be dumped soon
    – Climate change doesn’t rate as an important issue among Australian voters in the election campaign now underway (except the Greens who rate it the most important issue of all)
    – Media activity in the English speaking media world wide is in a steady decline. If the current rate continues climate change will be dead as an issue within about a year from now (see the activity timeline here: http://climatechange.carboncapturereport.org/cgi-bin/topic?)

    • Peter Lang,

      We will need to keep making decisions regarding climate policy so long as there is an active movement to decarbonize the global economy. The need to prevent the implementation of bad policy is no less important now than it was pre-Copenhagen.

      Conservatives in the US repeatedly defeated attempts to impose socialized medicine, then got rolled when the progressives and their media allies lied and claimed Obamacare was an attempt to reform the insurance industry, when it is in fact designed to replace it.

      Roughly the same thing is happening here now with what is laughingly called “comprehensive immigration reform.” And as usual, there are progressive Republicans all to eager to win the approval of the New York Times, et al. by capitulating without a fight.

      The price of freedom is eternal vigilance – and not just against foreign enemies.

  22. Peter Lang

    “Perhaps the time has passed when we need to make major policy decisions about climate policies.”

    I have that thought too at times. But then, if I accept uncertainty in the nature and timing of outcomes, I conclude that the time for decisions does not pass, but the character of the decisions may substantially change. So straining at gnats–obsessing over speculative details–is still detrimental because it is a continual diversion.

    • Obsessing over ideologies–nothing more than political theories and models–is also speculative and detrimental. Such thing are admittedly a gray area.

    • Chief

      Looks generally positive – BUT “more work is needed…”

      Max

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Looks generally problematic in a number of ways – and emission mitigation seems the more prudent course where outcomes are that uncertain. You don’t see any potential risk in changing the terrestrial hydrological cycle?

      • Chief

        No. I don’t see any risks (of adverse effects that outweigh any beneficial ones) from higher CO2 levels, within the range that is conceivable from human emissions But maybe you can educate me (no joke).

        Max

      • Chief Hydrologist

        ‘Overall, FACE experiments show decreases in whole plant water use of 5–20% under elevated CO2. This in turn can have consequences for the hydrological cycle of entire ecosystems, with soil moisture levels and runoff both increasing under elevated CO2 (Leakey et al. 2009).’

        It might be entirely benign. But do you feel lucky punk? Well – do you?

      • David Springer

        Chief Hydrologist | August 14, 2013 at 1:33 am |

        “Looks generally problematic in a number of ways – and emission mitigation seems the more prudent course where outcomes are that uncertain.”

        Mitigation that actually makes a significant difference in pCO2 isn’t politically possible. In fact it’s counterproductive because the nations that are willing to commit to reductions do so with the consequence of making domestic energy more expensive and hence domestic manufacturing more expensive. This gives foreign manufacturers who don’t mitigate a cost advantage and production shifts to them. These same foreign manufacturers are typically using the oldest, dirtiest conventional energy (dirty coal) so the shift in emissions from mitigating to non-mitigating nations actually makes for more CO2 emission overall and more honest to God pollutants like black carbon, nitrogen and sulfur compounds.

        “You don’t see any potential risk in changing the terrestrial hydrological cycle?”

        Not much. The earth’s hydrologic cycle spends a fair amount of time shut down due to freezing temperatures. Any warming will decrease the length of time it spends in frozen stasis. And as the article points out plants require less water per unit of growth when pCO2 is higher. Last, for most of the earth’s history in the past 500 million years since the modern terrestrial phyla sprang into existence pCO2 has been at least several times greater than now. The current climate episode, prevailing for only the past 3 million years, is a frozen struggle to survive for many species with atmospheric pCO2 dangerously close to the 200ppm level where photosynthesis begins to shut down. Polar ice caps are neither normal nor good for the biosphere as a whole.

        And you don’t see any potential risk in raising energy cost with no beneficial result? Until such time as some mitigation scheme would actually have a significant impact on pCO2 and consequent establishment of some kind of status quo for the climate is attained mitigation is, at best, just pissing away money that could instead be used productively. See Bjorn Lomborg for a laundry list of higher priority uses.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        To quote myself from above – so is all this utterly beyond our control? The role of development, health programs, education, safe water and sanitation in helping to limit population growth is obvious. These are precisely the sort of programs behind the Millennium Development Goals and focus in making these more effective and funded to the extent committed to would go some way to reducing population growth.

        Building the organic content of soils by ecosystem restoration and agricultural soil conservation and rehabilitation conserves water, increases groundwater supplies, water supply reliability and increases agricultural productivity. As well as protecting downstream environments and sequestering carbon.

        This goes well beyond the energy equation and should really be the focus of global attention in the interim while energy technologies evolve.

        http://judithcurry.com/2013/08/13/impact-of-climate-population-and-co2-on-water-resources/#comment-364531

        The reduction in water usage by individual plants is the point of the post. Ignorance of consequences is the point of my comment here – but that’s never stopped you has it Jabberwock? Your simple narratives are arguments from ignorance. And when have I ever advocated taxes or caps?

      • David Springer

        Chief Hydrologist | August 14, 2013 at 3:23 pm |

        “The reduction in water usage by individual plants is the point of the post. Ignorance of consequences is the point of my comment here”

        Fixed that for ya!

      • Chief Hydrologist

        You specialise in inconsequential drivel Jabberwock. Write that down.

      • David Springer

        Oh hang on. This is another schpiel about your hobby horse, the conservation farming panacea, that will mitigate CO2 by a significant amount and cost nothing.

        Sorry. Farmers are a pragmatic lot. I trust farmers who have skin in the game to better judge the efficacy of no-till or low-till than a navel gazer like Chief Kangaroo Skippy Ellision of blog comment fame.

      • Springer, “Sorry. Farmers are a pragmatic lot. I trust farmers who have skin in the game to better judge the efficacy of no-till or low-till than a navel gazer like Chief Kangaroo Skippy Ellision.”

        Yes they are. US land is a net carbon sink offsetting ~ 17% of its fossil fuel emissions. The US of course does not get credit for that offset since Carbon Taxation is not about carbon but about taxation. Most of the net carbon sink is due to tree farms and reforestation which the UK is tapping into to try and not completely blow their Carbon footprint out of proportion.

        No-Till in the US is currently at ~35% of the total cropland and growing about 1.5% per year according to

        http://cornandsoybeandigest.com/tillage/no-till-acres-keep-growing

        From the farmers I have talked with, more every year it seems since they tend to enjoy the lack of snow here, use modified no-till. The rotate normal till as needed to cut down on the round-up resistant weeds. So the point of mentioning no-till is that it is already growing, already reducing Carbon and didn’t cost a dime. The best thing the carbon crazies could do is STFU and let farmers farm.

      • Chief

        Thanks for info and tip.

        Yep. I feel lucky.

        Got no good reason not to.

        Max

      • Chief Hydrologist

        You have been through this before Jabberwock. Quoting a 30 year old Mother Jones article as state of the art. No it is not about no-till. No till is a small part of the package.

        e.g. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/10176217/The-underground-forests-that-are-bringing-deserts-to-life.html

        No till itself is a misnomer for a variety of measures – e.g. – http://www.extension.umn.edu/distribution/cropsystems/components/08483.pdf

        Sometime in the past 30 years US became carbon negative while increasing yields and farm profits. Real farmers continue to conserve and restore soils. There is a long and proud history of soil conservation in the US – coming off quite dire impacts.

        But it is also about natural ecosystems. The return of bison and the tall grass prairies is one way – http://www.businessinsider.com.au/american-serengetie-irks-catlemen-2013-5

        I don’t really care whether it is bison or cattle but deep rooted perennial pastures are the way to go.

        It is also about population, development and energy innovation.

        I am an environmental scientist and have studied over decades the way water, nutrients, pollutants and sediments move through landscapes, organisms, soils and surface water to estuaries and oceans. It is called biogeochemical cycling.

        Jabberwock – you are an ultratwit with little charm and less understanding.

      • Well, I’d feel lucky but the odds are way greater for catastrophic cooling than catastrophic warming.
        ==============

      • Fascinating when Springer starts to write with the same terms that I use


        David Springer | August 14, 2013 at 6:36 am |
        Any warming will decrease the length of time it spends in frozen stasis.

        compare to this I wrote the day before:


        WebHubTelescope (@whut) | August 13, 2013 at 11:11 am |
        And your point is what exactly?

        People use applied math all the time without getting into the kind of frozen stasis that results from thinking too hard about the origins of the universe.

        Something is obviously influencing Springer. I just find it interesting, in an earwig kind of way.

    • Chief Hydrologist

      Max – I don’t really need much proof. Changing the composition of the atmosphere and the biosphere while there are obvious ‘no regrets’ alternatives seems just intransigent madness.

      I think you are basically just basking in the glow of your own idiocy.

      • Ah, but changing them for the better is the truly no regrets policy.
        ===================

      • Chief Hydrologist

        I have hired Laplace’s long haired leaping gnome to plan the geoengineering. We will get back to you.

      • Heh, the best minds were planning to deploy sulphates, what, only two years ago? AnthroCO2, with its apparently small effect on climate, is the best of all possible worlds; a little warmer and a lot more fertile.
        ==========================

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Plan A is a little iron in the soul. Plan B involves rainbows and pots.

      • Rub-a-dub rainbow,
        The iron of the pot’s worth
        More than gold in it.
        ==============

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Angels breath is not worth the noise it makes.
        Gasping between incoherence and chimera.

  23. “…at peak global population 65% of people experience some level of water stress.”

    97% of those who know what a peak global population might be could be perceived by some as agreeing on that 65% figure. The rest may well argue for a figure of 66.5%, or be perceived as arguing for such. Or not. (Multiple independent studies have shown a degree of uncertainty in stuff in general between 3% and 97%. Or thereabouts.)

    When people in future centuries come to snigger at the daffier theories of the past, they will take most delight in propositions which apply prissy exactitude to the waffliest speculations. If you discuss with sufficient intricacy the number of angels who may dance on a pinhead, the public may forget to question if there are any angels at all dancing on pinheads.

  24. “This has implications for global GHG emissions targets that aim to limit climate change according to temperature targets alone.”

    An important conclusion.
    But the HadCM3 model fails to predict the El nino/La Nina phenomina nor the on/off natire of climate change, The most likely cause of these shortcomings, IMO. is the simulation of the CO2 molecule, the simulation needs to follow the hidtory of the molecule from the time it leaves the tailpipe or chimney at high temperature until it has fallen to an average temperature of less than 25C, because at that temperature it’s specific heat is little different from that of N2 or O2. That means that new, hot CO2 is far more important than cold, old CO2 to climate. The difference is due to the vibration modes of vthe CO2 molecule

  25. David Appell projects his own advocacy, and hasn’t even bothered to read. Many of the skeptics here have criticized this study for its reliance on failed models.
    =============

  26. The predictions of the hydrological cycle by models are far, far worse than the predictions of temperature – and even the temperature predictions are pretty much worthless.

    What if we had performed these experiments by sending a modern GCM and supercomputer back 100 years in time, together with privileged information regarding GHG emissions, solar flux, etc, and allowed our ancestors to run these models to work out what would happen to the hydrological cycle?

    The answer is shown here (ref below). The answer shows that the models would have provided no useful information, giving a worse prediction than a simple naive baseline.

    So in terms of predictive value, I see no reason to believe anything from this paper – the models have not demonstrated skill even with privileged information about the future, without that their predictions cannot be better.

    That said, I would add is that it is interesting that a paper has been published which claims a positive effect of AGW (whether the result is credible or not). Historically such a paper would have received massive resistance against publication. I suspect the bar is still higher for publication of this type of paper, but it is interesting to see it being published. This is an important step to getting science back on the right track of objective assessment of evidence rather than narrow advocacy for a political viewpoint.

    Ref: Anagnostopoulos, G. G., D. Koutsoyiannis, A. Christofides, A. Efstratiadis, and N. Mamassis, A comparison of local and aggregated climate model outputs with observed data, Hydrological Sciences Journal, 55 (7), 1094–1110, 2010.

    • Spence_UK

      Good comments.

    • If someone invented super computers sooner, if someone had invented any computer sooner. People would have believed the numbers that came out of those computers and they would have stopped actually thinking sooner.

    • Temperature and Sea Level are well inside the bounds of the past ten thousand years and they will stay in bounds.

      The CO2 levels are above the bounds of the past ten thousand years and that is extremely good for all life on earth that gets any good out of any green stuff that grows or for any life on earth that needs water.

    • To make a computer model work you must start with Theory that is Correct.
      If your computer model does not put out numbers that match what really happens, you can be sure the model is based on Theory that has Flaws.
      If your models says Earth will warm out of bounds and oceans will rise out of bounds and that has not happened in the past ten thousand years, you can be sure you messed up something really important.

      Most likely you forgot to add in that it always snows more when oceans are warm and wet and it always snows less when oceans are cold and frozen and this causes Albedo to increase and decrease to maintain tight bounds on temperature. So called greenhouse radiation provides most of the cooling for Earth, but it has no set point. Sea Ice and Ocean water have a set point and can turn snowfall on and off to do this tight bounding. Look at Earth Temperature in Paleo Data. There are bounds, but they are much wider and there is no set point in between the bounds, we now have a set point and tight regulation around the set point and this is well inside the old bounds. Consensus Climate Science has not even looked at or thought about why the most recent ten thousand years is different.

      It is different because the Polar Ice Cycle mutated during the most recent major warming with the Younger Dryas Event. Our modern Polar Ice Cycle is different and does provide the small increase and decrease in Albedo to maintain this modern paradise.

  27. In ‘Who Turned On The Heat?’ Bob Tisdale reminds us that
    over 70% of Planet ‘Earth,’ a misnomer, is actually water.
    Here’s a repeat of me own reminder.

    Across the great continents, drifting
    Shadows brush the plains with
    Fugitive mist. Distant
    Mountains, ridges of lapis lazuli
    Rim the sky that lifts
    Across latitudes from sombre
    Indigo to brillianr azurite.

    Earth is the water planet,
    All its great continents shifting
    In a world awash with seas,
    Crested waves rifting its shores.
    Noah’s flood is with us yet,
    Its opal waters inundate the land
    With mirroed pools.

    Water planet,
    viewed from space, like a snapshot
    From the gods, a shimmering orb,
    Netted In a cloud haze.
    Bts

    • Water is abundant, in all of its states, it does regulate the Temperature of Earth.

      Especially Ice and Water because it changes state and can turn snowfall on and off.

      A trace gas can help a trace, but only a trace.

      • Herman

        Glaciers reached a low point around 4000 years ago and the arctic ice was much diminished.

        By the end of the Roman optimum and the MWP ice had barely increased as the intervening cold periods had been npthing exceptional.
        Then the LIA -the coldest period of the Holocene-spent 200 years vastly expanding glacier (and we must assume) arctic ice.

        Question 1: Why did the snows not replenish the ice stock (During the LIA) until several warm periods had occurred?.

        Question 2. Was the sea level higher after the last warming of the MWP than it will be after all the LIA ice melts?
        tonyb

      • Snow don’t fall during a cold period. Snow falls during Warm Periods and that is why there are Cold Periods. Snow stops falling during Cold Periods and that is why a Warm Period always follows.

      • If Polar Sea Ice and Water is not the thermostat for the most recent ten thousand years, you must name something else.

        Using Polar Sea Ice and Water and more snowfall when it is warmer and less snowfall when it is colder you could easily build a climate model that might not match all the cycles of the past ten thousand years but it would easily stay inside the same bounds as we have had for ten thousand years.

        Do this with anything else!

        You have nothing else with a SET POINT!

      • Ice Volume is Replenished during Every Warm Period.
        Ice volume is reduced during Every Cold Period.
        Sea Level goes up and down with the warming and cooling cycles

        We have had the same bounds on temperature and sea level for ten thousand years

      • Planck does not come close to explaining why the temperature for the recent ten thousand years was tightly regulated and before ten thousand years ago it was allowed to go from upper bound to lower bound with no set point in between.

        What makes old Planck different from modern Planck? NOTHING!

        Planck has not changed.

        Something has changed.

        The Polar Sea Ice Cycle has Changed.

        Explain the difference with Planck, now and before.

      • Earth uses Polar Sea Ice to control snowfall on land and make small adjustments to Albedo to keep temperature balanced.
        These small changes show up in Albedo Measurements Albedo has been decreasing while we have been warming. The Warming has now stopped and the Albedo Decrease has now stopped. This is in the actual Data.

        A little ice age has more ice and colder temperatures. A Medieval Warm Period has less ice and warmer temperatures. This is clearly in the data.

        We are warm now and the snow fell from October to May. The ice that fell outside the bounds of multi-year ice did melt already. The ice that fell on top of multi-year ice is still there and will pile up every warm year until it gets heavy enough to advance.

        Try to do this bounding any other way and try to explain it.

    • Beth

      Yew shore do no how ta rite mighty purty.

      Yore feller surf Max

  28. Mist got in me eyes, ‘brilliant’

  29. The increase in CO2 in the atmosphere is one of the main contributing factors leading to climate change. However, CO2 also affects plants directly. One of the side effects of increasing atmospheric CO2 is to reduce the amount of water plants need to grow. This ‘CO2 effect’ increases the amount of water available for human consumption.

    Yes and it caused the Roman Warm Period and it caused the Medieval Warm period and it cause a bunch of other warm periods in the past ten thousand years.

    My bad, all those other times warmed just like this without our CO2.

  30. “The consensus of AR4 models . . . indicates an increase in annual precipitation in most of Asia during this century;

    Yep! and the Texas State Climatologist told our Climate Study Group that Texas has also had an increase in annual precipitation during the period of record.

    When oceans get warmer and the sea ice thaws it does provide more moisture for rain and snow. This is supported by data and common sense.

    The more snow then stops the further warming, every time in the past ten thousand years. That has not and will not change.

  31. The conclusions are described by the authors as “highly uncertain”. Data is severely limited at this time and is needed to inform good adaptation planning.

    “Assessments such as this one which are necessarily based on modelling studies are therefore highly uncertain”

    But I will agree with Judith that the important point (and not in any way a new one) is that the most useful research has an integrative approach and includes e.g. population dynamics, water resources (ground and surface), and food and agriculture studies.

    While this paper is an example of relevant research for adaptation planning using an integrative approach to both science and policy, it is far from a systemic analysis: the difference between irrigation issues related to surface water supplies vs groundwater supplies is barely considered, never mind e.g. groundwater recharge, sustainability in the face of groundwater mining, etc. Nor are population dynamics, other than growth e.g. transition from rural to urban.

    If observations, data, modeling, and integrative analysis were combining to suggest that more of the most vulnerable people will have better access to water and food as a result of climate change, rather than less access to food and water as a result of climate change, that would be wonderful. But it isn’t the case, especially when analysis uses a systemic or more ‘big picture’ approach to inter-dependent factors in those regions. Instead, the value of the analysis is more likely that it reveals possible protective factors for some kinds of vulnerabilities – which is not the same thing as ‘benefits’.

  32. Steven Mosher

    ECS less than 3.2

    http://www.earth-syst-dynam-discuss.net/4/785/2013/esdd-4-785-2013.pdf

    nail in the coffin or brick in a new wall?

    • Simple, stupid question, moshe. If the algorithm was wrong with earlier data, why should it be right with later data?
      =====================

      • Do have an MCS to compare it to? ;)

        Andrew

      • Great discussion @ the Bish’s. dung answers part of my question showing that the article assumes all main forcings are known, and Nic Lewis answers the rest by saying there is less noise in the later data.
        ===============

      • er, ‘all main forcings’.
        ========

      • Dingdang, I had it right the first time. Hurry up with the update.
        =======

      • “less noise in the later data”

        Thus poetry makes oranges into apples. Result: Cherry Pie! ;)

        Andrew

      • I think you’re making fun of me. Keep it up.
        ===========

      • Steven Mosher

        all algorithms are wrong. some are useful

      • Some algorithms are always right. This internet wouldn’t work otherwise. Algorithms of physical models are pretty much all wrong, but many are close enough to be useful. You really don’t want to have to calculate flight dynamics using quantum mechanics, and you don’t have to.

      • OK, so this algorithm is useful with more data, duh. It still has a flaw big enough to fly Persia through.
        ============

      • Steven Mosher

        Hole Kim? what hole? prove there is a hole. have jim cripwell measure it.

        off topic

        beautiful film below.

      • Where have all the flowers gone? Through the hole big enough to drive unknown natural forcings through. When will they ever learn?
        ================

      • Kim,

        It was not my intent to dis YOUR poetry. I was mocking “less noise is the later data” mumbo jumbo.

        Andrew

      • kim,

        “If the algorithm was wrong with earlier data, why should it be right with later data?”

        Data is irrelevant. If one warmist algorithm agrees with another warmist algorithm, that proves they are both accurate and precise. Or at least “useful,” which is obscurantist for the same thing.

        Who cares what the data says. Or if there even is any?

      • @BA, ramble in the mangle jangle.
        ==========

    • The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse

      Not so fast, coach.


      The posterior mean of the ECS is 1.8 C with 90% C.I. ranging from 0.9 to 3.2 C.

      That does not mean the same thing as “ECS less than 3.2″.

      • Nor does it mean ECS more than 0.9 deg C.
        ===============

      • The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse


        Nor does it mean ECS more than 0.9 deg C.

        Good point, koldie – But notice the coach wasn’t working from that end of the playbook.

      • Well, Very Reversed, notice that I was. So why should I?
        ============

      • The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse


        So why should I?

        You go to bat for the team you wish to have, not with the team you have.

      • Thank you. This is why I call you Very Reversed. I can understand how you missed a step; it was the form of my answer. Here it is: moshe and I both make the point that the fringes(>3.2 or <0.9) are unlikely. Now why should I argue that? You may guess, and I may answer.
        ====================

      • The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse


        moshe and I both make the point that the fringes(>3.2 or <0.9) are unlikely
        "

        "ECS less than 3.2" – not "probably less".

        Devil. Details. Read harder.

      • Steven Mosher

        Sure it means the same thing. It can also mean different things

        I didnt specify How much less or what probability.

        The basic point wass to get people to read the paper. which you didnt based on the timing of your response.

      • Steven Mosher

        kim

        you and the reverend miss the point.

        The point of the sentence was not to summarize the entire paper in a few short words. The point was to get you to read the paper.

        3.2 is interesting because GCMs average about 3.2 and here we see an observationally constrained estimate that put the upper bound ( 90%) at the mean of the gcms.

        To we lukewarmers this is not a big shock.

        one thing I like about their approach is the separation of hemispheres.
        .. there may be an interesting addition we can make to their data to constrain the estimate even more.

      • Steven Mosher, “one thing I like about their approach is the separation of hemispheres.” Brilliant! What a novel concept, certainly worthy of further study.
        “.. there may be an interesting addition we can make to their data to constrain the estimate even more.” Dude? you mean like quadrants? That’s like mind blowing.

      • The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse


        The basic point wass to get people to read the paper. which you didnt based on the timing of your response.

        Coach, maybe it’s just me – but, if you’d just said to the players: “here’s a paper I that think people should read”, people would likely understand your intentional stance (i.e. your “basic point”) way better than when you said “ECS less than 3.2″ – which is not what the paper asserts – and cryptic stuff about nails, coffins, bricks, and walls.

      • Steven Mosher

        “Coach, maybe it’s just me – but, if you’d just said to the players: “here’s a paper I that think people should read”,

        Sadly, I’ve tried that approach and it doesnt work. Since I do this stuff for a living, you’ll have to trust my judgement in how to drive traffic to a piece of information. Thank you for playing.

        ################
        people would likely understand your intentional stance (i.e. your “basic point”)

        hardly, my goal is not to get them to understand MY STANCE. my goal is to get them to engage in the behavior of reading the paper. In short if they know I want them to read the paper the oppositionally defiant ones wont. Again, my goal is to change their behavior, not their mental state about me.

        #############

        “way better than when you said “ECS less than 3.2″ – which is not what the paper asserts – ”

        two points.

        1. it would not work better to get them to do what I want.
        2. the paper does assert that. that and more.

        ########################

        and cryptic stuff about nails, coffins, bricks, and walls.

        Its not cryptic. Its short hand. read harder.

    • Neo Wall, as the FED adjusts the greenback to save the world with free debt…

      http://cnsnews.com/news/article/treasury-ran-98-billion-deficit-july-debt-stayed-exactly-16699396000000

      and some thought that forty days & forty nights, was a bit of a stretch.

    • Steven, Who are those infidels and how did Koch secretly fiance them?

      BTW, Explicitly removing natural variability does not mean explicitly removing “all” of the longer term natural variability. I see even lower ECS in our futures.

      • The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse


        I see even lower ECS in our futures.

        Fascinating. Crystal ball, tarot cards, or sheep’s entrails?

      • They started ARGO so there could be better science. They was not the Kochs; they was the team.

      • Heh, following the curve from faith to faith.
        =================

      • Rev, “Fascinating. Crystal ball, tarot cards, or sheep’s entrails?”

        Paleo tea leaves.

        JCH, “They started ARGO so there could be better science. They was not the Kochs; they was the team.” Who performed “reanalysis” to locate missing heat which miraculously agreed with a mid-range of comfort 3C sensitivity.

      • Sort of like the authority on hog cholera. Lol.

      • I doubt that there will be a consensus on ECS +/- .5C for a long time. (decades). It seems more likely that some consensus can only be reached on TCS over the next several decades into the future. This may be more important in any case

      • Here ya go Rev, my Paleo Tea leaves.

        http://redneckphysics.blogspot.com/2013/08/is-picture-worth-trillion-dollars.html

        1.6 C is about the best fit using just the instrumental data. The tropical oceans which are not producing that tropical troposphere hot spot are the best indication of the heat content of the oceans. The oceans, ~71% of the planet is the best indication of the Effective temperature of the planet.

        Without using novel methods, ala “Dimples” Marcott, there does indeed appear to have been a cooler period formerly known as the little ice age. If you ignore the past, the pesky LIA, you get a high “sensitivity” that will cost trillions of dollars to mitigate. If you consider the mean of the past 2000 years, you get a spread between 0.8C and 3.0C, with a skewed to the low side distribution. 3C is less likely than 0.8 C.

        Now that is not a rigorously peer reviewed analysis, but a pretty simple illustration.

      • Who said anything about hog cholera? You could look it up.
        ===============

      • Cappy’s model is anti-science. He fits to what appears ocean SST numbers ERSST3 from the tropics gathered by NOAA.

        He doesn’t care because he knows that all the other deniers won’t call him on it. That’s what FUD is for.

      • The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse

        Capt:
        Thanks for the tea leaves.

        I was going to check your math – but I don’t know how to convert bagels into Watts.

      • Webster, “He doesn’t care because he knows that all the other deniers won’t call him on it. That’s what FUD is for.”

        What would you like it fit to?

        Maybe HADcrappy 30-30 with instructions?

        http://redneckphysics.blogspot.com/2013/05/how-to-splice-instrumental-data-to.html

        Perhaps, CET?

        I was actually hoping the Rev would call me on it, but he is just a parrot minion.

      • I don’t know how to convert bagels into Watts.

        Glad to be of help, Reverend.

        Recipe for 6 bagels calls for preheating (4000 W oven using upper heat) to 250C and baking for ~20 minutes.

        Preheat takes ~10 minutes

        30 min * 4000W = 2000 Watt-hours for 6 bagels

        1 bagel = 333 Watt-hours.

        Let me know anytime that basic math baffles you (always glad to help out a man of the cloth).

        Max

      • Max, “1 bagel = 333 Watt-hours.”

        333 +/- 10 to be fair

      • Max. You’re failing to take the thermostat into account. What percentage of the time is the element on? Probably less than 50.

      • Steven Mosher

        capt.

        go have a look at hansens papers and all the assumptions used to derive 3C from LGM. so many knobs. Nobody has played with those knobs. in operational research we would be all over those knobs.. the sensitivity of those knobs would drive research to close the operating range of the knob. in due course. other fish to fry now

      • Steven, “go have a look at hansens papers and all the assumptions used to derive 3C from LGM. so many knobs. Nobody has played with those knobs.”

        Right, Hansen originally had the knobs adjusted for 4 C which is outside most everyone’s realistic range. Hansen adjusted his knobs down to 3C to play “consensus”. Because there is so much “no climate scientist left behind” inertia, leaving that artificial “range of comfort” is delaying the do over
        the observations will soon require. So there is no time like the present to push policy.

        I think it is only fitting that people remind the “Team” of their short comings.

      • The SST numbers do not reveal the latency of the ocean’s thermal mass. Look at land-based values instead. This will give a truer measure of the ultimate ECS, instead of a transient value influenced by a massive heat sink.

      • Webster, “The SST numbers do not reveal the latency of the ocean’s thermal mass. Look at land-based values instead. This will give a truer measure of the ultimate ECS, instead of a transient value influenced by a massive heat sink.”

        No they don’t and NH dominate land temperatures at an average altitude of 700 meters do not indicate the rate of ocean heat uptake that can be expected.

        I have shown you the ocean land absolute temperature differential by hemisphere, the SH caused 7000 year rise in CO2, the various studies that indicate millennial scale temperature fluctuations, the precessional solar cycle driven hemispheric “See Saw”, papers discussing the Relative importance of Meridional and Zonal SST gradients and quite a bit more, but you can only cling to the skirts of your fearless retired leader and his failing models like a good minion of the Great and Powerful Carbon.

        Black carbon and land use dominate NH climate change.

    • Well anything below 3.0 takes the c out of cAGW.

      Skeie et al.,

      “A lower and more constrained estimate of climate sensitivity using updated observations and detailed radiative forcing time series”

      http://www.earth-syst-dynam-discuss.net/4/785/2013/esdd-4-785-2013.pdf

      The posterior mean of the ECS is 1.8 ◦C with 90 % C.I. ranging from 0.9 to 3.2 ◦C which is tighter than most previously published estimates.

      • DocMartyn

        anything below 3.0 takes the c out of cAGW.

        Yeah. At the estimated 700 ppmv level by 2100, we’d see warming of 0.7C to 2.7C (mean value 1.5C).

        Yawn!

        Cappy’s right – let’s put those “trillions” somewhere else (where it makes more sense). Or hey (another idea) let’s just let everyone keep them

        Max

    • Steven Mosher

      Thanks for posting the update of the Norwegian study.

      In addition to the Norwegian (Berntsen et al.) study, there have been several recent studies (some at least partly based on actual physical observations), which all point to a lower 2xCO2 ECS than previously predicted by the models cited by IPCC.

      Recent studies on 2xCO2 ECS:

      Berntsen (2013) 0.9C to 3.2C
      Lewis (2013) 1.0C to 3.0C
      Lindzen (2011) 0.6C to 1.0C
      Schmittner (2011) 1.4C to 2.8C
      van Hateren (2012) 1.5C to 2.5C
      Schlesinger (2012) 1.45C to 2.01C
      Masters (2013)* 1.5C to 2.9C
      * not yet published

      The average range of these recent studies is 1.2°C to 2.5°C, with a mean value of 1.8°C, or about half of earlier model-based predictions cited by IPCC

      And our denizen straw poll says:

      – Cappy comes up with ECS = 1.6C (comment #364864)
      – kim says 0.9C to 3.2C (#364841)
      – you said 3.2C or less

      The good Reverend seems still a bit baffled by all this and Webby is off running his own convoluted calculations to try to save the IPCC AR4 mean value of 3.2C.

      But to me, as another “lukewarmer”, it looks like a deceased canard.

      Max

      PS Let’s see what IPCC does with all this new information.

      • PPS And it looks like the canard has lost its fat tail, too.

      • Hansen et al 1984.

        “Our 3-D global climate model yields a warming of ~4°C for either a 2 percent increase of So or doubled CO2. This indicates a net feedback factor of f = 3-4”

        “The temperature increase believed to have occurred in the past 130 years (approximately 0.5°C) is also found to imply a climate sensitivity of 2.5-5°C for doubled Cog…” (CO2?)

        “We infer that, because of recent increases in atmospheric CO2 and trace gases, there is a large, rapidly growing gap between current climate and the equilibrium climate for current atmospheric composition.”

        http://pubs.giss.nasa.gov/abs/ha07600n.html

        Is the above the start of it? The first thing I noticed is, indicates, imply, and infer used above. Were many things based on this paper? Also did this paper start the new definition of feedback? Which goes something like, There is positive feedback, until the feedback stops, because of other things. Do Scientists like this new definition of feedback? Does anyone care to comment on what if anything this paper did in any context, perhaps an historical one, and whether it was a paper to be look back at and value?

      • Most of those studies do not analyze the path to steady-state properly. The value of ECS assumes that the climate system has reached a steady-state and the energy imbalance caused by available heat capacity has been removed after a sustained doubling of CO2.

        That is the definition of ECS.

        In practice, we can get glimpses of what the ECS may be without having to wait for a long time to allow the climate system to “equilibrate”. All we have to do is artificially remove the source of the excess heat capacity, that is, the ocean.

        So what you do is look at land temperature records instead. The relative temperature changes of the land are giving us an early indication of what the eventual ECS will be since the lagged effect of a significant heat sink is partially removed.

        All the deniers know this to be true, yet will not admit it. It explains why they are so single-minded about finding an Urban Heat Island bias in the records. Find that bias and it will knock down the ECS.

        But that is why Muller and Curry worked the BEST project. It illuminated the lack of an UHI effect and the BEST web site has a fit to the curve showing a sensitivity of 3C per doubling of CO2.

        You can look it up.

      • Webster, “But that is why Muller and Curry worked the BEST project. It illuminated the lack of an UHI effect and the BEST web site has a fit to the curve showing a sensitivity of 3C per doubling of CO2.”

        By doing a simple fit of CO2 plus Volcanic aerosol forcing from an initial condition assumed to be “normal” for a data set biased to the northern hemisphere with a lower than “normal” average air density and “surface” specific heat capacity. You have to make Stargate equivalent leaps to assume that BEST land only will provide any indication of ECS.

      • Cappy has no experience with engineering thermodynamics.

        Take a computer CPU that is producing heat. That represents the surface of the earth. Place a heat sink adjacent to it. That will siphon off some of the heat, depending on how good the thermal conductive pathway is. That is the situation of the ocean adjacent to the land.

        Now instead, place the heat sink right underneath the CPU chip and rub a thermally conductive paste to the contact area. The chip does not get as hot, obviously as that is how computer designers such as SpringyBoy keep the CPU temperatures down.

        Alas, the land mass of the earth does not have a heat sink underneath it, but the sea surface does.

        And unless you add another component, a fan, to dissipate that heat, the sink (the sea) will eventually warm close to the temperature of the chip (the land).

        That is how ECS works. The earth has no fan and its heat sink is improperly positioned. You work the math according to the reality of the physical system. Physics does not care that the earth is many times bigger than a CPU. That is the beauty of applied math and statistical mechanics.

        You have options folks. Listen to the word salad of Cappy or try to understand basic science.

      • So the land warms the ocean does it?
        Any more fantasies you’d like to share with us?
        On second thoughts, don’t bother…

      • Webster, “Take a computer CPU that is producing heat. That represents the surface of the earth. Place a heat sink adjacent to it. That will siphon off some of the heat, depending on how good the thermal conductive pathway is. That is the situation of the ocean adjacent to the land.”

        Adjacent to land? The land surface temperature adjacent to Ocean or large bodies of water is close to the temperature of the ocean or large body of water. Land more greatly separated by horizontal and vertical distances are warming the most. It is a specific heat thing.

        Also with your ridiculous PC heat sink analogy, one end is at 0C and the other at -90C and you don’t know how hot the middle is.

      • Cappy has zero capacity for scientific reasoning, but is a pro at mixing up a scientific word salad.

        Look, physicists don’t frequent this blog too much and for good reason. No one gets the easy bits. I have used the PC heat sink analogy in the past, and I noticed that Vaughan Pratt has as well.

        You can’t challenge it and so you add FUD.

      • Webster, “Look, physicists don’t frequent this blog too much and for good reason. No one gets the easy bits. I have used the PC heat sink analogy in the past, and I noticed that Vaughan Pratt has as well. ”

        And I mentioned the same issue to Pratt. You don’t have a symmetric sink. Part of his issue was the NH temperature dip circa 1920. Another is some percentage of his fit curve can be due to long term recovery. If you split your heat sink into NH and SH segments you get different sensitivity estimates. Pretty much exactly what the paper Mosher recently sited with the 0.9 to 3.2 range discovered. Nearly everyone that actually considers asymmetry discovers there is lower sensitivity. As a minion of the Great and Power Carbon you adjust your blinders to the obvious and attempt to belittle people. You are only making yourself look foolish.

      • Interesting question of, Do to Oceans heat the land or does the land heat the Oceans? Some of both I think. If the Land temperatures are plus 2 degrees Celsius, the atmosphere presents a slightly higher temperature to the Oceans. The atmosphere then may be insulating the Ocean/Atmosphere boundary more than it had before. Perhaps insulating is the wrong word. Reducing the Ocean to Atmosphere transfer rate. I do think the Oceans have the depth and reserves to overpower the Atmosphere but the net effect includes some push back by the the Atmosphere.

        I think are Oceans are our ace in the hole, if this thing goes terribly wrong. Pushing back against the Atmosphere the more its temperatures rises. Their average temperature is a mere 4 degrees Celsius. You need a pretty long lever to move that number.

      • Ragnaar

        “Interesting question of, Do to Oceans heat the land or does the land heat the Oceans? ”

        Around 18Wm-2 of latent energy, rain, is transferred from the oceans to the land. Land warming would either have zero impact or increase that rate of transfer. Webster is not all that good when it comes to water.

      • “Interesting question of, Do to Oceans heat the land or does the land heat the Oceans? Some of both I think. If the Land temperatures are plus 2 degrees Celsius, the atmosphere presents a slightly higher temperature to the Oceans. ”

        Oceans are more surface area. And have higher average temperature.
        Ocean air temperature is largely controlled by evaporation. Water vapor has a lot of latent heat. Ocean create clouds and dump rain onto the land, clouds block sunlight, but keep nights warmer. With land, when the surface is heated, the heated air rises, and such air doesn’t do much heating laterally.
        The oceans also absorb more solar energy than land and water has high heat capacity.
        One just look at Europe, it’s probably has 10 degree higher average temperature than it would have if not for being on “correct side of the ocean” and the Gulf Stream. There no example of land having such effect upon any body of water.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        http://s1114.photobucket.com/user/Chief_Hydrologist/media/DIETMARDOMMENGET_zps939fe12e.png.html?sort=3&o=10

        http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/full/10.1175/2009JCLI2778.1

        Oceans store solar energy and moderate climate over days and nights to seasons and longer. Where there are marginally higher land surface temperature it is due to reduced water availability over land. It is not apparent in the tropospheric record and is not terribly important.

      • “With land, when the surface is heated, the heated air rises, and such air doesn’t do much heating laterally.”

        Though land areas do significantly warm other land area. Such as Santa Ana winds:
        “The Santa Ana winds are strong, extremely dry down-slope winds that originate inland and affect coastal Southern California and northern Baja California. Santa Ana winds blow mostly in autumn and winter, but can arise at other times of the year also. They can range from hot to cold, depending on the prevailing temperatures in the source regions—the Great Basin and upper Mojave Desert. The winds are known especially for the hot dry weather (often the hottest of the year) that they bring in the fall, and are infamous for fanning regional wildfires.”

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

        It’s also possible similar winds originating from land would caused increased ocean evaporation in some regions [which may cool ocean surfaces].

      • Cappy,
        I am in good company with the estimable Professor Pratt. The fact that you recall both my and Pratt’s arguments for the analogy indicates that the idea has sunk in. You can only attack it by pointing out the details in the fine structure. That would give most physicists a good laugh.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        Don’t forget BEST’s curve fit did not come with any sensitivity testing, and you get significantly different results if you use a different period for the fitting. In other words, unless you like cherry-picking, using their results without any caveats is wrong.

  33. Matthew R Marler

    Climate change will affect both rainfall and evaporation – both important factors influencing available water.

    I wonder if there are changes in cloud cover as well. That also is a considerable increase in the non-radiative transfer of energy from the surface to the upper troposphere; would that increase be supra-linear in temperature or CO2 concentration? (recall T^4 dependence of radiation on temp.)

  34. Steven Mosher

    ‘“.. there may be an interesting addition we can make to their data to constrain the estimate even more.” Dude? you mean like quadrants? That’s like mind blowing.”

    No extending the record further back in time.

  35. @Joshua | August 13, 2013 at 10:03 pm |
    At this point, I will be happy if it is only a pause and not an inflection.

  36. In responding to an earlier comment from Steven Mosher above, I somehow missed this gem. And simply can’t let it go.

    Me: I always refer to the “pause,” rather than the pause, because of the fact that it is highly unlikely anyone actually knows what the global average temperature of the Earth as a whole is to within tenths of a degree at any given time.

    Mosher: Well, unless you know the temperature you cant say its unlikely that anyone knows it. Think that through.

    Unless I know the temperature, I can’t say its unlikely that anyone knows it?

    I can’t say its unlikely anyone knows something unless I know that something? Seriously?

    And my comment was stupid? Do I really have to post a list of things nobody knows, to prove how wrong that comment was? Not to mention, with this “logic,” no one could ever write a sentence that begins “Nobody knows….” Because in order to be able to write it (according the the CEOIC), you would have to know what it is you claim nobody knows, which contradicts the “nobody.”

    “Think that through” is some great advice. Logician…think thy self.

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