Climate change and moral judgement

by Judith Curry

Converging evidence from the behavioural and brain sciences suggests that the human moral judgement system is not well equipped to identify climate change — a complex, large-scale and unintentionally caused phenomenon — as an important moral imperative. 

A recent issue of Nature Climate Change has the following paper:

Markowitz, E.M. & Shariff, A.F., 2012. Climate change and moral judgement. Nature Climate Change, 2(4), pp.243–247. [link to full paper online].
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The full paper is short and easy to read, I encourage you to read it.
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A comprehensive summary of the paper is provided in a post at minimolecule.  Excerpts:
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Climate change does not tip the human moral balance according to novel research compiled by psychologists at University of Oregon. Evidence from behavioural analysts and those studying the human condition suggest that we as human beings do not feel motivated to engage in urgent action to solve the issue of climate change, although climate scientists have had a long standing consensus for action.

Why is it that only a small population of US citizens support an increased duty on electricity and gas, whilst a majority support limits on greenhouse gas emissions imposed on big business. Is it purely to do with perceived scale of responsibility? The disconnect between the public and the scientific community and ever further, climate change communicators is now impinging on our psychological processing of the climate change issue as a whole.

Psychologists have now suggested that climate change actually challenges our perceptual, cognitive and information processing systems leading to emotionally charged reactions that are either defensive or counterproductive or both. So understanding the challenge in manipulating the moral intuition within individuals is particularly important to communicators and those that wish to initiate change.

The main points are encapsulated in two tables, reproduced here:
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Table 1 | Six psychological challenges posed by climate change to the human moral judgement system.

  1. Abstractness and cognitive complexity: The abstract nature of climate change makes it non-intuitive and cognitively effortful to grasp
  2. The blamelessness of unintentional action: The human moral judgement system is finely tuned to react to intentional transgressions
  3. Guilty bias: Anthropogenic climate change provokes self-defensive biases
  4. Uncertainty breeds wishful thinking: The lack of definitive prognoses results in unreasonable optimism
  5. Moral tribalism: The politicization of climate change fosters ideological polarization
  6. Long time horizons and faraway places: Out-group victims fall by the wayside

Table 2 | Six psychological strategies that communicators can use to bolster the recognition of climate change as a moral imperative.

  1. Use existing moral values: Frame climate change using more broadly held values that appeal to untapped demographics
  2. Burdens versus benefits: Focus messaging on the costs, not benefits, that we may impose on future generations
  3. Emotional carrots, not sticks: Motivate action through appeals to hope, pride and gratitude rather than guilt, shame and anxiety
  4. Be wary of extrinsic motivators: Pushing action on climate change as ‘good business’ may backfire
  5. Expand group identity: Increase identification with and empathy for future generations and people living in other places
  6. Highlight positive social norms: Leverage human susceptibility to social influence and approval
Minimolecule’s discussion of each of the points is worth reading.
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JC comment:  I found the six challenges to be very interesting and insightful.  From the conclusion of the paper it is clear that the motivation of this study is “in rallying first our hearts, and then our hands, to action.”  The six challenges seem to me to be very difficult to overcome, and I doubt that better communication strategies will be effective in rallying action.

1,270 responses to “Climate change and moral judgement

  1. Objection, assumes facts not in evidence.
    ========

    • It is difficult to motivate action with obviously falsified information.

      • The majority whose only info comes from the MSM do not know there is any doubt about CAGW. They also don’t know how much the cure will harm them.

      • Tha responses of leaders of nations, scientific organizations, research journals, the news media – even our most trusted organizations like the US National Academy of Sciences, the UK Royal Society, the UN IPCC, BBC, PBS, NYT and the Nobel Prize Committee – point to one unpalatable but inescapable conclusion:

        Society is not controlled by trusted servants of the public nor by lovers of wisdom (knowledge) – as recommended in Plato’s Republic – but by lovers of power.

        They were probably driven by instinctive fear of “nuclear fire” into hiding information on the source of energy that controls Earth’s climate, sustains life, powers the Sun and the cosmos – neutron repulsion in the compact cores of

        a.) Heavy atoms like uranium
        b.) Some planets like Jupiter
        c.) Ordinary Sun-like stars
        d.) Galaxies like the Milky Way

        See: omanuel.wordpress.com/about/#comment-31

        redshift.vif.com/JournalFiles/V19N02pdf/V19N2MAN.pdf

      • There are frightening indications today of seething anger starting to erupt in San Francisco:

        http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/05/01/BAQF1OBH55.DTL

        Peaceful resolution may require world leaders to correct the deception that it has promoted since Hiroshima was vaporized on 6 Aug 1945:

        http://omanuel.wordpress.com/about/#comment-53

      • There is no doubt, Diag, that

        a.) Erroneous predictions of CAGW – Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming – and

        b.) Irrational government policies that encouraged manufacturing jobs in the USA to move overseas to generate CO2

        Caused great damage to our economy and to the lives of millions of Americans formerly engaged in activities related to the production of steel from iron ore, and the manufacture, repair, sale and rental of automobiles.

        Over fifty-one million Americans now live in poverty, according to a report that aired tonight on PBS St Louis: The New Faces of Poverty – Former Middle Class Members.

        By coincidence tonight’s PBS program interviewed three adult Americans from an area hard-hit by the loss of automobile related jobs in Pittsburg, PA, Columbus, OH, and Detroit, MI: A black single female with one child, a white married male with two children, and a white engaged female with four children were interviewed about their recent journey

        a.) From comfortable middle class
        b.) To being unemployed
        c.) To being homeless
        d.) To living in shelters

        The universe that surrounds and sustains us is benevolent. Responses of world leaders and their scientific advisors to Climategate emails and documents since Nov 2009 belie over six decades of misinformation on the source of energy that controls Earth’s climate, sustains our lives and powers the universe, since Hiroshima was vaporized on 6 Aug 1945

        http://redshift.vif.com/JournalFiles/V19NO2pdf/V19N2MAN.pdf

        http://omanuel.wordpress.com/about/#comment-31

      • All these damages from CAGW propaganda might have been avoided if world leaders and leaders of the scientific community had not abused the integrity of science out of fear of “nuclear fires” that ended World War II in Aug 1945.

        The late Professors Fred Hoyle and Paul Kazuo Kuroda left behind hints of abrupt changes in consensus science dogma immediately after World War II ended:

        http://omanuel.wordpress.com/about/#comment-53

      • Speaking of vapors… perhaps the reason that the AGW crowd clings so tenaciously to their ‘science’, is that they are afraid of the follow up questions that would obviously arise from any agreement by them that there has been a directed agenda for the whole world, being put
        ‘forward’ by WHO?

      • Trying to stop a climate from changing by killing yourself just ain’t worth it.

        http://thegwpf.org/images/stories/gwpf-reports/goklany-public_health.pdf

      • Oliver,
        I just keep on with my own research even through the scorn or ignorance.
        This now has brought me to the place that evidence cannot be disputed as it is absolute facts. Velocity differences IS gravity as the planet is at a slower and slower velocity rate as you go to the core. This is why water pressure and weight is more and more as you go to the core. A direct relationship that can be mapped and calculated out. Considering we measure it currently by how much atmospheres of weight there is.

    • Kim,

      I have found many theories need no evidence at all.
      And yet, certainty in simple measurements can make the whole illusion of data collecting to prop up a theory fall totally apart.
      This is exactly what scientists are afraid of. The illusion of pretending to do something useful when none of the mechanical processes are included to produce or reflect the heat data gathered. Pretty grafts that are absolutely useless in understanding the mechanics of the planet that they are suppose to understand and make predictions on.

    • Yet another study to show that people that don’t agree with you are defective or are lacking (a bit slow, don’t ya know) in some way mentally. Even if it is not really their fault.

  2. I have a better communication strategy for them to try:
    Show us the evidence! I mean real evidence, not correlations, fuzzy critters, flawed climate models and natural weather variations pawned off as unusual.

    They also might try to explain why solar cycles being a better match to climate than CO2 should be ignored.

    Thanks
    JK

    • You said it well, Jim.

      Oliver K. Manuel
      Omanuel.wordpress.com/about/

      • This article is a fool’s errand. It blurs the line between science and opinion assuming that their opinion is correct and then tells the other side why they don’t see what is so obviously correct.

        This article is not designed to get to the truth, because they feel they already have it. But it certainly shows us how similar the AGW crowd is to a religious sect.

        But I did find this which I think explains how this article is intended to influence us.

      • The seven prin¬ci¬ples of human behav¬iour that con artists exploit, accord¬ing to the article:
        • THE DIS¬TRAC¬TION PRIN¬CI¬PLE: While you are dis¬tracted by what retains your inter¬est, hus¬tlers can do any¬thing to you and you won’t notice.
        • THE SOCIAL COM¬PLI¬ANCE PRIN¬CI¬PLE: Soci¬ety trains peo¬ple not to ques¬tion author¬ity. Hus¬tlers exploit this “sus¬pen¬sion of sus¬pi¬cious¬ness” to make you do what they want.
        • THE HERD PRIN¬CI¬PLE: Even sus¬pi¬cious marks will let their guard down when every¬one next to them appears to share the same risks. Safety in num¬bers? Not if they’re all con¬spir¬ing against you.
        • THE DIS¬HON¬ESTY PRIN¬CI¬PLE: Any¬thing ille¬gal you do will be used against you by the fraud¬ster, mak¬ing it harder for you to seek help once you real¬ize you’ve been had.
        • THE DECEPTION PRINCIPLE: Thing and people are not what they seem. Hustlers know how to manipulate you to make you believe that they are.
        • THE NEED AND GREED PRINCIPLE: Your needs and desires make you vul¬ner¬a-ble. Once hus¬tlers know what you really want, they can easily manipulate you.
        • THE TIME PRINCIPLE: When you are under time pres¬sure to make an important choice, you use a different decision strategy. Husslers steer you towards a strategy involving less reasoning.

    • jim | April 28, 2012 at 4:10 pm |

      So you want what? Bullet casings? Bodies? Video?

      As an example of the level, type and strength of evidence that would satisfy you, could you furnish the evidence for your one claim of solar cycles being a ‘better match’ to climate than CO2?

      I’d be delighted to have a hard target to shoot for, instead of something so ill-defined, in coming to a better understanding of what point you seek to make.

      • Steven Mosher

        Looks like he accepts bogus correlations between sun spots and temperature as evidence.
        WHILE discounting better evidence of the same sort about Green house gases.

        However, in general, I agree with your approach. Before you can convince somebody you are well advised to tease out what exactly they take as evidence for and evidence against.

      • Bart,

        How about this for starters:

        A list of species that have gone extinct due to climate change.

        Documentation of the 50 million climate change refugees.

        Proof that clouds are a net positive impact on temp and ho how they do so.

        Evidence that climate events are increasing and/or intensifying.

        A description of the mechanism by which a warming climate inpacts local weather events.

        I was listening on public radio to some author who is a “sustainability” expert (he’s Swedish) talk about loss of biodiversity. He kept refering to climate change, while also talking about the logging and conversion of Amazonian and Borneo rain forsts to agriculture and plantations. I’m betting the latter represents a far greater threat to biodiversity loss than climate change, yet so long as people bang the drum about how it will cause mass die-offs, attention will be diverted from addressing real problems, such a loss of habitate and changes in land use.

      • timg56 | April 30, 2012 at 4:47 pm |

        You catch me on the horns of a dilemma:

        You demand a list of species; jim demands no fuzzy critters. While I side with you that information about demonstrable habitat shifts ought be considered not just evidence, but excellent evidence depending on method of measuring and consideration put into alternative explanations, how am I going to meet jim’s challenge head on if I meet yours?

        While you want to talk about refugees (which.. wasn’t that from some prediction of the world as it may be when CO2 levels are almost 800 ppmv? I can never keep track of who means what, when.

        Perhaps a citation identifying the exact 50 million refugees you mean, and what exactly counts? Not that I find refugees at all relevant, given the unpredictability of human behavior. For all I know, 50 million people would rush into the arms of droughts and floods because some celebrity started a fad extreme sport or extreme diet. Still, it would be exciting to learn whether you’re being properly skeptical of a ludicrous claim (which is perfectly possible), or merely dismissive of likely outcomes out of hand.

        And these coulds, are they natural clouds or fake clouds? Or whatever man-made clouds are called these days? I’m fairly certain, considering how vague your parameters, there’s a proof that matches what you’re saying, but I’d rather know better what you think you mean before I answer and you reply that I just don’t understand you.. because there’s so much ambiguity anyone may.

        See, it’s not that we disagree, necessarily. It’s that I can’t tell from what you say whether we agree or not.

      • Bart,

        I’m disappointed. While well written, your reply might as well come from a slick lawyer or politician. Very little of substance while pretneding to answer the question.

        What do jim’s questions have to do with mine? If he doesn’t like or want a response to them, well that is his problem.

        RE the refugees. I am referring to those refugees a UN panel stated would have been created by the impacts of global warming – primarily island and low lying coastal region residents – by the year 2010. 50 million was the figure they gave. And the reason they (or more accurately the claim) is relevant is because it was and is still being used as proof disaster may be just around the corner, thus justifying political and economic policy choices to “do something”.

        As for clouds, seriously? That’s your reply? Fake clouds? I’m pretty sure if I point up to the sky and ask my 5 year old grand niece what those white fluffy things are, she’ll come up with the correct response. If you want to know what sort of evidence I might be looking for, asking for a better understanding of the role of clouds on climate is not only reasonable, but probably a requirement from anyone claiming they have a solid understanding of how climate works.

        You and I don’t have to agree. All we have to do is not be dismissive of those who disagree with us and be honest in our conversations. Your response does not come off as an honest attempt to address what I said.

      • Bart, Same tyype of comment as Timg56. You seem smart so what about clouds? Optical depth changes in artic vs tropic. As temps warm some feedback changes sign. As clouds get thicker harder to measure properties let alone extrapalate to models. We dont’s have a good handle yet. So be polite to people you disagree with. Not so snide.

      • >>In 2005, the United Nations Environment Programme predicted that climate change would create 50 million climate refugees by 2010. These people, it was said, would flee a range of disasters including sea level rise, increases in the numbers and severity of hurricanes, and disruption to food production….

        http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/04/15/the-un-disappears-50-million-climate-refugees-then-botches-the-disappearing-attempt/

        But here’s a question. If the science is settled, shouldn’t you know what 50 million we are talking about?

      • Willis Eschenbach | May 3, 2012 at 2:46 am |

        I can’t disagree that the UNEP was, and is a screw-up. But I can go further:

        Environmentally Induced Migration Map – Clarification

        GRID-Arendal offered a map for everybody to download and further use on Environmentally Induced Migration (“Fifty million climate refugees by 2010”) at this web address.

        This graphic was originally produced for the Environmental Atlas of the newspaper Le Monde diplomatique.

        We have decided to withdraw the product and accompanying text. It follows some media reports suggesting the findings presented were those of UNEP and the UN which they are not.

        We hope this clarifies the situation.

        They say on the page you link to that they _are_ the author. They say in the page I link to that they are not, and repudiate entirely its findings.

        And they hope they’re clear about that.

      • timg56 | May 1, 2012 at 11:53 am |
        Scott | May 1, 2012 at 12:22 pm |
        goodspkr | May 1, 2012 at 5:27 pm |

        I’m sorry you gents are all so disappointed by the flippancy of some of my words; I assure you, they were prompted by my own disappointment at the quality of what I was asked to reply to. I’ll attempt to do better.

        Let’s start with the end.

        http://www.grida.no/general/4700.aspx

        Q: Who originally claimed in 2005 there would be 50 million climate refugees by 2010?

        A: The Environmental Atlas of Le Monde Diplomatique (http://mondediplo.com/). Not the UN. Not the UNEP. The map was stored later at a UNEP clearinghouse for graphics, as that’s what that clearinghouse is for. “The UNEP/GRID-Arendal Maps & Graphics Library is an on-going project to collect and catalogue all graphic products that have been prepared for publications and web-sites from the last 15 years in a wide range of themes related to environment and sustainable development. There are currently 2669 graphics available in the database.”

        This was clearly a mistake, but I’d guess of the 2669 graphics on the site, it’s not the only one with a mistake, or the only one that the UN had nothing to do with creating or endorsing. Shame on the UNEP for not recognizing some maladept would disregard the disclaimer and call any old random image stored by the UN a UN prediction.

        You might as well say Google produced it, because you found it by using Google. Except, you didn’t. One suspects you found it on WUWT. What with their sterling reputation for fulsome and honest, unbiased reporting. In other words, you could say WUWT predicted 50 million climate refugees, on the same basis.

        So, you’ve been ranting for going on seven years now about a mistake as to who said what. Why? Didn’t you bother to check your sources? Or did you just like the nutty way it sounded so much and you knew if you checked that it could turn out to be shenanigans? Does my understanding of this somehow settle the science? (That’s meant in jest.)

        Now do you apprehend some small measure of my disappointment?

        And I was, clearly, being facetious with the phrase ‘fake clouds’. Let’s call the artificial man-made ones ‘cloud feedbacks’ instead. I’m not trying to sound snide; it’s more of an involuntary reflex. Like gagging at the sight of something rotten.

        So, let’s as a first step look at what someone else says, who may be less snide: http://www.skepticalscience.com/clouds-negative-feedback-intermediate.htm

        Can you confirm this is the point you have an issue with, and detail specifically where you find the case presented lacking? That there’s a difference between Arctic and lower lattitude behaviors?

        I can see there’s plenty of uncertainty in the case, but the AGW argument neither pivots on this one point, nor are we much informed by the details unless we’re hoping to improve model performance.. which doesn’t much interest me except in the gee whiz neato sense of mathematical fascination.

      • Willis Eschenbach

        Bart R | May 2, 2012 at 10:32 pm

        … Q: Who originally claimed in 2005 there would be 50 million climate refugees by 2010?

        A: The Environmental Atlas of Le Monde Diplomatique (http://mondediplo.com/). Not the UN. Not the UNEP.

        Since a) the Atlas containing the map is listed on the page called “UNEP Publications“, and the author is listed as

        Author: UNEP/GRID-Arendal”

        I’m gonna say that a) the author is UNEP (GRID-Arendal is a part of UNEP), that b) it is a UNEP publication, and that c) you’re grasping at straws.

        w.

      • Willis Eschenbach | May 2, 2012 at 11:29 pm |

        You can say it, but it doesn’t mean it’s true.

        The author of the web page was indeed UNEP/GRID-Arendal. As a curious coincidence, the 1927 Desiderata is often listed as written in 1692 because a later publisher listed the date of the building of his church as 1692 on a page containing the Desiderata.

        Just because you can construct a way to misread something due a technology-caused ambiguity doesn’t change the facts. A graphic artist in the employ of an atlas published for use in newspapers by a private alarmist French concern is not a UN prediction. It’s more of a sign the UN is too large and poorly run, with too little personal responsibility for the consequences of its mistakes due too much bureaucracy.

      • Willis Eschenbach

        Bart R | May 2, 2012 at 11:45 pm

        Willis Eschenbach | May 2, 2012 at 11:29 pm |

        You can say it, but it doesn’t mean it’s true.

        My friend, I didn’t say it. The UNEP, on their UNEP web site, on their “UNEP-Publications” page, says that the author of the document is the UNEP. Wriggle all you want, but that’s what they say.

        On the Monde Diplomatique page they say the atlas was the result of a “long-standing cooperation” with UNEP. And on the cover of the atlas, we find … oops … the logo of the UNEP. Since the UNEP is taking credit, I take “long-standing cooperation” to mean that the UNEP commissioned the Monde Diplomatique to produce it.

        In either case, the UNEP are very happy to promote it and take credit for it and list it on their “UNEP-Publications” page and say that they are the author of it with no mention of Le Monde Diplomatique and put their logo on the cover of it … call me crazy, but that makes it a UNEP publication in my book.

        Looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, you can call it a “technology-caused ambiguity” all you want, I call it a duck.

        w.

      • Bart, do me a favor, would yah, guy? Please don’t discover Joy’s emoticons. I mean, like, I’m barely hanging in there as it is after this last comment of yours did all its damage. I mean, like, I’m tellin’ yah, Bart, if your last had had Joy-style emoticons at the end, well, then, I just plain wouldn’t be here now. I mean, like, there’s only so much a normal human being can take, you know.

      • mike | May 3, 2012 at 12:29 am |

        I agree with you entirely. (Also, I wouldn’t know where to start.)

        Willis Eschenbach | May 3, 2012 at 12:28 am |

        We’re not as far apart as you seem to think.

        I think the UNEP was idiotic to set up its re-distribution page as it did. It puts the UN stamp on every Thomas-Richard-et-Henri who throws out whatever baseless trash they want online. Arguably, the UN becomes the publisher, and carry a publisher’s liability.

        There’s a near parallel with the IPCC, except the IPCC .. well, there’s a near enough parallel. Too much naive and clumsy eagerness, too little personal responsibility, too much bureaucracy, cumbersome editorial and publishing policies.

        My quibble is with calling Le Monde Diplomatique’s alarmism the UNEP’s “prediction.” It implies more intentionality than apparently there actually was, and is a needlessly agititative approach to do so without at least citing the real origins of the work, and noting that the UNEP posted a take-down when someone dragged them to the website and pointed out they were being complete idiots. (Again.)

        I’d be too glad to take swipes at the part of the UNEP that makes predictions, were it to have made this prediction, but I’m kinda a stickler about laying the blame at the right feet. In this case, whoever at UNEP thinks it wise to distribute claims unvetted, plus Le Monde Diplomatique.

      • Willis Eschenbach

        Bart, you still seem to be holding to your prior position that the UN was not the author, but only the curator. To use your example:

        You might as well say Google produced it, because you found it by using Google.

        Well, yes, Bart. If Google were to put a document on a page called “Google Publications”, and listed the author as “Google Corporation”, and put the Google logo on the front, you bet I’d say Google produced it.

        But that’s not what Google does, is it?

        Face it, your claim that the UNEP is just the blameless curator doesn’t pass the laugh test. Since the UNEP claims it and sells it and puts their logo on the front and says that they are the author, your idea that somehow it is the same as finding something on Google is a non-starter.

        Of course, rather than admit that obvious error of yours, rather than admit your Google analogy doesn’t even begin to work, you now want to play all kind of word games to absolve the UNEP of authorship.

        But the UNEP themselves are claiming authorship, which means you’ll need more than handwaving.

        The UNEP are not saying “here’s a document by someone else that we happen to be selling”. They are saying that it is a UNEP document, and that the author is the UNEP … so who should I believe? The UNEP, who say that they are the author and who put their logo on the front and claim ownership and sell it on their “UNEP-Documents” page … or some random anonymous internet popup without a scrap of evidence to back up his unusual ideas?

        Me, I’ll go with the evidence, thanks. If the UNEP is not the author, don’t you think the actual author would be complaining like crazy? Authors I know go postal when someone else claims to have written their work …

        Next, you state that the UNEP does this regularly, that it claims authorship of things that were not written or commissioned by the UNEP, but in fact were written by someone else. According to you:

        It puts the UN stamp on every Thomas-Richard-et-Henri who throws out whatever baseless trash they want online.

        Since according to you it is common for the UN to appropriate the work of others as its own … perhaps you could give us a half dozen examples of the UN claiming authorship of someone else’s work.

        Finally, if the UN claims ownership of some prediction, at that point it is the UN’s prediction, no matter if they originated it or not. That’s what claiming ownership means, it means that at that point it is the UN’s prediction.

        w.

    • IMO, the best evidence is the measurement of an increasing greenhouse effect:

      “Increases in greenhouse forcing inferred from the outgoing longwave radiation spectra of the Earth in 1970 and 1997,” J.E. Harries et al, Nature 410, 355-357 (15 March 2001).
      http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v410/n6826/abs/410355a0.html

      (And there have been several followups.) Correspondingly, downward longwave radiation is increasing:

      “Radiative forcing – measured at Earth’s surface – corroborate the increasing greenhouse effect,” R. Phillipona et al, Geo Res Letters, v31 L03202 (2004)
      http://www.agu.org/journals/ABS/2004/2003GL018765.shtml

      • David Appell— IMO, the best evidence is the measurement of an increasing greenhouse effect:
        JK—————-How does that implicate man’s CO2 emission? Where is the connection between CO2 and radiation balance? Especially since water vapor causes much more “greenhouse” effect than CO2. And since clouds have been shown to be created as a result of galactic & solar effects.

        And if you argue that it is only CO2 causing the radiation unbalance, where is the proof that it is man’s CO2 and not nature’s CO2 (which is 95% of the CO2 emission).

        If you drag up that old tired carbon 14 argument, then explain how we know that man’s CO2 is the ONLY conceivable source of “old” carbon.

        So, David, as I have been asking you for several years, where is the real proof that man’s CO2 is causing dangerous global warming.

        Thanks
        JK

      • There’s no hope for you if you deny the CO2 rise is human caused. The evidence for that is overwhelming.

        It amuses me that you claim “clouds have been shown to be created as a result of galactic & solar effects.”

        Not true. No evidence for that. Your brain is upside down. Things with evidence you deny. Things without evidence you state them as facts.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        lolwot:

        There’s no hope for you if you deny the CO2 rise is human caused. The evidence for that is overwhelming.

        I see comments like this on a fairly regular basis, but so far, I’ve never gotten an answer to my response to them: What percent of the rise in CO2 levels should be attributed to anthropogenic influence? What percentage should be attributed directly to anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions?

        Would you care to give me an answer?

      • please describe your conclusive evidence that the co2 is anthropogenic – thanks

      • As I said below, I am 99% sure at least 80% of the rise is human caused. Eg around that sort of range.

      • Iolwot
        Doesn’t Gavin reckon around 25% or so is caused by man?
        tonyb

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        lolwot:

        As I said below, I am 99% sure at least 80% of the rise is human caused. Eg around that sort of range.

        Thanks for the response! You’re the first person to give me one on this topic. You’ve also surprised me by giving a much lower figure than I expected. I don’t think most people who believe in AGW would go as low as 80%, even for a lower limit. Of course, I could be wrong.

      • Here you go:

        http://volcanoes.usgs.gov/hazards/gas/climate.php

        What takes CO2 out of the biosphere is geology. What returns it to the biosphere is geology.

        Carbon might move around a bit in the carbon cycle, but unless you bury it in some inert form in the ground, it will put upward pressure on the net CO2 level in the atmosphere. And we bury only a tiny fraction of carbon in inert form in the ground, due the power of microbial action.

        Man is currently emitting 100 times the CO2 that geology is.

        Unless Svensmark has proven supernovae are shipping CO2 to Earth from space, the rising CO2 levels are demonstrably chiefly due human action.

      • You forget oceans. The annual atmospheric CO2 growth is smaller than the human emissions (<50 % stays in the atmosphere in average). It varies a lot (~20 – 80%) and it seems to be driven by global temperature (excellent correlation). If the correlation continues, the growth will decline in the cooling world. In 2011 it was only 1.88 ppm, in spite of the record human emissions. Only a very small part of the environmental CO2 is in the atmosphere, much larger part is in the oceans. The atmospheric CO2 is determined by climatic factors, not by human emissions. Nature will demonstrate.

      • thisisnotgoodtogo

        “What takes CO2 out of the biosphere is geology.”

        In what way does geology do that ?

      • Edim | April 30, 2012 at 5:10 am |

        I do not ‘forget’ oceans. They’re in the biosphere. They can sequester a lot of CO2, but do not remove it from the carbon cycle, and are also in turn sensitive to its level. Higher or lower warming — within the range of Earth surface temperature scale — will not alter the net amount of CO2 in the carbon cycle by very much.

        The ocean will take up and dissolve, or warm up and eject, CO2; plants will take up and bind by photosynthesis CO2, or expire it, or animals will take up carbon from plants and expire CO2, or microbes will digest plants or animals or each other and expire CO2, unless the carbon in them is rendered inert and buried — that last one happens very little.

        The CO2 in the atmosphere experiences upward pressure and will dynamically seek to remove that pressure by rising in concentration as a net result of all of these activities due increasing CO2 content via such feedbacks.

        Pretending the ocean hasn’t always been part of the system is just a way to hide the incline.

      • “As I said below, I am 99% sure at least 80% of the rise is human caused.”

        My question is: what evidence leads to this conclusion. I am not asking for a cite, which is why I asked you to describe this evidence.

      • BTW David,
        Do you have any analysis of the latest Henrik Svensmark (peer reviewed even!) paper which Nigel Calder described on his blog (calderup.wordpress.com/):

        Today the Royal Astronomical Society in London publishes (online) Henrik Svensmark’s latest paper entitled “Evidence of nearby supernovae affecting life on Earth”. After years of effort Svensmark shows how the variable frequency of stellar explosions not far from our planet has ruled over the changing fortunes of living things throughout the past half billion years. Appearing in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, It’s a giant of a paper, with 22 figures, 30 equations and about 15,000 words.
        (Read the blog of the editor of “ New Scientist”, during its days as a credible source of science information, for a lengthy shredding of Appell style “science”)

        If this long time science writer is correct, its pretty close to game over for “the man is guilty” Gore/Jones/Hansen/Jones school of pseudo science.

        Thanks
        JK

      • Svensmark’s paper says nothing about the warming effect of rising CO2. Zip all.

      • jim | April 29, 2012 at 6:55 am |

        So, to be clear, the level of evidence it would take to convince you is the same level of observational precision and confidence, analysis and logic, as is contained in Svensmark’s supernova paper?

        I’d like for you to confirm that, if you would, and let me know of any other conditions or parameters that you would require.

        If you’d be so kind.

        Thanks in advance.

      • No–it’s not the level of evidence necessary to “convince” us–it’s the level of evidence necessary to conclude that the “science is not settled.” For the umpteenth time, it is your side that bears the burden of proof, not those of us who remain unconvinced.

      • qbeamus | April 30, 2012 at 3:21 pm |

        No–it’s not the level of evidence necessary to “convince” us–it’s the level of evidence necessary to conclude that the “science is not settled.” For the umpteenth time, it is your side that bears the burden of proof, not those of us who remain unconvinced.

        I have a side? One that would want me? I’m sure they’d be as surprised as I am.

        But to parse what you say: you don’t want a convincing level of evidence — though that’s what jim seems to say he wants.. (maybe I’m on his side?)

        As it happens, I’m not really kindly disposed toward the phrase “the science is settled.” I know what it meant when it was said. It started being trotted out in the late ’90s by opponents of Clinton on Kyoto after he made a speach that actually used the phrase, “The science is clear and compelling. We humans are changing the global climate.” (http://articles.cnn.com/1997-06-26/politics/clinton.UN_1_climate-change-global-climate-emission-trading?_s=PM:ALLPOLITICS)

        Perhaps someone did say it before the claim “the science is not settled” came back, but then, science doesn’t settle. Debates recede; science gets relatively clear, and confidence levels become compelling; the dust for a time settles. However, all variants of the phrase with or without ‘not’ are equally egregious and useless. If you expect a debate on it from me, you’ll get none. It’s a waste of time to respond to the words at all.

        Now, if you want to claim a Null Hypothesis, then the phrase ‘burden of proof’ may be meaningful.

        So by all means, for the first time, state your exact Null in a form subject to falsification by observation, experiment and/or logic.

        Because everything else is just meaningless rant.

      • Steven Mosher

        they dont have a meaningful null.

      • I just ran across this blog post
        blah-blah-blah-vs-equations”

        meaningless rant = “Blah Blah Blah”

        Just as SoD observes, I can’t find the equations to support alternative hypotheses. I will keep looking though.

      • Fair enough.

        In my opinion, there is not one, but many interesting null hypotheses. Before taking policy action, they’d all need to be resolved. I suppose we could formulate them into a compound proposition. Perhaps:

        “Human CO2 emissions do not cause a significant, harmful change in global temperaturess that would not be more efficiently dealt with through adaptation rather than the preventive course of reducing emissions.”

        I personally find the negative feedback hypothesis to be an especially interesting one. Notwithstanding the pooh-poohing in this thread, I believe it is highly likely that negative feedbacks make the temperature response to CO2 approximately zero. I have many theories about why, but I don’t know. But I know that unstable systems don’t last long, and the Earth has.

        So there is my unscintific starting point. Only rigorous scientific proof is likely to alter it, because in the absence of rigorous scientific proof, we are free to choose our starting positions based on such aesthetic criteria. Physicists work that way all the time.

      • Since the A(CO2)GW hypothesis is all over the place, there are multiple Nulls (no effect/relationship), such as no human effect on the atmospheric CO2, no atmospheric CO2 effect on the temperature etc. No significant effect counts too.

      • Edim said:

        “Since the A(CO2)GW hypothesis is all over the place, there are multiple Nulls (no effect/relationship), such as no human effect on the atmospheric CO2, no atmospheric CO2 effect on the temperature etc. No significant effect counts too.”

        Do you have any equations or models? Or do you thrive on empty narratives, i.e. the “blah, blah, blah”?

      • WHT, better sensible (and correct) explanations than empty (and misapplied) equations and models, like by the consensus. It’s standard physics (energy and mass conservation, thermodynamics and fluid mechanics, heat transfer). I have very little time for this (my job is very stressful) – I already waste way too much time on this.

        The Earth’s energy balance is not solved properly. The atmosphere is warmed multi-modally (by the surface plus directly absorbed solar) and cooled exclusively by radiation. The surface is warmed by the absorbed solar and cooled multi-modally by the atmosphere plus the direct radiation to space. Connect the dots.
        http://science-edu.larc.nasa.gov/EDDOCS/images/Erb/components2.gif

        The CO2 (cooling) effect is very likely insignificant though. If not, it’s a nice negative feedback to warming/cooling.

      • Poor baby Edim. I suggest you stay away from climate science, as the difficulty with the subject matter is interfering with your regular work.
        To a real scientist, stress and strain are merely physics terms.

      • Steven Mosher

        Jim

        Svensmark: “increased GCR can cause temporary increase in cloudiness and cooling.”

        AGW: increased C02 causes increased warming over time

        Do you see how neither of these “theories” has anything to do with the other?

        for example: “C02 causes warming and increased GCR can cause cooling”

        see that sentence??

        Find the contradiction. you can’t. you can’t because Svensmarks theory is orthogonal to AGW. Could GCR cause cooling? maybe. there is some evidence that suggests that for a couple days after Forbush events you get some cooling. temporary. Svensmarks latest? maybe could be that when you have a large number of SN you get prolonged cooling.
        so what? that says nothing whatsoever about C02. Nothing.
        side issue. utterly and completely a side issue

      • Mike Jonas

        The Svensmark paper indicates that GCRs have caused climate changes. CAGW depends on the assumption that those same climate changes were caused by CO2. If Svensmark is right then CAGW is based on incorrect assumptions ie, CAGW is wrong.
        Not much of CAGW is caused directly by CO2, so CAGW can be wrong even if CO2 itself does warm as claimed.

      • qbeamus | May 1, 2012 at 10:58 am |

        In my opinion, there is not one, but many interesting null hypotheses.

        Fair enough, but we’re hoping to keep the list as pertinent as possible, for the sake of economy of time. Because getting things done is good.

        Before taking policy action, they’d all need to be resolved.

        I disagree. Policy precedes sufficient information to act logically quite often, due constraints of time or resources, and yet properly. This is known as bounded rationalism or decision making under uncertainty.

        I suppose we could formulate them into a compound proposition. Perhaps:

        “Human CO2 emissions do not cause a significant, harmful change in global temperaturess that would not be more efficiently dealt with through adaptation rather than the preventive course of reducing emissions.”

        Hrm. But this, I can address immediately.

        Adaptation, I think we can agree, would be necessary in any eventuality regardless of climate: human conditions in much of the world are miserable and we know allow for significant advances in delivering utility and relief to many peoples. This is regardless of source of funds or particulars of political situation.

        Every form of adaptation would require some practical, specific plan for each condition or circumstance. As the climate is nonlinear, there is no way to argue which specific adaptation is most efficient very far in advance.

        However, we do know mathematically that increased perturbation of nonlinear systems tends to increase risk of extreme events, even though we can’t count on this to always happen and can’t be overly accurate in predictions of how this is expressed. These changes in risk are nonconsultative: the people who cause them by emitting CO2 (note, this is ‘risk’, not direct harm) do so without asking the permission of everyone whose risk is increased. They are rivalrous: once one party has consumed a risk factor, no one else may benefit from its use for a very, very long time, but only can consume a yet higher risk. They are valuable: lower risks are a premium commodity.

        So, we need a better Null, I think.

        I personally find the negative feedback hypothesis to be an especially interesting one. Notwithstanding the pooh-poohing in this thread, I believe it is highly likely that negative feedbacks make the temperature response to CO2 approximately zero. I have many theories about why, but I don’t know. But I know that unstable systems don’t last long, and the Earth has.

        Unstable systems can last millions or billions of years. While it’s true Earth has many conceivable negative feedback mechanisms and/or stable endpoints (like snowball Earth, eg), their existence isnt’ as much at issue as is their inconvenience.

        It is a pronoiac proposition that whatever feedbacks Earth may have all conveniently bend themselves to humanity’s favor. Far more likely, they cascade and shift and change over many tens of millennia (often suddenly, but many sudden changes might typify an epoch) to no particular creature’s favor at all, arbitrarily.

        Do you want to incur the more extreme expense of adaptation on behalf of billions of people without their permission and without compensating them, because you personally find the idea interesting?

        So there is my unscintific starting point. Only rigorous scientific proof is likely to alter it, because in the absence of rigorous scientific proof, we are free to choose our starting positions based on such aesthetic criteria. Physicists work that way all the time.

      • I don’t believe I understand your argument about risk. I believe you’re trying to say something like “people who cause warming are benefitting from costs they’re pushing on other people.” If so, I think you’re just begging the question. In any event, I don’t understand what you mean by “we need a better null,” but if you can clarify your position, perhaps I can respond better.

        As for my “pronoiac proposition,” I’m sure you’re right that occasionally things shift radically, but I deny that you, or anyone else, has enough information to know whether warming, cooling, dumping CO2, or sinking it, is most likely to bring about, or prevent, the next radical climate shift. Absent that information, I deny that there is any blame to be had if my policies happen to trigger it.

      • qbeamus | May 9, 2012 at 3:36 pm |

        The Risk argument is a standard, classic trespass argument. I’ve never heard it said to beg the question before.

        Simply put, there is clearly trespass going on. A huge number of people are saying they want CO2 levels to be lower. These people have as valid a claim to their share of the carbon cycle that mediates CO2 levels as anyone, given everyone is born dependent on breathe. Their property claim cannot be diminished without depriving them of control of one of the basics of life. So anyone who is using the carbon cycle by making lucrative CO2 emissions — which is the same as any lucrative burning or selling of fuel — is a rival to the property rights of these people who have made a definite and contrary statement about the use they desire their property be put. In the metaphor of land rights, the carbon cycle is posted, “Do not enter”.

        The lack of consent, where society deems such a manifest public good that forced expropriation on the principle of emminent domain is justified, by legal tradition requires compensation for this trespass. If there is no compensation for rivalrous lucrative use of the carbon cycle, then the precedent for land use, for all property rights, is profound and must be avoided. Or do you want anyone who thinks they can make a buck to wander into your home at all hours on the same principle?

        To set the level of compensation, one generally takes into account the thinking of the trespassed against, and how much they value the enjoyment of the property they have lost through expropriation. Well, the people who do have an issue with CO2 levels undoubtably use terms of future costs. Future costs is defined in “Risk”. No further proof is needed of harm, real or perceived, in discussing compensation for unconsented trespass.

        When actual harm is discussed and determined — and again, that too is subject not to the level of proof demanded by people who expect scientific certainty, but by the lower standard of proof of civil law — is for cases of compensation for tort. You would only need this higher level of proof if you were ready to say that past excess emitters must pay victims. Is that what you’re saying you want to see happen? For anyone who feels they’ve lost something and can prove to the level of the ‘reasonable person test’ to sue anyone with deep pockets who ever burned a gallon of gasoline?

        Maybe competing court trials is the way to settle all this. On one side, James Cameron suing any random Joe with a big car and a drafty house for trespassing on his carbon cycle; on the other side, Jo Nova suing some random schoolgirl who asks her teacher how long before the oceans boil, for causing the future economic collapse of Australia.

    • @ Jim | April 28, 2012 at 4:10 pm says: Show us the evidence! I mean real evidence, not correlations, fuzzy critters, flawed climate models and natural weather variations pawned off as unusual. 2] They also might try to explain why solar cycles being a better match to climate than CO2 should be ignored.

      Jim, people are scared from ”real evidences” one cannot argue against ”real evidences” . Real evidences are simple, easy to understand, I have all the proofs / evidences.

      2] solar cycle affect the climate as much as Paris Hilton’s menstrual cycles affect the climate. If you think that Sahara has different ”solar cycles than Brazil; so they have COMPLETELY different climates; you are scared from the truth; same as all the fundamental Warmist / fake Skeptics. Only real proofs will have happy ending. The CO2 phony GLOBAL warmings + the solar cycles, will be declared for what they really are: two different mountains of crap, with a same stench. Get on my blog, expose yourself to real proofs, not ”in 100years” but ALL proven now; ”beyond any reasonable doubt” 1] H2O controls the climate, not CO2 or the sunspots. 2] oxygen + nitrogen regulate the temperature, not CO2 or the fanatics from both camps. 3] climatic changes have nothing to do with the phony GLOBAL warmings. Warmings / coolings are NEVER global. 4] if one part of the planet gets warmer – other part / parts simultaneously must get colder, the LAWS IF PHYSICS and my formulas say so. Ask yourself: do you want the real proofs / facts; or do you want different crap than the Warmist promote?

      • Do you really think the laws of physics say that if one part of the planet gets warmer, another part must get colder???

      • @ David Appell | April 28, 2012 at 10:45 pm | asked: Do you really think the laws of physics say that if one part of the planet gets warmer, another part must get colder???

        David, not just ”think” but I have proven it, ”beyond any reasonable doubt”. The laws of physics are consistent, reliable; rely on what is reliable. Same laws of physics were 12000BC, 5BC, 1200AD, TODAY, and same laws of physics will be in 100years.

        1]One part of the planet cannot get warmer for more than 7-8 minutes – if another part doesn’t get colder. Because: on the part that gets warmer; oxygen + nitrogen expand INSTANTLY upwards – accordingly into the stratosphere – release extra heat, or intercept extra coldness, if you will – that extra coldness falls some place to the ground in a jiffy. 2] BUT, if other place / places is colder – there the air shrinks and accommodates for the extra volume of air from place that is gone warmer.

        2] the whole planet CANNOT get colder for more than 10 minutes, also. Because: when oxygen + nitrogen get colder -> they SHRINK -> release less heat for FEW MINUTES, until equalizes. Do you know how much heat the sun deposits here in few minutes?

        In other words: same as a ”see-saw plank” – B] bigger ripples in the pond don’t make more water, why Don? Go to my website and try to prove me wrong on anything; this is an official challenge. What I have, contradicts both camps; what I have can be proven / replicated NOW, not in 100y !!!!

      • Was the Earth colder, on average, during the last ice age? If so, how did it warm up, which by your argument would seem to be impossible?

      • David Appell | April 28, 2012 at 11:48 pm asked: Was the Earth colder, on average, during the last ice age? If so, how did it warm up, which by your argument would seem to be impossible?

        Davo, during the ”Ice Age” in the northern hemisphere for 12000years- Australia had HOTTER days than today. I said that: everything I state – I can prove IN DETAILS, all can be replicated!!! The earth wasn’t colder or warmer on average. Extra heat in the troposphere is not accumulative. GLOBAL temp going up and down as a yo-yo is a woo-doo culture, not factual, has being totally disproven by me. The thermostat is open, for the last 150y hasn’t accumulated enough extra heat, to boil one chicken egg. Oxygen + nitrogen expand / shrink INSTANTLY, in change of heat. Where the troposphere expands when gets warmer, there is colder than on the ground by 105C. If you want ”real proofs” you have face the reality; before 1990, ”climatologist were never scrutinized; they were lying than much more than after 1990, when scrutiny started

        On my blog is in details why the ice age started and why it finished. Overall, temp is always the same in the troposphere. Sea temp, Arctic temp; that is all a smokescreen, to confuse even more, the ignorant. Global temperature is: when the heat leaves the water, the soil, the fuel, the volcano, the atom bomb. David, don’t be scared from the truth; I have only 7-8 pages there – you will learn 1000 times more from it, than from all localizes warmings / coolings in the past; that were sold as GLOBAL, by the original swindlers for the last 100years

    • Robert of Ottawa

      Before they can show us any evidence, they first have to demonstrate any “climate chnages” are abnormal, or unnatural. That is what is difficult for them. If they cannot do that, then we have no reason to listen to them, or hand them billions of dollars.

    • Jim – absolutely couldn’t agree more. Its bizarre that the authors insist on treating your average Joe in the street as an idiot, incapable of thinking for himself. The reason there is a limited response to the call for action is simply because most people can see through it. Fantastic stories require fantastic evidence … and there isn’t any. Its as simple as that.

    • How about telling me exactly what I’m getting for my out of pocket money. IF THE ANSWER ISN’T “IT WILL FIX THE PROBLEM” then go bother some one else. If the answer is some poor folks aren’t doing as well as you and you need to give your money to them, then, again, you need to go some where else. All the above is stipulated on the premiss that there IS a problem. Yell and wave all you want, until it actually gets a lot hotter, the seas raise dramatically, the poles melt :), the glaciers melt :)…….. I am not gonna give you a dime. I know snake oil salesman when I see them. I’ve been to the carnival :)

    • I’d like to see some of that as well.

  3. I love it. The author considers ‘climate change’ a moral imperative, but seems not to think truth-telling is one, see ‘focus messaging on the costs, not benefits’.
    ===========

    • Read it again. The author considers climate change a moral imperative *of the liberals* and wonders how to convince conservatives. Not being one, he doesn’t get it.

      • Assuming unnecessary guilt is a moral imperative, but truth-telling is not. There is a lesson in there, but I’ll not begin to perceive it correctly until my moral intuition has been manipulated.
        =============

      • It’s something about “end’s justifying the means”…….. I’ve heard it some where also :)

      • Truth-telling is the only moral imperative, all the others follow.

      • Exactly, and the only reason not to tell the truth is to deceive. Else……. you would tell the truth.

    • To say nothing of ” Leverage human susceptibility to social influence and approval” – as though that were not the strategy on which the whole sorry business was founded.

      Judith, from the extracts you have provided, this looks like the worst of the “CAGW is a fact – why are we losing public faith in it?” genre you have seen fit to publish. In essence they are all one means or another of expressing the petulance of a priesthood whose cult has had its day. Before I take the trouble to read it, does this one have any other point, and if so what?

      This stuff always reminds me of the scene in The Hitchiker’s Guide to the Universe (can’t find the clip, so this from memory) in which a pair of mice have been running the show by prophesying doom to all who disobey them. At one point Arthur Dent simply turns his back on them and wanders off, whereupon their doom laden tirade turns to a litany of all the things Arthur is ruining by flouting their authority, including “appearing on chat shows”….

      If anyone can find a clip, it’s a bottler, and perfectly captures the rising tide of petulance of a disregarded and discredited priestly class that this piece exemplifies.

  4. So much talk about cognative ability and the biggest skeptics are those who understand the data and it’s limitations. Perhaps more effort should go to figuring out why knowledgeable people with disagreements are not talking to each other.

  5. Strategies 2 and 3 are internally contradictory, and I suspect the dissonance is from the assumption, not in evidence, that anthropogenic climate change is bad.
    =================

  6. Once again our hostess has chosen a subject which assumes that CAGW is real. Since the climate sensitivity of CO2 addded to the atmosphere from current levels is indistinguishable from zero, this is another thread talking about a non-issue.

    • Brandon Shollenberger

      I’m curious just what you think the climate sensitivity is. Given the increase in greenhouse gasses (which include more than just CO2), I’d find it hard to believe what you say unless you’re going to claim the sensitivity is less than one degree.

      I guess you could argue that lags in the system would spread out the expected increase in temperature, and thus we wouldn’t be able to see the signal for X amount of time, but…

      • David Wojick

        Brandon, I can’t speak for Jim but it seems pretty clear that he thinks the sensitivity is zero, which is certainly less than one degree. This is my view, in any case. So there is no expected increase in temperature. Why it is zero is unknown I think, but it certainly seems to be the physical case.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        I can’t keep track of the views of everyone I see post on blogs, hence why I asked. Especially since I think that position is absurd.

        For climate sensitivity to be zero, one of two things would have to be true. First, our understanding of fairly simple radiative physics could be wrong. Second, there could be some unknown negative feedback which would perfectly counteract the effect of carbon dioxide (and presumably other greenhouse gasses). In either case, the position has absolutely no support from scientific theories. There are no calculations or physics to support it.

        This means you are suggesting people reject a theory based upon simple science, without being able to provide any reason why it would be wrong. And why? I haven’t followed your posts very carefully, but it seems you’re claiming there have been mysterious and unexplained step-wise jumps in temperature, not steady warming like we’d expect from AGW.

        Maybe I’ve missed something, but to me, that just sounds like a wild imagination having too much time to itself.

      • Steven Mosher

        Sensitivity cannot be zero

        sensitivity is defined as the change in C per change in watts/m2

        for example: if you raise TSI by 1 watts, what is the change in C
        from that change in forcing.

        There are two separate questions:

        1. What is the change in FORCING ( watts) from a doubling of
        C02 concentration (ppm)
        2. What is the change in C from an increase ( any increase) in
        forcing.

        Sensitivity concerns the system response over time to a change in forcing.
        It is not zero. If you decrease forcing ( turn the suns WATTS up or down) you will see a change in temperature. The gain in that system is the sensitivity.

      • Willis Eschenbach

        Since the total solar irradiation has increased significantly over the last half billion years, and the temperature of the earth has stayed in the same narrow range over that time, it appears that indeed the sensitivity is zero …

        The problem is that you believe the paradigm that claims that temperature is a linear function of forcing. I hold, to the contrary, that the climate is governed by a whole host of thermostatic mechanisms. These prevent the temperature from changing in response to changing inputs, such has the increasing irradiation of the sun.

        w.

      • How about it is zero because it was made to operate that way.

      • Brandon Schollenberer writes “I’m curious just what you think the climate sensitivity is.”

        Obviously you have not read my postings on Eductaion and the Age of Uncertainty, and the latest Week in Review, where I lay out precisely why I know that the climate sensitivity of CO2 added to the atmosphere from current levels is indistinuishable from zero. There are there for anyone to read, and challenge the science I presented. No-one has, in my opinion, challenged this science.

        To recap, Girma’s graph shows conclusively that adding CO2 to the atmosphere from current levels has absolutely no effect whatsoever on the long term temperature/time graph. So the observed data proves CO2 has no effect on temperature, and, according to the scientific method, we always believe observed data over hypothetical estimations and the use of non-validated models, as proposed by the proponents of CAGW.

        If you disaree witrh my conclusion, please address the science I have presented.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        Jim Cripwell:

        Obviously you have not read my postings

        As it happens, I did read every single one of your comments. I simply did not associate your name with them. As I told David Wojick, I cannot keep track of the views of every person I see post on blogs. I knew I had seen your name before, but having never had an exchange with you, I had no particular reason to remember what you, specifically, had said.

        To recap, Girma’s graph shows conclusively

        If your belief is based on Girma’s graph, I think that is enough to end this exchange. Girma’s continual postings have been flawed in obvious ways for as long as I can remember, and I don’t intend to spend time on them anymore.

        You are, of course, free to disagree. You can believe Girma’s graphs are meaningful, and support strong conclusions. You can even talk to people about how adding greenhouse gasses will have no discernible impact, in direct contradiction to basic science, without being able to offer a sensible explanation. I don’t think you will convince many people, but I obviously cannot speak too harshly of your beliefs if I am not willing to discuss why they are wrong.

        But let me offer you a bit of unsolicited advice. Saying things are obvious when they are actually untrue is not a good way to start an exchange. Neither is spelling a person’s name wrong. These sort of things don’t prove anything, but to do tend to suggest a disturbing lack of caution.

      • Brandon, you write “in direct contradiction to basic science,”

        This is strongly resent. I defy you to show that my idea that the climate sensitivity for a doubling of CO2 added from current levels, is in direct contradiction to basic science. The fact that there is no CO2 signal in ANY modern temperature/time graph, forgetting Girma’s graph, shows that my claim has a very sound basis in science.

        Sorry about the missing “g” in you name. I have since found out the “g” on my laptop is sticking.

        Thank you for the unsolicited advice, which I will promptly ignore.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        Jim Cripwell, perhaps I should have been more clear:

        This is strongly resent. I defy you to show that my idea that the climate sensitivity for a doubling of CO2 added from current levels, is in direct contradiction to basic science. The fact that there is no CO2 signal in ANY modern temperature/time graph, forgetting Girma’s graph, shows that my claim has a very sound basis in science.

        If there wasn’t a single temperature station in the world, we’d still know to expect increased levels of greenhouse gasses (which include more than CO2) to cause warming. That’s the basic science you’re contradicting. As I told David Wojick, the only way climate sensitivity to a doubling of (effective) CO2 levels could be zero is if our understanding of basic science is wrong, or if there is some unknown negative feedback which directly and exactly counteracts the increased forcing.

        There is no explanation based on science as to why increased levels of greenhouse gasses would not cause warming. Whether or not we can see an effect, we know that effect should be there. That was my point.

        By the way, my name also doesn’t have a “c” in it.

      • Jim, actually, there is a “signature” of sorts. The 5.35ln(Cf/Co) does match very closely the UAH mid troposphere trend. Unfortunately, as Brandon mentions, there is more to consider than just CO2. Since it is such a good match, that indicates that the “actual” CO2 forcing impact is less than 5.35ln(Cf/Co) :)

        http://i122.photobucket.com/albums/o252/captdallas2/comparingCO2focingtoUAH.png Since the “signature” is only over land, it opens up the possibility that land use is being amplified by the additional greenhouse gases. Which in turn implies that the 5.35 is not really a constant.

      • Brandon you write “If there wasn’t a single temperature station in the world, we’d still know to expect increased levels of greenhouse gasses (which include more than CO2) to cause warming. That’s the basic science you’re contradicting”

        I have never denied that adding CO2 to the atmosphere causes warming. It is clear form the basic science that it does. The issue is how much warming will a doubling CO2 cause? I never stated this was zero. What I stated, and I quote

        “where I lay out precisely why I know that the climate sensitivity of CO2 added to the atmosphere from current levels is indistinguishable from zero.”

        Please notice the precise wording, which I crafted deliberately. I use the word “indistinguishable”.. So the actual warming could be 0.01 C, which is warming, but which is indistinguishable from zero.

        Sorry about the “c”. That was clearly in error. But I suggest you read what I actually wrote a little more carefully.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        Jim Cripwell, I explicitly asked what your view on climate sensitivity was, and David Wojick said it was clear you felt it was zero. A while after this, you responded to my question without disputing that description.

        Instead, you said the sensitivity is “indistinuishable [sic] from zero.” I took that as saying the sensitivity is zero, or close enough to make no difference. I don’t see anyway to interpret that as not meaning the sensitivity is far less than the ~1C we know to expect from basic, radiative physics, and thus I see no problem with what I’ve said. In the meantime, you say:

        So the actual warming could be 0.01 C, which is warming, but which is indistinguishable from zero.

        I haven’t said a word about how much warming we have seen because of greenhouse gasses, so I don’t know why you are talking about that. As I said, the temperature record is completely irrelevant to the lower limit I’ve provided.

        In any event, there is no way to argue for a sensitivity significantly lower than one degree without disputing basic science or postulating a mysterious, unknown negative feedback. As such, unless you intend to tell me you agree to the lower limit I’ve provided, I see nothing meriting correction in what I’ve said.

        Of course, if you do intend to agree to that lower limit, and have intended such all along, I’ll apologize for misunderstanding you. I’ll also ask you to explain how your words could possibly indicate such.

      • Brandon you write “I don’t see anyway to interpret that as not meaning the sensitivity is far less than the ~1C we know to expect from basic, radiative physics”

        I do not accept that basic radiative physics has established that the sensitivity must be at least ~1 C.

        a. This number, the no-feedback climate sensitivity, not only has not been mesaured, it cannot be measured. It is an abomination in physics.

        b. This no-feedback climate sensitivity assumes that the estimations can be made by only looking at radititon effects. This assumption has never been justified.

        This is a huge subject which I wish our hostess would, once again, have a thread to all by itself. But I see no reason why anyone has to believe that it has been proven beyond doubt that a doubling of CO2 must produce a rise of surface temperature of around 1 C. The observed data, which is always superior to hypothetical estimations, shows that the number is, indeed, indistinguishable from zero.

      • “b. This no-feedback climate sensitivity assumes that the estimations can be made by only looking at radititon effects. This assumption has never been justified.”

        Jim, ‘never been justified’ is very mildly put. Not even all radiation effects are looked at. The cooling bottleneck (if at all) for the Earth’s climate system is the radiative cooling to space, NOT the multi-modal cooling at the surface. CO2 can (in theory) enhance this radiative cooling and therefore have a net cooling effect on the surface. The problems like this can be found in standard heat transfer textbooks. Warmists would fail the exam miserably. Back to school! Maybe they learn something about the real climate change too (the one which never stops changing), not only the Orwellian one.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        Jim Cripwell, it would appear my view of your position was completely accurate all along. You claim:

        I do not accept that basic radiative physics has established that the sensitivity must be at least ~1 C.

        You don’t accept this, but it’s true. You say:

        But I see no reason why anyone has to believe that it has been proven beyond doubt that a doubling of CO2 must produce a rise of surface temperature of around 1 C.

        Nobody says you have to believe that. They just say you have to believe that if you want to participate in discussions predicated upon it. You can go on and on about it being wrong, but if people don’t agree with you, you’re not going to accomplish anything. You especially won’t accomplish anything by saying things like:

        The observed data, which is always superior to hypothetical estimations, shows that the number is, indeed, indistinguishable from zero.

        Observed data is not “always superior to hypothetical estimations.” In a complex system with lags, feedback and noise, which has only been observed for a short time, observed data can easily be useless. It certainly isn’t inherently superior, as you act.

      • Thanks, Brandon. I hope we can agree that we agree to differ.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        Jim Cripwell, I think I’ve been clear that I have no problem with you holding a different view than me. I think you’re wrong, in a monstrously large way, but since I’m not taking up the argument, I can’t expect you to change your view. My only interest was to clarify why I said you were wrong in the way I did.

        In any event, I assume you think I’m just as wrong as I think you are, and that’s fine. People don’t have to agree.

      • “I see no reason why anyone has to believe that it has been proven beyond doubt that a doubling of CO2 must produce a rise of surface temperature of around 1 C. ”

        The idea that “basic physics” defines some minimum as laughable – one may as well suggest that basic physics implies that when I get my car to 100km/h I do not need any power to keep it there, based on Newtons laws of motion! Complex, heterogeneous, dynamic systems do not respond the same way as simple, homogenous, static systems – and the “laws” being applied certainly appear to come from the latter, while the climate appears to be the former. You figure it out.

      • Edim, you write “Jim, ‘never been justified’ is very mildly put.”

        Thanks Edim. One of the things that amazes me is that there are people like Brandon around, who clearly have a deep understanding of science in general and climate science in particular, but who are prepared to take at face value, what the “experts” have written on the subject. One of the things I learned in my career, is that if you are going to quote a number, then it is essential that you go back, personally, to where that number was established, and make up your own mind whether or not that number is valid.

        So many proponents of CAGW simply look at the opinions that they want to agree with, and assume they are correct. In my book, that is not operating according to the basics of science.

      • Brandon, Roy Spencer and Richard Lindzen are all proponents of CAGW are they? Many people in these comments understand how the no-feedback climate sensitivity figure was arrived at, what it represents and what it doesn’t, and are satisfied that it’s meaningful, myself included.

        The real problem here in my opinion is that a number of commenters have faulty reasoning and are unable to correctly weigh up evidence, on a variety of subjects not just no-feedback sensitivity.

        I don’t know if that’s due to bias, ignorance, or even genetic.

        But I am sure it should not be possible that two separate people, armed with the same evidence, should reach polar views on matters such as whether CO2 rise is human caused or whether a doubling of CO2 causes significant warming.

      • Let me put this in the right place.

        lolwot writes “But I am sure it should not be possible that two separate people, armed with the same evidence, should reach polar views on matters such as whether CO2 rise is human caused or whether a doubling of CO2 causes significant warming.”

        Complete and utter grabage. This is a quite normal occurrence in science, when there is no observed data to provide a definitive answer. It is precisely what the situation was before Michelson and Morley conducted their classic experiment.

        I am always prepared to discuss the science behind the claim that it is possible to translate a change in radiative forcing into a change in surface temperature. There is no sound way in physics to do this. The claims by the proponents of CAGW that this has been done, are based on highly dubious science and non-validated models.

        The only thing we can rely on in physics is the hard measured data. Until thse data is available, there ought to be a continuing debate as to what the proper numbers are. Anyone who claims otherwise, simlpy does not understand science.

        And please dont try the appeal to authority. You ought to know that mentioning Lindzen and Spencer in this sort of discussion is simply stupid. These gentlemen are well aware that skepticism is the lifeblood of science. Never forget Nullius in Verba.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        Jim Cripwell, I really wish you’d stop making things up about me:

        there are people like Brandon around, who clearly have a deep understanding of science in general and climate science in particular, but who are prepared to take at face value, what the “experts” have written on the subject.

        You have absolutely no way to know why I accept the value I accept, and yet, you dismissively claim I go off blind faith. I disagree with you, therefore you apparently think I don’t understand the subject. That’s pathetic.

        So many proponents of CAGW simply look at the opinions that they want to agree with, and assume they are correct.

        As lolwot shows, you’re giving the implication I’m a proponent of CAGW. Perhaps that is inadvertent, but if not, you have issues. In my entire life, I have never subscribed to any CAGW views.

        The only thing we can rely on in physics is the hard measured data.

        Thanks for making me laugh!

      • “The only thing we can rely on in physics is the hard measured data”

        And that’s where you are going wrong.

        Well not exactly, you are willing to claim CO2 warming is indistinguishable from zero even though you don’t have hard measured data to back that up. So something more fundamentally wrong is going on here.

    • Our hostess chooses subjects on the various sides of this issue. I believe that she is trying to get people to look at data and theories and model output and actually think about what really makes sense. One thread may be an non-issue to some, but a major issue to others. I don’t find every thread to be of the same importance, but I likely sometimes find different threads to be important than you do.
      The important thing is to communicate with people who have different opinions and try to learn from each other.

      • David Wojick

        But in this case the implication is that skeptics are immoral, is it not? It is hard not to be offended by this selection. What is to learn?

      • I would be much happier if social psychologists who do this kind of work would substitute “progressively correct” (or some such) for “moral” just about everywhere they use the word “moral.” I see two or three papers in this general vein every year at our weekly seminars, and I always have to calm myself before, during and after the seminar. There is occasionally some interesting behavioral science in this field, but the heavy normative charge spoils the fun, at least for me.

      • I personally favor ‘wrath’ myself. ;)

      • Why be offended? I don’t get it, it’s clearly a projection. I will never understand why people get so easily offended.

      • The funny thing about progressives is how they reject objective morality, except for when it comes to painting conservatives as immoral. It’s the flip side of their multi-cultural dogma. All cultures are equal, except the free market, Judeo-Christian west, which is evil.

        Both are examples of projection as Edim notes. They wallow in security, wealth and justice the like of which the world has never known, and despise themselves for not having earned it. They have to choose between gracious acceptance of the society they have been gifted, rolling up their sleeves doing the hard work to make it better, or sit back, suck at the government teat in one form or another, and project their self loathing onto the culture they leech from.

        It’s just so much easier to live off government largesse and look down on and hate those around you.

      • Here’s a discussion of feedbacks at Lucia’s, speaking of data, theories, and models.

      • From the article at Luicia’s:
        “We see that the total linear feedback over the instrument period is much larger in absolute magnitude (i.e. more negative) than the total effective linear feedback calculated from the prediction runs. Put another way, in each model, the effective climate sensitivity (1.3 to 1.5 oK) calculated from the limited transient temperature change (< 0.8 oK) over the instrumental period is much smaller than that derived from the SRES A1B prediction runs, which predict a global transient climate response of between 2 and 4.3 degrees over the future period considered."

    • @ Jim Cripwell | April 28, 2012 at 4:23 pm

      Jim, you started to talk like a dissident. Zero GLOBAL warming is the truth; if you repeat it few times – you will get into a crossfire, from both camps. If you can understand that climatic changes have nothing to do with the phony GLOBAL warming; you will become the same as Stefan the Infidel. with the undesirable truth.

  7. The challenge is to judge the evidence provided by IPCC et al, and the suitability of their methods. And this is very far from a moral question.

  8. I also particularly like ‘the challenge of manipulating moral intuition’. These people, seeking to abolish man, have abolished their own humanity instead.
    ===================

    • kim, these people wouldn’t know a ‘moral’ if they tripped over one in the street. Like you and others, I am intensely irritated when people use ‘morality’ as an equivalent of ‘my political agenda’.

      Describing a political and communications strategy as a moral crusade is just revolting, as well as demonstrating either wilful or inadvertent ignorance of what morality means, whether in a religious or secular sense.

      I am mystified by Dr Curry’s fascination with this kind of hokum, which has appeared in several of her head posts. As as PP said, collectively describing your political opponents (or those who disagree with you generally) as immoral is a low and ancient trick. It deserves no serious consideration is any sensible discussion.

      • johanna | April 29, 2012 at 12:38 am |

        If you’re honestly wondering, look up the meaning of “Etc.”

        And, for what it’s worth, ‘σκέπτομαι’ skeptomai, to think, to look about, to consider.

        A real skeptic is willing to raise their head above the prescribed rote formulae they’ve been given, look about at any avenue of investigation, think and consider. There’s no handbook out there that can teach real skepticism. There isn’t an meaningful list of what is and isn’t a red herring.

        Skeptics explore, and when they explore, they discover.

        Who doesn’t chase red herrings is no skeptic.

        And as Richard Nixon said of morality, “Who doesn’t stand for something will fall for anything.” Who knew he meant it as operating instructions?

  9. One of the important aspects of the Debate is the resolution of the conflicts of the propositions, ie what are the implications of the solutions and how well posed is the problem and are there substantive ill posed problems in the Hadarmand sense.

    This was one of the areas that the organizers of the Euler conference suggested that needed resolution,and the invited paper Hillerbrand and Ghil 2008 imparts sufficient information,that the economic and scientific problems are firmly enmeshed.

    http://www.atmos.ucla.edu/tcd/PREPRINTS/RH&MG-Warming_ethics-Physica_D%2708.pdf

  10. “So understanding the challenge in manipulating the moral intuition within individuals is particularly important to communicators and those that wish to initiate change.”

    This is just another shot at “reframing,” taken from the perspective of progressive pseudo-scientists who call themselves psychologists.

    “Manipulate the moral intuition….” What a truly Orwellian turn of phrase.

    Marklowitz is apparently a grad student at the University of Oregon who got his masters in psychology, before joining the Environmental Studies Department. (can you say Michael Mann?)

    Shariff is an Assistant professor of psychology, and apparenrtly Marklowitz’s Ph.D advisor, at Oregon.

    A CAGW sycophant asst. prof. and his acolyte. Maybe they can get their own chapter ion the AR5?

    • Our son graduated from WSU with a degree in psychology.

      Needless to say he’s back in school working on one that is useful – computer science.

      • peterdavies252

        Heh. I did a first year unit in psych back in 1969 as a fill in to my econ degree and while I found it be an interesting overview of the topic and especially enjoyed playing with white rats in the classical conditioning experiments, it generally lacked substance.

    • blueice2hotsea

      GaryM

      Unless psychology has recently changed dramatically, the researchers are scientists and the clinicians are artists (cum science). In the case of this paper which offers advice on the use of psychological manipulation to alter behavior, I conclude that the authors are not actually scientists, rather they are (bullshit) artists.

      My apologies to the authors if my assessment is incorrect.

    • blueice2hotsea

      GaryM

      Unless psychology has changed dramatically, researchers are scientists and clinicians are artists (cum science). In this case, the paper offers advice on the use of psychological manipulation to alter behavior – very clinician-like, no? So the authors may actually be b***s*** artists, not scientists

      My apologies if my assessment is incorrect.

  11. Judy,

    As others have already pointed out, the authors start from the premise that ‘climate change’ is real and dangerous, and proceed from there. Yes, what they say about ‘challenges’ is sensible, but is ‘climate change’ (how I have come to hate this phrase) one of them?

    They say that ‘The abstract nature of climate change makes it non-intuitive and cognitively effortful to grasp’. I don’t agree with that. From my perspective it is only abstract if you accept the speculative and rubbery argument favoured by the IPCC. Otherwise it is much less abstract: there may be an issue, but the evidence suggests that any catastrophe is along way off, if it is there at all. There are things we should do for their own sake (like energy efficiency), and all societies should dearly more cogently with adaptation, foreseeing the evil consequences of droughts, floods and storms, and preparing for them now, rather than dealing with the consequences afterwards.

    • There’s a second built-in assumption; that ‘action’, in any quantity, is a complete solution. That’s actually the least supportable part of the chain, that rarely gets talked about.

    • Another…’We need to pass it, to find out what is in it’, moment.
      Friends of Education

    • @ donaitkin | April 28, 2012 at 5:21 pm

      Don, for floods you prepare in droughts; for droughts you prepare in floods. Build dams in droughts… but for all the Warmist, dam is a four letter word.

      2] climate can change for better also; is it perfect climate now? Connecting climatic changes to the phony GLOBAL warmings is ”the Mother of all lies”

  12. Their problem is huge.

    How do you convince everyone the sky is falling when the sky is very clearly not falling?

    How do you convince everyone that the King, or was it the Emperor, has beautiful clothes on when everyone is looking at his naked body?

    How do you convince everyone that we have dangerous warming when the data has not showed warming for the past fifteen years?

    How do you convince everyone we need to speed Trillions of Dollars to get rid of CO2 when the data don’t support the case that there is a problem?

    How do you convince everyone to pay a huge price to get rid of CO2 when we know that CO2 makes green things grow better while using less water.

    Why would we kill much life on earth by getting rid of CO2?

    Hopefully, Truth will win this dangerous debate.

    • To say this in a more simple way.
      How do you brainwash people to do something really, really stupid?

      • Remove God.

      • Tom
        Impossible for the creature to remove the Creator!
        Do you mean remove belief in God?
        Or ignore his priorities to first care for the poor, widows and orphans?

      • hagendl, We have removed God, from our courts, schools, military, even some churches… we all know it. Evolutionists scoff at God. Scientists for the most part feel the same way. Based on the past 2000 years, you might argree that they are correct. The Bible says He, will surprise the world with a shout the next time & we will ‘all’ see him. It’s the world today.

      • oh god- how about keeping your personal views of what god means or doesn’t mean apart from government.

      • No deal, Rob.

        “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

        Now you can deal with it. Right?

      • Invent God.

      • No need too.

      • True ’nuff.

        Plenty of brainwashed people already to go around filling the quota of stupid. And oh look, they have their God invention to thank for that.

  13. Stephen Wilde

    If the facts do not support what you want to do then simply define any objections as morally unsound as a first step to justifying coercion.

    • Like this?

      THE PRESIDENT:
      In my first term, I sang Al Green; in my second term, I’m going with Young Jeezy. (Laughter.)

      MRS. OBAMA: Yeah.

      THE PRESIDENT: Michelle said, yeah. (Laughter.) I sing that to her sometimes. (Laughter.)

      In my first term, we ended the war in Iraq; in my second term, I will win the war on Christmas. (Laughter.) In my first term, we repealed the policy known as “don’t ask, don’t tell” — (applause) — wait, though; in my second term, we will replace it with a policy known as, it’s raining men. (Laughter.) In my first term, we passed health care reform; in my second term, I guess I’ll pass it again. (Applause.)

      WHO is laughing now.

  14. The study looks contradictory and inherently flawed. If the in depth cognitive processing required to negotiate our way through these problems leads to poor activation of moral reasoning, the authors should demonstrate first if and how their own moral reasoning hasn’t been properly “activated”.

    The same applies to all other points in table 1. Psychomagically, the authors believe those don’t apply to themselves.

    IMNSHO the biggest obstacle is that communicators keep trying to reduce an issue that is “complex, abstract and cognitively challenging” to “It didn’t snow last January” or “March was weird”. And those are clear evidences of “poor activation of moral reasoning” of the communicators.

    ps Judith will be pleased to read: the more space there is for uncertainty the more wishful thinking we have. As if.

    • Yeah it has that smell to it. They will tell you that the groovy people have mo’ betta working memory or somesuch, that allows them to uniquely negotiate all these moral difficulties, by allowing them to selectively inhibit and activate the right processes, yada yada yada.

  15. Willis Eschenbach

    Gosh, what a surprise … somehow they left the following out of their “six challenges”:

    1. The moral and scientific leaders of the AGW movement lied through their teeth to the public.

    2. When they were caught and convicted by their own words, they did not acknowledge that they had done anything wrong.

    3. As a result, they have never apologized for lying through their teeth to the public.

    4. The great mass of climate scientists didn’t say a single word in protest at them lying through their teeth.

    5. The offenders continue to be feted and invited to address conferences.

    6. The offenders have not suffered any loss from their reprehensible actions.

    Judith, I’m getting very tired of you trying to sell this story that the problem is somehow a communications problem. It is not. It is a problem of liars and cheaters who have forfeited the trust of the public.

    As much as I hate to say it, your continued attempts to sell the bogus story that the loss of trust has nothing to do with lying and cheating is on the verge of becoming a lie and a cheat in and of itself …

    w.

    • Willis – Judith actually wrote: “I doubt that better communication strategies will be effective in rallying action“. I believe she’s as convinced as we are, that it is not a communication issue. OTOH the “communicators” are definitely a big obstacle in making the discourse move forward, as they keep broadcasting noise on all frequencies.

      • Willis Eschenbach

        Thanks, omnologos. My problem is that the whole paper says that it IS a communications issue and nothing but a communications issue. It claims that it’s all about “abstractness and cognitive complexity”, it doesn’t say one word about the loss of trust through the actions of the AGW leaders … and she says that she “found the six challenges to be very interesting and insightful.”

        How is that “insightful”? People didn’t lose trust in climate scientists because of “abstractness and cognitive complexity”, that’s ivory tower bafflegab of the bovine waste product variety. The paper is either unaware of the real issues, or deliberately ignoring the real issues, or trying to deflect interest from the real issues, and either way there is nothing at all insightful about it.

        w.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        Willis Eschenbach, do you really think discussing problems with something precludes there from being other problems with it? Do you think tribalism stops happening because some people have been deceptive?

        Of course not. Communication issues exist for everything. Knowing how to properly appeal to an audience matters whether you’re selling sound science or a scam.

      • Willis Eschenbach

        Brandon, no,of course it doesn’t “preclude there from being other problems with it”, any more than having gangrene in your leg precludes you from having an infected hangnail on your thumb.

        But if the doctor is just talking about the hangnail, and doesn’t say one single word about the gangrene, you need to see another doctor.

        w.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        Willis Eschenbach, we’re agreed on that. However, there is nothing which prevents a doctor from talking about one problem at one time, and the other problem at another. I was actually in the hospital just a couple weeks ago, and I experienced exactly that (save that it was done by two different doctors).

        In that regard, the only way your criticism of Judith Curry would be true is if you argued she doesn’t talk about uncertainties in global warming (enough) on her blog. The fact she doesn’t talk about them in this particular post is meaningless.

        I don’t think that’s an argument you’re wanting to make, but I could be wrong.

      • Willis Eschenbach

        Brandon Shollenberger | April 29, 2012 at 12:15 am |

        Willis Eschenbach, we’re agreed on that. However, there is nothing which prevents a doctor from talking about one problem at one time, and the other problem at another.

        Of course there is nothing that prevents that … but it not might be such a wonderful plan if you die of the gangrene while your doctor is waffling on regarding the hangnail.

        In that regard, the only way your criticism of Judith Curry would be true is if you argued she doesn’t talk about uncertainties in global warming (enough) on her blog. The fact she doesn’t talk about them in this particular post is meaningless.

        Uncertainties? You think I’m saying she should post more about uncertainties?? Where did I ever say or even hint that.

        She posts endless articles about how what we have is a communications problem, and she posts on and on about the uncertainties … but when’s the last time she posted one about how the loss of trust is because we were lied to?

        w.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        Willis Eschenbach:

        Uncertainties? You think I’m saying she should post more about uncertainties?? Where did I ever say or even hint that.

        You’re right. I somehow got mixed up after my first response to you. I think part of why I got mixed is this:

        Did Curry discuss Climategate? Yes. Did she discuss Peter Gleik? Yes. Did she discuss exaggerated claims of harm from global warming? Yes. Did she discuss Michael Mann’s dishonest behavior? Yes. Did she discuss people willfully misleading the public as “communication strategies”? Yes. Did she discuss how all of these sort of things will affect people’s level of trust? Yes.

        And yet, you say she is trying “to sell the bogus story” that dishonesty has no effect on levels of trust. She’s apparently doing this by talking about how the main examples of dishonesty affect levels of trust, but not randomly bringing up lies people have told.

        It makes me wonder just how many times Curry would have to talk about lies before you decided she wasn’t basically being dishonest. And how often to get you to say she was doing okay. And how about to make you say she was being good.

        Personally, I’m quite happy to see her focus on more meaningful issues, including http://judithcurry.com/2012/04/26/perils-of-apocalyptic-thinking/“>ones which involve dishonesty. And the ones which involve the non-sexy type of dishonesty, intellectual dishonesty.

        Quite frankly, I have no idea what you want from Curry. You didn’t suggest any material she’s failed to cover, so it sounds like you just want to her to keep rehashing old issues. If so, I think you’ll find most people are glad she doesn’t.

    • Who lied? And what was their lie, specifically?

      • Why doesn’t anyone respond to your comments? Are you persona non grata? And they were prasing you just a few months ago and calling you a luke-warmist. Fickle skeptics.

        Gosh, I just love reading comments. I really learn so much.

      • Roger Caiazza

        While I cannot speak for these folks, I believe that the vocal proponents of the hockey stick have lied. For example, see Steve McIntyre’s response to Michael Mann’s book (http://climateaudit.org/2012/04/23/checking-in/). The statistics and data handling procedures used for the hockey stick are not supportable and any attempt to argue otherwise is inappropriate. Failure to concede that point has made me lose confidence in the rest of their work.

      • Willis Eschenbach

        David, if you haven’t noticed any lies after the release of two tranches of climategate emails, and after watching Michael Mann lie to the US Congress, and after the lies that Phil Jones told me about why he was not responding to my FOI, and after the lies necessary to get the Jesus Paper into the IPCC, and after Mann lying about deleting emails showing how they lied to get the Jesus paper into the IPCC … well, if you are unable to detect a single lie in the whole lot, I fear you need professional help far beyond my poor power to add or detract … that is willful blindness that will not be altered by facts, explanations, or assistance.

        That willful blindness is also part of the reason the AGW folks are not able to convince anyone of their ideas … your inability to recognize liars does not engender either belief or trust in your judgement …

        w.

      • Willis, I see a lot of selective interpretation on your part. Just give me one documented “lie.”

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        How about Mann’s repeated assertion that Steve McIntyre and Ross McKitrick made errors because they had asked for an Excel spreadsheet? I’m sure you should be able to find documentation for that one since you were following the topic when it first came up.

        Mann’s repeated that lie in to one of the groups investigating things after Climategate (and they accepted his answer without any attempt at verifying it). He also repeated that lie in his book, a page number for which I can provide if you’d like.

      • How do you know it is a lie? It seems to me it is M&M’s word against Mann’s.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        David Appell:

        How do you know it is a lie? It seems to me it is M&M’s word against Mann’s.

        I suppose if you don’t bother to do even the most basic research, which would be enough to show Steve McIntyre has posted the entire correspondence online, it might seem that way. Of course, one would wonder why you haven’t, especially since he posted it around the time you were following the issue.

      • How do you know it’s the “entire” correspondence? How do you know what transpired in other correspondence?

        In other words, it’s no proof at all but still one person’s word against the others. On a subject that, frankly, has gotten to be a broken record and hence a waste of time from important issues.

      • Willis Eschenbach

        Sure, glad to. Michael Mann lied to the congressional committee when he said he had never calculated the r^2 statistic and that it would be a foolish thing to do.

        Phil Jones lied when he told me that he couldn’t reveal the data he was using, offering one bogus reason after another. In fact, he couldn’t reveal the data because he couldn’t find it.. His lies were so bad that the UK Parliament said the only reason that police charges weren’t brought was because the statute of limitations …

        I can provide more, David. You are on a fools errand trying to prove these guys were honest scientists. They weren’t, and now the whole field is paying the price.

      • John Carpenter

        “David Appell, you are behaving in a pathetic and ridiculous manner.

        From my view, he is behaving exactly like a lot of skeptics that frequent here….. demanding every ounce of proof before he will conceded to the obvious. Changing his mind will never happen…. because he can always ask for more yet impossible information to be brought to him…. thus safe guarding his treasured belief and never having to utter those dreaded words… “I was wrong about that”. My observation of his behavior should not be a mysterious concept for David to grasp, it’s used frequently by the warmist side, no?

      • David Appell:

        “How do you know it’s the “entire” correspondence? How do you know what transpired in other correspondence?”

        Wouldn’t it be within a “journalist’s” purview to ask Michael Mann if the corresponence is indeed complete, and if he says it’s not, to show us what’s missing?

      • David,

        Trying to defend Michael Mann is not a particularly smart use of time and energy. You are free to pick your battleground, but in this instance it is akin to standing in the open, against a superior force, with your back to a river.

      • Nick Stokes

        “His lies were so bad that the UK Parliament said the only reason that police charges weren’t brought was because the statute of limitations …”
        I’d sure like to see that one documented.

      • Nick said;
        “His lies were so bad that the UK Parliament said the only reason that police charges weren’t brought was because the statute of limitations …”
        I’d sure like to see that one documented….
        Happy to oblige

        here is who the informationc ommosioner is here is who the information commissioner is –they report direct to the Houses of Parliament
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Information_Commissioner%27s_Office

        This is where it says the CRU material was time barred

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freedom_of_Information_requests_to_the_Climatic_Research_Unit
        d

      • Nick Stokes

        Well, ,the ICO is not the UK parliament, even if he reports to it. And AFAIK he didn’t say it was the only reason “police charges” weren’t laid – he merely said that he couldn’t investigate for that reason.

      • Nick Stokes

        Indeed, I see from your link that, so far from the UK Parliament making that statement, they criticised (in bold type) the ICO for making it:
        “We regret that the ICO made a statement to the press that went beyond that which it could substantiate and that it took over a month for the ICO properly to put the record straight.”

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        How do you know it’s the “entire” correspondence? How do you know what transpired in other correspondence?

        In other words, it’s no proof at all but still one person’s word against the others. On a subject that, frankly, has gotten to be a broken record and hence a waste of time from important issues.

        Ooh, right. The source you aren’t even aware of was dishonestly manipulated in an extremely obvious way. Steve McIntyre flagrantly deceived everybody in an obvious and undeniable way, and nobody ever bothered to say a word about it.

        Of course. Why didn’t I think of that? Why didn’t I consider the possibility that McIntyre requested a spreadsheet containing the data he already had, which was created before the correspondence began, by a person he claims not to have contacted?

        I know! Maybe McIntyre actually fabricated the entire correspondence! I mean, we just have his word against Mann’s!

        Sarcasm off. David Appell, you are behaving in a pathetic and ridiculous manner. If you truly believe the things you say, I am afraid I can’t be of any help to you. When your perspectives stop being based upon what appears to be willful delusions, perhaps we’ll talk again.

      • John Carpenter

        See my comment here

        http://judithcurry.com/2012/04/28/climate-change-and-moral-judgement/#comment-196035

        that should have been posted here.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        John Carpenter:

        From my view, he is behaving exactly like a lot of skeptics that frequent here

        You may be right. You may be wrong. I don’t care. Pathetic behavior is pathetic behavior no matter who it comes from. Anyone who acts like he does deserves to be criticized, no matter what their beliefs may be. To me, sides are irrelevant.

      • Nick From your own link;

        ‘The ICO’s most recent letter, dated 3 March, in UEA’s view, “makes plain that there is no assumption by the ICO, prior to investigation, that UEA has breached the Act; and that no investigation has yet been completed.”[128] The ICO’s letter confirmed that the “ICO is not pursuing any investigation under section 77 of the Act. That matter is closed as far as the ICO is concerned, given the statutory time limits for action”. It added that:

        The ICO acknowledges your concern about the statement made and the subsequent media and blog reports. Given that the Deputy Commissioner has already been publicly associated with the matter, any Decision Notice will be reviewed and signed off by another authorised signatory.[129]
        We regret that the ICO made a statement to the press that went beyond that which it could substantiate and that it took over a month for the ICO properly to put the record straight. We recommend that the ICO develop procedures to ensure that its public comments are checked and that mechanisms exist to swiftly correct any mis-statements or misinterpretations of such statements.

        92. The disclosed e-mails appear to show a culture of non-disclosure at CRU and instances where information (disclosable or otherwise) may have been deleted, to avoid disclosure. The Deputy Information Commissioner’s letter of 29 January gives a clear indication that a breach of the FOIA may have occurred but that a prosecution was time-barred.[130] As, however, UEA pointed out, no investigation has been carried out.

        93. It seems to us that both sides have a point. There is prima facie evidence that CRU has breached the Freedom of Information Act 2000. It would, however, be premature, without a thorough investigation affording each party the opportunity to make representations, to conclude that UEA was in breach of the Act. In our view, it is unsatisfactory to leave the matter unresolved simply because of the operation of the six-month time limit on the initiation of prosecutions. Much of the reputation of CRU hangs on the issue. We conclude that the matter needs to be resolved conclusively—either by the Independent Climate Change Email Review or by the Information Commissioner. ‘

      • Nick Stokes

        Tony, the original claim was:
        “His lies were so bad that the UK Parliament said the only reason that police charges weren’t brought was because the statute of limitations …”
        Since the UK parliament didn’t say that; that the only person who said anything like it was the ICO, and he didn’t say it either, and what he did say was resoundingly repudiated by the UK parliament – well I think in the context of table-thumping about lies, this is, let’s say, an unfortunate level of inaccuracy.

      • Nick

        I agree that table thumping lies oversells it. Its a shame there wasn’t the chance to see what lies behind the curtain but that was prevented by the time delay and the three ‘Yes minister’ type enquiries.

        Tonyb

      • Roger: That the same hockey stick shape has been calculated by completely different mathematical methods (Tingley and Huybers) provides support against claims there are substantial mathematical errors in the Mann et al analysis.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        Sure David Appell, and we can point to a bunch of other papers showing the same thing. After all, appeals to popularity are great! They aren’t logical fallacies at all.

        And it’s not like the article linked to suffers from any of the same criticisms, like using Mann’s criticized PC1 or anything. Oh wait.

      • It might be convincing for people who find a blog post more substantial than a peer reviewed paper. I don’t.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        That might make sense if the paper actually addressed the criticisms in the blog post. You could perhaps argue one should trust what a “scientific paper” says over what a blog post says on any particular issue. But when the paper doesn’t even address certain issues, it doesn’t make much sense to trust it’s silence as being better than an actual discussion, even if that discussion is on a blog.

        But of course, if you wouldn’t even address the blatant logical fallacy of your position, I wouldn’t expect you to get this right either.

      • Nick Stokes

        Brandon,
        You should read that post you linked to. Steve hadn’t even read the paper David is referring to. And when he did, in a later post, he discussed it in a grunbling way, but I can’t even see a major criticism.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        Nick Stokes:

        Brandon,
        You should read that post you linked to.

        The ever pathetic rhetorical tricks never stop flowing out of Nick Stokes. He doesn’t like what you say about something? He’ll claim you didn’t read it. Because obviously, the only way you could disagree with him is if you were talking about things you hadn’t read.

        Because hey, rude comments are how reasonable people start discussions!

      • Nick Stokes

        Well Brandon, I’ll say it again. You linked to Steve’s post claiming that it dealt with a paper by Tingley and Huybers. But in fact he says (see Oct 24 update) that the paper he was writing about was different to the paper David had written about in Sci Am.

        Sorry to have assumed you hadn’t read it – it was the best explanation I could think of.

      • Seems bender thought *it* was a joke and a teaser:

        > It’s a joke, ok? Don’t worry. The analysis will come. This is just a teaser.

        http://climateaudit.org/2009/10/23/tingley-and-huybers-2009/#comment-200077

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        Nick Stokes:

        I’ll say it again. You linked to Steve’s post claiming that it dealt with a paper by Tingley and Huybers. But in fact he says (see Oct 24 update) that the paper he was writing about was different to the paper David had written about in Sci Am.

        Sorry to have assumed you hadn’t read it – it was the best explanation I could think of.

        That makes no sense. David Appell provided this as a citation, “(Tingley and Huybers).” I picked a Tingley and Huybers paper which fit his description. If I picked the wrong article, it’s only because Appell gave a bad citation. Beyond that, Appell didn’t dispute my choice, tacitly implying it was fine.

        Now you’re claiming I picked the wrong article because in other places, Appell has referred to a different article. Citations don’t work like that. Citations refer to what they refer to, not what someone refers to in a totally different location.

        As for whether or not I picked the right paper, that hardly matters. I picked a paper which perfectly fit Appell’s citation. That there may be other papers which fit it is not my responsibility. That Appell may have given a bad citation is not my responsibility.

        But of course, you blame me for Appell’s screw-up. Because apparently I’m not a mind-reader.

      • > Now you’re claiming I picked the wrong article.

        No.

        Try again.

      • David – I would be interested in reading the T&H paper if you have a link.

    • I’ve never been able to hear “communications problem” without thinking of “failure to communicate” in Cool Hand Luke. ht to Willis for pointing to that.

      North Korea has solved the communications problem. If that is the solution I would rather it was left unsolved.

    • See, truth is still here.

    • Willis said::

      1. The moral and scientific leaders of the AGW movement lied through their teeth to the public. Answer: Doubtful their actions qualify as “lies” by any stretch of the imagination, except perhaps in the case of Peter Gleick.

      2. When they were caught and convicted by their own words, they did not acknowledge that they had done anything wrong. Answer: No one else needed to acknowledge anything, except for Peter Gleick, who did.

      3. As a result, they have never apologized for lying through their teeth to the public. Answer: No need to apologize. Answer: Earth is warming and will very likely be in the range of 3C of troposphere warming by the time CO2 has doubled to 560 ppm.

      4. The great mass of climate scientists didn’t say a single word in protest at them lying through their teeth. Answer: No need to, as their was no lying, except for Peter Gleick, and enough said enough about that unfortunate incident.

      5. The offenders continue to be feted and invited to address conferences. Answer: And that is is it should be. Climate change will be an issue that will define this century, along with other effects of the Anthropocene.

      6. The offenders have not suffered any loss from their reprehensible actions. Answer: And they should not. They have dedicated their lives to the study of the climate and have served honorably, except for Peter Gleick.

      • R. Gates,
        Are you talking about the AGW ‘New Age Priests’ (NAP) here?

        6. The offenders have not suffered any loss from their reprehensible actions. Answer: And they should not. They have dedicated their lives to the study of the climate and have served honorably, except for Peter Gleick.

        Everyhbody that is called by a fellow ‘dedicated’ member, gets a walk?
        That’s not right.

      • Willis Eschenbach

        R. Gates, your response makes my case for willful blindness among AGW supporters much more forcefully than I ever could.

        w.

    • blueice2hotsea

      Thanks Willis for the acerbic reminder of the elephant in the living room (systemic corruption).

      Pity you don’t find find the linked magician’s paper to be “interesting and insightful”. It reveals how to vanish an elephant through psychological manipulation. The critical move is to provoke irrational activity.

      More the pity is your divination of a dark heart when JC spoils the trick both with the reveal and with reasoned, emotionally ambiguous comments. Seems to me that JC is a sweetheart.

  16. What is the choice the Left is offering the average student in the modern dropout factories these days? Accept being babysat by morons in the public schools where they indulge in psychobabble instead of psychocybernetic and then go work for the government? And, when the liberal Utopia implodes around everyone’s ears wait for the Red Shirts to break down the door?

  17. I have no objection to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. To argue that we should continue to increase emissions despite having but little wit – cf. Bart and Webby – to disentangle complex energy pathways and non-linear climate responses.

    What people object to is the ways and means inevitably proposed – and they will begin to look for any rationale for objecting to the progressive agenda. These are not hard to come by in the age of the internet – true or false. The lack of greenhouse gas warming for more than a decade is true enough – will persist for another decade or three – and is pretty much a slam dunk.

    In the meantime – if you had $75 billion to spend – where would you spend it to best effect?

    http://copenhagenconsensus.com/Projects/CC12.aspx

    • ‘To argue that we should continue to increase emissions despite having but little wit – cf. Bart and Webby – to disentangle complex energy pathways and non-linear climate responses.’ is an argument from ignorance –

    • The better question is, where would you spend it if it was your own money and instead of 75 billion or 7,000 Billion what if it was–e.g., $50-150K and you’ll probably never add to that in the next 20-50 years you have to live

      and even you’ve only got about $10-20K the government wants to treat you like you are are nothing but a fatted cow to be bled and distributed to others for the good of all as everone other than you sees fit?

      • I started with nothing and I still have plenty left? Typically the Copenhagen Consensus is talking about philanthropy.

        Governments spend our money more or less well. The economic aim is to have both taxes and spending at most 25% of gdp. Australia is about 30% at the moment due to some big spending increases justified by the GFC but totally pointless in reality. The US is a little less of the cost of a fiscal imbalance. There is also an aim to manage interest rates to prevent inflationary bubbles, not to print money and to prudentially manage the banking sector. How’s that working out for you?

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

        Police forces, law courts, armies, social welfare and other things are neccessary. So I would argue is foreign aid – which if used well can be both politically stabilising and market positive.

        Why do you think you’re right and Hayek is wrong?

      • Simple: America IS. Maybe it is at the ‘tail’ of the curve and destined to forever be an ‘outier.’ But one thing we know for sure: all great cultures of the past are now nothing more than, Dead Societies’ Dead Gods, Bronzed Heads and Mass Manias

      • What on Earth are you talking about. Much as I love America, Coca Cola and Jack Daniels – America is about as wrong as it can get fiscally without total collapse. And you still have a government that is not succeeding in fiscal conservatism – and a left still insisting you can spend your way out. I don’t really mean to make a point of this – but you really seem a no government sort of guy and given what you’ve got that might not be so bad. Not that I can 100% tell from the general flag waving incoherence but it seems to be there in the if you have $1 the government wants to steal it rant. Generally ture but that’s why we have elections. But in general and in stable economies and democracies there are considerations of social capital and law and order and government is a neccessary evil.

      • Roger Caiazza

        Chief Hydrologist
        You note that if americans are upset they should use the elections to get changes. I for one am so disillusioned that I don’t think there will be changes to address the fiscal issues you note with the current political structure.

        A couple of days I was surveyed about the local race for the House of Representatives. The person conducting the survey tried to get me to commit to the democrat, republican or green candidate. I said I could not vote for the democrat because he was a professional politician that had never held a real job (got voted out in the last election by a tea party candidate and did not get the message). I could not vote for the republican because she was too socially conservative. The green party is so far out of touch with reality that I cannot vote for her either. So it is none of the above for me because I place myself in the middle and none of the parties reflect my goals. I also believe that the majority of Americans are in the middle and share my feelings.

      • Roger that: the next presidential will be decided before those who actually work for a living even get off work in California?

      • I know how you feel Roger. We voted in local elections yesterday and voting is compulsory in Australia. I scrawled ‘you have to be kidding’ across the ballot paper.

      • It’s a pity the ballot paper isn’t perforated. That would make it perfectly useful in the toilet… if a little stiff and uncomfortable. But the message would be more graphic, don’t you think?

      • The election between George Bush and Al Gore was decided by a single old Jewish woman in Florida. The Democrat argument that teh election should go to Gore is that the old Jewish lady she must have been confused by the layout of the ballot as evidence by the fact that otherwise she never would have voted for Buchanan.

      • A California Public Utilities Commissioner recently had a couple of things to say about how we CA have been spending money (to meet our RES).

        CPUC commissioner Mike Florio said- “It just worries me that if we sign too many of these contracts, it’s going to make the program look bad just when it’s being successful,” The contracts are the long term Power Agreements our privately help electrical firms have put in place to meet the RES. “Commissioner Mike Florio, however, voted against the agreement. He said the possibility of steep electricity rate hikes triggered by renewable contracts keeps him awake at night”.

        http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/11/23/MNLV1M1CET.DTL&ao=2#ixzz1elvov450

      • I don’t think the CopenhagenConsensus is advocating RES in California – that is entirely your problem. More making education cheaper in the developing worlds, making cheap and healthy stove tops available, condoms and anti-malarial nets, safe water and sanitation. What do you care if a) you are spending the money anyway and you should concentrates on spending it more effectively or b) it is not your money.

      • I’d like option A)effectively- it is some of my money.

        CA has essentially bought into Kyoto. We started our leadership role in going green with a 20% RES. CAP and Trade starts later this year.

        The bills are coming due for having meet (almost) our 20%RES goal.

        A price for carbon was estimated for the Federal Government by the eia as part of an evaluation of the Kyoto Protocol

        “Greenhouse Gases and the Kyoto Protocol” http://www.eia.gov/oiaf/kyoto/pdf/execsum.pdf

        On page 18 of the Executive summary see Figure ES20. Projected Carbon Prices in the

        1990+9% High and Low Economic, Growth and High and Low, Technology Sensitivity Cases, 2010

        depending on the goal one wished to archive (ie reductions in CO2) and LOTS of assumptions the price varies between $121 and $243.

        The price PG&E’s customers are paying to reach our goals is TBD (CARB’s estimate was $200 for going from the 20%RES to the 33%RES). I didn’t get an answer to my question of what the cost has been been (will be) to get to the 20%RES. How we allocate the costs is going to be an interesting experience.

        From the – “Uncertainties in the Analysis” section………

        …..”Results from any model or analysis are highly uncertain. By their nature, energy models are simplified representations of complex energy markets. The results of any analysis are highly dependent on the specific data, assumptions, behavioral characteristics, methodologies, and model structures included. In addition, many of the factors that influence the future development of energy markets are highly uncertain, including weather, political and economic disruptions, technology development, and policy initiatives………..”

      • kakatoa – so they can’t model energy markets, but we are to believe they can model climate?

    • I spend it on buying the island of Maui. A couple of degrees warmer there will hardly be noticed.

      Anything left over would go to my wine budget.

  18. How not to solve the “problem”: Have certain well-compensated, carbon-piggy, flunky, “smarty pants” sell-outs come up with ever more crafty tricks to manipulate and scam the hoi-polloi on behalf of the academic world’s CO2-spewing boss-hog betters and benefactors.

    How to solve the “problem”: LEADERSHIP! LEADERSHIP FROM THE FRONT! LEADERSHIP BY EXAMPLE!

    When the world’s royal families; the “greenwashed” financial elite; the tenured toadies with a carbon-trough good gig; the media lickspittels in on the deal; the Hollywood jet-set crowd with their glamorous, carbon pig-out good life; and the like retreat to tiny efficiency apartments; confine their vacations to locales only within hiking or biking distance; limit their wardrobe to a few changes of durable, utilitarian sackcloth; subsist on foods only grown with a 25-mile range of their abode; and otherwise adopt the low-carbon life they so “morally” believe is essential for others to follow, then Joe6Pak will gladly follow their example. Indeed, low-carb will then be “cool”. And, more importantly, Joe will be convinced these carbon-Cassandras are really serious. You know, Joe is always ready for mighty sacrifices when there is a real need–visit a local military cemetery, if you think otherwise. You don’t need to worry about Joe when the chips are really down.

    But, please, let me clue you wannabe philosopher-kings and aspiring cull-masters in on a little secret–Joe’s BS detector has you hypocrite hustlers and your B. S., watermelon, flim-flam pitches spotted from the first word out of your mouth. And the upcoming, carbon-bacchanal in Rio?–Joe rolls his eye-balls.

    Finally, why is leadership never discussed among greenshirts? Why is leadership by example “not the way it works” (per lolwot)? My two-cents:
    the real “moral” crisis we are facing now-a-days is the abandonment of “leadership” by our betters as their core competency in favor of a predatory, bug-out sense of entitlement and an un-earned sense of privilege. Perhaps, leadership, from the front and by example, is viewed as a vulgar, trailer-trash sort of value–laughably unsuited to the sophisticated, two-faced shirkers and their enablers at the top. You know, the lofty ones pushing the make-a-buck, make-a-gulag climate warming/change/disruption/weirding rip-off.

    • True, and Forcing employers to do business within the ever-narrowing confines of acceptable conduct that is established at the whim politicians and demanding that employers police the business’s compliance with an ever-growing set of rules and performance criteria–as interpreted by government bureaucratic fiat–should henceforth be considered to be an impossible standard for employers to meet. WHENEVER YOU HEAR THAT THE ECONOMY IS GROWING UNDERSTAND THAT THIS IS A VERY BIG LIE. Economic growth does not arise from printing money to manufacture filing cabinets full of public-funded global warming junk science.

    • “Why is leadership by example “not the way it works” (per lolwot)?”

      Because individual actions won’t work. Setting examples doesn’t work. A top down regulation of CO2 emissions is the only solution.

      • lolwot

        In your vision of the world as it should be, how much CO2 should be emitted per person worldwide? How long would it take to get this target? At what level would CO2 be stabilized in your world if your vision was implemented?

      • blueice2hotsea

        Mr. Starkey –

        I have had a go at channeling lolwot. It could have gone horribly wrong, nevertheless I cannot resist sharing with you. Please compare with lolwot’s actual answers before judging my abilities too harshly…

        ——————–
        The desired CO2 level is hard to pin down because it is constantly changing. At some point it could even increase. Here’s why. The optimal emissions level for free market, capitalist democracies is zero, for Marxist/hostiles it is uncapped. The ideal overall CO2 stabilization level must fluctuate until it has finally produced a Marxist world-government.
        ——————–

        Ta-da.

      • “In your vision of the world as it should be, how much CO2 should be emitted per person worldwide? How long would it take to get this target? At what level would CO2 be stabilized in your world if your vision was implemented?”

        Ideally only as much that the CO2 rise peaks or at least slows to a crawl. I don’t know how long it would take to get to that target, nor what the final level would be, although the higher it goes the more risk there is. I think we have a fair amount of thermal inertia to deal with even after CO2 levels stabilize.

      • Lolwot

        If in 2050 worldwide CO2 is at 450ppm vs. 480ppm vs. 430ppm does it matter? The changes in the weather conditions between these expected outcomes is what? Was the weather really all that different in 1990 than today?

      • Of course, a top-down regulation of CO2 ALSO will not work, given our present political situation. Developing countries, including China, are not subject to any authority with the inclination to control CO2.

        So I suppose we should conclude that you favor a policy of invading and conquering China in order to impose top-down CO2 controls on them. After all, if the situation is as urgent as you say, the world is at stake. Human life on Earth will likely be extinguished, so we shouldn’t balk at killing a few million Chinese, right? And we need to get on that soon, because we’re almost out of time, right?

      • At the international level we would need agreement.

        The loss of western control on the issue you describe is a result of the failure to reach agreement while the ball was in our court. It would have been much easier to get China and India to agree to a carbon emission reduction treaty 10 years ago. Now the ball is heading out of our court.

        This path could certainly lead to war if something borks with climate just enough to scare the western populace into demanding action, but not enough to trip the likes of China which may have a much higher tolerance of risk and pain than Western populations, plus a greater incentive in the form of large fossil fuel infrastructure and resources to take that risk.

      • Lolwot

        Please step back and reconsider some of your basic premises.

        There was never “western control” of the subject issues. What there was, and still continues to be; is many independent nations acting in what they perceive as their own self interest. What countries view as their self interest can vary greatly over time and will vary based upon the goals that have been assigned by those making the decisions.

        China and India (as well as almost all other countries) can easily agree to anything if there is a motive for their government to make the agreement. Developing countries are not going to agree not to develop.

      • Your arguments about what might have been miss the point.

        My point was that you should be more careful about the ideas you urge us to accept. Just because you persuade us of one point doesn’t mean we will automatically accept every other axiom in your world. If you genuinely persuaded conservatives that only top-down control could save the world, (you could not so persuade libertarians), you would have succeeded in proving to them that we need to conquer China out of self defense (unless, I suppose, they accede to an ultimatum). Now, I’m sure that idea is as implausible to you as it is to me. But what is shows is the utter hopelessness of your position.

  19. bladeshearer

    They labor greatly to ignore the obvious absence of evidence supporting their belief in catastrophic anthropogenic climate change.

  20. Huh.

    I never had these difficulties of moral judgment.

    I’ve always known it was immoral to pee in the village well. Why don’t people who emit CO2 commercially?

    I’ve always known if you spend more than you make with the intention of passing the debt on to future generations, you were a wastrel and morally repugnant. Why don’t people who use up more than their share of the carbon cycle?

    I’ve always understood that throwing refuse over the fence into the neighbors’ yards was wrong and obscene. How does anyone not get this?

    The straightforward and ancient moral understanding of simple hygiene in a shared space.. how hard is that to apprehend?

    It’s not abstract, and it’s not very complex except for those who — apparently intentionally — seek to fog up the situation.

    I have no problem blaming the culprits, however ‘unintentional’ they insist they are, and yet blame isn’t really a strong component of any moral system I use, compared to responsibility for consequences, obligation to consider one’s actions and their outcomes, duty of care to family, all of which are clear and obvious cases.

    I’ve never considered myself guiltless in what emissions I’m responsible for, and can’t see self-defensiveness as productive or warranted, or anything but liable to make those who act so seem absurd.

    Which leaves for me:

    4.Uncertainty breeds wishful thinking: The lack of definitive prognoses results in unreasonable optimism
    5.Moral tribalism: The politicization of climate change fosters ideological polarization

    I can see #4, but this is a Gordion Knot of no special resiliency. CO2 level is up. We drive CO2 level emissions and constrain the mechanisms that lower CO2 level. There’s no reason for optimism while we move CO2 levels to heights not seen in 15 million years and the uncertainty that accompanies that divergence from everything our species has ever known in the condition of the biosphere.

    And #5? For shame. Putting ideology — especially the novel and short-lived ideologies of the late (and already passed) 20th century — ahead of future generations.

    Do you feel your tribe becoming the focus of an attack for its utter moral depravity? Well, maybe your tribe should sit in a corner and think about what it’s done until it can apologize for peeing in the well and promise not to do it again.

    • Scorecard:

      The liberal Utopianism of the Left–> Misery, poverty and death in the hundreds of millions.

      Global warming–> mostly good for humanity especially when compard to the alternative.

    • “people who use up more than their share of the carbon cycle?”

      How much is that exactly? And who decided?

      Do you get a credit if you are taking someone to the hospital? Does Obama get lots of credits for campaigning and vacationing with Air Force One? Who does the accounting on this? Do you get audited? Is there an appeal process?

      If I go over my share limit, is it a big sin or a little one? Are all sins the same? Can I get forgiveness if I do a proper penance?

      • You can, in principle, determine everyone’s share of the carbon cycle: determine natural sources and sinks, and decide on a safe level of atmospheric and oceanic carbon. Take that number [gigatons of carbon per year] and divide it by the Earth’s human population. That’s how much carbon you can emit every year. Otherwise, you’d have to make other arrangements.

      • I know! I know! cap and trade administrated by Goldmann Sachs.
        I’ll answer you, Dave.

      • I am with Appell on this one. Just calculate the fair share of carbon usage, which is probably going to be around that which is currently used by a goatherder in Ethiopia. If you exceed that amount, you get your hand chopped off.

      • I can’t believe there is a ‘Reply’ left on this indent: let me be the first to say you are an insensitive lout and should be penalized 150 carbon credits. Who shall vote with me?

      • A more reasonable answer is that you buy credits from someone.

        The principle is that those who damage property should pay for that damage. Is that really so controversial?

      • Confiscation of a man’s property by classifying CO2 as a poison is proof of liberal fascism.

      • You first have to prove I damaged someone’s property before I pay for it. You guys keep forgetting that requirement.

      • In practice the carbon fluxes are not known to more than 20% (AR4) accuracy – an error figure that is an order of magnitude greater than anthro. emissions.

        They also vary with and lag temperature – so who’s to know. To measure individual emissions we would have to chip everyone – much more powerful than a bar code tattooed on your forehead. Although I would probably start looking for a hack on the pirate internet.

        What we have is a confrontation between moral turpitude (moi) and moral unctuousness (nominations open). I have never pissed in a well but I do have both a 4L Ford and a SUV. I live in the outback for God’s sake. Will the Aussie carbon tax change that? Well look we already tax fuel at $0.38/L. So they reduce the ‘fuel excise’ and impose another tax. Yeah – so what. And the fact remains that the question is not whether the green/socialist government will survive but how big they will lose.

        Is a carbon tax at all politically pragmatic or practical? In a cooling world for which there is much greater certainty than that peak oil is goning to be more of a problem than $100 a barrel oil. Hell I can convert both my cars to LNG (indeed I am in the process) and come out more than even at $100 a barrel.

        I remain implacably opposed to carbon taxes – as is most of the world. Let’s shut up and vote on it. It is the production function. Seriously – you would have to have $100/tonne taxes in Australia to do anything at all. At which stage the economy has long since collapsed. Thought not. You want to take a moral gander of what that would do to development? The interim phase is subsidising supercritical coal plants as CDM in China and India. If you imagine that America can do it better – or indeed that it can be done well by anyone – you’ve got rocks in your head.

        One alternative is to make innovation cheaper by tax breaks and dollar for dollar investments. One way I am very keen on is a global energy prize. How to leverage a billion dollars. Clever rather than stupid.

      • Chief,

        I would have won that prize hands down…It is what pushed me to understand areas that were totally lacking in mechanics. Needing to produce proto-types when the science was missing to actually understand the whole process. How and why the conclusions were made in the past through what technology and science understanding was available back then. This pushed new boundaries of simple measuring and simple calculations that scientists NEVER even considered. If they did, the current LAWS and theories would be much different.

      • Not pricing carbon has a cost, too, as does not halting global warming.

      • David Appell said:
        “Not pricing carbon has a cost, too, as does not halting global warming.”

        So what? If the cost of pricing CO2-e emissions is greater than the benefits of doing so, why do it?

      • Joe – less theory more working systems.

      • If the cost of pricing CO2-e emissions is greater than the benefits of doing so, why do it?

        Because the vast majority of climate scientists disagree with you, and I find their work to be much more convincing.

        And even if the benefits were less than the cost, people who use a product should pay for the damage it does to the property of others.

      • David,

        Whatever gave you the idea that technological innovation – done very badly and very poorly funded – was not the core means of decarbonisation.

        There are dozens of others as well some of which I talk about in terms of Copenhagen Consensus priorities. The carbon pricing meme is BS – hasn’t succeeded after decades – can’t and shouldn’t proceed in my opinion – and is going backwards.

        The only tangible way forward is pragmatic – http://thebreakthrough.org/blog/2011/07/climate_pragmatism_innovation.shtml

        The world is cooling for a decade or three more because we are in a cool Pacific decadal mode. Mark that well because this is where ‘the science’ currently is. There is no wishy washy may or maybe’s, not any doubt at all, no resiling, no chance of a backdown, no mistaking or quibbling.

        If you think that this will not have repercussions for the politics of climate change – you have rocks in your head. If you think there is any chance in a generation to regain ground lost in a backlash against green/red overreach – again you have rocks in your head.

        Cheers

      • Chief Hydrologist said:

        “The world is cooling for a decade or three more because we are in a cool Pacific decadal mode.”

        _______
        By “world” you mean troposphere of course, as there is no sign of “cooling” in the worlds largest energy reservoir of the ocean…so I guess you would mean that reservoir that is less than 1/1000th of the planet’s solar energy reservoir which is the troposphere…and of course, even suggesting that we’ll get a “decade or three” of cooling here…quiet sun, cool PDO, or not is quite a stretch. I guess you can always hope for a series of really large volcanoes to make your prediction come true…

      • Gatesy,

        I am sure we have had this dance before. Any minor ocean warming this century did not happen from greenhouse gases in a non-warming atmosphere. Where this happened was in the SW changes evident in CERES data. And no – I mean the coupled ocean/atmosphere system as the cool Pacific decadal mode and the frequency and intensity of La Nina peaks.

        I’m not disputing that there was some minor ocean warming – http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=vonSchuckmann-OHC.gif

        Just that it was not a increase in donwelling IR – impossible in a non warming atmosphere – but from SW changes.
        http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=CERES-BAMS-2008-with-trend-lines1.gif

        There are a couple of relevant studies referred to here to do with climate shifts.

        http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2009/07/warminginterrupted-much-ado-about-natural-variability/ – I like to link realclimate to space cadets.

        ‘This suggests that the climate system may well have shifted again, with a consequent break in the global mean temperature trend from the post 1976/77 warming to a new period (indeterminate length) of roughly constant global mean temperature.’ Swanson et al 2009

        There is an initialised model study here that suggests 10 years of subdued temperature rise – http://www.pnas.org/content/107/5/1833.full

        There are a couple of studies from Latiff and colleags of course suggesting the same thing.

        It is a drag this natural variability hey?

      • Hell – edited and then posted the old version.

        Gatesy,

        I am sure we have had this dance before. Any minor ocean warming this century did not happen from greenhouse gases in a non-warming atmosphere. Where this happened was in the SW changes evident in CERES data. And no – I mean the coupled ocean/atmosphere system as the cool Pacific decadal mode and the frequency and intensity of La Nina peaks.

        I’m not disputing that there was some minor ocean warming – http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=vonSchuckmann-OHC.gif

        Just that it was not an increase in downwelling IR – impossible in a non warming atmosphere – but from SW changes.
        http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=CERES-BAMS-2008-with-trend-lines1.gif

        There are a couple of relevant studies referred to here to do with climate shifts.

        http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2009/07/warminginterrupted-much-ado-about-natural-variability/ – I like to link realclimate to space cadets.

        ‘This suggests that the climate system may well have shifted again, with a consequent break in the global mean temperature trend from the post 1976/77 warming to a new period (indeterminate length) of roughly constant global mean temperature.’ Swanson et al 2009

        There is an initialised model study here that suggests 10 years of subdued temperature rise – http://www.pnas.org/content/107/5/1833.full

        There are a couple of studies from Latif and colleagues’ of course suggesting the same thing.

        It is a drag this natural variability hey?

      • Chief Hydrologist:

        Thanks for your excellent response. I think however, you might be missing my point about the effects of greenhouse gases on ocean-atmosphere energy exchange. Certainly, we both agree that tropospheric temperatures were flat over the past decade, but this is not the issue. They did not decline either, but remained flat at the highest levels we’ve seen on instrument record. This is critical to my point about heat flux out of the ocean. The temperature of the troposphere acts as a control valve to the rate of heat flowing from ocean to atmosphere, affecting the thermal gradient across the ocean skin layer. With temperatures being flat over the past decade, this “control valve” didn’t open more or close, but simply kept approximately the same rate of ocean heat content accumulation averaged over the past decade. The ocean heat content, especially down to 1500 or 2000 meters clearly shows the accumulation continued. The control valve was roughly kept at the same level over the decade because temperatures in the atmosphere were flat. Had the atmosphere cooled greatly over the decade, the control valve would have opened up, and oceans would have released more heat. When the atmosphere warms, the control valve closes down, releasing less heat from ocean to atmosphere. This is of course another perfect example of a negative feedback process that helps to regulate the the overall balance of energy between ocean and atmosphere. During periods of intense atmospheric warming, such as we might get from continued increase in greenhouse gases, the control valve closes down greatly and ensures that the oceans help buffer the atmosphere from even an even greater amount of warming. During periods of intense atmospheric cooling, the control valve opens up, releasing more heat so as to ensure that the atmosphere doesn’t get so cold as to send the planet into another snowball Earth episode. In this way, this thermal gradient “control valve” effect at the ocean skin layer serves as a buffering mechanism, releasing or storing heat in the planet’s energy reservoir as needed.

      • R Gates said;

        ‘Certainly, we both agree that tropospheric temperatures were flat over the past decade, but this is not the issue. They did not decline either, but remained flat at the highest levels we’ve seen on instrument record.’

        I’m not convinced by your (presumably trade marked) ‘control valve’ mechanism, nor that we have anything remotely approaching a good understanding of the ocean temperatures to 2000m (and we have nothing to compare them with to put them in a historical context)

        Could not the plateauing suggest that we have reached the approx high point of the co2 absorption rate and if the logarithmic scale is correct there is nothing very much more to come on the way to a doubling of co2?.
        tonyb

      • R Gates

        Just found this on the Co2 saturation rate and logarithmic curve, which also has a useful sceptic vs believers Q and A.

        http://joannenova.com.au/2010/02/4-carbon-dioxide-is-already-absorbing-almost-all-it-can/
        tonyb

      • climatereason, the ocean is maintaining its record heat contents only because the atmosphere is staying warm. The atmosphere is staying warm at record levels only because there is more CO2 now to prevent it cooling as it would have in the past (e.g. when it reached similar levels in 1998 and dropped below that in the next year).

      • I prefer to think of the ocean/atmosphere as a coupled system which works pretty much as you describe but is perhaps understod in terms of power flux. SW into the ocean and net IR, latent and convection up. The downwelling IR is the determinant of net power fluxes from the ocean and thus if the atmosphere warms the ocean warms and vice versa. A coupled system in which the concept of ocean buffering – other than chemically – is misleading.

        You can see that if the atmosphere does not warm then the ocean can’t warm. It is as simple as that. So what caused the ocean warming in the von Schuckmann graph. It is the Achilles heel of AGW – that of secular changes in cloud cover. This is seen in the CERES data and many other places.

        In the energetically important marine straocumulos regions – low level stratocumulos cloud cover is negatively correlated with sea surface temperature. SST is decadally variable with the PDO and ENSO especially. So energy accumulates in warm Pacific decadal modes and energy is reflected more in cool modes.

        Thus you may ignore much of the available sceince – but it is as simple as that. As the cool Pacific decadal mode we are in intensifies the world will cool for a decade or three more.

      • Tony,

        From that chart you shared related to the logarithmic effect of CO2, you’d never be able to extrapolate the basic fact that from the bottom of a the last glacial period to the top of the Holocene, we had about a 10C move in temperatures, as CO2 went from 180 to 280 ppm or so. Milankovitch cycles can’t explain this move as the change in solar insolation in and of itself just isn’t enough. The additional forcing from CO2, as a positive feedback response triggered by Milankovitch changes can explain this kind of move. Now, going from 280 to 560 ppm, we may only get an additional 3C move, and this would be more in line with the logarithmic effect of CO2 saturation. This assumes of course, that there aren’t some other positive feedbacks that might be triggered by CO2 rising to these levels (such as the release of methane from the melting of permafrost and ocean shelf and floor methane clathrates.

      • “we had about a 10C move in temperatures, as CO2 went from 180 to 280 ppm or so”

        Well that’s vostok or Greenland i don’t know which but from what I’ve seen the global increase was only about half of that?

        your point still stands though. 5C warming is more than the orbital forcing can explain. Without some massive an unknown forcing there must be some positive feedback involved.

      • stan | April 28, 2012 at 8:29 pm |

        How much is that exactly? And who decided?

        I don’t need to know how much, so long as who decides is the democratic choice of every participant in the open and undistorted fair market, but the law of supply and demand.

        Let those with a birthright in the carbon cycle — all of us, per capita — profit from its sale.

        It’s not a matter of sin if you pay for what you use; it transforms from free riding theft by the action of market capitalism.

      • Bart and David,

        One of the problems we have out here in CA is the bills are coming due for meeting our RES target. We are not following the approach you are recommending Bart. Now we get to figure out who pays their fair/equitable share of the costs. The information below is from “PG&E’s Rate Design Window 2012 Application”

        Page 2-7 Table 2-4 PG&E cumulative Impacts of the 33% RPS on NON-CARE residential rates- http://docs.cpuc.ca.gov/published/proceedings/A1202020.htm

        “Year- 2015
        RPS Premium (1000s) = $1,159,000.
        Residential Share (1000s)= 486,000
        Cumulative Class Average Rate Increase= $.0.015
        Cumulative Tier 3/4 Rate Increase= $0.048″

        “Line 10 (page 1-14) “Absent any change in the residential rate design methodology, the differential between Tier 2 and Tier 4 rates, which was 18.9 centers per kWh in Jan 2012 (33.5 vs 14.6 cents per kWh), is forecasted to increase by 65 percent to 31.1 cents in 2022 (50.5 vs 19.4 kWh). The gap is already far in excess of what is equitable on a cost of service basis, and the failure to address this problem will rapidity worsen the situation.”

        That RPS Premium is a VERY BIG number

    • Michael Larkin

      You think in terms of sceptics peeing in the well. If we must use the well analogy, they see you as wanting to stop people using the well because you only imagine they are peeing in it.

      One side is right, and the other wrong, and I for one can’t say for sure which, even though I lean towards scepticism. Regardless, I can accept that at least some (a majority?) on both sides hold their opinions sincerely, based on their interpretation of the evidence. Both sides can be acting ethically even though one of them must be wrong. Good people can differ.

      One way to deal with conflicts like this is to attempt coercion. For a long time, it has been assymetric warfare. Governments, the scientific establishment, various organisations, and above all the mass media, have been on the side of the alarmists, vilifying and attempting to marginalise the sceptics.

      Is that fair and just? I suppose an argument can be made that it is, provided they are right. If the shoe had been on the other foot, I have no doubt that sceptics would have been applying the same advantage. However: the coercion hasn’t worked. It’s not just that sceptics have successfully resisted; it’s that people do in fact increasingly rely on energy sources that produce CO2, and alternatives are limited in their effectiveness.

      As far as I can see the only one that currently isn’t, is nuclear power, but that is resisted. If it weren’t, and we went all out for nuclear, then I might think: well, I still think alarmists are wrong, but it’s a win-win situation if we, and more importantly developing nations, get access to the power they need.

      So what to do? If the alarmists think they are right in the face of increasing scepticism, will changing the coercive spin work, as the authors of the paper Judith has posted hope? I don’t think so, because the paper is predicated on the assumption that the alarmists are right to be alarmed. It’s just trying to come up with a subtler way of twisting sceptical arms, hoping they won’t notice the continued attempts at psychological manipulation. Absolutely zero chance of that.

      One way to resolve it might be to have actual debate, with the full assent of the mass media, in which both sides get to put their case without any attempt to load the dice. I doubt the the alarmists would ever countenance this, as it would risk losing their influence on the messaging system.

      Hence I suspect we’re just going to have to wait until at some point nature pronounces the verdict. It will only be then that we will know for sure who’s right and who’s wrong. The issue of who is to blame, whichever side wins, is irrelevant. Many (most?) people, whatever their view, won’t be to blame, because they were sincerely acting in accord with their understanding.

      • Michael Larkin | April 28, 2012 at 10:07 pm |

        The ‘only imagine’ argument is novel, and I thank you for it. Something to think about.

        Can I prove the well is real? I believe so, to any objective standard.

        Can I prove the emission is real? Well, that’s pretty much as certain.

        Is the emission unnatural? As commercial activity, it is as much in the definition of artificial as one can imagine. Natural breathing, naturally, is not what I mean by commercial, or lucrative.

        Is it harmful? Well, I don’t need to prove harm, do I? No one in an ancient village proved the clod peeing in the well did harm before stoning him or putting him in stocks or boiling him alive.

        I mean, I _can_ demonstrate harm, but wouldn’t that be for the tort?

      • Michael Larkin

        I think you miss the point. The well is real, and sure enough, people are putting something in it. But sceptics would say it isn’t urine and it isn’t causing any harm. It may even on balance be doing good.

        My greatest scepticism is about the magnitude/direction of feedbacks, the adequacy of the climate models, and the failure of the predictions. And yes, I haven’t been impressed by the behaviour of certain key players, but that isn’t decisive however distasteful.

        I’m sincere, I have no reason to believe you aren’t too, and so it’s pointless trying to blame people. All I want to know is what the truth is, and so far have been unconvinced by the orthodoxy. No amount of cod psychology is going to have an effect.

      • Michael Larkin | April 29, 2012 at 1:09 am |

        I get the point. I’ve been to some of the Idsos’ propaganda sites. I understand the contention by boosters that whatever they pour into the well they have an absolute right to, and it’s good for us.

        But then, when has trespass into the common wellspring ever been accepted by however well-meaning a member of the community, so long as so many found the practice objectionable?

        Remember, it’s the only well. No one has the choice to opt out of what’s being done to the well by these well-meaning members. They haven’t been consulted by the well-meaning members for their permission, or offered to pay (and after all, I’m only asking they pay based on the precepts of fair market supply and demand) before committing this trespass.

        When has that ever been okay?

        When has that ever been anything but a form of usurpation, theft, or adulteration?

        Simply, what is being asked is to overthrow the basic principles of common trespass and common decency, as a special case, to avoid simply paying for the use of the common resource.

        The resource is the carbon cycle. However lagged or buffered or sequestered by the intermediate processes, that comes down to geology, and geology does not succumb to legal argument. It absorbs CO2 at one rate only. That makes it a scarce resource due physical limit.

        That makes the resource rivalrous, as what uptake is used by one emitter no other emitter in this millennium will be able to also use.

        Since the world has come to the point where — within tolerances so close as apply to any lucrative dealing — we can account for and charge a fee for the use of the vast majority of the CO2E inventory of any nation, the resource also is excludable.

        If excludable and rivalrous, it is under capitalism immoral to fail to price the good and maintain a fair and stable market for it, returning the fees set by Supply and Demand to the owners by birthright of the resource — every citizen per capita.

        If you believe you can produce a higher, more reasonable moral system for addressing the present inequities, by all means propose it. BAU is just not it, nor is cap and trade alone, nor is carbon tax, nor is simple subsidy of technology. Those last three ‘solutions’ do not address fully the inversion of the economic rewards in the system, and will fail; the fourth actively increases inequity and spirals us deeper into the mire of subsidy and imbalance with every business cycle, and will ruin us in the end if it continues.. whether there is harm from pee in the well or not.

      • Michael Larkin

        Bart,

        No disrespect, but I find your prose incoherent, and so haven’t anything to say in reply. Maybe you’re tired?

      • Likelier I’m just that incoherent.

        Predictions will generally fail; climate has significant nonlinearity on sub-decadal spans, and is fairly nonlinear on decadal spans, and when you get much longer than human lifespans, people get pretty bad at record-keeping.

        Feedbacks are a Gordion Knot. They represent the results of perturbations or external forcings, so in and of themselves mean the system is occupying a new and different level. As a general principal, the increase in feedbacks — in complexity — will involve a similarly complex (extreme or unknown) set of transitions to return the system to stability.

        That’s just plain old mathematics. What it means specifically? See the part above about predicitons; no one ought have very good ones, again mathematically.

        Orthodoxy won’t go very far, if you’re trying to decoct orthodoxy from out of the maelstrom of things like blogs and ‘debates’ or even the IPCC reports.

        Orthodoxy has a lag all its own in recognizing what it really had been — with its attendant failings — some generation later.

        Also, I’m not out to convince you. There’s data, and there’s method. So far as I can tell, the weight of the data and method supports hypotheses that frame the problem space in terms of “BAU is likely to be among the most expensive options.”

        The solution to getting to better options? That’s for policy, not science.

    • The answer, of course, is that we do not believe that emitting CO2 is the equivalent of “peeing in the well.” We simply do not believe that there is any harm to emitting CO2 that is not better dealt with by allowing our economy to grow and spending money later to adapt to any climate change that turns out to happen.

      • qbeamus | April 30, 2012 at 4:57 pm |

        You’re confusing the concept of tort with trespass. The trespassed-against never need prove harm, except to collect on damages. They only need show a right — and I think we all have a right to breath — and that the right is encumbered without consent or rightly determined compensation by due process.

        Also, you make an assumption that burning fossil reserves is good for the economy; all evidence is against you there. Efficient plastic, industrial chemical, pharmaceutical and nitrogen fertilizer resources are absolute requirements for a healthy economy, and no attack on America’s prosperity is greater than the act of burning this precious treasure.

    • Bart,

      It isn’t immoral to pee in the village well. Unsanitary maybe, but immoral?

      If instead of spending more money than I earn I save a portion of it for future use, does someone (government) have a right to claim some of it for those who haven’t?

      BTW – what is my share of carbon?

      • timg56 | April 30, 2012 at 5:11 pm |

        http://www.thefreedictionary.com/trespass

        Noun 1. trespass – a wrongful interference with the possession of property (personal property as well as realty), or the action instituted to recover damages
        civil wrong, tort – (law) any wrongdoing for which an action for damages may be brought
        continuing trespass – trespass that is not transient or intermittent but continues as long as the offending object remains; “dumping his garbage on my land was a case of continuing trespass”
        trespass de bonis asportatis – an action brought to recover damages from a person who has taken goods or property from its rightful owner
        trespass on the case – an action brought to recover damages from a person whose actions have resulted indirectly in injury or loss; “a person struck by a log as it was thrown onto a road could maintain trespass against the thrower but one who was hurt by stumbling over it could maintain and action on the case.”

        Immoral to trespass by peeing in the well? Yes. The concept of trespass is one of the most ancient and universal human moral values. Not recognizing trespass as immoral is, frankly, astonishing.

        As to your question about savings, you appear to be attempting to entangle two different issues, for no reason I can fathom. Perhaps if you expand on your meaning?

        As for your share of the carbon cycle, as someone who breathes as an inherent undiminished privatized common resource, it would be the same as anyone else’s; equal per capita. The details of that? That’d be up to your nation to decide, one hopes democratically.

        Your personal share of carbon? I have no idea. How much carbon have you paid for, earned or inherited?

      • BaitedBreath

        As for your share of the carbon cycle, as someone who breathes as an inherent undiminished privatized common resource

        What?? Was the atmosphere privatised while I’ve been away on my fishing trip? Dang, I must try and catch up over the weekend.

      • BaitedBreath | May 3, 2012 at 1:57 am |

        So far as I know, it’s only been privatized in this way in British Columbia, and unless your fishing trip were four years long, then not while you were away, no.

        See the implications of the form of the verb “would be” in the conditional form of a clause, or ask your local grammarian.

      • BaitedBreath

        The air has been privatised in British Columbia? So people have share certificates or suchlike? I’m impressed but confused.

        As regards elsewhere, you basic writing mistake was leaving out “IF air was privatised” ( -> then your share “would be”). (Assuming you wanted to be clear that, that is, rather than score a point). But yes, I’m sure your local grammarian would be happy to help.

      • I believe they just get money.

        As to clarity, I love clarity. I never miss an opportunity to .. oh, wait, that’s pie I’m thinking of.

        Oh, and see what your grammarian thinks of ending sentences with prepositions.

      • BaitedBreath

        > The air has been privatized in British Columbia? So people have share certificates or suchlike?

        > Bart R : I believe they just get money.

        Who gets money? What money? Parcels of ownership rights in the air are traded like houses or shares or TV sets? Seems impossible to police. How does the whole thing work exactly ?

      • Dude, seriously, never heard of Google?

        http://www.fin.gov.bc.ca/tbs/tp/climate/carbon_tax.htm

        Why ask me, when you can ask them?

      • BaitedBreath

        Dude, seriously, not know the difference between privatisation and taxation? Never used google?

      • Even The Dude knows that taxation doesn’t lower the taxes you pay, while privatization does.

        http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2009/06/dude.html is about a cap-and-trade tax because the permitting system raises revenue for the use of the government (and is usually pretty easy to defraud due abuse of free permits, and has other problems).

        The one way, you get to decide as an individual who gets the money, that’s privatization. The other way, the government takes your money and decides where it goes — to a system that encourages burning carbon while suppressing alternatives — that’s taxation.

        So, lower taxes for everyone because people pay for emitting carbon, that’s privatization.

        Higher taxes for everyone except the fossil fuel industry because the government subsidizes carbon based fuels? That’s taxation.

        Do you see the difference?

      • BaitedBreath

        So that’s resounding No then, dude, you clearly don’t know the difference between taxation and privatization.

        The problem seems to be that while, fair enough, you do seem to have some sort of idea of what taxation is, you quite obviously have absolutely no idea at all what privatization is. So let me help – it means private ownership (the “private” in there gives it away). It thus has nothing at all to do with taxation, which is by definition a state thing.

        You claimed that air had been privatized in British Columbia, which intrigued me. But clearly hasn’t, it is still under state control.

        Your rather garbled discussion on the relative virtues of a different taxes – while perhaps not without merit – are thus beside the point.
        ( I see what you’re getting at though, a CO2 tax is a Georgist notion, close relative of the Land Tax. But the aside about ‘subsidies’ for fossil fuel seems to be in the same failure-to-grasp-basic-concept category, as your ‘privatized’ air).

      • BaitedBreath | May 6, 2012 at 6:37 am |

        I’m the first to say British Columbia hasn’t gone far enough. But it’s not like I’m all about telling people how to do things that are their own business. That would be like me saying they should spend their money the way I tell them, by for instance taking money out of their pockets and keeping it for myself. Which is the opposite of what the British Columbia Revenue Neutral Carbon Tax Act does.

        You did look it up, right? Read it? Did the math?

        That’s one billion dollars a year spread around a population the size of South Carolina of their own money _not_ being sucked into the government’s pockets under state control.

        True, there is state control of the price level, which is lamentable. If they did it my way, Supply and Demand would set the level of the carbon price, and _all_ of that would flow into the pockets of the people per capita, until the maximum returns were reached.

        I am absolutely _not_ subscribing to the designs of Henry George in this matter: land has long been surrendered to governments worldwide in one way or another; no one has ever signed over their right to breath yet. While in some places, Georgism holds water as an argument, it isn’t a universally applicable precept. So, while it may have a certain parallelism, and the Georgist argument applies for the carbon cycle in ways that perhaps it does not for land in some cases, it’s not really a case that needs to be made. All we need to know who to direct the funds generated from use of the privatized carbon cycle to is that the people have agreed to that means by some valid form of consent, or that it goes to all per capita until such agreement is reached.

        My proposals are certainly far less a Market distortion than current deadweight loss practices that people insist on some flimsy loophole or excuse aren’t really subsidies.. and yet, which still have the same distortionate impact as subsidies. How do you not grasp that?

      • BaitedBreath

        Bart
        Your lengthy waxing is quite beside your own point here – which was your startling claim that AIR HAD BEEN PRIVATIZED in British Columbia. For which you (unsurpsiongly) cannot provide any evidence.
        Instead, you go on and on about this carbon TAX. Whatever its merits, you may as well be talking about the price of tea in China as far as relevance to PRIVATIZED AIR is is concerned.
        So, your overall approach was to make a silly albeit interesting claim, and then use it to push a quite different argument. Weird, dude.

  21. Right off the bat I disagree with these learned ethicists when they state that “…climate change is the direct result of intentional, goal-directed behavior…” That is pure propaganda since there is absolutely no scientific basis for it. But then again, they are not scientists. Taking this as a premise they try to work out why people who know it still don’t want to assume moral responsibility for climate change: “It is too hard for me to understand, or it is not my fault, or there was no immoral intention, or if anthropogenic I did not do it, or I don’t like the politics, or who cares for these types that I don’t even know.” These of cause are all hypotheticals that are supposed to be morally offensive to a true believer in global warming. Since they have noticed that despite that intentional global warming people still have these perverse reasons for not assuming moral responsibility they bring up a slew of suggestions about how to turn them into true believers. They call these suggestions “…strategies that communicators can use to bolster recognition of climate change as a moral imperative.” There are six of them, starting with “Use existing moral values.” If there ever was a perversion of moral values, propagandizing for action against a non-existent climate Armageddon is it. They are taking a leaf out of the Moonies playbook who in their heyday converted thousands to their cult. Even had a mass marriage ceremony for members who they had decided should all marry on the same day. And now we have Nature Climate Change printing this non-scientific nonsense about responsibility for a non-existent future catastrophe but refusing to print my article that was about climate science.

  22. Most people have sensitive constitutions. The climate change argument serves as a soft landing to the more concrete fossil fuel crisis that the world faces.

    Climate change remains abstract. People can move away from low-lying regions. They can move away from heat. We can take mitigation steps to stem the tide of warming. We can work with other nations to come up with solutions. This seems palatable to most people. No one really sees climate change as an existential threat.

    Fossil fuel depletion is concrete. We no longer have cheap sources of energy to drive our economy. We may need to get supplies from nations that have extra reserves, perhaps even invade to gain access. We no longer can work with other countries to solve the problem, as they have something we want, or vice-versa. We don’t have alternatives to liquid hydrocarbon fuel. We can’t move away from the threat, the farther we move the more energy is required. The threat is existential as long as we don’t have substitutability.

    People respond to these threats differently. Oil depletion is a threat of unfulfilled need and want. Climate change is a threat of inconvenience with the slight possibility of catastrophic consequences.

    Yet they have the same mitigating strategy. Switch to something other than fossil fuels. Combining the two threats makes this a no-brainer as the mitigation is substitutable.

    With probability 0.99, we know that oil depletion is a problem. Say that with probability 0.2, we estimate that climate change will be a problem. The probability that either will be a problem is still 0.992, since that is how you add according to the rules of probability.

    The administration had toyed with the idea of using climate change as the soft landing to move off of fossil fuels, but as Curry has pointed out, the strategy has slowly shifted to talk of sustainability, which is more in the direction of admitting to fossil fuel depletion as the vital concern.

    That is the choice that many governments are making. They kill two birds with one stone by exercising a judgement toward a sustainability path.

    cheers

    • You seem blind to the fact that you have three propositions here –i.e., (1) we’re running out of fossil fuel, (2) which is a problem we must solve now, and (3) we cannot have a free society established on the principle of individual liberty and economic freedom if we are to solve the problem.

      to solve the problem.

    • WHT, you say “They can move away from heat.”

      But what evidence is there that people want to move away from heat? Population density increases from polar regios to tropics.

      • Most people choose to go to warmer regions to take their annual vacation.

      • The general migration trend is from the colder to warmer parts.

      • Global warming is projected to occur mainly in higer latitudes, in winter and at night. There is expected to be little change in the temperatures in lower latitudes, in summer and in the day time. Surely this is good. It increases growing seasons.

      • Also more precipitation and more VO2 (fertiliser) is good for life and for food.

      So, what is so bad a bout a little warming?

      • Your arguments sound good, but really are just hand-waving. More careful analysis shows there is already evidence that warming is causing significant losses for certain crops:

        “Global scale climate–crop yield relationships and the impacts of recent warming,” David B Lobell and Christopher B Field, Environ. Res. Lett. 2 (2007) 014002 (7pp)
        http://www.mendeley.com/research/global-scale-climate-crop-yield-relationships-and-the-impacts-of-recent-warming/

      • So in that article, they say yields have gone up, but global warming has caused yields to go up less than otherwise? I guess this is akin to Obama’s jobs saved or created as the unemployment rate went up and up. I seriously doubt these guys can actually prove their hypothesis. I’m, uh, skeptical.

      • Do you suppose there are other factors besides temperature that might be affecting yields? Of course there are. Their analysis attempts to regress out the temperature dependence.

      • I’m sure they have a handle on all the factors affecting yield. Sure they do.

      • You haven’t even tried to read the paper, have you? You simply want to dismiss it out-of-hand.

        In fact, the third page of their paper contains this: “While these empirical/statistical models do not attempt to capture details of plant physiology or crop management, they do capture the net effect of the entire range of processes by which climate affects yields, including the effects of poorly modelled processes (e.g. pest dynamics). In addition, these empirical/statistical models enable a quantitative evaluation of
        uncertainties [13].”

      • David,

        That’s about the stupidest production function estimation I have ever seen. Do you suppose that capital and labor and (many) other inputs are being adjusted on the fly in response to changing circumstances during the growing season? Are these decisions endogenous with temperature and rainfall and global market conditions? To wit: If a hot and dry season seems to be in the offing, reasonable farmers may well reduce other inputs rather than throw good money after bad. Since the changes in input choices are not observed by the authors, there will be omitted variables bias: The temperature and precipitation changes will be correlated with other input changes, so they will proxy for them.

        Leave the estimation of human behavioral processes (farming, for instance) to experts. These wankers aren’t them.

      • David Appell,
        You’ve posted a link to one article. There are thousands of articles arguing for and against warming, CO2 and more precipitation increasing food productivity. Here are some comments on Skeptical Science (an alarmist’s site) for example:
        ‘http://www.skepticalscience.com/global-warming-positives-negatives.htm#1578

        However, surely the IPCC AR$, WG1 Chapter 6 statements (burried in the text) that there was more carbon tied up in the biosphere when the planet was warmer should be persuasive. Also Chapter 6 states that the area of deserts expands when warmer and shrinks when colder.
        It seems clear that there will be more food when warmer.

        As Nordhaus seems to say, there is a lack of evidence that the projected amount of global warming would be catastrophic or dangerous? As you say, it seems the arguments about catastrophic global warming are “really are just hand-waving.

      • A greener planet when temperatures are higher is not a priori a good thing for agriculture — much of that extra biomass is grass, weeds, etc, which make for bigger agricultural problems. It’s not as simple as ‘warmer means higher yields.’

      • Another factor is that many plants in the tropics could already be near their toleration for heat. Another is that their response might not be linear.

        The question of plant productivity in a warmer, higher-CO2 world is a very complex one that scientists are grappling with. There are many factors at play: temperatures, precipitation, soil quality, C and N cycles, etc. You arguments are very simplistic and not at all convincing.

      • David Appell,

        I suggest your comments “really are just hand-waving.“

      • I suggest your comments “really are just hand-waving.“

        At least I’ve provided a peer-reviewed paper. You have yet to do even that.

      • I provided this link: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1467-9779.2011.01544.x/full with my first comment on this thread. That is where my comments started. Have you read it and digested it yet? the whole point is, that it seems there is little evidence that GW is dangerous or catastrophic. It seems very low probability of damage due to climate change and low probability that CO2 pricing will have any effect on the climate. As such, it would seem to be unwise to impose any measures that damage the economy. We should implement only “no regrets” policies and keep researching – as Bjorn Lomborg has been arguing for a decade or so.

      • “At least I’ve provided a peer-reviewed paper.”

        Which has been duly destroyed. Honestly will you get over this “peer-reviewed” fetish? Peer reveiw is just a little better than throwing the damn papers off a staircase and accepting the ones that fall furthest. Anyone with any real experience of peer review and what ends up in the journals (and does not) knows this.

        You just throw out s–t and don’t stop to answer reasonable objections. I have zero respect for you Dave Appell.

      • Anyone who’s written a peer reviewed paper knows they are held to high academic standards. That doesn’t mean every peer reviewed paper is correct; but it does mean they deserve to be taken seriously instead of reflexively dismissed.

      • David Appell,

        You said (incorrectly) “At least I’ve provided a peer-reviewed paper. You have yet to do even that.”

        My point is about the paper http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1467-9779.2011.01544.x/full

        You have made no comment on that. It seems you are ignoring the main point and diverting to other, subordinate, issues. That is, you are missing or avoiding the substantive issue.

      • No, you are wrong. I write some papers, and many get through the peer-review process. It is a whiny, picayune and irritating charade of filling out citation mantras and taking out interpretive material that pushes the buttons of the referees. Most of the time, it has no measurable impact on the quality of the finished product (though sometimes it does). Far worse is the sheer randomness of the process. You are absolutely wrong that peer review confers my responsibility to take a peer-reviewed publication extra-seriously. You are really the worst and most pathetic sort of elitist dogmatist, aren’t you?

        Worst of all, technology has obviated the need for the peer review process and the traditional journals. By the time anything of importance to me appears in print, I have known about it from online working papers for at least a year–usually longer. I can find citation counts online and compare them to those for a well-chosen reference class… thereby learning everything I need to know about young scholars. Indeed it is what I SHOULD know about them: Their INFLUENCE not the VITA LINE COUNT.

        Try again, Dave Appell.

      • Peter,

        You are wasting your time. After seeing David make this statement

        ” much of that extra biomass is grass, weeds, etc, ”

        It is pretty clear he has limited knowledge of farming. Strange seeing as how he lives in one of the richest farming regions in the world.

      • David,

        I’m confused here. The paper says that they have estimated crop losses (using models), even though the empirical data has yields increasing, and claim that the increase is less than it should be (according to their model) and thus is the result of climate change.

        Exactly what does this prove?

      • In the Northeastern US, icy roads are a significant cause of mortality.

    • peterdavies252

      @WHT “With probability 0.99, we know that oil depletion is a problem. Say that with probability 0.2, we estimate that climate change will be a problem. The probability that either will be a problem is still 0.992, since that is how you add according to the rules of probability.”

      If I add 0.99 and 0.20 I get 1.19. This implies that it will be an absolute certainty that either or both will be a problem.

      • peterdavies252

        Correction: It will be an absolute certainty that either will be a problem but oil depletion is much more likely. The probability that both will be a problem in the scenario posed by WHT wouid be 0.99 x 0.20 = 0.198.

      • peterdavies252 said this:

        “If I add 0.99 and 0.20 I get 1.19. This implies that it will be an absolute certainty that either or both will be a problem.”

        Adding probabilities doesn’t work the way that you think it does.

        This is the addition rule for independent events:
        P(A or B) = P(A) + P(B) – P(A and B)
        so if P(A)=0.99 and P(B)=0.2
        P(A or B) = 0.99 +0.2 – 0.99*0.2 = 0.992
        just as I said.

        You made the classic mistake, which is explained here with an example:
        https://www.math.duke.edu//education/postcalc/probability/prob3.html

        I figure that the logic of probability is not something that the majority of fake skeptics are familiar with.

      • I on the other hand have been fascinated by probability math since first introduced as erhaps a 12 year old. I have to admit that a probability of 1.19 is a bit unlikely. It is a bit like the chance of aggregate human mortality exceeeding unity – some people die more than once.

        However it was quickly corrected and Peter is quite right that the likelihood of both A and B is the intersection of A and B – the joint probability of A and B is 0.99*0.2 – or 0.198.

        The likelihood of either A or B is the chance of A plus the chance of B less the combined chance of A and B.

        P(A) + P(B) – P(A)*P(B) = 0.99 + 0.2 – 0.99*0.2 = 0.992

        So with Webby’s probabilities pulled entirely out of his arse (is that an American expression or just Australian?) – we have a good chance of peak oil or catastrophic cimate change demanding a suspension of democracy and capitalism intervention by him and his mates. No thanks.

        A real risk analysis – of which I have done many – involves a consideration of both risk and consequence. Peak oil – consequence $100/barrel oil? So what. Global warming? No chance at all – climate is non-linear and we have but little wit to predict. There has been 1 climate shift so far this century and the likelihood for a few more is 99%. The shifts are unpredictable and potentially extreme. The consequences we will deal with because we have no choice.

      • According to the British, a coward dies a thousand deaths. I’m fairly certain the average Australian won’t have come across enough cowards to notice this, unless they’ve travelled to Europe.

      • Once again Chief’s explanation is wanting and he as usual does his little copycat cookbook recipe that he learned as a Civ.

        This is the way to understand this:
        What is the probability, Pn, that both things don’t happen? That is
        Pn = (1-P(A)) * (1-P(B))

        The remaining probability is that at least something happens
        P(A or B) = 1 -Pn = 1 -(1-P(A)-P(B)+P(A)*P(B))
        multiplying it out, we get:
        P(A)+P(B)-P(A)*P(B)

        0.99 +0.2 – 0.99*0.2 = 0.992

        which is the result I had above and what Chief can’t get through his skull. That’s why they become Civs.

        This is what we need to grok:
        1. An almost certain outcome with a significant impact will take considerable engineering and technical skills (and some type of capital funding) to manage.
        2. A potentially catastrophic outcome that has a slight chance of occurring will require risk mitigation.

        Put the two things together — a high probability scenario combined with a high risk scenario, and it is a no-brainer that the world will do something to risk mitigate the outcome. Switching to something other than fossil fuels is the obvious strategy.

      • Did you really just read the first paragraph? What you say has no relevance to anything I said. Simple probability theory? I probably learned this with set theory at 15 or so.

        Just to summarise the bit you didn’t read –

        1. we know that oil and gas is limited but don’t give a rat’s arse – there is actually quite a lot left and substitution feasible at $100/barrel;
        2. catastrophic climate change might indeed happen at any time – I keep linking to Woods Hole abrupt climate change page – but CO2 change is so minor it will probably be something else and ditto with the rat’s appendage – it is something we will need to deal with if it happens – it is certain that climate will change;
        3. technological innovation will happen at an ever faster rate – we could push that along a bit in the energy field but we have instead an obsessive fixation on failed and deeply impractical mechanisms – so ditto with the rat’s things.

      • “we know that oil and gas is limited but don’t give a rat’s arse – there is actually quite a lot left and substitution feasible at $100/barrel;”

        You have no quantitative estimate, which is what I do.

        “technological innovation will happen at an ever faster rate”

        You don’t try to describe technological advances, which is what goes into my fossil fuel depletion models.

      • I read on WUWT about how fracking could speed up the replenishment from the shale repository into the reservoir. Put a nuke in the shale to accomplish fracking. Do you have that in your DE model, WHT?

      • “I read on WUWT about how fracking could speed up the replenishment from the shale repository into the reservoir. Put a nuke in the shale to accomplish fracking. Do you have that in your DE model, WHT?”

        Well, like I said, I actually do the stuff that you won’t do, which is to lift a finger and do some mathematical analysis. Do you actually look at production extrapolation from hydraulically fractured wells?
        I do:
        http://www.theoildrum.com/node/9139/889114

      • No offense Webby – I would rather believe wikipedia than you – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reserves-to-production_ratio – and I still don’t give a rat’s arse.

      • peterdavies252

        Yep. Been too long since I been to skool. Thanks WHT and Chief for pointing out the error of my ways. :)

    • Web, be sure to buy your license first…

      http://www.eastoregonian.com/free/oregon-asks-to-kill-salmon-eating-birds/article_44c2ab88-9024-11e1-a2d5-001a4bcf887a.html

      but only for the one that deserves what it has coming to ‘it’.

  23. What is so bad about global warming? How bad is it?”

    “2. Six psychological strategies that communicators can use to bolster the recognition of climate change as a moral imperative.

    Burdens versus benefits: Focus messaging on the costs, not benefits, that we may impose on future generations”

    I am interested in what what are the costs and benefits of climate change and what are the costs and benefits of the proposed mitigation policies, like CO2 taxes and Cap and Trade schemes? What might be the unintended consequences of such mitigation schemes? What is likely to be the compliance cost of such schemes when they are implemented to the standard that would be required for trade in a virtually unmeasurable commodity (emissions of the Kyoto gasses)?

    What are our estimates of the damage cost of Global Warming based on? William Nordhaus states (p24, http://nordhaus.econ.yale.edu/Accom_Notes_100507.pdf ):
    “The major issue at this stage is that the database for impact studies continues to be relatively small.”

    Nordhaus also seems to say there is a lack of convincing evidence that even worst case would be catastrophic:
    “Economic policy in the face of sever tail events”, (March 2012) http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1467-9779.2011.01544.x/full

    “The present study is intended to put the Dismal Theorem in context and examine the range of its relevance, with an application to catastrophic climate change. I conclude that tail events are sometimes of extreme importance, and we must be extremely careful to include them in situations of deep uncertainty. However, we conclude that no loaded gun of strong tail dominance has been uncovered to date.”

    So, I wonder, how bad is global warming? Can we justify implementing policies that will do economic damage given the available estimates of the consequences of global warming are so uncertain and as Nordhaus says: “we conclude that no loaded gun of strong tail dominance has been uncovered to date.”?

    • And take the issue of climate change that the Left is using to take over the economy. We know where it leads. History tells us. Everyone works for the government and when the liberal Utopia implodes around everyone’s ears the Red Shirts come to break down the doors.

  24. It is difficult for people to react to things that haven’t happened yet. We are constantly seeing here the need for proof climate change is already dangerous or, if not, it has been proven beyond doubt that it will happen. Thankfully people making the decisions can’t afford to take the risk of inaction. Just like earthquake proofing is done based on odds, climate-proofing is already beginning in the area of planning flood barriers for major cities. A politician who votes against forward thinking of this kind risks looking foolish in the face of evidence that already exists. Imagine yourself putting forward an argument in a coastal city that nothing needs to be done to climate-proof it because you personally don’t see the change that is already happening and you don’t believe the scientists anyway.

    • More ‘tail dominance’ thinking instead of admitting to yourself that you are entranced by worst case scenearios and are willing to set the precautionary theory on its head because you SUCK.

    • Jim D,

      “In the face of massive uncertainty, hedging your bets and keeping your options open is almost always the right strategy. Money and technology are our raw materials for options. A healthy society is constantly scanning the horizon for threats and developing contingency plans to meet them, but the loss of economic and technological development that would be required to eliminate all theorized climate change risk (or all risk from genetic technologies or, for that matter, all risk from killer asteroids) would cripple our ability to deal with virtually every other foreseeable and unforeseeable risk, not to mention our ability to lead productive and interesting lives in the meantime.

      So what should we do about the real danger of global warming? In my view, we should be funding investments in technology that would provide us with response options in the event that we are currently radically underestimating the impacts of global warming. In the event that we discover at some point decades in the future that warming is far worse than currently anticipated, which would you rather have at that point: the marginal reduction in emissions that would have resulted up to that point from any realistic global mitigation program, or having available the product of a decades-long technology project to develop tools to ameliorate the problem as we then understand it?

      The best course of action with regard to this specific problem is rationally debatable, but at the level of strategy, we can be confident that humanity will face many difficulties in the upcoming century, as it has in every century. We just don’t know which ones they will be. This implies that the correct grand strategy for meeting them is to maximize total technical capabilities in the context of a market-oriented economy that can integrate highly unstructured information, and, most important, to maintain a democratic political culture that can face facts and respond to threats as they develop.”

      http://www.tnr.com/blog/critics/75757/why-the-decision-tackle-climate-change-isn%E2%80%99t-simple-al-gore-says?page=0,1

      • The problem is that, without some kind of price on carbon, there is no incentive for the development of the technologies that will be needed to either produce power without emitting carbon or geoengineering a solution.

        How is the so-called “free market” supposed to provide that incentive?

      • David Appell

        The problem is that, without some kind of price on carbon, there is no incentive for the development of the technologies

        You are starting from the assumption that the damages from GW are greater than the benefits or that the damages of GW are worse than the damages due to the damages of raising the cost of energy that pricing CO2-e would do. But that assumptions does not seem to have much evidence to support it (as the Nordhause papers seem to suggest: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1467-9779.2011.01544.x/full

        Secondly, you ask:
        How is the so-called “free market” supposed to provide that incentive?

        If the market was free of distortions we’ve imposed then nuclear power would be far cheaper (and safer). Then you wouldn’t need a CO2 piece to have low emisisons energy.

        I suggest CO2 tax and Cap and Trade is not going to work. It cannot be applied internationally. It cannot even be applied in the USA or the developed countries. The compliance cost would be enormous and will always be subject to massive rorting.

        CO2 taxes and Cap and Trade schemes are penalty schemes. People do not like being penalised. So they will not be accepted.

        If you want to argue for government intervention to allow low emissions technologies to be commercially competitive I’d suggest we should argue for intervene to remove the masses of past, bad interventions that society has imposed to favour some and penalise other technologies (such as nuclear power). Remove the impediments to a free market for energy as a first step.

      • I am all for more nuclear power. But markets need to be regulated in some fashion, for many reasons — to provide safety and stability, to avoid monopolies, to counteract negative externalities, etc. There will probably forever be disagreement about the appropriate level of regulation, but regulations have their purpose just as much as the market has its purpose.

      • I am with Appell on this one. We shouldn’t have given up on Solyndra so soon. We just have to have the guts to subsidize till it works, or go broke trying.

      • We are subsidizing fossil fuel companies by massive amounts — over a hundred billion dollars a year in added health costs alone — so why shouldn’t we subsidize other companies as well?

      • Because fossil fuels, and nulear, provide useful, dispatchable energy.

      • Fossil fuels provide energy, but also create a lot of damage. Generating power with fossil fuels creates more damage than value-added, according to Yale economist William Nordhaus in a 2011 paper:

        Muller, Nicholas Z., Robert Mendelsohn, and William Nordhaus. 2011. “Environmental Accounting for Pollution in the United States Economy.” American Economic Review, 101(5): 1649–75.
        http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/aer.101.5.1649
        http://nordhaus.econ.yale.edu/documents/Env_Accounts_052609.pdf

        To summarize that paper’s findings: for every $1 in value that comes from coal-generated electricity, it creates $2.20 in damages. Total damages: $70 billion per year (in 2012 dollars).

        Petroleum-generated electricity is even worse: $5.13 in damages for $1 in value.

        The National Academy of Sciences estimates that fossil fuel use causes damages of at least $120 B/yr to health and the environment:

        “Hidden Costs of Energy: Unpriced Consequences of Energy Production and Use”
        National Research Council, 2010
        http://books.nap.edu/catalog/12794.html

        Of course, no one on forums like this wants to mention external costs, because including them makes it clear that we are all subsidizing fossil fuels by a huge amount through worse health and higher medical costs. So a few Solyndras is a small price to pay to get energy without the negative side effects.

      • I’m actually more on David’s side on this one. The US has subsidized all sorts of endevors. A transnational rail system would have likely taken decades had it not been subidized with land grants. Think about ther number of colleges which started out as land grant institutions. Nuclear power had billions of federal dollars spent towards developing a commercial generating capacity. While I believe in a market approach, saying let the markets decide everything is not realistic.

      • Yes, I am in favor of long-term investment in climate-proofing the infrastructure, and promoting capabilities for sustainable energy, water supply and food production, and having it funded by fossil-carbon taxes rather than regular taxes. These need long-term planning and funding and cannot wait for last-minute fund-raising and quick fixes which would be more painful both financially and in terms of the lack of preparedness.

      • Exactly! Why stop wearing animal fur in the middle of the Ice Age when if you survive you may someday breathe the energy of the stars?

      • Wagathon, We will still need to wait a bit, as the first attempt,…

        http://www.nydailynews.com/life-style/health/swiss-women-dies-giving-water-food-thought-live-sunlight-article-1.1067359

        Failed.

      • Is your point that humans can coonvience themselves that any silly idea makes sense?

  25. You could use EXACTLY the same arguments to tie Democrat/Left-wing politicians and their supporters and the massive current governmental borrowing.
    Governments who borrow, say in 30 bonds, are essentially placing a tax on the unborn.
    Exactly the same six psychological challenges posed by state borrowing and the Democrats/Left-wing are blind to the consequences.
    The only major difference is we know paying off the borrowing is going to hurt the people in the USA 30 years down the line, but we cannot say the same thing about linking CO2 to adverse climate impacts.

    • Democrats aren’t blind to the debt issue. On the contrary, some have proposed solving it by raising taxes back to the levels they used to be, but many Republicans are opposed to that, which shows that they aren’t really interested in solving the debt problem but in using it to achieve their goals. And many Democrats think this isn’t the time to try to solve the debt problem — that a higher priority is getting the economy back to its potential level.

      • The debt problem and the emission problem are interrelated, ie exporting emissions to less altruistic regimes.

        The Uk divergence is a good example,where production rated emissions have decreased,whilst inversely consumption based emissions have increased .Redistribution of emissions at cost of internal production ,decreased taxation and jobs is a factor that needs to be debated .

        The problem is highlighted by the commons committee eg fig1 and 2
        http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201012/cmselect/cmenergy/1646/1646vw18.htm

      • As I read it, we’re already at the peak of the laffer curve. So increasing taxes will only depress revenues. It shouldn’t even be a surprise. For the past century or so, Politics has operated as a tuning feedback loop, to design a tax system that maximized the amount of money politicians have to buy votes with.

  26. Steven Mosher

    You are confused.
    1. sensitivity is defined as the increase in temperature given an increase in forcing in watts.
    For example: If the sun increased by 1 watt, what would the increase in temperature be. Lets start with that.

    There are two questions.

    1. What is the sensitivity ( response) in C, to an increase in forcinging (Watts) This figure is INDEPENDENT of the source of the forcing.

    2. What is the increase in forcing due to doubling of C02

    • If you look at the full Mauna Loa record, transient climate sensitivity(*), which is a lower bound on climate sensitivity, is at least 2.1 C:

      http://davidappell.blogspot.com/2012/03/better-way-to-calculate-climate.html

      (*) To be sure, this simple calculation does not exclude many factors that also influence climate, especially aerosols. It’s simply the change in temperature that has occurred compared to the change in atmospheric CO2.

      • David, just plot LN(CO2) vs Temp and take the slope. This gives a climate sensitivity of 2.1 even after all the fiddling around with the temp data. .

        http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w318/DocMartyn/LNCO2vstemp.jpg

        Now worries.

      • That’s exactly what I did.

        PS: The dT ~ ln(CO2) relationship begins to break down for higher values of CO2.

      • Brandon, the guesstimate that both David and I get; 2.1 degrees per CO2 doubling is the upper boundary. As both methodologies ignore other contributions of gasses like methane for instance, but rule out the fat-tail estimates of >2.5 degrees; so values of 8 degrees are out of the window.
        The bottom plot I present shows what the temperature would have been without the [CO2] increase, indicating that large scale temperature fluctuations, as in 1920-1980, will still be observed. If the sensitivity is actuality of the order of 0.5-1 degree, all we have witnessed since 1985 is a fluctuation similar to the one that began 95 years.

      • Brandon: Yes, I’m assuming all change in temperature is due to CO2 (and associated feedbacks). This is just a blog post, not a scientific paper.

        But if you look at the change in atmospheric carbon content from, say, CO2 vs CH4, the vast majority is due to the former. In terms of carbon, anthropogenic CH4 emissions are about 2-3% of CO2 emissions, Yes, it has a higher warming potential, but it also dissipates out of the atmosphere much quicker. In the end, most of the carbon we put into the atmosphere will be from CO2, and most of the manmade forcing will be from CO2.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        DocMartyn:

        Brandon, the guesstimate that both David and I get; 2.1 degrees per CO2 doubling is the upper boundary. As both methodologies ignore other contributions of gasses like methane for instance, but rule out the fat-tail estimates of >2.5 degrees; so values of 8 degrees are out of the window.

        No, it isn’t. It isn’t any sort of actual boundary. All it is is the lower boundary for transient climate sensitivity in some hypothetical world where the only greenhouse gas is carbon dioxide.

        It isn’t an upper boundary because transient climate sensitivity is different from climate sensitivity as a whole. It isn’t a lower boundary because it ignores far too much forcing from other greenhouse gasses.

        In fact, the uncertainty on how to handle transient climate sensitivity is so high, it’s impossible to know whether the bias I’ve been discussing is larger or smaller than it. That means it is impossible to know whether you guys are calculating an upper boundary, lower boundary, or just some value between the two.

        Which is fine, as long as you actually say it. If you two tell people what you’ve calculated, and what the limitations on interpreting it are, there’s no problem. But you aren’t. Neither of you said a word about the issue I brought up. David Appell didn’t even understand why the issue mattered so much (he didn’t even understand what sort of effect it would have).

        And that’s the problem. It is not acceptable for an important bias to go undiscussed, and apparently not even understood.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        I find these “analyses” amusing. Ignoring confounding factors is generally bad, but how can anyone act like carbon dioxide is the only greenhouse gas?

        I think it’d be interesting to see the same calculations done with effective CO2 levels,

      • Brandon: “Climate sensitivity” can mean different things. Often it means the change in temperature from a given change in a specific forcing, such as CO2. So you could calculate a different sensitivity for each GHG. But, of course, ultimately you want to know the sensitivity to all known forcings, which means you would, in principle, need to consider all GHGs as well as any expected solar changes, volcanic factors, etc.

        My little blog analysis wasn’t intended to be precise science. It’s just an example.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        David Appell:

        My little blog analysis wasn’t intended to be precise science. It’s just an example.

        Imprecision is fine. What isn’t fine is presenting an analysis as concluding something without offering any words of caution when it’s conclusion is necessarily overestimated. It’s even worse when you claim to be able to calculate the statistical uncertainty of your answer while ignoring such a major bias in it.

        And that’s ignoring the fact you call your answer a “lower bound on the climate sensitivity” because a response to forcing happens over time. That means you’re mentioning a bias which increases your answer, but ignoring a bias which would decrease it.

        It’s especially bad when you realize the negative bias you don’t mention may well overwhelm the positive bias you do mention, thus invalidating your claim of a “lower bound.”

      • How is ignoring other GHGs going to give a *lower* climate sensitivity?

      • Sorry, my previous reply wasn’t clear. Wouldn’t including other GHGs make for a *higher* (transient) climate sensitivity?

      • Yes, it would be nice to see some calculation with effective CO2 and also considering the temperature of the effective radiant layer and the effected surface.

        For example: If you just add a surface impact of 3.7 Wm-2 uniformly across the globe, there would be about 40% less impact at the warmest part of the tropics, the full impact at some magic average region of the global and 40% greater impact at the polar regions, unless the polar region has virtually no water vapor and an average maximum temperature less than -20 degrees C. That seems to make the problem a little more interesting.

        Try it sometime, just convert the regional temperatures to equivalent Flux, add the 3.7, convert back to temperature and redo the average. But then, if there is enough water vapor prior to the additional flux, the temperature increase is less. Silly relationship looks non-linear :)

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        David Appell:

        Sorry, my previous reply wasn’t clear. Wouldn’t including other GHGs make for a *higher* (transient) climate sensitivity?

        This does not speak well for any analysis you might offer. You have this effect exactly backwards. The fact adding non-CO2 greenhouse gasses will cause temperatures to go up does not mean adding them to any analysis will make the result go up.

        In your case, the reason considering the other greenhouse gasses will lower the expected sensitivity is simple. You say we can expect a doubling of forcings from CO2 in 166 years. If you considered the other greenhouse gasses, this value would drop as we will see a doubling of effective CO2 levels well before we see a doubling of actual CO2 levels.

        Suppose for example, we set your D (doubling time) to 100 years. We then multiply it by your m_Hadley, getting 1.26 C. Multiply it by m_(UAH LT), and we get 1.35C.

        To put it simply, the more positive forcings there are, the lower D is, and thus the lower your calculated sensitivity will be. To put it less simply, by ignoring other greenhouse gasses, you assign all observed warming to carbon dioxide, inflating it’s significance and your calculation.

        You’re assigning it blame it doesn’t deserve, then actually expressing surprise this would artificially inflate the value you blame on it.

      • I understand what David Appel is trying to do and I find it a clever identity. He assumes first that concentration of CO2 increases exponentially over time with an exponent a.

        C = C0 * exp(At)

        then he applies the climate sensitivity approximation

        dT = k * ln (C/C0)

        substituting the first into the second:

        dT = k * A * t

        we know dT and A and t from the empirical data.
        If C0 = 280 and C = 394, then k = dT/(A*t) or k = dT/ln(C/C0)
        take your pick, they both give k of approximately 2 degree C.

        The cleverness is just in realizing that the log of an exponential results in the exponent alone. Can’t argue the math, as that is why they call it an identity.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        David Appell:

        Brandon: Yes, I’m assuming all change in temperature is due to CO2 (and associated feedbacks). This is just a blog post, not a scientific paper.

        Are you seriously suggesting it’s okay to grossly mislead people because you’re doing it in a blog post, not a scientific paper? Good luck with that argument.

        But if you look at the change in atmospheric carbon content from, say, CO2 vs CH4, the vast majority is due to the former. In terms of carbon, anthropogenic CH4 emissions are about 2-3% of CO2 emissions, Yes, it has a higher warming potential, but it also dissipates out of the atmosphere much quicker. In the end, most of the carbon we put into the atmosphere will be from CO2, and most of the manmade forcing will be from CO2.

        It’s funny. I actually know what the forcings from various greenhouse gasses are thought to be. I’ve even discussed them in some detail. That’s why I can tell you, off the top of my head, carbon dioxide provides ~63% of the forcings greenhouse gasses provide. That’s also why I picked “100” for my example, as it almost perfectly meets the ratio of the actual values.

        But by all means. Ignore what the IPCC says the relative forcings of various greenhouse gasses are. Or accept them as true, and just willingly mislead people who read what you say, because you’re only posting on a blog.

        I mean, 63% does count as “most,” so clearly we don’t need to worry about the other 37%.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        Oh, and to be clear, I’m talking about effects over long periods of time, so the shorter lifespan of things like methane is being considered. If I were not, the numbers would be quite different, as shown by this graph.

      • WHT

        take your pick, they both give k of approximately 2 degree C.

        As the warming 1910-1940 is considered natural, the probable man made component is at most half of the observed warming, making climate sensitivity k of approximately 1 deg C.

      • “63%”? That’s a very high level of precision — higher than what the IPCC claims.

        Most atmospheric methane breaks down rather quickly to water or CO2. In the end, most of the carbon man adds to the atmosphere will be in the form of CO2.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        David Appell, your response is pathetic:

        “63%”? That’s a very high level of precision — higher than what the IPCC claims.

        This is nonsense. The IPCC gives the total forcing of greenhouse gases as 2.63, and the forcing from CO2 as 1.66. Both values are given to three significant digits, and the value I gave was given to two. This means the value I gave was actually less precise than the IPCC values.

        You can argue I should give uncertainty ranges for it, but given your continued and willful refusal to account for the large bias I’ve pointed out, that will ring quite hollow.

        But hey, I’m a sporting fellow. I’ll go ahead and give you the most favorable value possible. That would be 77%. That means the bias would cause your value to be at least one fifth lower than you give.

        Most atmospheric methane breaks down rather quickly to water or CO2. In the end, most of the carbon man adds to the atmosphere will be in the form of CO2.

        This is an incredibly pathetic response. I specifically gave a link to show the importance of the time period covered. You ignored it. Rather than actually account for the issue, you just say “most” of the temperature change is due to carbon dioxide.

        Most means more than 50%, making it a meaningless criteria. I’ve specifically said even if one accounts for the bias I discussed, “most” of the effect will still be due to carbon dioxide. This means your response to me is completely non-responsive.

        To put it bluntly, you are willfully misleading people by refusing to address a significant bias you know exists, but refuse to account for. The fact you haven’t even discussed the possibility of adding a warning to your post strongly suggests you have no integrity on this issue.

      • Have you noticed that the IPCC also gives error bars?

      • Look: I *defined* climate sensitivity as “the change in global mean surface temperature for a doubling of atmospheric CO2 level.” So anybody who actually read my blog would have seen that and so would know my context. Furthermore, I explicitedly wrote that one of my assumptions was “temperature change is proportional to the logarithm of the CO2 level.”

        http://davidappell.blogspot.com/2012/03/what-does-real-data-say-about-climate.html

        That right there defines my model, and specifies its limitations. If you don’t like it, leave a comment on my blog (warning: rude or ad hominem comments will be deleted), or start your own blog.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        David Appell, what would it take to get you to read what I say?

        Have you noticed that the IPCC also gives error bars?

        No, I don’t think I realized the IPCC gave uncertainty ranges. It’s not like I did a calculation explicitly based on them or anything:

        But hey, I’m a sporting fellow. I’ll go ahead and give you the most favorable value possible. That would be 77%.

        The total forcings from greenhouse gasses in the IPCC report are given as 2.63 (+/- 0.26). The forcings from CO2 alone are given as 1.66 (+/- 0.17). The ratio given for proportional forcing from CO2 by the central values is 1.66/2.63 = 63%. The ratio given by taking the minimum value for total forcing and maximum value for forcing from CO2 (giving you the most favorable result possible) is 1.83/2.37 = 77%.

        Oh my god! I actually did notice at the values I explicitly referred to do exist!

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        David Appell:

        Look: I *defined* climate sensitivity as “the change in global mean surface temperature for a doubling of atmospheric CO2 level.” So anybody who actually read my blog would have seen that and so would know my context.

        What they might not know is what you said isn’t actually. What you gave was actually a sensitivity to a doubling of atmospheric CO2 levels if no other greenhouse gasses exist.

        Slight difference.

        Furthermore, I explicitedly wrote that one of my assumptions was “temperature change is proportional to the logarithm of the CO2 level.”

        That assumption is fine. It’s also irrelevant. The relationship between CO2 and temperature doesn’t say anything about whether or not other factors are affecting temperature as well. It’s akin to saying temperatures in a room in winter are related to the amount of sun the room gets, but not mentioning the fact the furnace is on.

      • Maximum climate sensitivity using high school statistics

        CO2 concentration data is available from Mauna Loa from 1960-2011.

        Global mean temperature data of HADCRUT3 is available from 1960-2011.

        Their correlation graph is shown here => http://bit.ly/Iu4OXV

        This result gives 1ppm increase in CO2 concentration corresponds to an increase in global mean temperature of 0.0087 deg C.

        Assuming ALL this warming is caused by CO2, we have the estimate:

        Maximum Climate Sensitivity = 0.0087 (deg C/ppm) *280 (ppm) = 2.44 deg C.

        Assuming half the warming is due to natural causes, actual climate sensitivity = 1.2 deg C.

      • Girma, that was OK until the last sentence. Natural causes and other effects, if anything have hidden some of the warming since 1960 (mainly aerosols) and the sun hasn’t done much, and what is to say these other effects have suddenly stopped now. So you end up with 2.4+ per doubling from your data. Skeptics may not like this approach because it doesn’t help them in any way, so I think they will soon advise you to stop before doing more harm to them with this particular graph.

      • Or try fitting the logarithmic function? :D

      • Once again The Girma is nailed by his own ineptitude.

        Jim D takes the graph that The Girma links to and correctly points out that it leads to a 2.4 degree C change for a doubling of CO2.

        The graph also confirms exactly what David Appell was talking about. The line is simply a linearized variation of the accepted logarithmic sensitivity of temperature to CO2 concentration.

        Now watch as The Girma doubles back and begins complaining that we are misinterpreting what the graph says.

      • Yes, using a log axis for CO2 would have been more consistent with AGW and would have given 2.2 C per doubling (similar to what DocMartyn found). I am glad the skeptics are converging on this.

      • Jim D | April 29, 2012 at 12:19 pm |

        A minimum sensitivity of 2.2C/doubling, no?

        We can’t certain that confounding variables and negative feedbacks are either fixed or decrease faster than the log function, while positive feedbacks are either linear or grow at least as fast as logarithmically.

        After all, how much higher are we likely to see particulate emission rates go, for example? Given the very short residency time compared CO2, they’d have to be increasing at least as a Fibonacci sequence, which would come to a limit all its own (qv London smog).

        Far more likely we’re seeing a transient 2C +/- 0.5C confounding variable.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        I feel obliged to point out Girma, Bart R, Jim D and WebHubTelescope just promoted the exact error I stressed DocMartyn and David Appell had made. In the exact fork I discussed the error, no less.

        Apparently, people on both sides of the global warming debate want to act like carbon dioxide is the only greenhouse gas. I find that mind-boggling.

        But for those who might actually care about analyses based on reality, rather than some hypothetical world in which things like methane don’t exist, here’s an additional thought. The forcing added by greenhouse gas emissions varies based on the time period covered. If one uses the values for a 100 year period, approximately one third of greenhouse gas forcings come from non-CO2 greenhouse gasses. However, if one uses values for a 20 year period, that value becomes approximately one half.

        The point here is it is impossible to directly compare greenhouse gas forcings to temperature in the approach being used. That only works if you (nonsensically) ignore all non-CO2 greenhouse gasses. Once you start having different gasses with different residency times, the approach becomes impossible. The only way to salvage it would be to account for different residency times in the calculation of effective CO2 levels.

        But what are the odds people who are okay with the insane and over-simplified calculations that make no sense would actually do something like that?

      • “Yes, using a log axis for CO2 would have been more consistent with AGW and would have given 2.2 C per doubling (similar to what DocMartyn found). I am glad the skeptics are converging on this.”

        http://img717.imageshack.us/img717/1973/co2vshadcrut4.gif

        The above is a semi-log plot over the Mauna Loa CO2 collection period which suggests that:
        dT = 3.16 * ln (CO2)
        and
        3.16*ln(2) = 2.2 C

        All the skeptics are converging around their ringleader Girma and I say let them believe in the trendology. The climate scientists are doing the heavy lifting anyways.

        I should add that Brandon doesn’t seem to get the fact that it really is a matter of pointing out the obvious first and foremost. There is no equilibrium included, other greenhouse gases aren’t included, aersols aren’t considered, natural variance isn’t included. This is really about showing how Girma is changing his tune and has embarked on his journey into becoming a warmist.

      • Yes, it is oversimplistic to just plot CO2 and T. The IPCC estimate is that other GHGs and aerosols are roughly canceling and both shorter-lived, so this works better than it should. Solar influences are ruled out by not including the earlier part of the century. If you just plot 1980-2011, you would get a higher number presumably because aerosol levels have stabilized. These plots just go to show how a typical CO2 effect shows up with an explainable magnitude. Ignoring CO2 or reducing its effect makes these much harder to explain without invoking unmeasured forcing changes.

      • Up to the late middle of the last century, sunspot correlation with global temperature was very impressive; strong enough to dominate the isolates of the GMT curve over any other single source for at least eight decades and possibly for centuries.

        http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut4gl/mean:41/mean:61/isolate:123/plot/sidc-ssn/mean:11/mean:13/from:1850/normalise/scale:-0.125/to:1960/plot/sidc-ssn/mean:11/mean:13/from:1960/normalise/scale:-0.125

        After the mid-1950’s, something appears to have perturbed that relationship, and the correlation vanished. We no longer have as strong a connection to solar activity in our weather as once we did.

        As others have pointed out, other GHG’s are short-lived and largely self-cancelling; over a decade, their influence on GMT can be seen to be weak or to be well-represented as a feedback of CO2. Math, it tells us things.

        Like that the sensitivity is quasi-dynamic; at this point, it is likely about 2.2C/doubling with an approximate 2.0+/-0.5C confounding variable obscuring the rest of the dominant sensitivity.

        As CO2 level rises, sensitivity is likely also to rise in some nonlinear fashion. (Note the word ‘transient’ ought be sprinkled here and there in this discussion, but isn’t often enough.)

      • Bart: Until you can prove that CO2’s absorption by its increase has caused the spectrally integrated OLR to decrease by a proportionate amount with respect to the surface emission temperature you are speaking pure crap. This has never been accomplished and there seems to be no hurry by warming fanatics like yourself to ever get it done. The reason is the boogeyman of truth awaits on the other end that proves your sensitivity factors are the nonsense and crap the founding work always suggested they would be.. 100 billion dolars later and counting! Do we get our money back?

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        Bart R:

        As others have pointed out, other GHG’s are short-lived and largely self-cancelling;

        I’m not sure I can adequately express how wrong this is. Please reread it, and try posting what you actually mean.

        over a decade, their influence on GMT can be seen to be weak or to be well-represented as a feedback of CO2. Math, it tells us things.

        I would love to hear how math tells us something like methane “can be seen to be… well-represented as a feedback of CO2.” This is especially true since there’s a feedback with methane which creates CO2.

      • Chuck Wiese | April 30, 2012 at 3:09 am |

        You misidentify me. I’m a chaos fanatic, not a warming fanatic. Entirely different thing. So let’s try to avoid personal slurs, insults and invective, shall we, to see if we can get to an honest dialogue about actual science?

        A chaos fanatic doesn’t need to demonstrate squat about OLR wrt SET, for example, as external forcing remains perturbation regardless of the exact path of change of the level of the system.

        All that is needed is
        a) for CO2 to have a long ultimate residency (it clearly does, compounded by the huge nonlinearities of the medium and short term buffering mechanisms), and
        b) significant interaction of CO2 with OLR in the lab. The bizzaro ‘requirements’ you speculate about (note we’re discussing the ideas, not you personally) are simply details in a complex of systems that have been too poorly observed until lately (and are still orders of magnitude too poorly observed, which I’m not blaming you personally for, after all you appear to have nothing to do with observing anything at all, so can’t be held liable) for your assertions (again, referring to ideas, not personalities; the ideas are well worth insulting, whereas I don’t know you and consider you’re likely a fine human being) to be even a little meaningful at a practical level.

        Which puts them in good company with your bizzaro accounting (again, the ideas; I mean no disrespect to you, unless you happen to be an accountant, in which case I’d have to ask what are you thinking!, putting your profession into such disrepute by such incompetency). Have you been using JoNovamation (no insult intended to Jo Nova, however misleading her campaign of disinformation and confusion may be) to imagine that you once had $100 billion that was snuck out of your wallet without you noticing?

        More simply, TOA imbalance appears to be that ‘truth’ waiting at the other side, and it’s not kind to your suppositions. http://data.giss.nasa.gov/imbalance/maps.html

      • Brandon Shollenberger | April 30, 2012 at 3:41 am |

        After a decade in the atmosphere, methane pretty much has already become CO2.

        And both of them have had the effect of increasing release of methane and CO2 from their respective sequestration under ground and sea in one form or another due rising temperatures (as confirmed by BEST to a confidence of 1000:3).

        And while increased CO2 increased biomass, it also increases microbial tendency to alter the atmosphere by — guess what? That’s right, among other things, releasing more methane.

        See? Feedback.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        Bart R:

        And both of them have had the effect of increasing release of methane and CO2 from their respective sequestration under ground and sea in one form or another due rising temperatures (as confirmed by BEST to a confidence of 1000:3).

        First, I want to point out your parenthetical is unclear, at best. To anyone who didn’t know what BEST was, it would sound like you’re claiming BEST confirmed methane and CO2 caused feedbacks, releasing more of themselves.

        Second, methane currently accounts for something like 20% of the increased greenhouse effect. What you describe couldn’t possibly account for that, even if it were true. And there’s no actual indication it is.

        See? Feedback.

        You weren’t asked if there was a feedback. You were asked how something which currently makes up 20% of the increased greenhouse effect “can be seen to be… well-represented as a feedback of CO2.” You haven’t answered that question. Instead, you’ve given a bogus answer to another question and acted like it answered mine. That’s either stupid or dishonest.

        You’ve also failed to address the absurd comment you made, which I highlighted. Since you haven’t, I’ll mock it now. You claimed:

        other GHG’s are short-lived and largely self-cancelling

        By definition, all greenhouse gasses have a positive forcing. They could not possibly cancel out. It is hard to imagine anything dumber one could say about greenhouse gasses.

      • Brandon Shollenberger | April 30, 2012 at 2:44 pm |

        Huh. It seemed so patent that water vapor is both short-lived and somewhat self-cancelling when it becomes cloud, that I wouldn’t need to explain it to anyone who was willing and able to read so far into this thread and make such learned points.

        But then, I’d also have imagined anyone so equipped would know what was meant by BEST would be http://berkeleyearth.org/. (And people call _me_ Professor Pedantic?)

        And this ‘stupid or dishonest’ thing, you’ve excluded several other options:
        a) trying to get you to think for yourself;
        b) limited by how much typing I can do in a day;
        c) giving you the benefit of the doubt that you can get from a logical premise to an unavoidable conclusion.

        “You weren’t asked if there was a feedback. You were asked how something which currently makes up 20% of the increased greenhouse effect “can be seen to be… well-represented as a feedback of CO2.” You haven’t answered that question.”

        Without commenting on your unestablished 20% premise, if there is a thing that is a feedback, that is accepted as a feedback, that isn’t then disproved as a feedback, then the amount of its contribution, from fractional to many orders of magnitude more is irrelevant. Methane blooms filling the sky with thousands of times the mass of CO2 in the atmosphere could in theory (though certainly not in fact) still be a feedback, if the cause were the CO2 raising the temperature enough to vaporize the methane. Nothing in your 20% figure is the leastwise relevant.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        Bart R:

        Huh. It seemed so patent that water vapor is both short-lived and somewhat self-cancelling when it becomes cloud, that I wouldn’t need to explain it to anyone who was willing and able to read so far into this thread and make such learned points.

        That could possibly make sense if you had been talking about water vapor. It doesn’t make sense given you said:

        other GHG’s are short-lived and largely self-cancelling

        You referred to all non-carbon dioxide greenhouse gasses. You cannot say one of these is self-canceling, therefore all of them are. That’s basic logic. To demonstrate my point, methane isn’t self-canceling to any extent, therefore your comment is wrong.

        Nothing in your 20% figure is the leastwise relevant.

        You said all non-CO2 greenhouse gasses are either “weak” or “well-represented as a feedback of CO2.” I pointed out the magnitude of methane’s effect to show it isn’t weak. So despite your claim, it is completely relevant. Moreover, you’ve once again completely failed to answer the question you were asked. As I said before:

        You were asked how something which currently makes up 20% of the increased greenhouse effect “can be seen to be… well-represented as a feedback of CO2.”

        You still haven’t answered that question. You claim the forcings from methane emissions can be well-represented as a feedback of CO2, yet every time you’re challenged to show this, you discuss anything but the issue.

        And yes, it is either stupid or dishonest to respond to a question by saying something which doesn’t answer the question but act as though it does. You can either provide an explanation, admit your comment was false, or continue being non-responsive.

        Two of those options are reasonable.

      • Brandon Shollenberger | May 3, 2012 at 1:03 am |

        It’s funny that we’re disagreeing, as we’re so largely in agreement, but one ought get to the bottom of differences, to see if at the roots there is something interesting. Like the princess and the pea.

        “You cannot say one of these is self-canceling, therefore all of them are. That’s basic logic. To demonstrate my point, methane isn’t self-canceling to any extent, therefore your comment is wrong.”

        http://yourlogicalfallacyis.com/black-or-white

        I can say one of them is self-cancelling, therefore the set of other GHG’s has a self-cancelling property. As I said (or rather supported someone else saying), “largely self-cancelling”, and water vapor is by most measures the largest of the GHG’s, the set of other GHGs is largely self-cancelling, due to the largest of the GHG’s (by a plurality) being largely self-cancelling.

        And compared CO2, all the GHG’s are short-lived, or become CO2.

        Sure, I’m not dismissing the other GHG’s. Truth be told, we’re so twisted in this thread, I’m not entirely sure I remember the original point.

        But pedantry is so compelling an addiction. Doh, look. I’m preaching to the choir on that.

    • Not following you Steve; surely the wavelength of the photons that constitute the watt of energy are also important?
      What is the albedo of the Earth with respect to the two equal energy packets?
      Is the albedo for sw and lw radiation the same, in all land and aquatic environments?

  27. Which moral imperative?

    • Dennis | April 28, 2012 at 8:25 pm |

      If we’re taking our morals lessons from real estate speculators and flippers wrapping themselves in the flag, we’re seeing some other kind of failure.

      Oh, and in case you missed the source that inspired the video, the speculation is running toward 1965’s:

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZaGVCO6CByQ&feature=related

      Though of course no one in America misses the point of what’s really happening in this election year:

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m22tn8bp7uc

      • Thanks for linking the spoof video, I also agree with the core message of the video, but I don’t care who put it out or who is funding them.

    • Dennis

      That is just brilliant.

      Thank you.

      Does any one know the name of the presenter?

      • Girma | April 29, 2012 at 1:33 am |

        Mr. Orssengo, the political advertisement was paid for by a shell group that is a shell group of a shell group related to the Cato Institute and funded principally by Howard Rich, a man who made his money by speculating on real estate specializing in the technique called ‘flipping’: the flipper buys a distressed property, has a crew go in to intensively apply cosmetic changes on a schedule so short it will avoid inspection or interference by concerned neighbors to hide the defects, then sell the property at an inflated price using high-pressure sales tactics.
        The Koch brothers appear also to fund some of these shell organizations, which seem to be set up to get around federal election funding rules.

        You can start at freemarketamerica.org/about/ if you have questions; I’m sure they can put you in touch with the actor if you email them.

      • Bart R

        I don’t care who paid for it. I only see the content. It is just brilliant. I wish I know the presenter. He has done a superb job.

      • This guy?

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gnY0RznyRQM&feature=endscreen&NR=1
        (Remember my pencil analogy for CO2 optical density? Well, now you know it came from Milton Friedman.)

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kzD80HhofwM&feature=relmfu

      • He’s also done this scaremongering message, too.

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WdZbstEmAaM&feature=relmfu

        I thought you were claiming you wanted the scaremongering to stop?

      • Though to be more helpful, his name is Ryan Houck, an associate of (Rep)Senator Mel Martinez.

        (www.worldpropertychannel.com/us-markets/residential-real-estate-1/real-estate-news-miami-condo-foreclosures-florida-home-sales-lesley-blackner-ryan-houck-mel-martinez-pultegroup-lennar-corp-florida-association-of-realtors-3315.php) explains the connection between a New York real estate flipper and Houck, an advocate for developers who thinks neighbors should have no say in the standards of building in their neighborhood.

      • Thanks Bart

        I am impressed by him. What superb presentation? Only few people can equal him. He is brilliant.

        Bart. I am only talking about the above presentation.

      • Bart R,
        All of those videos are great, what is the problem, they are opinion pieces and not particularly scary, unless you are scared by allowing people to freely express their opinions.
        Perhaps you are scared because the If I Wanted America to Fail Video has 1.7 million views in 9 days.

      • Dennis | April 29, 2012 at 9:16 am |

        I have no problem with free speech; have you not noticed me making ample use of the principle? What about posting and discussing things I disagree with makes you question my commitment to the precept?

        However, to look at someone dancing around clad in the flag declaring how great a danger America itself is in from identifiable groups merely and only for the opinions they express that differ from the sponsors’ views, if you don’t see the problem in that as a form of rather extreme and blatant scaremongering.. then there’s a problem of optics you have to deal with.

        “What’s the problem” with putting the survival of America on the block as the only topic? With drilling into the fate of the nation over what turns out to be block parent associations asking that community standards apply to builders of strip malls, and the regulation of, for example hexavalent chromium next to grade schools, mercury salts into upstream drinking water sources, lead dust into playgrounds and sports fields, arsenic in the human food chain, cyanide in clothing, xylene, benzene, toluene and hydrazine in dairy products.. see, that would be real actual stuff that really actually ought to scare people who gather as parents and neighbors who care about their own health and their own survival, and that we know for a fact that some with the very same unfettered entrepreneurial spirit Mr. Houck enthuses over have in the past dumped and walked away from laughing all the way to the bank.

        So really, the sanctimony over free speech because the honesty of that speech has a light shone on it to burn off the fog and expose the naked avarice and indifference of greedy men, is a problem.

        I’m as free enterprise as a person can get, philosophically and by sensibility. I’ve worked at the headquarters in America of some of the great giants of enterprise, and am proud of what I’ve done for the shareholders’ interests. I can honestly say that opportunists and leeches who rally against the defense of America’s health by lobbying against the machinery of that defense in the EPA have time and again proven their true stripe in when seen in their fully deregulated natural environment, and sicken ordinary entrepreneurs and businessmen for perverting wholesome American commerce into poisonous piracy – and not the Johnny Depp kind.

        However glib their flag-drapped slickster from the Disney state may be.

      • thisisnotgoodtogo

        Bart,

        Do these
        “… identifiable groups”
        qualify as “deniers” ?

      • Yes, they were just kidding…

        http://www.c-span.org/WHCD/

        & what a bunch of inside-punch-lines from everybody who is anybody.

      • You should invite Mr. Houck to Australia to tour and give lectures.

        I’m sure he’d make an excellent ambassador for American values and precepts.

      • A little more research and information.

        http://mediamatters.org/research/201204270002

    • As the question is about morality, we may as well have some questionable morality.

      Probably NSFW, and I’m not entirely keen to post it here, but it is directly relevant, as a popular view of what America thinks is Fail.

  28. Social psychologists — hmmmm. They certainly have an excellent track record lately for quality research. If there is any academic field out there which is likely even worse than cancer or biotech research for producing unreplicatable crap (leaving out climate science for the moment), it would have to be social psychology.

    Even if we were to take as a given this study’s ridiculous assumption that global warming was proven, what are the odds that the study hasn’t been butchered with rank incompetence? I’ll put the over/under at less than 1 in 4.

  29. When I was walking in a field
    An apocalyptic prophet spoke to me.
    He fixed me with his glittering eye
    And told me of my human infamy…

    The sea will boil, the earth a saltry fireball
    Will become. We eat, we drink, and over populate
    The earth…pollute the atmosphere with co2.
    He goes on, blah,blah, blah, unceasingly pontificates.

    So then I tell him that the clouds
    Heaped overhead, an imminent catastrophe presage,
    He’d better make it out of here, post haste.
    And i am left alone on centre stage.

    I feel the quickening breeze and see
    It brush the waiting grass, and then
    A cricket chirps, the air grows cool
    ……… and so it rains.

    H/t to an ancient mariner.

    • Oh, is it poetry slam time?

      With apologies to Wm Cowper.

      Light moves in a mysterious way,
      Its wonders to perform;
      It plants its footsteps in the sea,
      And rides upon the storm.

      Albedo returns part to space,
      By cloud or ice – water’s other states;
      The rest to IR converts apace,
      That GHG back radiates.

      Deep in unfathomable mines
      Of never failing skill,
      Earth treasures up ancient remains,
      Reserves of oil and coal.

      And we could use it to manufacture
      Plastics of every sort and use;
      Pharmaceuticals, fertilizer and more,
      Instead we burn it, such an abuse.

      Judge not the heat by feeble sense,
      But trust in Mathematics;
      The TOA energy imbalance,
      Points to equilibrating dynamics.

      Blind sun belief is full of errors,
      Some scan cosmic rays in vain;
      Historical interpreters,
      The paleo record is plain.

      Anthropogenic causes,
      Human agency, my friend;
      These bring economic losses,
      Due extreme climate in the end.

    • Don’t you think dear Beth that Le Pétomane’s meter is pedestrian, the rhyme scheme almost endearingly banal and the subject lacking in any sense of the poetic? Merely a string of concepts connected only barely thematically? As meaningful as a shopping list?

      I am not suggesting that he try anything as daring as this – but you might like it. Written many years ago when I was a student.

      Debris

      Forget the passionate and visionary in your poetry.
      Take a still photo of you ontological evolution.
      Where do you stand now?
      Myself I live amidst the debris of experience.

      The undone washing, the unclean toilet.
      Coffee grounds littering the kitchen nook.
      Is this a time for poetry?
      Poetry would subsume the past and future
      into the evolving moment.

      Glacial ice would grind away the coffee on my kitchen floor.
      Hot suns would volatise the inconsequential
      detritus of my existence.
      I float as a bubble in the limitless expresso of the cosmos.

      Practical question intervene.
      Can I afford to wait for the next ice
      age for the washing up to be done?
      Or should I sort and organise
      amongst the rubble for the clues
      as to the meaning of my life?

      How shall we marshall meaning out of chaos? I have an idea it is by love. The mind may traverse the universe. Create monsters and demons. But that is a terrifyingly lonely universe. Loving and being loved are the twin poles around which my being revolves.

      I must have a plan. Something modest and unassuming would be appropriate. Especially with people. Great events are transpiring and I do respect the dreams of others.

      I pick up a foot soiled piece of paper from the floor to finish this poem. Glance at the Science and Technology Studies folders on top of mountains of paper. Take up the thread of the day.

      • So your whole don’t want to pay the consequences of your CO2 emission thing, it’s because you’re like many boomers who never had to clean up after themselves, because their parents always did it for them?

      • We were not even working class – more your poor white trash. My father left – my mother was an alcoholic who beat, verbally and emotionally abused and neglected us in turn. In fact generational poor white trash since Henry Ellison was transported to Sydney Harbour in the second fleet. We were pretty much feral street kids – so just your average upbringing. I have a bit of empathy for some poor bastard with their arse out of their pants – to use an Australian turn of phrase.

        I have actually installed solar panels, kitchen lights and dvd players in a grass hut in a third world village. My rents in-law – who have sadly passed on too young. Micro-hydro is a better option there – but needs more of a hands on technological capacity. Cheap solar would be a better option still. But there is little doubt that cheap energy and economic development go hand in hand with health and education outcomes.

        My costs matter little. $10 billion as nation to invest in technology? Too little – too late. It should be $10 billion a year – leveraged tax breaks for innovation. Make it cheaper to innovate rather than more expensive to produce energy. More expensive energy translates into lower global economic growth – with consequences for the most economically marginal people. We have committed to doubling our aid to $10 billion a years. Shit – if the government mongrels can’t get anything right they could hand out condoms, cook stoves and anti-malarial nets. Or give it to Bill Gates for God’s sake. But we could also get 50% reductions in black carbon and carbon dioxide there – on top of enhancing food production and groundwater stores. Hell – that would also reduce sea levels.

        So when you say I don’t give a damn – I am concerned more for a piddling amount extra that the government might tax me – just remember who you are talking to. I am not some middle class Unabomber wannabe hiding out in the Minnesota wilderness with a second story snow door , eighteen names for snow and delusions of moral grandeur.

      • Robert I Ellison

        Ah. So, it’s that nations should only work on one type of problem at a time. Two is too much to handle. All of the budget in your projects, and none in anyone else’s because that would be too much of a boggle.

        And once you do get Australia to vote to spend all that money on cook stoves or bed nets, which one will it be? Can’t be both at once, that would be too much to handle.

        And when the bed nets get chosen, will it be treated or untreated? Africa or Asia? …

        The best of the solutions to high CO2 levels make economies better, more efficient, and more capable of solving these problems themselves out of the democratic decisions of individuals, not from some state-run committee substituting its judgement for the free will of the populace.

      • That’s rather insulting.

        Guess it is ok for me to call anyone not a veteran a cowardly wuss because they lacked the courage to serve?

  30. ”Immoral tribalism”: The politicization of climate change fosters ideological polarization”. Polarization?! Debate is; when the most solid proof is adopted, by people involved in the debate. Problem is: the whole conspiracy has being built on a quick sand, if one thing is proven wrong – the fear is that; if admitting wrong on one subject,, the lot will collapse. Both camps are suffering from ”truth phobia” a debilitating / destructive disease.

    Putting the CONSTANT big / small climatic changes in the same basket with the phony GLOBAL warming, is the biggest immorality – then when the reference of ”morality” is added into the same basket, as a loaded comment

    Would the climate stopped changing, if it wasn’t any industrial revolution? Why nobody said: what would have being the ”climate” without the ”crapogenic gospel”? How can the earth sustain 7 billion people without producing extra CO2?! Because H2O controls the climate; improvement on places where the climate is extreme, is possible. But by blaming CO2 / CH4 = is denied any improvement to the climate; which is a crime in itself.

    2] stating that: a person knows what was the temperature on the WHOLE globe; is the mother of all lies. Look at the GLOBAL temps charts, FROM BOTH CAMPS – from one year to next; goes up / down by a fraction of a degree = is a label / admission of immoral dishonesty. Both camps are using it, both are lying; but will not point the finger at each other regarding the ”biggest, basic lies” which is; code of silence / thief’s /criminal’s honor.

    In any normal science is considered any new hypothesis / theory; maybe something has being overlooked. In ”climatology” on the other hand – real theory / proofs are categorically, instantly discarded; any Freudian would have interpreted that as ”admission that they know that they are wrong / lying” That makes it a double crime. Usually, nobody is correct 100%, and nobody is wrong 100%; unless you are a Fundamentalist Warmist / Fake Skeptic, Time is against the Hansen’s & Plimer’s GLOBAL warmings crap. Both are equally traitors of humanity and human honesty / integrity

    • Mr. Stefanthedenier, you are clearly accurate about your name.
      Usually, nobody is correct 100%…usually this statement would be true too.

  31. Six psychological strategies that communicators can use to bolster the recognition of climate change as a moral imperative.

    No communication strategy will work when the message is false => http://bit.ly/HnYPQf

    It is pure waste.

    • So what you’re saying is that based on the available data, the global warming alarmists’ description of the head of a dog based on the inner portion on its tail that covers is arse and gets crapped on is pure nonesense, right?

  32. A study of the Earth’s albedo (project “Earthshine”) shows that the amount of reflected sunlight does not vary with increases in greenhouse gases. The “Earthshine” data shows that the Earth’s albedo fell up to 1997 and rose after 2001.

    What was learned is that climate change is related to albedo, as a result of the change in the amount of energy from the sun that is absorbed by the Earth. For example, fewer clouds means less reflectivity which results in a warmer Earth. And, this happened through about 1998. Conversely, more clouds means greater reflectivity which results in a cooler Earth. And this happened after 1998.

    It is logical to presume that changes in Earth’s albedo are due to increases and decreases in low cloud cover, which in turn is related to the climate change that we have observed during the 20th Century, including the present global cooling. However, we see that climate variability over the same period is not related to changes in atmospheric greenhouse gases.

    Obviously, the amount of `climate forcing’ that may be due to changes in atmospheric greenhouse gases is either overstated or countervailing forces are at work that GCMs simply ignore. GCMs fail to account for changes in the Earth’s albedo. Accordingly, GCMs do not account for the effect that the Earth’s albedo has on the amount of solar energy that is absorbed by the Earth.
    ________________

    • It also matters how much dust is in the atmosphere, where it is and how small the particles are.
      If the location of where the chimneys changes from the US/Europe to China and SE Asia one would suppose the distribution of dust and cloud nucleation sites to change.

  33. Doug Badgero

    I am getting sick of these pseudo scientific articles exploring how best to brainwash me.

    • Clearly you are defective for life in the 21st centry…

      • Not defective…just realizing how scientists made him ignorant by trusting everything they said without checking it out himself.

    • Tooooo Late!!! :-)

      It was already done looooooong before you were born with protection of theories without understanding ALL of our planets parameters.
      Velocity happen to be a massive area of study missed that effects every molecule, planet sun etc. From the core to orbits, velocity was never mapped or measured ….. until now!

    • They’ll tease you with a cheeseburger and then tell you how bad it is for you.

      • The proper response being: Thank them for the cheeseburger and fart as you leave the room.

      • True, true the EPA is not conrolling these emissions yet.

      • Give them time.

        They did float a proposal for a methane tax on beef and dairy cattle.

        What I “love” about their determination that CO2 is a pollutant is that they just gave themselves the ability to regulater every single person in the US, as we are all walking point sources of pollution now. When it comes time to thin the herd, I wonder if they will implement a lottery system or come up with a complex matrix that determines who contributes aand therefore has the right to “pollute through continued breathing and who doesn’t.

      • We’e all just fleas on a floater waiting for the big flush…

  34. William Cowper, ‘Lines Written During a Period of Insanity:’

    Hard lot! encompassed with a thousand dangers;
    Weary, faint, trembling with a thousand terrors;
    I’m called, if vanished, to receive a sentence
    Worse than Abraham’s.*

    *Rebelling agains the authority of Moses, with his fellow dissidents,he was swallowed up in a cleft of rock.

  35. “Is it purely to do with perceived scale of responsibility?”

    How amusing. I think it has more to do with don’t tax me, don’t tax thee, tax that man behind the tree. Bob and Tom could do a skit on this one for mr obvious. This sort of insight ranks right up there with the previous paper where epidemics are scary stories and global warming is real. I suppose this is because millions have died from global warming and as far as we know nobody has died from epidemics. Or do I have those mixed up?

  36. We’re all moral beings, even scientists, engineers and mathematicians. But I don’t know of any training they receive that qualifies to instruct the public on moral issues. In professional societies it might be regarded as a boundary violation — comparable to that of a priest advising on the steel beams needed for a bridge.

    I think I might look to religious leaders for moral judgement and mechanical engineers for advice on structures.

    • Philip Lee | April 29, 2012 at 12:52 am |

      If there’s anything lower in the world than a moralist, you’re unlikely to find it.

      Mathematicians have given the world the basic tools to build every work of architecture measurably greater than the nest a primate builds in a tree, the advanced tools to reach space and apprehend the visible universe from within a fraction of a second of its birth on a scale of planets and stars and the span light travels in more than ten billion years, and to explore far more expansive infinitessimals. From Game Theory (which is no game) to Chaos Theory (which brings some order to thought about chaos), neither of which is so much theory as description of the shape of number itself fitted to the human mind, to simplest arithmetic of accounting and auditing and actuary, Mathematicians have handed us some of our greatest moral gains.

      Scientists have bridged gaps in understanding to delve the mysteries of disease, more than doubling the average human lifespan worldwide by little more than knowledge alone, have uncovered the causes and remedies of ten thousand thousand maladies and risks, means to puncture mere superstition and bring down walls of ignorance and malice, insights into how very nearly connected and related every human being is rather than the vague and ignorant philosophies of moralists who labelled some higher and some lower and called that unproven stance ‘science’.

      Engineers have built communication devices able to link every human voice and eye on the planet, the technical means to give safe drinking water to every human mouth within the next decade, to deliver hygiene and to transport goods and to extend our grasp so far as our reach.

      Moralist have done what, again? Made edicts, embraced hand-waved suppositions, terrorized and excused, fueled hatreds and incited feuds?

      Was it the presidency of a scientific genius that brought the USA down so low as to make state torture a policy of the executive office? A mathematical wizard? An engineering wunderkind? No. It was a man who went every Sunday and sat like a pharisee at the front of his congregation, before the eyes of the world, and pretended to a morality handed down from on high.

      I think we might look to religious leaders to copy the morals at least of those who build something useful, or who seek to know something true, or want to understand something worthy.

      • It was the moralist that gave us the law (Moses); another gave us hope of salvation outside of the law (Jesus); another gave us a framework for government founded on the basis that power derives from the consent of the governed (Jefferson). Moralists have given us examples on which some order their lives — Luther, King, Gandhi,

        But Newton has nothing to instructs on how we should conduct ourselves in a moral manner.

        Some Greens make moral arguments along the lines of needing to minimize the use of resources so that they are available to others (morality of unselfishness). If you don’t recognize the moral context and reply as a scientist, you’ll have no meeting of the minds.

        While moral discussions have their place, it would not be among a collection of moral illiterates. So, who here has the training?

      • As I recall from the movie, Moses was a soldier, architect and engineer, and when tasked to deliver moral codes tried to decline.

        And a carpenter does build useful things.

        Martin Luther set off dozens of wars over a few turns of phrase important in no practical way, that did not feed, clothe, shelter, cure, heal, educate or protect a single hair on the head of one person ever.

        Martin Luther King, a great man and a graduate in sociology (a soft science, but a science nonetheless), was killed by another ‘moralist’ who never did a whit of math, science or engineering.

        George Washington was a surveyor, and Thomas Jefferson a man of notably questionable personal morals in later life (which is no one’s business but his and his family’s) was, in early life an avid student of science and mathematics.

        And if you’re pretending the lawyer — and soldier — and later pacifist Gandhi (also assassinated by moralists) would have agreed with any two words you have said in a row, you’re doing a terrible job of convincing me of it by minimizing, demonizing and advocating against people of great learning and service in favor of assassins, warmongers and hypocrits.

      • Vart.R, you’re making a great mistake to presume I was trying to convince you of anything — it is a flaw of character to personalize a discussion.

        For the rest of you, to ignore the moral failing of murder while listing a person as a moralist seems a bit much. On the other hand to claim a preacher was a scientist because of a undergraduate degree is really a leap that I can’t take.

      • So.. a scientist who’s a good communicator, he’s a moralist, not a scientist?

        But a moralist who’s also a murderer, he’s just a murderer?

        I’m a flawed character all over the place, and acknowledge it; your reasoning, however, is more flawed still, apologizing for the failings of morality itself while hypocritically holding down science, mathematics and engineering after all the far more spectacular positive good they’ve done in the world than all moralism ever has or ever will.

      • Any person is responsible for their moral failing. But being educated as a scientist doesn’t make you one any more that not receiving a scientific education prevent you from being one.

        It is what you do that determines what you are. And moralist have added much to our lives by their work. But it is a rare person that can contribute at a high enough level to be view as a serious contributor to moral thought and science, engineering, mathematics, art, literature, etc.

        If you are a scientist, you might be cited as proving my point — you’ve just failed morally by corrupting my argument (“apologizing for the failings of morality itself while hypocritically holding down science”) to a point I didn’t make.

        I’ll repeat, scientist who pronounces outside their field may be committing a boundary violation. I don’t moral judgments from scientists any more than I want preachers to tell me what is right in science (rare individuals excepting).

      • Moralists have added what now to who?

        If any person is responsible for their own moral failing, how then is a moralist necessary or advantageous? If they cannot be blamed for the failing, they can take no credit for the success.

        What uplifts indeed is not moralizing, but knowledge and the seeking of it. No one doing that is acting as a moralist in that moment. Judging scientists’ boundary violations on speculation, that’s not a ‘may be’ but an patent presumption of guilt. You don’t need anyone to corrupt your arguments. They do just fine for themselves, by reductio ad absurdum.

        I too don’t want moral pronouncements from scientists. I prefer science from scientists and everyone responsible for their own morality alone.

  37. thisisnotgoodtogo

    Professor Curry,

    I think these people do not distinguish the terms well. They seem to be in some confusion over “morals”, “values”, and “interests”.

    A piece of junk is what it is..

    • what about “truth”?

      • thisisnotgoodtogo

        Wagathon,
        Thank you for your comment
        Indeed. “truth” didn’t make the cut.

        However, I think we can talk about it under “Morals”, since morals are about good vs bad. They are what people feel are good and evil.
        Right and wrong. “Some things are just wrong to do”

        Values, no the other hand, are about things such as ideals that we hold dear…perhaps public secular education could be used as example You value it or rate it highly – or you do not. Whether you do value public education or not, does not tell us your morals. Perhaps you do not value it because you think it’s not the best thing we could devise. That’s not necessarily being “bad”.

        “Interests” would be what you feel benefits you or it’s your wants or your needs.

        So in this way, at times interests might trump values or even morals.

        Here’s where these salesmen enter the picture.

        “what about “truth”?”

        Indeed.

      • thisisnotgoodtogo

        Since good and bad wrt truth can be argued, I think it’s not a moral issue. For instance, one could justify lying for the good of saving a person’s life or even to ease their pain or buffer a shock.

        What is left is to pinpoint where their values were trumped by their interests. They value truth per se apparently under certain conditions only, conditions which are not extant at this time.

      • thisisnotgoodtogo

        At the very least, they horribly discount or overlook the possibility of an audience’s need for an appearance of truthfulness as being a prime element in the successful transmission of their message.

  38. Willis Eschenbach

    David Appell | April 28, 2012 at 8:35 pm

    The problem is that, without some kind of price on carbon, there is no incentive for the development of the technologies that will be needed to either produce power without emitting carbon or geoengineering a solution.

    How is the so-called “free market” supposed to provide that incentive?

    That’s not a bug … that’s a feature.

    w.

    • David Appell

      Was there incentive for the change from horse drawn cart to cars?

      Was there incentive for the change from gramophones to CDs?

      • (touches Girma)…”BEER!”

      • Thank you!

      • Mr. Orssengo, to answer both your questions, yes, historically, very much so.

        The question is, what government every payed horse owners to use horses by taxing car owners, horse breeders to breed horses by taxing car manufacturers, gave research grants for improving transportation technology to the horse race industry while putting control of improving automobiles in the hands of the same people, and subsidized hay by taxing everyone else?

        See, that’s the parallel situation today. The automobile was actively supported by what were called infant industry exceptions. Many states and national governments had them. France, the UK and Germany were infamous for them. America certainly did it.

        The problem is, those exceptions — many of them, and many new since, besides — continue to this very day as loopholes, discouraging new technology by making us all poorer through taxes and also poorer in decision power, by using the state’s power to funnel our money to that one set of choices in what ought be a free market, creating a significant double barrier to entry of new alternatives.

        You really don’t know this?

      • Latimer Alder

        Please enlighten me about ‘infant industry exceptions’ for cars in the UK.

      • Latimer Alder | April 29, 2012 at 2:43 am |

        The UK has some sort of wonky class system that makes comparison of its economics to the real world irrelevant.

        When we talk about an economy, we talk about America for a reason.

      • Latimer Alder

        OK – you’re entitled to your opinion about the ‘class system’ in the UK. Though I think you may have been watching rather too much Hollywood and not leavened it with enough actual reality.

        But it was you who made the observation that the UK was infamous for ‘infant industry exceptions’. As I have never heard of these in relation to the car industry, I invited you to expand a little.

        Is it now the case that you cannot back up this claim, and I should treat it with as much credence as your remarks about UK economics?

      • Ah, you mean such as Leyland (though that was more a case of criminal tax dodging by Clarence Hatrey than intentional infant industry subsidy, it had much the same effect in the end, except for Hatrey’s little stint in prison), more than of course the much later Heath nationalization of Rolls Royce (though hardly an ‘infant’, more in its dotage) to prevent its bankruptcy?

        You’d be wanting to read the scribblings of Ha Joon Chang on that topic.

      • Latimer Alder

        There certainly were a lot of strange government interventions in the UK car industries in the 1960s and 1970s. I

        But your post specifically referred to ‘infant’ industry exceptions. by then the industry was ‘mature’…had consolidated down from hundreds of independent manufacturers into three large groups Ford, Vauxhall/GM, BL and a few smaller ones. And was producing several million vehicles per year.

        It was not an ‘infant’ industry..the whole supposed purpose of the interventions was to safeguard an industry that had become a very large and very important part of the national economy in terms of value, exports and employment.

        Whatever the rights and wrongs of these interventions, they were not ‘infant industry exceptions’.

        You are, of course, perfectly entitled to take whatever view you like of the UK. But it might be good if that view was occasionally leavened with some facts rather than only with throwaway disobligements.

        BTW the UK car industry is now in pretty good shape…but under different ownership and a different management regime from the highly interventionist days.

      • Latimer Alder

        @Bart R

        I mentioned the need for some leavening of facts in your view of the UK.

        Clarence Hatrey (of whom I had never previously heard) was a fraudulent financier who went broke – and to prison – in 1928. He had no connections whatsoever with the then very small Leyland Motors.

        The Heath government did not nationalise Rolls Royce because of any problems within the car side of the business, but because of the difficulties with the development of the RB211 aeroengine. The car division was sold as a separate entity (Rolls Royce Motors) within two years to remove it from government control, while the aeroengine part continued as a nationalised industry for another fourteen years until eventually being sold as Rolls Royce plc.

        RR plc now makes a highly successful range of jet engines with over 50,000 units in service with over 500 airlines.

        You and I might well agree that government interventions in industry are not generally good things, But using overblown rhetoric about ‘wonky class systems’ and easily refuted ‘facts’ to back them up weakens rather than strengthens your case.

      • Latimer Alder | April 30, 2012 at 1:36 am |

        You’ve got it exactly right.

        For reasons of palatability, tradition, and other excuses for deception, mere protectionism (with all its nasty connotations) and statism were perversely dressed up in a baby bonnet and called infant industry measures, well past the juvenile delinquency stage of corporate development. The nanny state just couldn’t help itself in socialist Europe.

        But for the UK, and other European states, that’s expected. But the USA is the bastion of the free market, and so for our politicians to be inflicting it on American firms, to be bailing out US companies, is inexcusable.

        We’d be stronger and better if we were leaner and meaner. By which I most emphatically do not mean Ryan Houck’s brand of fail.

      • Read up on the problem of horse manure removal from city streets – which was regarded as a major and intractable problem towards the end of the 19th century.

      • Peter317 | April 29, 2012 at 9:34 am |

        When every man of means owned a horse or a team, cities were limited in size to what extent the civic leaders could contrive to cart away the manure. Sure. But as a limits of growth problem, once the manure was captured and treated it reduced or sequestered rapidly and advantageously for fertilizer.

        Conversely, there is a limit too to cities by the extent civic leaders can arrange parking and freeways, that even though it is many times larger per city still is a limit, yet a parked car or one sitting idle in a traffic jam is no good to anyone.

        Wiser to have kept the horse, made cities smaller, improved bicycles for horse-free corridors and invested in telecommuting and mass transit.

      • Bart, if horses were only used by well-heeled members of society, how do you imagine goods were transported around? How do you think cities came about in the first place, if not for the difficulty and expense involved in moving goods and people over distances, and the consequent migration of people to where work and access to goods were?
        And do you really think the size of cities etc was controlled by politicians?
        As for using manure for fertilizer, what do you think happened when the laws of supply and demand kicked in and the bottom dropped out of the market, which it inevitably did? That’s right, it simply piled up anywhere and everywhere, becoming a massive health hazard.

        Those who don’t learn from history…

      • Peter317 | April 29, 2012 at 11:05 am |

        Who said ‘only’?

        Who said politicians? When I think of leaders, I generally think of leaders in engineering and science — in this case civil engineers.

        A railway a hundred years ago could as economically move goods as a railway today, give or take, and concentration of goods in warehouses was and remains an expensive cul de sac in logistics: far better were less concentration of goods and less lag between production and consumption possible due better communications and understanding of markets. The solutions of problems didn’t come through the automobile — they were delayed by the automobile.

        While the size of cities was determined by decisions of short-sighted planners, it’s no more as if there was a degree of control than when some wonder if human influence of climate implies human control over weather. (Silly thing to think.)

        And when manure ‘simply piled up’, was that not an indication disposal of the waste ought have been priced, and the owners of horses made to pay fees for the costs they imposed on all? Sounds to me more like a failure of government to apply capitalism on (literally) free riders, than the fault of the horse.

        Those who think the study of history ever taught anything about problem solving are doomed to have their problems fester just the same.

        You want a decent technician.

      • Bart, what makes you think it was the owners of the horses who were responsible? As with today’s swingeing fuel taxes (at least in Europe), the consumer’s ended up paying the price, as food, goods and services became more expensive, and, in effect, everyone owing everyone else.
        If you believe you have all the answers then why don’t you run for President?
        And as for your quaint faith in electric vehicles, well, over a hundred years later we still don’t have the technology required to deliver on the required scale and at an affordable price. And, at the end of the day, where do you think the energy for electric vehicles comes from in the first place?
        As for public transport being a panacea, just imagine the hopelessly overcrowded conditions on a typical morning bus or train being multiplied by ten to twenty times. And who would pay the necessary small army of bus and train drivers to sit around twiddling their thumbs during off-peak periods?

      • Peter317 | April 29, 2012 at 12:34 pm |

        I can see you don’t like the Jeffersonian vision of a plan for America that furnished all good things in their most advantageous role to all good people by their democratic decision power in a fair and stable marketplace under capitalist principles.

        You prefer the shakey table of markets determined by the heavy hand of state empowered unelected committees of plutocrats, bureaucrats, technocrats, demagogues and ideologues, based on your premise.

        We’ll always disagree over that preference. However, with your attitudes, I believe you’d have a great chance if you ran for President, in today’s America.

      • Bart, and I see you don’t have the answers – hence the hand-waving.

      • Why would I seek to replace Jefferson’s answers with my own?

        You think there are no thumb-twiddling gas station attendants? That gasoline is the one and only source of all energy? That burning is the best use of the versatile wonder resource that we make plastic, pharmaceuticals, fertilzer and many other industrial chemicals from?

        You keep asking such wrong questions, how don’t you expect people to wave at you?

        *wave* Hello? *wave*wave* Earth to Peter317? *wave* What are you thinking? *wave*

      • Just a hunch, but I would bet the city’s modern population of pets produces a similar tonnage of waste each day.

      • JCH,

        Tell you what, speaking as an urban (not urbane) dog owner, how ’bout you offer your services to a horse riding stable and agree to follow their horses around with a suitablely sized plastic bag.

      • The reason you do that is people were sick and tired of stepping in dog poop. Urban carriages today have a bag system that is supposed to catch the horsey poop. The automobile delayed the progress of stuff management by a full century.

      • JCH, you don’t appreciate scale, do you? Dog poop is completely insignificant in comparison.
        As for your comment about delaying progress of stuff management, the same could be said about the discovery of bronze delaying the progress of stone tools.

      • http://www.uctc.net/access/30/Access%2030%20-%2002%20-%20Horse%20Power.pdf

        A fun read.

        Now.. why does it seem familiar somehow?

      • Bart, one minor thing missing from your analogy…

        After only a few years, people actually wanted to own cars because they were a real improvement over the displaced technology.

      • John M | April 29, 2012 at 10:18 am |

        By and large, the cars people originally wanted to own were electric, and by a fair margin, until military needs mandated internal combustion for its greater power in military theaters of operation, and uniformity of supply through mass production to make maintenance of a war effort practical.

        At the time, the electrics were the real improvement, until the government stepped in and made a decision for wartime that spilled over into peacetime and effectively shuttered the electric manufacturers.

      • I concur, Schumpeter’s “creative destruction” comes to mind.

        http://www.econlib.org/library/Enc/bios/Schumpeter.html

        “Innovation by the entrepreneur, argued Schumpeter, leads to gales of “creative destruction” as innovations cause old inventories, ideas, technologies, skills, and equipment to become obsolete. The question is not “how capitalism administers existing structures, … [but] how it creates and destroys them.” This creative destruction, he believed, causes continuous progress and improves the standards of living for everyone.”

      • kakatoa | April 29, 2012 at 10:41 am |

        Every improvement has a context. In the chaos of history, had some wars been delayed or defered a decade or two, advances in a peacetime context in electric cars due greater investment and tinkering may have meant the original Jeep would have run on fuel cells or batteries.

        We never get to know ‘what if’, really. Now, with nanotech and metamaterials coming on, what happens in society will shape what innovations they are applied to. Personally, I’d rather the peacetime innovations over the military ones. They tend to come in better colors and don’t have to sacrifice cup holders for weapon mounts.

        Though, really, how likely is that?

      • Bart,

        You’re a good sport, but you have a proclivity to invent your own way of interpreting facts and history. Whether it’s your one man effort to redefine “subsidy”, your response to Latimer Adler elsewhere in the thread to define your own meaning for “an economy”, or here where you attribute the decline of electric vehicles, sales of which peaked in 1912, to the impact of US military policy during WWI. Not conicidentally, Charles Kettering invented the electric starter for gasoline powered vehicles in 1912.

        Here are a couple of more “mainstream” looks at the early history of electric vehicles.

        http://www.pbs.org/now/shows/223/electric-car-timeline.html

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

        Funny, in neither one do I see a reference to WWI impact.

      • John M | April 29, 2012 at 11:01 am |

        Necessity is the mother of invention. The failure of others’ interpretations are manifest; if my hypothesis is wrong, I’m perfectly content to examine it again and reject it if it proves as flawed as the .. say what?

        Redefine subsidy? I must admit, I’ve been using the simpler term ‘subsidy’ in place of a pastiche of technically more accurate terms like ‘deadweight loss’. You can look that one up and tell me how badly I’m redefining it, too.

        And while a half hour between PBS and wikipedia may make one an expert historian, it takes a little more time comparing what an electric car with the investment that backed the internal combustion industry would have looked like by 1912, and a little more digging to understand who invested what in the automobile in those early days. Especially, it is difficult as the auto industry has been busily shredding its historical records (other than those approved by its legal department) from its start.

        While I’m sure PBS and wikipedia are sincere, they’re blowing smoke without such documentary evidence about a topic that has always surrounded itself in fog and misdirection.

      • Bart, Bart, Bart,

        It should be clear to even you that the only reason electric cars got any use whatsoever in the early 20th century was for local transportation. Then, as now, long haul trips were just not possible with electric only.

        I note in passing that your own argument seems to be that cities should have stuck with manure-generating horses for city transportation, which if they’d followed your advice, means the electric car would have never gotten any sales.

        You can invent all the terms you want and minimize my research skills to your heart’s content, but the fact remains that electric cars died in the early 20th century because they were an inferior technology, not because of any “subsidies”, however you may want to define the term.

        And about those research skills…I assume you’ve come up with a citation for those “military needs” that killed the electric car?

      • John M | April 29, 2012 at 12:57 pm |

        Citations here? Not without prompting a maelstrom of postings about the military-industrial complex, Eisenhower, and the metal content of the sun, no.

        I respectfully decline to go further down that path at this time.

        However, I may hint that the USA was not the only, nor even the first, nation of the automobile.

        America’s drive for domestic electric transportation as part of an integrated whole with rail, water and air was disrupted in the earliest days of the 20th century by European ideas and teachings that conflicted with American ideals, disrupted a course of action that began with Jefferson, led to at first a fad for splendid isolationism and then caving in to an appetite for spilling American blood on alien soils in foreign adventures.

        If you only learn the history taught by schoolteachers, poets and politicians, well.. it’s not as if history is all that instructive, objective or particularly factual in any event.

      • “America’s drive for domestic electric transportation as part of an integrated whole with rail, water and air was disrupted in the earliest days of the 20th century by European ideas and teachings that conflicted with American ideals”

        This from a guy who says “When we talk about an economy, we talk about America for a reason.”

        Bart’s World— “a citation-free zone”.

      • John M | April 29, 2012 at 1:30 pm |

        Wow. Opinion now seems split between I cite not at all, I cite too little, I cite weakly, I cite irrelevantly, I cite too much, and then there are those who read the links I provide for a half a paragraph and claim they mean the opposite of their conclusions.

        Dude, my name is a link. Click it. From there, there are dozens of links. They’re not about this, of course, but they pretty much puncture your cite-free fantasy.

        Try again.

      • “Try again.”

        Sure. Your words:

        “Citations here? Not without prompting a maelstrom of postings about the military-industrial complex, Eisenhower, and the metal content of the sun, no.

        I respectfully decline to go further down that path at this time.”

    • Yes, I well remember the tax on whale oil that got markets to invest in petroleum. And the tax on horses that brought about the automobile; the tax on candles that led to electric lights; the tax on adding machines that brought forth the computer; the tax on hoola hoops that led directly to pet rocks. And so on.

      David Appell…Super Genius.

      • NW | April 29, 2012 at 1:31 am |

        You appear confused.

        The tax on whale oil got the markets to invest in larger whaling fleets; war brought on the internal combustion engine’s supremacy in the automobile market, because army’s wanted one single uniform standard and petroleum had excellent energy density, plus a military had little concern for the downsides of oil considering the alternative was someone with a different short-lifespan ideology winning; the tax on doors supported the electric light (or in the British Empire, on closets), and the computer was brought on by the tax on textiles.

        Glad to clear those up for you.

      • You’ve misunderstood me Bart. I was just spinning out the implications of David Appell’s economic theory of innovation incentives. As he has so much confidence in his theory of innovation, I should be able to successfully make up facts for him.

      • Oh, I understood. But you said ‘pet rock’. How could I resist joining in the fun?

        (More practically, it may be that you and David are nearer each other in opinion than you may suspect.)

    • We call that a misfeature.

  39. Give a specter like ‘global warming’ a name is like naming a child in the womb. With the name the idea is given substance and becomes a living thing like a tree upon which the ornaments are then hung. And, so too follow all of the usual claims about it: (1) first are born and nursed claims based on a belief by a select group of experts; (2) then comes the list of what some experts simply deem to be facts obvious to all as a matter of common sense (e.g., as obvious and rock solid as a glass greenhouse); (3) in a short while we are then treated to unassailable logical deductions that come from a growing expert culture of insiders (a veritable circle-jerk of sycophants); and (4), we finally arrive at the point where we have the unquestioned thoughts about reality that flow from the bearded brains of Über experts–i.e., effete snobs of Western civilization who in their hubris and unctuous disdain of the vulgar lot of the rest of us simply anoint their own thoughts as somehow totally representative of what should be a worldwide view of all things related to their special baby.

  40. Latimer Alder

    It was difficult for me to read the paper without concluding that their ‘product’ was just the same old unadulterated crap but that they hoped to improve its sales with new marketing and a sexier advertising campaign. ‘Morality’ coming from these guys sounds like a cheap perfume aimed at teenage girls.

    But marketing and advertising won’t change the fundamental weaknesses of the propositions they offer.

  41. I like your poem, Chief,
    ‘detritus of experience … or wait for the next ice age?’ )
    Sometimes it’s hard to separate past and present. I do the washing up, usually in a fit of abstraction, work plans I enjoy, there’s a kind of optimism about the future and objectivity, a disengagement from yourself.

    Living, really ‘living’ in the present? When you joke with someone and you both git it- a miracle! Dancing with kids does it for me, responding intently to music or getting caught in rain, present moment. But so much else and there’s what you bring to it. Look at blossom on a tree? Chekhov’s Cherry Orchard comes to mind. Stare at the ocean and I might think of Robert Frost .
    I guess I just can’t figure it out.

  42. Fergit apocalypse and fergit the coffee grounds on the floor, go for epiphany, lol.

    • Chief and Beth

      I’d go for the sound of skis on crisp fresh snow or the crashing of waves on the sea wall-like this morning for the latter
      tonyb

  43. So a summary:-
    1 We deceive you.
    2 You don’t believe us!
    3 What’s wrong with you?
    I suggest the psychologists who prepared this psychobabble seek immediate treatment, although sadly they may well be untreatable.

    • Stacey | April 29, 2012 at 5:17 am |

      More conventionally in political circles, “Act surprised; express concern; deny, deny, deny; demand an apology; campaign as a champion of the issue.”

      Though I suspect opinions continue to vary as to whom commits which.

      • How about credible, verifiable evidence that the proposed courses of actions make both environmental and economic sense for those who actually have to pay for the proposed actions?

        Do you believe that all the suggested responses make sense? What means do you suggest be utilized to ascertain the optimal responses given the fact that there are very limited resources available?

      • Rob Starkey | April 29, 2012 at 10:58 am |

        How about you, deciding for you, paying the price for the benefits you receive and facing the consequences of the decisions you make when you make them?

        Is there anyone better to decide for you, than you, on such a basis?

        Put a price of the carbon cycle, charge a fee determined by the law of supply and demand, pay the dividend to every citizen per capita as their birthright by simply being born breathing, and watch the innovation spring up to provide you with credible, verifiable solutions and credible, verifiable measures because money rides on it.

        Then every individual can decide what suggested response makes sense for them. Let the law of supply and demand and the democracy of the fair market ascertain the optimal responses, as capitalism is meant to for limited resources.

      • Bart

        A “carbon tax” as you propose would need to be evaluated based upon the specifics of the proposal in the nation where it is proposed for implementation. There are several points to consider, but generally they can be summarized in the idea of ensuring that the tax should be an efficient process of revenue generation and in this case also effectively reduce consumption of fossil fuels by the desired amount.

        We have previously scene examples where a fossil fuel tax was highly ineffective in reducing consumption. It depends on the details.

        If it was simply individuals deciding not to emit CO2, no tax is necessary

      • Bart

        When you have written about putting a price on carbon that appears to be a tax. An example of where tax tax was imposed that did not meet the goal of reducing consumption of fossil fuel is Ireland.

        If you wish to provide a link to your economic proposal for the US I would linke to read it.

      • Rob Starkey | April 29, 2012 at 12:59 pm |

        Except I don’t propose a carbon tax. In fact, I oppose a carbon tax specifically.

        Most especially, I reject the notion completely of general revenue generation by pricing the carbon cycle. The state’s pockets are no place to transfer the dividends of the air every citizen was born to breath. What a ludicrously dangerous precedent you suggest.

        I’m unacquainted with the specifics of these previous failures you allude to — perhaps you mean scam-prone ETS systems, or the socialist complaints about carbon taxes that don’t dole out enough to the poor, or some such, but it’s so hard to tell with you, you’re so all over the map and vague.

        Perhaps if you stuck to the specific thing I’m proposing, rather than fly around building straw man from pieces of other things?

      • Rob Starkey | April 29, 2012 at 1:29 pm |

        While you _could_ click on my name, that leads to a long boring diatribe (surprising, I know).

        I recommend instead http://www.citizensclimatelobby.org/ who speak much plainer, and as a bonus you can meet up with them in person, talk to them about their ideas and yours, and contribute to an actual solution on your own terms as a citizen. While I recommend examining that option, I’m not member or affiliate myself, not completely like-minded, nor endorsing them per se.

        That would be for you to decide about yourself.

      • Bart

        I reviewed what was posted @ http://www.citizensclimatelobby.org/files/images/FeeAndDividendLegProposal081811.pdf and the proposal makes little economic sense.

        The link proposes to implement a “carbon fee” (which is nothing more than a carbon tax by a different name) and then adding an “Equal Monthly Per-Person Dividend” to try to offset the negative economic impact of the tax.

        The concept of adding the dividend is a very administratively complex method (and thereby inefficient means) of providing a per capita refund of revenue collected. Additionally, the link also proposes to eliminate coal generated electricity regardless of whether it emits less CO2 than other means of generating electricity or not. That seems pretty short sighted.

        Generally, it would make sense to impose an additional tax on gasoline (in the US in this example) if the level of the additional tax would be sufficient to get the public to adopt some alternate form of energy generation that would not emit CO2.

        Bart- it is necessary to do the analysis and determine what alternative processes you wish to be utilized prior to implementing such a proposal. If you don’t, it is likely you are just advocating an inefficient method of taxation.

      • And to save you some clicking:

        http://www.citizensclimatelobby.org/files/images/FeeAndDividendLegProposal081811.pdf

        Which again I am not endorsing so much as pointing out is worth reading.

      • Rob Starkey | April 29, 2012 at 2:09 pm |

        I have to guess your phone bill is a tax by a different name too? Your grocery bill? The bill you paid when you bought your house? Taxes are the opposite of prices. Prices put control of decisions in the fair market into the hands of buyers and sellers as individuals. Taxes reduce the democracy of the market by two means: directly replacing the spending decisions of individuals, and shrinking the size of the market itself. If you can’t see the distinction, spend a little less time hanging out with socialists; their thinking is starting to limit your vision.

        Very administratively complex? Man, it’s how payroll adjustments are made already. That system already exists, is in place, tested and proven. It even reduces income tax churn to integrate with carbon pricing.

        As I said, I don’t agree with the entire proposal; if you can burn coal without emitting CO2 at a price competitive with other means, then why shouldn’t you?

        Is more paralysis by analysis needed? Dude, capitalism was invented how long ago? Proven the best system how many times? And you want to wait for something better to come along?

      • Bart, there is taxation as a form of raising money by which the government can operate, then there are taxes formulated to manipulate the free market. The first is necessary, the latter evil.

      • Bart

        You appear to not accept the basics. Learn the difference between a tax (what you are suggesting) and a cost to obtain goods or to get someone to provide a service. (use of a telephone as an example). You are proposing a tax pure an simple. That is not necessarily a bad thing, but when you deny it, further exchange becomes difficult.

        It is administratively complex and more expensive to administer than other taxes on several levels.

        On the collection side it seems to involve the establishment of the fees or taxes on each product that emits CO2?
        1. Who determines the amount of tax on each product or service? Is the tax the same on the company that produces cement as the one making fertilizer for farmers or the one that produces all the different types of automotive fuel?
        2. Who oversees the administration of the establishment of the above described fee structure and is there an appeal process if a business believes the fees have been inappositely assessed.

        On the rebate side, it would be pretty simple if it was just a rebate per household, but even that is added complexity and an added cost to administer. Why have an whole additional process to return money to taxpayers? Simply lower the tax rate and collect less if you want people to keep more of their money. Running it though the government is inherently inefficient.

        What do I want to wait for? Simply proposals or technology that cost effectively make sense. If products make sense people will buy or use them.

        Bart- here is a very basic question–do you have a worldwide per capita CO2 emissions target that all should adhere to at some point?

      • Rob Starkey | April 29, 2012 at 5:06 pm |

        You appear to not accept the basics. Learn the difference between a tax (what you are suggesting) and a cost to obtain goods or to get someone to provide a service. (use of a telephone as an example). You are proposing a tax pure an simple. That is not necessarily a bad thing, but when you deny it, further exchange becomes difficult.

        Let’s look at this quibble.

        Per Black’s Law Dictionary, “a tax Is any contribution imposed by government upon individuals, for the use and service of the state,”

        And for the difference of the way economists see tax:

        “From the view of economists, a tax is a non-penal, yet compulsory transfer of resources from the private to the Public sector levied on a basis of predetermined criteria and without reference to specific benefit received.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tax

        Not what I’m talking about: the state takes nothing in the form of revenue for its own use and service, at all, and you pay for the CO2E you use, no more. You don’t incur CO2E, you pay nothing. See? Not a tax by any definition. You keep calling things by their wrong names, you’ll end up being called Daisy.

        For what it’s worth, ‘price’ is, “A value that will purchase a definite quantity, weight, or other measure of a good or service.. As the consideration given in exchange for transfer of ownership, price forms the essential basis of commercial transactions.” http://www.businessdictionary.com

        See? Not tax, price. What’s so hard about using the right word?

        It is administratively complex and more expensive to administer ..
        On the collection side it seems to involve the establishment of the fees .. on each product that emits CO2?
        1. Who determines the amount ..?..
        2. Who oversees the administration of the establishment of the above described fee structure and is there an appeal process if a business believes the fees have been inappositely assessed.

        I recommend starting, as the CCL appears to endorse, the way British Columbia does it: use the CO2E inventory to determine CO2E levels of goods to be used to produce emissions. That gives you the basis for proportion of price per unit of each good. From there, let the law of Supply and Demand fix the price. Let the price rise until the revenue total of the next price rise exceeds the revenue total of the previous one. (Naturally, a good merchandiser can estimate this rather than by crude direct experimentation in the market.) See? The democracy of the market controls the price.

        On the rebate side, it would be pretty simple if it was just a rebate per household, but even that is added complexity and an added cost to administer.
        Rebate? No, no. _Dividend_. It’s money that belongs to people, not to the government. They have no authority to keep it, so no means to call it a rebate. Why do you want to keep mixing up your terms?

        Also, who said per household? I said per capita. What do households have to do with anything? If you’re a citizen, you breath. If you breath, you have a birthright to the air. CCL wants it to be a payroll thing, and if that floats their boat, who am I to judge them? If they want to steal from the unemployed, children and the elderly, that’s really their concern, not mine. Their proposal is at least less theft than happens now.

        Why have an whole additional process to return money to taxpayers? Simply lower the tax rate and collect less if you want people to keep more of their money. Running it though the government is inherently inefficient.

        Ahhh. I see what you’re after, now. You want to reduce taxes some ham-handed way using this one product as your whipping boy. Well that’s just plain nuts. Expand the size of the market by pricing CO2E, for one thing, taxes immediately drop as a ratio of the GDP, so you get what you want either way. It’s still incorrect to call pricing goods ‘tax’, however, and if you really want to cut taxes, then cut taxes honestly and directly, not by some subterfuge. I recommend you start by reducing spending, such as tax holidays for fossil fuel based businesses.

        What do I want to wait for? Simply proposals or technology that cost effectively make sense. If products make sense people will buy or use them.

        And the other shoe drops. You want taxes to drop, but _someday_, as opposed to _now_. When the stars align, and technology is perfected. When everyone agrees and no one dissents. When the committees all reach accord and the .. what a crappy do nothing attitude, I must say.

        Get ‘er done. Move on.

        do you have a worldwide per capita CO2 emissions target that all should adhere to at some point?

        Nope. Why seek to replace the judgment of the genius of the fair market with my own?

        Why do you seek to replace fair market democratic choice with yours?

  44. Tony b,
    Join our epiphany club!! Life’s too short for apocalypse *&^%$

  45. Considerate thinker

    I was reading David Appell’s attempt to link costs and benefits as estimated it seems by one or other of the agenda pushing urgers messing about with this whole issue.

    The thought struck me, can a similar process of cost and benefit be applied to Climatology “science” and the cost/waste calculated over the past 20 years, and the likely cost to be borne if we continue to follow the rabbit holes created, in pursuit of something, that is increasingly looking like a failed strategy, built on blind acceptance of some shaky modeling projections.

    Now, what is the benefit to defunding that branch of science and shifting money to innovation and invention providing low cost clean and abundant energy of the future. Those diverted funds would create one hell of a sought after prize/incentive (Hat tip to CH) to fund well targeted and beneficial science, like actually providing upgraded forecasting of weather and accurate weather warning to save lives. (remember that noble objective)?

    I am sure that someone could come up with other beneficial prizes and compelling cost benefit in making this change. Once that is done and dusted, the precautionary principle would add weight to politically and urgently bringing in this complete solution. There would be many potential spin off benefits.

    Might even lead to scientists opening their research to a new peer scrutiny as they vie for the pragmatic prizes.

    • There are many, many incentive programs. They always in in a catch that you need a company to back you no matter what new innovation is created.
      Pretty hard to find a company when most love the subsidies they are receiving. Free money for bad technology.

    • Considerate thinker says:

      “Now, what is the benefit to defunding that branch of science and shifting money to innovation and invention providing low cost clean and abundant energy of the future. “

      That is the moral and ethical dilemma that most of you people can’t seem to acknowledge. You seem to want to punish climate scientists, yet want the rewards that comes out of basic research.

      Every scientific research article always begins with a preamble by the authors stating why the research they are doing is important. This usually isn’t very long but is in there to remind the reader that someone funded the research for a specific reason, or that the author believes in the research as important.

      So, implicit in every climate science article is the following viewpoint (though not this bluntly stated) — Studying climate science is important because every living person has to deal with the environment, and the society as a whole will always have to adapt to whatever changes the future climate will confront us with. Moreover, there is the realization that the climate and environment can provide us with a potential source of renewable energy in the future. Only reactionaries would actually believe that non-renewable energy resources such as fossil fuels would last forever (see this delusionary bit for example). The possibilities for harvesting energy from wind, solar, hydroelectric, geothermal, tidal, amongst other pathways is still open, and every bit of climate research has the potential for payback. Knowledge builds in layers of successive discoveries.

      Perhaps I have been indoctrinated, but I always thought that this was the reason that we funded the space program. The ultimate goal was kind of lofty, yet the amount of payback we got out of NASA and the space program over the years was amazing. Same goes for DARPA and other research spin-offs.

      The fact that most of you can’t detect the vital bit of marketing blurb and trash-talking competitiveness of scientists out to discover the next greatest thing is actually kind of pathetic. For some reason, it is considered OK if Steve Jobs does this kind of marketing, but when it comes to a nation trying to protect its vital interests, it suddenly is bad. (Why do you people hate America?)

      So read that quote again at the top by “Considerate thinker”. He says that we need to embark on “defunding that branch of science and shifting money to innovation and invention providing low cost clean and abundant energy of the future”. This makes absolutely no sense because what is being funded is fundamental research that will provide a pathway to exactly that kind of future. I have no clue as to what the thinker is complaining about. Fundamental research is hard, and if one could pinpoint it as “innovation and invention” without the fundamental research behind it, you basically have discovered a magic formula for success.

  46. We should be aware that this psychobabble is another step toward pathologizing dissent, as it happened in the old Soviet Union. It has been going on for several years. See for example http://www.spiked-online.com/index.php?/site/article/6320 The new “field” of “ecopsychology” has even sprung up.

    Pathologizing dissent, along with plain old intimidation, are the tools of totalitarians.

    • Interesting how AGW scientists are trying to use psychology to force people into following a really bad theory and so called science behind it. No actual physical proof needed, just trust.

  47. Let me put this at the bottom of the discussion, and start again.

    Steven Mosher | April 28, 2012 at 7:58 pm | Reply

    You are confused.
    1. sensitivity is defined as the increase in temperature given an increase in forcing in watts.
    For example: If the sun increased by 1 watt, what would the increase in temperature be. Lets start with that.

    There are two questions.

    1. What is the sensitivity ( response) in C, to an increase in forcinging (Watts) This figure is INDEPENDENT of the source of the forcing.

    @@@@@@@@@@@

    The sentence I want to concentrate on is

    ” This figure is INDEPENDENT of the source of the forcing.”

    If the proponents of CAGW are correct, and the value for the no-feedback climate sensitivity for a doubling of CO2 is around 1 C, then this statement is incorrect. The estimation of climate sensitivity using the so-called Planck method specificly assumes that “the structure of the atmosphere does not change”. This is interpreted to mean that one can estimate this climate sensitivity by ONLY looking at radiation effects. It also assumes that the lapse rate does not change.

    This assumption has never been validated. But it means that the proponents of CAGW claim that the estimate of climate sensitivity for a doubling of CO2 is a special case. A case where the lapse rate does not change. If the lapse rate changes as result of the forcing, the effect on surface temperatures is very different than if the lapse rate does not change.

    So we need to differentiate sensitivity changes to two different classes of events. One where the lapse rate changes and one where it does not. So Steven’s statement , striclty speaking, is incorrect. And this really matters.

  48. I can see now why the Nature Publishing Group created this publication. Even they knew that they couldn’t afford to poison their Golden Goose nameplate even more than it is now by publishing this opinion piece in Nature itself.

    But without slopping through the “wetland” of words, this beauty stood out:

    Why is it that only a small population of US citizens support an increased duty on electricity and gas, whilst a majority support limits on greenhouse gas emissions imposed on big business.

    I wonder how much of their grant money they spent pondering that one.

    All they really had to do was google the phrase “raisiing other people’s taxes”.

  49. So basically this is a bunch of psychologists trying to work out ways of telling lies so that we will swallow them hook line and sinker. I suppose I could have wrapped that up in pyscho babble but I just couldn’t be bothered…..

  50. Alan D McIntire

    in 1950 the world had half the population it
    does now, it was using
    1/4 of the energy it does now, and CO2 was increasing at roughly
    half
    the rate it does now. Assuming that all of the increase is due to
    humans,, by cutting back on energy use by 7/8 we
    wouldn’t be ELIMINATING any human caused CO2 increase, we’d just be
    slowing down the increase to 1950 levels. I don’t think you’ll find
    anyone in the world willing to cut back energy use by 7/8.

    For Kyoto to be effective, we’d have
    to cut back CO2 productionon by 80 to 100%.

    http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,20867,20332352-601,00.html

    Since I am prejudiced in favor of driving the 10 miles to work rather than walking or biking, since I plan to continue to use my microwave to warm my dinners, turn on electricity to read the paper, to continue watching TV in the evenings, and to continue wasting energy by making posts to usenet, ,by traveling around to visit friends and relatives,and see interesting places., and since i I have no intention of living like a 15th
    century peasant, cutting back on CO2 production is not for me.. Billions of people would have to DIE in order for the
    planet to be able to support anyone in a 15th century level of
    technology. Given a choice between worst case AGW scenario and
    catastrophic death and destruction, any rational person would say,
    “bring on the worst case AGW scenario”.

    Christians have been preaching about the evils of war for over a millenium. Despite the obvious negative effects, the incidence of war has not dropped significantly over that period because the advantage some get form starting wars- extra wealth, spreading genes to the conquered population, outweighs the negative risks. The advantages each one of us gets
    from burning fossil fuels, keeping our jobs and staying alive in
    comfort, FAR outweighs any potential disadvantage.- A. McIntire

  51. Funny, with all the discussion of deception and disbelief, that at then end of the day, the estimate of 3C of warming as an equilibrium response to a doubling of CO2 from preindustrial levels is still a reasonable estimate well within the bands of uncertainty in both the climate models as well as the paleoclimate data.and this has been around for many decades. I don’t see much deception here.

    What is also not reasonable to say is that we even know what the equilibrium response of the current 392 ppm of CO2 will be, as the cryosphere and biosphere are still responding. How much more impossible is it to flatly state that they are certain what the equilibrium response of a doubling of CO2 will be! Who is being more deceptive– Monckton and Lindzen, who put a high degree of certainty that the equilibrium response of a doubling of CO2 will be nearly equal to the transient response, and will be about 1.2C at most, or the many hundreds of dedicated climate scientists who study this everyday are comfortable with the range of potential equilibrium response with uncertainty bands of 1.4C to 4.5C?

    I would posit that the rantings of good men like Monckton do much to sew the seeds of distrust and blur moral judgement in a dishonest way, creating more confusion than already might be present among those who fall victim to the polished nature of those rants.

    • “I would posit that the rantings of good men like Monckton do much to sew the seeds of distrust and blur moral judgement in a dishonest way, creating more confusion than already might be present among those who fall victim to the polished nature of those rants.”
      ————————————————————
      What ‘moral judgement’ are you referring to? Do you even know what the term means?

      Here’s a tip – it has nothing to do with people’s views on CAGW and on what, if anything, should be done about it.

      The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy defines ‘morality’ as follows:
      “The term “morality” can be used either

      descriptively to refer to some codes of conduct put forward by a society or,
      some other group, such as a religion, or
      accepted by an individual for her own behavior or
      normatively to refer to a code of conduct that, given specified conditions, would be put forward by all rational persons.”

      It can be relevant to the conduct of individuals (but not to groups) if they breach generally accepted codes of behaviour, such as by lying or deliberately manipulating the truth for their own ends. The misuse of the term ‘moral’ to score political points, such as in the head post and in your comment, is an example of this.

      • johanna,

        Respectfully, I disagree. When someone, say an elected official, whose own moral judgement (or code of conduct) rests in wanting to honestly “do the right thing” when it comes to deciding on what (if anything) should be done about anthropogenic climate change, and as such they might look toward experts for information and guidance as to what that “right thing” is that ought to be done. For someone like Monckton to present himself before elected officials as an “expert” in the climate sensitivity issue, and then specifically claiming such things as “equilibrium sensitivity will be nearly equal to the transient sensitivity” and it will be at most 1.2C for a doubling of CO2 etc.is something that he can’t possibly know with such certainty, as it simply is not known with any certainty by anyone, and is the subject much ongoing research. How much more honest it is to at least put a range on the sensitivity as the IPCC does. So where is Monckton’s moral judgment or code of conduct in presenting what amounts to his opinion as a greater certainty as to what the climate sensitivity is to those who are decision makers and are representatives of the people? Not only is he being deceptive in presenting things as more certain than he can possible know, given the fact that the research is still intensely ongoing, but also by presenting what amounts to his beliefs as certainty, he creates additional confusion among those who truly want, and need to do the right thing, as representatives of the people.

      • I agree with R. Gates on this. It takes a certain moral character to assert climate change needs no preparation because it won’t happen with absolute certainty according to their own error bars that don’t even overlap with the scientific consensus. Thankfully city planners are not believing their certainty. At least JC’s error bars do overlap IPCC’s, so she can’t be accused of this. These are different types of skeptic.

      • But that’s not what you said in your original comment. You said that the listeners’ ‘moral judgement’ was being blurred, demonstrating that you didn’t even understand what the term means. When corrected, you changed your argument to imply that Monckton and Lindzen as individuals are consciously lying. I have no way of knowing whether or not they are consciously lying, just as I have no way of knowing whether those who disagree with them are consciously lying, except where there is objective evidence such as Gleick’s admission and some of the Climategate emails.

        Your lack of clarity of thought and of basic understanding of the terms of the discussion is on a par with the authors of the slimy document in the head post.

    • thisisnotgoodtogo

      Hi, R Gates.

      I’m trying to categorize some of the items being mentioned, as falling under the headings “morals”, “values”, or “interests”.

      From your post:
      “I would posit that the rantings of good men like Monckton do much to sew the seeds of distrust and blur moral judgement in a dishonest way, creating more confusion than already might be present among those who fall victim to the polished nature of those rants.”

      I take “rantings” as being an noun turned verb, OK ? It’s human action which may “sow seeds of distrust”. That metaphor indicates that by making his speeches he may be inducing change of perceptions by the audience members ? And that such a change of perceptions is cause of blurring of moral judgement ***in a dishonest way*** ?

      First, if the above paraphrasing is OK, then we can deal with the purported “dishonesty” of making a judgement based on perceptions
      R Gates, a question: IYO, would being honest be a moral issue, a value held dear or important, or an interest of the party involved, or all of these ?
      Next,
      What can you tell me about the dishonesty of making judgment calls based on perceptions or trust ?.

    • R. Gates, Despite the inconsistencies of the modeled projections and observations, you remain convinced that CO2 forcing will lead to warming in excess of 1.5 degrees. Solar TSI only changes on the order of 1 Wm-2 from maximum to minimum, and only 1/4 of that would be the average change felt at the surface globally and only about 70% of that would be felt in the lower atmosphere and surface.

      http://i122.photobucket.com/albums/o252/captdallas2/uahmidtropospheretropicsoceanminuslandwithleantsiwithlag.png

      Even with all the noise, there is a fair correlation of mid-troposphere temperature change with the solar cycle. With all the billions of dollars spent to study the atmosphere with state of the art telemetry, you prefer to believe a hodge podge of mixed surface stations with poor coverage or modeled .results with insanely optimistic projected accuracy over the state of the art telemetry?

      I am impressed with your faith.

      • A point I often make is that the solar forcing in a cycle is only 0.2 W/m2 and its effect can be seen. Just imagine what 3.7 W/m2 from doubling CO2 can do. Nearly 20 times the solar cycle change. Even the LIA was only about -0.5 W/m2.

      • And then imagine the extent of modulation effected by clouds. Very impressive indeed!

      • Jim D, what you are missing is where the 3.7 Wm-2 is felt and what is the energy of the surface it is to impact. The average energy flux of the oceans is around 425Wm-2, 3.7 Wm-2 there has much less impact than in the high latitudes. CO2 impact is dependent on the temperature of both the source and sink. That is why the models miss the tropics and Antarctic so badly. Arrhenius was wrong. His second guess was close.

      • If the earth has to radiate 3.7 W/m2 more, it doesn’t matter much where it got the imbalance from, the net effect is warming. In this sense it is equivalent to a 1% solar increase.

      • Jim D, You may want to run some numbers to get a better handle on that thought. The impact of the 3.7 is based on an “average” radiant layer based on “average” temperatures. Averaging T and T^4 will not give the same answer. So the CO2 forcing formula has to be adjusted for the actual change in the regional radiant layer, not some fictitious average layer. That is why the models are consistently wrong in the tropics and the Antarctic. If there was better accuracy for the southern hemisphere surface temperatures, it would be obvious.

      • capt. d, whether the Arctic responds more or the tropics, the earth has to heat. I am not saying the response pattern is identical for solar and CO2 forcing, unlike what Lindzen and Spencer assume for ENSO and CO2 forcing. The local atmospheric change is determined by surface changes and how they are distributed. In this case the Arctic and perhaps continents are responding more than tropical oceans.

      • Jim D said, “capt. d, whether the Arctic responds more or the tropics, the earth has to heat. ” Of course, but all things do not have to remain equal and the surface does not have to experience all of the warming.

        The atmosphere below the average radiant layer can behave as a ground plane for an antennae. The variation in the altitude of the “average” radiant layer helps regulate the rate of long wave cooling. The lags between the oceans and atmosphere create the peaks and valleys in the temperature record. Not knowing what “average” should be complicates the problem. In a cooler world, CO2 would have a greater impact than in an “average” world. If paleo could do a better job, it would be easier to be more precise, but tropical reconstructions indicate there is less than 1.5 C change between the most recent glacial maxima and the current interglacial. The northern hemisphere has experience huge temperature fluctuations with even Siberia being warmer 45,000 years ago.

      • The troposphere is tied to the surface temperature by its definition. You can’t change the tropospheric temperature without changing the surface temperature and vice versa. This makes the whole thing simpler to understand as a single system too. The stratosphere is more independent, but we’re not talking about that.

      • CO2 sits in the back and does nothing. Not even a milliwatt (positive). I know you love your theory, but it’s wrong.

      • A convinced skeptic? Seems like an oxymoron but we see them in abundance here.

      • Yes, pretty convinced. It’s not an oxymoron, I would change my mind, just need sensible e