Open thread weekend

by Judith Curry

It’s your turn to introduce some new topics for discussion

Unfortunately I have been too busy to prepare new material for Climate Etc.  I will be at ATU next week.  My schedule will lighten up in about a week, opening up more time for me to spend on the blog.

872 responses to “Open thread weekend

  1. Here is an open letter to the UN Secretary-General on climate misinformation [Financial Post]:
    http://tinyurl.com/bv8n2tl

    – Oliver K. Manuel

    • The Creator’s Sense of Humor

      In the immortal words of G. K. Chesterson:

      “America is the only nation in the world that is founded on a creed. That creed is set forth with dogmatic and even theological lucidity in the United States Declaration of Independence; . . . it clearly names the Creator as the ultimate authority from whom these equal rights are derived.

      http://www.goodreads.com/quotes/262437-america-is-the-only-nation-in-the-world-that-is

      Today the joke is on those who built the internet to facilitate totalitarian control of human civilization on planet Earth, only to realize that their Creator had built a much larger internet that controls a region of space extending ~120 AU out from the Sun’s pulsar core, engulfing a region of space larger than ten billion, billion Earths, >10,000,000,000,000,000,000 or (10^19) Earths.

      http://omanuel.wordpress.com/about/#comment-1883

      • When linked to social networking, reality TV, gladiator sports, video games, etc., remember: A spider’s web is invisible to a fly.

    • Gerald Browning

      Anyone that wants to know how a climate model can run far beyond the time period of the accuracy of its numerical approximations of the
      dynamical equations (a few days at most) might want to read the enclosed section by Dave williamson – kluges described straight from the horses mouth.

      Jerry

      Numerical Techniques for Global Atmospheric Models
      Lecture Notes in Computational Science and Engineering Volume 80, 2011, pp 381-493
      The Pros and Cons of Diffusion, Filters and Fixers in Atmospheric General Circulation Models
      Christiane Jablonowski, David L. Williamson
      Look Inside
      Get Access
      Abstract
      All atmospheric General Circulation Models (GCMs) need some form of dissipation, either explicitly specified or inherent in the chosen numerical schemes for the spatial and temporal discretizations. This dissipation may serve many purposes, including cleaning up numerical noise generated by dispersion errors or computational modes, and the Gibbs ringing in spectral models. Damping processes might also be used to crudely represent subgrid Reynolds stresses, eliminate undesirable noise due to poor initialization or grid-scale forcing from the physics parameterizations, cover up weak computational stability, damp tracer variance, and prevent the accumulation of potential enstrophy or energy at the smallest grid scales. This chapter critically reviews the wide selection of dissipative processes in GCMs. They are the explicitly added diffusion and hyper-diffusion mechanisms, divergence damping, vorticity damping, external mode damping, sponge layers, spatial and temporal filters, inherent diffusion properties of the numerical schemes, and a posteriori fixers used to restore lost conservation properties. All theoretical considerations are supported by many practical examples from a wide selection of GCMs. The examples utilize idealized test cases to isolate causes and effects, and thereby highlight the pros and cons of the diffusion, filters and fixers in GCMs.
      Look
      Inside
      Share

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      About this Book

      • Jerry, I will read this chapter. The abstract almost makes it seem like viscosity is viewed as the universal “answer” to any behaviour that modelers don’t like. That is a very dangerous way to deal with modeling problems. In aerodynamic CFD, people go to great lengths to minimize artifiical viscosity. Schemes that truly minimize it such as SUPG are dramatically more accurate than the standard finite volume upwind methods. And of course, turbulence models are empirical garbage according to Tom Hughes. They have serious problems. Enjoy your insights.

  2. The sun isn’t made of Iron.
    Just to clear that up in everyone’s mind.

  3. I suggest a debate on:

    “High-cost CO2 mitigation polices are not justified – there is a better way”

    I suggest the rules are simple and it is up to users to self moderate.

    All comments begin by stating if the comment is: a ‘Contention’, ‘Rebuttal’, or ‘Reason’. Reasons are the supporting point for a Contention or Rebuttal and reference the comment and outline code (example below)

    For example, the first line of a comment would say:

    Rebuttal; 1.1.1 @ Peter Lang December 02, 14:25

    • I’ve inserted some material below to illustrate what I am suggesting. My proposal is that this would be built up by Climate Etc commenters posting ‘Contentions’, ‘Rebuttals’ and ‘Reasons’.

      The idea for this stemmed from a mix of David Wojick’s suggestions some months ago, Economist Debate (e.g. http://www.economist.com/debate/overview/201) and a rational argument tool that was suggest yesterday on The Conversation as a possible way to get some structure into the CAGW arguments. The tool suggested is available for 6 day free trial here:
      http://rationale.austhink.com/learn/argument-mapping
      I’ve used it as the basis for what I’ve posted below (but I haven’t added any rebuttals)

      Additional sub categories that can be used to further define the type of ‘Reason’ are:

      Co-premise
      and ‘Basis boxes’ which include:
      Basis
      Assertion
      By definition
      Case study
      Common Belief
      Data
      Event
      Example
      Expert Opinion
      Law
      Media
      Personal Experience
      Publication
      Quote
      Statistic
      Web

      Judith, please advise if I should stop.

      • Lots of luck but no chance getting his crew to do a structured debate. Besides all those categories are confusing and misleading. The category of a point made is not important and can itself become a matter of debate so is really a distraction. What is most important is seeing the structure, which we could do if we had unlimited nesting plus visualization.

        But it is interesting to see that the Rationale argument mapping product may be good for issue trees, so thanks for that. I may contact them since I figured out the basic issue tree structure of argument and debate long ago.
        See my http://www.stemed.info/reports/Wojick_Issue_Analysis_txt.pdf.

      • David Wojick,

        Thanks. I presume, if there was a desire to have a rational debate, the wording of the ‘Contentions’, Rebutals’, ‘Reasons’, as well as the evidence, would be the subject of debate and improvement. I understand it doesn’t matter whether the top assertion is worded negative or positive, the process would, in theory, result in a rational outcome.

        I realise it has little chance of working now. It may have once, but much of the discussion has descended into debate about ideological and religious beliefs.

        I’ll keep playing around. If anyone joins in that’s great.

        Lolwot: thanks for providing the only rebuttal so far.

      • Actually there is still a lot of scientific debate here but some people prefer the meta level, which means arguing about the debate itself. The ideological and religious name calling is basically a form of mass ad hominem but it is widespread in the general debate so why not here? We are just a good sample of the general debate.

    • You want people on a blog to follow rules?

    • Interesting idea but the debate topic statement doesn’t need to include “High-cost”.

      Clearly, cost benefit analysis of the various CO2 mitigation proposals and their related policies is lacking and, in the rare cases where it has been conducted, demonstrates the futility of mitigation.

      Yet, what justification would be needed if the proposed solution(s) saved the taxpayer money, reduced household overhead, improved quality of life, and addressed environmental concerns.

      The debate is actually about the lack of appropriate and insightful solutions.

      Your debate topic implies some currently exist.

      • John from CA,

        Good points. I wonder how these should be handled as part of the debate. I think they can be under 1.2. I think what you are saying is that high-cost mitigation policies are not justified but ‘No Regrets’ mitigation polices are justified (for the pedants, I do recognise that is motherhood). ‘No Regret’s policies are justified no matter how serious is AGW). I added ‘High-cost’ before mitigation to prevent the debate getting side tracked into discussing whether AGW was real, etc., rather than discussing pragmatic policy options.

        Yet, what justification would be needed if the proposed solution(s) saved the taxpayer money, reduced household overhead, improved quality of life, and addressed environmental concerns.

        I agree with the point you are making. IMO this really is the nub of the issue about mitigation. If we focus on what is needed to achieve ‘no regrets solutions progress will be easier and faster. Many benefits like those you mentioned can be achieved, and many other totally unexpected benefits will also emerge.

        But trying to impose high-cost and economically damaging policies on the population will cause endless division, frustration and wasted effort – IMO.

      • “Yet, what justification would be needed if the proposed solution(s) saved the taxpayer money, reduced household overhead, improved quality of life, and addressed environmental concerns.

        The debate is actually about the lack of appropriate and insightful solutions.

        Your debate topic implies some currently exist.”

        The only plausible reason to have government involved is the idea that government could develop technology/solutions. Though it’s pretty unrealistic to expect such competence from any government.
        The whole solar and wind thing is suppose to be to lower these technologies costs. And no government has been or will ever do this- all government have managed to do is delude themselves [mostly] and less successfully, the public.

        “Selling” [lying about] a crappy car is much easier than making a better car. No one has, nor will anyone lose their government job because they wasted tax dollars. If fixed this problem then there some hope- not huge hope, some- as in meager.
        The best solution is for government to stop interfering with the development of technology- and about 99% whatever government does is interfering with the development of technology. What is Obamacare but a giant and vastly stupid interference with medical technology?

        Developing energy technology is something the government figure out, how to stop interfering with it’s development. So things like portable fission reactors and allowing fusion technology to develop.

        Anyone developing economical fusion reactor, would, in just world, become a trillionaire- or at least as much money as people who developed crappy software, and/or a slightly improved internet search engine.

        But all the above is hard or impossible. What is easier is opening the space frontier. When the space frontier is opened, you going to get unimaginable innovations. That would the biggest benefit.
        But there also knowable benefits.
        Solar energy was invented for the space environment and it’s very successful technology when used in the space environment- very few imagine using anything but solar energy for space environment.
        So one can expect further improvement in this technology.

        What is needed in space environment is available rocket fuel.
        We need a market in space for rocket fuel. This so easy that even a government could manage to do this without screwing it up too much.
        And it would lower NASA’s cost for exploration- allow more exploration.
        It also lower the cost for any nation which wished to explore space- some could foolishly imagine that is not a good thing.
        Space is mostly a vast frictionless ocean. An ocean which could allow ports anywhere on the surface of Earth. Landlocked countries don’t need to remain landlocked.
        Getting to Earth is much easier than leaving Earth.
        The only real problem is leaving Earth, and even the friggin Russians can manage to do this pretty well. And Chinese can’t believe that SpaceX can do, what it’s doing. And SpaceX is just the beginning of what we do, if US government will allow it.

      • Peter Lang | December 2, 2012 at 7:36 pm |

        Thanks Peter, I completely agree, this is the nub of the issue.

        One of the interesting aspects, given that meeting the true needs of the end-user in an insightful way is fundamental to Industrial Design, why are they promoting inferior/poor conceived solutions?

        Example: the easiest way to ensure the objectives I previously stated related to power generation is to decentralize power generation. The DOE sponsored MIT Professor Dan Nocera’s work yet the current administration has forced Dr. Chu to reject the work in favor of inferior solutions.

        This leads to the superficial conclusion that they don’t actually wish to achieve anything positive for taxpayers. The UN should Not be in the solutions business.

        http://youtu.be/KTtmU2lD97o

    • This is a cart-before-the-horse idea. Surely the first stage is to evaluate the total cost of climate change mitigation, adaptation, effect on livelihoods, etc. You can’t discuss your questions without a full evaluation of the costs for the various scenarios first. then when you get a number like x trillions of dollars, discuss whether doing anything starting now is worth it, or is it more worth waiting?

      • Jim D,

        Thank you for your comment. This is one of at least three comment making a similar point but from different perspectives. We have to start somewhere. Chief Hydrologists suggested we should start with a debate about whether mitigation is necessary at all. He contends it is, and I think the vast majority of voting public agree, as long as the the cure is not worse than the disease. So I decided to jump to open debate the pragmatic part which is ‘no regrets’ versus high cost mitigation policies. That is what I was trying to get the focus on – the pragmatic and realistic options.

        I did try a number of different top level ‘Assertions’ before settling on the one I selected. Some I tried (and tested to some extent in the free 6 day trial of this ‘Rationale’ http://rationale.austhink.com/learn/argument-mapping) were:

        Policy actions, such as carbon pricing and renewable energy, are unlikely to influence future climate. (This one is from the the 125 scientists’ open letter to Ban Ki-Moon)

        Carbon price and renewable energy are the best way to prevent catastrophic climate change

        Carbon price is best way to control the climate

        Carbon price is the best way to prevent catastrophic climate change

        Carbon price is the necessary to prevent catastrophic climate change

        Carbon price and renewable energy are the best way to prevent catastrophic climate change

        Global ACO2 emissions will cause catastrophic climate change

        Mitigation of global ACO2 emissions is essential

        Australia’s carbon tax is justified.

        I ran into difficulties with all these.

    • “High-cost CO2 mitigation polices are not justified – there is a better way”

      Is the title open to discussion? Mike might think the tone was slightly on the side of those advocating CO2 emission controls. He might suggest something like:

      “Why are high-cost mitigation policies as advocated by in-it-for-the-dough, sociopathic hustlers, consumed with status anxieties, ill-tempered, crazy ol’ coots, corn-pone retards (possibly with a buck riding on the CAGW scam deal themselves) given to disturbingly-frank, embarrassingly-revealing, un-solicited confessionals that, suprisingly, have their goofy, off-beat charm in a Sooner State sort of way, seriously being considered? Why don’t we just tell them to f*** off?”

      Its always good for each side to feel there is no bias in the wording.

  4. 1. High-cost CO2 mitigation polices are not justified – there is a better way
    because:
    1.1 Man-made catastrophic climate change is very unlikely
    1.2 High-cost mitigation policies – such as carbon pricing and renewable energy – will not be sustainable politically
    1.3 Cost competitive alternative to fossil fuels, i.e. ‘No Regrets’ policies, are best way to cut CO2 emissions
    1.4 ‘No Regrets’ policies are achievable and can do the job

    • 1.4 falls under 1.3 so there are basically three initial contentions, each a major issue. If each contention has just three responses and each response has just three responses, and so on, then the tenth layer alone will have 3 to the 10th power responses, around 60,000. These are very big issues.

      Note too that one should also allow questions and answers as responses so that arguments can be clarified. Adding questions and answers to the arguments makes it an issue tree, which is the general form of human reasoning that I discovered in 1973.
      See my http://www.stemed.info/reports/Wojick_Issue_Analysis_txt.pdf

  5. What is going to kill you?

    Heart disease
    Cancer
    Chronic lower respiratory diseases
    Stroke
    Accident
    Alzheimer’s disease
    Diabetes
    Influenza and Pneumonia
    Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis
    CO2

    Which order would you have funded in research dollars?

    • Don’t be silly, CO2 causes:
      Heart disease
      Cancer
      Chronic lower respiratory diseases
      Stroke
      Accident
      Alzheimer’s disease
      Diabetes
      Influenza and Pneumonia
      Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis

      • gbaikie

        You forget:

        anxiety
        fear syndrome
        passive–aggressive personality disorder
        delusional disorder
        doomsday paralysis

        and in extreme cases (as sometimes witnessed on this site):

        paranoi

        Max

    • Doc Martyn

      I don’t know (I forgot).

      Max

    • There is some sense in the implication of this question. All the contributors to this blog are unlikely to be seriously adversely affected by climate change in their lifetimes. Yes, we’re much more likely to succumb to one of the ailments on the list.

      So why should we worry about climate change? Who cares if our generation leaves a huge problem behind for others to fix?

      • temp,

        Can you explain this concern for unborn “future” generations – i.e. people who do not exist, against the obvious lack of concern for people actually alive today?

        There is not a single individual I am aware of, whether it be researchers in climate studies calling for action, current and former politicians or UN affiliated officials, environmentalists and their NGO’s, or those sweet kind folks over at SkS, who does not benefit greatly from our current use of resources. Exactly what are they doing for “future” generations? Let even one of them give up their comfortable modern lifestyle and move to a third world nation to live among and help those less fortunate, and perhaps I might begin to believe they are sincere.

      • timg56,

        No I can’t explain it. Its a bit like when I’m out camping. I always tidy up afterwards so that the only clues I’ve been there are a few footprints and crushed grass. I don’t know why I do that. Why should I care?

        I would say the ‘why should we care’ argument is the only one on the so-called skeptic side to which I don’t have a ready answer.

      • temp,

        Yr: “I would say that ‘Why should we worry about climate change’ argument is the only one on the so-called skeptic side to which I don’t have a ready answer.”

        Temp,

        Looks like I must have missed one of your earlier comments, ‘cuz I still don’t have answer to a skeptical “argument” I’ve put forward repeatedly on this blog.

        In particular, temp, why is it that your sanctimonious, for-the-kids, professional and semi-professional, big-mouth, CAGW worry-wart pals (I’ll not personalize this), who profess to actually believe all the scare-mongering, CAGW crapola they dish-out, don’t LEAD FROM THE FRONT AND BY PERSONAL EXAMPLE when it comes to the austere, carbon life-style?

        I mean, like, we really don’t see your greenshirt good-buddies setting the example, do we, temp, when it comes to carbon austerity? Here’s what we see, instead:

        -The shot-caller money-bags at the top of the CAGW scam livin’ high on the carbon-hog with their rambling, beach-front, bachelor-pads over-run with giggly, air-head, thong-clad beach-bunnies (Eli up!); their private-jets and matching jet-set lifestyle; their yacht-additions; their Philosopher-Kings-and-Queens-only, posh, privately-owned Caribbean islands; and their sized-to-awe-the-peasants, gas-guzzling, tinted-windows, bullet-proof limos crewed by menacing, thuggish, kick-your-butt, the-bulge-in-my-pocket-isn’t-because-I’m-glad-to-see-you, security-guard-hard-asses sporting the latest in scary-dude, sun-glass technology.

        -Greenwashed, crony-capitalists, trading a few pence of campaign contributions for a big-bucks, taxpayer-ripoff, “renewable” energy, boondoogle, insider, investment opportunity, perfectly set up for the nimble hustler, with a good, “for-the-kids” line of flim-flam to get in at start, make his bucks real quick-like, and then exit the impending implosion-fiasco with his “bundle” in tact–leaving the hapless tax-payer to hold the bag.

        -The political opportunists, in on the deal, hot on the scent of a “carbon tax” to maintain themselves in their “public service” careers in the carbon-piggie style to which they’ve become accustomed with some lucrative, pay-off, post-retirement lobbying and book and lecture deals in the bag to keep them from the poor house in their golden years

        -Enabler toadies, hacks, quislings, sell-outs, flunkies, useful-idiots, and useful-tools all angling for place at the carbon-trough in exchange for their mercenary services on behalf of the CAGW con. And these repellent, creep-out lickspittles to do what with their thirty pieces of silver, temp? You know these people, temp? Tell me about their one or two changes of home-spun; their neighborhood foraging for all-organic, GMO-free vegan-fare for their sustenance; the humble, hand-crafted, all-natural tepees in which they find their shelter, and the like. Makes you wonder why the hive-bozo academics are so obsessed with their tenure-slops sinecures and their way-of-the-gravy-train Taoism, right, temp?–I mean, like they have nothing to spend all their dough on, anyway–right, temp?

        -And finally, temp, there’s the CO2-spew, eco-confabs you enviro-hypocrites insist on having that could easily be video-conferenced at vast savings in so-called CO2 pollution and taxpayer bucks–not that that last is a consideration with Gaia’s little helpers, I know.

        Again, the argument you haven’t answered, temp, is this: If your lecturing, smarty-pants, oh-so-scientific, kid-concerned, CAGW-obsessed, leg-humping hive-chums really believed the scare-booger, doom-butt clap-trap they peddle, then they’d LEAD FROM THE FRONT AND BY PERSONAL EXAMPLE? And since your carbon-glutton good-comrades don’t practice what they preach, temp, then why should anyone with slightest street-smarts and functional B. S. detector not dismiss their little game as a make-a-buck/make-a-gulag rip-off? Either that, or conclude your ol’ buds are tossin’ off the carbon because they really, really hate the kids.

      • Has Damascus ever been?…

        Isaiah – Chapter 17

        It’s always best to have the program.

      • temp,

        Your camping analogy doesn’t fit. By definition, your ability to go camping means you are able to benefit from a modern lifestyle and environment. There are billions for whom the idea of camping is most liekly beyond their ken, let alone their reach. Exactly how is your packing out what you take in helping them? These billions do not have the luxury of getting in their car and driving home to a shelter with running water, electricity, in door toilets, easy access to food both plentiful, fresh and usually of great variety.

        Exactly how is the UN and NGO’s who claim a concern for our environment helping these people? Like how they are keeping the peace in the Congo? How they are foisting “green” energy projects onto undeveloped nations, with much of the money going to big industry or into the pockets of corrupt governments?

        The term crime against humanity is over used these days, but it is one that truly applies to those people – such as the SecGen of the UN – who push for billions of dollars for programs and causes having little likelihood of improving the lives of the people most in need. Trying to tell us that global warming will surely result in global food shortages due to increased drought and flooding, when anyone who understands even the least about world food production and distribution knows that 50% of food crops perish each year from spoilage and that hundreds of millions in food support dollars around the world are siphoned off through corruption is pretty much the same as pissing down our backs and telling us it’s raining.

  6. 1.1 Man-made catastrophic climate change is very unlikely
    Because:
    1.1.1 Earth has been much warmer in the past, and life thrived
    1.1.2 Life thrives when warmer, struggles when colder (AR4 Chapter 6)
    1.1.3 The planet has been warmer for most of the time multi-cell life has thrived on Earth (past 550 million years). There has been no ice at the poles for 75% of this time.
    1.1.4 Sea level rise is not catastrophic. It is a trivial cost over 90 years. It is estimated at less than 0.03% of global GDP over that time.

    • Rebuttal; 1.1.

      Man-made catastrophic climate change is very plausible because:

      1. Catastrophes in the past, such as mass extinction events, are caused when changes become too fast for life adapt in time to and ecosystems unravel.
      2. Humans are inducing one of the fastest periods of change in the history of Earth.
      2.1. CO2 and other GHGs in the atmosphere are rising at an unprecedented rate in Earth’s history with some GHGs such as SF6 having never existed before in the atmosphere.
      2.1.1 CO2 has a significant impact on the biosphere
      2.1.1.1 CO2 is a strong greenhouse gas
      2.1.1.2 CO2 is a strong plant fertilizer
      2.1.1.3 CO2 rise induces ocean acidification
      2.1.2 Rapid reorganization of the biosphere will occur.
      2.1.3 As in the past ecosystems could unravel if key species fail to adapt in time.

      • Rebuttal, 1.1, Lolwot, @ December 1, 2012 at 8:13 pm

        Man-made catastrophic climate change is very plausible because:

        What is the definition of ‘catastrophic climate change’ or ‘catastrophic anthropogenic global’ warming? Does it mean a large number of human fatalities? This is what I understand it to mean. If so by when?

        You say nit is plausible. Well many catastrophes are ‘plausable’. But how likely is it given our ability to cut GHG emissions from fossil fuels this century if we really want and relatively quickly if we want to?

        How does the risk of catastrophic climate change rank amongst other potentially catastrophic risks, especially when time is take into account?

        [I suspect, this response may not follow the rules; I am new to this method, so I hope some experts will jump in, lead and educate me and any others who are interested, on how to apply this technique].

      • Global warming isn’t exactly as fast as, say, an asteroid impact. Warmists seem to be under the impression global warming is like that.

      • Mark B (number 2)

        “2.1.1.3 CO2 rise induces ocean acidification”

        As the oceans are still slightly alkaline, I prefer to use the phrase: “ocean neutralization”.
        So I would suggest that CO2 is creating a level playing field for all living sea creatures. Consequently, corals will not have such an unfair advantage in the future.

      • .Peter Lang – good approach;
        Sub contention: 1.1.5 The biosphere can accommodate rapid global warming.
        Support countering lolwot’s “rebuttal” that 2. Humans are inducing one of the fastest periods of change in the history of Earth.
        Rethinking species’ ability to cope with rapid climate change CHRISTIAN HOF, IRINA LEVINSKY, MIGUEL B. ARAU ´ J O and CARSTEN RAHBEK, Global Change Biology (2011) 17, 2987–2990, doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2486.2011.02418.x

        Recent geophysical studies challenge the view that the speed of current and projected climate change in core data, Steffensen et al. (2008) showed that local temperature changed up to 4 deg C/yr near the end of the last glacial period (14 700 BP). Their results revealed that ‘polar atmospheric circulation can shift in 1–3 years, resulting in decadal- to centennial-scale changes from cold stadials to warm interstadials’ associated with Greenland temperature changes of 10 deg C (Steffensen et al., 2008).

        i.e. 40 deg C/decade.
        Contrast:

        Earth’s mean temperature has increased by 0.74 deg C from 1906 to 2005, and projections of global mean temperature increase for the end of the century (2090–2099) range from 1.8 to 4 deg C (IPCC, 2007).

        i.e. IPCC warns of ~ 0.2 – 0.4 deg/decade
        Thus, the biosphere has accommodated global climate warming that was 100 times higher than the IPCC’s warnings of “rapid” global warming over the next century.

        See also:
        Rapid Younger Dryas – Holocene transition recorded in marine sediments offshore Newfoundland

        The transition from the Younger Dryas into the warmer Holocene is clearly reflected in the record as a sudden increase in productivity of both foraminifera and diatoms, with a relative increase in warmer water diatom species, and is further characterized by a steep rise in both calcium and organic carbon content. Based on the calcium record from the XRF core scan, the entire transition took place in only 55 years.

        Sub contention 1.1.6 Rapid geological global warming & cooling was not due to CO2.
        Evidence: See above, and:
        Easterbrook, D.J., Gosse, J., Sherard, C., Finkel, R., and Evenson, E., 2011, Evidence for synchronous global climatic events: Cosmogenic exposure ages of glaciations: in Evidence-Based Climate Science, Elsevier Inc., p. 53-88.

        PS lolwot to become credible, you rise above parroting alarmist rhetoric and submit scientific arguments supported by referenced evidence.

      • Pls relate your assertions to the ocean level data Lubos Motl just posted. Just where do all your effects show up on those (non) curves?

      • David L Hagen,

        Thank you for your two sub-contentions 1.1.5 and 1.1.6 rebutting Lolowot’s rebuttal. Your post has raised the bar on how to do it. Excellent.

      • Rebuttal, 1.1, Lolwot, @ December 1, 2012 at 8:13 pm

        2. Humans are inducing one of the fastest periods of change in the history of Earth.

        Question:
        Are the extinctions you refer to caused by mans’ greenhouse gas emissions?
        Or are they due to habitat destruction?
        Could you be attributing the extinctions to the wrong cause?

    • Peter Lang,

      Are you saying that if there were no longer any ice at the poles it would only cost 0.03% of global GDP and life would still thrive?

  7. 1.2 High-cost mitigation policies – such as carbon pricing and renewable energy – will not be sustainable politically
    Because:
    1.2.1 Risk of CO2 causing catastrophe is no greater than other risks that are not being mitigated
    1.2.2 High-cost mitigation policies will harm world economy – i.e., harm human wellbeing
    1.2.3 Benefits of the policies are uncertain / not demonstrable
    1.2.4 Not a robust solution
    1.2.5 Subject to political interference

    • Reason, 1.2.4 ‘Not a robust solution
      @ Peter Lang December 1, 2012 at 7:56 pm
      Because:

      It would waste global wealth on solutions that probably will not make beneficial changes to the climate

      It would waste global wealth that could be better spent on other policies that would deliver greater benefits for human well being.

    • 1.2.4

      “Not a robust solution”

      Do the math, using IPCC’s model-derived 2xCO2 climate sensitivity and projection of future warming and you see that this is the case.

      The most likely “business as usual” scenarios have CO2 rising to ~600 ppmv by 2100 with no “climate initiatives”, and temperature increasing by 1.2 to 1.8C above the level they would rise if all emissions had been stopped in 2000 (IPCC AR4 WG1).

      So if ALL nations agreed to eliminate ALL CO2 emissions IMMEDIATELY, we would theoretically reduced global warming by 2100 by 1.2 to 1.8C.

      This is peanuts – and it is an unachievable asymptototic value we could never reach in practice, even if the largest emitters of the 21stC (China, India, USA, etc.) would agree to drastically curtail CO2 emissions (which they have no intention of doing).

      So the truth of the matter is: we cannot change our planet’s future climate no matter how much money we throw it it.

      So premise 1.2.4 is validated

      Max

  8. 1.3 Cost competitive alternative to fossil fuels, i.e. ‘No Regrets’ policies, are best way to cut CO2 emissions
    Because:
    1.3.1 Smallest temperature increase, lowest damage cost, lowest abatement cost
    1.3.2 Global decarbonisation rate, required verses current
    1.3.3 Decarbonisation rate requires substitution for fossil fuels

    • Reason, 1.3.1, @ Peter Lang, December 1, 2012 at 7:58 pm
      Because:

      Basis:
      William Nordhaus (2008) ‘A Question of Balance’ http://nordhaus.econ.yale.edu/Balance_2nd_proofs.pdf

      Nordhaus used estimates available up to 2007 to estimate the damage cost of 3.06°C warming (from 1900) with no mitigation would be $22.55 trillion (in 2005 US $) (Table 5-1, p82-83). He estimated the damages with the ‘Optimal’ carbon price policy would be $17.31 trillion. (Temperature change from 1900 = 2.61°C, a saving of just 0.47°C)

      Importantly, he estimated the abatement cost with the ‘Optimal’ carbon price policy would be $2.2 trillion.

      That is, Nordhaus estimated the cost to avoid 0.47°C of warming at $2.2 trillion.

      However, Nordhaus also makes statements in the text that, taken together, show carbon pricing cannot work in the real world (see my summary here: http://judithcurry.com/2012/09/12/the-costs-of-tackling-or-not-tackling-anthropogenic-global-warming/#comment-239089.

      Therefore, carbon pricing would set the world back $2.2 trillion (2005 US$) for no benefit.

      This is an important issue. Little if any work has been done to show that carbon pricing can achieve the benefits that Nordhaus and the other carbon price advocates assume. They are making an unsupported assumption. Richard Tol acknowledged it in his reply to my question here: http://judithcurry.com/2012/09/12/the-costs-of-tackling-or-not-tackling-anthropogenic-global-warming/#comment-239101

      As an aside, Nordhaus also shows the estimated damage costs, abatement costs and Temperature change (from 1900) for other policies. Here is an extract from Table 5-1 for four of the sixteen polices listed.

      Global Temp change (°C from 1900); cost (2005 US$ trillion)
      Carbon price policy Damage cost Abatement cost Temp change
      Delay mitigation 250 years $22.6 $0.0 3.1
      Optimal carbon price $17.3 $2.2 2.6
      Stern Review (discounting) $9.0 $27.7 1.5
      Low-cost alternative to FF $4.9 $0.5 0.9

      The low-cost alternative to fossil fuels (Nordhaus calls it ‘Low-cost backstop’ policy) is by far the cheapest, by far the least damaging and gives by far the smallest temperature increase (based on Nordhaus’s estimates).

      [It should be noted that, in practice the costs would be higher and the benefits less because the estimates are based on assumptions that the ‘Low-cost backstop’ policy would be implemented fully and immediately in 2005. Clearly this is not possible]

    • Reason, 1.3.2, ‘Global decarbonisation rate, required verses current @ Peter Lang, December 1, 2012 at 7:58 pm
      Because:

      Decarbonisation rate required to substantially cut GHG emissions over next 40 to 80 years is around 5% to 6% per annum.
      The current rate is about 0.7% pa. The rate was about 2% pa in 1990 and has been declining since.

      Roger Pielke Jr. ‘Decelerating Decarbonization of the Global Economy’
      http://rogerpielkejr.blogspot.com.au/2010/07/decelerating-decarbonization-of-global.html
      Roger Pielke Jr. et. al. (2008) ’Dangerous assumptions’
      http://sciencepolicy.colorado.edu/admin/publication_files/resource-2593-2008.08.pdf

    • Reason, 1.3.3, ‘’Decarbonisation rate requires substitution for fossil fuels‘ @ Peter Lang, December 1, 2012 at 7:58 pm
      Because:

      Energy efficiency can have little impact. Only replacement of fossil fuels will have a significant impact on global GHG emissions.
      Ref: Roger Pielke Jr.
      http://rogerpielkejr.blogspot.com.au/2011/02/reality-check.html
      http://sciencepolicy.colorado.edu/admin/publication_files/2010.36.pdf

      Global CO2 emissions per kWh of electricity decreased by just 2% from 1990 to 2009. During that time the global proportion of electricity generation by fossil fuel increased from 63% to 67% the proportion by nuclear + renewables decreased from 37% to 33%. (Coal’s share increased from 37% to 40%)
      http://www.iea.org/publications/freepublications/publication/CO2emissionfromfuelcombustionHIGHLIGHTS.pdf
      http://www.iea.org/stats/pdf_graphs/29ELEC.pdf

      The reason there has been negligible decarbonisation of electricity is because the rollout of nuclear power and further development of it has been effectively stalled in the rich countries.

      Decarbonisation of electricity requires replacement of fossil fuels, especially coal, peat and oil, by nuclear and renewable energy technologies. Hydro’s share will continue to decrease because there is little more hydro resource available to be developed. Non-hydro renewables increased their proportion from 2.5% to 3.5% during this period. Their contribution remains insignificant. They remain not viable. Clearly nuclear will have to do the ‘heavy lifting.

      • David L. Hagen

        Peter – alternatively, renewable sources must be developed at a sufficient rate to replace fossil fuels at competitive prices. Note that the critical transition is in the use and supply of liquid transport fuels, NOT electricity.

      • Rebuttal, 1.3.3, ‘Decarbonisation rate requires substitution for fossil fuels‘ @ David Hagen December 2, 2012 at 2:12 pm

        renewable sources must be developed at a sufficient rate to replace fossil fuels at competitive prices.

        Rebuttal: Renewable sources are highly unlikely to be developed at a sufficient rate to replace fossil fuels at competitive prices.

        because:
        1. RE requires too much resources per TWh of electricity generated. For example, they require an order of magnitude more materials. Practically speaking, not enough renwable energy can be built to provide world energy needs. They are not sustainable.

        2. They cannot be built fast enough. Despite the massive public support and funding poured into them for decades (or centuries), and at an ever increasing rate over the past three decades, non-hydro renewable’s share of global electricity generation has increased just one percentage point between 1990 to 2009 – from 2.5% to 3.5%. The reality is that renewables can make little contribution. They may, perhaps, make more contribution to transport fuels in the future (such as algae production and harvesting, perhaps in the oceans).

        3. Non-hydro renewables use very low energy density ‘fuels’. This mitigates against them being a low cost option.

        the critical transition is in the use and supply of liquid transport fuels, NOT electricity.
        Rebuttal: The critical early transition is electricity generation, not fossil fuels.

        Because:

        If low-emissions electricity generation is cost competitive (cheaper than fossil fuel electricity generation), it could avoid up to 50% of the emissions from fossil fuels. Low cost electricity could replace fossil fuels used for electricity generation, some heat, some oil for land transport; and the fugitive emissions associates with production of all these. Low-cost, near-zero emissions electricity generation could replace 50% of emissions from fossil fuel energy sources.

        Next step in order of priority is transport fuels – i.e. development of energy carriers (replacement for liquid transport fuels) such as with high temperature nuclear reactors. But first step is replacement of fossil fuels for electricity generation. This will give the ‘early wins’. That’s where the focus is world wide for good reason.

  9. 1.4 ‘No Regrets’ policies are achievable and can do the job
    Because:
    1.4.1 Cost competitive alternative to fossil fuels is achievable as a ‘No regrets’ policy

    • Reason 1.4.1 @ Peter Lang, December 1, 2012 at 7:59 pm
      Because:

      By far the least cost way to reduce global emissions would be with a cost competitive alternative to fossil fuels. Just replacing coal fired electricity would avoid 20 Gt/a in 2035: http://www.eia.gov/oiaf/aeo/tablebrowser/#release=IEO2011&subject=3-IEO2011&table=13-IEO2011&region=0-0&cases=Reference-0504a_1630 That’s nearly half the global emissions from fossil fuels. True it is not feasible to do this by 2035, but it shows the magnitude of the saving that nuclear could provide, and would have done if development hadn’t been thwarted so badly for the past 50 years.

      If nuclear power is allowed to be significantly cheaper than fossil fuels, then low emissions electricity will substitute for some gas for heating and some oil for land transport. That would mean nuclear power would displace more fossil fuels (and the associated fugitive emissions).

      To make this possible we need small nuclear power plants. Large plants like the ones being built now are too expensive and there is too much investor risk in building them. They are also not suitable for small grids, like Australia’s. We need small plants that can be implemented incrementally.

      In February 2012, President Obama approved funding for just this – small, modular, factory-built, nuclear power plants. In November 2012, Department of energy selected the first design to be supported through to commercialisation: http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2012/11/26/nuclear-small-modular-reactors/1727001/ .

      Once in commercial production, small, modular nuclear power plants could be built as fast as global demand dictates. And costs will come down – perhaps 20% per doubling of capacity (according to Rod Adams). That is, the price would be halved by the time 1.5 GW is commissioned and would continuing down to perhaps 25% of first unit cost by the time12 GW are commissioned (I accept this may be optimistic, I am trying to get the big picture concepts across).

      There are 43 small nuclear power plant designs described here: http://www.world-nuclear.org/info/inf33.html . The more that are commercialised the better. Competition improves the breed and reduces costs – just like it has done with commercial aircraft and air fares over the past 50 years.

      To give a perspective of how fast production could be ramped up to meet demand, consider the case of another large and complex production. During WWII, the USA ramped up in just 18 months (1942-1943) to produce aircraft carriers in just 100 days. That is from first laying of the keel to the aircraft carrier being complete and fully loaded with weapons and aircraft: http://navalhistory.flixco.info/G/269245×269223/8330/a0.htm

      Given that rate of production was achieved 70 years ago, small modular, factory built nuclear power plants like the first one approved for support by DOE http://www.uxc.com/smr/Library/Design%20Specific/mPower/Presentations/2012%20-%20Reactor%20Design%20Overview.pdf we can envisage that they could be produced at the rate required to meet demand. The cheaper they are the more the demand, and the more that are produced the cheaper they will become.

      If we want low emissions, I’d suggest this is where the rich world should be focusing its efforts.

      • Posting essays as reasons defeats the goal of structuring the arguments. But then this argument has thousands of contentions, rebuttals and reasons so structuring it here is impossible. There is a good reason why we are approaching 300,000 comments.

      • “True it is not feasible to do this by 2035”

        Replacing all the coal fired electric plants with nuclear by 2035 is feasible.
        2012 – 2015 – 12 GW/year annual nuclear construction starts
        2016-2020 – 24 GW
        2021-2025 – 48 GW
        2026-2030 – 96 GW

        China will plausibly be at a 12 GW build rate by 2016 and India will plausibly be at a 8 GW build rate by 2016. The UAE and Saudi Arabia have both announced plans to build 1 GW each per year out to 2030. The UAE has already started and the the Saudi’s have announced starting in 2014. So that gives me 22 GW / year nuclear starts by 2016.
        I’m sure if I searched a little more I can find at least 2 GW’s of planned nuclear construction per year starting in the rest of the world.

        Establishing steady build rates within a country do a lot to bring costs down as the workers in the supply line and at the construction sites will get good at what they do. The Chinese trimmed the time for setting the top dome on their nuclear reactors by 2/3rds between 2009 and 2012.

      • Harrywr2,

        Reason 1.4.1 @ Peter Lang, December 1, 2012 at 7:59 pm

        Replacing all the coal fired electric plants with nuclear by 2035 is feasible.

        Thank you for another interesting and informative contribution..

        Using your rates, I calculate the world could have a total capacity of 900 GW of nuclear power by 2035.

        Coal generating capacity in 2035 is projected by EIA http://www.eia.gov/oiaf/aeo/tablebrowser/#release=IEO2011&subject=7-IEO2011&table=19-IEO2011&region=0-0&cases=Reference-0504a_1630 to be:
        World = 2129 GW
        OECD = 633 GW
        Non OECD = 1496 GW

        EIA projects China’s coal generating capacity at 1043 GW in 2035. China’s just released energy policy projects 200 GW nuclear by 2030(?) and 400 GW by 2050 (figures from memory). Therefore, China would need to build about five times more nuclear more nuclear than it plans by 2035 if it was to replace all coal with nuclear by then.

        Small countries cannot integrate 1 GW scale nuclear power plants in their grids (or fund them). They need small plants. USDOE has begun the push for small modular nuclear power plants, with the first cab off the rank, 180 MW mPower, scheduled to be ‘commercialised’ by 2022. Teething problems and ramp up of production for this and competitors, will take some time. At the current rate of progress, it will be close to 2030 before we really get going in making small nuclear a truly cheaper option than coal.

        However, I agree it doesn’t have to be like this. We could do it if we wanted to, especially the USA could make it happen if its people wanted to. The fact that USA built the first ever large nuclear reactor (first breaking of ground to in operation) in just 21 months and that was nearly 70 years ago, shows what could be done if we wanted to. Another example is the case of the production rates of aircraft carriers in 1942-43 being ramped up to the point where they were being built in just 100 days; this shows what could be done if we wanted to.

        It’s possible. But it is being blocked by public opposition.

      • Peter

        China’s coal fired capacity is 790GW currently running at 60% utilization. The build rate has slowed substantially. Hydro capacity and wind capacity are increasing rapidly. They will add another 200GW hydro by 2020 coupled with another 150GW of wind.

        The China 2030 estimate, which I remember from memory as well of 200GW and the 400GW by 2050 is the last ‘official’ statement. To get there they only need to extend the build rate envisioned in the 12th Five year plan out to 2030 and 2050.

        The same generally goes for India’s statements about 2030 and 2050.

        I’m assuming at some point they will accelerate the build rate when they are confident they have sufficiently experienced staff and supply chain infrastructure to sustain a higher build rate. Those decisions are for the planners of the 13th,14th and 15th five year plans.

    • Harrywr2,
      Thank you for more info. I agree it is technically feasible to replace most of the world’s coal capacity with nuclear bey 2035. I don’t see any sign on this or other web sites that the people we should expect to be the most enthusiastic advocates of a solution that could deliver what they say they want, actually support it. In fact, most of them seem to be as opposed as ever.

      • Peter,

        For Europeans the Olkiluoto #3 cost overruns are keeping the ‘save my wallet’ crowd on the sidelines. It’s hard to make the case the nuclear is a cost effective solution when the only recent example had huge delays and huge cost overruns.(Not unusual for a FOAK project, but none the less disturbing)

        In the US we haven’t had any demand growth and ultracheap natural gas is keeping the ‘save my wallet’ crowd on the sidelines as well.

        Hence, in most of the developed English speaking world there isn’t much conversation being put forth by the ‘save my wallet’ crowd except ending subsidies for wind and solar.

        I don’t expect US Natural gas prices to stay where they are forever, Our FOAK AP1000 project, Vogtle is experiencing some cost overruns due to regulatory delay. The VC Summer SOAK nuclear project which is about a year behind is staying fairly close to budget.

        Latest VC Summer Financials
        http://www.scana.com/NR/rdonlyres/749BD78B-BCFD-4B41-9080-D3478587ADF1/0/BLRAQuarterlyReportSeptember302012.pdf

        There won’t be much of a conversation to be had in the US about nuclear until around 2015 at the earliest when investors can evaluate accurately the construction cost risks of nuclear using VC Summer as the example and start to see that the SMR’s might actually get a design approval.

        There are some ‘low level’ discussions going on at city and state levels in the US where future nuclear plants might be sited. Since most of the proposed sites are in relatively rural areas our ‘big media’ doesn’t pick up the stories.

        Obviously, the rather unfortunate imposition of a Carbon Tax in Australia recently has lead to an increased desire among the Australian ‘save my wallet’ crowd to have a serious conversation about cost effective ways to reduce carbon emissions.

      • Harrywr2,

        Thank you for another comment, packed with relevant information.

        The regulatory delay and resulting cost overruns at Vogtle is a genuine concern. Who pays? I bet it isn’t the regulator. I’ll bet it is the investors and, therefore, eventually it will have to be paid by the electricity consumers. The risk of regulatory and public disruption delays is a key concern for investors.

        This is one of the main reasons for needing to accelerate the commercialisation of small modular nuclear power plants. They will be able to be built incrementally and much faster than the 1 GW monsters, so the risk to investors is much less – a $2 billon instead of $10 commitment at a time.

        SMRs cost less to build, improve safety and offer flexibility. They say these reactors could be made in U.S. factories and moved, or exported, to remote or small sites that cannot support large reactors.

        “You can put them together like Legos on a job site,” Mowry says. “The industry likes building blocks of this size,” he says, likening the heft of each to a tanker truck. He expects a two-reactor plant generating a total of 360 megawatts of power to cost $1.5 billion to build — about a tenth of the projected cost of a two-reactor, 2,000-megawatt plant the NRC approved earlier this year for Georgia.

        Genoa says U.S.-based companies are furthest along in developing small reactors, which he says many countries want. He says the U.S. has a chance to recapture its lead in nuclear technology, adding, “‘This race is ours to lose.”

        http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2012/11/26/nuclear-small-modular-reactors/1727001/

        The vast majority of countries cannot handle the 1 GW scale reactors. Such plants are too large for the grid and the financial commitment is too big. This is true for Australia. With one exception, our largest generating units are 660 MW (in NSW) 500 MW in Victoria and smaller in other states. The one exception is a 750 MW unit in Queensland. The small modular reactors, if cost competitive, would be ideal.

        As an example, Hazelwood is a 1600 MW brown coal power station in Victoria (eight 200 MW units). Its CO2 emissions are about 1.5 t/MWh. That’s amongst the world’s highest CO2 intensity power stations. It was built in the 1960’s and has a life extension to about 2030 or so (It has just been given a subsidy – called compensation for the carbon tax – of about $1 billion, and will earn large compensation for the carbon tax and ETS if the legislation is not repealed – go figure that one!).

        2030 would be a perfect time to replace it with eight 200 MW small modular nuclear reactors. Just slot them in, with minimal changes to the grid connections and using the same water source for cooling The mPower (or better alternatives) should be commercially proven by then, uprated to 200 MW or more, and perhaps half the price of the first production units. Perfect.

        The rest of the world can do likewise. Most coal generators could be replaced across the world by say 2060 – as long as they are allowed to be cheap. How quickly this happens is really up to those who oppose nuclear power. If they continue to oppose it they will continue to make it more expensive than is necessary. The higher price will slow roll out and slow development. Development and roll out will remain slow as it has been for the past 50 years or so. So the rate of reducing global emissions will be slower than it could be.

        Obviously, the rather unfortunate imposition of a Carbon Tax in Australia recently has lead to an increased desire among the Australian ‘save my wallet’ crowd to have a serious conversation about cost effective ways to reduce carbon emissions.

        That is me. However, I hope you can think of a better phrase than ‘save the wallet crowd’. I agree that term does describe many voters. However, I believe it is not really appropriate for the people who are thinking about rational policy options. I haven’t got a better catchy phrase but perhaps you can think of one that conveys these messages:

        • Low-cost power is good for humanity – especially in the poorest countries. It is good for the economy, for jobs, for higher real remuneration, better standard of living, and better services (such as Health, Education, infrastructure, etc).

        • If low-emissions electricity is cheap it will be rolled out faster across the world to replace high emissions electricity. So global emissions will be reduced faster.

        • Low-cost electricity will save millions of lives. It will be rolled out faster to replace open fires that use dung and wood for cooking and heating.

        I suggest ‘save the wallet crowd’ does not get these message across and trivialises what the people who advocate economically rational policies are really arguing for.

        By the way, these dot points also explain some of the important reasons why carbon pricing is bad policy. A better policy would be to remove the impediments that are preventing the world having low cost nuclear power. The USA could make this happen. The US President has the capacity to make this happen.

      • I think SMR’s will be a big hit as well.

        One of the things in the US regulatory process that has changed is the rigorousness of the design license process.. We spend a lot more time ‘up front’ on the design license then ever before. That makes the design license costs enormous.

        I personally see this as a feature…thoroughly evaluate every objection some anti-nuke crackpot might have before the first unit starts nuclear construction.

        It’s kind of lot like in a Christian Wedding, where the priest asks if anyone has an objection to the marriage, and if not forever hold your peace.

        In the 1980’s the evaluation of every objection a crackpot might have was done on a unit by unit basis after construction was started. That means construction frequently got held up in court proceedings where the crackpot would claim the NRC failed to evaluate X,Y,Z appropriately.

        Obviously, delays after construction have started, or after long lead time items have been ordered drive up cost because the construction financing meter is running.

        The AP1000 design license ended up unexpectedly having ‘one additional round’ of evaluations and the Vogtle people had already started site prep and ordered long lead time parts.

        The SMR design license cost share has been part of US DOE plans for a number of years. Unfortunately, because of the rigorous nature of the US NRC design licensing the NRC would not have been able to take them up anyway. They just don’t have the staff to evaluate more then one or two designs at a time. It’s an extremely time consuming and rigorous process.

        The plan since 2005 has been to license 2 or 3 big reactors, then 2 or 3 small reactors, then move on to the next gen stuff.

        All the SMR’s won’t be ‘made in america’. The Russian SBR-100 reactor(fast breeder) seems promising,construction begins on the full scale demonstrator in 2013 and I expect they will sell a bunch of them.

      • Harrywr2,

        Thank you again. More interesting information.

        One of the things in the US regulatory process that has changed is the rigorousness of the design license process.. We spend a lot more time ‘up front’ on the design license than ever before. That makes the design license costs enormous.

        I personally see this as a feature…thoroughly evaluate every objection some anti-nuke crackpot might have before the first unit starts nuclear construction.

        I agree that this is a feature. It is often stated it is far cheaper to design quality in from the start rather than try to fix problems later. So the NRC design reviews are good – in a way.

        However, I’d point out that the nuclear industry is treated differently than any other industry. By so doing it is costing the world massive delays in cutting global emissions and is causing avoidable fatalities. To put a number on this: 650,000 fatalities per year could be avoided if coal was replaced with nuclear now (overnight).

        No other electricity generator has its designs reviewed by a government body like the NRC, yet other industries are far more dangerous.

        Another industry that has high profile accidents is the aircraft industry. Passenger aircraft designs are not subject to government design reviews of the type and rigour that NRC has to do on every reactor design. The passenger aircraft industry has hundreds of fatalities at a time and hundreds of fatalities per year – perhaps more per year than the total number of fatalities civil nuclear industry has caused in 57 years. Yet, the aircraft manufacturers are responsible for their own designs. They have to ensure safety or they go broke. The same should be the case with nuclear reactors. SMRs would be better suited than the large nuclear plants for this because they will be produced more quickly, lessons learned will be built into the next versions more quickly, and competition will improve the breed. I think we need to get responsibility for design out of the hands of the government and into the commercial world just like it is for the aircraft industry and most other industries.

        The SMR design license cost share has been part of US DOE plans for a number of years. Unfortunately, because of the rigorous nature of the US NRC design licensing the NRC would not have been able to take them up anyway. They just don’t have the staff to evaluate more then one or two designs at a time. It’s an extremely time consuming and rigorous process.

        The plan since 2005 has been to license 2 or 3 big reactors, then 2 or 3 small reactors, then move on to the next gen stuff.

        The NRC approvals process is holding up the world. The blame for the delay cannot be attributed to the NRC or the politicians. The blame must be put squarely on the anti-nukes and the environmental NGOs. They are the people and organisations that have opposed the development of nuclear power every step of the way. Therefore, IMO, they should be held accountable for in the order of a million avoidable fatalities so far and for CO2 emissions being 10% to 20% higher than they would have been to date and decades of delay in rollout rate from here on.

        All the SMR’s won’t be ‘made in america’. The Russian SBR-100 reactor(fast breeder) seems promising, construction begins on the full scale demonstrator in 2013 and I expect they will sell a bunch of them.

        I agree. And that is great. I’d like to see many competitors in many of the large industrial countries manufacturing and competing to produce SMR’s. The competition will improve the breed and bring costs down. I’d like to see companies like the equivalent of the passenger aircraft industry competing and with a sort of equivalent regulation. And an equivalent ‘no blame’ approach for accident investigations. Countries that could manufacture SMRs include: USA, Canada, UK, France, Germany, Sweden, Finland, Russia, Japan, Korea, China, India, Brazil.

        I say: if we unleash the competition the world could cut global CO2 emissions very significantly by 2050, and save a million avoidable fatalities a year by 2050.

      • Peter,

        The difference between the Aircraft Industry and the Nuclear Industry is that we are not socializing the potential costs of aircraft accidents. If an airplane crashes either the airline or the airplane manufacturer end up paying the compensation.

        We had 9/11 and the airlines/aircraft manufacture’s could not bear the costs of a failure in airline security and airlines are no longer responsible for security.

        Of the 3 major commercial nuclear accidents that have occurred, the costs ended up being socialized in two of them.

        I would agree that the socialized costs that resulted from the 2 major nuclear accidents that had socialized costs are probably an order of magnitude lower then the socialized costs of the alternatives.

        We live in democracies where a substantial portion of the voting public prefers binary(good/bad) thinking rather then comparative analysis.

        The number of people who are going to end up falling off the roof and incurring major medical costs(socialized of course) or dying from cleaning solar panels is going to be enormous. We already have 160,000+ emergency room visits per year in the US as a result of ladder usage. Rooftop Solar panels are only going to add to that number.
        http://www.cpsc.gov/CPSCPUB/PUBS/ladder.html

        Of course making such an argument over at ‘green energy world’ would probably result in being banned for life ;))

      • Harrywr2,

        Thank you again. I agree with all your points.

        We live in democracies where a substantial portion of the voting public prefers binary(good/bad) thinking rather than comparative analysis.

        You are correct, of course, that this is the reality. However, I find it very frustrating when a debate goes something like this;

        Alarmist: ACO2 emissions will be catastrophic. We must do something about it immediately.

        Realist: Go nuke …. cut global CO2 emissions … and avoid hundreds of thousands of fatalities per year.

        Alarmist: Oh! No! We can’t consider that option. The public won’t accept it.

        Alarmist: Nuclear can’t be insured.

        Realist: The reason nuclear is not insurable is because the costs of accidents are several orders of magnitude too high for the amount of actual damage they do. That is caused because of 50 years of anti nuke activism … resulting in nuclear phobia throughout the developed countries … causing politicians to pass rules that require ridiculous responses to accidents (out of all proportion to the risk and orders of magnitude more costly than the response to far more damaging chemical spills). You can expect anyone to ensure against the response caused by widespread nuclear phobia as opposed to insure against what the damages would be if the response to the accident was equivalent to the response to any other major accident (such as a plane crash or toxic chemical release)

        Alarmist: I’m not interested in all that stuff. I just want a two word answer … NO NUKE!

        What we are confronted with is that Alarmists argue everyone should accept what they believe are the facts about CAGW, but they don’t want to debate the facts about rational policy options to address it. If nuclear is suggested the Alarmists turn to irrational responses like Nuke is not acceptable to the public and renewable energy is popular.

        The problem is that, in most cases, it is these same people, the Alarmists, (and the so called ‘environmental NGOs’) who made nuclear unacceptable and continue to do their best to keep it unacceptable.

        It’s frustrating. But as you say, it is the reality. Given that, I will continue to do all I can to try to educate those who are open to rational arguments so they may recognise how self defeating are policies that try to price global GHG emissions and policies to mandate and massively subsidise renewable energy (it now supplies 3% of global electricity and it’s share has increased 1 percentage point in 20 years).

      • Harrywr2,

        I’ve made several attempts to reply to your comment, but it is getting caught in the SPAM filter for some reason. I’ve tried several rewordings, but its going straight to SPAM (not to moderation). We’ll have to wait until Judith releases it.

        In the meantime, thank you for the link to the V.C. Summers project status report.

        This is an excellent example of a status report for a large project. I’d commend it to other bloggers who have not seen such reports before.

        I’ve been advocating that reports like this should be used to report the status of the Australian Government’s $50 billion National Broadband Network (NBN) project. Obviously, the government doesn’t want visibility for a project that, on performance to date, will complete 100 years late and more than four times over budgeted cost (in constant dollars).

        Project status reports like the V.C. Summers report are excellent for providing visibility of performance and good projections to completion for large projects. They can be even better if set up to provide ‘Earned Value’ information. Google ‘Earned Value Management’ or ‘Earned Value Performance Measurement’ if not familiar with what Earned Value means.

  10. Chief Hydrologist

    Let’s go back one step to the reasons for mitigation. Despite the fact that the world is not warming for a decade or three more – there is beyond that a risk of surprises on both ends of the warming and cooling spectrum. Uncertainty and lack of knowledge is – as reasonable people keep saying – a rationale for mitigation rather than not.

    The second rationale is simply extent of increase in carbon emissions as economies grow in this century from 4%, to 8%, 16, 32%, etc of natural carbon flux. A priori this seems hardly prudent and to argue that it is seems an heroic argument from extreme ignorance.

    The first is the political downfall of AGW – which is why they deny it so vehemently. The second is the kicker for such as I. As the downfall of the millennialist cult of AGW groupthink space cadets gathers pace the revolt of ordinary people – who have accepted in good faith ‘on the balance of probability’ the overblown narrative of the space cadets – will be spectacular. Yet almost paradoxically the need for mitigation will never be greater.

    But the best ways of mitigation are technological innovation, initiatives on economic growth, health and welfare especially in the developing world, conservation and restoration of ecosystems and – as an immediate and immensely rewarding project – conservation farming.

    • Relying on technological innovation assumes that a) such innovation will happen and b) such innovation will reduce demand for fossil fuels enough to significantly reduce the total amount of carbon emitted by 2100, rather than just supplementing the demand for fossil fuels.

      For example the US adoption of shale gas has reduced US CO2 emissions significantly. But in the longterm growth may expand in response to the additional coal to burn it all anyway, resulting in more CO2 emissions in the longterm rather than less.

      • There is certainly something to be said for the positive impact of a focus on education and welfare in the developing world.

        Of course, saying that it should be a focus and reaching common ground on how to focus on those issues, let along finding the will and resources needed to make progress, is a very tall task. Not very likely to happen when people like Chief spend so much of their time flinging Jell-0.

      • Innovation in nuclear power has already happened. All we have to do it use it.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Jello? The only thing jellied around here is your brain Josh.

        The technological solutions include both solar and new generation nuclear – plus a host of other potential developments. Distributed carbon capture combined with cheap electricity can provide endless liquid fuels. Conservation farming is a host of simple techniques that is happening and can increase organic content of soils, improve productivity by the 70% needed by 2050, increase water retention in soils, decrease polluted runoff downstream and conserve soil. The sequestration potential of conservation farming is recognised and immense – it is also the way to feed the world in this century.

        The only way to move beyond coal and oil is to develop other sources of energy that are cheaper. It is not going to happen otherwise – even if the world weren’t cooling for another decade or three at least.

        How to get there is the subject of the Millennium Development Goals, the Copenhagen Priorities and the Hartwell Group publications. It is these things we need to build momentum for – not empty posturings from the usual suspects on the political left.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Jim,

        This one is based on technology developed over 50 years – http://www.ga.com/nuclear-energy/energy-multiplier-module – it does not seem to be technologically impossible with a few developments needed in materials and fuel cycle technology.

        It can’t melt down – uses a variety of fuels including nuclear waste (600 years of fuel supply just there) – doesn’t require a water source – creates waste that is dangerous for hundreds of years rather than 100’s of thousands – is 1/4 the size of conventional plants and costs 30% less. Conventional plants are by comparison dinosaurs.

        Combine this with industrial scale carbon capture and you have an endless source of liquid fuel.

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GkEAA7VnyhE

        Cheers

      • Yeah, right. The problem is the empty posturing from the political left.

        Right.

        Meanwhile, in the real world (and speaking of dinosaurs) – this is what we have, passing as science – from the political right (folks like our much beloved David W):

        http://www.buzzfeed.com/andrewkaczynski/here-is-what-louisiana-schoolchildren-learn-about

        Fortunately, there is a bulkhead in our court system:

        http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-politics/wp/2012/11/30/la-judge-bobby-jindal-school-voucher-program-unconstitutional/

        Lord help us all.

      • And here, Chief. This is right up your ally too. More non-empty posturing from the political right. You and your extremist buds are sooooooooo profound:

        http://wonkette.com/490800/sundays-with-the-christianists-a-world-history-textbook-to-rescue-your-homeschooled-child-from-the-modern-age

      • Rationalizations, good for the soul?

        “President Obama: First and foremost, my Christian faith gives me a perspective and security that I don’t think I would have otherwise: That I am loved. That, at the end of the day, God is in control — and my main responsibility is to love God with all of my heart, soul and mind, and to love my neighbor as myself. Now, I don’t always live up to that standard, but it is a standard I am always pursuing.

        My faith is also a great source of comfort to me. I’ve said before that my faith has grown as president. This office tends to make a person pray more; and as President Lincoln once said, “I have been driven to my knees many times by the overwhelming conviction that I had no place else to go.”

        Finally, I try to make sure that my faith informs how I live my life. As a husband, as a father, and as president, my faith helps me to keep my eyes on the prize and focus on what is good and truly important.”

        http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/21/obama-and-romney-answer-q_n_1818290.html

      • Cap’n –

        Was that post for me? Perhaps you’re confused, and think that I’m equating religious belief with extremist fundamentalism? I don’t conflate the two. And in fact, I respect beliefs such as we see in those who believe in ID. But we should be careful to distinguish those beliefs from science, and we should be careful to identify those who wish to fuse religion and state, and we should be careful to identify the scale of impact from different sources of “empty posturing.”

        Seriously – did you read that stuff?

        “What phenomenon at the beginning of the 20th century threatened to destroy the roots of Western civilization?”

        […[

        Modern liberalism, however, is the desire to be free from absolute standards and morals, especially those of the Scriptures. Beginning with the un-Biblical idea that man is basically good, liberalism challenges such basic assumptions as the existence of absolute truth, objective knowledge, and a universally binding morality.

        I mean seriously. That could have been lifted directly from one of Chief’s repetitive rants with only a few minor tweaks.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        I think you will find that I owe more to the enlightenment liberalism of Hayek than to Moses – not that I have anything against Moses seperation of church and state is in principle a good thing.

        Besides which you will find that Australians can’t quite understand what all the fuss is about.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        ..but separation of church and state is in principle a good thing…

        But Joshua – what an amazingly stupid or dishonest person you are. Do you not recognise the difference between the true sense of liberal as it is understond in the rest of the world and religious extremism.

      • Joshua, “What phenomenon at the beginning of the 20th century threatened to destroy the roots of Western civilization?” What was the answer?

        Intolerance? Overconfidence? Mandating only one state approved ideology?

        If you were teaching in a highly “fundamentalist” region of the world, wouldn’t you like the option of at least mentioning there are other schools of thought? If you had the choice of a fair public school education for a kid or a private school run by a religious organization that consistently out performed the local public school system, what would you do?

        Now, if you are teaching a public school system were every church was starting their own private schools because the local population felt the “state” was threatening their religious freedom, what would you do?

      • Joshua, do you know why there is Christianity?

        BACON! The good Samaritan was a pork bellies trader. That wasn’t balm, it was BACON FAT! They are coming for you bacon next Joshua.

      • Cap’n –

        Intolerance? Overconfidence? Mandating only one state approved ideology?

        Huh? What are you talking about? “Mandating only one state-approved ideology?” Whaaaaaaaaa?

        If you were teaching in a highly “fundamentalist” region of the world, wouldn’t you like the option of at least mentioning there are other schools of thought?

        Did you read the curriculum? Did you see what was being promoted as “science.” Of course I believe that you should “‘mention” other schools of thought – no matter where you might be teaching. Far more than that, “other schools of thought” should be offered as the subject of instruction. Now consider that as you go back again and read the materials I linked. I’m sure you’ll get my point.

        If you had the choice of a fair public school education for a kid or a private school run by a religious organization that consistently out performed the local public school system, what would you do?

        Do you have something particular in mind? Do you mean do I understand why parents who live in terrible school districts, and who have the money, enroll their kids in private/parochial schools? Of course I do.

        Now, if you are teaching a public school system were every church was starting their own private schools because the local population felt the “state” was threatening their religious freedom, what would you do?

        That would depend on whether I felt that the “state” was really threatening their religious freedom. If I felt it was, I would feel compelled to leave the school. I have taught in public schools, however, and have never seen anything remotely resembling that. And on the other hand, what I do see are politicians promoting religious education with tax dollars – and calling it “science.” Even more ironic is that many of those same politicians alternately decry taxation and seek out federal funds.

      • Joshua, fifth graders. That is pre-pubescent or at least it was when I was a fifth grader. How deep should a 5th grade science class really be? What do you think is the appropriate sex education text for K-5?

        Joshua on his first day teaching Yazoo Miss. first graders: “There is no Santa Clause, Easter Bunny, Tooth Fairy or GOD. Your illiterate parents are liars! Now answer when your name is called.”

      • Wow Joshua. I can’t believe you just posted that link:

        Here –

        Have another:

        http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/lets-just-say-it-the-republicans-are-the-problem/2012/04/27/gIQAxCVUlT_story.html

        That is quite possibly the worst opinion piece published in the Washington Post all year. I remember when it was first published, I literally laughed at loud time after time. I could write an essay on how bad that article is (though it’d probably go at least fifteen pages). I mean, the authors even go so far as to say:

        Our advice to the press: Don’t seek professional safety through the even-handed, unfiltered presentation of opposing views.

        The authors tell the press, which is undoubtedly biased against the Republican party, not to be even-handed. If the the authors don’t think the press is already biased, how biased does it have to be before they see the obvious?

        Only the most biased or ignorant of people could read it and think it was a fair-minded article.

      • Dude –

        5th graders who believe in the tooth fairy or the Easter Bunny? Really? Where do you live?

        Funny story – my nephew (same one who just got his Ph. D in physics from Berkeley) told a bunch of kids in his (maybe his 2nd grade?) class that he figured out that there was no such thing as Santa Claus. My brother and sister-in-law got angry phone calls that night from a bunch of his classmates’ parents.

      • By the way, this is supposed to be a joke account for making vague responses to people who have said something that doesn’t deserve a real response. The fact I’m breaking from that should tell you how much contempt I have for that article. It is simply too ridiculous to respond to with silliness. No amount of absurdity I could come up with would do it justice.

      • Joshua, “5th graders who believe in the tooth fairy or the Easter Bunny? Really? Where do you live?”

        Born and raise in the backward south. Land of ignorant rednecks. In fact I just had a consultation phone call from a relative wanting to know how to build a home still. They had some confusion about methanol and foreshots.

        BTW, in the south, kids do not deny the existence of anything that delivers gifts :) I guess northern kids are smarter.

      • Vague –

        Read up on the history of Ornstein.

      • Joshua –

        You first. Bob could teach you a lot. Like how to think.

      • lolwot

        “Relying on technological innovation assumes that…such innovation will happen”

        Sure it will.

        Always has, since man started using fire or invented the wheel.

        “and…such innovation will reduce demand for fossil fuels…”

        Duh! They keep getting more difficult and costly to extract and, as a result, the world is continuously improving its “carbon efficiency” (GDP generated per ton of CO2 emitted), so there is no reason to believe that this will stop.

        “…enough to significantly reduce the total amount of carbon emitted by 2100…”

        Why reduce in absolute terms? As long as the global average living standard, quality of life and life expectancy is improving at the same time as overall energy efficiency is also increasing isn’t this the direction in which we should be developing?

        Our past success has been a result of technological innovation and the availability of a reliable supply of low-cost energy.

        So will our future success. lolwot.

        Max

      • Joshua

        If your nephew really told his 2nd grade class that there is no Santa Claus, then he is a jerk.

        Instead this idiot should be teaching them the “3 Rs”.

        Let children be children, with all the dreams and fantasies that this entails, for as long as possible, without having some pompous, self-righteous ass breaking the spell.

        It’s almost as bad as the knuckleheads who try to frighten schoolchildren with global warming horror stories.

        Max

      • manacker –

        If your nephew really told his 2nd grade class that there is no Santa Claus, then he is a jerk.

        lol! My nephew is a “jerk” because as an egghead 7 year-old, he told a couple of friends that he deduced that the notion of an obese man dressed in a red robe, flying through the sky on a sled pulled by flying reindeer, sliding down chimneys to deliver the toys he made in his workshop at the North Pole with the help of elves, depending on the behavior of every child on the planet, was a fantasy.

        I love you guys.

      • Left, 39.

      • Assume…a) such innovation will happen

        There is so much innovation in the pipeline it makes my head spin.
        The problem isn’t the level of innovation, it’s the replacement rates.

        Perfectly good ‘paid for’ coal fired plants are ‘cheap to keep’. Perfectly good ‘paid for’ air conditioners and heat pumps are running at 25% of the efficiency of the ‘best commercially available’ units. The same goes for refrigerators. It absolutely amazes me that we now have 50″ TV’s that only use 50 watts. If I replaced my old perfectly good 12″ Cathode Ray TV with a new 50″ LCD HD monster I would save electricity.

        Here is the EPA’s 20 year retrospective on how effective ‘energy star’ has been –
        http://www.energystar.gov/ia/products/downloads/ES_Anniv_Book_030712_508compliant_v2.pdf?7ddf-6ea3

      • School vouchers remove education from the manipulative stranglehold of politics and unions, and put it in the hands of parents. This of course anathema to those with a totalitarian out look such as Joshua, who prefer schools to be agents of political correctness and propaganda (including unquestioning acceptance of CAGW).

        I don’t doubt other statist ideologues besides Josha will also welcome the “bulwark” against commonsense and justice that the Louisinana court has become.

    • Chief,

      Despite the fact that the world is not warming for a decade or three more

      This seems to be one of your favourite phrases. Most people would say ‘decade or two’ , not decade or three, four, five or whatever.

      Neither would they say “is not warming”. They might say “has not warmed” or “will not warm”. So, why the use of the present continuous tense to cover a period of thirty years? Do you mean the last thirty years, or the next thirty, or fifteen years either way?

      • Chief Hydrologist

        We are in a cool mode – http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=8703 – and these last for 20 to 40 years in the proxy records.

        This has an obvious meaning – a decade or three more is another 10 to 30 years. Semantically equivalent. And it is not warming because we are in a cool mode. Surely both the science and the English are clear.

        Why bother with such trivialities – you will find that I am almost always comprehensible and occasionally eloquent.

      • Your cool mode was the warmest decade on record. Do you see the irony in that remark? Wait till it actually starts warming then? The next decade will be warmer than this, and even this ‘cool’ decade was warmer than the previous warming mode one. You are not using the word ‘cool’ in a correct way. You probably mean cooler than it should be given the fact of climate change.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        Jim D said: (to Chief Hydro)

        “Your cool mode was the warmest decade on record. Do you see the irony in that remark?”
        ____
        Chief Hydro never sees the irony of his own remarks. 2011 was the warmest La Nina year ever recorded– all during this supposed “cool down” that is supposed to last for a “decade or three”.

        With such certainty of a cool down in abundance, there is no room for facts.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        Probably it will be the warmest “cool down” mode on record. There is no doubt that the PDO provides some “cooling” over periods that can last many decades, but this has to be taken in context to the long-term warming signal that this PDO influence now rides upon.

      • Chief Hydro never sees the irony of his own remarks.

        True that. He’s the master of unintentional irony.

        Not sure which is my favorite: (1) When he whines about people insulting him or (2), When he complains about other people not accurately representing uncertainty.

        Got to be one of those two, though.

      • Gates Said, “Probably it will be the warmest “cool down” mode on record. ” Yep. Since we are currently at the peak of the precession cycle and since there is a 4.3ka precession related recurrent decay pattern in the southern ocean paleo data (and tropical oceans) that appears to stimulate the “Bond Events”, it should be historic.

      • The Skeptical Warmist
        You said:

        there is no room for facts

        But why didn’t you point out that the statement that started this is highly misleading:

        Your cool mode was the warmest decade on record.

        The statement refers to the instrumental record. But that spans a blink of an eye in terms of Earth history.

        The fact is that polar ice caps have existed for only about 25% of the time multi-cell life has thrived on Earth (about 550 million years). Much of that 25% was probably warmer than now. So Chief is correct to say we are in a cool phase. At a rough guess, for the past half billion years, the planet may have been warmer than now for 80% to 90% of the time and cooler than now for just 10% to 20% of the time. On that basis we are in a cool phase, as Chief correctly stated.

        The planet has been cooling for the past 50 million years. And it continues in a long-term cooling trend. That is dangerous (perhaps even catastrophic) for life as we know it, eventually. Why don’t we give more attention to this fact? Could it be because, as you so correctly pointed out:

        there is no room for facts

        ?

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Joshua – you complain about a left loony remark and then froth at the mouth and fling creationism quotes about the place. Just seems to prove my point really.

        ‘If as suggested here, a dynamically driven climate shift has occurred, the duration of similar shifts during the 20th century suggests the new global mean temperature trend may persist for several decades.’ S&T09

        There is actually some science to be considered – not just handwaving about hottest La Ninas or hottest decades. One the one hand we have NASA and on the other gatesy and Jim D. Please – if yu have some actual science that says it isn’t happening – let someone know. Please – it is so pathetic it is laughable.

      • Add another unintentional irony to the list.

        Mr. Spittle- flecked screen himself says I’m frothing at the mouth.

      • CH, you only have to look at the last cool mode 60 years ago, and see how much warmer this one is. Global warming is eating the ‘cool mode’s’ lunch and it is only just starting.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Joshua – you are an irredeemable idiot who really has no other skill but flinging misplaced pop psychologies about. When you are not foaming at the mouth about creationism. It is not only utterly and quite obviously misplaced in my case but seems from this distance to be a loony left beat up. And you are one of the looniest.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Gee Jim – eating lunch hey? That’s scientific. Do you have a reference for eating lunches?

        You got anything at all to suggest that the next few decades will continue strong warming? Other tthan lunches? Otherwise you are just wasting everyone’s time and distracting from the mitigation discussion I started with.

      • tempterrainn

        I can understand Chief’s wording real well, but you appear to have problems with it. Here’s how I understand it:

        He is simply saying that, based on the information he has analyzed, it is likely, in his opinion, that the observed “lack of warming” over the past decade or longer will occur for another one or two decades (or more).

        He tosses in the caveat that abrupt changes (in either direction) cannot be ruled out, as they have occurred in the past.

        To me this is a prognosis that makes much more sense than that of IPCC, which postulates a steady long-term increase of global temperature by 0.2C to 0.3C per decade over the next century.

        Wouldn’t you agree?

        Max

      • TT,
        The reason Chef Wiggles uses the phrase “a decade or three” is so people can Google the quote in a few years and find out how wrong he was. Sharp that guy.

      • We’re are not cooling.

        Last 10 years – not cooling.

        Since 2008 – warming. This despite suffering through the 2nd strongest La Nina in the record.

        And if Chef Hydro were capable of much else than boiling water, he would figure out why. Tsonis and Swanson have written it down.

      • Well, the warmists posting here are a gift that never stops giving. They show how illogical and unscientific one has to be to believe in AGW.

      • illogical and unscientific right back at you.

        Note how similar UAH and Gistemp have become. It’s spooky.

      • And desperate.

      • Nope. It’s just data. Sorry it doesn’t fit your politics.

      • Well, my politics is liberal and left-wing and it’s irrelevant. The data fits perfectly – the climate is shifting from warming to cooling, and at the highest CO2 concentration at that, just like it always does.

      • JCH, some might find it interesting that the UAH trend is steeper than the GISS trend since 2002. Mid troposphere warming is a sign of increased GHG forcing and also a sign of more energy transfer through the atmosphere. There was a lot of UAH warming in the southern hemisphere this last update. Wonder what it could be?

      • CH, just quantifying what has happened so far has shown these ‘cool modes’ are rather insignificant blips about the size of the 11-year solar cycle. In any long term planning they cancel and don’t matter. Other natural variations like solar irradiance and two large volcanoes have led to cooling in the last half century. So, why is it so much warmer now than 60 years ago, you should ask, when we have the cool mode together with these other natural negatives? Cloud cover has also been decreasing in response to the warming, as expected for a positive feedback, and somewhat in disagreement with the low-sensitivity proponents for whom clouds were their last hope.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Clouds?

        http://s1114.photobucket.com/albums/k538/Chief_Hydrologist/?action=view&current=Clementetal2009.png

        Natural, large-scale climate patterns like the PDO and El Niño-La Niña are superimposed on global warming caused by increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases and landscape changes like deforestation. According to Josh Willis, JPL oceanographer and climate scientist, “These natural climate phenomena can sometimes hide global warming caused by human activities. Or they can have the opposite effect of accentuating it.” They can hide it and hide it some more as well.

        The worls is not warming for a decade or three more. You still don’t have any actual science do you. Wood for dimwits graphs showing trends over periods too short to mean squat and handwaving narratives about lunch.

      • Edim said:

        ” Edim | December 2, 2012 at 10:11 am |

        Well, my politics is liberal and left-wing and it’s irrelevant. “

        Get this. Everything Edim has stated so far has essentially taken a contrarian position with respect to accepted climate science. He thinks that excess atmospheric CO2 is caused by temperature, he does not accept GHG theory, etc, etc.

        So now I can only assume that his theories on what constitutes a liberal and left-wing are contrary to conventional wisdom. I can only guess that if we query him on it, that he likely believes a liberal is someone who applies excessive make-up and that the left-wing is the good part of the turkey meat.

        Good gawd, spare us this spew.

      • “CH, just quantifying what has happened so far has shown these ‘cool modes’ are rather insignificant blips about the size of the 11-year solar cycle. In any long term planning they cancel and don’t matter. “

        I recently discovered the 1976 work of Hasselmann from the Max Planck Institute. He was one of the progenitors of applying stochastic climate models. One of the key phrases to search on is the term “red noise” — essentially describes random fluctuations which eventually revert to the mean.

        Others have applied some of Hasselmann’s ideas to data analysis. One from 2003 is this paper:
        Red noise and regime shifts

        “We do, however, believe that our results show that the existence of changes deemed significant by the composite
        analysis is not evidence for anything more than Gaussian red noise with stationary statistics.”

        They basically trash this climate “regime shift” idea as indistinguishable from red noise.

        “The analysis of interdecadal physical and biological variability is made challenging by the relative shortness of available time series. It has been suggested that rapid temporal changes of the most energetic empirical orthogonal function of North Pacific sea surface temperature (sometimes called the Pacific Decadal Oscillation or PDO) represents a ‘‘regime shift’’ between states with otherwise stable statistics. Using random independent time series generated to have the same frequency content as the PDO, we show that a composite analysis of climatic records recently used to identify regime shifts is likely to find them in Gaussian, red noise with stationary statistics. Detection of a shift by this procedure is not evidence of nonlinear processes leading to bi-stable behavior or any other meaningful regime shift.”

        What is not red noise is a semi-permanent elevation of the average value of the earth’s temperature or, even more obvious, the increase of the atmospheric levels of CO2.

        We should keep reminding Chef Wiggles that his wiggles and dragon-kings are red noise, and the elevation in climate measures caused by mankind is his actual regime change.

      • Webby,

        Liberal is as liberal does. The AGW is the verbiage of the rich, big oil, big banks… The poor are just mislead.

        “Over 2.5 billion people live on less than $2 a day. Every day nearly 16.000 children die from hunger and related causes. One dollar can save a life — the opposite must also be true. Poverty is a death sentence. Nations must invest $37 trillion in energy technologies by 2030 to stabilize greenhouse gas emissions at sustainable levels. Today’s decisions should be based on all the information we can get, not on hiding the decline.”

      • Edim. You must suffer from severe brain damage. The stuff that you spew makes no logical sense. I tried predicting what your contrarian take would be and that did not come close to reality. Totally delusional.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        ‘We do not suggest that rapid climate change has not occurred or that nonlinear processes causing genuine regime shifts are not important. The
        climate record is replete with changes not easily explained as the nearly Gaussian behavior of a linear process. Neither do we claim that the rapid changes in the North Pacific are unimportant or that the physical and biological records are not strongly related. Much evidence exists for the
        interdependence of the atmosphere, ocean, and biota on a variety of time scales. We do, however, believe that our results show that the existence of
        changes deemed significant by the composite analysis is not evidence for anything more than Gaussian red noise with stationary statistics.’ The conclusion to webnutcolonoscope’s reference

        Red noise is another term for random walk – and stationary statistics is of course a time series whose properties such as mean, variance, autocorrelation, etc. are all constant over time.

        Although composite analysis was not what Tsonis used and I doubt very much that anyhting much in the way macro climate processes is genuinely a random walk. Brownian motion might relevant to processes of turbidity in a quiet pool – but is far from relevant to ocean circulation.

      • It’s red noise all right, driven by reversion to the mean statistics.

        Very easy to model this. The only source of heat is the ocean’s surface (and possibly underwater volcanic vents). Since the ocean’s surface is always exposed to the atmosphere the amount of global heating from this source is bounded. Of course these decadal pseudo-oscillations can show cooling but that is for negative excursions from the mean whereby volumes of deeper colder water come into contact with the surface. Put the two together and you have red noise and the reversion to the mean statistics. These “high temperature” regimes are likely simply recoveries from low temperature excursions.

        On the other hand, GHG’s and albedo changes are not bounded as rigidly on the high temperature side. As the forcing function goes up, the system response is to continue to heat the globe, with an increasing temperature as a result. That is not red noise.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Th only source of heat is the sun and that changes with albedo changes that are potentially much greater than forcing changes from greenhouse gases. The perspective is important.

        But the system is deterministic. ENSO for instance is driven by cold water in the Peruvian Current – it is the other side of transport through Drakes passage than Capt. is concerned with. Ekmann transport pushes cold water along the South American coast and displaces the warm surface allowing more upwelling of cold subsurface water. Pressure and wind differentials then cause the propagation of La Nina across the Pacicific piling up warm water in the western Pacific. So it is a system with control variables and feedbacks.

        Southern Ocean storm tracks are driven by seal level pressure differences between polar and subpolar regions and there is some suggestion that this is driven by solar UV interacting with oxone in the stratosphere.

        The point is that simply calling it red noise – or random – does not explain anything.

      • But it forces you to admit that these oscillations have an upper bound. You just said that it is bringing in cold water. There is no model for hot water to arrive and thus start warming beyond a fixed point.

        That’s why a reversion to the mean model such as red noise works well. It will generate all the quasi-periodic fluctuations that you will end up seeing anyways, with bounds on the limit cycles.

        On the other hand, GHG and albedo changes can bring in extra heat, by retaining extra solar radiation, and the temperature will inch up, without a cooling influence as one sees from the decadal fluctuations.

        It is pretty obvious if you read the journal articles on stochastic climate.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Climate is technically a chaotic system. Somewhere here I quoted the TAR to that effect. I can likewise quote The Royal Society and a million other sources. The system is complex and dynamic and shares properties with other dynamic systems. Chief amongst these is ‘slowing down’, ‘noisy bifurcation’ and ‘strange attractors’. Google the terms.

        So they are not oscillations – but chaotic bifurcations. The bound is the topology of the phase space of the stable attractors. The conceptualisation is different. Instead of random variations within limits – there is an interaction of system components – negative and positive feedbacks – that in principle is completely deterministic but shows abrupt shifts and emergent behaviour that is as yet unpredictable in practice. Nothing on the scale of the planet in climate is random. Saying that it is random is both incorrect and explains nothing.

        Albedo can of course go up or down, greenhouse gases similarly with drying and wetting of the atmosphere. The heat content of the planet changes all the time for any number of reasons that impact on humidity and albedo. It is an utterly different conceptualisation. We are not on the same paradigm. We are not on the same planet. It works as nonlinear responses to control variables through real world feedbacks.

        It is simple if you read the journals on nonlinear dynamics.

    • Chief, whom decides how much CO2 in the atmosphere is the optimum? If the CO2 capture system, that the video you posted works as well as it is described, then where do we stop with the atmospheric concentration?

      • Chief Hydrologist

        I see it more as a fuel supply than taking it out of the atmosphere and putting it somewhere. Recyclable.

      • Sort of like who decides how many clouds should be in the atmosphere.
        I think 500 ppm would be a good amount, 1000 ppm is to high and 300 ppm is too low.

        It seems a more important issue for the world for all people to have basic human rights. And simple basic human right is people should allow to leave any country- well known examples of freedom denied was in the Soviet Union, but currently we have Cuba and N Korea as obvious examples of this human slavery.

        And UN should reformed so it’s more on side of the people in the world, rather than corrupt governments.

  11. @ Peter Lang,

    I know Canberra can be a pretty boring place but don’t you have anything better to do that write comment after comment saying basically the same thing? Viz: Global warming isn’t happening, or, if it is its a good thing, or, if it isn’t a good thing we don’t want to spend any money fixing it.

    You need to get out more. Join the local bowls club, take up fishing or whatever!

    • Lang is obsessed with nuclear power. His suggestion of a debate on CO2 mitigation policies was just an indirect way for him to get into his pitch for more nuke power plants.

      • Max_OK,

        How dumb is that comment. CAGW alarmists like yourself are obsessed with catastropheic AGW and end of the Earth beliefs, yet block the rational solutions that are not supported by those of your ideological persuasion. Are you incapable of thinking for yourself?

      • Max_OK,

        Is Peter Lang really obsessed with nuclear power? In a way maybe. There’s a substantial body of pro-nuclear opinion, admittedly not universal, amongst those who are concerned with the adverse effects of climate change, and would include people like James Hansen.

        The industry themselves would naturally look upon this group as potential allies. Why wouldn’t they? They aren’t stupid. But does, and is, Peter Lang?

      • Max,

        Peter’s support for nuclear power does not have to mean he’s obsessed with it. As someone who served four years on a nuclear sub and spent 10 years in commercial nuclear generation, I am strongly in support of nuclear power. I also recognize the hypocracy of those claiming a concern over global warming due to CO2, yet maintaining their long term opposition to nuclear power. (Note: I am not necessarily lumping you in this category.)

        If one wants to debate on purely engineering and scientific terms, there is not one good argument for not moving toward a generation base that is primarily nuclear.

      • Peter, you are labeling me with a stereotype from your imagination. You got me all wrong.

        I don’t have an ideological persuasion. I don’t care for ideologies. I try to be pragmatic. I am concerned about CAGW, not alarmed. I would be alarmed anything that could hurt me very soon, like my house catching on fire. I’m to old to be hurt by CAGW.

        I’m neither for or against nuclear power. I haven’t made up my mind. However, all things being equal, I would prefer living a great distance from a nuclear power plant rather than next door to one.

        Some who you would call CAGW alarmists (e.g., Hansen) see nuclear power as a solution. I believe you think CAGW is nothing to worry about, so they want nuclear power for the wrong reasons.

        I find it puzzling that you advocate nuclear power for your reasons and then offend people who advocate it for a different reason. You should be sucking up to these people, not alienating them.

      • Max_OK,

        Yes I would agree, except that I’d just say “sucking up” isn’t the right way to put it.

        In our everyday lives we know that we have to work with people of all political persuasions. It doesn’t make any sense to let a difference on one matter adversely affect a working relationship, especially when there are other areas where it is possible to reach a large measure of agreement, and substantial progress is possible.

    • TT,
      Larrikinism. Look it up on Wikipedia.

      The subculture here is fascinating. Considering that this is a USA domain blog, the number of commenters from Australia and from citizens and x-pats of the original British empire is something to ponder over.

      Brits have a tradition of arguing and Aussies have a tradition of mocking authority. Canadians often want to one-up their southern neighbors.

      The statistics are skew in representative opinion concerning the actual science.

      Joshua could probably comment on the out of whack demographics.

      • WHT –

        I have noticed that, and a similar phenomenon at WUWT.

        I’ve also noticed what seems to me to be a rather large % of non-Americans, Scandinavians in particular (some 26 out of the total 130), who were signatories to that letter David W. linked.

        The demographics are interesting; I have no solid theories – although I do think that the irreverent nature of Aussies might be a factor.

      • Correction – something closer to 20 Scandinavians – I sometimes forget that the Netherlands is not part of Scandinavia.

      • Web, that’s neighboUr! just a friendly correction from one of your Canadian friends.

        :)~

      • Maybe something to do with the consequences and relevant merits or otherwise of different countries school systems.

      • “J Martin | December 2, 2012 at 5:17 pm |

        Maybe something to do with the consequences and relevant merits or otherwise of different countries school systems.”

        Maybe something to do with why students from all over the world flock to the USA’s research universities?

      • WHT. I was thinking more of school age education not University education. At pre university both the UK and the US have been sliding down the International rankings for some time now.

        As for flocking to US universities, yes why not, US universities have enviable levels of finance and can offer students very attractive grants.

        I know one young man who has just started university in the states and he was offered a package worth nearly twice his mums salary. UK universities can’t compete with that. Indeed thanks to some stupid UK law that prevents universities from offering as much of a grant as they would like it is often cheaper for a student to go abroad to Germany, Italy, the US etc.

        So now we can expect UK universities to start sliding down the league tables as well.

        The demographics of visitors to this site and others are not out of whack, population wise, the US is twice the size of Russia but half the size of the rest of Europe EU, English is a well established lingua franca worldwide now, throw in a few climate paupers from down under and you get a refreshing mix of viewpoints.

        Not sure there are any Russian or Chinese visitors though. And the way dear Julia is going before long it might even be illegal for Ozzies to log on to this website or WUWT.

  12. I have a bad feeling about the political outcome of the polemic incompetetence in these parts .

  13. What?!?!?!

    No comments on the recent report on Antarctic and Greenland ice melt?

    Must be some kind of mistake, right?

  14. The Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center gives the following relationship:
    http://cdiac.ornl.gov/pns/convert.html

    1 ppm by volume of atmosphere CO2 = 2.13 Gt C

    How is the above relationship derived?

    xxxxxx

    The above relation is derived from the molecular mass of air listed here

    http://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/molecular-mass-air-d_679.html

    For the molecular mass of air, the main ones are Nitrogen, Oxygen, Argon and Carbon Dioxide:

    N2=>28.02, O2=>32, Ar=>39.94 & C02=>44.01

    Multiplying the percentage of each gas in air by the molecular mass of that gas gives the molecular mass of each gas in air:

    N2=>28.02×0.7809=21.88, O2=>32×0.2095=6.704
    Ar=> 39.94×0.00933=0.373 & C02=>44.01×0.0003=0.013

    The molecular mass of air is the sum of the atomic masses of Nitrogen, Oxygen, Argon and Carbon dioxide:

    Molecular Mass of Air = 21.88 + 6.704 + 0.373 + 0.013 = 28.97

    The above calculation was done for CO2 concentration of 300ppm (0.0003). For 383 ppm (0.000383), we have:

    Molecular mass of CO2 = 0.013 * 383/300 = 0.017 kg/kmol

    Molecular mass of Air = 28.97 kg/kmol

    From the above two results, the percentage of CO2 in air by mass is

    0.017/28.97 *100 = 0.0587%

    The mass of air in the atmosphere is given by CDIAC to be:

    5.137 x 10^18 kg = 5.137 x 10^15 t = 5.137 x 10^6 Gt

    From this, the mass of CO2 in the atmosphere is

    (0.0587/100)*5.137 x 10^6 = 0.003 x 10^6 = 3000 Gt

    This means that 383 ppm of CO2 corresponds to 3000 Gt of CO2. Therefore

    1 ppm of CO2 = 3000/383 = 7.83 Gt of CO2

    The final relationship required to arrive at the sought result is the weight relationship between CO2 and carbon. The atomic mass of Carbon is 12 and that of CO2 is 44. As a result, we have the conversion relationship:

    12 C => 44 CO2
    1 C => 44/12 = 3.67 CO2.

    Substitution this relationship in the right hand side of the ppm result above gives:

    1 ppm of CO2 = 7.83/3.67 = 2.13 Gt C

    Which is the relationship given by the Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center.

    • This calculation makes sense.

      Except, I’d just make the point that 2.13Gt of carbon has zero effect on the climate and the concentration of atmospheric CO2.

      Its the 7.83 Gt of CO2 that does.

      Maybe I’m being pedantic, but I do find the loose interchange of Carbon and Carbon dioxide somewhat annoying.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Three trivialities in a row. I shudder at what passes for a thought process in your sorry excuse for a brain.

      • Carbon doesn’t have an affect; carbon dioxide does!

        Vague Venns for the win!

  15. The Skeptical Warmist

    There’s some very unusual upper tropospheric warmth dominating the extreme southern hemisphere (-60 to -90 degrees) right now. This really has carried down from some stratospheric warm anomaly going all the way back to September:

    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/strat-trop/gif_files/time_pres_TEMP_ANOM_ALL_SH_2012.gif

    It is also associated with a very intense high pressure anomaly that spans from the troposphere into the stratosphere and has been parked over the extreme southern hemisphere for nearly two months:

    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/strat-trop/gif_files/time_pres_HGT_ANOM_ALL_SH_2012.gif

    Really have to go back to 2002 to see anything of this magnitude.

    • Yep. You might find this humorous.

      http://redneckphysics.blogspot.com/2012/10/just-for-fun-climate-shifts.html

      And this,
      http://redneckphysics.blogspot.com/2012/10/how-would-you-predict-future.html

      There are quite a few recurrent patterns in climate data. There is no guarantee that any pattern will repeat, but it kinda looks like the AMO shift has started.

      • The legend to the first graph says 24-44S but the text below says 44-64S. Just FYI.

      • Bill, thanks, the text is right, the legend didn’t update.

      • captdallas is right, there are recurrent patterns in climate data. I predict the future by looking at the years after the Roman Warm Period and looking at the years after the Medieval Warm Period and predict that a cool period that is similar to the little ice age will follow this very similar Warm Period. A manmade fraction of a trace gas has a fraction of a trace of a chance to change that. Extrapolations from curve fits that extend the warming since the Little Ice Age ignore the fact the extrapolations generally diverge after the end of a valid data set. They believe the numbers that come out of their computers and they quit thinking. These projections are typical of curve fits and projections like this are seldom valid.
        http://popesclimatetheory.com/page5.html
        Look at data for older warm periods and look at what is likely to follow.

    • Gates, The odd changes in the SSW events are pretty interesting. We both agree there is a lot of energy involved and that “Wall” energy or internal poleward energy transfer is part of the phenomenon. CO2 would have some impact, but it is kinda hard to filter out what causes what. When I noticed that the precessional cycle appears to be having an increasing impact on climate, I started looking a little harder at solar impacts and the asymmetric distribution of heat capacity, land versus oceans and the time lags of various impacts.

      https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-VyS6RTyqwjs/UKkNtyMWn3I/AAAAAAAAFrI/ytpp2_Xdd00/s747/tsi%2520averaging%2520impacts.png

      The lags tend to vary. So using the Svalgaard TSI reconstruction and various trailing averaging ranges I made that chart. With a southern ocean orientation to the higher ~1421Wm-2 and a northern, greater land mass orientation to the lower ~1310 Wm-2 annual summer/winter orbital variation in TSI, the charge/discharge rate of the oceans would likely vary a good deal with precession.

      Looking at the temperature data it is almost like the oceans have a charging threshold. There is not much change in the shorter solar cycles, only about a watt which would only have about 0.25 to 0.5 Wm-2 impact at the surface, but with the inconsistent lag times, that could have a small, longer term influence on ocean heat uptake. Wouldn’t be much though, but what is time to a planet?

  16. Couple days ago 125 signatories to a November 29, 2012 ‘Open Letter’ to H.E. Ban Ki-Moon of the UN brought to the Secretary-General’s attention ”recently released data [U.K. Met Office] showing that there has been no statistically significant global warming for almost 16 years,” proving ”models are wrong by their creators’ own criterion.”

    • Oklahoma’s own Prof. David Deming signed that letter. He may be best know for his views on vaginas and guns. To quote Deming,

      “I just want to point out that Kletter’s ‘easy access’ to a vagina enables her to ‘quickly and easily’ have sex with ‘as many random people’ as she wants. Her possession of an unregistered vagina also equips her to work as a prostitute and spread venereal diseases. Let’s hope Kletter is as responsible with her equipment as most gun owners are with theirs.”

      I suppose many of the signers were not aware the “16 years” was a cherry-pick. I noticed the names of quiet a few retirees, and old guys sometimes get confused and don’t understand what they are signing. But those who were aware of the cherry-pick are people I would not trust.

      • Did Al Gore have sex with that woman?

      • Why envy Al Gore? Envy will not get you anywhere.

        Anyway, Prof. Deming seems to be suggesting women’s vagina’s are as dangerous as guns, and therefore like guns, should be registered. It’s difficult for me to imagine a vagina being a weapon, but I’m not a right-winger like Deming.

        Deming is a reminder of why Obama got the women vote.

      • The 16 years in question are the last 16 years, which is how long it has been, so not a cherry pick just an important fact. I may be old and signed the UN protest letter but I am not confused, unlike you who are confused about what cherry picking means.

        Mind you I prefer the satellite data to the Jones type surface statistical models. UAH shows no warming from 1978 to 1997 and from 2001 to today. That is a lot of no warming.

      • The Skeptical Warmist (aka R. Gates)

        The past 16 years, taken as a group (which is the only way to look at climate) were the warmest 16 years on instrument record. Facts speak so much louder than denialist rhetoric.

      • Gates, it is the difference between warmth and warming, a state versus a trend. It is called understanding not rhetoric. It is still warm compared to the LIA but warming has stopped for now. Try to grasp the distinction.

      • R. Gates and David Wojick

        To illustrate the David’s point about difference between “trends” and “absolute values” see:
        http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:2001/trend/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1981/to:2001/trend

        The linear “trend” from 1980 to 2000 was a warming of +0.17C/decade.
        The linear “trend” from 2001 to today was a cooling of -0.08C/decade.

        Yet the average temperature anomaly over the most recent “cooling” period was higher than over the past “warming” period.

        And GHG forcing should affect “trend” (not absolute value).

        Max

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        David, the past 16 years were warmer than the previous 16 years which were warmer than the previous 16 before that so I guess we have a warming trend.

      • Max_OK

        Yeah. Deming signed the letter, along with a bunch of astrophysicists, meteorologists and climate scientists of all kinds.

        These are among the list of some 300+ scientists in this related field who have indicated that they do not support the IPCC “CAGW” premise.

        A good number of these were compiled on a list by your own Oklahoma Senator Inhofe a couple of years ago.

        Sure ’nuff looks like “the science is NOT settled”.

        Max_not from OK

      • Max_OK

        The “almost 16 years of no warming” is NOT a “cherry-pick” (as you put it), it is simply the longest statistical period prior to today during which there has been no observed “global warming”.

        And this despite unabated human GHG emissions and concentrations reaching record levels.

        [But as Ben Santer says, it takes 17 years for a trend to be statistically significant, so I guess we’ll have to wait another year or so.]

        However, it kinda makes you wonder about that 0.2C/decade warming we were supposed to see according to IPCC.

        I know the “CAGW believers” are all scrambling to rationalize away the “lack of warming”, but it is beginning to sound rather hollow, don’t you think?

        Max

      • I would say that choosing a period that extends to present is seldom cherry picking but too short a period tells little about climate trends. How relevant the temperature plateau really is can be seen by comparing moving averages over 5, 10 and 15 years since 1962 to make the whole period 50 years.

        http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:1962/mean:60/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:1962/mean:120/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:1962/mean:180

        Climate is about averages over rather long periods. There are no strict rules for the right period but looking at the 15 year moving average is certainly a reasonable choice. We see that it has kept on rising with little slowdown up to the most recent datapoint.

      • Pekka, talking about climate trends, what’s your comment on this:

        http://i1159.photobucket.com/albums/p623/Oefinell/15yrLR.jpg
        http://i1159.photobucket.com/albums/p623/Oefinell/20yrLR.jpg
        http://i1159.photobucket.com/albums/p623/Oefinell/30yrLR.jpg

        See how regular (periodic) the 50-year trend is? Even the 30-year trend. I find it amazing that someone can believe in the pre-dominant AGW (since ~1960) if the trends are like this. I see climate change as usual and I see the 30-year trend basically zero in ~2020. Will the AGW consensus stand until 2020? I doubt it.

      • Edim,

        The regularity is misleading. The neighboring points of the curves are far from independent. The non-smoothed curve tells clearly what in the data causes that behavior. The original temperature time series tells it even more clearly.

        In this case the information is best understandable in the original temperature time series. The minima and maxima of that time series are well known. The curve that you present adds nothing to that. It’s only role is to make it more difficult to understand the data and its meaning.

      • Pekka, thanks for your answer. I can only agree that it makes it more difficult to understand the data and its meaning if the meaning is AGW (since ~1960). It kinda doesn’t agree with it.

      • Actually it agrees extremely well with AGW. Look at the 50 year case. The first maximum around 1950 is only 0.005 more positive than the preceding minimum is negative while the present high value is still more positive and even the latest minimum didn’t get negative.

        The first maximum looks quite consistent with random variability while the present one tells about warming.

        What is the most misleading way of looking at the graph is to concentrate on the oscillation and forget the absolute value.

        It’s still true that the smoothness is highly misleading and could make my above argument look even stronger than it is.

        Curves that show moving averages may tell clearly about the relevant data but they are really terrible with respect to the impression they give on the statistical significance of the data. They mislead really badly the intuition in that respect.

      • Pekka, here’s the consensus attribution:
        http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/blogs/climateqa/files/2010/05/natural_anthropogenic_models_narrow.png

        More than 100% of the warming since the AGW started is human influenced (the natural trend is negative). The natural doesn’t look natural.

      • Max_OK

        You just stepped in it with that silly remark about Nils-Axel Mörner.

        This guy knows more about sea level than you ever will, so his opinion, when it comes to sea level impacts and AGW, are very relevant.

        That is the topic here, not “dowsing” for gold.

        You bring up all these totally irrelevant personal smears of the guys on that list, even though any one of them knows 100 times as much about the AGW story than you do (based on your silly and childish comments here).

        Grow up, buddy.

        Max_not from OK

      • It may be a bit of overstatement that the graph shows the consensus attribution, but it’s true that the curves present the ensemble averages reported in IPCC AR4 presented on this page

        Based on the AR4 set of model simulations the most likely natural trend since 1960 has been slightly cooling which means that AGW would exceed observed warming. The accuracy claimed by IPCC is, however, not sufficient for telling what the sign of natural trend has been over this period.

      • Pekka, interesting thing on your grapg is that the 5 and 10 year trends show the slowing of warming since 98. I tried playing with the 15 year trend, as it seems to be levelling also, but could not get it to advance to 2012 or even 2011 (start date 1950). The thing I see, is that warmth has occured, but now the planet may be reacting to it. My pet theory is that the early thawing of ice in the Arctic and later freeze up is a negative reaction to the build up of heat.

      • Gates said :- “denialist rhetoric”
        Have a bad weekend did we?

        Max_OK quoted Deming, responsible with her equipment as most gun owners are with theirs.

        Too many US gun owners are utterly irresponsible with their guns. A shockingly large number of children each year find and play with their parents guns and get injured and die. A news item in the UK on the BBC or somewhere, I can’t remember where, said the number of children who die and are injured from finding their parents guns amount to more than a thousand each year.

        In the UK hand guns that fire bullets have been outlawed. Small calibre rifles may be owned and rifles and hand guns that use black powder (old fashioned historic) may be owned.

        Getting a Fire Arms Certificate from the police is a long winded procedure subject to many checks, all weapons must be kept in special reinforced locked cabinets that are bolted to a wall in a secure location.

        Only the Fire Arms Certificate holder may know the location of the key to cabinet, if he tells his wife where the key is he has broken the law.

        If his wife also wants to have her own guns then she must have her own cabinet and she must also not tell her husband where the key is.

        Today, in the UK deaths of children by parents firearm are zero. About one child a year dies from gunshot wounds at the hands of drug dealers. All recent such deaths, all one a year, have been black on black. A small number (low tens I think) of adults, invariably black are killed by firearm each year, all drug related.

        A secure gun cabinet costs about £200. Clearly in the US too many parents don’t even place that much value on their own kids lives.

        In the UK, US gun control law is seen as a joke.

      • I am absolutely shocked to hear the news, J Martin:

        A small number (low tens I think) of adults, invariably black are killed by firearm each year, all drug related.

        I never realized only black people get killed by guns in the UK. And who knew it is only because of drugs? I guess what you’re telling me is the stories I see about white shooters like Darren Williams who try to kill their wives over domestic problems have bad aim and fail to kill their intended victims. I mean, because you wouldn’t just be making things up… Would you?

        Too many US gun owners are utterly irresponsible with their guns. A shockingly large number of children each year find and play with their parents guns and get injured and die. A news item in the UK on the BBC or somewhere, I can’t remember where, said the number of children who die and are injured from finding their parents guns amount to more than a thousand each year.

        Well, maybe you wouldn’t make things up on purpose, but you certainly have no problem saying things that are completely untrue. Fewer than 1,500 minors die a year in the United States due to guns. Of those, only ~100 are unintentional deaths.

        A secure gun cabinet costs about £200. Clearly in the US too many parents don’t even place that much value on their own kids lives.

        Before you go around making moral judgments of people, you should probably do some basic fact-checking. The CDC makes it very easy to look up whatever information you may need.

        In the UK, US gun control law is seen as a joke.

        That may be true, but if people in the UK are as misinformed as you are about these matters, you’re the jokes. It’s pretty bad to tell people they suck because you’re too biased/lazy to even check to see if what you believe makes sense.

      • Okay, okay, I swear. I’ll stop posting in a serious manner. It’s just so hard to respond to offensive, utter nonsense with a joke.

      • Vague Genie.

        Looks like I hit a raw nerve there. Thanks for the link, I had looked in the past but failed to find anything. I used the link and selecting, all intents, ages 0 to 14 I got 380 deaths, selecting 0 to 19 I got 2711 deaths.
        Selecting unintentional deaths, 0 to 14, I got 62 deaths and for ages 0 to 19 I got 134.

        I think the article I read may have been in the New Scientist, but I really don’t remember.

        Given the above official figure. Is it really too much to legislate and have the police force compliance on gun owners that they keep their guns securely under lock and key ? as they do in the UK. It would undoubtedly reduce the US child death toll.

        My personal views are that all guns should be banned and that we should live in a society where even the police do not have guns. To some extent this is largely true within the UK.

        I am aware that there is a large pro gun lobby in the US and that US culture has an almost endemic element of violence to it. However, reality is that it would likely be impossible to remove guns from US society, but nonetheless the sensible measure of requiring that guns are kept securely locked away from inquisitive youngsters should not be so casually ignored.

        I guess with the boss (JC) away, I have wandered somewhat off topic.

        Time to get back to climate.

      • Arrogance breeds not skill, and lying is such a subtle art. Oh well, oneself is the easiest to fool, and that ensures you should never lose.

      • Max,

        I’m pretty sure you recognize sarcasm and are fully aware that Demming’s comment was just that – aimed no doubt at a rabid gun control advocate (not going to bother looking up exactly who Kletter is, though the name does sound familiar).

      • J Martin,

        “It is better to have a gun and not need it than to need a gun and not have it.” – Christian Slater in True Romance.

        PS – in the US, gang related firearms fatalities, which make up the majority of the 14 to 19 yr old numbers, get counted under the “minors” category. Children dying from accidental discharge of an adult’s firearm, while always tragic on an individual basis, is not such a frequent occurance to justify an attack on the right to bear arms.

        PSS – as an Englishman one would have thought we taught you that lesson 240 or so years ago.

      • Brandon Shollenberger

        timg56, fewer than a hundred minors in the US suffer unintentional gun deaths each year. That includes things like hunting accidents and cases where the child didn’t even touch the gun. Despite this, J Martin told us a thousand children find their parent’s gun each year and get themselves killed. When it was pointed out his numbers were ludicrous, he ignored the issue and repeated his condemnations.

        Clearly, facts have no relevance, and he has no spot in a reasonable discussion.

    • MOK: Speaking of cherry picking, what does this purported Deming quote have to do with our letter correcting those silly statements? Is this your idea of reasoning?

      • David

        Aw, c’mon, take it easy on Okie – he just has a fixation on guns and female sex organs, like all good post-adolescent Oklahoma boys.

        It’s harmless – and he’ll grow out of it.

        Max

      • David, my idea of reasoning is to look at who signed that letter to the UN. What I see is lots of nuts and old coots. Some signatories are both.

        For example, Nils-Axel Mörner, age 74, believes he can find buried gold with a pointed stick. He’s a nutty old coot.

        I’m not saying everyone who signed the letter was old or nuts. But I think it’s safe to say most are politically conservative or libertarian, and place ideology ahead of science.

      • OK –

        But they have PhD’s!!!11!!1!

        Or at least a “Diploma in Geography.”

      • manacker said “he just has a fixation on guns and female sex organs.”

        I got rid of my guns. I do my hunting now with a camera. I don’t eat much meat anymore anyway. Tofu is better for my health, and I don’t have to pick out the buckshot.

        I do spend quite a bit of time thinking about women’s naughty parts. I’m told lust is sinful. I say lust is mother nature’s way of assuring humans will propagate.

      • Wagathon said:
        “what he was really saying is Obama got the “vagina” vote, which is not exactly correct: he got the mother with no husband vote.”
        ____

        Wag, we need more comments like yours to help keep keep Democrats in the White House.

        I think it safe to say there are many single mothers who would like to have husbands. You imply it’s their fault they don’t have husbands. If that’s the GOP message, you need to spread it around.
        .

      • MOK: You seem to be claiming that libertarians place ideology ahead of science while progressives do not. You do not have to be old to be nuts, or in any case that is a nutty argument. Libertarians are skeptical of government funded science that advances a predefined policy agenda, for good reasons.

        Conversely in some societies old folks are called elders. I first saw that environmentalism was a threat to society back in 1968. How old were you then?

  17. “These results point to the need for a more systematic exploration of the impact of forcing uncertainties on simulations of historical climate change.”

    http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2012/11/28/1210514109.full.pdf

    Hmmm? historical climate change. I guess something is out of tune?

  18.  

     

    As usual sea ice extent is now growing. The pace, however, has been freakishly brisk and amazing in scope. A refreeze record like this may portend exceptionally low winter temperatures, globally.

    • sea ice is at it’s second lowest extent in decades. how can that be a sign of low winter temperatures?

  19. But the effect CO2 as a Greenhouse gas is ever more marginal with greater concentration. Can this be true ???

    The IPCC Published report, (TAR3),
    (http://www.grida.no/publications/other/ipcc%5Ftar/?src=/climate/ipcc_tar…),
    acknowledge that the effective temperature increase caused by growing concentrations of CO2 in the atmosphere radically diminishes with increasing concentrations. The information is contained in their last report, but it is well disguised for any lay reader, (Chapter 6. Radiative Forcing of Climate Change: section 6.3.4 Total Well-Mixed Greenhouse Gas Forcing Estimate).

    The logarithmic diminution of the effect of CO2 is the likely reason why there was no runaway greenhouse warming in earlier eons, when CO2 levels were known to be at levels of several thousands ppmv.

    According to figures published by Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center, CDIAC in 2010 the total (natural and Man-made) CO2 warming effect at 390 ppmv causes ~1.24°C of the 33°C greenhouse effect and according to the logarithmic diminution process at 390 ppmv this CO2 level has already taken up ~88% of CO2’s effectiveness as a Greenhouse gas. Thus the maximum CO2 warming effect can only be 1.24°C / 88% = ~1.41°C: so only an additional 12% or ~+0.18°C remains.

    In the context of normal daily temperature variations at any a single location of 10°C to 20°C and which can usually be as much as 40°C to 50°C over the course of a year and as the margin of error for temperature measurements is about 1.0°C, the temperature diminution effects for all the excessive efforts of the Nations committed to CO2 reduction are marginal, immeasurable and irrelevant.

    Although the IPCC tacitly acknowledges that this crucial logarithmic diminution effect exists, it certainly does not report or emphasise it. Like the Medieval Warm Period, that the IPCC attempted to eliminate with the Hockey Stick graph in 2001, the panel knows that wide public knowledge of the diminution effect with increasing CO2 concentration would be utterly detrimental to their primary message.

    The IPCC certainly does not explain these devastating consequences for the CAGW theory in their Summary for Policy Makers. And thus the IPCC is entirely misleading in its central claim, as they say:
    “Warming of the climate system is unequivocal. Most of the observed increase in global average temperatures since the mid-20th century is very likely due to the observed increase in anthropogenic greenhouse gas concentrations.”

    Any unquestioning, policy making reader is irrevocably lead to assume that all increasing CO2 concentrations are progressively more harmful because of their escalating Greenhouse impact. But that is not so.

    From the present concentration of atmospheric CO2 at ~390 ppmv, with only ~12% of the effectiveness of CO2 as a Greenhouse Gas remaining. This can only give rise to a maximum rise of a further of ~0.18°C. Thereafter beyond 900+ pmmv the effect of increasing levels of CO2 can only ever be absolutely minimal even if CO2 concentrations were to increase indefinitely.

    Thus the widely held alarmist policy ambition to constrain Man-made temperature increase to +2.0°C has to be scientific nonsense as it could never be attained, however much more Man-made or natural CO2 was added to the atmosphere.

    • @edmh “The logarithmic diminution of the effect of CO2 is the likely reason why there was no runaway greenhouse warming in earlier eons, when CO2 levels were known to be at levels of several thousands ppmv.”

      I have always thought this to be a possibility, due to natural causes of wild fires, meteor strike, volcanic activity and, (as I have recently discovered on this blog), spontaneous combustion of fossil fuels, but apart from ice core studies which appear to me to be rather inexact, what sources can we look at to determine the truth of the above statement?

    • “According to figures published by Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center, CDIAC in 2010 the total (natural and Man-made) CO2 warming effect at 390 ppmv causes ~1.24°C of the 33°C greenhouse effect ”

      Wrong. All your numbers are wrong and they DIDNT come from the CDIAC. You’ve made that up. They’ve actually come from a dodgy internet site called “geocraft” which has very incorrect numbers.

      Why didn’t you make the source of your numbers clear? Why did you try to pass it off as CDIAC?

      “Although the IPCC tacitly acknowledges that this crucial logarithmic diminution effect exists, it certainly does not report or emphasise it.”

      All the figures the IPCC provide about CO2 are based on it’s effect being logarithmic. Eg climate sensitivity is given per doubling of CO2. In other words it’s already taken into account. You are barking up the wrong tree.

      • Iolwot

        Can you point me to any ‘official’ sources that show graphs that illustrate the logarithmic effect? Thanks.

        tonyb

      • LOL LOLwot :) “official”? You made me spill my morning coffee

      • lolwot

        The logarithmic CO2 temperature response effect is an important constraint on AGW.

        Since ~1750 we have seen CO2 increase from 280 to 392 ppmv (if we accept the IPCC estimate for 1750 based on ice core records).

        Over the same period we have used up an estimated 15% of all the fossil fuels that were EVER on our planet (WEC 2010), leaving 85% to go.

        So the absolute maximum CO2 level we can EVER asymptotically reach from consuming ALL fossil fuels is

        (392) + (0.85)*(392-280) / (0.15) = 1035, say ~1000 ppmv.

        Since 1750 we have seen ~0.8°C warming, with somewhere between 50 and 90% of this caused by CO2 (warming from CO2 = 0.4°C to 0.72°C (or 0.56°C±0.16°C)

        So how much warming would we see from burning all fossil fuels?

        That’s where the logarithmic relation comes in.

        The maximum warming we could EVER see from human CO2 emissions is:

        ln(1000/392)*(0.4)/ln(392/280) to ln(1000/392)*0.72/ln(392/280)

        = (0.9365)*(0.4)/(0.3365) = 1.1°C to (0.9365)*(0.72)/(0.3365) = 2.0°C

        That’s it, lolwot.

        So it is obvious that the logarithmic relation places a constraint on the amount of AGW we could possibly see in the future.

        Max

      • tony b

        This curve is not “official” but is often cited
        co2greenhouse-X2.png

        It shows a logarithmic relation and three separate estimates for the clear-sky natural GH effect of CO2 and the no-feedback 2xCO2 warming effect:

        Lindzen
        Natural: 5.2°C (15.8% of total 33°C)
        2xCO2: 0.64°C

        Kondratjew and Moskalenko
        Natural: 7.2°C (21.8% of total 33°C)
        2xCO2: 0.87°C

        Charnock + Shine
        Natural: 11.8°C (35.8% of total 33°C)
        2xCO2: 1.46°C

        Average of above
        Natural: 8.1°C (24.4% of total 33°C)
        2xCO2: 1.0°C*

        *Note that IPCC use 1.0°C (from Myhre et al.)

        Cheers

        Max

      • “According to figures published by Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center, CDIAC in 2010 the total (natural and Man-made) CO2 warming effect at 390 ppmv causes ~1.24°C of the 33°C greenhouse effect ”

        Wrong. All your numbers are wrong and they DIDNT come from the CDIAC. You’ve made that up. They’ve actually come from a dodgy internet site called “geocraft” which has very incorrect numbers.”

        So, what in your opinion is the correct numbers?
        Wiki:
        Water vapor H2O 36 – 72%
        Carbon dioxide CO2 9 – 26%
        Methane CH4 4 – 9%
        Ozone O3 3 – 7%
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greenhouse_gas

        I think the whole theory is wrong.
        And numbers given above are hopeless vague.
        If one were simply take 9% of 33, it gives 2.97 C.
        And 26% is 8.58 C.
        What is strange is that in comparison a doubling of CO2
        the numbers are more precise as long as you don’t
        include the amplification of forcing [which essentially the increase
        in water vapor any warming affect is suppose to cause].

        But large part of the 33 C number is clouds or reflective nature of the complex atmospheric system. Wiki:
        “If an ideal thermally conductive blackbody was the same distance from the Sun as the Earth is, it would have a temperature of about 5.3 °C. However, since the Earth reflects about 30% of the incoming sunlight, the planet’s effective temperature (the temperature of a blackbody that would emit the same amount of radiation) is about −18 °C”
        So, 23.3 of the -33 C is due to Earth not being an approximation of blackbody.
        So instead of 33, one could do 9-26% to 33 minus 23.3. Or 9.7 C.
        So .873 C to 2.522 C.
        In other words, if Earth was not reflective and one has greenhouse gases
        then .873 C to 2.522 C would apparently be added due to CO2. And
        water vapor of 36 – 72% adds: 3.496 to 6.984 C.

        But I don’t believe the greenhouse theory is correct in number aspect, but what clear, those think this theory is correct are only certain of one number, the greenhouse effect is 33 C.
        Which can shown to be wrong, simply because if you had blackbody and you adding any type of atmosphere, it doesn’t increase the surface temperature of blackbody- it can only reduce the temperature.

        So Earth is not vaguely like a blackbody. Nor is it like a body which is has a black color. What earth is mostly is world covered with water.

        So a world covered with water should be the baseline to which one then add land and anything else.

        So world covered by 3000+ meter deep water at Sun distance, will not be a frozen ball of ice.
        Such a world at Mars distance will not be a frozen ball of ice, nor at Venus distance will the water be boiling.
        Where is the frost line in this solar system?
        Hmm. Strangely, and sort of unrelated:
        “In astronomy or planetary science, the frost line, also known as the snow line or ice line, refers to a particular distance in the solar nebula from the central protosun where it is cool enough for hydrogen compounds such as water, ammonia, and methane to condense into solid ice grains. Depending on density, that temperature is estimated to be about 150K. The frost line of the Solar System is around 4.2 AU. The term is borrowed from the notion of “frost line” in soil science.”
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frost_line_%28astrophysics%29

        I am pretty sure Earth at 4 AU would have frozen ocean, but like Jupiter’s moon Europa, there should liquid water from geothermal heat.
        Now, Ceres is interesting, 2.5- 2.9 AU. It’s not in any way a “water dwarf planet”, but it’s thought to have fair amount the water. So:
        “The Cererian surface is relatively warm. The maximum temperature with the Sun overhead was estimated from measurements to be 235 K (about −38 °C, −36 °F) on 5 May 1991.”
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ceres_%28dwarf_planet%29
        So that indicates one should not have liquid water on Ceres, and generally it’s not thought to likely there is liquid water on Ceres, but I think main reason there wouldn’t liquid water, is there isn’t enough water on surface.

        So Ceres is suppose to not have stable water or ice on surface- just as Mars is does not have surface water [except poles during winter- not in sunlight]. Of course without Earth’s plate tectonics, we wouldn’t be a water planet- we could have lots water [the same amount of water] but not deep oceans covering 70% of planet. Instead a lot of the water would be in our mantle- just as is suppose to be the case with Ceres [and Mars].
        But I think it’s possibility Ceres could be more watery than dry desert world of Mars. And Mars is thought to have running water on surface perhaps within last few million years, and:
        “What’s more, the team has concluded that the water was present for “thousands or millions of years,” though the researchers said it would take far more research to get a clearer picture of the flow’s longevity.”
        http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2012/09/120927-mars-streambed-riverbed-science-curiosity-rover-nasa-water/
        Which could have be caused by “geothermal heat”. But there been also some evidence ancient shallow ocean or lakes billions of years ago- such bodies could not be kept liquid solely through “geothermal heat”.

        But it’s going to be take until 2015 before a spacecraft gets to Ceres and more things can be discovered. And it would be nifty if liquid or solid ice was found on it’s surface.
        Anyhow, Mars is about 1.5 AU, and I think probably 2 AU is somewhere near the limit for water planet to have liquid water on the surface.

      • tony b

        Here is a better link to that logarithmic CO2 temperature curve
        http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3012/3102481730_782feea7bd_b.jpg

        Cheers

        Max

      • Max

        Thanks for the link but I doubt that James Hansen or Michael Mann would consider ‘Junk science’ to be an ‘official’ source.

        If IPCC and others have taken the logarithmic curve into account in their calculations as noted by Iolwot, there must be many references to the official sources they relied on.
        tonyb

      • Iolwot

        Thanks for the link but if its from Science of Doom-excellent blog though it is-it carries no more weight than the Junk Science link that Max gave me.

        It would also be useful if one of the scales mentioned temperature rather than radiative forcing. Got any links to the official sources that IPCC and its contributing scientists would use?
        tonyb

      • Tony,

        The logarithmic dependence is not a directly applicable approach for making best possible estimates of the GHE, it’s rather a parameterization of results of a set of calculations that’s found to fit well with what can be learned from analyses based on the line-by-line calculations of absorption and emission.

        Any model that aims to describe properly the absorption and emission as function of altitude must use either directly the line-by-line data or band models based on that data. None of these approaches uses that logarithmic fit.

      • Pekka

        Are you saying that such a graph does not exist?

        If this is such a precise science that is firmly based on physics surely the calculations should be constant and it should be possible to construct such a graph (or series of graphs) that would match a variety of well tried situations?

        tonyb

      • climatereason, the logarithmic effect is in the forcing. To get a temperature, you would have to include sensitivity assumptions, such as how much the water vapor increases, and what happens to global circulations. Therefore the link from lolwot is the raw information you need. It comes from physics.

      • Tony,

        The Myhre et al graph linked in this thread from Science of Doom is exactly that. It presents results from more complete calculations where two band models were used and a logarithmic fit to those values. That’s it. Nothing more is needed for the calculations that start from the climate forcing. More comprehensive analyses that don’t start from climate forcing and which use band models (or line-by-line spectral data) do the calculation again every time they are run.

      • Pekka and Jim D

        Max’s graph from Junk Science was useful as it contained actual temperatures that would be achieved rather than radiative forcing

        http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3012/3102481730_782feea7bd_b.jpg

        Is there an ‘official’ graph available, such as the science of Doom one whereby the radiative forcing is exchanged by the more useful temperature matrix?

        Tonyb

      • Graphs whose basis is unclear are hardly useful. It’s at least certain that the logarithmic formula fails both at very low and very high concentrations. Extrapolating that to zero concentration would give an infinite result. Thus something else has been done, but I have no idea what that is.

        Better forget these graphs which appear to be overly simplified presentations of something partly unknown and date to 1995 or much earlier.

      • The graph linked by lolwot gives forcing relative to the pre-industrial level near 280 ppm. This is a good reference choice. You need a full GCM to provide a temperature for these forcings, but if you just want the no feedback effect on radiative temperature at the top of the atmosphere it would be converted by 3.7 W/m2 per degree C. The surface temperature change would be amplified by feedbacks, possibly by a factor of 3 where you would multiply the W/m2 scale by 0.8.

      • I found the letters to Physics Today that tell about the basis of the junkscience graphs. It’s obvious that there’s no reason to take look at them any more, junkscience.com is just junk. At the minimum we should have a real paper where the analyses are justified better. As they stand they were part of the argumentation of 1995 ready to be forgotten as soon as something more substantial was done by Myhre and others.

      • Pekka and Jim D

        Thanks for your help.

        Jim said;

        “The surface temperature change would be amplified by feedbacks, possibly by a factor of 3 where you would multiply the W/m2 scale by 0.8.”

        When all is said and done its the feedbacks that would impact the most on the logarithmic curve and the resultant temperature change. Here we are back to first base, as the feedbacks could be either negative OR positive and multiplying it by ‘possibly’ a factor of three might be as wrong as not allowing for any feedbacks at all, as the negative MIGHT counter the positive.

        Anyone care to defend the Junk science graph?

        Tonyb

      • Pekka said:

        “The logarithmic dependence is not a directly applicable approach for making best possible estimates of the GHE,”

        As you probably have realized by now, one of my objectives is to simplify the physics as much as I can to make it more intuitive to ordinary folks like me.

        Consider that if a length of semi-opaque filter allows some radiation to pass through proportional to the length of the filter. Then the additional amount that will get blocked is just the incremental integral of this length, where we just need to add the filtering material to increase the effective length.

        {\int_{x_1}^{x_2} {k \over x} dx} = ln(x_2) - ln(x_1)

        Voila, we have a logarithmic increase of filtering with respect to material added. I think some of the original experiments that were set up have also demonstrated this effect. This model essentially gives the needed math intuition to understand the principle of diminishing returns.

      • The first step is to convert the forcing to change in effective radiative temperature. That can be done accurately enough by dividing the relative change by 4. As the LWIR emission is about 240W/m2 and the effective radiative temperature about 255K that gives 0.27K/(W(m2) and 1.0K for 3.7W/m2.

        Requiring that the lapse rate remains unchanged leads to the result that the surface temperature changes a little more when the system is brought back to balance but this is a minor correction to the above. The feedbacks are a separate issue.

      • Steven Mosher

        Tony.

        The log curve can be found in Myhre’s 1998 paper ( as I recall )

        here is a short description.

        We have tools for estimating the transmission and propagation of radiation through gases. These tools are line by line radiative transfer codes. These codes are used by scientists and engineers who have to understand how various molecules can alter the transmission of radiation through the atmosphere. So, for example, if you want to calculate what a sensor will see when looking up at a radiating target or down at radiating target on the ground you would use a radiative transfer code.
        These codes are used in every day engineering. The are tested. They are validated. Our modern defense and modern communications depend on this physics.

        In his paper Myhre calculated what the effect would be is you doubled c02.
        he used a variety of codes to do this. The result was then “fit” with a log curve. much the same way Oke “fit” a log curve to the relationship between UHI and population. So, this ‘fit’ can be used for a quick and dirty estimate of the effect changing C02. Dont mistake it for a physical model. its not. And if you want to question it’s general truth and think it is wrong, you are wasting your time.

      • climatereason, this is why I prefer to focus on forcing than temperature changes. The forcing has no controversy attached to it, and can be compared with other forcings. E.g. Doubling CO2 is equivalent to increasing solar irradiance by 1%, or by reducing earth’s albedo from 0.3 to 0.29.
        As far as removing all CO2 goes, the Lacis et al. (2010, Science) paper, known as the “CO2 control knob” paper illustrates that the surface temperature would drop 30 degrees, both because of the albedo increase as it goes towards a snowball earth situation, and the collapse of the water vapor greenhouse as it condenses out in the colder temperatures. In this sense, the CO2 is supporting the amount of water vapor we have in the atmosphere which can’t exist as the only GHG.

  20. A Puzzle for ALL to consider

    It still appears that there are a number of people commenting above who believe that carbon dioxide has an effect on climate.

    Perhaps you don’t fully understand how diffusion in a gas has a propensity to ensure homogeneous entropy. When entropy is homogeneous throughout, say, the troposphere we would observe a perfectly linear temperature gradient based on the dry adiabatic lapse rate which is well known in physics to be a function of gravity.

    Of course weather conditions and atmospheric composition cause temporary irregularities, but never-the-less, this process ensures a temperature gradient for the simple reason that the sum of potential energy and kinetic energy in any small region is constant for all such regions in the troposphere.

    This is the only plausible explanation for the high temperature of the Venus surface, because only about 2.1 W/m^2 of incident Solar radiation gets through the dense Venus atmosphere to its surface. So there is no significant amount of such Solar radiation coming back out of the surface, unlike on Earth.

    Hence, the Venus atmosphere is heated by absorbed incident Solar radiation. But this hot atmosphere could not send heat by radiation and cause an even hotter surface to get hotter still. So what does cause that surface to be about 500 degrees hotter than the planet’s mean radiating temperature?

    I say that the naturally forming temperature gradient based on a propensity for there to be uniform entropy from top to bottom necessitates the high temperature at the base of the atmosphere. That region then heats the surface by both conduction and radiation, though the surface may well remain perhaps a degree or two less hot.

    Now, if anyone thinks they have an alternative suggestion as to how it all happens, I would be very grateful to discuss same, and consider it for publication, with due acknowledgement, in a paper I have written which is currently being reviewed, but still open to modification. Any takers?

     

    • Doug Cotton,

      It still appears that there are a number of people commenting above who believe that carbon dioxide has an effect on climate.

      There are also people who recognise there is an economic, policy and political debate going on. Just repeating over and over again that CO2 doesn’t do this that or the other thing gets us nowhere. It is rejected politically. Therefore, I suggest, if we want to have a reasonable and somewhat useful discussion, we need to be pragmatic – while recognising, of course, we have no power other than to persuade a few others we come in contact with and we may be able to influence. Zealots on each side of the debate are locked in to their positions. The swing voters are not zealots. They listen to reason. They weigh up what they are told and who they are told it by. If they judge the message is being presented by an ideologue, a zealot, an extremist, they dismiss that.

      Therefore, we need to discuss pragmatic policy options. My main desire is to help to persuade people not to waste enormous amounts of wealth on policies that will have negligible effect.)

      • Maybe you’d like to read the rest of the comment, together with further explanation just posted below regarding total PE+KE.

        If you or anyone is not willing or able to discuss the physics involved, or does not understand the fairly obvious implication that, if I’m right, there is no radiative GHE here on Earth, just as there is none on Venus, then please do not post irrelevant comments.

        I am seeking genuine, worthwhile and interesting contributions (based on sound physics) that I may consider publishing in the above-mentioned atmospheric physics paper.

    • The Skeptical Warmist

      Doug cotton said:

      “It still appears that there are a number of people commenting above who believe that carbon dioxide has an effect on climate.”

      ——
      Yep, there still are a rational and educated group who frequent this blog.

    • In my “puzzle” above, it may make it easier to understand if, instead of referring to entropy, you replace that with “the sum of molecular kinetic energy and potential energy.” Whenever a molecular is in “free flight” between collisions, there can be an interchange of PE and KE, but the total stays the same. Likewise, when two molecules collide, the total PE+KE for the two of them is unchanged, assuming no radiation occurs. Hence, as molecules move around and collide, the diffusion process leads to the PE+KE total eventually being about the same in any small region at any altitude. But those with lower PE at the base of the atmosphere have more KE, and thus temperature measurements are higher.

      • Does it matter what kind of molecules are in the mix? The specific heat capacity of CO2 for example decreases a lot more with temperature than O2 or N2. Weird molecule that CO2.

      • “Likewise, when two molecules collide, the total PE+KE for the two of them is unchanged, assuming no radiation occurs. Hence, as molecules move around and collide, the diffusion process leads to the PE+KE total eventually being about the same in any small region at any altitude. But those with lower PE at the base of the atmosphere have more KE, and thus temperature measurements are higher.”

        If collision of CO2 gas molecules caused much energy to radiate, wouldn’t Venus be cooler than it is?

        It seems to me that amount energy absorbed and radiated from any gas molecule is insignificant. If the gas is very hot, then it’s more substantial, a flame can radiate some heat, it’s hot.
        What about the depth of hot gas. Say you looking at furnace, thru say 1 meter diameter hole, and you have gas at 2000 C.
        Say the wall on other side of hot gas is 5′ away or 50′ feet away. Does 50′ of gas radiant more energy thru the 1 meter hole? Or does the closer hot wall 5′ away radiate more energy?

  21. David Wojick @ December 2, 2012 at 6:40 am

    Posting essays as reasons defeats the goal of structuring the arguments. But then this argument has thousands of contentions, rebuttals and reasons so structuring it here is impossible. There is a good reason why we are approaching 300,000 comments.

    David, perhaps you could give a lead and show how it should be done.

    Are you saying rational argument is not appropriate for CAGW? If CAGW is simply a belief I can understand that would be the case. However, if it is underpinned by science, and if we are to spend trillions on advocated mitigation measures, I would have thought structured rational argument would be appropriate. In fact, I thought that was what you were advocating when this discussion was taking place on Climate Etc. a few months ago.

    I would suggest the reason there is 300,000 arguments on Climate Etc. and there is no real progress globally in agreeing to acceptable, pragmatic policies to deal with the issue, is because the arguments are largely irrational and emotional and there has been no proper structured debate. The debate has been dominated by ideology as is being demonstrated so clearly by the bulk of the comments on this thread.

    • How what should be done Peter, a structured debate or the debate itself? A structured debate requires either a highly controlled process or systematic analysis of what is being said publicly. Neither can be done on a blog and either is a major project.

      As for your “bulk of comments” claim I think it is factually false but classifying and measuring the comments would also be a major project. As for the debate itself it exhibits the normal confusions of democratic decision making. Millions of words have been written and that is the scale in question.

      • David,

        I don’t find your comments very helpful.

        As for your “bulk of comments” claim I think it is factually false but classifying and measuring the comments would also be a major project.

        How is a silly, nit-picking point like that constructive?

    • Peter, if you think the arguments are irrational you probably do not understand human reasoning about complex issues. This is a normal great debate.

      • Peter, if you think the arguments are irrational you probably do not understand human reasoning about complex issues. This is a normal great debate.

        Your point is?

        This seems like a rather silly, arrogant and pompous statement. Surprising from an ‘educator’.

        Are you trying to say your idea of structured rational debate is simply an academic exercise and is of no practical use in the real world?

        That’s the impression I am getting from your multiple negative comments.

        I accept that it cannot work on a web site, at least not without a good online tool and discipline that people are prepared to follow. But having a go here could still be a learning exercise – perhaps.

        I am not sure why you are making all the negative comments, instead of taking a positive lead and showing examples of how it should work. Unless you are just trying to cover up for a failure.

      • Peter, my comments are negative because I am correcting you, which is designed to help. The structure of complex issues is my core field of expertise. I am trying to teach you something about it but you are apparently offended. Sorry but this is how I teach.

  22. In my “puzzle” above, it may make it easier to understand if, instead of referring to entropy, you replace that with “the sum of molecular kinetic energy and potential energy.” Whenever a molecular is in “free flight” between collisions, there can be an interchange of PE and KE, but the total stays the same. Likewise, when two molecules collide, the total PE+KE for the two of them is unchanged, assuming no radiation occurs. Hence, as molecules move around and collide, the diffusion process leads to the PE+KE total eventually being about the same in any small region at any altitude. But those with lower PE at the base of the atmosphere have more KE, and thus temperature measurements are higher.

    • Are there any real climate scientists on the list of signatories?

      That seems to be a listing of people who are willing to support in public opinions that neither Lindzen nor Spencer nor any other climate scientist is ready to support.

      Makes it perhaps easier to know whose views are not supported by even skeptical versions of climate science.

      • Pekka

        Lists are lists.

        There is no question that there are many “climate scientists” who have gone on record that they do not support the IPCC “CAGW” premise, for one reason or another.

        US Senator Inhofe once put together such a list. If you take off those on his list who are not in a climate related science and add in those, whom Inhofe did not include, you come up with a list of 300+ climate scientists, meteorologists and other scientists in a climate related field that have expressed doubts about the IPCC premise.

        There is probably a “dark figure” of added climate scientists, who may not agree with the IPCC “CAGW premise” but have not openly gone on record that they do. In climate science today, I’m sure that the forced IPCC “consensus process” does influence what scientists say openly on the subject.

        I have also not seen any list of climate scientists who have openly stated that they support the IPCC “GAGW premise”, have you?

        There may be more names on such a list, but I doubt whether it would be a higher percentage than about two-thirds of the total.

        As everyone acknowledges “the science is NOT settled”.

        Max

      • Pekka,

        Are there any real climate scientists on the list of signatories?

        You comment could be rephrased:

        “Are there any scientists who conform to the orthodoxy on the list of signatories?”

      • Notably missing are Lindzen, Spencer, Pielke and Curry.
        Contributors include Manuel and Wojick from here.

      • Steven Mosher

        I have reason to believe Judith believes this type of thing is stupid and just the kind of nonsense she finds objectionable on the warmist side of the debate.

        1. as a statement of science its meaningless.
        2. as a piece of politics its the kind of advocacy she tends to avoid.

        It functions merely as a piece of echo chamber rhetoric, more important to the tribe than it is to anyone else.

        Next up the members of PSI will write a letter proving that c02 doesnt warm and that the vertical structure of temperature on our planet can be explained by gravity.

    • I think they are almost all climate scientists, Pekka. We are scientists who study climate. I sure am.

      • Steven Mosher

        actually a scientist doesnt merely “study” a phenomena. He would have to explain things. in math. and you know share data and code.

      • Many of the people on that list explain things, including in math, but we mostly do assessments, like the IPCC does. We work the science to policy interface.

        My best math thing was discovering the step function in the satellite data, the one that seems to falsify AGW. Science does not get any better than this, right?

        My second best was probably tracking the area averaging method used into the surface statistical temperature models back into the foundations of statistical theory to discover that the models do not support confidence intervals because they violate the basic postulates of probability theory. Different temperature samples have different weights. The weight of a sample is inversely proportional to the number of samples in the grid cell. So while we can calculate the confidence interval for a given cell there is no way to combine them to get a confidence interval for the global temperature. Mathy enough?

        But mostly I just identify confusions and fallacies which I could do mathematically in the first order predicate calculus but do not need to. The issue tree itself is a topological discovery, basically how sentences fit together. Here too there are lots of things to discover and measure but CAGW gets all the money. The government does not fund analysis of the scientific debate because the official position it that it does not exist.

      • David,

        If your best mathematical result is presenting conclusions that are not supported at any significant level by the data then it would be better to refrain from all use of mathematics.

    • I love the selective attitude amongst some “skeptics” about “appeal to authority.”

      • Joshua

        The discussion here was about the letter to Ban Ki Moon, not about an “appeal to authority”.

        The long list of scientists who do not agree with the IPCC CAGW premise does not provide “evidence” that it is incorrect, anymore that a hypothetical list of scientists supporting the premise would provide “evidence” that the premise is correct (as Naomi Oreskes tried to show).

        It just shows that “the science is NOT settled”.

        Max

      • Right, Max. And when you ululated doom and gloom as the result of that court case in Italy, that wasn’t alarmism.

        I get it. Like I said, I love you guys.

      • Joshua

        You have a comprehension problem.

        There was no “doomsday” stuff from me – only from you.

        I am absolutely certain that human CO2 emissions are not leading us to a global “doomsday” (as you apparently are).

        In fact, all “doomsday” theories have only ONE thing in common – they never come true (or we wouldn’t be here today).

        Pretty simply, actually., Josh.

        Max

    • Steven Mosher

      great. I see mr iron sun in the mix.
      You dont fight the lunacy of counting heads in science by counting your own heads. And if you choose to count heads, you’d do well to insure that those heads were not all grey haired, and that you would want to be associated with them

      • This is politics not science so heads count, especially grey haired heads because they rule the world. This is all about Doha dear, but you are clearly too young to understand, or so it seems.

      • Steven Mosher

        Precisely.
        Since its about politics you would have done better to consider the criminal records of those who signed.
        Dope.
        Since it’s about politics you would have done better to consider the cross section you represented. Grey haired rule the world, but they are smart enough to realize that they need the appearance of support from a good cross section. That is why they rule and you dont.
        Since it’s about politics you would have done better to actually have people on the list that are respected in the science community and published outside of blogs.

      • Steven Mosher,

        You don’t count. You are just a young child playing in a sand pit. You are of no consequence
        Dope!

        You have no real world experience

        Your opinion doesn’t count.

        Dope!

      • Steven Mosher

        You still dont get it peter.
        I said you had no power to ask questions.
        That is, you cannot command answers or reward answers.
        Have a look at my comment.
        See any questions?
        Nope.
        What sucks for you is at the top of the thread, where you try to get people to fall in line with your approach to things.
        You cant even get people on a blog to follow you. Trust me, people in power take no notice of your questions, the same way people here take no notice of your directions.
        Fun, isnt it

      • Steven Mosher,

        Now your making misleading statements (i.e. lying).

        You said a lot more than that. You basically said only modelers like you have power to influence policy, because only you are bright enough to understand the climate science.

        I suspect, what little you know about the real world you’ve learnt from a computer screen, from the Discovery Channel and looking out the window.

        But you sure are an arrogant mother f….r.

        Get it yet!

      • Mosh said:

        “Since its about politics you would have done better to consider the criminal records of those who signed.”

        :)

        Are leg irons made out of IRON ?

        That would be IRONic

        (hint, hint)

      • Steven Mosher

        Peter.
        Go read again.
        I am not a modeler.
        Policy makers get to ask questions. you pretend to.
        You need to read much more carefully.
        I dont think you are up to it.

      • Steven Mosher,

        I get to ask as many questions as I like and to make whatever suggestions and comments I like (subject to the rules and accepted norms of how to contribute), and some arrogant, ignorant fool like you has no power to stop me doing so.

        Get it yet?

        I doubt you do because you clearly have a behaviour problem.

        I’ll continue to do what I can to to try to prevent opinionated, ignorant fools from the ‘age of entitlement’, like you, influencing the decision makers to implement bad policies – policies that you do not have sufficient understanding of the real world to enable you to appreciate how bad they are. That is why older guys, who have seen a thing or two, have a valuable contribution to make.

        Get it yet?

        Possible not. You may never get it!

      • Mosher, I think the list of names and credentials is quite impressive. There are some old friends but some new ones as well. The primary purpose of the letter is to support Canada’s decision to stay out of Kyoto 2. (The National Post is Canada’s big conservative newspaper.) Canada will be under great diplomatic pressure this week to join Kyoto 2. The letter will probably help but the outcome is unpredictable.

        You seem to have drifted into a pattern of invective and wild assertion. Too bad because you used to make a real contribution here. You clearly do not understand the political battle nor the power skeptics have.

      • Steven Mosher

        That’s a stupid cheap shot, to “cherry pick” the example of one signator of the letter where hundreds signed, who happens to have an unusual hypothesis.

        What about all the others who are more educated in climate science than you (or me)?

        Don’t do stupid stuff like that, Steven – you’re too smart to fall into that trap (leave that sort of childish behavior for guys like lolwot or Joshua, who don’t really use their brains that much).

        Max

  23. Thoughts on recent empirical data. The Arctic refreeze has gone at a record pace. We are back to 2007 levels. But more important, in some areas, namely the Bering Strait and Hudson Bay we are a lot closer to average as regards timing. The Bering Strait is about average, and Hudson Bay is not as far behind as it has been in recent years. Polar bears were said to be endangered because the ice froze too late, leaving them too little time to hunt. This would not seem to be the case this year. Are polar bears really endangered?

    What is happening with the SOI and El Nino/La Nina I cannot fathom. The daily SOI is hovering around 0. The 30 day and 90 day averages are firmly above zero. There is a significant pool of cold water that seems to be developing in the Nino 3.0 area. Do the experts really have any idea of what is going to happen, or is my guess as good as anyone else’s?

    • http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/intraseasonal/z200anim.gif

      All sorts of stuff is going on. It is almost like there is a new climate regime, but that can’t be true since only old white Christian conservative skeptics would believe such nonsense.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        The QBO is in a very unusual layered configuration not seen since 1992:

        http://www.geo.fu-berlin.de/en/met/ag/strat/produkte/qbo/

        That, combined with the unusual mid troposphere warmth seen over the SH:

        http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/strat-trop/gif_files/time_pres_TEMP_ANOM_ALL_SH_2012.gif

        Is all quite interesting. I will be watching with keen interest the nature of the SSW’s we get in the NH this winter.

      • Cap’n

        All sorts of stuff is going on. It is almost like there is a new climate regime, but that can’t be true since only old white Christian conservative skeptics would believe such nonsense.

        Not so. The problem is people of whatever demographic who over-emphasise short-term and regional variability in order to deny the dominance of the centennial forced trend.

      • BBD, “The problem is people of whatever demographic who over-emphasise short-term and regional variability in order to deny the dominance of the centennial forced trend.”

        So you are arrogantly assuming you are correct. The probability of your being correct decreases daily it seems. Clouds and Magic, Stephens revised Earth Energy Budget, Santer’s new paper where past aerosol forcing appears to be over estimated, Tsonis network analysis, Douglas phase lock loop and non-linear analysis, Lawrence North Atlantic BWT leads SST, Stott CO2 Temperature leads CO2, 23 dendro’s rebutt Mann Aerosol and skipping tree rings, 10^22 Joule magnitude SSW events in lieu of uniform increase in lapse rate, Tropical ozone depletion related to strat water vapor and a remarkable list of to be published papers. There is even indication that AR5 has a new take on uncertainty and sensitivity.;

        How do you like your crow?

      • Gish me no Gallops, please.

      • Dallas is salad pronounced backwards and Cappy is dishing up a heap of word salad. And it tastes like foo.

      • Webster, “Dallas is salad pronounced backwards and Cappy is dishing up a heap of word salad. And it tastes like foo.”

        Possibly :) Possibly not. There are though some interesting anomalies that have a number of people scratching their heads.

      • Saying that the surface temperature has stopped rising is premature and one-dimensional. The land temperature and ocean heat content, and, yes, the forcing are still rising very robustly. This may be the last pause because the forcing is changing faster now, and will change faster still, which the skeptical view never takes into account in their extrapolations.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        captdallas,

        We’ve had somewhat of a surprise to the downside (at least in terms of near surface tropospheric temperatures) over the past decade or so, and some are mistakenly doing the same thing that was done in the late 90’s only in the opposite way– expecting this to continue for, “a decade or three”.

        In this nonlinear chaotic system, it is being “poked” by some rather rapid changes in the atmospheric composition– essentially, an anthropogenic “human CO2 volcano” has been slowly erupting for several centuries and the eruption is growing more intense over these past few decades. Just like a real volcano represents a shock to the climate system, rapidly overwhelming negative feedbacks, it is extremely likely that the human-volcano might do the same.

        Surprises are likely ahead. And yes, I still strongly feel that SSW events are a huge piece not fully accounted for, but if (as the data seem to show) these events are growing more frequent and more intense, it tells us that the pot continues to boil and there has been no slow-down in the underlying forcing.

      • Gates, “Surprises are likely ahead. And yes, I still strongly feel that SSW events are a huge piece not fully accounted for, but if (as the data seem to show) these events are growing more frequent and more intense, it tells us that the pot continues to boil and there has been no slow-down in the underlying forcing.” Exactly, but since CO2 and land use would amplify a natural forcing and that amplification doesn’t have to have the same time constant or gain, you have a very sticky problem.

        With the right time constants, the oceans have a charging characteristic so they would respond more to peak available energy instead of average. The discharge response, since the ocean heat capacity and surface air heat capacity have a large difference, would be much more variable. There would be a distinct difference between SW and LW “sensitivity” adding a new variable to clouds and prolonged solar. The pot lid would have to dance until a more stable state is found.

      • BBD

        NSIDC has been guilty of doing as you write:

        over-emphasise short-term and regional variability in order to deny the dominance of the posit a centennial forced trend

        It’s almost like the 20th century started in 1979!

        And the Arctic region is a “canary” for the entire globe.

        Duh!

        Max

      • manacker

        You are just being silly.

        Centannial GAT for C20th (cubic fits).

    • Jim, here is in my opinion, a very honest blog about the polly bears. U Vic even!

      http://polarbearscience.com/2012/11/13/how-long-have-polar-bears-lived-in-hudson-bay/#more-638

    • Steven Mosher

      your guess is not as good.

    • Jim, it has been clearly shown time and again that the experts really don’t know; as far as your predictive observations time will make clear wheather you are right or wrong. Your guess is much better than theirs, in my book.

  24. Since climate science is in its infancy (and some scientists doubt we ‘ll ever be able to even measure anything as chaotic as climatic elements let alone make predictions,) appealing to the UN to spend money on more practical research and action than what’s being done for the IPCC and AGW alarmism, seems like a very good idea.

    • The UN should be limited to bringing hostile parties to the table. The UN should have nothing to do with climate.

      • jim2, I agree. However, governments are giving the UN agencies (e.g UNEP, IPCC, UNFCCC) good tax payers’ money so till that is stopped, tax payers should be able to influence how it’s spent.

      • However, governments are giving the UN agencies (e.g UNEP, IPCC, UNFCCC) good tax payers’ money so till that is stopped, tax payers should be able to influence how it’s spent.

        Gee, Mongoose, do you want the UN to be accountable to the people? Seems a bit unreasonable, doesn’t it?

        Wasn’t a war fought over taxation without representation?

        What was the outcome?

  25. Further to the discussion about the pause in warming. If we are to go to catastrophic temperature levels by the end of this century, then sooner or later the rate of warming has got to exceed the 0.06 C per decade that has persisted for many decades, possibly back to the LIA. And this excessive rate of warming needs to persist for some time if CAGW is going to be seen to be real. It was supposed to have started around 1970, but it has not appeared yet.
    How much longer do we have to wait for this excessive rise in the rate of warming to appear, before we conclude that it is never going to appear?

    • Jim Cripwell

      What you write is correct.

      For the “projection” of 0.2C per decade to become reality over the first two decades of this century, we would have to have warming of 0.56C per decade from here on out.
      http://farm6.staticflickr.com/5452/7207878630_5b703118f2_b.jpg

      The IPCC longer-term “projections” are even further removed from reality. Even the “committed” curve (no added CO2) is too high!
      http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7065/6855308561_4a4c435d4e_b.jpg

      But I would bet that IPCC continue the same failed “projections” in their new AR5 report (because the actual facts don’t really matter).

      Max

      • Max, you write “What you write is correct.\”

        Thanks. I thought I was right when I wrote it. It will be interesting to see how the warmists react to my message. I suspect they could do one of three things.

        1. They could ignore it.
        2. They could try and show where it is wrong.
        3. They could admit that I am correct.

        My guess is that people like lolwot, Steven Mosher, Pekka, BBD, and all the rest of the warmists here on Climate Etc, including our hostess, will do 1. They are simply too hypocrytical to do 3, and actually admit that I have written something that is scientificly correct, and strongly suggests that CAGW is wrong..

        We will see.

      • why do your graphs start in 2001?

        Shouldn’t they start in 2000?

        Ie 20 years being 2000-2019 (inclusive)

      • Steven Mosher

        Jim,
        You’re not even wrong. You are still confused.
        when you get unconfused I’ll let you know.
        I suspect, it will be about the time hell freezes over

      • Alexej Buergin

        Since the new century (and the new millennium) start with the year 2001 (2000 is the last year of the 20th century and the second millennium), it is better to start a graph with 2001.

      • Alexej Buergin,

        Since the new century (and the new millennium) start with the year 2001 (2000 is the last year of the 20th century and the second millennium), it is better to start a graph with 2001.

        I don’t agree. That start date depends on some strange dating system made by man. I think all dates should count from the date the Earth cam into existence. Or better still, the date of the Big Bang. I believe that can be determined to the billionth or trillionth of a second, (plus or minus a decreasing error).

        Another way to select the start date for a graph would be the date we started descending into the next ice age. You can determine that very accurately from the chart in AR4, WG1, Chapter 6, Box 1 (http://accessipcc.com/AR4-WG1-6.html#6-4-1)

        If you zoom in far enough into this box, and understand the text, you’ll be able to read off the chart that we began our descent into the next ice age at midnight on 31 December 1999. Try it, you’ll find I am correct. :)

      • lolwot

        You ask of my 21st century graphs:

        why do your graphs start in 2001?

        Shouldn’t they start in 2000?

        Because the “21st century” started January 1, 2001 AD, that’s why.
        http://www.hko.gov.hk/gts/time/centy-21-e.htm

        (Alexej Buergin has already answered your question, but thought I’d provide a link.)

        Max

      • bob droege

        I have no doubt that you can understand your cat. The comprehension deficit is in the opposite direction. How much do you suppose Moggy gleans from your discourse on atmospheric physics?

        ;-)

    • The Skeptical Warmist

      Jim C.,

      The underlying externally forced greenhouse gas increase anthropogenic warming of the lower troposphere is somewhere between .14C and .19C per decade when factoring out anthropogenic forced cooling and naturally forced cooling and/or warming.

      But I’m not blind to what the PDO and AMO and solar cycles and volcanic activity can do to short-term and multi-decadal temperature trends. They can both accentuate or hide anthropogenic forcing.

      • Hey folks (R. Gates and Jim Cripwell),

        All of this “warming attributable to human GHGs when factoring out anthropogenic forced cooling” is double-talk.

        The actually observed warming since 1850 was around 0.7°C

        IPCC tells us in AR4 that an equivalent of 93% of this was caused by CO2 (all other anthropogenic forcings cancelled each other out), with the rest caused by natural forcing, conceding that its <em<"level of scientific understanding of natural forcing is low"

        Since IPCC concedes that it doesn’t know much about natural forcing, we look elsewhere. Several solar studies tell us that around half of the past warming (rather than 7%) can be attributed to the unusually high level of 20th century solar activity (highest in several thousand years).

        So we have two estimates, giving us a range.

        Mauna Loa tells us that CO2 concentration today is ~392 ppmv and IPCC tells us (based on Vostok ice core data) that the level was ~280 ppmv when industrialization started.

        From these actual data and the logarithmic relation, we can calculate that the observed warming attributable to CO2 was between 0.35 and 0.65°C or -if averaged over the 150+ years since the record started – a decadal rate of 0.023°C to 0.043°C per decade. This equates to a long-term 2xCO2 temperature response of between 0.8 and 1.5°C,

        That’s it, folks!

        All the rest is double-talk.

        Max

    • But Jim,
      The trend from 1970 is 0.15 C per decade, and that is Had crutch 3.

      http://www.skepticalscience.com/trend.php

      • bob droege you write “The trend from 1970 is 0.15 C per decade, and that is Had crutch 3.”

        So what. Even if we assume that all this warming is due to CO2, which it almost certainly is not, then in 100 years the rise will be 1.5 C. I am not worried about such a small increase. In any event, the longer the pause continues, the less the trend will be. I do not regard this as a sign of CAGW. The IPCC wants us to keep the rise less than 2 C for this century, and we are clearly doing this while increasing the amount

      • Sorry, I forgot to copy the last part, namely “of CO2 in the atmosphere at an “alarming” rate.”

      • But Jim, I was only showing that you were wrong to state that warming hasn’t increased beyond the trend of 0.06 per decade since the LIA or whenever.
        The “pause” has yet to achieve statistical significance, and that in and of itself is significant.
        And a 1.5 degree rise by the end of this century may not worry you, but that is a linear extrapolation, and why do you think that is an appropriate model to use?

      • bob droege, you write “But Jim, I was only showing that you were wrong to state that warming hasn’t increased beyond the trend of 0.06 per decade since the LIA or whenever.”

        There are two basic graphs that I use. These are

        http://bit.ly/V19Im8 and

        http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/MidSummer-MidWinter.htm

        What these show is that over the full length of global temperatures that we have, there has been a linear trend of rising temperatures. Within these records, there are periods where temperatures have risen, and fallen, over shorter periods of time. There is no sign that I can see that anything has happened to change this linear trend.

        Just to clarify, the first graph is the complete record of all the global temperatures that we have. The second is the Central England Temperatures, which are not global, but are the longest set of directly measured temperatures that exist. The trends of these two graphs complement each other.

        The warmists claim that temperatures are going to rise to excessive levels some time in the future. What I am trying to point out, is that if this is going to happen, then at some point, the rate of rise of temperature of global temperatures must be at an excessive rate for a prolonged period of time. I cannot see that this has happened yet. What I am trying to point out to you is that your numbers do not support a claim that this excessive rise has actually started.

      • bob droege

        Don’t fall into the “short term” trap.

        The trend since the end of 2000 is cooling of 0.07°C per decade.

        Short term trends (less than 100 years) are meaningless.

        Best of all is to use the entire record, covering a time span of 160+ years now; this way the observed multidecadal warming/cooling cycles are evened out and we can see a true long-term trend.

        (See above post.)

        Max

      • bob droege, you write “but that is a linear extrapolation, and why do you think that is an appropriate model to use?”

        You are absolutely correct, and you are pointing out the fundamental weakness of my analysis, which I know is there, and have acknowledged on many occasions. I am using what I call negative information, which cannot prove anything. CAGW is a reasonable and plausible hypothesis, which I cannot prove is wrong. I just believe that there is insufficient empirical data to prove that it is right. This is a negative statement.

        For all I know, today global temperatures could start rising dramatically, and within a year, there could be ample empirical data to prove CAGW is correct. I cannot prove that this is not going to happen. All I can point out is that it has not happened yet. We have had 40 years of supposed CAGW, and so far as I can see there is no empirical data from the 20th and 21st centuries, to support the hypothesis of CAGW. What I am trying to do is have a discussion as to how long we have to wait before there is enough empirical data to prove CAGW, before we conclude that the hypothesis of CAGW is wrong. I cannot get any warmists to approach this problem. And you have not addressed it.

      • bob droege

        As Jim Cripwell has asked:

        how long we have to wait before there is enough empirical data to prove CAGW, before we conclude that the hypothesis of CAGW is wrong

        We have seen 15 years of “no warming” despite unabated emissions of human GHGs, especially CO2, and atmospheric concentrations reaching record levels.

        The “CAGW premise” (or “hypothesis”) of IPCC as I understand it from its AR4 report is that “most of the observed warming since 1950 was caused by increased concentrations of human GHGs, principally CO2, (i.e. AGW) and AGW represents a serious potential threat to humanity and our environment, unless human GHG emissions (principally CO2) are curtailed drastically”

        [If you understand the IPCC premise differently, please indicate how you would describe it.]

        A key underlying basis for the above CAGW hypothesis is a model-derived mean 2xCO2 climate sensitivity of 3.2C.

        On this basis, we should have seen 0.35C warming just from the CO2 increase over the 15-year period and IPCC had projected warming of 0.2C per decade, which would have been 0.3C over the period, but we have seen no warming at all.

        Ben Santer has suggested that it takes 17 years for a climate trend to be statistically significant – in other words, we still have two years to wait.

        My questions to you:

        1. IF the current “pause” continues for another 24 months, so we have a statistically significant 17 full years of “lack of warming”, would this falsify the CAGW hypothesis (including the underlying mean 2xCO2 climate sensitivity of 3.2C) in your opinion?

        2. If you answer “NO” to 1, how many years would it take?

        a- 20?
        b- 30?
        c- 50?
        d- 100?
        e- never

        3. If you answer “never”, please indicated how the CAGW premise could be falsified in your opinion (if you think the CAGW hypothesis cannot be falsified at all, please indicate this).

        Looking forward to your answer. Thanks.

        Max

      • Jim,
        You should try using an ENSO and Solar adjusted graph because if you compensate for those effects the continued warming trend becomes clearer.

        Also, I wasn’t making the claim that an excessive warming rate has already started, I was responding to your claim that the current warming rate hasn’t increased beyond 0.06 C per decade. If you use wood for trees and detrend over long periods of time to smooth out the noise, you do get a regularly increasing trend.
        Lastly, I don’t think science proves anything when things are as complex as climate, simpler things can be proven, but what matters is the amount of evidence for either side. There is sufficient evidence that in the long term and the calendar doesn’t end in 2100, the current warming rate will be detrimental, you know like the last scene in the first Planet of the Apes movie.

      • Max, where to start?

        You say one shouldn’t use short term trends, yet the base of your argument is the no warming since 2000 gambit.
        You continue to fail to have the chops to understand what Santer was saying with his 17 years quote, it was at least 17 yeas and more importanly, you have to do the tests to determine statistical significance, not just measure a certain number of years. Can you get that yet?
        As to your questions, I’ll answer the first such that the second and third are not necessary.
        If you use an ENSO and Solar compensated trend calculation, you do not have a 15 year cooling trend, or a 15 year lack of warming trend.
        Or using this tool http://www.skepticalscience.com/trend.php how many calculated trends with the different data sources reject the IPCC about 0.2 C per decade trend.
        I’ll let you use the exact 0.2 trend for you analysis.

        And I don’t think the CAGW can ever be falsified, because there are umpteen scenarios which human activity could change the climate in catastrophic fashion, but hopefully we can avoid taking such actions.

      • JCH

        Just to finish out your graph with two “cherry picked” temperature records for the past 15 years, I have added the other two you left out (HadCRUT and RSS).
        http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/uah/last:180/plot/uah/last:180/trend/plot/gistemp/last:180/plot/gistemp/last:180/trend/plot/hadcrut3vgl/last:180/plot/hadcrut3vgl/last:180/trend/plot/rss/last:180/plot/rss/last:180/trend

        As you can see, these both show slight cooling.

        So we have a period of “no warming” over the past 15 years if we consider all records.

        OK?

        Max

      • bob droege, you write “You should try using an ENSO and Solar adjusted graph because if you compensate for those effects the continued warming trend becomes clearer.”

        I NEVER use any sort of “adjusted” data. No-one has any idea what factors need to be adjusted, and no-one knows how many other factors there are that we know nothing about. So I only ever use the basic data. Adjusted data is a weasel way of trying to pretend something is real, when it is not.

        You also write “There is sufficient evidence that in the long term and the calendar doesn’t end in 2100, the current warming rate will be detrimental, ”

        Here is where we differ. You use weasel words. I do not. I specify “empirical data”, which is specific, and is a fundamental reuqirement for showing a hypothesis is anything more than a hypothesis. You merely claim “sufficient evidence”. This means absolutely nothing from a scientific point of view. What one person believes is sufficient, someone else thinks is insufficient. Nullius in verba. Who decides what “sufficient” means, if the evidence is not empirical? I follow the scientific method. You do not.

      • bob droege

        Thanks for your reply and for your efforts to help me understand what Santer wrote – but I really don’t need your help here, I understood very well what he wrote.

        You have somehow misunderstood that I was referring to a 10-year period.

        Not so.

        My question was, “how many more years (above the currently observed 15-year “pause”) do we have to wait until the CAGW premise is falsified?”

        You have answered that it would NEVER be falsified, no matter how many years we had of zero warming despite unabated GHG emissions..

        That answered my question.

        You have confirmed that CAGW is not a scientific hypothesis – it is some sort of unfalsifiable dogma.

        Thank for confirming my skeptical suspicion..

        Max

      • No Max,
        I didn’t say it would never be falsified no matter what the data returns, I said it would never be falsified because there is always a possibility that man could trigger catastrophic warming events.
        And there is no pause, and you did refence the trend since 2000.
        So how can the pause continue and then falsify AGW when there is no pause?

        Where is the pause in ocean heat content or global sea ice e

      • So now Jim whips out the no true lumberjack fallacy.

        I said to compensate for ENSO and Solar effects in your graphs, not to adjust your data to compensate, silly.

        I mean use data that shows how ENSO and solar effects can dampen the short term climate trends.
        Different things can affect the temperature trends, right, not just CO2. To use Cantor’s terminology “It’s not one to one and onto”
        Do you think the wood for trees index is raw data?

      • bob droege, you write “Do you think the wood for trees index is raw data?”

        I do wish people would read what I write and not put words in my mouth. If you took the trouble to read, you would find that I never used the expression “raw data”. I used “basic data”. I know that the data published is not raw.

        And you have carefully avoided the question of who decides what is “suffieient data”? As a private individual, you are entitled to your own opinion. But people and organizations that are in a position of authority, like scientific advisers to governments, or organzations like the WMO, the RS, and the APS, have no right to decide what is and what is not “sufficient data”. I am surprised that you can condone the completely unscientific conduct of these organizations in making the sort of statements that they have with respect to CAGW, on the basis of insufficient emprircal data.

      • Jim,
        I didn’t say you said wood for trees index was raw data, I didn’t put words in your mouth, I was merely asking for clarification. You do know that some of the indexes that go into wood for trees index are adjusted for time of observation bias and other biases?

        If you limit yourself to only 5 graphs which limits you to 2.3% of the emperical data on the amount of heat that is global warming, how can you argue that you are coming to a valid conclusion?

      • bob droege, you write “how can you argue that you are coming to a valid conclusion?”

        I am no expert in all the details of how global temperatures are measured. I know of five data sets, HAD/CRU, NOAA/NCDC, GISS, RSS amd UAH which routinely put out monthly data on global temperatures. Their tables are what I call “basic data”. The latter two sets are from satellites, and so the data is restricted to recent years. Of the remaining three, the HAD/CRU is the most widely used, and that is the data that Girma used to produce the graph I quoted. So far as I am aware, this is a simple graph, which just plots the basic data, with no other manipulation. The first three data sets provide, to a first approximation, the same sort of information. So I suggest that the conclusions one can draw from this plot are valid.

        And you still have not addressed my question as to who decides what is “sufficient data”?

      • bob droege

        Do you think the wood for trees index is raw data?

        I twitched a bit when I saw The Cripwell’s strident protestation that he NEVER uses adjusted data. There is no bottom to the stupidity that I can see. So, all this is a hopeless waste of energy. It’s like talking to the cat.

      • Cripwell

        Do you know how your precious satellite TLT reconstruction is created? Even the remotest hint of a clue? Thought not. Instead of huffing and puffing with indignation, why not go and find out. Then you will begin to understand just how ludicrous your remark about NEVER using adjusted data actually is.

      • And you still have not addressed my question as to who decides what is “sufficient data”?

        Oh, that’s easy. It’s done by a cabal of leftie climatologists dedicated to the overthrow of capitalism and the American Way. These shadowy figures have for decades now worked to undermine democracy and bring about socialist world government and compulsory tofu for all.

      • No Max, it’s why you’re not much like your hero. There is clearly something amiss in the various temperature series.

        The globe, the planet on which we live, looks like GISS, NOAA,BEST, and UAH, and it does not look like HadCrappy and RSS.

      • bob droege

        Waffle all you want to, bob, but you answered my question: the CAGW hypothesis of IPCC cannot be falsified in your opinion no matter how many years of continued “pause” we have in the global warming.

        That’s clear enough for me.

        You don’t have to rationalize or explain your viewpoint – it’s clear enough to me.

        CAGW is not a falsifiable scientific hypothesis or premise – it is non-falsifiable dogma.

        Max

      • JCH

        You are seriously trying to tell me that two of the temperature records, which show statistically insignificant warming over the past 15 years are correct while two others, which show statistically insignificant cooling over the same time period are incorrect?

        How dumb do you think I am to swallow such a silly suggestion?

        Come with serious arguments if you want to defend your dogma, JCH, not with such rubbish.

        Max

      • Offendedleftieweenie

        BBD,

        Yr: “…compulsory tofu for all.”

        Sir, I don’t know who or what you think you are, but you are obviously one of those right-wing, testosterone-addict ruffians who ride around in your big, VROOM!-VROOM!, monster trucks with scantily-clad hot-babes draped all over you openly and shamelessly admiring your “gun-rack” and causing me and my Vespa scooter to weave all over the road due to the air-pressure change you create when your three tons of manly steel-and-horsepower blow past me and leave me choking on your exhaust fumes and with your “BEAN-SPROUT WANKER!” taunts ringing in my ears!

        And just what is wrong with compulsory tofu consumption, anyway?–as long as there’s no GMO soy involved, of course. Sure, tofu is a bit bland, but us leftie hive-dorks learned, long-ago, to eat our tofu with fresh boogers mixed-in for flavoring. MMMM…tasty stuff! Hey! Don’t knock it till yah tried it!

      • BBD,
        I usually can understand my cat, he has few words but fewer wants.

      • Max, one can falsify the CAGW, but first you have to falsify Quantum Mechanics, are you up to that, considering that you still have problems with statistics, I think not. Quite a few Nobel Prizes would have to be withdrawn.

        Of course CAGW is falsifiable, but one would have to provide evidence that CO2 doesn’t absorb infared radiation.

        There you go, provide evidence that CO2 doesn’t absorb infared and you can falsify CAGW.

        You happy now?

      • Jim Cripwell

        When bob droege says this:

        You should try using an ENSO and Solar adjusted graph because if you compensate for those effects the continued warming trend becomes clearer.

        my sense is that he means something like this, after Foster & Rahmstorf (2011).

        Do have a look at F&R. That’s an HTML link so you don’t even have to download a pdf. See what happens when the solar, ENSO and volcanic aerosol influences are largely removed from various temperature reconstructions. Of course F&R11 doesn’t address the possible influence of anthropogenic aerosol loading or of the possible over-estimate of the rate at which energy mixes down into the deep ocean. For an exploration of these topics, see Hansen & Sato (2011). Further perspective on the potential role of ocean circulation on GAT on decadal timescales is provided by Meehl et al. (2011).

        And stop extrapolating from linear fits to C20th GAT. You are ignoring the rate of change of CO2 forcing. The atmospheric fraction of CO2 was small at the beginning of the C20th and large at the end. But it increased *more rapidly* in the second half of the C20th than the first. And it is projected to increase more rapidly still during the C21st. Linear extrapolation from the C20th over the C21st is not going to capture this change.

        Is it?

        Some more on Girma-esque nonsense over at Nick Stokes’ blog. I strongly recommend that you read it. Look down in the comments for links to Ron Broberg’s encounter with Girma. You can understand this if you want to. Prove to the world that you are not a cat.

      • (Whoops. This got misthreaded above:)

        bob droege

        I have no doubt that you can understand your cat. The comprehension deficit is in the opposite direction. How much do you suppose Moggy gleans from your discourse on atmospheric physics?

        ;-)

      • bob droege

        You have just told me how one could falsify AGW, but that’s not what I asked you for.

        Let’s say one accepts fully the concept of AGW.

        My question to you was how could one falsify the IPCC CAGW hypothesis?

        And you told me this hypothesis could not be falsified, even if the current “pause” in warming despite unabated GHG emissions continued indefinitely.

        To which I replied that if CAGW cannot be falsified it is not a scientific hypothesis, but some sort of dogma.

        Don’t try to switch the topic from CAGW to AGW

        Max

      • manacker, define the “CAGW hypothesis of IPCC” please. In a sentence what is it.

      • Lolwot,

        It is for the CAGW alarmists, like yourself to define CAGW. You argue we need to implement carbon pricing and mandate renewable energy and other irrational policies. Why do you advocate that? What is the justification for your advocacy/ In short it is that you believe in CAGW. So what is CAGW. What is your justification for advocating the world spends trillions on policies that you cannot demonstrate have any significant probability of making the climate better? It’s up to you to justify the policies you advocate. It’s up to you to define CAGW. Over to you.

      • lolwot

        You ask:

        manacker, define the “CAGW hypothesis of IPCC” please. In a sentence what is it.

        I wrote this in my post #273538 above, but will repeat here:

        The “CAGW premise” (or “hypothesis”) of IPCC as I understand it from its AR4 report is that “most of the observed warming since 1950 was caused by increased concentrations of human GHGs, principally CO2, (i.e. AGW) and AGW represents a serious potential threat to humanity and our environment, unless human GHG emissions (principally CO2) are curtailed drastically”

        Max

      • Lolwot,

        define the “CAGW hypothesis of IPCC” please. In a sentence what is it.

        This is a genuine and interesting question. It is also important for us to know what it means. If 3C, 4C, 5C, 6C is ‘really bad’, what does ‘really bad’ mean. The most commonly used terns to describe it by the climate alarmists is ‘catastrophic’. But what do they mean by that?

        Can it be defined by x fatalities per year? If so how many?

        The Indonesian tsunami killed 100,000 people. The Fukushima earth quake killed 25,000 people. They were considered to be catastrophes.

        Chernobyl killed about 60 people (directly attributed to the accident and radioactive contamination since) and a projected 4000 fatalities over 70 years in a population of about 200 million. That is considered to be a catastrophe.

        But 650,000 per year every year from pollution from coal power stations is not considered to be a catastrophe. It is normal.

        Pandemics have killed a large proportion of the population. They are catastrophes.

        But what do you believe would be the consequences of 3C, 4C, 5C, 6C of global warming (if it happened)?

        AGW represents a serious potential threat to humanity and our environment, unless human GHG emissions (principally CO2) are curtailed drastically”

        What does “a serious potential threat to humanity” mean, quantitatively? Where is it defined, quantitatively?

        Please don’t refer me to AR4, WG2 (the chapters controlled by the so called ‘environmental NGOs’).

      • Hey max,
        Can you quote me line and verse from the IPCC reports what they define CAGW to be?

      • Captain Kangaroo

        Oh for God’s sake – anything greater then 2 degrees C by definition – and that’s most of the discredable models.

        http://www.smh.com.au/environment/climate-change/its-the-end-of-the-world-as-we-know-it-20121202-2ap4l.html

      • How about

        “Unmitigated climate change would, in the long term, be likely
        to exceed the capacity of natural, managed and human systems to
        adapt.”

        Citation available on demand!

      • “The “CAGW premise” (or “hypothesis”) of IPCC as I understand it from its AR4 report is that “most of the observed warming since 1950 was caused by increased concentrations of human GHGs, principally CO2, (i.e. AGW) and AGW represents a serious potential threat to humanity and our environment, unless human GHG emissions (principally CO2) are curtailed drastically””

        That’s not a hypothesis.

        Pointing out a threat is not a hypothesis.

        If you disagree, how do you falsify the “hypothesis” that of CNT (catastrophic nuclear terrorism), the THREAT that terrorists might one day obtain a nuclear device and detonate it somewhere. Can that be falsified? How? And if it cannot be falsified does that mean the threat doesn’t exist?

    • A thought experiment… Suppose (for argument’s sake) that temperature evolution was modelled as a linear trend of 0.2C/decade with natural variability thrown on top. One could run thousands of simulations and work out the period at which 95% of calculated trends from individual runs became statistically significant. Let’s say we arrived at a figure of 16 years. What would it mean if 16 years passed without the trend in the actual data reaching statistical significance?

      1. The model could be rubbish
      2. The model could be essentially correct but:
      a. By chance alone, we are falling in the 5% of cases that don’t reach significance
      b. Natural variability has been underestimated
      c. The assumed distribution of natural variability is incorrect
      d. The trend is present but lower than 0.2C
      e. Combinations of a, b, c, d

      Case 2d: Suppose 0.2C/decade is an over-estimate of short term temperature response and the true trend is really 0.16C/decade. This would invalidate the 16 year significance calculation without discrediting the core of the theory. Perhaps a revised calculation would yield 20 years. Stating that 16 years has passed and therefore the theory is invalidated vastly oversteps the mark.

      How far can this line of reasoning be pushed (noting that this is a flimsy model presented as a thinking tool only)? Not indefinitely. If natural variability cannot be adequately constrained the theory is broken (Case 1). In addition, the probability of not reaching trend significance falls quickly with each passing year. Lower the trend too far and CAGW becomes less likely (and further off) or requires marked accelerations yet to be seen. (Note: no claim is being made that the above has anything to do with Ben Santer’s methodology.)

      • Ammonite

        Your logic is impeccable.

        An observed warming trend of 0.16C per decade would be “close enough” to the IPCC model-derived 0.2C per decade that one could argue that the CAGW premise of IPCC (which is the basis for the 0.2C per decade forecast) is essentially valid, but might need some downward adjustment.

        But we are not talking about an observed warming trend of 0.16C per decade.

        We are talking about an observed trend of no warming, which has continued for 15 years, despite continued unabated emissions of human GHGs.

        So me question was specifically:

        How many years would this trend of zero warming have to continue despite unabated GHG emissions before the CAGW premise of IPCC was falsified?

        That’s a simple question that can be answered by a simple answer.

        Bob Droege answered that (in his opinion) the CAGW hypothesis of IPCC would not be falsified, even if the “lack of warming” despite unabated GHG emissions continued indefinitely.

        This tells me that the IPCC CAGW hypothesis is not falsifiable and, hence, is not “science”, but rather “dogma”.

        Max

      • Hi manacker. As I read your post you are modeling temperature evolution as a linear process WITHOUT the addition of natural variability. This will not lead to robust conclusions. Your “trend” will go all over the place depending on your start and end points. I assume you would be critical of an AGW supporter that measured trend from a La Nina low to the next El Nino high. If so you must apply the same standards to your own analysis.

        CAGW would be falsified by rising CO2 but falling ocean heat content. (Annoyingly, any heat sequestered in the deep ocean beyond the reach of Argo effectively goes “missing” and perversely may even reduce sea level as the coefficient of expansion of water is higher for higher temperatures.) Given that sea level is rising and analyses such as Foster & Rahmstorf, the AGW hypothesis remains on solid ground (or should that read: floats on rising water?).

  26. It is my personal belief, that in a hundred years or so, when mankind actually knows far more about climate, todays loud and raucuos debates about purported differences of tenths of a degree over decades will be seen as equivalent to debating how many angels can fit on the head of a pin.

    “Those ‘scientific’ ego maniacs really thought they had the ability to actually measure Global Average Temperature. Not only that, they claimed they could calculate the temperature of the entire planet, land, sea and air, to within tenths of a degree per day, and trends to within tenths of a degree over decades, and even centuries. Even more bizarre, they thought they could calculate Global Average Temperature to the same precision over past decades, centuries, and even millennia, by reading tea leaves…I mean tree rings and chunks of ice.

    Can you imagine?”

    • The Ten Yamal of Global Warmanism

      Climate Science in Public Schools:

      Once upon a time there were these 10 Yamal — living trees — and their rings were full of valuable data.

      These trees are the original Ten Disciples of Mann, upon whose rings the Church of Warmanism was founded, and through them spreading the Gospel of Leftist, enviro-wackpot liberal Utopianism.

  27. Will This Be the 1st Winter of the Next ICE AGE?

    Snow, Record Cold in UK; More in Store

    November 29, 2010; 1:41 PM

    • The Skeptical Warmist

      No Waggy, it won’t for there hasn’t been a last winter yet of the current Ice Age, which started about 2.6 mya. Please at least get your terminology correct before making your otherwise inaccurate and inane comments.

      Now, we may well get a “last winter” of the current ice age in the next few thousand years, depending on what really happens with greenhouse gases etc. In as much as we are seeing the highest GHG concentrations in 800,000 years and probably far longer, we could well get a new climate regime similar to the Miocene in the next few thousand years. This would be the end of the current “ice age” as Antarctica would melt, Greenland would melt, and it would be an altogether different world.

      • TMann and the Left cannot admit that Mother Nature rolls the dice and so are compelled to make sense of shadows on the walls of Plato’s prison cave instead of simply stepping out into the light of the Sun.

      • Just remember that the last millennium 1000 – 2000 AD was the coolest of the current benign Holocene epoch and that at ~12,000 years our happy Holocene, (responsible for the development of all human civilisations) is getting long in the tooth. Its end is now overdue when compared with earlier shorter more intense interglacials such as the previous Eemian. See the Inconvenient Sceptic John Kehr figures 65 and 71.

        So whether the current sunspot cycle and ocean circulation cycles lead to Little Ice Age conditions or perhaps to the impending real end of the Holocene during this millennium, the one thing we should not be concerned about is a little Global Warming within the level of natural variations that have been seen in the past 1000 years.

        A cooling, rather than a warming, world leads to both a reduction in agricultural productivity with huge deprivation for Mankind worldwide and probably to more extreme weather events, (possibly like hurricane Sandy).
        There is good reason to expect worsening weather events in a cooling world because the temperature differential between the tropics and the poles will be enhanced.

      • There could be 4 Little Ice Ages before the next BIG one… or, maybe not. But we do know that whatever happens, there is nothing humanity can do about it. There is power in that kind of knowledge that superstitious and ignorant people who want to be deceived by people like Al Gore will never know and unfortunately the country isn’t getting any smarter. Just the reverse.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        Waggy,

        Since we are part of Mother Nature, and not some separate element of the universe, either physically or logically, there is no logical or physical reason why humans can’t affect climate in little and potentially big ways, just like the rest of “Mother Nature”.

        In regards to the Cave allegory, religion and science both are ways that we have attempted to describe what is causing the shadows on the cave. Fortunately, science is superior in that it does not rely on “faith” but facts and testable hypotheses. Science may not tell us what is casting the shadows, but the proof of the power of science is the incredible results it achieves in controlling and predicting whatever it is that is causing those shadows. “The Atom” is a metaphor no less than “The Holy Spirit”, but it seems one has led to some fairly remarkable power for Homo Sapiens– for better and worse.

      • R. Gates

        Your hyperbole about the ‘“last winter” of the current ice age’ skirts around the basic question here.

        If it keeps getting slightly cooler over the next few years (as it has over the past 10-15 years), despite unabated emissions of GHGs, when will we see a revision of the IPCC position on GHGs having been the primary cause of warming since 1950?

        Will such a revision occur if there is no more warming for another fifteen years?

        Or will there simply be rationalizations of GH warming hidden in the pipeline, GH warming masked by Chinese aerosols, etc. etc. in order to keep the hypothesis alive despite empirical data which tend to falsify it?

        That’s the question here, R. Gates.

        And I have not heard an answer to this from anyone.

        Max

    • Wagathon

      Have a look at Archer & Ganopolski (2005) for more on this.

      Briefly, the Earth’s orbital eccentricity is entering its cyclical minimum. The last time this happened was about 400ka and the interglacial (MIS 11) was unusually prolonged (20 – 30ka). It’s possible that the Holocene may be similarly prolonged even without the elevated forcing from CO2 emissions.

      The onset of the next glacial may be a very long way off indeed, which is good news, but a return to Miocene conditions would not be good news.

      We need to strike a happy balance, which arguably has already occurred. If emissions fell to negligible levels tomorrow there’s a very good chance that it would be a very long time before the onset of the next glacial:

      An anthropogenic release of 300 Gton C (as we have already done) has a relatively small impact on future climate evolution, postponing the next glacial termination 140 kyr from now by one precession cycle. Release of 1000 Gton C (blue lines, Figure 3c) is enough to decisively prevent glaciation in the next few thousand years, and given the long atmospheric lifetime of CO2, to prevent glaciation until 130 kyr from now.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        BBD,

        I agree with that general assessment related to the timing of the next glacial period. The next glacial is quite a ways off, and may be much further off because of AGW (like delayed hundred of thousands or even millions of years). I also agree that Miocene conditions would not likely be “good news” for the 7+ Billion humans we need to feed and clothe and house, but we are an adaptable lot, and likely some portion would adapt. Whether or not such conditions would be conducive to the extensive and advanced civilization we have is another issue entirely. But who knows…if we somehow crack the fusion energy “genie” than we’ll have unlimited kinds of energy at our fingertips and we can geoengineer this planet to be exactly what we want as cost will not be an issue. Fusion energy (pipe dream or not) would change everything.

      • R Gates

        Fusion would be wonderful, but who was it who said that fusion is always forty years off? Still, if we keep rubbing the tokamak, one of these days we might just get our wish… ;-)

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        BBD,

        Yep, the Fusion Genie always seems to be on the distant horizon– like a mirage of sorts. Maybe we’ll never get there. Perhaps we get close but something unexpected will plunge civilization back into some global dark ages and the chance for fusion will be gone for a thousand years. Maybe exactly 1,345.798 angels can dance on the head of a pin (assuming none of them are overweight).

      • Maybe exactly 1,345.798 angels can dance on the head of a pin (assuming none of them are overweight).

        The phase space of angels and pinheads contains many attractors, Grasshopper. A decade or three may be overweight.

        This is powerful knowledge. Use it wisely.

      • BBD quoted Release of 1000 Gton C (blue lines, Figure 3c) is enough to decisively prevent glaciation in the next few thousand years, and given the long atmospheric lifetime of CO2, to prevent glaciation until 130 kyr from now.

        In other words warmists should stop arguing that we need to reduce co2 emissions. It is clear we need to increase co2 emissions. Clearly anyone suggesting we reduce co2 emissions is a suicidal lunatic.

        Thank god for China and India who will save us from the next glaciation.

        Actually, the idea that any amount of co2 can save us or even postpone the next glaciation is nonsense, glaciations have arrived in the past despite far higher levels of co2 than we have today or are likely to have in a few hundred years, but we can live in hope.

      • Some scientists foresee a global cooling trend in our future that could last for decades. If this will be the first winter of the next Ice Age what do the global warming alarmists of Western academia do then, give us our money back?

      • R. Gates and BBD

        It is rare that I agree with either of you, but now I agree with you both that harnessing nuclear fusion for electrical power generation would represent a major breakthrough for humanity to continue having access to a reliable, low-cost source of energy when fossil fuels start to become more difficult and costly to extract and, hence, no longer economically competitive for power generation.

        I do not agree that this will take another “40 years”, though.

        But, until it does, we have many options to replace fossil fuels – but the only one that is economically viable on the scale we are talking about is nuclear fission (as Peter Lang has been telling us).

        The problem here is political.

        Germany has a timetable for getting out of nuclear entirely, Switzerland has agreed to do this but has no timetable, other European countries have either already decided to stop new nuclear plants or shut down the ones they have, with France the only exception. The USA has so many bureaucratic, legal and regulatory hurdles to new nuclear plants that these could hardly keep up with increased power demand.

        Then there is the niggling problem of spent fuel disposal, but this could easily be solved with existing fast breeder + thorium technology.

        The underlying problem is that humanity has been bombarded by so many anti-nuke fear mongering campaigns (by WWF, Greenpeace and all the other green lobby groups that are now doing the same for CAGW) that there is an irrational fear of nuclear power in the general public and the politicians.

        This will be hard to change.

        So, as logical as Peter Lang’s suggestion of moving to nuclear to solve the “CO2 problem”, it will most likely not happen until the general public sees that there is no threat from having a nuclear power plant nearby.

        And we’re not there yet by a long shot in Europe or (as I see it from here) the USA. Post-Fukushima Japan is also skittish about adding more nuclear power.

        I don’t know how the general public sees this in Australia, but that’s a small part of the overall CO2 load in any case.

        My conclusion: At present there is no economically and politically viable alternate to fossil fuels to cover large scale energy requirements and any ideas to “decarbonize” our society are simply pipe dreams for now.

        Max

      • A paper that was looked at in WUWT, I think, took a detailed look at the idea that we might have a long interstitial with the aid of co2, and it came to the conclusion that we ain’t going to be so lucky.

        You would need the climate to have a linear response and not a declining logarithmic response to co2 to get that.

        If we still have a technological society as we drop down the cooling slope into the next glaciation then I wouldn’t be at all surprised if the population try to geo-engineer temperatures upwards with man made gases, they will likely be pretty desperate as the top half of the Northern hemisphere becomes uninhabitable.

  28. The following by Santer et al., http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2012/11/28/1210514109.full.pdf, seems to be getting a lot of comment in the skeptics’ corner. What do you make of it?

    • It fits well with the Clouds and MAGIC post. The models generally overestimate lower troposphere and underestimate stratosphere temperatures. That tends to implies that the “Tuning” to early 20th century instrumental was over done and needs to be revisited. Since anthropogenic aerosols were assumed to have caused the post 1940 temperature decrease and explain the lower than expected warming, That could have an impact on the “most” warming due to CO2 statement in the IPCC reports, but some climate scientists are quite skilled at rationalizing.

      • One does not know whether aerosols have a large affect on cooling the earth. If they do not, then the climate sensitivity numbers are too high, and man made C02 isn’t as big a problem as many think it is. If they do, and climate sensitivity is high, by inducing aerosols into the atmosphere, humans can buy time to redo the energy base of the world.

        The King of the World should start an international contingency program based on using aerosols to find out how much time could be obtained using this technique, and to set up the international regulations on their use, if the high end climate sensitivity numbers prove out.

        In parallel, let research continue on all the green projects, like batteries, fuel cells, nuclear, blah blah blah. It’s too expensive to productive right now. These have value other than saving the world anyway.

    • For Santer and the global warming alarmists the idea of the “fingerprint of god” is meaningless so all they have left is the Left’s “fingerprint of man” as an explanation and a solution for everything and a justificaion for why they should be in control of everything humanity does.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        Waggy,

        Seems you believe in this “fingerprint of God”? Where do you draw the line between man and nature? When humans are now bringing new “artificial” cellular life into the world, how do we distinguish between man and nature? The distinction has always been artificial, and now that the line is blurring ever faster, it will be meaningless in another 100 years.

      • The Left fears a free man and that is the godawful truth that explains liberal fascism.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        What is a “free man” Waggy? Physically, psychologically, economically, or Spiritually? I’ve never met one.

      • They are a horrible sight with all those knives in their backs now that the American dream has been dragged down by the 47%’rs like a stone.

      • A free-man’s one
        Whom serpents dread
        His crushing heel
        Upon their head

    • The Skeptical Warmist

      This, from the Santer et al., paper:

      “After removing all global mean signals, model fingerprints remain identifiable in 70% of the tests involving tropospheric temperature changes. Despite such agreement in the large-scale features of model and observed geographical patterns of atmospheric temperature change, most
      models do not replicate the size of the observed changes. On
      average, the models analyzed underestimate the observed cooling
      of the lower stratosphere and overestimate the warming of the
      troposphere. Although the precise causes of such differences are
      unclear…”
      ____
      Interestingly, this 70% figure is roughly what FR 2011 came up with as well. There seems to be a 30% “unknown” dynamic or dynamics that are playing a bit of havoc with these attribution studies. What a great time for someone toe pin down the total climate effects of Sudden Stratospheric Warming events, including the key piece– total loss of energy from the Earth system during such events.

      • Yep. There is a question mark with that figure though that only time will tell the answer. The underlying trend from 1900 would account for about 50% of that 70% and would be virtually indistinguishable from CO2 forcing. With the reevaluation of aerosol forcing modeled to explain a large portion of the 1940 to 1960 cooling, that Super Duper La Lina which could be associated with the AMO comes into play. The Tuggweilder paper and another by Manabe, estimated that a shift in ACC, specifically Drake Passage surface wind velocity could cause a 10 to 20 Sverdrup change in the THC. It only takes a small nudge of the Antarctic convergence, which could look like the cold SST anomaly east of New Zealand and hot spot off Argentina to trigger something like that. Unfortunately, satellite and SH data are a little thin to say much one way or the other. I do have my suspicions though that something new is in the works.

      • Steven Mosher

        Sounds about right to me.
        Politically I think we know enough to take certain no regrets actions, and I like some of what Ross m has said on carbon taxes. any way
        scientifically, I think the next 2 decades will be fascinating.
        PDO, sun spots, arctic ice,
        When the warming kicks back in, however, i suspect some of our opponents will suffer memory loss.

      • I can’t believe that anyone would put any credence in anything Santer says, after he infamously altered that IPCC report.

    • My take on this Santer paper is that the ocean-coupled CMIP5 models have overestimated the lower tropospheric warming rate in the last 30 years because the rate is influenced by the PDO which the models don’t have, or at least not in the right phase. In particular, large areas of the Pacific have cooled in this period, and the models did not do this. This shows one of the difficulties or short-term comparisons over a few decades, and why tuning coupled models over those periods is not a good idea, because unless you get the ocean right, it will be problematic to match the surface temperature record, and getting the ocean right over decades is no easy feat. AMIP type models, where the ocean surface is specified from observations will have done a better job here.

      • Partially. there is also the tropical ozone depletion conundrum. Increased deep convection transports more water vapor and any aerosols locked in that water vapor into the stratosphere. The aerosol part could be man made, natural or any combination. The increased deep convection also could have a variety of causes including the PDO, ENSO and other internal oscillations.

        It is not a simple problem.

      • The lower stratospheric lack of enough cooling was a separate issue that they suspect was because the specified ozone depletion was not as strong as the actual depletion. This would be a systematic forcing error in the models. It is not clear if this has much effect on the troposphere temperature.

      • Jim D, Susan Solomon brought up the unexpected strat ozone depletion some time ago and she and Palvani have a paper on that.

        http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2012/2012JD017719.shtml

        Solomon also has a paper on strat water vapor changes being linked to the “pause”. There was a major shift in the strat temperature trend starting in 1995 which may or may not be related to Pinatubo. There was a recent paper on mid latitude deep convection causing ozone depletion and one on the Arctic ozone hole which was a tad of a surprise. Something that may or may not be related to the Arctic ozone hole is a large amount of energy not included until recently that was not accurately measurable due to Arctic mixed phase clouds. There would appear to be a water vapor don’t play well with ozone or the models trend developing.

        Gates mentioned that there are a slew of papers in the works on Sudden Stratospheric Warming event which release huge amounts of energy to space. These events are more common in the NH but do occur on occasion in the SH with fairly impressive energy estimates which are not or at least were not included in the energy budget. About a 1/3 of the annual imbalance worth of impressive. This situation is an atmospheric chemist’s wet dream.

        There might be a possibility that Santers may have slightly downplayed the significance a tad.

    • maxdaddy

      The Santer paper comparing actual observations with model outputs is interesting.

      From the conclusion:

      On average, the CMIP-5 models underestimate the observed cooling of the lower stratosphere and overestimate the warming of the troposphere. Biases are largest over the tropics and the Southern Hemisphere. Results presented here and elsewhere (40–42) suggest that forcing errors make an important contribution to such biases. These results point to the need for a more systematic exploration of the impact of forcing uncertainties on simulations of historical climate change.

      Translation: the comparison with actual observations shows that the models exaggerate AGW over the tropics (50+% of Earth’s surface) and the Southern Hemisphere (leaving less than around 25% of the total surface where the exaggeration is smaller). The reason for this observed discrepancy is “forcing errors” in the models (i.e. exaggerated “climate sensitivity”).

      Will IPCC revise its model-derived 2xCO2 climate sensitivity of 3.2C in AR5 as a result of these findings?

      Max

      • max, “Will IPCC revise its model-derived 2xCO2 climate sensitivity of 3.2C in AR5 as a result of these findings?” I have heard that they have to, but there is still time.

        ” Biases are largest over the tropics and the Southern Hemisphere. ” I am shocked!

  29. Alexej Buergin

    The european ETS (emissions trading system) for air travel seems to be dying slowly; for now it has been postponed.
    So the EU will not tax US planes flying over the US or chinese planes flying over China.
    Air traffic is predicted to increase from 2.7 billion passenger journeys a year to 6 billion by 2030.
    The ETS is supposed to be “a cornerstone to combat climate change”.
    The EU needs new taxes; it is a broke as the USA.

  30. CHANCE

    […a new record has just been attained. Antarctic sea ice has just reached an all-time record for total acreage. Day 265 of the year 2012 set an all time record, and then on day 266 that record was broken. The days 265 to 270 were the six highest Antarctic sea ice extent days of all time ~Kelvin Kemm]

    ADVANCE TO NEXT ICE AGE

  31. As many know, I suspect AGW deniers / skeptics are more likely than the general adult population to be old men, and I think my suspicion probably can be confirmed by age data on the 129 signers of the open climate letter to the UN Secretary-General complaining about his statement on extreme weather and climate change.

    So far I have looked at online information on the first 20 signatories to the letter. All were men, and 8 were older than age 70. The ages of the remaining 12 couldn’t be found, but 3 were known to be retired. So together that’s 11 of the 20. These results are consistent with what I suspected. I may get information on more of the signatories but I probably won’t cover all 129.

    The details on the first 20 follow:

    1. Habibullo I. Abdussamatov , astrophysicist, b Oct 27, 1940, age 72

    2. Syun-Ichi Akasofu, physicists, b Dec 4, 1930, age 81

    3. Bjarne Andresen, physicist, dob not found

    4. J. Scott Armstrong, professor of marketing, b Mar 26, 1937, age 75

    5. Timothy F. Ball, environmental consultant, b Nov 5, 1938, age 74

    6. James R. Barrante, chemist, dob not found but he received his under graduate degree in 1960, so I estimate his age is 73

    7. Colin Barton, earth science, dob not found, but he is retired from CISRO in Australia

    8. Joe Bastardi, meteorologist, b Jul 18, 1955, age 57

    9. Franco Battaglia, chemist, dob, not found

    10. Richard Becherer, physicist, dob not found

    11. Edwin X. Berry, physicist, dob not found but he received his BS degree from Caltech in 1957, so I estimate his age is 77

    12. Ian Bock, biological sciences, dob not found, but he is retired

    13. Ahmed Boucenna, physicist, dob not found

    14. Antonio Brambati, geologists, dob not found, but he is retired.

    15. Stephen C. Brown, environmental science, dob not found but he didn’t get his BS until 1987, so he’s probably only in his forties.

    16. Mark Lawrence Campbell, chemist, dob not found

    17. Rudolph Candler, chemist, dob not found

    18. Alan Carlin, economist, b 1937, age 75

    19. Dan Carruthers, Arctic Animal Behavioural Ecologist ? dob not found.

    20. Robert M. Carter, geologists?, dob not found , but he received his BS degree in 1963, so I estimate he is age 71.

    • You forgot to add that they are all white, thus completing your troika of agism, sexism and racism

      Try harder

      • Who wants to go over the cliff with a lie on their lips?

      • Old white Republican men are more likely than other people to be AGW deniers / skeptics ? Yes, that’s probably true, but I only looked for information the ages of the signatories to the letter.

    • Old men know more. People who know more are more likely to be skeptic. That is normal and natural.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        Old minds also become stuck in their mental ruts and can’t see the same fresh innovative and highly creative solutions that younger minds can. Mental ruts are bad, but wise is the person who knows they are in one– at least they can plot to get out!

      • Gates,

        You’re pushing the truce deal with your last.

        But I will not respond in kind except to say that in this Holiday Season I have much to be thankful for that I’m not some poor, hapless, captive-audience rat-kid with the ability to think for him/herself and with a sensitive, “Oh Brother!” gag-reflex who has taken on a student-loan debt-load that will onerously burden him/her for decades in order to attend your tax-payer rip-off “institution of higher learning” and who has to suffer through one of your passive/agressive, lectern-tyrant, New-Age, crypto-religious, sanctimonious-cant, guru-snake periods of instruction. Very, very thankful.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        Mike,

        Keep the faith my friend. I’ve got nothing against anyone, but only calls it like it is.

        Disclosure: I’m an “older” white guy i.e. over 50, above average income, and have spent no small part of my career working on and thinking about what it takes to keep your mind “fresh” and avoid mental ruts. So when you see my comments about older minds, white people, etc. please keep in mind that it is nothing personal (as I am both)– but the truth is, the olde we get the less flexible we become on our thinking, and this is why, for the large majority of career field that involve creative work, people often (though not always of course) do their most creative and innovative work earlier in their careers and then after that it’s just busy work and filling in the details…

      • mike

        Captive audience? You sound like the sort of chap who goes his own way. Vote with your feet!

        Although I would miss you, despite our only brief acquaintance. I appreciate your best work. There is a comic exuberance there that deserves recognition.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        One more thing Mike,

        You definitely have a very creative mind! Keep up those creative rants! Very good for your brain!

      • Old people may know more out-of-date and useless information. Unfortunately, they don’t know more about what’s relevant in today’s world.

      • “Old people may know more out-of-date and useless information. Unfortunately, they don’t know more about what’s relevant in today’s world.”

        Yeah, once they past thirty you can’t trust them old fogies.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        Max_OK,

        There is a huge value in the wisdom of experience, and certain cultures appreciate this value and other ones do not…as the saying goes:

        “Too soon old, too late smart…”

        We might not get the latest innovations from the older population, but if we listen to our mature adults, we might find out which innovations are worth a damn, and even what things ares more important than all the electronic toys we love so dearly and have grown so addicted.to.

      • Steven Mosher

        Herman you forgot the argument that these old coots are free from the influence of career and prestige.

    • The Skeptical Warmist

      Max_OK said:

      “As many know, I suspect AGW deniers / skeptics are more likely than the general adult population to be old men…”
      _____
      And or older women, and likely from higher income brackets or lower income brackets but less middle income and of course more likely to be white than not.. If you look around say, at the Heartland conference, the demographic seems to match the general demographic of the Republican Party rather nicely– albeit with even less women and minorities.

      • Gates,

        I can see that the crusher’s latest (rather effective) trick is to bury my hyper-kinetic, zits-n’-boogers rants under a sludge of nicey-nicey, buddy-buddy Holiday cheer.

        But all that means, Gates, is I need to up the ante–so, Gates, prepare to have your hive-brain, bug-freak scrambled, beyond any possibility of a Mr. Nice-guy reply.

        Like you, Gates, I call it like I see it. And here’s the real deal. It’s not about men or women or whites or non-whites or Republicans or Democrats or anything else like that, rather, its all about the the wimps vs. the real-men.

        In any healthy society, Gates–that is, any viable society since patriarchal, butt-kickers put you airy-fairy, nature-boy-flake types out of business in the Neolithic, alpha males have prevailed. And our Western society is coasting on the last of its testosterone reserves.

        Think of it this way, Gates. If you tree-fornicators-fakin’-an-orgasm over the austere, low-carbon lilfestyle which you gravy-train seeking, way-of-the-parasite-Taoist, carbon-hog-hypocrite, sissy-goober academics seek to impose on everyone but yourselves, are ever successful, three generations later, your progeny (if any–you greenshirts seem to be almost uniformly infertile) will end up as harem eunuchs (if they’re lucky) and purdah-plaything concubines for some, got-a-pair, he-man SUV-driving, steak-and-freedom-fries top-dog.

        Just two choices, in the long run for a healthy, wholesome society, Gates. Enlightened patriarchy or unenlightened patriarchy–let the weenie-boys and gal-pals run the show and you get the latter, within three generations, every time.

        But perhaps you disagree, Gates?

      • Steven Mosher

        alpha males?
        guy on a blog talks about alpha males.
        watch yourself R Gates, he might ask you to step outside next.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        Glad to see you are in fine form tonight Mike. I would choose Greece over Rome any day, and of course, those tough alpha males of
        Sparta…we know what they were all about.

      • Mosher/Gates,

        Hey guys! What’s all this stuff about “steeping outside” and “Sparta” and all–some sort of in-hive, ribald humor about the “out-door” life. A cheap, show-off display of your classical-education? Or what? All very cryptic.

        You, fine fellows, wouldn’t mind being so kind as to exactly spell out what it is you’re talking about, would you? Funny, this isn’t the first time PC-prig lefties have directed language like yours at me. And everytime, when I’ve asked for clarification, they clam-up. Curious, don’t you think? A real, baffling, snake-eats-rat conundrum, in fact

        Tol’ja my last would be Mr. Nice-guy response proof.

    • A whole spitball of shallowly spiteful argumentum ad hominen (even Mosher joined in with dipstickery, as I expected)

      Why am I not surprised, golly gee ?

    • David Springer

      Old men are also more likely to use their real names here. That’s because they no longer fear retribution from not being politically correct. Most of y’all don’t use your real names because you fear an employer or potential employer will someday connect your name with your blog activities and it will be diminishing. Tjhis is especially true if you spend a lot of time doing it because, as we all know, this is purely a waste of time that could be better put to some constructive use. I mean if you took up knitting instead you’d at least have some sweaters to show for your time.

      • “this is purely a waste of time that could be better put to some constructive use”
        ____

        True, but maybe it fulfills some need. Otherwise, why would people keep doing it?

    • Only a small proportion of all scientist and engineers signed the open climate letter to the UN Secretary-General complaining about his statement on extreme weather and climate change. How small? Minuscule, as we can see just by looking at U.S. data on Phd’s.

      Americans holding Phd degrees in science and engineering fields represented 39 out of the 130 signatories to the UN letter. According to the National Science foundation a total of 582,080 Americans had Phd’s in science and engineering in 1997. I couldn’t find more recent data, but the number now must be even greater. So the signatories to the letter represented fewer than 4 out of every 58,000 Americans who had Phd’s in science and engineering. That’s not a significant proportion of any population. In a town of 58,000, a petition that got only 4 signatures would not be taken seriously. It would be laughed at.

      American science and engineering Phd holders age 65 and older who were outside the labor force in 1997 numbered 36,020 (these would be the retirees).The number now is likely greater. I don’t yet know how many of the 38 American Phd signatories to the UN letter are retired. But even if all of them were retired, they would represent fewer than 4 out of every 3,600 retired Americans who had Phd’s in science and engineering. Again, not a proportion that warrants being taken seriously.

      http://www.nsf.gov/statistics/nsf02324/sectb.htm

  32. Politicasl Junkie

    Max, people still in their earlier years are looking for grants or tenure and the opportunity to publish. None of these is likely to happen unless one toes the alarmist line.

    On the other hand, people who have retired are free to express their opinions without a worry about committing career suicide.

    It makes perfectly good sense that the older folks will tell the truth, as they see it.

    • Political Junkie that’s an interesting theory. But it suggests conspiracy, and I’m skeptical of conspiracy theories.

      I have another theory. I’m thinking old guys miss the power they used to have, the attention they used to enjoy, and resent young whippersnappers getting the limelight. The oldsters have few new ideas, so they seek attention by being contrary, sometimes making fools of themselves in the process. Being laughed at doesn’t seem to bother them as much as being ignored. Being laughed at may be better than no attention at all.

      • Max_OK,

        Or, another theory, Max_OK, is that the “oldsters” raised with the values of another era have the ethical backbone to call out a hive-bozo, make-a-buck/make-a-gulag scam when they see one. That, and they’re not a bunch of tenure-track wannabe, gravy-train seeking, trough-obsessed, youth-master brainwashed, real-job unemployable, sloth-centric, caponized, weenie, hive-abused kids with an amoral sense of entitlement and running scared of the empowered, domineering, over-protective man-haters, that dominate their spoiled-brat professional life.

        I mean, Max_OK, have you ever even heard of any greenshirt “youngster” that wasn’t a whiny, little, emasculated, dork creep-out? lolwot, BBD (definitely a kid), Jim D, and all the others–squeaky-voiced, mommy’s-little-darlin’, wanker girlie-tykes pushing a con every one.

        And the greenshirt “oldsters”, Max_OK?–more of a mixed bag. You know, Max_OK, a mixed-bag that includes specimens such as: in-it-for-the-dough, sociopathic hustlers, consumed with status anxieties, like tempterrain; ill-tempered, crazy ol’ coots like WebHub; and, self-loathing, corn-pone retards (possibly with a buck riding on the CAGW scam deal themselves) given to disturbingly-frank, embarrassingly-revealing, un-solicited confessionals that, suprisingly, have their goofy, off-beat charm in a Sooner State sort of way.

        Just a little “Holiday Season”, limited-action, retaliatory trench-raid, Max_OK, to remind the crushers that both sides are obligated to keep the truce if it is to hold.

        And, oh by the way, a bit-early, but a very “Merry Christmas!” to you, Max, ol’ buddy.

      • “I mean, Max_OK, have you ever even heard of any greenshirt “youngster” that wasn’t a whiny, little, emasculated, dork creep-out? lolwot, BBD (definitely a kid), Jim D, and all the others–squeaky-voiced”

        Cool I’ve been promoted to first on the list

      • mike

        BBD (definitely a kid)

        At heart! Just like you ;-)

      • Mike

        D*mned! I had to turn down my hearing aid when I read that.

      • Mike,

        Brilliant! I’ve sent it to my sons. They’ve inherited my wisdom! :)

      • Re post by mike on December 2, 2012 at 5:52 pm

        Mike, none of those labels describe me, but I kinda like the sound of “hive-bozo.” I wouldn’t mind being known as a hive-bozo, unless it’s something really disgusting.

        Thank you for wishing me a Merry Christmas. I wish you and your family the same.

    • Mike “self-loathing, corn-pone retards (possibly with a buck riding on the CAGW scam deal themselves)”

      LOL and the buck riding bit reminds me of the leg humping antics of some awful little dogs which are emulated through the meaningless posts by some fanatics on this and other blogs.

  33.  
    Regarding the “puzzle” in my earlier post, Stephen Wilde responded in agreement on Roy Spencers’s blog and I replied …

    The reasons I usually only mention Venus, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune is that they are the ones (in addition to Earth) that have a “qualifying atmosphere” which is not only dense enough, but also has sufficient height. So of course these atmospheres have mass.

    However, for much the same reason that objects of different mass still have the same acceleration in a gravitational field, the computations for the dry adiabatic lapse rate (here) show it proportional to g and inversely proportional to specific heat. So the composition affects it as a result of varying specific heat, rather than varying mass. This of course is most relevant when clouds or high levels of water vapour are present.

    The effective mean lapse rate seems to end up being about two thirds (maybe up to 90% on some planets) but the main point is that it is never zero, which is what is assumed in those 33 degree calculations. So what we are both demonstrating is that the effective lapse rate is fully sufficient in itself so as not to require even a single degree of that “33 degrees” of warming by backradiation. So there is no radiative GHE.

    In regard to Venus, I have to say though that there would have been absolutely no radiation coming back from the surface which would have contributed to the original heating. Any such upwelling radiation would have to be less than the 2.1 W/m^2 of insolation originally received by the surface. Now that the surface is very close to the temperature of the base of the atmosphere, I suppose there could be a minor effect, but it would be less than 1% of the effect of the incident radiation absorbed by the atmosphere and diffused downwards.

    So, overall, it is the process of diffusing hotter temperatures towards the base which sets the temperature of the base of these atmospheres. This does not violate laws of thermodynamics, because, regarding 1st LoT there is no energy gain in the PE/KE exchange, and, regarding 2nd LoT, there is no reduction in entropy – which is what the 2nd LoT is really about. See this page in Wikipedia from which I quote …

    The second law of thermodynamics states that in general the total entropy of any system will not decrease other than by increasing the entropy of some other system.

    Yes, I agree that the level of the temperature plot depends on the mean Solar radiation reaching the planet. This is simply because the mean radiation being emitted must balance that absorbed. So there is indeed an equivalent altitude at which the radiation matches this level, whilst hotter altitudes radiate more and cooler ones less. It is not the geometric mid point of course, because irradiance is proportional to T^4, as per S-B Law.

    The very fact that the calculations based on the lapse rate work accurately on Earth actually implies that the combination of the level of mean Solar insolation and g also determines the temperature at the base of the Earth’s atmosphere. So I am saying that, even though we know full well that plenty of energy flows back from Earth’s surface to the atmosphere, that would not be enough on its own to raise the atmosphere’s temperature from absolute zero to what it is. It is primarily happening because of the fact that the Sun heats the surface more during the day, so there is an outward flow especially at night. As I have been saying, the temperature at the base of the atmosphere “came first” and it “supports” the surface temperature. This is the very reason why long term variations in mean Solar insolation (possibly due somehow to planetary orbits and variations in Earth’s own distance from the Sun) are the cause of cyclic patterns in climate.

    • The difference between the temperature at surface and at the effective radiating level is largely determined by the atmospheric pressure between them. This is true of the Earth and Venus. If Earth had no GHGs, the radiating level would be the surface and that would be 255 K. With GHGs the radiating level is higher and the lapse rate makes the surface warmer. The difference between GHGs and no GHGs is about 33 K at the surface. Venus has 90 atmospheres of pressure at the surface, so its surface is much hotter than its radiating level.

      • “The difference between the temperature at surface and at the effective radiating level is largely determined by the atmospheric pressure between them. This is true of the Earth and Venus. If Earth had no GHGs, the radiating level would be the surface and that would be 255 K.”

        This 255 K number is obviously some average global temperature. In sunlight the earth surface can varying a lot and can be as much as 100 K warmer than 255 K. And lunar surface which lacks any of Earth’s atmosphere can be around 400 K or more than 140 K warmer than 255 K .
        Venus of course has much slower rotation than Earth or the Moon.
        Earth would quite difference average temperature if it’s days more 1/2 an Earth year long and each day would like a polar year- perhaps a 30 C day and -30 C [or colder] night. Venus massive atmosphere prevents any significant variation of it’s surface temperature, despite very long nights.
        In comparison between Earth and Venus, it seems the highest achievable temperature greatly matters in regard to it’s average surface.
        Whereas this not very important in regards with Earth’s average temperature, because Earth fairly quickly radiates this heat into space.
        Forest fire on Earth could not much affect upon Earth’s average temperatures, whereas if one had something similar on Venus, they would have an effect on average temperature.
        Or a 100,000 sq km of hot lava on Earth wouldn’t have much to do with Earth’s average temperature, but they certainly mean something if on Venus.

        It seems to me it matters where you heat the atmosphere in terms of it’s elevation. Air warmed to 60 C at elevation of 10 km is quite difference than air warmed at the surface level by 60 C.

        Suppose you had 3 enormous machines. And we going to put them in orbit around Mars, Earth, and Venus. All these machine are going to expell one earth’s atmosphere amount of nitrogen heated to 60 C at 1 atm of pressure. And will be exhausted in opposite direction of orbital path at enough velocity that the gases deorbit. And the dumping takes a month of time.
        So 5.1 x 10^18 kg is one earth atmosphere. But revise it say instead the machine are expelling 1/10th of this, so: 5.1 x 10^16 kg.
        The question how affect would this have on Mars, Earth, and on Venus.
        So 5.1 x 10^13 tonnes or 51 trillion tonnes of N2 enters the atmosphere within a month of time.

        So Mars orbital velocity is about 3 km and Earth and Venus are about 7.5 km/sec. In terms joules of energy it’s 1/2 the mass times the velocity squared. Earth and Venus: 2.8 x 10^24 joules. And Mars: 4.59 x 10^23 joules. So Mars gets about 1/2 of the energy.

        In terms of scale: “The Earth receives 174 petawatts of incoming solar radiation “- wiki. So 1.74 10^17 joules of energy a second.
        Or 1.5 x 10^22 joules per day.
        So if most this gas de-orbits [and assuming it does] you get far more energy in month than the amount sunlight intersecting Earth’s disk- but all energy is could said to be “captured”.
        So the question what level of effect would this be?
        And which planet would affected most and would it barely noticeable or some vast effect upon the planet temperature?
        Would whatever level heat from this, would affect the surface of Venus?

    •  

      Yes, thank you Pat for your linked item which is saying exactly what I am saying, and I quote (my bold) …

      Then, the temperature distribution below the cloud layer is determined by a dry adiabatic lapse rate and the temperature near the cloud bottom. The surface temperature in the radiative‐convective equilibrium is strongly affected by the temperature near the cloud bottom in this situation

      Skeptical Warmist has still not put up a valid physical argument. If only 2.1 W/m^2 reaches the surface, not only is this insignificant, but it is just as easy for the same energy to escape back out of the surface, especially at around 600 K. Such a small trickle of energy (less than 10% of what you feel in the Sun here on Earth) could not keep accumulating in order to build up to 600K. By what process could it possibly do that when it can easily escape as fast as it arrives? In fact, S-B Law says it will do just that.

      On Earth the IPCC et al incorrectly try to blame it all on backradiation. But backradiation on Venus cannot be more than this 2.1 W/m^2 trickle. That’s the dilemma, my friend. That’s why it happens as in the above linked paper to which Pat kindly referred.

      You can’t send even a trickle of just 2 W/m^2 of radiation from the Venus surface up to its atmosphere and then back down again and expect it to warm the surface one iota. That would clearly be a decrease in entropy, which just doesn’t happen in any such process anywhere in the universe. Start by getting your physics right, at least. No radiation from the Venus atmosphere can transfer heat to the already hotter surface.
       

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        Doug said:

        ” No radiation from the Venus atmosphere can transfer heat to the already hotter surface.”

        _____
        Well, at least you’ve got that part right, but everything else in your twisted logic is quite..well…twisted. It is twisted because you are arguing about wrong assumptions regarding “backradiation” and wrong because you seem to think that the 90 bar or so of pressure at the surface of Venus is the only reason that it’s so blistering hot there. Atmospheric pressured alone will not get us to the temperatures seen on the surface. Without the greenhouse properties of the massive amount of CO2 absorbing and emitting and absorbing and emitting the LW near the surface, the heat generated by atmospheric pressure alone would have a much more steep thermal gradient to space and the rate of heat loss from the surface would be faster.

        “Backradiation” is a meaningless concept in the context of Venus’ lower atmosphere. One really needs to think in term of thermal gradients. It is all about thermal gradients between the surface and space.You have a dense, hot atmosphere at the surface, warmed by atmospheric pressure and a small amount of sunlight. The flow of that energy to space faces a very flat thermal gradient to space. Remember the flatter the gradient the less quickly the surface will cool. The surface temperature must be a result of the equilibrium being found between heat at the surface and the rate at which that heat can make it to space. The very high CO2 in the lower Venusian atmosphere sets the rate of that flow to space to a mere trickle.

        In short, the heat at the surface of Venus may be caused partially by atmospheric pressure partially by sunlight, but the actual equilibrium temperature of the surface is dictated by the thermal gradient between the surface and space and that is dictated by the greenhouse properties of CO2. For example, if you took a different, non-greenhouse gas, such as nitrogen, and replaced it in Venus’ atmosphere for all the CO2 such that the surface pressure was exactly the same as now, the surface equilibrium temperature would be less because the thermal gradient between surface and space would be more steep and energy would flow far more readily from surface to space.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        One additional point– there is no doubt that atmospheric pressure plays some small role in supplying a small amount of the thermal energy at Earth’s surface, but it is no where near the amount supplied by incoming solar. Venus and Earth may be exactly opposite in this regard, given the density of the Venusian atmosphere and the smaller amount of solar energy reaching the surface. But just like Venus, the rate of flow of that thermal energy from surface back to space will be dictated by the overall thermal gradient between surface and space. Thus, just like Venus, as you increase GHG’s, you make the thermal gradient less steep and energy flows slower from surface to space, raising the equilibrium temperature of the surface.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        This post by the way, is excellent and is far more detailed than my simplified explanation:

        http://scienceofdoom.com/2012/07/23/how-the-greenhouse-effect-works-a-guest-post-and-discussion/

        And this quote is one worth remembering:
        “In the end, it does not matter what the cause of resistance to heat transfer is. The total energy balance and thermal heat transfer resistance defines the process.”

        “Thermal heat transfer resistance” aka Thermal Gradient.

      • The discussion of that SoD thread is also good evidence on the difficulty of agreeing what’s the best way of describing the GHE in the Earth atmosphere where several simultaneous effects contribute comparable amounts to the overall effect:
        – changes in the radiation from the upper troposphere to space
        – changes in the influence of clouds (even without any change in cloudiness) due to the change in transparency of the atmosphere
        – changes in the amount of radiation that escapes directly from the surface to the space

        The case of the Earth is so complex because the mean free path of IR spans the whole range from very short (meters) to more than the thickness of the atmosphere. The whole range is applicable to a significant enough fraction of radiation to invalidate both the assumption of thin atmosphere and the assumption of very opaque atmosphere as a quantitatively valid way of describing the physics.

        For most of Venus atmosphere the assumption of very opaque atmosphere is valid. That means that radiative heat transfer can be considered as a form of conduction of heat. The diffusion equation is valid for it and the conductivity is the less the shorter the mean free path is, i.e. the less the more GHG’s there is. The resulting effective conductivity is low and leads to very high temperature gradients if it’s the strongest heat transfer process. Under such conditions very weak heating power could lead to very high temperatures.

        In the high pressure gas of the lower Venus atmosphere lines are very broad and continuum absorption is also important. All the IR radiation from the surface gets absorbed at very low altitude and then transferred further by the conduction-like radiative process and convection. Because the radiative heat transfer is so strongly inhibited, convection dominates when it’s present.

        Convection cannot exist without an atmospheric heat engine that drives it. Even weak solar radiation that reaches the surface is enough to drive some convection. (The geothermal heat does the same but is likely to be much weaker than the little solar at Venus surface.) Convection that reaches the Venus surface may be driven also from above by the heat engine that operates between the altitudes where most of the solar energy is absorbed and upper levels which radiate directly to space. There’s probably more scientific knowledge on the importance of these heat engine processes for the convection in lower Venus atmosphere but I don’t know about that.

        Whatever the driver of the convection is, the outcome is the same: a strong lapse rate down to the surface and a very hot surface.

  34. Anyone want to take a shot at my question on the previous thread?

    @jim2 | December 1, 2012 at 9:07 pm |

    BBD – It makes sense to me that as the Milankovitch parameters change, that each substantially different configuration could represent a distinct physical system. In this case, wouldn’t it be reasonable to hypothesize that each would exhibit a different climate sensitivity? Any thoughts?

    • I think that the continental configuration with one polar ocean and one polar continent makes for an asymmetry that is particularly sensitive to Milankovitch variations. So, I disagree, because the bigger factor is the continental locations.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        Also involved in the “continental locations” notion is the way they affect rainfall patterns and atmospheric and ocean currents. In short, yes, continental locations are key to the current “ice age” covering the past 2.6 million years. Despite the sun growing just a wee bit more energetic over this period, this cycle of long glacial periods divided up by short interglacials is related to the combination of Milankovitch forcing and the general location of the continents. In this light, it will be interesting to see what happens when we “poke” this system with the huge influx of GHG’s that we are introducing.

      •  
        Nothing will happen as a result of “poking” the system with CO2. The conditions on Venus, with 96.5% CO2 in its atmosphere actually prove my point – see earlier comments here and on Roy Spencer’s blog.
         

      • But that is exactly the point. Obliquity changes will determine how solar radiation is ‘dispached.’ More radiation to land or more radiation to ocean or equal radiation to both. Those three physical configurations are different. Therefore, it is plausible that the climate sensitivity would be different for each.

      • jim2, the orbital factors matter in the glaciation and deglaciation, but I suspect they don’t matter in the interglacial periods except to determine the polar ice cap sizes, and the sensitivity would also depend on that. Beyond the influence on ice area, I don’t see any other way it would affect sensitivity to forcings.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        Sorry Doug…No Sale!

      • This is a typical example of mistaken thinking …

        Tallbloke (Roger) said “What actually caused the warming was extra short wave from the Sun heating the ocean when the cloud cover diminished. It is what the empirical data says. I am at a loss to explain why so many people keep ignoring it.

        No, Roger, this is not what Stephen Wilde and I are saying in unison.

        Just because there’s a correlation with empirical data, this does not establish the cause. The effect of (long-term) variation in mean solar insolation is that it raises the whole temperature plot in the atmosphere, because the weighted mean has to increase to maintain radiative equilibrium. Raising the whole plot (whilst maintaining the gradient) thus raises the temperature at the base of the atmosphere (as distinct from the surface temperature.)

        The warmer temperature at the base of the atmosphere “supports” a warmer surface, because of daytime Solar input followed by night-time cooling which is limited by the temperature of the base of the atmosphere. The surface would not have got so hot if the atmosphere had been 255K (or 222K or whatever really is the correct theoretical figure.)

        The whole point about the Adiabatic Lapse Rate (or the “effective” one) is that it happens spontaneously. The IPCC et al think otherwise, in line with the thinking of Maxwell & Co which is now proven incorrect

      • To The Skeptical Warmist

        Unless and until you are able to come up with a valid explanation as to how the mere 2.1 W/m^2 of Solar radiation reaching the surface of Venus leads to that surface being hundreds of degrees hotter than the planet’s radiating temperature, then all you write is mere personal opinion, not in the category of science which obeys well known laws of physics – such as is my explanation, identical with Stephen Wilde’s and some well known scientists, past and present, who clearly have a better understanding of atmosphereic physics than yourself.

        So put up or shut up my friend.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        newclimatechangetheory:

        The ideal gas law combined with radiative transfer theory involving greenhouse gaes is pretty much all you need to know to understand the oppressive heat on the surface of Venus. A crushing atmospheric pressure plus energy that just can’t escape too fast is pretty simple to understand. The net thermal gradient between ground and space is so extremely flat that what ever little energy that does get down to the surface just has a very hard time making it’s way back to space. Venus has a thick, heavy atmosphere that is a very very good insulator. If you put on about 30 down coats on a summer day, you can get just a taste for what the surface of Venus is like.

        Also, your threats to me– the “put up or shut up” nonsense. Stuff it in a place much like Venus, with no direct sunlight.

      • “Unless and until you are able to come up with a valid explanation….”

        Well, one could start with here, and pursue the references back to Pollack and Young, 1975, and all the intervening research since then.

      • The configuration of the continents is very important. The ocean currents are very important. Most important is that it snows a huge lot more when the oceans are warm and the Arctic is open and that it snows a huge lot less when the oceans are cold and the Arctic is frozen. This is what keeps the temperature of earth bounded in a narrow range.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        Pat,

        These Skydragons are a trip…sort of one-trick ponies, er…dragons. Almost a cult really…

      • There is a major shortcoming in the 1975 paper of Pollack and Young.

        Yes, it includes computations (based on an initial temperature “guess” as they admit) that appear to explain the temperature gradient based on radiation. But, the implicit assumption is that radiation heading downwards will transfer heat to warmer regions of the atmosphere and eventually to the surface. This simply cannot happen without violating the 2nd LoT – which they don’t build into their calculations, and thus completely ignore.

        At least they agree roughly with Jelbring who calculated 2.5% of Solar radiation reaches the surface – compared with their 3%. However, I prefer the calculation of Miatello who came up with a mean of 2.1 W/m^2.

        Even if I agree on the 3%, as I keep saying, 3% of Solar energy going into the surface means no more than 3% of Solar energy coming out of the surface. Yet they in effect try to get away with claiming that the surface is transferring as much energy to the atmosphere as would a planet in space at 600 K without an atmosphere. Then they say there is a smaller reverse transfer from a less-hot level back to a hotter level. This simply can’t happen, but the whole thing is the epitome of typical false calculations relating to radiation which abound in the AGW literature.

        All that radiation from a less hot atmosphere can do would be to slow the rate of radiative cooling of the surface iff it were somehow heated above the temperature of the source of the radiation in the first place. But it can’t be with only 3% of Solar insolation.

      • The Skeptical Warmist

        newclimatechangetheory says:

        “All that radiation from a less hot atmosphere can do would be to slow the rate of radiative cooling of the surface iff it were somehow heated above the temperature of the source of the radiation in the first place. But it can’t be with only 3% of Solar insolation.”

        ____
        You’re getting closer. Follow this thought through. Greenhouse gases serve to make the thermal gradient less steep between surface and space, thus slowing the rate of cooling of the surface and raising the equilibrium temperature. Venus’ surface temperature is a direct reflection of the thermal gradient between surface and space. The energy or heat at Venus’ surface is from a combination of atmospheric pressure and solar energy making it down to the surface. If you replaced the CO2 with a non-greenhouse gas, even if you had the same exact pressure at the surface and the same solar energy reaching the surface, you would have a lower surface temperature because the thermal gradient between surface and space would become more steep and the surface would lose energy faster and thus have a lower equilibrium temperature.

      • The paper of Takagi et al. linked by Pat Cassen discusses in much more detail some of the points I make in my message in the above subthread. I hope that I succeeded in presenting the main ideas in a more approachable way.

    • Milankovitch parameters are small things and they likely cause small sensitivity changes or nothing.

    •  
      It is not pressure which raises the temperature at the base of any atmosphere. Pressure forces more molecules into a given space, but it does not generate energy and impart more kinetic energy to each molecule. Gravity converts PE to KE. The temperature you measure is based on mean kinetic energy of the molecules in the region. All this is basic physics, so you’ve blundered from the outset!

      The atmosphere is hotter at the base because of the propensity for molecules with greater KE and less PE to accumulate there, whilst molecules with less KE and more PE get diffused into upper layers of the atmosphere. This is a physical diffusion process which has nothing to do with radiation. It happens in any closed room in your house when, for example, you temporarily heat a corner of the room, turn off the heater and observe the uniform temperature which develops at any given level, but which is about 0.02 degree warmer at the floor level than at the ceiling if you could measure it and the room were perfectly insulated. It has been measured in sophisticated lab experiments by Graeff, and the WUWT attempted rebuttal was flawed because it also happens in solids..

      That’s what Jelbring and Miatello (as well as some who are not members of PSI) are on about. It is a fact which is generally agreed upon by the membership of Principia Scientific International, which is now close to 150 and includes people such as these, one being a Nobel Prize nominee for example. All of us give of our time (for no financial reward) because we are annoyed at the propagation of the fraud of AGW and the money and lives it is costing.

      Now, if backradiation has no effect on Venus, then it’s very interesting that you have to invent a totally different kind of greenhouse effect up there for Venus. Nature must be rather inconsistent.

      You are blatantly wrong in assuming carbon dioxide has any significant effect on the lapse rate. It is a function of the acceleration due to gravity (g) and the specific heat, according to standard physics. That’s why Miatello could explain both Earth and Venus surface temperatures with the same formula. (See Section 8 here and take your time to read all three pages.)

      So, taking a different gas like nitrogen would not make much difference on Venus, and any difference would only be due to a slight difference in specific heat. Radiation properties play no part in the equation.

      • Are you saying increasing the pressure adiabatically doesn’t cause warming? You can get warming just by increasing the pressure without gravity. It is the pressure that is the fundamental reason for the warmer air being at the base of the well mixed atmosphere. In this case pressure increases downwards due to gravity, and is known as the hydrostatic pressure, but without the pressure difference, there would be no temperature gradient.

      •  
        Jim D:

        Yes, of course you can increase temperature by compressing a gas using external energy to do so, but, that’s not adiabatic, and as far as the atmosphere is concerned, the compression took place a long time ago, and temperature has had plenty of time to sort itself out since then.

        Besides, there are totally different equations involved in determining the heat of compression versus the temperature distribution caused by diffusion in an adiabatic process. The latter is what is relevant in determining the adiabatic lapse rate.

        Doug Cotton
         

      • PS – JimD: I know gravity causes both pressure and the adiabatic lapse rate, so you won’t find an adiabatic lapse rate without a change in pressure. That’s why there is no lapse rate in a horizontal plane.

        However, pressure is eliminated when solving two simultaneous equations in order to derive the adiabatic lapse rate. Consequently, that rate (ie temperature gradient) is a function only of the acceleration due to gravity and the inverse of the specific heat. Hence it is (theoretically) constant at different altitudes, regardless of the changes in pressure.

        I realise my original statement was not water tight, but my point is that, just because pressure is high it does not mean temperature will be. There’s a big difference in the temperature in the deepest parts of the ocean on Earth and that at the base of the Venus atmosphere, but the pressure may be similar.

      • .. but without the pressure difference, there would be no temperature gradient.

        This is not a particularly useful statement as we cannot have gravity without pressure differences. Thus it’s not possible to discuss what would happen with changing altitude in absence of pressure differences.

        Thermodynamics taking gravity into account seems to be a difficult issue to most. It’s also discussed too little in most textbooks of thermodynamics. One useful concept in understanding what happens is the equipartition theorem. According to the equipartition theorem every continuous degree of freedom takes on the average the same amount of energy, i.e. kT/2 for each particle. (That’s true also for discrete degrees of freedom, when the number of active energy levels is high.)

        In case of atmospheric gases the degrees of freedom are the three translational components, rotations around two or three axises, and altitude. The theorem applies, however, to altitude only in absence of convection that’s a collective phenomenon and not subject to it. In absence of convection the gravitational energy comes in addition to the energies of the other degrees of freedom and there’s no (negative) correlation between the gravitational energy and kinetic energy. This is one way of understanding that the equilibrium state of gas in gravitational field is isothermal.

        The gravity affects every molecule and makes lower altitudes more likely than higher ones. That results in the barymetric formula for the density profile but the formula is the same for every value of the kinetic energy of the molecules. This is another way of expressing the fact that the equilibrium state is isothermal. How this result can be understood on microscopic level is discussed using formulas in this note.

        Convection changes all that as it leads to the adiabatic lapse rate or at least towards it.

      • The Skeptical Warmist (aka R. Gates)

        “There’s a big difference in the temperature in the deepest parts of the ocean on Earth and that at the base of the Venus atmosphere, but the pressure may be similar.”
        ____
        Compressibility of sea water is the reason. Water is virtually incompressible at even the great pressures found at the bottom of the ocean. If water were more compressible, you would see warmer water at greater depths. See:

        http://ga.water.usgs.gov/edu/compressibility.html

      • The Skeptical Warmist (aka R. Gates)

        ncct said:

        “It is not pressure which raises the temperature at the base of any atmosphere.”
        ____

        Really? Wow…just wow. This is so basic that I’m incredibly shocked at such a nonsensical assertion. The average kinetic energy of the molecules increases as you increase the pressure. Basic, just basic.

      • The Skeptical Warmist (aka R. Gates)

        “It is not pressure which raises the temperature at the base of any atmosphere.”
        ____
        Even looking at just the energy as a kinetic energy wave function in a unit of space we would see that the frequency would increase as the wavelength decreases the lower you go in the atmosphere. All driven by the density gradient from the gravitational field strength.

  35. First, I agree with Jim D.

    As for the relative sensitivity of glacial and interglacial climates to changes in radiative terms, they are equivalent:

    1/ Glacials terminate under slight changes in forcing that engage positive feedbacks.

    2/ Interglacials terminate under slight changes in forcing that engage positive feedbacks.

    I think you are suggesting that an interglacial climate with reduced polar ice sheets is less sensitive to changes in RF than a glacial climate. If you were correct, then how could (2) happen?

    • Actually, BBD, I was considering the distribution of land north vs south sans ice. It seems the radiation would have less of a heating effect if the majority of it fell on the Southern hemisphere, more if falling on the Northern. (Considering the effect of obliquity, primarily.)

    • But speaking of ice. An ice covered Earth would be insensitive to isolation changes – a low climate sensitivity. One without ice would be more sensitive. One with the Northern hemisphere oriented towards the Sun would be more sensitive. I don’t see how these things CAN’T affect sensitivity.

      • Actually, you raise an interesting point. There have been ‘snowball’ or at least ‘slushball’ Earth states in the past: albedo-locked icehouses largely insensitive to insolation change.

        The interesting question is why we aren’t still in one. How did the climate system climb out of the thermal hole?

        The hypothesised answer is that a frozen world has essentially no carbon sinks but remains volcanically active. Over millions of years, the levels of atmospheric CO2 rise to the point where GHG forcing overcomes ice-albedo and deglaciation begins.

      • David Springer

        Volcanic ash is good at darkening the surface of ice & snow and probably does more than CO2 buildup. Whether it does more or less it’s typical of your shallow knowledge of earth science not to mention it. You’re obsessed with greenhouse gases and thus everything is always about them. Pitiful.

      • David Springer

        While modeled results are always suspicious the same GCMs that BBD worships say CO2 at realistically attainable levels can’t melt a snowball earth. Volcanic dust is whut does it. Write that down!

        http://geosci.uchicago.edu/~abbot/PAPERS/abbot-pierrehumbert-10.pdf

        JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH, VOL. 115, D03104, doi:10.1029/2009JD012007, 2010

        Mudball: Surface dust and Snowball Earth deglaciation

        Dorian S. Abbot1,2 and Raymond T. Pierrehumbert3

        Received 4 March 2009; revised 2 October 2009; accepted 15 October 2009; published 3 February 2010.

        [1] Recent modeling results have raised doubts about the ability to deglaciate from a global glaciation at atmospheric carbon dioxide levels that are realistic for a Neoproterozoic Snowball Earth. Here we argue that over the lifetime of a Snowball event, ice dynamics should lead to the development of a layer of continental and volcanic dust at the ice surface in the tropics that would significantly lower the tropical surface albedo
        and encourage deglaciation. This idea leads to the prediction that clay drapes found on top of Neoproterozoic glaciations should be thicker in tropical than extratropical regions. We test this idea by running the FOAM general circulation model (GCM) with an added tropical dust layer of different sizes and albedos and find that the tropical dust layer causes
        Snowball deglaciation at pCO2 = 0.01–0.1 bar in a reasonable regime of these parameters.

        We find similar, though more nuanced, results from a limited number of test cases using National Center for Atmospheric Research’s CAM GCM.

      • Springer

        While modeled results are always suspicious the same GCMs that BBD worships say CO2 at realistically attainable levels can’t melt a snowball earth. Volcanic dust is whut does it. Write that down!

        Oh dear.

        Go back and read the abstract to Abbot et al. again, paying particular attention to this sentence:

        We test this idea by running the FOAM general circulation model (GCM) with an added tropical dust layer of different sizes and albedos and find that the tropical dust layer causes Snowball deglaciation at pCO2 = 0.01–0.1 bar in a reasonable regime of these parameters.

        Does this paper argue that volcanic dust reduces albedo sufficiently to trigger deglaciation? No, it doesn’t. It argues that *if* there is some albedo change from ice surface deposits *then* the RF from lower levels of CO2 will be sufficient forcing to terminate the glaciation.

        You still need CO2, and plenty of it. You don’t understand the paper you are throwing at me in standard desperate fake sceptic style.

        The more you challenge me on paleo, the bigger a fool I will make you look.

        Have at it…

      • jim2

        One of these papers argues for a much lower past CO2 concentration than the other in an apparent effort to get a higher climate sensitivity. What do you think? Also, do you have other papers on this?

        First off, let’s gently question your assumptions here. Since when did scientists make “apparent efforts to get a higher climate sensitivity”? This isn’t how it works. The conclusions emerge from the investigation; they don’t precede it.

        Hessler et al. (2004) is about *deep time* climate during the Archean Eon (3.9 – 2.5 billion years ago). Free oxygen didn’t accumulate in the atmosphere until after ~2.5Ba and solar luminosity was ~30% below present levels. A very different world.

        The weaker sun should have resulted in surface temperatures below freezing but apparently liquid water was widely present. This suggests additional surface warming, at least partly from an atmospheric greenhouse effect.

        H04 suggests that evidence is lacking for sufficiently high levels of CO2 to explain the apparent Archean surface temperature range (currently estimated as ~18 – 24C). One explanation may be that there was more methane (CH4) and nitrogen, the latter preventing the formation of a *cooling* hydrocarbon haze.

        Surface albedo may have been somewhat lower than the present if the continental area was smaller. Cloud composition may also have been different in this early atmosphere, further contributing to a lower planetary albedo.

        The Hessler study is an attempt to gain insight into how the unchanging laws of physics applied in a very different world. It doesn’t conflict with Royer’s commentary on Breeker et al. (2010) on fossil soils (paleosols). In fact this is another confirmation that the laws of physics have not changed (!). Note that Breeker10 is concerned with the Cretaceous and early Paleogene (125 – 40 million years ago. This is practically yesterday compared to the Archean.

        Royer explains that when paleosols are used as a proxy for atmospheric CO2 the results are at odds with other methods. Breeker et al. (2010) proposes a resolution to this problem.

        Rather than paraphrase at length:

        Breecker et al. (2, 4) demonstrate convincingly that the window of active carbonate formation is restricted to the warmer and dryer parts of the growing season. Carbonate formation is simply not thermodynamically favorable during cooler and wetter seasons. Critically, biological productivity and respiration are low during these dry periods. As a result, soil CO2 concentration during the critical window of active carbonate formation has been overestimated in most soils by a factor of two or more (2).

        What does this mean? CO2 estimates from the paleosol carbonate proxy can be cut in half (or more). Doing so snaps the paleosol-based estimates in line with most other approaches (2) (Fig. 1B) and produces the most precise view to date of Earth’s CO2 history. We are now better equipped to answer some important, basic questions. For example, what is the quantitative relationship between CO2 and temperature? That is, for every doubling of CO2, what is the long-term (103–104 years) equilibrium response of global temperature (termed here climate sensitivity)? Most assessments of climate sensitivity for the present day hover around 3°C per CO2 doubling (5), although if the longterm waxing and waning of continental ice sheets are considered it is probably closer to 6°C (6).

        And:

        With few exceptions, CO2 during the Cretaceous and early Paleogene was 3°C.

        Now here we are in the Pleistocene ice age. A very different world apparently governed by the same laws of physics. Climate sensitivity still appears to be about 3C for fast feedbacks and may be higher over the very long term (the clearest empirical estimate I have come across is Hansen & Sato 2012; see sections 2 and 3).

      • Sorry, the [greater than] and [less than] symbols in the quoted text were parsed as html tags and most of the second quote from Royer vanished. I posted in a rush and didn’t notice until now.

        Here it is again, entire:

        With few exceptions, CO2 during the Cretaceous and early Paleogene was [less than] 1,000 ppm (2) (Fig. 1B). Global mean surface temperature is very difficult to establish for these ancient periods. However, temperature change in the tropics today scales at roughly two-thirds the global change (5, 6). If we assume a similar relationship in the past and a climate sensitivity of 3°C per CO2 doubling, a rise in atmospheric CO2 to 1,000 ppm results in a 3.6°C warming in the tropics (relative to a 280-ppm baseline). Given that tropical sea surface temperatures range from 27° to 29°C today, tropical temperatures exceeding 30.6°–32.6°C (red band in Fig. 1A) during the Cretaceous and early Paleogene likely correspond to a climate sensitivity [greater than] 3°C.

      • BBD

        Past atmospheric CO2 levels have reached (or even exceeded) the 1000 ppmv level, as you point out.

        But is it realistic to assume that we could ever reach these levels again by burning up all the fossil fuels that were once created?

        WEC has made an estimate of all the optimistically inferred total fossil fuel reserves remaining on our planet.

        This study estimates that we have used ~15% of all the fossil fuels that were ever on our planet, leaving ~85% to go (other estimates, such as Hubbert, estimate much lower remaining reserves). These reserves would last us over 300 years at present consumption rates, but maybe only 150 years at future rates.

        Of course, if more cost-effective sources of energy are developed over the next 150 years, as fossil fuels become more difficult and expensive to extract, the usage rates will sink and the date will move further into the distant future.

        It is assumed by IPCC, based on ice core data, that the pre-industrialization CO2 level was 280 ppm; Mauna Loa tells us it is 392 ppmv today, so mankind has added 112 ppmv CO2 to date.

        All the remaining fossil fuels (85%) would get us to:

        392 + (0.85)*(112) / (0.15) ~ 1030 ppmv.

        So if we burn all the fossil fuels still remaining on our planet, we could get to a bit more than 1000 ppmv some day in the far distant future, provided no economically viable alternate source of energy will be developed over this long time period (a highly unlikely assumption).

        So I’d say in practice it is not reasonable to assume that human fossil fuel use will get CO2 level up to 1000 ppmv. Ever.

        Max

      • Never mind the feasibility of getting to 1000ppmv. Is this a strawman, a misdirection or stone cold ignorance? You tell me.

        God help us if we get anywhere near 1000ppmv. That’s the Cretaceous back again.

        550ppmv will get us back to something like the Eemian, at the very least, and it will do it fast, not over thousands of years. The Eemian mean sea level highstand was ~5m above present MSL. What fun that would be.

        Want to find out what happens to mid-latitude rainfall patterns when the Hadley cells expand? No, nor do I. It’s where we grow most of the world’s food. Chuck in a couple of billion more people by the late C21st just for good measure. This, btw, is why I find denialism so painful.

    • David Springer

      Glacials start and stop with NO change in total forcing. Greater forcing in winter, less in summer, starts a glacial and the opposite reverses it. It’s not about forcing it’s about surface albedo specifically how much and for how long snow persists in turning dark surface into light surface.

      • It’s not about forcing it’s about surface albedo

        Wrong!

        What causes the change in ice albedo? Why regionally/seasonally altered *forcing* (orbitally modulated high latitude NH insolation).

        What happens next? Cascading positive feedbacks to the initial *forcing*.

        You are *confused* Springer.

      • David Springer

        I already stated what caused the change in ice albedo. Warmer winters and cooler summers. What part of that didn’t you understand?

        This is well known stuff. I guess it isn’t part of the script you were given to counter “skeptic” arguments so you don’t know about it.

        http://oceanworld.tamu.edu/students/iceage/iceage2.htm

        The northern hemisphere has twice the land area as the southern. Land is much easier to cover with ice than ocean at the same latitude. Axial tilt and orbital precession don’t change the total amount of insolation the earth receives over the course of a year it changes the distribution of it over time and geography. So there’s zero net forcing that causes shifts between ice age and back. The mechanism boils down to warming winters and simultaneously cooler summers in the northern hemisphere. The exact opposite is happening in the southern hemisphere in the same year so there’s no net change in forcing either temporally or geograhically. It’s all about land vs. ocean and tendency for greater snow depth in warmer winters and less ability to melt it off in cooler summers. In the northern hemisphere with twice as much land surface as the southern that redistribution of solar energy is enough to start and end ice ages.

      • Springer

        I already stated what caused the change in ice albedo. Warmer winters and cooler summers. What part of that didn’t you understand?

        The part where you fail to grasp that changing high latitude insolation is a change in forcing, and changing ice-albedo is a positive feedback to that forcing.

        How can you be this stupid and manage to operate a computer?

  36. I don’t know about the rest of you but I like being able to BBQ in December without standing hip deep in snow. Whitetail backstrap seasoned and bathed in olive oil about to go on the fire. Yum!!!!!

  37. Concur with yer values on liberty, Mike, yer mischievous humour
    and robuste delivery of same.Too early ter wish yer the compliments
    of the season. I’ll be sending a rhyming card )

  38. Hi All, From several posters at WUWT: http://www.americanthinker.com/2012/11/fourteen_is_the_new_fifteen.html

    If true, any reassessment due in regards to present global temp?
    I would think so.

  39. If there was anything to AGW theory its proponents wouldn’t be catastrophists allow be associated with fearmongers, liars, charlatans, Leftist ideologues and monomaniacal schoolteachers with delusions of grandeur about saving humanity from America.

  40. The reason the scientists who question ”climate change’ tend to be older is simple and obvious. Near or past retirement age, they no longer have to worry about getting fired, or losiing grant money, or otherwise taking a torch to their careers by failing to fall into line.

  41. ‘A prankster surprises someone of rank and authority by
    surreptitiously sliding a thin feather up his nose during a
    moment of relaxation. ( Black Swan Ch 3)

    Hmm … the seriously self – assured expert hit with a totally
    unexpected event :)

    Sometimes I think we, the labelled ‘non – progressives’ of the
    climate – debate ‘non – consensus,’ have an advantage. For
    whatever personal achievements some non – consensusites
    may have acquired in their professional lives, here is healthful
    medicine reminding us not to take ourselves too seriously.

    Jest sayin …)

  42. Much as Members of the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Union destroyed Hostess Brands, Inc., is it any Wonder self-defeating schoolteachers and their government union Ding Dongs are beating the Ho Hos out of America and running off Twinkie production to China where businesses are not penalized for polluting the air with the smell of baking bread?

    “The IPCC is fundamentally corrupt. The only ‘reform’ I could envisage would be its abolition” —Vincent Gray

  43. Further on feathers,swans, turkeys and now
    grebes. ‘Dance of the Grebes.’

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZbRrxw-H6xA grebes.

    We view with delight the flight of birds
    Aerial acrobatics on high. Closest we get
    To it Is hang gliding or bungee jumping
    Off cliffs. But birds aren’t limited to
    Flight display or rites of passage epic
    Journeys across oceans. Sometimes,
    On land, they dance, sometimes even
    Walk on water.

    Grebes meeting on a lake, rippling
    Water rings inter-act and over-lap
    As they begin the ancient ritual of attraction
    Tentative courtship, circling and departing
    Over days.The gift of pond weed by the male,
    ‘I’m good for providing, take these weeds! ‘
    And if she does, the dance steps up,
    Necks arch and inter-twine in sync, beaks
    Cross like twin swords, uncross and cross again,
    And suddenly in a flurry of silver spray
    They’re off, running on water,
    Heads and slender necks tilted towards
    Each other, Oh, it’s a dance like no other,
    Defying gravity,
    Defying imagination!

    There’s a scene in a sixties’ movie where
    Romeo and Juliet meet for the first time
    In a formal dance.
    Arm extends to arm, glancing gesture of attraction,
    Hands touch, palm to palm, feet move
    In patterned sync to reedy music.
    Social mores of the time, however,
    Preclude the gravity defying
    Ecstatic finale.
    No running on water.

    BC

  44. always interesting to get Noam Chomsky’s view on things. Here is a post-election interview. It is not what you might think from the title.
    http://videosift.com/video/noam-chomsky-how-climate-change-became-a-liberal-hoax

  45. Skeptical Warmist wrote “Greenhouse gases serve to make the thermal gradient less steep between surface and space, thus slowing the rate of cooling of the surface and raising the equilibrium temperature.”

    (a) Such gases don’t make the natural adiabatic lapse rate less, because that rate is proportional to the force of gravity and inversely proportional to the specific heat – nothing else. The specific heat of carbon dioxide at around 500 K is about 4% less than that of nitrogen and so, since it is in the denominator, the adiabatic lapse rate for carbon dioxide is about 4% greater than that for nitrogen.

    (b) How does the energy “trapped” in the less hot atmosphere of Venus get back to the hotter surface? It can’t, because there is a law in physics called the Second Law of Thermodynamics about which you should read.

    (c) I told you, correctly, that the only effect that is physically possible would be a slowing of the rate of radiative cooling of the surface if and only if (iff) the surface were first heated somehow above the temperature of the radiating region of the atmosphere. That is correct physics. And even if the radiative component were slowed, the non-radiative cooling by conduction would simply speed up, or last longer into the Venus night and thus compensate and nullify any effect. In other words, the overall rate of surface cooling would not be affected, as happens on Earth.

    Only 3% of Solar insolation gets to the surface by any process. The atmosphere cannot magnify this effect and somehow multiply the incident radiation which it absorbs and send more to the surface !!!

    There is only 3% getting into the surface. That cannot heat the surface by 500 degrees so that it can then start cooling off and perhaps have its rate of cooling slowed by a mere 2 W/m^2 which is a generous estimate of the maximum possible backradiation. Whatever insolation is absorbed by conduction into the surface during the long Venus day has ample time at night to come back out again, because the rate of conduction into the surface is about the same as the rate of conduction back out again, and the night is about as long as the day – each ~120 Earth days.
     

    • Doug – Why are cloudy nights warmer than clear nights? I’ve always wondered….

      • Pat: I explained that about half way through this article. Best you read the whole bit which I contributed from where it mentions my name down to just before the final section where Joe Postma is quoted.

      • Pat Cassen

        You ask Doug a very pertinent question

        Why are cloudy nights warmer than clear nights?

        Because clouds slow down the outbound LW radiation from Earth’s surface to space.

        These is a second, equally pertinent question:

        Why are cloudy days cooler than clear days?

        Because clouds reflect incoming SW radiation from the sun to space.

        The net impact of clouds is one of strong cooling (the second factor is considerably larger than the former).

        The unanswered questions appear to be:

        1. Do clouds act as a separate climate forcing rather than simply as a “feedback” to some other forcing?
        2. Is the net overall feedback of clouds (both factors above) with warming negative or positive?

        The IPCC models assume that the answer to the first question is “NO” (clouds ONLY act as a “feedback”, not as a separate forcing)

        The IPCC models also predict that the answer to the second question is strongly positive (strong enough to add 1.3C to the mean model-derived 2xCO2 climate sensitivity prediction of 1.9C without cloud feedback).

        Yet IPCC concedes in its AR4 report that clouds remain “the largest source of uncertainty” and physical observations from CERES satellites published after AR4 was published (Spencer + Braswell 2006) show that the overall feedback from clouds is strongly negative instead (IOW the first factor above is smaller than the second)

        These two premises are the bone of contention in the previous thread on cloud uncertainties.

        My conclusion, based on the available data, is that clouds do act as a separate forcing, driven by a possibly solar-related mechanism, which is as yet poorly understood and that their net feedback with warming is negative, so that they act as a natural thermostat to hold our climate within boundaries.

        But the jury is still out on both questions.

        Max

      •  
        Max, in fairness to Pat, he did say “at night” and that is the issue I addressed in the article I linked – which you may wish to read.

        During the daylight hours it is obvious that clouds have a cooling effect simply by shading us. The altitude of the clouds also affects the level at which a lot of reflection takes place, and this then affects the level of the temperature plot beneath the clouds and the level at which it meets the surface.

        All these matters are normally just weather events that tend to average out over the whole globe. However, some studies have been done which indicate some possible long term variation in mean cloud cover and altitude, so this could be a factor in those natural climate cycles I have talked about for the last two years or so on my first site. It is possible that planetary orbits affect solar radiation, cosmic rays or something which could affect cloud formation on Earth. As you probably know there is a major CLOUD study well under way.

        Doug Cotton

         

      • Max, in fairness to Pat, he did say “at night” and that is the issue I addressed in the article I linked – which you may wish to read.

        During the daylight hours it is obvious that clouds have a cooling effect simply by shading us. The altitude of the clouds also affects the level at which a lot of reflection takes place, and this then affects the level of the temperature plot beneath the clouds and the level at which it meets the surface.

        All these matters are normally just weather events that tend to average out over the whole globe. However, some studies have been done which indicate some possible long term variation in mean cloud cover and altitude, so this could be a factor in those natural climate cycles I have talked about for the last two years or so on my first site. It is possible that planetary orbits affect solar radiation, cosmic rays or something which could affect cloud formation on Earth. As you probably know there is a major CLOUD study well under way.

        Doug Cotton

      • Doug – Thanks for your response. Curiousty got the better of me and I did read your stuff on cloudy nights. I found it…well, incoherent, let us say. Geothermal heat? Really? And how does heat capacity of the Earth change with cloudy weather? I suppose I’m missing something, but thanks, I’ll stick with the oldclimatechangetheory.

      • Doug Cotton

        Thanks for response.

        I simply pointed out what Judy Collins sang so beautifully long ago

        “I’ve looked at clouds from both sides now”

        – During the day the primary weather effect of clouds is the reflection of some of the incoming radiation from the sun back to space (so cloudy days are cooler than sunny ones).

        – During the night this switches to absorbing some of the outgoing LW radiation from Earth and blocking its direct radiation out to space (so cloudy nights are warmer than clear ones).

        The first effect is significantly stronger than the second, so that clouds have a net cooling effect on our planet.

        The open questions are whether or not clouds act as a separate forcing (you mentioned the CLOUD experiment, for example) and whether or not they act as a net positive or negative feedback with warming.

        IPCC models are programmed such that clouds do not act as a separate forcing and that they predict that clouds will act as a strongly positive feedback.

        This positive feedback results in an increase of the estimated mean 2xCO2 climate sensitivity from 1.9C to 3.2C (an increase of 1.3C).

        So it is clear that if cloud feedback ended up being neutral, climate sensitivity with all feedbacks would drop to 1.9C.

        And if it turned out to be negative, climate sensitivity could drop down to 1.0C (or even lower, as estimated by Lindzen and Spencer, based on CERES satellite observations).

        Both IPCC assumptions above are coming under fire, and it will be interesting to see how IPCC handles cloud forcing and feedback in its new AR5 report.

        We’ll see.

        Max

      • Manacker says
        “Why are cloudy nights warmer than clear nights?
        Because clouds slow down the outbound LW radiation from Earth’s surface to space.”
        Not quite. They reduce the net upward LW flux by increasing the downward LW flux (somewhat like adding CO2 does).

      • JimD, “They reduce the net upward LW flux by increasing the downward LW flux (somewhat like adding CO2 does).” Is OLR the only source of energy in clouds?

      • capt. d. You agree that clouds have a LW effect seen at the surface, don’t you? This would be their only effect at that distance. Skeptics try to wriggle out of it when we talk about this night-time cloud effect because they realize it is a slippery slope going from admissions about clouds to GHGs and downward IR.

      • JimD, “You agree that clouds have a LW effect seen at the surface, don’t you?” I do indeed. I also know that clouds absorb SW, their energy content is impacted by DWLR and OLR, and they are marvelously complex pretty puffy things. On cloudy calm nights they keep things a lot warmer than they do on a windy night.

      • Capt. d., OK, let’s see if manacker agrees with you. I am sure Doug won’t. This is a question that separates those that know some radiative physics from those that don’t.

      • Jim D

        You have made a basic logic error.

        I wrote that clouds cause warming at night by slowing down the LW radiation out to space, which is the correct answer.

        The GH theory has it that they do this by absorbing LW energy and re-radiating it in all directions, so that some of it does not escape our climate system.

        It is the net radiation out to space which counts. What happens internally inside our climate system is irrelevant to the overall net energy balance.

        You simply added your version of “how” clouds do this (which I have not disputed).

        Just to set the record straight.

        But the key question here is what impact clouds have as a separate climate forcing (through whatever mechanism) and how they respond to warming as a net feedback.

        And (as the cloud thread showed pretty clearly) these questions remain unanswered.

        Max

      • Understanding that clouds and GHGs emit LW radiation is a central concept in understanding the energy budget. It doesn’t matter whether the clouds warmed by latent heat, solar energy, or by IR absorption, emission is an intrinsic thing they would do anyway just because they have a temperature.

      • Jim D

        You talk about the “slippery slope”..

        The “slippery slope” for the CAGW premise is not the”backradiation premise” (as you suppose) but rather the uncertain behavior of clouds – both as a separate forcing from some as yet poorly defined mechanism, and as a feedback to warming.

        At present, IPCC models are programmed to show no separate forcing from clouds and to predict a fairly strongly net positive feedback from clouds with warming.

        These are both weak arguments – hence the “slippery slope”: if either assumption is wrong, climate sensitivity is actually lower than the models predict – so it is very likely that the models have exaggerated the positive impact of clouds on warming (and hernce the 2xCI2 climate sensitivity)

        But we’ll have to wait and see as these uncertainties get cleared up.

        Max

      • JimD, “Understanding that clouds and GHGs emit LW radiation is a central concept in understanding the energy budget. It doesn’t matter whether the clouds warmed by latent heat, solar energy, or by IR absorption, emission is an intrinsic thing they would do anyway just because they have a temperature.”

        Welcome to the dark side. The sky has a temperature. Because the mainstream climate scientists tried to explain that with huge DWLR arrows that poorly represent where the sky acquired that temperature, the Sky Dragons were born, confusion runs rampant and climate science is back peddling.

        Non-equilibrium thermodynamics allows one to remove some of that confusion by defining envelopes or systems within systems. In the more dense lower atmosphere, wall energy transfer is a major consideration which a Skeptical Gates is marveling over as we speak. In the less dense portion of the atmosphere there is an effect radiant layer with real radiant feedback from surface heat loss. In between chaos rules.

        So now as climate science ponders if the surface temperature is 14C or 15C or the closer to reality 16.3C, internal variability of longer than 30 years is rearing its sleepy head.

        It is fun to watch.

      • manacker, the models are not “programmed” with a positive feedback for clouds. This emerges from the radiative laws of physics and cloud-radiative properties, such as albedo and emissivity, that are in the models. The properties connect to measurable physical data. This is a common misunderstanding about models. Observed reductions in cloud cover with warming (at climate4you, for example) seem to indicate that positive feedback occurs on a global scale.

      • Jim D

        Nope.

        As a skeptic, I do not buy what you wrote about the models and clouds.

        The models are programmed not to show a separate climate forcing from clouds, as I indicated, i.e. they are NOT programmed to show a separate climate forcing from clouds. Right?

        Then they are fed various inputs, which result in their prediction of a net overall positive feedback with warming, with the concession that “understanding of the physical processes that control the response of boundary-layer clouds and their radiative properties to a change in climate remains very limited”.

        As a rational skeptic, this tells me clearly that the assumptions are all made to support the notion that clouds will exert no independent climate forcing but a strongly positive feedback with warming, even though there are no real-life data to support either conclusion.

        It’s climate model fantasy land, with the result of increasing the 2xCO2 climate sensitivity by 68%, from 1.9C to 3.2C.

        If cloud feedback is really negative as the CERES observations of Spencer + Braswell 2006 have shown, then the overall climate sensitivity would be somewhere around 1.0C (rather than 3.2C), and the whole CAGW bubble would simply go POP!

        So this is the reason why this major uncertainty should be cleared up.

        Don’t you agree?

        Max

        PS There may be other uncertainties regarding IPCC’s CAGW claims, but this seems to be a key one with major importance for the entire CAGW premise.

      • manacker, the models show a separate climate forcing from clouds. I don’t understand why you say they don’t. Many studies show how the models vary between weak and stronger positive feedback from cloud changes, and this seems to be happening, and is especially obvious in the warming during the 90’s. Spencer and Braswell seemed to be focused on ENSO cycles rather than decadal changes and were confused as to cause and effect, as the discussion with Dessler showed when Dessler had the opposite result.

      • JimD, Dessler? I seem to recall a paper that had a lively on-line review section.

        http://www.earth-syst-dynam.net/3/97/2012/esd-3-97-2012.html

        Something about cloud feedbacks.

      • It is quite entertaining to read Spencer’s response to the Dessler paper on Spencer’s blog. They later had a blog debate. Spencer here gives the start of his explanation that seems to indicate clouds cause El Ninos, which he later changed.
        http://www.drroyspencer.com/2010/12/the-dessler-cloud-feedback-paper-in-science-a-step-backward-for-climate-research/

      • JimD, I take it you didn’t check the Master’s paper or the discussion? BTW, I wasn’t impressed with either Spencer or Dessler in that “buttal exchange. In fact. there have been quite a few SWAG papers, especially leading up to the AR5 deadline.

      • Capt.D., OK, so short-term variations don’t give reliable cloud feedback information. I am not surprised. Try looking at longer term variations. There must be papers on that.