Open thread

by Judith Curry

It’s your turn to introduce topics for discussion.

Spotted on twitter:

Science will be discredited if researchers do not resist pressure from extremists – von Storch   [link]

20 women making waves in climate change debate: includes @curryja  [link]

Brad Plumer:  Heat waves replace drought as world’s deadliest climate disaster [link]

Cass Sunstein: Polarization on Twitter: “If a topic is political, it is common to see two separate, polarized crowds take shape.” [link]

New paper claims ‘deniers’ who use Google are not ‘people that genuinely want to learn more’ about climate [link]

Should scientific fraudsters get jail time? [link]

The Crony “Science” Publishing Complex – 1% publish 41% of all papers [link]

If scientists are more trusted than politicians, why don’t politicians trust them? [link]

Great essay by @keithkloor on Robert Kennedy Jr.’s vaccine crusade  [link]






239 responses to “Open thread

  1. A fan of *MORE* discourse

        Cryosphere Today reports that
        Arctic sea-ice decline
        has smashed through
        WUWT skeptical predictions

    and the melt is continuing

    Climate-scientists are unsurprised, needless to say.


    Conclusion It’s time for rational Climate Etc readers to:

    Increase the rational Bayesian probability
       that James Hansen’s and Pope Francis’ worldview is right.

    Decrease the rational Bayesian probability
       that Anthony Watts’ and Chris Monckton’s worldview is right.

    The ever-strengthening rationale for *THIS* pro-science odds-adjustment is obvious to *EVERYONE* — especially young scientists and young voters  — eh Climate Etc readers?

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    • Fann I’ve been following cryosphere lately myself. Yesterday I did a side by side with 2012. They look very similar with the exception that there is a little more ice coverage in 2014 and 2014 has a much larger cold area. It will be interesting to see this time next month. I predict that the melt will be no where near 2012. Care to make a gentlemans bet?

      • A fan of *MORE* discourse

        ordvic asks “Care to make a gentlemans bet [regarding Arctic sea-ice extent]?”

        FOMD’s over-under Bayesian prediction *already* is on-record here at Climate Etc (from the beginning of the ice-melt season), as the median of scientific predictions, namely 4.1×10^6 km^2.

        In regard to which FOMD-prediction, Cryosphere Today data look pretty good, eh ordvic?

        FOMD’s centrist conclusions
        (1)  Dwight Eisenhower and Bill Clinton alike were good presidents.
        (2)  Ronald Reagan was right to protect ozone; right to nuclear-disarm; wrong to cut-and-run from Beirut.
        (3)  James Hansen and Pope Francis are *FAR* more likely to prove right on climate-change than Anthony Watts and Chris Monckton.

        *EVERYONE* appreciates these common-sense lessons of history-and-science, eh Climate Etc readers?

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      • Yep, we’re too close to make a bet. Agreement is no fun.

      • Thanks for the Neven1 chart. That is quite a range from the experts.

    • Time For An Ob

      “James Hansen’s and Pope Francis’ worldview is right.”

      Global warming = religion?

    • Time For An Ob

      It might be confirmation bias to focus on the Arctic and ignore the Antarctic.

    • k scott denison

      And yet, the global sea ice anomaly remains above zero, well above 2012, above the long-term average, etc.

      Why is it you fail to mention this FOMD?

      • Have you looked at the Cryosphere Today today?

        Looks like the global anomaly is below zero.

        Doesn’t mean anything though.

    • A fan of *MORE* discourse

      In regard to ice (both polar and mountain-glacial) FOMD’s preferred metric is ice-mass: a metric that is thermodynamically more sensible *AND* geographically more broadly applicable *AND* statistically more stable than ice-extent.

      Observation Ice-mass is accelerating year-on-year, *EVERYWHERE* on the globe.

      Conclusion  We know by GRACE that ames Hansen and Pope Francis are *FAR* more likely to prove right on climate-change than Anthony Watts and Chris Monckton.

      *EVERYONE* appreciates these common-sense scientific observations and relative Bayesian odds, eh Climate Etc readers?

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      • Er, ice mass is accelerating means we are having more ice each year, surely not what you meant fan.
        The trouble with GRACE is that the metric there has enormous error bars and is computed on gravitational change interpretations that no one can duplicate or prove hence you are being extremely vague.
        This is alright when you are trying to hide something but not when you are being serious about using metrics.
        A bit like ocean heat sand sea level rise which suffer from the same reproducible measurements.
        When the slightly less dodgy SST and ice extent are used we see full blooded agreement when they go in the “right ” direction but now they are being understood as to adjustments (the former) and extent increase has been happening for over a year we suddenly get you running off to waffle.

    • All this talk about Arctic sea ice decline and Antarctic sea ice accretion without one mention of CO2. One might actually get the idea that temperature is at best loosely coupled to CO2. It is often as important what people don’t say as it is what they do say. Focus on the shiny watch swinging back and forth, back and forth, back and forth……

    • Hi FOMD can you please explain your reasoning here? Is there a clear link between each of rising atmospheric CO2 concentration, rising temperature and above average rate of ice melt given that the temperature above the 80th parallel has been below long term average for the entire melt season?
      The logical mind would surely ask “is there something else going on here that we don’t understand?”
      Eh FOMD?

      • A fan of *MORE* discourse

        Sam asks “Hi FOMD can you please explain your reasoning here? Is there a clear link between each of rising atmospheric CO2 concentration, rising temperature and above average rate of ice melt?”

        It is a pleasure to answer your question Sam!

        •  CO2 creates an energy imbalance

        •  The energy imbalance imbalance warms the ocean (this effect is particularly strong in the shallow Arctic ocean).

        •  Arctic sea-ice melts largely from below

        It’s nice how the science hangs together, eh Sam?

        Your thirst for knowledge is appreciated!

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      • “It is a pleasure to answer your question Sam!

        • CO2 creates an energy imbalance

        • The energy imbalance imbalance warms the ocean (this effect is particularly strong in the shallow Arctic ocean).

        • Arctic sea-ice melts largely from below

        It’s nice how the science hangs together, eh Sam?

        Your thirst for knowledge is appreciated!”
        Well played FOMD,

        Sam and others would serve themselves well to actually try and understand these CO2 related energy imbalance dynamics and the key role of ocean heat content in Earth’s climate– but not expecting that to happen.

      • Sam, further to this please note that in the Antarctic the energy imbalance cools the ocean.
        Antarctic ice freezes largely from below.
        FOMD made a slight error in commenting on Arctic ice when he said the effect is strong in the shallow Arctic Ocean.
        Due to it’s shallowness there is no deep sea trapped heat available to melt Arctic ice.
        Just the normal warm currents from the North Sea that have been coming up in summer due to the sun in perpetua.
        I am sure he will apologise for the confusion.

      • ‘One important development since the TAR is the apparent unexpectedly large changes in tropical mean radiation flux reported by ERBS (Wielicki et al., 2002a,b). It appears to be related in part to changes in the nature of tropical clouds (Wielicki et al., 2002a), based on the smaller changes in the clear-sky component of the radiative fluxes (Wong et al., 2000; Allan and Slingo, 2002), and appears to be statistically distinct from the spatial signals associated with ENSO (Allan and Slingo, 2002; Chen et al., 2002). A recent reanalysis of the ERBS active-cavity broadband data corrects for a 20 km change in satellite altitude between 1985 and 1999 and changes in the SW filter dome (Wong et al., 2006). Based upon the revised (Edition 3_Rev1) ERBS record (Figure 3.23), outgoing LW radiation over the tropics appears to have increased by about 0.7 W/m2 while the reflected SW radiation decreased by roughly 2.1 W/m2 from the 1980s to 1990s (Table 3.5).’ AR4 WG1

        This is apparent in multiple instruments and in ocean temps. We have the argument that early century warming was different – and simultaneously that it was CO2. That late century warming was definitely CO2 radiative imbalance – while the available evidence suggests it wasn’t. That the current hiatus is caused by ocean uptake – while the warming before that was not increase in heat flux fro the ocean associated with ENSO.

        Multiple personality disorder seems seems the obvious conclusion – all of them unpleasant and not too bright. FOMBS even talks about himself in the third person.

      • R. Gate, you seem to be a knowledgable participant.

        1. The GCMs produce rubbish results
        2. The oceans are reservoirs which impose latency of 100 – 1,000+ (?) years
        3. 60% of the non-condensing aCO2 is reabsorbed (aka condenses) each year
        4. Notwithstanding an unprecedented propaganda effort by the IPCC and many OECD countries, the emissions of GHG by the developing world has accelerated beyond worst case scenarios

        Can you convergence in that above to anything vaguely resembling a plausible objective argument?

        There is almost nothing which could be called closure/containment/science/effective-policy

      • nottawa rafter

        For the life of me I don’t know how you concluded that Gates is a knowledgeable participant. I have repeatedly asked him how the trend in OHC pre 1950 compares to post 1950 OHC trend. A truly knowledgeable participant would have provided a truly knowledgeable response. What did I get? Crickets. Not just any crickets, but the midsummer, sweltering heat kind. Loud and annoying.

      • FOMD to support your logical argument that increased atmospheric co2 has caused shallow sea warming and ice melting in the arctic- could I ask, do you have evidence perhaps in terms of measurements demonstrating a similar magnitude of warming in all or at least most of the shallow seas of the world? I thought co2 was well mixed and we were talking about a global energy imbalance. Otherwise we are back to wondering if there is something else possibly local going on in the arctic and the probability the cagw crowd is correct is unchanged.

      • Raving said:

        “1. The GCMs produce rubbish results
        2. The oceans are reservoirs which impose latency of 100 – 1,000+ (?) years
        3. 60% of the non-condensing aCO2 is reabsorbed (aka condenses) each year
        4. Notwithstanding an unprecedented propaganda effort by the IPCC and many OECD countries, the emissions of GHG by the developing world has accelerated beyond worst case scenarios.”

        To each of these points, one by one:

        To Point 1: The impossibility of models ever duplicating reality exactly seems to be lost on those who try to make the models something they are not designed to be Those who work with models every single day will tell you: The Models are Always Wrong, meaning they will never capture the exact evolution of the climate system because it is a chaotic system, and natural variability cannot be modeled. The models are about looking at specific dynamic relationships, especially over the longer-term time frame. It is in this regard that they are useful.

        To Point 2: The notion that the energy stored in the ocean has a “latency of 100-1000 years” before it affects climate is of course completely erroneous, but seems to be mainly advanced by those who would want to suggest that the warming of the oceans somehow won’t affect the climate immediately, if ever. The physical reality based on solid physics and science is that warmer oceans lead to immediate affects on the climate and thus weather, some subtle and some not so subtle. From warmer deeper currents surrounding and melting the the great ice masses in Greenland and Antarctica. to a warmer Indo-Pacific Warm Pool causing greater latent and sensible heat flux into the atmosphere which then affects global weather patterns, warming oceans immediately affect global climate and global weather. Super-Typhoons (which are ravaging the IPWP region this year) can only be created when there is deeper warmer water. Thus, there is no latency to warmer oceans immediately affecting climate and weather . The oceans call the shots in global climate every single day, and increasing energy in the oceans mean changing global climate and weather patterns.

        To Point 3: There seems to be some confusion about what it means to be a condensing versus noncondensing GH gas in terms of GH gas behavior. Of course at the right temperature and pressure CO2 condenses, but not at those typical found in the atmosphere. The absorption by the ocean or the biosphere is not what is meant by condensing. Water vapor is a readily condensing GH gas in the atmosphere of Earth at commonly found pressures and temperatures– CO2 is not.

        To Point 4: The only way currently for any large nation to rapidly develop is through the burning of fossil fuels. The energy density versus cost per joule of energy in fossil fuels simply makes them the only real choice for rapid development. Coal was the only thing that could have changed China so rapidly. The second choice would have been nuclear power, but the building of nuclear plants takes more time than a coal fired plant, and the sourcing of the fuel is still a problem so even with nuclear the development would not have been as rapid. Coal created modern China, just as it Industrialized many other countries, and certainly that burning has added some percentage to the current CO2 increases and thus to decades of future warming.

      • R. Gates and FOMD are very wise. The heating of the deep ocean by 0.001 degrees will immediately have catastrophic effects. The first thing that tricksy heat does is concentrate itself from the deep oceans into the shallow seas (but apparently only in the Arctic). And remember that we are talking about a global event, not regional like the MWP. That’s why most of the measurable changes we see now are only in the northern hemisphere. Oh wait. That makes no sense? Hmmmmm, maybe they aren’t so wise after all.

      • Bill,

        Your ignorance of energy flows in the ocean is apparent. The effects of warmer oceans are being seen in both Northern and Southern Hemispheres. I would school you on this more, but I sense your school door is shut and locked quite securely.

      • “To Point 1: The impossibility of models ever duplicating reality exactly seems to be lost on those who try to make the models something they are not designed to be Those who work with models every single day will tell you: The Models are Always Wrong, meaning they will never capture the exact evolution of the climate system because it is a chaotic system, and natural variability cannot be modeled. The models are about looking at specific dynamic relationships, especially over the longer-term time frame. It is in this regard that they are useful.”

        I would agree with this assessment of GCM’s.
        It doesn’t seem to be the prevailing one amongst the believers, though, since the next step is to start making unfounded claims about ‘averages being computable’, etc, etc….

  2. From the article:
    Charts And Maps Of America’s Amazing Shale Oil Revolution

    1. The Big Three. Yesterday, the Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration (EIA) updated its monthly “Drilling Productivity Report” with new estimates of oil production through August in America’s three, super-giant oil fields, the “Big Three”: the Bakken in North Dakota and Eagle Ford Shale and Permian Basin in Texas. As the chart above shows, each of those three elite oil fields has been producing more than one million barrels of oil per day – Permian Basin since the summer of 2011, the Eagle Ford Shale since the summer of 2013, and the Bakken since the spring of this year. In all of human history, there have only been ten oil fields in the world that have ever reached the one million barrel per day milestone, and three of those ten are now active in the US – thanks to the advanced drilling techniques (fracking and horizontal drilling) that started accessing oceans of shale oil in Texas and North Dakota about five years ago.

    4. Horizontal Drilling: ” A Real Marvel of Engineering.” The process of hydraulic fracturing has a long history dating back to the 1940s, and by itself wasn’t revolutionary or responsible for the shale oil boom. The truly revolutionary oil extraction technology that led to America’s shale revolution was horizontal drilling in combination with hydraulic fracturing. David Blackmon explains here in one of his excellent Forbes articles — “Horizontal Drilling: A Technological Marvel Ignored”:

    The truth is that, of the two technologies, horizontal drilling is the real marvel of engineering and scientific innovation. While impressive in its own right, the main innovations in “fracking” in recent years have been beefing up the generating horsepower to accommodate horizontal wells rather than vertical ones.

  3. From the article:
    Oil Markets In U.S. Increasingly Supplied By Permian Basin

    In a recent update, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) revealed that six formations are responsible for the bulk of the Permian Basin’s increased oil output. Oil production grew from 850,000 barrels per day in 2007 to 1,350,000 in 2013. The Permian Basin renewal is a technology story, a Basin benefiting greatly from the switch to horizontal drilling from vertical wells. Having the ability to drill over one mile across has changed the game. It has allowed E&P firms to apply techniques and practices that were already in motion in the Bakken and Eagle Ford Shales. In an earlier article, I mentioned the Permian as an U.S. oil market proxy. In 2013, the EIA cites that it accounted for nearly 20% of U.S. oil production.

    As the chart below shows, the Spraberry, Wolfcamp and Bone Springs formations indicate the most activity. This trio together increased from about 140,000 bbl/d in 2007 to an estimated 600,000 bbl/d in 2013, with total Permian oil production growing from 16% to 44%, states the EIA.

  4. David L. Hagen

    Truth and Civility
    Incivility harms civilization and science, diverting understanding and decisions with logical fallacies and high emotions.
    Both for our sake and for our children’s, appeal to improving civility to the raise discussion of scientific and policy issues and expose unscientific illogical arguments and fear driven policy making.
    See Os Guiness on The Case for Civility Harper Collins

    • David Springer

      Nah. Incivility is a driving force that inspires each side to greater heights. You ever played a competitive team sport? Or a highly competitive big business? We had signs hanging up all over Dell disparaging Compaq. Terrible flame wars between Microsoft and Sun. Computer science didn’t suffer. It bloomed in that environment. What doesn’t kill you only makes you strong. Sometimes the weak are culled though. Sun Micrsosystems, we barely knew ye. It’s not a guy thing either. Some of the things that 14-year old girls say to each other on divisional soccer teams would make a sailor blush. Some of you people have led REALLY sheltered lives.

      • David Springer

        The common term “hockey team” in the context of global warming science succinctly describes the situation. Imagine you’re on a professional hockey team and you tell your teammates you might help the other side out some during the game. It’s like that. Or you’re a sales guy at IBM and you tell the department head you might be selling some of the competition’s product on your sales calls if you feel it’s the better product.

        It’s just like that in global warming science. It’s funny as phuck. It stopped being science about the time the warmists sabotaged the air conditioning on the hottest day of the year in a 1998 congressional hearing on global warming. So everyone was sweating like pigs while hyping global warming. The so-called science ended that day and the climate circus took its place.

        So pass the popcorn and bring out more clowns! Gleick was great! Please don’t be a stranger here, Peter!

      • David Springer

        the hottest day of the year in a 1998 1988 congressional hearing on global

      • David L. Hagen

        That “us” vs “them” mentality is at the heart of the politicization of climate science. It particularly drives the focus on “mitigation” rather than allowing a balanced evaluation of both adaptation and mitigation with their respective costs and effectiveness. The control or mitigation strategy suitable for controlling sulfur emissions is very ineffective with CO2 and climate.
        Lets have full and vigorous evaluation and debate, but leave off the invective and ad hominem logical fallacies of “deniers” and “anti-science” etc.

      • David L. Hagen

        Springer, see the moderation discussion at Lucias Blackboard, starting about 131055especially SteveF (Comment #131082)

        IMO, the following should lead to moderation and in some cases, banning:
        1. Any threat of physical violence or any kind of revenge/retaliation (I have already received at least one veiled threat) against an individual or their family. Immediate and permanent ban (and maybe a call to the cops to boot).
        2. Hostile comments about a person’s personal life, family, relatives.
        3. Excessive profanity/vulgarity.
        4. Consistently off topic comments (eg D0ug Cot-ton, Web Telescope, or any of the Skydragon Slayers).
        5. Consistent attacks on the person and not the argument.
        6. Name calling instead of reasoned comment.
        5 and 6 fall under the general heading of ‘non-constructive, abusive behavior’, I guess.

    • David L. Hagen

      Having played competitive sports, invective is not necessary.

      • David Springer

        I have never played a competitive team sport where there wasn’t name calling on and off the field. Same goes for competitive business although it’s a little more tame in industry.

        If you want civility may I suggest a lightly moderated anonymous blog IS THE WRONG PHUCKING PLACE to look?

      • Nah, David Hagen is right, you know it.
        Invective on either side is bullying and used when reason is insufficient.
        Bullying can be stress relieving for someone losing an argument
        Means you get a little bit back on the side but the overall effect is you are perceived to be losing.
        Ok if both of you like playing hardball but makes everyone else around a bit queasy.
        Not that it bothers hardball types of course.

      • David Springer

        angech | July 20, 2014 at 2:21 am |

        “Nah, David Hagen is right, you know it.”

        Nah, I’m right and you know it.

        “Invective on either side is bullying and used when reason is insufficient.”

        It’s used when reason is ineffective either because the other side won’t listen to reason or your argument lacks reason.

        “Not that it bothers hardball types of course.”

        Well at least you got one thing right. It only bothers mamby pambies like you and Hagen. Contrary to evangelical legend the meek don’t inherit jack diddly squat.

    • David Springer

      David the other side has the data against them. If they give up underhanded tactics like we see in climategate, Gleick, sabotaging air conditioners, lawsuits, blackballing, bullying and so forth then they have nothing left. It will never stop until the data is so overwhelmingly against them no one can deny it any longer. The pause is killing the cause. Be patient and in the meantime have fun playing by what we used to call in the Corps “jungle rules”.

  5. From the article:
    Cline Shale Overview

    The Cline is one of the deepest targeted formations in the region at a depth of roughly 9,000 feet and covering well over 1 million acres across more than a dozen counties east of Midland including Scurry, Fisher, Howard, Mitchell, Nolan, Borden, Glasscock, Sterling, Coke, Reagan, Irion and Tom Green counties. The depth and maturity of the deposits give the Cline a promising potential with some estimates pegging the total reserves around 30 billion barrels, larger than the Bakken and Eagle Ford combined and, in the words of the Odessa American, “roughly the equivalent of all the oil sucked from the Permian Basin since the first well was completed in 1921.” Early well results have been encouraging, with exploration activity increasing as companies begin to understand their acreage and ‘crack the code’ of the Cline’s geology to maximize each well’s expected ultimate recovery. Visit our other pages on the Companies in the Cline, the Community Organizations and Impact and Maps for further information.

    • Jim2, the Cline shale is being hyped. Be very careful. GWPF has a story about it purporting to be from the WSJ. it is an advertisement placed in the WSJ touting a pink sheet company with a Cline Play story.
      Cline is so spotty–a few good wells, many bad ones–that it isn’t even on the list that EIA and USGS separately summed to estimate tight oil TRR last year. That total was about 24Bbbl TRR for the five major shales. And it was inflated by more than half because of erroneous inclusion of the Monterey, which EIA correctly removed about two months ago.
      The largest single TRR is Bakken , estimated between 7.4 and 8.1 including the top of the underlying Middle Forks, which has proved a second viable drilling target to the middle Bakken member.

      • Hi Rud,

        I’m not invested in pink sheet companies, or any company involved in shale for that matter, right now. I’m just passing along the article, not endorsing it.

        What I do know with good certainty is that technology and experience with a given geology frequently pays off. The Monterey might be harder to crack, due in part to cracks ;) , but even there, progress will probably be made in the longer run due to the persistent ~$100/bbl oil.

        Oil in oil, I find the shale story fascinating.

      • For example, from the article:

        In a series of presentations heavy on geological and engineering detail, speakers encouraged attendees to keep working to tap a formation the U.S. Energy Information Administration believed as recently as last year contained roughly 14 billion barrels of oil, making it the largest shale petroleum deposit in the country

        But on Wednesday, one speaker after another brushed aside the agency’s doubts. They called attention to hopeful strategies ranging from the use of acids to stimulate oil wells to fracking to a focus on geological formations naturally fractured over millions of years.

        A few even welcomed the federal reassessment, saying the EIA’s earlier estimate had raised hopes to an unrealistic level.

        The biggest fear expressed at the conference had little to do with whether the Monterey could be successfully exploited at a reasonable price. It was that environmentalists were turning public opinion against the industry’s use of tools such as fracking, or hydraulic fracturing, a decades-old oil field technique that activists and some state lawmakers worry could contaminate groundwater and air.

        As has happened repeatedly at industry gatherings over the past two years, speakers called for a coordinated campaign to disseminate accurate information about the effectiveness and relative safety of fracking and using acids in oil wells.

        Gagnon blamed oil companies’ “grand failure to communicate” for widespread concerns about fracking.

        There were clear signs the industry has not reached consensus about exploiting the Monterey.

        For example, Doug Hess, senior petroleum engineer at Bakersfield’s Orion California LP, said the best way to tap the formation effectively is to invest in expensive procedures such as “whole core” rock samples that must then be studied to pinpoint potential sweet spots.

        But Glen Honstein, a principal at Bakersfield’s Petrojen Production Co., said most oil companies don’t have deep enough pockets to pay for core samples and other advanced techniques. He recommended going after “low-hanging fruit” still plentiful in the southern Central Valley.

  6. just a moderation test for the f word

    Should scientific f****ster get jail time?

    • Hey, there is no evifence thar coral ever got cancer!

    • David Springer

      I prefer the letter space technique of spoiling the blacklisted word filter (all caps optional):

      F R A U D

      T R O L L

      L I A R

  7. Deconstructing the “we’re not pursuing an ideology, we’re just realists” canard.

    “The Dogma Business”

    “What I am saying is that liberalism is constantly rebranding itself as solely an explanation of reality and it constantly needs to rebrand itself because reality keeps revealing that it isn’t.”

  8. David Wojick

    I am still working on the Social Cost of Carbon (SCC) issue. Here is my hit list of problems with SCC as a basis for the US regulating CO2 emissions. Comments welcome.

    Speculation regulation. Why SCC is preposterous.

    1. SCC ignores the scientific debate.
    That there will be any adverse impacts from CO2 emissions has yet to be established. SCC uses advocacy models that assume a huge amount of human induced warming and damage therefrom. This is speculation disguised as science. Speculation is no basis for regulation.

    2. SCC goes out 300 years to get its assumed damages.
    We have no idea what the world is going to be like 100 years from now, much less 200 or 300.

    3. SCC is extremely sensitive to arbitrary assumptions.
    Equally plausible assumptions find a value 90% lower, or close to zero.

    4. SCC includes not just a lot of warming, but also catastrophic changes. One model assumes these are 10% likely. This is pure speculation, a computer game at best.

    5. SCC was adjusted upward by about 50% between 2009 and 2013, just in time for the EPA rule making.

    6. SCC claims to know the impact of a single ton of CO2 over the next 300 years.

    7. The scientific literature on SCC is clear that the uncertainties are huge. They cannot justify new rules.

    • Politicians decide on policies. Their task is also to decide, what evidence to use as basis for the decisions.

      Social Cost of Carbon is an extremely relevant measure for deciding, what kind of policies to choose. In the case of carbon tax, the natural first choice for the level of the tax is the SCC. If the SCC were known accurately it could be argued that a carbon tax of that magnitude would be optimal Pigovian tax that leads to highest well-being taking externalities into account.

      It’s true that determining the SCC is extremely difficult for a multitude of reasons. In my view that’s really the principal factor that makes it very difficult to decide rationally on the best climate policy. From that it does not follow that forgetting the whole issue would be the right choice.

      William Nordhaus has proposed in his book The Climate Casino an approach that I consider the best of the alternatives studied. The proposal is that a relatively low carbon tax (US$20-25 per ton CO2) is introduced immediately in as many countries as possible to be followed with a significantly higher tax in the future. (Australia has just moved in the opposite direction by cancelling such a tax.)

      • Even people like McKitrick have proposed a carbon tax that is indexed to the global temperature. This seems like an interesting compromise for those who think the world has stopped warming.

      • David Wojick

        Pekka, I am not recommending “forgetting the whole issue,” whatever that might mean (it seems like a nonsensical concept). The point is that no SCC can be determined, so SCC cannot be a basis for regulation. At this point there is no rational basis for regulation. Speculation is no basis for regulation.

      • David Wojick

        Jim D, you have missed Ross McKitrick’s point. He is calling the green’s bluff. I am not surprised that you do not see this.

      • My preference is that the tax rates of the next five years are always known, and that when a new year is added to that the rate would be based on the information available at that time. The five year period would provide enough predictability for companies for their strategic planning, but also allow for fast enough corrections, when new knowledge makes changes justified.

        Some upper limit could also be fixed for the maximal change from a year to the next.

      • David Wojick, I would favor an indexed carbon tax. I might even suggest something. How about $10 per tonne for each 0.1 C the decadal average exceeds the 2001-2010 mean global temperature. So by the time we get to 1 C it will be $100 per tonne, and at projected warming rates it would rise $20 per tonne per decade. Seems reasonable to me. Many faux skeptics, on the other hand, will not like this at all, knowing they are wrong about global temperatures.

      • McKitrick did not advocate imposition of a carbon tax. What he suggested was that if we were stupid enough to do so, we might as well have some actual connection between warming and the tax.

        With the added benefit that the actual tax might well work out to be zero.

      • McKitrick’s suggestion would start at $10 per tonne and could rise to $200 per tonne by 2100 under some warming scenarios. He seemed to support this in what he wrote for GWPF.

      • David Wojick

        Pekka, the point is that there is no scientific basis for a tax. None. So talking about how best to impose a tax is simply mistaken.

        The US SCC computation is a postulate not an estimate. Its logical form is “if you assume the following formulas you get the following number.” This is speculation not science. The SCC may well be zero or negative, but for now we have to way to estimate it. That is the state of the science..

        Nordhaus’s DICE model is one of the three used in the US SCC computation. See the link in my item #3 above for a critique of it as a flawed basis for computing SCC.

      • Curious George

        Pekka, your proposal is reasonable, and therefore a non-starter. Just in case, should it pass, I propose a zero tax for the first five years.

      • David,

        Of course there’s scientific basis for a carbon tax. It’s not accurate, but it exists. How to weigh that uncertain and inaccurate evidence is a task of decision makers.

        You know perfectly well that politicians make all the time decisions based on similarly uncertain and inaccurate evidence.

      • David Wojick

        No Pekka. It has yet to be shown that human emissions are dangerous. This I know. I also know that politicians respond to irrational fears but that is not a reason to advocate doing so.

      • David Wojick

        Pekka, when the uncertainty is of the form that we do not know then there is nothing to weigh. Ignorance has no weight.

      • This is why I like the Italian flag; we can make some sort of assessment of the size of the unknown space

      • Fear, though, has the force of gravity. But these people have been so ridiculous, the anti-gravity force of laughter is rising up the face.

      • I know I’m not alone in this, but I’ve advocated for several years that we start a carbon tax at $12/ton and re-evaluate it decenially against benchmarks for emissions and temperature changes. It could go up or down.

        I also strongly advocate it being completely revenue neutral, with all proceeds fed back to consumers. In the U.S. this would best be done by lowering SSI payments. I also think payments by employers could be lowered.

        Hypothecated revenue stream completely balanced by rebates to those paying. Pigou would be happy. Behavior would certainly change. Big winners? Those who can afford solar panels on their roofs charging an electric car. Big losers? Those who want dearly to hang on to the gas guzzlers and don’t want to insulate their homes.

        No big government. No century long commitment to something we don’t really understand as yet. Just old fashioned economics that has worked time and time again.

      • Even people like McKitrick have proposed a carbon tax that is indexed to the global temperature. This seems like an interesting compromise for those who think the world has stopped warming.
        Start the indexing, above one more degree and I would agree to this, if we could be sure the temperature data was being gathered and analyzed and presented honestly.

        They have proven this not to be the case.

      • David Springer

        Fuller not just no but phuck no on a carbon tax.

      • Agreeing with Springer again
        No Carbon tax.
        It is regressive, destroys the science we all espouse, hurts people and has no rational basis, just a fear of the unknown.
        Further to that, Judith, an unknown cannot by definition, be quantified. Is it a big unknown or a small unknown or a Donald Rumsfeld unknown? We do not know and the flag cannot stretch that far.
        Pekka, good to see you back, sorry for being bullying in the past.
        If we want a rational world reduce the population by fair means, pay people not to have kids, let people take up extreme sports and bring in euthanasia for those that want out.
        Farm more intensively and cleverly, reuse resources and step up scientific research into multiple alternative energy sources.
        And help people , do not stun them or abuse them by cutting off power.
        No carbon tax.
        As for the hypocrites in the Australian Labor Party and the Greens , driving their cars, and at the same time sending billions of tons of coal overseas while pretending to impose a carbon tax, good riddance.

      • A carbon tax is actually a fuel tax. We already have plenty of those, like gasoline taxes, which are very high in Europe. It didn’t, and won’t, have any discernible impact on emissions.

        Emissions will be reduced when we have emission free energy sources. We don’t have them now, and taxes won’t create them.
        Taxes create poverty, and poverty isn’t good for the environment or our ability to adapt.

        As to “revenue neutral” – nice utopia concept. I don’t believe in it’s political and ideological feasibility. I lost my confidence that tax and spend power hungry politicians will be so nice as to give taxpayers money back. Taxing is a one-way highway.

      • More about carbon taxes.

        Here is a proposal: how about agreeing to a carbon tax in exchange for the repeal of ethanol mandates ?

        Ethanol mandates (food burning) is a prime example of a harmful piece of policy, enacted as a response to global warming hysteria. Everyone (including green activists) agree now that it was a mistake, and doesn’t help reduce emissions. So why aren’t they repealed ? Because of vested interests (ethanol industry) and inertia.
        By the way – carbon taxes in Europe – a.k.a ETS (emission trading scheme) hasn’t reduced emissions either…

      • David Springer

        Wojick is right. There is no scientific basis for presuming the net effect of aCO2 is detrimental. A warmer world, especially when the warming happens where snow and ice retard primary production in the food chain, is a more productive world. Higher ambient CO2 also means accelerated plant growth using less fresh water. To be quite honest I can’t see any downside to aCO2 at all. The negative effects are all modeled while the positive effects are measured. Progressive dingbats will stupidly disagree of course.

      • Changes faster than Nature? No. Changes faster than usual? Mebbe so. Changes faster than the biome can deal with? No. Changes faster than human society can deal with? Mebbe so.

    • michael hart

      Does the EPA expect to ask every company manufacturing goods in China where they sourced their electricity from and how it was generated? Would they expect a helpful answer and propose tariffs on imports from China? And would the Chinese government and WTO agree to that?

      I think the answers would be No, No, No, No, No and No, possibly with a few more Noes thrown in for good measure in case I missed any.

    • Then there’s that tiny, tiddly-iddly other thing with carbon: the social benefit.

      The social benefit has something in common with the social cost, namely, it can’t really be calculated, so you need to fabricate a mock science for the task. Easily arranged these days.

    • The SCC is simply a political tool invented by a leftist administration to be used to further damage our economy. The MSM will obediently cite SCC as the reason that the administration and the EPA are taking action in the war on co2, environmentalists will scream that the SCC figures are too low and should be raised, while few if any of the aforementioned groups have actually read the document much less critically examined it. The left does not need or use real science to drive policy, simple emotion and low/no info voters seems to be working for them.

  9. It is worse than we thought, or worse than during the MWP anyway.

    Anyone heard of Jim Cripwell lately?

    I hope he is well, haven’t seen him post lately.

    • You may want to check out the NIPCC thread. There’s an update on Jim Cripwell there. We wish him well.

    • Jim Cripwell

      i have had brain cancer surgery, and the cancer is incurable.

    • nottawa rafter

      Any statistics on what percentage of fires were caused by careless human activity within the most developed areas. Many states have this growing interface of increased development and wilderness areas as a major cause of wildfires. Not many second homes 10,000 years ago. You have to control for negligent human behavior first, before inferring anything else.

      • You know I was citing fires in Boreal forests north of the 50th parallel?

        Going back 10,000 years?

      • nottawa rafter

        There are 1400 communities in the region. 14% of Canada’s population reside there. Thousands of jobs are centered there. Human activities that were not there thousands of years ago. What percent of wildfires were caused by humans.

      • Can you show that it matters what causes the wildfires?

        Does that matter to the point that it is now warmer than the MCA?

      • nottawa rafter

        Humans cause more than 50% of fires on wildlands in Canada. That probably is not the case in the subject area but it is a factor, and until you control for
        that variable making any inference between the fires in the MWP and now is gross speculation.

      • And you respond with your gross speculation that the cause of the wildfires matters.

        I don’t dispute that wildfires are currently caused by humans about 50% of the time.

        But data on the prevalence of human caused wildfires during the MCA and before is grossly absent so controlling for that variable is not likely.

      • nottawa rafter

        Thank you sir. You just made my point.
        Which means any attempt at making comparisons are meaningless.

  10. The cronyism of the “Science” publishing complex deserves a full thread.

    Elsewhere, it’s hard to imagine this didn’t get a full topic given the historic nature and positive implications;

    Australia is largely a culturally left-wing country with a horrendous elite leftist media and educational backwater on top of it all. It didn’t matter here, they lost.

    A canary in a coal mine for sure. England could rollover to rationalism and the greens are declining in Germany as well.

    • David Wojick

      Meanwhile the USA is going the other way, with direct controls aimed at CO2 by DOE, NHTSA, EPA, etc., never mind a carbon tax.

      • Only due to the dictatorial edicts of a failed administration. The worm has turned here as well, the greenshirts are weakening. To be sure there is a lost generation out there, best represented by the term “millennial’s” with it ties to the worst culture of the “baby boom” but the radicalism of the AGW agenda is fairly exposed and people have been able to run against it and win.

        The acceptance of decline was common practice in the 70’s as well, I hope it can pass into a better age as it did in the 80’s. Success does seem to lead to more social rot in the process.

      • cwon: Agree. My thirtysomething children are discouraged and are not inspired when I tell them about the 70s and 80s. They say this is different.

      • I appreciate the efforts the USA is undertaking. In China, despite sincere efforts…

        “The National Energy Board of China said total electricity consumption in the country has reached 2.6276 trillion KW in the first six months of this year. The figure represents a 5.3% increase from the same period last year, data from the board showed. In the month of June alone, total electricity consumption increased 5.9% to 463.9 billion KW from May. Experts said that an increase in electrical consumption supports the claim that China’s economy is picking up, as more factories are operating and more businesses are using electricity.”

  11. John Vonderlin

    Dr. Curry,
    During your recent post on the Anthropocene I contributed a comment about the Plasticene, a possible geologic strata in the record the Anthropocene will leave. Because of my research into sinksam, that is non-buoyant marine debris, I maintained that plastics in the dark and cold of the ocean depths were essentially immortal and would be incorporated into sedimentary layers for future scientists to ponder. This new paper by paleontologist Jan Zalasiewicz et al, explores this and other concepts about the record of our passing we will leave for the future bewilderment of those that will follow our potentially brief time upon the stage of life:

    Zalasiewicz, J., Williams, M., Waters, C.N., Barnosky, A.D. & Haff, P. (2014) The technofossil record of humans. The Anthropocene Review, 1, 34-43.

    “An interesting research article introducing a stratigraphy (technostratigraphy) for and within the Anthropocene, stratigraphic markers are defined as “fossils” left behind by humans (technofossils); for example Iron Age tools from around 1000 BC. The article is driven by the need to:
    1.characterise the deposits, and and correlate strata,
    of (and within) the Anthropocene in a similar manner to other periods of geological time. By using technofossils from the different stages of homonid technological development Zalasiewicz et al. argue that a chronology can be developed and applied to the Anthropocene concept. Furthermore, Zalasiewicz et al. provide examples of how technofossils, such as pottery and mobile phones, could be used to produce a high resolution (sub-centennial) dating and correlation of strata; so far an unreachable target for other periods of geological time. The paper provides a thought provoking insight into the definition of strata throughout geological time, and a novel technique into how this could be done in the Anthropocene.”

    • michael hart

      Douglas Adams had a similar theory: an archeological layer composed entirely of shoes, recording the economic activity and subsequent collapse during the “shoe event horizon”.

      Described here:

  12. Information on Steven Goddard’s blog suggests that the Climategate emails that surfaced in late November 2009 gave the public an opportunity to confirm Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s insight: “It is not because the truth is too difficult to see that we make mistakes…

    we make mistakes because the easiest and most comfortable course for us is to seek insight where it accords with our emotions – especially selfish ones.

    -Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

  13. Given the enthusiasm some here have for urging young scientists to enter STEM fields, this analysis of what happens to young women deserves a look:


    Little is known about the climate of the scientific fieldwork setting as it relates to gendered experiences, sexual harassment, and sexual assault. We conducted an internet-based survey of field scientists (N = 666) to characterize these experiences. Codes of conduct and sexual harassment policies were not regularly encountered by respondents, while harassment and assault were commonly experienced by respondents during trainee career stages. Women trainees were the primary targets; their perpetrators were predominantly senior to them professionally within the research team. Male trainees were more often targeted by their peers at the research site. Few respondents were aware of mechanisms to report incidents; most who did report were unsatisfied with the outcome. These findings suggest that policies emphasizing safety, inclusivity, and collegiality have the potential to improve field experiences of a diversity of researchers, especially during early career stages. These include better awareness of mechanisms for direct and oblique reporting of harassment and assault and, the implementation of productive response mechanisms when such behaviors are reported. Principal investigators are particularly well positioned to influence workplace culture at their field sites.

  14. From the article:

    The United Nations’ leading health agency, the World Health Organization, has called on countries around the world to end the criminalisation of people who use drugs. The call was made in a report published this month that looked at policy responses for dealing with HIV among key populations – men who have sex with men, people who inject drugs, people in prisons and other closed settings, sex workers and transgender people. The WHO’s unambiguous recommendation is clearly grounded in concerns for public health and human rights. Whilst the call is made in the context of the policy response to HIV specifically, it clearly has broader ramifications, specifically including drug use other than injecting.

    In the report, the WHO says:

    “Countries should work toward developing policies and laws that decriminalize injection and other use of drugs and, thereby, reduce incarceration.
    Countries should work toward developing policies and laws that decriminalize the use of clean needles and syringes (and that permit NSPs[needle and syringe programs]) and that legalize OST [opiate substitution treatment] for people who are opioid-dependent.
    Countries should ban compulsory treatment for people who use and/or inject drugs ”

    • Curious George

      Does it mean we should pull our investment in drug cartels?

    • Dear Curious,

      Not necessarily. If we in the US allow drugs to be imported, the cartels could do about as well as now. They would lose some of the overhead costs of killing and being killed, costs of building submarines and tunnels, and other extraneous costs. Might make for a better business.

      • Curious George

        Have you ever lived in a country where George Orwell’s books were illegal? They were only passed among best friends .. on a black market they would have fetched a fantastic price.

      • No, I haven’t CG. But at the rate things are going here in the US, I could well live to see the day. I’m already flabbergasted at the similarity of the US to some evil mix of 1984 and Brave New World. I can only shake my head.

        The only dim lights I see are a few recent Supreme Court decisions, even some Dimowits distancing themselves from Obama on immigration, and citizens rising up to face down the government.

  15. Re: scientist/advocate
    After reading several interminable and intense exchanges on WUWT, I thought more about the line between being a scientist and being an advocate. It’s worse than we thought.

    A scientist creates a new idea and publishes it. Good job.
    He puts it out there for others to criticize and expand upon.
    In the Feynman model, he realizes that he may be wrong. Very humble.

    On the other hand, there are advocates. Their job is not to inform in an unbiased manner, it is to make the others agree to their idea.

    The distinction is easy in theory, but in practice it doesn’t take too many exchanges in a blog until everyone is an advocate, no matter what they started as. If you insist, you are an advocate. Clarifications are acceptable, but repetition is not. Too many WUWT threads end up in a did-so did-not loop which only progresses to personal attacks.

    Peer review (done right) can be a good thing!

  16. Jim Cripwell

    it appears that a strong el nino is unlikely to develop this year. see roy spencer’s blog. the 90 day soi is still positive. so it seems likely that the cessation of global warming could continue into the indefinite future, and possibly the slight negative slope which has developed over the last 5 years or so could accelerate.

    • Hey, glad you popped up, Jim. Sorry to hear about your health situation. I’ve enjoyed your posts here, hope you can keep slotting in a few more.

      The shift back to dry 90s-style spring conditions in NSW after the good years of 2007-11 has been infuriating for me as a bamboo enthusiast. Knowing about your situation helps me to some perspective as to what’s “infuriating”. You are much appreciated.

    • nottawa rafter

      I pass on my best wishes to you. You have been an inspiration to me in maintaining high standards for the integrity of the scientific method. Where there is truth, there is clarity. It was always evident you had truth on your side.

  17. Still waiting for the JISAO PDO June number I found this:
    2014** 0.30 0.38 0.97 1.13 1.80 0.82
    In the Google description. The first number should be January and the last one June. Unfortunately I couldn’t find anything further. +1.80 to +0.82

    The published NOAA PDO for May and June was: +1.2 to -0.13

  18. In fact, in recent years, those with the highest level of knowledge — those saying they understand the global warming issue very well — are the least likely to believe global warming is the result of pollution from human activities. This is somewhat of a change from 2001 to 2007, when the most informed Americans were generally among the most likely of all knowledge groups to consider pollution the cause.

    The pattern changed sharply between 2007 and 2010, when the most informed group became the most skeptical. That period spanned the release of some hacked emails in 2009 that global-warming skeptics say proved climate researchers were suppressing scientific information — a controversy that ultimately became known as “Climategate.”

  19. A Telegraph Online article by Britain’s recently ex-Environment Minister might be of interest. I hope that his replacement is up to the mark.

    Owen Paterson: I’m proud of standing up to the green lobby
    By Owen Paterson 12:38AM BST 20 Jul 2014

    Every prime minister has the right to choose his team to take Britain into the general election and I am confident that my able successor at Defra, Liz Truss, will do an excellent job. It has been a privilege to take on the challenges of the rural economy and environment. However, I leave the post with great misgivings about the power and irresponsibility of – to coin a phrase – the Green Blob.

    By this I mean the mutually supportive network of environmental pressure groups, renewable energy companies and some public officials who keep each other well supplied with lavish funds, scare stories and green tape. This tangled triangle of unelected busybodies claims to have the interests of the planet and the countryside at heart, but it is increasingly clear that it is focusing on the wrong issues and doing real harm while profiting handsomely.

    Local conservationists on the ground do wonderful work to protect and improve wild landscapes, as do farmers, rural businesses and ordinary people. They are a world away from the highly paid globe-trotters of the Green Blob who besieged me with their self-serving demands, many of which would have harmed the natural environment.

    I soon realised that the greens and their industrial and bureaucratic allies are used to getting things their own way. I received more death threats in a few months at Defra than I ever did as secretary of state for Northern Ireland. My home address was circulated worldwide with an incitement to trash it; I was burnt in effigy by Greenpeace as I was recovering from an operation to save my eyesight. But I did not set out to be popular with lobbyists and I never forgot that they were not the people I was elected to serve. Indeed, I am proud that my departure was greeted with such gloating by spokespeople for the Green Party and Friends of the Earth.

    It was not my job to do the bidding of two organisations that are little more than anti-capitalist agitprop groups most of whose leaders could not tell a snakeshead fritillary from a silver-washed fritillary. I saw my task as improving both the environment and the rural economy; many in the green movement believed in neither. Their goal was to enhance their own income streams and influence by myth making and lobbying. Would they have been as determined to blacken my name if I was not challenging them rather effectively?

    When I arrived at Defra I found a department that had become under successive Labour governments a milch cow for the Green Blob. Just as Michael Gove set out to refocus education policy on the needs of children rather than teachers and bureaucrats and Iain Duncan Smith set out to empower the most vulnerable, so I began to reorganise the department around four priorities: to grow the rural economy, to improve the environment, and to safeguard both plant and animal health.

    The Green Blob sprouts especially vigorously in Brussels. The European Commission website reveals that a staggering 150 million euros (£119  million) was paid to the top nine green NGOs from 2007-13. European Union officials give generous grants to green groups so that they will lobby it for regulations that then require large budgets to enforce. When I attended a council meeting of elected EU ministers on shale gas in Lithuania last year, we were lectured by a man using largely untrue clichés about the dangers of shale gas. We discovered that he was from the European Environment Bureau, an umbrella group for unelected, taxpayer-subsidised green lobby groups. Speaking of Europe, I remain proud to have achieved some renegotiations.

    The discard ban ends the scandalous practice of throwing away perfectly edible fish, we broke the council deadlock on GM crops, so decisions may be repatriated to member countries and we headed off bans on fracking. Judge me by my opponents.

    When I proposed a solution to the dreadful suffering of cattle, badgers and farmers as a result of the bovine tuberculosis epidemic that Labour allowed to develop, I was opposed by rich pop stars who had never been faced with having to cull a pregnant heifer. (Interestingly, very recent local evidence suggests the decline in TB in the cull area may already have begun.)

    When I spoke up for the landscapes of this beautiful country against the heavily subsidised industry that wants to spoil them with wind turbines at vast cost to ordinary people, vast reward to rich landowners and undetectable effects on carbon dioxide emissions, I was frustrated by colleagues from the so-called Liberal Democrat Party.

    When I encouraged the search for affordable energy from shale gas to help grow the rural economy and lift people out of fuel poverty, I was opposed by a dress designer for whom energy bills are trivial concerns.
    When I championed brilliant scientists demonstrating genetic modifications to rice to save the lives of hundreds of thousands of children in developing countries, I was vilified by a luxury organic chocolate tycoon uninterested in the demonstrable environmental and humanitarian benefits of GM crops.

    When faced with the flooding of the Somerset Levels I refused to make the popular and false excuse of blaming it on global warming, but set out to reverse the policy inherited from a Labour peeress and serial quangocrat who had expressed the wish to “place a limpet mine on every pumping station”, while deliberately allowing the silting up of drainage channels.

    When I set out to shatter the crippling orthodoxy that growing the rural economy and improving the environment are mutually exclusive, I was ridiculed by a public school journalist who thinks the solution to environmental problems is “an ordered and structured downsizing of the global economy”. Back to the Stone Age, in other words, but Glastonbury-style.

    Yes, I’ve annoyed these people, but they don’t represent the real countryside of farmers and workers, of birds and butterflies.

    Like the nationalised industries and obstructive trade unions of the 1970s, the Green Blob has become a powerful self-serving caucus; it is the job of the elected politician to stand up to them. We must have the courage to tackle it head on, as Tony Abbott in Australia and Stephen Harper in Canada have done, or the economy and the environment will both continue to suffer.

    * Owen Paterson is a former secretary of state for environment, food and rural affairs.

    • Remarkable the rot, no?

    • A useful pom, genghis. I have to admit!

    • Here’s hoping he’s replaced by somone as clear thinking.
      regardin’ that expanding green blob. According to its 2010
      annual report, the WW Fund fer Naychure’s international
      revenues were almost three-quarters of a billion pounds in
      one year.

      Hey, when WWF and the other green blob organizations like
      Greenpeace take the global economy back ter the golden
      age, who will fund the members of the green blob then in the
      lifestyle ter witch they have become accustomed?

    • Thanks for that article!

    • David Springer

      That bordered on obnoxiously long for a blog comment. Maybe put it somewhere else and link to it?

      • Fair comment, my only “somewhere else” has been given a URL beginning “judithcurry” by WordPress, so I decided against it. The Tele is paywalled, perhaps you ran read a free articles free, I’ll post a brief comment and the Tele URL another time. Faustino

      • “a few articles”

    • Always enjoy a good rant.

    • Thanks for sharing this, Faustino. In this day and age, it is quite an amazing (not to mention informed and articulate) piece from a seasoned politician.

      I do hope he is not being merely “politically correct” in his assessment of the skills and knowledge of his successor.

      But I particularly liked his coinage of “the Green Blob”.

      It reminded me of a song that was popular in the years of my childhood. Although, truth be told, in retrospect, I’m inclined to suspect that my parents may have shielded my tender ears at that stage of my life. Because I have no recollection of having heard it until my late teens, when I was introduced to it by my beau at the time!

      But I digress …

      Wish I had the wherewithal to travel to the U.K. to hear Paterson’s 15 October 2014 presentation at the Annual GWPF Lecture.

      • Hilary, as regards Paterson’s successor, Christopher Booker wrote:

        “He is replaced by a woman who appears to have no qualifications for the job and who will be totally out of her depth in Brussels. Defra will once again sink back into its dysfunctional torpor, under a minister wholly in the hands of officials who will have to tell her what to say, think and do about everything.”

      • @Faustino

        <Very deep sigh> Well, I know from past experience that one can depend on Booker’s assessments.

        But, thanks for confirming my worst fears about Paterson’s successor, i.e. he was being “politically correct” – although perhaps in a different way to the current meaning of the term!

    • Excellent – thank you for posting.

  20. I have a son who is a scientist.
    He says that because I am not a scientist, haven’t had a research paper written, my input in a blog means nothing.
    Common sense reasoning on natural events and the world we live in means nothing to the science community, because there is no money in it.
    I agree with the global warming concept, providing we have proper auditing of temperature readings ( refer to my ‘Denizen’ input) have been carried out. But the convenient cause to the increase in atmospheric CO2 is beyond the pale.
    Last week there was a great fanfare about a new telescope or something to be catapulted into space. Its purpose was to look into deep space to locate planets with possible water or water vapor in their atmosphere.
    Scientists have decided that if it does not exist, life as we know it will not flourish.
    OK. To get a true reading of CO2, you need to remove water vapor from the air sample! My reasoning is: if we cannot live in a water vapor free world, does it really matter whether CO2 content is 1,000 or 0 ppm?
    Over to you.

  21. @ kim | July 19, 2014 at 2:54 pm |

    Fear, though, has the force of gravity. But these people have been so ridiculous, the anti-gravity force of laughter is rising up the face.
    Gravity perhaps, but no gravitas.

    • Dr. Stephan Lewandowsky and Dr. Naomi Oreskes and is on the topic of ENSO and “the pause” in global warming.
      I don’t think they’ll have anything new on either one as far as the science goes. The pause is the public perception, and that’s somehow related to a scientific ENSO I’ll guess.

    • Tisdale has some oddly misdirected complaints about Risbey’s paper at WUWT. The paper clearly says (and Tisdale even quotes it) “In the CMIP5 models run using historical forcing there is no way to ensure that the model has the same sequence of ENSO events as the real world. This will occur only by chance and only for limited periods, because natural variability in the models is not constrained to occur in the same sequence as the real world.”
      Then Tisdale goes on a 20-page rant that they selected the 4 models that were in phase, and why weren’t all the models in phase, so there must be something wrong with them. Does he just not understand the sentence he quoted? Should climate models initialized a century or two earlier have the ENSO’s in phase by the time they reach 2000? No, their phase is random by then. What is Tisdale thinking? Watts is with him, or just didn’t pick up on his expectation error.

      • “…because natural variability in the models is not constrained to occur in the same sequence as the real world.”
        The most interesting part of Tisdale’s post. Constrained natural variability. The models cannot constrain it enough so that it’s natural. I can’t quite figure out what I don’t like about that statement.

        Jim D, I think you might saying, only some of the models will be in phase at any one time.

        This is not going to be a popular idea but after reading Tisdale on this paper, I thought it’s an olive branch with a couple of climate heavy weights co-authoring.

        We can admit this and that. Yes some of the skeptics points are acknowledged. What would be interesting is to see what the strident consensus does with this paper?

      • All it is saying is that natural variation is random in its phase, and models are not going to get it any more in phase than they do with weather patterns. Skeptics probably (?) realize that climate models are not predicting the daily weather for a century, and it is no less for ENSO-scale events which have just as much randomness. They can’t say that January 2037 will have an El Nino, for example, any more than whether that will be a cold winter in the US, but this seems to be what Bob Tisdale has expected of them, which is sadly misinformed for someone who has been studying these model outputs.

      • k scott denison

        So Jim D you’d like us to lower our expectations of models.
        Pray tell, one thing models have gotten correct and over what time frame. Thanks in advance.

      • ksd, even climate modelers don’t expect a 2037 weather prediction. If that lowers your expectations, so be it. They have predicted warming rates that have been underestimated for land areas, and they have underpredicted the rapidity Arctic sea ice melt, so yes they have underdone things in some areas while overdoing the tropical ocean warming rate. The Risbey paper apparently shows that if you allow for the phase in natural variations they do a good job with the pause.

      • k scott denison

        Way to duck and weave Jimbo. Now, back to our regularly scheduled question: name one thing models have gotten correct and over what time period.

      • In 1981 Hansen had one of the first global climate models with a 2.8 C sensitivity that predicted the warming up until now quite well. If someone had a model in 1950 that had a 2 C per doubling transient sensitivity, it would also have predicted today’s warming pretty well given the CO2 growth from 310 to 400 ppm. These models predict warming rates in line with the observed 30-year rates where a no-CO2-change model would wrongly predict a zero warming since 1850.

      • Citations needed Jimbo. Quite well doesn’t actually do it for me. Just a bit too vague.

      • ksd, you can Google the Hansen 1981 projection as well as I can. It has been written about.

      • Steven Mosher

        “Then Tisdale goes on a 20-page rant that they selected the 4 models that were in phase, and why weren’t all the models in phase, so there must be something wrong with them. Does he just not understand the sentence he quoted? ”

        Nope ive explained it a hundred times to him

      • Watts had a chance to correct him, but didn’t. I would have though Watts knew this. Let’s see if Willis lets this nonsense persist over there. He might be their last hope, but they do have a red mist issue with a couple of the co-authors that tends to blind them to rationality sometimes.

      • So for these 4 instances of the model, what climate sensitivity (ECS) emerges from them?

      • And what of Tisdale’s criticism that the paper doesn’t take into account the AMO?

      • jim2, the WUWT didn’t seem to get that far into the paper. They got hung up on this faux criticism.

      • jim2, whatever they said about AMO would have been speculation because they didn’t have the model outputs to check. This was another complaint.

      • I tried to look at the paper, but I’ll be damned if I’m paying for it.

      • I also have not seen the paper, and did not read the full Tisdale rant. I saw his final remarks were wrong on the point I mentioned, so why bother with the rest.

      • If the models can’t capture the phases, there is something wrong with them. They haven’t advanced enough. 4 of 18 models did something it appears. Can we now claim the 18 models work?

        “When the models are synchronized with the oceans, they do a great job. Not only do they reproduce global warming trends during the last 50 years… …In sum, we now have four converging lines of evidence that highlight the predictive power of climate models.” – Lewandowsky

        How do we get this synchronization in this new fourth approach? We pick some models.

      • Ragnaar – that’s why I’m wondering what sensitivity the 4 models produce. If ENSO is making the output better match observation, it seems sensitivity would be less than that from models that predict too much warming.

      • If you threw out the models that did not predict the pause, you could easily be throwing out the most accurate models for 2100

      • Ragnaar maybe you misunderstood, not getting the phase of the natural variability is not the same thing as not getting any natural variability. All of the models would have natural variability, but not all corresponding to the real phase.

      • jimmy, jimmy
        If the four selected nameless models were nominated as the best of the lot because they got lucky and were in phase, doesn’t that imply that the rest of the models that are not in phase ain’t so lucky/good?

        This is a rerun of the bogus 97% paper. They sift through ALL of the freaking GCMs and find only four that marginally suit their purpose. Well, we found 4 models that accidentally got it about right so we are good. WTF is that all about?

        The question of how climate model projections have tracked the actual evolution of global mean surface air temperature is important in establishing the credibility of their projections. Some studies and the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report suggest that the recent 15-year period (1998–2012) provides evidence that models are overestimating current temperature evolution. Such comparisons are not evidence against model trends because they represent only one realization where the decadal natural variability component of the model climate is generally not in phase with observations. We present a more appropriate test of models where only those models with natural variability (represented by El Niño/Southern Oscillation) largely in phase with observations are selected from multi-model ensembles for comparison with observations. These tests show that climate models have provided good estimates of 15-year trends, including for recent periods and for Pacific spatial trend patterns.”

        The freaking IPCC admits that the models are overheated. Oh, wait! We found four that aren’t so bad, so models are Okey-dokey. How do they get this crap published? Three reviewers like our own anything-for- the-cause, jimmy dee?

      • OK, @JCH | July 20, 2014 at 10:02 pm | …
        What’s the daffynition of an “accurate model” if it doesn’t get anything about the real climate right?

      • Someone over at WUWT mentioned the Texas Sharpshooter fallacy WRT to the OL paper.

        From the article:


        The Texas sharpshooter is a fabled marksman who fires his gun randomly at the side of a barn, then paints a bullseye around the spot where the most bullet holes cluster. The story of this Lone Star state shooter has given its name to a fallacy apparently first described in the field of epidemiology, which studies how cases of disease cluster in a population.

        “Each year…epidemiologists regularly hear from people worried that their town has been plagued with an unusually large visitation [of cancer cases]. … The Erin Brockovich incident, one of the most famous, is among the many that have been debunked. Hexavalent chromium in the water supply of a small California town was blamed for causing cancer, resulting in a $333 million legal settlement and a movie starring Julia Roberts. But an epidemiological study ultimately showed that the cancer rate was no greater than that of the general population. The rate was actually slightly less.” (Source 3, below)


        This fallacy occurs when someone jumps to the conclusion that a cluster in some data must be the result of a cause, usually one that it is clustered around. There are two reasons why this is fallacious:

        The cluster may well be the result of chance, in which case it was not caused by anything.
        Even if the cluster is not the result of chance, there are other possible reasons for the clustering, other than the cause chosen. For instance, if a disease is contagious, it may be clustered around a carrier.

        At best, the occurrence of a cluster in the data is the basis not for a causal conclusion, but for the formation of a causal hypothesis which needs to be tested. Patterns in data can be useful for forming hypotheses, but they are not themselves sufficient evidence of a causal connection. In short, correlation is not causation.

      • Don M, see ENSO is like weather. Will a climate model that started up a couple of centuries ago get today’s weather? No. Will they get a pause in the last 15 years? Similarly, not likely, only by random chance. Is this so difficult to follow?

      • There’s a side by side comparison here:
        It seems they have lower sensitivity, but maybe they’ll elaborate on that.

        On a different point:
        “The figure clarifies that internal climate variability over a short decadal or 15-year time scale is at least as important as the forced climate changes arising from greenhouse gas emissions.” – Lewandowsky
        This seems to go both ways. We can ask why 15 years? It’s about the pause length. It is shorter than regime lengths and PDO and AMO phases.

        If we remember the Kosaka and Xie paper, that Dr. Curry commented on after its release. Lewandowsky’s above comment in some peoples eyes might support her comments.

      • Yes, jimmy dee. And I am supposed to be impressed that four unidentified models out of the whole freaking expensive gaggle got the pause right, by accident? Please don’t make me laugh so hard, jimmy. I could get a hernia.

      • Another Lovejoy paper on the subject of the pause and data, not models, is here (linked from WUWT). “Return periods of global climate fluctuations and the pause”
        Based on natural variability amplitudes derived from paleo data (as in his previous paper), he determines that the pause is within the range of expected random natural variations, especially as it followed a warm perturbation. His standard deviation for natural variations is 0.18 C.

      • Jim D says: “Then Tisdale goes on a 20-page rant that they selected the 4 models that were in phase, and why weren’t all the models in phase, so there must be something wrong with them.”

        A clear misrepresentation of my blog post. Did you miss the discussion of the “best” models? Did you miss the discussions about how climate models cannot simulate the basic processes associated with ENSO so even using the “best” models was pointless? And based on the remainder of your comment, it appears you did not comprehend any of my post.

        Have a nice day.

      • Bob Tisdale,
        On the thread “Understanding adjustments to temperature data from last week, Mosher agrees with WHT that your opinion is that temperatures are ratcheted up by El Nino and would be expected to never come down, endlessly going up.

        Your reply?

      • ‘endlessly’ is exuberant.

    • To me this just hilarious. GCM make no attempt to predict when natural variation will happen. This has been out front and known for as long as I have followed the climate debate.

      • “GCM make no attempt to predict when natural variation will happen.”

        Unicorns can’t be predicted because they don’t exist. Just ask Mosher.


      • Let hoi polloi know they’re a poor guide to the future then, eh?

    • Don Monfort

      Jimmy dee, perhaps you can summarize the importance of Risbey’s risible paper. We should care that a gaggle of warmistas, bit with confirmation bias, mucked around with the extant fleet of very expensive models and found four nameless freaks that allegedly matched up a little bit to some freaking thing? Where’s the freaking beef, jimmy?

      This is just another glaring example of the corruption of climate science peer review.

      • I haven’t seen the paper, but from the abstract they seem to show that the models can do the pause, which, of course, just destroys one of the main skeptical arguments about models.

      • They allege that 4 unidentified models out of the whole freaking lot, randomly halfway matched up. So GCMs are good. That is meaningless BS, jimmy. You know that.

      • The skeptical argument was that models couldn’t get the pause, so they are wrong. This just demolished that one.

      • The skeptics were 97% right, jimmy dee. Only four models allegedly got the pause. And they only got it by accident. As you well know, jimmy dee. You silly little rascal.

      • Proving that the pause was within the range of natural variation both in reality and in models is a tough one to swallow for the skeptics. The paper’s figures which are accessible with the abstract also show that the previous 15 years had a warming that the models underestimated, but for some reason the skeptics pay little attention to that.

      • You are really tedious, jimmy. They haven’t proven anything of any consequence. But that won’t stop them and dogmatic clown fellow travelers like you from making absurd claims to prop up a dying cause. Just more proof that the climate science is corrupt and desperate. End of story.

      • It is very difficult for me to tell whether the skeptics want the pause to be natural variation or not. They seem to go in both directions about this. The models have it as natural variation, so now I think the skeptics have to say it is not. Is that the way it works?

      • “It is very difficult for me to tell whether the skeptics want the pause to be natural variation or not. They seem to go in both directions about this. The models have it as natural variation, so now I think the skeptics have to say it is not. Is that the way it works?”
        You are getting close to the psychological truth of these fake-skeptics. They want whatever will disprove anthropogenic climate change to be true. They will reject anything that hints it may be true, and hang on even the most tenuous of threads that might suggest it is not. The problem is these threads are getting thinner and thinner and ever more rare. Then of course, all they have left is conspiracy and endless ad homs,

      • What bizarre post hoc rationalisations. Abrupt climate change happens every 3 or 4 decades with unpredictable consequences.

        It puts paid to Jimmy Dee’s simplistic nonsense and Randy the video guy’s silly narrative.

  22. There is a 97% probability that they will continue to ignore Anthony. Hey, they already passed pal review and they are in Nature. They don’t have to answer to Anthony. You can be sure they have a very good reason for hiding which models they selected as the four best. Probably to protect the privacy of the models. Models are shy by nature.

  23. Testing WP re posting as Faustino – posts have disappeared when I try to do that, hence the “genghiscunn” posts.


    Yes, Google Images will instantly pull up a bunch of the “box” diagrams with arrows going this way & that. Some of these are illustrative, some seem to be versions of something actually incorporated into GCMs or earlier, cruder computer models.

    But where is a simple comparative table — a literal spreadsheet, if you will — comparing positive feedbacks against negative feedbacks, and including:

    — an estimated range of their spatial scale/scope (ie highly local, regional, polar, global),
    — estimated range of impact on temperature,
    — time-scale (“hi freq vs. low freq”)
    — uncertainty bars would be nice
    — & maybe some links to sources for each.

    I’m talking about a literal TABLE, with columns and rows. So you can see side by side an inventory of ALL the known & postulated feedbacks, from largest to smallest.

    I’ve poked around around a fair amount, and the closest thing I’ve found is from a hyper-alarmist who is not even a climate scientist (sorry trying to remember the name/link…)

    I haven’t tried going thru all the print textbooks. I’m lazy. I’ve been considering making one myself, I’ve probably found about a dozen new damping feedbacks in studies over the last year alone. But like I said, I’m lazy, I’d rather not work on the chart if I don’t have to. It’s got to be out there somewhere… or not?

    I keep seeing these negative feedbacks but none of the activists or media hype seem to reference them. They only talk up amplifying feedbacks. For obvious reasons, it sells the danger.

  25. All data is stored in tables, so…
    Got a sheitload of tables in Google images by adding ‘table’ to the search string.

  26. @freeHat – Plenty o’ tables tabulating all kinds of stuff, but not the one I’m seeking. Tried “Climate Feedback Table” & “Climate Feedback Comparative Table”. & other variations previously. I mean, maybe 10 or 20 or 50 layers down it could be buried… but it makes my eyes hurt.

    The Image search did turn up “Understanding Climate Feedbacks,” a NRC report from 2003. Looks like fun beach reading ;-) But a scan thru all 100+ pages of even that document does not give a simple comparative table.

    I suppose someone will tell me its on page 259 of AR4 or something… (Free!)

    BTW the Royal Society London is hosting an event on Feedbacks Dec 8-9:

    Actually something else I’d like to see is an interactive animated graphic showing all the human & natural CO2 fluxes, allowing the user to manipulate various ranges & uncertainty levels & interactions and see what happens. Maybe executable in Wolfram’s Mathematics? Or is that too many variables for a simple java application that would run on anyone’s browser? I know there are a bunch of coders hanging out on this blog… (hint hint)…

  27. A fan of *MORE* discourse

    “Team Sustainability”
    Berry/Oreskes/Pope Francis/Hansen
    versus “Team Denialism”
    Jared Diamond, Ed Wilson, and Jane Goodall

    Mainly for fun, FOMD went to the Goodreads web site and looked up the number of ratings volunteered for a broad spectrum of climate-change luminaries.

    Here are the (striking!) results: most-rated to least-rated:

    Jared Diamond (181,045 ratings):  Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed and The World Until Yesterday: What Can We Learn from Traditional Societies?

    Edward O. Wilson (31,089 ratings):  The Diversity of Life and Letters to a Young Scientist

    Wendell Berry (28,838 ratings):  The Unsettling of America: Culture and Agriculture and What Are People For?

    Jane Goodall (15,825 ratings):  Reason for Hope: A Spiritual Journey and The Ten Trusts: What We Must Do to Care for The Animals We Love

    Naomi Oreskes (945 ratings):  The Collapse of Western Civilization: A View from the Future and Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming

    Pope Francis/Jorge Bergoglio (878 ratings):  Only Love Can Save Us: Letters, Homilies, and Talks of Pope Francis

    James Hansen (448 ratings):  Storms Of My Grandchildren: The Truth About The Climate Catastrophe And Our Last Chance To Save Humanity and

    Roy W. Spencer (180 ratings):  Climate Confusion: How Global Warming Hysteria Leads to Bad Science, Pandering Politicians and Misguided Policies That Hurt the Poor and The Great Global Warming Blunder: How Mother Nature Fooled the World’s Top Climate Scientists

    Fred Singer (116 ratings):  Hot Talk, Cold Science: Global Warming’s Unfinished Debate and Unstoppable Global Warming: Every 1,500 Years

    James Inhofe (17 ratings):  The Greatest Hoax: How the Global Warming Conspiracy Threatens Your Future

    Christopher Monckton (2 ratings):  The Climate Caper: Facts and Fallacies of Global Warming

    Anthony Watts (0 ratings):  Is The U.S. Surface Temperature Record Reliable?


    (1)  “Team Nature” (Diamond/Wilson/Berry/Goodall) enjoys a MASSIVE following among the literati.

    (2)  “Team Sustainability” (Berry/Oreskes/Pope Francis/Hansen) enjoys a RESPECTABLE following among the literati.

    (3)  “Team Denialism” (Spencer/Singer/Inhofe/Monckton/Watts) attracts (relatively) ZERO following among the literati.

    Prediction  The accelerating political union of “Team Nature” with “Team Sustainability” portends the extinction of “Team Denialism”.

    *EVERYONE* foresees *THAT*, eh Climate Etc readers?

    Everyone who *READS*, that is!

    \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

    • Yea, the skeptics always forget that it is the systems analysis which is what needs to be considered. The system is the earth, its natural resources and climate, amongst other factors. That is why Jared Diamond is such a popular and often contentious read — he is a historian who specializes in where the systems, i.e. societies dealing with the local surroundings, have failed, and tries to understand how and why they failed.

      • WHUT: Disagree. The skeptics are skeptical precisely because they believe that the climate science consensus is not adequately considering system earth; the skeptics want more system analyses – Lomberg is one example. Also, Dr. Curry’s theme is that there is too little known about system earth and that this uncertainty is not being properly conveyed to the policy makers. Finally, on this blog, skeptic comments repeatedly describe how the consensus focus on CAWG misses the biosphere, poverty, etc.

    • Literati , Oxford dictionary: Well-educated people who are interested in literature.
      Literature is 93% fiction and 7% facts related to history, travel etc.

      Ergo: Literati appreciate literature written by “Team Sustainability” Berry/Oreskes/ /Hansen etc, which also is 93% fiction

    • A fan of *MORE* discourse

      WebHubTelescope notes “Jared Diamond is a popular and often contentious read — he is a historian who specializes in where the systems, i.e. societies dealing with the local surroundings, have failed, and tries to understand how and why they failed.”

      This insight is entirely correct (as FOMD sees it):

      Libertarian faux-conservatives  *LOATH* Diamond’s far-sighted society-oriented perspective … they think *ONLY* of short-term selfish gains.

      Market fundamentalists  ditto.

      Big Carbon shills  double ditto.

      Big Carbon oligarchs  triple ditto.’

      *THAT’S* obvious to *EVERYONE*, eh Climate Etc readers?

      Especially obvious to folks who read books!

      \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

  28. Some empirical work on civility:

    Civility has been addressed by numerous scholars in the organizational sciences and beyond. There seems to be a consensus that civility encompasses more than just good manners and etiquette (Gill and Sypher 2009; Pearson et al. 2000, 2005; Peck 2002; Sypher 2004). Civility assumes an awareness that extends beyond the self, and entails conveying respect and concern for the well-being of others (Peck 2002; Sypher 2004). Pearson et al. (2000) describe workplace civility as ‘‘behavior that helps to preserve the norms for mutual respect at work (italics added); it comprises behaviors that are fundamental to positively connecting with another, building relationships, and empathizing’’ (p. 125). By conceptualizing civility as behavior which serves to maintain norms for mutual respect, Pearson et al. (2000) suggest that disrespectful behavior, or workplace incivility (Andersson and Pearson 1999), is kept to a minimum within a civil work environment. Gill and Sypher (2009) address this characteristic of civility directly: ‘‘Civility demands that one speaks in ways that are respectful, responsible, restrained, and principled and avoid that which is offensive, rude, demeaning, and threatening’’ (p. 55, italics added).

    • The arguments of the scientific ‘bullies’ is that civility is irrelevant to science, Newton was a SOB. I am trying to argue that bullying is to the detriment of scientific progress and informing the policy process

      • > The arguments of the scientific ‘bullies’ is that civility is irrelevant to science, Newton was a SOB. I am trying to argue that bullying is to the detriment of scientific progress and informing the policy process.

        Then you have to show that civility and bullying are independent variables, Judy, and that only bullying hinders scientific progress. Civility refers to a set of norms to cultivate something like mutual respect, something that bullying triggers. The name calling you have in mind is certainly uncivil, but exactly how does it bully and how does it hinders scientific progress? This rings hollow to me.

        Here’s what bullying looks like:

        One incident in school that had influence on his life was his fight with a larger lad. This lad was the school bully, who also happened to be first in studies as well. The fight ensued after Newton was punched by the bully. Newton fought back, he pushed the bully onto the ground and rubbed his face in the mud. The other students who were watching the fight cheered for Newton as they all hated the bully. Newton found that he could fight better than the bully and this made him think that he could do anything better than the bully. As a result he decided to pay attention to studies to compete. He stood first in his class.

        Force and coercion. One could even argue that bullying is one of the factors responsible for physics as we know it. What would a David do without a Goliath to identify and beat? Fast forward, Newton himself turns into a quarreler and a black hat marketer. One can certainly argue that he bullied Hooke:

        Robert Hooke discovered the cell, established experimentation as crucial to scientific research, and did pioneering work in optics, gravitation, paleontology, architecture, and more. Yet history dismissed and forgot him… all because he pissed off Isaac Newton, probably the most revered scientist who ever lived.

        Do you really think this happened because Newton was merely uncivil? Newton stands on the shoulders of a gigantic tradition, perhaps only rivaled by the parlor games of the times.

        Science is Sparta.


        So far, to characterize bullying, you pointed at Mike’s tweet as if name calling eo ipso led to bullying, and you used the David and Goliath tale, by which only those who hold the established view can bully, while excluding Michael Tobis from the class of Goliaths. Your interpretation of David and Goliath only served so far in your belittling of Michael (unless you wish to argue that Michael’s positions are not those of the establishment and to show how he’s wrong about your Italian Flag) and to immunize yourself by the sole power of your own definition from any possibility of bullying. As if Davids could not bully with their slingshots.


        Sometimes, bullies are loner and hold strange views. Sometimes, bullies act together and use soft voices and charming remarks. There are lots of works on bullying. Use them. Then, try to measure how it hinders scientific progress as a matter of fact. If you can show this, more power to you.

        It would be more expedient to maintain that lack of civility has an impact on how the public perceive scientists, like say a Ravetz maintains. But since even that should rest on empirical ground, it’s even shorter to simply say that scientists, like everyone else, have the right to be respected.

        You have the right not to be bullied, Judy. Use that right. Mobilize scientific institutions. Win.

      • > The arguments of the scientific ‘bullies’ is that civility is irrelevant to science, Newton was a SOB. I am trying to argue that bullying is to the detriment of scientific progress and informing the policy process.

        Then you have to show that civility and bullying are independent variables, Judy, and that only bullying hinders scientific progress. Civility refers to a set of norms to cultivate something like mutual respect, something that bullying triggers. The name calling you have in mind is certainly uncivil, but exactly how does it bully and how does it hinders scientific progress? This rings hollow to me.

        Here’s what bullying looks like:

        One incident in school that had influence on his life was his fight with a larger lad. This lad was the school bully, who also happened to be first in studies as well. The fight ensued after Newton was punched by the bully. Newton fought back, he pushed the bully onto the ground and rubbed his face in the mud. The other students who were watching the fight cheered for Newton as they all hated the bully. Newton found that he could fight better than the bully and this made him think that he could do anything better than the bully. As a result he decided to pay attention to studies to compete. He stood first in his class.

        Force and coercion. One could even argue that bullying is one of the factors responsible for physics as we know it. What would a David do without a Goliath to identify and beat?

        Science is Sparta.

      • You mean Spartacus, surely.

      • That would be Isaac.

      • Fast forward, Isaac himself turns into a quarreler and a black hat marketer. One can certainly argue that he bullied Hooke:

        Robert Hooke discovered the cell, established experimentation as crucial to scientific research, and did pioneering work in optics, gravitation, paleontology, architecture, and more. Yet history dismissed and forgot him… all because he p[…]ed off Isaac Newton, probably the most revered scientist who ever lived.*****%5De

        It would be wrong to think that Isaac was merely uncivil toward Hooke. Our Spartacus stands on the shoulders of a gigantic tradition, perhaps only rivaled by the parlor games of the times.

        It would be interesting to create a blog out of Isaac’s polemical correspondence, perhaps with responses from his adversaries and mates, to see how the speech patterns have evolved.

    • Steven Mosher

      the norms of civility are cultural and industry specific as anyone who has worked in multiple industries across various cultures could attest to.

  29. Politics is the opiate of science.

  30. Jim Cripwell,

    Very sorry to hear of your health problems. While we see things differently, you are always polite and honest and I do wish you well.

  31. Is the Great Climate Con Job over yet?


  32. Trippy.

    Gravity Waves in the Thermosphere & Ionosphere: Observations…
    Frits & Lund


    Observational and theoretical studies have suggested gravity wave propagation and influences in the thermosphere and ionosphere for half a century. Gravity waves contribute, or are believed to contribute, to a variety of neutral and electrodynamic phenomena ranging from vertical coupling, energy and momentum transport and deposition, neutral perturbations and accelerations, traveling ionospheric disturbances, ionospheric irregularities, and plasma instabilities under quiet conditions to strong coupling from high to low latitudes and accompanying electrodynamics under storm-time conditions. Our goals here are to briefly review what has been learned to date, to illustrate some of the more recent results indicative of gravity wave effects, and to identify some aspects of neutral dynamics not previously considered that we expect may also have significant influences on neutral dynamics and electrodynamics in the thermosphere and ionosphere.

  33. Eeyore Rifkin

    Goddard has ripped TOBS to shreds this past week. I’d like to see a sober, cogent, empirically grounded explanation of the adjustments.

    Science may well be more fundamentally concerned with ideas than with data, however empiricism remains its sine qua non. There’s too much conjecture and shoddiness baked into the givens of climate science.

  34. I think one of the biggest looming problems in climate science is the contamination of the surface temperature record by the very routines meant to clean it up. EVERYTHING rides on that global temperature anomaly being accurate. But its becoming increasingly clear that the automated procedures for stitching together the temperature record are often creating trends where none exist.

    The flaw seems to be based on the reasonable assumption that errors and breaks in the record will work in both directions (sometimes warming, sometimes cooling). HOWEVER, the methods used to maintain the stations almost always results in slow increases (degrading local conditions/equipment) followed by sharp declines. The units paint slowly deterioriates then it gets repainted. Urbanization increases local temperatures then the station is moved.

    Its so sad when you finally realize that they work hard to remove urban heat island effect…only to have these automated routines add it back, often multiple times as the stations move over and over…lowering the temperatures of the past as they go. Without that adjustment, the warming is unremarkable, simply continuing warming of over a century (plus/minus some natural cycles), which BTW fits perfectly with almost all the tide gage data which shows no unusual increase from additional melting or temperature for the same period.

    • “EVERYTHING rides on that global temperature anomaly being accurate.”

      Nothing depends on it if you don’t believe that the postulated temperature increases would have net dis-benefits.

  35. From the article:

    Less than one week after that interview was published Japan announces that two reactors are approved to be safe and are able to be turned back on. This is a psychological game changer as the uranium priced has slid for more than three years over 60% as Japan idled their reactors after the 2011 Fukushima Disaster.

    This approval by the Japanese Nuclear Regulatory Authority signals the fact that major industrial nations require nuclear for cheap and clean energy. This decision by the Japanese NRA tell us the Japanese economy can no longer rely on expensive liquefied natural gas and renewable sources. They must turn to the safer next generation nuclear reactors.

  36. ingvarwz | July 19, 2014 at 9:56 pm

    “I have a son who is a scientist.
    He says that because I am not a scientist, haven’t had a research paper written, my input in a blog means nothing.”

    On the other hand, nobody believes scientists any more.

  37. Cause of the Pause
    divergence of the Pacific and Indian oceans trends

  38. From the article:

    New data shows the White House has painted a false picture of the Central American migration by hiding a huge spike in “family units” who are illegally crossing the Texas border.

    The data, which was dumped by the U.S. border patrol late Friday afternoon, shows that inflow of youths and children traveling without parents has doubled since 2013, to 57,525 in the nine months up to July 2014.

    But the number of migrants who cross the border in so-called “family units” has spiked five-fold to 55,420, according to the border patrol’s data, which came out amid a storm of news about the shoot-down of a Malaysian aircraft in Ukraine, delays in failed U.S. nuke talks with Iran, and on Hamas’ continued war against Israel.

    In the Rio Grande area where most of the migrants are crossing the border, the number of so-called “unaccompanied children” was actually outnumbered by the inflow by adults, parents and children in “family units,” according to the data.

    The much-faster growth in “family units” has been hidden by White House and agency officials, who have tried to portray the influx as a wave of children fleeing abuse and violence.

    Top officials, such as Jeh Johnson, the secretary of Homeland Security, has explained the influx as a child migration, and justified the government’s welcoming response as acting “in the best interests of the children.” That portrayal has been picked up and spread by Democratic legislators, reporters and bloggers — such as Greg Sargent at The Washington Post and Rachel Lienesch at the Huffington Post – to help mute the public’s growing anger at the Democrats’ failure to guard the border.

  39. From the article:

    HOUSTON, Texas–A city council in Denton, Texas–a gas city that is located on top of a large reserve–rejected a ban on fracking this week.

    The Denton City Council voted against the proposal 5-2 following eight hours of hearing public opinions, according to the Associated Press (AP).

    Had the ban passed, Denton would have become the first city in Texas to prohibit fracking. To many, such a ban would seem more typical of a California city. Indeed, in May Santa Cruz County in California voted unanimously to ban fracking.

    Denton is located directly on top of the Barnett Shale, one of the largest natural gas reserves in the country, according to the AP. Gas fields in the town have reportedly produced a billion dollars in mineral wealth and allowed the city to prosper.

    There are are obvious benefits to fracking, which includes blasting water, sand, and other chemicals. Fracking lowers the cost of natural gas and could help make the U.S. energy independent. Fox Business Network’s John Stossel has also pointed out that “for those concerned about global warming, burning gas instead of oil and coal helps reduce CO2 emissions.”

  40. From the (pay walled) article:

    Last week’s burst of world disorder was ideal for a news dump, and the White House didn’t disappoint: On no legal basis, all 4.5 million residents of the five U.S. territories were quietly released from ObamaCare. Where does everybody else apply?

    The original House and Senate bills that became the Affordable Care Act included funding for insurance exchanges in these territories, as President Obama promised when as a Senator he campaigned in Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands and other 2008 Democratic primaries. But the $14.5…

  41. Confirming the obvious which is seldom talked about directly;

    The reason bullying is accepted and works to political effect. How orthodox is sustained in general society. We still don’t have a comparable poll of those who claim to speak for the climate science “community”.

    Why is that Dr. Curry?

  42. I suggest anyone who has an IR thermometer point it at the sky on a clear day, especially on low humidity day/nights. Then do the same to the bottom of clouds.
    It’s obvious that the ratio of clouds to clear skies has a bigger impact than any increase in DWIR that Co2 causes.

  43. Heidi Cullen? She’s not part of the climate debate. She runs a propaganda outfit. That’s not “debate”. Climate Central simply does “spin” which is a nicer term for propaganda.

    She’s not a “scientist” . She is a defense attorney for CAGW. I suppose the world needs defense attorneys and they have 1st Amendment rights, but I have a serious problem when they do it under the guise of “science”.

    If Climate Central did real science, they would be trying to find holes in the CAGW theories, not plug the holes with spin.

  44. The hottest April, May and June in recorded history has just occured and yet some people still claim global warming has paused.

    • Eric commented

      The hottest April, May and June in recorded history has just occured and yet some people still claim global warming has paused.

      As long as you understand that surface temps in the Northern Hemisphere have only been reasonably sampled since about 1974, and that the Southern Hemisphere is still under sampled, so your recorded history is not even a few decades, you might have a point.

    • The WoodForTrees Index… which I feel is the most robust surface temperature index… shows the temp trend is negative since 2001. Global warming hasn’t “paused”. That implies a resumption. Global warming has “stopped”.

      However, climate is generally considered a minimum of 30 years so I argue the climate relevant trend i still solidly up and with record CO2, I suspect the warming will resume and we can then call it the “pause”.. But I also think it’s clear the CO2/temp relationship continues to scream that it’s much lower than generally assumed by most models.

  45. Hi Dr. Curry,
    Interesting post at WUWT on a paper by Shaun Lovejoy. Since he has posted here, I would sure like to get your opinion on his paper. The It is ‘trying to explain away the ‘warming pause’ by natural variability’. Wow, natural variability can ‘slow down’ the warming; but it couldn’t be responsible for it also . . ?

    THe link to the WUWT post is:

  46. Climate change wins precarious slot in proposed development goals

    Poverty, environment, even traffic fatalities: UN’s sweeping sustainable development goals aim to fix everything — on paper

  47. “The only hope left for the climate movement, Schellnhuber summarizes, is great leadership coming from somewhere. “A few climate Ghandis wouldn’t be bad.”” –

    A ‘No’ uttered from the deepest conviction is better than a ‘Yes’ merely uttered to please, or worse, to avoid trouble.

    First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.

  48. NHL outlines plan to fight climate change

    Still, Bettman said the NHL has a “vested interest in this cause.”

    “As a business, we rely on freshwater to make our ice, on energy to fuel our operations and on healthy communities for our athletes, employees and fans to live, work and play. Moreover, to continue to stage world class outdoor hockey events like the NHL Winter Classic, NHL Heritage Classic or NHL Stadium Series, we need winter weather,” Bettman said.

  49. A technological shift.
    From the article:

    An increasing number of businesses are opting out of staying virtually connected and are reverting back to old technologies to avoid being spied on. The move has led to a surge in typewriter sales in Germany.

    German typewriter makers such as Bandermann and Olympia have cited climbing sales amid NSA spying revelations.

    “We sell about 10,000 [typewriters] every year,” Bandermann manager Rolf Bonnen told The Local. “We’ve seen an increase because Brother left the market [in 2012],” he added. The company’s sales jumped by one-third over last year since 2012.

  50. Science marches on!–finance.html

    As of 2013 glyphosate resistant “super weeds” have infected 70 million acres of U.S. farmland. Modern industrial mono-culture agriculture was made possible by genetic engineering developed by Monsanto, Syngenta, DuPont and Dow Chemical.

    >>Here’s the part that might affect the climate:
    According to the Dept. of Agriculture the best way to suppress super weeds is the practice of ‘deep tilling’. Most farmers abandoned deep tilling after the disastrous Dust Bowl era of the 1930s. If we start deep tilling 70 million acres of farm land there will be massive feedbacks of GHG releases, millions of tons of erosion of dust and valuable nutrient runoff.

    Science to the rescue!
    Dow Chemical scientist have developed a new herbicide marketed as “Enlist Duo”. The product should be in the food supply shortly as it was fast tracked by the FDA and EPA by skipping human toxicology testing.
    “Exposure to 2,4-D has been linked to thyroid conditions, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, suppressed immune function, and other adverse health effects. According to the letter from the 35 doctors, Dow “did not conduct any toxicity tests for simultaneous exposure to the combination of 2,4-D and glyphosate, which could pose a much higher human and environmental toxicity risk than either herbicide alone.”

  51. Nice discussion at the blackboard, MWgrant, Carrick and Paul K on data use in Kriging and in BEST global average temperatures.
    It is in a post quite off topic about “SKS TCP front” and comes in halfway through.
    The basic concern is in using data in the wrong way.
    Brandon is commentating as well and Zeke/Mosher have retired to the peanut gallery.
    Well worth anyone who believes in Cowtan/Way Kriging having a look at these comments as it suggests their explanation may be wrong.
    Judith it may even be worth getting a few quotes from these guys writings
    As an article in Kriging techniques.