Politicizing the IPCC report

by Judith Curry

UK Energy and Climate Change Committee report on IPCC AR5 – another pointless exercise in circular reasoning, confirmation bias and division? – Paul Matthews

The UK House of Commons Energy and Climate Change Committee haspublished its report following their review into IPCC AR5 WG1.

A blog post by Paul Matthews provides the following context for the report:

A brief recap with links to earlier posts: the Committee is chaired by Tim Yeo (Con) who has been criticised for his green energy interests, was caught in a lobbying sting and has been de-selected by his local party. There are two openly climate-sceptical members, Peter Lilley (Con) and Graham Stringer (Lab). The inquiry was announced last November with a call for written submissions by December. The remit covered robustness, range of views, climate models, the pause, and policy. Over 50 written submissions were sent in, IPCC-supportive ones from institutions such as the Met Office and Royal Society and many critical ones from individuals (the allegedly influential GWPF did not make a submission). From January – March, three oral evidence sessions were held, the first of which featured three mainstream climate scientists followed by three sceptics. The second session had some interesting clashes between Yeo and Lilley. The third session included science advisors and members of DECC.

The full 64 page report can be downloaded [here]. Excerpts from the Summary:

AR5 provides the best available summary of the prevailing scientific opinion on climate change currently available to policy-makers. Its conclusions have been reached with high statistical confidence by a working group made up of many of the world’s leading climate scientists drawing on areas of well-understood science. The overall thrust and conclusions of the report are widely supported in the scientific community and its summaries are presented in a way that is persuasive to the lay reader. As in all areas of science that involve highly complex dynamic systems, there are uncertainties. But these uncertainties do not blur the overwhelmingly clear picture of a climate system changing as a result of human influence.

The IPCC has responded extremely well to constructive criticism in the last few years and has tightened its review processes to make AR5 the most exhaustive and heavily scrutinised Assessment Report to-date. We believe that the IPCC would benefit from increasing the level of transparency by recruiting a small team of non-climate scientists to observe the review process from start to finish including during the plenary meetings to agree the Summary for Policymakers. However, the authority of the reports comes not from the process and procedure per se, but from the evidence itself: the thousands of peer-reviewed academic papers that together form a clear and unambiguous picture of a climate that is being dangerously destabilised.

Of course there are those who will continue to be critical of the conclusions and the process through which the IPCC produces its Assessment Reports. But our conclusion here is clear. There is no scientific basis for downgrading the UK’s ambition to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The Government and the international community must heed the IPCC’s warning and work to agree a binding global deal in 2015 to limit climate change to manageable levels.

BBC has an article on the bickering of the MPs, and the existence of a minority report MPs bicker over IPCC report on causes of climate change.  Excerpts:

But two members of the committee, Peter Lilley (Conservative) and Graham Stringer (Labour), disagreed with the other nine. They accused their fellow MPs of not holding the IPCC critically to account.

“As scientists by training, we do not dispute the science of the greenhouse effect – nor did any of our witnesses,” they said in a statement.

“However, there remain great uncertainties about how much warming a given increase in greenhouse gases will cause, how much damage any temperature increase will cause and the best balance between adaptation to versus prevention of global warming.”

The two MPs say that the underlying technical report of the IPCC acknowledges many uncertainties, but these have been omitted from the critical Summary for Policymakers, presented to politicians.

Among a number of issues they highlight the so-called “pause” in global warming since 1997.

“About one third of all the CO2 omitted by mankind since the industrial revolution has been put into the atmosphere since 1997; yet there has been no statistically significant increase in the mean global temperature since then.

“By definition, a period with record emissions but no warming cannot provide evidence that emissions are the dominant cause of warming!”

JC comments:  I am not a fan of the IPCC [link] and disagree with the high confidence of many of its statements.  This statement from the Summary concerns me in particular:  Its conclusions have been reached with high statistical confidence.  Rather, it should be stated that Its highly confident conclusions have been reached by expert judgment, in an explicit consensus building environment that is prone to groupthink.

The summary gives a nod to uncertainty: As in all areas of science that involve highly complex dynamic systems, there are uncertainties. But these uncertainties do not blur the overwhelmingly clear picture of a climate system changing as a result of human influence.  They seem to have swallowed the IPCC’s waffling about the ‘pause’.

From the BBC article:

The Energy and Climate Change Committee, in their report, took a different view. They said that periods of hiatus are consistent with earlier assessments and forced climate change takes place against a background of natural variability.

“The current period of hiatus does not undermine the core conclusions of the WGI (working group 1) contribution to the fifth assessment report when put in the context of the overall, long-term global energy budget.

“Despite the hiatus, the first decade of the 2000s was the warmest in the instrumental record and overall warming is expected to continue in the coming decades.”

We don’t need no stinkin’ science

Peter Lilley and Graham Stringer stated that the Report is ‘more like cheerleading than objective analysis.’   Well, I give the Committee  credit for holding much more substantive Hearings on climate change  than in the U.S. Senate and House.  But the outcome was predictably pre-ordained to be dominated by politics.

With regards to climate and energy policy, politicians in the U.S. and elsewhere are increasingly bypassing science altogether.  Other agendas have taken over, and the policies are still muddled by ostensibly justifying them to prevent climate change.

As an example, CNSNews reports in an article about EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy’s Congressional testimony last week:

“And the great thing about this proposal is it really is an investment opportunity. This is not about pollution control. It’s about increased efficiency at our plants…It’s about investments in renewables and clean energy. It’s about investments in people’s ability to lower their electricity bills by getting good, clean, efficient appliances, homes, rental units,” McCarthy told the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.

Sen. John Barroso (R-Wyo.) said the proposed regulation may cause Americans pain by raising electricity prices, but it “can’t make a dent” in terms of global pollution.

“Sir, what I know about this rule is that I know it will leave the United States in 2030 with a more efficient and cleaner energy supply system — and more jobs in clean energy, which are the jobs of the future,” McCarthy responded.

JC conclusions

In the global debate about climate change and energy policy, science is increasingly becoming a side show, and used when it is convenient to justify a politically desirable policy.  Well, that is politics.  I have two concerns:

1.  ‘Using’ climate science in this way has a very unfortunate impact on climate science itself: ‘inconvenient’ questions don’t get asked and inconvenient science doesn’t get funded.

2.  If people are concerned about the adverse impacts of extreme weather events, reducing CO2 emissions are not going to have any impact on policy relevant time scales, even if you accept the IPCC analyses.  Resources expended on energy policy are in direct conflict with reducing vulnerability to extreme events.



242 responses to “Politicizing the IPCC report

  1. Professor Curry,

    I agree with your concerns about the statement that IPCC “conclusions have been reached with high statistical confidence.”

    • Greg Goodman

      omanuel: I agree with your concerns about the statement that IPCC “conclusions have been reached with high statistical confidence.”

      That clumsy phrase shows they have not understood a bit of it. They have not even understood enough to get the words right.

      Seeing Yeo’s farcical exchange with Lindzen, showed his blustering, arrogant attitude despite not being able to understand the difference between rising temps and temps being at a higher level but not rising.

      Thankfully he has been deselected but he will remain and MP and on the committee until the next Westminster election in 2015.

      The problem is all the calling of witnesses is whitewash. They have already decided what they intend to do but are obliged to go through the motions.

      It is telling that the two members of the committee with any science qualifications have to put out a minority report from the technology and science committee.

  2. David Wojick

    It is certainly true that the US EPA has sidelined the science, in favor of its so-called Social Cost of Carbon (SCC) modeling. SCC is nothing but CAGW run through a computer. The fact that they had to go out 300 years to get the damages due to today’s emissions is testimony to the absurdity of the present situation.

  3. Wow.
    We should have fusion in 300 years. Australia is about to announce a breakthrough, LLNL is on track for breakeven on the National Ignition Facility and 300 years ago we had not heard of airplanes, space flight, computers or horseless carriges. Looking forward to all the changes.

    • Yep. As has been said, fusion technology is just 5 years away . . . And always has been.

      • They always said 50.

        300 gives some wiggle room.

      • Well, in 1714, the British colonies in North America relied primarily on firewood and horses for energy — and human musclepower, not always voluntary.

        So it’s reasonable to expect major changes by 2400 AD….

  4. The purpose is not to build an effective solution. It is merely to corral the populations into doing things they normally would not do. Solutions have end points. Scare tactics do not.

    • Walt Allensworth

      ^^^^ This ^^^^

    • Yep, if we actually do something about the problem, like a carbon tax, this will result in the collapse of the economy and the loss of your job. Remember that when you vote.

      ^^^^^^^^^Sarcasm flags are optional.^^^^^^^^

      • It’s not just the carbon taxes (mainly levelled on heavy industry), it’s the lack of viable alternative sources of energy and the unwillingness to face the reality of energy shortages that will cause the collapse. The US is probably OK because despite the bluster, they didn’t throw the baby out with the bathwater. The UK alas seems to expect to rely on negawatts and wind.

      • Down the rabett burrow.
        Case of historic myopia?

      • It will also result in starving children.

        Which, of course, I think is a good thing – as my much beloved “skeptics” are always pointing out.

        You just can’t have enough starving children.

      • “Starving children”

        If you’re denying that more expensive energy is a hardship that will fall mostly on the poor, then I think you should forget this climate stuff and find a new hobby.

      • Like I said Joseph, historic myopia. W/out efficient fossil fuel
        energy there would have been no Industrial Revolution. Pre
        Industrial Revolution work in the fields and life in the hovel fer
        most. Life expectancy low, child mortality high, famine a common
        event. Get it?

      • These people remind me of Orkans. Where babies are born old and age young. They expect ancient people to have the knowledge of today, and the people of today to forget the knowledge of yesterday.

      • They don’t think it through dear Beth. I swear it’s some sort of pathology.

      • From my ‘History’s Chequered History’ dear Pokerguy,
        regarding the memory hole, ‘Those who can’t remember
        the past can jest make it up.’ And kim’s witticism that
        ‘Those who remember the past can jest it up.’

      • In your case, sarcasm flags are irrelevant. But you are welcome to explain how a carbon tax is going to reduce the warming of the planet. Please do! Quote the studies that show it reducing temperatures by 1-3ºc over the next century.

        Then you can come back, read what I wrote, write an intelligent response and we can discuss something. Until then, sorry, you are proving my point.

      • A sufficient carbon tax will limit emissions or don’t you believe in economics? See, for example, Eli Rabett’s Simple Plan to Save the World.

      • Rob Starkey

        Eli’s carbon tax plan would not stop CO2 levels from rising, but would generate revenue that is needed

  5. One point that is important to make for the US audience is that here in the UK, although it is politicised, the climate debate does not divide sharply along party lines in the way it does in the US. Of the two dissidents, one is Conservative (Lilley) but the other is Labour (Stringer). One thing these two have in common is a degree in a science subject, unlike the other committee members.

    Thanks for the link!

    • That is an interesting point that is raised often. I wonder, however, how much of that fact is simple political survival. Both parties in the UK endorsed policy that has proven to be simultaneously extraordinarily expensive and useless. To have to admit that and acknowledge that the scare story used to sell the bad policy is overblown would be political suicide. The short version of this “report” is MPs Claim: We Aren’t Totally Incompetent, We Really Did Have a Reason to Wreck The Nation’s Energy Policy!

      The Toles cartoon is a classic of warmist hypocrisy. The warm constantly parley every hot day or storm into “proof” or “evidence” of AGW, yet when their own meme is thrown in their faces in a cold snap, they pat each other on the back over how clever they are to point out the dupes who can’t tell the difference between weather and climate. No doubt it raises a weak cheer from the faithful, but nobody else is buying it.

      • I think it is the opposite in the US. The plurality is against big spending to reign in CO2 emissions. When Obama’s party had control of both chambers of congress he could not get Cap and Trade passed.

  6. Better Headline: IPCC Politicises Climate Report, Then Distributes It.


  7. anthony thompson

    The seven non-scientists on the committee are supportive of the IPCC. The two scientists are highly critical. Peter Lilley’s degree is in Physics from Cambridge University – the foremost Physics Department in the UK. Graham Stringer’s degree is in Chemistry from Sheffield University and his career before entering the House of Commons was as an Analytical Chemist.

    • Heh, Seven to two. 78% of non-scientists go along with the IPCC, but only 22% of scientists do. That sounds about right.

      Uh, well, those statistics are garbled. 100% of non-scientists are in agreement with the IPCC and 0% of scientists agree. There, that sounds even better.

      • Greg Goodman

        Faulty maths Kim:
        100% of non scientists go with IPCC.
        ZERO% of scientists do.

        72% (not 78%) of science and tech. committee are NON scientists.

        Presumably the are chosen for being good at doing committees rather than having any competence is the area of expertise that the committee is supposed to assess.

        What a circus.

      • nottawa rafter

        And 100% of them are still stinging that the rebels whupped on their homeboy George. Sorry tonyb.:)

      • Hee, hee, Gee Gee; I like the way the garbled statistics are more believable, it’s IPCC worthy.

    • Yep. So Peter & Graham will both be in agreement with the only real science in this game:- carbon-dioxide can react to infrared by warming, but it does try to expand first.

  8. Hugh Whalen

    The whole IPCC/AGW seems to me to correspond to this:

    Question: Do you agree that crime is a problem?

    Answer: 97% of the populations says: YES!

    Conclusion: 97% of the population supports the death penalty. It must be instituted immediately.


    • David Wojick

      An excellent analogy, Hugh. 97% think humans have made some contribution to the past warming (if only UHI). Then it is claimed that they therefore support drastic decarbonization efforts. This is the way political arguments often work, or try to.

  9. Curious George

    [IPCC] conclusions have been reached with high statistical confidence by a working group…
    To reach a 90% statistical confidence, a minimum group size is 10. For a 95% statistical confidence, you need a group of 20. For 97% you need 30.

  10. Turnedoutnice

    it looks very much as if the final obstacle to progression along the path of sanity has been overcome. It is the acceptance that the explanation of the ‘hiatus’ aka ‘pause’ by natural cooling processes, countering the GHE, implies that natural heating processes contributed to the previous warming.

    So far so good; Latif argues that the IPCC’s CO2 ‘Climate Sensitivity’ has been far too high: http://notrickszone.com/2014/07/28/leading-german-alarmist-scientist-mojib-latif-turns-cool-climate-sensitivity-is-too-high/

    However, there is much further to go; the reality is that solar processes account for most if not all of the post 1710 warming: http://hockeyschtick.blogspot.co.uk/2014/07/new-paper-finds-high-correlation.html

    CO2 Climate Sensitivity may be very low indeed and it is easy to show how……..

  11. The lack of a significant political divide in the UK between the main parties on the issue makes opposition to frankly climate driven energy policies doubly difficult. Unfortunately the gap tends to be filled with a minority political party and tabloid journalists, two sources with an arguably poor record for accuracy.

    • ‘a minority political party …….with an arguably poor record for accuracy’

      I assume that Howard is referring to the Liberal Democrats whose record for getting anything at all right is undetectable by any methods known to this observer.

      • Oh, no. Although Ed Davey is probably in a class of his own on energy matters, I wouldn’t wish to give the impression that I regard any one political party as any more accurate (or honest) than another. ;-)

  12. Danley Wolfe

    So now it political game and not about science. It has developed this way because the balance of political power has enabled, encouraged and abetted in it happening as it has. The temp anomaly run while CO2 rose from ~355 -> 385 ppm during the mid ’70s – 1997/8 (= ~23 years) provided the support; however temperature now has been flat for 17 years and running (… that’s close to a tradeoff). Science will lead to revealed truth in the long term; however policy changes are path dependent, therefore outcomes may be irreversible, masking and confounding natural vs. policy forced results. Science World not Political World. Since politics control the political outcome, the only way to affect the course is politically led by objective Science.

  13. On the other hand, both UK and Germany are destroying their ecomomies with high renewable energy costs. If we can keep them doing that and the US refrains from following it will help the US increase manufactuiring. China, INdia, Russia and Saudi Arabia continue to push the US to global bans on fossil fuels so they may continue ecomomic progress. Depends on the US electorate and future choices.

    • Germany is building coal-fired power plants.

    • Threatens to shut the coal plants down. Has not happened yet. Some of the old ones can’t compete with natural gas and still emit too much NOx, SOx and Mercury. When heating costs and electricity rates go up the lack of solar and wind will drive more gas turbine fed with natural gas from fracking. So the first to go will be old bad actors. Will be interesting to see if carbon sequestration or coal bed gas work out but for now the investment turnover could be a net benefit to engineering, construction and utility companies. Lots of moving pieces on the chess board.

      • Scott, I actually investigate organomercury neurotixicity and loath dumping mercury into the biosphere with a passion.
        Modern CFLs typically contain 3-5 mgs of mercury and that is going to end up in land fill, not recycled or safely disposed of.
        They only had to wait a few years until the LED’s were ready and this madness wouldn’t have happened.

      • Well then Doc, make sure you aren’t using any power form a coal fired power station – the biggest emitter of mercury into the biosphere.

  14. “We have less confidence in projected near-term changes which are likely to
    remain heavily influenced by internal variability […] ….
    … we see that the
    models do a good job of representing the larger time-scale changes.158”

    To paraphrase. “The models aren’t expected to do so well on time scales that are verifiable. However, for time scales that cant possibly effect my grants or political clout, they do quite well”.

    How a simulation that has 100% error by one month can say anything about the future at long times scales…. Even geniuses can be idiots, I guess. To be more generous, I suppose it is an argument that a simplified energy model is all that matters. Why not just come out and present it that way, then, and muster some support for that way of thinking? Why still run the GCM?

  15. With global warming science in their back pockets, Leftist politicians are the gift that just keeps taking…

  16. After not showing up – which shoots a big hole in AGW theory (the theory that human CO2 was causing global warming) – alarmists stopped talking about a Hot Spot and began to make excuses for why it was missing. It’s too late though: the rest of the world no longer cares about what the witchdoctors of Western academia are going to say next about global warming and climate change. Even those who hate America know that if the Leftists will stab their fellow citizens in the back they’re certainly not to be trusted about anything else. “Climate science is incredibly more complex than [developed countries] negotiators make it out to be… Climate science should not be driven by the West. We should not always be dependent on outside reports.” ~Jairam Ramesh (India)

  17. Amusing that trying to make the economic case has taken wings, leaving the pollution control argument grounded. Yeah, that’ll fly.

  18. I would like to repeat a point I´ve made in the past: Even if one takes the climate models seriously the IPCC process used to create the AR5 has a serious flaw, because the Representative Conventration Pathways were created using a flawed work flow. This means RCP8.5, the one sometimes is referred to as “Business as usual” isn´t realistic. I consider it to be poorly done. Building the basic model asumptions for those RCP´s involves issues those members of parliament should know a lot about. And yet their review never even mentions them. This means the whole review process carried out by those MPs is fairly meaningless.

    • The Tom Toles cartoon as usual is great.

      What I find hilarious is how bad other associations are. Case in point, consider the US Energy Information Administration. The EIA supported the overblown Monterey Shale oil resource estimates based in part on a poor report which happened to be farmed out to an engineering firm that essentially took oil investor presentations and cut&pasted to create the document.

      The EIA estimate was 15 billion barrels of oil for the Monterey Shale and this recently cut back by 96% — and the USGS doesn’t even register it on their map of recoverable resources:

      Never mind the fact that who in their right mind is going to frack in earthquake-prone areas of California?

      The IPCC looks like geniuses when compared to the EIA. The bottom-line is that a fossil-fuel future is a dead-end, regardless of what the climate science says. Attacks on the IPCC is a complete misdirection — when we should be looking at the existential problem of depending on non-renewable fossil-fuel resources.

      • WHUT,

        I am ready to join in your call for an end to all this decarbonization nonsense. We should be burning fossil fuels as fast as we can. The sooner we start to actually run out, the sooner prices will spike, and the sooner the public will demand alternative energy.

        We have to reduce taxes on energy, open up all areas to exploration and extraction, and repeal all regulations that increase the cost of oil, coal and natural gas to mitigate CO2.

        (Sorry WHUT, I was channeling fan for a minute there.)

      • The story that the EIA was going to announce that it was cutting recoverable reserves by 96% in a months time was published in May 2014; it is almost August.

      • The USGS actually employs geologists and earth scientists who might know what they are talking about. As for the EIA, who knows? It looks as if they hired some oil industry hacks who inflated the estimates and thus created speculation interest.

        Watch the presentation by Nate Hagens that Andrew Revkin recommends.

      • The IPCC doesn’t do oil reserve estimates. This is why their RCP 8.5 used in the cmip5 for AR5 has such a poor estimate. How do you like the way I’m picking up your acronyms?

  19. “increasingly” not about science? That’s somewhat obtuse, it’s been this way for 45+ years. It’s just a subset of the “earthday”, anti-industrial left tinkering in the background on campus their whole lives in some cases. The only thing that changes is when it creeps out into open sunlight and the main political stage into prime time as opposed from the tiny academic armpits dominated by greenshirt activists who steer concepts like “97% agree with us” and “something must be done” in their alternate universe with a hyper left-wing media doing all it can to advance the meme.

    Actual empirical evidence simply was never there so there was no “science” to drive anything further. It was always agenda, common political cultures all nodding their heads together, excluding dissent and reason at any turn.

    So it isn’t “increasingly not about science” but the debate changes as it gets more mainstreamed. It largely highlights how unscientific so many of the academic parlor arguments have always been. That most of science community is silent on the idiocy of labeling co2 “pollution” is a good indicator of how the relevant community sold their souls to their political preferences long ago. Same with the back benching at best on the “97%” inventions and postulations for the “cause”. Same as the segue from “warming” to “climate change” and on and on. Same as “deep ocean heating” or “extreme weather”. It started as a meme and it ends as a meme.

    By in large “climate science” deserves the much of the publics contempt as fraudsters. I would same Dr. Curry is time stamping from her own epiphany but that’s a slight to the many who carried the burden in the 1970’s and 80’s. Generally, it was always politics most of our adult lives.

  20. Adam Gallon

    Then we invest heavily in nuclear power, divert 90% of the money hosed into climate pseudoscience to nuclear power.

    • Fukushima killed the nuclear power industry.

      Too bad but true. Even though the wave killed 20,000 and swept 12,000 out to sea never to be seen again. Three workers got 25 rem dose and will have increased cancer risk from 21% to 21.1% over a 70 year lifespan. Germany will shut down their rectors. Japan shuts down their reactors. France shuts down their reactors. Big energy deficits and increase in energy prices. US will let 120 reactors lapse during license renewal. Hard to see a way out of this energy mess, plus water mess with the energy water nexus. Need some technology breakthroughs.
      China and India keep building coal fired power plants and US and Australia can mine and export coal to them.

  21. Has global warming corruption reached a tipping point?

  22. “By definition, a period with record emissions but no warming cannot provide evidence that emissions are the dominant cause of warming!”

    But consensus!!!!

    And regarding cartoonist Toles, if you aren’t sure about the right side on any political subject, find a Toles cartoon and choose the contrary view..

    • ” if you aren’t sure about the right side on any political subject, find a Toles cartoon and choose the contrary view..”

      Sounds reasonable – if you know nothing about an issue, simply oppose the opinion of a liberal. I guess it saves having to actually think.

  23. Danley Wolfe

    It matters who chairs the Senate Environment Committee. Currently, Barbara Boxer (D-NY) but that has a good chance of changing in ~ 3 months. I find it telling / fascinating that Ms Boxer is also the Chair of the Senate Committee on Ethics. This also matters to you non Americans for obvious reasons; the US has been the main defender of Reason.

  24. Here’s a great business idea: Buy old Yugos and convert them to new Porsche sport cars. Novel, start with junk and create a masterpiece.

    Somewhat like the efforts of the ministers, starting with the IPCC report and creating….

    As John Christy has testified, the IPCC Reports are flawed because the IPCC Process is flawed; the process has no checks against bias.


    • The whole leftism by stealth, “Post Partisan” drivel of the likes of Silver and the other clown Ezra Klein “explanatory journalism” (brainwashing and indoctrination but you’re not suppose to notice) has pretty much run the course. Five-Thirty-Eight better being looking some deep liberal equity funding because it’s just a terrible format, site and given the number of annoying pop-ups hard-selling and grinding on visitors it could be facing a short life cycle.

      This is all end of being in power pathology. The lies, disinformation and executive mandating are both designed to fire up the minions to vote to “save the Earth” come November and/or set up the distractions of the numerous failed policies both domestically and internationally of this incompetent administration. All the operatives are in full court press mode. So the ensemble of fanatics in the article from Mann, Holdren and Krugman are no surprise but it’s still embarrassing throwing in Think Progress and the Daily Kos. It’s really the face of mob rule. Roger Pielke Jr. wouldn’t even make many lists of “skeptics” as is the case with Dr. Curry. Being near the fold clearly only made the reaction even more extreme. Stalin treated German prisoners of war far better then anyone perceived internally judged “anti-Soviet”. It’s the same way in the mafia. So politically you target the most moderate players and characterize them as extremists to set an example and try to set the goal posts of what is even remotely discussable, that’s at work as well here.

  25. David L. Hagen

    The IPCC Needs to apply: The Golden Rule of Forecasting: Be Conservative J. Scott Armstrong and Kesten C. Green and Andreas Graefe 6 February 2014 MPRA Paper No. 53579, 10. February 2014 http://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/53579/

    A conservative forecast is consistent with cumulative knowledge about the present and the past. To be conservative, forecasters must seek all knowledge relevant to the problem, and use methods that have been validated for the situation. A checklist of 28 guidelines is provided to implement the Golden Rule. This article’s review of research found 150 experimental comparisons; all supported the guidelines. The average error reduction from following a single guideline (compared to common practice) was 28 percent. The Golden Rule Checklist helps forecasters to forecast more accurately, especially when the situation is uncertain and complex, and when bias is likely. Non-experts who know the Golden Rule can identify dubious forecasts quickly and inexpensively.. . .

    Presentation June 2014 aka: “Forecast unto others as you would have them forecast unto you.”
    GoldenRuleOfForecasing.com Supporting materials

  26. A quibble with the title of this post.

    You can’t politicize a campaign commercial.

    • I quibble with “increasingly” as if this wasn’t all explained by past generations from the 70’s and beyond and certainly from the moment the IPCC was formed.

  27. An example of something the Left has not said… yet:

    I have an article planned on where the heck the hiatus came from…..The fact is that we can’t account for the hiatus and it is a travesty that we can’t but, it’s not statistically significant; and, it cannot be denied that the world is getting warmer and perhaps warmer than we expected but we’re not seeing it because it is being hidden by the hiatus that is hiding our view of reality. In reality, what we can very likely expect will be a big jump in average global temperatures when the hiatus burns out. Until then, global warming still is catastrophic–e.g.,

    Even though there is this hiatus in this surface average temperature, we’re still getting record heat waves, we’re still getting harsh bush fires…..it shows we shouldn’t take any comfort from this plateau in global average temperatures. ~Professor Matthew England (a super-intelligent science professor on ABC)

    • You know, I wonder about that.

      Say there is a super El Nino, and reported “global average temperatures” jump, and keep slowly rising.

      I know every warmist around will claim that is proof that the heat was hiding in the oceans. But how does heat accumulate for 17+ years, without being noticed, and then “return” to the atmosphere in an extremely short time span?

      I know actually understanding the climate is no bar to predicting changes in GAT by tenths of a degree, but wouldn’t it be refreshing if someone could actually predict a mechanism for such a bizarre occurrence? Before it happens.

      • As it turns out, a hypothesized ‘hot spot’ gone missing means the jig is up! Everyone knew by the mid ’90s that the continued claim by the Left about a consensus opinion on the validity of AGW theory was only evidence of the existence an ideologically-motivated pathological science being put forward as mainstream thought for political purposes–i.e., propaganda!

      • “But how does heat accumulate for 17+ years, without being noticed, and then “return” to the atmosphere in an extremely short time span?”

        Good question. But I think you gave a possible reason in your quip about el Nino / la Nina. Also question whether it has been noticed (tip, google for ocean heat).

        One thing I remember from school science was about how the ocean moderates temperature. The islands have much smaller temperature extremes than the continents. So it’s never really surprised me that the oceans could absorb extra heat when the air temperatures have increased. What happens when they eventually equilibriate is the next question

  28. My favorite is the job-creation stat from the U.S. bureaucrat. Good rule of thumb for all citizens: When a microeconomic policy (a stadium subsidy, a solar subsidy, a trade agreement or a trade barrier, a ban on incandescent lightbulbs, etc.) is purported to “create jobs” the claim is almost certainly nonsense (and if true are almost certainly a bad thing.) That’s because the total number of jobs in the economy depends on 1) aggregate demand and supply conditions, not sector-specific ones, 2) resources diverted into one sector come from another, and 3) the overall labor-intensiveness of the economy. Studies that claim that micro policy x will “create jobs” never look at the ripple effects of resource diversion. If the government passed a law that no one was allowed to cook his own meals, that would “create jobs,” as would a ban on the use of powered equipment during road construction. In each case, however, other jobs would be lost and the overall standard of living would go down.

  29. QUIZ:

    They did all they possibly could do – more than anyone has ever been done – to diminish government. That is their legacy and it is that legacy that still has our backs.

    Who are ‘they’ in the sentence above:
    (a) Public school teachers
    (b) Scientists
    (c) The Founding Fathers

    • Wag,
      Founding fathers were really very insightful and wise. Even Reagan could not reverse the trends in eight years. Bush “read my lips, no new taxes” failed and lost. Partially due to 3rd party but since then an unmitigated disaster. Hard to see how this ends well. But we have to keep fighting as they did in the dark days because liberty always demands fighting the intrussions of the elite. What a time when the elite in this country were for freedom, free speach and self reliance.

  30. There are two statements this week that illustrate the core malevolence within the AR 5 Statement for Policy Makers:

    Steve McIntyre:
    ” I believe that the strength of the “consensus” varies by proposition and that too often climate promoters will bait-and-switch from consensus on something relatively uncontroversial (e.g. GHG having some impact) to green solution fantasies…”

    And Gina McCarthy”

    “And the great thing about this proposal is it really is an investment opportunity. This is not about pollution control.”

    So Dr. Curry, you are correct:

    “…science is increasingly becoming a side show, and used when it is convenient to justify a politically desirable policy. ”

    Our Government officials, from EPA Chief McCarty to John Holdren at Science and Technology to our President Obama we are seeing the machinations of an Imperial Presidency mimicking the early features of the French Revolution, Robespierre’s Reign of Terror.

  31. “Its conclusions have been reached with high statistical confidence by a working group made up of many of the world’s leading climate scientists drawing on areas of well-understood science.”

    What??? End of sentence? Full stop?

    This is a PERFECT example of how us anti-science types just roll on the floor laughing wondering how it is possible these guys can actually write this with a straight face.

    Ummmm…what conclusions would you be referring to? Exactly?

    Call me crazy, but I think a blanket statement here is inappropriate as the confidence may possibly change depending on which conclusion we are talking about.

    Strangely enough the IPCC agrees with me, not them.

  32. What is the consensus opinion — True or False: CO2 is climate pollution.

    • The general gutlessness and political corruption exposed in one simple question.

      It will never be polled by liberal establishments that indeed control most polling and dissemination. You could expect massive obstruction if such a poll was attempted outside the usual politically correct channels. Most would abstain, shameful in itself.

  33. Alexej Buergin

    JC conclusions
    “Well, that is politics.”

    It is, and that is sad (and not just in regard to our topic)..

  34. Alexej Buergin

    Current UK politics: The (momentary) big parties are like the two cheeks of a youknowwhat, and the Lib-Dems are in between.

  35. Curious George

    A statistical confidence in a “conclusion” is reached in science in these two steps per http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Statistical_hypothesis_testing:

    1. Form a hypothesis (“conclusion” in IPCC jargon).
    2. Test it against available data. The more data you have the more confidence you may get. There are formulas to compute a confidence level from a number of observations supporting or opposing the hypothesis.

    Please note that a statistical confidence has nothing to do with a size of a working group, or the number of leading climate scientists in it.

  36. Jim Cripwell

    Who going to bell the cat?

  37. Once you embrace the proposition that there is no such thing as a climate scientist, you can then hope that one day there will be such a things as a climate scientist. Not till then can you hope.

    Climate science sort-of exists. Just like there were doctors before there was anatomy. I wonder if those doctors went before gatherings of great men to testify on “tackling miasma”? Probably.

    • There is weather which is a science (meteorology); and, there is climate which involves psychology (the study of the mind) and political science (another discipline in the social sciences).

    • The miasma explanation survived for close to 2000 years. I trust that for the sake of humanity the CAGW “explanation” will not do so.

  38. Well, that’s very brave of Judith – complaining of ‘politicizing’ the IPCC when she’s just recently been trying to, admittedly hamfistedly, poltiicize a simple data issue.

    And this?

    “If people are concerned about the adverse impacts of extreme weather events, reducing CO2 emissions are not going to have any impact on policy relevant time scales, even if you accept the IPCC analyses. Resources expended on energy policy are in direct conflict with reducing vulnerability to extreme events.” -JC

    Oh dear.

    We know that human judgement is quite poor when it comes to assessing risk, and it gets worse over longertimescales. All Judith does here is to give voice to that failing.

    Maybe it can be our new health message to young smokers – look you might get cancer, but that’s probably 40-50 yrs away and really, that’s not relevent on policy time scales.

    Just too stoopid.

    • Kids would you like to feel more super human? Leave it too, Michael.

      • Can anyone translate?

      • The United Nations is already there to help us all. You can’t see it? Look around the world. Top to bottom, inside out, upside down. Who needs more data when we have TV & your comments.

      • Anyone else?…please.

      • It’s OK, you live in a vapour not smoke.

        James 4:14 Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away


    • Rob Starkey


      The fact that you seem unable to understand Judith’s point is indicative of your bias.

      There is no reliable information to show that increased levels atmospheric CO2 has led to more extreme weather events as the IPCC has claimed.

      Even if there was such evidence there is not evidence that incurring the costs to mitigate CO2 emissions will result in any decrease in severe weather during the lifetimes of those paying for them and the expense on mitigation takes funds away from other activities that will surely reduce the harms from any adverse weather that does occur-regardless of the root cause.

      • I understand it, it’s just wrong.

        Why should people now pay the costs of public health and prevention measures that won’t have benefits within their life-time?

        It’s short term and narrow thinking, a misunderstanding of policy formulation, and commits the cognitive error of being overly optimistic of the future.

      • Decimation is wrong and you are right, Michael.

    • Michael: Here is an example of what Dr Curry said: If you want to reduce the risk of hurricane damage there are better ways to do that than reducing CO2 emissions. There are ways that will do less damage to the economy and will have more immediate results.

      • No one anywhere has suggested that we shouldn’t have good adaptation. For instance here in Oz, we have mandatory cyclone rating building codes. That’s sensible adaption. Those codes can be changed over time, but there are significant costs that “damage the economy” that aren’t so easy to adapt to.

        Judith continually tries to portray this as an either/or choice. It isn’t.

      • The most efficient use of resources can be an either/or choice.

      • Yes, but it isn’t.

      • “When a market fails to allocate resources efficiently, there is said to be market failure.”
        When a government fails to allocate resources efficiently, there is said to be a failure of government.
        “WWF says nations need to make a special effort to maximize the benefits of ecosystem-based adaptation. It will probably deliver the best value for money.” – WWF

      • Michael: Dr Curry knows more about predicting extreme weather events and the effective use of resources for adaptation to those events than most climate scientists. I think it would help you to regard her as an expert in this area and read some of her papers.

      • Sorry, I didn’t realise that she was an expert on the economics of natural disasters.

        Or on disaster response and adaptation.

      • ” If you want to reduce the risk of hurricane damage there are better ways to do that than reducing CO2 emissions”

        Best way is to put whatever one is smoking down and get a talented psychiatrist.

    • The resemblance to Joshua is uncanny.

    • Resources expended on energy policy are in direct conflict with reducing vulnerability to extreme events.” -JC

      Known in the US as the Gerry Ford fallacy, that one can only be done at the expense of the other. Not even worthy of a sixth grade debate.

      • The reality is that there are budgets in the US government, passed by congress in the form of appropiations. Climate spending by the federal government is done in the form of multiple appropriations, each federal department having it’s own appropriation. Complicating your arguement is the fact that congress must offset increased spending on climate with spending cuts or revenue increases (this may not have been true in Gerald Ford’s day). And each little paragraph of each appropriation has advocates. If a congressman proposes a cut in any part of the budget lobbyists will be at his door with cash or threats to remove cash.

      • So, tax increases are off the table? Fees for polluting the atmosphere are not allowed? C;mon.

      • Rob Starkey


        The US currently spends roughly 35% more than it generates in revenue. Taxes will have to be raised just to make up that inbalance.

        How about you try to be realistic. There are limited financial resources. The US economy is not like it was when Jerry Ford was president. then we had a relatively balanced budget- now we are on a path to national failure based on pretending we can spend more than we generate FOREVER.

  39. John Vonderlin

    The smoking analogy is a very poor one. It didn’t take sophisticated and controversial statistical analyses to prove to me or anybody I knew that smoking was harmful many years before the Surgeon General asserted that was the case. Organic foods’ long term health benefits are a more accurate health message analogy. As a one time extreme organic farmer in the Seventies, I can assure you I was a true believer and walked the walk, as well as talked the talk. I spent a lot of my limited capital to follow my beliefs rigorously. Decades later, observational science has demonstrated to me clearly that much of my efforts and expense were wasted. While chemical usage, GMOs and other issues with industrial farming need to be controlled wisely and investigated thoroughly, to have had the whole country follow my unfounded, nearly religious beliefs would have been an economic disaster, particularly for the poor.
    Given that obesity and all the health problems associated with it are highly connected to poverty, perhaps at least some good would have come from much higher food prices. It’s harder to see how driving the energy prices skyward from similar misplaced beliefs in CAGW and the necessity of expensive mitigation will have even that kind of potential silver lining.

    • What do you think the long term effects on all people will be in relation to Butane Hash Oil and ecigs?

      • Michael, if you would care to comment on this subject, I have been assured that BHO is a ‘green’ drug that may even cure cancer. I have my doubts but what do I know at my age.

    • “The smoking analogy is a very poor one. It didn’t take sophisticated and controversial statistical analyses to prove to me or anybody I knew that smoking was harmful many years before the Surgeon General asserted that was the case” – John.

      And yet, large numbers of people still smoke.

      And it did indeed take sophisticated epidemiological work to establish the link – and like with AGW, vested interests fought hard against this and tried to deny any link between cigarettes and health impacts.

      The important message is that contrary to Judith’s assertions, we do indeed take policy action in respect to outcomes over long time frames.

      Judith is, yet again, getting confused over policy and politics – she’s arguing about the difficulty of action at the level of political time-scales as a reason not to take policy action, on the basis that policy only relates to short-term political time-scales.

      It’s a dog’s breakfast of confusion and flat-out wrong-headedness.

      • Yes, yes, exactly Michael! Can’t you see the beauty of the analogy naq? Nobody “needs” a cigarette just as nobody “needs” to heat their homes in the winter. And your antiquated fixation on being able to get to work tomorrow? Please! No different than an addict sneaking to the stairwell late at night for a sweet, sweet taste of the Virginia weed.
        Just relax, let “science” take this misery of light bulbs and industry and air conditioning away. Well, from you anyway. Michael will be enjoying Havana hand-rolleds on the jet to the Rio conference. But it’s for your own good, can’t you see that!

      • No. She’s arguing that with any kind of normal discount rate, if you are concerned about the impact of current and next-several-decade extreme weather events, resources devoted to CO2 mitigation instead of adaptation are a loser. That’s because the lag between mitigation action and impact on extreme weather–if you believe the putative consensus–is extremely long. It has nothing to do with confusing politics and policy. It has to do with not lying to people about the ability of mitigation to affect the extreme weather events that have them concerned.

      • steve,

        Yes, it is interesting to see Judith continue to advocate policy positions – sad to see science undermined so!

        Back to the point – Judith, and others, assume a hand-waving “damage to the economy”as the basis for their claims, though the majority of economic analysis are suggesting the greatest “damage to the economy” will come from inaction on AGW, over anything but the shorter time-frames. Delaying mitigation is reducing it’s effectiveness and increasing costs for the future.

        There is no either or. We need adaptation. We need mitigation

      • If we rule out the insane zero-discount-rate Stern report, we’re left with some studies that say IF we ran a theoretically optimal tax policy with global coverage that cut other taxes to make up for the new CO2 levies, then we might get a small gain and other studies that say even such a nirvana policy comes out behind.

        All of these studies are wildly biased in favor of mitigation because they assume that there is no consumer surplus in the goods that would be driven out of production by CO2 taxes–that the marginal unit consumed of any good has the same value as the inframarginal units. In other words, the lost welfare from reduced production is measured at market prices, as though consumers were indifferent between buying and not buying goods. That’s an okay technical assumption in order to make back-of-the-envelope calculations about tiny changes in prices simpler but it is a serious error for policy analysis of big changes. It leads to a massive undervaluing of foregone consumption.

    • Great to hear that, John. While I do grow my stuff “organically” it’s because I have no need to do otherwise. And I certainly don’t ask for praise or certification from the ponytails. As a consumer (and conservationist) I boycott nothing but I prefer non-organic over organic when possible. Maybe we could start one of those “movements”.

      As for the smoking thing: I used to have a 1913 Everyman’s Encyclopedia which said much the same things about tobacco use as we hear now. (On the other hand, there has been, in recent decades, a mystifying level of ignorance about marijuana damage and withdrawal.) While I’m aware that tobacco execs fib and fudge to dodge lawsuits, my take is that just about everyone has always known about tobacco and that it has zilch to do with the climate debate.

      • ” just about everyone has always known about tobacco”

        Amazing revisionism!!

        Must just be a complete coincidence that the rates of smoking have dropped sharply in line with public anti-smoking campaigns.

      • Knowing about tobacco and copping extreme public discouragement are two different things.

        I repeat: it has been generally known for some centuries that tobacco undermines human health. I was born in 1949 and it was never a mystery to me. Smokers told me! Public acceptance of smoking was the problem, not ignorance.

      • Mosomoso, it’s easy to keep straight- smoking is bad unless it’s smoking that’s good. They have “research” and everything.

        In fact I’ll bet that the consensus among cannabis scientists publishing in safe access now approved journals is even greater than 97% that smoking leftist-approved plants is great! How can you question that?

      • mosomso,

        Smoking was advertsied for it’s health benefits, mostly spurious, but strangely enough, it does have a few small and well-known beneficial side-effects.

      • It does have a few slight benefits, Michael. But I’m awfully glad I took the advice of all the parents, relatives, friends, doctors, teachers, clerics etc of my era – many of whom smoked – and that I did not take up what was always called a “filthy habit” or a “vice”. Mind you, I was never a bore or a lecturer on the subject – and I did do all the other stupid things you could do in the sixties and seventies.

    • John –

      ==> “Given that obesity and all the health problems associated with it are highly connected to poverty, perhaps at least some good would have come from much higher food prices.”

      Well, that has the promise to be some quite remarkable logic. I’m hoping that you could elaborate a bit more on what you see might be the benefits of higher food prices.

      • Actually, even better if you could explain the benefits of much higher food prices.

        I’m a HUGE fan of “skeptical” logic, and this looks to be a fine specimen. Please, elaborate!

    • The smoking analogy is also poor because in that instance all the vested interests (certainly in terms of large amounts of money) were on one side only. Individual scientists could further their careers (quite properly) by proving the health risks, but no companies stood to gain huge amounts of money by showing how harmful smoking could be.

      When it comes to global warming, there are massive vested interests that want the alarm to be sounded as loudly as possible – NGOs, renewable energy companies, etc. On the other side stands the coal industry, but plenty of big oil companies have hedged their position by setting up renewable divisions to suckle on the subsidies.

      • You might look up the later career of one Fredrick Seitz.

      • The point I was making is that on the smoking issue, there were no major vested interests supporting the medical stance that it is harmful. On global warming, there are plenty of vested interests trumpeting the dangers.
        Referring to Seitz just confirms my point.

      • How about the manufacturers of nicotine patches?

      • As far as I know nicotine patches came on the scene a long time after the big fights over the science behind the dangers of smoking.

      • Quit smoking campaigns started in the 1960’s.

      • After WW2 my Uncle left Naval Research Laboratory and became a scientist for an international chemical company. His lab produced synthetic tobaccos.

      • “Quit smoking campaigns started in the 1960’s.”

        With medical backing, yes. And as far as I know nicotine patches became available in the 1980’s-90’s. So the manufacturers weren’t an issue in the medically-backed anti-smoking campaigns that started earlier. So all the vested interests in the anti-smoking debate were on one side, which is why it’s a bad analogy to the climate wars.

        I really don’t understand where you’re coming from here.

      • That your attempt to downplay any possibility of “vested interests” on anti-tobacco side is a-historical and has nothing to with reality. Govt’s poured millions into public health campaigns, research, NGO’s etc.

        So what?

        It’s just more delusional conspiracy ideation.

      • Michael, you suggested nicotine patches as an example of a vested interest. I point out they didn’t exist until decades after the real heat of the anti-smoking debate had died down and it’s enough for you to label me a conspiracist?

        But thanks anyway for admitting that government-funded NGOs are a vested interest. I’m sick of hearing claims from your side that they’re just objective, caring people trying to save the planet.

      • So now you agree that anti-moking NGO’sa re a vested interest?

        So it was all about vested interests wanting “the alarm to be sounded as loudly as possible”.

        Bloody smoking alarmists!

  40. Once an issue becomes political and money is involved, all common sense together with background important issues fly out of the room. A new problem emerges. The discussion is taken away from the main issue: Is the research and the science reputable. In my non-scientific background, the answer is NO. There is a lot in nature we simply don’t know/understand and certain people are afraid to admit their shortcomings. That is why we now have deniers and sceptics.

    • Now there’s another fine example of “skeptical” logic.

      July temps at BWI = a significant indicator relative to the risk of long-term climate change as the result of ACO2.

      You boyz are on a roll tonight.

  41. John Vonderlin

    Here’s an excerpt from the Foreword of a 1916 treatise titled, “The Brown God and His White Imps” : “The Tobacco Habit is, at present the greatest single evil in this land. The more violent, immediate and visible effects of the Liquor Traffic had led most of us to regard it as the greatest enemy to civilization, but a careful study of the effects of tobacco will convince any intelligent and open-minded person that tobacco is at least a very close second to liquor, if not a greater evil in the aggregate.”
    The evils of tobacco were easily and fairly quickly seen and heard and smelled by everyone, even smokers. The effects of increasing CO2 are subtle, mixed, and very slow to reveal themselves to anybody with certainty. Being an intelligent and open-minded person if the risk was obvious and imminent I wouldn’t be a Lukewarmer. Your usage of tobacco’s health risk as an analogy highlights the weakness of your case.
    To cede to governmental control the production of something so integral to nearly every facet of our lives, including breathing, would require extraordinary proof in my opinion. I’ve not seen it, nowhere near it.

    • Yes, John,

      It was known to everyone, since forever.

      But strangely while some were saying it was evil, some were promoting it for it’s healthful effects.

      Even more strangely, the tobacco lobby suddenly decided to wage a war against the idea that smoking was bad, just because some epidemiologist said it was, even though even already knew it.

      Curiouser and curiouser!!

      • To make the point clearer: if it just someone’s opinion, then that is no big deal, because the advertisers can promote their opinion that smoking is cool and “good”. Let the best argued opinion win, and so on. But once it becomes “scientifically proven” that smoking is a medical disaster, then the public health authorities have an obligation to reduce the harm by introducing regulations against the harmful substance. And it’s all downhill from there, from the point of view of the tobacco companies.

        Pretty similar to the situation now with greenhouse gasses. If the climate effects are all just people’s opinions, then we’re only talking politics. But once there is solid science saying that it’s actually harmful – and especially as the extent of the potential harm begins to be better understood – then the defense of the companies selling CO2 emitting products that “opinions differ” on whether they’re bad begins to be untenable. Hence the attacks we see on the scientific credibility of climate scientists and climate science.

    • The parallel between the toboacco-company ‘science’ on the health effects of smoking, and government ‘science’ on global warming ‘science’ are abundantly clear : both were geared to produce results that favoured their paymaster, by skewing and twisting the science in their favour. Both pretended their funds were not used to advance their vested interest.

      The ideas that smoking is healthy, and that global warming is a certain imminent disater, are both science forgeries of the highest order.

  42. Judith –

    If you want to reduce the risk of hurricane damage there are better ways to do that than reducing CO2 emissions. There are ways that will do less damage to the economy and will have more immediate results.


    I thought that you distinguish your advocacy activism um….. concern about the negative impact of politicization of science, on the basis of not making policy recommendations.

    In what construct of the world is that not a policy recommendation? Unless you have no actual “ways” in mind, you are absolutely advocating for specific policies (to the exclusion of others).

    Of course, maybe you don’t have any actual specific policies in mind (that would be less economically damaging and have more immediate results).

    But if that’s the case, then….uh….I guess it would mean that you’re criticizing some policies as being inferior to others without having an actual basis for doing so.

    That would be awfully odd, wouldn’t it?

    • There are many policy alternatives to taxes and caps.

      e.g. http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/27939/1/HartwellPaper_English_version.pdf

      Looking at some of these might be more useful than furiously nit-picking like some OCD chimpanzee.

      • Rob,

        Did you read it ??

        It proposes a carbon tax as one policy option.

      • Have you read it? It proposes a low, hypothecated tax intended to fund energy research. This is not a near term idea.

        A buck a ton? Certainly not enough to satisfy climate extremists. Probably best just to drop it – it confuses deranged neo-socialists.

      • It’s a tax.

        It calls it a tax.

        Anything else?

      • Hell – I’d suggest a billion dollar energy prize. Sort of like this but on steroids.


        Far less than a buck a ton.

        Not really what gormless greens have in mind.

      • That was a just a starting point – the policy recommendation is for a progressively increasing carbon tax.

        Good to see you getting on board with sensible mitigation strategies.

      • ‘In contrast, our strategy is more modest and specific. Under it, the political priority of governments would switch from the preoccupation with emissions targets under the previous “Kyoto” regime to credible long-term global commitments and methods to invest in energy innovation. A slowly rising but initially low carbon tax has the advantages of avoiding negative growth effects. We are aware that as a general rule politicians in general and Ministries of Finance in particular hate the principle of hypothecation, because it ties their hands. We see that fact as one of the virtues of hypothecation, because it removes the issue
        from the political arena in just that way, and by doing so, may help to restore public trust at a time when the stock of politicians is not high in many of the democracies. None of this is hypothetical. In the February 2010 Union Budget, the Indian Minister of Finance, Pranab Mukherjee, established a National Clean Energy Fund to support RD&D and to be funded by a tax of Rs.50/ton on both
        domestic and imported coal.’

        50 Rupees/ton of coal? Less than 50c/ton o CO2 – all devoted to R&D. Jackbooted greenshirt delusional fantasies notwithstanding.

      • That’s the problem with mentioning a carbon tax. They start humping legs and peeing on the floor.

    • Perhaps you’d care to quantify how much hurricane risk will reduce if emissions are reduced.

    • Joshua: Your comment quoting Dr Curry is inaccurate. That was not a quote of anybody. It was a hypothetical example that I provide to Michael, in response to his request.

      • Joshua: My bad. Should have written it more clearly. A better lead in would have been ‘here is a hypothetical example that might help you understand what she was saying’

      • this is funny…. Joshua, there were no quotation marks, no italics, no indentation…. nothing to suggest it was a direct quotation. When I read it, having read JC’s lead article for this thread, it was obvious that it was not a direct quotation.

        Why not just limit yourself to a quick apology? It’s a simple minor matter, but too typical of how you operate here (as others have noted). Leave it to politicians to do the “limited, partial hangout” thing (a Watergate phrase when trying to avoid responsibility).

        Trying to put it back upon the wording of rls is silly, imho. His wording was fine. Accepting responsibility includes not trying to make someone else share in the blame for your “bad”….

      • ooops now my turn to apologize!! Sorry, Joshua.

        I saw the “Joshua: my bad” and thought I was reading your comment (while I was scanning comments too quickly). Ok, so rls agrees the comment should have been written more clearly, and I apologize for picking on Joshua when it was my misreading.

        I still think the rls comment was fine and clear as a non-quotation, but obviously I booted my response to Joshua.

      • Skip,

        This is what rls wrote before the excerpt that Joshua used;
        “Michael: Here is an example of what Dr Curry said…”

        An example of what Dr Curry said. Maybe you need to ponder that a bit more carefully.

        But yes, I blame Joshua – he should know better than to assume that the ‘skeptics’ could get anything right.

      • skiphil –

        No apology needed, and I don’t think you’re picking on me.

        It was a mistake on my part. No excuses – but an explanation: I only skimmed Judith’s post a couple of hours before writing my comment, and then came back to read the comments and found that and wrongly assumed it was a quote.

        I considered putting the string into the search box before writing my comment but neglected to do so before writing my comment. That’;s something I certainly should have done even if it were a quote of Judith – so as to make sure that I understood the context. It was sloppy.

        So an apology from me seems in order.

        Judith – I apologize for misattributing that quote to you. It was sloppy on my part. No excuses.

        To make mosher happy, I’ll add.

        No doubt, my error reflects a “motivated reasoning” or confirmation bias on my part. I certainly know that before commenting on a quote, I should obtain information related to the context of my quote. I violated simple principles of good-faith discussion. I did that because of my belief that your approach to “advocacy” as it relates to climate change is inconsistent – and my belief biased my reasoning process. I am certainly prone to motivated reasoning just like everyone here. My pattern recognition mode of thinking led me to falsely see isolated information as fitting into a pattern, and my ideological orientation corrupted my analysis.

        Kind of like this:


        Again – not an excuse, but an explanation.


      • rls –

        ==> “Joshua: My bad. Should have written it more clearly.”

        No problem. The mistake was on me, not how you wrote it. The reason I made the error is that I was working backwards from Michael’s comment and assumed it was a quote w/o checking.

        That’s on me. But thank’s for the benefit of the doubt, and the courtesy of engaging in good faith. That’s rare around here (displayed consistently only by John Carpenter, ordvic, and long gone BillC, IMO), and I want to express my appreciation.

      • Well, actually – the “reason” is better explained in my comment related to my reasoning being biased by “motivation.” See above.

      • John Carpenter

        Joshua, best blog apology EVAH!

      • John Carpenter –

        ==> “Joshua, best blog apology EVAH!”

        Thanks. Of course I’m sure it’s just a coincidence that you’d feel that way about an apology that also contained a compliment to your approach to blog discourse!


    • Steven Mosher


      question. who are you quoting?

  43. Everybody needs to get real. Fast. No fooling.

  44. John Vonderlin

    While the silver lining comment was meant to be more satirical than substantive, it is kind of hard to be obese if you can’t afford or find the food that would make you that way, isn’t it? Please note my usage of the words “perhaps,” and “some” to indicate the throwaway nature of that assertion in my previous comment. However: ( Wikipedia: Caloric restriction without malnutrition has been shown to work in a variety of species, among them yeast, fish, rodents and dogs to decelerate the biological aging process, resulting in longer maintenance of youthful health and an increase in both median and maximum lifespan.)
    The poverty/obesity connection is complex, with poor food choices being important. But, Americans have relative to their income the cheapest food in the world, and those prone to make bad choices across the spectrums of human behavior can do so very easily in their dietary choices. If that wasn’t so because of high food prices they might have better diets and better health as was evidenced in Britain in WWII.

    • John –

      => “While the silver lining comment was meant to be more satirical than substantive, it is kind of hard to be obese if you can’t afford or find the food that would make you that way, isn’t it?”

      The reason why obesity is correlated with income is because (at least in part) many less expensive foods tend to be more fattening and because the “free market” makes sure that those inexpensive and fattening foods are readily available in low income areas and because the “free market” spends a lot of money advertising those less expensive/highly fattening foods to low income consumers.

      ==> “The poverty/obesity connection is complex, ”

      Yes, and your simple equation of less money to spend on food would result in lower obesity is shown incoherent by the very fact that obesity is correlated with lower income.

      Keep in mind as well that the body adjusts to lower caloric intake. So, this:

      ==> “But, Americans have relative to their income the cheapest food in the world, ”

      is misleadingly simplistic.

  45. Accepting the IPCC report is not politicizing it. It is just politicians accepting the science. This is the way we would want them to behave rather than just rejecting it outright, which would be political. It is depressing for skeptics who are angry that once again they have failed to put up any showing on a committee, but clearly now they are being outmaneuvered at every turn and they need to regroup after their latest defeat.

    • Jim D: Oops. Missed that turn in Australia. And what happened with Cap and Trade in the US? And Germany building coal plants? I don’t think the skeptics are surprised or disappointed. It’s not a game with a score. As more is known over time the players will start leaving the field, the spectators will pack up and go home, and the game will fade away.

      • The game above was seen played at Hogwarts. On one side the dark radiative force and on the other side the enlightened force of cloudian.

      • If you don’t think the movement in Australia was purely political, you would be out of touch with what they are doing there.

    • Jim D., the IPCC is a political creation with a policy conclusion before the first science report was ever reviewed or cataloged. With the idiotic alliance to crony nuclear interests at the time Reagan threw the greenshirt left a bone most likely following Thatcher’s lead in the U.K. which to a degree was targeting coal mining unions. She was cognitive enough to acknowledge her mistakes in the end.

      It took a whole village to create the IPCC political monster. The dream of regulating, populist hatred of energy interests and desire of specialty tax targeting long predates the global warming scam. The IPCC work is brochure ware for power lust and nothing more. The loss of integrity of science, if not corrected, move the world ever closer to the Orwellian reality so many fear and reject.

  46. jimd

    Its strange that the sceptics are being ‘outmaneuvered at every turn’ when they have so many vast resources. Oh wait, thats warmists….

    I think what it does illustrate Jim, is that sceptics to do not access to the huge sums of money that is supposedly thrown at them at every turn and that the GWPF-as I continually point out-are inconsequential and have very little influence in the corridors of power and influence.

    I try to engage directly with the two most influential organisations of their type in the UK (apart from Parliament) and that is the Environment Agency and the Met office.

    Each have far more sceptics than I had realised. Most will certainly not put their heads above the parapet but think that AGW has been overstated. That is not to say they don’t believe that man has no impact but that his influence is exaggerated, or they just don’t know its extent


  47. The climate debate was politicised from the beginning. both by the UN committee set up to run it and Democrat Preisident aspirant AL Gore’s Sdi=Fi film depicting its supposed results. Heavily influenced by ninetieth century scientist Aeehenius the formation of the IPCC was approved by the UNFCCC with the provision that the ‘science was settled’. Apparently they believed that no new research was necessary. How wrong they were.

  48. When one of these so-called ‘experts’ and policy-makers can demonstrate to me publicly the ability to hold back the incoming tide in the Severn Estuary (or the Bay of Fundy if they prefer) I will accept the claim that we can ‘stabilise’ or hold back ‘climate change’. Until then, tell me how I can adapt and spend money on adapting rather than on ecologically damaging windmills and solar panels.

    • The Severn in catastrophic flood now would no doubt attract one of those dodgy comments like “while we cannot say that this single event was caused by human activity, nonetheless we will be seeing more and more of such events and of they will be of much greater intensity etc etc”. I won’t go on. You know the drill by now, guys.

      Just as well they didn’t have “climate change” back in 1607. Amazing how the Bristol Channel and Severn Estuary made all that trouble without a boost from “climate change”. But if St. Mary Magdalene’s flood could swamp Europe the way it did in 1342, you’d have to think this “climate change” whatsy is a real pussycat compared to…well, whatever actually makes stuff happen.

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  50. Money speaks the loudest.
    While people put up green schemes and governments walk the talk they will go ahead.
    Once reality bites and there is no promised income and the waste becomes apparent the governments will shut them down.
    Swings and roundabouts and IPCC recommendations will go. The momentum is building.
    Not to mention the science.

  51. If one reads the oral (and the written) testimony, it is clear that the Curryside sent clowns like Monckton (wrtten) and Donna Laframboise (oral) to the hearings. This is a sure tell that there is no there here. Is it any wonder that the committee came down where it did?

    • Yet another data point that sharply demonstrates that Eli, and Tamino and like-minded colleagues, maintain blogs the sole objective of which is to presumptively label people in a disgustingly derogatory manner, and to provide a platform for regular commenters to do the same. All the while denying commenters who address the issues an opportunity to participate.

      Climate Scientists continuing to dig to the very bottom.

      • Rabett appears to be a hate spewing “educator” in all fairness to actual “scientists” but I get the point. Where is the internal discipline and self policing inside the climate advocacy movement on the part of actual scientists and imagined responsible leaders? No where to be seen.

      • Oh my, Eli said “clown”.

        How disgraceful!

        Where are my pearls? want to clutch them too.

      • What are the actual issues relating to politicizing the IPCC report captured by the word clowns?

      • Dan, the clowns are digging for the pearl worth more than all their tribe.

      • Dang, that was supposed to be ‘all their troupe’.

      • Dan,

        Maybe that buy sending a clown spouting gibberish they were showing they had little interest in science, but a lot in political rhetoric.

      • Ah, Michael, the perils of rhetorical questions. You cast your pearls before we swine and now they are all gone. Perhaps the next clutch you feel will be a well-deserved and well-administered Kansas City version.

      • Where did the swine go Tom?

      • An excellent additional data point by Michael. A speculative conditional, “maybe”, assigned to specific issues, “gibberish”.

        That certainly clarified that.

      • I didn’t want to be too definite. Maybe I’m wrong.
        But reading the transcript, it’s hard to avoid the ‘clown’ conclusion.

        Have you read it? If so, did you squirm with embarrassment?

      • I didn’t want to be too definite.

        Well, ok then. You met that goal. In spades, with flying colors, A+ success, & etc.

    • Your pathology is pretty well summed up that you think the Keeling Curve needs a donation to be “saved” on your site. What a joke.

      • cwon once more proves Eli right

        The Keeling curve is supported by grants from NOAA and NASA. These have been under threat because those budgets are tight. You might want to read this letter from Ralph Keeling about the effort Eli participates in

        ….Importantly, the attention raised by this effort has paid dividends much larger than actual dollar sum. I want to offer a heartfelt thanks to everyone who contributed. It has been gratifying to see help come in from people all over the world who understand the value of long-term observations such as the Keeling Curve. It really helps to know that there is a public support base that we can turn to in tough times like we have faced lately. This funding will be used to support key elements of the long-term program. We have daily needs that range from maintaining the supply of calibration gases in our instruments to Mauna Loa to the analysis of air samples brought into our La Jolla lab from stations ranging from the South Pole to the northernmost point of Alaska.

    • I would have done better. But I would focus more on issues where I leverage my engineering and economics background. Lately I’ve been living in the EU after running away from Venezuela, and I find their energy policy to be quite a shambles. They need somebody like me, wise, old, and full of common sense to tell them what to do, that’s for sure. If this keeps up I’m moving to Mauritius.

  52. Pseudo-intellectual superiority arguments from the left are nothing new, it goes far beyond the climate cabal;


    The decline of the partisan media monopoly is one trend the largely state funded academic enclave are reacting to.

  53. I believe Michael makes some valid points. As Lilley and Stringer stated, I also believe in the “basic science” and that AGW is occurring. But, with so much uncertainty in the sciences, I also don’t really have a clue as to its timing and magnitude.

    Believing in the “basic science”, the one thing that sticks in my head is the question Dr. Molina (Nobel prize in ozone and CFCs) always asks: “Is it a good idea to follow a GHG emissions trajectory to 800 ppm?”

    The “Politicizing” of AGW has occurred because “Liberal Ideology” has been allowed to “frame” the policy debate — with command/control and top bottom approaches like carbon taxes and/or cap and trade.

    Republicans (in general) have not really offered alternative approaches to this “Liberal paradigm” based on Conservative principles. For the most part, it seems like the GOP (especially its Tea Party segment) just want an “ideological fight”.

    In the last Presidential primaries, Jon Huntsman tried to change the narrative within the GOP with a national commitment to 3 key building blocks: (1) Energy Efficiency technology innovation and advancement for U.S. goods and services; (2) greater use and export of natural gas using safe fracking; (3) International trade (especially to developing countries).

    As a volunteer for Gov. Huntsman, I saw how he was treated as a Liberal, Ozone Al Gore look alike within the GOP.

    Huntsman was both following the “basic science” and also recognizing the tremendous science uncertainties. It is Dr. Molina’s trajectory path that Huntsman was trying to address — recognizing that like a cruise ship, sharp 90 degree turns are impossible.

    Addressing the trajectory path of AGW will take time. An example of this is the latest ACEE Report, which ranked U.S. energy efficiency as lackluster compared to other leading world economies.


    • What a preposterous analysis regarding conservatives wanting an “ideological fight”. You seem to ignore it that it isn’t just the U.S. left that has driven the meme of global Soviet like climate authority expansion into every freedom and individual right but it’s a worldwide event. The IPCC is a function of U.N. power grasping. Blaming libertarians and conservatives for their reaction is similar to demanding the arrest of a homeowner for beating a burglar to a pulp after being caught breaking into his house.

      Huntsman is the worst sort of pandering fifth column GOP member who should just defect outright to the Democratic Party and work on that level of extremism over there. Take John McCain and Lindsey Graham with you while you’re traveling. Pandering and deal making are exactly what isn’t required in the sham of climate taxing and social control regimes.

      “Uncertainty” is effectively a weasel word for “we have no science evidence” and filtering to the “precautionary principle” is a blank check for greenshirt excess and authority effectively just as insidious as the very worst climate fascists who still think they are on the rise.

      Sorry, there is no compromise with this level of evil.

    • The climate discussion ended in the US congress when cap and trade was defeated. The cap and trade votes also contributed to the Republican wave in 2010. Today, climate is no concern to the public and the elected officials in congress hear the silence; the only action is that of the Obama administration and it is tenuous. In three years there will be another administration and the debate may be very different than what we see today.

  54. While I agree with Dr. Curry, I don’t think she is entirely correct when stating “If people are concerned about the adverse impacts of extreme weather events, reducing CO2 emissions are not going to have any impact on policy relevant time scales…” I think there is a real danger that reducing Co2 emissions through onerous legislation that will cause energy costs to rise significantly will have an impact on policy relevant time scales. I understand that she is referring to extreme weather, but socioeconomic impacts need to be considered as well.

    As to Michael’s comments – creating a poorer world now for the sake of saving future generations from climate change, will, in reality (I know, a world not familiar to you) make future generations less able to adapt to an ever changing climate. Thinking that expensive mitigation efforts we make today mean that humans have the power to stop climate from changing, or, that we can stop all future catastrophic climate events from occurring is, to put it kindly, foolish. The best weapon to address climate change is a robust economy that provides the resources necessary to build infrastructure that is more capable of withstanding inevitable climate change and extreme weather events.

  55. Dear Dr. Curry & Steven Mosher — Have you ever commented/responded to Dr. Molina’s question? (very elevated ppm levels from today’s levels) Thanks

    • Stephen: The answer will probably be that:
      (1) The basic science is useful but not sufficient in understanding the climate.
      (2) The pause gives us more time to understand the observations before taking action.

      • I think the answer would be that the uncertainty at 800 ppm is far greater than that at 400 ppm, so it is not worth the added risk, and efforts should be made to prevent increasing this particular risk factor.

    • Curious George

      “Is it a good idea to follow a GHG emissions trajectory to 800 ppm?” As quoted it probably refers only to CO2. The most potent GHG is water.

  56. “Politicizing” the IPCC Report??

    The IPCC is a political body, politically funded, amd politically selected. It’s entire purpose politics and the furtherance thereof (which in the case of climate means fomenting alarm, thereby ushering in greater politicization of society).

    You may as well speak of “politicizing” the president’s speeches. No less ludicrous.

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  58. JC Comments: ……Rather, it should be stated that Its highly confident conclusions have been reached by expert judgment, in an explicit consensus building environment that is prone to groupthink.

    The summary gives a nod to uncertainty: ‘As in all areas of science that involve highly complex dynamic systems, there are uncertainties. But these uncertainties do not blur the overwhelmingly clear picture of a climate system changing as a result of human influence.’ They seem to have swallowed the IPCC’s waffling about the ‘pause’.

    Judith, as a person who is about as prone to groupthink as a dog is to write a theses in Italian on chemical bonding agents, I strongly suggest that you have it incorrect on “the pause.”

    Climate Change IS NOT about a contemporaneous response to increased levels of thermal radiation absorbing molecules; but about the longer term, and increasingly cumulative affect on the earth/atmosphere energy balance, from a (geologically) radically higher level of long lived GH molecules in the air, re-radiating thermal (earth surface, longer wavelength) radiation that would otherwise solely continue emitting upward and outward.

    Any instantaneous changes to air directly from a different amount of GH gases are going to be additive to the underlying conditions that exist, not a replacement for them; and so since we have no idea what the earth would have done in the absence of this huge alteration, we can’t know what the affect in any one year or decade is. We can’t even know with accumulated underlying changes, and for the same reason – the natural and large variability in climate. Let alone a climate that is changing and likely, with an increasing level of net energy upon what was a “relatively” stable system, to be more not less volatile.

    More important, however is that most of the change in re radiation is going not into increasing atmospheric temperature, but in raising the energy balance of the earth, which starts to have affect on once relatively stable climate driving or radically affecting systems. Such as ice cover, for instance, which both raises albedo drastically, and has hundreds of billions of tons of carbon trapped in its upper layers in the permafrost regions alone. And such as our oceans (and, when it comes to oceans, or any of this, really, the fact that we can’t pinpoint exact amounts has nothing to do with the underlying idea, or the relevance of the huge amount that we have been able to pinpoint), as well as ice cover therein as well.

    What’s particularly noteworthy is that during this “lull” of otherwise all but irrelevant shorter term temperature patterns, the oceans have been still accumulating energy. That is, any high but “lulled” overall temperature didn’t reflect net energy being lost by the oceans, as temperatures were at near record high yearly averages during this 21st century “lull” period – in which, according to the NOAA, 9 of the 10 hottest years on modern record still managed to occur – in spite of this. That is, these records managed to occur even with the oceans not losing energy, or even staying flat, but instead gaining in total retained net energy (and thus pulling more in than they were losing, which would have a cooling affect over what ambient temperatures would have been if the oceans didn’t still gain in net energy) and, during much of this period (particularly in the last few years), even doing so at a faster rate.

    The issue – though it’s easy to see it as so, and much of our media often invariably or implicitly does on this issue – is not about more warmth trapped in the air during any one day or year or even decade, so that one day or one year or one decade is thus linearly (or even non linearly) “warmer” in ambient air temperature than the day, the year, or the decade before. It’s about the increasingly cumulative affect of that increased atmospheric re radiation upon the earth’s energy balance, until a new balance is reached after atmospheric levels of GH gases, from a geologic perspective anyway, stabilize.

    Because of the way climate works over time, and the relative (initial slowness) of system changes to differing (here, greater) energy inputs, that balance can not occur until well after atmospheric levels have stabilized. So most of what CC actually represents, if the atmosphere stabilized tomorrow, has not yet been realized.

    But the bigger problem is that we’re adding even more to these levels, and, rapidly. For the same fundamental, cumulative reasons, this greatly compounds the affect of increased re-radiation upon already changing underlying and otherwise relatively long standing earth systems.

    It’s thus a geologic time scale issue (if in geologic terms an incredibly fast one), not a highly insular “mankind” time scale issue. The whole notion that 15 years of far higher average temperatures than the norm since we began record keeping, is not “high enough” or “is high enough” to thereby “legitimize” or “de-legitimize” the idea of radical long term change in response to a radical long term change in the atmospheric heat re radiating quotient, misconstrues the entire issue.

    • ‘It is hypothesized that persistent and consistent trends among several climate modes act to kick the climate state, altering the pattern and magnitude of air-sea interaction between the atmosphere and the underlying ocean. The middle panel in Figure 1 shows that these climate mode trend phases indeed behaved anomalously three times during the 20th century, immediately following the synchronization events of the 1910s, 1940s, and 1970s. This combination of the synchronization of these dynamical modes in the climate, followed immediately afterward by significant increase in the fraction of strong trends (coupling) without exception marked shifts in the 20th century climate state. These shifts were accompanied by breaks in the global mean temperature trend with respect to time, presumably associated with either discontinuities in the global radiative budget due
      126 to the global reorganization of clouds and water vapor or dramatic changes in the uptake of heat by the deep ocean.’ https://pantherfile.uwm.edu/kswanson/www/publications/2008GL037022_all.pdf

      ‘Comparisons of global steric height 10 trends based on different gridded fields of Argo in situ measurements show a range of 0–1mmyr−1 which can be lead back to data handling and climatology uncertainties. Our results show that GOIs derived from the Argo measurements are ideally suitable to monitor the state of the global ocean, especially after November 2007, i.e. when Argo sampling was 100% complete. They also show that there is significant interannual global variability at global scale, especially for global OFC. Before the end of 2007, error bars are too large to deliver robust short-term trends of GOIs and thus an interpretation in terms of long-term climate signals are still questionable, especially since uncertainties due to interannual fluctuations are not included in our error estimation.’ http://www.ocean-sci-discuss.net/8/999/2011/osd-8-999-2011.pdf

      ‘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 m–2 while the reflected SW radiation decreased by roughly 2.1 W m–2 from the 1980s to 1990s (Table 3.5).’ http://www.ipcc.ch/publications_and_data/ar4/wg1/en/ch3s3-4-4-1.html

    • ‘Climate forcing results in an imbalance in the TOA radiation budget that has direct implications for global
      climate, but the large natural variability in the Earth’s radiation budget due to fluctuations in atmospheric and ocean dynamics complicates this picture.’ http://meteora.ucsd.edu/~jnorris/reprints/Loeb_et_al_ISSI_Surv_Geophys_2012.pdf

      There is no evidence that ocean heat is increasing – merely different treatment of large inherent variability linked to changes in toa flux. There is evidence that clouds are changing linked to decadal variability.


      We have a another space cadet who has dutifully learned his lines.

      • So for your assertion that we have no evidence that the oceans are warming, despite the fact that NOAA and NASA and pretty much any professional non ideological scientist who studies it as part of their work, assert it, we have, voila, a link to this commenter, Rob Ellison’s own blog, and not just his own ideas, which is fine, but Rob Ellison’s own assertion that there is no evidence that ocean heat is increasing.

        Therefore, according to Rob Ellison, clearly it’s not. And anyone who has “learned their lines well,” and relied not upon Rob Ellison, but the world’s leading scientists who have studied the issue and the worlds leading scientific organizations, is of course — and continuing of course the pattern of rampant disparagement of anybody who disagrees with the idea that *(geologically) suddenly changing the long lived atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations to levels not seen on earth in millions of years is nevertheless not really all that likely to shift our climate — now, a Space Cadet.

        Future generations will find the irony insufficient tonic for the wildly changed conditions we’ve left them, yet informative, nonetheless,when they ask the question “how.”

      • Repeating your nonsense doesn’t help. I stopped reading after the first sentence.

        This seems more clearly consistent with CERES toa data.


        A steric sea level rise of 0.2mm +/- 0.8mm/year.

        Did you not read von Schucmann and Le Troan, the IPCC, Loeb et al?

        You simply go into an a misguided speil about the world’s leading scientists.

      • ‘Finally, the presence of vigorous climate variability presents significant challenges to near-term climate prediction (25, 26), leaving open the possibility of steady or even declining global mean surface temperatures over the next several decades that could present a significant empirical obstacle to the implementation of policies directed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions (27). However, global warming could likewise suddenly and without any ostensive cause accelerate due to internal variability. To paraphrase C. S. Lewis, the climate system appears wild, and may continue to hold many surprises if pressed.’ http://www.pnas.org/content/106/38/16120.full

        People like Carter have no direct exposure to climate science – but learn their lines in internet echo chambers before venturing out to beard the beast in it’s lair. Pathetic really.

        Having now caught a glimpse of the second last paragraph – the meme of carbon dioxide levels is repeated almost word perfect.

        Too bad it seems less than obviously true.

        e.g. http://www.academia.edu/2949675/Stomatal_proxy_record_of_CO2_concentrations_from_the_last_termination_suggests_an_important_role_for_CO2_at_climate_change_transitions

        But it is the solutions they invariably propose – in that unctuous way of the Borg collective cult of AGW groupthink space cadet – that are totally bonkers.

      • Climate forcing? Get hold of yourselves. Climate is a statistical exercise based on weather data. There is a vast difference between weather and climate and scientists keep blurring the borders between the two. As for ocean and sea waters warming, we don’t have enough probes to get a genuine average.
        What is required in the debate is to ascertained the amount of the water vapor in the atmosphere. So far we have failed and to blame global warming on poor old CO2 for our shortcomings is ridiculous.
        To establish a true benchmark of greenhouse gases we must identify all. We also need to quantify the global presence of all ice, water and water vapor as one total unit. We must also accept that oceans provide with the aid of the sun some water vapor, that falls out as rain (the quantity can be measured, thus the heat/energy escape can be calculated). Depending on where that rain falls, we have water or ice. It is like a dog chasing its tail. Simple stuff.

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  61. If people are concerned about the adverse impacts of extreme weather events, reducing CO2 emissions are not going to have any impact on policy relevant time scales, even if you accept the IPCC analyses. Resources expended on energy policy are in direct conflict with reducing vulnerability to extreme events.

    As Stephan Gardiner analyzed this before you wrote it

    In conclusion, the presence of the problem of moral corruption reveals another sense in which climate change may be a perfect moral storm. This is that its complexity may turn out to be perfectly convenient for us, the current generation, and indeed for each successor generation as it comes to occupy our position. For one thing, it provides each generation with the cover under which it can seem to be taking the issue seriously – by negotiating weak and largely substanceless global accords, for example, and then heralding them as great achievements – when really it is simply exploiting its temporal position. For another, all of this can occur without the exploitative generation actually having to acknowledge that this is what it is doing. By avoiding overtly selfish behaviour, earlier generations can take advantage of the future without the unpleasantness of admitting it – either to others, or, perhaps more importantly, to itself