Back from the twitter twilight zone: Responses to my WSJ op-ed

by Judith Curry

I’ve just returned from China, the first thing I did in the U.S. airport on my layover back to Atlanta was to check twitter.

I’m feeling pretty brain dead after my flight and the 12 hour time change.  Checking my twitter notifications that have accrued over the past 11 days while I’ve been in china (behind the great Chinese internet firewall) was very entertaining.

Overall my WSJ op-ed seems to have been well received.  Below are some of the more interesting or entertaining of the critical responses.

Bart Verheggen

My post on the Lewis and Curry paper was reproduced at the Climate Change National Forum, Bart Verheggen responds [here].  Excerpt:

I’m pleased that Dr. Curry acknowledges that “uncertainty in itself is not a reason for inaction”. I do find that conclusion slightly at odds with her frequent calls to put less effort in mitigation. Curry says that “deep uncertainties remain”, while at the same time apparently basing her anti-mitigation viewpoint on the assumption that climate sensitivity (ECS) is low. If this deep uncertainty however extends to ECS, one would think that the risk of substantial warming entails a substantial risk that is worth hedging against. Is she so sure that ECS is low and impacts benign? In short, I sense some inconsistencies in her approach to uncertainty. 

It appears to me that Dr Curry is at times inflating the uncertainty, to the point of creating the appearance of ignorance. I think that does a disservice to the prospect for “a more meaningful dialogue on how to address the complex challenges of climate variability and change”, which is a goal she frequently expresses to strive towards. As an example of inflated uncertainty, it is imho well established that the warming since 1950 is predominantly anthropogenic, and likewise is the projection that the warming will continue with continuing emissions very robust. There are uncertainties and ranges of probability, but the impression that this is totally up in the air is mistaken, to my mind. Perhaps in her (to my mind mistaken) belief that uncertainties are frequently ignored, she started over-compensating in the other direction?

JC comment:  My seeming contradictory stance on the uncertainty issue is a valid point to raise.  We have very little justification (and no demonstrated skill so far) for predicting the climate of the 21st century.  That said, within the framework of how the IPCC is framing the climate problem and has defined ‘climate sensitivity’, the only justification for values of ECS (greater than 3 C) is climate models that that do not adequately account for natural internal variability and when compared with observations seem to be running ‘too hot.’   So, could climate sensitivity be very high?  Yes, but we have no reliable methods for inferring very high climate sensitivity, other than climate models that are demonstrably running to hot and dubious analyses of the paleoclimate record.

The paleo-estimates are interesting in the sense that from a variety of time periods and from a variety of studies and methods, ECS appears to be in the range between 2 and 4 degrees C. It thus seems that when someone advocates for a value lower than that, they have some explaining to do as to why such large temperature swings occurred in the (deep) past?

JC comment:  Yes lets use dubious paleo estimates to falsify estimates from the relatively reliable instrumental record, and also lets forget that climate sensitivity is state dependent.

Rapid Response Team

Michael Mann, John Abraham, Scott Mandia, Peter Gleick and Richard Somerville have penned a response at HuffPo:  Curry advocates against action on climate change.  Excerpts:

So the piece repeats the same tired claims about lowered sensitivity, using the “pause” meme and her own study as justification for delaying action. According to her (and of course the contrarians) a limited set of studies using a single incomplete methodology are reason enough to put off getting serious about climate change.

To summarize the article, it turns out that even if one assumes these recent studies are correct, this buys us only a decade of extra time before crossing the internationally agreed-upon limit of 2°C of warming. This means that even if Curry’s correct, it may just be the difference between bad and terrible consequences of our inability to get emissions under control.

This understanding is shared by all the mainstream climate scientists who have examined the breadth of the scientific literature.

Esoteric and academic arguments about the response of the atmosphere to a doubling of CO2 may be interesting for those steeped in the peer-reviewed literature, but for the public and policy makers the important and unfortunate fact is that climate change is continuing unabated. This was the hottest September on record, after the hottest August on record (yielding the hottest summer on record), and the oceans continue to warm rapidly. In fact, some parts of the ocean have been shown to be warming even more rapidly than we thought.

JC comments:  Pause denial is getting more and more difficult with time.

In the end, Curry’s claims fly in the face of what we know. Quite literally, according to the largest scientific organization in the world and publisher of the journal Science. The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) released this year a report titled “What We Know” that shows that taking action now reduces both the cost and the risks associated with our warmed world.

Regardless of whether Curry is right about the climate being slightly less sensitive to CO2 (something that hundreds of thousands of years of paleoclimate records suggest is false) the fact remains that the sooner we reduce emissions, the less damage we will endure. And interestingly, Curry admits that the only substantial worry is from a high emissions scenario. But if we listen to her argument for inaction, that high emissions scenario is exactly what we’ll get.

 JC comment:  The signatories on this op-ed are interesting; in the old days the Rapid Response Team would have been able to pull a larger number and more impressive names as signatories.  This is really a very content free op-ed, they didn’t even manage to insert any good ‘smears.’

Union of Concerned Scientists

Union of Concerned  Scientists has an article: Wall Street Journal offers a skewed climate change perspective from Judith Curry.  Excerpts:

I asked my colleague Peter Frumhoff—our chief scientist, a former IPCC lead author, and the co-author of a recent study on climate science and policy—if I could share his reaction to Dr. Curry’s argument.

Here’s what he wrote:

The ocean is absorbing much of the excess heat from human emissions. If the model Curry and colleagues discussed had incorporated the latest ocean heat content data, their relatively low best estimate for climate sensitivity would have been more in line with previously reported, higher estimates.

It would be a mistake to set policy based solely on low estimates. That’s why we have advisory bodies like the IPCC and National Climate Assessment that examine all the available science, including higher estimates. The risks of far greater climate sensitivity can’t simply be discounted or dismissed.

The bottom line is that we know enough about where we’re heading to reduce emissions even as scientists grapple with homing in on precisely how much the Earth is expected to warm.

DeSmog

DeSmog blog has a guest post by Climate Nexus  Judith Curry is back advocating for inaction in the Wall Street Journal.  Excerpts:

Curry provides a highly biased and skewed overview of climate sensitivity studies, which makes sense for publication in the Wall Street Journal. In reality, the IPCC sensitivity estimate remains the most reliable and comprehensive expression of the state of knowledge on the topic, and scientists agree that this sensitivity range implies an urgent need for climate action.

Curry has growing ties to denier groups and her consulting business serves fossil fuel companies. She recently participated in a forum held by the discredited, fossil-fuel funded George Marshall Institute, which advocates outright climate denial and has denied the link between tobacco and cancer in the past. Her consulting company has received funding from the fossil fuel industry since 2007, at her own admission. Finally, her work has been repeatedly criticized by reputable scientists including those at RealClimate and the Union of Concerned Scientists.

JC comment:  Well if you can’t come up with any real arguments, you can also try playing the fossil fuel card.

Lewandowsky

Lewandowsky has an article in the Conversation Why climate uncertainty is no excuse for doing nothing.  Relevant excerpt:

Paterson is far from alone: climate change debate has been suffused with appeals to “uncertainty” to delay policy action. Who hasn’t heard politicians or media personalities use uncertainty associated with some aspects of climate change to claim that the science is “not settled”?

Over in the US, this sort of thinking pops up quite often in the opinion pages of The Wall Street Journal. Its most recent article, by Professor Judith Curry, concludes that the ostensibly slowed rate of recent warming gives us “more time to find ways to decarbonise the economy affordably.”

Lucia notes the inconsistency in a post Lew: Curry’s paper suggests LESS uncertainty not MORE!   As I stated above, with the confines of the narrow way that the IPCC frames the climate change problem, the evidence is growing that we can chop off the fat tail of previous high sensitivity estimates.

Greg Laden

Greg Laden has a post Mark Steyn and Judith Curry.  Relevant excerpt: “Two items related only because these two seem to like each other and there are coeval happenings.”

JC comment:   I guess if you don’t have any real arguments against my article, you can always criticize me for the company I keep.

 The Australian

The Australian has a superb article by Graham Lloyd: A pause for this message:  climate change numbers aren’t adding up.  Excerpts:

It is a crucial time for science. Garth Paltridge, former chief research scientist with the CSIRO Division of Atmospheric Research and chief executive of the Antarctic Co-operative Research Centre, fears the rise of “postmodern” science. In the world of postmodern science, he says, results are valid only in the context of society’s beliefs, and where the very existence of scientific truth can be denied. “Postmodern science envisages a sort of political nirvana in which scientific theory and results can be consciously and legitimately man­ipulated to suit either the dictates of political correctness or the politics of the government of the day,” Paltridge says.

At this point, Australian ­governments and their climate agencies are standing firmly behind the IPCC. But respected US climate scientist Judith Curry agrees with Paltridge. 

Curry has been a strong voice in the climate change debate internationally and is at the centre of new research that questions ­climate sensitivity. She argues the sensitivity of the climate to increasing concentrations of carbon dioxide is a central question in the debate on the appropriate policy response to ­increasing carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. In the US, she says, a climate policy dialogue is starting to open up, with discussion of the 2C threshold, lower sensitivity and the hiatus.

Inquirer put a series of questions to Australia’s high-profile ­climate change bodies asking them to comment on Curry’s research on climate sensitivity, the hiatus in global surface temperatures and model predictions. Former climate commissioners Will Steffen and Tim Flannery were unavailable to answer but Climate Council chief executive Amanda McKenzie says “vested interests have been using the ‘so-called pause’ to spread doubt and misinformation”. “The Earth continues to warm strongly,” she says. “Since 1998 human activities have introduced two billion Hiroshima bombs’ worth of heat into the ­atmosphere.”

Responses from Australia’s key science organisations show they remain in lock-step with the IPCC and their advice is accepted by Environment Minister, Greg Hunt. Helen Cleugh, science director at CSIRO Oceans and Atmosphere Flagship, says measurements do show that the rate at which global mean surface temperature has warmed in the past decade is less than the previous decade. However, while the rate of increase is lower, the temperatures are not lower, she says.

Measurements across the oceans and Earth system as a whole show that warming has continued unabated. “A reduction in the rate of warming (not a pause) is a result of short-term natural variability, ocean absorption of heat from the atmosphere, volcanic eruptions, a downward phase of the 11-year solar cycle, and other impacts over a short time period,” Cleugh says.

After taking advice from the Bureau of Meteorology, Hunt tells Inquirer the warming of the climate system is “unequivocal”. “The climate system, which ­includes the atmosphere, oceans, land and ice has continued to ­accumulate heat over the last 18 years,” Hunt says. Although there has been a slower rate of atmospheric warming during the past 18 years, this does not undermine the fundamental physics of global warming, the scientific basis of climate models or the estimates of climate sensitivity.

Greens leader Christine Milne says she does not accept the pause. “There has been a slowdown in the speed of the rise but global surface temperatures have still continued to climb,” Milne says. “There are strong indications through observations and models that the ocean is absorbing more of the heat than it has in the recent past.”

In Britain, the Met Office has acknowledged the pause and debate about its significance. “Global mean surface temperatures rose rapidly from the 1970s but have been relatively flat over the most recent 15 years to 2013,” the Met says. “This has prompted speculation that human induced global warming is no longer happening, or at least will be much smaller than predicted. Others maintain that this is a temporary pause and that temperatures will again rise at rates seen previously,” the Met says.

But the Met Office says research shows the recent pause in global surface temperature rise does not materially alter the risks of substantial warming of the Earth by the end of this century. “Nor does it invalidate the fundamental physics of global warming, the scientific bases of climate models and their estimates of climate sensitivity,” the Met says.

Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology says the rate of warming in global surface temperature during the past century has not been uniform, with some decades warming more rapidly than others. “This is a consequence of variations in heat exchange between the atmosphere and the oceans, and other decade-to-decade changes like variations in solar forcing and the solar dimming ­effects of pollution and volcanic eruptions,” BoM says. “The pattern that results is one of steady warming of the oceans, accompanied by alternating periods of fast and slow rises in air temperature.”

There is dispute over whether increased ocean heat can fully explain the absence of surface warming during the past 18 years. Recent papers have claimed greater deep ocean heat in the north Pacific, Atlantic and ­Southern Ocean to explain the “missing” heat. According to Curry, the bottom line is that uncertainties in ocean heat content are very large, and “there is no particularly convincing evidence that the “missing heat” is hiding in the ocean.

“The three studies represent careful studies using conventional assumptions relating to climate sensitivity, addressing the question ‘where has the heat in a warming earth gone?’ ” Asten says. “An alternative approach which I predict will come, although not without opposition from ‘consensus scientists’, is to postulate that the ‘missing heat’ was never here; that is, a reduced climate sensitivity will be estim­ated for the Earth, at or below the low end of the range currently published by the IPCC.”

Asten says the trend of climate sensitivity estimates made across the past six years from meteorological, satellite and ocean sediment records has been, with very few exceptions, to produce estimates at or below the low end of the range published by the IPCC. He says low values of climate sensitivity will still affect global temperatures as CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere rise, but increases in temperature may be of similar magnitude to naturally driven temperature cycles, a scenario that has strong implications for how we manage causes and consequences of climate change.

Paltridge says that the prospect of “missing heat” being located in the oceans is a double-edged sword. “We are being told that some internal oceanic fluctuation may have reduced the upward trend in global temperature,” he says. “It is therefore more than a little strange that we are not hearing from the IPCC that some natural internal fluctuation of the system may have given rise to most of the earlier upward trend.

“In light of all this, we have at least to consider the possibility that the scientific establishment behind the global warming issue has been drawn into the trap of seri­ously overstating the climate problem in its effort to promote the cause. It is a particularly nasty trap in the context of science because it risks destroying, perhaps for centuries to come, the unique and hard-won reputation for honesty which is the basis of society’s respect for scientific endeavour.”

JC reflections

Climate science has been thrown into disarray by the hiatus, disagreement between climate model and instrumental estimates of climate sensitivity, uncertainties in carbon uptake by plants, and diverging interpretations of ocean heating (in the face of a dearth of observations).  ‘Certainty’ arguably peaked at the time of the AR4 (2007); perception of uncertainty is arguably greater than any time since the FAR (1991).   Yes of course we know more about the climate system than we did in 1991, but more knowledge about the complex climate systems opens up new areas of ignorance and greater uncertainty.

In context of the way climate sensitivity is defined by the IPCC, uncertainty in climate sensitivity is decreasing as errors in previous observational estimates are identified and eliminated and model estimates seem to be converging more.   Climate model simulations, when compared with 21st century observations seem to be running too hot, giving creedence to the lower observation-based sensitivity values.

What do the lower values of climate sensitivity imply for policy?  Well slower values of warming make it easier to adapt, and provide time to develop new technologies and new policies.  But the true believers such as Mann et al. call adaptation, developing new technologies and policies as ‘inaction.’  The policy logic apparent in the essays critical of my op-ed are rather naive.

So we are left with science in disarray and naive logic regarding policy.  And the ‘warm team’ wonders why people are yawning?

 

 

 

833 responses to “Back from the twitter twilight zone: Responses to my WSJ op-ed

  1. I think SciAm has reprinted the goofy Lew paper. See them all in a row. This is fun.

      • I don’t have the stomach to read the article, but that they’re finally talking about uncertainty strikes me as a major victory. It’s almost funny.

      • “Yes lets use dubious paleo estimates to falsify estimates from the relatively reliable instrumental record, and also lets forget that climate sensitivity is state dependent”

        Loving the new-found edge. Passion, the occasional expressions of outrage and sarcasm, you wear them all quite well Judith.

    • I have been banned from Unscientific American for point out where their articles are biased and inaccurate.

    • David Springer

      The US is mitigating CO2 emission. Near zero growth since 1990. What are we supposed to do, go to war with China and India to stop them? I suggest the nattering nabobs of negativity focus on means of stopping those countries with rapidly growing emissions.

      http://www.yaleclimateconnections.org/pics/0713_Fig3.jpg

      • Dave a great graph and point. It is the epitomy of arrogance that Mand and his crew somehow believe we can do it all ourselves. If they think the U.S can influsence CHine and India to do anything, then not only are they arrogant, but foolish and naive as well. Perhaps they should go to China and convince them to cut their emissions. They would laugh him out of the country if they didnt throw his hund end in jail. Maybe he can sue them.

      • Mann I meant. Bad eyes.

  2. Our host must have hit a really raw nerve. That an op-ed article can provoke so many ad hom responses indicates the paucity of the opponent’s arguments. The warmists’ team mantra seems to be either name call or “If you can’t dazzle them with science, baffle them with bullshit”

  3. Sigh.
    ===

  4. Regarding the Rapid Response Team: first there is a reference to consensus, “…mainstream…” and then the appeal to authority, “…AAAS…”.

    This is an appropriate opportunity to review Feynman’s letter of resignation to the National Academy of Sciences:

    “I am sorry that you had to be bothered by this matter of my wanting to resign my membership in the Academy. It must be quite a job worrying about all the peculiar whims of all the strange birds that make up your flock…
    “My desire to resign is merely a personal one; it is not meant as a protest of any kind, or a criticism of the Academy or its activities. Perhaps it is just that i enjoy being peculiar. My peculiarity is this: I find it psychologically very distasteful to judge people’s ‘merit.’ So I cannot participate in the main activity of selecting people for membership. To be a member of a group, of which an important activity is to choose others deemed worthy of membership in that self-esteemed group bothers me. The care with which we select ‘those worthy of the honor’ of joining the Academy feels to me like a form of self-praise. How can we say only the best must be allowed in to join those who are already in, without loudly proclaiming to our inner selves that we who are in must be very good indeed. Of course I believe I am very good indeed, but that is a private matter and I cannot publicly admit that I do so, to such an extent that I have the nerve to decide that this man, or that, is not worthy of joining my elite club…”

  5. Welcome back!

    Interesting how the critics of your work so often resort to personal attacks, something which you don’t do when writing or speaking for the media. They must be getting pretty desperate. Instead of engaging with your arguments, they prefer to engage with you, it seems.

    Kudos for your appearance on (Aussie TV show) Catalyst, BTW. I’ve had some feedback from others who watched it, and they were favourably impressed.

  6. “If this deep uncertainty however extends to ECS, one would think that the risk of substantial warming entails a substantial risk that is worth hedging against. Is she so sure that ECS is low and impacts benign? In short, I sense some inconsistencies in her approach to uncertainty.”

    When the facts are on your side pound them. When they’re not, pound the precautionary principle. What I see are a bunch of opportunists, careerists, and rent seekers watching to their horror, that the science is not going their way. Well how about turning the precautionary principle around a bit. Maybe we shouldn’t send ourselves back to the dark ages to head off a problem that with every passing month is looking more and more fantastical…

    • Sorry. “Realizing to their horror…”

      • AK,

        Agreed. If you’re a fan of low regrets options, the great global warming debate has already been won. The few countries that have actually taken a step or two down the green brick road to economic ruin, are now waking up. We’re simply not going to impoverish ourselves for a problem the nature and extent of which grows more uncertain by the day.

      • Quote Rob Ellison:
        “‘In a world of limited resources, we can’t do everything, so which goals should we prioritise?”

        Can Rob post the stock manifest of the planet’s resources?
        Please include all unknown discoveries.
        This will help with prioritising decisions.

    • Maybe we shouldn’t send ourselves back to the dark ages to head off a problem that with every passing month is looking more and more fantastical…

      More binary logic: there’s a host of “low-regrets” options, especially along the R&D lines. As long as the alarmists are allowed to get away with claiming not “send[ing] ourselves back to the dark ages” is “doing nothing”, there’s not going to be anything resembling consensus on policy.

      They should be forced to explain why their “solutions” to the fossil carbon problem have to include raising the price of energy. Let’s see how well they justify rationalize their hidden agenda(s).

      • >They should be forced to explain why their “solutions” to the fossil carbon problem have to include raising the price of energy

        Won’t happen … loses too much support

        The most pointed response to pushing accountability is to reply that “demand management” be implemented. The circularity of this escapes most people

      • There is no “host of low-regrets options.” By definition, a no-regrets policy would be one with a risk-adjusted rate of return equal to or better than the best alternative use of resources (which for government would often be reducing taxes). A low-regrets option would imply a return modestly lower than the opportunity cost. If there were a host of such options, there is sure to be an entrepreneur who figures that he might be able to turn a satisfactory buck on one or more of them and will explore it/them further. Government support for such policies make sit easier to make a buck by gaming the system, which happens constantly, particularly in the emissions reduction field. Approach alleged LROs with caution.

        Pokerguy, good post, mine below takes a similar line.

      • @Faustino…

        There is no “host of low-regrets options.”

        Of course there’s a host of low-regrets options. Most them may not be easily visible except by hindsight…

        By definition, a no-regrets policy would be one with a risk-adjusted rate of return equal to or better than the best alternative use of resources (which for government would often be reducing taxes). A low-regrets option would imply a return modestly lower than the opportunity cost.

        I’m talking about the real world here, not modelling fantasies. Any “risk-adjusted rate of return” looked at in your modelling world would be dependent on a new, different host of assumptions. Questionable assumptions whose probability would then have to be estimated and incorporated into the model. In the end, IMO, you’d be left with a morass of interlocking probabilities, a cloud of uncertainty.

        If there were a host of such options, there is sure to be an entrepreneur who figures that he might be able to turn a satisfactory buck on one or more of them and will explore it/them further.

        IIRC you claim to have extensive experience in public policy. Surely you’re aware of the difference between the technological options to be considered by an investor, and the policy options that contribute to determining the return on any specific investment.

        Want an example? Consider the story of Sun Catalytix:

        For years Sun Catalytix worked on a catalyst that would use sunlight to split water molecules and harvest hydrogen. The company received a $4 million grant from the Department of Energy in 2010 to help fund the research. In 2011, the company unveiled a sample device made of a solar cell, cobalt and nickel that could split water and harvest hydrogen in a fuel cell. But the company soon realized it would take many more years and a lot more investment capital to bring the technology to market. Sun Catalytix CEO Mike Decelle told MIT Technology Review last year that raising the needed capital for an untested technology like this is “a tough pitch.”

        So Sun Catalytix put its “artificial leaf” development on hold and focused on so-called flow batteries that can store solar and wind energy, or provide multiple hours of backup power to buildings in the event of a power outage. The company claims it can deliver one megawatt of power for up to four to six hours using a battery roughly the size of a shipping container at a cost significantly lower than the current long-lasting batteries used in municipal power grids.

        While not as innovative as a solar panel that could split water molecules, the flow battery technology and Sun Catalytix’s bevy of patents are what captured Lockheed Martin’s attention. The defense contractor says Sun Catalytix will be renamed Lockheed Martin Advanced Energy Storage LLC, and will operate through the company’s Missiles and Fire Control business area. The deal includes Sun Catalytix’s approximately 25 employees. Lockheed Martin didn’t say how much it paid in the acquisition.

        So is the original artificial leaf something more worth developing than another type of flow battery (which many competitors are already working on)?

        I don’t know. But what I do know is that there are ways that policy changes could “tilt the balance” towards longer term investments of this sort, probably without either spending collected tax money or interfering with the “free” market in capital.

        Government support for such policies make sit easier to make a buck by gaming the system, which happens constantly, particularly in the emissions reduction field. Approach alleged LROs with caution.

        Well, I can’t argue with your last sentence. As for the previous, seems to me you’re confusing policy options with investment options, but I may just be misunderstanding. Want to clarify?

      • I’m not talking about “picking winners” here, so much as making the prize bigger for winning marathons over sprints.

      • ‘By definition, a no-regrets policy would be one with a risk-adjusted rate of return equal to or better than the best alternative use of resources (which for government would often be reducing taxes).’

        By definition no regrets is a project that has a benefit to cost ratio greater than unity without considering any costs of climate change. The rate of return is relative to the benefit to cost ratio. There are in principle endless no regrets policies and you do the ones that make sense.

      • No confusion between policy and investment options, AK. The same applies in both: if you deliberately choose an option which does not meet its opportunity cost, you are not maximising the returns, whether for a firm, individual or community. The main differences are that private investors have greater incentives to make optimal choices. Governments and public servants can get away with bad choices, which reduce community welfare, without cost, except that a run of egregious decisions can lead to a change of government. I can recall many government decisions which I advised against on the basis of detailed analysis, often including CGE modelling and financial analysis as well as CBA, which went ahead. My analysis was never challenged, never shown to be flawed, the only counter was “It’s a done deal, Mike,” “The minister wants it, Mike”. The ministers got kudos, the bureaucrats got promoted. When as I predicted, the projects etc failed, no one carried the can. I was involved in “real world” decision-making at high levels for many years, I used modelling only as a tool to support good decision-making.

        In the instance you cite, the private firm decided that its long term option would not receive backing. In other words, venture capitalists, who flourish or fail on their capacity to succeed with a decent (though usually small) proportion of projects they back would not support it. I have never found in government the capacity to make such decisions, they are generally clueless compared to venture capitalists, but will back things because they have no skin in the game and the ventures have “announcement” potential.

      • Rob, the point is that a government concerned with maximising community welfare will support he options that best do that. (Of course, we have many recent and distant examples of governments failing to do that, e.g. the NBN and desal plants.) So the best projects will proceed under the normal course of government, whether or not CAGW is an issue. The argument for “no regrets” policies as you define them is that government will have left on the table projects that it should have pursued. Optimally, if it had a choice of projects with >1 benefit to cost, and taking account of risk, it would have chosen the best ones. If there are options remaining with > 1 btc, they must still be concerned with alternative uses of the funds/resources, including tax cuts. That is, governments should already be “doing the ones which make sense,” which means that advocating “no regrets” policies is meaningless.

        And I would question your assertion that there are in principle endless positive return policies. I have assessed many allegedly positive return policies which were far from that; what is endless, in my experience, is governments’ capacity to make bad decisions, for a host of reasons, often unrelated to optimising community welfare.

      • In the instance you cite, the private firm decided that its long term option would not receive backing. In other words, venture capitalists, who flourish or fail on their capacity to succeed with a decent (though usually small) proportion of projects they back would not support it.

        What would have had to have been different for them to support it?

        Leave aside, for the moment, whether or not the project would have succeeded. Assume it would have (will). The problem was too long a time to return. Why is investment so short-sighted? They’re not dumb, they see something in the current situation(s) that puts a premium on quick returns.

        What do they see? Could it be changed so that investors would be willing to support development pointing to a 3-5 decade return? Could that change be made within the current political system? How.

        Asking government bureaucrats to pick investment opportunities is like asking for a host of Solyndras. Even expecting them to buy off on changes to the IP laws is probably pointless. But the latter type of change could be accomplished at a societal, legislative level. (In the US, where democratic representation primarily affects legislation.)

        Could it be done right? I don’t know. Perhaps.

      • AK, “The problem was too long a time to return. Why is investment so short-sighted?” As you know, investors and non-investors prefer present resources to future ones; that’s why we have (normally) positive interest rates and discount future income. Even if we make the “will succeed” assumption, which of course is more uncertain the longer the time-frame involved – someone might have implemented a better idea in the meantime – you are forgoing income streams from projects with quicker returns if you choose the very long-term one. Let’s say you choose the quicker return projects: then as they mature you have more resources to invest in further projects, and the uncertainties regarding your first idea will be reduced. Lots of incentives to choose that earlier-returns option, no reason, to me, why government should help out with the longer-term one.

        Interestingly in the alleged CAGW context, the investments with the longest time-horizons tend to be resource projects. You find a potential source to explore, go through regulatory hoops to gain an exploration licence, if you find a potentially viable source, you go through more RHs – in Australia, home of some of the greatest resource extraction and processing companies, it can take several years to get the go-ahead through the regulatory processes of states and feds, more years to bring it on-stream – and at each stage seek finance, from financiers who generally prefer shorter term and more certain returns, then . Until you finally get near to production for market, you have no idea what market conditions you will face when you are finally producing; and you know that from then on, you will face highly variable market conditions. (One of the biggest hurdles to resource investments in Australia is environmental activists with vexatious litigation, who at times get governments to “lock up” the resources you expected over many years to exploit.) So I would suggest that a firm in the situation you describe should best seek backing from the resource industry! I think, in fact, that many resource companies are invested in long-term alternative energy projects, though I can’t cite cases.

      • ‘In a world of limited resources, we can’t do everything, so which goals should we prioritize? The Copenhagen Consensus Center provides information on which targets will do the most social good (measured in dollars, but also incorporating e.g. welfare, health and environmental protection), relative to their costs.’ Copenhagen Consensus

        Within the range of actions developed by the Copenhagen Consensus are those have direct and indirect CO2 mitigation outcomes. These are no regrets options involving high priority social and economic objectives.

    • These people have no understanding of the concept of hedging.

  7. “What do the lower values of climate sensitivity imply for policy? Well slower values of warming make it easier to adapt, and provide time…”

    Nope. That’s just warmism with an extension. What got us into this mess won’t get us out of this mess. Replacing the bolsheviks with mensheviks is just making the klimatariat respectable for a bit longer.

    No more assumptions, no more white elephants based on assumptions. The IPCC etc can tell you less than the Nile Priesthood, who were only betting on one good thing annually.That does not mean future climate is unknowable. Just not known. It would be truly wonderful to have a science of climate, but in the meantime…

    Engineer for everything, just like a real civilization does.

    • + lots of bamboo.

      • Lots of bamboo, of course. And shiny new coal power stations. And Diesel Landcruisers that aren’t too old. And gigantic dams. And new autostrade. And lots of phone/internet towers. And fresh gnocchi swimming in Gorgonzola cream sauce…

        Did I mention bright new power stations for our luscious black coal?

  8. A push of the uncertainty button is taken as an affront to climate science infallibility. You are barking at dogma

  9. “Curry has been a strong voice in the climate change debate internationally and is at the centre of new research that questions ­climate sensitivity.”

    How far you’ve come on your journey, Judith. Been a privilege to have been witness to some of it.

  10. It is interesting that Garth Paltridge should highlight the decline in trust as the real risk faced by climate scientists. He has a point. The debate over CAGW and to a lesser extent AGW has produced some of the slimiest vitriol I have ever seen. The lows to which opponents of skeptics are willing to sink underlines a total lack of integrity. Climate science is now in the same position that health science was in during the 80s and 90s when researchers warned us of the supposed dangers of dairy products, eggs and meat. Charlatans ruled then and charlatans rule today. This is not science as I was taught 40 years ago.

  11. Climate science has been thrown into disarray by the hiatus, disagreement between climate model and instrumental estimates of climate sensitivity, uncertainties in carbon uptake by plants, and diverging interpretations of ocean heating (in the face of a dearth of observations).

    That is definitely your opinion. I’m not sure it is widely held view in the climate science community.

    • They are optimistic in their pessimism. .

    • Someone could produce a list of peer reviewed papers that include, “pause”, “hiatus” and “stand still” I guess. lat I heard there were about 50 explanations for what isn’t happening :)

      • …and the skeptics have already dismissed all of them as not even remotely possible as far as I can tell.

      • You miss the point, Jim D. The issue here is that up until 2 or 3 years ago, people pointing to the hiatus were dismissed as deniers. Then it seems, the dam broke. That article came out in a liberal magazine…The Economist I think it was….conceding that the pause was indeed happening…and suddenly the climate establishment was running for cover. Ad hoc explanation followed ad hoc explanation followed ad hoc explanation, in a desperate and transparent attempt to paper over the abysmal failure of the models on which this whole dog and pony show is built.

      • Without 1998, you have no pause. The recent trend is consistent with the trend before 1998. It is a very fragile concept that relies on one year of extreme natural variability.
        http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut4gl/mean:12/from:1970/to:1997/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:1970/trend/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:1999/mean:12

      • Then why all the attempts to explain it?

      • In the SH you can extend prior to the El Nino excursion,which is greater then the Santer constraint ie >18 yrs.

        http://woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut4sh/from:1996.6/mean:12/plot/hadcrut4sh/from:1996.6/mean:12/trend/plot/none

      • ‘Using a new measure of coupling strength, this update shows that these climate modes have recently synchronized, with synchronization peaking in the year 2001/02. This synchronization has been followed by an increase in coupling. This suggests that the climate system may well have shifted again, with a consequent break in the global mean temperature trend from the post 1976/77 warming to a new period (indeterminate length) of roughly constant global mean temperature.’ https://pantherfile.uwm.edu/kswanson/www/publications/2008GL037022_all.pdf

        http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/rss/plot/uah/plot/rss-land/from:2002/trend/plot/uah/from:2002/trend

        I use the satellite data – it avoids the problems of drought artifacts in the surface record. Unfortunately – we can’t say which is right – but neither show a positive trend since 2002. The relevant start date for the new regime. One which is very likely to last 30 years.

        https://watertechbyrie.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/earthshine.jpg

        ‘Earthshine changes in albedo shown in blue, ISCCP-FD shown in black and CERES in red. A climatologically significant change before CERES followed by a long period of insignificant change.’

        That this is not understood seems more cognitively dissonant than rational.

      • Matthew R Marler

        Jim D: …and the skeptics have already dismissed all of them as not even remotely possible as far as I can tell.

        Quote somebody specific. I thought that the paper on the accelerated thermohaline circulation was credible: needing confirmation and quantification, but worthy of researching. It was also ad hoc, and not to be believed, but to be considered possibly true.

      • Actually, JimD is right, there isn’t a “pause”, just a continuation of about 0.10 C per decade for most of the world.

        https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-jjod0aCb_zw/VEG9afL66AI/AAAAAAAALm8/PEjIzbaVRDU/w602-h408-no/global%2Bwarming.png

        The only “pause” is when you compare reality to projections :)

      • Matthew Marler, WUWT are keeping the list, and their people and articles have not yet subscribed to any of them being remotely correct. They know that if the pause was a natural variation, they can’t then say it was a problem with the CO2 sensitivity. It really is an either/or, and they prefer the “or” and don’t want to hear about any of the 50 “eithers”. It is like that here at CE too. It just can’t be natural variation because that destroys the low sensitivity theory.

      • captd, see my post below. Projections depend when you look at them. For the period 1984-1998 the models were running cold, and now by running warm they are just catching up with nature. This bigger picture view is little commented on by skeptics, of course.

      • Matthew R Marler

        Jim D: …and the skeptics have already dismissed all of them as not even remotely possible as far as I can tell.

        Jim D: WUWT are keeping the list, and their people and articles have not yet subscribed to any of them being remotely correct

        WUWT occupies the no man’s land between “dismissing” them and “subscribing” to them, a land mostly of derision because they are all ad hoc and untested.

        The person who clearly dismisses all of them is you, as you repeatedly remind us that the pause has not happened and is not happening.

      • Matthew Marler, the pause does not show up in 30-year trends because it was preceded by a sharp rise. If you are focused on 15-year periods, you need to consider natural variability more seriously because that time scale does not cancel them out as much. Just like if you look at annual averages you have to consider that you will see ups and downs due to ENSO. In the big picture these self-canceling oscillations are just distractions.

      • Jim D
        “Matthew Marler, the pause does not show up in 30-year trends because it was preceded by a sharp rise. If you are focused on 15-year periods, you need to consider natural variability more seriously because that time scale does not cancel them out as much. “

        Well, fortunately in 2030 when the pause turns 32 it will show up in 30 year temperature trends.

      • Cooling and warming shows up in regimes in the 20th century..

        1909 to 1944, 1945 to 1976, 1977 to 1998, 1999 to ?

        There is no chance that the pattern will be repeated in the 21st.

      • Matthew R Marler

        Jim D: Matthew Marler, the pause does not show up in 30-year trends because it was preceded by a sharp rise. If you are focused on 15-year periods, you need to consider natural variability more seriously because that time scale does not cancel them out as much. Just like if you look at annual averages you have to consider that you will see ups and downs due to ENSO. In the big picture these self-canceling oscillations are just distractions.

        You have written that before, and that is why I wrote that you dismiss all of the “explanations” of the “pause”. You and other believers, not skeptics.

        Whether the cancellations will recur in the future, like the question of whether the ca. 1000 year period represents a persistent process, we can’t tell yet.

        Meanwhile, no one predicted the “apparent pause”, even people who now claim to believe in the reality of the short-term “self-canceling” oscillations. That is why WUWT and contributors deride the many explanations.

      • Matthew Marler, you only have to look at the past record to see the reality of short-term self-canceling oscillations. They are known about and this one is not exceptional. It is helped a lot by the presence of 1998 which was exceptional, preceded by an exceptional rise, not coincidentally, and followed by a succession of warm years. Any honest analysis of the pause has to include the period preceding the 1998 step because the pause line by itself is discontinuous with the previous record. Carrying the previous rise rate forwards, we find that most of the pause has been above that trend line.
        http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:1975/mean:12/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:1975/trend

      • Jim Owen, you just perfectly illustrated my previous comment that “the pause line by itself is discontinuous with the previous record.”

      • Jim D | October 18, 2014 at 9:40 pm |

        Matthew Marler, WUWT are keeping the list, and their people and articles have not yet subscribed to any of them being remotely correct. They know that if the pause was a natural variation, they can’t then say it was a problem with the CO2 sensitivity. It really is an either/or, and they prefer the “or” and don’t want to hear about any of the 50 “eithers”. It is like that here at CE too. It just can’t be natural variation because that destroys the low sensitivity theory.

        Cognitively dissonant much?

      • Matthew R Marler

        Jim D: Matthew Marler, you only have to look at the past record to see the reality of short-term self-canceling oscillations.

        You only have to look at the past record to see the reality of an oscillation with a period of about 1000 years. You get to “pick and choose” which parts of “the past record” you believe represent persistent processes useful for predicting the future. At this point, I doubt there is a reliable way to distinguish between “honest” and “dishonest” evaluations of the past record.

        Going forward, we have diverse models (conceptual and mathematical) with extrapolations (forecasts, projections, expectations, predictions, etc) into the future. All will be shown to be inaccurate to some degree, and after 20 more years (and at least 20 more classes of models) we might have one with a credible claim to an accurate prediction for 2050.

        I should mention that I appreciate your persistent politeness. I think you are the best representative on this blog of a point of view I have come to discredit, and I always look up your comments. I have a suspicion that if I read something that makes me revise my overall judgment back to what it was, you’ll have written it.

      • Jim D –
        “Jim Owen, you just perfectly illustrated my previous comment that “the pause line by itself is discontinuous with the previous record.””

        Yup, that’s exactly what I said – here and in a later comment. The record is discontinuous. Why? And yet you insist on running a linear trend through that discontinuity. Bad dog – no cookie.

      • So the “pause” is really a jump-and-pause. It makes no sense on its own.

      • Jim D –
        “So the “pause” is really a jump-and-pause. It makes no sense on its own.”

        If it makes no sense on its own, as a scientist you should be asking WHY? That statement is the essence of science – it raises questions without providing convenient answers. “Science” is about finding those answers.

      • The jump-and-pause makes sense as a cycle of natural variation that self cancels in 30 years leaving the long term trend as it was. The pause is a half-cycle.

      • Jim D – You’re stating the obvious conclusion without offering the underlying explanation for anything. I think you “may be” right about the cycle. But that can only be proved by time.

        But that begs the question as to why this (98) was a Super El Nino or why the temp slope changed after it happened (the pause) or what causes El Nino at all, let alone the Super variety.

        Regardless, we DID have the 98 El Nino so the statement that “if there were no El Nino” is a non sequitor and a waste of bandwidth.

        And now I AM late. Good night.

      • The slope change suggests that the temperature rose above the equalibrium temp, and still is.

    • “without 1998 you have no pause”

      Jim D.

      You would be pause deniers are a dogged bunch. So fine, for the sake of discussion let’s stipulate that there’s been no pause. What counts here is it looks like the warming has been significantly over-estimated, Paper after paper is coming out with the same general conclusion, that climate sensitivity is looking much less dire. I simply cannot grasp why you seem to dismiss these things as unimportant.

      • Yes you can. Most of us can grasp why. You are just being polite. ;-)

      • PG nails the key point. I have thought for some time that the term “pause” did more to offer critics a chink to attack and thereby skip over the real point – that the models run hot.

      • I would call it jump-and-pause. You can’t have one without the other. 2014 shows whatever it was is over.
        http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:1975/mean:12/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:1975/trend/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:2014/mean:3

      • Jim D, do you perhaps not realise how comments like that make you appear?

      • Skeptics don’t realize what the actual temperature trend data makes them look like. It rises 0.17 C per decade instead of 0.2 C and they make a big deal of the 0.03 difference when they would have expected less than 0.1 C per decade over this period, and don’t make a big deal over their own larger error.

      • Jim D, you take a 12-month mean of a data series, and then tack a short 3-month mean onto the end of it, and then try to pretend that it means something.
        You’re not impressing anyone.

      • That’s to show what 2014 is doing so far, and how we are already breaking monthly and seasonal records that were set in an El Nino year. It’s only because the trend is still going strong. Thanks for asking.

      • Pierre-Normand

        pokerguy wrote:

        (Quoting Jim D.) “without 1998 you have no pause”

        “You would be pause deniers are a dogged bunch. So fine, for the sake of discussion let’s stipulate that there’s been no pause.”

        There is a failure in logic there. If I claim that without HIV there would be no AIDS, that doesn’t make me an AIDS denier. That’s because I am not denying that there are HIV infections. Likewise Jim D isn’t denying that there has been a large El Nino warming in 1998. He rather is reminding forgetful skeptics that *this* likely is the largest contributor to the pause.

    • The climate science community is in denial. The pause is killing the cause.

    • The :”science community” may be the last to acknowledge the confusion and shambles the discipline finds it in these days. With dozens of explanations for the hiatus or temperature stasis, for example, any fair-minded, objective observer would reasonably conclude “disarray” is a mild and accurate judgement about the State of Climate Science.

    • The “science community” may be the last to acknowledge the confusion and shambles the discipline finds it in these days. With dozens of explanations for the hiatus or temperature stasis, for example, any fair-minded, objective observer would reasonably conclude “disarray” is a mild and accurate judgement about the State of Climate Science.

    • Try following the discussion Joseph. And try increasing your perceptive abilities. Then you might pick up on the a) limited nature of the respondents to Dr Curry’s piece (i.e. few top researchers) and b) the personal attack mode most of the responses took.

  12. The IPCC AR5 points out too that models were running cold in 1984-1998, and as Paltridge pointed out, very little attention was paid to that warming period being partially due to natural variability which peaked in 1998 because it was faster than CO2 could explain by itself. That exceptional year is, not surprisingly, responsible for the models running cold before it and hot after it, but taking the 30 years total, they are about right in the big picture.
    http://object.cato.org/sites/cato.org/files/wp-content/uploads/cw_081314_fig1.jpg

    • Curious George

      Oh, we treasure those good reliable models of old ..

    • I’ll see it when I believe it.

    • I have pretty much accepted C&W and Best on Arctic heat. The only problem with it is that it does not explain why the Antarctic is so damn frozen. Well I have the answer and it’s not CO2. It is very simple, the earth is more than three miles further out in orbit during the SH summer.
      “Earth comes closest to the Sun every year around January 3. It is farthest from the Sun every year around July 4. (For a table of these dates for various years, see Apsis.)
      The difference in distance between Earth’s nearest point to the Sun in January and farthest point from the Sun in July is about 5 million kilometers (3.1 million miles). Earth is about 147.1 million kilometers (91.4 million miles) from the Sun at perihelion in early January, in contrast to about 152.1 million kilometers (94.5 million miles) at aphelion in early July. Because of the increased distance at aphelion, only 93.55% of the solar radiation from the Sun falls on a given square area of land than at perihelion. As winter also falls in the southern hemisphere at the same time as aphelion, this decrease in solar radiation due to the aphelion plus shorter periods of daylight causes, in general, less heat from the Sun to hit the southern hemisphere in winter then solar radiation hitting the northern hemisphere during its winter but perihelion six months later.
      When Earth is closest to the Sun, it is winter in the northern hemisphere and summer in the southern hemisphere. Thus Earth’s distance from the Sun does not affect what season occurs. Instead, Earth’s seasons come and go because Earth does not rotate with its axis exactly upright with respect to the plane of its orbit around the Sun. Earth’s axial tilt is 23.4 degrees. This puts the Sun farther south in December and January, so the north has winter and the south has summer. Thus winter falls on that part of the globe where sunlight strikes least directly, and summer falls where sunlight strikes most directly, regardless of Earth’s distance from the Sun.”

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

      Refer to the table for this year’s dates:

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

      You can also see how the same phenomenon during the Eemian interglacial and how it affected it:

      http://theinconvenientskeptic.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/Chap_6-Illustration_45.png

      Duncan Steel has a paper related to this very subject.

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

      Although I don’t come to the same conclusion (I’ll go with JCs 50/50) it certainly explains the Antarctic freezer better than some CO2 induced trade winds (LOL):
      Perihelion precession, polar ice and global warming
      Duncan Steel
      Email: pppigw@duncansteel.com
      Summary: The increase in mean global temperature over the past 150 years is generally
      ascribed to human activities, in particular the rises in the atmospheric mixing ratios of carbon
      dioxide and other greenhouse gases since the Industrial Revolution began. Whilst it is thought
      that ice ages and interglacial periods are mainly initiated by multi-millennial variations in
      Earth’s heliocentric orbit and obliquity, shorter-term orbital variations and consequent
      observable climatic effects over decadal/centurial timescales have not been considered
      significant causes of contemporary climate change compared to anthropogenic influences. Here
      it is shown that the precession of perihelion occurring over a century substantially affects the
      intra-annual variation of solar radiation influx at different locations, especially higher latitudes,
      with northern and southern hemispheres being subject to contrasting insolation changes. This
      north/south asymmetry has grown since perihelion was aligned with the winter solstice seven to
      eight centuries ago, and must cause enhanced year-on-year springtime melting of Arctic (but not
      Antarctic) ice and therefore feedback warming because increasing amounts of land and open sea
      are denuded of high-albedo ice and snow across boreal summer and into autumn. The
      accelerating sequence of insolation change now occurring as perihelion moves further into boreal
      winter has not occurred previously during the Holocene and so would not have been observed
      before by past or present civilisations. Reasons are given for the significance of this process
      having been overlooked until now. This mechanism represents a supplementary – natural –
      contribution to climate change in the present epoch and may even be the dominant fundamental
      cause of global warming, although anthropogenic effects surely play a role too.
      Page 2 of 23
      Duncan Steel: Perihelion precession, polar ice and global warming
      Introduction
      Record melting of Arctic sea ice over the past year (Schiermeier 2012) has been widely presumed
      to be a consequence of anthropogenic global warming (AGW), and yet a natural mechanism
      exists that may be responsible, at least in part.
      The widespread belief that AGW is the fundamental cause of present-day climate change is
      predicated on the apparent correlation between rising levels of carbon dioxide and the increase
      in mean global temperature over the past two centuries. Simple considerations of the effect of
      carbon dioxide, water vapour and methane on the infra-red opacity of the atmosphere lead to an
      expectation that as the proportions of those gases rise, so should the temperature. This provides
      a reason to think that in this case the correlation has a cause, and is not simply a coincidence.
      Correlation, however, does not demonstrate causality, and the possibility remains that this
      is either a coincidence, or that some other factor(s) may be involved in the warming. The case for
      AGW being the dominant cause of climate change would be weakened should some other
      causative agency be identified that also has a temporal correlation with the rising temperature.
      In this article I present prima facie evidence that the ongoing natural increase in spring
      insolation occurring at high northern latitudes, coupled with the positive feedback effect of the
      resultant snow and ice loss reducing the region’s mean albedo over summer, comprises just such
      a causative agency. This concept frames a working hypothesis in which the melting of Arctic ice
      is not so much a consequence of global warming as its cause. In this picture AGW due to rising
      levels of greenhouse gases remains as a contributor to the overall warming, but is not necessarily
      the dominant influence.
      The changing insolation theory (CIT) mooted herein is capable of explaining various
      observed phenomena which the AGW hypothesis has not yet been able to accommodate.
      Specifically, what has been observed and is pertinent here are the following:
      1. A gradual rise in mean global temperature over the past two centuries;
      2. Accelerating spring and summer melting of Arctic sea ice reaching an extent not
      previously witnessed;
      3. No substantial loss of Antarctic sea ice, and actually a small growth in its extent
      (Shepherd et al. 2010; Parkinson and Cavalieri 2012);
      4. The greatest rises in regional temperatures (and temperature variability) being at
      high northern latitudes (Liu et al. 2007; Wu et al. 2011).”

      IT’S THE APISIDAL PERIHELIAN PRECESSION STUPID!!

      • FIRST PARAGRAPH Should read ‘more than three million miles.’

      • IT’S THE APISIDAL PERIHELIAN PRECESSION STUPID!!
        But AGW CO2 CONTROL KNOB is so much easier fer
        CAGW STUPIDS ter git their heads around and pronounce,
        ordvic, it’ll never take-off on twitter.

    • Jim D, your example plainly does not understand the difference between in sample (b), mostly out of sample (a) – bothnowing to the CMIP5 tuning period– and a long average whichnis neither but happens to be convenient for your narrative. Statistical fail. Please read the essay An Awkward Pause in my new ebook Blowing Smoke, out yesterday. Foreward by our gracious hostess. Then read the companion essay Hiding the Hiatus. Then get back if you can with counterfacts.

      • How did you explain the underwarming of the models in 1984-1998?

      • An Awkward Pause in my new ebook Blowing Smoke, out yesterday,

        It’s like an ongoing marketing campaign..

      • “an ongoing marketing campaign”

        Global Warming™

        Andrew

      • pokerguy (aka al neipris)

        Good one, Bad Andrew. Indeed it is.

      • Jim D | October 20, 2014 at 7:16 pm |
        “How did you explain the underwarming of the models in 1984-1998?”

        That isn’t too difficult. The early models were running too hot so they adjusted them down. After a while they were running too hot so they adjusted them down again. Since you are trying to match the past and the rate of warming is decreasing it requires that your models run cool at earlier times. Don’t forget the expected rate of warming from AR1 was 0.3 C/ decade with the lowest warming expected in any one decade being 0.2 C.

      • Steven commented
        “That isn’t too difficult. The early models were running too hot so they adjusted them down.”

        My understanding is that what they’ve been doing to adjust model output is to adjust aerosols to until output matches surface records. They have not been adjusting the positive feedback from Co2 to humidity.

        Also , max temps have gone up All of 0.001F since 1940.

      • Yes, they adjust the aerosols among other things but aerosols are probably the main one. So if the models are running too hot you adjust the aerosols up either by quantity or effect and they aren’t running hot anymore. You can also adjust the estimated forcing or the sensitivity and both have been. I’m sure they have made adjustments to feedbacks also but I can’t think of any specific ones off hand and they are probably minor and vary model to model. As a bottom line though I would say your comment is right and the adjustment of aerosols is probably the main climate control knob, to steal a phrase.

      • steven commented

        Yes, they adjust the aerosols among other things but aerosols are probably the main one. So if the models are running too hot you adjust the aerosols up either by quantity or effect and they aren’t running hot anymore. You can also adjust the estimated forcing or the sensitivity and both have been. I’m sure they have made adjustments to feedbacks also but I can’t think of any specific ones off hand and they are probably minor and vary model to model. As a bottom line though I would say your comment is right and the adjustment of aerosols is probably the main climate control knob, to steal a phrase.

        My understanding is that they couldn’t get the models warm enough until they, I think allowed for super saturation of air near the boundary of water, this is the positive feedback they built in. I don’t believe they’ve changed this because it’s key to consensus climate science, and the models don’t warm enough if they do.

      • Let me rephrase that. They have adjusted some feedbacks and thus the sensitivity but I’m not sure which ones. That’s why the range of estimated sensitivity has changed.

      • I’m not sure about the supersaturation issue. I remember reading comments about it but never checked it out myself.

  13. Wasn’t the last big group author skeptic bashing published in the Times or something a with a bit more impact than the Huff and Puff?

  14. Thankfully the “pause” distraction is coming to an end, so we can get back to focusing on the long-term trend of the last 40 years. Monthly data suggests we are already back on the 40-year trend line, and it isn’t even an El Nino yet.
    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut4gl/mean:12/from:1970/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:1970/trend/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:2013/mean:3

      • Works too. Mean trend = .162 C per decade still going even through the somewhat hard to discern “pause”.

      • Yes, you can fit an OLS linear trendline to any data series.
        But it only tells you anything if there actually is a linear trend in the data.
        Just like you can fit a linear trend to a segment of a circle, but it doesn’t tell you anything about the circle.

      • And now … for the pause that refreshes.

    • Matthew R Marler

      Jim D: so we can get back to focusing on the long-term trend of the last 40 years.

      Select your intervals and select your models. Why restrict yourself to 40 years and a linear trend?

    • “Thankfully the “pause” distraction is coming to an end,”

      Right, JIm. Better we all burn than you having to suffer the embarrassment of being wrong.

      • The pause is a whole misguided debate to be forgotten in a few years. It is just a sidetrack to avoid talking about the real issue.

    • Jim D, if 1.62C turns out to be the amount of global warming in this century, what actions do you advise?

      • Jim D, just to follow on a bit, I believe the highest decadal warming has been about 1.9C, in the decade ending in 2003. Nothing before or since has approached it. Given that we now have 70 years of decent records since the period when anthropogenic contributions of CO2 are judged sufficient to contribute to global warming,

        Zeke Hausfather computed the decadal warming for every year since then and found what I cited above, the highest level being 1.9C for the ten years ending in 2003. Most decadal totals were about 1.6 to 1.7C.

        Is it time to have a rational discussion based on the very real possibility that global warming is real and significant, but not likely to be as high as some predicted over the past 25 years?

      • Attn: decimal.
        ====

      • Thanks, kim. What Zeke actually computed was the century trend (eg 1.9C per century) at a decadal level (.19C for the ten years ending in 2003).

        Attn: haiku request.

      • Linear extrapolation would be just a lower estimate. The warming rate has been doubling every few decades with increasing fossil fuel use. The people who want increased fossil fuel use need to pay attention to this kind of thing.

      • Like the tangent to
        A circumnavigation.
        Centuries to see.
        ============

      • Matthew R Marler

        Jim D: The warming rate has been doubling every few decades with increasing fossil fuel use.

        Clearly that requires some detailed clarification. It isn’t now warming twice as fast as it was in1980, or twice as fast as in 1935.

      • Pierre-Normand

        The background warming rate in the 1930s is attributed to CO2 and solar forcing in roughly equal measure. Both forcing changes are roughly the same. In the more recent period, the solar forcing contribution is slightly negative so CO2 seems to be responsible alone. Accounting for aerosols further improves the match between temperature and total forcing in the mid-century period between the two sharp rises.

        http://woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:1875/mean:12/mean:360/plot/sidc-ssn/from:1875/mean:12/mean:360/scale:0.01/offset:-0.6

        http://woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:1875/mean:12/mean:360/plot/sidc-ssn/from:1875/mean:12/mean:360/scale:0.01/offset:-0.6

      • The trend at the end of the 20th century was twice the average trend of the 20th century, and AGW would predict that ratio based on the CO2 growth curve.

      • Umm, JimD, I think the last two decades argue powerfully against your claim that the warming rate has been ‘doubling every few decades.’

      • The climate sensitivity doubles every two weeks. Yeah, that’s it!

      • Weather has been known to be chaotic since Edward Lorenz discovered the ‘butterfly effect’ in the 1960’s. Abrupt climate change on the other hand was thought to have happened only in the distant past and so climate was expected to evolve steadily over this century in response to ordered climate forcing.

        More recent work is identifying abrupt climate changes working through the El Niño Southern Oscillation, the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, the North Atlantic Oscillation, the Southern Annular Mode, the Artic Oscillation, the Indian Ocean Dipole and other measures of ocean and atmospheric states. These are measurements of sea surface temperature and atmospheric pressure over more than 100 years which show evidence for abrupt change to new climate conditions that persist for up to a few decades before shifting again. Global rainfall and flood records likewise show evidence for abrupt shifts and regimes that persist for decades. In Australia, less frequent flooding from early last century to the mid 1940’s, more frequent flooding to the late 1970’s and again a low rainfall regime to recent times.

        Anastasios Tsonis, of the Atmospheric Sciences Group at University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, and colleagues used a mathematical network approach to analyse abrupt climate change on decadal timescales. Ocean and atmospheric indices – in this case the El Niño Southern Oscillation, the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, the North Atlantic Oscillation and the North Pacific Oscillation – can be thought of as chaotic oscillators that capture the major modes of climate variability. Tsonis and colleagues calculated the ‘distance’ between the indices. It was found that they would synchronise at certain times and then shift into a new state.

        It is no coincidence that shifts in ocean and atmospheric indices occur at the same time as changes in the trajectory of global surface temperature. Our ‘interest is to understand – first the natural variability of climate – and then take it from there. So we were very excited when we realized a lot of changes in the past century from warmer to cooler and then back to warmer were all natural,’ Tsonis said.

        Four multi-decadal climate shifts were identified in the last century coinciding with changes in the surface temperature trajectory. Warming from 1909 to the mid 1940’s, cooling to the late 1970’s, warming to 1998 and declining since. The shifts are punctuated by extreme El Niño Southern Oscillation events. Fluctuations between La Niña and El Niño peak at these times and climate then settles into a damped oscillation. Until the next critical climate threshold – due perhaps in a decade or two if the recent past is any indication.

        The background warming between 1944 and 1998 is 0.4 degrees C and 0.07 degrees C/decade. This is the warming over both a warming and cooling regime. So the residual that might be anthropogenic.

        Data shows IR cooling of 0.7W/m2 and SW warming of 2.1W/m2 between the 1980’s and 1990’s. The 2 relevant satellite sources say pretty much the same thing and it is confirmed by ocean heat.

        https://watertechbyrie.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/wong2006figure7.gif

        Knowledge of the global energy budget changes prior to that is totally lacking.

      • Matthew R Marler

        Jim D: The trend at the end of the 20th century was twice the average trend of the 20th century

        On the other hand, the trend of the 21st century is 0, which is twice the rate of certain selected previous intervals that had a warming rate of 0. You pick your ratios, then choose the intervals for which those ratios work out as you choose.

    • Jim D | October 18, 2014 at 7:14 pm
      “Thankfully the “pause” distraction is coming to an end, so we can get back to focusing on the long-term trend of the last 40 years.”

      I love how the warmists cheer for doom and gloom.

      Well, there are three camps:
      1. Warmists say it is getting warmer.
      2. Wavists say it is getting cooler.
      3. Solists say it is getting cooler.

      Don’t see how CO2 can inflate temperatures more than 0.5°C above the 2014 standard. Some 600 PPM or less number for equilibrium CO2 just isn’t going to change temperatures a lot. And NOBODY has posited a non-fantasy mechanism for getting CO2 over 600 PPM.

      I don’t know who is right… but I have my popcorn out and am waiting for 2020. If we are having the same hiatus discussion in 2020 then everybody is partially right.

      • PA said “If we are having the same hiatus discussion in 2020 then everybody is partially right.”

        If this were to happen and if I were a betting man I would say that this scenario is more likely than not, then we will have not progressed at all and that the science of climate change would be dead in the water.

      • Climate change is a political position not a science theory. From what I can tell there never was any “science” to climate change.

        A credible scientific theory has supporting evidence.

        Broadly speaking the climate changes, But that is like observing that the sun rises in the east and sets in the west.

      • What I think is going to happen by 2020, is that all the 30 year trends in global temperature will increase.
        If you look at the trends since 1990, which would be the start of 30 year trends in 2020 even RSS is above 0.1. The 24 year trends are all positive and they include the hiatus period.

        The RSS satellite’s orbit could continue to decay and the RSS trend could continue to be the outlier.

        If CO2 trends higher like it has then the trends will trend higher.

      • Whatever you try, you can’t make it stop looking like a rising trend for 40 years that even fits today after the pause.

      • Pierre-Normand

        Jim Owen, Jim D is right. The big El Nino explains the discontinuity. After a big El Nino is over, though, surface temperatures are expected come back down. CO2 explains why not only did they fail to come back down but kept on rising in spite of the combined cooling effects of ENSO (recent La Nina episodes) and the Sun (negative TSI trend).

      • Pass Jim D another turtle.

      • Without data it is all just narrative nonsense.

        https://watertechbyrie.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/earthshine.jpg

        ‘Earthshine changes in albedo shown in blue, ISCCP-FD shown in black and CERES in red. A climatologically significant change before CERES followed by a long period of insignificant change.’

        What we see is a change in albedo in the 1998/2001 climate shift – an increase in cloud that results in reduced IR emissions and increased reflected SW. Increased surface temps and reduced ocean warming.

        https://watertechbyrie.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/loeb2011-fig1.png

        What we see here is cooling in IR between the 1980’s and 1990’s and warming in SW. The IR peak in El Nino reflect the higher tropospheric temperature and relatively reduced cloud cover in the central Pacific.

        https://watertechbyrie.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/loeb2011-fig1.png

        Clouds change decadally increasing in cover to the to the end of the 20th century – a step change – and not much change since.

        https://watertechbyrie.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/cloud_palleandlaken2013_zps3c92a9fc.png

      • Eh – 1998 was a dragon king.

        http://arxiv.org/abs/0907.4290

      • Most of the other skeptics keep quiet about the clouds reducing during the rapid warming from 1970-2000, because that is exactly opposite to their hopes of a negative cloud feedback, and supports the positive feedback idea more. We would have heard a lot more about this if the clouds had been behaving as a negative feedback, but instead, silence.

      • Matthew R Marler

        Jim D: Most of the other skeptics keep quiet about the clouds reducing during the rapid warming from 1970-2000, because that is exactly opposite to their hopes of a negative cloud feedback, and supports the positive feedback idea more. We would have heard a lot more about this if the clouds had been behaving as a negative feedback, but instead, silence.

        How do you get that? The reduction in cloud cover is an ideal explanation for the subsequent warming, with warming producing a subsequent increase in cloud cover that squelched subsequent warming. Again with the unnamed “skeptics”, when skeptics have in fact written this. I, for example, wrote that at least once before, and I think I am considered a “skeptic” (despite the fact that I quote science sometimes and support the “basic radiative physics” as the emission/absorption spectra of H2O and CO2 are sometimes called.)

      • MM, when the clouds only explain a small percentage of the warming it is either a positive feedback or coincidence, but not the cause.

      • Matthew R Marler

        Jim D: MM, when the clouds only explain a small percentage of the warming it is either a positive feedback or coincidence, but not the cause.

        Maybe, but that does not support your claim that anybody has been keeping quiet about the reduced cloud cover of the last warming epoch.

        If cloud cover was reduced during that last warming epoch, and if the “pause” followed an increase in cloud cover, then the cloud cover change “explains” most of the observed mean temp change of the last 40 years. It all depends on how you model the effects of clouds.

      • MM, people have yet to find a way for clouds to drive climate, but you can check into GCRs and Spencer’s various thoughts on cloud forcing and see how much you believe them.

      • Matthew R Marler

        Jim D: MM, people have yet to find a way for clouds to drive climate, but you can check into GCRs and Spencer’s various thoughts on cloud forcing and see how much you believe them.

        You and I just outlined a way for cloud cover changes to effect temperature changes, and for temperature changes to effect cloud cover changes. whether clouds amount to some definition of “drivers of climate” is a different consideration. If it is true, as you asserted, that something in the climate system produced a subsequent epoch of reduced cloud cover, then it is possible (as I wrote) that the epoch of reduced cloud cover produced a subsequent epoch of warming. If you focus attention on the last 40 years, then the cloud cover change “explains” a large fraction of the temperature change.

        {You might recall that a lack of wind to blow away cloud cover was presented in a paper here some time back as a reason why there has been a pause (the paper focused on clear vs cloudy skies in ENSO, then generalized to the world at large.)}

        I am not saying that it really worked that way, only that it might have.

        Also, that (a) you didn’t think of the consequences when you wrote about the cloud cover change and (b) you didn’t think of the implications when the focus was restricted to the last 40 years.

        It is widely acknowledged in the peer-reviewed literature that cloud cover responses constitute one of the “known unknowns”. I maintain that there is no good rationale for the way that you pick and choose subsets of the historical record.

      • Jim D seems to think (twice now) that –
        “Whatever you try, you can’t make it stop looking like a rising trend for 40 years that even fits today after the pause.”

        But that only works if you run your linear trend through the discontinuity. What would your math professor have to say about that?

        You can run a linear trend on a segment of a sine wave or parabola – what does it tell you? In this case, it requires TWO linear trends. If they have the same slope then your contention may be correct. But they don’t. So the conclusion is that the data on the two sides of the continuity is “different” and the question is: WHY?

        You haven’t answered that question.

      • P-N – You failed to examine the complete temp record, which did exactly as you expected – up to a point. The temp came back down and then stayed down for some time before rising again to a different level. You’re partially right – but not right enough.

        Do I have answers? No. But I have lots of questions – and if you blow the questions off, I lots MORE questions.

      • Jim Owen, I would be more interested in the discontinuity itself. It’s not natural, and probably implies something about the way the trends are separated.

      • Jim D – Last shot – I’m running out of time.

        Yes, the discontinuity needs to be explained, but WITHOUT CO2 as a driver. Super El Ninos have occurred periodically for thousands of years and long, long before CO2 was a factor. There are archaeological records that confirm this. Problem is that, IIRC, there is no mathematically correct, scientifically accurate explanation for El Nino – of any size.

        Note – I am NOT claiming superior knowledge here. I’m only asking questions that I’ve never, in any forum, heard voiced before. Nor have I heard the answers to those questions. But I have heard a lot of “explanations” that explain nothing and obscure the inconvenient facts.

      • Jim Owen, so you want a different explanation from the standard one that the 1998 El Nino was a big one that jumped well above the warming trend line, and residual heat stayed in the system for a while after it (a period known as the pause), until finally the warming caught up with it after some La Nina periods around 2014 which itself was an ENSO neutral year that has a chance of exceeding all preceding El Nino years including 1998.

    • Matthew R Marler

      Jim D: so we can get back to focusing on the long-term trend of the last 40 years.

      Only for you is “the last 40 years” a “long-term”. If you look at the last 11,500 years, the current warming is approximately “on time” (with no CO2 effect whatsoever), and the warming peaks display a downward trend since the “Holocene Optimum”.

      • Agreed. Even though the last 11500 years is a very small time period in the context of the extended trajectory of Earth’s climate from its genesis. Trends can only be inferred from each observation set and prediction based on such trends are inconclusive.

      • Pierre-Normand

        Suppose a river has been flowing at a steady rate for 10,000 years. Then we construct dam and thereafter the river flow is halved during the following 10 years. However, 10 years is such a short period compared to the previous one, we can nary conclude anything at all about the effect of the dam on the river flow in the past decade, or in the coming decades. Maybe the dam has no effect at all and the reduction of flow that occurred after it was built was entirely natural. The buildup of water upstream of the dam (or cooling of the stratosphere, sea level rise, etc.) is irrelevant.

  15. Pingback: Back from the twitter twilight zone: Responses to my WSJ op-ed | Latest News

  16. Yes, Judith, the world is in disarray over the prospects for future climate, Yes, the IPCC has masse a mess of its climate deliberations. I still believe that this mess could have been avoided if they had done a proper evaluation of the 1940 singularity which would have shown for the first time the on/off nature of climate change. Can anyone deny it now?

    • Yeah, the Chinese and Indians are concerned about ramping up economic output. They accept AGW for whatever it might prove to be.

  17. Judy, to those of us who are scientists in fields remote from climate science but who follow the debate from far, your style of arguing is much more appealing than that of your (warmist) opponents. Thank you for keeping it in spite of attacks you are sometime enduring,

    • Well, Dr. Curry seems to have staked out the objective middle ground and tends to discuss climate and address critics with fact based approach using relatively neutral language.

      This is to be commended.

      A dispassionate and factual presentation is much more persuasive than the loud and negative tone of much of the climate debate – and much more pleasant to read and ponder.

    • Steven Sullivan

      Speak for yourself, bacpierre. You certainly don’t speak for all ‘scientists remote from climate science but who follow the debate from (a)far”

      • Nor do you, but you sure speak like a lot of the alarmists do.
        =========

      • But unlike bacpierre, I don’t claim to, kim. Personally, I dodn’t findy Curry’s ‘style’ to be all that different from her ‘warmist opponents’ (if by which we mean other climate scientists blogging and op-ed-ing, most of whom,oddly enough, differ with her). She certainly can be as snarky as they. She tolerates rather more copious and vicious denigration of the ‘the other side’ on her blog than they do on theirs.

  18. The last paragraph of Pancost and Lewandowsky:

    The deeper the uncertainty, the more greenhouse gas emissions should be perceived as a wild and poorly understood gamble. By extension, the only unequivocal tool for minimising climate change uncertainty is to decrease our greenhouse gas emissions.

    The scent of the precautionary principle in full panic and no sense of a comparison of different risks associated with possible policy alternatives. Strange.

    • And they’re wrong: a strong focus on remediation later this century could do just about the same as immediate mitigation, without the massive economic impact.

    • Flawed, not complete enough even to be wrong…

  19. JC, I think you’re awesome so I say this with all due respect. But usually you are very level headed against criticism, but this post seems to have more bite than normal.

  20. David L. Hagen

    Re: “Pause denial is getting more and more difficult with time.”
    Ross McKitrick finds the duration of the current unpredicted temperature “pause” “to be 19 years at the surface and 16-26 years in the lower troposphere depending on the data set used.”
    **McKitrick, Ross R. and Timothy Vogelsang (2014) “HAC-Robust Trend Comparisons Among Climate Series with Possible Level Shifts” Environmetrics DOI: 10.1002/env.2294. 

    By “So called pause” – “Global surface temperatures continue to rise” etc., True Believers Mann et al. depart from reality and the objective scientific method.

  21. ‘Union of concerned scientists!’ Case of wolves in charge
    of the flock, lemmings in charge of the science.

  22. The climate change scene is no longer a one horse race and its about time the debate centres on the science rather than on decarbonisation of the western economies for the benefit of the emerging economies.

    The science of climate change should be based on meteorology and not numerology around a mythical concept of global temperature response to the doubling of a trace gas. This parameter is a vector in any case, depending on extraneous influences about which little is known.

  23. Judith,

    Your willingness to engage the idiocy is entertaining. However, you have earned the right to not tolerate fools gladly (ala Lindzen).

  24. DeSmogBlog is a wretched piece of work. I am not surprised that they had the most vacuous, vitriolic, and ad hominem response.

    • I can’t think of an alarmist blog that isn’t a wretched thing to behold. Sneering in tone, morally bankrupt, and deeply, deeply dishonest, every single one of them (that I’m aware of anyway).

      • I find ATTP to be a thoughtful and polite (mainly) blog – certainly above the line.

      • And then there’s everything else.
        =========================

      • That’s because they are all warmists stroking each other’s egos. There’s nary a sceptic to be found there!

      • Pierre-Normand

        Agreed about ATTP.

        Rated on a 1 to 10 scale scale, as manifested by the general attitude towards interventions or queries on behalf of the “other side”, I would rate some popular blogs/forums roughly thus:

        ATTP: 9
        RealClimate: 7 or 8
        Lucia’s Blackboard: 7
        SkepticalScience: 6
        Climate Audit: 6
        Climate Etc: 4
        HotWhopper: 2
        WUWT: 1

        Moderation seems paramount.

      • No need to get excited about contrary opinions when you can just start deleting comments. Moderation makes a wonderful pacifier.

      • Peter

        I’ve seen some interesting discussions on ATTP (I’ve even occasionally contributed) but I like the site because (ISTM) that it is more concerned with discussing the issues, rather than “laying down the party line”.

        You do not have to agree with people to find them interesting. Nor does either “side” have a monopoly of insight.

      • WFC ATTP seems to be “thoughtful and polite” because they are discussing one party’s line.

      • Matthew R Marler

        Pierre-Normand: Rated on a 1 to 10 scale scale,

        Is 10 “best” or “worst”? I perceive WUWT and RealClimate as having opposite biases in terms of the works they choose to present and the beliefs of the people who maintain the sites, but WUWT provides fairer treatment to people who write dissenting views.

      • Pierre-Normand

        “Is 10 “best” or “worst”? I perceive WUWT and RealClimate as having opposite biases in terms of the works they choose to present and the beliefs of the people who maintain the sites, but WUWT provides fairer treatment to people who write dissenting views.”

        My ranking was about civility, not fairness. Fairness as a criterion would yield a different ranking and would be much more dependent on the bias of the ranker.

        RealClimate may sometimes be unfair but pays a high moderation price for a quite high signal to noise ratio, especially regarding technical topics where I find much to learn. I think ClimateAudit and the Blackboard also offer reasonably high signal to noise ratios, albeit focused on rather narrowly selected nitpicks on the science.

        I view WUWT rather as a madhouse. Voices of calm reason, such as Stokes, Zeke or Engelbeen (and voices of impatient reason such as Mosher) are *completely* drowned in a bottomless pit of angry paranoid illiterate nonsense — so that layman lurkers can hardly discern them among all the confused and confusing pseudo-science. One of the main moderators is among the worst offenders. If you’re already informed about the topic, then you can find some value if you carry a machete to make your way through the jungle. But I may be biased.

        Climate Etc may also be paying, in the interest of fairness and balance, the price of a lowered signal to noise ration. That’s fine with me. That creates interesting discussions and furnishes a middle meeting ground. When I need to find information, or gain genuine understanding, on technical topics, I move to the less fair blogs, mainstream scientific fora, or to the *totally* unfair world of scientific textbooks and articles.

      • Agree about ATTP. I have enjoyed my visits there.

    • Pierre-Normand said:

      Rated on a 1 to 10 scale scale, as manifested by the general attitude towards interventions or queries on behalf of the “other side”, I would rate some popular blogs/forums roughly thus:

      ATTP: 9
      RealClimate: 7 or 8
      Lucia’s Blackboard: 7
      SkepticalScience: 6
      Climate Audit: 6
      Climate Etc: 4
      HotWhopper: 2
      WUWT: 1

      That list is most interesting. I believe that it corresponds perfectly to how much you agree with the point of view of the blog in question. SO your perception of “openness” really boils down to how much you agree with the content.

      As a physicist, I find even the title of AATP dismissive and disrespectful. RealClimate and SkS are completely unwilling to even hear opposing viewpoints, generally representing them as caricatures, since they ban the actual voices from posting. OTOH, Climate Audit directly addresses opposing viewpoints, allows those who disagree to post in the comments, and keeps the discussion at a technical, instead of personal level.

      I would like to suggest as gently as I can that your perception does not even come close to reality.

      • Pierre-Normand

        “That list is most interesting. I believe that it corresponds perfectly to how much you agree with the point of view of the blog in question. SO your perception of “openness” really boils down to how much you agree with the content.”

        I didn’t consider “openness” at all, only civility, and I was careful to abstract from my agreement with the blog owner, or with the majority of regulars. One can be close minded to — and even rightfully dismissive of — a viewpoint one regards as not remotely likely to be true and still debate courteously. I agree strongly with most opinions expressed on HotWhopper but ranked it dismally low (almost as bad as WUWT). I disagree strongly with most opinions defended on Lucia’s but ranked it higher than SkepticalScience. I also ranked Climate Etc quite low due to the abuse coming from both sides.

        I am actually very sensitive to abuse from warmists directed against skeptics, often complain about it, and do my utmost never to reciprocate when targeted by skeptics myself. That’s because when one becomes abusive, then one forfeits the right to be listened to by the person targeted. As for the precise ranking of the sites, you mileage may vary. But I suspect you misunderstood my criterion.

      • I went to ATTP tonight and this is from the top post:

        If, however, you read Richard Tol’s response to this, it appears that his critics are all wrong and that it is all some kind of left-wing conspiracy. At this point I’m probably supposed to make some comment about Richard’s behaviour, but I really can’t be bothered. As Joshua would say, it’s just the same ol’ same ol’.

        I guess you just have a different definition of “civility” than everyone else in the world.

      • Speaking of blogs, Tamino (Open Mind) has been missing since July, and no one knows what happened, as far as I know.

      • “RealClimate and SkS are completely unwilling to even hear opposing viewpoints, generally representing them as caricatures, since they ban the actual voices from posting.”

        That’s a plain misstatement of fact, as a visit to most any RC thread will show. ‘Opposing’ (i.e., more or less denialist) viewpoints are rather common. That they don’t tolerate as much *content-free* ‘opposing viewpoint’ posts as Judy Curry does, does not reflect badly on them.

        Why do people here keep lying about RC? I’ve noticed this is a recurring phenomenon. Do they threaten you that badly?

      • Steven:

        Either you are new to the debate (have you been following for more than, say 3 years?) or you are a shill.

        RealClimate is famous for two types of edits: the first just deleting comments and the more insidious – editing the content of a comment and then answering the modified comment. Unconscionable.

      • P-N,

        RealClimate and SkS can afford to be “polite” as they edite, block or delete almost any comment that they don’t like or disagree with.

        Bet you’d be right at home in 1950’s Birmingham Alabama.

  25. Wittgenstein has an analysis of certainty with respect to religion, which seems to apply here as well, namely that the certainty of faith is that very faith, not something else; and it is love that seizes on that faith. It is believed lovingly.

    I think that’s lurking in the problem.

    see Culture and Value p.32-33

    • A point my teacher Goenka often made was that faith without understanding, without wisdom, was insufficient. To be valuable and worthwhile, faith must be based on a clear understanding of reality; reality as it is, not as you believe or wish it to be. Something too often overlooked by faiths of all kinds.

    • Well, sidestepping W adeptly, show me the love in this epidemic of social mania called catastrophic man guilted change.
      ==================

  26. Matthew R Marler

    from Mann et al: Esoteric and academic arguments about the response of the atmosphere to a doubling of CO2 may be interesting for those steeped in the peer-reviewed literature, but for the public and policy makers the important and unfortunate fact is that climate change is continuing unabated. This was the hottest September on record, after the hottest August on record (yielding the hottest summer on record), and the oceans continue to warm rapidly. In fact, some parts of the ocean have been shown to be warming even more rapidly than we thought.

    For the public and policy makers, the important and unfortunate fact is that there is no solid evidence that anything we try with fossil fuels will affect climate change. That is why the esoteric and academic arguments (and evidence) about the effect of doubling CO2 are so important beyond just those scientists steeped in the peer-reviewed literature.

    Some parts of the ocean are warming less rapidly than we thought, and the overall rate of warming is less than the models projected (modeled, etc.)

    • ” there is no solid evidence that anything we try with fossil fuels will affect climate change.” A major reason why warmist-supported emissions reductions policies are wrong. Even if we had such evidence, it would not of itself dictate ERPs, there are far superior approaches which would additionally better address both existing real issues and as yet unknown issues which emerge over time.

    • “Battling climate change” continues to sound absurd to me. To my ear, it sounds vaguely crazy. When Obama proclaimed that “this is the day the oceans stop rising and the planet begins to heal,” all I could think was this is the kind of thing one might hear in a nut house, not the White House. I find it frightening, the staggering ignorance demonstrated by the so-called leader of the free world.

      • So-called “leader of the free world”?! Nah … at this point we have six years of evidence that the only “leadership” he’s ever demonstrated is that which he accomplishes with his chin – as it predictably and mechanistically moves from side to side, while he holds his nose in the air and spews juvenile, inane (and often contradictory) teleprompted platitudes.

        View from here is that his greatest “strength” is his ability to bamboozle his (much delayed but) rapidly declining legion of fans and excusers.

      • Politics is a terrible waste of the mind. It makes people say silly things for simpleton minds. Please continue to bring forth relevant facts, Judith…

      • Agreed Hilary. The man who ran on hope and change, who promised a new age of transparency, and honesty, and governmental competence (major oxymoron) has turned out to be a fraud of the first order. What a staggering FAIL.

  27. “…and the oceans continue to warm rapidly. In fact, some parts of the ocean have been shown to be warming even more rapidly than we thought.”
    – Rapid Response Team

    Schmidt writing in 2011:
    “The Meehl et al study looked at the changes in ocean heat content during these occasional decades and compared that to the changes seen in other decades with positive surface trends. What they found was that decades with cooling surface temperatures consistently had higher-than-average increases in ocean heat content.”
    “Neither is this heat going to come back out from the deep ocean any time soon (the notion that this heat is the warming that is ‘in the pipeline’ is erroneous).”
    “…the surface temperature records are the longest climate records we have from direct measurements and have been independently replicated by multiple independent groups. I’m not aware of anyone who has ever thought that surface temperatures tell us everything there is to know about climate change, but nonetheless in practical terms global warming has for years been defined as the rise in this metric. It is certainly useful to look at the total heat content anomaly (as best as it can be estimated), but the difficulties in assembling such a metric and extending it back in time more than a few decades preclude it from supplanting the surface temperatures in this respect.”
    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2011/10/global-warming-and-ocean-heat-content/

    It looks like ocean circulations change perhaps on decadal scales. Sequestrating the heat apparently for a long time. It’s there but not much a factor given the mass of the oceans. The Team warns us that it’s still happening but the heat has been given a long term jail sentence. If these ocean surface cooling cycles occur half the time at their current strength, to halve the sensitivity value seems to provide the most useful number.

    Schmidt points at the surface temperature as the arguably better metric and mentions the weaknesses of the total heat content. I agree with his, not ‘in the pipeline’ remark because I think it accurately counts it as not a short term threat. It is a liability so far into the future we might give it a zero value. Same as if I promise to give you $100 in 100 years. That’s not worth much.

    • If the heat has gone swimming then surely it is not “sequestered” or in “jail”. Nor is it a short or long term threat. If it has gone into the oceans, then it (or, rather, all but a tiny part of it) must have gone, permanently. Not “jail”, but the chair.

      The reason is this. If 3 degs of atmospheric heat goes into the ocean, it will heat the ocean by only 0.003 degs (ish). If so, then the only heat that can or will be given “back” to the atmosphere from the oceans, therefore, is that 0.003 degs.

      So the 3 degs of atmospheric warming will have been permanently changed to 0.003 degs atmospheric warming. Which is not in the slightest bit scary, nor worth spending a penny on to mitigate.

      Am I missing something?

      • Pierre-Normand

        “Am I missing something”

        Yes, the reason there is much heat to be sequestered in the first place is the top of atmosphere imbalance caused by the increase in external forcing. Since the increase in the rate of heat sequestration (and the concomitant reduction in the rate of surface warming) likely is mainly a result of cyclical internal variability, when the cycles will switch to the opposite phase, the surface warming will resume even faster. Only the surface warming can cancel the top of atmosphere imbalance.

      • Pierre,

        Let me see if I have understood you correctly:

        (A) you agree (notwithstanding the word sequestered) that such heat as has gone into the ocean has (all but a tiny amount) gone for ever? That it cannot and will not return, Godzilla like, to the atmosphere? (As some have suggested)

        (B) you believe that this state of affairs cannot last, and that at the end of the cycle (when?) the energy imbalance will again impact on surface temperatures?

        If so, then (given the fact that ACO2’s forcing effect is not open-ended – that there comes a time when additional ACO2 will make no difference) the fact (if fact it is – which is not certain) that the oceans are capable of “diluting” the effect must have an impact on the overall (ie, now until saturation) forcing effect of ACO2.

        Do you agree?

      • Pierre-Normand

        WFC: “(B) you believe that this state of affairs cannot last, and that at the end of the cycle (when?) the energy imbalance will again impact on surface temperatures?”

        When? Just about right now. The ENSO cycle has been in La Nada mode for a few months and the surface and troposphere, that both normally lag ENSO by a few months, indeed already are back on the 40 year warming trend. The pause seems over.

        “If so, then (given the fact that ACO2’s forcing effect is not open-ended – that there comes a time when additional ACO2 will make no difference)”

        The logarithmic on the CO2 concentration to forcing relationship is taken into account in projections for 2100 given various scenarios.

  28. Welcome back! From the responses you featured, I couldn’t help wondering why your critics (for want of a better word) have learned so little in the last 5 years that (notwithstanding the new technology at their disposal) they continue to operate as though we’re all still living in the (pre-Internet) early ’90’s. During which time they virtually ruled the international decision-making world.

    The view from here is that these once-upon-a-time movers and shakers are now flailing and drowning in the shallow oratorical pools of their own devising.

    The UNEP seems to be in equal disarray with so many contradictory soundbites and mini-mantras-in-the-making … Almost as if they’re grasping for something that will take them back to the good old days – when relatively few took any notice of their copious word salads. They’ve even shifted from their longterm messages of “doom and gloom” to everything’s coming up roses and opportunities!

    So I thought it was rather interesting that after five years, the former UNFCCC head honcho, Yvo de Boer, actually acknowledged that Copenhagen 2009 was a “failure” – and that (essentially since Climategate 1.0), “the climate process fell into a coma”. Something that Christiana Figueres, his inept successor, is probably incapable of realizing. Notwithstanding the fairly recent assignment of old-UNEP-hand Joe Alcamo to assist her!

    Furthermore, the UNEP (and its many “children”) has been creating an ever narrowing bridge between “climate change” and “sustainable development”. Both of which, of course, demand megabucks in international funding (which has not been forthcoming, notwithstanding the creation of a multiplicity of “innovative” funding “mechanisms”)

    At the end of Sept., Fred Pearce (IMHO, notwithstanding the fact that he’s still riding the dreaded CO2 bandwagon, probably one of the most rational of enviro-journalists) had a piece in yale360 (picked up by the U.K. Guardian, as well):

    Beyond Treaties: A New Way of Framing Global Climate Action

    As negotiators look to next year’s UN climate conference in Paris, there is increasing discussion of a new way forward that does not depend on sweeping international agreements. Some analysts are pointing to Plan B — recasting the climate issue as one of national self-interest rather than global treaties.
    […]
    The United Nations Climate Summit in New York last week passed with many promises, but no firm pledges.
    […]
    But behind the scenes, some are asking what happens if there isn’t a deal in Paris. Or even how much it matters whether there is such a deal. Failure is possible, after all. The political winds are even less propitious today than they were five years ago.

    [followed by a disappointingly uncritical recitation of Stern2.0’s “new” Economics and other not so disappointing stuff … but Pearce concludes:]

    If the economists who note the benefits of moving to a low-carbon economy are right, and if we fail to halt the danger, then politics will be more to blame than economics. But if self-interest is the route to saving the climate, then maybe we still have a chance.

    Note the “if’s”, btw!

    Also of interest, is the current perspective (or at least it was this week!) of Todd Stern, an old and politically powerful hand who is very much committed to “sustainable development” – and very well-placed within higher US gov’t circles – who recently gave a presentation at Yale.

    He reports to Kerry; and, IMHO, he really should be doing a better job of “educating” his oh-so-foolishly-alarmist boss. But, for all intents and purposes, as “Special Envoy for Climate Change”, Stern would appear to be the U.S. head honcho on the “climate front”.

    So, as I recently wrote after taking a trip down my memory lane, and a few days later watching Stern (the latter, not the former) in action:

    It’s worth noting, IMHO, [as …] Stern at least acknowledges (at approx. 24:30) that it is the split between the UNFCCC’s Annex 1 (i.e. developed) and Annex II (i.e. not so developed) countries is “the singular fault line”. This may be why Stern is now trying to steer things towards the concept of each country making up its own mind. Certainly no less costly to anyone, nor is there any consideration of the damage that has been done (and continues to be done, on so many fronts) by the UN and its many tentacles of self-aggrandizement and discord-sowing.

    Bottom line for me, is that while such journalists and powers that be may not be publicly acknowledging the validity of your voice, perhaps your recent papers and essays here, along with your WSJ Op Ed are making a (positive) difference :-)

  29. When are people going to get serious about calling them out on the ‘90% of AGW is going into heating the oceans’ claim? It is in the atmospheric temperature record that we must firstly observe the AGW signal for it is the atmosphere where the perturbation occurs. If the oceans are actually warming in response to elevated CO2 levels then the atmosphere has to warm as well (globally, of course).

  30. Welcome back to the western (modern) world. A good summary from a woman with jet lag (a hellish thing).

    Opinions as expressed in the media are always interesting as they reflect their readerships point of view. I guess they also inform it, in-so-much as they feed a point of view rhetoric.

    A main weapon to turn the tide of policy and the direction of scientific research is public opinion. There are many believers out there (I suspect they will be last to change their views), there are also many people who dislike appearing contrary (this group are there to be swayed) persuading people that it is alright to assess for themselves the evidence is fundamental to changing the direction of the political & scientific consensus.

    Evidence works and evidence will increase as time passes. I believe in the end people will associate CAGW hysteria as a peculiar thing, something that will be studied by the sociologists and anthropologists and politics scientist, of the future. The physical evidence will persuade them.

    Until that happens the damage caused by policy will accumulate. Damage to the environment by the creation of wind farms. The damage caused by technologies like LED light bulbs. The damage caused by impeding the advancement of the developing world by restricting access to reliable energies. The opportunity cost of society expending vast resources on a mistaken belief.

  31. The responses to the WSJ article show the weakness of the CAGW camp regarding policy. Bart Verheggen says that “one would think that the risk of substantial warming entails a substantial risk that is worth hedging against;” Judith responds: “We have very little justification (and no demonstrated skill so far) for predicting the climate of the 21st century.”

    Even disregarding Judith’s caveat, and even if there is “substantial risk,” such risk does not per se justify any action. This always come back to alternative uses of resources and costs and benefits. And even if there is substantial risk, I have argued repeatedly that there are better policy options than emissions reductions. This argument also applies to the concerns of Mann et al and UCS, and Judith’s response on policy is appropriate.

    • Faustino | October 18, 2014 at 8:38 pm
      “Even disregarding Judith’s caveat, and even if there is “substantial risk,” such risk does not per se justify any action. This always come back to alternative uses of resources and costs and benefits.”

      Well… For people outside of the twilight zone, new energy facilities are justified on a cost/benefit basis. Since CO2 is beneficial, in theory there should be a penalty for renewable technologies.

      However, I am fine with any technology deployed that is cost competitive – including renewable technologies, even though there is a current and future opportunity cost associated with reducing CO2 emissions.

    • @ Faustino

      The warmunists continually warn about the ‘risk’, so far not in evidence, of ‘climate change’, meaning of course the risk to our civilization created by our burning fossil fuels to sustain it.

      They are not so keen to warn of the ‘risk’, or rather the certainty, of the damage to our civilization that would be incurred should their recommendations for MITIGATING climate change be adopted. I. e., by sharply curtailing our use of fossil fuels, and taxing and regulating the activities for which fossil fuels would continue to be permitted.

  32. I hope you enjoyed your visit to Nanjing. The pollution gods were kind recently…

    It’s disappointing to see Bart Verheggen’s public statements grow more dogmatic, although the core of his position has not changed. He has always been a gentleman and I hope his recent writings do not reflect a change in disposition.

    The overall reaction of the consensus luminaries is predictable and unconvincing. It amounts to ‘we had a hot summer so you’re wrong’, a tactic they have objected to when for example ‘we have had a cold winter’ has been employed in the debate.

    More interesting to me is the make-up of those commenting publicly on your recent publications. Peter Gleick is a thief and a forger. Michael Mann is a mercurial hot-tempered scientist desperately trying to defend his reputation. Stephan Lewandowsky is a psychologist who published laughably false propaganda in a complaisant journal before having to withdraw it.

    Scott Mandia posed in a Superman uniform to announce his participation in the ‘Crusher Crew’, a group of like-minded souls who monitor climate conversations on the internet and attack opponents using prepared extracts from alarmist dogma.

    Gavin Schmidt is a legitimate opponent. However, as Mac points out at Climate Audit, he is enmeshed in a decade-long defense of his friend and colleague Michael Mann, and cannot be expected to provide an objective viewpoint.

    The takeaway seems to be that although I think you have done an amazing job of reviving uncertainty and assigning to it its proper role, it’s not because of the quality of your opponents. Many of us feel like you see further in regards to this debate, but in fact that’s because you’re surrounded by dwarves.

    • “… I think you have done an amazing job of reviving uncertainty and assigning to it its proper role … you’re surrounded by dwarves.”

      Good summary. No one really ever seems to step up to the plate, do they?

    • Tom,
      When Judith committed the cardinal sin of deigning to question the the dogma and more importantly the “authority” of the CAGW Priesthood :)

      The advantages of dogma
      When I refer to the IPCC dogma, it is the religious importance that the IPCC holds for this cadre of scientists; they will tolerate no dissent, and seek to trample and discredit anyone who challenges the IPCC. Who are these priests of the IPCC?
      http://judithcurry.com/2010/11/03/reversing-the-direction-of-the-positive-feedback-loop/

      the “Defenders of the Faith” such as Joe Romm and Bart Verheggen quickly rose up in Holy Indignation!!

      Defender of the Faith: Bart Verheggen
      http://ourchangingclimate.wordpress.com/2010/11/05/judith-curry-building-bridges-burning-bridges/

      Furthermore Bart’s view on the importance of conning the public with the “consensus” (anti-scientific) argument is pretty clear :
      http://judithcurry.com/2014/05/20/climate-scientists-joining-advocacy-groups/#comment-562969

      There was an earlier article naming Lindzen as someone the warmers would dearly love to , but cannot dismiss (ignore).
      I think Judith is also now in the elite ranks of those who cannot be dismissed :)
      Forget 30:1 Curry Factor. The Ratio must be a lot higher now :: ))

    • Hi Tom,
      Of course you can feel free to sling all kinds of accusations in all directions. No need to back up statements around here apparently. As long as they suit the prevailing dogma I guess.

      • Bart the Bitter, Gentleman at Alarms.
        ===========

      • Hi Bart

        I hope you’re well and that things are going very, very well for you. I would have stopped by your blog but it doesn’t load in China.

        As I doubt that you object to my ‘accusing’ you of being a gentleman, I assume you’re not happy that I find your writings more dogmatic than in the past. I’m sorry if what I wrote offended you, but it does seem to be the case.

        Obviously that’s just my opinion. Had I said ’emphatic’ rather than ‘dogmatic’ would you have been as offended?

        As I get ‘assailed’ (too strong a word) from commenters here quite frequently, I can only say that this site is a regular kennel, hosting dogmas of all type with no discrimination, including mine.

        Congratulations on the survey–I hope it provided you with useful information about the state of scientific opinion on climate change. And good luck on Climate Dialogue.

      • I think it is Judith’s position that has shifted, while the AGWers react to these new positions consistently with the shift away from their position. Remember when Judith started the blog she could not be drawn to a sensitivity more precise than 1-10 C, but now she seems almost certain that it is 1-1.5 C with almost no chance (in her own words) of even being the 2 C that would allow for 100% attribution of the warming to CO2 since 1950. This is a large shift, and the reaction to it is becoming predictably stronger as her uncertainty error bars go down while at the same time she makes this very rigid, almost intolerant, view more public.

      • Matthew R Marler

        Jim D: Remember when Judith started the blog she could not be drawn to a sensitivity more precise than 1-10 C, but now she seems almost certain that it is 1-1.5 C with almost no chance (in her own words) of even being the 2 C that would allow for 100% attribution of the warming to CO2 since 1950. This is a large shift, and the reaction to it is becoming predictably stronger as her uncertainty error bars go down while at the same time she makes this very rigid, almost intolerant, view more public.

        Since Prof Curry started this blog, she has, among other things, co-authored a major review of the evidence. Your characterization of her view as “very rigid, almost intolerant” is not substantiated by her writing. The upper tails of the earlier distributions of the climate sensitivity were driven primarily by Bayesian posterior distributions derived from very broad uniform priors that put substantial probability (sometimes more than 50%) for the range above 4C. Those priors had no substantiation in evidence. The more closely the estimates hew to the data, the smaller are the estimates, on the whole.

      • Judith has characterized 100% CO2 attribution since 1950 as very unlikely. This is the central IPCC estimate, so she has said in effect that the IPCC is almost certainly wrong in the center of its uncertainty range. It used to be within her error bars. Now it is outside. Lewis and Curry give it better odds, but the 100% attribution is at or beyond the 83% end of their range. The LC central attribution is about 66% CO2 which disagrees with Curry’s own 50/50 idea.

  33. We need mitigation alright, but not of CO2 … from the article:

    How would the region, which continues growing and sprouting waterfront condos, stand up to a massive surge of water like those produced by Hurricane Katrina or Superstorm Sandy?

    “It won’t survive,” Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Craig Fugate says bluntly.

    That makes the Miami metropolitan area the second-biggest sitting duck in the country. A study by CoreLogic estimates more than $103 billion worth of property is at risk from hurricane storm surge — only New York City has more exposed property.

    USA TODAY
    Some cities try to stem the flood in South Florida
    Miami’s vulnerability is well known, but emergency planners say generations of political leaders have failed to invest the billions needed to keep flood-control systems up to date.

    “This is not something that just occurred overnight,” said Fugate, who dealt with nearly a dozen hurricanes as Florida’s emergency management director before joining FEMA. “A lot of decisions by a lot of people over a long period of time. It’s a shared responsibility. The question is: Is there the political will to start addressing that?”

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/10/18/miami-hurricane-flood-control/13170817/

    • jim2
      “We need mitigation alright, but not of CO2 … from the article:

      How would the region, which continues growing and sprouting waterfront condos, stand up to a massive surge of water like those produced by Hurricane Katrina or Superstorm Sandy?”

      Well… many people in the coastal areas are doing the equivalent of jumping into traffic. The subsidence rate of many coastal areas is high – 5 to 10 times the mythical “sea rise”.

      Places like New Orleans that used to be part swamp, sink when the waters are dammed up and the swamp pumped dry. The city is a pile of silt in a flood plain. Ground water extraction just aggravates things.

      There are areas on the coast that are building up. There are areas that are sinking. Since America is headed southwest the east coast will generally be sinking.

      The solution is to stop government insurance programs for some of the coastal areas and make them too expensive to live on. The government is doing the equivalent of paying people to play in traffic. That isn’t rational.

      • No, they want to make coal and gasoline too expensive to buy. But they want their rich friends on the coast to have flood insurance on us.

        I’m sick of the government being controlled by the rich and companies. The R’s want to throw US workers under the bus with amnesty. They are no better than Dimowits on that issue. I’m amazed they don’t understand they will simultaneously throw themselves under the bus.

        Oh well.

  34. HuffPo: “This was the hottest September on record, after the hottest August on record”

    February 2014 was colder than February 1878.

  35. HuffPo: “This was the hottest September on record, after the hottest August on record”

    In the USA September 2014 was the 68th coldest.

    • Yeah.

      But it was really really hot in the parts of the Antarctic which don’t have any temperature gauges. That’s why there’s so much more ice down there than there used to be.

  36. ”We’ve got to ride this global warming issue. Even if the theory of global warming is wrong, we will be doing the right thing in terms of economic and environmental policy.”
    Timothy Wirth is the Vice Chair of the United Nations Foundation and the Better World Fund. Both organizations were founded in 1998 through a major financial commitment from Ted Turner to support and strengthen the work of the United Nations.

    Moderates neither need no want societal or economic transformation. What we want of government is to manage interest rates to prevent asset bubbles, defend the weak from the strong, to defend against both external enemies and natural disasters and to succor the population in need. At some 22% of GDP. Within that much is allowed in the cut and thrust of democracy and the evolving social contract.

    Fringe extremists have some other agenda.

    • REALITY CHECK, to the extent that is possible on this issue:

      Sensibly addressing geologically radical atmospheric alteration to mitigate our ongoing additions is far from fringe; not doing so with a head in the sand based upon desire, and macroeconomic fear, dressed up as the “new” ‘science, kind of is. Treasury Secretaries and Wall Street Giants Robert Rubin and Henry Paulson (Bush) both agree, and they’re huge advocates of the market, and hardly fringe, to put it mildly.

      @22% of GDP a fine idea. No need to expand to address, and little need to over regulate. But a big need to find a way to level the playing field between those processes that contribute excessively to ongoing long term atmospheric alteration, and those that don’t, so that the latter are on more of an equal playing field, when consumers and businesses both make decisions.

      Fear of economic transformation,in response to changing information, is not “moderate,” it is reactionary.

      • “The only hope for the world is to make sure there is not another United States. We can’t let other countries have the same number of cars, the amount of industrialization we have in the US. We have to stop these third World countries right where they are.”
        Michael Oppenheimer

        Science is not as John Carter imagines. The world is not warming. The Arctic – and the US and parts of Europe are cooling. Warming is not guaranteed. Climate is utterly unpredictable and climate surprises are inevitable. This is where science leads – time and again. It is not even clear that CO2 levels
        are higher than early in the Holocene.

        https://watertechbyrie.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/co2_zps58f177bb.png

        They are not capable of processing anomalous information and this is a symptom of the psychopathology.

        The real issue comes from another direction entirely – from the dynamical mechanism at the heart of climate. There are rational responses to the issue – but they are about is transforming societies and economies. Rational response is not part of the plan. .

        Rational responses include energy innovation. Building resilience to climate variability that will happen regardless remains a central objective of rational policy. Economic development is the core of building long term resilience. Fast mitigation is not merely possible with reductions in population pressures and emissions of black carbon, tropospheric ozone, methane, CFC’s and nitrous oxide – but are outcomes of health, education and economic development strategies. We may also reduce carbon emissions by building soil fertility on agricultural lands and conserving and restoring ecosystems. There are practical and pragmatic approaches that provide real no regrets policy options.

      • I’d suggest a reality check but I don’t think he is capable of it.

      • There are two ways to transform an economy.

        (A) when people find better, cheaper and more efficient ways of doing something, thereby bringing about economic change because the old ways no longer make any sense to the people operating it – which change is often brought about in spite of, rather than because of, the state and its desires (feudalism to capitalism)

        (B) when idealists and governments decide to remake an economy by trying to force people into ideological templates (Bolshevism, African Socialism, Autarchy etc).

        The latter type of change has a poor record of success.

      • “Science is not as John Carter imagines”

        Nor are all of the world’s leading climate scientists who professionally study this issue, except for Richard “cigarette smoking doesn’t cause lung cancer” contrarian Lindzen.

        Just the commenter above and a bunch of politically connected and fossil fuel loyal interests, including a few tangential scientists, and the rare actual climate scientist like THIS GUY

        P.s, someone in response to Kim (best commenter here IMO) that Carter only likes “his biases.” I have no biases, I want this issue to be much less significant than it is. I do think fossil fuels pollute, but it ain’t my style – as it is popular to conflate, and mangle climate science,, as a way to head off redress that one is afraid of – to use something incorrect or stretched. AT ALL.

        It would be far preferable that a small increase in gg gases (over billions of years,geologically huge for us) was no big deal for us. FAR PREFERABLE. Looking at the issue, wishing it, doesn’t make it so or skew my assessment of the issue, as it does with most commenters here.

        And the proprietor of this site, who is riding the coattails of a solidarity issue, and keeps getting the issue wrong. (And all the commenters here, and the aforementioned groups keep driving and reinforcing it.)

      • Matthew R Marler

        John Carter: And the proprietor of this site, who is riding the coattails of a solidarity issue, and keeps getting the issue wrong. (And all the commenters here, and the aforementioned groups keep driving and reinforcing it.)

        That doesn’t make any sense.

  37. Juith, welcome home. Your sea ice posts were fascinating. Your responses to warmunist counters/detractors more so. If that is what you can do with severe jet lag, I would not want to debate you when fresh. Nicely done.
    The tide is definitely turning, and you and climate etc have been a big part of it. You and Richard Lindzen are true climate scientists.

    • > The tide is definitely turning …

      I wish I could believe it … this comment does not imply Judith C has not been courageous in her defence of objective, rational analyses, only that irrationality is indeed a very difficult beast to tame. Susceptibility to irrational fear is highly contagious, as the warmista know very well, and it is a very long way off being beaten back

      • @ianl8888

        Can’t speak for everybody else, but for myself, and several scientists whose work I am familiar with, who use the word as a term of art, I don’t “fear” cc in the least. And they don’t. Diff; from being greatly concerned, for logical reasons and objective assessment.

        The “fear”: thing is another sort of red herring used to simply dismiss the relevant analysis, and help perpetuate the false idea that concern over a geologically radical alteration of the atmosphere is not rational, but dismissal of it, is.

        The real fear, and it tends to be highly correlated (studies keep showing, anyway) with strong “conservatism” and even more, with authoritarianism (at least libertarians, once they get a great grasp of the facts, if not zealots, can start to change their perspective on CC) is both fear of change, and fear of a wildly myopically presumed macroeconomic harm.

        Both of these are irrational. And incorrect. But apparently not recognize, nor how much fear, in multiple forms, is driving so much anti climate change science zealotry and sentiment.

      • Matthew R Marler

        John Carter: Can’t speak for everybody else, but for myself, and several scientists whose work I am familiar with, who use the word as a term of art, I don’t “fear” cc in the least. And they don’t. Diff; from being greatly concerned, for logical reasons and objective assessment.

        What is your assessment of the effects of climate change to date, since the end of the Little Ice Age? How about the likely future effects of future CO2?

        The real fear, and it tends to be highly correlated (studies keep showing, anyway) with strong “conservatism” and even more, with authoritarianism (at least libertarians, once they get a great grasp of the facts, if not zealots, can start to change their perspective on CC) is both fear of change, and fear of a wildly myopically presumed macroeconomic harm.

        Whatever is that about?

    • Rud,
      I was delighted that Kobo carried your new book, Blowing Smoke:
      http://store.kobobooks.com/en-CA/ebook/blowing-smoke-3
      Just got it last night.
      I’ve read Arts of Truth, which was available on Kobo,(Gaia’s Limits was not) and it was a very worthwhile read
      cheers
      brent

      • Brent, glad you liked Arts. Gaia’s Limits was published before Kobo. It is available at Apple iBooks, Amazon Kindle, or B&N Nook. You can download a Kindle app to any computer platform to read it. Necessarily a Bit of a data slog. Blowing Smoke is more of a fun set of reads, parts guest posted here previously. Regards

  38. You ought to have better things to spend your time on Judith than most of those people. Alas.

    I’m looking forward to your accounts of the orient.

  39. “The Australian has a superb article by Graham Lloyd…” -JC

    The same Graham Lloyd who’s been writng utter nonsense on station temp adjustments in Australia.

    Ideology holds sway at The Oz.

    • “utter nonsense”? How about some links proving it?

      • AK,

        Lloyd had similar article years ago – same premise, just a different straw to clutch at.

        I don’t blame Judith for thinking this was something – i’m sure that she had no idea that Lloyd has ben singing the same tune for years.

        It’s groundhog day…again, at The Oz.

      • No links I see.

      • AK,

        The Oz has,thankfully, hidden most of its stuff behind the paywall.

        Continuing on the theme of GroundHog day…..Lloyd wheels Michael Asten out again, for a reliably predictable – ‘it’s-all-wrong-so-nothing-to-worry-about’.

        Asten has been on-call to trot out the same old stuff for years. It’s typically spectacularly wrong.

        This time Graham opts for a more sublte angle.

        First it’s;
        “momentum is building behind the controversial view that the numbers don’t add up”
        then
        “A rising chorus of literature in the world’s best scientific journals and most prestigious opinion pages has argued the climate change math is flawed”
        and
        “For climate scientists, irritating questions from “sceptics” about the “pause” have now become peer-reviewed papers…”
        which is the intro for Michael Asten as the first quote for the article.

        The casual reader might well think they are then geting an opinion from one of these “rising chorus of…..climate scientists”.

        Maybe if Graham has made clear that Asten’s expertise is……mineral exploration…..the reader might be in a better place to contextualise what comes next;
        “While opinions on causes differ, existence of the pause is settled; only activists dare claim the pause in global temperature does not exist,” – Asten.

        Ah, damn those ‘activists’.

        Though I did enjoy Grahams attmepts some years back to protect us from the vey harmful health effects of low-frequency noise from those stanic mills (AKA wind turbines).

        The Oz – different day, same cr@p.

      • Jennifer Marohasy has been whipping the BOM for its adjustments for a while now.

        She is somewhat critical of the lies and deceit of the environmental movement (they do lie and deceive).

        I did look at a BOM adjustment of a station a couple of years ago and they added 0.8°C during station moves, for no particular reason, compared to surrounding stations showed no change in temperature.

        I believe the homogenization and pasteurization of land temperatures to make them politically safe is a bad idea.

      • Inconveniently for Jennifer, adjustments down are also made.

      • “adjustments down are also made”

        Yes. The old “Yes, I shoplifted, but I also paid for stuff” argument.

        Andrew

      • Andrew seems to be arguing that the only adjustment that is valid is down??

    • No, the same Graham Lloyd who has shown documentary evidence, such as long-term station records, which show how BoM has distorted reality. The BoM has, I believe, been forced to backtrack, to reconsider its “adjustment” processes and to be more transparent about them. Lloyd of course was the reporter rather than the instigator, blame others for producing records which contradicted the BoM’s adjusted data.

    • “Andrew seems to be arguing…”

      Only if you are a mindless Warmer.

      Andrew

  40.  
    There still exists a huge government-education bureaucracy driven to forever be unreasonable. What motive could there be?

  41. Pingback: Red Cross trashes alarmist cause … | pindanpost

  42. Another illogical statement by @jcurry

    “We have very little justification (and no demonstrated skill so far) for predicting the climate of the 21st century.”

    ______

    Come on followers of Curry, THINK.

    Predicting the general long term climate range – WHICH IS WHAT THE ISSUE OF CLIMATE CHANGE IS ALL ABOUT – is remarkably different than being able to precisely model over a shorter periods the exact path of change. (Which would be a little ridiculous to do, but the more we try, the more we learn, and we use models to try and quantify, and people can relate more easily, than to complex multi range concepts.)

    THINK.

    @jcurry writes op eds for the WSJ, and testifies before the U.S. Congress, and makes these kinds of statements.

    THINK.

    There is a supreme bias here, driving it, and I’ve pointed it out many times, and @jcurry simply ignores it.

    The fact is, most people really don’t know what the actual climate change issue is, let alone know a lot of detailed, accurate information about it, so all these strong “opinions” – most at odds with the the assertions of the scientists in directly related fields who professionally study this issue – is another indicator that bias and desire and an enormous host of misinformation drives perception on this issue. And with a lot of support from it, it’s driving @jcurry, who ought to know better.

    • Steven Mosher

      “There is a supreme bias here, driving it, and I’ve pointed it out many times, and @jcurry simply ignores it.”

      The best explanation is that you are wrong.

      • The supreme bias is… not seeing dowsing as legitimate science. People who believe in the scientific method narrow-mindedly refuse to accept the witching rod.

      • @SM

        “The best explanation is that you are wrong.”

        That’s actually the worst explanation. Read the comment you are responding to, and THINK. If you did that, you would begin to see this from that alone. Curry misconstrues the issue, as well as what it is really based upon.

        Not to mention, that with that explanation that I am wrong, automatically comes the attachment that almost all of the world’s leading scientists in a directly related discipline who professionally study this issue are also wrong.

        And Curry, who gets the issue wrong, who erroneously thinks that climate change is a linear and contemporaneous response, who completely misconstrues what the “pause” actually is as well as it’s relevance, is right.

        The best explanation is that your response enables the perpetuation of the same “belief” on this issue – both reflected and somewhat insularly self reinforced here – that I am talking about in the first place.

      • John Carter

        I replied to a comment of yours on the other thread this morning. Look forward to your reply.

        http://judithcurry.com/2014/10/09/my-op-ed-in-the-wall-street-journal-is-now-online/#comment-638948
        tonyb

      • Perhaps even more importantly regarding Curry’s statement, while we may not be able to precisely predict, contrary to what Curry’s position on this issue supports (and her statement here implies as well),and what the crux of the issue is all about:

        We have a LOT of reason to know that the Climate of the 21st century is likely to change in a way that is statistically outside of the norm, and likely to represent change in a direction that will vastly, and increasingly, impact our world.

        The bias here is a simple refusal to accept this, and an attempt to wrangle around with various ways to seemingly refute it, with each one more illogical, more irrelevant, more issue misconstruing, or more misrepresentative, than the last. Such as turning the “pause” into some sort of important refutation, or great mitigation of, the the basic climate change theory – see middle part: http://theworldofairaboveus.blogspot.com/2014/10/the-crux-of-climate-change-issue-and.html

        So when Curry says “We have very little justification … for predicting the climate of the 21st century,” to the extent this refers to the idea of generally predicting a likelihood of a certain range of change, it is an extremely reckless or, more likely (and ironically enough, given all the “study” on this issue) ill informed or ill thought out statement.

      • John Carter
        “The bias here is a simple refusal to accept this, and an attempt to wrangle around with various ways to seemingly refute it, with each one more illogical, more irrelevant, more issue misconstruing, or more misrepresentative, than the last. Such as turning the “pause” into some sort of important refutation, or great mitigation of, the the basic climate change theory – see middle part:”

        “Sigh”.
        1. CO2 has existed naturally at over 17.5 times (1750%) of the current level or 25 times (2500%) of the alarmists 280 PPM gold standard.

        2. 280 PPM is dangerously close to the starvation level (200 PPM) for plants where they simply stop growing. People who claim 280 PPM is a useful target for CO2 are deluded or misinformed.

        3. The warmers were right for about 17 years and have been wrong for 17 years – on average the warmers are at best 1/2 right.

        4. The claims of possible 800+ CO2 levels (“Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concludes that recent … concentrations to reach about 940 ppm by 2100”) are simply lies. There is no way short of a asteroid or volcanic disaster, to get the CO2 level which is trending toward 577 PPM, to be higher than 600 PPM by 2100, if ever.

        Where does this leave us? 3.5°C is the IPCC best guess (it seems to vary between 3.5 and 4). We will use 4°C. The IPCC overestimates CO2 net forcing effect by at least a factor of 2. The IPCC overestimates CO2 levels massively and there will be at worst 1/2 of a doubling of CO2.

        4°C * 1/2 * 1/2 = 1°C. 1°C is as bad as it is going to get and is a useful number for planning purposes.

        The period since 1900 has featured 0.4°-1.0°C depending on who you believe or which adjusted data set you use. Since 1900 the natural plant growth rate has increased 50% and even CSIRO says the deserts are blooming.

        CAGW enthusiasts are in the uncomfortable position of having to claim that while 1°C of warming has provably benefited the planet, 1°C further warming in the 21st century will be an unmitigated disaster. The burden of proof for the CAGW claim of harm has not been met.

      • PA, even a conservative average of 3 ppm per year gets us to 650 ppm by 2100, and then you add the 20-30% net effect of other GHGs and aerosols which brings it up to the 800-900 ppm CO2-equivalent range, where you are now talking about the RCP6 scenario. That is a scenario of weak or failed mitigation.

      • ““Sigh”.
        1. CO2 has existed naturally at over 17.5 times (1750%) of the current level or 25 times (2500%) of the alarmists 280 PPM gold standard.

        2. 280 PPM is dangerously close to the starvation level (200 PPM) for plants where they simply stop growing. People who claim 280 PPM is a useful target for CO2 are deluded or misinformed.”

        _____

        Making things up – or posting things that are completely irrelevant to the issue and actually believing they are relevant (such as no 1 above in particular, – I mean DO YOU REALLY THINK THAT IS RELEVANT? If you do please desist from even having an “opinion on this topic, let alone commenting, because you don;t know the basics of the issue), or grabbing them from sources that have all but made them up because it fits the above described agenda, is a great way to perpetuate,, and in fact self seal, belief:

        http://www.logicallyfallacious.com/index.php/logical-fallacies/161-self-sealing-argument

        Though the above commenter will probably read that in a self sealing fashion.

        As for the claim that “warmists’ hav been “right” for 17 years and wrong for 17 years, this misconstrues the issue far worse than Curry does. READ THIS PIECE. Yeah, I wrote it, but the support – and there are dozens of links – from the world’s leading science organizations. NOT hard core anti fossil fuel response think tank funded organizations. Or armchair ideologue scientists from other disciples, the rare few out of many who join the fear of macroeconomic,energy and agricultural transformation, change in general, and don’t understand the issue and self reinforce the mistake.

      • ‘Giving society cheap, abundant energy would be the equivalent of giving an idiot child a machine gun.”
        Paul Ehrlich,

        Social and economic transformation is something to be deeply mistrustful of. Energy innovation – cheap and abundant energy is the goal. As is rational social and development policy in which environmental goals have their place. There is a stark choice between policies of failure and despair – and the positive policies we offer for humanity and the environment.

      • JimD, carbon sinks appear to be rising exponentially (with a lag) commensurately with estimated human emissions.

        I’ve read plenty of times in the past about “carbon sinks saturating”, but there seems to be no evidence.

        It seems laughable that people are fretting about the “climate sensitivity” of a CO2 doubling when that looks increasingly hard to achieve.

      • michael hart, that may be, but as the emission rate rises, the equilibrium level where they balance rises too, and we are well below the equilibrium level even for the current emission rate.

      • On John Carters climate blog where the posts are so long, etymologists are working on a more extreme saying several orders of magnitude beyond “verbal diarrhea”.

        Below is a nugget of his superior THINK

        For instance, in the Eastern Atlantic Seaboard, temperatures are moderately cold during winter months. Yet jet 3000 miles west, …… (the West Coast of the U.S.A…………the winters tend to stay temperate; largely due to warmer ocean currents, which also highlight the importance of ocean temperature on climate.

        I can’t wait to throw away my wetsuit and swim in the balmy warmth of the California Current. Those east coasties are oh so jealous swimming in the freezing Gulf Stream.

        Thanks John Carter!

      • Jim D October 19, 2014 at 1:46 pm |
        “PA, even a conservative average of 3 ppm per year gets us to 650 ppm by 2100, and then you add the 20-30% net effect of other GHGs and aerosols which brings it up to the 800-900 ppm CO2-equivalent range, where you are now talking about the RCP6 scenario. That is a scenario of weak or failed mitigation.”

        http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/gmd/ccgg/trends/weekly.html
        Week beginning on October 12, 2014: 395.56 ppm
        Weekly value from 1 year ago: 393.60 ppm
        Weekly value from 10 years ago: 374.23 ppm

        Time for math.
        395.56-393.6 = 1.96 PPM/year
        395.56-374.23 = 21.33 PPM/decade (2.13 PPM/year).

        In September the rate was 1.77 PPM/year.

        So a conservative estimate is 2 PPM per year or less not 3 or more. The higher pCO2 concentration in the air – the greater the rate of diffusion (since the rate is dependent on the concentration differential) into sinks and conversion to biomass.

        Methane has a 9 year lifetime and just doesn’t build up much in the atmosphere. It doesn’t look like CO2 has a long lifetime either and 5-15 year estimates from studies seem to be in the ball park.

        Further – we are at 400 PPM and the world is wonderful. The amount of time to get to 400 from a higher level is pretty trivial. About 1.6 times as much “excess” CO2 is being absorbed by the environment, than is staying in the atmosphere. So the CO2 level will go down much faster than it went up.

        Oh, and 2 * 85 = 170 or a 570 PPM 2100 CO2 level. Now, even that isn’t a conservative estimate – since we will be using different energy technologies in 2100 than we are today. China will hit peak coal in 2030 and there just isn’t a feasible way to keep increasing CO2 emissions to the level needed to maintain a 2 PPM annual CO2 increase.

      • Steven Mosher

        John

        you are wrong

        “And Curry, who gets the issue wrong, who erroneously thinks that climate change is a linear and contemporaneous response”

        She thinks the opposite.

        Look.
        you cant read
        have havent read
        you dont get the science

      • Steven Mosher

        John Carter

        ‘A while back, University of Alabama at Huntsville Scientist Roy Spencer managed to get a study published under an implicit theory that “clouds drive climate,” rather than also serve as a response to it.

        Wrong.

        His argument is not that clouds DRIVE climate change.

        you cant read.

      • Steven Mosher

        John Carter

        ‘ And these ice sheets are also now melting: And melting at an accelerating rate, at both ends of the earth.”

        Wrong.

      • PA, current rates are 2.5 ppm per year and increasing. If you think 2 ppm going forwards is good, welcome to the world of mitigation. There is a hope of reducing emissions by 20% in the next decade or so, back below 30 GtCO2/yr, and that may get us to 2 ppm/yr again. You are talking mitigation scenarios here. It won’t just happen without mitigation. A lot of your people are very upset about being asked to reduce 20% even over a decade. You should tell them how easy it is to emit at 30 GtCO2/yr and see how that goes. They will say you are trying to collapse the global economy or something.

      • That’s what i was thinking, but Mr Carter isn’t exactly the clearest of writers, so it makes it tougher to conclude he’s wrong when one can’t determine what he’s saying.

      • PA, how are you going to get billions of people out of poverty in this century, if they are going to rely primarily on fossil fuels for economic growth, and not dramatically increase CO2 emissions?

      • @PA,

        @Howard
        What, to be able to persist in so called “climate skepticism,” did you scour my blog (not even the piece linked to) to see if you could pull out some mistake, irrelevant to the actual issue, used to suggest a tangential point?

        I’m sure I could find a few too. It’s a blog. But let’s see, vetted scientific journal papers, they pretty much all support the central points you will find therein, and the data comes from leading science institutions and organizations,and those directly involved in the research, not some professor somewhere in Washington State who takes the data and simply changes it and then it is dispersed to about 50 million people through 10,000 channels and quasi new ideological sites, and 10m comments on the Internet in various forms as new “truth.”

        Yet no vetted science journal papers actually support the notion – apart from the separate but conflated idea of various specific uncertainties – that the underlying “theory” of a a significant shift in climate from a significant net input of energy to the earth lower atmosphere system of time, is wrong or even sketchy.

        But you found a tangential assumption on my blog buried deep in one of the earlier pages, so, yay! Climate change not real or significant, or suggestions I make here – all backed by most of the world’s leading climate scientists (as well as logic) fly out the window.

        Congratulations. You’ve found another way to continue the self reinforcing process of a false belief, by focusing on that which doesn’t really go to the underpinning of the belief itself. Thereby helping you ignore points such as the one just made above, about papers, so long as we’re scouring sources, published in leading, vetted, Science journals. I’m sure, just as “Carter wrong because I found a mistake on his blog somewhere!” you find a way to dismiss that fact as well, and in fact all that get in the way of true “climate change” skepticism, which is the basic nature of it.

        Let’s also contrast that with the direct claim by some climate skeptics that much of the warming is due to “ocean heat.” If warming is due to ocean heat, not ocean heat via more atmospheric re radiation as well as more directly through atmospheric re radiation, then the oceans would have to be cooling if more heat was leaving. Ocean heat comes from the atmosphere, so if heat was being lost, they would be cooling. They are warming. Geologically, at a very rapid rate. Which means they are pulling more heat out of the air – a lot more – than they emit back.

        The basic point and the one relevant to climate change, is still relevant – oceans still have an enormous moderating effect on temperature over time (though if there is a huge increase or decrease in re radiated atmospheric heat it is going to then affect the oceans initially). So if oceans continue to rise in heat, and the atmosphere continues to trap a much higher amount of heat (let alone, as GG levels continue to rise, more and more of it) current air temperatures don’t come close to representing a stases condition, and can’t.

      • Joseph | October 20, 2014 at 4:34 pm |
        PA, how are you going to get billions of people out of poverty in this century, if they are going to rely primarily on fossil fuels for economic growth, and not dramatically increase CO2 emissions?

        Uhhh, just why would we want to stop CO2 emissions?

        CO2 isn’t pollution and at the practical levels we can drive it too I’m not sure there is any risk of negative effects. The 20th century had a 50% increase in plant growth and that’s a benefit.

        Most of the emitted CO2 (9.8 carbon Gt/year) is going into the ocean at the poles (90+ carbon Gt/year) where the pCO2 effective concentration is about a 1/3 of the atmospheric level (I could look it up for a better number). The drift speed at the bottom of the ocean is cm/s. I see numbers in the 5-10 range. Upwelling CO2 (about 6 carbon Gt less than goes in at the poles) at the equator is from the time of Jesus or earlier (for 10 cm/s the time delay is about 3170 years). The time delay makes the ocean virtually an infinite sink. I welcome input from professional oceanographers on the mean time delay between absorption and emission since this isn’t my area of expertise.

        I can’t tell at this point who is right about CO2 forcing plus feedback but right now the low enders are winning. Until we get better data – knee jerk panic driven policies will have the same impact knee jerk panic driven policies usually have, and this is something to be avoided.

      • I am glad you are willing to admit that we can’t move the developing world out of poverty (relying on fossil fuels) without increasing CO2 emissions. Your opinion on the effect of those emissions is practically worthless.

    • The issue of climate change dogma is about the decarbonisation cause being slowly hung out to dry. The supreme bias belongs to the defenders of the cause while the bulk of the misinformation is in fact being pedalled by them, fuelled by recurrent grants which now looks like drying up as well.

      • “The issue of climate change dogma is about the decarbonisation cause being slowly hung out to dry. The supreme bias belongs to the defenders of the cause while the bulk of the misinformation is in fact being pedalled by them, fueled by recurrent grants which now looks like drying up as well.”

        This is accurate.

        And pigs fly.

        As for seeing what one believes, the thing about science is to remove as much of that as possible, and to work to see, to draw conclusions from observation and analysis, not the other way around.

        IT is exactly the other way around that largely drives this site, and which drives almost all of the massive misinformation on this issue. Example after example after example is given, and the same process of seeing what one wants to see,continues.

        Thus, John Cook’s reasonably even handed and often understated site,skeptical science, which gives example after example after example – based upon the actual science, and vetted science papers – of the multiple fundamental myths that drive the great bulk (if not to some extent, ALL) climate change naysaying, is thus dismissed (and Cook himself – see some of the other anti climate change sites, for instance – repeatedly denigrated) . so a person can thus continue to see what they believe, or want or feel they need, very much to believe.

        http://www.salon.com/2014/07/29/alabama_state_officials_we_wont_comply_with_the_epa_because_god_gave_us_coal/
        As just one example, fueling (no pun intended) massive support, easy on such a complex futuristic multi dimensional probability range complex strategic assessment requiring issue, for misinformation, misconstruction, and excessive rhetoric passed off as science and logic.

      • the bulk of the misinformation is in fact being pedalled by them, fuelled by recurrent grants which now looks like drying up as well.

        Are you saying that the very large majority of climate scientists who accept AGW are promoting “misinformation” rather than actual science? Who really believes this? Why should anyone believe this? It’s getting close to the AGW is a hoax meme.

      • John Carter Cook | October 19, 2014 at 12:45 pm

        Example after example after example is given,

        And it only takes a single example to prove it all wrong(hint follow the url in my name).

        Thus, John Cook’s reasonably even handed and often understated site,skeptical science,

        LOL

    • John Carter, people, being people, will see what they believe.
      And nobody is immune to that particular bias – not scientists, not me, and not you.

    • OK, we’re getting close. ‘a supreme bias’. In 20 words or less, what is that bias?
      ==========

      • People’s propensity to see what they believe

      • …and to not see what they don’t believe

      • Well, yeah, but I was wondering about the ‘supreme bias’ that John detects here, and in Judy. I can tell you my perception of John’s bias. He has bowed to mistaken authority and is needlessly frightened.
        ===================

      • I think I just inadvertently proved my own point …

      • Every time I start to see my biases clearly, the kaleidoscope turns again.
        ============

      • World disasters are down – fewest catastrophies and deaths in 10 years – but, the amount would lower with less AGW.

      • “OK, we’re getting close. ‘a supreme bias’. …what is that bias?”

        That we cant much affect the natural world. That the earth adjusts for us, rather than vice versa, so major gg changes and the huge increase of lower atmospheric/earth energy input will self regulate in a way conducive to our evolution and not ultimately reflect the new energy balance irrespective of us. That the economy depends on fossil fuel and not our own industry. That our legislative response to the problem will be bad, so, since it’s an abstract one that we can’t really see or feel anyway, there is instead probably just no real problem.

        “He has bowed to mistaken authority and is needlessly frightened.”

        You are talking about the wrong person, to put it mildly, but this is the assessment that need be made, to continue perpetuating the same self reinforcing belief on this issue, and memes to dismiss legitimate scientific concerns and claims by leading scientists,as simple misplaced “alarmism” or other.

        On the second part of the two, however, if by “frightened,” you mean “concerned” or “caring,” than yes. If you mean frightened, than no.

        I do think a lot of people are frightened, actually frightened, or fearful of, both change, the idea of transforming our economy, and of macroeconomic affect, based, not upon pretty basic science that is easy to castigate if there’s an underlying (and on this massive misinformation issue CONSTANTLY REINFORCED) need or desire, since it can’t be fully “proven” until after the fact, but upon wild assumption- on yet another subject (economics) that people are much less conceptually adept at than they implicitly presume – regarding future macroeconomic progress and transformation

        Somewhat akin to bees that ultimately perish, because to a partially open but crystal clean window which they can’t see, they keep flying into the glass.

        So, somewhat similarly, we believe, that to “progress” (and turning the term into an oxymoron) we need to harm our world (from our perspective anyway,when it comes to radical climate shifts, and often from any perspective, when it comes to a lot of pollutants and excess and often ultimately needless carcinogens), and since we DONT want to NOT progress, we argue that we are not really harming our world. (Or giving ourselves cancer. Or for years that the absolutely crap food we ate was good for us. Or that air pollution we can’t see is irrelevant to the quality of our existence until, like in China, we can literally see and feel it.)

        And easy to self delude on – harsh as that term is – on this issue of climate change, most of all, and,most ironic of all, because it represents a pretty massive potential change, that people are STILL not getting bc it is an abstract “air” and more geologic time frame oriented,, complex, and until well after the fact, largely hidden, thing.

      • So three ‘supreme biases’ in less than 2,000 words. I’ll stick with ‘bowed to mistaken authority and needlessly frightened.’
        =================

      • I can tell you my perception of John’s bias. He has bowed to mistaken authority and is needlessly frightened.

        I think his supreme bias is that he needs to be frightened.

    • John Carter – “the scientists in directly related fields who professionally study this issue” have gut feelings. Even they know they don’t have proof that meets the traditional standards of science.

      • “””John Carter – “the scientists in directly related fields who professionally study this issue” have gut feelings. Even they know they don’t have proof that meets the traditional standards of science.”””

        I think a BIG part of the problem (maybe almost all of it) that drives the misconstruction of this issue so desired is the failure to adequately assess exactly what the issue is, and integrate that into a coherent framework analytical assessment.

        The issue is not about “PROOF>” We don’t know what will happen, nor can we. We can now with a high to extremely high degree of probability that the climate will shift in a significant to radical way. That is very different from proof, and requires a completely different analysis of the issue.

        There is only one earth. No sister or “Control” earth”s. No history of a similar course on an otherwise identical planet (or many) with one of the variables controlled for, etc. Climate is a powerful long term expression of inputted energy, that over the short run (~50 years, ~150 years, ~10 years, depending on context) is extremely hard to pinpoint. Thrustin an enormou external forcing of a geologically major magnitude upon it, is even more so.

        Yet on these sites (and in the media, and even by a few semi related scientists who kinda keep an eye on the issue or are semi involved) treat it as if it is some sort of both immediate, and linear, contemporaneous correlation between increased lower level atmospheric re radiation, and increased (or changed) global ambient air temperatures, which is absurd, and belies any real deep understanding of the actual issue.

        Amazing yet how so many are an “expert” on this issue such as to have such a zealous opinion, and don’t even really know what the issue is about.
        (This includes Curry, who should know better, but clearly doesn’t., and has become swept alone in the solidarity entrenching tide against “the man” (irony of ironies, since the most profound basis for that tide is severe authoritarianism and reactionaryism)

        Point being, that, not to sound like Peter Sellers in “Dr. Strangelove” (rent it if you haven’t seen it, it’s kinda brilliant and hilarious), THE WHOLE POINT IS that it can’t be proven until after the fact. That does’t mean the risk, which is wholly different concept, is not real, highly significant, and high.

      • @kim

        “I have read John Carter ’til my eyes bleed(no, I have no fever), and I haven’t figured out what he means by ‘supreme bias’, despite his telling me numerous times.”

        Are you sure you don’t have Ebola?

        Have explained it, read, but maybe, I don’t know, maybe, just maybe, like most people with strong opinions on this issue YOU ARE NOT A CLIMATE SCIENTIST, OR CUT OUT TO BE ONE.

        @andrew

        Good comment. I still hope Manziel goes somewhere that he gets to play, you know, just to see. (by the way, click on name link, It was a stupid call, but I wrote the Jags were gonna upset the Browns. Voila.)

      • John Carter,

        In your opinion, given the progress to date, do think that a total expenditure of 30 billion dollars on so called climate science, for no results to date – no breakthroughs, no predictive ability, no benefit to mankind – was a better use of funds than, say, trying to find a prophylactic for Ebola, or even a cure?

        Or is throwing away scarce resources on complete and utter nonsense to be greatly admired and even emulated by populations with demonstrably more sanity?

        Waste your own money. I can look after my own. How do you know I am not wiser, or even more intelligent than you, in this regard? Warmists have faith and assumptions. I don’t believe I have to be part of their fantasy. Worship the Warm in your own time, at your own expense, if you would be so kind.

        Live well and prosper,

        Mike Flynn.

      • Kim,

        Are you sure you don’t have Ebola?

        He gets the joke, but still doesn’t get it. Very amusing.

      • John Carter says:
        The issue is not about “PROOF>” We don’t know what will happen, nor can we. We can now with a high to extremely high degree of probability that the climate will shift in a significant to radical way. That is very different from proof, and requires a completely different analysis of the issue.
        *****

        We don’t know what will happen, but we are highly certain we know there will be a shift in a radical way. Hmmm ….

      • The issue is not about “PROOF>” We don’t know what will happen, nor can we. We can (k)now with a high to extremely high degree of probability that the climate will shift in a significant to radical way. That is very different from proof, and requires a completely different analysis of the issue.

        *****

        We don’t know what will happen, but we are highly certain we know there will be a shift in a radical way. Hmmm ….

        ———–

        You know, is it just possible that most people aren’t good scientists, and yet are formulating opinions as if they are?

        The above also wildly misconstrues. “We don;t know what will happen is consistent with the idea of a high risk of very significant climate shift, but the commenter, missing the entire point, phrases it the opposite. That is the whole point on this. IT is a risk range.

        It is also not 100% that the ultimate change falls into that risk range. =- depending on how wide or how narrow, ( as well as what time frames) are used.

        Given those two, if “we don’t know what will happen” refers to “We don’t know exactly what will happen, but that there is a range or risks – then it is not only true, IT HAS TO BE>

        That is the whole point of risk.

        This subject is complex, and the analyses even more complex, as it not only involves the direct science involved but the concept of variation, probabilities, and ranges (and types) of shifts over time.

        Yet we have commenters – most – commenting on it who don’t understand this (or don’t want ot, or their skepticism is getting in the way of even being able to intelligently entertain the idea) yet who are profession opinions routinely on this site as if they have more knowledge on the subject than the world’s leading climate scientists, or are simply better scientists than them.

        Yet don’t understand what a probability of a risk range actually means. Let alone why on this issue we couldn’t begin to know precisely how much and along what time line global climate will precisely shift, nor know why that is consistent with the issue itself given what the actual problem is. Most don’t even know that (the actual problem) either.

        In short,, though simplified, its the confusion of non certainty of an outcome with belief therefore that there is no relevant knowledge about the range of outcomes, or that that knowledge can not support the existence of a problem or challenge that would be highly counterproductive to not address. Which is remarkably illogical.

        And which, at its core, if seemingly complicated on this issue (and highly colored by non recognized bias, ideological belief, conflation of the topic with fear of redress, and a remarkable sea of misinformation) is about as basic a mistake as can be made. And it drives (or at least serves as a vehicle for, including by @jcurry) much of climate change “skepticism.”

        And, though not simplified, but also in short, most people DON”T understand the issue. This, from the many posts I’ve read here, includes Curry (although not as much as many, as she has a lot of detailed info but doesn’t really understand what the issue IS). And I’d go through the posts and show why in a detailed analysis, with substantial support if it could be read by more than 15 people (and ideally our U.S. Congress); while Curry in the meantime is testifying before the U.S. Congress (along with many other who are misinformed, because our congress reflect us, in an increasing sea of rhetoric and talk radio information we are electing less and less qualified individuals, and they call in “experts” that support their biases and beliefs, that mirror ours in society).

    • I have read John Carter ’til my eyes bleed(no, I have no fever), and I haven’t figured out what he means by ‘supreme bias’, despite his telling me numerous times.
      =================

      • Kim

        When John Carter says supreme bias he means someone else’s bias, bias that he doesn’t like. Hs own bias he likes just fine. The difference between his bias and my bias is that his bias takes up more blog space.

      • John C is certainly biased in favour of the AGW hypothesis being true but I doubt if he could quantify the extent to which natural variability contributes to the measured increases in global warming over the past 50 years. So far there has been no work on this apart from that of very few dedicated souls with no axe to grind.

    • Look!… On The Internet!… It’s!…

      Johnny Climateball­™

      Andrew

    • Perhaps the er …cart before the force.
      The Vostok proxies suggest a different story to that of
      the control knob modelling narrative.
      http://www.co2science.org/articles/V6/N26/EDIT.php

  43. Pierre-Normand

    Judith Curry wrote: “Yes lets use dubious paleo estimates to falsify estimates from the relatively reliable instrumental record, and also lets forget that climate sensitivity is state dependent.”

    I thought the paleo-climate based estimates of climate sensitivity actually were accounting for the global ice albedo part of state dependency. I couldn’t comment because I don’t know enough about the topic. However I just read this comment by Joel D. Shore on WUWT:

    “More importantly, these estimates allow us to estimate the warming that occurs with each W/m^2 of forcing….with that value somewhere around 0.75 C per (W/m^2). And, this, along with the universally agreed-upon forcing of ~4 W/m^2 per CO2 doubling leads to the conclusion that the climate sensitivity is somewhere around 3 C per doubling. In fact, as Hansen points out, this is the forcing one obtains if one assumes that albedo changes due to ice changes are a forcing rather than a feedback. Since they play the role of a feedback in our current climate “experiment”, the actual sensitivity could be higher…Hansen thought perhaps even about double that…although hopefully that is not true in our current climate state when there is not that much ice to melt.”

    So, Judith may have a point. If one makes proper account of the state dependency of climate sensitivity, then the paleo-climate estimates usually quoted are overly conservative. It may be reasonable to expect ECS to be somewhat larger than 3°C/CO2 doubling (as a center estimate).

    • Thanks P-N. I can hardly wait until JC and her team here grasp this amusing point about the ‘dubious’ paleoclimate estimates (read: Mann’s damned hockey stick). Which card will they play? Will they deny the universality of ~4W/m^2 per 2xCO2? Will they go ‘but, Hansen!’ Or will it be ‘but, ‘hide the decline!’ (which Judy already seems to have played, really, but it’s such a popular card).

    • There are so many different sensitivities that keeping track with all gets cumbersome.

      ECS is normally defined to exclude effects of changes in albedo from shrinking ice and snow cover. A separate sensitivity ESS (Equilibrium Systen Sensitivity) includes those as well as feedbacks.

      When we consider sensitivities like ESS (and also ECS) we must remember that they are theoretical concepts that assume constant CO2 concentration over very long periods, but constant CO2 concentrations at elevated levels are not a credible future. In reality we have first increasing concentrations and then decreasing. Both are likely to occur during a time span shorter than getting very close to the equilibrium would take. For that reason one more sensitivity has been added to the palette: TCRE (Transient Climate Response to Emissions), which relates the peak temperature to the cumulative total of emissions. TCRE is perhaps the most relevant for estimating the future of the Earth climate.

      • Ya – these are all theoretical formulations that can never be measured.

        The suspicious mind believes that the IPCC is now shy from making predictions/projections/estimate that involve actual temperatures because when they last did ( IPCC4 ) they got burned with the 0.2C decadal rate and the low end 1.8 C century rate.

        I don’t have much use for TCRs or ECSs or even the RF which is also a theoretical but not measurable.

  44. “Lucia notes the inconsistency in a post Lew: Curry’s paper suggests LESS uncertainty not MORE!” As I posted at Lucia’s site, the incongruity of Lewandowsky’s post is great enough that I just wonder if he mixed up your post with Steve Koonin’s – especially because I think you have expressed views agreeing with Koonin’s as well. That would be pretty funny.

    Of course, his post quotes your article, which seems to spoil my scenario, but that could be the other author grabbing a quote without either one really thinking about it…

    • Pierre-Normand

      This narrowing of the sensitivity range still is inconsistent with an anthropogenic attribution of the warming since 1950 that is lower than 50%. In order to reconcile her claims about 20th century warming attributions with the Lewis&Curry paper, Judith has to dismiss the L&C result and maintain her endorsement of a wider uncertainty range.

      • I thought she was fairly clear about this anyhow. She doesn’t (necessarily) believe in climate sensitivities, she’s into Stadium Waves and other stuff, but this paper was an attempt to show what result the IPCC should have gotten had they done the math correctly. If you trust the IPCC’s assumptions, use this sensitivity instead of theirs.

      • Heh, the sensitivity to anthropogenic fear is plummeting, and has the potential of being shown to be negative.

      • Much ado about sensitivity:

        http://julesandjames.blogspot.com/2014/10/much-ado-about-sensitivity.html

        miker613 will copy-paste Judy’s arguments at James’ in a moment.

      • Lewis and Curry carefully chose baseline periods around 1940 and 1870 that were at peaks of natural variability. If they had done a linear fit to the whole record (as we saw with Lovejoy for example) they would have found transient sensitivities more in line with the IPCC range. It wasn’t as objective as they try to make it seem.
        http://www.rcinet.ca/en/wp-content/uploads/sites/3/2014/04/LOVEJOY-WARM-GRAPH.jpg

      • “miker613 will copy-paste Judy’s arguments at James’ in a moment.” Why? I follow Annan; it’s been clear for a long time that he agrees that sensitivity estimates need to come down, and he says so here too. He is “deeply unimpressed” with the way the climate scientist community is dealing with the Pause, and has always said that too.
        As usual, I am happy when climate scientists stick to climate science. I will take care of mitigation/adaptation decisions myself, thank you.

        I don’t really understand what you have been doing recently, Willard. What is the point of jumping on people involved in an argument and shouting, “Aha – just caught you making an argument!” Do you do the same to those who agree with you? Do you do the same with what you are doing yourself? It doesn’t come across to me as a position of strength, but as a move of desperation.

      • > it’s been clear for a long time that he agrees that sensitivity estimates need to come down,

        It’s also been clear for a long time that James finds Lewis’ work underwhelming. Speaking of which, the article ends up with:

        Finally, it is also amusing to see Judith “we don’t know anything” Curry to put her name to this new paper: it is unclear what she might have added, as Nic has been presenting analyses of this nature for some time now. But that’s a minor matter.

        Too minor for miker613 to copy-paste it here, no doubt.

        But then we hear lots of good things about traceability.

      • > It wasn’t as objective as they try to make it seem.

        This hints at a related point made by James elsewhere:

        Nic uses the emotionally appealing terminology of “objective probability” for this method. I don’t blame him for this (he didn’t invent it) but I do wonder whether many people have been seduced by the language without understanding what it actually does.

        http://julesandjames.blogspot.co.uk/2014/04/objective-probability-or-automatic.html

      • I thought there was no such thing as completely objective in Bayesian statistics. However, James has railed against the use of uniform priors as not a good choice.

      • “It’s also been clear for a long time that James finds Lewis’ work underwhelming.” For most of us, the climate sensitivity is important, and Annan’s personal view of Curry and Lewis is not. That would be why the public face of climate science is trying so hard to distract us from that issue. Here’s how they talk: “A _slightly_ lower estimate”, “_maybe_ we have an extra decade” – that kind of stuff. If Lewis and Curry – and Annan – are right, the paleo estimates are wrong, and badly wrong. The higher sensitivity estimates are ruled out completely. A simple acknowledgment of the major impact of that would be appreciated. But not expected.

        The most recent survey I saw showed that there sure isn’t a 97% consensus on high climate sensitivity. A very sizable bloc thinks that it’s at the lower end of IPCC estimates.

      • Paul S had this to say in the comments:

        A [Nic & Judy want to stick as close to IPCC data as possible] isn’t really true since the IPCC give sensitivity estimates which they chose to ignore.

        B [they would certainly use C&W if reviewers questioned it] suggests they knew their results were biased low and underestimated uncertainty but made a deliberate attempt to push the paper through without disclosing this. I recall someone recently arguing such a thing could reasonably be described as fraud.

        http://julesandjames.blogspot.com/2014/10/much-ado-about-sensitivity.html?showComment=1412445560975#c8976498537364008131

      • Hee, hee.
        =======

      • “Paul S had this to say in the comments:…” Near as I can see, neither his A nor his B make any sense.

      • Let’s see if Willard can explicate A and B in his own words and thoughts.
        ==============

      • > Near as I can see, neither his A nor his B make any sense.

        Which part of “the IPCC give sensitivity estimates which they chose to ignore” do you not get, miker613?

      • Hee hee hee HEE haw. I was disappointed in Paul S, but not surprised by Willard, pounding along several lengths behind the leading racehorse, but riderless.
        ============

      • Don’t anyone explain it to him. Make him read the paper.

        Disclaimer. I haven’t.
        ===============

      • ‘Which part of “the IPCC give sensitivity estimates which they chose to ignore” do you not get, miker613?’
        My first comment above: “this paper was an attempt to show what result the IPCC should have gotten had they done the math correctly. If you trust the IPCC’s assumptions, use this sensitivity instead of theirs.” Am I supposed to think that Paul S is clueless, has reading comprehension issues, or just doesn’t care about actually understanding those he opposes?

      • Aw, you make it too easy for him. Mebbe now he can do the chronology with C&W.
        ==========

      • Global temperature vs Log([CO2]) using HADCRU4 and ice dome/Keeling, including the data up to last month

        http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w318/DocMartyn/HADCRU4vsLogCO2_zps2439f40e.jpg

        A climate sensitivity of 1.9 for 2x[CO2] is the best you can get.

      • Willard, Paul S I think is just a little off here. Curry and Lewis uses a method from many previous studies and updates the forcings, etc. based on AR5. They don’t ignore anything.

        I believe I saw Lewis say that C&W will increase their central value by less than 0.1.

        Not everything in their paper is perfectly correct and further evidence will come to light. What’s so unusual about that?

        All in all, Annan too has said the IPCC is overestimating sensitivity especially with their use of uniform priors. That’s in the main what Curry is saying too.

      • 2.5 is still fine by me, though I wouldn’t be surprised by a value a bit lower or higher. I don’t think the recent decade really changes the best estimate all that much, but it helps to confirm what sensible people were saying several years ago about extremely high values :-) – Annan in 2013

      • since we’re having an Annan quote-fest
        ” Of the three GMST datasets cited in AR5, only HadCRUT4 (Morice et al, 2012) covers the 1859–1882 and 1850–1900 base periods used in this study; it is therefore employed.” L&C, section 3.3

        “Lewis & Curry should have used C&W in addition to, or instead of, HadCrut4. C&W warmed about 8-9% more over the instrumental period. “- deeplclimate, on Annan’s blog

        “Yes, a direct comparison of HadCRUT to model global data is certainly a mistake. Normal procedure is to mask model output.” – Annan’s reply

      • I can’t seem to find a citation for the C & W temperature reconstruction in AR5.

        http://static.berkeleyearth.org/graphics/land-and-ocean/land-and-ocean-other-results-1950-small.png

        They all seem to be in the same general uncertainty range. Perhaps the proponents of C&W should publish their own peer reviewed paper?

      • she’s into Stadium Waves and other stuff

        lol That’s a good characterization of the response to Dr. Curry’s theory about the most significant natural variation. It’s either that or crickets..

    • Or maybe he’s just stupid? (Lewandowsky, that is)

  45. Richard Scott

    Judy, welcome back
    A quote Lincoln
    If I were to read much less answer all the attacks made on me. …I do the very best I know how, the very best I can and I mean to keep doing it to the end. If the end brings me out alright what is said about me will not amount to anything. If the end brings me out wrong, ten angels swearing I was right would make no difference

  46. Please please can someone explain the mechanism whereby heat hides in the ocean but does not increase the temperature of the ground and hence the air temperature?

    • Pierre-Normand

      Stacey, there never is any significant flow of heat from the atmosphere to the oceans. The Sun warms the oceans and the heat flows from oceans to atmosphere (only a small amount diffuses down) though conduction/convection, evaporation and radiation (and some also flows back directly to space). But this flow from the ocean surface is highly variable as a result of internal variability. When the rate of cooling of the oceans is temporarily reduced, the oceans heat up, because they don’t shed as much of the energy received from the Sun, while the atmosphere cools. This is what occurs, for instance, when there is a La Nina episode.

      • “When the rate of cooling of the oceans is temporarily reduced”

        Why should atmospheric CO2 alter the rate at which the surface brine radiates and cools?

    • Pierre-Normand

      “Why should atmospheric CO2 alter the rate at which the surface brine radiates and cools?”

      Radiating and cooling are two different things. Only surface temperature determines the infrared emission power. The cooling rate depends on all the fluxes, including also conductive/convective, latent heat, and back-radiation from the atmosphere. The increase in atmospheric CO2 concentration increase the back-radiation but it’s not primarily this that explains the reduction of the surface cooling since other fluxes also vary.

      It’s rather the top-of-atmosphere (or tropopause) forcing change — and the consequent reduced ability the system as a whole to shed radiation to space — that’s responsible. By conservation of energy, and because of the low heat capacity of the atmosphere, the surface flux tends rapidly (within weeks or months) to match the TOA flux. It is this necessary radiative-convective adjustment of the fluxes at the surface, and the whole atmospheric column, that explain the reduced rate of cooling of the surface, and why it must eventually warm up to restore the TOA balance.

      • This explanation still does not describe the mechanism whereby the TOA imbalance is adding heat to the oceans, specifically the deeper oceans (700 to 2000 m) without warming the effective surface first Pierre.

      • Pierre-Normand

        “This explanation still does not describe the mechanism whereby the TOA imbalance is adding heat to the oceans, specifically the deeper oceans (700 to 2000 m) without warming the effective surface first Pierre.”

        As I said, no heat is directly added by the increase in back-radiation at the surface. Rather the *net* upward longwave flux (emission minus back-radiation) is reduced. One effect among many is to reduce the temperature gradient within the skin layer of the ocean and hence reduce the rate of cooling of the upper mixed layer (the first few meters of which are warmed by the Sun) to the atmosphere and also, radiatively, through the atmospheric infrared window, directly to space.

        My main point, tough, was that there is no reason to doubt the effectiveness of the TOA imbalance. An increase in Solar radiation can create it just as effectively as an increase in atmospheric CO2 does. And once this TOA imbalance is created, it’s impossible for it to be sustained without the heat flux *out* of the oceans being reduces, lest you believe that the climate system has the power make energy disappear. Whatever occurs in the atmosphere and surface layer must either reduce the TOA imbalance *or* oceans must heat up.

        I know much less about heat transport below 700m, but I think its caused mainly by large scale scale circulation and Ekman transport much more than downward diffusion.

        You can get much more details in Pierrehumbert’s “Principles of Planetary Climate”. There also are very many good explanatory blog posts and discussions of those two main topics (the greenhouse effect and the mechanism of ocean heat increase) on RealClimate, ScienceOfDoom, SkepticalScience, Roy Specer’s blog and even WUWT. There also was an interesting guest post by Donald Rapp on Climate Etc., but unfortunately the ensuing discussion had a pretty low signal to noise ratio and Rapp understandably didn’t stay for very long.

        I can dig up specific links if you wish.

      • “You can get much more details in Pierrehumbert’s “Principles of Planetary Climate”. There also are very many good explanatory blog posts and discussions of those two main topics (the greenhouse effect and the mechanism of ocean heat increase) on RealClimate, ScienceOfDoom, SkepticalScience, Roy Specer’s blog and even WUWT. There also was an interesting guest post by Donald Rapp on Climate Etc., but unfortunately the ensuing discussion had a pretty low signal to noise ratio and Rapp understandably didn’t stay for very long”

        Having sat through all of those schooling’s you present, there is undeniable error in the amount of energy accruing at the depths presented to be all from those small CO2 related mechanisms. The discussion here about Rapps’s article raised many unanswered questions. Rapp deals with the surface boundary layer. It is the sun and wind and clouds that regulates ENSO, a mechanism that can warm the oceans deeper than surface currents. Kudos to Donald Rapp for an excellent article.

      • The reduced rate of cooling at the TOA not at the surface is what you meant.

      • Pierre-Normand

        “Having sat through all of those schooling’s you present, there is undeniable error in the amount of energy accruing at the depths presented to be all from those small CO2 related mechanisms.”

        There are errors? OK. Sorry about that.

      • Pierre-Normand

        dailyplanet: “The reduced rate of cooling at the TOA not at the surface is what you meant.”

        No. I really meant what I wrote. What’s the trouble? The TOA imbalance minus the net surface flux (from *all* fluxes, latent, radiative, etc.) gives the rate of change of the atmospheric energy content. Because of the low heat capacity of the atmosphere, this means that the TOA imbalance must soon match the net surface flux lest the atmosphere becomes extremely hot. This is just from conservation of energy.

      • You are not making any sense Pierre

        “No. I really meant what I wrote. What’s the trouble? The TOA imbalance minus the net surface flux (from *all* fluxes, latent, radiative, etc.) gives the rate of change of the atmospheric energy content. Because of the low heat capacity of the atmosphere, this means that the TOA imbalance must soon match the net surface flux lest the atmosphere becomes extremely hot. This is just from conservation of energy.”

        If the effective TOA is slightly cooler then the effective surface needs to radiate at a higher temperature.

        You are still handwaving the heat into the deeper ocean absent heating of the lower atmosphere. I am sure Gates will help you handwave. If CO2 is heating the oceans it should show up in the near surface waters and result in a shift to greater evaporative cooling. This should result in greater atmospheric heating. I am more or less paraphrasing Lacis or Santer or Hansen. What is the method or mechanism for increasing ocean heat content from CO2 if the atmosphere is not heating first?

      • The ocean’s heating is from the sun and cooling is from net IR and fluxes, so the added CO2 reduces its cooling rate, and it becomes warmer than it would be with less CO2. Think of it like insulation.

      • It is much more complicated than insulation Jim D.

        The ocean can rapidly transport heat up through itself by convection and only slowly transport heat down by conduction. Radiation is a much smaller form of heat transport from the surface compared to evaporation. If the CO2 was the entire cause of warming due to back radiation would not the atmosphere need to be warming in lockstep with the oceans? This is why the ENSO process and other large heat flows independent of CO2 seem to be at least as important if not more important for the variability of OHC. The fingerprint of CO2 should show in the first 100 meters of the ocean warming and lower atmosphere temperature should be tightly coupled.

        Instead we have the deeper ocean warming and no lower tropospheric warming over oceans except in the far north.

      • dalyplanet, if you add more insulation to your house, it doesn’t have to warm to keep your house warmer. It provides a larger temperature gradient to the outside, and helps the surface to retain its warmth from the sun better.
        The ocean water does not stay at the surface. There are areas where it goes down and others where it comes up. When the colder upwelled water spreads across the surface as in the PDO cold phase, the warmer surface water area is reduced and the warm water gets deeper. This changes the ocean temperature profile in the ways seen. You have to think of the ocean as circulating vertically too, not just in circles on the surface.

      • CO2 does not act like insulation at all. Saying CO2 acts like insulation is completely an incorrect visualization. If you believe that CO2 is insulation then you do not understand my question.

        Show me the links to peer reviewed papers or even a reliable blog that show this transport of ocean heat content Jim D. If you show papers that describe ENSO then my point about ENSO and the sun and the wind and the clouds strengthens the argument that CO2 has little to do with deep ocean heating.

      • dalyplanet, insulation is important because the ocean loses 75% of its heat via IR emission, and any way to reduce that is going to have an effect.
        I am not sure what you are asking about ocean circulations. Do you not believe in vertical ocean circulations or that warm water can be transported down by these? It’s not diffusion, if that is what you are thinking. It is downward transport en masse in various locations around the globe. One of these was just referred to in connection with the Southern Hemisphere potentially being another location for ocean heat storage that was not sampled well by Argo. Others are in the West Pacific where heat is stored between El Ninos, and North Atlantic where the Gulf Stream ends.

      • Here is a post I have looked at for more than half a decade

        http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2006/09/why-greenhouse-gases-heat-the-ocean/

        Notice the heating is in the upper ocean, scienceofdoom has 4 posts with the last being the mist interesting, from several years ago also.If there is large amounts of heat being retained in the upper surface of the ocean then this warmer surface must heat the atmosphere, the ocean physics imply greater lower atmosphere heat.

      • I am asking for the mechanism that a surface phenomena, driven by less than a half a percent calculated change in flux is heating the oceans below a few hundred meters. The oceans have absorbed more energy since we started measuring in 2004. Show me how it is all from CO2 and not from clouds or winds or deep ocean currents or some combination.

      • dalyplanet, why do you not think the atmosphere above the ocean warms in response to the surface warming, and the surface itself warms in response to the changing energy balance there? AGW says that the atmosphere responds to surface warming to maintain the lapse rate. This is a central part of it.

      • The forcing from CO2 has been about 2 W/m2 so far. Half of it is offset by earth warming enough to radiate it back out. The other half is stored mostly in the ocean. 1 W/m2 applied continuously is about right to account for how much the ocean has been warming. Note that this is unsustainable because the top of atmosphere is still 1 W/m2 out of balance, and that won’t be removed until the surface warms enough to radiate out the full 2 W/m2 which itself is growing with emissions. If the imbalance remains, the ocean just keeps warming which eventually becomes difficult to do without the surface warming, although there are temporary periods where the surface doesn’t keep up and the imbalance grows.

      • Have to explain how the ocean is storing heat while the surface of the oceans have been cooling since 2001.

      • It is just a God awful climate extremist narrative.

        Oceans warm and cool. This means that the radiative balance is finely tuned. The change in ocean heating follows closely the change in net radiative flux.

        https://watertechbyrie.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/wong2006figure71.gif

        It shows part of a period of SW warming of 2.1W/m2 and 0.7W/m2 IR cooling between the 1980’s and 1990’s.

        While it was warming a little in SW last decade – and the Sun cooling somewhat less.

        https://watertechbyrie.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/ceres_modis-1.gif

        There is now no trend in net CERES TOA radiant flux.

        https://watertechbyrie.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/ceres_ebaf-toa_ed2-8_anom_toa_net_flux-all-sky_march-2000toapril-20142.png

        CERES anomalies provide a new precision in measuring changes in TOA radiant flux. The changes in the record exceed the entire greenhouse gas nominal forcing for the last century. There is no confidence that we know by how much it will change this century.

      • The surface isn’t cooling. It has been the hottest ocean on record. Anyway, there are variations in the surface warming rate due to ocean circulations and other natural variations. Remember that part of the ocean circulations brings up deep cooler water to the surface and this rate varies which is why the surface temperature varies. Is this type of natural variation hard to understand? I don’t know what the problem is.

      • Talking to me? That a mistake.

        https://watertechbyrie.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/von-schuckmannn-2013.png

        I assume it is about right. Pre-Argo is dicey – the splice is unreliable – Argo is dominated by natural variation – most of it was reflected SW changes. Some of it from the Sun.

        https://watertechbyrie.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/sw-ceres-june-2014.png

        If you have some data – for God’s sake discuss it and not simply talk about how hot it is.

        Ocean heat follows net CERES – there is no trend currently.

      • I think Ellison is closer to correct with his post above Jim D. The ocean, well she has a full dance card and is not going steady with CO2 forcing. So far Jim D and Pierre you have not put up anything for a proof that CO2 is the cause of all ocean heating.

      • dalyp, as I said, the 2 W/m2 forcing change explains why the ocean has been warming and the ongoing imbalance explains why it still is. It’s just the long-term energy balance, and it matches the rate of change well enough given observation uncertainties. The scientists understand this much, but many of the skeptics like yourself have fallen down at this hurdle (not Judith who seems to understand because the LC paper outlines the idea in section 2). If you have further questions, you should refer to the parts of the LC paper you don’t follow or agree with.

      • Jim D says
        “dalyplanet, insulation is important because the ocean loses 75% of its heat via IR emission,”

        but DaSilva Young and Levitus 1995 show that oceans lose most heat via latent heat loss and radiation loss is about half of latent heat loss except near the poles.

      • Yes the 2.1 W/m2 change in SW warming explains ocean heat in the last part of the century very well.

        ‘The interannual variability of the net flux
        anomalies in Fig. 7 from the ERBS Nonscanner WFOV
        and CERES Scanner agree very well with the interannual
        variability of the ocean heat storage data. The
        agreement is within the ocean heat storage sampling
        uncertainties, with 1-sigma difference in the anomalies
        of 0.4 W m2. The two times series are in phase with
        each other, consistent with the constraint of planetary
        energy balance.’ http://www.image.ucar.edu/idag/Papers/Wong_ERBEreanalysis.pdf

      • Jim D

        Lewis and Curry made an adjustment to OHC about 60% if I remember correctly, they were making no discussions of the specifics of this discussion. Can you link to some literature that makes this deep ocean heating from the CO2 the focus that is not a modeling study of the hypothetical missing heat?

      • dalyp, you are confusing net IR with emitted IR. Excluding the absorbed part from the sky, which maybe you dispute anyway, the emission is hundreds of W/m2, as would be expected for a water surface radiating almost like a black body. It is a very efficient emitter, and IR is the main way of losing heat.

      • The Wong paper is quite informative Rob. I was looking at it again last night.It stimulated my desire to post something in response to Pierre

        Jim D, you are devolving into fuzzy fizzicks. All the peer reviewed papers I have read use the net Qlw

      • dalyp, These are different processes dependent on different factors. The absorption part, for example depends on GHGs and occurs at specific wavelengths, while the emission part only depends on surface temperature and is across wavelengths. You may as well include solar absorption or its IR part if you want to really muddle things together. Then the radiation has a net warming, a large part of which (more than half) is due to GHGs in the atmosphere. Does that view help?

      • Lewis and Curry don’t alter the IPCC numbers much. They say more than 2 W/m2 of forcing is now occurring and that significant amounts are going into OHC by means that seem to perplex you. They have an imbalance which is why their TCR is less than their ECS, just like everyone else’s.

      • Jim D | October 20, 2014 at 8:46 pm |
        “dalyp, you are confusing net IR with emitted IR. Excluding the absorbed part from the sky, which maybe you dispute anyway, the emission is hundreds of W/m2, as would be expected for a water surface radiating almost like a black body. It is a very efficient emitter, and IR is the main way of losing heat.”

        Accord to “Global Warming and the Future of the Earth”, by Robert G. Watts, 168 W/m2 is absorbed by the surface, the surface emits 390 W/m2, the atmosphere emits 324 W/m2 back (net 66 W/m2), there is 78 latent heat loss (evaporation) and 24 sensible heat loss (convection).

        Other studies come up with similar but different numbers…

        You are right about the black body – IR emissivity is 0.97/0.96 for land/ocean from numbers I find.

      • I think I am less perplexed than you Jim D, but that is not saying much. The point is that you have certainly offered no proof that it is all CO2 driven. Rob on the other hand shows there is significant changes to OHC from clouds.

      • “”
        Interannual Rates (Since 2005)
        Over the past 8 years (2005–2012), the median SLS or WLS trend for OHC 0–700 m is 0.21 ± 0.20 W m−2 (Figure 14f). Individually, trends vary from 0.16 W m−2 [Levitus et al., 2012; von Schuckmann and LeTraon, 2011] to 0.39 W m−2 [Domingues et al., 2008], and uncertainties are larger for the shorter periods. In addition, an updated estimate from von Schuckmann and LeTraon [2011] finds a WLS trend of 0.3 ± 0.1 W m−2 for the 10–2000 m layer, based on their Argo analysis for 2005–2012. Although these trends seem to be consistent with those estimated for the multidecadal periods, they are unlikely to represent long-term changes in global upper OHC. Linear trends are particularly sensitive to the periods being analyzed [Lyman, 2012], and over such a short 8 year interval, changes in upper OHC can be strongly influenced by fluctuations in the state of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) [Roemmich and Gilson, 2011] and other short-term variations in the ocean state. Specifically for the ENSO events observed during 2004–2011, the global ocean tends to lose heat at a rate of >1 W m−2 during El Niños, mainly through evaporative cooling [Trenberth et al., 2002], and to gain a similar amount of heat during La Niñas [Roemmich and Gilson, 2011]. These net changes in OHC associated with ENSO are an order of magnitude larger than the multidecadal changes estimated for 1970–2012. They depend on the east-west oscillation of the tropical Pacific thermocline, which adiabatically redistributes heat between the surface (~0–100 m) and subsurface ocean (~100–500 m) and thus allows the near-surface ocean to significantly alter its net heat exchange with the atmosphere depending on the phase of ENSO [Roemmich and Gilson, 2011].

        “”
        http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/rog.20022/full

      • dalyp, sure, the oceans have been warming for a century, and Rob E’s satellite data can explain that to your content in terms of clouds. So easy to please. I won’t get in the way of your fantasy.

      • My fantasy Jim D was that you could or would provide some useful information as to the source of your beliefs. Apparently I just have to take the assertion that the CO2 is warming the deep oceans possibly to the very bottom as a matter of faith.

      • Daly

        ‘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

        Try this one if you haven’t already – latest I know of.

        They have no data – and simply fall back on climate extremist narrative and calling the data they don’t agree with nonsense. Satellite anomalies data is unusable – for instance – because of absolute calibration errors. Convenient that – and so wrong.

        Well done – you last comment was the best of the post.

      • The world has been warming for more than a century – much of it quite natural and about to turn around.

      • dalyp, why don’t you challenge Lewis and Curry on their OHC assumption? You don’t see that the forcing from GHGs is enough to warm the ocean as much as it has, even when numerically it is. What else is there to do? It is surprising what even 1 W/m2 over the whole earth averaged over a century can do to the system’s temperature. Where do those W/m2 come from? Again, ask Lewis and Curry. It’s the change imposed by emissions.

  47. Stacey

    Both ocean and ground temperatures have been increasing for hundreds of years and they have also warmed prior to this era. This concerns warmer oceans in the past;

    “bserved increases in ocean heat content (OHC) and temperature are robust indicators of global warming during the past several decades. We used high-resolution proxy records from sediment cores to extend these observations in the Pacific 10,000 years beyond the instrumental record. We show that water masses linked to North Pacific and Antarctic intermediate waters were warmer by 2.1 ± 0.4°C and 1.5 ± 0.4°C, respectively, during the middle Holocene Thermal Maximum than over the past century. Both water masses were ~0.9°C warmer during the Medieval Warm period than during the Little Ice Age and ~0.65° warmer than in recent decades. Although documented changes in global surface temperatures during the Holocene and Common era are relatively small, the concomitant changes in OHC are large.”

    This concerns rising ground temperatures.

    http://www.earth.lsa.umich.edu/climate/core.html

    I think we need to know WHY ocean and ground temperatures have been warming for hundreds of years and have warmed previously to greater extents than today. This will help to put modern temperatures into their proper context

    tonyb

    • climatereason:“This concerns rising ground temperatures….

      I think we need to know WHY ocean and ground temperatures have been warming for hundreds of years and have warmed previously to greater extents than today. This will help to put modern temperatures into their proper context”

      Fun graph:
      http://www.seafriends.org.nz/issues/global/globaltemp4000yr.gif

      The chart illustrates the point that about every 1000 years it gets warmer for a decreasingly short period of time, then gets cooler again.

      This time we have been warmer for about 130-150 years. I expect we have 50-100 years before it gets really cold again. And it will get much colder than the little ice age, barring interference by man.

      I don’t know why there is a 1000 year oscillation in temperatures. Don’t have theory to cover it. But it is going to get colder – perhaps dangerously cold – perhaps catastrophically cold, unless we take some action to mitigate a potential future disaster. To stop catastrophic natural global cooling (CNGC) we need to pump out all the CO2 we can as a “precaution” to mitigate some of the effects of cold – which are much worse than the effects of warm.

      • Given present evidence, we can’t pump enough to make much difference.
        =============

      • This graph is useful in a cartoon sort of way, though I did note the sudden cool down it showed around 1257, which is of course the point at which on of the largest volcanoes of the past 2000 years went off.

      • Rgates

        No it turns down well after 1300, long after the short lived affects of this volcano have worn off (but that’s only contemporary observations of course which aren’t as good as tree rings,)

        tonyb

      • Hi Tony,

        Yes, I know you hate the idea that a few very large volcanoes played a role in the LIA. Ocean heat content paleodata, which is far more critical and relevant to climate than CET, would tell us that indeed, the mega-volcanoes of 1257 and 1453 played major roles in the LIA. But this is a dead horse for you…so why beat it?

      • Rgates

        We have no evidence from working living peoples accounts that the 1257 volcanos caused a long term problem. If you think tree rings are more reliable you must stick to your beliefs.

        As I have said before, I have no opinion on the 1453 event as I have not studied it.

        Tonyb

      • Gates, volcanoes cause a lot of things. They are as handy for excuses as anthropogenic aerosols. I’m just trying to figure out how volcanoes caused cooling in the LIA but none of the warming now yet were able to devastate the world with all the warming they caused earlier while having no effect on life from their cooling. So how do you explain what seems a lack of consistency of argument?

      • Steven,

        I had a bit of a hard time figuring out exactly your point. We had the two largest volcanoes of the past 2000 years in 1257 and 1453. Ocean heat content plummeted and we were in the LIA. Effects of large mega volcanoes stay with the climate system for a long time through sea ice feedbacks and ocean thermal inertia.

      • Gates, you shouldn’t have had a hard time since I have posed this question to you before. If warming from volcanoes caused mass extinctions previously, why is the only noticable effect from recent volcanoes cooling? Have they adapted?

      • Steven,

        You seem to be referring to the period of massive volcanism which elevated CO2 levels in Earth’s past. The Siberian traps were a likely source for this. This type of volcanism has a net warming effect over the long run because of the amount and height of sulfate ejection into the atmosphere versus the amount of CO2, which lasts far longer in the atmosphere. Suggest you read about the volcanism of the traps versus the type we saw from the 1257 and 1453, which eject lots of sulfate high in the atmosphere.

      • The siberian traps were the equivalent of one large volcanic eruption every year for a million years. You contend that a couple of large eruptions can put us in a LIA but that sort of eruption pattern causes warming because of the CO2 released? Since you have done the research why don’t you link me the paper explaining how much different those volcanoes were.

      • I think we should use strategically placed explosives to trigger the methane bomb.

        After people see the small, temporary response to 6x methane levels, that it rains out quickly and becomes fertilizer, people will be all on board with increasing CO2 concentrations.

  48. “uncertainty in itself is not a reason for inaction”. No, but in the UK it has played no role. Rather it has been assumed that dangerous global warming is certain and imminent. The resulitng panic renewable policy has not worked but has proved very expensive. Kick away the prop of approaching disaster (the “pause”) and it comes to look not only very expensive but very stupid. That is why amongst the policy elites a retreat is now underway.

  49. Paleo climate sensitivity is conceptually simple.

    dF = d(GHG) + d(albedo) + d(aerosols)

    Greenhouse gases and aerosols are determined from ice cores. Albedo from modeling.

    ‘Unfortunately, we have no direct information concerning the past global surface albedo from the ice core data. Consequently, we have to rely on past modeling results. The radiative forcing due to the surface albedo changes (extent of ice sheets, sea ice and snow cover, exposure of a new land in a low sea level state, change in surface characteristics and vegetation cover) has been estimated by several authors to be between 3 and 4 W/m2 with most results clustering around 3.5 W/m2 [Hewitt and
    Mitchell, 1997].’ http://www.iac.ethz.ch/doc/publications/Chylek-Lohmann-GRL2008.pdf

    https://watertechbyrie.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/chylek-table-1.png

    Aerosol forcing is treated as an unknown in 2 equations.

    The problem is in both the ice core data and the modeling. If CO2 changes are underestimated then the sensitivity is much less.

    https://watertechbyrie.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/steinthorsdottir-fig-9.png

    The increase in temperature from 1944 to 1998 is 0.4 degrees C. If we assume 50% of that was anthropogenic we get a TCR of 0.9 degree C.

    !944 and 1998 are of course chosen on the basis of climate shifts – involving changes in the trajectory of surface temperature.

    Anastasios Tsonis, of the Atmospheric Sciences Group at University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, and colleagues used a mathematical network approach to analyse abrupt climate change on decadal timescales. Ocean and atmospheric indices – in this case the El Niño Southern Oscillation, the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, the North Atlantic Oscillation and the North Pacific Oscillation – can be thought of as chaotic oscillators that capture the major modes of climate variability. Tsonis and colleagues calculated the ‘distance’ between the indices. It was found that they would synchronise at certain times and then shift into a new state.

    It is no coincidence that shifts in ocean and atmospheric indices occur at the same time as changes in the trajectory of global surface temperature. Our ‘interest is to understand – first the natural variability of climate – and then take it from there. So we were very excited when we realized a lot of changes in the past century from warmer to cooler and then back to warmer were all natural,’ Tsonis said.

    This suggests a whole new definition of climate sensitivity.

    https://watertechbyrie.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/unstable-ebm-fig-2-jpg1.jpg

    Michael Ghil’s model has two stable states with two points of abrupt climate change – the latter at the transitions from the blue lines to the red from above and below. The two axes are normalized solar energy inputs μ (insolation) to the climate system and a global mean temperature. The current day energy input is μ = 1 with a global mean temperature of 287.7 degrees Kelvin. This is a relatively balmy 58.2 degrees Fahrenheit.

    The 1-D climate model uses physically based equations to determine changes in the climate system as a result of changes in solar intensity, ice reflectance and greenhouse gas changes. With a small decrease in radiation from the Sun – or an increase in ice cover – the system becomes unstable with runaway ice feedbacks. Runaway ice feedbacks drive the transitions between glacial and interglacial states seen repeatedly over the past 2.58 million years. These are warm interludes – such as the present time – of relatively short duration and longer duration

    The model shows that climate sensitivity (γ) is variable. It is the change in temperature (ΔT) divided by the change in the control variable (Δμ) – the tangent to the curve as shown above. Sensitivity increases moving down the upper curve to the left towards the bifurcation and becomes arbitrarily large at the instability. The problem in a chaotic climate then becomes not one of quantifying climate sensitivity in a smoothly evolving climate but of predicting the onset of abrupt climate shifts and their implications for climate and society. The problem of abrupt climate change on multi-decadal scales is of the most immediate significance.

    • When it comes to CO2, it may well increase the probability of such shifts. It may increase the probability that such shifts will be more extreme than otherwise. But such shifts have happened before and will almost certainly happen again. Thus, with or without CO2 concerns, the focus should be on adaptive resilience to them when they happen.

      Of course, that doesn’t eliminate the importance of fossil carbon being dumped into the system. Part of it accumulates in the atmosphere, with unknown influences on the climate, as well as existing ecosystems and opportunistic species, including weeds, destructive insects, and other threats to human crops.

      We don’t even know where all the rest is even going, much less how much damage (if any) it’s doing along the way. Most of the threats from dumping fossil carbon into the system are probably like those to the climate: increasing the risk of a sudden, unexpected change too rapid for easy adaptation.

      Given that the magnitude, and nature, of those threats is unknown, it would be f00lish to pick a “cure” that’s orders of magnitude worse than the “disease”: any major reconstruction of the world’s socioeconomic system presents far worse risks of destabilization than any plausible outcome of fossil carbon.

      The best options, then, are minor “tweaks” to the system that incent effective technological solutions within the current framework of corporate, “free”-market capitalism. There will be winners and losers, it’s incumbent on those trying to deal with the problem politically to structure their policy solutions such that the winners are corporate and individual investors who focus on real-world research and development.

      While those who focus on crony-“capitalism” and manipulating the bureaucracy need to become losers.

      • AK, it is just as likely to reduce these shifts. More so, it is likely to do both increase and decrease shifts on varying timescales. Even more likely, it doesn’t make much difference.

        As for biology, that is a constant battle. We happen to be doing well at the moment. No matter the biological response to CO2, there is a big war and tech is our best chance at not losing.

    • Rob, +1000

  50. “dubious paleo estimates” – Dr. Curry throws this kind of comment in every so often, but I don’t really know what she is saying about them. Does she have posts on this? What are the paleo estimates that we are referring to, and are they dubious, and why?

    • My guess is poor resolution and sketchy knowledge of the forcings.
      ==========

    • miker, Quality of paleo reconstructions is a major issue, remember Mann et al? James Annan and Jules Hargreaves have several papers on paleo sensitivity and have noted that the reconstructions that “aren’t reliable” as in not approved by the team, tend to work better than the manipulated reconstructions. They came up with about a 4C maximum paleo “sensitivity” and are still involved in improving paleo modeling.

      • “So when JimD or R. Gates start waxing all prophetic about CO2 forcing millions and millions of years ago, they are either ignoring the science or attempting to blow smoke up something.”
        ——
        No Capt., I simply read the latest research, which increasingly confirms the strong role of CO2 as a control knob for the climate, and the unparalleled ( at least for some 55 million years) spike in GHG’s that the HCV has caused.

      • I simply read the latest research, which increasingly confirms the strong role of CO2 as a control knob for the climate, and the unparalleled ( at least for some 55 million years) spike in GHG’s that the HCV has caused.

        Confirmation bias?

      • R Gates, “No Capt., I simply read the latest research, which increasingly confirms the strong role of CO2 as a control knob for the climate, and the unparalleled ( at least for some 55 million years) spike in GHG’s that the HCV has caused.”

        None of the research indicates that CO2 was THE control knob, in general CO2 is credited with less than 50% of the climate control and since CO2 tends to follow temperature not lead, it should be considered more of a regulator than a control knob. Compared to the impact of the Drake Passage and Panama closure, CO2 may not even be in the same league as ocean heat transport. CO2 does have an impact and humans are contributing to CO2, but beyond the original no feedback sensitivity, it is all supposition.

        https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-jjod0aCb_zw/VEG9afL66AI/AAAAAAAALm8/PEjIzbaVRDU/w602-h408-no/global%2Bwarming.png

        I have shown that a few times. Other than the northern 25% of the global, “Global” sensitivity is very close to the no feedback estimate. It is getting pretty obvious that “other” than CO2 is a major factor in the region with the greatest warming.

      • captd, your argument seems to be that because Arctic amplification exists, global warming doesn’t matter.

    • Well, to start with, any hyper-complex non-linear system is going to be highly sensitive to all boundary conditions, not just initial conditions. For example, the closing of the Panama Strait:

      The closure of the CAS changed the boundary conditions of the oceans and created a new state of the oceanic and atmospheric system. The Isthmus blocked the exchange of tropical water masses between the Atlantic and Pacific. The closure of the circumtropical seaways is assumed to have triggered and/or strengthened the North Atlantic Deep Water production, initiated the Caribbean Current, strengthened the Gulf Stream, and, therefore, changed the global distribution of deep-water masses, heat and salinity (Haug & Tiedemann1998). The intensification of the circulation caused the build-up of sediment drifts in the Caribbean (Anselmetti et al.2000) and later in the North Atlantic (Wold 1994)

      Similar, less noticeable, events have probably occurred within the last million years or so, meaning that any estimates of “sensitivity” from before that time are highly questionable.

      And, given the ability of even tiny changes to have impacts out of proportion to their size, the same could be said about even the last few thousand years.

      • AK, the Panama Closure and Drake Passage opening both had large impacts on climate. Drake Passage opening resulted in a about a 3C global cooling with the SH cooling while the NH warmed resulting in the NH oceans being about 3 C warmer than the SH oceans, based ot Toggweiler et al. with the GFLD.

        So when JimD or R. Gates start waxing all prophetic about CO2 forcing millions and millions of years ago, they are either ignoring the science or attempting to blow smoke up something.

      • So when JimD or R. Gates start waxing all prophetic about CO2 forcing millions and millions of years ago, they are either ignoring the science or attempting to blow smoke up something.

        That was sort of my point.

        Not to mention the evolution of tropical C4 savanna grasses during this time. IMO most of the major clades already existed as forest floor small-niche species, but they expanded into the sunlight, and probably drove the reduction in pCO2 to present levels. How these eco-system evolutionary developments interacted with changes to continent structures and circulation patterns: who knows?

      • AK with the NH and most of the land mass warming by about 3 C, plant growth in general would have had a massive impact. Since the longest term ice cores are in the Antarctic, I doubt that they are all that great as “global” thermometers.

        Another thing not often discussed are ice dam cycles. There is evidence of a rough 60 year cycle in the Pacific Northwest, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Missoula_Floods that would have a large impact on the regional climate plus beaver over harvesting had to have had a large impact in wilderness areas all across their range.

      • […] plus beaver over harvesting had to have had a large impact in wilderness areas all across their range.

        This sort of anthropogenic influence tends to get short shrift in modern CO2 discussions. I often mention whales, specifically baleen whales, whose feeding patterns almost certainly affect the species mix in oceanic plankton differently from a more short-stepped pyramid of productivity. And most species of which are either extinct, or threatened with extinction, a process that occurred during the early Industrial Revolution.

    • Some skeptics think it is just coincidence that the high CO2 periods in paleoclimate were iceless hothouses, like the Eocene and whole of the Mesozoic era. Not only that, but the amount of CO2 we may have by 2100 is comparable with those periods. I have never understood that groupthink dismissal by skeptics as anything but just as those particular facts being inconvenient to their viewpoint.
      http://www.skepticalscience.com//pics/PastfutureCO2figure2.jpg

      • JimD, ” I have never understood that group think dismissal by skeptics as anything but just as those particular facts being inconvenient to their viewpoint.”

        I don’t think skeptics are as much into group think as they are into reality. Since we were discussing the changes related to the Panama closure and the Drake Passage opening, periods prior to those events would not have the same sensitivity to any forcing. That is due to change in the ocean circulations that increase the rate of heat loss with increase pole ward flow. It is pretty simple, the poles are the heat sinks. The more energy transferred to the heat sink the more energy sunk.

        Here is a link yet again to the relative importance of merdional and zonal temperature gradients. http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/1324186/

        Not put your thinking cap on.

      • Some skeptics think it is just coincidence that the high CO2 periods in paleoclimate were iceless hothouses, like the Eocene and whole of the Mesozoic era.

        It’s important to remember that the assumption of a “greenhouse effect” was built into these paleoclimate models. Thus the whole paleo thing is begging the question.

      • For example, The impact of Miocene atmospheric carbon dioxide fluctuations on climate and the evolution of terrestrial ecosystems by Wolfram M. Kurschner, Zlatko Kvacek, and David L. Dilcher, PNAS January 15, 2008 vol. 105 no. 2 449–453:

        In addition to geochemical CO2 proxies, stomatal frequency analysis on fossil leaf remains represents a terrestrial proxy for CO2 that is based on the inverse relationship between atmospheric CO2 and stomatal frequency (22). In the present study, stomatal frequency is expressed as the stomatal index (SI), which is calculated as SI (%) = [SD/(SD + ED)] X 100, where SD is the stomatal density and ED is the epidermal cell density. Because SI normalizes for leaf expansion, it is largely independent of plant water stress and is primarily a function of CO2 (22, 23). Calculation of SI provides a robust method for estimating CO2 levels on short (24) and geologically long time scales (25, 26). Because the stomatal frequency response to CO2 is species-specific, quantitative estimates of CO2 are limited to extant species. Here we present a CO2 reconstruction based on a multiple-species stomatal frequency record from leaf remains of two extant lineages of laurel species (the Laurus abchasica and Laurus nobilis lineage and the Ocotea hradekensis and Ocotea foetens lineage), maidenhair tree (Ginkgo biloba), and an extinct laurel species (Laurophyllum pseudoprinceps). For each extant species, the stomatal frequency response has been independently calibrated based on historical sets of herbarium leaf material, using standard protocols (27). [my bold]

        The assumption that a “species” from millions of years ago has the same “stomatal frequency response to CO2” as a modern one that looks like it is totally unwarranted. They assume this because it’s consistent with what they’re trying to prove:

        Our data show striking CO2 fluctuations of ~600–300 parts per million by volume (ppmv). Periods of low CO2 are contemporaneous with major glaciations, whereas elevated CO2 of 500 ppmv coincides with the climatic optimum in the Miocene. Our data point to a long-term coupling between atmospheric CO2 and climate.

        Begging the question.

      • captd, there was a lot more continental drift than your Drake Passage issue in the last billion years, and a lot of the CO2 change was related to volcanic periods (addition) and mountain building (depletion) due to that, but in the end the correlation is with CO2 not continental configurations.

      • AK, “begging the question”? That’s like say things fall and Newton’s theory expains it, but his theory is just based on things falling, so it is begging the question.

      • JimD, of course there is.

        http://www.whoi.edu/oceanus/feature/how-the-isthmus-of-panama-put-ice-in-the-arctic

        Paleo provides examples of major impacts. You have to consider those to estimate partial impacts like variations in sea ice, fast ice and average surface wind velocities.

      • captd, you can have the ocean water flowing around in all kinds of ways, it doesn’t change the mean surface temperature, only redistributes it. Glaciation has not occurred with CO2 levels much above 500 ppm at any time since the Permian. It is a major barrier to it for obvious reasons.

      • JimD, “captd, you can have the ocean water flowing around in all kinds of ways, it doesn’t change the mean surface temperature, only redistributes it.”

        right, and if you remove the water from your radiator the car will run just fine.

        http://www.ewp.rpi.edu/hartford/~ernesto/F2011/EP/MaterialsforStudents/Chan/Bartlett1996.pdf

        Back to basics Jimmy D.

      • captd, you can have the ocean water flowing around in all kinds of ways, it doesn’t change the mean surface temperature, only redistributes it.

        What an uninformed statement!

      • I think it’s back to basics. Greenhouse gases warm the climate. Doubling or tripling CO2 has a major effect in paleoclimate, like that or not. Just because you are willing that to be wrong, it won’t be.

      • JimD, “. Just because you are willing that to be wrong, it won’t be.”

        Willing to be wrong is about the same as willing to try and learn. A doubling of CO2 “all things remaining equal” will produce about 3.7 Wm-2 of additional resistance to heat loss or about 1C of temperature increase IF the average global temperature responding to that 3.7 Wm-2 is 15 C degrees. All things remaining equal means just that, no cloud response, no increase in latent, convective or advective cooling. That is what you got Jimmy D.

        Since the initial condition, “pre-industrial” was likely 1 C cooler than “normal” initially and closer to 2 C cooler above 30N (all that ice doncha know)” you have an initial inequality, below normal conditions.

        https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-4rh-741loSo/VEKphwNa1_I/AAAAAAAALnQ/TokMZox6eRo/w640-h434-no/global%2Bwarming%2Bthe%2Bnorth%2Bcountry.png

        A little BEST action to look further back. Notice how SST and BEST wander off in different directions around 1900. Now did Mosh and Muller screw up or is there something else involved?

      • Greenhouse gases warm the climate. Doubling or tripling CO2 has a major effect in paleoclimate, like that or not. Just because you are willing that to be wrong, it won’t be.

        Argument by assertion. That’s just your opinion. The “facts” aren’t in yet.

      • Dang it! I got all parenthetical and mentioned Mosh in the same comment. That is gonna leave a mark :)

      • Oh and JimmyD, Jimmy d Hansen revised that iconic 15 C which was part of that 33C discrepancy to “about 14 C”, so even the grandest of climate poohbahs didn’t initially consider the LIA. Imagine that?

    • Really, it’s because the paleoclimate data is pointing to the 3C per doubling of CO2 as being a pretty good number. We are getting a new wealth of data from the mid- Pliocene, and perhaps Judith is not completely up on the multiple proxy data pointing more consistently at 3C remaining quite a good estimate for CO2 at 560 ppm.

    • Trying to sort through the various answers here. From all your comments, I would say it does sound dubious.
      Even in the last century, where we have a fair amount of measurements – whoa! We only just discovered to our great chagrin that we should been measuring deep ocean temperatures for the last century so we missed a essential component of the picture.
      I have enough experience with bogus medical studies that confuse correlation with causation to be concerned. But again, that’s just based on the few comments here; maybe they really did a better job. But, maybe we should stick to studies on the part of the timeline where we have more complete data.

  51. Peter Hartley

    Judith — welcome back and congratulations on your op-Ed. If the above are the “best” counter-arguments of your critics their case is weak indeed.

    I have one minor comment on the potential policy implications of a lower climate sensitivity to CO2. You say

    “Well slower values of warming make it easier to adapt, and provide time to develop new technology.”

    More than that, if the CO2 component of climate change is smaller the natural component becomes relatively more important. This raises the value of adaptation policies relative to controlling CO2 emissions. At best, the latter will do something about just one (small it seems) part of climate change while the former will defend against significant weather shocks no matter what the cause of the change in distribution of weather patterns. As estimates of sensitivity to CO2 decline, reducing CO2 emissions at great expense and to little effect (especially when the Chinas and Indias of the world cannot be dragooned into forgoing their right to develop)

  52. Pingback: Same ol’ same ol’ | …and Then There's Physics

  53. Judth,
    As the ” hiatus” seems to be a central point in your idea that climate sentivity might be lower than certain models indicate, I am wondering about your thoughts on what this warm non-El Nino year means. Other past record warm years (1998, 2010) have all been El Niño years, where lots of latent and sensible heat poured from ocean to atmosphere and spiked tropospheric trmperatures, 2014 might very likely break those records without the El Niño kicker. Furthermore, 2014 could become the warmest single year out of the warmest decade on record. Given that the oceans drive the atmosphere and the oceans are running at record OHC levels, this is not surprising. There was no “hiatus” in net energy accumlumulation in the climate system. A record warm 2014 without an El Niño kicker and record warm oceans should be factored into discussions and estimates of climate sensitivity to the rapidly increasing GHG’s.

    • Yes, her bottom line, summing up her view, in the WSJ piece was exactly that.
      “This slower rate of warming—relative to climate model projections—means there is less urgency to phase out greenhouse gas emissions now”
      It doubles down on the pause in no uncertain terms.

      • JimD, “This slower rate of warming—relative to climate model projections—means there is less urgency to phase out greenhouse gas emissions now”

        Exactly, but compared to what sense of urgency? 350.org exploding heads need to get ‘er done yesterday? Grogg Laden screw the economy full speed ahead? When someone makes a rational statement “alarmists” tend to twist it into something else, isn’t that right Jimmy D?

        Most likely there is a 50 to 100 year time line regardless of green fantasies. Some things can be done now, particulates and black carbon, some things require technological advances and green flexibility. So far the push for now has backfired pure and simple.

      • Right CD. And everyone knows we are running out of fossil fuels anyway. What’s the problem?

      • C’mon Capt. The “hiatus” has been a big part the justification to ratchet down sentivity estimates, supposedly buying us time. If the trend line in rising temps reverts back to the mean, as it has in 2014 without an El Niño kicker, or even shows an upward polynomial growth curve the next ten years, then the extra time we thought we had becomes time we should have doubled down on decarbonization of the energy system.

      • Based on the last 30-40 years, the rise rate is 0.5 C per 30 years (pause and all). This alone gets it well above 2 C by 2100 (given we already had 0.8 C by 2000). If the 30-year rate continues to be 0.5 C per 30 years, is Judith going to kick into something-must-be-done mode or find some other metric to cling to for not doing anything just yet?

      • R. Gates | October 19, 2014 at 12:22 pm |
        “… the extra time we thought we had becomes time we should have doubled down on decarbonization of the energy system.”

        Before destroying the world economy by “decarbonization,” it would be prudent to demonstrate (with some data) that anthropogenic “carbon” is indeed causing harmful “global warming.” Hand waving, pencil whipping, rationalization, argumentation, and calculations are not an adequate substitute for data, which seems to be missing or hidden in places we can’t see it. There is no other field of science where this would be tolerated.

      • Actually it doesn’t do much to global GDP, but that is a common problem with skeptical thinking that seems to have ingrained itself and disables their ability to think clearly about possible paths forward.

      • Actually it doesn’t do much to global GDP, […]

        According to the tendentious models you prefer.

      • Like climate models (even GCM’s), economic models leave out a host of “feedbacks”. Great for post facto analysis. Horrible for policy.

      • They leave out the beneficial feedbacks of a stabilized climate.

      • Jim D | October 19, 2014 at 2:12 pm |
        “Actually it doesn’t do much to global GDP, but that is a common problem with skeptical thinking that seems to have ingrained itself and disables their ability to think clearly about possible paths forward.”

        Thank you for putting an exclamation point on my statement that “Hand waving, pencil whipping, rationalization, argumentation, and calculations are not an adequate substitute for data, which seems to be missing.” If the data existed Jim D or another commenter would share it with us rather than change the subject.

    • From a scientic standpoint, as opposed to political purpose, the best result of the “hiatus” might be to begin to account for the full flow of energy in the climate system as climate sensitivity is being evaluated, versus simply looking myopically at sensible tropospheric heat. Deep ARGO will also help in this effort. The hiatus is a flee that has ridden on the tale of the ocean, but certain people have chosen that flee to be a good proxy for full climate sentivity. Amazing.

    • R.Gates, So you want to fund many more Solandras and have more of the filthy rich driving Telsa while passing out more CFLBs? If there was a “consensus” to have China turn on their scrubbers the Asian brown cloud would be halved almost over night. China believes the warm and fuzzy greenies will pay them tribute to get them to stop. That is why they are building the crap out of coal and stock piling other people’s fossil fuels. China don’t play warm and fuzzy. Even Germany is going coal because of the fear of nuclear.

      If the alarmists had ever come up with a workable game plan other than tax it to death, there would be no skeptics. Since the Alarmists have proven they can’t lead, the next stage is to get out of the way.

      • I don’t recall talking about funding anybody. There are smart ways and dumb ways to turn off or at least turn down the HCV. Lining the pockets of Washington’s corporate masters would be a dumb way.

      • R. Gates, “Lining the pockets of Washington’s corporate masters would be a dumb way.”

        Of course it is the dumb way and lining the pockets of the “Global” corporate (re: nationalized) pockets is even dumber. That is what has happened under the “green” watch, can I get a kumbaya?

      • The global corporate masters and the Washington corporate masters are one and the same. There are few meaningful political boundaries. Only markets and politicians to buy.

      • R. Gates, “Only markets and politicians to buy.”

        but of course, where do you think you are, climate fairy tale land?

        So the Greenies are obviously the wrong people to even consider for getting anything done cost effectively.

      • I don’t think one’s position on renewable energy has any bearing on their business acumen. Successful “green” capitalism is blossoming worldwide.

      • Successful “green” capitalism is blossoming worldwide.

        Mostly hothouse weeds fertilized by tax-supported subsidies.

        But there is, IMO, a small contingent of properly competitive endeavors, just as there was during the Internet craze of the ’90’s.

    • Steven Mosher

      “As the ” hiatus” seems to be a central point in your idea that climate sentivity might be lower than certain models indicate, I am wondering about your thoughts on what this warm non-El Nino year means.

      Err no.
      The idea that sensitivity might be less than the models is driven by
      these things.

      1. The models have over estimated the warming. That needs explaining.
      A lower sensitivity is a possible explanation.
      2. Her and Nics paper suggests it is lower.

      This warm el nino is consistent with a lower sensitivity. Absolutely consistent with it.

      • This warm el nino is consistent with a lower sensitivity. Absolutely consistent with it.

        Everybody needs to keep in mind that the observational evidence being “consistent with a lower sensitivity” doesn’t prove it. In fact, the observational evidence being “consistent with” anything doesn’t prove it. It just shows that it doesn’t disprove it.

      • “The models have over estimated the warming” or have they?
        http://www.climatechange2013.org/images/figures/WGI_AR5_FigBoxTS.3-1.jpg

      • “This warm el nino is consistent with a lower sensitivity”?
        How about a warm year with a non El Nino?

      • “The models have over estimated the warming” or have they?

        Yes of course they have:

        http://climatewatcher.webs.com/SatelliteEraTemperatures.png

        IPCC4:
        “A temperature rise of about 0.2 °C per decade is projected for the next two decades for all SRES scenarios.”

        “Best estimate for a ‘low scenario’ is 1.8 °C” ( per century )

        Observed range is from UAHMT 0.5C to GISST 1.6C all less than the ‘low scenario’.

      • “This warm el nino is consistent with a lower sensitivity.”
        —-
        Except we are not in an El Niño and the past two record warm years of 1998 and 2010 were and that is what kicked those years to record highs. What we are seeing is all that record OHC affecting tropospheric temps in a non-El Nino year. The heat that was going to be harmlessly diffused throughout the ocean…yeah, not so much.

      • Lucifer, the graphs I showed were AR5 and more up to date. I think you showed some model runs from the 80’s that the skeptics are still complaining about after all these decades. They need to catch up a bit. Or if you insist on using 1980’s predictions try this one from 1981.
        http://www.skepticalscience.com/pics/Hansen81ModelvsObs.jpg

      • Steven, what about the fact that model runs that are consistent with the ENSO cycle do have skill in modeling global temperatures? They only run hot when that natural variation is not taken into account.

      • Joseph, “Steven, what about the fact that model runs that are consistent with the ENSO cycle do have skill in modeling global temperatures?”

        Which models would those be? I mean before hand, some have “reanalyzed” things to near perfection, after the fact of course.

      • Joseph, the first was discussed on Climate Etc. By adjusting the ENSO region temperatures to actual values, they were able to model the pause. The problem with the models prior to the pause is that they didn’t “project” actual absolute surface temperatures very well, +/- about 3 degrees which is way off considering latent heat is critical. The second link I haven’t seen yet, but it is also post dicting. Only time will tell if they are on the right track. WHOI also have a model that “projects” a centennial scale Pacific oscillation pretty much what we are seeing, but also showed up a bit late to the party.

        Since there aren’t any models that predicted the pause, that is a pretty clear indication that there is something wrong in the models which adjusting surface temperatures after the fact isn’t likely to fix. As it is, they all run hot which is still useful, climate is likely less sensitive to CO2 forcing that previously thought. When compared to the energy balance sensitivity estimates, the model ensemble could be an upper bound,not a bad thing to have handy. It would change the policy priorities I would think which is the main issue.

      • Jim D

        I agree that the IPCC5 lowered the ‘estimates’ of earlier failed work to include the low end warming observed.

  54. I am looking forward to the blizzard of scientific papers from Curry’s critics articulating the meteorology that supports their opinions described above. Perhaps we will learn more about the neglected natural variations in our climate. Will they cool down the models? I am not holding my breath!

  55. ‘So the piece repeats the same tired claims about lowered sensitivity, using the “pause” meme’.

    “Pause meme”. May damnation rain down on those who abuse language. Meme my hat.

    • The “hiatus” is a real tropospheric event, with temperatures flattening at the the warmest 10 years on instrument record, with the last year of that ten year period (2014) potentially being the warmest of all and potentially the warmest on record. The meme becomes the political interpretation of what these facts mean in terms of policy. Judith’s interpretation made Owner Murdock and the WSJ editors very happy. They have a lot riding on keeping the HCV running full tilt for a long long time.

      • “Judith’s interpretation made Owner Murdock and the WSJ editors very happy. They have a lot riding on keeping the HCV running full tilt for a long long time.”

        Gates, I used to respect you. I can no longer recall why.

      • What instrumental record are you referring to Gates? If you mean the surface thermometers, none of them are in the troposphere. Nor do any of them record the global temperature. Your so-called “record” is actually the output from some really strange area averaged statistical models operating on questionable data.

        On the other hand the satellites really do measure the troposphere and they show no significant warming 1978-1997 nor 2001-today, just a small step warming in between these two flat periods and that is coincident with a big ocean event. In short they show no GHG warming whatever for the last 36 years.

        Your so-called instrumental warming record is the real myth here.

      • “In short they show no GHG warming whatever for the last 36 years.”
        ——
        It is comments like these that remind me why ignorance is enemy of intelligent dialog.

      • What ignorance are you referring to Gates? It sounds like yours. I am merely pointing out the structure of the UAH temperature record. Unless you can point to a capacitor like mechanism that stored GHG induced increased heat from 1978 until 1997, then suddenly released it during the big ENSO cycle, then started storing it again, there is literally no evidence of GHG warming in the entire UAH record. None. Is this what you call ignorance, your having no explanation?

      • “Unless you can point to a capacitor like mechanism that stored GHG induced increased heat from 1978 until 1997, then suddenly released it during the big ENSO cycle, then started storing it again…”
        —–
        You may want to take a very long look at the dynamics of ocean heat storage as well as the role of latent and sensible heat flux from ocean to atmosphere in supporting sensible tropospheric heat. The ocean is precisely a large heat capacitor, and the failure of some to ignore the central role of the ocean in Earth’s climate is the cause of much frustration in trying to have a conversation with the ignorant.

      • R. Gates – I think you have a problem. You have yet to explain the operation of the “capacitor analogy”, yet you present it as implied fact. Specifically, the question is – what triggered the capacitor discharge and why. Nor does the Global SST data support the analogy in the first place – there is no capacitor-like energy build-up, but rather a spike (a discontinuity).

        http://woodfortrees.org/plot/hadsst3gl/from:1970

        Discontinuities are always problematic in science – and engineering. So are explanations that fail to adhere to known physical laws.

        I will agree that the role of the oceans has been neglected in the past, but then so has the role of the Sun. Which form of neglect is more egregious?

      • “Judith’s interpretation made Owner Murdock and the WSJ editors very happy. They have a lot riding on keeping the HCV running full tilt for a long long time.”

        In the past I have confused you as being reasonably intelligent but somewhat confused but that will not happen in the future.

      • Pierre-Normand

        “R. Gates – I think you have a problem. You have yet to explain the operation of the “capacitor analogy”, yet you present it as implied fact.”

        That’s really quite simple. The Indo-Pacific Warm Pool (IPWP) can either warm up and deepen during the negative phase of the ENSO cycle, or bounce back and spread out to a vast area of the tropical Pacific (Google up “Kelvin wave”) during an El Nino episode, thus releasing much of the accumulated heat to the atmosphere in a relatively short period. There always is a flow of heat from ocean to atmosphere but the rate is much more variable than the rate of accumulation of solar energy. Hence the IPWP acts effectively as a heat accumulator. Other modes of internal variability of ocean atmosphere interaction in other (or larger) areas and longer time-scales may satisfy roughly such a description. Ask Judith about this metaphor and the Stadium Wave.

      • “R. Gates – I think you have a problem. You have yet to explain the operation of the “capacitor analogy”, yet you present it as implied fact.”
        _____
        While uncertainties abound about the exact amounts of energy being stored or discharged from the ocean (especially below 2000m), the dynamical mechanisms involved in storing and releasing energy from the ocean (i.e. the capacitor effect) is less of a mystery. The ENSO cycle in particular is a good example of charge/discharge of energy from the ocean, and this is related to wind, thermocline tilt, upwelling and downwelling. During classic El Nino’s, more net sensible and latent heat comes from the Pacific ocean, and this could be considered as the “discharge cycle”. During La Nina’s, the opposite is true, and the ocean gains net energy. Right now, with the increasing forcing from GH gases, over multi-decadal periods, while the ENSO cycle still exists, it is a “charge/discharge” cycle running on top of a longer-term rising OHC.

      • Pierre Normand,

        Excellent description. Few here realize that the IPWP has been gaining energy and expanding for the past 60+ years, or that what is considered as anomalous warmth in the Pacific used to define the comings and goings of El Nino’s has been constantly revised upwards over the past several decades to account for the continuously warming ocean. See:

        http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/analysis_monitoring/ensostuff/ONI_change.shtml

      • El Nino peaked in the 20th century in a 1000 year high.

        More salt is La Nina in a high resolution Law Dome ice core proxy.

        https://watertechbyrie.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/vance2012-antartica-law-dome-ice-core-salt-content.png

    • Me too, Jeremy. The “pause meme,” as if the now 18 year hiatus is no more than some urban legend.

      Meme this, all you warmist memesters.

  56. Lewandowsky has a very interesting political position which he doesn´t show in certain venues. For example here´s a quote from his breathless description of Naomi Klein, the ubercommunist speaking at Oxford:

    “Opposition to neoliberalism, and its ultimate demise, may therefore be the only way in which climate mitigation can be achieved. On that view, any action that nibbles away at the prevailing neoliberal paradigm and its underlying fundamentalist view of free markets may indeed be considered climate activism.”

    http://www.shapingtomorrowsworld.org/lewandowskyKlein.html

    I have seen enough of Naomi Klein to realize she´s a carefully painted over communist, and it seems to me Lewandowsky is using the climate issue as a political weapon or trojan horse. They seem to cover their tracks very carefully when they publish in Scientific American and similar publications, but their political slant really shows up when they write elsewhere.

    I couldn´t care less if a scientist was a devoted Marxist if the issue didn´t get involved in his or hers “scientific position”, but this is clearly what seems to happen with many of these individuals, their objective seems to be mostly to upset the apple cart using the climate as a weapon. Which seems to be quite foolish, all it does is generate political opposition and it definitely doesn´t get them additional political support.

    When they stray so far from the fundamental scientific/technical/economic issues (such as the fact that renewables aren´t cost effective and most countries can´t afford extensive deployment), they get completely out of their safe environment, which means their “solutions” become utter nonsense.

    • “I have seen enough of Naomi Klein to realize she´s a carefully painted over communist…:

      This is the woman who asserts that open-mindedness is the wrong approach to global warming…a disgraceful position for an academic and purported intellectual.

      I’d have scoffed at the communist thing a few years ago, but I no longer have any doubt that for a fair enough sized minority, global warming is their best opportunity to do away with capitalism.

      • Sure you’re not confusing her with Naomi Oreskes

      • Sorry, AK, yes, Naomi Oreskes. My bad. No wonder I couldn’t find the link I was looking for…

      • Let’s just find some Naomi or another we can vent our faux-skeptical diatribes on, eh?

      • There are people from every political persuasion who use an issue to advance political goals. And that doesn’t mean they are necessarily wrong about the issue.

      • ‘In her most provocative book yet, Naomi Klein tackles the most profound threat humanity has ever faced: the war our economic model is waging against life on earth.’

        It is more than apparent that the rhetoric – superficially in the objective idiom of science – is a facade for a fringe extremist agenda.

      • How about Naomi campbell?

        Tonyb

      • Klein and Oreskes are clearly both Marxist stooges. But AFAIK Klein isn’t claiming to be a “scientist”

      • RE: Joseph’s “There are people from every political persuasion who use an issue to advance political goals. And that doesn’t mean they are necessarily wrong about the issue.”

        Finally something we can agree on 100%.

        FYI – Neither of the Naomi’s are likely to be “right” with regard to the topic of climate.

    • ‘Forget everything you think you know about global warming. The really inconvenient truth is that it’s not about carbon—it’s about capitalism. The convenient truth is that we can seize this existential crisis to transform our failed economic system and build something radically better. 

In her most provocative book yet, Naomi Klein tackles the most profound threat humanity has ever faced: the war our economic model is waging against life on earth.’

  57. The mystical powers of the one element, CO2, and the force this one idea has on the scientifically week minds of global warming alarmists, really does make this one element, the One.

    Let Us Pray…

  58. Pingback: Judith Curry’s WSJ Op-Ed | Transterrestrial Musings

  59. Judith,

    In response to my critique at CCNF (http://climatechangenationalforum.org/uncertainty-doesnt-imply-nothing-is-known-or-nothing-should-be-done/ ) you write:
    “My seeming contradictory stance on the uncertainty issue is a valid point to raise.”

    Could you expand on that? How do you reconcile very large uncertainty re climate science in general with apparently very limited uncertainty re ECS and impacts (you seem very sure both are small)?

    Furthermore, I wrote:

    “The paleo-estimates are interesting in the sense that from a variety of time periods and from a variety of studies and methods, ECS appears to be in the range between 2 and 4 degrees C. It thus seems that when someone advocates for a value lower than that, they have some explaining to do as to why such large temperature swings occurred in the (deep) past?”

    to which you replied:

    “JC comment: Yes lets use dubious paleo estimates to falsify estimates from the relatively reliable instrumental record, and also lets forget that climate sensitivity is state dependent.”

    That’s a strawman. I may as well say “Yes lets ignore climate changes in the past and what we can learn from them and only go with the tremendously uncertain aerosol forcing, and also lets forget that feedbacks aren’t necessarily constant in time.” by which I’d also make a slight caricature of your opinion.

    Different methods for estimating ECS have different pros and cons. I deem it unwise to put all your eggs in one basket regarding ECS estimates, and ignoring other (inconvenient?) evidence, on the assumption that they are vastly inferior. The state-dependence you mention gives rise to a lot of questions, e.g. would you expect warm periods in the past to have higher ECS than cold periods? Is that what we’re seeing? Why or why not? But not, let’s not ask any of those questions and just ignore that field of research altogether.

    • Assuming (just for the sake of discussion) that the “ECS appears to be in the range between 2 and 4 degrees C”, why should anybody assume it’s within that range today?

      Start by assuming that you assumed the “ECS” was a fixed, constant, number, the actual range implied by your evidence is far larger than “between 2 and 4 degrees C” when you allow for it to vary depending on continental configuration. Then, it could easily be as low as 1° C or less. Thus, what’s needed is evidence from today regarding what it is.

      All the paleo evidence is thus deprecated.

    • Bart, I’ve always found it odd that people give much credence to ECS estimates based on proxy data from 24000 years ago. Surely modern data is much more accurate. Proxy reconstructions seem to be hugely controversial and there have been some quite prominent errors found by McIntyre in some of Mann’s work and even PAGES2K. That’s OK, but the modern data is much more reliable.

    • Bart, in my blog post i discussed the meta uncertainties surrounding all this. My op-ed is about the discrepancies between models and observations, including evidence that the models are running too hot.

      I regard the paleo estimates as less reliable than instrumental or climate models, for a variety of reasons. The IPCC seems to, also.

      My own eggs regarding this issue aren’t in any basket, i have problems with the whole idea of the CO2 climate control knob, I think natural climate variability is at least as important, and we have very little idea of how the 21st century climate will play out.

      • “i have problems with the whole idea of the CO2 climate control knob, I think natural climate variability is at least as important, and we have very little idea of how the 21st century climate will play out.”

        I’m no scientist. I’m not even all that bright. But the control knob metaphor struck me as absurdly simplistic when I first heard it a year or so ago, and I’m almost certain it would have done so 5 years ago when I was still a dewy eyed warmist. Around that time I became more and more mystified as to how they could distinguish current warming as somehow different from past warming, How could the IPCC be so certain? How could the APC state that the evidence was “incontrovertible.” The word seemed out of place, more suited to the rhetorical excess of a prosecuting attorney than a sober scientific assertion regarding something as immensely complicated as the climate.

        Turns out in my muddle-headed, foggy layman’s way, I was onto something.

      • Sorry. “APS.

      • lemiere jacques

        the very idea of an ecs is not obvious, so the idea of an ecs witch doesn’t depend of state of the systemis hard to accept.

      • Many papers now have directly related climate change to forcing changes, either by measurement or just assuming it as an obvious given to make sensitivity calculations. Increasing CO2 does lead to a forcing change, 2 W/m2 already, and maybe 6 W/m2 by 2100 unless something is done to slow down. Six W/m2 is very large, being more than ten times even the largest estimates of solar variations that have been thought to occur through the millennium including the Maunder Minimum and more comparable with forcing changes that lead to different geological epochs, periods or even eras. These quantifications put CO2 changes in context and make it a control knob.

    • Steven Mosher

      funny.

      I read Ar4 and Ar5 on sensitivity. I read all the comments by reviewers.
      In these years long assessments of the state of the science, I find no
      record of people weighing the various methods and appproaches to estimating sensitivity. To wit: the method Judith and Nic used was just fine
      when it yielded higher numbers.. Now, it’s somehow suspect.

      Further, every time I push into Paleo data and methods I find the following.

      1. incomplete archives
      2. untested methods.
      3. almost no code.

      Take Hansen on the LGM. Quality check 101.
      a) what value does he use for additional forcing due to doubling c02
      b) can you replicate his result

      Bottom line. the study of ECS needs to do some basic 101 stuff.

      I propose the following. If a paper on ECS cannot be replicated, if the author cannot BOTHER to archive his code and data for this momentous question, then that paper is JUNK.

      Step one: get rid of the junk and do a proper job.

      This is your cue to defend shoddy science.

      I dare you.

    • Bart, I’m going to have a lot of fun watching people on your side disown C & W once the AMO is negative, the ice recovers, and C & W show the most cooling of the data sets. Good to know in advance you will be sticking with it thick or thin.

      • Pierre-Normand

        Steven, that would only be fair since warmists already have had their fun seeing skeptics squirm and disown thee efforts of Judy’s own BEST team to produce a land surface record that incorporates many more stations, and implements better algorithms, in order to correct alleged warmist biases in the CRU record, only to discover that the CRU warming trend was biased low.

      • Pierre-Normand, see, you know exactly how much fun I’ll be having.

      • Pierre-Normand

        I embrace my Karma.

  60. One can easily think of reasons why ECS might be less today than 24000 years ago. There is a lot less ice so albedo feedbacks are much more limited in extent. They there is dust and aerosols. Bart, do you really think its possible to estimate today what their effect was on huge ice sheets, tundra in North America, or Asia?

  61. http://news.yahoo.com/britain-threatens-internet-trolls-two-years-jail-110001348.html;_ylt=AwrBJR_DD0RUZCgAnGjQtDMD

    The link says it all.

    I wonder if we can extradite some of our more, shall we say, loquacious commenters from the US to Britain?

    On a serious note, other than credible threats of violence, I think this is a really bad idea.

    • GaryM

      To put this into perspective, as well as the examples listed there are various other examples of extreme trolling including threats of ra*e and maiming and other campaigns of sheer hatred.

      Personally I steer clear of social media as some of it is very unpleasant but I don’t see why we should have to put up with these extremely unpleasant and potentially dangerous trolls, some of whom have caused their victims to commit suicide.

      tonyb

      • I’d say the issue is where to draw the line, Tony. We can all agree that threats of violence shouldn’t be tolerated, but it’s easy to see how in these nanny state, politically correct times, this could be dangerous.

        Statements like this from the article bother me as dangerously broad: “This is a law to combat cruelty — and marks our determination to take a stand against a baying cyber-mob”

      • Pokerguy

        We are talking about extreme trolling here with extreme results such as stalking, credible threats of violence and actions that cause suicide.

        Tonyb

      • tonyb,

        According to the article:

        “Prosecutions can currently be brought under a number of different laws, but the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) last year introduced guidelines to address any confusion.

        It said messages sent via social media could be a criminal offence if they contain ‘credible threats of violence’ or target an individual in a way that ‘may constitute harassment or stalking.'”

        Let me show you the worrisome part of this:

        “…messages sent via social media could be a criminal offence if they…target an individual in a way that ‘may constitute harassment….'” (“Or” can be a very dangerous word in criminal statutes.)

        This suggests that prosecution will not necessarily be limited to “threats of ra*e and maiming and other campaigns of sheer hatred.”

        Harassment is a very broad term. Without seeing the statute in question, I can’t say for sure, but it certainly seems the British prosecutors believe they can prosecute for harassment, not just credible threats. And if the last ten years have taught us anything, it is that terms like “harassment” can be defined extremely broadly.

        You might currently have a putatively conservative government over there, but eventually there will be hard core progressives in charge again. Just imagine how they will interpret the term. Up to 2 years in prison if a progressive prosecutor thinks your tweets constitute harassment. As I said, a really bad idea.

      • “some of whom have caused their victims to commit suicide.” No, Tony, that is entirely down to the individual concerned, and their reaction to external stimuli. I’ve twice been very close to suicide, and when older and wiser was assessed to be for several months at a level of depression normally associated with suicide, but suicide was never an option for me then. Yes, people may be brutal, vicious and contemptible in their behaviour, but the response is down to the individual. We can’t control the external world, we can control the way we respond to it.

      • Faustino,
        I commend your courage. And wisdom. The liberal impulse is to sanitize the world from all perceived threats. We most especially want to be sure that nobody’s feelings are hurt. This growing impulse has led to a new class of crimes…”hate crimes” which we are to believe are more heinous that just regular crimes, even when involving the same level of violence.

        We’re already a good way down the slippery slope to full on absurdity. High time for the pendulum to swing the other way, imvho.

  62. As much as I read in this blog, I’m more convinced that earth climate is a sort of these various balls toys, who are fuelled by batteries (sun), but with a lot of subsystems that haven’t still been well captured by models. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u1RokwR5fO8
    Another idea is that by the moment, models are in some way in hands of only one side of the players,it would be interesting if other ideas could be introduced in those models, as a “what if…”, including even what are now considered phantasious theories. The democratization of access to models, in order to use them to test those ideas would be very desirable. Maybe with next generations of computers that will be possible. Having an standard model (not many that use practically the same equations and introduce the same inputs) that includes many variables that you can change “on line”. Maybe this post is naif, but….

    • Pepe, the supercomputers on which climate models necessarily run are so expensive that theynare only feasible in the hands of government funding. And those governments (US, UK, Germany) are firmly warmunist.

      But there is not need to try. There are mathematical fatal flaws in all the models that cannot be overcome even if supercomputers improve by an order of magnitude, and if Rob Ellisons nonlinear dynamic chaos concerns can be overcome by enough ensemble runs to discern their main climate strange attractors.
      The core problem is that essential heat convective processes (Lindzen’s adaptive iris) occur at scales at least an order of magnitude smaller than the smallest grid cells now computationally feasible. And shrinking those cells by an order of magnitude raises the computational requirements by roughly two orders of magnitude, since the time steps must also shrink accordingly.
      These issues are illustrated in the essay Models all the way down, in ebook Blowing Smoke, which appeared yesterday with a foreward from our hostess.

  63. Stephen Segrest

    CaptnDallas — Could you lay out your argument in bullet form why you are so negative on solar, and pro-active on nuclear? Could you limit your argument to the U.S. (not the EU). Thanks.

    • I am not particularly pro or negative on anything other than the way policy tries to pick winners ahead of time. I think grid connected solar is not a great idea yet and that stand along solar is a better way to develop the technology. I like smaller scale nuclear only because the reduced decay energy makes it much safer to operate. I left my crystal ball someplace so I can’t tell you what will win. I can tell you it is likely to be a bit of a surprise. I foresee more pleasant surprises when government mandates aren’t involved.

      • Stephen Segrest

        Articles from not exactly your “Wild Eye Liberal” sources — Forbes Magazine and Georgia Power.
        Whether Georgia Power and the PSC made a good decision one could assume that either (A) they did a detailed system planning study using load shape curves, engineering economics on stacked dispatch, probability assessments on fuel diversity, ect. or (B) The Liberal Socialists made them do it. Wagathon will of course choose that it was Option B.

        Key quote from the PSC was it was a good fit in meeting peak load requirements.

        http://www.forbes.com/sites/kensilverstein/2014/10/17/theres-a-sunnier-life-after-coal-in-georgia/

        http://www.utilitydive.com/news/georgia-power-inks-solar-contracts-for-less-than-65-centskwh/321898/

      • Steven, South Carolina also has a reasonable plan to integrate solar with their distribution system That plan was developed by the state and the state utilities. That is how it should work. The homes installing solar though are not guaranteed some large fixed buy back rate like some states. The plan in SC is flexible, which is intelligent.

        Here in the Keys there are utility scale solar projects that are being evaluated. The Keys has an issue with potential wind and salt damage. It doesn’t make much sense to go hog wild on solar if it can’t withstand the environment. Since the price of solar is dropping, lower cost will reduce risk. It is simple local decision making.

        If you think west Florida and Duke power can max out solar, invest in it. Just don’t force the FKEC to follow suite.

        It really boggles my mind that you can’t accept that people are smart enough to make their own decisions without your or the federal governments help. The federal government has a role, but not a mandate to think for everyone.

      • Stephen Segrest

        Captdallas — I’ve consistently said I oppose a “Federal” Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard (an example of Liberal top/down, command/control, one-size-fits-all policy approaches like carbon taxes and cap and trade which I also have been clear I oppose).

        I believe renewable energy decisions should be made at State and local levels — looking for the “right fits” that make sense (i.e., peaking loads, as the Forbes article on Georgia discussed).

    • Stephen: With these new solar projects Georgia will have about 3% of its power come from solar. Remember the comment on another thread about planners being overruled by committees for political correctness? And did you know that Georgia is a huge recipient federal dollars? Multiple military installations, the CDC, etc; three Army bases in GA are getting 30 MW solar sites each. Looks like 3% was deemed just right to keep the $$ rolling in.

    • Stephen Segrest

      rls — Your comment would require a “conspiracy theory” which in today’s world of open public access to things like Utility integrated resource planning and especially “Request for Proposals” would be puzzlesome. It would require System Planning engineers being told to “manipulate” their models (and then be able to hide it in any public forum) so that solar wins. I personally never experienced anything like this.

      Now some assumptions used in engineering economics models would be “subjective” and totally at the discretion of management that could favor solar. An example of this is what EPA regs to use on things like future mercury and low level ozone emissions.

      Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld an EPA reg on low level ozone (developed under the George W. Bush Administration no less) that Industry had appealed in the Courts for about 6 years:

      http://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/219853-supreme-court-wont-hear-challenge-to-epa-ozone-standard

      Now, I could buy-in to the subjective assumption of what future EPA ppb will be (that would clearly effect engineering economics models) — but this wouldn’t be a “conspiracy theory”.

      • Stephen Segrest

        rls — another example in engineering economics assumptions is the importance of having a diversified fuel mix. Some Utilities feel very strongly about this (as to weighting of importance) — and sincerely believe this in their justification of nuclear power. But in making assumptions say on the price of natural gas, the Utility must be consistent in assumptions in their resource planning. In evaluating nuclear they couldn’t use one set of assumptions on natural gas, and then on solar to use another set of assumptions.

      • China is putting in 58 nuclear plants by 2023 (one every 2 months) with no shutdowns of old plants.

        The new plants include some Westinghouse AP1000 reactors.

        It is pretty obvious that bureaucratic interference and regulatory obstacles makes nuclear power much more expensive than it should be.

        There isn’t any reason for the US to switch to renewables – the massive installation of nuclear power plants by India and China will significantly slow the rate of CO2 increase. China and India combined produce twice the CO2 that the US does. The emissions increase in the last decade was driven by China with a little help from India.

        The slower the rate of fossil fuel consumption – the lower the maximum CO2 level will be.