Week in review – science and technology edition

by Judith Curry

A few things that caught my eye this past week.

@michaelpollan on how soil could be a huge secret ally in the fight for a stable climate. [link] …

Lee Jussim  on the Lewandowsky scam: [link] …

Vikings’ mysterious abandonment of Greenland was not due to climate change, study suggests [link]

Backlash ensues as Rep. Lamar Smith roots out corruption at NOAA  [link]

How exactly did #Israel achieve #water security? [link]

A Biofuel Dream Gone Bad via @FortuneMagazine [link]

Interesting perspective from former @curryja student: How To Get Excommunicated From Climate Science [link] Note: i don’t know where he got the numbers of my publications in recent years, but the numbers are incorrect.

Steve McIntyre on Antarctic ice mass controversy [link]  …

What’s so special about 2 degrees Celsius? [link] …

Evidence of a decadal solar signal in the Amazon River: 1903 to 2013 [link]

Unbelievable hatchet job on Kevin Folta.  [link]  Makes Sou look like an amateur.

The unfolding global crisis of soil loss  [link] …

A refusal to think freely is making universities increasingly irrelevant [link]

Researchers probe undiscovered ocean floor under Antarctic ice shelf [link] …

Attribution of climate change to extreme weather events in 2014 – 32 papers in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society [link]

“France’s Top Weatherman Hired By Kremlin After Being Fired For Questioning Global Warming” Faith [link] …

Shi Yan’s approach to #farming helps break China’s “addiction to pesticides” [link]

New paper finds rapid thinning of East Antarctic glacier began 7000 years ago & persisted two centuries [link] …

Roger Pielke Jr’s recent talk on the climate debate [link]

David Siegel: critical thinking about climate change [link]  …

Study: Thinning ice leads to winter warming in the Arctic [link] …

Prominent Russian Scientist: ‘We should fear a deep temperature drop” [link]

NYTimes:  The price of denialism [link]

The equivalent of 800,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide released in massive California gas leak: The climate equivalent of the BP oil disaster is happening NOW in California [link]


102 responses to “Week in review – science and technology edition

  1. Here’s another new paper that deserves attention: “Changes in annual precipitation over the Earth’s land mass excluding Antarctica from the 18th century to 2013” by W.A. van Wijngaarden and A. Syed in the Journal of Hydrology, December 2015. Gated.

    Over 1½ million monthly precipitation totals observed at 1000 stations in 114 countries analysed.
    Data record much longer than 3 recent conflicting studies that analysed a few decades of data.
    No substantial difference found for stations located at northern, tropical and southern latitudes.
    No substantial difference found for stations experiencing dry, moderate and wet climates.
    No significant global precipitation change from 1850 to present.

    Will we see articles about this study in The Guardian and the New York Times?

    Hat tip on this to Roger Pielke Sr.

    • editor

      I am afraid that I think this is another of those occasions when very thin data is being over stretched, just like SST’s and some surface temperature records.

      The met office maintain rainfall records back to 1760 and having examined them I woud say their reliability is very limited as there were so few sampling points, they often changed and they were not always properly supervised. Unles it suits their purpose the met office generally use records only back to 1912 .


  2. The former student – how to get excommunicated link is dead!

  3. As the NYTimes articles says, it is very true that the denialists hold opposing theories to less rigor than the consensus theories that they don’t want to believe. This, indeed, distinguishes denialists from skeptics.

    • I think you mean less well developed, not less rigorous. Not surprising since the US alone has spent $40 billion developing pro-CAGW science. In scientific revolutions the new ideas are always less developed than the old ideas, for obvious reasons.

      • You might call the rival theories less well developed, when I would call them easily debunkable.

      • Jim D, how diligently have you studied the word of God (Bible)? You understand that this book has many experiments you can try in the privacy of your own home, don’t you? Experimentation leads to personal beliefs you will find, just like the rest of the body has found over the past few thousand years. You have been perverted by your teachers, when they led you astray by telling you to accepted evolution without asking Him. He is only a heartbeat away from you all the time, anyway. Sleep well my friend.

      • Darwin, was right when he expressed his belief that new discoveries in biology would confirm or deny his theory of Evolution. DNA has shown it was not a random act of violence after all. Right?.

      • Call them what you like, just do not expect anyone to listen. You do know that climate varies naturally, right? Or is that idea “easily debunkable” in your mind?

      • Just take the historical climate datasets and keep smoothing till they’re flat, or perhaps leave just enough small wiggles to make it look somewhat visually interesting. Add colors and a nearly meaningless scale, and for God’s sake don’t include error bars.

      • stevenreincarnated

        “Jim D | December 5, 2015 at 10:53 am |
        You might call the rival theories less well developed, when I would call them easily debunkable.”

        Jim, you forgot to click your heels. That’s why it didn’t work.

      • Shame on you, steven. Poor yimmy. We were just about to start taking him seriously and you destroy the little fella.

    • I did not know there was a difference between denialists and skeptics. What is it, in your mind anyway? So far as I can tell the warmers typically call all skeptics denialists.

      • The NYTimes article makes this distinction. Denialists are quick to jump on hard-to-support alternatives with little evidence, and almost no skepticism of them, while true skeptics require rigor not only from AGW, but also equally from rival theories. This is a good litmus test for people calling themselves “skeptics” and suggesting alternatives that they think are better. They have to ask themselves, have their alternatives passed the scientific method to the level they demand of AGW?

      • This is just the silly semantic game where you warmers refuse to call skeptics “skeptics” because they are not skeptical of themselves. Natural climate variability is not “hard-to-support” (why the hyphens, more silly semantics?). Climate is always changing. The warmer’s claim to the contrary is impossible-to-support.

    • I didn’t have a problem with Mr. McIntyre’s opinion piece in the NYTimes. The problem for me is the false “black vs white” impression presented by the media and, even more disappointing, quite a few climate scientists.

      For example, I believe the global climate is warming and human activities contribute to it. Yet I don’t agree with those who leap to catastrophic conclusions. Mr. McIntyre’s argument that “True skepticism must be more than an ideological reflex…” should apply to both sides of the climate debate.

      • The concept of catastrophism isn’t really provable either way, because it depends so heavily on societal awareness and response. So when people talk in terms of theories and skepticism, they restrict it to WG1 topics such as the climate sensitivity, and the atmospheric response to anthropogenic inputs.

      • So when people talk in terms of theories and skepticism, they restrict it to WG1 topics such as the climate sensitivity, and the atmospheric response to anthropogenic inputs.

        If only that were true.

      • I think you will find that almost all the “skeptics” here are skeptical of the IPCC sensitivities, and almost none believe that the sensitivity is most likely true and are only skeptical of the negative effects that 3-5 C implies. So first you have to know what people you are labeling as “skeptics”. However, with more evidence on sensitivity, there may be more of a shift to the latter category, and perhaps you are one of them who has already made this shift.

      • WG1? Really? What many of us are most skeptical about yimmy, is the honesty of the alarmists. The bogus claims of certainty. The debate is over meme. The shunning and persecution of dissenting scientists by their consensus goon colleagues. The linking of all recent manifestations of inclement weather to man made global warming. Hide the decline. Blaming waves of war refugees and terrorism on a garden variety drought. The greatest threat faced by mankind. We don’t find this huffpo crap believable, yimmy.

      • I think you will find that almost all the “skeptics” here are skeptical of the IPCC sensitivities, and almost none believe that the sensitivity is most likely true and are only skeptical of the negative effects that 3-5 C implies.

        ECS is a hypothetical and will never occur.

        Actual rates ( temperature change per unit of time ) are what’s observable ~ 1.5K per century. Why run away from those?

        The IPCC did, because they were wrong with AR4
        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”[13] is 1.8 °C
        but we don’t have to.

      • “I didn’t have a problem with Mr. McIntyre’s opinion piece”

        It’s Ms. (Lee) McIntyre.

      • “It’s Ms. (Lee) McIntyre”
        Lee McIntyre is male, going by his webpage. So “Mr.” seems appropriate, or “Dr.” will do as well. “Ms.”, not so much.

    • As the NYTimes articles says, it is very true that the denialists hold opposing theories to less rigor than the consensus theories that they don’t want to believe.


      Agenda supporting catastrophists persist with exaggeration even though the models are wrong about the atmospheric response, Hansen was wrong about his testimony, and the AR4 was wrong about it’s 0.2C per decade promise.

    • The Times has done a completely thorough job on obscuring what the Karl controversy is all about ie massive data tampering to achieve a desired outcome. Furthermore the Times has been ruthless in suppressing and critical reader comments.

    • Jim D
      “it is very true that the denialists hold opposing theories to less rigor than the consensus theories”

      That is a bogus straw man argument! If someone shouts “The sky is falling!”, it is not necessary to present a theory why the sky is not falling to dismiss that claim. All you have to do is use common sense to observe that the sky is still up there and OK.

      In claiming there is adequate data to prove the “Sky is falling”, it not sufficient to claim that something fell on your head so your point is proven. After all, you could have been hit by one of Newton’s apples when you were not looking.

      Bringing this back to terrestrial climate variations, you will find most of us “skeptics” are looking at the real data and the real historic records and not finding anything to get excited about. Who is more likely to be correct about temperature monitoring instrument data interpretation, an instrumentation engineer or an academic without similar training and experience? Who is more likely to be correct about statistical analysis of climate data, a statistician or an academic with only one or two university classes on the subject? Both that engineer and the statistician are capable spot errors in instrumentation data use and analysis. If those errors are denied by consensus supporters, other people certainly have no obligation to accept any consensus claims without concern. For the engineer or statistician to question the accuracy of the consensus is not denial. They are simply reporting facts! It is not their responsibility to provide an alternative comprehensive theory of how our climate operates.

    • “As the NYTimes articles says, it is very true that the denialists hold opposing theories to less rigor than the consensus theories that they don’t want to believe. This, indeed, distinguishes denialists from skeptics.”

      I found something else. In all my requests for code only Skeptics have refused to the bitter end. The same goes for data.

    • Curious George

      My own experience with fanatics (as opposed to Jim D’s term denialists): I found an issue with a CAM 5.1 climate model, which yields its predictions unreliable after 80 hours – I asked them to provide a better estimate, but they never did. They did nothing to correct the problem for two years; I don’t care any more. https://judithcurry.com/2013/06/28/open-thread-weekend-23/#comment-338257

    • Will we ever see you being skeptical to the proponents of your pet theory in the same manner you are being skeptical to the opponents of your pet theory?

  4. Regarding the link: “Researchers probe undiscovered ocean floor under Antarctic ice shelf”

    First, they meant “unexplored” so I suggest the Columbia Spectator find a better copy editor.

    Second, they mention the seafloor mapping project relied upon:

    … a precision GPS system accurate to 10 centimeters…

    This margin of error (which is only one part of the compounding error ranges) applies to most of the ice loss/ice mass discussion. While still useful when properly applied (for example, mapping the sea floor) credulous press reports of ice loss typically gloss over the fact that the error range can be an order of magnitude (or more) greater than the estimated change in the ice.

    Steve McIntyre’s post on Antarctic ice research papers should be required reading for all reporters on the climate beat.

  5. Check this out. Skeptics are winning! http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/12/151202155717.htm
    The garbled semantics are appalling. Apparently skeptics (climate change deniers) are against climate change (climate change foes). In reality it is the skeptics who are arguing that climate change is common and natural. The warmers need to deny this, making them the climate change deniers.

    And this from a science mag, and funded by NSF. For shame.

    • The research, funded by the National Science Foundation, finds that climate-change advocates are largely failing to influence public opinion. Climate-change foes, on the other hand, are successfully changing people’s minds — Republicans and Democrats alike — with messages denying the existence of global warming.

      Bunch of code-words in there.

      • Exactly, AK. The warmers have invented their own private language, which makes skeptics look stupid. The distortions are impressive.

      • richardswarthout


        isn’t “the research funded by the National Science Foundation”, in reality, research funded by the US government? – government funds NSF which in turn hands out grants. Should the government be funding this kind of research, that does nothing to further scientific knowledge?


  6. Lee Jussim on the Lewandowsky scam: [link] …

    From the linked article:

    It is not uncommon for social psychologists to list “the promotion of social justice” as a research topic on their CVs, or on their university homepages. One academic, John Jost at New York University, who argues that conservatism is a form of motivated cognition, runs what he calls the Social Justice Lab. Within the scientific community, the blending of science with political activism is far from being frowned upon. One only has to take a brief look at Twitter to see that scientists are often in practice of tweeting about “white privilege”, “women in STEM”, “structural disadvantage”, “affirmative action”, and “stereotypes”. For many scientists, the crusade to change the world is seen as part of one’s job description.

  7. “New paper finds rapid thinning of East Antarctic glacier began 7000 years ago & persisted two centuries [link] …”
    “The loss of insulating ice between the ocean and atmosphere increases the amount of heat-trapping water vapor and clouds in the Arctic air. That extra moisture keeps air temperatures relatively warm during fall and winter and melts even more ice..”

    If there is less summer ice, the following rebound in the Spring is stronger, e.g. 2007 and 2012, while with a greater summer ice extent, the rebound is weaker.

  8. The soil loss paper is dubious at best. It is true that salt buildup has poisoned some irrigated land, as in India. It is true that erosion is a significant cropland problem with improper contouring/plowing. And it is true that overly cultivated soil will slowly loose organic matter content. But no way is it true that 1/3 of arable land has been lost in the past 40 years. Pure unsupportable alarmism. See the food chapter of Gaia’s Limits for the facts. Trying to hitch best agricultural practices to COP21 is a stretch.

  9. What’s so special about 2 degrees Celsius?


    The IPCC moved the goal posts to the unmeasured pre-industrial.
    They had to because the rate of change predictions from AR4 were so embarrassingly wrong.

    But since there was cooling from 1945 to 1975, and people were concerned about the effects of cooling, change from the 1970s would seem a lot more reasonable and much less alarming.

    • The draft contains many choices which leave all the many basic disagreements still disagreed. Paris will end like Copenhagen, except the issues are now more clearly delineated and the urgency less thanks to the pause.

  10. Vikings’ mysterious abandonment of Greenland was not due to climate change

    Doesn’t appear that convincing.
    The argument cited is that glaciers advanced during the presumed warm period. But for most of the GISP2 record, ice accumulation correlates positively with temperature, meaning glacier advance might actually coincide with the warm period, and not be in contradiction of it.

    I’m not necessarily on board with the Greenland settlements being evidence of warming ( economics and human behavior are not good proxies ), just that the paper doesn’t appear to contradict it.

  11. David L. Hagen

    The Burden of Proof on Climate Change
    By S. Fred Singer American Thinker, November 30, 2015

    The burden of proof for Anthropogenic Climate Change falls on alarmists. Climate Change (CC) has been ongoing for millions of years – long before humans existed on this planet. Obviously, the causes were all of natural origin, and not anthropogenic. . . .
    Let’s call this the “Null Hypothesis.” Logically therefore, the burden of proof is on alarmists to demonstrate that the Null Hypothesis is not adequate to account for empirical climate data; alarmists must provide convincing observational evidence for Anthropogenic CC (ACC)
    – by detailed comparison of empirical data with GH models.
    I am not aware of such proofs, only of anecdotal info – although I admit that ACC is plausible; after all, CO2 is a GH gas, and its level has been rising, mainly because of burning of fossil fuels. . . .
    Surviving a coming climate cooling
    I am much more concerned about a cooling climate, as predicted by many solar scientists [4], with its adverse ecological effects and severe economic consequences for humanity. . . .

    Can we restore the scientific method with demonstrable predictions differing from the null hypothesis?
    – AND put risk evaluation in the larger context including the dangers of cooling?

  12. SM’s Antarctica analysis is a must read. There are several illuminating angles. IPCC selection bias and reliance on ‘old’ and incorrect GIA for GRACE estimates when better estimates had been published. Ignoring serious methedological critiques virtually proving the coast survey method was upward biased. The delay in publishing the IceSat estimates in order not to ‘poison’ AR5. The fundamental statistical problem with the ‘acceleration’ meme. Warmunist response to the paper (Schmidt [ignorant on GRACE/GIA] and Mann ‘old data’ when mostlynlikely deliberately delayed publication).
    I had presumed the quality of Antarctica ice science was high, given how specialized and expensive it is. WRONG. As poor as paleoclimate, now exposed by the climate auditor.

    • I agree, an excellent article. I counted 240 “estimates” and “adjustments” in the analysis. Common sense should give pause as to the level of certainty attributed to any findings found by previous and future papers.

      I also enjoyed finding out about Zwally worrying that “some of the climate deniers will jump on this.”

  13. Er, you see, there was a sort of, um, climate anomaly in medieval times, and some people sort of call that a Medieval Warming, God love ’em, but it was kind of spotty. And those Vikings didn’t just bail because of temperatures. There may have been all sorts of other stuff happening…decline in the walrus tusk market maybe. I mean, as scientists they are compelled to take into account walrus tusk demand and supply and possible declines in the market for polar bears…

    So, except for the Vikings and the tusks and polar bears, the Medieval Warming was rather like the Modern Warming and those other majors warmings: uneven, contradictory, with “all sorts of other stuff happening”. They just don’t want to say the obvious out loud. Would you say it if you wanted further research grants and a spread in the WaPo?

    The Straightening of the Hockey Stick shaft is almost heroic, isn’t it? Just when you think the silly implement is doomed a new band of defenders rises up with new verbal equivocations and factual wriggles. I dare say they’re working on the decline of the Ming as I write, and European and Ottoman history will have to be tweaked pretty hard.

    Go away, warmies. Just go away.

  14. The russian paper on the coming cold is really aweful stuff

    “British researchers assert that the current temperature drop is due to the La Niña
    phenomenon (this name is a translation from the Spanish “la niña” meaning “a girl”)
    in the Pacific Ocean, on the coasts of Ecuador, Peru and Columbia. This
    phenomenon is characterized by an anomalous decrease in the temperature of the
    surface of ocean averaging 0.5-1 degrees. This directly distinguishes the
    phenomenon from another widely known phenomenon – the El Niño (El Niño – “a
    boy”), which is characterized by an anomalous increase in the temperature of the
    surface of ocean. The two phenomena are equally complex to forecast and to
    understand. American geophysicists, who have studied them, assume that they can
    only be short-term fluctuations in a longer natural cycle, the “super-Niño”. We
    consider that all these phenomena (El Niño, La Niña, and “super-Niño”) are
    generated by the 11-year and bicentennial fluctuations of the intensity of solar energy
    radiation. The presence of correlation among them indicates this. ”

    Its 6 years out of date

    • What’s really awful is the notion that 6 years is a significant interval in the study of climate.

    • Curious George

      Have you ever seen “Shakespeare” spelled in Russian?

    • ““As the NYTimes articles says, it is very true that the denialists hold opposing theories to less rigor than the consensus theories that they don’t want to believe. This, indeed, distinguishes denialists from skeptics.””

      • Since the MSU era, temperature trends are lower than Hansen C.
        Would you like to hold Hansen to account here?

        The AR4 promised 0.2C per decade for all scenarios.
        Would you like to hold them to account now?

        Some claim ‘global warming is accelerating’ when you know it’s decelerating. Would you like to apply rigor to this erroneous claim?

      • TE I did all of that before you even joined the fun.

        The issue I raised was posting a 6 year article as “news in science”

        its drek.

  15. The moraine proxy for Greenland temperatures is clear as mud.

    • Worse than mud, its beryllium 10 from supposed moraine rock exposure to cosmic rays. And ‘the only lab in the world capable of the analysis’. Imagine the minute trace amounts being used. Now imagine the background isotope noise in Greenland rocks. Now imagine the measurement uncertainty that they did not discuss.
      Then weigh their new exotic conclusion once again removing MWP evidence against the abundant archeological evidence. Stuff like burials now encased in permafrost. Barley. Firewood. Dairy (cattle bones)…

    • Weather the Vikings stayed in Greenland or cleared out,
      lotsa’ archaeological evidence buried in the permafrost,
      some of it still there today, reveals an icy Greenland –
      Pompei. Brrrrrr … Sometimes ice sufficeth.

  16. Pity about the KiOR collapse. Now they’ll have to go back to wasting food instead of wasting wood.

    On a brighter note, American wood is still being wasted to generate electricity in England.

    Here’s an idea. In future, if anyone uses the words “startup” and “green” in the same sentence…just put a nappy on them and stick a pacifier in their mouth.

  17. George Devries Klein, PhD, PG, FGSA

    Two Comments:

    1). The 2 degree Celsius link I fail to see the concern when the daytime highest temp and night-time lowest-temp difference exceeds 5 degrees Celsius or more in many place. People live with that daily temp change regularly. We all adapt to it.

    2) Universities being leftist bastions. Essentially, the American Land-Grant Flagship universities mimic the french system. In France, the top institution of higher ed is ‘Le’cole Plytechnique’ which graduates the top scientists, engineers and business leaders that run the country in a timely manner. The remainder of the ‘universite’s’ graduate people who take ten years to ern a degree and can;t find a decent job. On American Land-Grant campuses, department and colleges of science, engineering and busieness represent L’cole Polytechnique’ and the colleges of Liberal Arts represent the universite.’ It’s been that way for 50 years t least.

    George Devries Klein, PhD,PG, FGSA

    • Curious George

      University professors: Prof. Lewandowsky, Prof. Mann, Prof. Ehrlich. Also Prof. Haeckel, but here we step on an undesirable-left territory.

  18. LukesAreWrongToo

    All climate change – yes ALL – is 100% natural and has nothing to do with carbon dioxide. It’s obvious that rising CO2 levels have not affected temperatures this century, and there is absolutely no valid physics that any of you can produce to show why climate should be affected by CO2.

    The global mean temperature varies in cycles that appear to be regulated by planetary orbits and variations in solar intensity, cosmic rays etc which probably also relate to planetary orbits. For example, the eccentricity of Earth’s orbit has a cycle of about 100,000 years which is thought to relate to the spacing of glacial periods, this being because the annual mean distance of the Sun varies over that 100,000 year cycle. There are numerous cycles, but the two dominant ones in the space of a few thousand years have periods of about 1,000 years and 60 years. Both were rising in the 30 years to 1998, but now we have slight net cooling for 30 years, and probably about 500 years of long term cooling due to start within 100 years.

    Solar intensity can also vary because of variations in cloud cover. Reflections from clouds affect the albedo by about 20%. For each 1% change (for example to 19% or 21%) there is a temperature change of about 0.9 degree. So all the climate change in the last few thousand years could have been due just to such changes in cloud cover. Clearly there are also other changes in sunspot activity, and you have to ask yourselves whether than could well explain the 1,000 year cycle. What regulates these long term cycles in sunspot activity? Well, the only things that are “regular” are planetary orbits, and it could well be that planetary magnetic fields which reach to the Sun have some effect on sunspots and possibly cosmic rays intensities which, in turn, may affect cloud formation.

    It’s ALL natural and you have no proof that it could not be.

    Until you understand that planetary surface temperatures are not established by direct radiation reaching such surfaces you have failed to pay due diligence. The explanation as to what really determines such temperatures on all planets is out there to be read and studied. It all started with an explanation by the brilliant 19th century physicist Josef Loschmidt who has now been proven right with modern day experiments which show that force fields do indeed create temperature gradients that are the state of maximum entropy.

  19. richardswarthout

    For those interested (Mosher?)

    The Big Ten Championship Game is soon to start. Go Michigan State University!


  20. Rather than pushing the boundaries of human knowledge, most universities now churn out dreary, predictable research that nobody reads. ~Allister Heath: The vast majority of academics are of the Left…

    The taxpayer is paying for filing cabinets full of worthless global warming junk science. The Left eagerly turned out the industrial-military complex. For the good of the country, the economy and to recapture integrity and honor in science, the government-education complex also is due for serious downsizing.

  21. From the 2 degree “c” article:

    If we extend the tolerance range by a further 0.5 degrees Celsius at either end, then the tolerable temperature window extends from 9.9 degrees Celsius to 16.6 degrees Celsius.

    I wonder who here would think 9.9 degrees C mean would be tolerable, as it is .5 degrees below the mean minimum of the last ice age? Particularly in Germany, where some council decided these were tolerable temperatures.

  22. Decline in the integrity of constitutional government and government science was noted and posted on ResearchGate, had thousands of reads before my account was locked, just before the UN’s COP-21 Conference started in Paris.


  23. Crude is still around $40. The world economy is lackluster and producers are producing full tilt. The WTI contango of $7 a year out puts pressure on crude to go to storage. If the world economy doesn’t pick up or some producers cut production, this could continue for months. Also, there will be more bankruptcies in the independent Exploration and Production companies in 2016 and some higher cost shale production will be shut in.

    OIL 40.14
    BRENT 43.00
    NAT GAS 2.184
    RBOB GAS 1.2843

  24. by Judith Curry

    David Siegel: critical thinking about climate change [link] … :

    ”Despite being attacked by friends and people I have never known, I decided to publish an essay called “What I Learned About Climate Change: The Science Is Not Settled.” Here are my 10 general conclusions:
    1. Weather is not climate. There are no studies showing a conclusive link between global warming and increased frequency or intensity of storms, droughts, floods, cold or heat waves.
    2. Natural variation in weather and climate is tremendous. Most of what people call “global warming” is natural, not man-made. The earth is warming, but not quickly, not much, and not lately.
    3. There is tremendous uncertainty as to how the climate really works. Climate models are not yet skillful; predictions are unresolved.
    4. New research shows fluctuations in energy from the sun correlate very strongly with changes in earth’s temperature, better than CO2 levels.
    5. CO2 has very little to do with it. CO2 continues its relentless rise, yet our planet hasn’t warmed in 18 years now. (Despite talk of 2015 as the “hottest year on record,” there has been no average global mean temperature increase since 1997.) All the decarbonization we can do isn’t going to change the climate much.
    6. There is no such thing as “carbon pollution.” Carbon dioxide is coming out of your nose right now; it is not a poisonous gas. CO2 concentrations in previous eras have been many times higher than they are today.
    7. Sea level will probably continue to rise — but not quickly, and not much.Researchers have found no link between CO2 and sea level.
    8. The Arctic experiences natural variation as well, with some years warmer earlier than others. Polar bear numbers are up, not down. That has more to do with hunting permits than CO2. Antarctic ice is growing, not shrinking.
    9. No one has demonstrated any unnatural damage to reef or marine systems.Additional man-made CO2 will not likely harm oceans, reef systems, or marine life. Fish are mostly threatened by people, who eat them. Reefs are more threatened by sunscreen than by CO2.
    10. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and others are pursuing a political agenda and a PR campaign, not scientific inquiry. There’s a tremendous amount of trickery going on under the surface.”

    As far as I understand JC’s reflections in her topic https://judithcurry.com/2015/12/04/bill-gail-dont-let-climate-debate-hinder-the-economy agree with the statement of David Siegel above:

    ”Back to natural climate variability. We remain extremely vulnerable to weather and climate disasters, that have nothing discernible to do with human caused climate change. These are being ignored by policy makers – somehow the expectation seems to be that reducing CO2 emissions will reduce the frequency/severity of these events, even though there is next to no evidence (e.g. IPCC SREX) of discernible influences of AGW on these extreme events. ”

    Also they seem to regard the belief in any dominating, anthropogenic share of climate warming as baseless. JC etc have replaced climate models by using empiric observation, which makes the climate sensitivity be only about half of what IPCC has reported. The real climate sensitivity seems to be still much lower. For instance Scafetta says it is less than 1C, and Lindzen says it is less than 0,5C. I personally agree with Cripwell, Arrak and Wojick, as they have stated that the climate sensitivity cannot be distinguished from zero.

    As avarage temperature of climate has not increased during the latest nearly two decades, although the CO2 content in atmosphere has even mildly accelerating increased, it already proves that the increase of atmospheric CO2 content does not dominate the climate warming. In addition, the share of anthropogenic CO2 emissions in the recent increase of CO2 content in atmosphere has been only about 4 % at the most; my comment https://judithcurry.com/2011/08/04/carbon-cycle-questions/#comment-198992 . This means that there are no ”threats of serious or irreversible damage” related to anthropogenic CO2 emissions. I hope this shall be understood this December in Paris, too; my comment https://judithcurry.com/2015/10/20/a-peculiar-kind-of-science/#comment-739497 .

  25. More info on thermal flux under West Antarctic ice. For the area examined, the heat flow was about 2-3.6 times the modeled estimates, More evidence of a geo-heat explanation for western melt vs eastern accumulation. Its early, but this appears inconvenient for anthropogenic flooders.


  26. Shi Yan’s approach to #farming helps break China’s “addiction to pesticides” [link]:
    “Farmers can spend half a day picking bugs off plants by hand, and on the rare occasion that crops are infected beyond repair, the team simply rips them out and starts again.”

    Yes. Well. Umm.. If they did that in California then maybe only LA lawyers would be able to afford produce (when they weren’t busy litigating repetitive stress injury lawsuits).

  27. Pingback: Noise Assisted Data Analysis | Watts Up With That?