Week in review – science edition

by Judith Curry

A few things that caught my eye this past week.

How better weather forecasting can help stretch water supplies. [link]

Science:  New scrutiny for a slowing conveyor [link]

Forecasting winter precipitation extremes in California using the North Pacific High sea level pressure anomaly [link]

Even psychologists respond to meaningless rewards [link]

FOIA E-Mails: Politically Inexperienced, Publicity-Hungry Scientists Get Burned In Political Arena [link]

Science not there: global warming NOT fueling Alberta’s wildfire [link]

New (low) estimate of the climate sensitivity [link] …

The Conversation:  A brief history of climate science [link]

Knowledge and data gaps hamper a proper understanding of the Himalayan glaciers and the impact of climate change in the upper Indus basin  [link]

‘Thrown on the scrapheap’: Global sea-level expert John Church made to walk the plank by CSIRO [link] …

Arctic Sea Ice Loss Not Leading to Colder Winters [link]

The pressure to publish pushes down quality [link]

For Richard Feynman’s birthday, @JamesGleick on the source of The Great Explainer’s genius [link] …

Humanity’s health may rely on what sits on the Arctic seabed [link]

Causal inference in statistics: an overview [link]

The effectiveness, costs and coastal protection benefits of natural and nature-based defences: [link]

“We find that black carbon resides in oceans for tens of thousands of years…”
[link]

Headlines ‘exaggerated’ climate link to sinking of Pacific islands [link]

13 leading climate experts answer impossible Q: “Gut feelings” on climate sensitivity! -> [link]

Dueling visuals of global warming:

  • Ed Hawkins: Spiralling global temperatures from 1850-2016 (full animation)  [link]
  • @ed_hawkins This one is way better than yours. It has spaceships, & frisking lazers![link]
  • Hi @ed_hawkins! Here is a cartoon version with a few more years in ;-) [link]

“How much does groundwater contribute to sea level rise?” Prior ‘consensus’ off by 3X [link] …

A Few Facts For Climate Alarmists Waging War Against Astrophysicist Willie Soon [link] …

John Oliver exposes how the media turns scientific studies into “morning show gossip” http://ow.ly/Vsmb3003Txu

Why Cliff Mass is a very dangerous weather person [link]

Scientists’ credibility unhurt by #climatechange advocacy, study suggests [link]

Cutting to the core: CSIRO to end long-standing Antarctic ice, atmosphere research [link] …

How the Pacific Ocean alters the pace of Arctic warming [link]

Deep sea microbes may be key to oceans’ climate change feedback [link]

267 responses to “Week in review – science edition

  1. Pingback: Week in review – science edition – Enjeux énergies et environnement

  2. Link for “Even psychologists respond to meaningless rewards” is incorrect. Presumably the correct URL is http://fivethirtyeight.com/features/even-psychologists-respond-to-meaningless-rewards/

  3. Re: Why Cliff Mass Is a Very Dangerous Weatherperson. “He is a scientist, and you are not—therefore, I will take his opinion seriously and not yours, someone who knows little to nothing about this science. My answer to this sort of thinking is this: Yes, I’m not a scientist, but I have read my philosophy….”

    Oy vey, The Cause is Just (philosophically speaking) therefore the science should be ignored because it dares to raises doubt? I don’t think it is Cliff mass who is a very dangerous person. I think it is Charles Mudede who is the very dangerous person. Keep your philosophical hands off science!

    • afonzarelli

      Yes, Charles is a pretty creepy dude. If anybody wonders why our world is so messed up, he (and everybody else like him) IS the reason…

  4. Tomorrow, IERJ is scheduled to publish this paper on “Solar energy.”

    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/10640850/Solar_Energy.pdf

  5. New (low) estimate of the climate sensitivity [link] …

    Some interesting points:

    Sensitivity-altering climate feedbacks are not always additive

    From the “Keypoints” block at the front.

    It is assumed that the real climate system has a well-defined value of equilibrium climate sensitivity. This will here be denoted ECS.

    Given how completely unwarranted that assumption is, perhaps more effort should be spent in questioning its existence than producing endless research quibbling over what it is?

    The dominant category of EBM used in the EfCS context is the simple zero-dimensional model (ZDM), in which all quantities are global and annual means and the surface temperature (T ) is the basic climatic variable

    Any calculation for a planetary system like ours (or any other hyper-complex non-linear system) that uses averages (“global and annual means”) as inputs produces garbage as outputs.

    Perturbations in T around its observed equilibrium value lead to perturbations in the TOA radiation budget.

    Given that observed temperature is varying widely and at least pseudo-randomly on every time-scale from sub-annual to kiloyears, no “observed equilibrium value” can be determined without inputting an arbitrary settling time.

    • David L. Hagen

      Bates: ~1K Effective Climate Sensitivity

      Using the observational estimates of the tropical radiative response coefficient (~5 W m^-2 K^-1) and allowing the extratropical coefficient to assume values in its probable range ({2.0, 3.5} W m^-2 K^-1), the estimates of effective climate sensitivity given by Models A and B are found to be close and quite insensitive to the value of the dynamical heat transport coefficient. The estimates given by both models in this case lie in the neighbourhood of 1°C.

      Let the validation begin between Bates vs IPCC models with very differing values of climate sensitivity!

  6. Even if, “Science not there: global warming not fueling Alberta’s wildfire,” AGW theory is still real, if you believe, no matter what science says.

    • Haven’t you heard Wags? Philosophy trumps science. At least according to the clown whose response to the question “Why should we believe you verses a real scientist like Cliff Mass?” is a long spiel showing off he took philosophy classes in college. Definitely zombie bait material.

  7. Even psychologists respond to meaningless rewards [link]

    Link goes to the winter precipitation in CA article.

  8. Bates new paper finding ECS ~1 is both good and bad. His math formalisms are good, especially showing that more complex B collapses to simple A under all reasonable assumptions about inputs. But he input the Lindzen and Choi 2011 (LC11) values for bsub1 and bsub2, to derive a LC11 like ECS result. Those values have already been pretty much debunked in the literature. Bad. What he should have done, IMO, is use the full Ceres record to establish those input parameters.

    • ristvan: But he input the Lindzen and Choi 2011 (LC11) values for bsub1 and bsub2, to derive a LC11 like ECS result

      Are there in fact better estimates that have not been “debunked”? My sense was that the “debunking” was as questionable as LC11 itself.

      • Better estimates IMO could be derived from the full CERES TOA estimates, partitioned for Bates math by the averages (or regression trend over all the data) between +/- 30 latitude and +/- 31 to 90 latitude. The long time frame washes out seasonal weather changes, one problem in LC11 with the arbitrary 3 month lagged regression. This is doable using R, as recent WUWT posts by Eschenbach on CERES show. Perhaps we can persuade Willis to calculate the two perameters and plug them into Bates model A.

      • ristvan: Better estimates IMO could be derived from the full CERES TOA estimates, partitioned for Bates math by the averages (or regression trend over all the data) between +/- 30 latitude and +/- 31 to 90 latitude.

        My intended question was, Are better estimates available now? Sure better estimates in future will improve Bates’ model, but for now LC11 is appropriate for a first paper of this sort.

      • ristvan:
        I might have lost track of the thread while skimming Bates but I note that he addressed the criticisms of L&C, including:

        Lin et al. (2005) and Trenberth et al. (2010) have criticized LCH01 and LC09 for the lack of an explicit perturbation DHT in their EBM, which is the equivalent of Model A. This omission is remedied in a simple way in Model B.

        Bates goes on to explore the differences between Models A and B, noting that observational values of the tropical radiative response coefficient bring them into closer agreement than using GCM-generated values. Since you are more familiar with the literature, perhaps you could provide more details for your concern over Bates?

      • Opluso, the salient critique was to LC11, which Bates did not address. I looked at LC11 quite closely when writing the climate chapter of The Arts of Truth. I did a guest post here on ECS on 7/22/2012 that noted my misgivings. Judith did a post on LC11 on 7/10/2011 that discusses the peer review comments at PNAS which resulted not in a revised paper, but rather unrevised publication in a different much less prestigious Asian journal.

      • Isn’t bates 2016 a response to critiques of Bates 2014 since he references M&S 2015 (with revise SM) as verification of LC11 along with criticisms of Bates 2014 ? That would make Andrew “balloonacy” Dessler’s blurb about Bates 2014 kind of “old news” wouldn’t it.

      • ristvan:

        I was under the impression L&C (2011) limited their analysis (while discussing alternatives) to the tropics because they were examining outgoing flux as related to changing SST. They thus wanted to look at ocean-covered regions and specifically exclude the northern hemisphere’s extratropical region.

        To respond to the criticism of our emphasis on the tropical domain (Murphy, 2010; Trenberth et al. , 2010), we analyzed the complete record of CERES for the globe (Dessler, 2010) (Note that ERBE data is not available for the high latitudes since the field-of-view is between 60o S and 60o N). As seen in the previous section, the use of the global CERES record leads to a result that is basically similar to that from the tropical data in this study. The global CERES record, however, contains more noise than the tropical record.
        This result lends support to the argument that the water vapor feedback is primarily restricted to the tropics, and there are reasons to suppose that this is also the case for cloud feedbacks. Although, in principle, climate feedbacks may arise from any latitude, there are substantive reasons for supposing that they are, indeed, concentrated mostly in the tropics.(L&C (2011))

        I further thought Bates addressed at least some of your concern, as when he stated:

        In Fig. 3 we show the results for the case where the sum (bsub1 + bsub2)/2 remains fixed at b, with b set to 3.5 Wm-2K-1, while bsub1 = b + X, bsub2 = b – X, X being a parameter varying in the range +/- 3 Wm-2K-1. In this case the EfCS given by Model A (and the ZDM) remains fixed at 1.06°C, but the EfCS given by Model B can vary by large amounts as the parameters (bsub1, bsub2, d) change.

        This was followed by extensive discussions, including the part referenced by captdallas (citing Mauritsen and Stevens). See also ​”Appendix 2: Correspondence between the LC11 and Model A feedback formulisms”

        Nevertheless, I look forward to further discussions of this nature, particularly given that SMosher has declared the pre-Bates number of low-ECS papers insufficiently weighty evidence for a successful counterargument against IPCC/consensus estimates.

      • afonzarelli

        We’re nearly half way the doubling of CO2 NOW… If climate sensitivity is in the range of ipcc projections, shouldn’t we have seen half of it already?

      • afonzarelli:

        It is generally accepted that the oceans act as a heat sink to create a lag in CO2-forced atmospheric warming. The question remains exactly how (and when, and how much) that process is expressed in surface temperatures.

      • afonzarelli

        That’s fine, but it also means that we’re never going to see the 3 C. increase in temps that every alarmist scientist claims that we will. In fact we may well see cooling while the oceans continue to warm. Climate sensitivity estimates should have a metric that includes heat sinking into the oceans. The numbers that they give us now tell us nothing (especially when we’re never actually going to see those kind of numbers). If the doubling of CO2 ultimately brings us just 1 C. in surface warming (as this new paper suggests), will those alarmist scientists claim that they were right all along anyway?

  9. Regarding the Alberta fires and climate change. Yes, you can’t link a single event with climate change. Can the fires be linked to an unusually warm spring? Probably yes. Is the warmth of this spring ten times more likely to occur now than it was fifty years ago? Probably yes. There is a causal chain without being a direct link.

    • Jim, it was also affected by poor forest management practices. They had studies suggesting actions that were never taken. The probability of what happened can be influenced by forest managers on site, irrespective of climate.

      Sounds a little like so many other areas where man’s actions or inactions on the ground can mitigate or exacerbate influences of climate.

    • The Chinchaga fire in 1940 was many times worse. Same general boreal forest area, a bit further west. There is NO link between climate change and the Fort McMurray fire, as Cliff Mass pointed out and so got chastised by an ignorant warmunist (JC links). Boreal forests burn. They rely on fire to regenerate. The forest around Ft. McMurry had gone from about 30 percent mature nothing overmature to over 60% mature and 10% overmature thanks to fire supression. So given the right weather conditions, the inevitable happened.

      • The “right weather conditions” also became so much more likely in the meantime. A factor not to be ignored.

      • What you’re not getting Jim D, is that if the “right” conditions did occur more frequently, the consequences would be smaller fires and healthier forests.

      • No, just more fires in more areas per year. The return time for an area may get shorter, but still remains long in the big scheme of things.

      • Forest fires are a good thing. Like coastal hurricanes, people need to plan for them and landscape as appropriate.

      • Jim D, What is a conservative number on the estimated percentage of arson involved forest fires?

      • The guy on TV said nine out of ten but that has to be high?

      • The whole history of the boreal forests has been fires. Since Europeans came along it’ been mainly mismanagement of said fires. As for a warm spell in Alberta being due to global warming, pooh. Alberta has a long and varied history of bizarro weather including snow in July and t-shirt weather in January. It happens when you’re on the downwind side of a bunch of mountains.

    • Re: Why Cliff Mass is a very dangerous weather person

      The author asked:

      “Why is it better to wager on a strong position on global warming than not? Because if one is wrong, if there is no relationship between human activity and, say, the fires in Alberta or the melting of polar ice or the winds that uprooted Seattle trees recently, are we worse off?”

      There are only two possible answers to this question. Either ignorance, lack of intellectual ability, or an ideological scotoma has led Charles Mudede to the wrong one.

      Once a person has chosen to believe there are no costs to building wind turbines and PV cells and redundant and complex grids and back-up generation systems and all while destroying expensive systems which are currently in use, then there is little opportunity for a rational discourse.

      • Well put. A proud aggressive unwillingness to engage.

      • It’s like having an imaginary Powerball, where no evidence exists of its existence. Likewise, no evidence exists of its non-existence.

        However, the lottery tickets are free.

        This is according to the apologetic philosophy devised by the seventeenth-century French philosopher, mathematician and physicist Blaise Pascal (1623–62). God’s grace is free, Salvation is a free gift to mankind from God, which God has already paid the price. One only has to believe in God to have a chance at winning the Powerball.

        This is the philosophy which Mudede professes. It’s called Pascal’s wager. So why wouldn’t one take a ticket?

        The rub, of course, as sciguy54 points out, is that the tickets are not free. Far from it. The tickets, in reality, come at a very high price.

      • Well, Australia’s (and likely the world’s) greatest known inferno was in 1851. Our worst storm and surge (still world highest?) was in 1899. On the subject of uprooted trees, the Bulahdelah Tornado (not far from where I live) happened a mere 46 years ago: it uprooted and smashed a million trees – and a Bulahdelah Flooded Gum can be seriously tall!

        Are we better off because we did NOT respond to these disasters and extremes by hobbling our economy and dismantling critical industries?

        I’d say Charles Mudede is a very dangerous climate warrior or agnotologist (or whatever he does when not bleating like a good little agnus of the flock).

    • Well, there is a link with climate change.

      60% more growth means it has more to burn or has to burn more often.

      Is this bad? Should we reduce plant growth so we have few forest fires?

      Best solution may be an aggressive logging policy.

    • Given that the great fire of 1919 in the exact same area, caused by low snow winter and a very dry spring (exact same as this years cause), and was a much bigger fire (about 2.8 million hectares if memory recalls, but this one is still going so it might get there eventually), was a naturally occurring event within natural variation……you have zero reason to actually expect this fire or the causes are anything different than normal natural causes. Unless of course you are so desperate for something to back you up, that you ignore the historical record and choose to remain in limited virtual environments. I can say without any exaggeration (unlike your expressed opinions) that this springs conditions are zero times more likely to occur today than 96 years ago. This is where you leave science behind, when you ignore actual natural variation and historical data in favor of opinions and cherry picked data. Try actually looking up the historical fire trends next time before you weigh in on your imaginary threat analysis. I am willing to bet not one of you alarmists bothered to look up the historical fire records for the area before you weighed in with opinions pretending to be science. I know that you can actually look things up when it backs up your point, try it for stuff that refutes it as well, otherwise you sound silly and uninformed.

  10. I take no position about the study finding less contribution by groundwater to SLR. The author is rejecting work that he has done and is now revising estimates downward. Good for him for being an honest broker.

    But it should be noted that this is a work in progress and there will be numerous iterations of revised estimates up and down so that what was considered “truths” by one generation will be “untruthed” by future generations. As climate science goes through its maturation process, it will fortunately gain some humility. That is when it will dawn on the scientists how little they really know.

    They can then be eligible to join the league of real scientists.

    • Nice comment. The whole geoundwater debate is IMO a gnat on an elephant. The elephant has three parts: ce sheet deterioration, thermosteric ocean rise, and global GIA/tectonic ocean basin volume (in that order of priority). The net measurable delta change of all groundwater is within the error estimates of each of those three. Times three.

    • They can then be eligible to join the league of real scientists.

      Lol. None of your nonsense changes this:

      • Jch

        What are you claiming this chart represents?

        Here is the info direct from aviso as put up by the bbc

        http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-36255957

        The university of Colorado sea level chart shows the continuation of the long established trend at 3.4 mm a year.

        Tonyb

      • Let’s look at an actual AVISO chart.

        2.88 mm/Y, 9.5 inches by 2100 if it continued. Pretty obviously the 2015 El Nino saved the warmers from having to explain a deceleration of the sea level rise (temporarily).

        By the end of 2018 I see a 2.80 (as opposed to 2.88) sea level rise in our future. Does anyone want to bet on a 3.0 AVISO sea level rise by 2019?

      • I think Mosher suggested a long time frame for CO2 sensitivity. How about for SLR as well?

      • JHC – 3 year time-frame for sea-level measurement?
        Bzzzzzzzzt.
        Thanks for playing.
        Try looking over 40 year and get back to us.

      • JCH,

        You’re dreaming, as is the author of the chart. A tenth of a millimeter is about four thousandths of an inch – roughly the thickness of a human hair. Your graph shows values to 1/100 of a mm. Nonsense.

        Cumulative errors in the most up to date satellite altimetry amount to 20 cm at best. Climatologists apply the Mosher Method, and also average away furiously – all to no avail, in real terms. More pablum for the childlike masses.

        Read up on satellite altimetry and real physics, if you wish. I’m right, as far as facts go.

        Cheers.

    • http://www.tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_global_station.htm?stnid=680-140

      I would like to see a reconciliation between this one site in Sydney showing .65mm/yr trend since 1886 and any of the other global altimetry systems. Where is the acceleration in SLR? And while they are at it, throw in the dozens of other locations around the world with significantly lower trends of the NOAA tidal gauge data than the spurious 6.65mm/yr trend.

    • It represents that since the Saral mission started, its seasonally adjusted rate is 6.65mm per year. I doubt that disagrees with any of the other missions over that time frame.

      El Nino is part of the climate. Nobody depends on it. La Nina has been dominate in the 21st century. Koolers have depended on it!!! Lol.

      • La Nina years:
        2008
        2010 – 2011
        ENSO neutral years:
        2013
        2014
        El Nino years:
        2009 – early 2010
        2015
        2016

    • The essential thing is to stand close and look only to the right. Eyes right, I said! I saw you all peeping left…Now move closer…eyes to the right…I’m serious! This is science! Stand close and eyes RIGHT!

  11. New (low) estimate of the climate sensitivity [link] …

    I can see that model being elaborated as more studies of energy flows (dynamics) are reported. Bates considers tropical vs extratropical responses; next add in oceanic vs terrestrial (making 4 compartments, or what he calls “dimensions”); then add in the three surface cooling processes (radiative, advective/convective, evapotranspirative) to make a 12 compartment model. I don’t think the empirical evidence is there yet to support such a complex model (the Romps et al result, strictly speaking, may only apply to a section of the terrestrial NH extratropical region, though it could apply to the terrestrial SH extratropical region as well.)

    If you add in “slabs” of ocean and “strata” of atmosphere, you can easily get a large dimensional compartment model, increasingly complex as more energy transport processes and their rates are studied empirically. As with all modeling, it requires testing against out-of-sample data, but I think that represents a step forward in modeling.

    Thank you again Prof Curry for a link to an interesting paper.

  12. Not-so-noble-cause-cli-sci. Shukla’s inquisition held
    to account. Schadenfreude. )

    Docs and emails here, and elsewhere on the web, released
    under under Freedom Of Info.
    http://junkscience.com/2016/05/court-allows-climate-skeptics-access-to-rico20-profs-e-mail/

    • It feels just like yesterday when our State dept. cheered the bloom of the ‘Arab Spring’.

      http://www.infowars.com/scenes-from-the-venezuela-apocalypse-countless-wounded-after-5000-loot-supermarket-looking-for-food/

      Today it is already raining in Latin America.

    • beththeserf, thank you for the link.

    • Even after being advised by an expert in the anti-tobacco company RICO case that the chances of a climate investigation by the Dept of Justice were slim-to-none, and after their attempt to enlist the Union of Concerned Scientists in their plan was rejected, Profs Shukla and Maibach proceeded with their demand for a broad RICO case, using their professional affiliations and connections in furtherance of their goal.

      They “strongly endorsed” Sen. Whitehouse’s partisan campaign against “fossil fuel companies and their allies” and the RICO20 letter referred specifically to “supporters” of fossil fuel companies. Although Prof. Shukla apparently was new to the game of influencing policy through written advocacy, Prof. Maibach is a highly experienced expert in carefully worded communications. Thus, it’s hard to blame individuals who disagree on the science and/or policy for feeling the RICO20 letter was directed at their livelihood and expressive freedom.

      Rather predictably, Shukla and company tried to backpeddle their rickety bike as it headed toward a cliff. Good luck with that.

      Sen. Whitehouse Op-Ed, May 29, 2015:

      Fossil fuel companies and their allies are funding a massive and sophisticated campaign to mislead the American people about the environmental harm caused by carbon pollution.

      In the case of fossil fuels, just as with tobacco, the industry joined together in a common enterprise and coordinated strategy. In 1998, the Clinton administration was building support for international climate action under the Kyoto Protocol. The fossil fuel industry, its trade associations and the conservative policy institutes that often do the industry’s dirty work met at the Washington office of the American Petroleum Institute.

      RICO20 letter, September 1, 2015:

      Dear President Obama, Attorney General Lynch, and OSTP Director Holdren,

      One additional tool — recently proposed by Senator Sheldon Whitehouse — is a RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act) investigation of corporations and other organizations that have knowingly deceived the American people about the risks of climate change, as a means to forestall America’s response to climate change.

      We strongly endorse Senator Whitehouse’s call for a RICO investigation.

      If corporations in the fossil fuel industry and their supporters are guilty of the misdeeds that have been documented in books and journal articles…

      Shukla letter, October 2, 2015:

      Our letter never once makes reference to individuals, be they scientists or bloggers, instead suggested an ‘investigation of corporations and other organizations’ such as oil and coal lobby groups.

      In conclusion, we stand by our request that corporations and other organizations that have knowingly deceived the American people about the risk of climate change be investigated to determine if they knowingly deceived the public about climate science. And we wish to be clear that we are not suggesting that scientists or bloggers should be investigated for expressing their beliefs.

    • Fascinating reading. This goes well beyond naivety; they appear to have absolute convictions of being both morally and scientifically right regarding a major imminent threat to society, plus that there *is* a nefarious enemy deliberately opposing our salvation. Ultimately, the pressure of these convictions is what pushed them into rash and inappropriate advocacy.

      • This all ties into John Robertson’s comment lower on the thread: arguments against the “precautionary principle”:

        https://judithcurry.com/2016/05/14/week-in-review-science-edition-41/#comment-784324

        In foreign policy the precautionary principle manifests itself as the doctrine known as “preventitive war,” the doctrine that Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld used to justify Iraq War II.

        The precautionary principle in foreign affairs first began to gain ground in U.S. foreign policy with the CIA’s infamous “Team B” that Ford set up in 1968.

        Previewing what would become known as Dick Cheney’s “one percent doctrine,” Team B interpreted threats with the smallest probability of occurring as likely to occur.

        — GREG GRANDIN, Kissinger’s Shadow

        Reinhold Niebuhr wrote in 1952 that he feared

        that our “technocratic” tendency to equate the mastery of nature with the mastery of history could tempt us to lose patience with the tortuous course of history. We might be driven to hysteria by its inevitable frustrations….

        The certainty of the foe’s continued intransigence seems to be the only fixed fact in an uncertain future. Nations find it even more difficult than individuals to preserve sanity when confronted with a resolute and unscrupulous foe….

        In the present situation even the sanest of our statesmen have found it convenient to coform their policies to the public temper of fear and hatred which the most vulgar of our politicians have generated or exploited. Our foreign policy is thus threatened with a kind of apoplectic rigidity and inflexibility. Constant proof is required that the foe is hated with sufficient vigor….

        There is no simple triumph over this spirit of fear and hatred. It is certainly an achievement beyond the resources of a simple idealism. For naive idealists are always so preoccupied with their own virtues that they have no residual awareness of the common characteristics in all human foibles and frailties and could not bear to be reminded that there is a hidden kinship between the vices of men the most vicious and the virtues of even the most upright.

        The American situaiton is such a vivid symbol of the spiritual complexities of modern man, because the degree of American power tends to generate illusions to which a technocratic culture is already too prone.

        This technocratic approach to problems of history, which erroneously equates the mastery of nature with the mastery of historical destiny, in turn accentuates a very old failing in human nature: the inclination of the wise, or the powerful, or the virtuous, to obscure and deny the human limitations in all human achievements and pretensions.

        — REINHOLD NIEBUHR, The Irony of American History

      • What Lew and crew invariably forget in their conspiracy ideation nonsense is that the really crazy conspiracy theories are based on the fact that the believers have no evidence for their theories and hold that very lack of evidence as proof that someone is hiding it. So you get such nonsense as the claiming that the oil companies are funding ‘denial’ when most of them are publicly promoting CAGW and are heavily invested in wind or solar power. Meanwhile they accuse skeptics of being conspiracy nuts for pointing out where alarmists have been CAUGHT lying, committing fraud, or other nefarious acts.

  13. Josh’s version of Ed Hawkins temperature ‘death spiral’ says it all. A little ridicule goes a long way.

  14. Causal inference in statistics: an overview [link]

    Very good for its length (42 pp). Pearl is one of the masters, possibly the master of this approach to causal inference.

  15. CSIRO, Church, and SLR. The science is settled meme continues to have consequences down under. SLR alarmist sacked. Warmunists outraged when their chickens come home to roost.

    • David L. Hagen

      CSIRO says it’s not firing scientists, it’s re-balancing CEO

      Changing focus and re-skilling, not walking away from climate research, says . . .
      CSIRO Chief Executive Larry Marshall’s rebuttal opens by saying that “the overall number of people in CSIRO is projected to be unchanged at the end of a two year period.” . . .
      Marshall also says he feels CSIRO will retain significant capacity in its Oceans and Atmosphere business, which will go from 420 staff to “about 355”, a higher number than has been reported.
      The CEO also writes that CSIRO will “also recruit new people with new skills.”
      He goes on to say that the changes are being made in the name of innovation.

      Finally some pragmatic reality sets in.

    • Yes, it IS interesting that when someone gets sacked from a climate science post, it very much depends on that persons views on climate change as to whether or not people are “outraged” by the sacking – or so it seems to me, because I do not remember the “outrage” from the same noisy bunch when another climate scientist got sacked while overseas, and that one didn’t even get any notice, just gone!

  16. Ed Hawkins: Spiralling global temperatures from 1850-2016 (full animation) [link]

    That’s cute!

  17. Try to spot the pause in Ed Hawkins spiral. Then look at Josh’s deranged skeptical view of the pause. Very telling.

    • Low trends from the maxima in 1998 are rightly held to account.
      High trends starting from low values in 1880 are also not relevant.

      Trends since 1945 cover the period of significant CO2 accumulation.
      Trends since 1979 include a fourth measurement set ( MSU ).

      Other periods are interesting, but not ones I consider relevant to AGW discussion.

  18. “Science: New scrutiny for a slowing conveyor [link]”

    I tried to log in to Science” yesterday to read the article when I first saw the abstract, no dice.

    Does anybody have a copy of the full article you can share?

  19. “Gut feelings”

    And we know what comes out of guts.

  20. Brad Keyes has a long satirical parody at Climate Skepticism that is wickedly funny and perceptive all the way through:

    https://cliscep.com/2016/05/12/my-year-as-a-skeptic-muller-diaries-prove-controversial/

  21. David L. Hagen

    Tokyo Tectonics
    Real science with $trillion implications.
    New Plate Discovery May Force Japan To Review Quake Plans: Report

    If a quake measuring 7.3 on the Richter scale were to hit the Tokyo region in the evening rush hour, it would kill 13,000 people and inflict 1.1 trillion dollars in damage, according to a government estimate released in February.
    The geological structure of the Kanto region, which includes Tokyo, is complex with the interaction of the Philippine, Pacific and Eurasian plates, but Shinji Toda argued the portion of a plate believed to be part of the Philippine plate was indeed an independent tectonic plate, Kyodo News Agency said. . . .The previous big quake that hit the Kanto region occurred in 1923, leaving 142,807 people dead or unaccounted for.

  22. Re Slowing Atlantic conveyer. Encouraging. “Scientists are (building) the largest effort yet to monitor the Atlantic conveyor belt – powerful ocean currents with far-reaching effects on the global climate … that has “mysteriously slowed” over the past decade…key to understanding the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC), how it is affected by climate change….(m)odels suggest that… I truly hope that the effort will provide enough data to allow conclusions to be robust rather than relying on models which may be little more than untested deterministic hypotheses or guesses. We need better information and better understanding to reduce the significant degree of uncertainties in climate change…. in spite of the talking point story line 97% certainty (Senator Reid invoked it AGAIN this week in “open topic” presentation on the Senate floor. The rhetoric (not just the 97% talking point / storyline but all such rhetoric) needs to be challenged each and every time… and it’s happening in our schools with the Common Core curriculum on climate change.

    • David Wojick

      The new, alarmist climate change standard, being adopted by many states, is the Next Generation standard, which is not Common Core. Nor are any of these curricula. The curricula for each state and school, plus the textbooks, still have to be developed. K-12 education in the US is a very big system, involving many millions of people.

  23. Anatomy of a failed paradigm

    For much of the later 20th century, the standard, consensus paradigm for the settlement of the Americas was the Clovis First hypothesis

    Known as “Clovis First,” the predominant hypothesis among archaeologists in the latter half of the 20th century had been that the people associated with the Clovis culture were the first inhabitants of the Americas. The primary support for this was that no solid evidence of pre-Clovis human inhabitation had been found. According to the standard accepted theory, the Clovis people crossed the Beringia land bridge over the Bering Strait from Siberia to Alaska during the period of lowered sea levels during the ice age, then made their way southward through an ice-free corridor east of the Rocky Mountains in present-day Western Canada as the glaciers retreated.[38]

    There were, of course, “contrarian” challenges to this theory:

    Preserved amid the bromeliad-encrusted plateaus that tower over the thorn forests of northeast Brazil, the ancient rock art depicts fierce battles among tribesmen, orgiastic scenes of prehistoric revelry and hunters pursuing their game, spears in hand.

    “These were stunning compositions, people and animals together, not just figures alone,” said Dr. Guidon, 81, remembering what first lured her and other archaeologists in the 1970s to this remote site where jaguars still prowl.

    […]

    Researchers here say they have unearthed stone tools proving that humans reached what is now northeast Brazil as early as 22,000 years ago. Their discovery adds to the growing body of research upending a prevailing belief of 20th-century archaeology in the United States known as the Clovis model, which holds that people first arrived in the Americas from Asia about 13,000 years ago.

    “If they’re right, and there’s a great possibility that they are, that will change everything we know about the settlement of the Americas,” said Walter Neves, an evolutionary anthropologist at the University of São Paulo whose own analysis of an 11,000-year-old skull in Brazil implies that some ancient Americans resembled aboriginal Australians more than they did Asians.

    But even as late as 2004, there were deniers insisting that the traditional paradigm was “the only coherent explanation for data derived from geology, climatology, paleontology, archaeology, linguistics, and molecular genetics.”:

    Currently fashionable theories envision multiple pre-Clovis migrations including Transpacific or coastal voyages by Australians, Melanesians, or Ainu, and even a Transatlantic migration by Caucasoid Solutreans from Iberia. However, close examination of these theories will reveal their factual and logical weaknesses. The Clovis First model remains the only coherent explanation for data derived from geology, climatology, paleontology, archaeology, linguistics, and molecular genetics. Indeed, the most recent findings from each of these disciplines, far from challenging this model, actually provide additional support for it.

    […]

    Claims of human occupation as early as 50,000 BP at Pedra Furada in Brazil ([ref.]) are no longer taken seriously by North American archaeologists. Having now scrutinized Parenti’s report on the excavations (Parenti 2001), I must admit that some 15 or 20 of the illustrated stones indeed look like authentic pebble tools. However,with the appearance of the Serra Talhada industry at ca. 10,500 rcbp, there is a sudden shift from quartzite to chalcedony, and for the first time in the sequence, the artifacts are finely chipped and unambiguous. Even if one were to accept (as I would not) the human manufacture of the older chipped cobbles, the abrupt assemblage change would imply population replacement, not evolution in place (as Parenti himself would surely acknowledge). Furthermore, this break in the sequence is too early to correspond to the supposed Australoid to Mongoloid population replacement that Neves (see below) would date at about 9000-8000 rcbp.

    So how did they get there? Unicorns! (H/T Steven Mosher)

    Note the appeals to irrelevant objections and specious rationalizations. Sort of reminds me of the objections of supporters of the IPCC “consensus” paradigm to science about solar influences, network theory, and especially the “stadium wave”.

    Fast-forward to 2012: The Clovis First Theory is put to rest at Paisley Caves

    Then to 2013: Disputed finds put humans in South America 22,000 years ago

    Now, Pre-Clovis occupation 14,550 years ago at the Page-Ladson site, Florida, and the peopling of the Americas by Halligan et al (follow the link for full author list) Sci. Adv. 2016; 2 : e1600375 13 May 2016

    Stone tools and mastodon bones occur in an undisturbed geological context at the Page-Ladson site, Florida. Seventy-one radiocarbon ages showthat ~14,550 calendar years ago (cal yr B.P.), people butchered or scavenged a mastodon next to a pond in a bedrock sinkhole within the Aucilla River. This occupation surface was buried by ~4m of sediment during the late Pleistocene marine transgression, which also left the site submerged. Sporormiella and other proxy evidence from the sediments indicate that hunter-gatherers along the Gulf Coastal Plain coexisted with and utilized megafauna for ~2000 years before these animals became extinct at ~12,600 cal yr B.P. Page-Ladson expands our understanding of the earliest colonizers of the Americas and human-megafauna interaction before extinction.

    The parallels to the currently failing IPCC-sponsored CAGW paradigm are plain.

  24. An august climate theologian is being made to look for a new job (or “walk the plank”, as they say in the case of august theologians). I think they call this cruel treatment a Clexit.

    Australians know that posh green Malcolm Turnbull had to make all sorts of concessions to the snips/snails/puppy dog tails branch of the coalition before he got the top gig.

    But this is so short sighted!

    The seas will be rising by trivial amounts, mere dribbles, as in tedious reality, unless we continue to pay our choicest minds to model them upward!

    On a minor note, observe how the environment editor of the SMH is photographed with his head tilted in lofty exasperation. The Fairfax press is renowned for that. (I know the Guardian has got some great tilters too, but our guys always get the angle so perfect.)

    Fairfax used to have its Rivers of Gold, a near monopoly on classified advertising across Australia. They could afford to indulge all sorts of angry teenie boppers and ageing Trots on staff. Now the ads are gone to the cybersphere and Fairfax are left with just the boppers and the Trots.

    • Sadly it seems today that graduates of the U.S. Naval Academy are OK with ‘whatever floats your boat’ and at the same time they are very concerned about displacement. Topsy-Turvy world everywhere we look.

    • Mosomoso

      Australia seems to have joined Europe according to the Eurovision song contest organisers. Their song was almost as bad as ours. However, I hope you win as that would entail all the pious European countries expending huse sums of carbon in order to get to oz. I would like to see how they would justify that! Good luck..

      Tonyb

      • It’s probably due to one of those free trade agreements which take thirty years longer because it’s the EU. They’re so serious about freedom they never rush into it.

        Anyway, if Eurovision comes to Sydney we can promise them more camp than even Conchita can handle.

        If it goes to Canberra (sort of like Brasilia, but with sheep around it) that may be the last time they rig the contest for Oz. They’ll volare out of here and never volare back.

      • Ukraine came from far behind due to the public part of the vote. I still don’t understand it. Bit of a surprise. 1944: a rather serious political song. Also in typically Euro style, there was an intermission dance about the refugee crisis. Great show overall, but very European.

      • Jimd

        Very European. Which is why the Brits largely pour scorn on it. It is like entertainment from the sixties. More to the point Australia was narrowly beaten. You must admit it would have been great entertainment as the right on carbon conscious countries of Europe tried to justify a trip to the other side of the world in order to participate in a supposedly Eurovision song contest!

        Tonyb

      • Euro-vision 1960’s. Kinda UN prescient hey?

      • In Ukraine’s case it was the backstory, which we didn’t get from here in the US. The song itself was not the best. The one I liked was Poland, which also had a big leap between the jury points and the public vote. I heard that if Australia had won, they would have partnered with a European host city.
        This is more on the Russian backlash to the song.
        http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/eurovision-ukraine-russia_us_57388cb3e4b077d4d6f35021

      • jimd

        there are two rules for Eurovision;

        the first is that the songs must be very bad

        the second is that they should not be political

        whilst Ukraine effortlessly complied on the first, it surely didn’t on the second.

        I wonder if mosomoso or Beth can put us all up if Australia now win through the disqualification of Ukraine and we decide to visit?

        You will need to start rowing now, as clearly you wouldn’t want to get on a carbon guzzling jet…

        tonyb

      • Never mind the songs. The show is very glitzy with every effort being put into the look and stagecraft. This is probably where Russia got the points to get in the top 3. Corny Swedish hosts completed the set. In the US, Logo TV, on the internet, did a fine job too.

    • By the way, whatever happened ter Chris Turney?

      • I think he’s off selling his biochar to the Esquimaux. Less sea ice in the Arctic…but, if there’s any at all, Professor Turney will get stuck in it.

      • Turney, a kind of inverted Mawson of the north ?

      • Peter Lang

        Beth,

        Thanks for the Sandy Shaw video. Wonderful. What a walk down memory lane. It is so much easier to sit and enjoy watching a view that stays focused on the person and the expressions instead of jumping every 2 seconds from one shot to another of which most are off the subject.

      • A pleasure, Peter. If I was a Brit, I’d use it as a BREXIT
        campaign song … or that other Eurovision song by ABBA,
        ‘Waterloo.’ )

  25. Russ Roberts, who interviewed Judith for his Econtalk podcast is intervewed in today’s Wall Street Journal.

    When All Economics Is Political
    The dismal science has too much junk science, says Russ Roberts, an evangelist for humility in a discipline where it is often hard to find.

    “How do you know macroeconomists have a sense of humor? They use decimal points.”
    … “I’m not saying facts don’t matter. I’m not saying evidence doesn’t matter,” Mr. Roberts maintains. “I’m not saying economics is a waste of time. It’s a wonderful way to help you organize your thinking about how the world works.”

    http://www.wsj.com/articles/when-all-economics-is-political-1463178093

    Substitute “Climatology” for “Economics.”

    • Yep.

      Instead of “When All Economics Is Political,” a much more fitting title would be “When All Science Is Political.”

      • Excellent link.

      • aplanningengineer,

        But of course, climatologists are far more scientific than economists, aren’t they?

        Cheers.

      • Flynn -As a sideline observer I think they have a lot in common, partrticularly as regards gaining undeserved credibility through “mathiness”. The major difference I see is that (likely due to rewards structures) economists advance and advocate a diversity of alternative and competing views – while climatologists benefit from consensus. Please note-I am referring to benefits for the practitioners, not the body of knowledge or understandings around these subject fields. The later is harmed by outside forces pushing for premature consensus.

      • aplannningengineer,

        Maybe the difference between climatologists adhering to a concensus, and economists holding divergent views, might be due to their paymasters.

        Economists are actually employed (I use the word loosely), from time to time, by private employers.Their fortune telling abilities supposedly give their employers some fiscal advantage. Doesn’t seem to work out so well most of the time, as far as I can see.

        As to climatologists, they produce nothing of value except CO2 and other fertilisers. Hence, I assume they are employed (again using the word loosely) by Governments, in one way or another. Obviously, many economists are also employed by Governments, where they exhibit the same productive abilities as climatologists, by and large.

        Cheers.

      • That essay in Aeon is…tired, shall we say. Most of it is about the history of astrology and there is almost nothing of an evidentiary nature to tie that history to modern economics. Which is not to say that lots of people don’t misunderstand and/or oversell the uses of mathematics and statistics in economics. But it seems to fall into that genre of complaint going back to the 18th century when political economy was born as a distinct field–“how dare you impose logical or empirical discipline on my humanistic maunderings.”

  26. Causal inference in statistics: An overview

    Does this one look like another tea-leave-reading-using-math method?

  27. David L. Hagen

    Celebrating Richard Feynman – and Henry F. Schaeffer III
    The Feynman birthday article linked to: Richard Feynman on Science vs. Religion and Why Uncertainty Is Central to Morality with this fascinating quote:

    Western civilization, it seems to me, stands by two great heritages. One is the scientific spirit of adventure–the adventure into the unknown, an unknown which must be recognized as being unknown in order to be explored; the demand that the unanswerable mysteries of the universe remain unanswered; the attitude that all is uncertain; to summarize it — the humility of the intellect. The other great heritage is Christian ethics — the basis of action on love, the brotherhood of all men, the value of the individual — the humility of the spirit. . . .
    How can we draw inspiration to support these two pillars of Western civilization so that they may stand together in full vigor, mutually unafraid? Is this not the central problem of our time?

    For those interested in exploring further, I recommend one of today’s great scientists Henry F. Scheffer, III who wrote:
    Science and Christianity: Conflict Or Coherence? Dr. Henry F. Schaefer’s university lectures have been expanded to full-length essays. That grew out of his lecture: Scientists and Their Gods I highly recommend both.

  28. Peter Lang

    Very interesting. ECS = 1.0
    Ray Bates, 2016, Estimating Climate Sensitivity Using Two-zone Energy Balance Models

    The wise, rational, objective, top scientist Richard Lindzen is looking better and better as time progresses. Pity the CAGW alarmists, policy analysts policy makers and media haven’t been listening, eh?
    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/2015EA000154/epdf

    • PL, as much as I admire Lindzen (he consented to read and then spend a full day with me at MIT critiquing the climate chapter of Arts of Truth back in june 2012, six weeks before he went emeritus, and 4 months before the book published), fact remains the Bates study is observationally flawed. As is LC11 upon which Bates relied.
      I don’t think clinging to flawed papers is helpful. There are many more flawed warmunist papers. That does not mean there are no flawed skeptical papers. Just like I don’t think claiming CO2 is not a GHG, or it is already saturated, is helpful.
      That sort of stuff just feeds the ‘skeptics are flat Earthers’ meme.

      • ristvan: I don’t think clinging to flawed papers is helpful.

        No one is clinging! As soon as reliable improvements over LC11 are published, I am sure that they will be used in models, Bates’ models and others..

      • Peter Lang

        Rud,

        Thank you. I was waiting to hear the critiques. At the moment I don’t understand what the fundamental flaw is, but look forward to hearing it. I accept you are probably correct (it’s too low compared with ECS from observational analyses), and given your comment, I will not forward this to others.

  29. For Richard Feynman’s birthday, @JamesGleick on the source of The Great Explainer’s genius [link] …

    “Knowledge was rarer then. A secondhand magazine was an occasion. For a Far Rockaway teenager merely to find a mathematics textbook took will and enterprise. Each radio program, each telephone call, each lecture in a local synagogue, each movie at the new Gem theater on Mott Avenue carried the weight of something special. Each book Richard possessed burned itself into his memory.”

    I´m not so sure that knowledge was rarer then – there´s really much unknowledge out there now.

  30. Climate sensitivity. What say all – was the list of 13 scientists to question a reasonable one? Is it at least an adequate sample? I see that Nic Lewis was not included for some reason. Nor was James Annan…
    “(Let’s ignore the lukewarmers (~1.5), is what all real climate experts seem to agree on.)” All real climate experts.

  31. John Robertson

    “Why Cliff Mass is a very dangerous weather person” the argument raised in this article is that even though the evidence is not in for human caused global warming that we should still embrace the precautionary principle and reduce carbon emissions.

    Utter nonsense. You can choose any subject and apply a precautionary principle to it that will expose how ridiculous it is:

    There was an old man in France who used to get up every morning at five A.M. He would then go and sprinkle a white powder on the roads.
    When he was asked what he was sprinkling on the roads, he answered that it was elephant powder.
    The person then remarked “But everybody knows that there are no elephants in France!” to which he answered “I guess it must be working then!”

    Reductio ad absurdum

  32. John Robertson

    For more arguments against the precautionary principle start here

  33. John Robertson

    If the HTML link doesn’t work – cut and paste this…

    http://www.law.uchicago.edu/files/files/149.crs_.precaution-new.pdf

  34. OIA E-Mails: Politically Inexperienced, Publicity-Hungry Scientists Get Burned In Political Arena

    http://notrickszone.com/2016/05/14/foia-e-mails-politically-inexperienced-publicity-hungry-scientists-get-burned-in-political-arena/#sthash.uKyFU6r7.dpu

    The released emails are intriguing, to say the least. In following the debates on climate change, I have long been struck by how obviously intelligent people can, at times, sometimes often, have a profound disconnect with reality.

    “This letter has caused concern among some scientists who do not agree with the scientific consensus on human caused climate change, including some we consider to be friends, because they misinterpreted our letter. Somehow – perhaps as a result of gross mischaracterizations of our letter by climate denial bloggers – these scientists came to see our letter as calling for criminal investigation of scientists who reject the scientific consensus on climate change. This is not at all the case. Our letter never once makes reference to individuals, be they scientists, or bloggers, instead suggested ‘investigation of corporations and other organizations’ such as oil and coal lobby groups.”

    It is first interesting that Shukla, who respects colleagues he considers to be friends enough to refer to them as “scientists who do not agree with the scientific consensus on human caused climate change, but when referring to bloggers who do not agree with the scientific consensus on this issue, he refers to them as “climate denial bloggers”. He appears unwilling to demonize his friends, but more than willing to demonize strangers who disagree with him.

    Secondly, it is interesting that Shukla respects his colleagues he calls friends enough to avoid demonization, but not enough to consider that perhaps his letter actually does what many of his critics claim it does, instead more willing to believe these colleagues of his are easily influenced by a handful of bloggers.

    Third, and here the disconnect with reality is extremely disturbing, Shukla seems convinced that attacking corporations and organizations is not the same as attacking individuals. Of course, there are plenty of people around, including Bernie Sanders, who love to scream “corporations are not people”, but unless Shukla is arguing he wanted the Justice department to investigate the buildings and properties of corporations and organizations instead of the people in them, and I sincerely doubt that, this absurd disconnect with reality raises serious questions.

    When a scientist demonstrates this kind of disconnect, and Shukla does it in several emails, claiming he is politically naive and claiming he doesn’t follow the news and blogs unless someone has sent a specific link, what kind of disconnect with reality is happening when Shukla is interpreting the science?

    Shukla presented to his comrades in arms the Whitehouse op/ed, representing it as credible evidence, despite the fact that the last paragraph in Whitehouse’s rant was an admission that he had no evidence to support his accusations, naivete is no excuse for failing to discern the difference between an op/ed piece, and an article by investigative journalist. There is reason that NYTimes published Whitehouse’s, and Oreskes and Naomi Wolfe’s campaign to demonize Exxon in the editorial section of the paper instead of the news section, and this shouldn’t have to be explained to Shukla, who, after all, was advised by several people that the RICO strategy was likely a nonstarter, but he ignored this and published the letter anyway.

    • John Carpenter

      “instead more willing to believe these colleagues of his are easily influenced by a handful of bloggers.”

      Not influenced, deceived. Just like what Exxon did, deceived the public about the “truth” of AGW. (A truth they apparently new in the 1970’s way way ahead of any consensus). It wasn’t RICO20’s poor writing communication skills, it was otter people not reading it correctly cuz the bloggers made them confused. It only takes a “handful of bloggers” to totally derail progress needed to act on AGW. Amazing how such a small percentage of folks on the fringe can have such a huge impact.

      This quote from Ed Maibach says it all…

      “p.s. I suppose it is obvious, but the people who are filing these requests have every intention of trying to hurt Shukla and me. We’ve been told that quite directly by people indirectly involved in the action.”

      Did you catch that? He was told quite directly by people indirectly involved. Priceless.

      • Just like what Exxon did, deceived the public about the “truth” of AGW. (A truth they apparently new in the 1970’s way way ahead of any consensus).

        That looks like slander to me. What they did was point out the uncertainties, which was perfectly correct. They aren’t the ones guilty of deception.

      • John Carpenter

        AK, there is a good deal of tongue and cheek in my comment that does not come across as very obvious. I think Maibach and Shukla basically waded into a shark tank and for that they reaped what they sowed. Maibach and Shukla made the mistake of blaming others for mucking up the communication works for not understanding what they actually wrote instead of owning it and telling everyone to bone up on what RICO can and can’t do. It’s like trying to blame Exxon for deceiving the public about AGW instead of the scientific consensus community owning their message and doing a better job to reach folks about it.

        Then Ed plays the victim card and what he wrote is simply laughable.

      • OK, if it was a sarcastic pseudo-quote, I stand corrected. Quite a few people around here are saying that seriously.

      • It is not just poor writing or communications skills, although that is a very serious problem with the CAGW advocates, it is their interpretation of reality that is truly disturbing. How do we trust people’s interpretation of science or data when they appear to genuinely believe that attacking and slandering business people is perfectly acceptable, after they acknowledged doing the same to bloggers and skeptic scientist isn’t? How do we trust their interpretation of the science when they are so willing to not just wade into the legal theater, but pretend they understand it, after they were advised by the very people they sought advice from to consider other avenues, because their strategy was not tenable?

        This incident is more damning to the CAGW movement than Climategate was, and Shukla and Maibach are not the only people who will have to face the music. Oreskes has been pushing the RICO strategy since at least 2012:

        Establishing Accountability for Climate Change Damages

        http://www.climateaccountability.org/pdf/Climate%20Accountability%20Rpt%20Oct12.pdf

        In this summary of that conference, reading it you will find very similar exchanges about applying RICO to climate change policy resisters as can be found in the emails of Shukla and Maibach. That conference is filled with people who were and continue to conspire to slander EXXON and “other organizations” who resist climate change policies. This isn’t just about frustrating FOIA requests, this is about people who are attempting to act under color of law – this is why Shukla claims the tobacco incident demonstrates a “clear precedent” – in order to deny and deprive other people of their rights. These are private people who are trying to use government force to screw other people. So, this nonsense that all these people only want to save humanity from themselves is a house of cards that crumbles under the weight of the their RICO fantasies.

        Besides Shukla, and Maibach, Sheldon Whitehouse, Naomi Wolfe, and David Sasoon are all people who have much to answer for.

      • I would like to know what the mentor guy Bill Novelli, thinks about the whole thing. If he’s a big wheel with AARP, he must have the pulse of seniors?

      • John Carpenter

        It’s the problem many people see when scientists mix advocacy with their life work. Judy has expressed concern about how this harms climate science when it happens. I agree it is not optimum. It’s is a poor way of communicating for scientists. When they take the advocacy communication step…
        – They should not be surprised when people question their work.
        – They should not be surprised when people question their objectivity to the subject.
        – They should not be surprised when they are attacked personally by those who don’t agree with their advocacy.

        It’s a different arena they have entered, but just because they take that step does not mean their work is bad or not objective. That can only be determined through scientific scrutiny over time. If you dismiss their work based solely on their advocacy, you will run the risk of being subject to the same kind of bias fingered at them by those crying advocacy.

      • “It’s a different arena they have entered, but just because they take that step does not mean their work is bad or not objective. That can only be determined through scientific scrutiny over time. If you dismiss their work based solely on their advocacy, you will run the risk of being subject to the same kind of bias fingered at them by those crying advocacy.”

        In terms of policy it is wholly relevant and their interpretations of reality should be weighed. I fully agree with you about the science, and no, I shouldn’t dismiss it as not being science, and in my defense I am not. I am concerned about how this science, that clearly needs some correction and messy back yards cleaned up, is being used to drive through dubious policies.

      • Jim D | May 16, 2016 at 8:00 pm |
        There was Hansen’s testimony in 1988, and then an IPCC report in 1990, and it was already accurately stated there.

        Huh? Say what?

        Do you mean “Ice Free” Hansen?

        Do you mean an IPCC who thinks the 1°C ECS is 1.5-4.5°C, can’t be below 1.5°C “highly unlikely”, and can’t narrow the range after a quarter century of work?

        You are just illustrating the dearth of “reliable sources” on climate issues.

        A pack of “Chicken Littles” and “Boys crying Wolf” is not proof of a problem.

      • Where were you, or any of the skeptics for that matter in 1990? That was the science from the experts, and it was accepted. It took a decade for the skeptics to get organized behind their new thinktanks, some of which sprung naturally from pro-tobacco outfits.

      • Jim D, For me all it took to CHANGE my mind was when I read the AGW entrails in November, 2009. You are too good to read them, what?

      • Negative water vapor feedback.

        Jim D | May 16, 2016 at 9:05 pm |
        Where were you, or any of the skeptics for that matter in 1990? That was the science from the experts, and it was accepted.

        Yeah, and it was wrong.

        Persecuting Exxon for not getting hysterical about a non-problem is going to set a precedent for persecuting the consensus scientists for fraud..

        All President Trump has to do is ask to get all the government emails. If Trump wants to unwind the global warming hysteria and prosecute scientific misconduct it is pretty much a done deal. The FBI will be finished with Hillary and have time on their hands..

      • The last 60 years of data, during which we have had 75% of our emissions, strongly supports AGW, and at a rate of over 2 C per doubling. The foresaw it in 1990, and they saw it come to pass 25 years later.
        http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/gistemp/from:1950/mean:12/plot/esrl-co2/scale:0.01/offset:-3.25

      • Jim D | May 16, 2016 at 10:52 pm |
        The last 60 years of data, during which we have had 75% of our emissions, strongly supports AGW

        Enjoy. You will have fun for about 8 more months. Then you won’t have pretty graphs like this for at least 4 years.

        Next year that graph will look a lot different.

      • PA, the “pause” is in that graph, and the last 25 years was dominated by a 17-year pause. Can you even see it? Same with the next one, if it happens, but, as you suggest, 2016 will be a new favorite starting point for “skeptics” trends. Forget the pause that started in 1998. That was no good. Let’s try the one from 2016. Yeah. That’s the ticket.

      • “p.s. I suppose it is obvious, but the people who are filing these requests have every intention of trying to hurt Shukla and me. We’ve been told that quite directly by people indirectly involved in the action.?

        I caught it and wondered why CEI (which has been a vociferous “skeptic” of climate change science) would be requesting the email except to engage in a fishing expedition to catch mischief. I don’t see any other reason that makes sense to me. It seems more logical to me than “priceless.”

    • What sparked this off was a series of reports based on journalistic research. They do have a factual case here with a lot of supporting documents and witnesses, and it is not to be forgotten. The case is summarized well here.
      http://insideclimatenews.org/content/Exxon-The-Road-Not-Taken

      How that journalistic effort got started is documented here. It is interesting background.
      http://insideclimatenews.org/news/10112015/how-we-got-exxon-mobil-climate-change-science-story-subpoena-investigation

      • “What sparked this off was a series of reports based on journalistic research.”

        I have read the articles by Inside Climate News and the collaboration between the Columbia School of Journalism and the L.A. Times, have you?

        What is striking is how they both “independently” offer up the same “evidence” (have you bothered to look at what they are calling “evidence”?) but of course, if it was actually evidence, then the Justice Dept. would most certainly begin investigating.

        It has not been forgotten, I have read those so called “supporting documents”, and by the way, so had Sheldon Whitehouse, who was inspired by those “investigative journalists” to write the op/ed piece, but as it is in law, so should it be here. In law, the rules of statutory construction require that each and ever word be given significance, so let us apply that principle to Whithouse’s op/ed:

        The fossil-fuel industry’s campaign to mislead the American people

        https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-fossil-fuel-industrys-campaign-to-mislead-the-american-people/2015/05/29/04a2c448-0574-11e5-8bda-c7b4e9a8f7ac_story.html

        Take, for example, this paragraph:

        “The shape of the fossil fuel industry’s denial operation has been documented by, among others, Drexel University professor Robert Brulle. In a 2013 paper published in the journal Climatic Change, Brulle described a complex network of organizations and funding that appears designed to obscure the fossil fuel industry’s fingerprints. To quote directly from Brulle’s report, it was “a deliberate and organized effort to misdirect the public discussion and distort the public’s understanding of climate.” That sounds a lot like Kessler’s findings in the tobacco racketeering case.”

        Pay strict attention to how Whithouse quotes Kessler, who flat out accuses the fossil fuel industry of “a deliberate and organized effort to misdirect the public discussion and distort the public’s understanding of climate.”

        However, please take note that before Whitehouse quotes Kessler, he himself couches his own language only claiming that it “appears designed to obscure…” If Kessler is so damn credible why is Whitehouse couching his language in a way that protects him from slander suits? Sheldon Whitehouse may be an idiot but he’s not stupid. I suspect, however, he is counting on his reader to be stupid, even though he ends his piece with this:

        “To be clear: I don’t know whether the fossil fuel industry and its allies engaged in the same kind of racketeering activity as the tobacco industry. We don’t have enough information to make that conclusion. Perhaps it’s all smoke and no fire. But there’s an awful lot of smoke.”

        Was that not clear enough for you, Jim? Maybe not clear enough for Shukla and Maibach?

      • Yup. It’s a bunch of filthy pseudo-journalism. IMO the only reason it’s not a good case for slander is that they don’t actually accuse Exxon of doing anything illegal. It’s all a bunch of slippery semantic sleight-of-hand, switching the supposed “certainty” in and out according to their audience’s preconceptions.

        There’s no sign of any misbehavior in the “evidence” they adduce. As anybody willing to actually slog through it with an open mind will see.

      • Pseudo-journalism would not have reports and witnesses from the organization itself that testify to a shift in tactics. Most other oil companies did not engage in their tricks to mislead politicians and shareholders. They singled themselves out in this behavior. It looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, and is best not just ignored so that they can just get away with it.

      • I am not sure what happened to my original reply to you Jim, but let me try this without the links.

        I have read the documents that Inside Climate News, and the L.A. Times in collaboration with the Columbia school of Journalism provided. It is striking how both “investigative” reports produce the exact same “evidence”. There is nothing damning in those documents and this is precisely why Sheldon Whitehouse used the language he did, and precisely why the New York Times published this in the Opinion section.

        In law, the rules of statutory construction require that each and every word be given significance. I urge you, Jim, to read, or reread if that be the case, Whitehouse’s piece. Pay close attention to how he relies on others to make direct accusations while he couches his language with text like “it appears”, and pay close attention to his final paragraph, an undeniable disclaimer and admission that there is no evidence of a fire, only smoke.

      • “It looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, and is best not just ignored so that they can just get away with it.”

        If there is no fire and only smoke, there is a likelihood that someone is blowing smoke.

      • They were funding a disinformation campaign for political and economic purposes, and there is evidence of that. They knew very early that the science would lead to emissions reductions policies, and even took part in that science and produced their own projections. After being very solidly in the mainstream, they dropped that program and started to drift into pseudo-scientific areas that would be more convenient for them in the political arena.

      • “They were funding a disinformation campaign for political and economic purposes, and there is evidence of that.”

        By all means, show us this evidence. Point the specific documents that incriminate Exxon, not the articles, but the documents themselves, they are readily available to read, and your insistence that the evidence exists implies you’ve read the evidence, so please, show us this “evidence”.

        “They knew very early that the science would lead to emissions reductions policies, and even took part in that science and produced their own projections.”

        Of course they did, Jim. It was very easily to predict such a thing after the implementation of the IPCC. Their taking part in the process does not incriminate them of any criminal activity or any wrong doing and certainly not injurious.

        “After being very solidly in the mainstream, they dropped that program…”

        Who can blame them? Why should anyone be obligated to stay with mainstream views when those views are increasingly hostile to that someone?

      • “They were funding a disinformation campaign for political and economic purposes, and there is evidence of that.”

        Prove it. Stop making unsupported claims and stop linking to articles that do the same and show us this evidence.

      • You think they didn’t fund the thinktanks and politicians to claim the opposite of the consensus? Does CEI ring any bells?

      • JimD

        Can I respectfully suggest you read the papers and books on the state of climate science during the 1970’s? In particular I would recommend those by Lamb and Budyko.

        There were swing in the sixties from a pretty wide consensus that the earth was cooling and concerns over a forthcoming LIA and by the mid 1970’s uncertainty reigned as the 30 year long drop in temperatures had reversed itself. The 1970’s was an era of uncertainty which by the end of the decade had formed the opinion that temperatures were more likely than not rising but still with dissenting voices.

        Exxon were merely reflecting the research priorities and the uncertainties of the time. they did NOT know for certain what was happening and why.

        It was into the 1980’s and then the eventual set up of the IPCC that certainty grew that man was probably responsible for some of the temperature increase.

        You must view the research of the time in its proper historical context and not blast EXXon for wrong doing merely because you don’t like oil companies. They were not omnipotent.

        tonyb

      • The actual language from Shukla and Maibach is quoted above at https://judithcurry.com/2016/05/14/week-in-review-science-edition-41/#comment-784352.

        The weak case against Exxon is well demonstrated by the overblown outrage expressed by climate activists against sensible, cautious statements by company executives. Here is one of their smoking gun graphics (I only link, it’s a big image):
        http://insideclimatenews.org/content/exxon-science-vs-misinformation

        Climate activists appear shrill and silly when they convict first and gather evidence later:

        …we stand by our request that corporations and other organizations that have knowingly deceived the American people about the risk of climate change be investigated to determine if they knowingly deceived the public…

        Shukla might rue the day he brought scrutiny upon his own double-dipping incomes. And Maibach demonstrated the limits to his own communications expertise and his own willingness to disregard the advice of experts for personal political purposes.

        Petard, hoist, etc.

      • There is a difference between not knowing and supporting the opposite of the scientific consensus in congressional proceedings. It is no coincidence that the part of congress that doesn’t believe the consensus is also the Republican part en bloc, while in the public the lines are not so sharp. It is a purely political move to go against what the science says. Links to the FF industry are easy to find, and are what this case is about. One of the linked ICN articles is subtitled “Collaborating with the Bush-Cheney White House, Exxon turned ordinary scientific uncertainties into weapons of mass confusion.”, so it spread into the executive branch too by the 2000’s.

      • jimd

        you said

        ‘Exxon turned ordinary scientific uncertainties into weapons of mass confusion.”, so it spread into the executive branch too by the 2000’s.’

        Where is your evidence for this?

        As I remarked just above you;

        ‘You must view the research of the time in its proper historical context and not blast EXXon for wrong doing merely because you don’t like oil companies. They were not omnipotent.’

        tonyb

      • It is a purely political move to go against what the science says.

        I’m glad you agree it is a constitutionally protected activity to lobby for (in public and private) regulations that you support — or against those you oppose. Otherwise, we’d have to toss most climate activists in jail…

        What did Exxon do first? They studied an issue that might impact the company down the road.
        What did Exxon do next? They assessed the likelihood of anti-fossil fuel regulations arising in response to climate change.
        And then what did Exxon do? They argued against various regulatory concepts that they felt would hurt the company’s profits. And they promoted the views of those that were more supportive of Exxon’s position. Shocking!

        I know this kind of thing frightens the horses but there is nothing illegal or untoward about it. This breathless blog bashing is a convenient rallying point but I haven’t seen any behavior that is even close to creating culpability for Exxon (including at the links you provided).

      • If this goes the way of tobacco, no one gets fined or goes to jail, they just cease and desist and start stating, instead of denying, the consensus side in public statements, but it may take a decade to get there.
        http://www.dwlr.com/blog/2011-05-12/rico-convictions-major-tobacco-companies-affirmed

      • Perhaps it would help if someone could explain what Exxon did wrong.

        Claiming that they had certain knowledge of CAGW 40 years ago is foolish. We don’t have certain knowledge of CAGW today.

        Disagreeing with a mostly left wing political viewpoint isn’t a crime either.

        They researched an issue. They concluded CO2 would cause some indeterminate amount of warming. They reduced their footprint a little.

        The specifics required for a CAGW scenario still haven’t been proven (high forcing, high future CO2, high harm from warming). In fact none basics required for CAGW have been proven. CO2 appears to cause a little warming. Big whoop. Global warming is a threat somewhere between a puppy dog you would adopt as pet, and a full grown wolf. That range of outcome isn’t even actionable information.

        So what exactly did Exxon do wrong?

      • Jimd

        I read your inside climate news link. It all seemed horribly biased. I then checked up on another story of theirs about the UK and solar power. As that was incorrect it did not give me confidence that their Exxon reporting would be any better.

        I found this

        http://www.exxonmobilperspectives.com/2015/11/19/more-backtracking-by-insideclimate-news/

        Any comments on it?

        Tonyb

      • It is good you read that, because now you know where the case against Exxon is coming from. Interesting to see Exxon’s perspective, but what else would they say at this point? It is their own documents that we are looking at here. This is not about them opposing policy, which they can do of course. It is about them misrepresenting science to make their case for not doing anything. Big Tobacco found out you can’t misrepresent science in order to keep selling your products.

      • “You think they didn’t fund the thinktanks and politicians to claim the opposite of the consensus? Does CEI ring any bells?”

        It does not surprise me that when I ask you to prove your claims of a “disinformation campaign” by giving evidence, that you respond with a disingenuous question.

        Let’s back up a bit and go back to addressing you original claim in this particular thread, that the whole Shukla scandal was “sparked…off” by a “series of reports based on journalistic research.”

        There is no evidence that Shukla relied upon any “series of reports based on journalistic research”. Indeed, there is evidence that Shukla had no idea that a website such as Inside Climate News even existed, as the emails reveal Shukla claiming that he does not read newspapers and websites unless a specific article or content had been brought to his attention. We know from reading his emails that obviously Sheldon Whitehouse’s opinion piece was on his radar, but this is the only content that Shukla, or Maibach acknowledge.

        So, when you link to Inside Climate News, ironically implying this website is a news site that is known for its “journalistic research”, you are making claims based on “facts” not yet entered into evidence. You have no evidence that Shukla had read the “series of reports”. But since you have raised the issue of Inside Climate News, so let us enter some facts into evidence.

        Jim, you have accused Exxon of engaging in a “disinformation campaign”, but here are some pertinent facts about Insideclimatenews:

        http://insideclimatenews.org/about/our-funders

        Who is Common Sense Fund?

        “The Common Sense Fund promotes action both on the environment and in the arts that is practical, creative, and addresses social needs.”

        http://commonsensefund.org/

        Who is the Educational Foundation of America?

        “The Environmental Grantmaking Program at EFA seeks to address climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the United States.”

        “For example, EFA’s grantee partners rallied to bring media attention, legal scrutiny, and advocacy to shine light on Duke’s negligence. One year later, Duke was charged with criminal negligence and settled a $102 million payment.”

        http://www.theefa.org/environment/

        Who is the Ford Foundation?

        “I’ve come to Paris to see whether governments will agree to cap their carbon pollution. Emissions into the atmosphere from burning oil and coal are heating the planet. But what many don’t know is that after oil and coal, the greatest source of carbon pollution is from clearing forests. If tropical deforestation were a country, its emissions would be greater than those of Europe.”

        https://www.fordfoundation.org/ideas/equals-change-blog/posts/how-securing-community-rights-can-help-fight-climate-change/

        That was just one single article from the Ford Foundation to give you a clue about its very vociferous advocacy of climate change painful policies.

        Who is the Grantham Foundation?

        “The Grantham Foundation seeks to raise awareness of urgent environmental issues and supports individuals and organizations working to find solutions. Our grantmaking supports communication and collaboration in environmental protection, with an emphasis on climate change.”

        http://www.granthamfoundation.org/

        The Knight Foundation?

        http://www.knightfoundation.org/blogs/knightblog/2015/3/31/urban-tech-startups-and-cities-future/

        The only thing that you have been able to get right about this situation, Jim, is that there has been a well funded disinformation campaign afoot, you just can’t seem to see that well funded disinformation campaign.

      • Shukla’s letter was in support of what Whitehouse was doing, which was a RICO investigation. In October Whitehouse used the ICN info as more justification for needing this investigation to focus on Exxon, but he had made more generic comparisons of Big Fossil to Big Tobacco in May 2015 prior to ICN, and Shukla’s letter was in September at a similar time to the ICN reports. So the letter traces to Whitehouse’s statements about RICO, which in turn trace to several previous books and reports on the parallels to Big Tobacco that were well known by then.
        Listing organizations that support the scientists does not make your case for you because the precise point is those that try disinformation against the science.

      • catweazle666

        Jim D: “It is about them misrepresenting science to make their case for not doing anything.”

        Really?

        Given that the science is even now not even remotely settled – never mind 40 years ago, what science were they misrepresenting?

      • There was Hansen’s testimony in 1988, and then an IPCC report in 1990, and it was already accurately stated there. The majority of the warming was from GHGs, leading to the conclusion that emissions policies could have significant effects. It led to the 1992 Kyoto Protocol. “Skepticism” was slow out of the gate, and made little if any showing back then. Exxon made enormous efforts at “skepticism” over the next couple of decades, but it was ultimately a losing battle, and we got Paris in 2015. Meanwhile Exxon has started backing the consensus and the AGU in their latest climate statements, which is possibly why the AGU accepts their money despite some protests. They have changed, I’ll give them that, but is it just a cover?

      • “Shukla’s letter was in support of what Whitehouse was doing, which was a RICO investigation.”

        This is demonstrably false.

        “Section 1961(10) of Title 18 provides that the Attorney General may designate any department or agency to conduct investigations authorized by the RICO statute and such department or agency may use the investigative provisions of the statute or the investigative power of such department or agency otherwise conferred by law. Absent a specific designation by the Attorney General, jurisdiction to conduct investigations for violations of 18 U.S.C. § 1962 lies with the agency having jurisdiction over the violations constituting the pattern of racketeering activity listed in 18 U.S.C. § 1961.”

        ~9-110.100 – Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO)~

        Sheldon Whitehouse is a Senator. The Attorney General does not have the authority to “direct” any Senator to investigate. Whitehouse has the authority himself to hold hearings on the matter, but he hasn’t, all he has done is engage in a political campaign, and Shukla’s letter was in support of that, not in support of this imaginary “RICO investigation”.

        “In October Whitehouse used the ICN info as more justification for needing this investigation to focus on Exxon, but he had made more generic comparisons of Big Fossil to Big Tobacco in May 2015 prior to ICN, and Shukla’s letter was in September at a similar time to the ICN reports.”

        On Tuesday of October 20, 2015, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse gave a speech addressed to the president. This is the speech you are referencing, in terms of Whitehouse’s reference of ICN. It was a speech, not an announcement explaining why he was investigating Exxon under RICO. This was not the case because Senator Whitehouse is not involved in any “RICO investigation”. Evidence of this abounds, including that speech you are referencing:

        “I rise today for the 115th time to urge that we wake up to the threat of climate change.”

        “Scrutiny of the corporate campaign of misinformation intensifies, and scrutiny of the fossil fuel polluters behind it intensifies, and the regular cast of right-wing, climate-denier attack dogs have got their hackles up.

        On May 6, I gave a speech here on the Floor. The speech compared the misinformation campaign by the fossil fuel industry about the dangers of carbon pollution to the tobacco industry’s misinformation campaign about the dangers of its product. ”

        “This is not an idea I just cooked up. Look at the academic work of Professor Robert Brulle of Drexel University and Professor Riley Dunlap of Oklahoma State University. Look at the investigative work of Naomi Oreskes’s book Merchants of Doubt, David Michaels’s book Doubt is Their Product, and Gerald Markowitz and David Rosner’s book Deceit and Denial, describing the industry-backed machinery of deception.

        Look at the journalistic work of Neela Banerjee, Lisa Song, David Hasemyer, and John Cushman Jr. in the recent reporting of InsideClimate News about what ExxonMobil knew about climate change versus the falsehoods it chose to tell the public. Look at a separate probe by journalists Sara Jerving, Katie Jennings, Masako Melissa Hirsch, and Susanne Rust in the Los Angeles Times.”

        ~Sheldon Whitehouse – 10-20-2015~

        It is simply ignorance of the law that compels people to claim Whitehouse is involved in a “RICO investigation”.

        “Listing organizations that support the scientists does not make your case for you because the precise point is those that try disinformation against the science.”

        In truth, and in fact, I listed grant givers that are funding Inside Climate News, and it is a gross mischaracterization of the facts to call that “organizations that support the scientists.” What that list does is demonstrate that Inside Climate News is a well funded organization largely funded by foundations who openly proclaim to have interests in using public policy and legal scrutiny as a method of achieving their goals.

        If in fact, there is only smoke and no fire, then when the smoke clears, and Exxon and CEI are able to successfully gain dismissals of these subpoena’s for want of subject matter jurisdiction, and heads begin to roll, much more scrutiny will be placed upon the disinformation campaign that “sparked this off”.

      • OK, so you are saying that calling for a RICO investigation is not the same thing as doing a RICO investigation. Is that it? Was this investigation started regardless of what Whitehouse asked for? This begs the question, who started it if not Whitehouse? Obviously I haven’t been keeping up, and I might have missed a step. Maybe it was the 20 scientists who instigated it with their letter to Obama and Lynch. Here’s one of them recently.
        http://watchdog.org/261374/alan-betts-rico-free-speech/

      • “OK, so you are saying that calling for a RICO investigation is not the same thing as doing a RICO investigation. Is that it? Was this investigation started regardless of what Whitehouse asked for?”

        There is no RICO investigation, you’re making that up.

        Schniederman’s investigation into Exxon is based on the pretext that Exxon may have lied to their investors about risks oil companies face because of climate change. It is not a RICO investigation.

        Under New York States Martin Act, Schneiderman has a wide breadth of jurisdiction to initiate this kind of investigation. This is why Exxon did not challenge Schneiderman, but when Claude Walker of the Virgin Islands did the same, both Exxon and CEI slapped back. Claude Walker has no jurisdiction and is acting upon his own private beliefs under color of law, which is why he has already back off and it appears as if he is about to withdraw his subpoena’s.

        In January of this year, the L.A. Times reported that Kamala Harris of California initiated an investigation, but as to what sort of investigation, the Times had this to say:

        “It is unclear what approach Harris intends to take in California’s investigation.”

        Magicians convince their audience they are “magic” through misdirection. They point the audiences attention in one direction while they work out the mechanics of their trick and when the audience looks back, lo and behold you have unicorns!

        Sheldon Whitehouse pointed in one direction, and Schneiderman, Walker, Harris and others worked out the mechanics of their trick and you saw unicorns.

      • The first line of the article I linked said “As more than a dozen states investigate energy companies over an alleged global warming coverup”. If this is not a RICO investigation, what is your preferred term for it?

      • “This begs the question, who started it if not Whitehouse?”

        Raises the question, not “begs the question”. Begging the question is an informal fallacy where the premise assumes the conclusion is true.

        In answer to the question you’ve raised see my post above.

      • “The first line of the article I linked said “As more than a dozen states investigate energy companies over an alleged global warming coverup”. If this is not a RICO investigation, what is your preferred term for it?”

        First, read the quote you just referenced. There is no mention of RICO. Secondly, I have laid out in painstaking detail how, at this point, there is no RICO investigation. If you do not understand these details, then speak to them so I can help clear this up for you. AG’s investigate all the time, you can’t possibly imagine that every time they do they are involved in a RICO investigation.

        Go back to the 9-110.100 – Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) I cited earlier and take the time to read it over carefully, then do some research for yourself so you can better understand what RICO actually is.

      • Thanks, not RICO, just other various types of suspicious stuff. I see. Were the skeptics wrong to be so concerned about RICO investigations, or can they still happen?

      • “Thanks, not RICO, just other various types of suspicious stuff. I see. Were the skeptics wrong to be so concerned about RICO investigations, or can they still happen?”

        If there is any “suspicious stuff” no one knows, including you. If these investigations (fishing expeditions) actually manage to find any “suspicious stuff” then they will move forward using the courts, and then you would be justified in explaining to people that Exxon is being tried over “suspicious stuff”. If these investigations go no where then obviously there wasn’t any “suspicious stuff”.

        The skeptics are rightfully concerned about all of this, not just RICO, because it very strongly appears to be people using “legal scrutiny” as a way to inure fossil fuel companies, and “other organizations” (i.e. CEI). AG Walker of the Virgin Island demanding CEI’s donor list is just one example of injury done. Donors now have to worry that their funding of CEI will embroil them in highly political witch hunts. Prudence would suggest to simply decline to donate to CEI until all this smoke clears.

        I, like many of the people who advised Shukla and Maibach to not pursue their strategy, do not see any credible RICO case being made.

      • ” …because it very strongly appears to be people using “legal scrutiny” as a way to inure fossil fuel companies….

        Sorry, should be “ensure”.

      • These are described as “coverups”, so if they are covering up what the science says, they are closely related to RICO, but which law they use comes down to the purpose of the coverup.

      • Quick Jim. Blame Exxon!

        A group of construction unions threatened to boycott a big new Democratic get-out-the-vote operation this fall unless a wealthy opponent of climate change is barred from it.

        http://nyti.ms/23VnTqs

      • “These are described as “coverups”, so if they are covering up what the science says, they are closely related to RICO, but which law they use comes down to the purpose of the coverup.”

        “These” what? What “these” are described as “cover-ups”? Described by whom?

        A “cover-up” is an attempt to conceal evidence, whether that be evidence of wrong doing, or some kind of error, or incompetence.

        This is why I have been so skeptical that you have even bothered to read the links you provide. Perhaps you skimmed over them and then took it upon faith they are valid “investigative reports”, but there is no doubt in my mind that you are unable to demonstrate any evidence of a “cover-up” by Exxon or CEI.

        I suspect you are taking a Goebellian approach to this and are simply using this thread to continually repeat falsehoods loud enough and long enough in a tragic belief that people will come to believe them. The Goebellian approach can only work, however, after your adversaries have been silenced, not before.

      • The article I quoted already described the investigations as being about coverups.
        http://watchdog.org/261374/alan-betts-rico-free-speech/
        I don’t think it is any coincidence that these appear to have started about the time ICN said Exxon were funding multiple efforts against taking the scientific consensus at face value despite having believed that at one time themselves, so it is no stretch to say that the alleged coverups are related to that. However, I think Exxon have already stopped those practices, and now only need to disavow them completely to help their case, especially since their management has changed in 2006, which is after most of what they are accused of. This group do seem more reasonable on the science when you look at their climate statement and support of the AGU.

      • “The article I quoted already described the investigations as being about coverups.”

        Vermont climate scientist says RICO investigations not attack on free speech

        “As more than a dozen states investigate energy companies over an alleged global warming coverup, Vermont “RICO 20” professor Alan Betts says backers aren’t engaged in an anti-free-speech witch-hunt.”

        Alleged definition: (of an incident or a person) said, without proof, to have taken place or to have a specified illegal or undesirable quality.

        It is tragic that needs to be explained to anyone, but for clarification sake, Alan Betts is one of the RICO20 activists who conspired with Shukla and Maibach. So far, all the article has done is cite Alan Betts and what he alleges.

        “Last week, top attorneys led by New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and former Vice President Al Gore announced a collective effort to investigate Exxon Mobil over environmentalist claims that the company misled the public about its role in climate change.”

        “over environmentalist claims”. Do you need that spelled out for you, Jim? This is why you had to link that article again, because you have no evidence of any “cover up” you are just parroting what those RICO20 activists are saying. Sure, Schneiderman is parroting them too, but just how soon do you expect to hear back from Schneiderman on the results of this fishing expedition?

        Continuing:

        “Among those present was Vermont Attorney General William Sorrell, who said his office may join the investigation.

        Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt blasted the investigation as a “publicity stunt,” and touted a 27-state lawsuit to fight the Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan. West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, appearing on the Inside Shale Weekly radio program, responded, “You cannot use the power of the office of the attorney general to silence your critics.”

        It is odd, Jim, that you would use this link to defend your stubborn insistence that there is some kind of evidence of a “cover-up” when other AG’s who see no “cover-up”, but instead see a “publicity stunt” are being quoted in this article as well. Are you under the impression that the law is partisan? Did you simply omit the admission that not all state AG’s agree with the tentative dozen because of Derek Smith’s political affiliation or did you not get past the first two sentences?

        “The actions are backed by the “RICO 20,” a group of 20 climate scientists that urged President Obama and U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch to use the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act against fossil fuel companies, especially Exxon Mobil. Jagadish Shukla, a climate dynamics professor at George Mason University, and leader of the RICO 20, has been investigated by Congress for possible abuse of $1.5 million in taxpayer grants.”

        Did you read that paragraph? While other AG’s may disagree with these “publicity stunt” seeking AG’s, at least there are 20 climate scientists who back them up, no? It matters not that the ring leader of the RICO 20 has been investigated by Congress “for possible abuse of $1.5 million in taxpayer grants”. I suspect, somehow, that you are able to understand what “allegedly” means when accusations of wrongdoing by Shukla are made, just not when they are made about business people and free market advocates.

      • It wasn’t Betts alone or even the RICO 20, alleging those things. It was the state attorneys, and yes alleging, not convicting. This is the normal way a case starts. They see a case to be made based on evidence so far. A few subpoenas will be done as a follow-up, then we shall see what happens next. As Betts said, it is not a case about silencing anyone. It is about Exxon’s deceit regarding global warming. Deceit is a form of dishonesty that can be illegal depending on who it influenced and whether there is gain from it. The hardest thing to prove may be whether they gained anything or just tried and failed, and can they be convicted when their deceit failed to fool anyone? This is an interesting question. For my part, I don’t actually care how the case goes because Exxon have already reformed how they speak about the science (at least publicly) under their new CEO, which is unlike the tobacco companies that went all the way to the courts. Is it too little, too late? We’ll see.

      • “However, I think Exxon have already stopped those practices, and now only need to disavow them completely to help their case, especially since their management has changed in 2006, which is after most of what they are accused of.”

        What practices? You keep alleging generalities. Do you mean to say that Exxon has stopped the practice of “cover-ups”, or maybe you mean they’ve stopped violating RICCO statutes. Or maybe the crime is not really something to worry about until after Exxon has been convicted. Convicted of what? Who knows? They must be guilty of a crime though, because 20 climate scientist (20 because we’re calling Ed Maibach one) say they are.

      • “This is the normal way a case starts. They see a case to be made based on evidence so far. A few subpoenas will be done as a follow-up, then we shall see what happens next.”

        Could you give us your definition of “normal”? “a few subpoenas will be done as a follow-up”? If this thing actually manages to move past this phase, then the AG’s will use discovery to compel Exxon and all pertinent parties to hand over evidence and these rights of discovery are broad, not just “a few” as some kind of “follow up”.

        Why are you pretending like you understand the legalities involved? It is clear you do not?

      • Perhaps you can also update us on the Shukla case. That seems to have gone quiet.

      • Yep. Of course it has gone silent, Jim. Do you imagine the very same media that has been hyping this RICO strategy wants the public to know that an internal audit of Jadadish Shukla by GMU, obtained by congressional investigators appears to reveal Shukla’s double dipping, in violation of that GMU’s policy?

        “The professor, Jagadish Shukla, received $511,410 in combined compensation from George Mason University and his own taxpayer-funded climate change research center in 2014 alone, without receiving required permission from university officials, the audit found.”

        —————————————————————————————-

        “The committee’s investigation has revealed serious concerns related to Dr. Shukla’s management of taxpayer money,” Smith writes in the letter, a copy of which was obtained by The Daily Signal.”

        “Since 2001, Shukla used his research center to pay himself and his wife more than $5.6 million in compensation, “an excessive amount for a nonprofit relying on taxpayer money,” Smith writes.”

        In the letter, Smith offers to assist Allison Lerner, the National Science Foundation’s inspector general, in any investigation she “may deem appropriate” in response to the GMU audit.”

        http://dailysignal.com/2016/03/02/house-probe-reveals-audit-detailing-climate-change-researchers-double-dipping-with-taxpayer-funds/

      • Exciting stuff. Keep on it. We can only wonder why he chose the join the debate if he has shaky finances. Seems fairly foolish, if true. This is the kind of thing they got Salby for, and he had to leave the country to continue to work.

      • “Exciting stuff. Keep on it.”

        I will do my best. You may be interested in reading the letters sent to the state AG’s investigating Exxon by the HCSTS:

        Quotes from the letter to Kamala Harris from the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology:

        “According to media reports, efforts to instigate an investigation such as the one announced by the Green 20 on March 29 date back to at least back to 2012 and are the result of a “four year, coordinated strategy by environmental organizations and trial attorneys.” (3) In June 2012 the Climate Accountability Institute (CAI) and the Union of Concerned Scientists convened a workshop on “Climate Accountability, Public Opinion and Legal Strategies” in La Jolla, California. The workshop attendees included UCS Director of Science and Policy Peter Frumhoff and activist trial attorney Mathew Pawa, founder of the Global Warming Legal Action Project.”

        “The goal of the 2012 workshop was to develop a “strategy to fight industry in courts” as well as find ways to address what workshop attendees believed to be a “network of public relations firms and non-profit ‘front groups’ that have been actively sowing disinformation about global warming for years” According to the workshops report a necessary component of the strategy was to bring “internal industry documents to light” Workshop attendees then proceeded to identify ways to procure documents that they admittedly did not know existed. (e.g. “many participants suggested that incriminating documents may (emphasis on the may) exist)

        ————————————————————————————

        “The strategy decided upon by workshop participants appears clear: to act under the color of law to persuade attorneys general to use their prosecutorial powers to stifle scientific discourse, intimidate private entities and individuals and deprive them of their First Amendment Rights and freedoms.”

        The letter goes on to describe a meeting between Pawa, and representatives of 350.org and Greenpeace at the Manhattan offices of the Rockefeller Family Fund to develop a strategy that would “establish in the public’s mind that Exxon is a corrupt institution that has pushed humanity (and all creation) toward climate chaos and grave harm” and “to drive Exxon & climate into the center of the 2016 election cycle” (11).

        The letter then describes one final meeting involving Pawa and Frumhoff briefing Gore and the AG’s who comprise the Green 20, explaining to Kamala Harris that it has since come to light that NY AG Schneiderman failed to disclose this fact.

        The letter is, of course, a transparency request from the House Committete and is quite the illuminating read.

        https://science.house.gov/sites/republicans.science.house.gov/files/documents/05.18.16%20SST%20Letter%20to%20CA%20AG.pdf

        The same letter was sent to the other 16 AG’s, which include the Virgin Islands, Connecticut, D.C., Iowa, Illinois, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, RI, Virginia, Vermont and Washington.

      • I happen to agree that a disinformation campaign by Big Fossil needs to be brought to light, so good job those people. They succeeded.

      • “I happen to agree that a disinformation campaign by Big Fossil needs to be brought to light, so good job those people. They succeeded.”

        It is disturbing to see how your own bias affects your reading comprehension. What “they succeeded” in doing is bringing light to their own disinformation campaign, not Exxon’s.

        These AG’s are now being investigated by Congress. Private persons would have had a hell of a time getting these AG’s to comply with FOIA’s and transparency, and I don’t doubt these AG’s will try to resist Congress and claim bipartisan politics (as if their coordinated campaign has not been), but the wheels of justice are, as they always do, slowly turning. What you are salivating for in anticipation is only going to disappoint you, Jim.

      • No surprise about Congress taking that side, right? They supported the disinformation at every opportunity. Smith has gone rogue as science chair, having given himself unilateral subpoena power in an unprecedented move and used it more than anyone has in that position. He’s not a happy camper there, probably sensing that the science is against him.

      • “No surprise about Congress taking that side, right? They supported the disinformation at every opportunity. Smith has gone rogue as science chair, having given himself unilateral subpoena power in an unprecedented move and used it more than anyone has in that position. He’s not a happy camper there, probably sensing that the science is against him.”

        I get that you think that climate science is a registered Democrat, I just don’t get why you think that.

        If I ask you to explain what you mean by “haven given himself unilateral subpoena power”, will I have to keep asking you that question or can you cogently explain what you mean by that. Are you arguing that Lamar Smith did not have the authority to subpoena the NOAA? Are you arguing that Smith did not have the authority to subpoena GMU and Shukla?

      • He changed the rules in January 2015.
        “Previously, consent of the ranking member was required, but the changes gave unilateral subpoena power to the committee chairman. Johnson also noted that the committee under Smith’s leadership has issued six subpoenas, more than were used in its previous 54-year history.” From
        http://www.factcheck.org/2015/11/smith-misfires-on-climate-science/
        Numerous other articles on abuse of subpoena power such as
        https://www.theguardian.com/science/political-science/2015/nov/19/lamar-smith-harassing-climate-scientists

      • ““Previously, consent of the ranking member was required, but the changes gave unilateral subpoena power to the committee chairman. Johnson also noted that the committee under Smith’s leadership has issued six subpoenas, more than were used in its previous 54-year history.”

        “ranking member” should be “Ranking Minority Member”. Now Jim, why do you think a propaganda organization that calls itself “factcheck.org” would omit the word “minority” from that phrase? Just sloppy fact checking maybe? Incompetence, perhaps? Or is “factcheck” willfully omitting the word because it undermines their argument?

        Here is a link to the committee rules, not that I think you’ll bother to read it, but someone may appreciate it.

        The remark about the committee’s 54 year history and lack of subpoenas until lately is irrelevant to who has the authority to issue them. Either a committee member of the Senate, or for that matter, any member of the Senate, does or does not have the authority to issue subpoenas.

      • The point is that both ranking members had to agree to subpoenas before this. You are just diverting and missing this point completely. When one person can issue subpoenas unilaterally, there are no checks and balances against personal agendas, and that is what happened here to explain so many subpoenas by one person.

      • Sorry, forgot to provide that link to House Committee on Science Space and Technology::

        http://science.house.gov/sites/republicans.science.house.gov/files/documents/hearings/Committee%20on%20Science%2C%20Space%2C%20and%20Technology%20Rules%20114th%20Congress%20v2_0.pdf

        Also, a correction to my question of whether a Senator has the authority, since we are talking about Smith a Representative, but same question, does any Representative have the authority to subpoena?

        The answer is yes, they do.

      • A foresighted article about this power grab when it happened in January 2015. Remember this is before Smith started using his newly acquired power.
        http://www.rollcall.com/news/checking_the_house_science_committees_new_subpoena_power_commentary-239722-1.html

      • Checking the House Science Committee’s New Subpoena Power | Commentary –

        That is the headline from your link. Leads people to believe that the HCSTS only recently obtained the power of subpoena. Accidental?

        Here are Andrew Siddon’s first two sentences:

        “What is Congress asking of scientists? I admit it — I don’t spend a lot of time delving into the rules of the House of Representatives.”

        Ya think? Let’s not take his word for it, however, and let us see just what Andrew Siddon does know.

        “The Science Committee chairman is now empowered to “authorize and issue subpoenas” and “authorize the staff of the Committee to conduct depositions” in pursuit of investigations — without agreement from the ranking member. That’s a lot of power, and it’s not clear how it’s going to get used. But given the recent history of committee members and their staffs, I’m worried.”

        Once again, just another person parroting the propaganda, either willfully or if we are take Siddon’s excuse, ignorantly omitting the word “minority” in order to make it appear as if subordinate Representatives can issue subpoenas without asking their ranking member, instead of the truth, which is the Chairman of the House Committee no longer needs agreement from the Ranking Minority Member.

        “But these rules are something else entirely. What do they mean for scientists like me? Could I be subpoenaed to appear before the committee, or compelled to give a deposition, to justify in a political setting the decisions I make in my research?”

        Why not? Did it not occur to Andrew Siddon that if his research is being used to justify political agendas that he could likely have to testify somewhere as to the justification of that research being used for the purposes of political gain.

        Of course, I am a free market advocate who abhors the give away Congress who funds all this begin with. My suggestion is that Siddon and others expecting “taxpayers” to provide them with a living find that living elsewhere and Congress just stop funding science altogether, then some guy heading the House Committee on Science, Technology and Space won’t have any authority to subpoena those scientists….just the state AG’s of which Siddon, I have no doubt supports.

      • Informally they are known as the chairman and the ranking member. You keep complaining about this use of common terms for them even though now you have seen it in two places. Get used to it. Would you like it if the shoe was on the other foot and, in the wake of the Soon thing, Grijalva had been able to subpoena emails from people he suspected of collusion rather than just request them for investigation? Even as it was a lot of people thought it was an overreach. The actual author of the piece, Dr. Rosenberg, credit where it is due, was very prescient in his concern that subpoenas would now be issued if Smith didn’t like a result. It perfectly foreshadowed the NOAA and Karl subpoenas.

      • It perfectly foreshadowed the NOAA and Karl subpoenas.

        The refusal of NOAA to provide the requested documents to its oversight Committee perfectly foreshadowed the subpoena.

        The subpoena power being discussed is an inherent power of Congress under its investigatory and oversight obligations. The delegation of such power to the Committee or to the Chair is a matter for the internal rules of each 2-year Congress. You are discussing a rules change at the Committee level, rather similar in nature to the rules change by Clinton supporters during the recent Nevada caucus.

        If only the Ranking Member had thrown a chair…

      • Dr. Rosenberg saw the Smith subpoenas coming when he changed the rules of his committee, and sure enough…. interference in science. Grijalva is equally to blame for his meddling and the AMS called him out on it. I side with the AMS who calls this stuff out whether it is Smith or Grijalva. Politicians should stay out of it, and just let the scientists deal with disputes among themselves.

      • “Informally they are known as the chairman and the ranking member.”

        The articles you have lined are not internal memos demonstrating an informal discussion between Representatives, or even an attorneys blog where such informality might make sense.

        Factcheck.org has no business using the informal use of Ranking Minority Member, at least not as long as they don’t want to be seen as SloppyFactcheck.org. and the same goes to the Guardian as well. Had either of these two articles first used the proper term then, if the wanted to, parenthetically pointing out that the informal use of the term is ranking member, and from that point on relied on the informal term, that would have been fine, but as it stands, it is just sloppy journalism.

        “You keep complaining about this use of common terms for them even though now you have seen it in two places.”

        I have actually seen in it in three places, and all three places, one of them Andrew Siddon’s highly partisan opinion piece – the same Siddon who admitted up front he had no idea what he was talking about – and I have made it clear my problem with the use of the informality. It is used to mislead the public not inform, and I further echo my original statement in this thread, asking why should anyone trust a scientists interpretation of the science when they are willing to be so informal in formal topics they know nothing about?

        It doesn’t take a whole lot of research to understand the workings of a congressional body or parliament, and when we are currently having scientists – too many who have generated a living on the dime of the “taxpayer” – lecturing the public about how Congress is doing something, while making perfectly clear that this scientist couldn’t be bothered to do any real research on the matter we are listening to or reading idiots who have been given a forum for no other reason than politics. Not science, Jim, politics. That Siddon opinion piece had nothing to do with science.

        I’m going to come back later and address your question regarding Soon and Grijalva.

      • Exactly! Politics not science. None of this going on with subpoenas is about science. Let the scientists deal with the science, and the politicians can look at the results.

      • “Exactly! Politics not science. None of this going on with subpoenas is about science. ”

        I emphatically agree.

        “Let the scientists deal with the science, and the politicians can look at the results.”

        I emphatically disagree! Let the public examine the results, and let the public decide what needs to be done. Caveat, under this established republic, the public’s will can only go as far as the Constitution and state constitutions allow, meaning the majority cannot vote rights are repealed.

      • Sure the public can examine the results, write their own papers for perusal to see if they know anything useful, and we can go from there. The scientific community are part of the public too.

      • “Sure the public can examine the results, write their own papers for perusal to see if they know anything useful, and we can go from there. The scientific community are part of the public too.”

        Going from there, of course, means debating the policy strategies, which is politics. There has long been an amusing tautological structure to the whole CAGW movement that rivals Abbot and Costello’s Who’s on First routine.

      • Difference is: “I don’t know”‘s been arrested and dragged out of the game.

      • We went from there around 1990. The science has not changed appreciably enough to do anything different from then. Certain parts of politics/industry have since tried to develop a partisan resistance, but the science has stayed the course.

      • “We went from there around 1990. The science has not changed appreciably enough to do anything different from then. Certain parts of politics/industry have since tried to develop a partisan resistance, but the science has stayed the course.”

        Science cannot “stay the course” anymore than a ship can do so. Only beings cognizant of where they are going can “stay the course”. This is what I am talking about when I refer to the anthropomorphization of science as if it is some benevolent god with a grand scheme.

        It is that zealotry that tends to blind the true believer of science who desperately wants to believe their science is incorruptible and that their moral purpose is just and good. They cannot recognize their own march towards technocratic tyranny began as a resistance to law, to constitutional constraint and to governments of the people, for the people and by the people. The IPCC was not established because of a populist movement demanding it so and there never has been any mandate for government to investigate why it is that the Global Average Temperature (an abstraction) has risen 1.5 degree centigrade over the past 150 years.

        This politicization of climate science began, at the very least, with Hansen’s dripping in sweat testimony – staged by Senator Wirth – and the creation of the IPCC. The various treatise governments have attempted to hoist upon a public that rightly resists it has never been about the science and has always been about the politics.

      • There was no populist movement for ozone, sulfate or particulate regulations either, but they happened because of the science. Maybe there is a populist movement to save the environment by stabilizing the climate because this is a more serious problem than those were, but it wasn’t started by a populist movement any more than the Montreal Protocol was. Scientists realized the problem, politicians acted. That is how it goes in all these cases.

      • “There was no populist movement for ozone, sulfate or particulate regulations either, but they happened because of the science.”

        No they didn’t, they happened because of politics. The believe that science caused those regulations is delusional.

        “Maybe there is a populist movement to save the environment by stabilizing the climate because this is a more serious problem than those were, but it wasn’t started by a populist movement any more than the Montreal Protocol was.”

        Maybe there is a populist movement only it wasn’t started by a populist movement? I will grant you this, Jim, a characteristic of populism is belief in an encroaching apocalypse, so you’ve got that going for you.

        “Scientists realized the problem, politicians acted. That is how it goes in all these cases.”

        I offer this in reply:

        “Science can-and should inform the legal system about facts, including facts about degrees of reliability and the extent of experimental validity, but the ultimate normative and institutional question of whether and when, if at all, a given degree of validity or reliability is sufficient for some legal or forensic purpose is a legal and not a scientific question.”

        “By discouraging poor science while leaving nonscience untouched, the Daubert revolution may have perversely fostered an increased reliance on the even worse nonscientific evidence that dominates the litigation process by not masquerading as science at all. This problem may not have an easy solution, but its identification suggests that Daubert may have created as many problems as it solved. The revolution in scientific and expert testimony that started with Daubert is thus-or at least should be-far from over.”

        http://scholarship.law.cornell.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=3181&context=clr

      • This is your problem right here, when you said “No they didn’t, they happened because of politics. The believe that science caused those regulations is delusional.” Do you agree with yourself when you read that? How do you rationalize such thinking? Regulations are enacted based on problems to be solved. If there was no problem, there would be no regulation. Regulation follows evidence. Every country acting independently, and to some extent together, have now started to tackle emissions. Science is the unifying factor here, not politics because that remains as diverse as it can be.

      • You’re not making much sense to me right now, Jim. Whatever your complaint is with my assertion that regulations happen because of politics and not science, you have failed to cogently explain what your problem is with that argument.

        If regulations stem from evidence, perhaps you can demonstrate the necessary evidence for some of these regulations:

        1.) State of Texas requiring computer repair technicians to obtain private investigators license.

        2.) Philadelphia’s requirement of bloggers to obtain a “business privilege license”.

        3.) Washington D.C.’s tour guide licensing requirement.

        4.) Texas (again) requiring interior designers to obtain a license.

        5.) The IRS requiring small businesses to file even more 1099’s than before.

        Can you demonstrate the sound science behind those five regulations, Jim?

      • I gave the examples where regulations follow science and you disputed it. Pardon me for thinking you were talking about the subject at hand and not wandering off into your own la-la land. We only have to look at North Carolina and Oklahoma to see where regulations follow prejudice.

      • “I gave the examples where regulations follow science and you disputed it.”

        Exactly Jim, and I dispute it still. Also, take note of your changing language. Regulations that “follow science” do not happen because of science, they still happen because of politics, and you have failed to demonstrate otherwise.

      • If you are saying some politicians are guided by the science and some want to ignore it for other reasons, yes, we do see examples of that. In the end, the correct route is for policy to be guided by scientific evidence, and not by invested interests who profit more from the status quo.

      • “If you are saying some politicians are guided by the science and some want to ignore it for other reasons, yes, we do see examples of that.”

        Nope. Not saying that.

        “In the end, the correct route is for policy to be guided by scientific evidence, and not by invested interests who profit more from the status quo.”

        There are a multitude of flaws with this argument. You’ve demonstrated your unfamiliarity with law several times over throughout this thread, Jim. First, there is no constitutional basis for your claim. The constitution does not empower scientists to direct legislatures. Further, there is plenty of case law to support my argument.

        “However, “a legislative choice is not subject to courtroom fact-finding and may be based on rational speculation unsupported by evidence or empirical data.”

        ~Gallagher v. City of Clayton, 2012 U.S. App.~

        The importance of the case law I just cited in relation to this debate cannot be stressed enough. The 8th Cir. grants a huge deference to the legislature making such declarations:

        “Even if the rationale for the law seems tenuous, the law survives rational-basis review so long as the legislative facts on which the law is apparently based could reasonably be conceived to be true by the governmental decision-maker.”

        Even if the science a legislative was acted upon is junk science, as long as the legislature can show a good faith belief the science was valid, then the legislative act will remain valid despite the junk science it is based upon.

        “The Board relied on a number of studies in enacting the Ordinance, including a report of the U.S. Surgeon General indicating “there is no risk-free level of exposure to secondhand smoke.” Although the Board could have engaged in “rational speculation unsupported by evidence or empirical data” that outdoor secondhand smoke exposure harms health, the Board went further and relied on reports that could reasonably be conceived to be true.

        We need not determine whether outdoor secondhand smoke exposure actually causes harm. Because the City reasonably could believe this to be true, the Ordinance survives rational-basis review.”

        This is why robust debate over the science is paramount before any legislative process begins. This is why people who stand to suffer due to proposed legislation based upon dubious science must act to stop the process before it happens. Their very rights depend upon it.

        Secondly, the hypocrisy that drips off the CAGW advocates as they insist – just like Andrew Sidddon – is pathetic. The insidious belief that they should be funded by taxpayers in order to do research that gives government a “reasonable” basis to expand its authority and that this government should spend nearly $100 billion dollars based upon dubious science, but if private companies and organizations, or corporations fund their own science, this according to the CAGW advocates, is suspect is not just a bad argument, it is a house of cards that easily crumbles.

        No rational thinking person takes this argument, that government funding of science is as pure as a unicorns heart but private business funding of science is as foul as dragon’s breath, seriously. It takes a zealous true believer to keep on keeping on with such silly propaganda. A true believer indeed. Do the CAGW’s genuflect? What would CAGW do?

      • The robust debate has been had. There have been five assessment reports in the last 25 years, all saying that emissions have caused a lot of warming and more emissions will cause even more warming which has consequences. Your own positions stands against the international science and what independent scientific societies and industries say. This is your own problem. Law doesn’t dictate science. It is vice versa in many cases (see any pollution regulation). The EPA are allowed to regulate CO2 as a result of consensus science, so now you have to move on based on that. You may be unhappy that the law has left you behind, but there it is. Accept it. I can’t help you.

      • “The robust debate has been had.”

        No it hasn’t, it has only just begun. Scientists and their acolytes have no legal authority to tell the public when a political debate, even when that political debate is over the science, is over. They have the right to make such declarations, but they have no weight.

        “There have been five assessment reports in the last 25 years, all saying that emissions have caused a lot of warming and more emissions will cause even more warming which has consequences.”

        None of which constitute “robust debate”…not by any stretch of the imagination.

        “Your own positions stands against the international science and what independent scientific societies and industries say.”

        My own position stands with the law, and frankly, you have not seen me making any positive claims in regards to the science. Skeptics do not “stand against international science – unless “international science” is a code word for “global governance”, or any science and demand that scientists demonstrate their claims, and the claims you are making are extraordinary claims. That requires extraordinary evidence not citation of a government bureaucratic reports.

        It has not gone unnoticed, Jim, that you have attempted to link the IPCC to “international science”.

        “Law doesn’t dictate science.”

        Are you sure about that? The laws of physics have no weight in science, do they? The laws of thermodynamics have no force in science, do they? Slow down, brother, breathe and think before you make your proclamations.

        “It is vice versa in many cases (see any pollution regulation).”

        I have already refuted this, and your failure to offer any valid rebuttal to that refutation has not gone unnoticed. You are delusional on this, and are making a mistake of fact, and an erroneous point of law. Science does not dictate pollution regulations, bureaucrats do. This may come as a shock to you, but maps do not dictate geography either. Nor does measurement dictate size or weight. Diagnosis does not dictate illness, nor does it dictate healing or further decline in health. It is folly to think that these things do the dictating. It demonstrate a serious real world disconnect.

        “The EPA are allowed to regulate CO2 as a result of consensus science…”

        “Consensus science” is just politics.

        …so now you have to move on based on that.”

        Nope. You do not get any desert until you’ve done your homework, and pretending like you have and demanding I move one will not work. Now do your homework and get to those extraordinary demonstrations to support your extraordinary claims.

        “You may be unhappy that the law has left you behind…”

        How would you know what the law has done? You need to know something about the law before you can know this. Now do your homework.

      • World government conspiracy ideation just makes you look crazy. Stop doing that. I may as well debate wagathon, if that is where you are at, and I have no patience for that.
        Yes, regulations are informed by science. How do you think the EPA regulates pollutants in the air and water, or the FDA regulates drugs and food standards? There’s a heck of a lot of science to say what is a safe level. Same with CO2. We don’t want 700 ppm, and it is a global problem to solve.

      • “World government conspiracy ideation just makes you look crazy.”

        Stop relying on strawman arguments, they make you look dim.

        “Yes, regulations are informed by science.”

        No, science does not dictate regulations. Stop doing that, stop insisting on being dim.

        “How do you think the EPA regulates pollutants in the air and water, or the FDA regulates drugs and food standards?”

        Explain the science behind the FDA’s black box warning for antidepressants that “may cause suicidal thinking”, and be sure to explain how that science directed the FDA to keep anti-depressants on the market.

        You are only fooling yourself, Jim and your blathering on about losing patience is wearing thin.

        “There’s a heck of a lot of science to say what is a safe level. Same with CO2. We don’t want 700 ppm, and it is a global problem to solve.”

        I suspect you are smarter than your sloppy language allows. By global problem you obviously do not mean it is up to nature to fix the problem, so what do you mean by “global problem”?

      • You have not seen or understood how any scientific evidence got into regulations. It is a complete mystery to you why or how pollutant levels are measured and controlled. Come back when you understand even one example of how science got into a regulation and share it. It’s a pointless discussion if you can’t accept that any science-based policy even exists.
        Do I have to even explain how CO2 levels are a global problem? The sources are global and the effects are global. How much more global can it be?

      • “You have not seen or understood how any scientific evidence got into regulations.”

        No matter how you rephrase it, Jim, science does not dictate regulations, and this fairy tale fantasy of yours where elected and duly appointed officials turn to the wise and noble scientists for wisdom and guidance on what to do and what kind of regulations to implement is simply silly.

        I have explained to you what case law has to say about your opinion, and it is clear that legislatures do not need any empirical evidence or any other form of scientific evidence in order to implement regulations. I cited a single case to keep it simple for you, but you ignored this so that you may continue with your silly fairy tale.

        “It is a complete mystery to you why or how pollutant levels are measured and controlled.”

        What did I tell you about relying on straw man arguments?

        “Come back when you understand even one example of how science got into a regulation and share it.”

        Jim, come back when you understand how constitutions work, how the law works, and who it is that dictates regulations.

        ” It’s a pointless discussion if you can’t accept that any science-based policy even exists.”

        It is pointless to keep arguing straw man arguments. There are policies Jim, that cite as supporting authority scientific evidence, this however, does not mean that the wise and noble scientist went to the legislature and told them they needed to do what the scientists tell them to do. Legislatures use scientific evidence in support of the reason for creating the legislation to begin with, and I demonstrated this when I referenced Gallagher v. City of Clayton. Had you bothered to read what I referenced I wouldn’t have to be explaining this to you now..

        “Do I have to even explain how CO2 levels are a global problem?”

        I asked you to clarify what you mean by “global concern” and now I am asking you what you mean by “global problem”? Come back when you are willing to clarify this.

        “The sources are global and the effects are global. How much more global can it be?”

        Keep waving your hands really wildly, Jim. When all else fails there is always flailing. There is a joke about a young attorney who isabout to try his first case. Nervously he turns to one of the partners he respects for some last minute advice and the elder partner tells the young attorney; “If the facts work against you, argue the law. If the law works against you, argue the facts.” The young attorney nods and mulls this over, then asks; “what if both the law and the facts work against me?” The elder partner smiles and tells him; “Then scream for justice.”

      • The EPA regulate ozone, particulate and sulfate levels in the air, plus levels of things like heavy metals in the water. They measure these things, issue health warnings when needed, and can impose penalties on cities that don’t clean up their air quality. They base this on science, mostly doing their own research or referencing other research. What part of science going into regulations are you disputing? The EPA has this authority. They don’t have to go to state houses to get their pollution levels passed as laws. Not all regulations are laws in your narrow definition of the term. Similarly with water monitoring. Agencies have these as responsibilities and use science to help set limits. Here’s the first example I found of this in effect.
        http://www.bakersfield.com/news/2013/11/14/ozone-improvements-could-end-29-million-penalty.html

      • “The EPA regulate ozone, particulate and sulfate levels in the air, plus levels of things like heavy metals in the water.”

        Nope. The EPA regulates human consumption of goods and products under its jurisdiction. It’s jurisdiction, in terms of regulation, include the Clean Air Act of 1963, of which the air quality and emissions limitation is somewhat toothless, but it’s amended ozone protection (Title VI 1990) gives the EPA jurisdiction to reduce the amount of ozone depleting substanceS (ODS) in use, i.e. freon and chlorofluorocarbons. By using schedules developed by the Montreal Protocol, the EPA works to “phase-out” the use of ODS altogether. In this regard, the EPA is not actually regulating ozone, but the production and importation of it ODS, and this holds true for other harmful pollutants.

        It is not a coincidence that people who treat science as a great and giving god with a grand scheme also treat government agencies as entities that regulate every chemical in nature. People are regulated not things.

        “What part of science going into regulations are you disputing?”

        I listed several above of which you ignored, making this question just another strawman.

        “Not all regulations are laws in your narrow definition of the term.”

        Regulation is no more law than is legislation. Legislation is not law, at best it accurately describes law, at worst it is flat out unlawful. The map is not the territory, at best it accurately describes the territory, at worst it is flat out fraudulent. Why is this so hard for you to understand?

        You are desperately digging this hole of yours in a foolish belief that you can somehow backpedal your remark that science dictates regulations. You want the authority to tell people that science is settled and now everyone has to accept what the scientists told the politicians what to do and “move on”, but if this were true, why is it you can’t move on from the dud of an argument you’re making?

      • It does not have the power to “regulate human consumption”. It regulates atmospheric levels of pollutants whether “consumed” or not. Emission is what matters, not consumption. Their jurisdiction stops at what gets put in the atmosphere. Industries have to figure out how to stop polluting, and in some cases they can still use the same chemicals but with different venting procedures. Same with carbon. If you can capture the CO2, it is fine to use coal, but not otherwise.

      • Virgin Islands AG Withdraws Climate Change Subpoena Against Think Tank

        “still, the Competitive Enterprise Institute will continue to pursue sanctions against Walker in court because the nonprofit believes the attorney general violated its right to free speech.

        “CEI is going forward with our motion for sanctions because Walker’s withdrawal only strengthens our claim that this subpoena was a constitutional outrage from the very beginning, violating our right to free speech and our donors’ right to confidentiality, and threatening the right of all Americans to express views that go against some party line,” said Sam Kazman, the general counsel for the Competitive Enterprise Institute, in a prepared statement.”

        As I have said, this is far from over…

      • “It does not have the power to “regulate human consumption”

        That is the only power the EPA has, and your profound disconnect with reality greatly undermines your reasoning.

        “Section 604 of the Clean Air Act establishes the phaseout targets for Class I ODS. The ban on production and import of halons took effect on January 1, 1994. The ban on production and import of other Class I ODS—excluding methyl bromide—took effect on January 1, 1996. There are several exemptions from the phaseout.”

        https://www.epa.gov/ods-phaseout/phaseout-class-i-ozone-depleting-substances

        You have every right, Jim to tell your little fairy tales, and I will fight to my last breath to defend that right, but why should anyone take an author of fairy tales seriously about the effects of climate change?

      • The EPA are not enforcing the import ban. That would be other government agencies under the act. You don’t have EPA agents searching import containers. Their duty is to monitor the environment, and determine who is breaking the laws that way. I gave you link of an example of how they can use their monitoring to restrict pollution (Bakersfield, CA). They set the levels, yes based on science, monitor and act on what they see.

      • “The EPA are not enforcing the import ban. That would be other government agencies under the act.”

        Okay Jim, it has just gotten to the point of a wise man arguing with a fool, and when that happens it becomes difficult to distinguish the two. If you want to believe that freon and CFC’s are sentient chemicals that obey the commands of the EPA, as does the entire climate, who am I to burst your little red balloon?

      • Rather than the chemicals themselves (huh?), I think it is the polluters who pay attention to the EPA restrictions, so this may be the part you didn’t quite follow. Sorry if I wasn’t specific enough.

  35. The AP wire today has a story headlined ”UK scientist at NCAR in Colorado pens ‘cli-fi-sci’ trilogy to combat climate-change doubters” – about Philip Judge at NCAR: The Denver Post post on this AP story got over 200 comments pro and con, natch. LINK — http://www.durangoherald.com/article/20160514/AP/305149996/0/SEARCH/Scientist-pens-trilogy-to-combat-climate-change-doubters

    • “Judge said that the first book is really a look at the decline of the world, and a mission in interstellar travel, including discussion about how we haven’t heard from intelligent life when there are so many stars out there. The second book is about hope, when the world has hit rock-bottom. The third is about how to deal with the future.”

      Because disguising fiction as actual science has not been working out too well for them, why not try just openly embracing the fiction part and see how that does?

    • CAGW is sci-fi fiction so a sci-fi novel is an appropriate.venue for the topic..

  36. Driven by the naturally occurring 2015-2016 El Niño, and not climate change, leaving boreal forests afire in Alberta and millions of red
    crabs washing up on southern California beaches from San Clemente to Huntington Beach… biblical? Caused by too much CO2 in the air — proof that modernity is killing the Earth? The beauty of nature at work?

  37. nobodysknowledge

    Two interesting papers on climate sensitivity.
    The Bates paper on 1 deg. And all the other IPPC scientists on 3 deg.
    Piers Forster, James Hansen, Gavin Schmidt, Alan Robock, Michael Mann, Ken Caldeira, Stefan Rahmstorf, Chris Forest, Gabriele Hegerl, Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, Jonathan Gregory, Drew Shindell and Andrei Sokolov share their thoughts, and gut feelings, on climate sensitivity.
    When it comes to the gut feelings, it says something of a deeper understanding of climate change. So, can it be a lack of deeper understanding among the most celebrated experts?

    • The central conclusion of this study is that to disregard the low values of effective climate sensitivity ( 1°C) given by observations on the grounds that they do not agree with the larger values of equilibrium, or effective, climate sensitivity given by GCMs, while the GCMs themselves do not properly represent the observed value of the tropical radiative response coefficient, is a standpoint that needs to be reconsidered.

      There you go. All you have to do is ignore observations and believe the inaccurate models. As 13 leading climate scientists clearly do.

      • nobodysknowledge

        And what surprised me most is that Gabriele Hegerl Came out with a lower sensitivity than most of the other scientists. Even if she says that the real warming is masked by aerosols, so it is measured far to low.

      • nobodysknowledge

        Should be “far too low”. So you cannot rely on observations, according to these experts. Because there has been human cooling of the climate that soon will blow away.

  38. The most far-reaching discovery for humanity this year was the realization that the Sun may emit a super-solar-flare every ~1,000 years that resets the stage of human civilization.

    http://sciencenordic.com/sun-can-emit-superflares-every-1000-years

    That may explain the mystery of knowledge ancient civilizations had of the dates of cyclic events in giant calanders of the heavens.

  39. From the article:

    An overheating planet isn’t pleasant for several species, but for one migratory bird, climate change is causing it to shrink in size and put its survival at risk, new research suggests.

    With global warming having a dramatic impact on the High Arctic, the environmental change to the Red Knot’s (Calidris canutus) nesting ground is putting its access to sufficient nutrients in jeopardy.

    http://www.cnbc.com/2016/05/13/climate-change-is-causing-the-red-knot-bird-to-shrink-study.html

  40. maksimovich1

    a bare flare year

  41. David Springer

    Congratulations climatastrophists!

    March 2016 set a new global average temperature record. The old record anomaly of 0.73C set in 1998 was creamed by the new one at 0.83C. Stunning proof that global warming is real.

    And you boys only had to wait 18 years for it. A whopping 0.1C of global warming in 18 years. Holy smokes! Scary stuff!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    /sarc

  42. David Wojick

    My latest study — modeling dominates climate science:
    http://www.cato.org/blog/climate-modeling-dominates-climate-science

    Semantic analysis indicates that something like 55% of the computer modeling that is done in all of science is done in climate science. That is an incredible concentration, given that climate science is a small field. In addition, we found that 97% of the research papers that mention climate change also refer to modeling. Clearly modeling dominates the field.

    Modeling is not true science; modeling is just playing with hypotheses, so there is actually very little climate science being done. Moreover, given that the models all assume AGW, it is no wonder that many climate scientists endorse AGW. It is built into their work.

    We need to restructure the climate research program, to refocus it on the attribution problem: How much, if any, are humans responsible for global warming? The models fail to address this central question.

    • David: I agree that there is too much modeling in climate science. The reason climate models suck up so much of the total modeling oxygen is due to their sheer size and complexity. And yet, they still fall short of being able to reliable project future climate outcome better than a range from the garden of Eden to the hell of Venus. It is obvious that getting a better model code and hardware is not going to happen until there is a yuuge breakthrough, which makes it sound like fusion… always rolling 30-years in the future.

      This means that climate science should shift away from models to getting better field data that will help inform adaptation and/or mitigation. In addition, the west should continue funding research on advanced pollution control and low-cost, low carbon energy technology.

      One way to fund technological development is to provide tax breaks (not subsidies) for existing industrial companies for the installation of pollution control equipment, for energy efficiency and for carbon reduction. To make this happen, the tort environment, regulations and regulatory agencies must be reigned in. Right now, industry has to take enormous risks to adopt new pollution controls. Regulators make switching over very difficult via archaic permitting processes and a general laziness opposed to doing anything new and different. Also, by upgrading pollution controls, filthy stinking tort lawyers will then claim that the corporation must have known that the old way was bad, therefore all those years they were harming the public and the environment. This is not too dissimilar to the Exxon lawsuit cases. Recent federal cases have eliminated government permits as a shield against pollution liability. This makes the current system purposefully ignorant and stagnant, which in a universe ruled by entropy is regressive. The funny thing is that the current regulatory system that has been built for the environmentalist lobby groups increases environmental injustice for the poor and minorities who happen to live closer to factories, farms and power plants.

      • David Wojick

        I see no need for low carbon energy technology.

      • Is this an example of what you’re talking about?

        The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday rejected Exxon Mobil Corp’s appeal of a $236 million judgment against the oil company in a case brought by the state of New Hampshire over groundwater contamination linked to a gasoline additive….

        The additive at the center of the case is called methyl tertiary butyl ether, or MTBE. It is an oxygen-containing substance that was added to gasoline to promote more complete combustion and reduce air pollution. It was one of several additives that had been recommended by regulators to reduce emissions but has now largely been phased out of the U.S. fuel supply because of the hazard it poses to groundwater.

        – See more at: http://www.rigzone.com/news/oil_gas/a/144526/US_Top_Court_Rejects_Exxon_Appeal_in_Groundwater_Contamination_Case#sthash.KNMnqFeg.dpuf

        It’s hard to know what’s going on here from such a short story, but if people are put in a no-win situation where they’re damned if they do and damned if they don’t, they’re most likely not going to cooperate.

      • One of the problems with the modeling is when the models are used to adjust the data to make it better.

        To some extent, since the models are validated against the data, which is now data+model data, you run the risk of the model emulating the model instead of the model emulating the data.

      • Oil Companies seem to be somewhat more cowboy with the environment because they have such an effective control over the regulatory environment. The profits from MTBE was orders of magnitude higher than the liabilities, so they put it in the fuel knowing it would create groundwater problems. Environmental management at one major wrote memos in the late 1980’s saying that MTBE was “job security”.

  43. “It is reasonably obvious to the naked eye that CO2 and population seem to move in lockstep. To show this in more analytical terms, we can superimpose a trend line, which is simply a mathematical curve which fits the data. After some experimentation it was found that a trend line consisting of a third-order polynomial provided a very good fit to the data. In statistical terms, the R2 value for this curve is more than 0.999, which indicates that it correlates with the data to an accuracy of better than 99.9%.”

    CO2 increasing as the population produces more of the stuff? Temperature rising as the increasing population produces more heat (involved in the production of energy and CO2)?

    Who’da thought such a thing? Me, obviously, amongst others.

    Cheers.

  44. Repeated large-scale retreat and advance of Totten
    Glacier indicated by inland bed erosion
    by A. R. A. Aitken, J. L. Roberts, T. D. van Ommen, D. A. Young, N. R. Golledge, J. S. Greenbaum,
    D. D. Blankenship, & M. J. Siegert Nature 533, 385–389 (19 May 2016) doi:10.1038/nature17447

    Climate variations cause ice sheets to retreat and advance, raising or lowering sea level by metres to decametres. The basic relationship is unambiguous, but the timing, magnitude and sources of sealevel change remain unclear; in particular, the contribution of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS) is ill defined, restricting our appreciation of potential future change. Several lines of evidence suggest possible collapse of the Totten Glacier into interior basins during past warm periods, most notably the Pliocene epoch1–4, causing several metres of sea-level rise. However, the structure and long-term evolution of the ice sheet in this region have been understood insufficiently to constrain past ice-sheet extents. Here we show that deep ice-sheet erosion—enough to expose basement rocks—has occurred in two regions: the head of the Totten Glacier, within 150 kilometres of today’s grounding line; and deep within the Sabrina Subglacial Basin, 350–550 kilometres from this grounding line. Our results, based on ICECAP aerogeophysical data, demarcate the marginal zones of two distinct quasi-stable EAIS configurations, corresponding to the ‘modern-scale’ ice sheet (with a marginal zone near the present ice-sheet margin) and the retreated ice sheet (with the marginal zone located far inland). The transitional region of 200–250 kilometres in width is less eroded, suggesting shorter-lived exposure to eroding conditions during repeated retreat–advance events, which are probably driven by ocean-forced instabilities. Representative ice-sheet models indicate that the global sea-level increase resulting from retreat in this sector can be up to 0.9 metres in the modern-scale configuration, and exceeds 2 metres in the retreated configuration.

    I haven’t read it yet, just discovered it.

    Sci-hub link (I don’t guarantee it’ll work, but…):
    http://sci-hub.bz/http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v533/n7603/full/nature17447.html

    • This is seriously weird. I copied the link directly from the BOM web site, but it’s wrong. If you click the pic, you will be taken to the “real” chart, which currently at around 0.5, not 1.25 as above.

      • Fixed it for you.

        That is the BOM. Next month we say goodbye to Al Nino!

      • WordPress seems to have a cached copy. They just updated the picture while keeping the URL the same. So the WP cache is the older picture.