Week in review – science edition

by Judith Curry

A few things that caught my eye this past week.

Fossil leaves bear witness to ancient carbon dioxide levels [link]

Paul Homewood: Two satellite datasets agree: The Pause lives on: ‘No warming for the last 18 years’ [link]

Wood stoves rapidly overtaking traffic as major cause of poor air quality in UK [link] …

What differences exist between severe & nonsevere high-shear, low-CAPE convective events? [link]

Global #Ocean circulation may be more vulnerable to shutdown than thought – [link]

A very good history of the ice age climate science: [link]

Incredible  maps of long-term global surface water occurrence. [link]  …

Antarctic sea ice gain does not compensate for increased solar absorption from Arctic ice loss  [link]

“Why do general circulation models overestimate the aerosol cloud lifetime effect?” [link] …

New paper in discussion how the **shape** of the Greenland ice sheet amplifies meltwater release [link]

Fredericke Otto: Yes, Some Extreme Weather Can Be Blamed on Climate Change [link]

The Term ‘Severe Weather’ May Not Mean What You Think [link]

USA FLOOD RISK INCREASE: Flood threats changing across regions; #Water in storage critical factor  [link] …

REWRITING THE CODE OF LIFE. Through DNA editing, researchers hope to alter the genetic destiny of species and eliminate diseases. [link]

‘Official data shows snow extent in northern hemisphere last autumn was 2nd greatest on record since 1967’ [link]

Andreas Munschow on the potential for for a break in the Peterman glacier [link]

The Smoking Gun of Arctic Warmth Leads To A Stunning Indictment [link]

The importance of ENSO nonlinearities in tropical Pacific response to external forcing [link]

Sea level rise from ocean warming underestimated, scientists say [link]

#Arctic Research Plan gives goals for next 5 years including ocean & atmos observations [link] …

The Antarctic circumpolar current is 30% more powerful than scientists realized [link]

#Greenland Ice Sheet surface mass balance has risen 100 billion tons above the 1990-2013 average. [link]

What can a medieval climate crisis teach us about modern-day warming? [link]

During last period of global warming, Antarctica warmed 2 to 3 times more than planet average [link] …

Snow data from satellites improves temperature predictions, [link] …

Researchers study sea spray to improve hurricane intensity forecasting [link] …

Reassessment of temperature variations and trends from global reanalyses and monthly surface climatological datasets [link]

Why is atmospheric methane surging? (Hint: it’s not fracking) [link]

Most records in Arctic display clear evidence for warmer- and cooler-than-present conditions at millennial timescale [link]

New paper finds “Atlantic cooling & Mediterranean winter rain maxima are generally associated with SOLAR minima” [link] …

New paper attributes warming patterns in China to the amount of surface solar radiation & precipitation [link]

Moderate Cold Kills More People Than Extreme Heat [link]

The largest glacier in East Antarctica is melting rapidly and could raise sea level by 11 feet, scientist say. [link]

Another reason to dump ethanol biofuel: Study finds corn ethanol land use change warms climate [link] …

A bunch of carbon dioxide that’s been trapped in the soil is starting to escape [link]

Policy and social sciences

BBC on the Bank of England: ‘The only function of economic forecasting,’ JK Galbraith once said, ‘is to make astrology look respectable.’ [link]

Does it matter if Donald Trump has a science adviser? [link]

Pathological anxiety associated with increased risk, but not loss aversion. [link] …

Unsettled science: Feds preparing to drop warnings on cholesterol [link]  …

#Greenland’s melting fuels more melting, setting up problems for the future. [link]

Great article by @CoralMDavenport in NYT summarizing the various POVs of incoming cabinet members on #climatechange. [link]

The coming battle between the Trump team and economists over the true cost of climate change [link]

About science and scientists

This is good article: Understanding the rhetoric of climate science debates [link]

Important essay on what’s most essential to learn in math class: “number sense” [link].  This one really resonated with me as I challenge my grand daughter (first grade) in learning math (she loves it!)

Mark Steyn: The “Craziness” of the Climate Science Echo Chamber [link]…

“Peer reviewers do not understand the difference between results that they don’t like and scientific flaws” [link] …

Chris Essex writes:Gallant Scientists Remembered & Climate Politics 2016 [link]

Media And The Game Of Climate Change Denialism [link]

Stephen Pinker on entropy [link]

Does Funding Influence the Results of Science? conflicts of interest abound!  [link]

“The Unbearable Asymmetry of Bullshit” [link]

Skeptical climate scientists coming in from the cold [link]

New York Times confirms GMO industry ties at National Academies of Sciences [link]

More details on the #GMO conflict-of-interest culture at National Academies of Sciences [link] …

Excellent review by @JannaLevin on the vital role women have played in the exploration of space:[link]

This is a very insightful essay: Beware Anti-“Pseudo-Science” Agitation [link]

Perverse incentives of scientific publishing: It’s Too Hard to Publish Criticisms and Obtain Data for Replication | [link]

Tribute to astronomer Vera Rubin, with many quotes from her excellent writing in @PhysicsToday [link]

Ethics and statistics  [link].  Very good collection of essays.

In praise of (admitting) ignorance, by Simon Cullen:  [link]

Beware anti-pseudo science agitation.  [link]

Alex Epstein: The Church Of Climate Scientology: How Climate Science Became A Religion [link]

The post-trust era (not ‘post-truth’) [link]

Very interesting paper by Jean Goodwin about Kevin Folta: IGMOs in public discussions, trust, objectivity [link] …

Astronaut and NASA administrator Piers Sellers has died of pancreatic cancer [link]

Dept of Energy gov’t scientist fired for answering Congressional questions contrary to DOE management views. [link]…

Scott Adams: I invent the term Cognitive Blindness and apply it to the climate change debate:  [link]

“Scientists want to do good, but the problem is that they don’t understand the world” Hans Rosling [link]

Research: Publication bias and the canonization of false facts [link]  Perfect antidote to ‘fake news’ phenomena

280 responses to “Week in review – science edition

  1. “Sea level rise was also found to vary substantially from place to place, with the rate around the Philippines “five times the global rate.” Meanwhile, sea level on the US west coast is largely stable because there is hardly any ocean warming in that area, said the findings.” Am I crazy or is that statement insane? How can the Pacific ocean rise on side but not another?

    • Is it possible that there is no such thing a sea level as separate from the surface of the earth?
      Hence the confusion.
      If we had gills and lungs would we care.
      Or even think of measuring it.
      We have a history of trying to measure things that are in reality concepts and not independently existing.
      Maybe it’s like upper and lower body exercise.
      My belt is not an actual demarcation line.
      I only separate them when I sit on my derriere.

    • Harry Twinotter


      ” How can the Pacific ocean rise on side but not another?”

      Easily. The height of the western pacific is usually several meters higher than the east. Winds, ocean currents, that sort of thing.

      • David Wojick

        The sea is not level, so SLR does not exist. We should measure the volume, if we could. Most climate data is unrealistic. Hence rhe debate.

      • Wow… just wow: reality is insane, so it does not exist.

      • David Wojick

        Nothing insane about reality except the people therein.

      • Keep in mind that most statistical climate data, which is based on sparse convenience sampling, is less reliable than the typical Presidential poll, where they at least try to do random sampling. And we know how poorly Presidential polls turn out.

      • Harry Twinotter

        David Wojick.

        I do not know why you even bother.

      • Steven Mosher

        Rivers are not Level. Therefore river level does not exist.
        Consequently there can be no floods.

      • catweazle666

        “Rivers are not Level. Therefore river level does not exist.
        Consequently there can be no floods.”

        Is your ‘Trump Derangement Syndrome’ giving you a hard time, Mosher?

        I’m sure you can get counselling.

      • Danny Thomas

        ‘Waves’ on the oceans are as to ‘floods’ on a river.

        Seems poetic somehow.

      • Being in a plane parallel to the plane of the horizon; horizontal.

        My house is level, so I hope. So is yours. My house is at some 800 feet above sea level. Yours is not. I think we can take a 100 meter length of ocean and find that it is parallel to the plane of the horizon. If we advance across the Pacific and take measurements at intervals of 10 kilometers, we find the ocean is level at each point, but aligned with a different plane that is still the plane of the horizon for that location.

      • If the height of the Pacific is higher one one side than the other due to winds current and that sort of thing, then if the ocean is actually rising BOTH sides should be rising together.

      • “then if the ocean is actually rising BOTH sides should be rising together.”

        Not necessarily… if the temperature of the water is not the same then the the thermal expansion might not be uniform, in a sense, and therefore move up or down in different ways at the two “ends” of the ocean.
        It makes sense to me.
        Anyway… if you read this recent paper…


        …. you’ll see that even “the experts” in the warmists’ field do not have much of a clue, it depends which model one uses, and which numerical technique one applies… and it is possible to get completely different results/answers even using the same data… acceleration of the SL rise or deceleration.


      • The height of the ocean in various places will depend on the density of the underlying water column. It will also depend on wind, currents, etc, but I wanted to point this out also. Density will depend on the temperature of the water and salinity. To see how density affects the surface level, view this video:

    • Denisity of warm water is less than cool water. Level in a manometer heated on one side will rise on the heated side and not change on the unheated side.

      • I don’t think that is correct. Water is also affected by gravity so any rise on one side will eventually show up on the other side as well.

      • Tumbleweed,

        What matters is the weight or mass of the water column. When water heats its mass and weight does not change. This is an issue in the measurement of any column of liquid using differential pressure where the temperature changes significantly.

      • “Gravity takes over and tries to level and tries to level the sea surface.” This kind of my point. If sea levels are indeed rising the ocean may rise a bit more on one side than the other but you simply can’t have one side rising at 5 times the over all global rate and the other side not rising at all.

      • What they could’ve done is had a too short time frame for the 5 times faster. Just like I could find fast local sea level rise for short time frames all over the place.
        Wuwt ocean page:
        Global Sea Surface Height – Current
        1/2 way down is a nice map that is pretty current but I can’t link to it. Warm water is higher. Cold water is not so high. In order to have a slope, the warm must rise, it seems to me. And the cold can drop. Then I suppose it flows from warm to cold. All other things being equal. What a planet.
        Now, as the oceans equatorial oceans warm because of CO2, the slope would increase, moving more warm water to cool places where Karl can find it, and count it before it escapes through the TOA.
        As the sea ice melts because of CO2 the water gets colder as it lost its insulation. Making that colder water even colder, steeping the gradient, meaning more water flow to the poles. The hydrological cycle speeds up.
        With the ENSO region with good upwelling in the East, it’s not only the tradewinds. It is the tradewinds blowing water up a slope that gets steeper the more upwelling there is as cooler water is lower. An El Nino’s termination lessens the East to West upslope allowing the trades to more easily get the La Nina going. Faltering early stage La Ninas face less of an East to West upslope.

      • Well personally I think the biggest driver of the five times higher than global average on one side with no rise on the other is the fact that he Philippines is after some of that UN money for “mitigation” while the US is one of the countries that has to pay into the pool. However maybe we will get lucky and money pouring into the mitigation pool will grow 5 times faster than the UN can spend it as it comes in.

    • Despite sea level rise, Earth’s land area has increased in the past 30 years. Pacific islands have mostly enlarged, e.g. here. Same story with Bangladesh. Seems relevant but you don’t see it discussed much.

  2. Pingback: Week in review – science edition | Robbie's Blog

  3. Danny Thomas

    This link is not working: This is good article: Understanding the rhetoric of climate science debates [link]

    Maybe it’s this: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/wcc.452/full

    • fixed, thx

    • There has been so much good material in this post that I’m still ploughing through [plowing thru] it all. Thx, Judith.
      On the ‘rhetoric’ article: is it really a good article, or is it just rhetoric? I thought it very promising at the start, very disappointing by the end. Its distinction between rhetoric and science seemed to have overtones of Kuhn vs Popper. It seemed to advocate following a Kuhn-like model, but real science needs Popper. IOW no matter how much rhetoric helps understanding (or sways people), the only thing that can resolve the issue is evidence.
      In the meantime, it would help a lot if everyone got to grips with the uncertainty that Judith has tried so hard for so long to get into public view.

  4. Curious George

    “The ice shelf, they measured, is melting at its base faster than all other ice shelves of similar size in East Antarctica. If it were to give way, enough ice would slide into the sea to raise global levels by over 11 feet.” These scientist discovered that Archimedes was wrong.

  5. Does it matter if Donald Trump has a science adviser?

    Donald Trump is not a stranger to science, his uncle John George Trump was a recipient of U.S. President Ronald Reagan’s National Medal of Science, physicist and professor at the MIT for nearly four decades, the USA’s major expert on the Tesla’s inventions. Trump’s name is associated with number of major inventions or technological advances.

    • Thank you for sharing that information. I had no idea Trump was linked in any way with Tesla, one of the world’d greatest scientists.

    • About 20 days after Tesla’s death the FBI took possessions of all Tesla’s papers ( already confiscated by the government’s Office of Alien Property). John G. Trump at the time MIT professor (electrical engineering) was tasked to evaluate Tesla’s unrealised projects. The official report was short ‘of no value’, but detailed analysis as far as I know wasn’t published.

    • johnvonderlin

      You’re kidding right? John Trump was an admirable man, who cared little for money, but loved science. He was described thusly: “He was remarkably even-tempered, with kindness and consideration to all, never threatening or arrogant in manner, even when under high stress. He was outwardly and in appearance the mildest of men, with a convincing persuasiveness, carefully marshalling all his facts.”

      • It looks as if the linear regression coefficient for the values quoted between uncle and nephew might be as high as in R^2 = – 0.9

  6. *The Smoking Gun of Arctic Warmth Leads To A Stunning Indictment;
    “What this study took great pains to do was to show that this warmth is almost certainly not a natural oscillation in the Arctic climate.”

    Took great grant money and produced pseudoscience. The IPCC circulation models show that rising CO2 increases positive NAO/AO, that would cool and not warm the Arctic. Sea ice loss this year is reduced because of negative NAO increased May-Aug and Nov, and a typical post El Nino strong warm pulse to the AMO, which strengthened in November:

    *The importance of ENSO nonlinearities in tropical Pacific response to external forcing:

    Increased forcing of the climate increases positive NAO/AO, and that is associated with faster trade winds, so would mean an increase in La Nina conditions and a cooling rather warming of the cold tongue.

    *New paper finds “Atlantic cooling & Mediterranean winter rain maxima are generally associated with SOLAR minima”

    Well a cold North Atlantic and a dry Mediterranean winter would be a positive NAO regime, the complete opposite to the increase in negative NAO that occurs through solar minima.

    • catweazle666

      Also, Jimbo rests his hopes on a BS Salon article about Trump and the collapse of fossil fuel markets…

      Oh dear…

      • The carbon boom – not happening, dream on. As the article mentions, the declining costs of renewables mean coal has its days numbered. Come 2030, nobody is going to be thinking of digging it up anymore. It’s a dead end.

      • catweazle666

        In your dreams, Jimbo!

        Haven’t you caught on yet? Brexit and Trump spell the end for your crackpot alarmist BS.

        The World has changed, and you lot are irrelevant.

      • The trend has changed already, and Fabius Maximus has realized that, saying we don’t even need a policy to help the climate because fossil fuels are economically dead anyway. I think this is the way the skeptics will go, or they can argue among themselves on that. I want to see Judith post that up for debate here.

      • Ah, Larry Kummer says so too, does he?

        So that’s got to be right then…

      • That looks like a split among the skeptics. They need to debate that among themselves.

      • catweazle666

        “That looks like a split among the skeptics.”

        Unlike you lot Jimbo who take great care to sing from the same hymn sheet and are ostracised from the group for any deviation from the true creed, sceptics are not and never have been a homogenous group.

        In any case, Kummer isn’t a sceptic nor even a lukewarmer, he’s a firm believer in AGW, although possibly not fervent enough to be accepted by you true believers.

      • That explains why they posted his article without comment at WUWT. Perhaps that site has switched allegiance on you too.

      • “Haven’t you caught on yet? Brexit and Trump spell the end for your crackpot alarmist BS.”

        Just a political swing as is the want of folks.
        Merely human nature.
        Just an expression of hope, that things can be better.
        I voted for Brexit BTW.
        Not because I’m right-wing.
        I advocate the science ( yes the empirical stuff ) NOT because I’m a socialist.
        Mr Trump will not change the science.
        Though he may change the US and the World.
        Be careful what you wish for and all that.
        Supporting Russia over his own Intelligence agencies, because to do so would illegitimise his own election “victory.
        Good luck with that.

        An I say for the nth time …
        The IPCC range for ECS is 1.5 – 4.5C
        Not 4.5C (full stop).
        The “C” bit is something naysayers have invented as the demon to slay above all else.
        Evidence of “C”?
        Nothing’s happened yet.
        Nothing would …. yet.

      • “Mr Trump will not change the science.”

        That’ll be the science originally courtesy of Arrhenius in 1889, subsequently refuted by Knut Ångström little more than a decade later, would it?


        And notwithstanding which, beyond alleged results determined under closely controlled and monitored laboratory conditions only, are now being extrapolated to an infinitely larger and more complex non-linear chaotic system controlled by a vast number of feedbacks, of which we are even unsure of the sign of some of the few we’re aware of?

        And for which there is exactly zero empirically determined scientific evidence to justify this extrapolation?

        And for which around three decades has not even produced any unequivocal anecdotal evidence either – in many cases very much the opposite in fact, the US mainland hurricane drought now in its eleventh year, for example.

        THAT science?


      • And for which there is exactly zero empirically determined scientific evidence to justify this extrapolation?

        And I can show it’s wrong.

      • Tony Banton,

        Evidence of “C”?
        Nothing’s happened yet.
        Nothing would …. yet.

        And no persuasive, valid relevant evidence that GHG emissions will do more harm than good to human wellbeing in future!

      • Jim D, 2030 is just 13 years away. The massive global infrastructure for burning coal, with more coming on strong, is not about to go away in a decade. Even the US still burns almost a billion tons a year, with almost no new plants built since 1980.

        You would be more believable if you tried a more realistic scenario. Shoot for 2050 or later, where dreams are still possible, making debate free and easy.

      • “And no persuasive, valid relevant evidence that GHG emissions will do more harm than good to human wellbeing in future!”

        You mean the “trace gas” that simultaneously gives rise to life on Earth?

        There is plenty of evidence.
        There – my hand-wavering is the equal of yours.
        Because there would be no point in me providing you with any.

      • Jim D, a skeptic (meaning anyone not believing in the threat of CAGW), would love the cost of alternatives to crash. Skeptics, unlike warmists, are pragmatists. Frankly if an alternative solution were to arrive today that created truly “cheap” energy, that was scalable, abundant, reliable; great! Not only for the reason of cheap energy, but we’ll finally have relief from the din of the Lefts screaming meemies. Skeptics won’t care about fossil fuels once they demonstrate declining utility. But we’re probably decades from alternatives overtaking fossil fuels.

        The day that oil falls to the wayside in preference for a better alternative is just another day in the life of a capitalist. For the religious Left, relax, you can look forward to the day when alternatives really do win the day; skeptics will yawn and say “progress”, just as we expected. We’ll maybe let you believe you won, or perhaps slap you silly to wake you from your collective delusion. There’s little emotional investment for the Right relative to fossil fuels despite the often heard accusation that skeptics have been coerced by big oil, one of the more stupid memes.

      • I say stop subsidies for wind and solar and let the wind and solar companies pay for whatever they need in the way of a “smart” (dumb) grid.

      • @Jim D

        “The carbon boom – not happening, dream on. As the article mentions, the declining costs of renewables mean coal has its days numbered. ”

        Yeah!… keep on dreaming… Germany just released the 2016 figures for its REN electricity production and emissions from the power sector, and… guess what?… in spite of 5 additional GW of wind turbines, in spite of 1 GWp of additional useless PV panels, the production of both wind and PV has DECREASED with respect to 2015.
        On the GHG emission side… they have gone UP with respect to 2015.
        And this is the “model” to follow for other countries, right?
        Wonderful Energiewende, isn’t it? :-)

    • Curious George

      Has this article been peer reviewed?

      • Danny Thomas

        Peer? Not sure. Reviewed: https://fabiusmaximus.com/2017/01/05/end-of-the-global-climate-emergency/

        Interesting perspective of the offering.

      • Is that important to you?

      • Yes, Fabius Maximus appears also to have given up pushing fossil fuels because things are not going that way. Trump, not so much.

      • “What the mix of solar,wind,hydro,coal,natural gas and nuclear looks like in 2030 is anyones guess.

        Personally I’d bet my own money on Pebble Bed nuclear being a big winner.”

        Certainly not in the USA!… with the biblical time span that it takes to NRC to review, comment, and validate any new reactor design… DECADES!… 2030 being only 13 years away makes it impossible for any pebble-bed reactor to become operational by then.

        The anti-nuclear movement of the past decades, based on skilled law suits had its way… and blocked any such development… it is a sad truth.


    • What carbon bubble? Peabody coal(the worlds largest private coal mining company) is in bankruptcy.

      Nobody believes King Coal is going to make any sort of substantial resurgence…ever.

      What the mix of solar,wind,hydro,coal,natural gas and nuclear looks like in 2030 is anyones guess.

      Personally I’d bet my own money on Pebble Bed nuclear being a big winner.

      • His cabinet represents oil and coal, and I don’t think they’re going to push anything else because we know their interests in advance. This is a carbon-bubble cabinet if ever there was one.

    • Jim D:
      The idea of a carbon bubble looks like considering, are the assets of oil companies properly valued? Once again, the money knows. The people who invest money are ‘the money’. Their current stock prices reflect what the money thinks they are worth. Same as with any other S & P 500 company. No, the value will not turn out to be true later. Conditions will change. The inventor of the phrase carbon bubble made a prediction about a future share prices of oil companies. That’s nice. I’ll go with the money and the market.

      The traditional definition of a bubble is more like, we all chase the same real estate in California until the values crash. Exponential growth approaching a vertical slope which is not achievable. The situation here is that rapid growth is tempered by a number of factors including potential increased government action. Other innovations by competitors.

    • Countries and states and regions that pop their carbon bubbles will fail to have a good economy.

      Countries and states and regions that grow their carbon bubbles will live the good life.

      Life is wonderful for billions due to fossil fuels and the more CO2 is greening the earth. This will continue to be true for many years to come, hundreds or even thousands.

      • The ones that do best will be the ones that figure out how to go beyond carbon.

      • “The ones that do best will be the ones that figure out how to go beyond carbon.”

        You’re actually kind of correct; but would be better phrased if you described the problem holistically relative to capitalism; “the ones that do best” are capitalists practicing the art of creative destruction who figure out how to cost effectively, and efficiently, change the energy production paradigm. Of course this applies to everything, not just going beyond carbon. The difference between a pragmatic capitalist and most on the Left is that a capitalist works within the boundaries of market forces and efficiencies, risk/reward. The Left doesn’t care about cost and will blindly throw money at any problem no matter who it bankrupts as long as it’s not them.

        It galls many warmists that big oil is among the enterprises blazing the trail towards alternatives. Oil tycoon T-Boone Pickens failed venture into mass scale wind farms is unfortunate, yet he’s a prime example of the pragmatic capitalist making a lateral move towards alternatives. Getting beyond carbon will eventually happen when the technology curve allows its discovery. Money can’t buy leaps in evolution to many technologies because resolving technological gaps are cost prohibitive.

  7. “How can the Pacific ocean rise on side but not another?” There are two phenomena at work: Tectonic continental rise and fall, and thermal expansion of seawater. Most of the US west coast is rising and the water off that coast is thermally stable, while the seawater around the Philippines is warming and the Pacific equatorial waters are being pushed westward by the trade winds. Globally, average sea level is rising very slowly, about 1 mm/year if you go by tide gauges.

    • First of all, no tide gauge measures global average sea level, so we have sampling error to worry about, even if the gauges were somehow all correct. Second, there are few, if any, tectonically stable gauges. Then too tides are based on a host of local factors.

    • Tectonic continental rise and fall is not (not yet anyway but I’m sure that is coming) connected to how much carbon humans put out. Therefore it is not ocean rising but land rising and falling. 1 mm/year? What is the error bounds on tide gauge measurements. Are you seriously telling me a tide gauge has an error rate of less than 1mm/year?

      • David Wojick

        Not just that. They are telling you that when this sparse convenience sample is somehow averaged globally, the global result is accurate to less than 1 mm per year. But then a lot of climate data is based on similarly preposterous claims of statistical accuracy.

        I used to live in the Seattle area and we had 11 foot tides, twice a day. That is a variance of about 44 feet a day. How do you convert that to a single measure accurate to less than 1 mm?

        The newspapers published daily forecasts of high and low tide heights, which were often off by a foot, because local tides (where the gauges are) are affected by a host of local factors, especially currents, winds and topography. Also shipping when the gauge is in the harbor, as it often is. For that matter, how do you use a physical mechanism to measure the water height to 1 mm when the waves are two feet high?

        More metrical and statistical absurdity.

      • But if you ask about things like that you get called out as a denier and subjected to all kinds of abuse.

  8. I skimmed the article on the history ice age climate science. Interesting reading til it got to the 21st century and all the detail in the body of the article evaporated into a truncated conclusion. It would have been interesting if the article linked to continuing explanatory perspectives instead of ‘problem solved.’ Or am I missing something?

  9. Danny Thomas

    For some of us, ignorance is bliss.

    “The fact that few Trump or Sanders supporters could pass Econ 101 tomorrow if their lives depended on it was apparently no deterrent to making opposition to the TPP a litmus test of the candidates’ presidential qualifications.”

    ” we sincerely hold strong moral beliefs on topics about which we are almost completely ignorant.”


    Thank you for a stark reminder Dr. Curry!

  10. Danny Thomas

    Global #Ocean circulation may be more vulnerable to shutdown than thought – [link]

    So much skepticism in one article. Models are wrong as they stand. When ‘corrected’ they’re considered ‘wrong’.

    Yet: “And within 50 years or so, both the uncorrected and corrected models in the new study produce similar results. It is only after that, under extreme warming, that the current shifts.”

    And current (pun?) thinking is unclear: “Recent studies have suggested that the AMOC is weakening, although there’s some scientific debate about how much of this has been caused by human activities and how much by natural variations.”

    Not sure what was learned as a result of reading this article.

  11. Steven Mosher

    Long ago,, folks here said re analysis should be the gold standard..
    So.. we have a paper comparing re analysis to standard datasets

    “Nevertheless global and regional averages differ on various time-scales due to differences in data coverage and sea-surface temperature analyses; averages from those conventional datasets that infill where they lack direct observations agree better with the averages from the reanalyses. ”

    “Surface warming from 1998 to 2012 is larger than indicated by earlier versions of the conventional datasets used to characterize what the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change termed a hiatus in global warming. None of the datasets exhibit net warming over the Antarctic since 1979.”

    expect folks to criticize reanalysis now.

    • richardswarthout

      Perhaps I am alone, but it seems that all these papers comparing datasets, that try to estimate a global temperature, are a wasteful use of brain power. The differences are trivial, deserving not analysis, but acceptance that the data is imprecise. The temporal graphs of global temperature should be displayed as grey areas, not lines.


      • “try to estimate a global temperature, are a wasteful use of brain power”

        Perhaps it is a result of a ‘deficit in the brainpower’.
        Global temperature graphs are no more than nonsense, it is an artificial construct with no physical meaning. At any moment in time global temperatures will have difference of at least 50+ degrees centigrade; averaging such values to obtain precision of the order of 0.01C is just laughable.

      • richardswarthout

        Vukcevic, Your comment is uplifting to me, a lowly engineer with small knowledge, now supported by one of the brighter lights. Sincerely, Richard

      • “Perhaps I am alone, but it seems that all these papers comparing datasets, that try to estimate a global temperature, are a wasteful use of brain power.”

        No Richard, you’re not alone.

        The “global temperature” is about as real as the “global telephone number”, and about as useful.

        On top of that, anyone who compares “values” of this dubious statistical artefact that differ by a couple of hundredths of a degree and triumphantly asserts that “we have a winnah” and it proves that “it’s worse than we thought” is either entirely deluded or extracting the urine.

        But hey, I suppose it beats stacking shelves in your local supermarket!

      • David Wojick

        Richard, if these grey areas were properly drawn we would see that we do not know if it is warming or not, much less by how much. There would be nothing to panic over, or even to explain. On the other hand, equations that handle grey bands is an interesting challenge. Anyone working on that?

    • Geoff Sherrington

      All that matters in the scientific measurement department is “Is the best result before us?”
      I have illustrated this many times using past mineral exploration scientific applications like geophysical and geochemical models and hypotheses. It does not matter who authors the data, what their reputations are, what their experience is, if they have created wrong data. The drive to create wrong answers is almost absent in this mineral work. Rogue operators are few and quickly spotted. The rarity of transgressions is largely because there is no gain in going rogue. The sought deposit is either there or not there and no amount of fancy number work will change that reality.
      In some climate work it remains so disappointing that there are rogue operators who seem to think that they can succeed better in supporting a hypothesis if they manipulate numbers. Manipulation is everywhere. Ideally, it should be minimal.The immutability of the hypothesis target seems to have been forgotten in favour of an unreal flexible target, almost to Texas sharpshooter style. Wrong, wrong, wrong. You must set up your hypothesis with a specified, fixed target. If it bombs, you drop it.
      I was driven to write these few words because increasingly you seem to be promoting thoughts about data being better or worse depending on who fiddles it and what methods were used. You have drifted from the much appreciated mental purity of the early CA days and I miss that. What went wrong, Steven? Can I help to rehabilitate?
      Cheers old friend Geoff.

    • What does any of it matter since no one seems to be able to produce any convincing, valid, relevant evidence to show GHG emissions are doing, or are likely to do, more harm than good the the global economy and human-well-being? CAGW is built on innuendo, assertions and unsupported assumptions.

      • Gymnosperm:
        Can you please explain what it is you have plottted as the 5.35ln(C/277.3) function.
        Is it direct to T (C) ?
        i.e. The right-hand scale?

      • The right hand vertical scale applies to everything except the interpolated CO2.
        All the time series’ are from a spreadsheet Steven kindly directed me to on the BE site.
        In spite of the BE graphic suggesting Ln, the function provided is Log(CO2/277.3). The 277.3 seems to be a scaling factor. It didn’t work for me as I plotted a new land series and running mean to get the last three years. I scaled everything to a common start point below the land series for clarity.

        I used the parameter values provided. For full explanation see:

      • Gymnosperm:
        Yes, in noticed that they use log 10 instead of natural log and that halves the answer.
        I took the 277.3 to be the value of the atmos concentration of CO2 ppm pre industrial. But the empirical correlation is 5.35ln(C/Co) !!
        At the very least best seem to have a typo on the spreadsheet.
        Maybe Steven Mosher could explain.

      • I also note that the above should give a forcing in W/m2 and not T.

      • Average land temperature of less than 10 C? Can’t grow much food with that.

      • Not my numbers. Just a reporter here. Maybe includes Greenland, the Yukon Territories, and Antarctica; all land areas not notable for agriculture.

  12. Danny Thomas

    Dr. Curry,

    Otto suggests the attribution science can be applied after the fact. Is it reasonable to expect that similar results in actual forecasting such as your work at CFAN?

  13. Just who, may I ask, is Paul Homewood? Google search is not confidence inspiring.

    • Curious George

      You may ask.

    • A UK blogger with over 4 million hits who is being increasingly quoted in UK MSM because of his carefully referenced analyses. If you did not know, shame. If you did and tried another argument from authority, shame doubled.

      • Rust an:
        I’m sorry, but a blogger does not attain his “expertise” on a subject he blogs on, that is merely a measure of the number of people who have sympathy with his views. And as we know “sympathy of view” has nothing to do with correctness.
        According to Delingpole, Paul Homewood is a “retired accountant”.

      • David Wojick

        This makes sense given that a large fraction of the debate is about number crunching. Physics is actually secondary. As with all environmental impact cases, the data is scarce and questionable. Like Homewood, my focus is on the math, things like questionable data and statistical inference, not the physics.

      • Calm down, ristvan, and descend from your elevated equine. Not everybody who asks a question, particularly a legitimate one, is “arguing from authority”. What has Paul Homewood done, other than write stuff you happen to agree with, to engender this reverence?

        Unlike a lot of “skeptics”, I like to know something about the qualifications of someone before I trust what they say. It’s easy to place confidence in someone just because of the echo chamber effect, and, I’m sorry, but Homewood is (to me) an unfamiliar name who suddenly pops up as some kind of guru in the climate wars.

        So, rather than have me quiz those responsible for all 4 million hits, maybe you can help me out by pointing me to some material that helps me overcome my skepticism.

    • Argue the argument, not the author.

      • I’m sorry, dougbadgero, but as I said above the author matters, for obvious reasons.

        If I repeated something Judith Curry said people might think that I was knowledgable about climate science, which of course wouldn’t be the case. I can repeat what the wisest sage on the internet says, and in that case my saying it means nothing by itself.

        Paul Homewood may be a genius. If you think that to be the case then show me why you think that. If you can’t or won’t then, to me, Paul Homewood is just another guy I don’t know.

      • I’m sorry, dougbadgero, but as I said above the author matters, for obvious reasons.

        Ad hominem (Latin for “to the man” or “to the person”), short for argumentum ad hominem, is a logical fallacy in which an argument is rebutted by attacking the character, motive, or other attribute of the person making the argument, or persons associated with the argument, rather than attacking the substance of the argument itself.

      • Mr. Turbulence. Are you saying that I am “attacking the character, motive, or other attribute of the person making the argument…” when all I’m doing is asking about his qualifications to say what he says.?

        It seems you don’t understand the plight of the blogger who is not a scientist and who is struggling to understand climate science. I’m not picking on Paul Homewood, but as far as I know he is just another gadfly with no science or math credentials of his own. Tell me why I should believe him.

      • “Tell me why I should believe him.”

        Credentials presented by others will not ease the plight of a blogger who is struggling to understand climate science. The struggle is only in vain if you are so willing to surrender your own desire for knowledge in exchange for the information the credentialed offer.

      • Mr.Zodeaux

        Say what?

      • Mr. scraft;

        People showing you their framed certificates is not going to help you determine the truth of their claims, only the truth of their credentials…and the truth of their credentials is ever so diminishing with each generation.

      • Tell me why I should believe him.
        The idea is to evaluate the ideas, not the person.

      • Scraft,

        You don’t need to be published climate scientist to contribute. There are multiple disciplines involved or techniques used that are also applied in other fields. In fact one of the criticisms of climate studies has been how some researchers have stepped outside their specialty, with statistical analysis being one.

      • Mr Zodeaux – Of course. I’m not looking for paper credentials. What I’m looking is some demonstration of knowledge of the subject. Not necessarily a CV, though that of course helps. People do make these things up, too. You can tell a lot about someone by how other bloggers react to them, which can range from ignoring the person completely to stimulating interchange of ideas.

        How the person writes means a lot. Expressing complex ideas in a way that non-experts is a priceless quality.

      • “Expressing complex ideas in a way that non-experts is a priceless quality.”

        Mr. Scraft;

        While not necessarily a complex idea Turbulent Eddie above showed the priceless quality of expressing the point. It’s the ideas that matter not the person expressing them. I’ve seen two year old children espouse wisdom beyond their years and who lack any kind of credential to justify that wisdom, they were just, for whatever reasons, being wise.

        P.S. Doug B. also offers a priceless expression of the point.

  14. Part of the Larsen ice shelf, the size of a smallish state in the US, is apparently about to break off. Brace yourselves for the wailing. From the article:

    Giant iceberg, 5,000 square kilometers, set to calve from Larsen C Ice Shelf, Antarctica


    • It is an ice shelf. So by definition utterly irrelevant to SLR thanks to Archimedes. And, this is Larsen C. A and B already went.

    • It would depend on the subsequent behavior of the glacier behind Larsen C.

      • Danny Thomas

        Just guessing, but I’d expect it to expand seaward generating replacement sea ice.

        “Melting ice on the edges of the Antarctic continent could be leading to more fresh, just-above-freezing water, which makes refreezing into sea ice easier, Parkinson said. Or changes in water circulation patterns, bringing colder waters up to the surface around the landmass, could help grow more ice.

        Snowfall could be a factor as well, Meier said. Snow landing on thin ice can actually push the thin ice below the water, which then allows cold ocean water to seep up through the ice and flood the snow – leading to a slushy mixture that freezes in the cold atmosphere and adds to the thickness of the ice. This new, thicker ice would be more resilient to melting.” https://www.nasa.gov/content/goddard/antarctic-sea-ice-reaches-new-record-maximum

      • If water melts off a land-based glacier and makes it into an ocean, it would raise SL. If it were to later freeze, SL would be unchanged.

      • JCH,

        From where does the increased precipitation originate? Frozen glacial ice, or open water? You seem to suggest you know the end result of this calving. I suggest you don’t (at least fully). Got a link or a personal calculation to offer, or just an assertion?

        I’ve looked for an answer to balancing equation. No luck as yet. Maybe you can assist?

      • The ice shelves in the Amundsen and Bellingshausen seas have limited or almost no ‘passive’ portion, which implies that further retreat of current ice-shelf fronts will yield important dynamic consequences. This region is particularly vulnerable as ice shelves have been thinning at high rates for two decades5 and as upstream grounded ice rests on a backward sloping bed, a precondition to marine ice-sheet instability6, 7. In contrast to these ice shelves, Larsen C Ice Shelf, in the Weddell Sea, exhibits a large ‘passive’ frontal area, suggesting that the imminent calving of a vast tabular iceberg8 will be unlikely to instantly produce much dynamic change.

        Dynamic change would be the land-based ice’s behavior after a calving, which is what I said it would depend upon. This paper suggests the land-based ice in this situation would remain stable if the calving people think is about to happen should actually happen.

      • Thank you. Steig isn’t certain.

        “This paper suggests the land-based ice in this situation would remain stable if the calving people think is about to happen should actually happen.” This indicates SLR is not of great concern at this time.

        However, the implication of your previous comment was potentially an indication a bit different response.

        Ain’t climate conversation entertaining?

      • Amundsen and Bellingshausen seas
        Ice core data in the Antarctic goes back more than 800 thousand years. The most recent ten thousand years has been extremely stable in the same bounds. That is what I expect for the next thousands of years. Whatever is happening now is normal, natural and necessaryl

    • Larsen C. Free at last.

  15. Fossil leaves bear witness to ancient carbon dioxide levels [link]

    –e.g., “During documented episodes of global warmth, he says, the method reveals relatively low CO2 values, nothing like the levels of 2000 ppm or more suggested by other proxies.”

    Does, relatively low CO2 values mean, e.g., nothing like the levels of 2000 ppm or e.g., no more than double current CO2 levels?

    • All this deep paleo stuff is junk science. ALL. No matter how it cuts. Reasons include at least two. 1. There were not the same number of continents, and they were not in the same global positions. 2. There was not the same biosphere because of evolution.
      As a simple example, the carboniferous main coal forming era started ~ 360 mya with the evolution of woody (lignin, not just cellulose and hemicellulose) plants. That let them grow tall and large and dominate–and form coal. It ended with the evolution of white fungus ~300 mya capable of digesting lignin. Since then, all coal formation is from relatively rare acidic peat bogs where the lignin fungus is inhibited by pH. Basic geology/paleontology/evolution stuff that should be but is not taught in high school or first year college science.

      • That’s very interesting. Thanks for that.

      • J2, forgot one other fact. During the Carboniferous, there were basicslly only two continents: laurasisa and gondwana. Those get inferred from geological strata and associated fossils from the seven continents we know today. The science is plate techtonics, only agreed in the 1970s despite Wegonner’s 1916 convincing first treatise after his 1912 paper.

      • Interesting too that according to wiki, “North China was located near the Arctic Circle and it remained the northernmost land in the world during the Carboniferous Ice Age between 300 and 280 million years ago.”

      • I see that the Estimate of Uncertainty just, disappeared…

      • There are no confidence intervals on the very old, way out of date, chart you posted either.

      • The updated graph looks like a replay of coming out of an ice age 300M years ago — back when atmospheric CO2 was very low as it is today relative to before and after levels — and, we’re currently in the comfort zone of the Greenhouse (assuming not Greenhouse Warming nor Greenhouse Cooling is mo-betta) and on our way to a Triassic Hothouse (over the next 100M years)…?

      • Wagathon,

        I haven’t a clue what you are talking about with your “The updated graph looks like a replay of coming out of an ice age 300M years ago”. It doesn’t llok anything like that. The point is that the Scotese has updated the chart he first made back in the 1980s. I suggested you use the updated chart rather than a way out of date picture.

      • …and, I am further updating it with a forecast to -50M to -100M based on previous cycles. Where’s my Nobel?

      • You don’t get a Nobel because you have not understood the cause of the 150 Ma cycle of ice ages. We will not get out of the current ice age until the tectonic plates re align so ocean currents can circulate the globe in low to mid latitudes and are block from circulating the globe around Antarctics. So, we noeed to wait a wee while until North and South America separate and until South America and or Australia rejoins Antarctica. however, Australia is currently heading to join China (travelling at 7 cm per year; about the fastest of all continents and equivalent to about one kangaroo height per 20 years).

        Don’t wait up! :)

      • “The powerful earthquake that unleashed a devastating tsunami Friday appears to have moved the main island of Japan by 8 feet (2.4 meters) and shifted the Earth on its axis.” ~CNN

  16. R.I.P. Astronaut Sellers who died of pancreatic cancer two days before Christmas. Sellers was a dedicated global warming alarmist and wrote in the NYT this year — at a time when he undoubtedly knew that he was terminally ill with pancreatic cancer — as follows:

    “I’ve no complaints. As an astronaut I spacewalked 220 miles above the Earth. Floating alongside the International Space Station, I watched hurricanes cartwheel across oceans, the Amazon snake its way to the sea through a brilliant green carpet of forest and gigantic nighttime thunderstorms flash and flare for hundreds of miles along the Equator. From this God’s-eye-view, I saw how fragile and infinitely precious the Earth is.

    It’s complex. Some believers you just can’t argue with. Even so, as many scientists get older — older than Astronaut Seller’s 61 years of age — they see things through a different lens and come to question the AGW hypothesis.

    • Curious George

      Not a word about humans. Alarmists are aliens. They assume that the rest of us are aliens as well.

  17. Re @CoralMDavenport in NYT summarizing the various POVs of incoming cabinet members on #climatechange. You have to understand Coral Davenport and this article for what they are. She came on board at NYT a year or two ago expressly to pitch for global warming science and policy (joining the likes of Justin Gillis who cherry picks every subject he talks about to spin to global warming advocacy).. This article does not give any opinion at all but lays out the positions of the folks that Trump has nominated for his key cabinet positions. However, the statements she has attributed position all of the nominees as deniers or luke warmists at best. Her motive is to show that Trump and all his key people are all skeptics … in order to enflame the NYT reader base which are predominately liberal and global warming advocates. The exception was Mattis who has never stated any opinion. I do hope that Trump will take all of the spin out of global warming policy making.

  18. The modern Wood Burning Stove (WBS) design is one of a delayed combustor; ie, a lower chamber where the wood is burned with low oxygen (pyrolysis) and a secondary upper chamber where the gases of pyrolysis are mixed with additional (room air) oxygen for combustion producing up to 70% efficiency as opposed to an open fireplace with 5% heat efficiency.

    Three major problems come from such a design: 1) adding wood to the lower chamber requires opening the firebox door resulting in a 1000 fold increase in indoor emission (particulates and gases) with a 30 second door opening. 2) combustion efficiency and emission reductions require a constant high temperature in the upper combustion chamber otherwise cooling results in creosote accumulation in the cooling chimney pipes and a serious chimney fire hazard. 3) To control stovepipe emissions attempts at adding a catalytic converter to the chimney results in further retardation of combustion gas emissions resulting further in chimney condensation of creosote and the risk of chimney fires, requiring a chimney fan to move emissions.

    If anyone has observed the chimney accumulations of flammable products like creosote, one knows that three to four times a winter chimney cleaning is required. If one checks off the box on one’s homeowner’s insurance whether one heats with a wood burning stove, one will realize the gain in cost for fuel is taken away by the increase in the homeowner’s insurance policy due to the risk of burning one’s home down.

    Outdoor wood furnaces using hot water to heat one’s home means never leaving home on a winter’s vacation since the water pipes freeze/burst and the subsequent water damage is not covered by one’s homeowner’s insurance policy.

    As to emissions from the WBS, whether indoor or out, a coal fired power plant provides electricity for heating (expensive) yet overall is cheaper and less emissions than the from the crackling fire in your Benjamin Franklin inspired wood burning stove.

    The UK chopped down all their forests a long time ago for firewood. In the USA, after the impact of the 1972 OPEC oil embargo having resulted in a rush back to nature using WBS, this impetus subsided, the forests have been allowed to recover. Reducing atmospheric CO2 no matter where the emissions emirate occurs when planting deciduous trees and their carbon sequestering behavior. Besides, in the Autumn, when their leaves turn multiple colors, they kinda look nice.

    • Forgot to quote where the impetus for this essay came from:


      and the link:

      “Wood stoves rapidly overtaking traffic as major cause of poor air quality in UK [link] …”

    • Roger Knights

      Here are a couple of old WUWT comments from 2013 on this topic:

      michaelwiseguy says:
      August 11, 2013 at 1:00 am

      Alexander Feht says:
      August 11, 2013 at 12:43 am
      “For the record: it is 1:40 AM, August 11th, 2013, and the temperature outside is 44 degrees Fahrenheit (7 degrees Celsius).”

      Try this;

      Rocket Stove Mass Heater
      rocket mass heaters in a nutshell:

      heat your home with 80% to 90% less wood
      Here is an old WUWT comment from 2013 on this topic:

      michaelwiseguy says:
      August 11, 2013 at 1:00 am

      Alexander Feht says:
      August 11, 2013 at 12:43 am
      . . . . . . . . . .
      Try this;

      Rocket Stove Mass Heater
      rocket mass heaters in a nutshell:

      heat your home with 80% to 90% less wood

      exhaust is nearly pure steam and CO2 (a little smoke at the beginning)

      the heat from one fire can last for days

      you can build one in a day and half

      folks have built them spending less than $20

      the verbose details on rocket mass heaters:
      This could be the cleanest and most sustainable way to heat a conventional home. Some people have reported that they heat their home with nothing more than the dead branches that fall off the trees in their yard. And they burn so clean, that a lot of sneaky people are using them illegally, in cities, without detection.

      When somebody first told me about rocket mass heaters, none of it made sense. The fire burns sideways? No smoke? If a conventional wood stove is 75% efficient, doesn’t that mean the most wood you could possibly save is something like 25%? How do you have a big hole right over the fire and not have the house fill with smoke? I was skeptical.

      And then I saw one in action. The fire really does burn sideways. The exhaust is near room temperature – and very clean. The smoke doesn’t come back up because a huge amount of air is getting sucked into the wood hole. Neat! I sat on one that had not had a fire in it for 24 hours – it was still hot!


      • Roger Knight

        Thank you for your comment and links.

        This reminds me of the “Russian style masonry stoves found even today in homes that have to winter at -40F/C. Wood was then as is now scare even though when Moscow was founded, it was in a dense forest. So maximizing heat from scant amount of wood is/was paramount.

        In Europe the fabled palaces also had a masonry stove which also burnt scraps of wood at high intensity which heated the many baffles that delayed the heated exhaust’s exit and heating a masonry heat retaining structure. (Grandparents where given the place of honor to sleep on this bed of heated stoneware). Getting these fires going without a significant draw of air could be smokey in the beginning resulting in designs placing the firebox at the back, usually through a wall and servants access where the servants would have to endure the smokey beginnings and ends.

        I see that the rocket mass heater also uses an insulated path for burning the gases of the initial combustion, ie, a secondary combustion. My guess is that to burn the creosote in a controlled chimney fire the initial combustion has to be pretty brisk to propel the exhaust all the way through the system until the final flue exit.

        Since the OPEC oil embargo was lifted some 40+ years ago, there has been little call for a more sophisticated heating system especially since many of the people heating with wood have wood lots themselves or the wood suppliers have access to millions of trees, especially ash trees that have been killed by the Emerald Ash Bore. With several sustained very cold winters over the last 5 years, the EAB as an invasive species does not have the ethylene glycol antifreeze necessary to keep the body fluids from freezing solid and hence killing the EAB larvae. Until the next invasive species to kill indigenous trees in mass quantities, the supply of wood will diminish and another fossil fuel will be needed to replace WoodBurningSoves.

  19. Great article by @CoralMDavenport in NYT summarizing the various POVs of incoming cabinet members on #climatechange. [link]

    Usually Coral Davenport’s articles at the NYTimes make me gag, but this one put a smile on my face.

    • See my comment at 1/7/2016 8:50 pm – above. This article may have put a smile on your face but it was written to enflame the Times global warming advocacy readers, to whom this was targeted, in order to point out that all of Trump’s nominees are deniers and skeptics etc.

      • Curious George

        Trump is such a polarizing figure. This is an attempt to avoid even more polarization … but how?? – beats me.

      • I completely agree with what you are saying. Coral Davenport is a typical NYT lefty hack and the intent of the article is, as you say, to inflame the Times faithful.

        I am smiling because of the clear difference between the views of the nominees and the politicos who adhere to the CAGW mafia’s party line.

        Change is coming.

      • Their consternation is part of our pleasure. Theirs is a powerful political movement based on provoking environmental fear. Resistance is essential. Progress is enjoyable.

  20. Pertaining to the ‘etc’.

    “”We certainly don’t want intelligence interfering with politics and we don’t want politics interfering with intelligence.” Kellyanne Conway


    (Sorry. Could have resisted. Chose not to).

    • And she is spot on! No evidence has been presented that Russia hacked the DNC. For, you see, it’s classified.

    • Well, even though I didn’t find anything about this specific on the internet, Reince Priebus on Fox News Sunday just said Russia did hack the DNC. He also said Russia attempted to hack the RNC, but 1) the had security in place and 2) when the FBI alerted them to the hacking attempt, they had the FBI over to help resist it.

      The Dimowits didn’t do that and got hacked successfully. So they have to take responsibility for being lax with their information, which seems to be a theme running through Dimowit organizations; from Hillary’s closet server to this case.

    • And now I find this. I suppose it’s possible Priebus fingered the Russians in an attempt to defuse the media obsession with this. From the article:

      Even so, the report leaves out the much hoped-for technical evidence that informed these conclusions. In its “Scope and Sourcing” section, the report explains that this evidence exists, but can’t be declassified. And that means the report won’t satisfy the majority of the cybersecurity community that believes Russia hacked Democratic targets but has demanded more evidence, let alone the diehard deniers of the Kremlin’s fingerprints. “Seeing more of the context in which this happened does make me a little more trusting that this really was Russia,” says Robert Graham, an analyst for the cybersecurity firm Erratasec who has closely followed the Russian hacking investigation. “But knowing what data they probably have, they could have given us more details. And that really pisses me off.”


    • The president making a public issue of the Russian election interference is ironic on several levels. And one last demonstration of Obama’s ineptitude.

    • What do you think the chances are that Russia didn’t play a role in the Keystone and Standing Rock nonsense?


    • The typical dialog when questioning the Trump team goes like this.
      Media: Do you think Russia tried to interfere with our elections?
      Trump Team: The intel said no one hacked into the election machines
      Media: Yes, but was Russia doing anything wrong?
      Trump Team: we should look at all hacking from all countries
      Media: Yes, but what about Putin wanting to influence the elections
      Trump Team: The intel said there was no effect on the results
      Media: Yes, but Russia and Putin
      Trump Team: we need to improve intel.
      …and so on

      • Jimd

        The thing that would worry me the most is that apparently Hillary protected the public information stored on her server with a password that was er…’password.’ surely not?

        Even more worrying is that a nation that is largely third world (Russia) is considered ( by some) to have been able to hack into the electronic infrastructure that underpins American democracy. Mind you, north Korea seems to have been sucessful in totally trashing that US entertainment site a year or so ago .

        Surely the lesson is that america needs to dramatically Improve its cyber security?


      • Yes, Russia is somewhat below even Italy in GDP despite the larger population, and also on a per capita basis neck-and-neck with Mexico. As a country they are a failure, but like North Korea, they put their efforts into their military and covert activities. They also helped produce and distribute fake news that I think had more effect than the rather boring DNC emails. Remember Mike ‘pizzagate’ Flynn is now Trump’s chief national security person, so I don’t hold out much hope of improvement there.

      • Curious George

        Jim, a good work. It’s that way, indeed. I read the publicly released intel report. Short on substance. Was Russia doing anything wrong? Is there a smoking gun? We need to improve intel.

      • So far they have blamed the intel agencies, NBC and other media, and the DNC, but notably Putin, Russia and wikileaks get a pass despite being nailed by intel. Trump’s team just answer a different question to avoid mentioning Russia. Maybe it’s just a blind spot on their part.

      • Jimd

        I am watching the new series of ‘Sherlock’ at the moment so hope your reply comes before it finishes and I clear off to bed….


      • Danny Thomas

        The comment was in jest. Intelligence in politics and/or politics in intelligence. Take it seriously not literally. You know, like jumbo shrimp.

      • Tonyb
        Russia took sides in elections from days of Stalin, to Vietnam protests, to nuclear freeze campaigns, to anti fracking shutdown energy in the west campaigns. It is to be expected. US interfered in Israel democratic election, west german elections, Chilean coup, tried to assassinate Castro, invaded Grenada and Panama, Also took part in Vietnam coup and many others. It is expected.

        Democrats should have hidden their lies with better passwords. All the hacking complaints don’t address the issue that the information released is true. The compaints are that the hackers exposed the lies and manipulations of the democrats. That exposure is what they think causing people to mistrust democrats, not the truth of the lies.

      • The DNC emails were largely boring. The RNC internal emails about Trump or from Trump’s team would have been much more interesting reading. For example how did their platform remove condemnation of Russia and mention of support for Ukraine? No one owned up to it.

      • Curious George

        Danny, a military intelligence is an oxymoron.

      • Curious George

        In moderation, second attempt: Military intelligence is an 0xym0r0n.

      • And your point is Jim?

        My takeaway from the exchange you describe is that the people asking the questions should not be allowed outside without adult supervision.

        As I comment below, pushing the Russian”influence” argument is childish at best and ret@rded at worst. It ignores past US behavior, assumes US voters are too dumb to think for themselves and as you illustrate below, relies on a totally fabricated position that similar (or worse) emails belonging to the RNC or Trump campaign exist, are in the possession of the same hackers and were not released.

        Kind of like that dog who ate your homework.

      • Even Trump admits to Russian hacking now, but avoids answering their connections to wikileaks, fake news, and alleged financial leverage in his business. As long as he avoids these, he will keep getting asked. At least the Buzzfeed stuff, while entertaining and colorful, is unlikely to be true because, as he says, he is a known germaphobe.

      • Jim D,

        I’m guessing one of the top spots on your wish list is a wheelchair, seeing as your responses are getting more lame by the day.

        There is no evidence the election was “hacked”. Which is why the fallback position has been”influenced”.

        Reading comprehension is your friend. Try it sometime.

    • The truly stupid aspect of all this is that many countries, from time immemorial, have used whatever medium available to influence events in other countries. Many countries have hacked others governmental systems and used the internet to promote propaganda. The US has used hacking to influence elections in other countries. None of this is new.

      The DNC was just too stupid or lackadaisical to secure their information. The RNC protected theirs. It’s a good thing the Redimowits are in charge of our national intelligence now.

      Although the hacking is a “bad” act, whoever hacked the DNC did more net good by showing just how much some journalists and their outlets conspire with Dimowits. US citizens have a right to know that and now they do. May the NYT, CNN, ABC, NBC, and CBS burn in hell.

      • Fake news was 90% anti-Hillary. There was gullibility. 14% of Trump supporters believed Hillary was involved in pizzagate, and that was just one fake story. He could have lost with a 1% swing to Hillary. This had an impact because on social media, people can’t tell fake sources from real media. It is easy to make a case that on balance, the disinformation favored Trump and swung it enough, especially among the less educated who can’t discriminate fake news that comes across on their facebook. Maybe next time, people will be more aware of sourcing what they read, but it is too late for this one.

      • catweazle666

        “Fake news was 90% anti-Hillary.”

        Utter, absolute, mendacious drivel.

        The whole of the MSM on both sides of the Pond without exception was absolutely swamped with lies, insults, smears and distortions about Donald Trump.

        As if you had been paying any attention at all you must be very well aware, of course.

        Why oh why do you keep reflexively posting such ridiculous twaddle, knowing all it does is decrease your already almost non-existent credibility even further?

      • There were a lot of people on the media that didn’t like Donald, but you have to distinguish news from opinion. Did the news ever claim Donald did or said anything he didn’t admit to himself? The fake news made many claims about Hillary that were plain wrong.

      • catweazle666

        “Fake news was 90% anti-Hillary.”

        Utter, absolute drivel.

        The whole of the MSM on both sides of the Pond without exception was absolutely swamped with insults, smears and distortions about Donald Trump.

        As if you had been paying any attention at all you must be very well aware, of course.

        Why oh why do you keep reflexively posting such ridiculous twaddle, knowing all it does is decrease your already almost non-existent credibility even further?

      • The traditional news networks have been spreading fake news for the last 50 years. Cr000ked Hillary lost because she had nothing to offer suburbanites around the northern/mid-western cities. The same ones that voted for Obama twice in a row. She was a loser nominee from the start. She just assumed that because she is a Clinton and a woman that she would win. She was simply a lousy candidate who didn’t understand the electorate and ran a lousy campaign. End of story.

      • richardswarthout

        Jim2: Reading between the lines, I see agreement on all sides that Russia did the hacking of Podesta and the DNC, but there is disagreement on that part of the report claiming that Russians we’re trying to help Trump and discredit Clinton. There was even disagreement between the agencies on this, with the NSA giving it only moderate confidence. One analysis of this poses the possibility that the Russians expected Clinton to win and were merely trying to lay the groundwork for a difficult presidency, that trying to help Trump was not in the cards. And the report does say that at a (unstated) point in time, the Russians changed their tactics toward that end. But when would that of been, since she was expected to win, by most observers, very early on in the campaign. Cheers, Richard

      • Richard, I’m sure Iran wanted Clinton to win and may have surreptitiously gotten money to her campaign given how shadily the Clinton Foundation is run.

        But, so what?

        Clinton won the popular vote by a few million like-minded liberals from New York and California. The electoral system allows a much greater diversity of views across the nation to make a difference. That’s what happened here. People across the country voted for the next President of the United States of America, Donald J. Trump.

        He’s already been twice more Presidential than Obama and hasn’t even been sworn in yet.

      • Jimd

        Come off it. Certainly on this side of the pond the MSM And other news outlets was bent double by the weight of plaudits for Hillary. Similarly, the abuse hurled at trump could be weighed by the ton.


      • There you go again Jim D. Making stuff up. Fake news was 90% anti Hillary.

        Without a definition of”fake news”, that is a completely worthless statement. And assuming we all agreed on the definition, you still made up the 90% number.

        Can we all grow up here? The Presidency has never been determined by popular vote. Saying Clinton won the popular vote is not a true statement, as it ignores the fact over 7 million absentee ballots were not counted. Ballots which historically go 2 – 1 for the Republican candidate.

        Russian “hacking” to influence the election is not only a squirrel, but a hypocritical one. The US has attempted to overtly and covertly influence some 84 democratic elections around the world post WW II. That doesn’t include all of the coup’s and revolutions we have sponsored, supported or condoned. Whining about the Russians trying to do so is, well childish is probably the best term to use and make it past moderation.

        Then there is the problem of there being zero evidence any of the leaked emails being shown to have been faked or modified. In other words, any impact they could have had was due to the content. Content that stands as valid. The best the whiney little children can come up with as a counterpoint is that no similar emails were leaked from the RNC or Trump campaign. Good luck winning a court case with that strategy.

        Finally, the entire argument requires a belief that most of the people voting for Trump (or not voting at all) are too stupid to think for themselves. Which is exactly what the media, the DNC and the Clinton campaign thought. (And apparently still do.)

      • tonyb, on that side of the pond you don’t get the right-wing radio and TV media that form a closed bubble of information for a large section of the population, and believe me, there were no plaudits for Hillary there, and they, like Trump, disdain the mainstream media to make sure their people stay loyal. That was the circuit to cultivate the fake news, and they spread it via facebook, tweets, emails, etc. Now, it is true that Trump’s lack of a grasp of facts and small-minded tweets often made a negative impression on people when they were reported by the mainstream media, but their right-wing bubble didn’t focus on that so much.

      • Jim D promulgates the false contention that some people, right-wing, live in a bubble. Given the large number of verbose, lefty media outlets, that is virtually impossible. They are ubiquitous.

    • From the article:

      Drudge seemed to imply that his site was taken down in connection with punishment leveled against Russia for election-related hacking. The first attack on his website came hours after President Barack Obama announced the US would impose sanctions against Moscow, and the Drudge Report had previously been identified in a Washington Post story as responsible for spreading Russian propaganda.

      “Maybe they think this is a proportional counterattack to Russia,” tweeted Sheryl Attkisson, a former CBS News investigative journalist. “After all they have decided @Drudge is Russian fake news, right?”

      Neither the White House nor the Office of the Director of National Intelligence responded to requests for comment. But cybersecurity experts who spoke to Business Insider discounted Drudge’s claim on grounds that the government attacking a US journalist’s website would be a blatant violation of the Constitution — as well as generally improbable.


      • Danny Thomas

        Heard about that. Here’s what I read: “An anonymous computer hacker, Mr. Trump said, “could be somebody sitting on their bed that weighs 400 pounds.”

      • The Golden Globes was an anti-Trump fest, highlighted by Meryl Streep taking him to civility class as a major part of her acceptance speech for lifetime achievement. Also they mentioned that since it was the Hollywood, Foreign, Press, Trump would not like any part of that name. I am sure Trump will have a tweet or two to get back at Hollywood for this.

  21. Harry Twinotter

    “Paul Homewood: Two satellite datasets agree: The Pause lives on: ‘No warming for the last 18 years’”

    Really? And he comes to that conclusion without a trend line calculation in sight, or even a mention of the surface and TTT data sets.

  22. Harry Twinotter

    “Greenland Ice Sheet surface mass balance has risen 100 billion tons above the 1990-2013 average.”

    It’s snow. Likely it will melt in June.

  23. Wow,

    70 articles and links posted in this week’s WIR, and not one has anything presenting evidence that GHG emissions are doing or will do more harm than good to the global economy and human well-being.

  24. Question for climate scientists:

    How did biosphere productivity in much warmer times in the geologic past compare with biosphere productivity now?

    How does the mass of carbon tied up in the biosphere in much warmer times compare with the now?

    What studies have been done to determine these?

  25. http://models.weatherbell.com/climate/cdas_v2_hemisphere_2017.png

    Where is all this global warming ? The answer is no where to be found.

    In addition solar is now entering a very quiet phase and within 6 to 12 months from now global temperatures should be lower.

    The solar wind and AP index still high but they should be falling off as we move forward and at that time expect a real decline in global temperatures.

  26. To have year 2016 no warmer then year 1998 says to me a pause has been in place for the last 20 years more or less.

    If it were AGW as being the cause for global temperatures the global temperatures would show a steady slow rise once ENSO/VOLCANIC activity were removed. That is not the case the global temperatures have been steady since 1998.

    There has been nor will there be any AGW. A fraud of a theory.

  27. “Droughts, wildfires, heat waves, intense rainstorms—these are all extreme weather phenomena that occur naturally. But climate change is now increasing the frequency and magnitude of many of these events.”

    Droughts exhibit decreases in frequency and intensity as indicated by the long term US PDSI and satellite era vegetative indices.

    Wildfires exhibit decreases in frequency as indicated by the US paleo record of tree fire scars and lake ash sediment as well as no change in frequency or area in the US observed record, according to the National Interagency Fire Center.

    Heat waves are not particularly well defined, but there is a century long decrease in hot days ( 100F ) and warm months ( 85F ) for most, though not all, of the US.

    As for intense rain storms, there does appear to be an increase in observed daily US rainfall totals above 5cm ( ~ 2 inches ) over the last 85 years, but there has been no change in daily rainfall totals above 20cm ( ~ 8 inches ), the kind that have occurred in high profile floods. Further, the Wet/Dry percentages in the US for more than a century do not indicate any significant change.

    Most of this is documented in Dr. John Christy’s 2016 Congressional testimony.

    SciAm loses credibility with me for unquestioningly publishing this falsity in spite of the publicly available data. This is a major lie living within the popular conception of global warming. Yes, global average temperatures have been rising – that’s the 97%. But most of the presumed impacts have been falsified to date. The 97% does not include this nonsense!

    • Curious George

      The Earth is greening. That may be due to a decreasing frequency of droughts, but more likely it is a result of a better supply of CO2, which allows plants to thrive in arid conditions.

    • Scientific American is no longer either scientific or american. It is now owned by German publisher Holtzbrinck.

  28. It would be satisfying if the climate got significantly cooler just to shut up the alarmists. But OTOH, I would rather have a 30 meter sea level rise than a kilometer of ice.

    • Try physics. What physical mechanism shows any sort of tendency to actually cool the GMST? Not this pansy-butted hiatus from warming nonsense from up where geese fly…. an actual good old-fashioned cooling of the global surface. Go on… shut me up.

      • Do you believe cooling acts in a unilateral manner?

      • richardswarthout

        JCH, How about the movement of the earth around the sun? Or rain? Keep Warm, Richard

      • David Wojick

        And yet we have the LIA.

      • “In 1784, Benjamin Franklin made what may have been the first connection between volcanoes and global climate while stationed in Paris as the first diplomatic representative of the United States of America.”

      • Steven Mosher

        JCH didnt you get the memo.

        there is no such thing as a global temperature.. it cannot be either warmer or cooler.. but there was an LIA… we have millions of samples of temperatures from that era…

        err wait…

      • catweazle666

        “there is no such thing as a global temperature..”

        Conceptually, just barely feasible.

        Practically, as ridiculous and useless as the concept of the global telephone number – an equally conceptually feasible but useless concept.

      • ” we have millions of samples of temperatures from that era…”

        But they were all convenience samples says the guy with the kung foo death grip on the last Wikipedia article he read.

      • The globe has a lot of water on it. As said by others, that’s the better metric. The average ocean temperature, and it might be down to 700 meters is the system and the climate (plus ice sheets on land). The weather is what we see in the atmosphere. The atmosphere has been the weather since at least the 1960s. Why did that change?

  29. Evidence of climate change:

    Right at the top on the right is something about the Scientific Consensus. Is 97% really evidence?

    It says:
    “There is no question that increased levels of greenhouse gases must cause the Earth to warm in response.”

    So there is no possible way the Earth could cool given that emissions will continue to rise. No other factor can outweigh GHGs. If total GHGs increased by 0.00001% in a year, the Earth must warm.

      • Curious George

        What else is the 97% consensus?

      • “Scientific evidence is evidence which serves to either support or counter a scientific theory or hypothesis.”
        Here’s the evidence. We took a poll. I still don’t see why the put the 97% consensus at the top of the evidence page. Along time ago there was a consensus that the Earth was the center of universe. A belief in that was not evidence, so I say. Nor was the belief by many scientific people at that time that this was true. Tycho Brahe had a big protractor and gathered evidence. Somewhere in the whole deal, was a theory.

    • So there is no possible way the Earth could cool given that emissions will continue to rise. No other factor can outweigh GHGs. If total GHGs increased by 0.00001% in a year, the Earth must warm.

      I tried to look at ways other than surface warming that might equilibriate a CO2 doubling. One way, warm the upper troposphere even more than modeled, but not the surface, would do it. But observations indicate just the opposite has occurred: the surface has warmed more than the upper tropopause ( no hot spot ).

      Humidifying the lower troposphere while making the upper troposphere more arid would do it. And there’s even some evidence that happened in the uncertain humidity measurements. But is there a case for CO2 causing that?

      Albedo can and does fluctuate, but is there a physical basis for thinking it would increase with increasing CO2? One could imagine it, but that would seem tenuous.

      So, while other things could happen, warming, including surface warming, would seem the most likely result

    • The so-called science agency websites are full of this sort of alarmist trash. Hopefully the new Admin will track it all down and rewrite it. Not a small job by any means. Maybe a good crowdsourcing project.

      For example, NSF denies dec-cen variability without human interference:

      • I was surprised by the certianty expressed.
        I’d have backed it off a bit to this:
        “It is very likely that material increases in the levels of greenhouse gases do cause the Earth to warm in response.”

  30. richardswarthout

    Perhaps somebody can help me regarding the previous thread. The Zeke Hausfather et al abstract discusses satellite data and Mosher infers that it is not from the usual MSU sensors. Can you tell me more? Are UAH and RSS using new data from new sensors? Also, the graphs do not include the ARGO data: what’s with that? Thank you, Richard

    • The buoy-only and satellite-only records we use span the period from 1997 to the end of 2015.

      ATSR and AVHRR

      The brevity of the Argo records and their divergence from other records limit the weight that can be placed on them.

      • JCH, if in 20 years we are still using COBE-SST and not COBE-SSTv4c, then there will be a climate relevant length, unadjusted reference that could be spliced to a 100 plus year record of engine intake temperatures, bucket temperatures and educated guesses.

        Of course in 20 years it is reasonably likely that COBE-SST will have an obvious cooling bias or warming bias depending on expectations :)

      • richardswarthout

        JCH, Thank you for the information. It appears that Hausfather et al were stretching the truth when they stated:

        “We show that ERSST version 4 trends generally agree with largely independent, near-global, and instrumentally homogeneous SST measurements from floating buoys, Argo floats, and radiometer-based satellite measurements that have been developed and deployed during the past two decades.”

        It appears, on reading the methods, that the satellite data was not homogeneous and that the Argo data included thres different datasets with one disgreeing with the other two, and that Argo was therefore not included in the abstract.

        Mosher, will we be seeing a retraction/modification of your “evidence”?



      • Genuinely weird.

      • richardswarthout

        JCH, “Genuinely weird”. To who is that comment directed? Cheers, Richard

      • One could so far as to say that the ocean components of both UAH 6.0 and RSS MSU also affirm Haung, Karl, and Hausfather.

  31. In the meantime, nino 3.4 is back where it was three years ago.


  32. A very good history of the ice age climate science: [link]

    This is a very good record of what they do not understand. Read it, it is more about what they do not know than it is about what that they do know. This is not a good history of real science.

    Alex Pope

  33. Ambit Gambit has an interesting article and charts:

    Global warming hysteria needs to take a longer view

    Climate change is accelerating, according to the latest annual climate report from the Bureau of Meteorology, with 2016 tipped to have been the hottest year ever recorded globally.

    according to The Australian. And because it is the BOM, no one bothers to check.

    In fact, when you go to some of Australia’s oldest and best maintained climate records there is precious little sign that there is any significant warming happening, and none that it is accelerating.

    These graphs, taken from BOM data for a number of Australian lighthouses tell the story.

    I’ve chosen these data sets for a number of reasons.

    1. They are continuous records and have been taken from the same spot over the whole of the time of their existence. So there is no need to adjust them in any way to take account of station shifts, or the urban heat island effect.

    2. The oceans are the drivers of climate and temperature. Taking temperatures close to the coast means you are capturing a more representative sample of what is happening on earth. Inland temperatures can be effected more by things like prevailing winds, and drought or flood.

    3. Lighthouse keepers are pretty reliable folk, or they wouldn’t be doing what they do, and as a result I think we can assume that they are probably pretty reliable when it comes to taking temperature. Probably more reliable than say postmasters, who have a lot of other things on their plate.

    4. These cover the east, south and west parts of the continent. So it is relatively comprehensive. I think given a choice between lots of bad, short term data, and relatively few, but incredibly high-quality data, you should always choose the latter. If you’re wondering why nothing from north Australia I couldn’t find anything to match my lighthouse and longevity criteria there, but as global warming is predicted to be stronger away from the equator, that is an issue of lesser importance.

    • Woops, forgot to include the link. See the article (copied above in full) and charts here: http://www.ambitgambit.com/2017/01/07/global-warming-hysteria-needs-to-take-a-longer-view/

      • Harry Twinotter

        Peter Lang.

        So the article by “Graham” contains cherry-picked locations like Lighthouses. And you trust this “Graham” to know what he is doing, such as vetting and statistically averaging correctly. And you trust “Graham” to know he can ignore the other several hundred weather stations on the Australian continent and Tasmania.

        I can get you a good deal on the Boston Bridge – interested?

      • Harry Twinotter

        And the irony is the lighthouse data sets (on face value) show warming! “Graham” has tried to hide this fact by squishing the scale, but it is visble.

  34. Thank you for your information, my view is that after the UEA email leak global warming is the biggest scam on the people of the world ever.

  35. Tidbits from a recent paper Professor Curry called important:

    In short, if CM3’s internal variability is realistic, there is some chance that a rapid underlying warming rate of 0.2 K decade−1 could be ongoing as of 2015, but that this warming signal has been substantially masked (and may continue to be masked for even another decade or more) by an internal variability cooling episode. …

    Uh, no kidding.

    :One extreme example shows a warming of almost 1 °C in 15 years—a much greater 15-year warming rate than has occurred in the observations to date (red curves). These spring-back warmings illustrate another important potential consequence of strong internal multidecadal variability as simulated in CM3, and reinforce the need to better understand whether such internal variability actually occurs in the real world. …

    Closer than you think.

  36. re: Ancient CO2 levels: if you go back 300 million years, you need to account for the location of continents and solar intensity. The location of antarctica at the S pole, for example, creates a perfect storm of weather to keep it frozen. The “roaring 40s” just circle around and around, not distributing heat well to the continent. Even a few tens of millions of years ago, Panama was not connected so currents could flow, and the Aleutian chain did not exist as a barrier to heat dispersion. It is all different.

  37. Antarctic sea ice gain does not compensate for increased solar absorption from Arctic ice loss

    Unfortunately they don’t know how much extra is lost as all of that open water is exposed to very cold clear skies for days on end for at least 3/4 of the year where the Sun isn’t warming the north pole..

  38. I appreciated the “history of the ice age climate science,” I guess by Spencer Weart. It helps me to understand how people could think that the recent increase of CO2 in the atmosphere might cause big changes (without getting into how much CO2 can do on its own, whether warming is likely to be better or worse for humanity, etc.)

    Questions/mysteries: how can apparently small changes in Earth orbit cause massive changes in climate?

    “The variation in the intensity of sunlight that was computed for the 100,000-year astronomical cycle came from a minor change in orbital eccentricity — a slight stretching of the Earth’s path around the sun out of a perfect circle. It was a particularly tiny variation; the changes it caused should be trivial compared with the shorter-term and larger orbital shifts, not to mention all the other influences on climate. Yet it was the 100,000-year cycle that dominated the record.”

    Answer seems to be: this particular orbital change first triggers a temperature change (sun hitting a particular part of the earth in a particular way, affected by ice cover and other things); this triggers other changes, which in turn causes temperature increase or decrease. A series of forcings are crucial to explaining the outcome, coming and going of ice ages.

    “A small rise or fall in temperature seemed likely to cause a rise or fall in the gas levels (for example, when seawater got warmer it would evaporate some CO2 into the atmosphere, whereas it would absorb the gas during a cooling period). More or less greenhouse gases in the atmosphere would make for further changes in temperature, which would in turn raise or lower the gas levels some more… and so on. It was the first truly plausible theory for how minor shifts of sunlight could make the entire planet’s temperature lurch back and forth.”

    Supposedly it is only in Greenland that temperature increases always come before dramatic CO2 changes, not the other way around–leading to the little joke that Gore had it backwards.

    We have increased CO2 beyond levels seen in very old cores from the past. Therefore it is reasonable to expect temperature increases that might affect our lives, regardless of changes in earth orbit.

    The problem is that the astronomers and geologists still do not have much more than a plausible guess as to how a number of different factors actually brought about a change in earth’s climate.

    “The more precise the data got, the less precise seemed the match between sunlight in the Northern Hemisphere and ice age cycles; probably Southern Hemisphere sunlight and other Milankovitch features played a role. Evidently when orbital effects served as a pacemaker, it was by adjusting the timing of greater forces working through their own complex cycles. As one reviewer said in 2002, ‘The sheer number of explanations for the 100,000-year cycle… seems to have dulled the scientific community into a semipermanent state of wariness about accepting any particular explanation.'”

    Should governments have spent billions on windmills and such, when there was no sign of an actual crisis anywhere, based on such interesting stuff? Judith Curry, I guess a “luke-warmer,” seems increasingly inclined to say that money should be spent on such things as storm-proofing. She also says the warmists may turn out to be right.

    Another favourite part. Is anything truly troubling actually happening right now?

    “There were disturbing signs that feedbacks were indeed kicking in. Drying forests and warmer seawater were getting less efficient at taking CO2 out of the air, and methane was seen bubbling up from Arctic wetlands.”

    So now these two or three things are the biggest scares? Think of all the scare stories that are not mentioned here: extreme weather events (unless the drying forests are supposed to result from drought), sea level change, ocean acidification, coral bleaching, dead blob in Pacific, polar bears. Methane in the Arctic ocean does not result directly from human emissions, but it is presumably released because of melting ice; is there any clear trend? In any case the methane may not make it into the atmosphere. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/05/160527112654.htm

    There seems to be a lot of “ifs” in the drying forests story, and I would think the temperature of seawater is even more complicated. http://www.livescience.com/53101-drought-could-kill-off-trees.html

    Finally, there seems to be a reference to the fact that the temperature hasn’t gone up much at all:

    “Our current situation was altogether different. The warming was not started by a small shift of sunlight, as in previous epochs. Our addition of gases to the atmosphere was initiating the process, with the temperature rise lagging behind the rise of gas levels.”

    Lagging? Thanks for clearing that up professor.

  39. I hope Judith does not mind me posting this here, only I was being challenged at the OU on the validity of the Logarithmic effect of CO2 on temperature and that they could not track this down. I came across in a book by Don Easterbrook, which lead me to a D Archiabald etc etc. eventually I found this blog about Guy Callendar from 1938.

    This blog which talks a bit about Callendar but more specifically his paper.
    Its worthy of a read; talk about being ahead of ones time.


  40. Fredericke Otto: Yes, Some Extreme Weather Can Be Blamed on Climate Change [link]

    Otto wrote: So we have to simulate that world by removing the anthropogenic warming from the climate models, or by doing statistical modeling on observations of the late 19th and early 20th century. Then we determine what would have been possible weather in a world without climate change.

    This is a joke, they don’t really understand anthropogenic warming, so they have no clue as to what to remove.

  41. David Wojick

    In light of some of my discussions above, I must mention what I call the “fallacy of the mean”. Consider the 48% confidence interval. It is more likely that the true value lies outside of it than inside. But this interval is centered on the mean, making the mean unlikely to be true. And as the confidence interval is narrowed, for even lower probabilities, the mean becomes even less likely to be true. But we systematically ignore this feature of statistical science and use the mean as though it were very likely to be true, which is simply false.

    Put another way, what sampling theory tells us is that the confidence interval is the important result, not the mean, which is highly unlikely to be correct.

    But then, if it is a convenience sample, as most climate data are, then even the confidence interval is invalid, because it is based on probability theory, which requires a random sample.

    In short, there is a lot of bad math in climate science.

  42. Obama has a new commentary in Science magazine today.
    “The irreversible momentum of clean energy”.

    • “The irreversible momentum of clean energy”.

      Yeah, which just goes to show what a complete fantasist he is.

      • He gives you the numbers. Deny them if you want.

      • Jim D,

        There has never been much doubt that renewable energy will grow. Intelligent minds question the validity of eliminating existing energy infrastructure before renewable sources have reached the level of replacement.

        Those who believe doing so will speed deployment of renewable are bankrupt on almost all counts (morally, ethically, arithmetically).

  43. The present study focuses on differences between satellite- and model-based estimates of tropospheric temperature change. We assess the validity of two highly publicized claims:

    Okay, two claims that were made:

    that modeled tropospheric warming is a factor of 3–4 larger than in satellite and radiosonde observations (Christy 2015) and that satellite tropospheric temperature data show no statistically significant warming over the last 18 years…

    in the:

    (U.S.Senate 2015). …

    In the United States Senate. Yeah, no gold standard politicized science going on here.

    Next, the validity of the statement that satellite data show no significant tropospheric warming over the last 18 years is assessed. This claim is not supported by the current analysis: in five out of six corrected satellite TMT records, significant global-scale tropospheric warming has occurred within the last 18 years. Finally, long-standing concerns are examined regarding discrepancies in modeled and observed vertical profiles of warming in the tropical atmosphere. It is shown that amplification of tropical warming between the lower and mid-to-upper troposphere is now in close agreement in the average of 37 climate models and in one updated satellite record.

    I’m sure a correction is being rushed to the US Senate floor.

    • Finally, long-standing concerns are examined regarding discrepancies in modeled and observed vertical profiles of warming in the tropical atmosphere. It is shown that amplification of tropical warming between the lower and mid-to-upper troposphere is now in close agreement in the average of 37 climate models and in one updated satellite record.

      Still waiting for the Fu 2016 numbers, but here is a 2015 comparison of satellite era trends:

      I haven’t read the paper slowly and closely yet, but it is considering shorter term trends, but I believe it is a mischaracterization to call the models and obs “close agreement”.

      Should there even be a hot spot?

      Perhaps not. The models create too much precipitation in the tropics ( and the Double ITCZ ). This problem seems to have gotten worse, not better from CMIP3 to CMIP5.

  44. Thanks for highlighting Kevin Folta, yet again. I’ve been following Dr. Folta for several years and love the way he approaches science communication. Climate science needs people like Dr. Folta (and Dr. Curry) in its ranks. Instead, we get people like Michael Mann who deflect, obfuscate, and inveigh and then wonder why people don’t trust them.

    • Hopefully, there were errors in that reporting. And hopefully, there are errors here, too.


      • BuzzFud is the same one that published the fake Trump “dossier.” You can rely on them to support the most stringent of journalistic standards.

        Trump rocked at his press conference. It’s way past time Redimowits started calling out the press for fake news. It was awe-inspiring. I especially loved it when Trump refused CNN, the one that leaked debate questions to Biliously, a question. They so deserved what they got and I look forward to more crow dinners for the in-the-left-tank new organizations.

        This is going to be tons of fun.

      • It is kind of like accusing the President of not being born in the country. Fake outrage, because that is what the Trump team do whenever they can. What Buzzfeed released was apparently making the rounds well before the election, but the media were not releasing it. Now it only makes the news because it was included in an intelligence briefing.

      • “It is kind of like accusing the President of not being born in the country.”

        You mean like Hillary did?

        Hillary Clinton is the founder of the movement that questioned Barack Obama’s birthplace. She can practically be referred to as the mother of the birther movement.

        The following is a list of 7 times that Hillary Clinton – not Donald Trump – was shown to have started the Obama birther controversy…”


      • I think Trump also tried to blame Hillary for his own beliefs, but he owned it for four years, while Hillary never did make any such claim because the truth was plain to see with even a little digging, so that whole idea, far-fetched in the first place, was quickly done in by the evidence. He even had a birth announcement in a Hawaii newspaper, so you have to have some crazy long-term conspiracy theory to make it work, and it was Trump who had that.

      • The 30 pages of hogwash were much worse than the birther thing.

    • richardswarthout

      The story is wrong. The reporter was either lazy or misled intentionally. The reconciliation bill he was referring to had two parts, and he/she only reported the first part, which appears to lay out the budget if congress let the budget run on automatic for the next ten years. The second part instructs four various committees to cut at least $1Trillion each (4T total) from the budget laid out in the first part. This was probably their way of showing that cuts were being made. Keep warm, Richard

    • richardswarthout

      See my reply below; the reconciliation bill has two parts and the reporter has ignored the 2nd part.

  45. There’s a Wuwt article that took some flak:
    Maybe we could argue about it? Here was my comment there:
    “Instead, I found vast unambiguous evidence that rapid CO2 increases occur only when rapidly melting/retreating glaciers are interacting with the earth’s oceans and atmosphere in creating rapid global warming, rising seawater levels and signature rapid atmospheric CO2 increases.”
    Sea levels vary by about 140 meters over long time scales. So the oceans increase in volume by a bit less than 4% as they rise by 140 meters. I feel this is a significant amount of water that was warmed.
    How to warm water and retain the short wave sunlight? Have upwelling near the ENSO region. Cool ocean bottom water brought to the surface heats more as it evaporates less than IPWP water does. To warm water, cooler water is better.
    Bottom water is similar to ice sheets as the question is, when is it coming back and how much is coming back? It is true that ice sheets are not in the ENSO region.
    “This research makes it clear that glaciers represent a substantial reservoir of organic carbon,” said Hood, a scientist at the University of Alaska Southeast.
    Every time we lose CO2, how do we know it’s coming back later? We store it in ice until it’s needed.
    “Marshall and Clark:
    “…Our simulations suggest that a substantial fraction (60% to 80%) of the ice sheet was frozen to the bed for the first 75 kyr of the glacial cycle, thus strongly limiting basal flow. Subsequent doubling of the area of warm-based ice in response to ice sheet thickening and expansion and to the reduction in downward advection of cold ice may have enabled broad increases in geologically- and hydrologically-mediated fast ice flow during the last deglaciation.
    Increased dynamical activity of the ice sheet would lead to net thinning of the ice sheet interior and the transport of large amounts of ice into regions of intense ablation both south of the ice sheet and at the marine margins (via calving). This has the potential to provide a strong positive feedback on deglaciation.”
    Above it is suggested that ice causes warming. It shifts closer to the equator. As we look at long time frames, we are looking for a tipping to explain the spike upwards out of a glacial. Their paper suggests, given enough ice, this shift occurs.
    I found to article interesting and it helped further my understanding how the system may work.

  46. From GWPF (more evidence of the reality that renewables cannot supply a significant proportion of global electricity, let alone energy):

    The End Of Germany’s Energiewende?

    This winter could go down in history as the event that proved the German energy transition to be unsubstantiated and incapable of becoming a success story. Electricity from wind and solar generation has been catastrophically low for several weeks. December brought new declines. A persistent winter high-pressure system with dense fog throughout Central Europe has been sufficient to unmask the fairy tale of a successful energy transition, even for me as a lay person. You do not need to be a technician, an energy expert, or a scientist to perceive the underlying futility of this basic situation. Stable high-pressure winter weather has resulted in a confrontation. An Energiewende that relies mainly on wind and solar energy will not work in the long run. One cannot forgo nuclear power, eliminate fossil fuels, and tell people that electricity supplies will remain secure all the same.–Heiner Fassbeck, Energy Post, 10 January 2017


  47. Interesting:

    “The new policy states as its “cornerstone” that “all scientists, engineers, or others supported by DOE are free and encouraged to share their scientific findings and views.” That includes talking to the media, giving public talks, and even expressing views on social media (though these can’t be attributed to the government).”

    “The seven-page policy prevents other agency employees, such as political appointees or press officers, from leaning on or torquing scientific findings. “Under no circumstance may anyone, including a public affairs officer, ask or direct any researcher to alter the record of scientific findings or conclusions,” the document states.”

    “The policy is not a new rule or regulation by the agency, so it would be easier to reverse than such regulatory measures. On the other hand, it would invite controversy if the incoming Trump administration were to try to reverse a policy designed to protect scientific information and those who create it.”



    It seemed very likely that the guilty party was rising greenhouse gasses with Arctic amplification as the accomplice, and that’s JUST what the evidence shows. It’s overwhelming, and the defendants have no choice but to throw themselves upon the mercy of the court.

    The analysis shows that even in our present climate that is around a degree warmer than 1900, this heat is unusual, but would happen once every 50-200 years. The odds of it happening in the climate of 1900 are astronomically tiny, however, if we warm another degree, this will be a nearly commonplace event.