Skin in the game

by Judith Curry

Some reflections on my transition from academic climate research to private sector weather forecasting and regional climate change assessments.

I’ve received thousand of emails, tweets, etc. regarding my retirement from Georgia Tech.  Two messages motivated the theme for this post:

Congratulations on your emancipation, and I have no doubt that you will enjoy and thrive in a skin-in-the-game world!

Good luck with your new venture, in the real world where what we pay for must work as advertised. Change from alternative reality!

Skin in the game

So, what is ‘skin in the game’?

Definition #1If someone is said to have some “skin in the game”, it usually means that person has something to lose (whether it’s some form of ownership, money, property, or just respect) in a given situation – and that situation is usually something business related. So, the “game” in the phrase just refers a situation where there is something that has some risk involved, where people can potentially lose something.

Definition #2To be at risk financially because you have invested in something that you want to happen.  You take more ownership of something when you have some skin in the game.

Nassim Taleb has a new book in the works:  Skin in the game: the thrills and logic of risk taking. Based on the snippets that I’ve seen, I don’t quite ‘get it’, but the title of one of his chapters is The skin of others in your game, which is a theme I want to exploit here.

Weather forecasts versus climate predictions

If you are a weather forecaster in the private sector, you will quickly lose your clients if your forecasts are consistently wrong.  Daily forecasts are evaluated daily; seasonal forecasts are evaluated several times each year.  Clearly weather forecasters have skin in the game in terms of  their forecasts.

With regards to climate projections, the predictions being made now will be irrelevant in 2100, which is their target prediction date.  In fact, the forecasts become obsolete every 5 years or so, as new model versions are implemented. Recent attempts to evaluate climate model projections in CMIP5 during the early 21st century have shown striking discrepancies between model projections and observations.

Defenders of the climate models and climate model projections argue that climate models shouldn’t be expected to verify on decadal time scales.

In other words, climate modelers have no skin in the game in terms of losing something if their forecasts turn out to be wrong.  In fact, there is actually a perversion of skin in the game, whereby scientists are rewarded (professional recognition, grants, etc.) if they make alarming predictions (even if they are easily shown not to comport with observations).

Skin in the game: forecast uncertainty and confidence

I would like to start this section with an excerpt from my 2013 House testimony:

By engaging with decision makers in both the private and public sector on issues related to weather and seasonal climate variability through my company CFAN, my perspective on uncertainty and confidence in context of prediction, and how to convey this, has utterly and irreversibly changed. I have learned about the complexity of different decisions that depend, at least in part, on weather and climate information. I have learned the importance of careful determination and conveyance of the uncertainty associated with a forecast, and the added challenges associated with predicting extreme events. Confidence in a particular probabilistic forecast is determined by consistency of consecutive forecasts, and historical evaluation of forecast accuracy and errors under similar conditions. I have also learned how different types of decision makers make use of forecast uncertainty and confidence information.

I have found that the worst forecast outcome is a forecast issued with a high level of confidence that turns out to be wrong; a close second is missing the possibility of an extreme event.

In other words, my work with CFAN epitomizes a ‘skin in the game’ environment.  Which is diametrically opposed to the ‘skin of others in your game’ approach by academics to climate change.

Working in an environment with skin in the game dramatically changed my perspective on uncertainty and confidence.  This perspective (derived from my skin in the game work with CFAN) is very clear in my discussion of climate science, uncertainty, and overconfidence by the IPCC [https://judithcurry.com/category/uncertainty/]

This perspective may be unique in the academic climate community; I don’t know of any other climate scientists with skin in the game in private sector weather forecasting.

Climate prognostications: the skin of others in your game

When I saw the phrase ‘skin of others in your game,’ it immediately struck me as describing the situation of climate scientists/activists.  Whereby they make dramatic prognostications of dire consequences, and advocate for emissions reductions with their attendant economic costs and detrimental effects of developing countries.

The scientists themselves have absolutely no skin in the game, other than the perversions associated with being professionally rewarded for making alarming predictions and claiming that anyone who doesn’t agree with them is a science ‘denier.’

Who among the climate activists would redirect their research funding and travel funding to efforts to reduce emissions?  Who among the climate scientists/activists are making a serious effort to reduce their carbon footprint, e.g. air travel?  [see Walking the climate talk].  They have no skin at all in the game. This becomes truly perverse when they insist on the skin of others in their game.

JC reflections

I said in my post JC in transition that I thought that the private sector is a more ‘honest’ place for a scientist than academia.  In this context,  in the private sector you have skin in the game with regards to weather forecasts (and shorter term climate forecasts), whereas in academia scientists have no skin in the game in terms of the climate change projections.

Making shorter term weather or climate forecasts, with some skin in the game, would be very good experience for academic climate scientists.  And this experience just might end up changing their perspectives on uncertainty and forecast confidence  . . . to something that sounds like my perspective.

485 responses to “Skin in the game

  1. 2017 seems to be a year of change for a lot of us.

    https://thepointman.wordpress.com/2017/01/08/a-message-in-two-parts-part-two/

    Good luck outside of Lincoln’s tent.

    Pointman

    • Hi Pointman, I will miss your writings on climate, but applaud your new focus on free speech!

    • Pointman

      Believing that the climate wars is won by ‘our’ side is surely akin to the philosophical notion in the early 1990’s about the end of history

      https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_End_of_History_and_the_Last_Man

      The collapse of communism has in turn been supplanted by a fraying of the liberal consensus and history is seen to be a never ending string comprised of an indeterminate number of threads.

      I do not see the climate troops vacating the battlefield nor that activists will start to look round for an alternative cause.

      Tonyb

      • Believing that the climate wars is won by ‘our’ side is surely akin to the philosophical notion in the early 1990’s about the end of history

        Not really..the functional point of the alarmist side of the climate wars was to shift energy markets. Energy markets have shifted for reasons external to the climate debate.(natural gas is cheaper to get out of the ground and deliver to market then coal).

        What James Hanson believes or the chairman of Peabody coal believes is largely irrelevant.

      • Yes, declaration of victory is premature. Donald Trump’s election is an apparent victory for Vladimir Putin, but for climate skeptics? I’m afraid not. For all we know the Donald may turn out to be the biggest alarmist since Obama.

        My hope is that those scientists who doubt the consensus but are afraid to speak out will become emboldened. This, of course, depends on some changes being made personnel-wise that will enable more courageous science. Trump has to direct this. Let’s hope he does.

  2. Pingback: Skin in the game | Robbie's Blog

  3. Superb post, Judy.

    Yes, in the private sector accuracy, timeliness and customer service are everything. You are absolutely correct that we will lose our clients if we do not constantly deliver on those three elements of our services.

    I have found, generally, that academic meteorology looks down at the private sector rather than learning from us or even seeking to emulate us. It would be a different world in our science if that were not the case.

  4. Hello, I am the president of the sustainability club at my high school, and I strive to be completely unbiased when it comes to being informed about the issues with our climate. I have been looking into the issue of climate change and came upon you, Dr. Curry. Although I am not well versed in research as I am only in high school, I have found that the information surrounding global warming is overwhelming and seems very biased on both sides. I was wondering if you would be able to answer a few of my questions concerning this worldwide issue and your choice to pursue research outside of Georgia Tech (where I intend to apply and hopefully attend college). I was unable to find any contact information, and realize that you are a bit of a “hot topic” currently but in the case that you would kindly give the time to answer a few of my inquiries, I would be very grateful.
    My two most pressing questions are:
    1. If your research in the future shows that global warming is being caused or worstened by human activity, would you be discouraged or proud of your choice?
    2. What tells you that our current climate change is not a human creation, and is there any specific data which you could point me to which would help me further understand this viewpoint?
    Thank you

    • Hi Anna, thanks for stopping by. Georgia Tech is a very good choice for your undergraduate studies. Send me an email curryja at eas.gatech.edu. Re your questions:

      1. As a scientist I am pretty indifferent to the actual outcome of this debate. I regard it as my job to continually re-evaluate the evidence and reassess the conclusions.
      2. My arguments are mostly about uncertainty: what we DON’T know.

      You came to the right place. It may take awhile to dig through the posts here, but they will give you a good sense of the state of the evidence and debate on this issue.

      • Thank you so much, I have found this and all the following comments very encouraging and helpful. I have subscribed to and will be reading your subsequent blogs, and cannot wait to learn more about our earth and its climate. I will email you if I run into any questions which I cannot find the answer to online.
        Anna G.

    • Anna, before you can understand the future, you need to understand the past. I strongly urge you to look at the studies of past climate that are not centered on co2 theory, including the archaeology record, to get a proper context for climate change.

      • Anna, one concept that should land squarely in the centre of your investigations on all science is the crucial null hypothesis. It states that if you do not require a special mechanism to explain an observed phenomenon, the default, correct position is not to conjure one up. Climate today is completely unremarkable in the annals of natural history to which we have access (various proxy data sets describing climates gone by). You ask for evidence that humans are not causing climate change. It should be the reverse: seek evidence that they are. Climate has been changing forever, the vast majority of which time had no humans on the scene. Why must we seek a role for ourselves in a saga that hasn’t shown any evidence of our arrival affecting it? It is those who claim we are changing the climate who bear the burden of proof, the responsibility to give evidence. I’ve been seeking that evidence for the last fifteen years (as a layperson, not a scientist) with no fruits for my efforts as yet. If you find any, I’d love to hear about it! Good luck at Georgia Tech’s admissions dept etc. — John DD

      • Thank you, I will definitely do this as I continue researching in my free time!

      • Thank you, this offers a good perspective to start with.

    • Anna Gardner,
      Read this blog.
      Read Judith Curry’s past posts here.
      Observe how she communicates as much as what she thinks.
      No matter which side you come down on in the climate debate you will see what science and honest pursuit of knowledge is supposed to look like.
      Then seek out teachers with that same vibe.
      Everything else will take care of itself.

      As Judith says climate is a “weedy” subject.
      Hang in.
      You just found one of the best classes you’ll ever take and it’s free.
      And so far there’s no term paper.

    • Anna Gardner,
      I fear that the politics of the climate debate gives young people the mistaken impression that their world is imperiled.
      It is not true.
      You live in the best of times.
      All generations have faced challenges and all have succeeded in overcoming them.
      Otherwise you and I would not be here. :)

      As one reader of Climate Etc., I hope to see more of your questions and comments here.
      The only bad question is the one unasked.

      Make ’em explain the fundamentals.
      If they squirm, you’re on the right track.

    • Anna Gardner,

      Could I urge you to read at least the 1 page summary of Judith Curry’s 2015 testimony to US House of Representatives on: “The President’s U.N. Climate Pledge”: https://science.house.gov/sites/republicans.science.house.gov/files/documents/HHRG-114-SY-WState-JCurry-20150415_0.pdf

      And here is he testimony to the US Senate: Hearing on
      “Data or Dogma? Promoting Open Inquiry in the Debate
      Over the Magnitude of Human Impact on Climate Change

      https://curryja.files.wordpress.com/2015/12/curry-senate-testimony-2015.pdf

      They will provide valuable, objective background on what is important; and you can forward it to others to help educate them on what is relevant.

      Also, be careful to avoid the “ad hominem fallacy”:

      Ad hominem (Latin for “to the man” or “to the person”[1]), 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.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ad_hominem

      More:

      Description of Ad Hominem

      Translated from Latin to English, “Ad Hominem” means “against the man” or “against the person.”

      An Ad Hominem is a general category of fallacies in which a claim or argument is rejected on the basis of some irrelevant fact about the author of or the person presenting the claim or argument. Typically, this fallacy involves two steps. First, an attack against the character of person making the claim, her circumstances, or her actions is made (or the character, circumstances, or actions of the person reporting the claim). Second, this attack is taken to be evidence against the claim or argument the person in question is making (or presenting). This type of “argument” has the following form:

      Person A makes claim X.
      Person B makes an attack on person A.
      Therefore A’s claim is false.
      The reason why an Ad Hominem (of any kind) is a fallacy is that the character, circumstances, or actions of a person do not (in most cases) have a bearing on the truth or falsity of the claim being made (or the quality of the argument being made).
      http://www.nizkor.org/features/fallacies/ad-hominem.html

      • Thank you, I have shared the links already and read some of them. I am just about to watch the video of her speaking to the senate as I find that more effective when trying to grasp big ideas over reading. This was really helpful.

      • Anna Gardner,

        You may be interested to watch the video of Judith Curry’s testimony to the US House of Representatives Science, Space and Technology, Full Committee Hearing – The President’s UN Climate Pledge https://science.house.gov/legislation/hearings/full-committee-hearing-president-s-un-climate-pledge-scientifically-justified

        Her impeccable integrity, intellectual honest, and her ability to educate stands out.

      • I watched both testimonies, and am impressed by Judith Curry’s true scientific drive. Thank you for these great resources.

      • Anna,

        Can I challenge you to consider this:

        Life thrived when the planet was much warmer than now. For around 60% of the past 540 million years (most of the period animal life has existed, and thrived), the planet was at least 5 C warmer than now (up to 13 C warmer). For 75% of the past 540 Ma there were no ice sheets at the poles. The planet is currently in an unusually cold period; only the second such multi-million year cold period in the past 540 Ma.

        If average global temperature increases by 3C, the average temperature of the tropics increases by only about 1 C (i.e. a 0.3% increase). That’s not a serious threat. The average temp of the poles would increase from -36C to -7C, a 29 C increase, which would be hugely beneficial. Mid latitudes would experience temperature increases mostly at night and in winter, giving longer growing season And many other benefits.

        None of this suggests warming, if it does happen, is a threat to life, to human civilisation or to the global economy.

        More here:
        https://judithcurry.com/2016/11/25/week-in-review-science-and-policy-edition-3/#comment-826495

    • Anna Gardner

      Congratulations upon beginning this quest: climate. One of the first portions of the journey is learning the language. I suggest having a quick reference at your fingertips to find definitions and very briefly stated concepts. Words like: telecommunication or chaos or boundary or circulation or a host of other words used in climate science have more specific meanings than in general conversation. Try Wikipedia if it is on your computer looking up the words as you go. The concepts are best viewed within the framework of Newton’s “Fluid Dynamics” as the atmosphere and its demarkations and oceans with their circulation currents all interplay with one another.

      Good luck. Be mindful the journey has no known destination. So, enjoy the travel. Don’t forget to stop and smell the roses.

    • Anna, you have found, imho, the best site on the Web for information on the climate change debate and more. I suggest that you don’t read just articles but dig into the papers as well. There is a lot of politics surrounding climate change and it has tainted much of the science, but there are some very smart and honest scientists out there, you just have to find them. Dr. Curry is really a breath of fresh air. Best of luck.

    • Anna,
      You may want to familiarize yourself with following regarding your questions

      1) precautionary principle (strong and weak)
      2) wicked problem (scientifically)
      3) again: skin in the game
      4) black swan (somehow related with #1

      Best of luck in your pursuits, so refreshing to see that young students like yourself still exist (Kim Kardashian anyone?)

  5. The AGW fearmongering business now faces a great danger of we taxpayers coming to understand that, (1) we’ve been lied to by our Leftist Overlords and (2), only we have skin in game and its time we stopped baring our backs to the whip.

  6. Yes, indeed. As someone generally out at the sharp end of the stick, I can only agree wholeheartedly.

    w.

  7. Curiosity doesn’t require skin in the game, and works fine in science.

    I’d say it’s more important in fact. It’s the only thing that works.

    Skin in the game though might introduce caution. That doesn’t create science but it’s better than the open-ended funding alternative.

  8. I heard on Fox Business News today that you had resigned your position. So, I came looking for your comments. I hope the government decision makers still seek you out for advice. I know from experience that they commonly seek advice from academia, because having such a position gives the appearance of a greater expertise and lesser bias (ha ha) than government experts. Your expertise will in no way be diminished. Fortunately, I think the business-oriented incoming executive branch will be looking your way.

  9. While climate projection even for a couple of decades means you have little skin in the game, being retired by the time it verifies, it doesn’t mean there is not a responsibility. If a customer wanted to know the mean temperature at their location from 2030-2040 for some planning (or it could be sea level), would you base it on the mean of the 20th century, the mean of the last decade, or a projected forwards warming at the rate of the last few decades? I think that, given how steadily it has been warming since 1980 (about 0.3 C per decade for the average land area, see below), a forward projection would be a good central estimate around which to add the uncertainty that partly includes what emissions will do in that timeframe. Then you should look closely at what this temperature does to the customer’s interests, because erring on the side of caution is probably better when presenting the results. This kind of judgement call gets to the center of how a climate forecasting company would operate.
    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/crutem4vgl/mean:120/mean:240/plot/crutem4vgl/from:1985/trend

    • Actually I think you should probably do the second step first, and not so you can err on the side of caution. The best thing you can do is help your client design their affairs so they are adaptive to the uncertainty.

      • …but especially give them the high probability of warming by, for example, 0.3 C per decade, because otherwise they may not act on it. The probabilities figure into cost-benefit calculations.

      • You miss the point, the probabilities are uncertain, and that’s what one needs to be managed.

    • I don’t consider running models with a known wrong latent heat of water vaporization responsible.

      • This is just with observations. The trend has been very clear since 1980. Models happen to agree, but that is beside the point.

  10. It is a galling aspect – forecasts made beyond a human lifetime and as such, not only not verifiable, but the rascals making the forecasts aren’t held to account because they’re deceased sooner than validation time.

    But even the forecast failures are glossed over.

    That would include Hansen Testimony ( observations less than even Scenario C for 1979 through 2015 ) and the IPCC AR4 ( 2C per century for all scenarios ).

    Faced with these shortcomings, the IPCC moved away from actual falsifiable trend predictions to ECS which is even worse who’s to say when equilibrium occurs?

  11. “I have found that the worst forecast outcome is a forecast issued with a high level of confidence that turns out to be wrong; a close second is missing the possibility of an extreme event.”
    Need to read his second book again.
    He banks on extreme events occurring more often than people expect, that is they forget to factor in all the remote possibilities.
    Get insurance, it’s cheap for extreme event predicting.
    In regard to weather the amazing thing is how many 1 in a hundred year or worse events can occur in one spot in 10 years.
    Take 2030-2040, perhaps it could be sea level,.
    One could have at least 15 such events some of which would make the mean temperature at their location irrelevant.
    eg drought, tornado, Hurricane, other wind events, flooding due to rains, Hailstorm, Temperatures 10 degrees below expected, temps 10 degrees above expected. Also an earthquake, Tsunami or Fire due to planting Australian gums in California.
    Jim D ” If a customer wanted to know the mean temperature at their location from 2030-2040 for some planning “–
    I would tell him to invest in air conditioner units with a backup fossil fuel generator [or 2].

    • The other aspect of the trend is that a 100-year extreme event in the 20th century can become a ten-year event now because of trends (which is true of mean summer temperature in most places, for example). The probability curve has shifted by one or more standard deviations in statistical terms, and is still shifting at the same rate. This type of thing is of interest to customers, possibly energy companies or insurers.

    • “In regard to weather the amazing thing is how many 1 in a hundred year or worse events can occur in one spot in 10 years.” That nails it I think. The reason is that many natural events such as weather events are not independent of one another IN TIME, i.e. they are “red noise” not “white noise”. For example, global average temperature is a red noise quantity so that the best predictor of next year’s global average temperature is this year’s value. Just because something is random doesn’t make it white. Red noise often has the appearance of containing trends and cycles but these are spurious – they have no predictive power.

  12. In regard to risk management the importance is in having a risk assessor, climate forecaster in place.
    Does not change the risk of an extreme event happening but produces a lot of comfort in the organization which is good for morale.
    And pays well [Taleb].

  13. Pingback: Skin in the game – Enjeux énergies et environnement

  14. Only an academic could take a simple one-line truth that 99% of working adults understand and turn it into a whole paper.

    Better get over that Curry. You don’t get paid by the word anymore.

    Write that down of course. 🤑

  15. We all have skin in the game Dr. Curry.

    That is why many of us who understand what is at risk pay attention, when many others don’t.

    That risk is not one dimensional, no matter your position on such.

    Thanks for doing what you do Doc!

    It means much to all involved….

    Even if most don’t realize it yet, you are one of the good guys/gals in the end.

    I thank you very much for that.

    Be well with our future and yours.

    Regards Ed

  16. Geoff Sherrington

    Silly me for assuming over the decades of my career that I had an obligation to create more wealth for society than I would consume for myself.
    I chose work environments where you more or less payed your own way and gave a lot to society.
    It is hard to comprehend a work environment wherein you get paid by society for doing nothing good, even doing obvious bad.
    We will all be in a better place when self-supporting principles dominate again. To the extent it applies, go private enterprise and thumbs down to academia and bureaucracy, where scope exists for scientific work.
    Skin in the game adds tremendous excitement.
    Geoff

  17. Harry Twinotter

    Still peddling the same old talking point “I claim climate models are wrong”.

    Show evidence instead of talking about it. Science is in the evidence, not in the opinions.

    • No. You live in upside-down world. First the people promoting the models shall show evidence the models are right.0

      • Harry Twinotter

        “No. You live in upside-down world. First the people promoting the models shall show evidence the models are right.”

        This is correct in general. But Dr Curry is making a claim the models are wrong. Let her show evidence for this claim.

        And this silly “skin in the game” nonsense (she is assuming a lot about other’s motivations, again without providing evidence). Let her demonstrate to the world her Global Circulation Model, and how it matches observations better.

      • But Dr Curry is making a claim the models are wrong. Let her show evidence for this claim.

        Reminds me of Sunday’s Dilbert.

        Do you have any scientific proof that reducing fossil fuels won’t cause a nuclear holocaust?

        And this silly “skin in the game” nonsense (she is assuming a lot about other’s motivations, again without providing evidence). Let her demonstrate to the world her Global Circulation Model, and how it matches observations better.

        That is the point – nobody has observations of 2100 – the models are unvalidated.

        And decadal rates, while of the same sign, are less than the extents modeled.


    • There’s your evidence.

      • Adam:
        No here’s your rebuttal…..

      • No here’s your rebuttal…..

        TB,

        If I predicted last year’s super bowl, would you be impressed?

      • “No here’s your rebuttal…..”

        Oh look, another fake graph!

      • “If I predicted last year’s super bowl, would you be impressed?”

        No, as I have no interest in American football.

      • “Oh look, another fake graph!”

        So you are saying that the that observational data is faked?
        So you are saying that that IPCC projection is faked?
        So you are saying that the projected forcings did not turn out less than projected?
        So you are saying that OHC modelling did not give a good account .

        “And with one bound he was free”.
        Doesn’t work anywhere but in the echo-chamber.

        And accusations of “fakery” firmly put you in that rabbit-hole echo-chamber with the other conspiracy ….. err, people.

    • All models are wrong – Discuss

      • You’ve obviously never met my girlfriend.

      • This a catch question? taing it at the high school physics level of scientific proof.

        1. If the model is based on proven scientific relationships – AKA laws – tested in engineering implmentations, it is probably right, no one is dying from repetitive failures. This is how we model aircraft, cars, buildings, bridges, ships, etc. Very successfully, or engineering would be dead as a profession. We have to be right in our predictions, or Comets rain from the skies and 707’s rule the them instead, literally. Chevrolet Corvairs happen, etc.

        2. Models based on unproven hypotheses using undersubscribed data sets that extrapolate that data outside its range are probably wrong. As Neural Nets demonstrate so stunningly well. The more multivariate non-linear relationships are also involved the more wrong they are likely to be. Adding in numerical modelling approximations adds to uncertainty.

        Obs.

        The great thing about climate science is it’s NOT rocket science. Doesn;t have to work or people die. It’s far more abstract, intellectual, ultimately unprovable in strict terms of scientific proof, so endlessly debatable, and a working carreer is too short to see a serious climate change cycle through to be found out. I would be happy to be disabised of this conclusion by accurate predictions and laws arsising from this “proven science”.

        So casters of the climate Runes can be hopelessly wrong, and remain undiscovered while regularly re-inventing (“improving”) the science and correcting the data to fit the failed predictions, so no one loses their jobs and the search for ultimately unachievable truth goes on, however much angst and wasted lives and treasure have been justified in the name of their guesses. Just like religion, believe or leave (academe). A perfect scam, except for the actual science denial in energy policy and the prescriptive subsidies enacted in its name.

        nb: Jerry Hall has also been rjust as right on the climate, from time to time, if THAT was the question.

      • brianrlcatt, +100

      • Harry Twinotter

        bobdroege.

        Just eyeballing those curves, they match.

      • Your eyeballs are pretty good, Harry:

      • Hindcasts are typically not considered validation.

      • > Hindcasts are typically not considered validation.

        Sure, typically one validates *forecasts* against subsequent observation, TE. That works great for 1-15 day weather forecast cycles.

        However, the IPCC are doing *centennial-scale* projections. Why? Because decarbonizing the economy by some combination of non-emitting energy sources and/or carbon capture and storage is likely a centennial-scale global endeavor.

        On behalf of reality, I apologize for the constraints that such long timescales impose on your sense of typicality when it comes to validating Teh Stoopid Modulz.

        That all said, I would note that 16 years of CMIP3 projections are now in the books. GMST is well within the 95% envelope, and the trend is tracking nicely to the ensemble mean. Keeping in mind that Arrhenius predicted the CO2 –> GMST result back in 1896, how many more years of out of sample observation do you require before getting the picture?

      • However, the IPCC are doing *centennial-scale* projections. Why? Because decarbonizing the economy by some combination of non-emitting energy sources and/or carbon capture and storage is likely a centennial-scale global endeavor.
        On behalf of reality, I apologize for the constraints that such long timescales impose on your sense of typicality when it comes to validating Teh Stoopid Modulz.
        That all said, I would note that 16 years of CMIP3 projections are now in the books. GMST is well within the 95% envelope, and the trend is tracking nicely to the ensemble mean. Keeping in mind that Arrhenius predicted the CO2 –> GMST result back in 1896, how many more years of out of sample observation do you require before getting the picture?

        Well gee, that seems solvable. Why don’t they start in 1896, train until say 1950, and then let it run unguided?
        We’d be pretty close to a century of real data to compare against.

      • how many more years of out of sample observation do you require before getting the picture?
        Oh, I have a pretty good conception that there’s warming likely forced by GHG increases.

        Beyond the obfuscation of including the hindcast, it’s mostly a matter of extent.

        Observed global trends are about 1.6 C/century for the satellite era.
        This is at the low end of projections ( less than the AR4 best estimate of ‘low scenario’ of 1.8C/century ).

        Low is not no. But it is low.

      • > Why don’t they start in 1896, train until say 1950, and then let it run unguided?

        Availability and fidelity of observation is limited or non-existent prior to 1950, micro6500. Recall that Teh Modulz are not only tuned to GMST, but to things like cloud, snow and ice coverage as well as ocean heat content — all of which have an impact on radiative balance and hence energy budget of the system, not to mention energy redistribution internally. We didn’t have XBTs, ARGO or satellites in 1900.

        Purists like TE will still argue that even if such a thing were done, results from 1951-present were still known when the model was being tuned, and are thus not truly “out of sample”. I don’t disagree with that argument — I question the weight given to it in this domain, where actually solving the problem likely equals or exceeds the time interval required to do a robust test of predictive skill of the sort to which TE alludes.

        In sum, one does not simply apply “typical” practice to atypical problems and expect to obtain good solutions by default.

      • Harry Twinotter

        brandongates.

        “Your eyeballs are pretty good, Harry:”

        For a projection to stay within a 2-sigma bounds over 15 years… yes, they match.

      • > Beyond the obfuscation of including the hindcast, it’s mostly a matter of extent.

        You have a odd definition for the word “obfuscation”, TE.

        > Observed global trends are about 1.6 C/century for the satellite era.

        Let’s talk more about “obfuscation” shall we? From which data product is that trend derived? What’s the *uncertainty* of that trend estimate?

        > This is at the low end of projections ( less than the AR4 best estimate of ‘low scenario’ of 1.8C/century ). Low is not no. But it is low.

        Regressing CMIP3 SRES A1B against HADCRUT4 over the entire hindcast interval of 1900-2000 gives a scaling factor of 0.89 (model is too hot). Against GISTEMP, the scaling factor is 1.04 (model is too cool).

        Best way I can think of to reduce the uncertainty of making changes to a complex system is to reduce the changes being made to it. The clock ticks.

    • HT, there are at least three ways to show the climate models cannot be right. 1. Unavoidable Parameterization tuned to best hindcast, which introduces the general attribution problem lurking in AR4 WG1 SPM figure 8.2. 2. IPCC TAR on chaos. Attempting to claim the models as boundry condition problems rather than initial condition problems (weather) does not solve the underlying problem in the mathematics of nonlinear dynamical systems. Climate models are coarse resolution weather models run out for many dacades rather than a few days. 3. By comparing model output to observation. A. The models produce a tropical troposphere hotspot that does not exist in reality. The difference is ~3.5x in John Christy’s Feb 2016 congressional testimony chart, or ~2x in Santer’s new paper with the inappropriate stratosphere adjustment (appropriate at thempoles, not the tropics). B. ECS twice observational. See for example Lewis and Curry 2014.
      Faith in model,results is misplaced. See also essay Models all the way Down for additional examples of how and why models cannot be right: absolute temperature, land elevation, clouds, …

      • The models do not reproduce the fundamental thermodynamic responses of the real climate. Hemispheric albedo and and a single ITCZ as two examples.

      • > HT, there are at least three ways to show the climate models cannot be right.

        Which means that YOU do not know what will happen, Rud. When will you ever learn?

      • “Which means that YOU do not know what will happen, Rud. When will you ever learn?”

        Coming from you…

        What a totally ignorant, arrogant little creature you are!

      • BRG. You are correct that I do not know what will happen. You are incorrect that I do not know what will NOT happen. There is a huge difference, which you illogically overlook. Truth is never certain. But untruth is certain via scientific method and Popper’s falsification. Then there is a middle ground of dunno. Read the opening chapter of my 2012 ebook The Arts of Truth for a detailed (with footnote references) epistemological exposition and the the Enfamil illustrative example. The rest of the book is just a detailed elaboration in several,distinct parts.

    • No Harry it is much easier to spot the skin and call the game.. Do science?

      how quaint

    • Models embody opinions. Science is not opinions.

  18. Defenders of the climate models and climate model projections argue that climate models shouldn’t be expected to verify on decadal time scales.

    In other words, climate modelers have no skin in the game in terms of losing something if their forecasts turn out to be wrong. In fact, there is actually a perversion of skin in the game, whereby scientists are rewarded (professional recognition, grants, etc.) if they make alarming predictions (even if they are easily shown not to comport with observations).

    Exactly!!

    Even more so with projections of catastrophic climate change, dangerous climate change, or even that GHG emissions will do more harm than good. This last one is the important one! Everything else is pretty irrelevant in comparison with the last one.

  19. Working in an environment with skin in the game dramatically changed my perspective on uncertainty and confidence. This perspective (derived from my skin in the game work with CFAN) is very clear in my discussion of climate science, uncertainty, and overconfidence by the IPCC [ https://judithcurry.com/category/uncertainty/ ]

    This perspective may be unique in the academic climate community; I don’t know of any other climate scientists with skin in the game in private sector weather forecasting.

    Wow!. That identifies a major issue with climate science.

  20. I have to copy this too (given that some commenters are still trying to defend the indefensible) – i.e., they are incapable of opening their minds to the fact they and their ilk could be wrong.

    When I saw the phrase ‘skin of others in your game,’ it immediately struck me as describing the situation of climate scientists/activists. Whereby they make dramatic prognostications of dire consequences, and advocate for emissions reductions with their attendant economic costs and detrimental effects of developing countries.

    The scientists themselves have absolutely no skin in the game, other than the perversions associated with being professionally rewarded for making alarming predictions and claiming that anyone who doesn’t agree with them is a science ‘denier.’

    Who among the climate activists would redirect their research funding and travel funding to efforts to reduce emissions? Who among the climate scientists/activists are making a serious effort to reduce their carbon footprint, e.g. air travel? [see Walking the climate talk]. They have no skin at all in the game. This becomes truly perverse when they insist on the skin of others in their game.

    • Peter

      You may have seen me make the point to climate activists here about their own carbon footprint.

      There are generally two reactions, the first being that they have done nothing material to reduce it and the second is anger that I have the temerity to ask.

      It is very relevant surely, that if you genuinely believe we are on the edge of, or actually in, some dreadful climate disaster, that you should substantially amend your ways?

      Tonyb

      • TonyB,

        It’s up to others, not the activists, to fix what the alarmists believe is a problem. The Activists role is to educate, conjole and denigrate those who are not persuaded the evidence supports their beliefs.

  21. Judith,

    We all have skin in the game, when it comes to science, and the resulting progress for humankind.

    Your move to the private sector has some risk, but seems the better way forward. Leaving behind. a bad situation has value in itself. Politics will sort the current mess in climate science, but cannot take knowledge forward.

  22. Prediction out to twenty months has just become a lot easier. See the first paper listed here: http://ljp.gcess.cn/dct/page/65558 that links change in the ozone content of the Arctic stratosphere to the ENSO phenomenon. The Chinese at Beijing University appreciate the importance of the northern and southern annular modes.in determining the evolution of regional climate and in particular the influence of the SAM on their monsoon.

    • Great.

      Now all you have to do is predict the changes content of the Arctic stratosphere and the SAM.

      Unfortunately, both are dynamic fluctuations which will lead you back to the same limits of forecasting to about 7 days or so.

  23. This is a really odd post.

    It seems to suggest that being in the private sector per se makes scientists more likely to be honest in their forecasts. Yet our societal experience is then precise opposite; that the incentive for profit will skew the presentation of scientific evidence. The most obvious example is the need for regulation on the marketing of medicines.

    Judith also seems to suggest that scientists are unwilling to have “skin in the game”. Yet when it comes to betting on climate outcomes, scientists willing to take this up seem to find it pretty hard to find “sceptics” willing to take them up on this. See for example https://www.skepticalscience.com/climate-bet-for-charity-2016-update.html (those betting on the climate cooling invariably lose these bets, of course)

    Finally, activists are castigated for not reducing their own carbon footprint, without presenting any evidence for this, although there are many who have done so. Just for instance: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/aug/09/vegan-corrupt-food-system-meat-dairy

    Weird.

    • Very tall guy

      Of course the EA investigated the monbiot pollution incident. Here is a copy of their report

      https://democracy.middevon.gov.uk/documents/s4573/MDDC%20Scrutiny%20Panel%20report%20Dec%202015.pdf

      I have been a vegetarian all my adult life. I have flirted with veganism but it is highly restrictive and is not a philosophy that the overwhelming majority of people are likely to voluntarily follow.

      Tonyb

    • Firstly in the private sector, you really do have to right. If you are not there are consequences ranging from losing your job to ending up in court to in the extreme killing people. It’s much much more exacting than academia. Depending on who you work for you may not even be able to publish…

      Secondly, if you want to learn about science… I’d recommend not reading either the guardian or sks. Neither are good sources.

      • Oops…. should read…..really do have to be right….

      • Firstly, you’re wrong; if you were right there would be no need for regulators such as the FDA.

        Secondly, SKS is a very good source for science, providing peer reviewed references for all it’s articles, and neither SKS or the Guardian were cited by me for their scientific content.

      • That’s the precise reason for the existence of the FDA. To try and ensure that you don’t kill people. If people involved in climate studies want to submit the levels of documentation involved in an FDA submission I’d happily let them call themselves scientists. There’d also be significantly less sceptics.

        As to sks. If you think that’s a reputable source of any scientific information. You’re not really qualified to have an opinion.

      • That’s the precise reason for the existence of the FDA. To try and ensure that you don’t kill people

        Yes, quite. Because private sector scientists can’t be trusted to do it themselves without regulation. Which is why Judith’s article is so odd.

        As to sks. If you think that’s a reputable source of any scientific information. You’re not really qualified to have an opinion.

        Your prejudice is both tedious and unjustified. But I guess it saves you the bother of having to think.

      • Secondly, SKS is a very good source for science
        That is a matter of opinion.

        My experience is SS doesn’t tolerate dissent, marked both by banning reasoned posters and snarky names for opposing view holders ( ad hom ).

        But I read this quote this morning from geopoliticalfutures.com

        David Hume wrote in “A Treatise of Human Nature” that, “Reason is, and ought only to be the slave of the passions, and can never pretend to any other office than to serve and obey them.” What Hume meant was that the passions motivate human action, not the cold logic of reason. Reason’s function is to make sense of the passions and to bring concrete form to the end or purpose that passions impel. Propaganda speaks the language of reason, even when its goal is to mislead. But it knows that its audience is first and foremost the passions, and not the altar of logical consistency.

        So it’s human nature to use science and reason to try and prove a preconceived notion.

      • barnes, you have to be kidding

        Skeptical Science has actual published researchers who post there, populartechnology, not so much.

      • @Verytallguy

        You’re missing the point. Outside academia there are all sorts of checks and balances. The FDA being one of these. The lengths that people have to go to, to get approval are extreme. Such rigour does not exist within the field of climate studies. If it did there would be far fewer sceptical voices. You appear to be claiming that this extra rigour is required because the science is poorly executed when in fact you couldn’t be further from the truth.

        As to thinking…. again you’re barking up the wrong tree there. But Hey Ho. I don’t think it matters what I tell you. Read more and read a more varied selection of opions would be my only advice. You’re doing the right thing by starting to read our friendly hostesses blog

      • Read more and read a more varied selection of opions would be my only advice. You’re doing the right thing by starting to read our friendly hostesses blog

        Fear not, blunder, I’m very familiar with the blog and its… iconoclastic outlook.

        My views on SKS are not able to pass moderation, so the field is open to you there.

        My advice to you would be to avoid hubris and read the IPCC.

      • Read the links there Bob. Pop Tech is not talking about the science, just showing how dishonest SkS is… kind of like how Donna LaFramboise shows how dishonest the IPCC is. If you want to believe in lies, go for it, just don’t expect to the rest of us to be so gullible as to believe the nonsense SkS spews.

      • I go to SKS for the links to published articles, not for the blog content.

        Your faith in Poptech is misplaced, he’s the 450 articles skeptical of global warming guy, at least the last time I looked, I am sure he’s found more by now. But I found his list rather lacking, a lot of the articles on his list have nothing to do with the science of climate.

        Sorry you feel you and Poptech were mistreated there, but it is their house and you should respect that and not post drivel.

        And you are gullible if you have swallowed Poptech’s charming work.

      • Maybe you were reading another list? It is at 1350+ papers now…

        http://www.populartechnology.net/2009/10/peer-reviewed-papers-supporting.html

        Which paper on the list has nothing to do with climate?

    • Working within the private sector for four decades I didn’t find the incentive for company profits impacted the way scientists behaved with regards to the actual science. They were driven by the evident linkage between face time and having their inputs given credit, so they could get more raises and promotions.

      I served for years as the technical watchdog for scientists and engineers, we had partners from the public sector, and I didn’t sense any particular difference in behavior, other than those of us who worked for private outfits were paid better and had a much crisper and efficient work environment.

      I have had the opportunity to look at long term climate trends when I worked in Arctic projects, we could see changing ice cover, a trend towards less multiyear ice, but nobody dared reduce the design basis ice loads or descriptions we used to design structures and transport vessels. In other words, we risked so much we just didn’t want to make the call on having better ice conditions and the associated higher significant wave heights. And as far as I know the other companies’ technical teams were thinking the same way.

      Dr Curry, if you guys could really give us a regional forecast for sea and ocean conditions in the Sea of Okhost, or the Kara over the next 40 years that would be worth at least $100 million in your pocket.

      • Actually, this one is in our wheelhouse. No idea who I would even pitch that to

      • Judith

        As you know the met office was set up by fitzroy following a disastrous storm in the 1850’s

        http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/news/in-depth/overview

        To this day they give excellent shipping forecasts for the seas around the British isles which have become something of a cult to landlubbers and mariners alike. You can rely on them for 24 hours. Forecasting for the next 40 years? I think not

        Tonyb

      • Volume of the Kara Sea ice could be forecast one to two winters in advance.
        Two large Siberian rivers Ob (12,000+ m3/s) and Yenisey (19,000+ m3/s) discharge huge volumes of fresh waters into the Kara Sea diluting its salinity and so promoting faster freezing.
        It is (in general) assumed that about half of these two rivers water comes from snow, about one-third from rainwater, and the remainder from groundwater.
        Intensity of the previous winter snow and the summer rains on the Central Siberian Plateau could be a good guide since the fresh waters of the two rivers just about reach Kara Sea before winter ice sets in.

      • Dr Curry: that would be the Vicepresidents of research at ExxonMobil, Shell, ConocoPhillips, BP, Statoil, Kvaerner, and possibly Total. I think it may work better if you suggest a Joint Industry Project, and have them sort out if they want to include Gazprom and Rosneft (I see the main focus on the Barents to the Chukchi, Sea of Okhost, and Sakhalin).

        Vukcevik: a long term forecast is a bit different than the effort used for a design basis. The design basis for an offshore development in the Arctic could range up to 20-30 years forward in time. They should look for the 100 year return events, as well as fairly detailed look at navigating conditions. This has to include ice as well as open water, wind, etc.

    • “The most obvious example is the need for regulation on the marketing of medicines.”
      The degree of politicization seems to have a real impact. The most obvious counter-example is that the peak oilers are still revered in academia while the scientists who work for Exxon et al went out and discovered they were all wet.

    • More Guardianista drivel from VTG…

    • Very Tall Guy
      You are missing the specifics of Dr. Curry’s transition because she was not claiming all industry scientists are more honest. A private weather forecaster who makes consistently poor forecasts is very quickly an unemployed forecaster because his clients quickly realize the poor quality and therefore has skin in the game. An academic weather forecaster with no paying clients who makes consistently poor forecasts only affects his students but would not lose his job and therefore has no skin in the game. In both cases forecasts can be verified and skill determined. The climate models cannot verified at the time scale of the policy decisions, so no skill can be determined. The academics who make climate forecasts cannot have skin in the game.

    • Verytallguy,
      Many scientists (and that includes engineers and geologists etcetera) in the private sector are professionals; not part of executive management and are much less directly driven by profit.

    • “The most obvious example is the need for regulation on the marketing of medicines.”

      Right, because regulations will fix the problem. Like the FDA’s black box warning on anti-depressants. Suicidal ideation is not a enough to keep the drugs off the market, just put a warning on it. Maybe years down the road Matt Pawa can sue pharmaceuticals under RICO and all the activists will pat themselves on the back as the same anti-depressants remain on the market. In the meantime, cannabis sativa and indica remain prohibited by federal statutes because science.

  24. A philosophical point of view of scientific work. Well written, profound and true. Thank you Dr Curry.

  25. There is a deep contradiction lying in the heart of this post. The private sector, and having skin in the game means that there is personal risk attached to specific outcomes. As you yourself note, this skews the focus of research to shorter term weather prediction and tying personal stakes to those predictions. This skew necessarily creates huge holes in the tapestry of knowledge needed to understand the science clearly, since skin in the game of private sector styled funding would necessarily drive the focus towards the personally rewarding hotspots and a kind of sophistry that chases preferred outcomes instead of unfortunate, non profitable realities. So skin in the game, personal risk and reward, distorts the bigger picture. It individualises scientists and creates a constradiction by twisting the process oriented field of science into a goal oriented knowledge as product. If knowledge cant be a useful product that can be somehow monetised by vested interests, then noone will pursue that knowledge and it will reman unknown and ignored. This is a deep contradiction.

    The skin in the game of the science through public institutions is profoundly ignored by your article, because the skin is ones reputation, one’s ability to push the boundary of human knowledge. This cannot be done in an atmosphere of private investment where discoveries are tied to the monetization of knowledge.

    You’ve talked about skin in the game, focussing on skin but have deeply ignored the fact that the rules of game are vastly more important. The goal of one game is profit, the goal of the other is truth.

    • “The skin in the game of the science through public institution”

      …is still M O N E Y. And who gets it from who.

      Andrew

    • The skin in the game of the science through public institutions is profoundly ignored by your article, because the skin is ones reputation, one’s ability to push the boundary of human knowledge.

      Consider the other skin described above: the observational results to tests of hypotheses. Year 2100 forecasts ( or ECS, whenever that is ) that are not verifiable or falsifiable in a human lifetime, are not testable, but the reputation of those making such non validated claims is not put a risk ( because they will be dead before the observations are made ). In the shorter term, those making such forecasts build reputation, not with veracity, but with the appeal to emotion of the worst of their forecasts.

      It’s not so much the global mean temperature, but all the implied disasters of AGW that are just not observed with the couple some odd W/m^2 we’ve already incurred.

      Global vegetative drought increasing? No.
      Global Accumulated Cyclone Energy increasing? No.
      Global tropical cyclone numbers increasing? No.
      Global century scale extreme high temperatures increasing? No.

      US Drought Index increasing? No.
      US Violent Tornadoes increasing? No.
      US century scale extreme high temperatures increasing? No.

      There’s a good reason that the implied boogie men of AGW haven’t increased. These are all the result of dynamic fluid flow, the kind that is not predictable and is not at all directly tied to global mean temperature. Those implying these things ( beyond a generalized global mean temperature increase ) certainly are doing so without validation, but the consumers of such ideas are not holding the proponents or their reputations to account.

      • TE
        Thanks so much for the rationale review of the issues. is there any way to measure increases in wind or realignment of Hadley cells type reorganization?

        Implies winds transfer energy to respond to variations in heat content.
        Scott

      • scotts4sf –
        is there any way to measure increases in wind or realignment of Hadley cells

        Hadley cells: Hadley Cell Widening: Model Simulations versus Observations, and references therein.

        Other changes in atmospheric circulation: Contribution of changes in atmospheric circulation patterns to extreme temperature trends

        Full text here: Contribution of changes in atmospheric circulation patterns to extreme
        temperature trends
        .

      • Scott

        Although not strictly what you asked about, Hubert lamb did a fascinating study of global wind circulation.

        http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/00063657509476457

        He aso did one more specifically about Britain since the 13 th century regarding the prevalence of westerlies. In the uk such winds generally bring milder wetter weather in the winter. He tantalisingly concluded this graphic around 1975. I approached the met office to see if it was possible to update this chart on a like for like basis, I.e excluding other wind directions. It seems that such information is not easily gathered.

        I superimposed my own estimations of past temperatures using my CET estimates to 1538 and other bits and pieces from earlier centuries.

        There is no doubt there is a close correlation and the unanswered question is did this westerly regime persist from 1975 until the present day and could therefore have an impact on the sporadic warming we can observe in recent decades?

        Tonyb

      • Pat Cassen

        Thanks very much.

        I am reading these to absorb the information but appreciative of your links.

        Scott

      • Tonyb
        Thanks also. takes some time to review but appreciative.

        By the way, finally got “Climate Present Past and Future, Vol 2

        Climataic History and the Future.

        Also a long slog but enjoyable.

        Scott

      • There is a great deal of inter-annual variation of waves in the jet stream:

        Changes in mean temperature don’t determine this.
        There has been some change in temperature gradient, which does determine ( and is in part determined by ) jet stream undulations. But this change represents 1 or 2 % of the gradient and is probably not significant in the context of natural variation.

        As for Hadley Cells ( not an actual phenomenon, but rather a statistical artifact ), somehow the conventional wisdom has been that warming will lead to an expansion of the Hadley Cells. Perhaps if we define the cell as the distance between the ITCZ and the mean polar jet stream this happens. But this is contraindicated by the increase in related intensity of subsidence during winter and the decrease of related subsidence during summer:

        This relationship stands to reason when one divorces from the Hadley Cell and considers the subsidence part of polar air mass intrusion into the tropics from the winter hemisphere, which may even cross the equator ( especially south to north ).

      • Also, we have good reason to doubt that the GCMs are capable of predicting any circulation changes, because of the problems they have even modeling the past, exhibit A of which is the big problem of the double ITCZ:

        The second row depicts observed, CMIP3, and CMIP5 precipitation.
        This is determined by meridional wind ( fourth row ).
        The models create too much precipitation, which means too much vertical heat transport, which means too much hot spot.
        They do this because they fail to get the converging low level winds correct.
        This is not a good basis for predicting the future.

      • Thanks TE.

        Useful response and enlightening that Hadley Cells are also a model construct and represent physical phenomenon but are not real.

        Scott

    • CW, science ‘skin in game’ via reputation has gone badly awry. You only lose skin in climate science academia if you don’t go with the flow. See Lindzen’s recent comments. See Judith’s transition post. See the many palpably wrong climate science paper examples, some amounting to academic misconduct, in Blowing Smoke essays. Those authors got promoted and rewarded for producing easily provable junk. They have no skin in the game at all.

    • CW excellent points

      I am stunned at how few people here actually test and probe Judith’s Ideas, especially when they conform to their prior views.

      Zero push back even from a devils advocate point of view.

      But you put your finger EXACTLY on the problem..

      Most folks wont see what you did

      • Steven,

        Zero push back even from a devils advocate point of view.

        You are very hypocritical.

        How much pushback have you demonstrated against the CAGW belief when confronted by facts that do not support your views: e.g. the fact there is a lack of evidence demonstrating that GHG emissions will do more harm than good.

      • Steven Mosher

        “How much pushback have you demonstrated against the CAGW belief when confronted by facts that do not support your views: e.g. the fact there is a lack of evidence demonstrating that GHG emissions will do more harm than good.”

        1. From 2007 to 2009 I was critical of the temperature series. I pushed back. google it fwit
        2. In 2009 and 2010 I wrote a book on Climategate, pushing back on
        Mann and Jones and others. To this day there are folks in the
        climate community who refuse to to talk to me.
        3. From 2009-2012 I volunteered — all my skin in the game– to find something demonstrably wrong with the temperature data. It was my full time non paying job.
        4. I’m a luke warmer. As I defined it years ago, thats having an AGNOSTIC view on harms/benefits. not denial, not belief. But a recognition ( like Judiths) that there may be some sever consequences.

        On the whole I see no evidence of benefit. I see evidence of substantial harm, primarily from sea level rise.

      • SM, there is no scientific way to infer SLR from AGW based on observational evidence. None, zip, nada. SLR has not accelerated. The corrected GRACE and Zwally IceSat measurements both say Antarctica is neutral to gaining ice. And so on.

      • @Steven Mosher
        “On the whole I see no evidence of benefit. I see evidence of substantial harm, primarily from sea level rise.”

        You mean these, among others, are not benefits?

        https://www.nasa.gov/feature/goddard/2016/carbon-dioxide-fertilization-greening-earth/

        http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(14)62114-0/abstract

        Reduced use of fossil fuels for heating purposes, due to milder winters?

        Coming to sea level rise…. pliiiiz!… less than 2 mm/year… what’s the problem, exactly?

      • SM is correct about sea level rise is the world continues to warm, regardless of reason. If it warms like IPCC thinks (bus as usual scenario – .3degC per decade), or about 2-3 deg by 2100, then that translates to 2-3 ft by 2100, which is significant but it would happen gradually.

        SM you say you are a lukewarmer. How does this translate into your views of sea level rise, relative to IPCC projections?

      • Mosher (fwit),

        On the whole I see no evidence of benefit. I see evidence of substantial harm, primarily from sea level rise.

        Who cares what you “see” – i.e. what you believe. Belief is religion, not science. You have no valid evidence to support your beliefs. As you’ve acknowledged many times you know nothing about impacts.

        Do your homework!

      • “On the whole I see no evidence of benefit.”

        Look harder.
        Here’s few places you may find that people benefit from fossil fuels (there are more, and some overlap, but it’s a start):
        lifespan;health;lifestyle;travel;communications;food production;protection against negative enviromental effects;protection of the environment itself.
        All of these have been improved by the use of fossil fuels. EG, deaths due to extreme weather reduced by >90% (99%?) over the 20th C; the cleanest environments are in the countries that are the most heavily invested in fossil fuel use; it’s now easier and cheaper to fly half-way around the world than it used to be to have a 60 minute phone conversation over the same distance. All possible because of the use of fossil fuels over many decades.

      • Mosher,
        I guess CW is thinking that academic freedom from the constraints of any risk whatsoever in producing junk science enables innovative thinking to flourish that would not otherwise evolve.
        However, in practice, in the field of mainstream “climate science” a great deal of junk is generated secure in the knowledge of protection from rebuttal by the consensus academia and consensus journal industry etcetera.

        “Climate Science” academia or at least 97% of it has no ‘skin in the game’ and it seems the more outrageous claims therein gain the greatest rewards.

        Bob Fernley-Jones

      • ““Climate Science” academia or at least 97% of it has no ‘skin in the game’ and it seems the more outrageous claims therein gain the greatest rewards.”

        From a May 20, 2011 GAO report:

        “A 2008 Congressional Research Service analysis had similarly found no “overarching policy goal for climate change that guides the programs funded or the priorities among programs”…Federal entities are beginning to implement some of these options. However, without further improvement in how federal climate change funding is defined and reported, strategic priorities are set, and funding is aligned with priorities, it will be difficult for the public and Congress to fully understand how climate change funds are accounted for and how they are spent.”

        Meanwhile…

        The United States Global Research Program (USGRP) consists of 13 different federal agencies:

        The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) which throws money at foreign nations, in their 2017 budget request asked for $352.2 million dollars to “invest” in “developing countries well suited to transition to climate-resilient, low emissions development strategies…”

        The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) which provided The Agricultural Research Service (ARS) with an additional $19 million dollars in 2016 to address climate change risk to agriculture. In 2014 the ARS issued a report stating they had workforce of approximately 6,200 employees, including 2,200 scientists and post docs.

        The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in 2017 has requested, as a part of their requested $5.8 billion dollar budget, $520 million for the Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research (OAR) an increase of $30.7 million from last years budget for their 33 in house climate scientists and whomever else they throw money to.

        That’s just three of the federal agencies funding climate science, how many more should I present before you can see those scientists and post docs skin in the game?

    • Your comment is thoughtful but deeply misunderstands what I am saying (this goes for mosher’s comments also). This gives me an idea for a follow on post, which I hope to get up Wed nite or Thurs.

      • Skin in the game? Nite?

        Good grief Judith, if working in private enterprise has done this to you in a few days you’ll be posting future articles in text speak or rap form before we know it …..

        Tonyb

      • “Good grief Judith, if working in private enterprise has done this to you in a few days you’ll be posting future articles in text speak or rap form before we know it …..”

        If climate change weren’t so whack
        and the people got their money back,
        then maybe Judy’s spit would be inappropriate
        like some snooty pedant turned into reprobate;
        just looking for cover underneath the clouds
        or a thousand corpses underneath their shrouds.

        If climate change weren’t so confusing
        and government was not so abusing,
        Then Dr. Curry’s verse might be lame
        to suggest all this change might be tame,
        but the activists are so darn apocalyptic
        with visions of heat that’s oh so anticryptic.

        Just look at those footprints in the sky
        and tell me please, somebody tell me why
        that evil demon likes to show off his horn
        just like a prancing dancing unicorn?

        If climate change weren’t so darn anthropogenic
        then maybe humans wouldn’t be so carcinogenic,
        and then not even lady Curry could keep denying
        what all those prescient models keep implying
        just look at the data, why can’t you see oh two
        this world is gonna end and its because of you!

        Just look at those footprints in the sky
        and tell me please, somebody tell me why
        that evil demon likes to show off his horn
        just like a prancing dancing unicorn?

      • Jean Paul

        :)

        So Judith can get down with the kids by using rap or text speak and speak to a serious audience using Shakespearean language. Stuff intended for political decision makers can be carried out in cartoons….

        Tonyb

      • “and speak to a serious audience using Shakespearean language.”

        To warm or not warm? That is the question —
        Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer
        The slings and arrows of outrageous weather
        or to take arms against a rising sea of troubles
        and, by opposing, end them. To die, to sleep —
        No more — and by a sleep to say we end
        The heartache of a thousand natural forcings
        That flesh is heir to — ’tis a consummation
        Devoutly to be wished. To die, to sleep.
        To sleep, perchance to dream. Aye there’s the rub
        For in that sleep of death what data may come
        When we have shuffled off our mortal toil.
        Must give us pause. There’s the respect
        That makes calamity of so long climate.

        (Iambic pentameter gets lost in the translation)

      • “To gild refined gold, to paint the lily, to throw a perfume on the violet, to smooth the ice, or add another hue unto the rainbow, or with taper-light to seek the beauteous eye of heaven to garnish, is wasteful and ridiculous excess.”

        Shakespeare

      • “So foul and fair a day I have not seen.” – Macbeth Act 1 Scene 3

        This line might be the one that resonates the most with this post regarding skin in the game.

        In the scene Macbeth and Banquo approach the three witches, but before they do, Macbeth stops to reflect upon the day. He could be speaking to the darkening skies enveloping the just bright and sunny day while rain pours down as if heralding the ominous tone to come, but these two warriors have just finished a horrific battle and while victorious, at such a cost to provoke the Thane’s amazement.

    • CW, do you really believe that the goal of institutional science funding is truth? The overwhelming majority of institutional science funding comes from U.S. Government agencies. They want results that conform with the political agendas of their pooh bahs, not results that confuse things. Public/institutional funding of science has become a charade.

      Private funders of science/technology want results that help them make (or not lose) money. Simple, straight forward cause and effect mechanism.

    • Climate Wisdom,

      the goal of the other is truth.

      That is not true when the funding for research and researchers is allocated to achieve ideological goals, which is the case when it is handed out by governments. That should be clear to any unbiased observer. Just look at the ideological agenda of the Obama Administration!

    • Your moralistic conclusion is as weak and inaccurate as it is condescending: “The goal of one game is profit, the goal of the other is truth.”

      Profit is an absolute truth in black and white on an IRS form. Academic “truth” is really peer consensus (reputation). Profit via scientific success generally is subject to objective standards of performance. There are exceptions, of course, like tobacco science and much of medico-pharma science for example. The science necessary to create the microcomputer revolution, aerospace, energy production, etc. are judged harshly by the necessity of being self supporting (sustainable). Funding of academic science frequently relies on successful marketing to bureaucrats tasked to dole out money extracted by force from taxpayers, resulting in political influence.

      Private science is limited to immediate needs while academic science has no such limitations, making both important aspects of science that are interdependent and necessary for a fully functioning modern society.

      • The problem is when actual research scientists ‘forecast’ the future, and provide misleading assessments of the uncertainties of their forecasts, all the while advocating for policies based on their forecasts. This is not ‘truth’, and it does not even have the honesty and skin in the game of weather forecasters.

      • Steven Mosher

        Judith.

        Almost by definition you can’t have “skin” in the game (punishment or reward) if your JOB is to forecast the Long term consequences that come due after you die. You cant merely change the job and say… Ok predict the climate 10 years from now. The task at hand is predicting the long term consequences of todays action..

        Think of it this way.. Most Skeptics predict NO POSSIBLE consequences for emitting C02. Their model is one fricking constant. ZERO. Do you take them to task for their uncertainty calculations… for their forecast that c02 can have no effect or must have little effect? Do you mention that they have no skin in their game of forecasting no ill effects? Nope.

        Rather, you target folks who take on a very hard hard job.. making a forecast that is very hard to judge precisely because we dont get to correct our understanding every month day week or hour. Are these forecasts over confident? well that is Just has hard to to show as the question of whether they are correct or not. At best the models represent our best understanding.. if someone has a better understanding they can bring it.

        The best I can say is that forecasting the weather is categorically different than forecasting the climate, precisely because in the first you can get instant feedback, and in the second you cannot by definition get the same kind of feedback. You are trying to judge a horserace by the number of touchdowns the jockey scores.

        I predict Halleys comet will return in 2062

        but I have no skin in the game

      • Mosher: “Rather, you target folks who take on a very hard hard job.. making a forecast that is very hard to judge precisely because we dont get to correct our understanding every month day week or hour. Are these forecasts over confident? well that is Just has hard to to show as the question of whether they are correct or not. At best the models represent our best understanding.. if someone has a better understanding they can bring it.”

        You have gone down the rabbit-hole and drunk the koolaid. All jobs are hard, computer modeling is near the bottom of the hardness scale. I think what you mean is difficult and highly uncertain. How do you know the GCMs represent our best understanding? If they completely miss regional effects, cannot simulate ocean cycles and poorly represent cloud effects, how is that better than simple back of the envelope calcs of TCS and SLR? Continuing to refine complex models with no hope of achieving the necessary scale of discretization is not progress. Then, taking these poorly performing GCMs to make predictions of specific problems, like flooding, drought, species destruction, etc. is irresponsible. They have created a Chicken Little reputation that has made making progress on policy impossible.

      • “The best I can say is that forecasting the weather is categorically different than forecasting the climate, precisely because in the first you can get instant feedback, and in the second you cannot by definition get the same kind of feedback. You are trying to judge a horserace by the number of touchdowns the jockey scores.”

        Steven: Speaking as a retired meteorologist.
        I agree 100%.

    • Geoff Sherrington

      CW,
      Your comment about profit and truth is wrong and bitter, perhaps reflecting low experience.
      In industry, no truth means no profit, not absolutely but strongly.
      Altruism (Google it) is more of a motivating factor than the monetization of knowledge.
      People in the private sector have little interest in lives where deceit and untrut
      h would dominate and generate low self esteem and a gangster-like environment. Strangely, people are most happy when they are among honest, rewarding and productive work, be they in private or public enterprise.

    • I am going to disagree…

      “The skin in the game of the science through public institutions is profoundly ignored by your article, because the skin is ones reputation, one’s ability to push the boundary of human knowledge. This cannot be done in an atmosphere of private investment where discoveries are tied to the monetization of knowledge.

      You’ve talked about skin in the game, focussing on skin but have deeply ignored the fact that the rules of game are vastly more important. The goal of one game is profit, the goal of the other is truth.”

      1) Private enterprize doesn’t protect one from a bad reputation. In fact, it may be worse as word spreads through industry fast if you produce results or you don’t. Even faster if you end up in civil court with the whole world watching on cable news.

      2) Making a profit isn’t inherently easy. You have to take risks, not only in business practice but in many industries it requires that you push the technology envelope, sometimes with disastrous consequences. Get the science and/or engineering wrong and it could possibly be the end of your company. Don’t take risks and you will lose your company to the competition. In 2100, I doubt anyone will remember a climate modeler from 2016.

      3) I smell an air of ideology to your above statement. Profit isn’t bad nor does it cause corruption in and of itself. Non-profit enterprise isn’t inherently good nor does it attract only non-self interested people. A pharmaceutical company can fudge their results but if the medication is harmful or ineffective the pharm company stands a chance at huge losses and civil suits as well as reputational damage to company image and loss of employment for the fudgers. I am not real familiar with government funded academia but I doubt the stakes are nearly as high.

      4) To say that the pursuit of profit cannot exist with the pursuit of truth is just wrong.

    • RE: CW. “The goal of one game is profit, the goal of the other is truth.”

      If only that were true. I believe the goal of one (CFAN) is to provide the private sector with usable information. The profit comes from being right, IE: truth. Which is what their clients want. Repeat business is earned through trust, IE: being right. The other, not so much. Unfortunately, with rare exception, I do not believe ‘the goal of the other is truth’.

  26. This discussion of skin-in-the-game reminded me of an important aspect of the AGW proponent’s viewpoint.
    I always wondered why they never complain about the industry that is one of the largest consumers of fossil fuels and producers of greenhouse gasses: the commercial airline industry.
    But of course, then the AGW alarmists would actually have skin in the game. They enjoy jetting from coast to coast and overseas for their conferences, meetings, collaborations and the like, and to not be able to do so would negatively impact their own lifestyles. It would mean they actually have skin in the game.
    Instead, it’s always someone else that must make sacrifices for the good of the Earth. The working class must give up their coal and trucks. Third world countries must not be allowed to use coal to improve their lives. But the intelligentsia of the academic world cannot be asked to give up anything. Certainly not their important travel expense accounts and ability to bypass the long overland journeys and slow ship transport that the unwashed masses are relegated to. If you ask these vocal opponents of the evil fossil fuel industry to stop using air travel and lobby to shut down these significant “polluters”, they will look at you aghast. Because that would affect THEM.

  27. I think you will find you are more focused on what didn’t go right or work as expected in your forecasts than you will be on the validation of your forecasts. You have the advantage of a pension, so financially your less skinned than those who do not have that support. Academic science is a wasteland of paper publishing with no consequence beyond the tenure decision and one more promotion on the academic ladder.

    • Judith is downplaying why she stayed as long as she did. Did you forget the part about being around a lot of bright young students who might actually make a breakthrough discovery? Of course if a teacher fails to inspire their students then maybe someone else should take the position.

  28. This seems to be a corollary of; “It’s hard to imagine a more stupid way or more dangerous way of making decisions than by putting those decisions in the hands of people who pay no price for being wrong.” – Thomas Sowell. Coupled with the perverse incentive of rewarding the most alarmist predictions with the most attention, grants, or publishing priority and the recipe for disaster is perfectly complete.
    [someone made a meme of that quote:] https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/originals/1f/03/9f/1f039fe75ebe2df7dae215e13490d15c.jpg

  29. Skin in the game has also been referred to as conflict of interest.

    Simply put, looking at skin in the game is on the same level as looking
    at consensus, looking at politics, race, age, oil money, any host of factors
    that can “influence” or bias the result. Its simply not very scientific. But when you cant judge science on its own merits its nice to have crutches like “consensus” or “skin” in the game

    once upon a time I did marketing forecasts. I definitely had skin in the game. I always beat my forecast. how’d I manage that?.. not hard. So you can imagine the discussion… “You beat every forecast by 10% how’d you do that? You should forecast better ! ” Err no my forecast is perfect, I just work hard to beat it.. Interesting puzzle that.

    Skin in the game… Like most everything can cut both ways.

    Skin in the game? its uncertain whether it helps or hurts. unless folks here think that the science of human behavior is settled.

    • You put your skin in the game when you have a high confidence in the quality of your work. Please explain the conflict of interest. I don’t find your marketing example illuminating. How do you beat a good forecast?

      • Even broken clocks are right twice a day.

        At this moment in time, Steven is correct. If you have skin in the game you have a desired outcome.

      • Steven Mosher

        See Jean Paul who has the sense to consider the argument and not the source.

      • Obviously, having an incentive or not is not the issue. Everybody has incentives of one sort or another. The relevant question is to what extent the incentives one faces align with sincerity or not. A drug developer might have an incentive to exaggerate the efficacy of his product if the feedback loop on its true efficacy is clouded by noise or delayed beyond his decision horizon.

        Judy’s point is that for a weather forecaster, there is no gain to being excessively confident or for producing biased predictions–the feedback environment is very conducive to sincerity. That incentive alignment may not be the case for a government-funded climate researcher whose career benefits from promulgating the shared political program of heavy intervention against fossil fuels and would be very much hurt by not going along with that.

        I don’t know why Mosher is pretending to be obtuse about this.

      • “I don’t know why Mosher is pretending to be obtuse about this.”

        What makes you think he’s pretending?

    • Steven,

      Who has more conflict of interest than you?

      • Steven Mosher

        Up your game toad. I don’t see conflict of interest or skin in the game as being proof of anything.. one reason is that it is a binary decision.. so you cant really ask sensibly who has more or less.. more or less conflict?
        6 dolts of conflict or 7.3 dolts? It is either there or not there and in the end doesnt make much difference.. if you actually take the time to evaluate the work on its own merits rather than the appearance or propriety or impropriety

      • “Toad” yourself. That and the rest of your comment is silly, irrelevant gobbledygook.

        The fact is you continually dodge what is important – i.e. the impacts of GHG emissions. Instead you like to rave on about computer code/models/games.

        The lack of valid evidence or sound reasoning that GHG emissions will cause significant net negative impacts to the global economy or human well being is the Achilles Heel of the climate Alarnists’ ideology. You hate the topic. You mostly avoid it or, when you do respond, it is with an aggressive-defensive attack, insults and denigration of those who point out your lack of understanding, and bias. You have nothing constructive to offer on the most important topic of all regarding alarmists’ beliefs. You frequently make denigrating and insulting comments directed at skeptics and tell them they have lost the argument because they don’t have a model.

        The fact is the climate alarmists have lost the debate. The foundations for the Alarmists’ belief are crumbling. The house of cards is collapsing.

        What fun laughing at you now, Mosher, a true example of a denier; a flat-earther!

      • “I don’t see conflict of interest or skin in the game as being proof of anything”

        Mosher’s Modus (I just coined the term) is when someone issues a Declaration of Warming (from gasp! Natural Laws) and then produces a Squiggly Line of Warming (what are the chances?) and then triangulates an Issuance of Ignorance About Human Behavior. lol

        Andrew

      • Curious George

        Steven, Trader Joe’s has a “Rum of the Gods” for $6.99.

      • “The fact is the climate alarmists have lost the debate. The foundations for the Alarmists’ belief are crumbling. The house of cards is collapsing.”
        Peter:
        A fine example of hope over reality.
        Or.
        Down the rabbit-hole syndrome.
        Dont judge via reading blogs or Trumpian success
        Shouting does not win an “arguement”
        Science does in this case.
        And whatever you might think a hand-full of naysayers from that side is not a “win”. Nor is a Trump in the WH.
        IF there is an “A” to come., it is far in the future and not to be decided by ideological or DK motivation.
        Which is all you have.

      • The AGW alarmists have lost because they cannot justify their belief that GHG emissions will do more harm than good this century, let alone justify their belief that GHG emissions will damage the global economy or human well being. This is the Achilles Heel of the Alarmists’ ideology. That’s why they’ve lost. Just the true deniers of the relevant facts are left clinging to the sinking ship.

      • “The AGW alarmists have lost because they cannot justify their belief that GHG emissions will do more harm than good this century”

        Peter:
        No justification or belief is needed or given.
        The science stands on it’s own.
        Full stop.
        1.5C to 4.5C per x2 CO2.

      • That’s irrelevant to whether or not GHG emissions will. be net beneficial or net damaging. You seem to have no understanding of the fundamentals.

      • “1.5C to 4.5C per x2 CO2.”

        The most up-to-date estimates in fact give 1.3K – 1.5K.

        Do try to keep up.

        Hmmm…why do I get the impression you would prefer the very highest of the old estimates?

        Misanthrope, are you?

      • > The lack of valid evidence or sound reasoning that GHG emissions will cause significant net negative impacts to the global economy or human well being is the Achilles Heel of the climate Alarnists’ ideology.

        No, Peter L., it’s just recognition that having evidence of *future* events is not possible by definition.

        You were saying something about “sound reasoning” again?

      • Your comment just goes to prove the point. There is not justification for GHG mitigation policies. Those who argue for them are relying on innuendo and belief. Thank you for another Alarmist proving the point!

  30. Human behavior is tacitly settled where it matters. “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” The separation of powers we know so well embodies this philosophy.

    Hmm, where else do we find a concentration of absolute power?

    • This was meant as a reply to Steven: “Skin in the game? its uncertain whether it helps or hurts. unless folks here think that the science of human behavior is settled.”

      • Steven Mosher

        You saying so or citing cliches is hardly convincing.
        Come again with some real science. measurements.. Popper.. Feynman.. yu known the dance

      • Steven, if lack of convincing clichés, or convincing science, was the requisite for posts here then you would be much harder to find in the threads.

        The theme of this thread is a cliché, “skin in the game”, one of Dr. Curry’s shorter articles. Dr. Curry describes some of her visceral views relative to activism, the ‘skin of others in your game’. She is not stating that there’s not skin in the game at the university level for all science, or that university level science isn’t important holistically. She explains why skin in the game at the university level, specific to climate science, has been compromised. She uses cliché in the scope of a short article because she knows her smart audience doesn’t need a screed to state the obvious. There’s a large body of articles on CE that gets into the weeds of climate politics, bias, corruption, activism, etc.; one can peruse these for granularity on Dr. Curry’s, and others, views.

        You stated: “Skin in the game? its uncertain whether it helps or hurts. unless folks here think that the science of human behavior is settled.”

        I simply point out human behavior is tacitly settled where it matters, relative to climate science (implied), through the truism “absolute power corrupts absolutely”. This is essentially what the monolithic body of climate science activism represents. Who needs “skin in the game“ to reel in arrogance and corruption when one can use others fists instead? Warmists must either deny the truism behind the cliché “absolute power corrupts absolutely”, or they must deny that climate science is represented by a body wielding absolute power. Warmists are “deniers”. It’s you who have been “hardly convincing”.

    • “You saying so or citing cliches is hardly convincing.
      Come again with some real science. measurements.. Popper.. Feynman.. yu known the dance.”

      Steven, once again in this thread I find agreement with you, but can’t help but wonder where all that real science, and measurements are in demonstrating why government force is the only or best solution/answer to really scary climate change.

      • Steven Mosher

        I dont think it is the only or best solution. Said so many times.

      • “I dont think it is the only or best solution. Said so many times.”

        Say it harder. Ya gotta know that government as the answer is what is being sold ad nauseum. Please join me in countering that ad nauseum with our own.

      • “Steven, once again in this thread I find agreement with you, but can’t help but wonder where all that real science, and measurements are in demonstrating why government force is the only or best solution/answer to really scary climate change.”

        I’m sorry but if find that statement counter-intuitive.
        A global problem requires a global solution.
        Hence government.
        New tech requires help to reach economies of scale.
        Hence government subsidy.

        Tell me how we could tackle AGW without government?
        And don’t say private industry….. else I’ll tell you “Exxon”.

      • “Tell me how we could tackle AGW without government?”

        Neither government nor mankind can significantly affect the climate than significantly affect the time the sun rises and sets.

        It is amusing that you true believers maintain that the surface temperature of the planet can be changed by in effect putting taxes on fuel up.

        Or rather, it would be amusing, if the results were not so harmful to such huge numbers of the World’s population. In fact, it’s tragic.

      • Tell me how we could tackle AGW without government?

        Governments need to remove the impediments they have imposed on energy over the past 60 years. Once the impediments are removed the world can progress having low-emissions energy at much lower cost than we have now.

        the answer is: get government out of the way. Stop the ideological clap trap driven by so called Progressives and environmental activists that governments are forced to respond to.

        If we keep electing so called Progressives (they’ve been blocking true progress for 50 years), we’ll keep getting incompetents like the Obama Administration – and we’ll keep implementing policies that retard progress.

      • Same everywhere in the Western democracies. This a global conspiracy of smart issue based lobbyists making a fast regressive buck, based on the guesses of climate scientists, fraudulently linked to a regressive set of over subsidised solutions that actually make net grid sourced ACO2 emissions worse, exploiting the abject ignorance of the public and their politicians for a faster buck than doing the right thing. Just ending the subsidies would fix everyhting except ending new coal build w/o CCS. or maybe just banning it w/o al meissions except CO2 removed as a start, in China and the USA… Can’t make it up. That’s government’s job.

      • “Tell me how we could tackle AGW without government?
        And don’t say private industry….. else I’ll tell you “Exxon”.”

        Tony,

        I agree with Catweazle’s remarks about the folly of thinking AGW could be “tackled” through human effort, and of course, I remain skeptical about what exactly “AGW” is and to what extent it should even be a concern. That any action at all is being taken and discussed is not because of the skeptics it is because of the advocates of a climate theory that insist on selling the story packaged as a thriller/horror end of the world scenario.

        You argue a statement I’ve made is counter-intuitive, yet what you quote is my argument to the lack of scientific research demonstrating how it is government is the best solution to deal with this really scary climate change being sold by activists and an alarming number of those activists being funded by the very governments that would be empowered to handle “global problems”.

        First the skeptics are expected to concede there is in fact a global problem. The advocates of the problem have worked hard and employed a number of methods in which to convince the skeptics that the very lack of evidence the skeptics ask for is the very evidence they need. The Global Problem advocates cry; The lack of evidence is the evidence!
        They point to the orgy of a lack of evidence in demonstration. There is so much lack of evidence it is obscene.

        Sure they got their graphs to play the role of really scary boogie man, like a creepy mask wearing slasher who appears in jump scare moments in the narrative to snatch another victim, and the advocates then show the pictures of a sad looking polar bear standing upon an impoverished ice sheet, or pictures of coral reefs, or ever increasingly pictures of human immigrants, or victims of war to function as the narratives victim be-felled by the chaotic villain. And the horror twist, the big reveal? The villain, all along, was us! And so they argue, this is why we need bigger more forceful government.

        The skeptic is expected to accept this narrative because a consensus of scientists were manufactured to assure the public that they approve of government policy that restricts the individuals right to the use of certain fuel sources. Tony, this an awful lot to ask of a skeptic in order to get them to the point of “global problem”.

        Even if a skeptic were to accept that AGW has become a “global problem” they still have to accept a separate issue in regards to addressing the problem. Why should a skeptic be expected to simply assume that addressing the global problem means even more empowerment of government? Why does a global problem mandate global governance?

        That last question is particularly pointed in that it is pointing the anthropogenic portion of the advocates AGW argument and if a skeptic were to accept that, why wouldn’t the advocates assume the skeptic would then point to how government has largely been and remains the greatest contributor to this problem? Indeed, if we are going to restrict fuel options in order to satiate the advocates shouldn’t we begin by reigning that in with government? Arguments that government needs to continue expending fuel sources it seeks to prohibit the governed from using strongly suggests a faulty premise.

      • I found this when considering how to tackle climate change without government involvement:
        https://www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/plant-trees/why-plant-trees/climate-change/
        Planting trees turns out to be controversial and there a number uh-uh stories.

        Perhaps a more agreeable approach is to consider Lake Minnetonka. A large local treasure. Local governments and charities work to protect and improve it. Here, we are not trying to save the world, just a bunch of lakes we can see each day.

        The value of trying to slow sea level rise with windturbines still escapes me. We can save a lake but the Ganges Delta? It’s not helping. A grand vision with no noticible results.

      • > Why does a global problem mandate global governance?

        Because of the free rider problem, Jean Paul Z. and two others. As The Economist explains (my emphasis):

        It is all about politics. Climate change is the hardest political problem the world has ever had to deal with. It is a prisoner’s dilemma, a free-rider problem and the tragedy of the commons all rolled into one. At issue is the difficulty of allocating the cost of collective action and trusting other parties to bear their share of the burden. At a city, state and national level, institutions that can resolve such problems have been built up over the centuries. But climate change has been a worldwide worry for only a couple of decades. Mankind has no framework for it. The UN is a useful talking shop, but it does not get much done.

        Note that “global governance” need not mean a “global government”, a binding treaty with significant penalties for noncompliance would suffice. Also note that these problems diminish as the market price of non-fossil energy technologies near economic parity with fossil energy sources. At the point that alternatives are cheaper per unit power than their fossil equivalents, market forces take over thus practically eliminating the need for external enforcement/incentive.

        One fly in that ointment is intermittence of solar and wind. Some analysts are bullish on solutions to that problem becoming much less costly, others not so much.

      • Do the arthmatic, guys ‘n gals. First watch Sir David MacKay FRS explain enrgy reality. 15 minutes to change your physics beliefs regarding enrgy generation into proven science.

        If the light comes on, watch his TED talk on You Tube for the harder stuff, and then go the his Master work, “Sustainable Energy, Without the Hot Air” start with the synopsis. A Bil Gates tip ten read. You are being conned, using your ownscience as an excuse.

        This matters because the climate change debate has been hi-jacked, emissions made worse by the net effects of renewables for a fast lobbyist buck in fact, driven by ignorance and misleading attacks that lump clean low carbon gas with dirty high carbon coal, and old school anti-nuclear activists who oppose nuclear generation on factualy spurious grounds, while it is in physics and engineering fact by far the best solution on any measure, through promoting irrational fear unsupported in any area of the facts and proven physics they deceive the unknowing about with simply false or msleading “sience” . You are physicists, you should be communicating the proven science of energy generation as well as climate, because you understand the what is fact, and what is fiction for profit or to promote regressive precautionary principle extremism.
        .
        So many in the climate change debate have apparently forgotten the physics of the consequences of what they support in its name. Just wrong, looking the wrong way so long you have even caused Trump to support a genuine problem, dirty coal, rather than take a rational, prudent and strategic route to empowering the best possible future, with minimum climate efcts if ACC is a problem, for the energy dependnent US economy, by far the highest GDP/Capita, throiugh by far the highest enrgy use/capita. David MacKay explains this well in his TED talk and the e-book.

        A CHALLENGE TO CLIMATE CHANGE PHSYICISTS; I suggest those educated to understand get their heads out of the climate change clouds and study the realities of the overpriced and regressive engineering done in their name, in factual defiance of the laws of physics.

        Those professional trained to do this on the back of an envelope really need to check out the high school physics and hard data of generation in the context of a developed countries extant grid system and expected energy needs over a minimum of 60 years,

        The physics of offsetting fossil expensively with weak and uncontrollably intermittent wind enrgy source and worse, versus CCGT replacing coal with no subidies on a square kilometre run from a clean gas pipe, means government is making the problem worse by law for easy lobbyist profits. I lecture interactively to technical peers and lay audiences on this, inspired by Doug Lightfoot in Canada, and no one believes otherwise at the end.

        BUT the predictable solution from the politicians and their lobbyists is snake oil energy, its promoters exploit the irrational fear of climate change they firstexagerate and legislate to make the supposed cause worse for more money – for short term profit when any change won’t be detectable in most adult’s lifetimes. The money men know the climate won’t change much either way before they retire with your subsidies in their bank account. I find it amazing that climate physicists who can work with complex models can’t do the high school physcs of what is done to energy supply in the name of climate cahnge. Massive malfeasance. Is it because this is where the grants come from?

        Expecting renewables to substantivly replace fossil or gas base load is simply a delusion, not marginal or equivocal. Do the arithmatic. The storeage needed to st cinvert and regenerate elctricity for even a week is simply off the dial, never mind the land and resource use to generate it, and we have far better solutions on evry measure of costed engineering, we don’t need irenewables, unless its deep rock hydro or desert solar, or off the grid. None are mainstream global demand. Subsidy won’t change the weak , intermittent and cubicly variable with velocity renewable energy sources on a global or local scale. Not enough, when needed. Science facts.

        I have done examples for UK Parliament I can share, on a quick look it appears the USA has a similar’ish develped country generation mix, except you have some hot desert bits full of strange reactionary varmints, anarchists and well equipped desert rat liberals – 20 degrees further south than us, and your coal is mainly in the NE on a continental sized grid, with gas predominating in the SW, which really isn’t a problem in need of fixing yet. Simply replacing the NE coal firing with 60% less CO2 clean and cheap CCGT you have to go woud be by far the most effective short-medium term solution for the USA, no debate required if the facts are what matters.

        FYI China’s strategy is to go flat out for nuclear while maximising effective hydro, a French mix. Just look at the planned nuclear deployment. Russia’s similar, offset by a lot of petrochemicals under the ground that are also paying to build nuclear. They just fired up their first Fast Fission reactor after a LOT of process development, 100 times less spent fuel, 100 times greater fuel burn, they are probably ahead of everyone in future energy solutions. Physics fact – Nuclear is the only adequately intense and accesible energy source we control after fossil gas and coal is gone as a commodity fuel, no real argument. It is also in fact the safest, wholly sustainable for hom sap on Earth, while it still rains and there are oceans, and uses MUCH less land and natural resources to build than any other source, because of the intensity of the energy sources and the massive efforts to make nuclear energy ridiculously safe, compared to any other generation or day to day toxi risk. A bit of radiation does you good, certainly no har, up to 400 tims theevcuation evels that we can prove epidemiologically, but irrational fear and old hypothese that are just wrong keeps disproven beliefs as the basis for regulation and officials in hazmat suits waving meters where in radiation levels people all around the world live out normal lives in. The dichotomy is rather like climate science – show me the data that supports the hypothesis.

        We will need 3 times the electricity for heating and transport w/o fossil, cheaper, not less and more expesnive, etc. Wwhere is the coming from? Whaever the ultimately unknowable degree of CO2 related climate change is, the alternative reality of renewables simply doesn’t add up on the proven physics.

        You should get me to come and talk to you about the facts, to challenge them and yourselves, dispel the confusion and deceit spread by the cynical commercial and lobbying interests, and the climate change doomsaying industry, at the actual expense of every American and the global climate , if there is significant ACC, as well as the natural environment. I’d even do the work on the top level US numbers and put it in a real context for the USA, on the back of larger envelopes, in case it isn’t just obvious. Just the science facts, very inconvenient for the alternative reality science fiction, that we simply don’t need to best “save the planet” – from Al Gore and his renewable energy, physics denying, renewable sales people. You are not served byclimate change laws, and here are best qualified to understand why.

        Obviously each aspect of grid enrgy supply is a paper and discussion on its own. From thermal efficiency through resource use to radiobiology. But all are clear and fact based, and I and others have done them, many times, so you don’t have to. You can easily validate the facts. Not enough care to. Why?

        brian.catt@physics.org

      • “It is all about politics. Climate change is the hardest political problem the world has ever had to deal with.”

        Don’t worry Gates.

        In a year or two the politicians will have found some other bone to worry and climate change will be right back there with all the other failed apocalypses dating right back to the Revelation of Saint John the Divine and the Four Horsemen and beyond.

        Then you’ll have to find some other issue to spout impenetrable prolix alarmist drivel and work up a sweat over.

        But don’t worry, I’m sure you’ll cope, your sort always do.

      • brandongates, “Because of the free rider problem, Jean Paul Z. and two others. As The Economist explains (my emphasis):”

        There are several ways of skinning catfish just as there are several ways of leading, managing and governing. Some form or forms of cleaner energy combined with increased energy efficiency would “solve” the CO2 emissions problem. Develop that and the “world” will follow. There will be other unintended consequences as there always are, but if CO2 emissions is your primary goal, problem solved.

        If there is no energy of the future and CO2 is a major problem, then the Economist view might be the only possibility. That would mean “necessarily more expensive energy” and energy austerity. The unintended consequences of a force austerity are pretty easy to predict, cheating, unrest, rebellion.

        Adopting a pessimistic view from the start just makes finding a solution much more difficult. So assuming the Economist view is likely a self fulling prophecy, more freeriders not less.

        Right now, residential and small commercial use of fossil fuels and biomass “globally” are producing a large share of emissions, CO2 and more common “pollutants” because of the inherent inefficiency. Tackling that problem first has a greater potential to reduce emissions in a “compassionate” way so you would have more people joining the effort than pushing back.

      • wonder where all that real science, and measurements are in demonstrating why government force is the only or best solution/answer to really scary climate change.

        Bingo.

        There’s plenty of science/measurement wrt temperature increase.
        You draw blank stares asking why mean temperature increase is a problem.

        There is an exception, namely sea level rise.

        But even there, current rates are not a century threat.
        And probably the fastest growing component of SLR is human ground water use. But I’m not arguing Mosher should stop bathing.

        And with SLR, it is primed for confirmation bias as well because of uncertainty.

        What is the ‘background’ rate?
        What has the change in runoff been because of anthropogenic impervious surfaces?
        What other uncertainties exist in the ocean budgets?

      • > First watch Sir David MacKay FRS explain enrgy reality.

        I was actually thinking of MacKay when I wrote that response to JPZ, brianrlcatt. He’s arguably a pessimist compared to the optimistic likes of e.g. Mark Jacobson at Stanford. I don’t mind taking the pessimistic view, and being pleasantly surprised. But as such, I don’t rule out nuclear fission as a potentially, if not likely necessary, part of a carbon-neutral energy economy.

        > The storeage needed to st cinvert and regenerate elctricity for even a week is simply off the dial […]

        A *week* of storage? Holy alarmist worst case scenario, Batman.

      • > Adopting a pessimistic view from the start just makes finding a solution much more difficult.

        OTOH, selling a too-optimistic view from the start means the thing loses political viability when obfuscated future costs and/or unintended negative consequences come home to roost, Dallas.

        > So assuming the Economist view is likely a self fulling prophecy, more freeriders not less.

        It’s not clear to me how the Economist’s view is likely a self-fulfilling prophecy. brianrlcatt’s just above gives more of what looks like a self-fulfilling prophesy to me (my emphasis):

        Those professional trained to do this on the back of an envelope really need to check out the high school physics and hard data of generation in the context of a developed countries extant grid system and expected energy needs over a minimum of 60 years,

        And *extant* storage costs, *extant* political opposition to fission, *extant* low market prices of oil and gas due to the shale glut, *extant* etc.

        One way to put it is that Luddites have been as reliably wrong as Malthusians. However, in a resource-limited world my default bet will lean toward Malthus every time.

        > Tackling [the inherent inefficiency] problem first has a greater potential to reduce emissions in a “compassionate” way so you would have more people joining the effort than pushing back.

        Begs the question that efficiency isn’t already being tackled, and dubiously assumes that society can’t walk and chew gum at the same time.

        Your compassion argument may deserve me being less dismissive. I wrote earlier: Note that “global governance” need not mean a “global government”, a binding treaty with significant penalties for noncompliance would suffice.

        Treaties can contain incentives as well as penalties, but treaties can only apply to governments. The challenge of a government party to a treaty is how to induce compliance within its own economy. They have available to them many tools to do this, which resolve to the same two basic classes as the treaty scenario: carrots and sticks.

        What’s going on in the US is that partisans are playing favorites which are at odds with each other. The result is gridlock, which *apparently* suits one side of the aisle just fine. Sheldon Whitehouse offers a different view of his Republican counterparts in this stinging op-ed in WaPo:

        Talking to my Senate Republican colleagues about climate change is like talking to prisoners about escaping. The conversations are often private, even furtive. One told me, “Let’s keep talking, but you can’t let my staff know.”

        The dirty secret is that climate change is not really a partisan issue in Congress. Its history has not been partisan, with Republican senators such as John McCain, Lamar Alexander, Susan Collins, Lindsey O. Graham and Jeff Flake (as a House member) having introduced climate bills in the past. Climate change became partisan in 2010, shortly after the five Republican-appointed justices of the Supreme Court upended a century of law and precedent to issue the Citizens United decision, which rejected limits on corporate spending on political campaigns. The timing is not a coincidence.

        It would be nice to get confirmation of that lede paragraph. Of course if it’s even remotely true that would be inherently difficult to obtain.

        I personally think it would be nice to ratchet down the demonization of FF companies somewhat. In my way of thinking, they just haven’t yet been offered by Democrats the right carrots to play ball.

      • However, in a resource-limited world

        Well there is that, I don’t think we live in a resource limited world, well more than temporarily anyways, we have the whole solar system to use, if we become a spacefaring race.

      • > There is an exception, namely sea level rise. But even there, current rates are not a century threat.

        … says TE with such certainty. But:

        > And with SLR, it is primed for confirmation bias as well because of uncertainty.

        I couldn’t make this up.

      • brandongates, “Begs the question that efficiency isn’t already being tackled, and dubiously assumes that society can’t walk and chew gum at the same time.”

        Society can, politicians, not so much. Obama started with the “necessarily more expense” and “they can build it but we will bankrupt them” memes without considering that each percentage increase in coal fired efficiency has a 2% reduction in emissions.; A relatively inexpensive coal fired power plant providing electric and heating hot water can be 60% efficient in the proper season while providing electricity to replace coal, charcoal, etc. for home use. It would also justify a grid in more remote areas that could be used for other and future forms of energy.

        Selling upward mobility is a lot easier than selling austerity.

        After his famous quotes, Germany had to turn to coal, the US managed to get a couple super-critical coal plants completed (~40-45% eff.) mine to mouth in one case plus China and India built a butt load of plants they couldn’t afford to scrub reliably. Add to that incentives to deforest, convert crop land to fuel land and the string of unintended consequences started showing up pretty early. Not to mention unobtainable mandates and fairly large scale alternate energy bankruptcies.

        Right now we have protestors that are blocking cleaner natural gas to Mexico, a lower cost, cleaner energy for a less affluent country, while that country’s government has raised petrol cost by 20% since January 1 because they need to eliminate those climate disastrous fossil fuel subsidies. Mexicans have a tenancy to protest with machetes which is a bit awkward.

        I have wondered if depopulation was part of the game plan.

      • Just one of so many examples of the regressive effects of alternative energy reality, falsely justified on climate science, that renewables bring to energy markets, on the almost totally flawed assertion for a grid based developed economy that redusing ACC from CO2 emissions means renewables. The reverse of energy engineering reality. Q: What is the Chinese long term energy strategy again?

        PS Ans: Be like France and Sweden.

      • btw, once you have mobilized a bunch of activists that know the only true course to save the world as we know it, how do you turn them off. Or as Bernie Sanders said, “How do I land this plane?”

      • Brandon,

        It is nice to see you, brother. I hope your holidays were pleasant and the new year brings you much opportunity.

        The problem with the ‘free rider problem’ is it is just another hypothetical added onto the trash heap of AGW hypothetical’s. In the context you use the free rider problem it is necessarily bound to the ‘public good’. Using the ‘free rider problem’ as an excuse for government intervention pointing to the public good as justification, but it is just a non-sequitur.

        Further, the free rider problem requires a positive outcome derived by the actions of others. The free rider problem is very much a non-sequitur in regards to AGW, since no positive outcomes based on the actions of others are being cited by the government that seeks the authority to intervene on behalf of the public good regarding AGW. Only negative outcomes based on the actions of others are being cited. This is not the free rider problem, it is some other hypothetical.

        In regards to the prisoner’s dilemma, have you ever wondered what would happen if that game theory was played with actual prisoner’s? Andreas Lange and Menusch Khadjavi of the University of Hamburg (Prisoner’s and their Dilemma) have and you know what they found? Higher cooperation between the prisoners than the students who also played the game, that’s what they found.

        The free rider problem is a big justification for government intervention in terms of charity – also relying on the same game theory the prisoner’s dilemma does – arguing that it is people’s best interest to hold down on charitable donations and let the rich do it and that this outcome is not good for the “public good”. Government has so intervened into charity, at least in the U.S., that, people need to seek approval from a tax agency in order to perform a public good. As the government intervention becomes more pervasive…just look around Brandon…there is no visible sign of any Pareto improvement.

      • In a climate/carbon/global perspective the ‘free rider’ problem is where those who get the benefit of using fossil fuels are not generally the same ones paying the true long-term cost.

      • > Society can, politicians, not so much. Obama started with the “necessarily more expense” and “they can build it but we will bankrupt them” memes without considering that each percentage increase in coal fired efficiency has a 2% reduction in emissions.

        Let’s not forget that by a 5-4 partisan vote SCOTUS issued a stay on the Clean Power Plan, Dallas. I direct your attention to the modifications to the so-called “building blocks”.

        I find it difficult to believe Emperor Obama killed King Coal beginning his first year in office:

        Fracking free market. Highly overrated and failing!

        > Selling upward mobility is a lot easier than selling austerity.

        Debt financing alternatives is the opposite of austerity. You might be surprised how tough a sell it is. I think this is bonkers: the Feds have just about the lowest borrowing rate on the planet. But whatever.

        > Add to that incentives to deforest, convert crop land to fuel land and the string of unintended consequences started showing up pretty early.

        Perhaps you don’t recall, but I’ve already told you that I think that getting automobiles plastered on moonshine is a Bad Idea.

        > Not to mention unobtainable mandates and fairly large scale alternate energy bankruptcies.

        Back to self-fulfilling prophesies with a “but Solyndra” kicker. Very nice!

        Traditional energy bankruptcies can be rather spectacular too you know, even without help from the gummint. This one is easily worth 50 Solyndras, all by its lonesome.

        > I have wondered if depopulation was part of the game plan.

        The nice thing about activists is that one can always find at least one who has said something totally brain-dead and perfectly awful. They don’t even need to be actually holding the machete. A sustainable squirrel supply if you will. Very green!

      • > Q: What is the Chinese long term energy strategy again?
        > PS Ans: Be like France and Sweden.

        Q: What’s their immediate motivation to do it, brianrlcatt?
        A: Particulate pollution.

        By the way, they also lead the world for investment in new solar and wind deployment. They also have a different sort of long term plan for solar.

        But what do they know. They’re a bunch of Communist nouveau mercantilists.

      • > It is nice to see you, brother. I hope your holidays were pleasant and the new year brings you much opportunity.

        Same to you Jean Paul Z.

        > The problem with the ‘free rider problem’ is it is just another hypothetical added onto the trash heap of AGW hypothetical’s.

        Except for when it’s applied to social safety nets, guaranteed incomes, or omnibus farm bills which pay land owners to not grow crops. SNAP is of course the mother of all riders, being worth more than the farm portion as of 2014.

        Congrisscritters. Ya’ just gotta’ love ’em.

        > Using the ‘free rider problem’ as an excuse for government intervention pointing to the public good as justification, but it is just a non-sequitur.

        Latest word is that we’re going to front the money to Build The Wall ourselves, then bill Mexico for it later. So I guess it’s not strictly gummint intervention if *theoretically* we’re not ultimately going to pay for it.

        You know, like when Rummy said that Iraq would be able to pay for its own reconstruction in petrobux once their freedoms had been secured (or was that our freedoms insured, I never can keep it straight) and sanctions had been lifted. Man, did that ever turn out to be a cruel joke.

        Anywho, you may not be the only cynic in this conversation. Just sayin’. :-)

        > Further, the free rider problem requires a positive outcome derived by the actions of others.

        Most people would consider pollution reduction a positive outcome. But as we learnt in discussions dating to last year, not everyone agrees that CO2 is a pollutant, so …

        > Higher cooperation between the prisoners than the students who also played the game, that’s what they found.

        Interesting. I guess there is some honor amongst thieves …

        … eh. I just read the paper, it’s not so cut and dried. Thanks for the tip though.

        > As the government intervention becomes more pervasive…just look around Brandon…there is no visible sign of any Pareto improvement.

        That’s rather sweeping, JPZ. And I’m just not in the mood to go along with the inherent burden of proof shifting that occurs when one party in an argument declares that no evidence of X exists, therefore X doesn’t exist. If you were on my side of the AGW argument, you might better understand how tedious that line of argumentation can get for me.

        That all said, I am fond of asking anti-statist libertarians why it is that anarcho-capitalist societies aren’t to be found amongst the world’s leading economies. But it’s rhetorical, and I don’t ever expect a cogent response to it on that basis.

        Cheers, brother.

      • brandongates, You seem to be missing a point , Obama’s goals followed the general lines of the more alarmist playbook, reality tends to follow its own path. Since you mentioned Enron, according to some they were the poster child for corporate social responsibility, lobbying for renewable energy mandates, carbon dioxide regulation and btu taxes, all that would make energy more expensive. More expensive energy would make them more money. Al Gore and Ken Lay helped start the carbon credit market I believe. Enron would be one of the green failures. Solandra, A123 etc. are just part of Obama’s list. The driving force which I am talking about is climate crusader doctrine starting circa 1992.

        There has been about 30 years of over selling catastrophe. James Hansen actually had a meeting with Bush the Elder where Bush was willing to commit to stricter PM regulation because it was doable, but Hansen had a conniption fit about his death train visions. Bush the Elder wanted Hansen to tone down the rhetoric which lead to Hansen’s being censored. Stephen Schneider’s double ethical bind thoughts on over selling disaster while ignoring uncertainty was in 1996 I think. All the “solutions” were “known” well before fracking made it mark.

      • Brandon,

        You’ve referred to me as a “pessimist” and now a “cynic”, but I remain an ardent free market advocate. I do not do this out of cynicism, nor pessimism. I remain optimistic that people, in general, yearn for more not less freedom, and I remain hopeful that I will see more evidence of this in my lifetime.

        I think that rational self interest means I have an obligation to care about the planet I live on and the people and other creatures who do to. I think when lexicographers define selfish to mean; “a chief concern for ones own interest, especially with disregard for others” they have created a contradiction as having disregard for others is not in my best interest, and I see no evidence, even for the misanthropic, that disregard for others is in anyone else’s best interest.

        I think the reason you don’t find find free markets today is because humanity is so damned used to surrendering to the whimsy of governments and its just easier to shrug one’s shoulders and say; “You can’t beat city hall.” Of course, as things continue to get worse, from the American revolution, its bloodier cousin in France, to the Russian revolution all the way up to modern revolutions or revolts, when the people have had enough, they rebel. Aristotle pointed this out more than two thousand years ago, and the cycle continues, even if it seems to get sillier and only lead to more of the same problem.

        Call me a cynic if you will, but I keep hope that people will get tired of this stupidity and get smarter about how they rebel, and more importantly, once the rebellion is done, smarter about how they form or reform governments.

        In terms of no sign of Pareto improvement, I’m specifically talking about governments intervention on behalf of the public good and claiming authority over charity. I see what food stamps and public assistance do for poor people, and I am told they cannot accept that “assistance” and also work. I wouldn’t call that help, Brandon, I would call that help as betrayal, and help as betrayal is not help.

      • > You seem to be missing a point , Obama’s goals followed the general lines of the more alarmist playbook, reality tends to follow its own path.

        Sometimes I do miss points, sometimes I simply don’t agree with them, Dallas. This would be more of the latter. I think that’s mostly because I judge Obama by what he actually did (or in the case of the CPP, what he tried to do), not by his rhetoric.

        > More expensive energy would make [Enron] more money.

        Not if the energy is more expensive due to taxation. Or I should say, it’s not clear to me how that would work *unless* you’re talking about a supply reduction such that they could have made a killing on the spot market.

        But you’re “missing” the point of why I brought up Enron, which is that they went bust due to serious ethical lapses and accounting chicanery — in no small part due to their auditing firm looking the other way in all the right places to protect their own revenue stream. Cf. Solyndra, which *was* a bad bet to be sure, but due to market externalities wholly beyond their control — namely the plummeting cost of silicon used to make traditional solar PV panels.

        I think it’s worth pointing out that private capital got hurt worse in that deal than taxpayers did; by my reckoning twice as much.

        Bottom line: we’ve made worse mistakes. It goes with the territory of being in uncharted territory … or again in the case of Enron, completely familiar territory. Why, even old-school telecom stole Enron’s Chapter 11 record the very next year when WorldCom went belly up. Curiously, Arthur Andersen was at the center of that one as well.

        > There has been about 30 years of over selling catastrophe.

        And which Modulz tell you that, Dallas? Come on. It never ceases to amaze me how quickly Uncertainty Monsters evaporate when you guys start laying into the but alarmism mantra.

      • Jean Paul Z.,

        > I do not do this out of cynicism, nor pessimism. I remain optimistic that people, in general, yearn for more not less freedom, and I remain hopeful that I will see more evidence of this in my lifetime.

        Thing about freedom is that people who have it (or claim they should have it) are free to define for themselves what it means, or more to the point, how best to maximize it for themselves. So this could be a one man’s garbage is another man’s treasure kind of scenario.

        > I think that rational self interest means I have an obligation to care about the planet I live on and the people and other creatures who do to.

        I agree with that definition.

        > I think when lexicographers define selfish to mean; “a chief concern for ones own interest, especially with disregard for others” they have created a contradiction as having disregard for others is not in my best interest, and I see no evidence, even for the misanthropic, that disregard for others is in anyone else’s best interest.

        I agree with the lexicographers, and don’t agree with you that there’s an inherent contradiction. Stalin is an extreme example.

        > I think the reason you don’t find find free markets today is because humanity is so damned used to surrendering to the whimsy of governments and its just easier to shrug one’s shoulders and say; “You can’t beat city hall.”

        Sure. However, the question I’m posing is why is city hall there to begin with. I argue that it mainly has to do with scalability.

        > Aristotle pointed this out more than two thousand years ago, and the cycle continues, even if it seems to get sillier and only lead to more of the same problem.

        I see that as a manifestation of human nature. I can go beyond silly and call it absurd.

        > Call me a cynic if you will, but I keep hope that people will get tired of this stupidity and get smarter about how they rebel, and more importantly, once the rebellion is done, smarter about how they form or reform governments.

        I’ll just flatly state my opinion that wholly unfettered free-market capitalism cannot be something that society — and by extension, good government — can tolerate. Reason being that large amounts of capital and large amounts of power tend to go hand in hand. So without some “public” regulation of markets and market players, any economy tends toward the tyranny of the rich elite. Look at any of the historical rebellion examples you’ve given; it wasn’t poor people violating any of the claimed personal rights of the rich — it was exactly the opposite.

        As for the label of cynic, you really must understand that I hold to Bierce’s definition:

        A blackguard whose faulty vision sees things as they are, not as they ought to be. Hence the custom among the Scythians of plucking out a cynic’s eyes to improve his vision.

        I don’t ever mean it as a pejorative.

        > In terms of no sign of Pareto improvement, I’m specifically talking about governments intervention on behalf of the public good and claiming authority over charity. I see what food stamps and public assistance do for poor people, and I am told they cannot accept that “assistance” and also work.

        As I expected the free-rider problem solidifies from a hypothetical into something quite concrete when applied to the “appropriate” theoretical concept. As this post is too long already (even after chopping > 10 paragraphs out of it) I’ll leave off discussing this point in detail except to say that I’m really interested in how Finland’s experiment with guaranteed income works out.

        I will see you anon. Be well, sir.

      • brandongates, “Sometimes I do miss points, sometimes I simply don’t agree with them, Dallas. This would be more of the latter. I think that’s mostly because I judge Obama by what he actually did (or in the case of the CPP, what he tried to do), not by his rhetoric.”

        Interesting, Rhetoric is the effective art of persuasion which can also be called propaganda if you disagree or effective politics if you agree. It is what is used to inspire the masses. So you appear to be an ends justifies the means kind of guy like Schneider.

        Part of the unintended consequences of rhetoric to mobilize the masses is that some portion of them are naive enough to believe the bullcrap, like in order to save the world, all fossil fuels must be left in the ground NOW. Makes it difficult to explain bridge energy, increased efficiency and “cleaner” energy especially when some say things like “There is no such thing as clean coal!”

        That is also rhetoric, so I shouldn’t have any thing to judge you by because all you have is rhetoric. I believe most of the world would disagree with you.

      • > Part of the unintended consequences of rhetoric to mobilize the masses is that some portion of them are naive enough to believe the bullcrap, like in order to save the world, all fossil fuels must be left in the ground NOW. Makes it difficult to explain bridge energy, increased efficiency and “cleaner” energy especially when some say things like “There is no such thing as clean coal!”

        I repeat:

        Let’s not forget that by a 5-4 partisan vote SCOTUS issued a stay on the Clean Power Plan, Dallas. I direct your attention to the modifications to the so-called “building blocks”.

        Since you glossed over this point in favor of recycling the “alarmist playbook” talking point, here are the three building blocks and a discussion of how they were modified from the original proposal in response to better data and public feedback:

        * Building block 1: Improved efficiency at power plants. Power plants can make heat rate improvements to reduce the amount of CO2 they emit per megawatt-hour of electricity generated. Based on additional data and information in the comments, which reflect different opportunities in different regions of the country, this building block delivers 2.1 percent to 4.3 percent improvement, depending upon the region. At proposal, the assumption was 6 percent improved efficiency at all coal and oil units.

        * Building block 2: Shifting generation from higher emitting coal to lower emitting natural gas power plants. At proposal, the BSER analysis assumed natural gas units could run at 70 percent of their “nameplate capacity,” essentially the designed capacity of power that a unit can generate and is stamped on the unit when it is manufactured. Many commenters said that nameplate capacity was the wrong metric because it didn’t reflect real operating conditions. They suggested we use a “net summer capacity factor” instead, which is based on observed data about how a unit has actually performed. At final, building block 2 assumes natural gas can be used at 75 percent of “net summer capacity.”

        * Building block 3: Shifting generation to zero-emitting renewables: The final BSER analysis does not include existing or under-construction nuclear power or existing utility-scale renewable energy generation as part of building block 3. The analysis does include more use of new renewable energy than at proposal based on up-to-date information clearly demonstrating the lower cost and greater availability of clean generation than was evident at proposal. It takes into account recent reductions in the cost of clean energy technology, as well as projections of continuing cost reductions. Generation from under-construction nuclear facilities and nuclear plant uprates can still be incorporated into state plans and count towards compliance. In fact, nuclear power competes well under a mass-based plan, as increased nuclear generation can mean that fossil fuel units are operating less and emitting fewer tons of CO2.

        Your “but Obama’s alarmist playbook didn’t consider X” rhetoric falls rather flat when one notes Obama’s Clean Power Plan actually does consider things like increased efficiency (block 1) and the concept of bridge energy (block 2).

      • Brandongates, “Since you glossed over this point in favor of recycling the “alarmist playbook” talking point,..”

        No I didn’t gloss over anything. Alarmists promoted an agenda and there is push back. Those pushing back are labeled deniers, skeptics etc. What you are missing is that there are activists pushing back often against bridge energies that should be part of the transition, but the communication of the complexity of the transition isn’t being sold as well as the initial urgent action game plan. Now you have a fairly large populist movement and there are indications that failed climate change policy is having more impact than climate change itself. Arab Spring for example was blamed on “climate change” by the usual suspects but market volatility that doubled staple food costs, oil prices and created “end of times” mentality in some societies would be a product of rhetoric.

        As I mentioned, “How do I land this plane?” Bernie Sanders, is a question that climate change activists would be asking themselves.

        The Economist theory implies staying the course of dramatic and urgent action, a pessimistic view that just promotes more irrational behavior and a less dramatic course with optimism would tend to calm the masses. Focusing on BC reduction and artificial glacier or glacier nourishment with some happy verbiage about slowing sea level rise and reducing desertification could go a long way to getting people involved in something other than ecoterrorism. Revolutions can be messy.

        Now you can deny that oversellling catastrophe has a negative impact on markets, but it doesn’t take much these days in my opinion. Rhetoric isn’t something to dismiss.

      • Now you can deny that oversellling catastrophe has a negative impact on markets, but it doesn’t take much these days in my opinion. Rhetoric isn’t something to dismiss.

        And in the same manner we have idiots like the Senators who claim our new President is not only illegitimate, but a list of about every personal flaw a person can have, and that anyone who accepts him also has those same flaws.

        Where do they go from there?

      • Back to basics offering progress instead of progressiveism. The hand wringers and catastrophists lose when real, measurable progress is made.

      • > Now you have a fairly large populist movement and there are indications that failed climate change policy is having more impact than climate change itself.

        Yes, now your true agenda pokes its head out, Dallas.

        > The Economist theory implies staying the course of dramatic and urgent action, a pessimistic view that just promotes more irrational behavior and a less dramatic course with optimism would tend to calm the masses.

        I’m just going to repeat this until you get the message:

        Let’s not forget that by a 5-4 partisan vote SCOTUS issued a stay on the Clean Power Plan, Dallas. I direct your attention to the modifications to the so-called “building blocks”.

        Look what “we” made “you” do: block the very stepwise implementation you oh-so-rationally called for. No matter how many Arab Spring squirrels you chase, here in the US, climate policy in the form of the CPP did not “fail”. It was actively opposed — not to make it better, but to make sure it never saw the light of day. And it most likely won’t, not because of “alarmist activists” but because of the incoming Trump administration.

        Your attempt to shift responsibility is rhetoric, by the way. And yes, I am paying attention to it.

        Good day.

      • brandongates, “Yes, now your true agenda pokes its head out, Dallas.”

        No, it has been pretty exposed for some time, overselling catastrophe to direct political will has consequences. You can deny that you personally oversold, but Storms of my Grandchildren: The Truth About the Coming Climate Catastrophe and Our Last Chance to Save Humanity does tend to indicate some pretty severe situations. “Energy will necessarily be more expensive” isn’t all that heartwarming either. “There is no such thing as clean coal!!” and “if they build it we will bankrupt them” Then there are the anti-frackers and anti-nuclear members of the constituency. When someone starts a movement, having an end game is nice. You obviously have none other that game theory.

      • “You can deny that you personally oversold,”

        He can try…

      • > You can deny that you personally oversold, but Storms of my Grandchildren: The Truth About the Coming Climate Catastrophe and Our Last Chance to Save Humanity does tend to indicate some pretty severe situations.

        James Hansen wrote that book not me, Dallas. Notice how you keep pointing to things I didn’t write. Notice (again) how the policy Obama actually attempted to implement specified the very things you say the “alarmists” are NOT considering: increased efficiency, bridge energy, and fission as an acceptable non-intermittent component of the long-term solution. Not to mention local authorities to choose for themselves which mix of technologies they anticipate working best in order to meet targets.

        Yet STILL …

        > Then there are the anti-frackers and anti-nuclear members of the constituency.

        … you beat on the but alarmist activism meme like it’s going out of style.

        Except it isn’t going out of style because *your* narrative relies on ducking the reality that Obama’s CPP proposed exactly what you’re asking for and that Republican opposition is the reason the CPP was stayed by SCOTUS to begin with.

        Your only option therefore is to wag the dog by appealing to social movements you obviously oppose for whatever litany reason(s). And because of the very same 1st Amendment rights Freedom Fighters are themselves so fond of asserting, you’re guaranteed an endless supply of anti-fracking, anti-fission, anti-capitalist protesters to point to. Very convenient!

        It’s a cute rhetorical trick, but not very *persuasive* because reeks disingenuity. As such, by all means, please keep digging.

      • brandongates, my entire string of comments has been on how valid the Economist blurb you pasted might be. Try to get a grasp of the situation that exists. A pessimistic view concerned with free riders, prisoner delimma game theory and the need for urgent action that has been assumed for 30 plus years is a bit cold and ivory tower sciency. It has also created a few unintended consequences.

        I thought Judith was a bit nutz when she posted a few psychological papers, but the political side of the political-science debate requires quite a bit of subject.

        Michael J. Mazarr published a piece at the Hoover Institute in 2004 and radical Islamist have both a belief in catastrophic climate change and a complete list of eschatoloy – signs of the ends of days. We have a butt load of fundamentalists, populists and mysticists, some with automatic weapons, some with machetes planning various less that civil actions.

        I would say the catastrophist position is about played and some a bit more down to Earth and optimistic is in order. Simple as that brandon, the Economist point is BS.

        http://www.hoover.org/research/psychological-sources-islamic-terrorism

      • Ronald Bailey’s “End of Doom” book spends a whole bookload of words with references on how the catastrophe industry works, in spite of its predictions and solutions always failing. Been working that way since the Moche Indians at least. All it needs is gullible and lazy minded people who prefer an easy tribalist/emotional belief to the effort and individualism independent understanding requires. Of course secular education is supposed to dispel easy tribal belief and end religious cult beliefs like Christianity, Islam, Scientology, Communism, Fascism, Racism, anti-nuclear/Fracking/GM Foodism, etc. And now climate change. Seems there is some intelligence/rationality threshold in the human species, though, when so many prefer independently provable as wrong in fact beliefs to understanding.

        PS Feynman nade very clear the way in which any loose hypothesis can be exploited this way, it can be argued for ever, because it cannot be defined well enough to test and prove 0r disprove, and usual rhetoric of deniers and believers is all there really is to pantomime debate. Politicians and those who want power over others or easy money all love that, because the unquestioning belief of the gullible can be exploited any way they want.

      • > […] my entire string of comments has been on how valid the Economist blurb you pasted might be.

        One need only review your own comments in this thread to find examples of its veracity, Dallas. A good place to look would be hereish:

        Obama started with the “necessarily more expense” and “they can build it but we will bankrupt them” memes without considering that each percentage increase in coal fired efficiency has a 2% reduction in emissions.

        > Try to get a grasp of the situation that exists.

        First tell me more about Enron being a “green failure”. I nearly befouled myself giggling at that one. Oh nevermind.

        The situation that exists is Obama delivered a Clean Power Plan which Republicans didn’t like, have generally opposed since even before Kyoto, and therefore they blocked it. That’s not just “pushback” — they meant to kill it. Election results pretty much ensure that they’ll finish the job.

        > A pessimistic view concerned with free riders, prisoner delimma game theory and the need for urgent action that has been assumed for 30 plus years is a bit cold and ivory tower sciency. It has also created a few unintended consequences.

        If only they’d give up their freedom of expression and right to peaceful assembly to say what you want them to say instead of what they want to say, there would be fewer “unintended consequences”. You’d gladly open your wallet if they weren’t just so darned *alarmist*.

        Pull my other one.

        > Michael J. Mazarr published a piece at the Hoover Institute in 2004 and radical Islamist have both a belief in catastrophic climate change and a complete list of eschatoloy – signs of the ends of days. We have a butt load of fundamentalists, populists and mysticists, some with automatic weapons, some with machetes planning various less that civil actions.

        That’s at least twice now you’ve worked in the Muslim Terrorist Boogeyman angle for some additional squirrel-flavored seasoning. Very nice!

        > […] the Economist point is BS.

        Nah, you’re a poster child example of their point in action. I’d say most people don’t want to pay more taxes, or be put at a competitive disadvantage with foreign nations. Thus our natural inclination is to either resist implementation of policy which we *perceive* would do that, or attempt to defect from it once imposed.

        Some of us are even willing to publicly own our rational self-interest without trying to shunt the responsibility our conscious and willful decisions entail onto others.

        Cheers.

  31. The skin in the game assumes the GAME is accurate understanding and forecasting of the climate. If the Game is to get grants, go to IPCC conferences, publish books, some fame and fortune, then its different skin.

    • So much depends on skin in which game. This relevant
      comment from stevepostrel @4.00am.

      ‘Incentives are not necessarily so lined up with sincere
      search for the truth in climate science, for the obvious
      reasons that the research is part of (and funded by)
      a strongly held ideological (and now materially interested)
      program of political regulation of the economy. Deviants
      are likely to be punished regardless of the merit of their
      research. Common sense says that there are lots of
      people beavering away trying to find new corrections that
      will make the data fit better to the preferred narrative, and
      almost no one combing it looking for corrections that will
      make the data fit the narrative more poorly. And there is no
      reality test for these long-term forecasts, no rapid feedback,
      nor any inclination to look for interim ways to test models
      severely. Instead, every effort is made to justify lowering test
      severity and to accept known flaws and systematic errors.’

      YAD061 anyone?

      • So well put by stevepostrel @4.00am. Confirmational delusion. Post truth science as religion, complete with hertics and an inquisition.

    • In ‘Antifragile’ Nassim Taleb describes having ‘skin in the
      game’ in the sense of the ancient Hammurabi Code – the
      engineer having to sleep under his own bridge, the failed
      banker beheaded in front of his own bank…You share in
      any public pain resulting from your professional action.

      Taleb calls the phenomenon of causing harmful action
      without accountability the Stiglitz Syndrome after Joseph
      Stiglitz, who, unlike Nassim Taleb with his own skin in the
      game predicting Fannie Mae’s failure, made a public
      assessment that:
      ‘on the basis of historical experiences, the risk to the
      government from a potential deficit in GSE debt is
      effectively zero. (A/F p387.) Had Stiglitz been obliged to
      invest his own funds in Fannie Mae he might have been
      more critical. While the collapse of Fannie Mae cost the
      tax payers billions of dollars, Joseph Stiglitz, says Taleb,
      with selective amnesia, went on to publish an I told ya’
      so book post Fannie Mae’s demise. Academics seem not
      designed to recall their failed predictions, think Erlich!

      Climate scientists funded by to find a specific research
      outcome can’t be said to have ‘skin in the game’ in the
      above sense of sharing public pain, but rather an ‘interest’
      in the sense of politicians with an interest that ought to be
      declared, like undisclosed shares in a company that their
      decision making may benefit. Skin in the game here is not
      public accountability ‘skin’ but personal benefit irrespective
      of public benefit.

  32. My interest in uncertainty also began with skin in the game. As a young civil engineer I long ago worked my way through grad school in philosophy of science by designing large dams for the US flood control program. Thousands of lives depended on my recommendations so I got very interested in the data I was given, especially the so-called 100 year flood.

    When I pointed out that statistical science said that one could not determine the 100 year flood from 100 years of data I was met with hostility. Now it is 100 (or 300) year climate forecasts that I am questioning. And again hostility.

    Statistics are facts about samples, not necessarily facts about the world being sampled. Few understand this.

    • go back and read what a return period actually is.

      You remind me of the engineers who didnt understand how we could calculate the MTBF for a product that had never shipped

      • Curious George

        [Wikipedia] “Recurrence interval = (n+1)/m,
        n number of years on record;
        m is the number of recorded occurrences of the event being considered
        For floods, the event may be measured in terms of m³/s or height; for storm surges, in terms of the height of the surge, and similarly for other events.”
        With 100 years of data: how many 100-year events have occurred? I just don’t know. Please link to a superior text.

      • Year 0
        Year 5 Big flood
        Year 100 Big flood
        Year 105 Big flood

        The first flood has a 5 year return period that increases by 1 a year until it reaches about 100.
        The second flood changes the return period to 50 years.
        The third flood changes the return period to 35 years.

        Here’s one thing about counting. It doesn’t make predictions. I can predict 100 year events are now 10 year events based on the above. But I haven’t counted anything that supports that.

        The first data point started out wrong and told us the return period was 5 and that told us to do something which history shows we could have put off for 50 years. Right before the second flood we were being told, don’t worry about. After the second flood we were told, don’t worry about it. The third flood comes and having been wrong twice in recent years, we conclude it’s caused by global warming.

  33. Only a few posts back I witnessed one of the denizens repeatedly insist people apologize for calling Thom Karl a fraud and I have regularly seen this denizen accuse skeptics of being frauds. Perhaps we’re all frauds…every single one of us.

    Why else would anyone of us take the time we do to post comments in this blog if we didn’t have skin in the game? My own skin in the game came when I saw read Sheldon Whitehouse’s op/ed piece calling for RICO investigation of skeptics. Suddenly, for me the prosaic nature of climate change became a wild tournament of warriors where either one choose a side or have that side chosen for you.

    Learning as much as I could about the science became paramount because as long as I can remember media has been a cesspool of fake news and knowing the truth has always been dicey when the best you can hope for is information provided by others. Still, learning as best I could became paramount because I cannot stand censors or censorship. My desired outcome is to quell the censors and let the debate rage on unabated by the priest class or their fervent laity.

    Does this make me any less of a skeptic? In some eyes I have no doubt it does, and even before my admissions now I have no doubt I was dismissed as a “serious” or “true skeptic”. Even so, I remain skeptical that climate change is an issue that government can address. I remain confident that empowering government to address really scary climate change simply means empowering government further and this very likely leads to more suppression, more denial and denigration of rights and therein lies my skin in the game. The defense of individual rights.

    • Another definition of skin in the game is consequences for being wrong.

      What are the consequences to you about being wrong about the importance of individual rights ? Specifically, Many skeptics assert that there will be no bad effects on 100 year scale for individuals increasing c02 today. That;s a climate forecast.. made with no skin in the game.

      • Steven;

        “What are the consequences to you about being wrong about the importance of individual rights ?”

        The consequences of being wrong about the importance of individual rights are the further denial and disparagement of individual rights. The consequences of that is more than disenfranchisement, people have fought revolutions over such consequences.

        ” Specifically, Many skeptics assert that there will be no bad effects on 100 year scale for individuals increasing c02 today. That;s a climate forecast.. made with no skin in the game.”

        This skeptic – as in little old moi – makes no such assertion instead asserting that if the outcome of government policy is even nearly as damaging as the predicted damage caused by really scary climate change then doing nothing is probably best.

      • Steven Mosher

        “The consequences of being wrong about the importance of individual rights are the further denial and disparagement of individual rights.”

        You missed the other half of the equation.. What are the consequences if YOU are wrong about its importance?

        basically your skin in the game doesnt allow you to question the value of the things you hold dear. you have 1/2 of a confidence interval

      • Mosher, and virtually all alarmists assert, there will be [] bad effects on 100 year scale for [] increasing CO2 today.

        However, they have no valid evidence to support their assertion.

        And the world is waking up. The foundations for the alarmists ideology are collapsing. Mosher & Mates have LOST!. Get over it. Get another job (playing computer games, perhaps)

      • Steven,

        “You missed the other half of the equation.. What are the consequences if YOU are wrong about its importance?”

        I’m wondering how you could have missed the obvious implication. If individual rights are denigrated further then little old moi will feel this effect, but I thought I made that clear in my original comment you replied to, that this is my skin in the game. Maybe read harder and you will see that.

        Perhaps more importantly, however, is that contrary to popular belief, individual rights are perceptible, particularly in their absence. If I bump into someone at the mall and moments later notice my wallet is missing, the sense of loss I feel, the outrage over being burgled is my perception of the right to property.

        If I am attacked by a knife wielding madman and in my fear I fight desperately to stay alive, those rushes of feeling pulsating through my body are the perceptions of the right to life. There is no time for confidence interval to make sure I have the right to life, just little old moi’s perception of the right to life.

      • That’s Dilbert again.

        Do you have any scientific proof that reducing fossil fuels won’t cause a nuclear holocaust?

      • answer the question Jean Paul

      • “Many skeptics assert that there will be no bad effects on 100 year scale for individuals increasing c02 today. That;s a climate forecast.. made with no skin in the game.”

        Wrong as usual.

        Anyone with children and grandchildren has a great deal of ‘skin in the game’ – far, far more than a dodgy second-hand temperature database peddler.

      • “answer the question Jean Paul.”

        I did Steven. Don’t ignore what I write only so you can make pointless drive by comments in reply.

        You asked me what the consequences of me be wrong about the importance of individual rights was to me and I answered that question directly. Your silly “specifics” of the question, have nothing to do with the question. What many skeptics assert or don’t assert has nothing at all to do with the question of the importance of individual rights.

        All climate forecasts, by the way, are made by people who have skin in the game, in my opinion. Raise that bar as high or as low as you want(proper definitions of an idiom), the game isn’t track and field hurdles, the game is chess.

      • We can’t predict whether too far out from today,
        no matter what tipping point predictors say,
        black swans prevail. Five Year Plans? Great
        Leaps Forward? A hundred years from today?
        … Impossible to say.

      • What will it all mean, a hundred years from today? Tra la.
        https://secondhandsongs.com/performance/158497/versions

      • > Mosher, and virtually all alarmists assert, there will be [] bad effects on 100 year scale for [] increasing CO2 today. However, they have no valid evidence to support their assertion.

        That would be because evidence from the FUTURE doesn’t exist yet, Peter L.

      • Thank Heaven you’ve just confirmed there is nothing to worry about then. I presume, now you’ve seen the light, you’ll be out there advocating to stop alarlarmist beliefs and dogma.

      • > Thank Heaven you’ve just confirmed there is nothing to worry about then.

        Confirmation of that would require evidence which *we* do not have, Peter L.

      • That would be because evidence from the FUTURE doesn’t exist yet, Peter L.

        Yes, one of the themes of skin in the game.

        People are claiming predictions which are not validated, without risking a price for being wrong.

      • > Yes, one of the themes of skin in the game.

        One of the features of temporal reality, TE.

        > People are claiming predictions which are not validated, without risking a price for being wrong.

        I can only assume that by “people” you mean folks like Peter L. when they write things such as: Thank Heaven you’ve just confirmed there is nothing to worry about then.

        On a semi-related note, it’s rare that I agree with teh catweazle666:

        Anyone with children and grandchildren has a great deal of ‘skin in the game’ – far, far more than a dodgy second-hand temperature database peddler.

        Somewhat fittingly I only agree with the bit which comes before the dash. Nobody’s perfect I suppose.

  34. I felt similarly. As a corporate reinsurance actuary, I was competing against nature. If my evaluation of risk was accurate, my firm would do well and I’d get a bonus. If my risk evaluations were inaccurate, the company would do poorly and I’d lose my job. In short, I got rewarded for being correct.

    In academia being right is less important than getting grants and getting published. Of couse, these are not independent, but there’s quite a difference. E.g., I got a lot of respect for a model I published, but it was based on stretched assumptions and had little practical value.

    • “If my evaluation of risk was accurate, my firm would do well and I’d get a bonus. ”

      If you sold a policy for $100 and claims were $50.. was that accurate?
      if you sold that policy for 100 and claims were 25,, what was your bonus.
      bigger or smaller? in other words if you over estimated the risk, and your
      company did better, were you rewarded or punished

      Or lets ask it a different way. in all your experience were you ever judged for being biased slightly high or low? How often were you biased high
      and how often biased low?
      As a matter of practice were your predictions adjusted, padded,

      Insurance is a good case.

      Today many insurance companies are concerned about climate related losses

      Skeptics of course argue that we CANNOT TRUST insurance forecasts because they have skin in the game

      • Mosher

        In Florida the risk and premiums on Hurricane insurance were mismatched for the last 10 years and they have been making a killing. I wonder how they are doing in Honolulu insuring against SLR with the trend at 1.41mm/yr. Not all insurance companies are concerned. Some are making a tidy profit due to the hype.

      • Mosher – cerescokid beat me to the punch. Do you really not understand the motivation for insurance companies to latch onto alarmist forecasts?

      • “A recent study has reported that as of 2014, about 81% of workers covered by healthcare through an employer were in a partially or completely self-funded plan,[7] which is up 21% since 1999.”

        The issue is argued to be important. Companies cut the insurance company out in part or in full. High Deductible Health Plans also cut them out in part. Health Saving Accounts do a similar thing. Who brought us HDHPs? Small businesses. Sole Proprietors. With the wicked problem of healthcare a somewhat libertarian partial solution occurred. The responsibilities were taken by the individual. When costs are perceived to be too high, people opt out and take the risk themselves.

        While not an expert on MNSure or the ACA, people below a certain income level who get everything except low deductibles paid by the state, do not have access to HDHPs in Minnesota. The state has higher costs. And the individuals don’t have access HSAs. This idea of self insurance which is growing, is denied to those below a certain income level.

        It is my guess, my guess, that all state plans follow Federal ACA rules. Perhaps poor people can’t be trusted to take responsibility, not even the least amount like a $1400 annual deductible for an individual.

        Health insurance is argued to be broken in the U.S. Do I have health insurance for my autos? I have none. I pay for every set of tires and new battery and no middle man is a part of that taking a cut of my everyday life. I would suggest it is bloated and worked its way into too much of our lives. I think that people should consider disaster insurance though.

        Will climate change cause the family farmland to have to grow some lower valued crops? I doubt it. I’d take that risk and not pay someone to insure against that. I will take the risk. Say it. It’s liberating. I will take care of myself.

      • > Do you really not understand the motivation for insurance companies to latch onto alarmist forecasts?

        Do you really not understand the motivation for fossil fuel companies to keep the value of their proven reserves from going to zero, tomthegreekguy?

      • Tom… The point is they have skin in the game.
        How accurate is their forecast.

      • Insurance is a good case.

        Today many insurance companies are concerned about climate related losses

        No. Insurance rates are adjustable.
        I’m pretty sure that insurance companies won’t issue insurance for the year 2100, because insurance companies don’t claim to know risks or values then, much less predicting the demise of the paying customer.

        The adjustable rates are why Warren Buffet is making a killing in the insurance business. Anxious customers benefit insurance companies by leading them to accept higher premiums ( when claims may actually be lower ).

      • Brandon Gates – What I understand, and you apparently do not, is that the question you posed is an entirely different topic. Just as an FYI, I understand the motivations of fossil fuel companies and take that into account when I evaluate their pronouncements.

      • Mosher – Having skin in the game means paying a price for being wrong. But this is not symmetric around the agnostic null. If they are wrong on the skeptic side they could lose big; if they are wrong on the alarmist side they have little to lose and much to gain, assuming there is solidarity with their competitors on the question. So, they have more motivation to be alarmist.

      • > What I understand, and you apparently do not, is that the question you posed is an entirely different topic.

        I don’t think so, tomthegreekguy — you’re making a “follow the money” argument here. So am I. That’s the commonality. FF revenues and perhaps more importantly, unburnt reserves, are the skin in the game. Let’s please not pretend otherwise.

        > Just as an FYI, I understand the motivations of fossil fuel companies and take that into account when I evaluate their pronouncements.

        Which pronouncements, and how do you evaluate them?

        By the way, Steven asked you a direct question: How accurate is their forecast.

        Your reply to him was unresponsive to it. Why?

      • Brandon Gates – FF companies are motivated to downplay the severity of GW; insurance companies are motivated to overplay the severity. I understand both of these. Mosher’s comment suggested he did not understand the latter.

        I was unresponsive to his question because I don’t understand it. What forecast are we talking about?

      • Insurers and reinsurers have great skin in the game of getting risks right.

        An insurance company that offers contracts that are too expensive can be undercut by competition and lose clients. This may lead to bankruptcy as the most important clients are the ones you have.

        Nothing in ExxonKnew compares to that. Fossil fuels companies promote Mr T as a way to minimize the social cost of carbon.

        Different skin, different kind of game.

      • Insurers and reinsurers have great skin in the game of getting risks right.

        Yes.
        But they reassess every year,
        and global warming seems to be helping them make huge profits ( lower expenses ).

      • Reinsurers got interested into AGW because water damage reclamations already cost them money, TE.

        Never bet too much on profits you can’t see. Even teh Taleb will you that.

      • tomthegreekguy,

        > FF companies are motivated to downplay the severity of GW; insurance companies are motivated to overplay the severity.

        Both have a fiduciary duty to maximize shareholder equity, which places constraints on how they handle their respectively different risk exposures. IOW, their long games require them at least internally to hold “objective” assessments of plausible future realities.

        > I understand both of these. Mosher’s comment suggested he did not understand the latter.

        On review, I perhaps should not have challenged your own understanding so forcefully. I don’t always agree with Steven, but I rarely get the sense he doesn’t understand what he’s talking about.

        > I was unresponsive to his question because I don’t understand it. What forecast are we talking about?

        Fair enough. I took it as a rhetorical question designed to get you to think about how loss-insurers in a competitive market can be profitable in a world full of loss. Willard already has some good comments about that in this subthread. He also challenges the “but collusion” argument going on here.

  35. Dr. Curry

    Skin in the game sounds so much like: accountability; ie being accountable for what you say and do. Accountability has a partner: believability. Does what you say and do make sense or is believable. Believability has its own separate partner: integrity. Is one being truthful as far are one can tell. And yet, skin in the game means living with the consequences of your convictions however you have assembled such notions. It seems to me that having skin in the game also means being prudent; ie, making judgements about the likelihood of an outcome with all its caveats.

    When I judge someone who is making a prognostication, my inclination is to watch the person’s body language, are they comfortable with whom they appear to be? Are they comfortable with what they are saying. Are they willing to be accountable for what they say they will do? And finally, how much risk are they willing to take on their own? How much skin do they have in the game?

  36. udith wrote: “I have found that the worst forecast outcome is 1) a forecast issued with a high level of confidence that turns out to be wrong; 2) a close second is missing the possibility of an extreme event.”

    This sounds a lot like the IPCC: 1) Too much confidence that unforced variability is low and ECS high. 2) The precautionary principle.

  37. “The scientists themselves have absolutely no skin in the game, other than the perversions associated with being professionally rewarded for making alarming predictions and claiming that anyone who doesn’t agree with them is a science ‘denier.’”

    Dr. Curry, I deeply disagree with this statement. “Skin in the game” for at least some scientists, is the satisfaction and acceptance of what they have accomplished even in a field that has no public attention, knowing that it will matter, and even that will have no public attention. Don’t make science a matter of good or bad PR.

    • It’s not just bad PR. Much science has become corrupted by ideology and public funding to support ideology. Much science has become policy driven and money driven. The scientists have to believe in and advocate for the group-think dominant at the time or they miss out on funding and their careers can be ruined.

      But much worse than that is the enormous economic damage and the damage to human well-being that is being done by “Policy Driven Science” – such as climate science and the advocacy of the scientists involved.

    • Skin in the game is when you risk life, liberty and fortune on a project. It has nothing to do with a sense of accomplishment outside public view. That is the opposite of skin in the game because hiding in the shadows being impressed with oneself doing work no one is interested in. You would better argue your point by saying that the popular climate alarmists have skin in the game when they go public and open up their personal and professional lives to intense scrutiny.

      • It’s all a matter of how You define “Skin in the game.” I am not talking about hiding anywhere or being impressed by oneself. I am talking about advancing science, without being in the limelight all the time, and let bad or good PR decide if You are doing good or bad science.

      • Skin in the game implies you are investing in a venture like buying the lab equipment and renting the space out of your own pocket. I would stretch that to those willing to make themselves public targets.

        When you say “satisfaction and acceptance of what they have accomplished even in a field that has no public attention, knowing that it will matter” it is the very definition of hubris.

      • > Skin in the game implies you are investing in a venture like buying the lab equipment and renting the space out of your own pocket.

        That is insufficient – it also implies this investment matters to your capacity to make the same move all over again. Think St. Petersburg paradox.

        Otherwise most life decisions would get you some skin in the game. After all, life is a resource-based game.

        Judy’s rich enough to see that this whole line of argument is crap.

      • Can always rely on Willard to over-complicate a simple concept to completely erase any meaning: Dada logic.

      • Can always rely on Denizens to coopt a fairly well established concept into their fight for Freedom and stretch it beyond the point of justfied disingenuousness. What downside is there for them to reveal a little more #SpeedoScience?

      • Someone needs to loosen Willard’s slogan straitjacket.

      • Yes, he seems particularly squirrelly just at the moment!

      • The title of this post is “Skin in the game.” The concept of skin in the game is fairly well established. It implies tangible risks. I have yet to see any downside for Judy by going emeritus. On the contrary.

        Take for example teh Donald who hired staff to clap, cheer, and boo during his latest press conference. By some account, he paid his staff 50$ each. Does this imply that the press conference had teh Donald more skin in the game by doing so?

        Of course not. Ask teh Dilbert.

        Now, ask yourself the same question, but instead of paying his staff, he paid them 25 millions in total, i.e. the same as he settled teh Donald’s fraudulent U case. Would that give him more skin in the game?

        Perhaps. Depends on how much teh Donald owes.

        All this has been discussed centuries ago.

      • LOOK! LOTS OF SQUIRRELS!

      • Oh, look! Willard adds more BS to the pile. Your overlords would be proud!

      • Willard must think entrepreneurial ventures do not involve risk, tangible or otherwise. Perhaps the startups in which Willard is a principle owner include guaranteed income and absence of liability.

      • > must think entrepreneurial ventures do not involve risk, tangible or otherwise

        Not at all. All I need to think is that not all ventures carry much skin in the game. This meme (biz=risk) Freedom Fighters are fond of has been refuted both theorically and empirically.

        Take Judy’s costs you alluded to earlier, Geo. Investing in computational facilities only carries a risk if you pay before you have clients to pay for them. Renting at a U should be cheap unless other companies are competing in renting lab time. The same applies to data leases: meteo being local, it would make sense to pay fees for the ones your clients want. Same for staff: hiring on contract basis carries no upfrint cost.

        The skin is tangible, BTW. Meteorological predictions being both quite rough and produced by somehow robust modulz, how can you go wrong? More importantly, with whom are you compering? As far as I can see, Judy’s gig is occupying a captive with little skin. This blog is pure skinless punditry.

        Betting on Mr. T carries very little skin. Betting real money on a Stadium Wave of predictions (say with James Annan) carries a little bit more.

        When will we see bets?

      • Willard: someone has stolen your wordpress account or Annan must have sent you a a lid of Kosher Kush from Colorado. Perhaps it’s a Brexit/Trump depression hangover. Get back in the game, buddy… I miss the old you.

  38. The Crisis of Germany’s Energiewende

    German consumers and industry pay a hefty price for the green energy transition, the so-called Energiewende. Technical problems with the German power grid are piling up as the government continues its breakneck drive to change the country’s energy mix. Parts of Germany are already over-saturated with wind turbines. Other nations are not following Germany’s expensive experiment. Germany has the second highest electricity price (after Denmark) in Europe. Renewable energy subsidies will rise from 6.35 €ct/kwh to an astounding 7.3 €ct/kwh in 2017. This policy is costing consumers 25 billion euros annually, paid via their power bills. It represents a social transfer from bottom to top of immense dimensions.

    The driving force behind this socially unsustainable energy policy is an irrational fear that humans are irreparably damaging the climate as a result of CO2 emissions – despite new scientific findings showing that CO2’s impact on global temperatures has been overstated by the IPCC. Government plans to open up forests to allow the construction of wind parks is a catastrophe for most species of predatory birds and bats and the surrounding ecosystem.

    GWPF: http://us4.campaign-archive2.com/?u=c920274f2a364603849bbb505&id=d1eeca5e5a&e=d3ab024ae2

  39. I completely relate to this post. In the 1990’s I reconstituted what was then Mot’s VC operation (New Enterprises). Burned its useless bloated $26 million per year form to the ground by firing everyone and appropriating the entire budget to patent outlicensing. Then, six months later, resurrected as Mot Ventures under new leadership and my tight control with 1/3 budget. Perhaps by pure luck, in the first year the new org found a $3 million investment in a Yahoo spinout that returned $80 milllion in 11 months, plus a permanent Mot cell phone advantage.
    Lessons: incompetence never heals. One has to be tough and honest about incompetence. And that NEVER wins friends. Only promotions (until the two come into conflict with incompetent boss friends… such is life).

  40. “Policy driven science” is a part science history, and will be a part of science’s future. Policy will never trump science, policy can delay and deter science, but will always loose. It’s a matter of time, and is as sure as the second law of thermodynamics, maybe even a part of it.

  41. More like this one; the entropy of the universe tends to a maximum

  42. Congrats in your new endeavors, shackles off. I too “like” Nassim Taleb, and agree pretty much with most of his work. I think he over reaches when declaring that CC should be approached based on the precautionary principle; I’ve read your thinking on this and I think it makes all the sense in the world to try to tackle CC as a wicked problem with clumsy solutions and to work on cost benefit approaches. Again best of luck in your future work and thank you for allowing us to participate in your blog.

    • Victor Adams,

      I agree that the social science side of it, and the politics and ideology are a wicked problem. I do not agree that there is a real problem with doing rational policy analysis. At the moment is it is clear that any policy that raises the cost of energy or damages the global and regional/country policies will do much more harm than good. Furthermore, there seems to be a lack of persuasive evidence to justify the belief that GHG emissions will cause net harm this century let alone that they are a threat to the global economy or to human well-being.

      Please, before responding, read my comments at the top of this thread; they explain the evidence that has persuaded me of this https://judithcurry.com/2016/11/25/week-in-review-science-and-policy-edition-3/#comment-826494 .

  43. “Skin in the game” is probably not the best term for explaining the distinction being made here by Judith. In economics there are precise concepts about incentives–incentive alignment, incentive compatibility, etc.–that pin down the issue more clearly. Judith’s point is really a simple one–in weather forecasting, customers pay you to guess right and state your uncertainty accurately and both the forecaster and the customer can quickly and frequently evaluate whether you guessed right and/or stated your uncertainty appropriately. So there isn’t a whole lot of personal incentive to distort one’s efforts away from maximizing the accuracy and usefulness of one’s forecast.

    When the information/feedback environment is not as conducive to evaluating agent success or failure, and/or when the people paying the bills (or giving status) rewards care about things other than accurate and useful predictions, then “skin in the game” is a bad thing for truth and usefulness, because the incentives may point in other directions.

    Traditionally, in pure science with funders who were relatively indifferent to what was concluded but wanted to see discoveries, and with practitioners who wanted to get ahead by making discoveries and getting recognized for them, Polanyi’s Republic of Science created an incentive-compatible error-correcting social process where incentives pointed toward sincere propagation of one’s beliefs and findings. Should you include a particular analysis in your paper? Include or exclude certain data? If it caused other discoverers to be more likely to read and cite you over the long term, then yes, you should. They, in turn, would read others’ work with the intent of building on it to make their own discoveries. Hence, the incentive compatibility.

    Incentives are not necessarily so lined up with sincere search for the truth in climate science, for the obvious reasons that the research is part of (and funded by) a strongly held ideological (and now materially interested) program of political regulation of the economy. Deviants are likely to be punished regardless of the merit of their research. Common sense says that there are lots of people beavering away trying to find new corrections that will make the data fit better to the preferred narrative, and almost no one combing it looking for corrections that will make the data fit the narrative more poorly. And there is no reality test for these long-term forecasts, no rapid feedback, nor any inclination to look for interim ways to test models severely. Instead, every effort is made to justify lowering test severity and to accept known flaws and systematic errors.

    So the issue is not whether or not one has “skin in the game.” It is what kind of skin and how the game is played that determines whether one has strong incentives to be correct and sincere.

  44. When the science meets the road as engineering it has to work as advertised, the safe operation of cars, also power stations, bridges, buildings and planes, etc , because people die if it doesn’t. Real world science has to be a lot more reliable than climate scientist’s careless guesses, presented as fact yet can never be proven laws by the very nature of the system being modelled, BTW, always hypotheses. There are serious consequences for stuff that doesn’t work as advertised.

    IMO there should be for irresponsible modellers who have created a academic religion worthy of the Moche Indians, that sacrifice lives and treasure in avoidable energy poverty claimed to change the weather, causing Billions to be wasted on sacrifices that must in fact make the claimed cause worse, to satisfy their beliefs in guesses they cannot prove and are mostly just wrong in fact, because their models are demonstrably flawed.

    Something mustn’t be done on these unprovable guesses presented as facts, especially when the political “cure” clearly makes things worse!

    This, for a physicist turned commercial engineer, is the most bizarre part of “climate change action”. Much of the renewable subsidy industry justified in the name of these flawed models causes net grid emissions of CO2 to be much worse for much longer than simply replacing coal with clean low carbon gas and long term inevitable base load zero carbon nuclear on the grid, unsubsidised – but that’s only a generation engineering fact from the laws of physics. Something any high school physoics student can quickly validate with energy data and the laws of physics. No need to deny climate science to understand the fraud enacted in its name, just be fan or Arithmatic.

    Legislators have voted in their own subsidy laws for their lobbyists, that deny the laws of physics to waste Billions pa on what can’t work as advertised. Government at work. Why?

    As with other such eco scams/malfeasance, doing the best thing ina etablished industry often isn’t profitable enough for lobbyists, so laws are passed to exploit an issue du jour, to increase profitability by law. Usually these overpriced snake oil cures are worse than ineffective, they are in fact to the detriment of the environment/climate/health that politicians and officials claim will be improved. Predictably, regressive climate change subsidies in fact impoverish bill payers and the economy overall to make CO2 emissions avoidably wose and damage vast areas of “the environment”, versus better existing solutions to the claimed problem, that are now made artificially less profitable by law.

    The ONLY people who profit are the priestly climate change academics, who cannot prove their beliefs, yet accuse those who challenge them with hard science as being heretics/science deniers/paid by commercial competitors, anything to distract from answering the challenge on the facts, plus the doomsaying industry, and the REAL big fraudulent $$$ go to the renewables lobbyists, with some grateful legalised sharing with officials and politicians in the subsidy trough. Note that they argue the ultimately unprovable or provable climate science, to distract from the renewable energy emissions fraud – on every factual measure of generation, at least. The rest of us pay for this wholly regressive energy fraud on the engineering facts, justified on dodgy unproven climate science, presented as fact by politicians who must know the climate models are both inherently unreliable by their design, and can never be proven by established scientific method.

    When nothing else makes sense – follow the money. A return to a political preference for what works on the engineering delivery and provable science facts, with real consequences for those promoting and enforcing what does not, is required. Organised crime should be punished, whether state or private sector extortion, as in this case. IMO.

    • +100

      • I’ll raise that +200

        What a pity this sort of comment goes right over the heads of most Alarmists.

    • > Real world science has to be a lot more reliable than climate scientist’s careless guesses, presented as fact yet can never be proven laws by the very nature of the system being modelled, BTW, always hypotheses. There are serious consequences for stuff that doesn’t work as advertised. […] Something mustn’t be done on these unprovable guesses presented as facts, especially when the political “cure” clearly makes things worse!

      Climate catastrophe is totally provable, brianrlcatt. You just have to let it happen. Hard empirical data are always the best sort, yes?

      And speaking of handwaving, I’m looking forward to your proof that decarbonizing the economy cannot be done without bankrupting the world.

      > When nothing else makes sense – follow the money.

      So energy consumption accounts for about 10% of the world’s GDP, and about 75% of that is fossil fuel based.

      • “Climate catastrophe is totally provable”

        Maybe in the world of modeling, where model output is considered proof.

      • “Climate catastrophe is totally provable”

        Utter, absolute, 100%, 180 degree proof, 24 carat bull manure.

        And that’s the charitable description.

        Honestly Gates, do you never get tired of having to sleep on a rubber sheet?

        Do you stand on street corners with a sandwich board bawling about the end of the World being nigh?

        Have you considered professional psychiatric assistance?

      • The way to decarbonise supply fastest for most grids is gas replacing coal and nuclear replacing both, no subsidies or renewables required. Costs for nuclear are around todays , up to $100 /NWh LCOE. Fuel sustainable at the levels required to support 11 Billion stable population, on Uranium alone. There is also Thorium salt fissionof course, maybe fusion.. Renewabes do almost nothing, to reduce CO2 emissions, as Germany is avoidable and expesnively proving , as the arithmetic was always obvious. Renewables are also wholly inadequate to replace fossil as base load and for transport and heating, horrbly resource intensive and hence expensive for what they do deliver. There is a paper for the UK House of Lords accepted as evidence here which quantifies this at the macro level BUT only has science facts, I’m afraid, so there is no science to debate in it.: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/1976309/THE%20ECONOMIC%20IMPACT%20OF%20SCIENCE%20DENIAL%20IN%20ENERGY%20POLICY.doc.pdf

  45. This is OT, so I won’t post content, but it’s too good to miss :) It has to do with Russian Hacking, Etc.

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-01-10/4chan-claims-have-fabricated-anti-trump-report-hoax

  46. Dr. Curry, I believe, iirc, you’ve highlighted Dr. Ioannidis in the past for his work in meta-research. Here he is again with other researchers with a paper published yesterday. This looks pretty great and relevant, obviously, to even climate science.

    Cheers…

    A manifesto for reproducible science

    http://www.nature.com/articles/s41562-016-0021

    • thx! I’ve just tweeted this

    • This is good:

      –snip–

      The combination of apophenia (the tendency to see patterns in random data), confirmation bias (the tendency to focus on evidence that is in line with our expectations or favoured explanation) and hindsight bias (the tendency to see an event as having been predictable only after it has occurred) can easily lead us to false conclusions,

      –snip–

      Haven’t heard the term apophenia before. What a great word, and so descriptive for the comments sections of climate blogs.

      In other words, apophenia is apropos.

  47. Restore Academic “skin in the game” by funding on prediction accuracy
    curryja
    Proposal: Make grant funds were contingent on model forecast/hindcast accuracy. e.g., take HALF the date to tune the model, then see how well it forecasts/hindcasts on the other half of the data.
    Progressively concentrate funding to improve the best models by discarding the worst models.

    • This is a strategy used in ai programs to judge results, and what happens is you can get stuck in a local minimum, but not the true minimum, and it doesn’t have the energy to jump out of the local min. And I could see the same sort of thing happening with funding.
      We want them to alter behavior, but we might not want to shut them down, we might have just the right person there who can see then need for the jump.
      Now it would force a turn over of all of the people, etc, creative destruction, maybe they need to fail 3 times before they get the budget ax.

      • David L. Hagen

        micro6500 Excellent focus on both local and global optimums. So tune funding to both improve near term predictive accuracy AND fund studying nature and its variability to improve long term understanding and accuracy. Use stochastic models that include climate persistence (stochastic Hurst Kolmogorov dynamics) to improve understanding and predictability.

      • At the annual sales meeting(decade or two ago) discussing year end performance, noted that this years focus on maintenence renewals, was very successful, in fact too focused as product sales dropped, alot. The wisdom is be careful what you compensate for, as smart people will optimize their performance to take as much advantage as the rules allow, but it not just not be what the rule markers envisioned would happen. Climate itself is a lot like this.

    • This extends the paper above: Munafò et al A manifesto for reproducible science” Nature Human Behaviour 1, Article number: 0021 (2017) doi:10.1038/s41562-016-0021.
      That is strategically important to science and policy.

      “Here we argue for the adoption of measures to optimize key elements of the scientific process: methods, reporting and dissemination, reproducibility, evaluation and incentives. . . .one analysis estimates that 85% of biomedical research efforts are wasted, while 90% of respondents to a recent survey in Nature agreed that there is a ‘reproducibility crisis’” . . .”The key to fostering a robust metascience that evaluates and improves practices is that the stakeholders of science must not embrace the status quo, but instead pursue self-examination continuously for improvement and self-correction of the scientific process itself.
      As Richard Feynman said, “The first principle is that you must not fool yourself – and you are the easiest person to fool.””

  48. I have found that the worst forecast outcome is a forecast issued with a high level of confidence that turns out to be wrong; a close second is missing the possibility of an extreme event.

    I am in the data game. And If done poorly, the adverse outcomes are extensive.
    And these are the two issues I drive into every customer when they want to start programmatically “fixing” their data.
    When you have a million pieces of data that people type in, there’s history, there is everything you can’t imagine. No one’s(well slight exaggeration) data is what they originally think it is. When you change it you lose what it was, and why it changed is lost to history. Plus they think they fixed it, over confidence sets in, unjustified confidence.
    Then, as the users depend on the data, if it’s wrong and they don’t detect the error, again the impacts are significant. If it’s not maintained, it decays, the more it decays the less trust the users have, or the worse the errors get created because of it.

    Beyond applying to the many adjustments, all justified by the adjuster, some are even reasonable, but assumptions and data do not mix well. But infilling over nonlinear (in many dimensions) fields, and then somehow reducing the measurement error is, well insane.

  49. JC reflections:
    ”I said in my post JC in transition that I thought that the private sector is a more ‘honest’ place for a scientist than academia. In this context, in the private sector you have skin in the game with regards to weather forecasts (and shorter term climate forecasts), whereas in academia scientists have no skin in the game in terms of the climate change projections.”

    Why ”the private sector is a more ‘honest’ place for a scientist than academia”?

    Anyhow, anyone can learn by doing. I see no difference between shorter and longer projections. In any multiscientific problem – like climate change – working solution demanded may depend for instance on researcher’s openmindness, interdisciplinary background and/or practical experience to solve problems. These all seem to be possible in private sectors. But in instutional organisations – like academia, media, political and ideological organisations etc – there seems to be less place for real ‘honest’ science. For instance even UN politicians seem blindly to believe, without any evidence in reality, that the recent climate warming has been caused by recent CO2 emissions from fossile fuels. They have set up IPCC in order to find scientific evidence for the recent climate warming belived to be anthropogenic. Even in the Rio conference 1992 any final evidence for that remained be lacking. Even nowadays there is available no evidence in reality concerning the climate model results adopted by IPCC, on the basis of which the recent warming has been questionably tried to prove to be caused by antropogenic CO2 emissions.

    Judith Curry; https://judithcurry.com/2016/12/21/the-tragedy-of-the-horizon : ”A transition away from fossil fuels by the end of the 21st century is not unlikely, independently of a climate change driver. The key issue is whether and how fast climate change should drive the transition away from fossil fuels.”

    As I am aware, the alternatives under consideration are: a) either to cut anthropogenic CO2 emissions rapidly according to the Paris agreement in order to ‘transit away from fossile fuels’, or b) to replace fossile fuels – in accordance with Eija-Riitta Korhola – by developing methods to replace energy from fossile fuels still available by using other energy sources available when that is profitable, or when fossile fuels are finishing. In the case a) we have already experienced – by cutting CO2 emissions according to the Kyoto protocol – that the solution is not working, whereas it will be only disastrous without any benefits strived for. Instead in the case b) the replacement of of fossile fuels without quick cutting anthropogenic CO2 emissions takes more time, but at the same time it helps to make working solutions be possible, i. e. ”we can set ourselves on the path of an energy future with energy that abundant, clean and friendly to the environment, secure, and economical.”/Judith Curry.

    Why the Paris agreement does not work?

    The Paris agreement is not based on any evidence in reality. There the influence of model-based anthropogenic CO2 emissions on climate warming is overestimated and deeply uncertain. For instance, as far as I am aware, Svante Arrhenius has not regarded climate sensitivity – i. e. any doubling of CO2 content in atmosphere – as any threatening climate warming. Judith Curry et al. have halved the climate sensitivity adopted by IPCC by using observed temperatures instead of climate model results. Scafetta and Lindzen have claimed that climate sensitivity is less than 1C or 0.5C. According to Wojick, Arrak and Cripwell it can not be distinguished from zero.

    From my point of view the climate sensitivity really is so low that it can not be distinguished from zero; https://judithcurry.com/2011/08/04/carbon-cycle-questions/#comment-198992 :”As far as I am aware the CO2 content in the atmosphere is controlled together by both all CO2 emissions from sources to atmosphere and by all CO2 absorptions from atmosphere to sinks. After any change of CO2 emissions from sources or of CO2 absorptions to sinks makes the atmospheric CO2 content strive for a new level in order to reach a new dynamic balance between the CO2 emissions and the absorptions. As to the influence of human CO2 emissions on the atmospheric CO2 content it is determined by the proportion of the human CO2 emissions to the total CO2 emissions. Nowadays when the yearly total CO2 emissions are little over 200 GtC (CO2 as carbon) and the yearly human CO2 emissions are about 8 GtC, the influence of the human CO2 emissions on the CO2 content in atmosphere is approaching 4 % at the most.” In addition, during the last 100 million years trends of atmospheric CO2 content have followed trends of climate temperature and not vice versa. That is valid on the recent trend of increasing CO2 content in atmosphere, too, as I have proved in my comment above.

    Also David Wojick says: ”I think the uncertainties are so great that a ban on using SCC is in order. We do not even know that significant AGW exists, so it’s impact clearly cannot be quantified.”; https://judithcurry.com/2016/12/30/discussion-thread-social-cost-of-carbon/#comment-832494 ; and ”CO2 level does not determine temperature”; https://judithcurry.com/2016/12/29/internal-climate-sensitivity-estimates/#comment-832339 .

    As you see, climate change, i. e. Climate warming, is not any reason for cutting anthropogenic CO2 emissions: anthropogenic CO2 emissions do not control increase of CO2 content in atmosphere, increase of CO2 content in atmosphere does not control climate temperature, and it is ‘clean and frendly to environment’.

    Judith Curry, you are right, as you focus on weather events and natural climate changes instead of minimal climate warming caused by anthropogenic CO2 emissions. However, the key question is, how you can make even politicians as decision makers believe that they are wrong.

  50. Hi Judy. Congrats on all that you’ve accomplished – and are yet to pull off in the future. Curious if your bio/list of publications will remain up at your home page at GaTech?

    On a number of occasions in the midst of conversations/debates on AGW/ACC (got to keep the “A” in the conversation), someone (sometimes including journalists) will say that the so-called skeptics/deniers are not real climate scientists, etc., I’ll simply email them your link and ask that they actually spend a few minutes reading it over. Those that do (including at least one journalist who then contacted you) seem to have a ‘coming to moment.’ On occasion, a few rather immediately re-learn the art of civil discussion.

    Thanks again,

    Gary

  51. Prediction really isn’t science, I guess.
    I mean it can’t be verified until verification is already useless.

    • True. However, collecting the data to show whether GHG emissions are likely to provide net benefits or net damages to the global economy and therefore to human well being is science. But it’s not being done. There is no valid justification for the assumptions and assertions that GHG emissions are doing or will do more harm than good.

      • Yes, the economy is also an important factor that the planet hugging zealots ignore.
        Science is a strange thing…so many degrees of freedom, so few data points.

  52.          YOU ARE THE SPENDER [of research money]
    
                              On Whom Spent
                       ------------------------
     Whose Money      |    You     Someone Else
    -------------------------------------------
       Yours          |     I         II
    -------------------------------------------
       Someone Else's |     III       IV
    -------------------------------------------
    

    Milton and Rose Friedman identified those four categories of spending and their relative influence on corruption.

    Type I & II spending are the least corrupting – e.g. CFAN

    Type III & IV spending are most corrupting (of both beneficiaries and spenders) – e.g. government grant climate science.

  53. An example of no skin in the game: Today’s Wall Street Journal brings us under a headline “Dossier on Trump, Russia Focus on Probe” these pearls:

    The unverified allegations – including a claim Russia has material that could be used to blackmail Mr. Trump – were deemed sufficiently significant by senior intelligence officials … They said sharing of such unverified information was taken out of an abundance of caution …

    It used to be the duty of senior intelligence officials to sift through available information and to separate the grain from the chaff. It would be too much to ask them to perform their duty – with associated risks. They might be wrong. That’s what separates good officials from bad officials.

    Today they exude an abundance of caution. Drain the swamp, indeed.

    • It is always qualified as unverified or alleged when it is mentioned in the media, and only Buzzfeed released any detail. However, Trump still refuses to answer if any of his people had any contact with the Kremlin during the election campaign. You can see why that doesn’t look good or can at least lead to a misunderstanding.

      • Curious George

        I agree. But that is not the point. The point is that we need intelligence services behaving responsibly. These guys get paid for spreading unverified rumors.

      • They took it seriously because it is a source that they have used in the past. They are still investigating.

      • This whole incident is a mushroom cloud of BS created by Dimowits and/or never-trumpers. Note who gave the report to the FBI – Lame McCain.

        This is nothing more than a political circus.

      • When Trump is so cosy with Putin, people will look for reasons unless he tells them why he is. It is irrational behavior for a President to forgive or ignore everything Putin does. This is just the latest suspected reason. Perhaps his taxes will give us other reasons. The press and pundits just don’t understand his thinking, and where there is a black hole of information, they look to fill it.

      • Jimd, neither you nor anyone else knows how Trump will handle Putin. Right now, he isn’t the President. He is just forced to deal with the Three Ring Circus produced by Dimowits, Lame McCain, and Soros’ NGOs.

        Speaking of Soros, there’s this:

        Billionaire investor George Soros has confirmed he wants to bring down Europe’s borders, following the accusation made last week by Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban.
        Last week, Mr Orban accused Mr Soros – who was born in Hungary – of deliberately encouraging the migrant crisis.

        “This invasion is driven, on the one hand, by people smugglers, and on the other by those (human rights) activists who support everything that weakens the nation-state,” Mr Orban said.

        http://www.breitbart.com/london/2015/11/02/soros-admits-involvement-in-migrant-crisis-national-borders-are-the-obstacle/

      • Trump doesn’t have a bad thing to say about Putin, but he does attack people like McCain who do, so this is a sign of where his preferences lie. Tillerson also didn’t admit to knowing anything negative about Putin when being grilled by Rubio on it. Regarding Putin’s history, it is McCain and Rubio who have the normal American view, while Trump and Tillerson only look suspect in that regard.

      • McCain should be ashamed of himself. He needs to retire and put him out of our misery.

      • See, you would have said McCain is a hero before the Trump era, but now Trump can’t be wrong on anything he says in your book. He’s got you hook, line and sinker, like many other poor dudes who hang on his every tweet. That’s how demagogues work.

      • I didn’t say McCain wasn’t a hero. He’s just done. It’s time to go home.

      • ..and you only say that because Trump does. This is the point. He’s not done. He is being more rational than Trump on this issue, but you just don’t see that side at all. Is there anything Trump says that you disagree with? I suggest no. Authoritarianism is the need for someone to tell you what to think, and he feeds that need.

      • I take the angst as a sign Trump won a spot in your mind – rent free.

      • JimD. I take pleasure to see you writhe and contort – the truth, Trump, McCain … yourself …

      • Seeing his supporter(s) defend all of Trump’s rantings is entertaining, if nothing else. His popularity was bad at the election and is now dwindling. Many ethical questions there, and these just grow in number with time. When he talks, he makes them worse.

      • “JimD. I take pleasure to see you writhe and contort – the truth, Trump, McCain … yourself …”

        Looks like his Trump Derangement Syndrome is giving him gyp.

        Perhaps he needs to retire to a safe space, cuddle a puppy and play with some crayons.

        There’s always counselling, of course…

      • Here’s a place where JimD can feel comfortable. It’s a meeting put together by Slate and Univision to discuss how to cover Trump. A first! I’m thinking they will never be able to twist the facts as long as Trump has Twitter!

        http://thehill.com/media/314133-journalists-join-together-for-panel-on-how-to-cover-trump

      • jim2:
        “JimD. I take pleasure to see you writhe and contort – the truth, Trump, McCain … yourself …”

        Reading and hearing of trump’s nasty vindictiveness – I would suggest you are following his lead with this statement.
        And, unless done tongue in cheek, is entirely uncalled for.

        Look up Selina Scott’s account of her dealings with Trump for just one example.

        His ego was obviously massively bruised by Scott.

      • With Bob Woodward saying crap like it should never have been released in the first place.

        But I guess you don’t see any difference Jim D between releasing something with a qualifier (in other words a CYA move) and recognizing it as something that should never have been released in the first place.

  54. Hey, I just stumbled upon a six-minute sermon on this topic from “Praeger University” (Dennis Praeger + guests talking online); it cites the cases of the James Hill’s Great Northern railway versus the govt-funded Union Pacific, and the Wright brothers versus the government-funded Prof. Langley (sp?) of the Smithsonian. (However, there are counterpoints to these cases, as commenters point out.)

  55. Academics are often judged based on the style and beauty of their argument, including how it fits with current fashion. Thus Paul Ehrlich made wild claims (1970 Earth Day) about overpopulation, coming starvation, mass extinctions, and the epidemic of people wearing socks with sandals, and even though proven wrong conclusively, he is still the cat’s meow.

  56. There is a tendency to feel that it is “not fair” for some to be rewarded more than others. Thus resistance to allowing people to be fired (civil service). In academia, you may get rewarded for bringing in grants, but there is still resistance to “judging” some to be better than others, and thus resistance to skin in the game.

  57. So, how much skin should Hansen ante up?

    Since 1988, the year of his testimony,
    the temperature trend of NOAA Land/Ocean is indeed up (1.7C/century)
    but well short of Scenario B ( 2.9C/century ).

  58. In an email to me from the late Bob Carter a few years ago, he commented that engineers like me were highly represented in the skeptical community.
    Some of us non-academic types work in industries where a mistake can get people killed, and we tend to be rather careful about making assumptions or taking a guess at stuff. It seems to me, that many academics do not even ‘test for sensibility’ in their much vaunted modelling, either in the data they put in, or the stuff that comes out.

    Industrial engineering is a coalface science that sure does fit Judith’s ‘skin in the game’ characterization. Bob was among notable geologists also at the coalface.

    Thank you Judith, you’ve made my day.

    Bob Fernley-Jones

    • Bob,

      Excellent comment. I agree 100%. Unfortunately, the gullible take more notice of scaremongering dangerous-climate-change advocates alarmists and advocates for irrational policies than they do of experienced practicing engineers. I strongly endorse this:

      Bob [Carter] was among notable geologists also at the coalface.

      He was very rational and pragmatic and constantly “tested for sensibility”

  59. As one of the many engineers in the ‘skeptical community’ I have been researching climate change for about a decade. My findings include compelling evidence CO2 has no significant effect on climate. Also sunspot number anomaly time-integral plus net of the effect of all ocean cycles plus effect of water vapor increase provides a 98% match to temperature anomaly measurements 1895-2015. Analysis and graphs are at http://globalclimatedrivers2.blogspot.com

    • I’ve been at it for 25 years. My involvement has been policy advice and economically rational policy analysis. Throughout that time there has been no persuasive evidence that the policy fads advocated at various times (Kyoto Protocol, Carbon Pricing, carbon taxes, ETS, Paris Agreement) would deliver net benefits to our country or to the world.

  60. Some benefits of AGW:

    1. Dowling, 2013. The Impact of Climate Change on the European Energy System.:

    Main results and findings

    Under the Reference scenario, overall EU energy demand is estimated to fall by 13% compared to the control period, though it would increase by 8% in Southern Europe due to increased demand for cooling. Results for the 2°C scenario are similar, with overall demand decreasing by 7%, with a 1% increase in Southern Europe.

    https://ec.europa.eu/jrc/en/peseta/demand-energy

    2. Parkinson and Djilali, 2015. ‘Robust response to hydro-climatic change in electricity generation planning
    https://www.researchgate.net/publication/274387678_Robust_response_to_hydro-climatic_change_in_electricity_generation_planning

    An electricity generation planning framework incorporating adaptation to hydro-climatic change is presented. The planning framework internalizes risks and opportunities associated with alternative hydro-climate scenarios to identify a long-term system configuration robust to uncertainty. The implications of a robust response to hydro-climatic change are demonstrated for the electricity system in British Columbia (BC), Canada. Adaptation strategy is crucial in this region, mainly due to the large contribution of hydropower resources to regional electricity supply. Analysis of results from basin-scale hydrologic models driven with downscaled global climate data suggest that shifts in regional streamflow characteristics by the year 2050 are likely to increase BC’s annual hydropower potential by more than 10 %. These effects combined with an estimated decrease in electricity demand by 2 % due to warmer temperatures, could provide an additional 11 TWh of annual energy. Uncertainties in these projected climate impacts indicate technology configurations offering significant long-term operational flexibility will be needed to ensure system reliability. Results from the regional long-term electricity generation model incorporating adaptive capacity show the significant shifts required in the non-hydro capacity mix to ensure system robustness cause an increase in cumulative operating costs of between 1 and 7 %. Analysis of technology configurations involving high-penetrations of wind generation highlights interactions between flexibility requirements occurring over multiple temporal scales.

    • > Dowling, 2013. The Impact of Climate Change on the European Energy System.

      There is a word missing at the end of that line.

      Say it.

      • How on Earth would I know what’s in your crazy mind, with your crazy alarmist agenda, Willard. If you want to say something, make your point. Don’t play stupid games.

        Here’s, the link to the paper if you can’t be bothered to google it. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421513004485

      • “Manuscript”.

      • Not part of the title dummy (which is what I copied, obviously. And what is your point you are trying to make?

      • > Not part of the title dummy (which is what I copied, obviously.

        Tar Baby actually copied everything from this line, except the bold:

        References

        Dowling, 2013. The Impact of Climate Change on the European Energy System.Manuscript.

        https://ec.europa.eu/jrc/en/peseta/demand-energy

        ***

        > what is your point you are trying to make?

        That the PESETA authors consulted the manuscript of that paper, not its published version.

        That Tar Baby failed to mention that it was a manuscript.

        That Tar Baby may not have read the paper when citing a secondary, outdated source.

      • The money quote:

        Whilst the differences between scenarios may appear small in
        Table 7, they represent significant changes in EU import bills over
        the projection period. By as early as 2030 the EU sees a decreased
        annual energy import bill of between 11 and 14 billion USD
        depending on the climate run analysed. The cumulative reduced
        imports of fossil fuels in the METO-A1B scenario compared to the
        same scenario with no climate change impacts (noC-A1B) from
        2010 to 2050 equate to 750 billion USD, both DMI-A1B and KNMI-
        A1B are over 500 billion USD and in the MPI-E1 scenario the EU
        imports over 300 billion USD less than the no climate change E1
        scenario.
        This puts the climate impacts in clearer economic terms.

        This modulz paper may not provide the best argument against mitigation.

      • The argument against mitigation is that there is not valid justification for it.

      • > The argument against mitigation is that there is not valid justification for it.

        A 10% increase in hydro efficiency is a good thing, but saving more than 10 billions per year is not a good reason to mitigate.

        Fascinating.

      • They could save a bundle if they stopped burning US-produced wood chips and simply burned coal.

      • Willard: “There is a word missing at the end of that line.

        Say it.”

        SQUIRREL?

      • > They could save a bundle […]

        Them being Eur27, something that “Some benefits of AGW” fails to clarify.

        This matters because of caveats mentioned in conclusion, like this one:

        It should be noted that while Europe sees lower energy demand due to climate change impacts, other analyses (Mima et al. (2011) for example) have shown that regions outside of the EU27 that have a larger cooling demand than heating demand (e.g many developing countries) are likely to experience an increase in total energy demand as a result of climate change, in contrast with the decrease seen in the EU27.

        Aussies and Southern Euros ought to know that temp increases won’t save them money. As for Brits, perhaps one day they’ll learn to isolate for real, not just symbolically.

      • Willrd,

        Aussies and Southern Euros ought to know that temp increases won’t save them money. As for Brits, perhaps one day they’ll learn to isolate for real, not just symbolically.

        A statement of your religious belief. Like the rest of the Alarmists, you have no valid, relevant facts. You have no arguments. so you resort to unsupported assertions and innuendo. the more you, Mosher, Jim D and the other Regressives do this, the more you convince me there is no valid justification for the alarmists’ beliefs that GHG emissions will do more harm than good.

        Until someone can find and convincingly demonstrate a serious flaw in this: https://anglejournal.com/article/2015-11-why-carbon-pricing-will-not-succeed/

        And in my 12 comments at the top of this thread https://judithcurry.com/2016/11/25/week-in-review-science-and-policy-edition-3/#comment-826494, I’d suggest you should tuck your tail between your legs and go hide under a log.

      • > you have no valid, relevant facts

        I already mentioned a few. Here’s another one from the paper, with two implications:

        The POLES model has analysed a ‘steady-state’ future. Shortterm, extreme events, such as heat waves, cannot be captured in POLES. Climate science shows we can expect more of these shortterm, extreme events in the future as the climate continues to
        change. These short lived but extreme events may present a larger ‘shock’ to the energy system than the steady state changes as shown in this paper, such as power outages during the 2003 European heat wave. The results presented in this paper could be considered a lower bound of impacts on the EU energy system, with a potentially large upside

        As for our Aussie losing his cool, this may be explained by the following semi-random cite:

        The energy demand of 5 star houses is projected to vary significantly in the range of -30% to 100% by 2050 and -50% to 350% by 2100 for A1B, A1FI and 550ppm stabilisation emission scenarios, depending on the regional climates. It was also found that the climate change impacts depend on the energy efficiency of houses. Although more efficient or higher energy star rating houses may experience less absolute changes in energy requirement due to changing climate, they appear to have greater percentage changes in H/C energy demand, especially in regions with a H/C balanced temperate climate such as in Sydney where the increase is projected to be up to 120% and 530% for high star rating houses when the global temperature increases 2°C and 5°C respectively, potentially posing significant pressures on the capacity of local energy supply

        530%.

        Just a flesh wound.

        Nothing to worry about.

      • As I have said before, if one set of people get the benefits of increasing CO2 and another set get the costs, it makes absolutely no sense to say these offset each other in the SCC unless you have a way to transfer money from the gainers to the losers. No, rather you take the cost side into account, and equally tax everyone using CO2 to pay for it, not just the gainers. This is a practical matter.

      • Willard,

        A 10% increase in hydro efficiency is a good thing, but saving more than 10 billions per year is not a good reason to mitigate.

        You haven’t provided valid justification for your “10 billions per year”. That is the Achilles Heel in the CAGW Alarmists’ belief. You can’t justify that assertion.

      • > You haven’t provided valid justification for your “10 billions per year”.

        I already provided the quote:

        The cumulative reduced imports of fossil fuels in the METO-A1B scenario compared to the same scenario with no climate change impacts (noC-A1B) from 2010 to 2050 equate to 750 billion USD, both DMI-A1B and KNMI- A1B are over 500 billion USD and in the MPI-E1 scenario the EU imports over 300 billion USD less than the no climate change E1 scenario.

        750 – 300 = 450. Divide that by 40 years.

      • “750 – 300 = 450. Divide that by 40 years.”

        How many SQUIRRELS is that?

      • Dodge, as I expected. You have demonstrated, clearly, you are intellectually dishonest. Typical of many of the Regressives.

      • I really love this bit:

        saving more than 10 billions per year

        Justify that assertion!! Let’s follow this through. First define what are the top three components of it and the percentage those three contribute to the saving more than 10 billions per year

        No dodging or weaving, Willard. Just focus on substantiating that assertion.

        if you avoid answering it honestly it, you will be demonstrating intellectual dishonesty.

      • > Justify that assertion!!

        Read your own god damn reference.

      • Willard,

        You’ve got nothing except your religious beliefs. You clearly haven’t a clue about any of this.

        The more of this nonsense I see from you and the other Regressives trying to defend their beliefs, the more clearly you demonstrate the foundations you’ve built your belief on are crashing down.

  61. The End of the Energiewende?

    “The prominent German economist Heiner Flassbeck has challenged fundamental assumptions of the Energiewende at his blog site makroskop.eu. According to Flassbeck, the former Director of Macroeconomics and Development at the UNCTAD in Geneva and a former State Secretary of Finance, a recent period of extremely low solar and wind power generation shows that Germany will never be able to rely on renewable energy, regardless of how much new capacity will be built.”
    http://www.theenergycollective.com/energy-post/2395990/the-end-of-the-energiewende

    The prominent German economist Heiner Flassbeck has challenged fundamental assumptions of the Energiewende at his blog site makroskop.eu. According to Flassbeck, the former Director of Macroeconomics and Development at the UNCTAD in Geneva and a former State Secretary of Finance, a recent period of extremely low solar and wind power generation shows that Germany will never be able to rely on renewable energy, regardless of how much new capacity will be built.

    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.

    We have attempted unsuccessfully to find Energiewende advocates willing to explain that inconsistency. Their silence is not easy to fathom. But maybe the events themselves have made the outcome inevitable.

    With nuclear power no longer available, a capacity of at least 50 gigawatts is required by other means, despite an enormously expanded network of wind turbines and solar systems

    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.

    • The surprise is not that this has happened.. but that nobody in power foresaw it.

      Long periods of calm and stable weather are regular features of our Northern European weather. They are not strange rare events.

      And, no matter how big the nameplate capacity, the power output of a wind turbine with no wind is reliably, predictably and definitely zero.

      Similarly the night time output of solar panels, no matter how efficient nor how many hectares are covered remains at a big fat zilch.

      This is schoolboy physics/geography. And the effects were entirely predictable.

      Those who ‘badly advised’ eager gullible credulous politicians otherwise should return to their proper trades of estate agency or 3rd hard car salesmanship.

      • Latimer Alder,

        Great to hear from you. Where have you been? Return home (CE) immediately and never leave home again. :)

        Happy new year to you, too. I really miss your comments. You offered excellent “tests for sensibility” from a great deal of relevant experience in the real world! And got your points across with humour – very persuasive.

      • Hi Peter

        Thank you for you New Year wishes which are, of course, reciprocated.

        And for your extremely flattering and undeserved remarks…

        My relative absence from these hallowed portals is easily explained. Up here in Britland, we’ve had a bit of a local difficulty with a bunch of elitist authoritarian antidemocrats residing in Brussels. And it was my honour and privilege to help in the Brexit campaign to solve this problem..both in real life and on the Interweb.

        It took a bit of work over quite a long time, but our foes are slain (at least for now) and we’re looking forward to escaping back to the Big Wide World once more.

        Along the way I discovered the power of Twitter as a way to discuss and influence far more ‘ordinary’ people than lengthy articles on blogs. So that’ll probably be my main focus in future. I’d be delighted if anyone would choose to follow me on that platform. A very different style of commentary from CE…but equally good fun.

        But I haven’t forgotten CE…nor Bishop Hill ..nor all the many chums I’ve made in Blogland (and some in real life too). I’ll be keeping a weather eye open to all of them.. and commenting when I think there’s something helpful to say.

        With kindest regards

      • Fantastic. I am really pleased you succeeded with Brexit. I have high hopes Britannia will lead the world out of disaster again – as Churchill and Maggie Thatcher did before. I hope the EU population will chuck out the Kommisars their anti-democratic processes and procedures and get a truly representative democracy. Perhaps they should just hand over to UK to rule for a decade or two until they get sorted out with a proper, well proven Westminster system of government.

        There were many good articles in Australia about Brexit. I like Greg Sheridan, senior in the Australian. Here’s one of them:

        Brexit: Britannia rules again as the bulldog bites
        Greg Sheridan
        The Weekend Australian
        25 June 2016
        http://www.theaustralian.com.au/opinion/columnists/greg-sheridan/brexit-britannia-rules-again-as-the-bulldog-bites/news-story/b1be3932f8aef5b99af6135ed290dd82

      • FWIW my guess is that the EU won’t be ‘replaced’. It’ll just fade away as fewer and fewer states take any notice of its ever more bizarre demands to control and regulate anything that it can lay its grubby hands on.

        We can see this already happening with the effective collapse of the Schengen system of ‘free movement’… I’ll guess that ‘ecomeasures’ to accord with Paris will be next..just ignored.

        It may take time to die completely, but Brexit marks a big milestone along its decline to irrelevance.

        Vive Le Brexit!

      • Latimer wrote: “It took a bit of work over quite a long time, but our foes are slain (at least for now) and we’re looking forward to escaping back to the Big Wide World once more.”

        Heh! If all else fails, turn to the Holy Hand Grenade!!

      • “their proper trades of estate agency or 3rd hard car salesmanship.”

        Or second-hand Mannipulated temperature database salesmanship, of course.

      • Just for a few facts, all science should care about, to address number of comments, here are UK renewable duty cycles.

        And YES, a week of no significant wind and high pressure across Northern europe, and longer, is normal in the UK winter, and Summer.

        http://www.gridwatch.templar.co.uk/

        One wekk’s average demand is 6.4 TWh = c.11 Billion car batteries of 600Wh (50Ah), c.£500 Billion renewed every 3 years. A wall 270 batteries high around the entire 7,700 mile UK coast line – that can keep the rising sea levels out? Roughly half that cost in Powerwalls.

        To say David MacKay was pessimist is to totally and deliberately misunderstand real physicists. David simply applied the established science, and its variation where appropriate, to the range of renewable delusions, there is nothing in what he has said or written that involves guessing unproven physics or delivers a more optimistic or pessimistic version than the facts support. If you disagree, please state the actual basis for you assertion whoever it was…..

        Either way my example is OPTIMISTIC, could be longer than a week, and the solution is always expensively pointless, as we can generate all the energy we need unsubsidised on demand with no need for storage of expensively produced renewable energy when the X3 excess capacity required (see duty cycle) is over generating. PS Generating all our electrical energy from wind turbines 8/7 to then ration it out to meet demand with batteries would also need to cover about HALF THE UK’s LAND AREA BTW.

        We don’t need no steenking renewables. There are better unsubsidised answers to decaronisation, adequacy, affordability and sustainability. Hard science facts.

      • brianrlcatt,

        Thank you. I agree with all you say in that comment. And many thanks to David Mackay who wrote that excellent, factual, unbiased book “Sustainable Energy – without the hot air”.

        An important point should be added to your comment. If not for the activism and increasing influence of the environmental and anti-nuclear protest movements since the 1960’s nuclear power could now cost about 1/10th of what it does. It could be supplying around 2/3 of global electricity by now (if the pre-1971 global deployment rate had continued). Production of petrol, diesel, jet fuel from electricity and seawater could be economic and ramping up – replacing a growing proportion of fossil oil. From 1975 to 2015, the increase in generation from nuclear power could have avoided 9.5 million deaths and 174 Gt CO2 (for those who are scared of CO2). The Regressives have a hell of a lot to answer for.
        https://judithcurry.com/2016/03/13/nuclear-power-learning-rates-policy-implications/ (deaths and CO2 avoided quoted in this comment are updated since the post linked)

      • I was assisted by David MacKay who reviewed a short study for my group on the economics of synthesising liquid fuel using nuclear power, atmospheric carbon dioxide and water vapour versus charging electric cars using the same nuclear generated electricity. Would you like to see that? You can find me on google if you need.

      • Yes Brian, I’d really like to see that. I am very interested in the economic viability of petrol, diesel, jet fuel from sea water using nuclear energy for both electricity and for producing the required hydrogen.

        Could you please post a link to where I can read your article or report?

        Have you seen this (and the source documents referred to in it):
        Unlimited synfuels from seawaterhttps://bravenewclimate.com/2013/01/16/zero-emission-synfuel-from-seawater/

        And this independent check of the Audi cost estimate of producing diesel from sea water:
        http://www.energytrendsinsider.com/2015/04/30/is-audis-carbon-neutral-diesel-a-game-changer/

        I’ve got much more on this if interested.

      • Peter

        I am crap at WordPress. Just found all these answers onan account I din’t realise I was using, not my main one on deconfused.com. Need help!

        Just found this. So here is my effort, David did check it over, I won’t claim that was peer review. I’ll happily share his input, if I can find it… what do you tjhink of this, is it clear enough. It was circulated to a number of very eminent politicians and acdemics on my closed circulation. Not sure who read it, though. I am easy to find on Google. +44 1932 772731 https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/1976309/Synthetic%20Petrol%20from%20NUclear%20Power.pdf

  62. From Michael Shellenberger:

    German emissions increased in 2016 for a second year in a row as a result of the country closing one of its nuclear plants and replacing it with coal and natural gas, a new Environmental Progress analysis finds.
    EP EXCLUSIVE: German Emissions Increase in 2016 Due to Nuclear Plant Closure http://www.environmentalprogress.org/big-news/2017/1/13/breaking-german-emissions-increase-in-2016-for-second-year-in-a-row-due-to-nuclear-closure
    German emissions likely would have declined had it not closed the nuclear plant.
    Not only did new solar and wind not make up for the lost nuclear, the percentage of time during 2016 that solar and wind produced electricity declined dramatically.
    Germany added a whopping 10 percent more wind capacity and 2.5 percent more solar capacity between 2015 and 2016 and yet generated just one percent more electricity from wind — and one percent less electricity from solar.
    The reason is because Germany had significantly less sunshine and wind in 2016 than 2015.
    As such, 2016 is a dramatic illustration of the limits of energy sources that depend on the weather. Their output varies dramatically not just hour-to-hour but also year-to-year.
    Anti-nuclear advocates have long insisted that this radical intermittency can be solved through more transmission and storage. But there’s a problem: neither more transmission lines nor more storage would have made Germany any sunnier, or windier, in 2016.

  63. Consequences of Global Warming of 1.5 °C and 2 °C for Regional Temperature and Precipitation Changes in the Contiguous United States

    http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0168697

    Here’s my guess after looking for the reason we will warm faster than the global average. We are on land. The modeled rate of warming here is faster than expected.

    They also expect more precipitation.

    • We are on land. The modeled rate of warming here is faster than expected.

      There was just more water vapor blown I land than when the oceans are all cold in the Northern Hemisphere.

  64. brandongates linked to this:

    For 16 years everything stayed below the CMIP5 ensemble mean. What is that called? You have your about 95% and you stay in the lower half for that long. Think of a PDF. Better yet, think of the PDF changing with a regime change. Rotate it 180 degrees with the a regime change so it is now its former self’s mirror image. El Nino periods would then be out there in the long tail or when PDF has flipped.

    Look at CMIP3 on the plot. In about 1998 the two CMIPs diverge. About 0.1 C is added to CMIP5. CMIP 3 provides much more reasonable and useful information.

    • Ragnaar:
      “for 16 years everything stayed below the CMIP5 ensemble mean. What is that called? ”

      It’s called natural variation.
      Which, as you should know, CANNOT be modelled as a mean of multiple model runs.
      Why would you expect that it should if you understand the methodology/science?
      That is why there is the 95% cl’s.
      That 16 years was dominated by the -ve PDO/ENSO. We’ll see what happens if the next 16 is +ve PDO/ENSO dominated.

      “Look at CMIP3 on the plot. In about 1998 the two CMIPs diverge. About 0.1 C is added to CMIP5. CMIP 3 provides much more reasonable and useful information.”
      I disagree – CMIP5 has a more focused range, and given the over-projected forcing at the time it was run, is a damned good result.

      • Lemme translate Tony’s remarks:

        ‘If only the climate worked the way the modellers expect, then the models would have given a darn good result’

        Yep.

        And if only that horse had run the way I thought it would in the 3:30 at Sandown I’d be rich.

        But it didn’t.

      • Hi Latimer!

        Nice to have you back!

      • Nobody knows how long the positive phase of the PDO will last. It could last one more month; another year; a few more years; maybe a full decade; maybe a decade or two.

        It’s now 36 months old.

        The positive phase is the unnatural state. The Eastern Pacific is naturally an area of wind-driven upwelling. That will probably be somewhat enhanced under AGW. That means the GMST will usually rest below the mean, and then the GMST will experience regime changes (positive PDO) that will take it far above the mean.

        The negative phase of the stadium wave came and went 2006 to 2012. It’s now strongly positive. Enjoy the new warming regime… could last a few more years.

        The modellers basically average NV out. You could pray they were right, but they weren’t, so things are likely going to be worse than they expected.

      • “And if only that horse had run the way I thought it would in the 3:30 at Sandown I’d be rich.

        But it didn’t.”

        Ah, but you see.
        Climate Scientists don’t “expect” theeir projections to “run the way I thought”.
        They (the climate scince community) seeking to LEARN from them.

        See – the basic difference from ideologically motivated “sceptics” and scientists.
        One seeks to understand the climate.
        The other seeks to ridicule their efforts with ignorance and continue the hunt for squirrels in the ABCD quest.

      • Here is an example of why I would decouple unproven climate science from what the data and proven science tells those who are trained to understand.
        We need to be spending money on what actually works, like this, protects the public now and our economic futures long term, not what appeals to science denying deusionals and well heeled green supremacist science deniers, that is then exploited for a fast regressive lobbyist buck, that no one will be able to show did more than cost a lot of money by law. This is a good use of money to respond to slightly rising sea levels, but mostly to occasional surges from spring tides, storm surges, etc, WEATHER. Judith’s new business, weather reality versus climate change abstraction. SUMMARY: It’s fine to seek after truth, just don’t waste our money on unproven hypotheses, and attack those who have very valid alternaive models and hypotheses. Why would a real scientist do that? (Rhetorical question BTW). https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/1976309/Thames%20Barrier

        https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4917595/

      • “They (the climate scince community) seeking to LEARN from them.”

        So that’s why they rig meetings of the US Govt. by turning the A/C off, produce dodgy Hokey Schticks using fraudulent statistical methodology and use the thoroughly unrealistic results from their pathetic $100,000,000 computer games to do their level best via their 1,000 decibel hysterical advocacy to destroy Western industries and impoverish the majority of the civilised world, presumably.

        Glad we’ve got that sorted out…

      • ‘Climate Scientists don’t “expect” theeir projections to “run the way I thought”.
        They (the climate scince community) seeking to LEARN from them’

        Sweet!

        Then perhaps they should make very very clear to all concerned that they aren’t supposed to be taken seriously as forecasts/projections or whatever you want to call them.

        Indeed they should have ‘science health warnings’ attached so absolutely nobody could ever be misled about their purpose. And if for example a climate modeller (lets call him ‘Gavin’ just for fun) were to hear that his work was being misrepresented I’m sure he’d run post haste to the nearest media outlet to denounce those who wilfully do so.

        And is that what happens? I think not.

    • Probability distribution from 2000 to 2014 for the CMIP 5 ensemble mean:

      https://probabilityandstats.files.wordpress.com/2015/10/standard-normal-lognormal-pdfs.jpg?w=584&h=333

      It is the normal bell curve distribution. What the system did was the lopsided distribution staying below the expected ensemble mean for the whole period even though the diagram could be argued to be backwards on the horizontal axis. This suggests climate regimes can have materially different probability distributions.

      Changing probability distributions might be seen with a ready to go IPWP. A month before a large El Nino onset. The warm water in the West is the hump. That hump moves East and flattens out. Monthly temperatures are now warmer and reflected by the new distribution.

      Changing probability distributions might be seen where 10 potential meters of sea level rise is. A hump of ice on Antarctica. If that hump flattens and the ice slides into the ocean, our sea level rise is now realized and reflected by the new distribution.

      • On the statistical nature of distinct cycles in global warming variables

        This may explain the frequent finding that many global warming time series, e.g., the Southern oscillation index and the Pacific decadal oscillation, show distinct cycle times (Power spectral analysis: 3–5, 7–8, 13–15, 22–24, and 29–30 years). An important implication of these findings is that processes that strengthen the impact of one ocean variable on another may cause more frequent adverse climate conditions.

      • JCH:
        As we watch the oceans go through different regimes, we may see good rain, then not good rain. If the two regimes were equally balanced 100 years ago and now, are we going down that road again? I’ll buy that as the hydrological cycle speeds up, it will shift more often. Just as during a glacial it gets lethargic because not a lot is happening. Life and warmth requires more switching to keep things from getting too hot. Trying to follow the quoted conclusion, drought will not last as many years. Here’s another thing that I would imply from what you quoted. If we see more rapid regime changes, alternating cooling and warming (more cooling than otherwise), suggests the planetary cooling system like the one in your car, is working.

        Starting in 2006 is it cycling? To my cycling suggests a plateau or threshold. As the Arctic seems to magnify change, but probably for a life supporting reason, it’s a good place to look for this speed up. However one might argue the plot shows a portion of the system shuddering which I say is a sign of impending collapse and a regime swap. Eye of the beholder I guess.

      • Looks like a section of a single period to me, given the known periodicity of climate variation, many of your lifetimes.

    • I’ll assume the CMIP5s outputs to 2 standard deviations is a bell curve. From 1998 to 2015 actual climate data stayed within 2 standard deviations of the the CMIP5s mean. It possible going forward we’ll spend the next 17 years above the mean. If that happens, I’d conclude it’s not a bell curve distribution that is more or less stationary around an ascending line. That the pdf can rapidly shift up or that it is a barbell distribution. If it truely is a barbell distribution but we don’t know when the shifts will be, we are unable to shrink the 2 standard deviations by roughly half the distribution. If we can see the shifts and each end of the barbelll is sticky, then we can make better 10 year projections beginning with a shift.

  65. Trump made his name on fakeness. Have you heard of Trump University, and various other “deals” where he lost a billion dollars of other people’s money? He lives on it, but eventually reality catches up, and it is interesting to watch that process in real time.

    • …that was a response to something that got deleted, probably for being uncivil to other posters.

      • It doesn’t matter what you say, it doesn’t matter what the never-trumpers say, it doesn’t matter what the dimowits say, it doesn’t even matter what Trump says … all that matters is what he does as President.

      • For a President, what he says and even thinks, matters a lot. There’s no way around that, and the signs so far are not good that he even has a clue how to turn his slogans into policies, regardless of making new enemies with intelligence, the press, Hollywood, China, NATO, the EU and the UN, even before he is in the White House. None of those paths look like good ones, but perhaps it is part of some master plan where he won’t be as vindictive in power as he looks like he might be. We’ll see soon.

      • News Flash, Jim D. China is already an enemy. The EU doesn’t matter so much as their constituent countries, and the sooner gone the better for us all. A major funding cut may be coming soon for the UN, good for us. NATO is still there and he will be boss of the intel agencies.

        What’s not to like? McCain doesn’t like him? He never did anyway. Hollywood doesn’t like him? Never did and never will, most of them anyway. There are some conservatives there that do like him. Whiny snowflakes don’t like him and Dimowits don’t like him.

        I predict many who currently don’t will like him at the end of the first four years. And that’s what you and your Soros, dimowit buddies are afraid of.

      • Saner heads on his cabinet are already taking back what he said about international agreements on Iran and climate change. Does he want America to give up its position on the UN Security Council? I don’t think so, but he just might do that to spite them in a backfiring sort of way. Who knows in his case. Does he want to give up on major trading partners like China and the EU with his new tariff walls? Rising prices for American consumers and slumping export sales will show ’em, right? He’s not thinking his slogans through to logical conclusions, and that is a major problem.

      • > China is already an enemy.

        Indeed:

        Most [Design Donald] ties are made in China. Some [Design Donald]suits are also made in China.

        This is why teh Donald won.

      • jim2,

        “China is an enemy.” Rather simplistic, not to mention wrong.

        China is a competitor. There is a difference. And there are more than just economic venues open to competition.

    • “but eventually reality catches up”

      So it does!

      And now, he’s just about to become the leader of the richest, most powerful nation on Earth.

      And here are you, a sad lonely troll, snivelling on a blog because you’re just a loser who never accomplished anything at all.

      • Yes, yes, Trump is your hero. Nevermind all the fake posturing in his past. What can possibly go wrong? We’ll see soon enough. I think the Trump fans are really looking forwards to the Rockettes and Mormon Tabernacle Choir, which is more their speed. I would have preferred Springsteen and U2 or just about anyone who can perform real music, but they don’t seem to think this is an appropriate venue for them. Wonder why? Perhaps the cool bands will entertain all the protesters instead.

      • “Yes, yes, Trump is your hero.”

        Wrong as usual, you really must stop putting words into other peoples’ mouths, which is tantamount to lying and possibly even could be considered slander. One day it will get you into trouble.

        Now please point to the post(s) where I ever asserted that Trump was “my hero” or withdraw that allegation.

      • OK, say what you don’t like about Trump’s plans, because that has been in short supply. You disagree whenever I do, so it makes it look like he can do no wrong in your book. I find that with Trump supporters. They just believe everything he says, and take it as some kind of gospel. Tweets from on high. This is how authoritarianism looks.

      • Jim D, the cool guy.

      • jim2, you better like the Rockettes because that’s all you’ve got on Friday. Lame, as Trump would say.

      • I don’t know Jim D. I am still confident he has accomplished at least an average number of things. For instance bringing a more liberal perspective to the this blog.

      • JIMD

        I think you are giving your age away if you think Springsteen and U2-relics of the 70’s- are cool. Perhaps Trump hopes to look forward rather than back? Mind you, I fail to see how a mini rock concert has any place at a Presidential inauguration.

        I wish someone would take away Trumps twitter account. It is the modern day equivalent of the wild west where everybody reached for their guns at the slightest provocation. Trump needs to take a few minutes to think before reacting, but presumably his advisers have told him that?

        Has anything been seen of Hillary in recent weeks?

        tonyb

      • Tony, I understand what you mean about Trump’s twitter account. But without it, the press will distort what he says and means. I think he does need some direct and fast acting channel to the people. Maybe Twitter isn’t it, but I can’t think of anything other than Twitter that is more used and public.

      • jim

        I understand what you mean about a direct channel but I am not sure that such a trivial means of communication as Twitter is suitable for a US president, let alone one who seems incapable of metaphorically keeping his gun in his holster. Perhaps he needs to set it for a 4 hour delay so he can reflect on what he is saying?

        tonyb

      • tonyb, whatever you think about rock/pop, Trump’s inauguration will appeal mostly to his own generation of seventysomethings. Yes, Springsteen and U2, still going strong and with relevant and mature things to say in today’s world. Rockettes, not so much, but more the kind of spectacle that Trump admires. Compare and contrast.

      • > Now please point to the post(s) where I ever asserted that [teh Donald] was “my hero” or withdraw that allegation.

        The claim is not that you asserted that teh Donald was your hero, Weazle.

        He simply offered that as a way to interpret your #MAGA cheerleading.

        I don’t think you can dispute that cheerleading, but go ahead.

        Please do.

        Beware your wishes.

      • I might remind Jim D that Trump isn’t yet President. In general, I like what he’s doing as President-elect. He’s appointing powerful people and has enlisted Carson and Steve Harvey to help inner cities. We’ll see what he actually does when he becomes President.

        http://donaldtrumprevolution.weebly.com/trump-countdown-clock.html

      • That’s it Jim D,

        focus on what is important – who performs at the inauguration.

        What about a Democratic congressman going on national TV and saying the new President is not legitimate? Or that he and several of his fellow Democrats plan to boycott the swearing in ceremony?

        Trump isn’t President yet and he already has liberal Democrats falling all over themselves exhibiting how childish they can behave. But you keep focused on the really deep issues, like Springsteen and U2.

      • timg56, if you are paying attention, for Trump it is all about looks and the entertainment world. That is a high priority for him in his tweetings. He will have the lamest inaugural of all time, and will not be happy about it. On Lewis, yes, Lewis is entitled to his opinion, and it is no surprise to me that Trump responded, and then more people respond to Trump’s response. The new normal.

      • Jimbo, you really don’t get Trump, do you?

        This is how it works:

        Supporters take him seriously but not literally.
        Detractors take him literally but not seriously.

        Now go away and think about that, you might actually acquire a grasp of the situation.

        But I doubt it.

      • Everyone knows he does not mean what he says, and this goes for all his campaign promises too, and some people are just about to find that out. He can fool some of the people all of the time, and that is his base.

      • I won’t even try to guess what is in your mind.

      • Why is it Jim that you are incapable of responding directly to the point?

        Your assertion that Trump is”all about the entertainment world” is nothing more than another of your unsupported, made up “facts”.

        And your comment on Congressman Lewis being entitled to his opinion is true, but irrelevant. In other words it is what you say when you don’t want to respond to the primary issue. How about telling us when the last instance of a member of Congress called a legally elected President illegitimate.

      • timg56, what difference is it that he is a congressman? Several others in congress suspect Russian interference and want to investigate it. This is how the system operates properly. A 1% shift would have given enough states to Hillary for her to win. It was so close that even small effects on public opinion mattered, so Lewis is of the opinion that the influence was worth 1%. Not very far-fetched.

  66. Reblogged this on 4timesayear's Blog.

  67. WRT skin in the game/AKA value for money and progressive science, here is a good use of money to protect OUR environment, versus “the planet”. No equivocation possible.

    Understanding the weather and mitigating what it can do to us is good and progressive, saves lives and treasure. An example of why I would decouple unproven planetary climate science from what the actual data and proven science tells those who are trained to understand has happened, in particular STOP spending money and making laws based on modellers’ guesses that produce no new laws, especially money and policy that makes CO2 emissions worse, etc.

    We need to be spending money on what actually works, protects the public now, our crops, cities and our economic futures long term, not what appeals to science denying delusionals and well heeled green supremacist science deniers coccooned in academe, that is then exploited for a fast regressive lobbyist buck by renewable fraudsters et al, that no one will ever be able to show did more than cost a lot of money by law in a busness case review.

    But practical measures ARE ipos facto a good use of money to respond to slightly rising sea levels, but in fact mostly to occasional surges from spring tides, storm surges – WEATHER.

    Judith’s new business, weather reality versus climate change abstraction.

    SUMMARY: It’s fine to seek after truth, but spend money on things we know will work and address real threatsj, don’t lose our skin fighting unwinnable battles on unproven hypotheses in the name of protecting those served from “climate change” – before you have proven anything. The attacks on those who have very valid alternative models and hypotheses tells you what this is really all about, and its not science.

    Why would a real scientist do that? (Rhetorical question BTW).

    • Plus millions!

    • Yes.

      That pretty much puts it in a nutshell, Brian.

    • If climate stayed constant, climate service companies would have no jobs because actuarial tables based on history would do for planning. The reason for the boom in climate service companies, especially in the last decade, is precisely climate change and the non-ignorable rate it is occurring. They have to try to anticipate these changes for planning even a couple of decades ahead. That background rate of change was never a consideration that was needed through most of the 20th century. You could say that they owe their business to the fact of climate change, and they could not get very far if the denied the trends.

      • “The reason for the boom in climate service companies, especially in the last decade, is precisely climate change and the non-ignorable rate it is occurring.”

        No, it is the carefully and expensively fabricated illusion that it is occurring, an illusion that is becoming increasingly threadbare as an ever-increasing proportion of the population realise that they are being taken for a very expensive ride to nowhere.

      • If climate stayed constant, climate service companies would have no jobs because actuarial tables based on history would do for planning.

        Are you kidding? Just the seasons changing will keep them working for a long long time.

      • You don’t need a climate company to predict that summer follows spring, so I don’t know what you mean. If you mean that summers and winters are changing, yes, that is the point.

      • Wow, I don’t know some might wonder when and how much rain you’ll get, if thunderstorms or tornados might be forming.
        And they aren’t changing very much, but at least I have measured it, how about you?

      • What you are describing is known as weather forecasting. I still don’t know what point you are making.

      • So Judith’s business is investing in an illusion? Tell her that.

      • And you know that IS the reason how Jim?

        Here silly old me thought that accurate weather forecasting is something that has always had value, with that value increasing as accuracy can be extended further in the future.

      • Climate forecasting is different from weather forecasting. Climate forecasting is only needed if you first acknowledge it is changing and forecastably, not randomly, changing.

      • “Climate forecasting is different from weather forecasting.”

        Yes, exactly.

        Weather forecasting is a useful science which is improving over time.

        Climate forecasting is a very expensive joke in poor taste and in its present form not much longer for this world.

      • Well, that’s Judith’s business now.

      • “Well, that’s Judith’s business now.”

        See that bit in my post that says “its present form” Jimbo?

        This is Judith’s business now – as taken from her site:

        We provide daily, weekly, and seasonal forecasts of surface weather and extreme events, including tropical cyclones, floods and drought, heat waves and cold outbreaks. Our forecasts assess the most likely future outcome as well as the uncertainty in the forecasts.

        http://www.cfanclimate.net/solutions-overview

        See anything there about the year 2100? Or even the year 2040? No? Didn’t think so.

      • Is that not what you meant by “climate forecasting”? You have to be more specific when you lash out. The reason climate services are booming is the need for information on multi-decadal trends, e.g. for insurance, food, water, energy, security, coastal, ocean, and ecosystem concerns. That’s where the money is, and you don’t get very far unless you account for the trends.

      • Scrambling for positions due to incorrect forecasts beyond the lyaponov limit.

        https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-01-14/bone-chilling-winter-from-berlin-to-davos-causes-energy-scramble

      • > See anything there about the year 2100? Or even the year 2040? No? Didn’t think so.

        Read harder, catweazle666:

        curryja | October 10, 2016 at 1:07 pm |

        we are doing detailed analyses of time slices from 2040-2050 and 2090-2100

  68. No, but after years of careful consideration that’s what you think, no amount of explanation from me will be able to explain why it isn’t weather.

  69. Some of the participants here may have heard these old saws on prediction, but I’m going out on a limb and hope most will appreciate them:
    1) If you predict, predict often
    2) Predicting is very difficult especially regarding the future
    No wander Nassim Taleb wrote a piece on “the scandal of prediction”.

  70. https://judithcurry.com/2017/01/09/skin-in-the-game/#comment-834593
    When polar sea ice has record low extents, there is more snow and cold that follows. 2016 was a record low sea ice year and the snows are falling, in Europe and North America. That is how it works, ice on land is replenished when polar sea ice has low extent. Look at the data.

  71. Forgot a famous comment by fleet Admiral William (Bull) Halsey when told by his meteorologist that longer weather predictions in the Pacific war theater were impossible; so goes the Admiral: “I know they are useless but I need them for planning purposes”

  72. Pingback: SpeedoScience | …and Then There's Physics

  73. Pingback: You Ought to Have a Look: On Fixing Science - Principia Scientific International

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