Scott Pruitt’s statement on climate change

by Judith Curry

My analysis of EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt’s recent statements on climate change, and the response to his statements.

Last week, there was a controversial interview of Scott Pruitt on CNBC. A sampling of the headlines reporting on his interview:

New Yorker:  Scott Pruitt rejects climate change reality.  A relatively thorough summary of the interview with Scott Pruitt.

Washington Post:  On climate change, Scott Pruitt causes an uproar — and contradicts the EPA’s own website.

CNBC:  Scott Pruitt’s climate denial is dangerous and out of step.

Guardian: EPA head Scott Pruitt denies that carbon dioxide causes global warming.  Subtitle:  Trump adviser shocks scientists and environmental advocates with statement that negates EPA policy and ‘overwhelmingly clear’ evidence on climate change

David Robert at Vox: Scott Pruitt denies basic climate science. But most of the outrage is missing the point. Subtitle:  It’s not about Pruitt and it’s not about facts. Excerpt: The right’s refusal to accept the authority of climate science is of a piece with its rejection of mainstream media, academia, and government, the shared institutions and norms that bind us together and contain our political disputes.

A number of scientists have responded in various venues regarding their opinion on Scott Pruitt’s statements.  Here I include the ‘official’ statement from the AGU:

AGU Responds to Statements from EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt on Climate Change.  Excerpt: The position statement of the American Geophysical Union regarding climate change leaves no doubt that increasing atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide resulting from human activity is the dominant source of climate change during the last several decades.

You may recall my concerns about the AGU policy statement on climate change [link]

What Scott Pruitt actually said

Listen to what Scott Pruitt actually said on CNBC and then compare it to the portrayal in the media.  Here is the key text:

I think that measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do and there’s tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact, so no, I would not agree that it’s a primary contributor to the global warming that we see.  But we don’t know that yet.  We need to continue the debate and continue the review and the analysis.

Can you square what Pruitt actually said with the distorted quotes and headlines about this?  I can’t.

I think that these two statements made by Pruitt are absolutely correct:

I think that measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do and there’s tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact

We need to continue the debate and continue the review and the analysis.

The other two statements give slightly conflicting messages:

I would not agree that it’s a primary contributor to the global warming that we see.  But we don’t know that yet.

The main statement of controversy is:

I would not agree that it’s a primary contributor to the global warming that we see.

You can interpret this in two ways:

1.Pruitt is denying that CO2 is a primary contributor to recent global warming

OR

2.Pruitt is saying that he does not accept as a ‘fact’ that CO2 is a primary contributor because we simply don’t know.

Since his subsequent statement is “But we don’t know that yet”, #2 is obviously the correct interpretation.

I think he is saying that he is not convinced that we know with certainty that humans have caused 100% of the recent warming (which is what some climate modelers are saying, see recent tweets from Gavin Schmidt), or that humans have caused ‘more than half’ of the recent warming (which was the conclusion from the IPCC AR5.

JC reflections

If I am interpreting Pruitt’s statements correctly, I do not find anything to disagree with in what he said: we don’t know how much of recent warming can be attributed to humans. In my opinion, this is correct and is a healthy position for both the science and policy debates.

Exactly what the Trump administration intends to do regarding funding climate science, energy policy and the Paris climate agreement presumably remain as subjects of debate within the administration.  Looking at every little leak and quote out of context as a rationale for hysteria simply isn’t rational or useful.

The most interest reaction to all this is David Robert’s vox article:

The right’s refusal to accept the authority of climate science is of a piece with its rejection of mainstream media, academia, and government, the shared institutions and norms that bind us together and contain our political disputes.

The ‘problem’:  a change of administration and party after 8 years, mainstream media no longer has a lock on the media’s message (given all of the new news sources on the internet), academia’s profoundly liberal bias is being challenged, and the consensus that has been negotiated and enforced by certain elite scientists is being challenged.

Three cheers for democracy, the internet and the scientific process.

708 responses to “Scott Pruitt’s statement on climate change

  1. Three cheers for democracy, the internet and the scientific process.

    I’m with you. Well said.

    • Second that sentiment.

      • russellseitz

        The mind should develop a blind spot whenever a dangerous thought presented itself. The process should be automatic, instinctive. Crimestop, they called it in Newspeak.

        Crimestop means the faculty of stopping short, as though by instinct, at the threshold of any dangerous thought.

        It includes the power of not grasping analogies, of failing to perceive logical errors, of misunderstanding the simplest arguments if they are inimical to Ingsoc, and of being bored or repelled by any train of thought which is capable of leading in a heretical direction. Crimestop, in short, means protective stupidity.

        – George Orwell – The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism

      • A lot of otherwise intelligent people have bought into the climate scare for fear of being called a “science denier”. Fear is a powerful tool for manipulation.

    • Three cheers for democracy, the internet and the scientific process. Totally agree.

      The politicization of science, has led many democrats to argue if anyone disagrees with their favored hypotheses that CO2 accounts for most or all climate change, then we must be “anti-science” . They have tried to portray themselves as the party of science, and anyone who disagrees as anti-science

      But before we can attribute anything to CO2, we must understand the bounds of natural climate variability. Hopefully Pruitt can redirect funds that had been used to support research obsessed with catastrophic climate change in the distant future, and re-direct it to research on understanding natural oscillations. The PDO was not even named until 1996, but now there is a consensus that it is a major driver of global climate change, second to ENSO.

      • Hi Jim,
        What’s the story on having 2 large bleaching event on the GBR back to back.
        http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-03-10/great-barrier-reef-mass-bleaching-event-2017-confirmed/8342174

        Your my #1 guy for alternative facts on coral bleaching.

      • I would look at the number of scientists studying the Great Barrier Reef while coating their bodies in sunscreen containing oxybenzone, which is fatal to coral in parts per trillion quantities.

      • Hi George,
        It was just the other day I noticed a bunch of mad scientists had made a brand new hockey stick showing the growth of man made compounds introduced into the biosphere since the beginning of the industrial age. I bet oxybenzone was on their list.

        https://judithcurry.com/2017/03/04/week-in-review-science-edition-63/#comment-840636

      • Jim Steele, do you still believe that corals can instantaneously adapt to bleaching and miraculously recover? Why did 2/3 of the northern section of the Great Barrier Reef die last year? Now, it is bleaching again due to too much heat? You downplayed heat as a cause for bleaching as claimed by marine biologists and NOAA: “In contrast to researchers like Hoegh-Guldberg who emphasizes coral bleaching as a deadly product of global warming, bleaching is a visible stage in a complex set of acclimation mechanisms during which coral expel, shift and shuffle their symbionts, seeking the most beneficial partnership possible.”

        Since 2/3 of the north Great Barrier Reef died due to heat-induced bleaching last year, and the GBR is bleaching again this year, do you want to modify your claims?

        You also wrote this, “There is a perception that bleaching suddenly became more common only since the 1980s, leading some to speculate bleaching is due to rising CO2 and global warming.” Bleaching did become more common and is happening more frequently. That is why there is a perception that it is true, because it is true.

        I think you (and Judith Curry for printing and “editing” the guest essay) owe an apology for your blatant attempt to downplay the obvious damaging impacts of climate change and global warming on coral reef ecosystems. The massive bleaching and death on the Great Barrier Reef make your efforts to diminish coral bleaching as evidence of climate change seem extremely misguided and wrong.

      • Jacksmith, I am sorry, I dont know who you are. But I am delighted to know I am your favorite source of knowledge. Still I am not sure what specific facts you are now looking for

        In my essay The Coral Bleaching Debate: Is Bleaching the Legacy of a Marvelous Adaptation Mechanism or A Prelude to Extirpation? I never argued that bleaching could not happen 2 years in a row. I reported new advances in the adaptive bleaching hypothesis that many coral researchers now vouch for. Improved genetic techniques are constantly confirming the alternantive fact that different symbionts can be shuffled and shifted and provide different degrees of protection and rapid adaptation to various stresses. This contradicts the old “alternative facts” from researchers like Houegh-Guldberg who argued coral can only adapt very slowly via classical Darwinian evolution.

        In addition there is continuing research supporting the Mirobe Bleaching Hypothesis. These researchers argue, not only must the photosynthesizing symbionts be taken into consderation, but all the microbes that compose a coral ecospecies. They argue that bleaching can be induced by bacteria such as in the genus VIbrio. These bacteria can exude toxins and molecules that disrupt the mechanisms that make coral resilient. Increases in seaweeds like Lobophora spp harbor Vibrio spp and more seaweed can cause more bleaching as a means of helping the seaweeds in their battle for space against coral.

        Overfishing and other disruptions have caused an increase these seaweeds and thus tilted the balance against coral making them more susceptible to summer temperatures. I dont know the trends of these increasing seaweeds in all segments of the GBR but if these facts are something you want to pursue further, I will gladly contribute to your investagation.

      • Hi Trip, Unfortunately I do remember you because you were aggressively insulting and obsessed with only a CO2 interpretation of coral bleaching. That you now demand an apology from me as well as from Judith for simply allowing me to report an alternative explanation that is debated in the peer reviewed literature, suggests you lean towards promoting intellectual tyranny when you disagree. You appear to be against the scientific process where alternative explanations must be considered.

        Just to remind you, what I downplayed is the hype that bleaching now means coral are on the verge of extirpation by 2050 as Hoegh-Guldberg fear mongers. If you remember I provided several examples of reefs that were bleached, and “believed” dead, only to revive and thrive within 0ne to 15 years.

        https://goo.gl/7mEJ2y

        It seems reports of bleaching in the Far Northern Great Barrier Reef has you upset. And presently I do not have adequate information, nor have you provided any, to ascertain how that bleaching supports or refutes the adaptive bleaching hypothesis. Can you tell me if the same colonies, species, or reefs underwent bleaching again? Often what is observed is different colonies, species and reefs undergo bleaching, while those that bleached previously are now more resilient. Has there been any trends in seaweed cover? Can you explain why one reef was bleached but a neighboring reef was not???

        Trip do you believe coral are suddenly so fragile they will be extirpated by 2050 despite thriving during the Holocene Optimum when temperatures were much higher?

      • Trip Here is a report from the GBRMPA confirming my suspicions that different places are experience bleaching than the year before.

        “On 9 March 2017 experts from the Marine Park Authority spent six hours flying over the Reef between Townsville and Cairns, alongside researchers from the Australian Institute of Marine Science. The first aerial survey of the Reef for 2017 found severe bleaching in offshore reefs from north of Ingham to the northern extent of the survey near Cairns. This year more bleaching is being observed in this central part of the Reef, which last year escaped widespread severe bleaching.”

        So you see Trip, to simply hype “2 years of bleaching” tell us very little. The coral that are now bleaching wdid not bleach last year and there for did not adapt with new symbionts. Finally you really must wait 10 to 15 years before you can call a reef dead. Coral have proven the rumors of their demise have been greatly exaggerated. If a fire destroyed a forest, I hope you would not argue the trees would soon go extinct, would you? Trees as well as coral have similarly adapted to rapid rejuvenation after extreme disruptions.

      • Steven Mosher

        “But before we can attribute anything to CO2, we must understand the bounds of natural climate variability.”

        Since we undersztand the Bounds of natural variability, the problem is solved.

      • I do not always agree with you, but seriously, that has to be the stupidest statement you have ever made.

      • catweazle666

        “Since we undersztand the Bounds of natural variability, the problem is solved.”

        Utter rubbish.

        We know nothing of the sort, not even close.

        Ah, I forgot, you depend on your computer games for your so-called “understanding”, so I suppose in MoshWorld, that makes sense.

        But not anywhere else…

      • Jim,
        Everything you say could be true.
        But the reefs are dying. I saw it in Belize from my first trip in 1971 to my last visit in 2006. If human nature is any guide I predict you will win this argument. Maybe we can name one of the dead reefs in your honor.

      • I’m an environmental scientist and I live on the Great Barrier Reef lagoon. Still lots of amazing coral left I assure you. It is the best managed reef system in the world. The 40% by the way is mostly storms – quite a lot of crown of thorns starfish damage – and 10% bleaching.

        The 2016 bleaching was El Niño. As you can see the mortality was mostly in the onshore corals in the far north. These are vulnerable but resilient systems.

        The cause was El Niño. The Pacific transitioned to a warmer state in the early 20th century – culminating in a 1000 year high in El Niño activity in the late 20th century.

        More salt in the Law Dome ice core is La Niña. It is solar driven – I describe a mechanism that has solid scientific support below – and ENSO activity will return to the more normal La Niña state this century.

        Corals will recover in the almost pristine north – and may recover with enhanced heat tolerance. Zooxanthellae are adapted to different conditions. There are a range of corals adapted to many different conditions. They can even migrate as eggs and sperm are cast to the currents. Corals are remarkably adaptable.

        “It was previously known that corals hosting more than one type of zooxanthellae could better cope with temperature changes by favouring types of zooxanthellae that have greater thermal tolerance. However, until now it was not known if corals hosting a single type of zooxanthellae could have different levels of thermal tolerance.

        Results recently published in the prestigious scientific journal, Nature Climate Change, showed corals that only host a single type of zooxanthellae may in fact differ in their thermal tolerance. This finding is important because many species of coral are dominated by a single type of zooxanthellae.

        PhD student, Ms Emily Howells from the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies (CoECRS) at James Cook University, Townsville, together with scientists from AIMS and CoECRS, collected two populations of a single type of zooxanthellae (known as C1) from two locations on the Great Barrier Reef. The population collected from Magnetic Island near Townsville experiences average ocean temperatures 2°C higher than the population collected from the Whitsunday Islands. In experiments at AIMS, young corals were treated with one or other of the two different populations of zooxanthellae, and exposed to elevated water temperatures, as might occur during bleaching events.

        The results were striking. Corals with zooxanthellae from the warmer region coped well with higher temperatures, staying healthy and growing rapidly, whilst corals with zooxanthellae from the cooler region suffered severe bleaching (loss of the zooxanthellae) and actually reduced in size as they partly died off.” Australian Institute of Marine Science

        The more recent bleaching is as a result of the La Niña Modoki decaying in the equatorial Pacific. I noted the high ocean temperatures locally – short lived, not remarkably high and seen in the coastal areas of the southern GBR. No-one has a handle on any bleaching it caused it yet – but I doubt that it is much to sing and dance about.

        El Niño activity will fade, corals are resilient and the GBR is well managed. Don’t get me wrong – coral reefs are sacred places. But there are a lot of politics around the GBR – most of it nonsense.

      • Jack I am sure you have seen lost coral in Belize. But the loss of coral in the Caribbean has been attributed to disease, increased competition with algae promoted by overfishing and the loss the herbivorous sea urchin, and the import of the liionfish that eats herbivorous fish. The biggest bleaching event around the Florida tract reefs was due to cold.

        You can blame it all on CO2 if you wish, but that is the least parsimonious.

        Researchers find coral atolls throughout the tropics that are not perturbed by humans regards fishing and landscape changes are doing as good as they were 1000 years ago. Undisturbed atolls experiencing greater temperatures have minor bleaching that revives in a year, compared heavily fished and perturbed neighbors that have experienced severe bleaching. Rising CO2 does not explain those events.

      • > PhD student, Ms Emily Howells from the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies (CoECRS) at James Cook University, Townsville, […]

        Patchwriting again, Chief?

      • > Maybe we can name one of the dead reefs in your honor.

        Like a boss, Jack.

      • Robert I. Ellison,
        But why should we even care if they all die off? Sure it sounds scary but bottom line what put’s food on the table and petro in the ute? Resource extraction, industrial farming/ranching and financial engineering are where the money and jobs are. Speaking of money, don’t forget you owe us $17 billion for those F-35 fighters you bought from us.
        Now that we have the most pro business government in the history of civilization with the Trump/Pruitt/Tillerson dream team you will be lucky to see any environmental protection for the next 20 years. I might not like it but I’m not blind.

      • You missed the quotation marks wee willie – provided by the CRC for Excellence in coral reef science?

        I guess that’s the objection.

      • philjourdan

        To whom were you making your comment? I think I know but wanted to confirm it.

      • I should have been more specific. It was directed to Steven Mosher.

    • David Springer

      This was oral, right? Who parsed it as two sentences (which is grammatically incorrect):

      “I would not agree that it’s a primary contributor to the global warming that we see. But we don’t know that yet.”

      instead of as a single sentence which is grammatically correct

      “I would not agree that it’s a primary contributor to the global warming that we see but we don’t know that yet.”

      The first parsing allows him to be taken out of context. The second (correct) parsing makes clear that he is not agreeing because the facts are not clear.

      • You need to see/hear the actual question he was asked before judging it even parsing his answer. It turns out he wasn’t asked about global,warming or climate change. He was asked “Do you believe that it’s been proven that carbon dioxide is THE primary control knob for climate?”

      • There is absolutely nothing grammatically incorrect about the two-sentence form.

      • David Ramsay Steel:

        You never reflected my Climate Etc. response to your essay, explaining your many errors and false assumptions, at the la-blog, which you had undertaken so to do. Please can you make good on your offer. As I said at the time, repeated below, your blog is a private forum and I am not able to do this myself. Thank you. Prior comment:
        —————-
        andywest2012 | May 20, 2015 at 9:35 am |

        David Ramsay Steele | May 12, 2015 at 2:35 am

        But to get a user name and password, don’t I have to ‘join’? It says in the general info that the forum is private and joining is subject to approval. Nor even if approval is granted do I particularly want to ‘join’ (no dislike of your blog implied at all, but I don’t want to join any politically orientated forum at this time). In essence, there appears to be no true public access therefore, as there is here for instance, unless simply a WordPress or Facebook or similar ID works (there’s no indication of that). If this is not the case, can you simply reflect my reply below your article or enact one of the other fixes please? Thanks.
        —————-
        The other fixes being: correct the essay, or considering that it is a complete misfire, take it down. Comment explaining the issues here:
        https://judithcurry.com/2015/04/24/contradiction-on-emotional-bias-in-the-climate-domain/#comment-697908
        At the moment your essay still stands, with no indication that you have acknowledged issues with it.

      • David L. Hagen

        Well put Judith.
        Pruitt statement as one sentence makes sense.
        Bad News Sells.
        An example of main stream media desperate to recover paying customers – despite the facts!

      • David Springer

        David Steele – most schools teach the maxim “Never begin a sentence with ‘and’ or ‘but’. http://blog.oxforddictionaries.com/2012/01/can-i-start-a-sentence-with-a-conjunction/

        But you may choose to argue the point. And that’s okay. But it looks kind of silly. And people taught otherwise will continually wag a finger. And you may not care. And that’s okay too.

        But be that as it may we should ask whether the chosen transcriptive choice changes the meaning of the sentence. And we should also ask whether the transcription choice allows a whole sentence to be quoted that is clearly out of context given there is an immediate conjunctive connecting word at the beginning of the next sentence.

        But I don’t care. And I don’t think Pruitt cares either. Because regardless of this the EPA is getting disassembled. And it will return to its core mission of protecting the environment. But it will not continue on a pointless futile exercise to regulate the earth’s temperature. And it will not demonize fertilization of the atmosphere with CO2 which in any reasonable view is a net benefit to living things.

      • if 50% of the EPA budget is grants, and the rumors of Trumps budget calling for a 25% reduction in the EPA budget are true, things are going to get interesting there.

        Imagine the gall of the President actually planning to REDUCE the size of the executive branch workforce, you may even think he is serious about draining the swamp :-)

      • David,
        You put a lot of faith in the NASA satellites showing all this greening of the planet but can you explain why the atmospheric and ocean oxygen levels keep dropping. I thought plants were the primary source of oxygen in the biosphere? Sum Ting Wong?
        Oh one other thing. You do realize that measuring atmosphere temperatures with satellites uses a sensor that measures the reflective qualities or oxygen atoms. If there there is a steady decrease in the ratio of oxygen atoms to the levels of GHG then the satellites are biased cool. I have asked Dr. Spencer (UAH) to explain how he adjusts the satellite data for this forcing but he’s ignoring my question for some reason. Just being a good skeptic.

      • Jim Steele,
        You assert that adaptive bleaching hypothesis versus climate change induced bleaching is being debated in the peer-reviewed literature? Couple of things about that.

        1. Some are researching to see if after a bleaching event, corals can regain and switch to more heat tolerant symbionts, which might provide surviving corals with better heat tolerance.

        2. Climate change induced bleaching may be questioned by a very tiny group who are trying to undermine the consensus on climate change.

        3. There is no peer-reviewed science asserting that since corals may be able to switch symbionts then climate change induced bleaching is not a reality.

        4. No one is seriously debating in peer-reviewed literature that climate change induced bleaching is not a big deal since corals can switch symbionts and magically adapt as you assert. That is left for non-marine biologists and non-climate scientists (like you) to postulate on denier blogs.

        5. I have not seen any peer-reviewed literature that claiming that the Great Barrier Reef that experienced 90% bleaching and 67% mortality in the northern third last year was caused by anything but temperatures that were too hot.

        6. The overwhelming vast number of marine biologists agree that climate change induced warming has raised SST and when an El Nino is added to the already warmed water, then the GBR and corals reefs around the world experienced the most severe bleaching in recorded history.

        Now we have another round of hot water that is causing bleaching in back to back years on the GBR for the first time in recorded history. This time without a big El Nino to explain the bleaching. Why could the water be so hot to cause the corals to bleach again? Must just be some other random accusation you dream up beyond climate change induced bleaching?

        Forgive me if I do not accept your claim to be in favor of the scientific process where alternative explanations must be considered. Your alternative claims were intended to pretend that massive death from global coral bleaching was not necessarily a problem, and therefore no one should really worry about CO2 and climate change. The obvious explanation, which was hypothesized and has proven by factual evidence of increases in extent and frequency of bleaching events, is that: 1. Man’s activities (primarily CO2 emissions) are causing climate change and warming, and 2. corals suffer under warming, and 3. we plainly see that corals around the globe are bleaching and dying during documented hot water events. It seems relatively straight-forward to deduce that man’s activities that are causing warming are harming coral reefs? Also, it seems rather obvious that if we value coral reefs, then we would seek remedies to prevent man from causing more CO2-driven climate change?

        What is your alternate hypothesis for two back-to-back bleaching events on the GBR besides hot water? Seems to me you flail about with a number of specious claims to try and undermine the obvious need to reduce man’s emissions of fossil fuels if we are going to have any healthy coral reefs in the future. Among your assorted far-fetched climate-denial inspired claims:
        1. Corals can magically adapt to rising temps through switching symbionts. That could happen on a small scale but not for a dead coral and not as some magic solution to bleaching.
        2. Coral reefs can come back in 15 years, so no problem. Projections of more frequent and severe climate change induced warming are predicted by the overwhelming preponderance of climate and marine scientists. Corals cannot recover if they are suffering bleaching in increasing frequency (like back to back years).
        3. You attributed the main cause of decline of Caribbean coral reefs to disease, but neglected to mention that warming and bleaching exacerbate coral diseases.
        4. You admit “I downplayed is the hype that bleaching now means coral are on the verge of extirpation by 2050,” which is really your purpose here. No real science. Just trying to downplay the reality-based science and the real, justifiable fears that a very large percentage of corals will be dead and gone under current climate warming projections.
        5. Your assertion that two years of bleaching on the GBR tells us very little, is simply wishful thinking and untrue. You may wish it doesn’t tell us anything, but it clearly tells us that the water is getting too hot for important ecosystems two years in a row.
        6. Different reefs and corals and genotypes bleach at different stress levels. That does not mean that corals that bleached previously are now more resilient. Many bleached corals dies, and many are severely weakened and are susceptible to disease. And there is a changeover on the reef from reef-building corals to less structurally-complex “weedy” corals that replace the framework and reef-building corals. And there is obvious increase in algae when a reef dies – it turns into an algal reef covering dead coral.
        7. Downplaying all the obvious negative effects of bleaching exposes your real and only agenda, which is to try and find some convoluted way to pretend that reefs dying globally from heat is not a problem and not caused by humans. This clumsy attempt to downplay the damaging impact of coral bleaching was extremely unsuccessful and bordered on comical.
        8. I work in the Florida Keys in coral restoration. We had two years of bad bleaching in 2014 and 2015 due to high ocean water temperatures. This caused lots of death and disease outbreaks in the weakened coral. It is clear to all of us that hot water caused by human induced climate change is our biggest challenge. There are many challenges and stressors facing corals but year after year bleaching, which is projected to happen in the near future (and happening very frequently now) is their greatest threat. To assert otherwise just exposes your already clear and misguided agenda.

      • “So the heart of the ban on starting a sentence with ‘and’ or ‘but’ seems to lie in the fact that they are coordinating rather than subordinating conjunctions, and as such are typically used to link elements of equal status within a sentence. The argument against using ‘and’ or ‘but’ to introduce a sentence is that such a sentence expresses an incomplete thought (or ‘fragment’) and is therefore incorrect.
        However, this is a stylistic preference rather than a grammatical ‘rule’. If your teachers or your organization are inflexible about this issue, then you should respect their opinion, but ultimately, it’s just a point of view and you’re not being ungrammatical. If you want to defend your position, you can say that it’s particularly useful to start a sentence with these conjunctions if you’re aiming to create a dramatic or forceful effect. As the following examples show, the introductory conjunction gives more weight to the thought expressed in the sentence (a comma would be far less emphatic):
        It’s a pretty smart and progressive budget. But do you think those changes go far enough?
        Some people are calling this film the worst movie ever. And who are we to argue?
        Putting ‘but’ or ‘and’ at the start of a sentence is also an effective way of showing surprise:
        Dworkin’s answer is no. But why not?
        Who would have thought it? And is it really true?
        You could also refer to the fact that you’re in very good company (examples can be found in the work of writers such as Susan Sontag, Vladimir Nabokov, Kingsley Amis, P.G. Wodehouse, and Albert Einstein) and that highly respected grammar and usage guides (such as Fowler and Garner) all agree that it’s a perfectly acceptable practice.”

        We should read a little further in our own references than the first paragraph.

      • Tripp

        You say

        ‘….then the GBR and corals reefs around the world experienced the most severe bleaching in recorded history.

        Now we have another round of hot water that is causing bleaching in back to back years on the GBR for the first time in recorded history. ‘

        Can you clarify when (as regards these corals in these locations) detailed recorded history’ began? Thanks.
        tonyb

      • Jim Steele wrote, “The coral that are now bleaching wdid not bleach last year and there for did not adapt with new symbionts.” This is unsurprisingly false and another example of Jim Steele’s desperate attempt to pretend reality is not what it is. Here is link an updated 2017 survey map showing that the northern section of the GBR is 81% bleached despite your claims to the exact opposite.

        Turns out those bleached and dead corals from 2016 did not magically adapt with new symbionts as you assert. At some point, you must admit that you lose all credibility and appear a parody?

      • This is the updated map – given previously.

        https://judithcurry.com/2017/03/11/scott-pruitts-statement-on-climate-change/#comment-842014

        It is not bleaching I am questioning btw – but the degree of anthropogenic global warming.

      • David Springer

        Use of conjunctions.

        Robert Ellisson is a genius! But the people who say that are morons.

        Springer can now be quoted as saying “Robert Ellisson is a genius!”

        But that wouldn’t be a fair quote now would it? That was my point. The choice in how to transcribe Pruitt allowed him to be taken out of context. Regardless of which school of conjunctive sentence beginnings you were taught at no one will wag a finger at not beginning a sentence with a conjunctive. So there.

      • David Springer

        Use of conjunctions.

        Robert Ellisson is a genius! But the people who say that are ignorant.

        Springer can now be quoted as saying “Robert Ellisson is a genius!”

        But that wouldn’t be a fair quote now would it? That was my point. The choice in how to transcribe Pruitt allowed him to be taken out of context. Regardless of which school of conjunctive sentence beginnings you were taught at no one will wag a finger at not beginning a sentence with a conjunctive. So there.

      • David Springer

        JackSmith4TX

        Oxygen levels are thought to have been a slow decline for at least a million years. The rate is not large enough to cause any concern. No one knows why. I’d guess it has been declining for the 4 million years since the earth entered the modern ice age. Increased oxygen production due to more green plants might reasonably be negated by increased consumption of oxygen further down the food chain by plant eaters and also by increased decomposition of dead plants.

        Regardless the ratio of oxygen to GHGs has no effect on satellite temperature readings. The partial pressure of oxygen changing would have an effect but that changes so drastically with altitude the almost imperceptibly small O2 depletion in recent decades would have no significant influence. Satellite microwave sounders integrate atmospheric layers kilometers in depth with rough altitude limits. The O2 depletion would only cause an additional uncertainty measured in centimeters of any given layer’s presumed altitude. Normal changes in barometric pressure cause far more altitude uncertainty but even that is insignificant.

      • Jim Steele writes, ” If a fire destroyed a forest, I hope you would not argue the trees would soon go extinct, would you? Trees as well as coral have similarly adapted to rapid rejuvenation after extreme disruptions.”

        Well, Jim, if a fire that was caused by AGW destroyed a large percentage of the largest forest in the world, let’s say similar to Amazon tropical rainforest, with 100 year-old old growth trees that are the foundation of entire ecosystem, and then the next year another fire destroyed another large percentage of the largest forest in the world, I would not think that trees will soon go extinct, but I sure would worry about the survival of the largest forest in the world. And I would think that one of the earth’s most valued ecosystems is under tremendous threat, and I would worry about all the various organisms that live in a tropical rainforest, and the people that depend on the rainforest for their food and livelihoods.

        Also, I would worry that 100 year old trees that are the foundation of the ecosystem could not replace themselves in a short time frame. There are many corals on the Great Barrier Reef that are many decades old. They cannot replace themselves in a short time frame and the entire ecosystem and the people and organisms that depend on the Great Barrier Reef will suffer.

      • David Springer

        “We should read a little further in our own references than the first paragraph.”

        We should not read further than where the reference was given to see what point it was making.

        The given reference was to make the point that most schools did and still do teach the diktat to never start a sentence with ‘but’ or ‘and’. That point was made in the first paragraph. Nowhere did I continue to argue that it was not grammatically correct only that is was widely taught as not correct.

        We should stop being stupid thin skinned curmudgeons from down under if we want to gain the respect of our superiors.

      • > We should stop being stupid thin skinned curmudgeons from down under if we want to gain the respect of our superiors.

        But I love you the way you are, Big Dave.

        And you know that love requires respect, right?

    • Amen sister.

      • The post a i just made is not accurate. Terry Hughes reposted the chart from 2016 on twitter just now and made a mistake and thought it was the 2017 update. I apologize for the mistake.

      • With all due respect, the best scientists in the world at the IPCC, after reviewing the best science in the world, believe it is anthropogenic global warming and climate change. While the smug, bull-headed “skeptics” spout science denial and through up dust over any perceived and invented issue to pretend the obvious man-made climate change is not happening, the Great Barrier Reef is dying and CO2 continues to grow year after year. All while the oil and gas campaign to create doubt confuses people and delays action. Frankly, it is sickening.

      • This is why Jim Steele and Judith Curry tried desperately to “downplay” the obvious devastating impacts of human induced warming on coral reefs. It is an obvious, compelling symbol of what what happens as CO2 continues to increase, the earth continues to warm, and “skeptics” try to deny the obvious. More ecosystems will collapse if man does not reduce emissions. But, please tell me more about water vapor, salt, data tampering at NOAA, contrived criticism of climate models, or whatever denial trick of the week you want to dream up.

      • I regret not mentioning Jim Steele’s silly “Bleaching the Legacy of a Marvelous Adaptation Mechanism.” The fact that misleading, dishonest essay was published and celebrated here tells everything you want to know about this blog and Judith’s embrace of Scott Pruitt.

      • Tripp

        I asked this question of you yesterday and hope you can give a reply;

        You say

        ‘….then the GBR and corals reefs around the world experienced the most severe bleaching in recorded history.

        Now we have another round of hot water that is causing bleaching in back to back years on the GBR for the first time in recorded history. ‘

        Can you clarify when (as regards these corals in these locations) detailed recorded history’ began? Thanks.
        tonyb

      • Judith

        I have twice politely asked Tripp if he can clarify when (as regards these corals in these locations) detailed ‘recorded history’ began with respect to coral bleaching?

        In the absence of a reply from him (he may not have noticed or not be aware of the answer) I have asked the same question of the Caitlin Sea View survey and NOAA.

        If you or anyone else knows the answer please let let me know.

        tonyb

      • Tony B,
        I am not an historian of monitoring of on the Great Barrier Reef. However, this study from 2012 indicates that data has been formally collected since 1985.
        http://www.pnas.org/content/109/44/17995.full

        It is clear that the GBR has suffered declines before the first recorded global bleaching event in 1998. However, several recent studies, including this new study in the journal Nature finds that bleaching is now the overarching concern and local management cannot prevent destruction from extreme heat:

        “Water quality and fishing pressure had minimal effect on the unprecedented bleaching in 2016, suggesting that local protection of reefs affords little or no resistance to extreme heat. Similarly, past exposure to bleaching in 1998 and 2002 did not lessen the severity of bleaching in 2016. Consequently, immediate global action to curb future warming is essential to secure a future for coral reefs.”

        http://www.pnas.org/content/109/44/17995.full

        I note that past exposure to bleaching did not lessen severity of bleaching in 2016 in direct contravention of Jim Steele’s magical “adaptive bleaching hypothesis.”

      • Tripp

        Thank you. So ‘recorded history’ appears to be only some 30 years? Much shorter than the lives of many of those on this blog I would dare say. :)

        There were extreme heat periods in the 1930’s and 1940’s, the late 1800’s the early 1800’s and the Watkins diary from the late 1780’s demonstrate the first Australian settlers also experienced great extremes of heat.

        Don’t you think 30 years is a bit short to be making definitive statements about coral without knowing about likely precedents?

        tonyb

      • Tonyb
        Also causes could be sewage outfalls, industrial outfalls, fishing pressure, reef impacts from humans and various other sources.

        Another cause could be pjeople whose livliehood depends of damage mitigation and funding studies.

        On the other hand tourist operators and dive boat groups say GBR is doing fine. They aslo depend on a view of the reef issues.

        Best to hold ones judgement until clarity on the issues.

        30 years is not a long term trend in the ocean. Could be the WAVE

        Scott

      • Tripp

        No, my questions were asked because as a historical climatologist I wanted to know what time scales we were talking about.30 years is a blink of an eye.

        I don’t know if there have been precedents or not but it is dangerous to draw wide ranging assumptions from such a short period.

        If NOAA or anyone replies to me I will let you know in case their data goes further back

        tonyb

      • Trip says, “The post a i just made is not accurate. Terry Hughes reposted the chart from 2016 on twitter just now and made a mistake and thought it was the 2017 update. I apologize for the mistake.”

        Indeed most of what you blathered is not accurate. You should apologize to me and Judtih for promoting inaccuracies.

      • Trip, I have never argued that bleaching is not triggered by warmer temperatures, among other things. If you truly work restoring Florida reefs then you will recall the worst bleaching was due to the 2010 cold.Bleaching is also triggered by disease and contact with seaweeds.

        You keep trying to suggest some conspiracy that my intent as well as that of other scientists who support the adaptive bleaching hypothesis is driven by some nefarious desire to deny global warming. Only Trip sees the truth. Indeed as you reveal here you are obsessed with CO2 warming as the cause of all things, and therefore you can not comprehend any other explanation no matter how real and well supported.

        To deflect the fact that the loss of Caribbean reefs was not due to global warming but was due to disease, the loss of herbivores and increases in competitive seaweeds, you assume, then fervently believe and finally insultingly argue that warmer temperatures have caused more disease. But that is untested speculation. Correlation is not causation. There are however several papers showing more disease, more nutrients, and declining water quality causes more disease and thus makes coral more susceptible to bleaching from warm water.

        There are also several studies showing uninhabited atolls, free from those human disturbances, are more resilient to warming. They do not bleach at higher temperatures while neighboring atolls bleach at lower temperatures. If they bleach, there is usually rapid recovery.

        Numerous studies show that seaweeds have an allelopathic effect and harbor disease that prevent swift coral recovery and lead to a shift to more seaweeds/less coral. Many studies show that atoll inhabitants reliant on fishing lead to an increase in seaweed cover and a reduction in coral.

        In ‘Re-evaluating the health of coral reef communities: baselines and evidence for human impacts across the central Pacific’ by Smith 2016 they reported “we did find that the majority of reefs on inhabited islands were dominated by fleshy non reef-building organisms (turf algae, fleshy macroalgae and non-calcifying invertebrates). By contrast, benthic communities from uninhabited islands were more variable but in general supported more calcifiers and active reef builders (stony corals and crustose coralline algae). Our results suggest that cumulative human impacts across the central Pacific may be causing a reduction in the abundance of reef builders”

        May I also suggest you read Chronic nutrient enrichment increases prevalence and severity of coral disease and bleaching Veega-Thruber 2013 http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/gcb.12450/abstract

        Their experimental evidence found, “elevated nutrient loading increased coral bleaching; Agaricia spp. of corals exposed to nutrients suffered a 3.5-fold increase in bleaching frequency relative to control corals, providing empirical support for a hypothesized link between nutrient loading and bleaching-induced coral declines”

        From your rants here, you seem to think all these scientific reports are not valid but just a conspiracy against CO2 global wamring. But good scientists must examine the alternative hypotheses. Having done so myself, I suggest Trip if you are truly working to restore reefs around Florida, then you should focus on improving water quality. Although warm weather triggers bleaching, trends in increased bleaching and lost coral usually correlate best with decreased water quality or El NInos. And you cant control an El Nino.

      • I suggest you read my essay again: The Coral Bleaching Debate:Is Bleaching the Legacy of a Marvelous Adaptation Mechanism or A Prelude to Extirpation?

        http://landscapesandcycles.net/coral-bleaching-debate.html

        You called it “silly”, but only your misinterpretations are silly. Please quote exactly what you disagree with in that essay, and then provide evidence to support your disagreement. And a word of caution, citing some consensus amonsgt your colleagues is silly. Consensus is not evidence. Consensus is a tool of politics. Evidence is the tool of science.

      • Finally Triip, I asked you to show me if the same species, colonies or reefs bleaching in 2017 are the same as those in 2016. Instead you offered an inaccurate map of bleaching in 2016 and nothing for 2017 suggesting it was I who was desperately wrong. ROTFLMAO. It appears you were hoist by your own petard.

        Tripp please read Patterns of bleaching and recovery of Montipora
        capitata in Kane‘ohe Bay, Hawai‘i, USA, Cunning 2016. They report exactly what is outlined in the essay on adaptive bleaching: That different symbionts offer different resistance to bleaching and different abilities for recovery. They reported, “Bleaching resistance was significantly associated with the dominant symbiont clade. All bleached colonies (n = 30) were dominated by clade C symbionts, while many non-bleached colonies (n = 16) were dominated by thermotolerant clade D. However, clade C Symbiodinium dominated 14 other colonies that did not bleach, indicating that an alternate mechanism such as host genetic adaptation may play a role in thermal tolerance of these colonies. Bleached corals recovered their symbionts within 1−3 mo (excepting 1 mortality) and remained C-dominated. However, colonies recovered 3 times faster at the northern reef, which experiences similar temperature but lower irradiance and higher water flow and turnover compared to the southern reef.”

        http://www.int-res.com/abstracts/meps/v551/p131-139/

        Perhaps if you read more of the peer reviewed literature you would not engage in the venomous inaccurate attacks that you have done here

    • I fully agree. Well said.

      “The right’s refusal to accept the authority of climate science is of a piece with its rejection of mainstream media, academia, and government, the shared institutions and norms that bind us together and contain our political disputes.”

      An interesting statement – an appeal to authority and consensus, but not to factual science. The commenter is basically expecting intelligent voters and policy makers not to think for themselves but to simply parrot what the mainstream media, academia, government and left wing political bodies state as true. Voters seem to be smarter or have perhaps learned from past experience that this is a recipe for disaster. It would take far to much time and text to list the many times that a consensus of thought on one end of a political/social spectrum was ultimately found to be foolishly and dangerously wrong. For CAGW/Climate Change, I believe we are coming close to a general realization of the same once more, as all the prophesies have and continue to fail the test of reality.

      • I wish I could figure out how to edit a post here…

        This is the new study in journal Nature:
        http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v543/n7645/full/nature21707.html

      • Your repeated questions were obviously leading to that post. Just because there were not multitudes of formal data collection does not mean that the recent increases in frequency and severity of bleaching is not significant. This background explanation provides an excellent rebuttal to your using the lack of data, as some sort of proof that recent warming and bleaching could have happened in the past:

        “Mass coral moralities in coral reef ecosystems have been reported in all major reef provinces since the 1870s. The frequency and scale of bleaching disturbances has increased dramatically since the late 70’s. This is possibly due to more observers and a greater interest in reporting in recent years. More than 60 coral reef bleaching events out of 105 mass coral moralities were reported between 1979-1990, compared with only three bleaching events among 63 mass coral moralities recorded during the preceding 103 years.
        Prior to the 1980s, most mass coral moralities were related to non-thermal disturbances such as storms, aerial exposures during extreme low tides, and Acanthaster outbreaks. Coral bleaching accompanied some of the mortality events prior to the 1980s during periods of elevated sea water temperature, but these disturbances were geographically isolated and restricted to particular reefs zones. In contrast, many of the coral bleaching events observed in the 1980s occurred over large geographic regions and at all depths. ”
        You seem to be asserting that all the bleaching events before 1970 are unknown due to lack of observations.” That is partially true, but there were 63 reports of coral mortalities before 1979 and only 3 were the result of bleaching. So, there were obviously some monitoring of coral mortalities and bleaching was not prevalent.
        http://www.marinebiology.org/coralbleaching.htm

        The link above is an excellent resource that accurately describes coral bleaching. It is fair, balanced and uses clear facts.

      • This is anecdotal, but in 1987, marine biologists had never seen regional bleaching in the Caribbean.
        http://www.nytimes.com/1987/12/15/science/experts-are-puzzled-by-widespread-coral-bleaching-in-caribbean.html

        You would think that some of the experienced marine biologists had been around 20 or 30 years or more and they had never seen regional bleaching. Just more evidence.

      • in 1987, marine biologists had never seen regional bleaching in the Caribbean.

        Confirmation bias?
        A doctor friend of mine who’s no stranger to Caribbean vacations, said he was very concerned about the coral at all the places he visited ( after seeing a recent documentary ).

        The wiki page on corals indicates causes of ‘bleaching’:
        high temperatures
        low temperatures
        low oxygen
        high solar irradiance ( sunshine )
        increased sedimentation
        bacterial infections
        changes in salinity!
        herbicides
        low tide and exposure
        cyanide fishing
        mineral dust
        human sunscreen lotions!

        I told him he was killing the coral by squirting on his suntan lotion.

        With this many factors, the gravity to ‘global warming’ is very suspicious.

        We know the coral have to die fairly regularly to create all those wonderful coral beaches:

      • Jim,
        You can easily cite studies that show that corals suffer where man is polluting them, or over-fishing them, and the loss of the diadema sea urchin is a major contributor to the decline of Caribbean coral reefs. However, currently, bleaching due to heat is clearly the most impactful stressor on Coral reefs. Bruno wrote an important study in 2010 showing that inside Marine Protected Areas coral cover held steady, but outside Marine Protected Areas coral cover decreased.
        “A Global Analysis of the Effectiveness of Marine Protected Areas in Preventing Coral Loss.” Elizabeth R. Selig, John F. Bruno, February 17, 2010
        http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0009278
        Results and Discussion
        We found that MPAs can be effective in preventing coral losses. There was no change in coral cover over time across all reefs within MPAs over 38 years. In contrast, coral cover on unprotected reefs continued to decline throughout this period.

        However, in 2015 Bruno had to dispute his earlier findings about local management being effective in preserving coral cover.
        http://www.nature.com/articles/srep29778
        “Here we show that coral reef degradation is not correlated with human population density. This suggests that local factors such as fishing and pollution are having minimal effects or that their impacts are masked by global drivers such as ocean warming. These findings indicate that local management alone cannot restore coral populations or increase the resilience of reefs to large-scale impacts. They also highlight the truly global reach of anthropogenic warming and the immediate need for drastic and sustained cuts in carbon emissions.”

        The recent Hughes study in Nature backs-up Bruno’s conclusions:
        http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v543/n7645/full/nature21707.html
        “The distinctive geographic footprints of recurrent bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef in 1998, 2002 and 2016 were determined by the spatial pattern of sea temperatures in each year. Water quality and fishing pressure had minimal effect on the unprecedented bleaching in 2016, suggesting that local protection of reefs affords little or no resistance to extreme heat. Similarly, past exposure to bleaching in 1998 and 2002 did not lessen the severity of bleaching in 2016. Consequently, immediate global action to curb future warming is essential to secure a future for coral reefs.”

        Bottom line, rising temperatures is the cause of widespread bleaching during the recent record-setting hot years.

        Jim, you wrote, “There are also several studies showing uninhabited atolls, free from those human disturbances, are more resilient to warming. They do not bleach at higher temperatures while neighboring atolls bleach at lower temperatures. If they bleach, there is usually rapid recovery.”

        Please post these “several” studies that show that corals around uninhabited atolls do not bleach at higher temperatures while neighboring atolls bleach at lower temperatures.

      • Jim,
        I understand that you are a serial bulletin board belligerent, and argue like a child across the internet. However, I will play your game because you don’t know what you are talking about and you spout nonsense. Here is the latest inaccuracy: “To deflect the fact that the loss of Caribbean reefs was not due to global warming but was due to disease, the loss of herbivores and increases in competitive seaweeds, you assume, then fervently believe and finally insultingly argue that warmer temperatures have caused more disease. But that is untested speculation. Correlation is not causation.”

        The following studies document that warmer temperatures have caused more disease. Seems there are lots of scientists that insultingly argue that warmer temperatures have caused more disease? LOL. (James, this is a clear and overwhelmingly beautiful example of you posting nonsense and accusations, and me just ripping your nonsense to shreds.)

        1. Thermal Stress and Coral Cover as Drivers of Coral Disease Outbreaks
        John F Bruno , Elizabeth R Selig, Kenneth S Casey, Cathie A Page, Bette L Willis, C. Drew Harvell, Hugh Sweatman, Amy M Melendy
        Published: May 8, 2007
        http://journals.plos.org/plosbiology/article?id=10.1371/journal.pbio.0050124
        Our results indicate that the frequency of temperature anomalies, which is predicted to increase in most tropical oceans, can increase the susceptibility of corals to disease, leading to outbreaks where corals are abundant.

        2. In Hot Water: Global Warming Takes a Toll on Coral Reefs
        https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2453177/

        “Coral bleaching isn’t always fatal—if water temperatures cool in time, the zooxanthellae might return, allowing corals to recover. But in parts of the Eastern Caribbean, the reefs never got a chance. Almost as soon as their recovery started, they were attacked by diseases affecting a range of coral species down to 60 feet. By 2007, roughly 60% of the coral cover in the Virgin Islands and 53% in Puerto Rico’s La Parguera Natural Reserve was dead—an unprecedented tragedy.”

        “Scientists speculate that warming triggers coral illness by stressing the animals, leaving them open to infection. That’s particularly true if diseases follow bleaching, which deprives corals of carbon, leaving them dependent on whatever passing prey they can grab with their tentacles. “The corals are exhausted, so they get sick,” explains Patterson. “It’s like what would happen to you if you worked seventy-hour work weeks without a good diet and a break.”

        “The fact that coral diseases in the Eastern Caribbean erupted in the aftermath of a thermal anomaly bolsters hypotheses that the two are somehow related, says Drew Harvell, a professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at Cornell University and chair of the Coral Reef Targeted Research Program’s Coral Disease Working Group. “Associations between warming and infectious disease in corals are getting more established now,” she says.”

        3. Genetic Susceptibility, Colony Size, and Water Temperature Drive White-Pox Disease on the Coral Acropora palmata
        Erinn M. Muller , Robert van Woesik
        Published: November 5, 2014
        http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0110759
        “These results suggest that white-pox disease was most likely a consequence of anomalously high water temperatures that selectively compromised the oldest colonies and the most susceptible coral genotypes.”

        4. Are infectious diseases really killing corals? Alternative interpretations of the experimental and ecological data
        Michael P. Lessera, , , John C. Bythellb, Ruth D. Gatesc, Ron W. Johnstoned, Ove Hoegh-Guldbergd

        We propose that coral “diseases”, with rare exception, are opportunistic infections secondary to exposure to physiological stress (e.g. elevated temperature) that result in reduced host resistance and unchecked growth of bacteria normally benign and non-pathogenic.These bacteria are from the environment, the host, or the coral mucus layer and become opportunistic pathogens. While difficult and time consuming, we do not advocate abandoning the study of disease-causing pathogens in corals. However, these studies should include comprehensive efforts to better understand the relationship between coral diseases and environmental changes, largely anthropogenic in nature, occurring on coral reefs around the world. These environmental insults are the cause of the physiological stress that subsequently leads to coral mortality and morbidity by many mechanisms including overwhelming infections by opportunistic pathogens.

        5.What are the physiological and immunological responses of coral to climate warming and disease?
        Laura D. Mydlarz, Elizabeth S. McGinty, C. Drew Harvell
        Journal of Experimental Biology 2010 213:
        http://jeb.biologists.org/content/213/6/934
        “Coral bleaching and an increase in infectious disease are linked to above average sea surface temperatures…. Some components of immunity show thermal resilience and are enhanced during temperature stress and even in bleached corals. These examples suggest some plasticity and resilience to cope with environmental change and even the potential for evolution of resistance to disease. However, there is huge variability in responses among coral species, and the rate of climate change is projected to be so rapid that only extremely hardy taxa are likely to survive the projected changes in climate stressors.”

        Drops Microphone.

      • Tripp, I repeat my argument. Suggestions that warming has caused disease is speculative as your own citations support:

        1. “can” increase the susceptibility of corals to disease,
        2. Scientists “speculate” that warming triggers coral illness by stressing the animals, leaving them open to infection.
        3.These results “suggest” that white-pox disease was most “likely” a consequence of anomalously high water temperatures
        4. We “propose” that coral “diseases”, with rare exception, are opportunistic infections secondary to exposure to physiological stress

        It was not long ago that the consensus in medical community was excessive gastric acid from spicy foods and anxiety were the cause of ulcers. Observations of bacteria were deemed opportunistic. The Nobel Prize later given to researchers who simply asked has cause and effect have been misunderstood and bacteria are the cause. Antibiotics proved their hypotheses. Similarly several studies have applied antibiotics and stopped bleaching caused by toxins released by algaes.

        Perhaps Tripp you have failed to learn the lessons of history. Instead you persist in your ugly attacks on anyone you disagree with and who reports the alternative explanations by scientists

        Your Bruno paper is really crap, suggesting it is not I who does not know what he is talking about. It is not surprising that his co-author belongs to the infamous alarmist CBD that launches bogus lawsuits arguing polar bears, penguins pika etc are going extinct due to CO2. Their pika suit was denied 3 times for insufficient evidence.

        Bruno created the argument that “Here we show that coral reef degradation is not correlated with human population density” and from their goes onto to speculate everything must be CO2. He certainly tapped all Tripp’s confirmation bias. He makes all the speculations despite acknowledging “Comprehensive monitoring in space and time of these basic parameters is scarce to non-existent for most tropical and subtropical coral reefs.”

        Bruno uses a baseline of coral cover “thought to be ~50–75%” based on a flawed monkey survey that he instigated and was highly criticized. Departure from the baseline was his measure of degradation. However coral cover varies greatly for many different reasons like latitude and currents,as well as human degradation. So such assumptions is ridiculous and as a result no one should suspect his results to provide a correlation between human density and coral cover. His baseline for macroalgae was also inappropriate. He uses macroalgae but “not filamentous “turf ” algae” that have been shown to be correlated with human impacts and disease.

        Tripp, you seem to confuse speculation with evidence and thus your analyses cant separate fact from fantasy.

        I linked to a paper with evidence that higher nutrients increased frequency of bleaching by 3.5X. You ignored the facts and went on blast with speculation

        You confuse the notion that increasing your verbal diarrhea and shrillness of your insulting language equates with a meaningful scientific argument. Indeed I can be belligerent when a poster is as insulting and ignorant as you have revealed yourself to be.

      • Tripp Funderburk: Scientists speculate that warming triggers coral illness by stressing the animals, leaving them open to infection.

        I thank you for your links, but as that quote shows, and others with “suggest” and “may” show, there is still much speculation. This is a topic worthy of review every 5 years or so.

    • YOU SHOULD BRUSH UP ON WHAT CLIMATE IS: -”there is no such a thing as ‘’earth’s global climate’’ – there are many INDEPENDENT different MICRO CLIMATES 1] Alpine climate 2] Mediterranean climate, 3] sea- level climate 4] high altitude climate 5] temperate climates 6] subtropical climate, 7] tropical climate 8] desert climate 9] rainforest climates 10] wet climate 11] dry climate, as in desert AND THEY KEEP CHANGING; wet climate gets dry occasionally b] even rains in the desert sometimes and improves. In the tropics is wet and dry -/- in subtropics and temperate climates changes four time a year, WITH EVERY season= migratory birds can tell you that; because they know much more about climate than all the Warmist foot-solders and all climate skeptics combined – on the polar caps climates change twice a year. Leading Warmist know that is no ”global warming” so they encompassed ”climatic changes” to confuse and con the ignorant – so that when is some extreme weather for few days on some corner of the planet, to use it as proof of their phony global warming and ignore that the weather is good simultaneously on the other 97% of the planet, even though is same amount of co2. In other words, they used the trick as: -”if you want to sell that the sun is orbiting around the earth -> you encompass the moon – present proofs that the moon is orbiting around the earth and occasionally insert that: the sun and moon rise from same place and set to the west, proof that the ”sun is orbiting around the earth” AND the trick works, because the Flat-Earthers called ”climate skeptics” are fanatically supporting 90% of the Warmist lies. Bottom line: if somebody doesn’t believe that on the earth climate exist and constantly changes, but is no global warming -> ”climate skeptic” shouldn’t be allowed on the street, unless accompanied by an adult. b] many micro-climates and they keep changing, but no such a thing as ”global climate”

      • We just had the three hottest years in recorded history. CO2 in the atmosphere has increased by 40% since industrial revolution. The Great Barrier Reef is bleaching for the 2nd year in a row due to hot water. Arctic and Antarctic ice is at record lows.
        In 2007, the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC AR4) stated, “Warming of the climate system is unequivocal, and since the 1950s, many of the observed changes are unprecedented over decades to millennia. The atmosphere and ocean have warmed, the amounts of snow and ice have diminished, and sea level has risen.”
        In 2014, the IPCC stated, “The evidence for human influence on the climate system has grown since the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report (AR4). It is extremely likely that more than half of the observed increase in global average surface temperature from 1951 to 2010 was caused by the anthropogenic increase in GHG concentrations and other anthropogenic forcings together. The best estimate of the human-induced contribution to warming is similar to the observed warming over this period.”
        So, according to IPCC all the warming we have seen since 1950 is from human activities with CO2 being the largest contributor. That is the best review of all the best science on climate change.
        When asked if he thought CO2 was primary driver of climate change, our EPA Administrator, Scott Pruitt, said, “No, I think that measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do and there’s tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact. So no, I would not agree that it’s a primary contributor to the global warming that we see. But we don’t know that yet. We need to continue the debate and continue the review and the analysis.”
        While that statement is egregiously stupid and contrary to science, it also a lie upon a lie. He said we need to continue the review and analysis. But, today, the OMB Director when asked about the cuts to climate science research, he replied, “We’re not spending money on that anymore. We consider that to be a waste of your money to go out and do that.”
        The Trump administration released a budget blueprint on Thursday that proposes a 31 percent cut the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), including a $100 million cut to climate change programs under its purview. The budget proposal takes aim at climate change programming throughout the budget. It zeros out funding for State Department climate change programs, including American contributions to international climate change accounts, and the budget also reduces funding for advanced energy and renewable power research. At the Environmental Protection Agency, the proposed budget “discontinues funding for the Clean Power Plan, international climate change programs, climate change research and partnership programs, and related efforts.”
        So, Pruitt said we need more review and analysis, but the OMB Director said we are not going to be spending money on review and analysis of climate change.
        Shockingly, this Administration denies science and will simply starve science from studying an issue and stop contributions to international efforts to fight climate change.
        This madness is happening despite the fact that the Defense Secretary Mattis wrote in answers to Congress, that “Climate change is impacting stability in areas of the world where our troops are operating today. It is appropriate for the Combatant Commands to incorporate drivers of instability that impact the security environment in their areas into their planning.”
        Sen. Jeanne Shahee asked, “Do you believe climate change is a security threat?”
        Mattis: “Climate change can be a driver of instability and the Department of Defense must pay attention to potential adverse impacts generated by this phenomenon.”
        Shaheen: “General Mattis, how should the military prepare to address this threat?”
        Mattis: “As I noted above, climate change is a challenge that requires a broader, whole-of government response. If confirmed, I will ensure that the Department of Defense plays its appropriate role within such a response by addressing national security aspects.”
        So, our military says that climate change drives instability and requires a whole-of-government response, but the OMB director says we are not going to fund climate change programs?
        Wait, what?

      • Jim, your bogus claims have never been through peer-review. You make stuff up. Those studies I cited went through peer review. You said I “insultingly argue that warmer temperatures have caused more disease.” In an hour, I found 5 peer-reviewed papers that directly refuted your assertion. I am sure there are many more.

        You said you have studies showing that corals around uninhabited atolls do not bleach at higher temperatures while neighboring atolls bleach at lower temperatures. Please post those studies are admit you made that up to.

      • Tripp you are delusional . To repeat speculation is not evidence. Keep repeating that and eventually you will realize how much uncertainty there is regards this issue

    • Judith Curry wrote: “Exactly what the Trump administration intends to do regarding funding climate science, energy policy and the Paris climate agreement presumably remain as subjects of debate within the administration. Looking at every little leak and quote out of context as a rationale for hysteria simply isn’t rational or useful.”

      oday, the OMB Director when asked about the cuts to climate science research, he replied, “We’re not spending money on that anymore. We consider that to be a waste of your money to go out and do that.”

      Yesterday, when the OMB Director asked about the cuts to climate science research, he replied, “We’re not spending money on that anymore. We consider that to be a waste of your money to go out and do that.”

      Also, yesterday, the Trump administration released a budget blueprint that proposes a 31 percent cut the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), including a $100 million cut to climate change programs under its purview. The budget proposal takes aim at climate change programming throughout the budget. It zeros out funding for State Department climate change programs, including American contributions to international climate change accounts, and the budget also reduces funding for advanced energy and renewable power research. At the Environmental Protection Agency, the proposed budget “discontinues funding for the Clean Power Plan, international climate change programs, climate change research and partnership programs, and related efforts.”

      So, now that we now that the Trump Administration aims to cut all climate research and American contributions to international climate change efforts, is it time for hysteria? Or do the skeptics here have so much skepticism that everyone is happy that all climate change programs are being cut?

  2. There seems to be a third possibility. That he was referring to the overall process of recent global warming – in which CO2 is the ‘primary trigger’, but water vapour is the “primary contributor”. As far as I am aware, the latter statement is just basic consensus science. For instance, in 2010 a paper by the current NASA lead climate researcher put water vapour in the high troposphere at ~20% of the overall global warming effect (Schmidt et al, ‘Attribution of the present-day total greenhouse effect’).

    • Very sorry, that should have read: “put CO2 at ~20% of the overall global warming effect”.

    • David Springer

      Right but there’s even more to it. CO2 is a catch-all for all non-condensing greenhouse gases including methane and nitrous oxide.

      • Where is water in this diagram?

      • PeteBonk,

        “… all non-condensing greenhouse gases…”

        I’d guess non-condensing under ambient conditions on Earth.

      • David Springer

        In the condensing greenhouse gas list. It’s a very short list.

      • I don’t think I captured the true relationship, but if I did, I think the non-condensing greenhouse gasses would be reduced to a single pixel…

      • David Springer

        The bone of contention is whether or not CO2 is a control knob for how much water vapor is in the atmosphere. There is no credible or widely argued case against CO2’s greenhouse effect in a dry atmosphere. If the earth were a barren rock with everything else equal doubling CO2 would increase the surface temperature by 1.1C +/-0.1C.

        Global warming theory however posits that the modest warming of a dry atmosphere increases its capacity to hold water vapor so where increased evaporation is possible (at least everywhere over the ocean) the CO2-only GHE of 1.1C is trebled to 3.0C or more. This is known as “water vapor amplification”.

        It is credibly argued that water vapor amplification doesn’t happen. As more water vapor enters the atmosphere more clouds form which have the effect of reflecting more sunlight which lowers the temperature of the surface below.

        In the case of no water vapor amplification CO2 would become an on/off switch instead of a control knob. In that hypothesis a base level of CO2 becomes sufficient to tip the balance between quasi-stable states of a mostly frozen planet that reflects the vast majority of sunlight and stays frozen or mostly unfrozen with a dark liquid ocean that absorbs the vast majority of sunlight.

        In my view, which has been decades in learned consideration, the evidence points to CO2 being an on/off switch for water vapor not a control knob.

    • He was asked “Do you believe that it’s been proven that carbon dioxide is THE primary control knob for climate?” This is the actual question to which he quite correctly responded “No”.

    • You have touched on one of my favorite topics, and I appreciate the link you provided. I am providing one in response – the late Dr. William Gray’s 2010 (same year) paper where he directly confronts positive water vapor feedback.

      I draw your attention to the references to Charney in both papers. Dr. Gray asserts that his study of 60 years of reanalysis data plus 21 years of satellite data and local rainfall data show that the atmosphere doesn’t behave in the manner assumed for a doubling of CO2 by Charney in 1979, and still used by Schmidt in 2010 (GISS Model E).

      Dr. Gray asserts that temperature response to a doubling of CO2 will only be one-sixth that projected by Schmidt. I have yet to find a refutation of Gray’s work. By this post, I am continuing my search for one. Comments are welcome.

      Link to Dr. Gray’s paper:
      http://climaterealists.com/attachments/ftp/AMS-Final5-10.pdf

      Link to the Schmidt paper: https://pubs.giss.nasa.gov/docs/2010/2010_Schmidt_sc05400j.pdf

      • On my initial reading, the paper does contain some serious problems with quantification of what he is describing. At one stage Dr Gray argues that the TOA CO2 forcing associated with his atmospheric concentration of 380ppm is (100/280)*3.7. He assumes a linear rather than a logarithmic effect. Secondly, even if this were corrected, it would still be wrong, since the forcing he should be applying in the context of explaining temperature-dependent observations is the total change in all forcings from pre-industral – not just the CO2 forcing. He also seems somewhat confused by the no-feedback calculation of temperature rise from CO2. He is correct to suggest that this calculation does not account for increased evaporation, but that is only because it does not account for any change in sensible heat at all, nor does it account for change in lapse rate – both of these things are treated as feedbacks. The no-feedback temperature change for a doubling of CO2 is the answer to the question: what temperature do I have to raise the Earth’s surface by to balance an additional forcing of 3.7 W/m2 at TOA if I hold everything else constant.

        He may well be right when he asserts that GCM’s C-C calculations (which more or less correspond to a constant rel humidity) do not correspond well to observations. In fact, I recall that Garth Partridge argued something similar from the reanalysis data. However, I do not understand how any of this affects Dr Gray’s final quantified conclusions because his calculation of CO2 sensitivity with WV feedback is somewhat arcane, to me at least, and appears to have changed by the time he presented a paper on this subject at a Heartland conference in 2012. In summary, he might well be saying something important, but the paper is not stellar in quality IMO.

      • Here’s the Heartland presentation you referred to. It includes an intro to his THC hypothesis. It is more user-friendly in readability overall. http://tropical.atmos.colostate.edu/Includes/Documents/Publications/gray2012.pdf

      • Thanks for the Web link. I am certainly no expert on this matter, and have only a growing but-outline journalistic knowledge of the apparent fundamentals of the warming process, with the help of various explanatory podcasts and process diagrams. e.g.: the very clear explanations given by a lead scientist on the NASA TC4 mission in a long audio interview at: http://omegataupodcast.net/46-the-nasa-tc4-project/ As such I am not really qualified to assess the details of the extended conference abstract you link to. But as a ‘go straight to meta’ kind of historian I would have initial worries about it on two broad points. As I understand the high troposphere process, ice-fall velocity rates from the area of high ‘superfine’ cirrus in the upper troposphere are the second most important climate sensitivity factor in the broad warming model(s) under discussion. Yet my initial keyword search of the 2010 Gray & Schwartz paper for “ice” suggests that it does not mention this apparently important factor, which I would have expected it to mention. My second initial concern is that the 2010-11 results of the NASA TC4 mission to the upper troposphere are not mentioned by the paper, specifically the discovery of much larger and much sparser ice crystals than had been previously assumed by then-existing models. I wonder to what extent the TC4 mission results – and similar later findings – may have modified the understanding and functioning of the current IR energy transfer element of the climate models – which I take it is what the Gray & Schwartz abstract was addressing?

      • Thanks. The Heartland paper adds to my confusion rather than dispels it, since it changes the sensitivity estimate and introduces an unsupported assertion that temperature changes are mostly due to multi-decadal and centenary changes in ocean salinity.
        If Dr Gray’s presentation has any importance then it rests with the observational data (OK, a mix of reanalysis data) which he claims are at odds with GCM simulations. He promises in his paper “A long observational paper is presently being prepared to more fully document our many observations of the association of changes of rainfall with albedo and IR.” Do you happen to know if such a documentation was made? If so, it may indeed be important in explaining the absence of the tropical hotspot and demonstrating that the total WV plus cloud feedback is negative. However, as it stands, we are left with a number of declared “findings” with no data shown to support them, and then a total disconnect between his conclusions about the observational data and his estimation of a revised climate sensitivity. The basis for the latter calculation is not well explained at all.
        For a clear and simple exposition of what GCMs actually DO in terms of surface balance in response to a change in CO2, I would strongly recommend the Andrews et al 2009 paper which you can find here:-
        http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/pdf/10.1175/2008JCLI2759.1
        You can compare and contrast the actual movements in latent heat, sensible heat, SW and LW in the GCMs with the assertions made by Dr Gray. For an excellent theoretical analysis of surface balance, I would recommend Ramanathan 1981, but you need a wet towel on your head to untangle the maths.

      • Here is the follow-up paper, done about a year after the first one, and probably released prior to the Heartland presentation.
        http://hurricane.atmos.colostate.edu/Includes/Documents/Publications/grayschwartz2012.pdf

        Thanks for these comments; very much appreciated.

      • finnpii,
        Thanks for the last link. It allows me at least to confirm that his climate sensitivity calculation is plain wrong. He seems to have assumed a certain symmetry of positive and negative feedbacks when talking about “temperature feedback”. It just doesn’t work that way. If you believe the feedback values he posted on his graph, they add up to ca -1.2 W/m2/degK. Added to Planck, this gives a total feedback of -4.5 W/m2/degK and the predicted ECS is then given by 3.7/4.5 = 0.82 deg C not his reported 0.3 degC or his earlier 0.5 degC.
        For the rest, he also makes some annoyingly counterfactual statements, such as references to a “faulty assumption of constant relative humidity” in the GCMs. There is no such assumption. The early analytic models assumed constant RH as a working hypothesis. The GCMs calculate WV using C-C as a limiting constraint. It just happpens that the results are not far off an assumption of constant RH.
        This brings me to the meat of the issue. His findings support Paltridge et al (see here: https://climateaudit.org/2009/03/04/a-peek-behind-the-curtain/ ) , but this is not very surprising since he is using the same reanalysis dataset for the observations of RH and total precipitatable water in the upper and mid troposphere. What he has added to that is an explanation for why specific humidity can decrease counterintuitively even when there is a rise in surface temperature and the hydrological cycle is accelerated. He has also added an observation (which I cannot confirm) that there is a decrease in net positive downward TOA flux and a drying of the upper atmosphere at times of high rainfall relative to low rainfall. He is right to suggest that this is contraindicated in the GCMs. They all predict an increase in rainfall AND an increase in specific humidity as temperature increases. It is worth noting that this does go a long way towards explaining the observation of Richard Lindzen that the observed OLR response in the tropics is of opposite sign to that predicted in GCM’s. It would also explain why GCM climate sensitivity is biased high against observational data.
        So overall:- It is a badly written paper with several errors, but the observations might prove to be very important. The humidity data will be challenged for the same reason that Paltridge was challenged.

      • I was thinking of dropping a note to Professor Gray to seek clarification on a couple of points, but, sadly, it seems that he died last year. To judge from his entry in Wikipedia, I think I would have liked him.

        “Gray had many students and he offered them advise including his commandments. One of them was Remember Up-Moist, Down-Dry and Keep it Holy which was the reference to his conviction that one has to include moisture processes such as evaporation and rainfall to understand atmospheric energy balance. Thou Shalt Not Concern Thyself Unduly With Commandments and Regulations expressed his disdain for bureaucracy. Being observational atmospheric scientist, he detested numerical models of the atmosphere – Thou Shalt Not Bow Before Computer Terminals Nor Involve Thyself With Numerical Models. He hold very lively group meetings with his students and encouraged them to question everything – Remember Thy Project Meeting and Keep it Holy, Thou Shalt Not Wait’til the End of a Talk to Ask a Question When Thou Can Interrupt in the Middle.”

      • kribaez: Being only what I call a “climate hobbyist”, it will take some serious study on my part to understand your comments. Mine is a cursory understanding. I appreciate your engaging my blog post with such energy.

        I’m sure it wouldn’t equate to communicating with Dr. Gray, but he did have a co-author named Barry Schwartz who is probably still at it at Colorado State University, if you think he could address your questions.

      • > I have yet to find a refutation of Gray’s work

        You might like this comment, vintage ct 12, 2006-10-12:

        I am not going to critique Gray’s paper, it is beyond rational critcism, i will save technical comments for such an unlikely event as any of this actually ever gets published. Bill Gray is not a player in the scientific debate, his ideas reflected in the paper referred to at RC are so flawed that they are unpublishable. Bill Gray does not enrage the scientists, he simply isn’t a player in the scientific debate on global warming. However, he is a HUGE figure in the public debate on global warming. I am not alone in judging Gray to be “off the spectrum”, Richard Lindzen said something similar in an interview with Joel Achenbach (most climateauditors wont’ like the achenbach piece, but i believe the quote from Lindzen to be accurate […]

        https://climateaudit.org/2006/10/11/bill-gray-presentation/#comment-66515

      • @Willard: That is from 2006, and after clicking through, I found a broken link to whatever that Gray study was. I am specifically talking about his studies from ~2010 to 2012.

        Even Dr. Curry has modified her positions on many issues since ’06.

      • Since you’re the amateur here, dear Finn, I suggest you scratch your own itch and search for G10’s citations yourself. Otherwise Denizens will have to conclude you did not do your homework before issuing your negative existential.

        Please beware your wishes.

        Yes, the quote is ca 2006. Some things change. Some do not. Not knowing much about the so-called “hurricanes war” indicates you may be new here.

      • There isn’t any positive water feedback, but there is a lot of temperature regulation from water vapor. About 35W/m^ at this location.

        The regulation, the changing of the rate of outgoing radiation, which results in a change in the rate of cooling, is temperature dependent on dew point temp, slowing cooling late at night to limit how much it cools.

        Forcing from co2 is just radiated to space (this is under clear sky conditions) before the required temp is reached to slow cooling. This is why they have to lie and cheat to make it look like temps are correlated to rising CO2. Fake science, or they’re just stupid.

        Here is how it works: This is a simplified exaggerated example. Cooling rates once they start to slow, is likely an exponential curve so my 2 step example does not represent how much is left accurately.

        Let’s say it’s 85F with a dew point of 60F. Lets set the cooling rates as 5F per hour below a rel humidity of about 85% (this will actually start to drop at about 70 or 75%, and the rate quickly drops until in the upper 90’s where it slows down to under 0.5F/hour), so lets set this switch point as 70F
        But let’s say we add 5F of temp due to co2 radiation during the day, way over exaggerated. so at 7:00 pm one temp is 85F, the other 90F
        7:00 85F/90F
        8:00 80F/85F
        9:00 75F/80F
        10:00 70F/75F
        11:00 68F/70F
        12:00 66F/68F

        5F was reduced to 2F, now the reality is the higher rate always cools at a higher rate because it isn’t a real switch(as well as it has the higher 4th power relationship to cooling), you can see this all in the graph above.
        Start off with a sensitivity to solar at less than 0.02F/W/m^2 x 3.7w so less than 0.1F, and by morning there is little left if any left.

        And it’s also why min temps follow dew point temps, not co2.

      • > Forcing from co2 is just radiated to space (this is under clear sky conditions) before the required temp is reached to slow cooling. This is why they have to lie and cheat to make it look like temps are correlated to rising CO2. Fake science, or they’re just stupid.

        One problem with verbal abuses, Micro, is that they may indicate where to look for logical skyhooks. In your case, your watery regulator bites more than it can chew. How does it beat El Ninos over and over again?

        Something’s amiss.

      • How does it beat El Ninos over and over again

        El Nino’s are self-emergent systems that builds a large pool of warm water, which creates a lot of warm water vapor, which is then blown is some cases poleward to cool. That cooling, that warm water vapor shows up as higher dew points over land, and surface min temp, as I’ve shown, is strongly regulated to dew point. Then if it’s sunny it warms up, and than that night it cools back to dew point.

      • > That cooling, that warm water vapor shows up as higher dew points over land, and surface min temp, as I’ve shown, is strongly regulated to dew point.

        What you’ve shown is a correlation, micro. The regulation part requires a bit more.

        But that’s unresponsive to what I’m asking. So perhaps I should be clearer. Are you suggesting that dew points are causing the warming we observe? That’d be an interesting hypothesis, and would fit nicely in my Contrarian Matrix:

        https://contrarianmatrix.wordpress.com/lots-of-theories/

        If I get you right, then I’d need a citation for your hypothesis so I could link to it.

        I’ll even add your name in the colophon.

        Waddaya say?

      • So perhaps I should be clearer. Are you suggesting that dew points are causing the warming we observe?

        Well if I say yes, it’s fails to capture that’s it the oceans cycles that are the source of the increased dew point.

      • > [I]t the oceans cycles that are the source of the increased dew point.

        Great! Now, what would be the most serious citation expressing that idea, Micro?

      • Great! Now, what would be the most serious citation expressing that idea, Micro?

        The measurements shown here.
        https://micro6500blog.wordpress.com/2016/05/18/measuring-surface-climate-sensitivity/

      • I want a mechanism, Micro. Not CS crap.

      • I want a mechanism, Micro

        What’s the mechanism that moves and self organizes warm pools of water in the Ocean? What is the mechanism that causes an El Nino?

        And I don’t really care what you want Willard.

      • > What’s the mechanism that moves and self organizes warm pools of water in the Ocean?

        Moving and self-organizing doesn’t warming create, Micro. Because, physics.

        To replace AGW, you need something that explains GW better than the A.

      • Moving and self-organizing doesn’t warming create, Micro. Because, physics.

        Ah, an El Nino is a reorganization of existing warm water into a large pool upwind of a major continent, effectively most of the Northern Hemisphere because the itc zones blow it around the world, but it blows all that water vapor inland, and daily temps ride on top of dew points.
        Is it all just existing latent energy regulating temps, or does it just allow max temps to go up higher and when you look at the land distribution between hemispheres it adds up to more over thermometers.
        Not sure.
        And my stupid CS stuff was showing the distribution of heat, by latitude bands. Sort of pertinent to this conversation.

        well you have to admit that the surface of the 2 hemispheres is asymmetrical

      • > And my stupid CS stuff was showing the distribution of heat, by latitude bands. Sort of pertinent to this conversation.

        The conversation being about how GW can be explained by a reorganizing ocean from which emerges some dew processes. Or something like that.

        Explain first, then calculate.

      • Observe, hypothesis, test. Check, check, and check.
        Warm water makes humidity air.ie the dew point goes up. The wind blows the warm air to someplace else. If the warm water is more north than south, more warm air blows over northern land, and since there is less land in the south, changes between north and south are not the same . And I was analyzing surface data when I realized I had a way to show effective CS based on actual measurements, and not a model

      • > I was analyzing surface data when I realized I had a way to show effective CS based on actual measurements, and not a model

        LOL

      • I did meet and talk to Bill Gray at two climate conferences. at the last one in Washington DC

        Bill Grey, who was one of the greatest weather and climate scientists, said, after some talks by our TRCS people at the Washington DC Climate Conference, whatever warming CO2 can cause, the earth will respond and counter most of it. Bill Grey said, everyone’s published CO2 sensitivity is too high, the atmosphere responds to any increase CO2 and makes corrections. He said .2 to .4 at the most.

        I met and talked to Bill Grey in Las Vegas and again in Washington DC. He made comments after the NASA TRCS group spoke in DC on Panel 13.

        Ten minutes into this recording, Bill Grey does make his statements that there clearly are natural responses to changes that bound climate extremes,

        He was telling us about natural responses, or feedbacks, if you prefer.
        Listen to William Grey!

        Everyone’s climate sensitivity lower bound is higher than Bill Grey’s highest estimate.
        copy and paste this link and listen starting at ten minutes.

      • whatever warming CO2 can cause, the earth will respond and counter most of it. Bill Grey said, everyone’s published CO2 sensitivity is too high, the atmosphere responds to any increase CO2 and makes corrections. He said .2 to .4 at the most.

        And this is exactly what my stupid little graph shows in action.

      • That appears to be the wrong link, but it is a good link, try this one
        Ten minutes in for Bill Gray, I spell Gray as Grey in many of my postings and I have seen others commit this error.

        Listen to William Grey!

      • Wrong again, I try again. look at ten minutes in.

    • Yes the phrase “non-condensing” is on the context of the planet earth. Indeed ‘global warming’ and ‘climate change’ are both given in the context of our home planet. Does that point really need to be belabored?

      P.S. In case you need clarification I’m writing this from the planet earth. Is that where you are located?

    • Jim Steele, you post so many logical fallacies. Since science was wrong once, then “Perhaps Tripp you have failed to learn the lessons of history. Instead you persist in your ugly attacks on anyone you disagree with and who reports the alternative explanations by scientists.” Wasn’t the original diagnosis also provided by scientists? But the new scientists were right and the old scientists were wrong. So basically, any scientific finding should be doubted and only new scientists, who refute the old scientist should be trusted, or you haven’t learned the lesson of history. So illogical.

      • Tripp

        I had a reply back from the Caitlin Survey as follows;

        “Thanks for getting in contact. I forwarded your question onto our team of scientists and they replied:

        Will be in recorded history. No reports of coral bleaching appeared in recorded records prior to the late 1970s. 1998 was the first time that bleaching was recorded on a global scale where all ocean systems were affected during their respective austral summers.

        There is also lots of good additional information on our Global Coral Bleaching site.”

        Sounds like there was a lack of coordinated records prior to the late 1970’s?

        It might be worth seeing if there are isolated records for other very large El Nino years prior to 1998, in say the 1920 to 1940 period. Des anyone know when these occurred

        tonyb

      • Logical fallacies????? Not only have you totally misinterpreted the adaptive bleaching hypothesis, but here again you fail to understand the historical point. All that is being argued is scientists have often confused cause and effect. Offering alternative explanations is the lifeblood of scientific progress.

        In contrast Tripp, you simply fail to understand that science advances by fully vetting any hypothesis and testing it against alternative hypotheses. Tripp you have argued that providing alternative hypotheses, no matter how well supported by evidence, is some sort of conspiracy against your favorite hypothesis. Such reasoning is not indicative of a balanced mind.

        Get over it. Science requires fully vetted alternative explanations before we can trust a scientist’s opinion.

  3. The real problem is that journalists are incapable of engaging in critical thinking and nuanced statements. They go after the eyeballs. Printing statements that are uncontroversial don’t sell newspapers. The media, in the final analysis are in the businessto make money.

    I ignore headlines about global warming. They seldom have anything to do with reality.

    This issue with Pruitt is just the latest example. As shown by the headlines and some comments here , people spend more time putting words inthe mouths of others than in reading or listening with precision.

    And for some warmists the issue needs to be reduced to a binary question. Why insist on engaging the cognitive functions.

    • Tony B,
      I draw a different conclusion. The lack of recorded bleaching events is better evidence that they did not occur rather than there was a lack of record keeping. If something is not happening, why would scientists keep detailed records of it not happening?

    • If you were a real scientist, you would publish peer-reviewed science. You don’t. You don’t have any training in marine biology or in climate science. You post science denial fantasies on denial blogs and argue with people who call you on it. You conflate issues, miss the point, and when you are wrong, which is nearly always, you won’t admit your mistake. You have contrarian psychological issues that make you attack people who point out the illogic and ridiculousness of your claims like a beaten dog when you are afraid that you will be exposed as a charlatan.

      You offered an alternative hypothesis that global coral bleaching was not a big deal because corals can switch symbionts and magically adapt. That has been proven wrong. 2/3 of the North Great Barrier Reef is dead. They did not magically adapt through your snake-oil, denial-inspired adaptive bleaching hypothesis. So, if science considers alternative hypotheses, and the hypotheses are shown to be without merit, then the author of that rejected hypothesis should admit it and quit pretending it makes any sense.

      Coral is bleaching due to climate change and AGW. Corals switching symbionts does not change that, or reduce the devastation. It is just denier noise made up by an amateur science denier.

  4. My reaction upon reading NYT, WashPo and New Yorker articles on Pruitt’s statements was the same. I commented as well on NYT and WashPo articles. NYT piece was written by Coral Davenport who for the past year + is full time on pushing the lefty climate agenda along with Justin Gillis, always incomplete partial story presenting supporting climate without voicing the real issues of e.g., uncertainties, climate sensitivity, and esp. natural causes/forcing. I noted on the WashPo article there were many many comments that objected to the one sided story and misinterpretation of what Pruitt has said – that is an encouraging sign. I scolded Davenport writer of the NYT piece for how she misrepresented what Pruitt actually said. I do believe that Pruitt needs to stay on message and not lower himself to getting into the debate and there are real challenges in overturning Scotus ruling in Massuchusetts v. EPA which is the precedent setting case essentially law of the land…on CO2 being defined as a pollutant therefore something the government can control as it likes at will. This presents limits as it stands on executive orders to reverse the abuse / damage done during the Obama presidency. So Pruitt is correct that a Congressional Act is needed to make the needed correction – Massachusetts v. EPA then means that any law passed will surely be challenged all the way to the Supreme Court.

    I also notice that every NYT article on Climate Change runs a side bar with a link to a propaganda presentation prepared by Justin Gillis with all the answers you need to understand Climate Change. Check it out. Totally one sided propaganda … I believe it is basically correct to use the term “crooked mainstream media” esp. in the case of the NYT and WashPo but don’t forget the cable fake news shows. Of course to the other side all of this is perfectly ok / not corrupt.

    • I also responded to the article by Coral Davenport and tweeted her to which she responded. She and others misstated what Mr. Pruitt was asked in addition to distorting his response. Here is the actual question posed:

      “Do you believe that it’s been proven that carbon dioxide is THE primary control knob for climate?”

      When you understand the question, his answer makes perfect sense. All the criticisms are based on an assumption of a different question. He wasn’t asked if carbon dioxide was a primary contributor to global warming. He wasn’t even asked about climate change or global warming. He was asked about climate. It was a dumb question, for sure. But he answered it in a manner consistent with scientific understanding.

    • It is true that only Congress can overturn the SCOTUS ruling that CO2 is a pollutant under the CAA, because the CAA clearly includes causing climate change in the definition of “pollutant” (added in 1990).

      However, EPA can by itself reverse its endangerment finding, based on a new and improved assessment of the science, which is sufficient to stop all regulatory action against CO2 emissions. “We do not know” is sufficient to reverse the endangerment finding.

      BTW, this issue will be addressed in some detail at the Heartland Institute’s upcoming “Conference on Climate Change” in DC on March 23-24, see https://www.heartland.org/events/events/12th-international-conference-on-climate-change. The theme is “Resetting U.S. Climate Policy.” All are invited (for a modest entry fee.)

      • DW, SCOTUS did NOT rule that CO2 was a pollutant. In Mass v. EPA, it ruled that under the CAA in 2007, the EPA had the congressional authority to do so. Then with the 2008 endangement finding, it did. The endangerment finding can be redone. Or the CAA circular definition of a pollutant as that which pollutes can be amended by congress. Both routes can be traveled. Meanwhile the CPP is almost certainly unconstitutional so that goes away all by itself.

      • “However, EPA can by itself reverse its endangerment finding, based on a new and improved assessment of the science, which is sufficient to stop all regulatory action against CO2 emissions. “We do not know” is sufficient to reverse the endangerment finding.”
        And the next guy just reverses Pruitt’s.
        Turn EPA responsibilities back to the states.
        I believe recent failures have shown those at the fed EPA are replaceable by state EPAs.
        We have the internet and everybody owns a decent camera.
        The bad guys can’t hide like in the ’70s.

      • David Springer

    • The IPCC, 80 National Academies of Science, every major scientific/geophysical society on earth, Exxon, DoD, NOAA, NASA, the Pope and vast majority of scientists acknowledge that humans are causing climate change. According to you, acknowledging the consensus on climate change by the media is pushing a lefty agenda. So, every major science organization on earth is pushing a lefty climate agenda? Wow, that is major conspiracy that every legitimate science organization in the world is part of a lefty plot to lie about climate change. Can you name one legitimate science organization that denies that man is causing climate change?

  5. I’m in agreement that we just don’t know yet. The dogma enforcers always fight independent thought. It’s always sad when scitntists, politicians, and their various supporters engaged in the massive AGW group deception seek to marginalize and denigrate those that express uncertainty about climate change attribution.

    Suppression of independent thought that is outside the mainstream is very unhealthy in science and many other matters as well.

  6. The right’s refusal to accept the authority of climate science…the shared institutions and norms that bind us together

    If 49% of the population(or 51%) reject something…then it is not a ‘shared institution that binds us’…it an an institution that divides us.

    What is it about people talking about science when they can no even see the logical fallacy in their own attempts to make a logical argument?

    It’s as ludicrous as saying ‘Left handed peoples refusal to be right handed’ rejects the shares value of right handedness that bind us together.

    • Curious George

      The “climate science” lost all authority when it declared itself settled and silenced any opposition. In fact, it ceased to be science, and became a club.

      • It was politicians who declared it settled enough that there is a real risk, which then leads to mitigation actions. This is where we are now – mitigating.

    • “The right’s refusal to accept the authority of …”

      I thought the Lew crew said that us skeptics were ‘authoritarians’.
      Authoritarians refusing to accept authority.
      Dang.
      We need new Pythons.

    • Exactly Harry.

      I love how corporate owned media seems to think it is essential to freedom of speech and freedom of the press, when the truth is probably closer to it being one of the greatest threats.

      Fortunately, due to TDS they appear to be digging their own graves.

  7. Here we have the perennial problem of the “science politics intersection”.

    In science people are interested in the logical content of a statement while in politics people are interested in distorting propositions as much as possible to please your audience without your interpretation being rejected by your audience because of cognitive dissonance.

    Since Pruitt knew he was seen as a politician he would have been well advised to make it more difficult to distort his statements. Given his statements this was to be expected.

    Replacing “the shared institutions and norms that bind us together” with ‘the shared institutions and norms that bind the left together’ makes the Vox article somehow spot an again.

  8. The message I hear, there is an attack upon the EPA and NASA’s earth climate budgets and these headlines and slant of commenters is an effort to mitigate the budget losses. There is no climate science to preserve, only the funding stream. Carefully parsed words have no meaning now, only the media maintaining the spin. And, may I say, Gavin is right in the middle of the spinning fray, he has a lot to lose; ie, his job.

    Extricating the USA from the UN’s climate control efforts plus leaving behind the Paris agreements would remove a large gaggle of government employees and academic hanger-on-ers with little resources to fight over, which, would be a good thing for the present.

    I do hope Ivanna Trump and Secretary of State Tollison (sp?) advise to remain within the UN’s position, whispering in Donald’s ear does not impede our withdrawal as was promised on the Campaign trail. Pulling out of UN and Paris now would necessitate the next administration to re-write EPA’s enabling legislation which would likely take a long time. Meanwhile, the world would continue spinning on and the cacophony of climate lobbyists would have also moved onto some other worldly issue needing profound governmental intervention.

  9. The press seems intent of justifying the public’s opinion and the President Trump’s belief that they are more about agenda’s, fake news and propaganda than an honest reporting the news. The good news is the more nonsense they publish, the more traffic gets driven to the conservative news sources.

  10. I will repost what I put on the other thread.
    It may be too soon to tell for him, but every major scientific society, government and industry have recognized that emissions need to slow down, and that is why we have Paris. Even Exxon has statements on emissions that are far ahead of Pruitt. When a person even trails the fossil fuel industry on climate change, that is something.
    http://corporate.exxonmobil.com/en/current-issues/climate-policy/climate-perspectives/our-position
    “The risk of climate change is clear and the risk warrants action. Increasing carbon emissions in the atmosphere are having a warming effect. There is a broad scientific and policy consensus that action must be taken to further quantify and assess the risks.”
    Would Pruitt, and Judith for that matter, at least agree with Exxon’s climate statement? He wasn’t asked anything about risk, which allowed him to dodge the issue. Risk is how much your uncertainty overlaps with truly large climate impacts of emissions.

    • Jim D, the difficulty with your statement is the meaning of the word recognized.

    • Oh dear Jimbo, it looks like you’ll have to find some other fantasy apocalypse to justify sleeping on your rubber sheet.

      AGW = It’s All Gone Wrong!

      Seems that one has gone the way of numerous others and has run its course.

      I believe Mosher has switched to pollution, pm2.5 and NOx which the ‘Usual Suspects’ have now started peddling as the greatest current threat to ‘Civilisation as we know it’, perhaps you can get a handle on that?

      • You still have Pruitt on your side, I guess, but some Florida Republicans have seen enough of this. They have to care about real things instead of Pruitt’s self-conflicted musings.
        http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/gop-florida-epa_us_58c30374e4b0ed71826c9aa3?q5aa5x5cnyfa8aor&ncid=inblnkushpmg00000009

      • JD, you have two problems. 1. I am a Florida voter. 2. Broward county just asked me to reregister some party. Cause I registered none. The last request has pissed me off.

      • Jim D, Florida Republicans have seen enough of what? Misrepresentation by reporters as to what somebody actually said?

        “Scientists, environmentalists and Democratic lawmakers pounced Thursday after Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt refuted his own agency by insisting carbon dioxide emissions don’t cause global warming.”

        This bears no relation to what the guy actually said, right?

        If Fla. Repubs knew what the guy really said, they would have reacted differently.

      • As I mentioned somewhere else on this thread, most people would interpret his answer to that question as ‘no’ because he included that word in his answer. If he meant ‘maybe’ he worded his answer very poorly which led people to think he meant ‘no’ when he said ‘no’. He’s a lawyer, so who knows what he really thinks because he has had to take that side for his cases for so many years.

    • It may be too soon to tell for him, but every major scientific society, government and industry have recognized that emissions need to slow down, and that is why we have Paris.

      Emissions have already slowed down, without Paris:

      The same forces that have led to decreasing rates of emissions are continuing – emissions will continue to decrease already.

      Good news if you care about emissions.

      Not good news if you care more about dictatorial government control.

      • Some people want to bring back the coal industry from the dead, exploit tar sands and shale oil to the max, and drill in the Arctic while also not caring about energy and fuel efficiency and trying to stop renewable programs. That battle is not over even if you think it is because there is industry money behind them.

      • Some people want to bring back the coal industry from the dead, exploit tar sands and shale oil to the max, and drill in the Arctic while also not caring about energy and fuel efficiency and trying to stop renewable programs. That battle is not over even if you think it is because there is industry money behind them.

        Regulation didn’t kill coal, natural gas did – that will continue.

      • Yes it did, but try telling that to Pruitt and the President who likely see coal as a jobs program even though it doesn’t profit anyone.

      • Jimd

        But do you practice what you preach and live a low carbon lifestyle thereby obviating the need for new coal mines or using tar sands etc?
        Tonyb

      • I am not promoting regulating what individual people do, but what governments and industries do which is especially important in regards to planning and effects on the global climate. The people can react to their choices, and I am for freedom of choice. If the government imposed fuel efficiency standards or incentivized low-energy use, I would be for that.

      • Jim D,

        .”..I am for freedom of choice. If the government imposed …, I would be for that.”

        At least you didn’t contradict yourself within the same sentence.

      • Good point. There are possibly some things the government could impose that I may object to, but not these types of measures, and nothing comes to mind in the US at least, so they have been sensible so far, at least for me. Now if we get to some recent things like immigration bans or dictating restrooms, there may be some difference of opinion. They also want to stop monitoring methane leaks and allow coal mines to pollute rivers. Not good.

      • Jimd

        So you are one of the participants of the tragedy of the commons? Bearing in mind your extreme concern over ‘business as usual’ regarding our fossil fuel use I would have thought you would be an enthusiastic proponent of an alternative way of doing things and show your concern by substantially reducing your carbon footprint.

        Tonyb

      • It turns out that just a 2% reduction in global CO2 emissions per year solves the problem. It’s a long term problem with a long-term solution. Nothing I do tomorrow matters a whit, and I am realistic enough to realize that. What matters is global agreements and I support those.

      • “Nothing I do tomorrow matters a whit, and I am realistic enough to realize that. What matters is global agreements……..”

        Ah yes, the Al Gore/Leo Decaprio philosophy. Advocate strict loss of freedoms while living large and showing the world they have no intention of practicing what they preach.

      • You would prefer the advocates to live like monks because they would be less effective that way. As for the “strict loss of freedoms” give me a break. How is a 50-year technological advancement plan a strict loss of freedoms?This is theater critic Steyn’s “collapsing the global economy” fearmongering meme.

      • A 2% reduction in emissions is a worthy goal but we’re going to need some help from China and India. Our (U.S.) emissions are decreasing without our really trying that hard.

      • “You would prefer the advocates to live like monks…”

        Cutting down air travel and living in ONE energy efficient home is now equivalent to living in a monastery?

        Give me a break indeed.

        I live in CA and there is talk in Sacramento of installing tracking devices in all cars to regulate movement of citizens (politicians of course exempt) and taxing them accordingly. All in the name of fighting climate change.

        If you don’t recognize this as just one more potential loss of freedom, that’s on you.

      • harkin1, that tracking idea sounds like it comes straight from a fake news right-wing conspiracy site. The simplest way to tax carbon is just by adding it to the fuel price rather than having a GPS on everyone.

      • This brings up an interesting question. If people don’t want a gas tax to pay for their roads, but they would like those who use them to pay more, I wonder how this can be done. This may become more of an issue as more people move to electric cars. I doubt GPS would be a popular or even practical choice, so that may leave the only option as an added tax at registration. Food for thought there.

    • Curious George

      I agree. The swamp is deep and wide.

    • Actually the Exxon statement is very carefully crafted. It acknowledges there is a risk; agrees that action is required, but only to the extent of the need for further quantification and assessment; and draws attention to competing priorities that need to be in the mix.

      There is no doubt there is a risk from GHG emissions, but the question for the politics is how much of a risk and how to manage it. The risk is the uncertainty times the consequences, and in this case it is slowly evolving and with the passage of time we are reducing the uncertainty and better understanding the consequences. This is why the uncertainty is the critical part to understand for policy purposes.

      When it comes to management the line being taken by the various treaties is second rate. It assumes certainty about the likelihood of change (and does dodgy calculations on the consequences) and prescribes certain costs today in response. This is done on the basis of being precautionary rather than trying to manage the risk.

      Given the actual level of uncertainty (particularly the link between GHG emissions and the way the climate is changing), but the way the passage of time is constraining climate sensitivity on the downside, it makes sense to do the low cost things today (particularly those with material payoffs) and to take the option of investing in understanding what’s happening rather than rushing in and imposing high costs today.

      That’s pretty much what Exxon suggest.

      I’ll conclude by adding that Exxon is no doubt quite properly managing another risk, namely that their customers perceive them as being unconcerned about the issue. They (along with many politicians) need to lay this risk off.

      • There is a realization that mitigating emissions more also mitigates risk more. You don’t need precision to make that equation. The days of ignorant recklessness are past.

      • You misunderstand. Managing a risk comes at a cost and here you are trading off an uncertain future benefit against a certain cost today. The sums have to be done, the option of waiting and doing more to understand the uncertainty needs to be in the mix. I should hasten to add that other low cost actions that could have an impact or potentially provide a base for future action should also be in the mix.

        As you say the days of ignorant recklessness are past, but I somehow don’t think you were applying it to your own position.

      • There is a cost whether you manage the emissions or not. Mitigating emissions more reduces the risk of future damage more. The cost argument is bogus because alternative energy can only take over as its costs compete sufficiently and those costs are coming down all the time. There are advances in renewables especially energy storage, and 2050 is a long way away. I also think nuclear energy has a role with the newer safer technology that has been developed. With motivation, this can be solved. Here’s an example of things happening today.
        http://www.huffingtonpost.com.au/2017/03/09/elon-musk-just-personally-promised-to-fix-south-australias-ener/?utm_hp_ref=au-homepage

      • “There is a cost whether you manage the emissions or not. ”

        Yes, but the point of risk management is that we don’t identify an uncertain cost in the future, ignore the benefits, and move to mitigate it today willy-nilly. We ask what the risk is (and the uncertainty in that) and weigh that against the cost. The answer may well be to wait and see (or to continue poking around and/or getting on with the obvious while one waits).

        Just think of all the cost that has been incurred on the basis of high projections of GHG emissions costs based on what are increasingly being seen as over estimated climate sensitivities. That’s the kind of practical risk that we need to be managing.

        If, as you say, alternative energy is going to become competitive then well and good, it will naturally be an obvious risk reduction development and should pretty much look after itself. The wise investment now would be low cost activities that remove roadblocks etc.

        Unfortunately it isn’t all going to be that simple. Clean fuels for the heavy duty cycle fleet are likely to require very high carbon charges to make them competitive with existing fossil fuels (particularly as their GHG footprint reduces).

        Given the uncertainty in all that and the uncertainty in climate sensitivity and the potential costs of climate change, but the certainty around the costs that accepting high carbon charges will impose, how do you best manage the risks?

        Simply moving to mitigate emissions may well increase the risks. It isn’t straightforward.

      • Well, whether you like it or not, we have Paris, and mitigation is going ahead largely because it is the common-sense no-regrets approach to handling risk and uncertainty while also moving away from a limited energy source. Under the Paris agreement, this is a very gradual process that unfolds over many decades. It also involves continual regular assessments of progress and what works best with the target kept in mind. People fearmonger about costs and pay no attention to the time-scales involved in the plans that factor into that. They have this mismatch between a proposed climate change policy that they should know is slow, but their assumptions about its cost being immediate.

      • Unfortunately Paris isn’t no-regrets or common sense. It’s a political deal.

        You haven’t answered, but how much do you regret investments that have been made on the basis of IPCC AR5 estimates of climate sensitivity and the top end of their projections versus where the current semi-empirical estimates are at and the risk properly assessed on the full PDF of future temps given by the IPCC?

        For example, how many coastal communities are facing the cost today of planning rules that have been introduced on the basis of an (ironically unlikely) 1m plus sea level rise at the end of the century.

        This is just demonstrates in microcosm the risk that Paris creates for the global community (or the developed countries at least).

      • To mitigate the risk of climate change we need to move away from fossil fuels by clear cutting all the world’s rain forests and US hardwood forests so we can ship the wood chips to Europe where they will directly count as renewable green energy. Oh wait. We’re already doing that to meet EU climate targets.

      • It should be repeated that U.S. emissions are decreasing, mainly due to market forces. And I don’t really know but I would bet that EPA’s Endangerment Finding has had little or nothing to do with it. And this has taken very little, if any, sacrifice.

        Personally, I don’t mind some mild sacrifices to bring down our emissions further – sort of a lite application of the precautionary principal. Large sacrifices are politically impossible in a democracy, especially if they allow the Chinese to eat our lunch while their own emissions are increasing. That dog will not hunt.

        Should we continue to subsidize renewal energy development? Probably, especially since we subsidize fossil fuels to the extent of tax policy. The issue is the magnitude of the subsidy.

      • HAS, the estimates of sea-level rise near a meter by 2100 would be a median value. Also sensitivity still puts it at a 4 C rise from 700 ppm which can be reached under BAU using projected global per capita CO2 growth and population growth. Most planning is still aimed at avoiding such high levels and preferably keeping it nearer 450 ppm. Skeptics perhaps disagree that CO2 should be limited below 700 ppm and equivalently that global per capita emissions should be reduced, but that is an argument that they don’t make very explicitly stating what CO2 level and sea-level and temperature rise they would be happy with by 2100.

      • What scientific study supports ~one meter being “ironically unlikely”?

      • At this point I’m in favor of a 5 or 6 meter rise, but unfortunately coastal elites are quite mobile and would probably escape it by flying to Switzerland. Perhaps I can come up with something that would be more effective.

        Unfortunately, IPCC AR5 predictions (guesses) for 2100 CE are from 0.15 meters (RCP 2.6) to 0.30 meters (RCP 8.5), and that’s not enough to catch anyone who isn’t already buried up to their neck in sand.

        And of course guys in hard hats could just lower the sea level by using the energy from about a year’s worth of new Chinese power plant construction to pump sea water back into high polar areas where it will freeze.

      • By 2150, you might get your wish.

      • Perhaps, but that still gives coastal families six generations to decide to sell their house and move to Nashville. I just don’t foresee that very many of them would be caught unawares and trapped by the rising waters that great-great grandpa warned them about.

      • Jim D, JCH and George perhaps have a look at Table 13.5 Chpt 13 AR5 IPCC that gives their view. Their likely range is 0.28 to 0.98m by 2100. 1m is therefore unlikely. Since then we have climate sensitivity constrained at much lower levels than these projections assume.

        Jim D, I can see you having difficulty grasping the concept of managing risk under uncertainty. You seem to want the future to be more certain than science can deliver at this stage, and you are seeking simple rules to impose. It isn’t like that. In this case the science can only say that by the end of the century there is a very large range that pretty much includes BAU at the lower end.

        The problem is that there are both costs and benefits from acting. Over-react and you’ve cost coastal communities needlessly (along with the population at large if constraining fossil fuel use). You are ignoring those possible outcomes.

      • Well, if they wanted a solution instead of a problem to milk, lowering sea level is a simple exercise in moving fluids. Convert the sea level rise to a volume and the rate of rise to a flow rate, then pick a height and distance to pump the water, which sets the amount of power required (with 85% pump efficiency). Problem solved until the onset of the next glaciation period.

        If my duck pond is about to overflow, I’d remove a few buckets of water, or take a shovel and dig the basin a tiny bit deeper, or add a small pond pump. “The duck pond is about to overflow! We must rethink all of human society!” is not a rational response to a simple fluid problem – unless of course the goal isn’t to solve the simple problem but to gain money and status, if not control of human society, through fear mongering.

      • HAS, sea level is where there is the least certainty. IPCC tried not to factor in any major ice sheet collapses. NOAA gets 0.2-2 m in some scenarios and advise planning for the high end in high-risk cases. New York refers to this document for their planning.
        http://woodfortrees.org/plot/gistemp/from:1950/mean:12/plot/esrl-co2/scale:0.01/offset:-3.2
        Rise rates in the past have been 3-4 meters per century in certain faster phases after the last Ice Age. These rates can happen with rapid forcing changes.

      • Jim D if you read the literature on catastrophic collapse of sea ice in the IPCC you will see that the modeling used relies on triggering temperatures at the top of their projected range. And even then this is uncertain. Uncertainty is cumulative so if the IPCC triggering temperature has a 5% chance of occurring by 2100 and there is a 20% chance of that leading to collapse beginning we are down at the level of 1% chance. Something to keep an eye on, but the important thing is we will know much better in 10 years time.

        NOAA discusses this in “Global and Regional Sea Level Rise Scenarios for the United States” (2017). They also show the probabilities of their scenarios being exceeded under a range of RCP scenarios in 2100 (Table 4) and these pretty much confirm 1m is unlikely on the unlikely RCP8.5 and very unlikely on the much more likely RCP4.5.

        Since you find NOAA’s work useful perhaps read section 6.1 of the report dealing with scenario selection. It will help you think about how to manage risk under uncertainty, particularly where the risks are gradually evolving rather than being stochastic (eg seismic).

      • Just to be thorough, here’s my math on the cost of lowering sea level by pumping water upward 100 meters vertically onto arctic surfaces where it will freeze.

        Given the Earth’s ocean area of 360 million square kilometers (3.6e14 sq meters), and a rate of rise of 1 mm/year (0.1 meters per century), the flow rate is 11,407 cubic meters per second, or 11.407e6 kg/sec. Since P.E. is mass*gravity*height, the power required to pump that mass at 85% pump efficiency is 11,186 megawatts, or 11,186,000 kW. At $0.10 per kWhr, the cost is $1,316,047/hour, or $11.54 billion per year.

        In table form the variables in the calculation are

        rate of rise: 1 mm/year or 0.1 m/century
        pumping height: 100 meters
        electricity cost: $0.10/kWhr
        cost per year: $11.54 billion

        If you want to abate a 0.3 meter rise by 2117, the cost would thus be $34.6 billion a year.

        If it costs far more to try and avoid the problem than it costs to fix the problem, we should just fix the problem.

    • “….. action must be taken to further quantify the risk.” is consistent with Mr. Elliott’s statement. It is a far cry from “We must fundamentally change our societies, economies and energy systems.”

    • Geoff Sherrington

      JimD,
      Again it comes down to credible separation of natural and anthropogenic climate effects. Whatever is asserted by anyone, no matter how authoritative, is useless unless and until the attribution can be made. Words of belief are not enough. Science has to be satisfied first.
      JimD, you have consistently jumped over this critical attribution step.
      If you can make a clear statement that attribution has been achieved and how, then that is what needs confirmation and restatement by your several listed authorities.
      Has any one of them stated the mechanism of this attribution, together with confirmation that they agree with it being correct and applicable?
      If we the public do not know the detail, the science, the logic of this claimed support, we have a duty to ask about the ongoing reluctance of said authorities to describe the precise mechanism of the solution of the attribution problem.
      Until then can we separate natural from anthropogenic?
      NO, WE CANNOT.
      Geoff

      • You need to pay attention to the imbalance. A positive imbalance (the sign agreed even by skeptics who look at OHC) means that all the warming we have had has not been enough to keep up with the forcing that itself is anthropogenically dominated. It is a simple piece of evidence that the skeptics just don’t do their homework on. Follow where the observational evidence leads and be objective and then the 100% conclusion is not so surprising.

      • Geoff Sherrington

        JimD,
        Sorry, I do not “need” to do anything you suggest. The proponents of a hypothesis affecting me are those who need to do things such as defending the hypothesis.
        Whereas I sought a clear explanation of the mechanisms on which you rely to differentiate natural from anthro, you have come back with a few vague buzz words and an insinuation that I am one of a 1% (dumb) minority.
        JimD, that is not how hypotheses are defended.
        You reference ocean heat content. Now, a lot of my career involved measurement of earth science variables and its quality control, so I am on fairly experienced ground when I state that those who rely on current OHC figures are imprudent, for at least the two reasons that the estimation of error has not been done with adequate depth and formalism; and that the enormity of the task of sampling ocean temperatures seems not well appreciated. The deeper half of the oceans is scarcely sampled at all, though that is not a killer observation, just a measure of the immaturity of the challenge.
        One is left with an impression that everyone in the club knows that natural has not been separated from anthro, but a wink and nod acquiescence lets all move on the the next stages of the hypothesis of global warming.
        Given the enormous stakes, wink and nod is no basis for masking policy.
        Can you at least nominate a few references that purport to finally explain the attribution mechanisms? I have looked fairly thouroughly over the last decade and found none, including much reading of IPCC reports.
        Geoff

  11. I’m not sure where this is all going, but it will be an interesting ride. Will it be a smash-up at the end, or a smooth highway? One problem I see is that the administration and the party are now not the same entity. It’s now politicians versus managers, and they have different mind-sets. The MSM is resisting the electorate. The electorate has realized that it wants managers, not politicians. The MSM will take time to change as funds move from the old media to the new. Academia’s bias will take the longest to change. Academia will support the “consensus” until it is abundantly clear that a consensus never existed. Trump will have an eight-year knock-down, drag-out, fight, and it will take an equally managerial successor to continue it. What will support this fight is success. If the stock markets continue to rise and government finances improve, the Democrats will whither away. If not, ……..??

    • The problem with ‘managers’ is that their interests often conflict with the people’s. The politicians are supposed to represent the people, but actually through money in politics mostly represent the big industries that fill the swamp. The problem is that no one is truly representing the people, and environmental protection is fast becoming a perfect example of that. The role of the EPA is to protect the environment against the polluters. Pruitt comes at it from the other direction being a big supporter of the polluters. It’s another example of the Trumpism craziness where people were deceived into voting against their own interests.

      • I object to your cultural/political/tribal appropriation of the word swamp.

        The epitome of swamp creatures squealing as they dehydrate is that head of the EPA’s “Environmental Justice” department that made a big public showing of resigning before he was tossed out. He is emblematic of the pond scum of the administrative state.

        I feel triggered by your matriarchal nonintersectional microaggressions against all my current gender identities..

        I will retreat to one of my safe spaces filled with baby wolves, hot women, and beer, lots of beer.

        (So no, we don’t consider productive industries the swamp).

      • The swamp are the industries with their lobbyists that affect every election and policy to the detriment of what the regular people actually need and want from their government.

      • GS, I think that the democratic system in the US has been perverted by money, and I would stand by that. If you think money in politics is fine, that is your opinion, but you can’t impose that mindset. Citizens United says money is speech, and so it follows that more money is more speech, and less money is less speech as far as getting the policies you want. This is an area that the Bernie Sanders wing puts at their core, and I happen to agree and post on this now and then.

      • Regarding our form of democracy, it is true that industry lobbies have huge influence, but 1) industry lobbies exist because they represent products that the electorate uses. Fossil fuels has a big lobby because fossil fuel companies are huge and rich, and that’s because huge amounts of fossil fuels are used, and that’s because of their tremendous utility. In that sense, what’s good for Exxon is good for the U.S.A.

        2) The President and the Congress are truly responsible to and for the people who have the opportunity to periodically vote them in or out. Granted, the influence of industry money is undeniable, but the smart politician ignores the “people” at his/her peril.

        Managers hold their position so long as politicians allow them to, and that’s the way it should be. And I don’t agree that the people want managers and not politicians. Donald Trump won the election as a politician, certainly not as a manager, and his managers like Scott Pruitt will do what Trump tells them to do.

      • The politicians are chosen locally to represent their party by their financial support and promises. The people only get to choose which party, but can’t choose someone who is not encumbered by financiers for their election because that part has already happened at the candidate selection stage. A candidate will not be selected that can’t provide good funding for their campaign. It’s a fundamental problem with pay-to-play elections. Your view on what’s good for Exxon is good for the US is completely opposite to what anyone who cares about the environment would say. Big companies don’t advocate for policies that help the environment, worker pay, worker safety, public health and product safety and often oppose them in the name of profit. Electing people who support big companies is completely ignoring this other side of the equation that helps the people.

      • I’d be fine with cutting off corporate contributions if we are also willing to cut off union contributions as well.

      • Maybe you should read a little more carefully what I said, rather than allowing any mention of Exxon to propel you into an anti-corporate sound-off.

        My point is that Exxon is a big, powerful company because it sells a product that everybody wants and needs. Companies can’t just declare themselves influential lobbyists. Is it a pay-to-play system? I’d say that’s one way to put it. Big companies that are important to the economy have thousands of employees and big payrolls, and they deserve to be heard. Contributions to candidates are a good way to get their attention.

        To write off Exxon because “they don’t care about the environment” is naive. Environmentalists who want to fight and demonize them are effectively fighting tens of millions of ordinary citizens – which means those environmentalists will lose.

        Fossil fuel companies were universally admired until climate alarmists made them the fall guy for a warming climate. Now some politicians consider them criminals because they expressed skepticism about climate change. This is the kind of foolishness that gets somebody like Trump elected.

      • Fossil fuel companies are not universally admired. Look at coal – regularly called out for various forms of pollution and miner safety violations. Fossil industries would not clean up their act without a fight. You may be a fan, but I am not when they do these things. When they lobby it is to protect their right to pollute and have their pipelines built regardless of who does not want them, and they have the money to get these things through. It is no coincidence that the most denialist congressmen are in oil and coal states and have influence on committees important to shove their industrial interests through. Trump hires these people into his cabinet, so now they are even more ingrained in the system, and that is before even talking about the banker crowd and the ignoramus they put in charge of energy.

    • =={ One problem I see is that the administration and the party are now not the same entity. It’s now politicians versus managers, and they have different mind-sets.}==

      Scott Pruitt isn’t a politician?

  12. This is a good start by Pruitt. Watermelon heads exploding all over the MSM was to be expected. Misrepresenting what he actually said is a standard progressive tactic.
    The WaPo concern is easily fixed by taking down the EPA website and then revising it to something more closely representing current knowledge. Except for the now cooled 2015-16 El Nino blip, no warming this century. Yet this century comprises ~1/3 of the rise in atmospheric CO2 since 1958 (onset of Keeling Curve). Observational ECS ~1.65 not 3+. SLR not accelerating. Planet greening per NASA. Polar bears thriving. California drowning. Arctic ice recovering. CMIP5 models failing- running 3.5x hot innthe tropical troposphere. Even Santers new paper with the illegitimate tropical stratosphere correction found them running 1.7x hot.

    • Hi Rud,
      1) Didn’t you mean no warming caused by human development? I’m pretty sure Curry’s main theory is it’s all just natural variability and nothing humans are doing will affect the long term climate trends.
      2) Why should we care what happens to bears or most large carnivores? They serve no useful purpose to Americans as far as I can tell. We generally don’t eat them and they are dangerous.
      2) At the current rate of recovery at what point can we declare that the polar regions have fully recovered? If it doesn’t matter now why should it matter in the future?

      • I literally meant no statistically meaningul warming this century (since 2000) whatever the cause. The pause is almost certainly returning. The months since July 2016 show the fastest cooling in the satellite record. And the unusual persistent low in the Arctic drawing in warmer air (all the MSM headlines) is actually a massive further cooling event.

        Polar bears are an Al Gore meme and have been used to sell CAGW. Their thriving refutes the meme.

        Akasofu published on a roughly 60-65 year Arctic full ice cycle. This ismsupported by DMI August ice extent record to 1939, and by Russian ice records. IMO the true ice nadir was 2007 and we are 1/3 of the way to the next maximum. This can already be seen in multiyear ice recovery. Falling Arctic ice has been used to sell CAGW. Ice recovery refutes the meme.

      • Do you agree with the latest data from Dr. Roy Spencer?
        http://www.drroyspencer.com/2017/03/uah-global-temperature-update-for-february-2017-0-35-deg-c/
        Looking at his graph the drop in the temperature was faster and almost straight down in the 97-98 El Nino event. In his Feb. measurement there was a +0.35 deg C increase which is a lot slower than the rate of the previous decline for a comparable time period (so far).
        From what I know about satellite sensors they don’t measure temperature but actually the reflective property of oxygen atoms. He just published the Version 6 dataset paper so I hope he has factored in the measurable decrease in oxygen in the atmosphere since we began measurements.
        scrippso2.ucsd.edu/ .

    • I’m still in “robot” mode Rud! At the risk of repeating myself:

      Do you classify Scott Pruitt’s claim as a “fact”, a “factoid”, an “alternative fact” or “fake news”?

      • Depends on which specific statement sentence. Some are facts: measuring human impact with precision is challenging. When two comments mysteriously in moderation emerge, you will have a logical proof.
        Some are factoids in the Kip Hansen sense: humans not primarily responsible. Again when the moderated comments emerge, you will understand why. Depending on perspective, that statement could also be an alt fact in the Kip Hansen sense. Lots of fake news was provided by MSM, none by Pruitt.

      • Thank you Rud.

        So it seems you did understand my question all along! Now, up above you state “Arctic ice recovering.”

        Do you classify that claim as a “fact”, a “factoid”, an “alternative fact” or “fake news”?

      • As a fact verifible by DMI, NSIDC, and Russia. Do you not know that there are two Russian ice breakers accompnying three supply ships all frozen in place off Chukoya (sp?) Siberia.

      • Rud – Those “icebound icebreakers” are “fake news” with very high confidence. I have been covering that “story” since before the cryodenialosphere picked it up:

        http://GreatWhiteCon.info/2017/02/alternative-facts-about-the-arctic-in-2017/

        Here’s the very latest “Shock News!” from Chaunskaya Bay:

        The Northern Sea Route seems to be opening up extremely early this year!

      • The Siberian Times has a more recent story about the ice breakers:

        “Global warming? Icebreaker marooned by thick ice connects to shore power supply”

        http://siberiantimes.com/other/others/news/n0872-global-warming-icebreaker-marooned-by-thick-ice-connects-to-shore-power-supply/

        They apparently are close to shore.

      • Jim2 – February 10th is more recent than March 11th? Surely not?

        And surely the Siberian Times headline writer was over the top with their “marooned”?

        Just as surely as Rud was “alternative” with his “a fact verifible by DMI, NSIDC, and Russia”!

      • The ships are stuck off Pevek, not the part you show in the satellite picture.

        Fake news indeed! I think it’s bloody obvious who’s peddling the fake news.

      • Northern sea route transits:

        Year Total
        2011 41
        2012 46
        2013 71
        2014 53
        2015 18
        2016 18

      • Jim2 – I think “it’s bloody obvious who’s peddling the fake news” too. You and Rud, amongst others. Let’s start with the churnalistic source you quote shall we?

        The fourth vessel in the convoy – the Admiral Makarov – has been dispatched to undertake other icebreaking duties in the region.

        The failure of the return voyage is not surprising given the time of year.

        Are those two sentences “facts”, “factoids”, “alternative facts” or “fake news”? What do they tell us about Rud’s “two Russian ice breakers accompanying three supply ships all frozen in place”?

  13. Scott Pruitt’s alternative facts.

    Alternative fact # 1:

    At one point in the exchange, Sanders simply asked Pruitt, “Why is the climate changing?” “I’m asking you a personal opinion,” he continued.

    “My personal opinion is immaterial to the job of the…” Pruitt began.

    Alternative fact #2:

    “I think that measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do and there’s tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact, so no, I would not agree that it’s a primary contributor to the global warming that we see,” Pruitt said on the program “

    Interesting how his personal opinion is irrelevant one minute and then another minute forms his basis for determining (as the head of the EPA) what is a primary contributor to climate change, eh?

    • “Why is the climate changing?”
      This question alone indicates confirmation bias ( implicit is that one is talking about global mean temperature ).

      One of my favorite charts from the IPCC is this one:

      It’s a latitude band chart of precipitation anomalies for the globe.
      For the moment, leaving aside the veracity, you can’t go back to any decade without one latitude band being anomalous. Probably no one knows why. But the climate is always changing in ways more significant than global mean temperature.

      • Geoff Sherrington

        Turbulent Eddie,
        Favourite chart?
        Do tell us why there is pattern in the 1961-1990 time period?
        How can you subtract 1961-1990 data from itself and retain a residual?
        (Yes I have intense dislike for the climate work device used herre, the so-called anomaly method. Nick Stokes berates me for this dislike, but his main arguments fail to convince. Raw data any time for me).
        Geoff

      • Steven Mosher

        Geoff. Wrt to the anomaly method. You get the same answer whether you use it or don’t use it.

        As for only using raw data. ..you get more warming with raw data.

      • Geoff Sherrington

        Steven,
        You might get more warming using your methods of analysis with raw v. anomaly, but I get less using my methods. One of us suffers terminological and/or methodological inexactitude.
        I dislike the anomaly method partly because one has to append extra information each time it is used, like the choice of reference period, which was the point of my comment to TE.
        Geoff

    • Numbnuts, learn the difference between opinion and assessment.

      Pruitt is offering his assessment of the degree of precision currently available and the degree of disagreement over impact.

      Here is an opinion – your use of “alternative fact” is indicative of what a putz you are, not a sign of cuteness.

  14. Jim D: “It may be too soon to tell for him, but every major scientific society, government and industry have recognized that emissions need to slow down, and that is why we have Paris.”

    When the Democrats were in power in Congress and in the White House, they didn’t do nearly as much as current environmental law would have allowed them to do in pushing strong anti-carbon regulations. The Democrats had the power, but not the commitment or the will.

    In direct contradiction to their professed beliefs concerning the dangers of climate change, they chose not to use the full authority of the Clean Air Act to regulate all of America’s carbon emission sources, not just those from coal-fired power plants.

    Sooner or later, the Democrats will be back in the driver’s seat in Washington, possibly as soon as 2021. Here is what a newly-elected Democratic president could do starting in January of 2021 to put us on track towards achieving Barack Obama’s publicly-stated goal of an 80% reduction in America’s carbon emissions by 2050:

    1: On his or her first day in office, issue an Executive Order declaring a carbon pollution emergency and directing all departments and agencies of the Federal Government to cooperate with the EPA in developing a fully comprehensive anti-carbon regulatory program.

    2: Publish a Clean Air Act (CAA) Section 108 Endangerment Finding for carbon to complement and greatly expand upon 2009’s Section 202 Endangerment Finding.

    3: Using the CAA Section 108 Endangerment Finding as the basis, set a National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) for carbon at 450 parts per million. Use the NAAQS of 450 ppm as the basis for legally enabling America’s commitment to the Paris climate accords.

    4: Publish an aggressive framework of anti-carbon regulations which target all sources of America’s carbon pollution, not just those of coal-fired power power plants. Develop a corresponding framework of stiff carbon pollution fines which is the functional equivalent of a legislated tax on carbon.

    5: Use a series of cooperative agreements with the state governments to enforce these anti-carbon regulations and to collect the carbon pollution fines, assigning all revenues thus collected to the individual state governments.

    Under existing environmental law, the Executive Branch could in theory do everything which needs to be done in forcing steep reductions in America’s carbon emissions, and to enforce those reductions legally and constitutionally without another word of new legislation being needed from the US Congress.

    Once they are back in control, if the Democrats don’t move aggressively forward in pressing strong anti-carbon regulations, ones which target all sectors of the American economy, then they can be rightly accused of being completely cynical and deceitful in claiming to be concerned about the dangers of climate change.

    • Yes, if they knew they only had 2 years with control in Congress, that would have been one the big things right along with healthcare, and possibly also immigration they could have tackled. Another two years and they may well have done that. As it was the CPP and fuel efficiency plans, that they could do without congress, were in line with other countries in the Paris agreement, and the US would not be seen as laggards if those plans were allowed to continue. A carbon tax makes sense, either the revenue neutral kind that rewards efficiency and helps the poor to buy fuel or rebates them in some way, or one that uses revenue to develop new energy technologies and infrastructure for it.

      • Beta Blocker

        Jim D: “Yes, if they knew they only had 2 years with control in Congress, that would have been one the big things right along with healthcare, and possibly also immigration they could have tackled. Another two years and they may well have done that. As it was the CPP and fuel efficiency plans, that they could do without congress, were in line with other countries in the Paris agreement, and the US would not be seen as laggards if those plans were allowed to continue. A carbon tax makes sense, either the revenue neutral kind that rewards efficiency and helps the poor to buy fuel or rebates them in some way, or one that uses revenue to develop new energy technologies and infrastructure for it.”

        Jim D, once again, you evade the fundamental issue in an attempt to absolve the Democrats from not acting in accordance with their professed beliefs concerning the dangers of climate change.

        If an excessive concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere does indeed make it an atmospheric pollutant — it has been identified as such according to the EPA’s 2009 Section 202 Endangerment Finding — then regulatory actions published, coordinated, and enforced by the EPA must be the nation’s preferred approach to dealing with CO2 as a pollutant.

        This is what the Clean Air Act demands; but more important than that, strict carbon regulation is the only means we have for guaranteeing that America’s carbon emissions can be reduced 80% by 2050.

        As for the Clean Power Plan (CPP), remember that CO2 is a well-mixed gas. The earth’s atmosphere doesn’t know where a CO2 molecule comes from, and carbon emissions are ubiquitous throughout the American economy. The Clean Power Plan would have been struck down in the courts because it is not written according to the EPA’s own historical practices in that it unfairly targets the coal industry for the better part of our emission reductions while leaving other segments of America’s economy largely untouched.

        As for the supposed miracles of renewable energy technology, it is impossible for advancing technology by itself to reduce America’s carbon emissions to the extent which is necessary to meet the 2050 reduction target. Advanced technology can play an important role, but strictly-enforced energy conservation measures will also be necessary if we are to go as far and as fast as needed to achieve the 2050 goal. For Democrats to claim otherwise is in itself a cynical and deceitful act on their part.

      • It’s all very well for the EPA to treat CO2 as a pollutant and even perhaps dictate a safe level for it (say 450 ppm). Then what? It requires international agreements to put this into effect, and the EPA does not have that jurisdiction. This is not the normal kind of EPA problem. A better parallel is the Montreal Protocol for CFCs. The EPA can help with national targets consistent with the required global mitigation, and can probably even impose penalties for excesses in emission rates in this case to protect the global environment, much as it was to protect the ozone layer with CFC mitigation.

      • Beta Blocker

        Jim D, what you are doing here is looking for excuses not to follow the only policy pathway that can possibly reduce America’s carbon emissions 80% by 2050. This has the effect of making the sincerity of your professed commitment to fighting climate change open to question.

        Jim D: “It’s all very well for the EPA to treat CO2 as a pollutant and even perhaps dictate a safe level for it (say 450 ppm). Then what? It requires international agreements to put this into effect, and the EPA does not have that jurisdiction. This is not the normal kind of EPA problem.”

        When the US Supreme Court ruled in 2010 that 2009’s Section 202 Endangerment Finding had been properly developed and published according to the Clean Air Act’s provisions, the precedent was established for regulating carbon emissions using the EPA as our primary coordinating agency. That decision made CO2 a ‘normal kind of EPA problem’ to the extent it needed to be to allow for aggressive regulation of all of America’s carbon emissions.

        What the Obama Administration should have done next — if they had been truly serious about reducing all of America’s carbon emissions — was to publish a CAA Section 108 Endangerment Finding using the Section 202 finding as a template. They could then have used that Section 108 finding as a basis for pushing a series of powerful and effective anti-carbon regulations that touched every sector of the American economy.

        But the Obamamanians didn’t do that. They published the Clean Power Plan, which was a fatally flawed regulation from get-go and which was then, and still is, likely to be rejected in the courts. Combined with their refusal to enact a carbon tax in 2009, the failure to move forward with a Section 108 finding had the effect of making the sincerity of President Obama’s and the Democrat’s commitment to fighting climate change very much open to question.

        Jim D: “A better parallel is the Montreal Protocol for CFCs. The EPA can help with national targets consistent with the required global mitigation, and can probably even impose penalties for excesses in emission rates in this case to protect the global environment, much as it was to protect the ozone layer with CFC mitigation.”

        It’s often been said that America’s leadership is vitally necessary to enable the world-wide effort needed to win the fight against climate change.

        The Democrats didn’t need to sign a treaty to demonstrate America’s commitment to fighting climate change. They could have demonstrated that commitment through aggressive action in controlling the carbon emissions America itself is generating, using the EPA as their policy enforcement tool.

        President Obama himself could have personally demonstrated his commitment to fighting climate change by accepting the political risks of pushing for comprehensive anti-carbon regulation and of asking for genuine sacrifice on the part of the American people.

        But neither President Obama nor the Democrats in Congress were willing to take those political risks. Would the Democrats and a newly elected Democratic president and Congress make the same decision again if the voters return them to power in 2021?

      • Beta Blocker, you are saying that there was a faster way to reduce emissions despite the fact that there wasn’t. Technologically we are not there where we can just replace emissions wholesale unless you have an idea that no one else has thought of. The pace of reduction proposed is that of the western world, and is enough to meet the Paris targets. There is no way for the US to go faster than anyone else, and also no need. What the Obama administration did was just right. Get China involved and push for a pragmatic reduction from all the other major emitters. Perhaps with another two years of Congress after 2010, he could have done some budget-related changes like a carbon tax, but I am pretty sure he can’t do that without them. Anyway states are free to enact those and some have.

      • Beta Blocker

        Jim D: “Beta Blocker, you are saying that there was a faster way to reduce emissions despite the fact that there wasn’t.”

        Jim D, I am questioning the sincerity of the Democrat’s professed commitment to the goal President Obama set for a 28% reduction in America’s GHG emissions by 2025, a 32% reduction by 2030, and an 80% reduction by 2050.

        What is your opinion concerning these targets? Are they too ambitious, or are they not ambitious enough?

        Do you believe these targets are achievable in the time frames President Obama set out without imposing mandatory energy conservation measures which have the effect of rationing all forms of fossil fuel energy?

        If you believe Obama’s GHG reduction targets and his schedule dates are the right ones, how do you propose we go about achieving them?

      • So far in 2015 US emissions were more than 10% below 2005 levels, so it remains on track despite not even trying hard for most of this time, as I think coal is dying a natural death, and renewables are expanding anyway just as a matter of practicality and economy helped by general public support for clean energy. Sticking to planned CAFE standards will also be important and technology is helping there too. Don’t underestimate technology advances, and industrial, commercial and public motivations to fix the emission problem. They know that the future is not fossil fuels.

      • jimd

        Surely the US co2 levels are dropping because of (highly unpopular in some quarters) fracking and that the US has exported much of their heavy industry and manufacturing to other countries?

        If the environmental lobby has their way and reduce fracking AND Trump succeeds in bringing back heavy industry to America, surely the co2 levels could start to rise again?

        tonyb

      • The US oil industry has stayed put, and that is a major contributor. The US per capita CO2 emission level is still on the high end globally because of that. Even if (somehow) heavy industry comes back, it will be more efficient and employ less people. That was one of his rhetorical promises but it relies on him, as the government, forcing the CEOs not to look at the efficiencies they may have gained by manufacturing and selling overseas, and trying to punish them for that instead. It’s big government meddling with the marketplace, just like the conservatives wanted (?).

      • Tony, you are correct concerning the drop in CO2 emissions in the US. But natural gas is great! We won’t be getting rid of fracking anytime soon, it didn’t even happen under obummer, it sure as hell won’t happen under Trump. Natural gas is a great feedstock as well as an energy source.

        Of course, it wasn’t US citizens who moved manufacturing over seas, it was business. I can only hope some of it comes back to the US – CO2 emissions be damned!!!

      • jimd

        We all appreciate that there is some low hanging fruit that can be picked that could reduce co2 or even dangerous pollutants.

        In Britain the Govt encouraged people a decade ago to switch to diesel cars in order to reduce co2 despite everyone telling them that the emissions from diesel were much more dangerous pollutants.

        After encouraging people very vigorously they are now back pedalling and diesel vehicles are now seen as the spawn of the de%il.

        One related thing that came up in todays newspapers is that ‘white van man’ has proliferated as people want their internet purchase delivered immediately. Their vans are apparently causing ten times more pollution than their emissions tests originally claimed (thank you tax dodging in the UK Google)

        Has America seen the same upsurge in smaller diesel vehicles used for rapid deliveries?

        tonyb

      • I am not aware of diesel being promoted in the US. Fuel is cheap anyway and the US has strict car emission standards.

      • jimd

        bearing in mind you say the oil industry is the biggest problem and that fuel is cheap, presumably you would like to see the tax on it increased to European levels in order to sharply curtail fuel use?

        tonyb

      • A $40/tonne carbon tax would raise it by 40 cents per gallon. If this is phased in over a few years, people would not notice. It fluctuates by a $1 per gallon year to year anyway. The revenue-neutral version of a carbon tax would more than offset this with rebates for those who use less energy than average.

      • @ jim D?

        If people won’t notice the carbon tax, how will it curtail emissions?

        the only way it would reduce emissions is if people use less because it’s more expensive, and they will only do that if they notice the expense

      • Its purpose is to add the true social cost. If it was saved it would pay for adaptation and damage.

      • now you are just being silly.

        according to you, the ‘true social cost’ is that the rising CO2 levels will cause the sea levels to rise by meters and flood the coats (among many other problems), a 0.50/gal tax on gas isn’t going to pay for that.

      • They came up with $40 per tonne and account for investment at 3%, and then before you know it you are talking about real money, so yes that is the amount needed. You get a big fuss about the SCC, but that is the size of it when you start talking about the numbers.

      • jimd

        surely there is a flaw in your logic? If people would not notice a 40 cent tax increase on fuel they will continue to consume it at the same rate as now.

        if you want to reduce the harm that you believe the oil industries do, surely taxes need to be raised enough to significantly reduce demand? That is to say, to European levels.

        tonyb

      • I don’t think of a carbon tax as a deterrent, just as a much needed revenue source that skims off the top. If it is revenue-neutral it can be rebated to subsidize energy bills. The low-carbon users would net gain from such a tax. Or it can be partly rebated and partly subsidize infrastructure needed for energy generation.

    • They were scared that if they used that Power, they would be seen as Dictators and Kicked out. As it stands, the American People chose to avoid that possibility anyway and Believe Trumps better way with regard to Jobs and less taxes and so on. Bad luck Lefties. See if you can beat him in 4 years time.

      • Beta Blocker

        CrabbyOne: “They were scared that if they used that Power, they would be seen as Dictators and Kicked out. As it stands, the American People chose to avoid that possibility anyway and believe Trumps better way with regard to Jobs and less taxes and so on. Bad luck Lefties. See if you can beat him in 4 years time.”

        Donald Trump is now president because Hillary Clinton didn’t do the work needed to ensure she won the Electoral College in addition to winning the popular vote. She ignored warnings that the swing states were vulnerable; she didn’t do what she needed to do to get out the vote in those states, and that’s why Trump sits in the Oval Office.

        That said, there is no question but that if serious economic and personal sacrifice was ever to be demanded of the American people in the name of fighting climate change, the public debate over the validity of today’s climate science would quickly reach a critical mass.

        The Democrats claim the dangers of climate change are real and that the science is powerfully on their side.

        If their concern is genuine and not merely a political ploy to attract environmentally conscious voters, they should be willing to defend that position in the court of public opinion and to demonstrate the leadership needed to convince America’s voters that strict anti-carbon regulation is necessary.

        For Democrats to do otherwise once they return to power would be a cynical and deceitful act on their part.

      • I disagree.
        Donald Trump is now President Trump because we needed an outsider that spoke the truth.
        He offered to fix the underlying problems of Washington DC BAU and the bad deals taxpayers are given.
        He was the one that knew the solutions did not include CO2, carbon credits, a tax revenue stream, CAGW and fixing the earth’s fever.
        afaik There is zero evidence of unprecedented climate catastrophe.
        But, there’s tons of evidence some people do us harm.
        He said that it’s time to end the bad deals.
        And we agreed.

      • He’s conned people before, and this is the biggest one of them all. His plans usually lead to the little guy suffering and/or him losing big money, not just his own but other people’s. Trump has a deluded reality that we can only glimpse with his twitterings. His handlers have their work cut out, and they need to watch him 24/7 to restrain him. When they fail, there are others that have to follow behind and clean up the messes he leaves. Sad.

      • Beta,

        Maybe this is your real point:

        “For Democrats to do otherwise once they return to power would be a cynical and deceitful act on their part.”

    • Has this meme grown old?

      Now we have to wait at least 4 years to get a Democrat back in the White House for your storyline to get enacted? The Democrats who you have repeatedly stated failed to act on the problem in the first place?

      • Beta Blocker

        timg56, the real point here is that those who are pushing technology innovation as The Solution to climate change — if only we would spend enough money to buy it — can’t get the job done with technology alone in the thirty-five years before the 80% target is due in 2050.

        Just spending money on technology isn’t going to work, Serious energy conservation measures, including what amounts to government rationing of fossil fuel energy resources, is necessary to meet the 2050 reduction target.

        These conservation measures will impose some level of sacrifice on some large number of people who now enjoy the benefits of fossil fuel energy.

        To claim otherwise is to play a game of politics with the climate change issue, a game which has no clear outcome except to guarantee that America will eventually be covered from coast to coast to with an unholy combination of wind mills and gas fracking wells.

      • I’m still not sure what your point is.

        If you think Americans are going to make the significant reductions in fossil fuel use you say is necessary, then I’d say you are living in a fantasy world.

        As for wind mills and fracking wells – the first is going to be limited. Even the wind industry’s proponents acknowledge 20% of US generation is the maximum wind can contribute. The second has a rather small footprint.

      • Beta Blocker

        timg56: “I’m still not sure what your point is. If you think Americans are going to make the significant reductions in fossil fuel use you say is necessary, then I’d say you are living in a fantasy world. As for wind mills and fracking wells – the first is going to be limited. Even the wind industry’s proponents acknowledge 20% of US generation is the maximum wind can contribute. The second has a rather small footprint.”

        First, as someone who makes his living in the nuclear industry, I don’t want to see this country covered from coast to coast with an unholy combination of wind mills and gas fracking wells when we can do much of the job of carbon emission reduction using nuclear power.

        Second, I want the public debate over the validity of today’s climate science to go critical mass, so that doubters — I will not call them deniers — can come face to face with their accusers in the court of US public opinion.

        Third, I want those of the progressive left who are using the issue of climate change as a political stick to acknowledge that they can’t reduce our carbon emissions to the extent they claim is necessary without imposing considerable personal and economic sacrifice on the American people.

        Fourth, I want the Democrats who are using the issue of climate change as a political weapon against the Republicans to explain why they didn’t pass a carbon tax while they controlled the US Congress and why they didn’t use the full authority of the Clean Air Act against carbon emissions while they controlled the Executive Branch.

        Fifth, I want a grand experiment in the fast-track adoption of renewable energy technologies to be performed, an experiment in which a representative region of the country is assigned the task of demonstrating what kinds of technologies and what kinds of implementation strategies either do, or do not, actually work in moving towards a low-carbon economy.

        For that last item, a grand experiment in the fast-track adoption of renewable energy technologies, the Californians have already embarked upon an ambitious plan to this very thing.

        They have committed to a 50% reduction in their power sector carbon emissions by 2030, and a 100% reduction by 2050. And they believe they can do it without nuclear power.

        My position concerning the Californians and their grand experiment is that no one should stand in their way, but that we must also be vigilant in keeping an eye on the Californians lest they get cold feet and renege on their commitment.

  15. Judith quotes Pruitt:
    “I think that measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do and there’s tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact”

    If we are just talking about impacts that currently affect humans I agree. Technology will shield most of us from most of the first order effects like extreme weather, pollution and rising sea levels. If I had to guess I bet genetic engineering will pretty much eliminate our need to worry about the health of the rest of the biosphere. The human brain is the most powerful thing on the planet, until AI becomes self aware :)

  16. Pingback: Scott Pruitt On Climate | Transterrestrial Musings

  17. Has anyone consulted the Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth (the BIBLE) for it’s spin on this situation? The best Book says there will be a “Millennium” After the Lord’s return for the People of the Earth to live under. So obviously, there will not be the Doom and Gloom the Lefties expect to see. The Earth will go on it’s merry way till the Lord says otherwise. Just my 20 cents worth.

  18. It’s an interesting interlude.

    Q: Do you believe, that it’s been proven, that CO2 is the primary control knob for climate? Do you believe that?

    A: “I think that measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do and there’s tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact, so no, I would not agree that it’s a primary contributor to the global warming that we see. But we don’t know that yet. We need to continue the debate, continue the review and analysis.

    Many facets within.
    First, there is a mismatch between the question and the answer.

    The question is about proof and control knob for climate.

    The answer is about global warming, then a caveat of what we do and don’t know and then a call for continued analysis.

    My response (after more reflection than an interview might offer ) might have been:

    “There likely will never be complete, unequivocal proof of attribution of any trends in the atmosphere. However, it is likely that increased CO2 causes increased global temperature. But global temperature is not climate. The questions then become about: extent, marginal changes to climate ( storms, precipitation, extremes – and change is from a base, not zero ), risk-benefit ratio from such assessments and perhaps most importantly, the secular changes in global CO2 emissions.

    The extent of warming has been lower than the low end of past modeled projections. Changes to climate have been correspondingly small. Many of these changes would appear to convey benefit to humanity ( reduced storm intensity from reduced kinetic energy, reduced variability, etc. ) beyond the direct benefit of the energy and fertilization of crops. And some 75% of global CO2 emissions are from countries with fertility rates lower than replacement rate, which will perpetuate the already falling global CO2 emissions rate, perhaps making dictates unnecessary.”

    That’s how I might have answered.

  19. Climate Control Knobs:

    Solar Radiance ( the largest knob )
    Orbital Parameters ( very large knob )
    Orography ( Oceans/Mountains/Continents ) ( very large knob ),
    Chaotic Fluid Flow
    Atmospheric Constiuency ( including CO2 ).

    Solar,Orbit, and Orography are probably most significant.
    But, nobody’s twiddling those knobs, while we are twiddling the CO2 knob.

    That should give on solace. The biggest knobs are relatively constant.
    Climate may change but not by much because most of the important knobs aren’t changing.

    • We only have control of one of them, and it is as large as you want to make it. Current forcing stands at about ten times what the sun alone can do on century time scales. Climate only changes with these control knobs because all changes can be explained through these. There are some tipping points too where a small twiddle of a knob leads to a large change, like the Ice Ages.

      • You’re distorting the meaning of the word climate.
        The poles will still have an energy deficit, seasons will exist about the same, jet streams will still occur. Deserts and jungles will still exist at about the same locations.

        And you’re conceiving of everything as a problem. Too the extent that change occurs, models have indicated decreased kinetic energy ( less intense storms? ) and decreased temperature variability ( less frequent extremes? ). To be sure, these changes would be small, but mind the exaggerations when applied to negatives as well.

        There are some tipping points too where a small twiddle of a knob leads to a large change, like the Ice Ages.
        Ice Ages clearly arise from not twiddles of the small knobs but big changes in the big knob of orbits. I’m pretty sure no one is predicting an ice age from ‘global warming’.

      • Ice Ages occur through a subtle albedo forcing change from small orbital changes. These albedo changes have big positive feedbacks, hence the Ice Ages. I find no skeptics who want to defend a 4 C global temperature increase that would come with 700 ppm that would itself come from continued growth in emissions per capita and global population. Skeptics would rather deny that 4 C is possible than defend allowing unmitigated climate change at the central sensitivity estimate. These are two different arguments, but we never get to the second one with the skeptics, which is essentially the no-harm at 4 C argument.

      • “And you’re conceiving of everything as a problem. Too the extent that change occurs, models have indicated decreased kinetic energy ( less intense storms? ) and decreased temperature variability ( less frequent extremes? ). To be sure, these changes would be small, but mind the exaggerations when applied to negatives as well.”

        Kinetic energy is not just driven by equ to pole deltaT. Release of LH from increased absolute humidity is another (drives vertical motion). Convective storms (incl Tropical storms) is the obvious mechanism in which that occurs but it is a very sig process in baroclinic generated storms (mid-lat depressions) too. Given the reduction in PJS strength the propensity of JS disruption and “stuck” regimes means precipitable water and slow system motion bring an increased flooding threat.
        Decreased temp variability (I assume you mean deltaT equ to pole) does not come into it in regards continental temp extremes (high summer temps) – because of the reduced mobility afforded by a weaker PJS the persistence of Rossby waves.

      • Working with precipitation measurements made at nearly 1,000 weather stations located in 114 different countries — each of which had at least 100 years of observations that resulted in a macro-dataset comprising over 1.5 million monthly precipitation amounts — Wijngaarden and Syed (2015) developed a precipitation history for Earth’s entire land mass (minus Antarctica), which they ultimately used to calculate global changes in precipitation for a set of different time intervals relative to the 1961-90 time interval. And what did these results reveal?

        The two Canadian researchers report that “most trends exhibited no clear precipitation change,” noting that “global changes in precipitation over the Earth’s land mass excluding Antarctica relative to 1961-90 were estimated to be: -1.2±1.7, 2.6±2.5 and -5.4±8.1 percent per century for the periods 1850-2000, 1900-2000 and 1950-2000, respectively.” In addition, they state that “stations experiencing low, moderate and heavy annual precipitation did not show very different precipitation trends,” which would imply, as they describe it, that “deserts/jungles are neither expanding nor shrinking due to changes in precipitation patterns.”

        And they therefore also state, in the terminal sentence of their paper, that it is “reasonable to conclude that some caution is warranted about claiming that large changes to global precipitation have occurred during the last 150 years.”

        Van Wijngaarden, W.A. and Syed, A. 2015. Changes in annual precipitation over the Earth’s land mass excluding Antarctica from the 18th century to 2013. Journal of Hydrology 531: 1020-1027.

      • RIE, can you find a paper where someone has claimed large changes of precipitation over the last 150 years?

      • “Our reconstruction reveals that prominent seesaw patterns of alternating moisture regimes observed in instrumental data12, 13, 14 across the Mediterranean, western USA, and China have operated consistently over the past twelve centuries. Using an updated compilation of 128 temperature proxy records15, we assess the relationship between the reconstructed centennial-scale Northern Hemisphere hydroclimate and temperature variability. Even though dry and wet conditions occurred over extensive areas under both warm and cold climate regimes, a statistically significant co-variability of hydroclimate and temperature is evident for particular regions. We compare the reconstructed hydroclimate anomalies with coupled atmosphere–ocean general circulation model simulations and find reasonable agreement during pre-industrial times. However, the intensification of the twentieth-century-mean hydroclimate anomalies in the simulations, as compared to previous centuries, is not supported by our new multi-proxy reconstruction. This finding suggests that much work remains before we can model hydroclimate variability accurately, and highlights the importance of using palaeoclimate data to place recent and predicted hydroclimate changes in a millennium-long context16, 17.”

        http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v532/n7597/full/nature17418.html

        So the models are wrong – not much surprise there. Much less convincing are blog comment narratives about how a hyper-complex system works. The millennium long context in a highly variable system is an obvious necessity.

      • We have only had a small fraction of the projected climate change, so you can’t discount possible changes in precipitation going forwards which it appears you have. In a warmer climate precipitation is heavier, but droughts could also be more severe.

      • I can guarantee that we have seen a fraction of the variability the system is capable of.

      • Not just random variability too – forced change all in one direction and fast.

      • The planet is busily moving to sequester carbon – for reasons other than global warming – and moving to 21st century energy within decades. Jim is a dinosaur.

      • What other reasons are there?

      • Food security, economic development, soil water holding capacity, less downstream flooding, less erosion, drought and flood resilience, more efficient use of agricultural inputs, reversing desertification, higher levels of nutrients and minerals in soils. biodiversity, ecological restoration…

        Carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels and cement production – from 1750 to 2011 – was about 365 billion metric tonnes as carbon (GtC), with another 180 GtC from deforestation and agriculture. A critical metric is the losses from soils and forests.

        Putting carbon back where it belongs – and where it does the most good – is the goal of many countries and many millions of people.

  20. > Can you square what Pruitt actually said with the […] quotes and headlines about this?

    Of course

    I would not agree that it’s a primary contributor to the global warming that we see.

    Next post, please.

    ***

    > I can’t.

    Why, of course.

  21. Essentially, with Scott Pruitt we’re stepping off the — where we should have stepped off back in 2009.

  22. Maybe Judith can clarify something. Is the suggestion that we should be able to (or need to) precisely determine how much is anthropogenic?

    • Curious George

      Climate predictions are based on quantities which have never been measured with any precision, like the Effective Radiation Level or a Climate Sensitivity. I have exactly zero confidence in these predictions. I agree that an action is urgently needed: make better predictions. Call them predictions, not projections. Stop using weasel words.

      • Curious,
        The problem is that some of these probably cannot be measured with better precision (or, at least, not easily). That’s why these are presented with confidence/uncertainty intervals. That way you see the likelihood/probability of it falling within a certain range. That’s largely how science works.

      • Curious George

        That’s exactly how a pseudo-science works. It knows it can’t do any better, so please trust it. What happened to Physics?

      • It’s not precise, but you can take it for what it looks like which is 1 C per 100 ppm. This gives 2.3 C per doubling as an effective transient rate just based on observations.
        http://woodfortrees.org/plot/gistemp/from:1950/mean:12/plot/esrl-co2/scale:0.01/offset:-3.2

      • Curious George

        The point is that it is deliberately constructed to be obscure and imprecise. Not what I would expect of a science.

      • The point is that it is deliberately constructed to be obscure and imprecise. Not what I would expect of a science.

        No, it’s not. That it isn’t necessarily as precise as maybe we would like, does not mean that it is constructed to be obscure and imprecise. Presenting uncertainties (or confidence intervals) is a perfectly normally part of science. Expecting absolute precision is not.

      • Curious George

        Science should build on measurable quantities. Astronomy, for example. If you start with an assumption that celestial cycles as signs of divine communications, you get astrology.

      • Curious,

        Science should build on measurable quantities.

        Indeed, but this does not mean that science requires measuring things with absolute precision. If anything, this is almost never possible. Science requires presenting results with uncertainties/confidence intervals.

        Astronomy, for example.

        I’m well aware of what happens in Astronomy.

    • Judith is more than capable of speaking for herself, but my short answer is yes.

      My longer answer is that at the very least the climate models at the centre of debate need to either be improved so that they do not need arbitrary tuning to hindcast history or be abandoned.

      • Judith is more than capable of speaking for herself, but my short answer is yes.

        Firstly, absolute precision is almost never possible. We’ll always be working with a range of possible outcomes. How do you define when the range is too large?

        As for the models, even if they are at the centre of the debate (which I’m not convinced they are) they aren’t the only – or even the key – evidence.

      • aTTP, the problem with the models is the number of pseudo scientific studies which are premised on the models. There are even some which feed various input scenarios into the models and then claim the output is data.

        Oh, and absolute precision is not the problem. It’s worst than that.

      • > the climate models at the centre of debate need to either be improved so that they do not need arbitrary tuning to hindcast history or be abandoned.

        and I would say that one good test of any model is that after it has been tuned, if you change the starting conditions by an amount smaller than the claimed precision of the measurements, the model must produce essentially the same results.

        If it doesn’t, then the model results are the result of choosing the tuning parameters, not based on data.

        side note, starting conditions should not be defined as something like and accuracy of 0.1 degree, but instead as +- X degrees, which isn’t going to be 0.05 degrees if anyone competent in statistical analysis is honestly doing the work.

      • Steven Mosher

        I won’t believe in gravity until they get it right to 100 significant digits.

      • Steven, as my first reply has been censored I’ll try again.

        Believe what you will, but the uncertainty over the output of the climate models is significantly greater than the uncertainty over the universal gravitational constant or the uncertainty over the laws of gravity.

      • The fundamental fact of models is that they have at their core nonlinear equations of fluid transport. They are chaotic. They are sensitively dependent on initial conditions. Beyond a certain time there is no longer a single deterministic solution. All of the above.

        Within the unavoidable limits of measurement precision of inputs – and of the characterization of processes and couplings – there are thousands of starting points and thousands of solutions that diverge exponentially. Try to understand that this is true not just scientifically but mathematically.

        “In sum, a strategy must recognise what is possible. In climate research and modelling, we should recognise that we are dealing with a coupled non-linear chaotic system, and therefore that the long-term prediction of future climate states is not possible. The most we can expect to achieve is the prediction of the probability distribution of the system’s future possible states by the generation of ensembles of model solutions.” IPCC TAR 14.2.2.2

        What they mean by the generation of ensembles is what is called perturbed physics ensembles – many solutions are generated from small changes in initial conditions. It is shown schematically below. The solutions diverge through the state space of the model and converge on a range of values that may or may not correspond to the future climate state. Each of these solutions are equally plausible. There is no way to determine beforehand which is the ‘correct’ solution. Theoretically a solution could be assigned a probability – but not yet. The key idea is that there are thousands of solutions – as a result of the nonlinear equations at the core of the mathematical engine – and no way of rationally determining which is right.

        http://rsta.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/369/1956/4751

        This is not what the IPCC does. The IPCC takes one solution from each model and graphs them together as an ‘opportunistic ensemble’. Each individual solution is arbitrarily chosen from amongst all other plausible solutions on the basis of the qualitative expectation of solution behaviour. Literally – this looks about right. It is the antithesis of precision. The IPCC takes their opportunistic ensemble and fabricates a statistics over it. The results are literally incredible and need to be simply thrown away as complete rubbish.

        Models are fine – I have spent 30 years as a hydrodynamic modeler – and they all need calibration. But this is not how to use them. It strongly suggests to me a serious scientific fraud intended to scam the unsuspecting public – because all this is known without a doubt.

      • Steven Mosher: I won’t believe in gravity until they get it right to 100 significant digits.

        That may be a true statement about your belief, but I suspect it is an irony.

        Would you rely upon calculations that depend on the existence of gravity and a reasonable estimate of its strength, such as the position of your car on a map display, calculated from GPS signals? Those are amazing, and in real time.

        Quantitative theories based on gravitation have produced reasonably dependable results. To date, the quantitative theories of the effects of CO2 have produced undependable results, dramatically overpredicting warming (hence the drama). Off-the-cuff warnings, such as perpetual drought, the end of snow, the disastrous increase in the rate of Hurricane Katrinas, were even worse.

      • Would you rely upon calculations that depend on the existence of gravity

        Gravity is easy to prove, stand under a falling hammer.

      • My thoughts on precision as regards to the climate sensitivity.

        Just because it turns out the value for climate sensitivity is approximately some number of whole degrees C per 280 parts per million CO2 does not indicate a lack of precision, it indicates where the precision lies, in the integer per ppm level.

        That’s not a lack of precision.

        Since I am the high priest of the Highlander Church of Simple Machines and Significant Digits, I disagree with Mosher, in that we only know gravity to one significant digit, the same as climate sensitivity.

        There can be only one!

        Everything’s a lever!

      • David Springer

        I won’t believe in Steve Mosher until he stops blurting irrelevancies.

        So Steve, if the gravitational constant was defined as somewhere between 15 and 45 feet per second per second how would that influence the design of bridges, aircraft, and anything else of that nature?

      • David Springer

        I won’t believe in Steve Moshier until he stops blurting irrelevancies.

        So Steve, if the gravitational constant was defined as somewhere between 15 and 45 feet per second per second how would that influence the design of bridges, aircraft, and anything else of that nature?

      • David Springer

        Moshher has been a bad boy. He’s under moderation. Can’t get a post through if his name is spelled correctly. What was your crime aside from being stoopid?

      • Thanks for the information David. It might explain why not one but two of my comments were moderated. The question I will ask next time he drives by is whether he considers himself to be a scientist. My working hypothesis is that like the rest of the data fiddlers he is not.

    • The simple test of a model is its fitness for purpose. Stability in the face of perturbation of inputs etc etc are all secondary to that, and in fact may be irrelevant to the purpose.

      Thus we use different models for the motion of physical objects depending on the scale etc.

      The question then becomes are GCMs useful for making decisions about managing risks that arise from GHGs. The answer is like the curate’s egg they are good in parts.

      They are probably not very good at providing evidence of the risks since they do fail to model critical elements of the atmosphere. Here we should turn to empirical techniques. They are definitely useful for short-term (days and weeks) estimation of the weather – we use them all the time. They are similarly useful for understanding how the climate interacts within tight boundary conditions.

      However for decadal projections of how things might develop to support decision makers they are probably less useful than macroeconomic models in their equivalent domain, and for multi-decadal forecasts or projection of future climates one suspects simpler models would be more useful, although the effort really hasn’t gone into developing them.

      As might be expected the controversy over their use occurs where they are probably the least fit-for-purpose.

  23. “The position statement of the American Geophysical Union regarding climate change leaves no doubt that increasing atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide resulting from human activity is the dominant source of climate change during the last several decades.”
    Have they looked at Humlum 2013 or Harde 2017? Both of these papers find that human emissions hardly effect atmospheric concentration. The natural sources and sinks are so large and variable the human source is lost in the noise. Humlum shows that annual CO2 concentration follows temperature not the other way around. It seems that if we can’t find a correlation of human emissions to atmospheric concentration we shouldn’t be talking about our emissions being the dominant source of climate change. There are also dozens of new papers in the last year or so that demonstrate that the recent warming is not global or unusual so why the hurry to fix it?
    I will be watching Pruitt to see if these things will finally get to the mainstream media.

  24. Pingback: Scott Pruitt’s statement on climate change – Enjeux énergies et environnement

  25. “I think that measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do and there’s tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact”

    That is something United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change seems to completely agree with:

    “The equilibrium climate sensitivity quantifies the response of the climate system to constant radiative forcing on multi-century time scales. It is defined as the change in global mean surface temperature at equilibrium that is caused by a doubling of the atmospheric CO2 concentration. Equilibrium climate sensitivity is likely in the range 1.5°C to 4.5°C (high confidence), extremely unlikely less than 1°C (high confidence), and very unlikely greater than 6°C (medium confidence)( Note 16 ).”

    Note 16 “No best estimate for equilibrium climate sensitivity can now be given because of a lack of agreement on values across assessed lines of evidence and studies.”

    – ref.: IPCC; WGI ; AR5; Summary for policymakers; Page 16

  26. Here are a couple of citations that everyone should read. Admittedly, these are social science related articles, but everyone can learn from them. Also, these articles may seem a little old, but the concepts expressed within them are still relevant today.

    Demeritt, David. “The construction of global warming and the politics of science.” Annals of the association of American geographers 91, no. 2 (2001): 307-337.

    Lahsen, Myanna. “Seductive simulations? Uncertainty distribution around climate models.” Social Studies of Science 35, no. 6 (2005): 895-922.

    • Alan, Thanks for the references. The second one is quite instructive I think. It discusses the way modelers “sell” their models in contrast to how they think about it when they do science.

      • Thank you.

        Unfortunately, most people think this discussion is a science issue. It’s not about science, it’s about politics, social interactions, and policy. This would not be as contentious a problem if this was relegated to pure science. The problem is that people are striving to control the narrative and achieve political objectives, and that thrusts the entire situation into the social arena, not just pure science. It’s not just about the data, the error in the data, the methods for modelling and acquiring data, or the overall uncertainty associated with the present conclusions asserted by the dominant climate scientists. That makes it about the social sciences, and therefore social science studies like Science and Technology Policy (STP) comes into play.

        STP is the social study of science and people that make science happen, along with policies, institutions, and policymakers. Think about the social interactions in this blog. Even though data may be presented, it’s essentially a social interaction and social argument that is occurring.

        Once you see and understand the social construction of science and the climate change debate, you will be enlightened, and begin to understand what is actually going on in the news, with politicians, and scientists in general.

        I understand that the climate change debate is a social construction that is designed to achieve particular political objectives. It’s no longer just about the science.

      • Yes Allan, That’s the key fact that activist scientists fail to grasp. Its not the skeptics that are causing the lack of “action.” It’s the politics and basic human nature. I have bookmarked your references and will use them in the future.

  27. Pingback: Pruitt ha dejado desnudo al kindergarten … y es muy feo | PlazaMoyua.com

  28. Well said. It should also be noted that many of the responses to Pruitt’s statement have included unsupportable (and overly-emotional) comments that have gone unchallenged. It’s an excellent demonstration of how this debate has left the world of science.

    It will be interesting when Scott Pruitt actually does something instead of just saying something.

  29. I look forward to reading Judith Curry’s future columns on whether microorganisms cause disease, evolution is real, or the Earth is more than a few thousand years old.

    Hey, uncertainty, right?

    ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    • Curious George

      You must be a good astrologist.

    • Magma, the warming from ~1920-1945 is essentially indistinguishable from the warming~1975-2000. AR4 WG1 SPM figure 8.2 says the first was not AGW; it could not do otherwise since there not sufficient change in atmospheic CO2. The problem is natural variation did not magically stop in 1975.
      That is very different than the well established germ theory of infectious disease, evolution (which we see working in the evolution of antibiotic resistant disease causing bacteria), or Earths age.

  30. I would hope that we could find areas of common agreement to facilitate discussion. My limited research led me to this link: https://climate.nasa.gov/scientific-consensus/. It appears to me that the scientific consensus is that climate change is real and largely caused by us. I see this as our best common ground.

    • That it is real is a tautology. That it is largely caused by us is much less certain. Solve the problems of prediction in a chaotic system and we can talk. You would probably win a Nobel Prize also.

    • That is what NASA says. That is what the IPCC says. But it isn’t factually correct in many respects. The attribution uncertainty causes the whole CAGW edifice relected by that NASA site to fail There is no common ground about it to be found.
      The warming from ~1920-1945 is essentially indistinguishable from the warming ~1975-2000. IPCC AR4 WG1 SPM figure 8.2 said the first warming was mostly not AGW; they could not do otherwise since there was not enough change in atmospheric CO2. The problem is that natural variation did not magically cease in 1975. Ergo, the NASA propaganda that the later warming is AGW is just wrong.
      And, except for the now cooled 2015-16 El Nino blip, there has been no warming this century except by Karlization. This century comprises ~1/3 of the total atmospheric CO2 increase since 1958 (Keeling curve start). Proves three things: 1. CO2 is not the master control knob. 2. Natural variation still exists. 3. The climate models are wrong since they predicted rising temperatures with rising CO2.

  31. Current science supports his position.
    “A Hiatus of the Greenhouse Effect”
    “the downward tendency of clouds is the dominant contributor to the greenhouse effect hiatus.”
    http://www.nature.com/articles/srep33315

  32. Uncertainty is a two edged sword. Uncertainty goes to undermining the imagined certainties of global warming – not terribly well I have to say – and usually with impossible certainties of their own. But it goes no way to resolving uncertainty in a context of real action in the real world.

    ‘The report does not focus on large, abrupt causes—nuclear wars or giant meteorite impacts—but rather on the surprising new findings that abrupt climate change can occur when gradual causes push the earth system across a threshold. Just as the slowly increasing pressure of a finger eventually flips a switch and turns on a light, the slow effects of drifting continents or wobbling orbits or changing atmospheric composition may “switch” the climate to a new state. And, just as a moving hand is more likely than a stationary one to encounter and flip a switch, faster earth-system changes—whether natural or human-caused—are likely to increase the probability of encountering a threshold that triggers a still faster climate shift.’ https://www.nap.edu/read/10136/chapter/1#v

    Uncertainty is absolute. Opportunistic ensembles of models are theoretically complete nonsense – to the extent that scientific fraud is indicated. Warming is occurring modestly at some 0.087 degrees C/decade. But the future is unknowable and may hold surprises on either the hot or cold end of the spectrum that are well outside a steady rise in global temperatures. The consideration extends to changing terrestrial hydrology through through plant stomatal responses to CO2 or changing ocean chemistry. Ecologies are chaotic – and nothing can be known of the outcomes of any of this. Little can be known but that we are changing Earth systems with carbon dioxide emissions.

    I find it difficult to imagine that doing nothing is the optimal response to a problem of an unknown but but potentially high severity. On the other hand – the distance between the rhetoric and reality of COP21 is predictably delusional. The world has committed – by IEA projections – to increase energy emissions by 3.7 billion tonnes of CO2 in 2030 – at a cost of $13.7 trillion dollars.

    I agree with the growth of fossil fueled energy sources. Climate change – such as it is – can’t be solved on the backs of the world’s poor. Not liking it is immaterial – we are along for the ride. Most of the energy growth will be in non-OECD countries.

    The answer to energy is technological. I think that cost-competitive modern versions of decades old technology – being commercialised around the world now – is a very likely contender. One advantage is that they can burn conventional nuclear waste to produce much less waste that is much shorter lived.

    Some 180 billion tonnes of carbon has been lost from soils and forests over the last few hundred years. Returning even half that for reasons of food security, development, flood and drought resilience and biodiversity would take 330 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. It is not an idea but a global objective.

    • And, just as a moving hand is more likely than a stationary one to encounter and flip a switch, faster earth-system changes—whether natural or human-caused—are likely to increase the probability of encountering a threshold that triggers a still faster climate shift.’

      …and, there likely are equally plausible counteranalogies that would lead to an opposite conclusion–e.g., begin rowing west from Spain may decrease the probability of finding land as opposed to simply drifting with the tide.

    • The analogy was from the introduction to the NAS report – by a group of very eminent scientists.

      You may believe it is not – but your story is not equally plausible.

      But beyond that there are nuclear engines, farm productivity and environmental conservation. These are proper aims for policy in this area – and being reflexively reactive is not.

    • Curious George

      “doing nothing is [not] the optimal response to a problem of an unknown but but potentially high severity”. We are throwing trillions of dollars on projects with questionable results, like biofuels. Let’s better spend millions on researching the problem. We are in a theater where IPCC yelled “fire” and everybody is rushing to the nearest door, without knowing which one is the exit.

      • I agree – especially if Audi and General Atomics fund it.

        From memory – Audi was claiming $3/litre. I suppose that’s about $12/gallon. A ways to go then.

      • When it comes to global warming Lord Christopher Monckton got it right: The correct policy response to the non-problem of global warming is not to cap or tax carbon dioxide emissions. It is to have the courage to do nothing.

      • Caps and taxes are nonsense – but the alternative is far from doing nothing. It is to answer imaginatively what can be done to manage uncertainty while benefiting the world. It is happening whether you approve or not.

    • That earth will be attacked by extra terrestrials is “a problem of an unknown but potentially high severity”, is it not? What should we be doing about that? How many $ trillions should we be spending?

      • I suppose you believe that we have been attacked by aliens many times in the past?

        Abrupt climate change is very real and abrupt changes in global ecologies are certain. The solution you are missing is that only rich people can afford environments.

        And if you really don’t want to advance US agriculture through science and technology – or move to 21st century technology – well I guess the world will just pass you by.

      • so you are saying that we need to spend trillions to try and prevent natural changes?

        First off, you are now no longer claiming “it’s all man’s fault”

        Second, you still need to explain why the changed conditions are worse for humanity than the current conditions.

      • ACtually, since the things that would be developed to defend against ETs would be the same things that we need to get off this rock, we should be spending a lot on the topic :-)

      • Like getting hit by an asteroid – abrupt climate change will happen but with greater frequency. We can avoid shortening the odds by minimising change to the system.

        Carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels and cement production – from 1750 to 2011 – was about 365 billion metric tonnes as carbon (GtC), with another 180 GtC from deforestation and agriculture. A critical metric is the losses from soils and forests.

        Putting carbon back where it belongs – and where it does the most good – is the goal of many countries and many millions of people. For the purpose of food security, economic development, soil water holding capacity, less downstream flooding, less erosion, drought and flood resilience, more efficient use of agricultural inputs, reversing desertification, higher levels of nutrients and minerals in soils. biodiversity, ecological restoration…

        It is the new standard in farm practice in the US – http://onpasture.com/

        The other side was about advanced nuclear designs.

        Uncertainty cuts both ways – but even if it is a problem it isn’t. Well as much as anything is certain.

  33. “The right’s refusal to accept the authority of climate science is of a piece with its rejection of mainstream media, academia, and government, the shared institutions and norms that bind us together and contain our political disputes.” David Robert at Vox

    This statement says it all . . . if you don’t agree with “us,” you’re not worth listening to or reading. This attitude dominates climate science, government (liberal), most “shared” institutions, academia and the mainstream media.

    I’m an old guy who received an engineering degree (thankfully) in the apolitical 1950s. I’ve watched my alma mater, Time magazine, PBS, “science,” the “culture,” and the Democrat party make a hard left turn over the years. Except for the internet and social media, there’s no ability to state an alternative opinion to that offered by the Left. Whether politics, climate or social science, culture, or mores only one opinion is allowed. To state or show support for an alternative position means you get ejected, shouted down or physically attacked. Or in Pruitt’s case, you are misquoted or misrepresented and made to look like a looney ignoramous.

    Thank you, Dr. Curry, for continuing with this website, and for correctly interpreting Mr. Pruitt’s statements.

    • Why did you let this happen?!
      You were part of the “Greatest Generation” remember? Just look what we have done; The space program, computers, 500 TV channels, most powerful military in world not to mention the greatest wealth inequality in modern American history. Where did we go wrong?

      • We haven’t gone wrong jack. Just allowed a small group of apologists who believe they are smarter, better educated and of better stock and therefore should be the ones making all of the “important” decisions, control the narrative. They lost control of that narrative last fall, allowing citizens who still believe the US is the greatest nation on earth to assert that narrative.

        And boy, is the whining off the charts.

      • Who allowed them Tim? Not me, not you, not my parents not my friends. Give me a name so I focus my anger on someone who deserves it.

      • catweazle666

        “Give me a name so I focus my anger on someone who deserves it.”

        How about Obama and all the PeeCee pseudo-intellectual self-elected-elite metropolitan hipster class that supported him?

        Fortunately, under the new management, it looks like things have a chance of being put back on the right track.

      • Give me a name.

        Seriously?

        How about jacksmith, seeing as how you expect others to do your thinking for you.

      • I don’t have a name but I’m going to point at the 45%+ of the eligible voters who have failed their country by withdrawing from the political discourse by not voting. The alternative to that narrative is they have just given up realizing the game was rigged all along.
        Voter turnout for the 2016 election was the lowest in 20 years. If they don’t care enough to exercise their right to vote then maybe they don’t deserve it and they certainty don’t have a right to criticize what happens to their health care, taxes or foreign policy now.

    • Unfortunately, I have to take this into the social domain. You all are operating within it anyway, even if you aren’t aware of it.

      It’s kind of scary to me that socially dogmatic principals such as mandated conformity are being used to suppress independent thought in the climate change debate. It is inherently political to do this sort of activity.

      Socialism thrives where uniformity and conformity are mandated and enforced. Independence of thought is strongly discouraged in socialist environments. Group think is encouraged, and propaganda is used to reinforce the group think (the massive group deception). This is how Communism and Socialism have dominated the thoughts and lives of billions of people. If you are a nonconformist, you are purged, publicly disgraced, derided, and threatened (in a variety of manners ranging from verbal abuse to imprisonment or even with death, as in the Communist countries, Imperial Japan, and Nazi Germany). Even the most recent example of thought conformity enforcement can be seen in Sweden, through the denial of the consideration that their immigration policies could be generating massive social problems within their borders.

      Be aware of socialist dogma that is designed to force bad political objectives on the populace as a whole. The social policies that are derived through this sort of mechanism are likely to be fraught with error and end in disaster.

      Sorry, but it’s true.

      • According to surveys going back decades the most respected organization in America is the military. What type of social organization would you classify the military as?
        Key features:
        Authoritarian to the extreme.
        Rigid hierarchical structure.
        Merit based promotions only, no voting for your leaders.
        Total social conformity enforced by Uniform Code of Military Justice.
        Lifetime social benefits including healthcare.

        Perhaps we should just draft the entire population into the military and all our problems would be solved. Fun fact, For some reason there has never been a billionaire serving in the military.

      • There is no reply button for jacksmith4tx, therefore I will make my reply to that person here.

        Unfortunately, jacksmith4tx confuses a required military structure with political structures. Your argument is not a comparative argument. This is because of the required organizational structure that are mandated by all military institutions (regardless of incorporating political structures) in order to be effective fighting forces. Most of the prevailing political and social structures of the past and present require the existence of military organizations to be able to survive.

        So, the moral to this story is to not confuse military organization, discipline, and conformity with the political and social structures that use them. All military organizations have the same basic structure regardless of the incorporating political structures that form them.

      • jack,

        Ever serve? Doesn’t sound like it from your characterization of the US military. One of the strengths of our armed forces has been the ability to think and act independently. The Marines have a saying, Improvise, Adapt, Overcome. Not exactly something a rigid, authoritarian, hierarchical organization would encourage. And what does merit based promotion have to with socially dogmatic principals and mandated conformity?

      • Tim,
        “The Marines have a saying, Improvise, Adapt, Overcome. Not exactly something a rigid, authoritarian, hierarchical organization would encourage.”

        Sounds like what trained, obedient soldiers are told to do in combat situations. Islamic jihadist say the same thing. Note the purpose of saying this is so you use what ever means necessary to complete the objective the authoritarian, hierarchical organization wants.

        Try that technique with your wife or a 2yr old baby.

        I spent 20yrs working for a defense contractor building as supporting the toys you guys play with and was born on a AF Base.

  34. Oh gee, another tiff over what caused “the climate change of the last several decades”.
    WHAT fracking climate change?
    Minor changes in global average temp ain’t climate change.
    ‘The last several decades’ have been one of the more stable in human history.
    The reason we’re going on about ‘climate change’ is we don’t enough to worry about.

    • Agreed Ronin. I’d be particularly interested in a statement of what the climate is now in my home town of Cairns in Australia and a statement of what it was 30 years ago.

      The emphasis on the manufactured single figure to represent the temperature of the entire earth has created much heat but very little light.

      • ‘It is not light that we need, but fire; it is not the gentle shower, but thunder. We need the storm, the whirlwind, and the earthquake.’ Frederick Douglass

      • Forest ‘manufactured single figure to represent’
        Science forgets that it creates.
        Then often obscures the source of these creations and presents them as other than manufactured.
        They often choose language poorly and pretend that they are not about language.
        But the one thing that torques my keister the most about this climate thing is the teaching of kids to hate their own existence.
        Teaching kids that Gaia erred in them.
        To doubt the gift of their future.
        This is the most sinister and dim propaganda crime of my lifetime.

      • Forrest, please excuse the misspelling of your name;
        Hello to the SH.
        I’m in the NH, USA.
        Trapped among the feckless coastal elite.
        Required to listen and nod.

  35. Pruitt gives a fair assessment of the problem and said precise and well.\. Judith, you are absolutely right on this one.

    Both of us are now emeritus professors and we both learned long ago that academe overreacts with righteous indignation, particularly on their realm of expertise. Henry Kissinger pt it well when he said, “The reason there is so much politics in academe is that there is so little at stake.” (This is also known in some circles as “Sayre’s Law).

    George Devries Klein, PhD, PG, FGSA &
    Professor Emeritus, Geology, University of Illinois @ Urbana-Chamaign

  36. Bravo, Dr. Klein. Once more with the sanity!

  37. I agree with Judith’s analysis completely.

    IMHO Scott Pruitt was an inspired choice to head EPA.

  38. Berényi Péter

    the consensus that has been negotiated and enforced by certain elite scientists is being challenged

    Until we understand why amount of annual total absorbed shortwave radiation is next to the same for the two hemispheres in spite of the huge difference in their clear sky albedos, climate science is missing its basic paradigm, therefore no consensus makes any sense whatsoever.

    Climate funds should clearly be redirected to basic research from those who can only fabricate politically loaded scare stories instead of doing actual scientific research.

  39. My favourite Scott Pruitt quote – assuming the NYT actually quoted him correctly, a somewhat dubious prospect perhaps, considering their “journalist-wannabes'” performances of late …

    “The future ain’t what it used to be at the E.P.A.”

    But that aside, as I have noted elsewhere … Even the upper echelons of the UN/EU seem to be adapting (finally!) to the reality that the wheels have been falling off the CO2-is-deadly climate-whatevers bandwagon.

    Reading between the lines of the proceedings of copious carefully crafted UN word-salads … The arms, elbows, hands and fingers of the UN had to stick to their CO2-causes-all-evils money-grubbing guns until the new, improved sibling (rival?!) bandwagon, aka IPBES (Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services), had sufficiently matured to bring the dedicated missionaries on board.

    As I’ve noted elsewhere, a rather significant tidbit from the recently concluded IPBES proceedings appears to signal that CO2 as primary cause is rapidly falling from favour:

    In his keynote speech, UNFCCC Deputy Executive Secretary Richard Kinley urged both the climate change and biodiversity communities to focus on positive synergies to enhance “our” work. He suggested fully integrating the climate and biodiversity agendas with the implementation of the SDGs [Sustainable Development Goals -hro] in national economic development and investment plans. He noted that the IPBES’ global assessment “can be an important input” for the next round of nationally determined contributions (NDCs) under the Paris Agreement [my bold -hro]

    YMMV, but I fully expect all the “transformative” and “innovative” send-money-now solutions will emanate from the UN’s far foggier “Sustainable Development” front. Whether their predictable alarms will yield anything more than inane slogans, tweets and word-salads of obeisance remains to be seen. My best guess: no they won’t, because, well, because – thanks to the Interwebs – too many people have seen this 5th-rate flick before;-)

    Consider also the following arrogant tweet from one of the UNEP’s sisters-in-authoritative-arms, the BSR:

    Now on @UPSLongitudes: How can we embed sustainability in U.S. #infrastructure? #PPP https://t.co/3pVB49oTer— BSR (@BSRnews) March 11, 2017

    Thanks to the UNEP’s ubiquitous arms, elbows, hands and fingers – of which BSR is merely one – and recycled IPCC-nik Bob Watson’s baby, FutureEarth – the new, improved bandwagon is ready and waiting for the snowflakes, their hashtags and placards.

    • Well done – but you forgot the photo op’s.

      “The UN’s flagship energy access program, for example, claims that “basic human needs” can be met with enough electricity to power a fan, a couple of light bulbs, and a radio for five hours a day.”

      They will be so grateful.

      “The presidents and prime ministers agreed to replace the eight goals and 18 targets of the Millennium Development Goals with an impossibly long list of 17 goals and 169 targets. The chief problem with this new laundry list of targets is that trying to prioritize 169 things looks very similar to prioritizing nothing.

      Researchers for Copenhagen Consensus—the think tank that I am president of—explored how much social benefit the targets would achieve, and found that some targets could achieve a huge deal, others very little. Spreading money and energy thinly among them reduces the overall good that we do.

      Consider this target: “By 2030 ensure all learners acquire knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development, including among others through education for sustainable development and sustainable lifestyles, human rights, gender equality, promotion of a culture of peace and non-violence, global citizenship, and appreciation of cultural diversity and of culture’s contribution to sustainable development.” It’s hard to know what is promised, let alone how it will be implemented, monitored or evaluated….

      Yet some targets are worth pursuing. Copenhagen Consensus analysis by a panel including several Nobel laureate economists found that there are 19 specific targets within the 169 that would do more than $15 of good for every dollar spent.” http://time.com/4052109/un-sustainable-development-goals/

      Yes let’s let the UN fritter away $2.5 trillion.

  40. I think Scott Pruit did a good summary of the climate science.
    “It is very likely that more than half the warming is caused by CO2”
    What percentage would it take to say we are sure? Would it be 20% or 30% of the warming.
    After 30 years of recearch they can only come up with these weasel words.
    How would it sound if they said we are 50% sure that most of the warming is caused by man made CO2?
    It would in fact be the same statement.
    My glass is half empty or half full.

    • I should change “climate science” to the officiially promoted sort of climate science. There are researchers and others that realise that climate is a lot more that CO2 and temperature, and how little we know about it.

    • It also says that the best estimate of human-induced warming is similar to the observed warming over this period. This means 100% is the best estimate: a crucial part that is rarely quoted by skeptics for some reason.

      • That’s because they predicted much more warming than we had (which was zero for about two decades now), so whatever warming there was must have been all caused by us. That’s unsound reasoning.

      • It’s the positive imbalance, but I shouldn’t need to explain that.

      • catweazle666

        “This means 100% is the best estimate: a crucial part that is rarely quoted by skeptics for some reason.”

        The reason being it’s sh1te, like most of your prognostications.

      • Skeptics are happy the quote the very likely more than half part of this, but then leave out the part I just quoted which comes straight after. If they quoted this part too every time, it might make them look more honest, but I am not expecting that to change.

  41. “I think that measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do and there’s tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact

    We need to continue the debate and continue the review and the analysis.”

    This contains two statements.
    1.) that measuring with PRECISION is challenging
    2) There is TREMENDOUS disagreement about the degree of impact.

    Let take them in order. The first statement about precision presupposes that Precision is required to make policy. Now, since he is a policy maker it is incumbant on Pruitt to define
    A) What level of precision is required. Do we need to know the human
    impact is 75.56786543% of the warming? Suppose we only know the answer to +- 10%, and suppose we could say 90% of the warming +-10%
    is attributed to humans. Or suppose, that we only need to either more than half or less than half. A smart interrogator of Pruit would presue this line of questioning. He made precision an Issue, so he needs to be straightforward in answering the question of how much precision is required
    and back up his answer ( as EPA head) with hard numbers.

    B) He’s laid out a challenge. Note in his mind it is an open question and
    the answer could be catastrophic. Note he didnt rule the very possiblity of precision ( we can never know) and he didnt rule out the possibility of catastrophic impacts, he merely said it was difficult to assess with precision.
    So comes the question: Since improved precision is possible and since the impacts may be great, what course of action will he support to improve the science and expand out knowledge. This ties back to him setting a Standard of precision and standard of proof. As a policy maker what will change his mind. We dont want to be subject to administartors shifting goal posts.

    c) he cited tremendous disagreement as if that were a fact. But the fact of disagreement is Not enough to look the other way. I could estimate 10 Trillion worth of damage and Bob could hold that there was only 3 Trillion.
    Is that a tremendous disagreement OR an agreement that it will be bad and a disagreement over how bad. Second, You neeed more than just disagreement to have pause. you need rational disagreement between informed parties. For example, You can find people who disagree that our country needs lower taxes. The mere fact of disagreement doesnt stop us from changing the tax code.

    ###########################################

    The other two statements give slightly conflicting messages:

    I would not agree that it’s a primary contributor to the global warming that we see. But we don’t know that yet.

    The notable thing about this is that Pruit is relying on an unarticulated standard of knoweldge. Unlike many skeptics who claim certainty there is no effect, unlike others who claim the answer is unknowable, he at least SEEMS to have appliied a standard of knowledge.
    Well, WHAT is that standard of knowledge he applied to say we dont know? nailing down an “Uncertainist” is tough work, because

    A) they will change the subject
    B) They will cite impossible standards of proof without justification
    C) they are faux pragmaticists

    He also needs to be nailed down about the meaning of primary.

    There are three broad classes of causes:

    A) Anthropogenic
    B) Natural ( solar volcanoe etc)
    C) Internal Variablity

    Does primary mean 51% ( or should I say 50.00000000001% to be more precise ??)
    or does primary mean largest of the three?

    • Mosher, The simple answer to the Alarmist position is that no one knows what the future will hold in 80 to 100 years. It is possible that there may be unknown cooling processes that are on the verge of occurring that may be ameliorated by CO2. (I admit not likely, but if Alarmists will occur that warming may be worse than currently imagined, this counter-argument is also valid)

      The one thing we do know is that science is advancing very rapidly and that that human society will be very different 80-100 years from now. If there is substantial and harmful warming, it will be a trivial exercise to reduce it with the increased scientific tools that will be available in the future.

      JD

    • With what precision do we know what the global temperature was in 1950?
      With what precision do we know what the global temperature is now?
      With what precision do we know how much of the change is anthro?
      With what precision do we know how much of the anthro-change is due to burning fossils?
      With what precision do we know whether said change in global temperature is good or bad?
      With what precision do we know how much various political policies would reduce our consumption of fossil fuels?
      With what precision do we know the beneficial impacts of such policies?
      With what precision do we know the detrimental impacts of such policies?

      To sum up: With what precision do we know how much money it is wise to spend to achieve Climate Goals?

      I hate it how the media just reduces the question to “Do you believe in Climate Change?”.

      • and if they claim that they know the global temps to 0.1 degree, and the models produce wildly different results if you shift the starting conditions by 0.001 degree, the models are worthless

      • Steven Mosher

        With what precision do we know what the global temperature was in 1950?

        #################

        Wrong question. Pruitt stated that getting a precise answer was a challenge. It his responsibility as a consumer of science and policymaker to define what precision is required for policy. The same goes for all your other questions. Policy making may only require precision to +- 10%. Or even less precise. For example..
        I’m sure that a travel ban will reduce the risk of new terror attacks.. I can’t tell you with any precision, but the lack of precision in the estimate doesn’t mean the policy isn’t rational.
        Once You play the precision card it is up to you, not me, to set a precision requirement and justify it.

        It’s the users of information, policymakers, to set and defend precision requirements. Not you. Not me.. but Pruitt now owns the decision making process and he has appealed to the previous criteria so the ball is in his court, not mine, to answer the question. .How precise is REQUIRED? Until that question is answered it’s stupid to even calculate the present uncertainity.

        If he says we have to know it to 3 significant digits he will have prove that is a reasonable requirement

        As I’ve said before we know everything we need to know to make policy without any reference to temperatures or human attribution.

      • catweazle666

        “As I’ve said before we know everything we need to know to make policy without any reference to temperatures or human attribution.”

        Absolute, total, complete nonsense.

        We know nothing of the sort.

      • “Policy making may only require precision to +- 10%.”

        10% would be, what? 3 orders of magnitude better than now? Or maybe just 2 orders of magnitude? A lot better at any rate.
        Work on that. Let me know when you get to 20%….

      • “As I’ve said before we know everything we need to know to make policy without any reference to temperatures or human attribution.”

        So much wiggle room in that. I know that there will be a baseball game in May. I know that one of those teams will win that game. I know that ability and professionalism is controlling factor in winning baseball games. Therefore I know everything I need to know to place a winning bet, today, on a game in May.
        Policy – decision making – is always done with a significant hedge in mind- how precise your understanding of the determines how much you’re willing to risk. I’m willing to risk a lot more on a game between the Yankees and the little sisters of the poor than I am between Yankees-Orioles right now.
        The warm assert not merely that we know enough to set policy, but that what we know is precise enough to warrant policies with significant risk (economic impact).

        You of all people should know that it is entirely rational to doubt that.

      • “As I’ve said before we know everything we need to know to make policy without any reference to temperatures or human attribution.”

        With pollution from Asia causing western states to have ozone levels exceeding current limits, how will reducing US ozone emissions standards improve US or “global” air quality?

        Approximately 50% of the “global” reduction in life expectancy interpreted as 7 million potential deaths per year due to particulate matter are related to indoor use of coal, charcoal, and bio-mass, not central energy systems with standard scrubbers and particle arresters as required in the US. How is the elimination of coal us in the US going to reduce this “global” problem? Wouldn’t recommending emissions standards “globally” that meet or exceed US standards encourage more responsible use of limited resources?

        “Global” mercury emissions are primarily due to artisan mining practices and unregulated emissions in Asian, African and South American industries. Wouldn’t it be more practical to encourage these regions to use better practice than to over regulate locally?

        With China willing to finance infrastructure in developing nations without “green” strings attached, aren’t current policy initiatives devaluing US foreign interests?

      • Almost forgot, bio-fuel initiatives and damming wild tropical rivers appears to be causing more problems than solutions. Who do we need to terminate for that jewel of a policy recommendation?

      • Steven Mosher: Policy making may only require precision to +- 10%.

        Maybe. For CO2 policy, it might be nice to have the sign of the water vapor effect better known than it is now. Also, why the model predicted tropical hot spot isn’t there.

      • Maybe. For CO2 policy, it might be nice to have the sign of the water vapor effect better known than it is now.

        There’s about 18F of warming early morning recorded here. Greatly exceeds co2.

        Look at the temp would be if the high cooling rate didn’t change till the sun comes up.

    • Curious George

      Do we know the Climate Sensitivity with a sufficient precision to guide a responsible policy?

      • Steven Mosher

        Yes we knew enough in 1896.
        And in 1938
        And 1988.

      • I am curious, Stephen – what would your responsible policy be?

        I will start with mine. No mitigation with current technology because nothing works well enough to replicate itself and it is too expensive today. Research alternatives to fossil fuels because cheap sources could run out and if you need to mitigate in the future Pielke’s Iron Law cheaper must be confronted. Plan for the past and make society resilient to extreme weather, because, you said it well, we don’t even plan for the past. Finally, throw some money at research to natural drivers of climate change because you never know.

      • Curious George

        Please share with me the value and error bounds.

    • Steven Mosher: This contains two statements.
      1.) that measuring with PRECISION is challenging
      2) There is TREMENDOUS disagreement about the degree of impact.

      It’s a shame that there was little attempt to clarify language and thinking before the IPCC was formed, and before there were calls to invest vast and seldom calculated resources to reducing human CO2.

      1. Has it ever been shown that “precision” and “accuracy” of the mathematical models were sufficient to support policy? Not as of the time that Hansen gave his Senate testimony, and not in the most recent report of the IPCC. Anywhere?

      2. “Tremendous” disagreement is a good descriptor for the anguish and ad hominems that greeted Bjorn Lomborg’s calculations of the costs of modest “improvements”. Since then, the evidence on the effects of CO2, rainfall and temperature changes over the past 135 or so years has tended to undermine the claim that there is any harm from anthropogenic CO2. (As far as I can tell, you have been impervious to evidence from the last 10 years of research.) Research on cyclonic storms shows little effect.

  42. All weather events come about because of atmospheric “here today gone tomorrow” pressure systems interacting with the various jet streams and semi-permanent pressure systems (which are huge extremely powerful entities) interacting with oceanic/trade winds teleconnections. It takes a tremendous amount of energy to drive these systems into a new regime and to sustain the shift. There is no way the anthropogenic portion of global well mixed CO2 can be the cause. Not enough energy. Period. End of discussion. Whatever change in weather systems the anthropogenic portion is responsible for is buried in the natural oscillating noise of the past 800,000 years of weather pattern stadial and interstadial regimes.

    That this easily discernible via calculated energy needed is ignored astounds me.

  43. Once again, Judith comes off as the adult in the room. Others, for unknown reasons, didn’t take the time to determine precisely what Pruitt said. Perhaps this is a habit just going off half cocked. Or they have innate reading comprehension problems. What ever the reason they all messed up the assignment completely. They did not know what he said. They only believed that he had said something they didn’t like and off they went.

    In comes Judith. No, she said in her usual objective and analytical way, let’s step back and see what Pruitt actually said. Once that was done and once the facts were learned, the transgressor didn’t seem to be quite the lunatic that they thought. It was a well reasoned statement that could be defended given the state of the science today.

    They were the usual crowd that was involved getting it completely wrong. The equation addicts and ankle biting wannabees. It makes one wonder if they have ever had a real job. Clearly they want simple answers and only view the world through a binary lens. Either you are with us or you’re a denier. No nuance. No admission that other possibilities exist. Just dogma.

    And these are the same people who want to be taken seriously. They are the cadre that has the only correct answer. Follow them, they say, for they are the chosen ones. They see where others, with inferior intellect, are clearly blind.

    Sorry boys, but you just mucked up another attempt at gaining some legitimacy. No cigars for you.

    • His response was in the negative surrounded by some weasel words for plausible deniability, being a lawyer. There is no doubt which way he leans regarding the control knob unless he has worded himself very badly. Take ‘no’ as his answer. He didn’t say ‘maybe’.

      • Jim D: Take ‘no’ as his answer. He didn’t say ‘maybe’.

        He said “Not yet”.

      • The question was whether he believed CO2 was the control knob. ‘not yet’ is not an answer to that kind of question. Perhaps it is ‘no’ in another guise, but he actually said ‘no’ he doesn’t agree which sounds like ‘no’ to that question. He could have stayed on safe ground and said “I don’t know” or “I am not a scientist” which is the preferred answer of politicians, but he drifted off and showed his cards. Next time his answer will be more careful.

      • bedeverethewise

        Jim D,
        Are you suggesting that CO2 is the primary knob for climate? Because that was the question that was asked. “Do you believe that it’s been proven that carbon dioxide is the primary control knob for climate?”

        The only acceptable answer to that question is No.

        Or a thoughtful person could explain that the question doesn’t make sense without defining what is meant by primary control knob or climate. And any reasonable definition of those terms would result in an answer of no.

      • The scientists say it is the primary control knob. The other factors don’t really compete.

      • catweazle666

        “The scientists say it is the primary control knob.”

        More BS…

        SOME of the rapidly losing credibility “climate scientists” who will be looking for employment in the very near future – if they aren’t already – say that.

        The vast majority of real scientists don’t say anything of the kind.

      • You are just repeating what Pruitt says which is that you don’t know why it is warming so fast, and you are still scratching your heads on that one. It is very understandable that you and Pruitt still don’t know what’s going on with these mysterious record warm years every year. I think you managed to convince yourself it can’t no way, no how, be the record CO2 levels, but that puts you in a box of your own making.

      • catweazle666

        “you don’t know why it is warming so fast”

        Jimbo, it isn’t warming fast, for the last couple of decades – despite the best efforts of the alarmist data Mannipulators – it’s hardly been warming at all!

      • You need to check that graph again sometime. As of now we have this.
        http://woodfortrees.org/plot/gistemp/from:1950/mean:12/plot/esrl-co2/scale:0.01/offset:-3.2

      • catweazle666

        Sorry Jimbo, that’s a totally rubbish graph, as I’m sure you are well aware.

        I prefer this one.

        http://woodfortrees.org/plot/rss/from:1998/trend/plot/rss/from:19 98

        Looks like 0.04 deg C per decade to me, not worth getting excited about.

      • Do you think a 20-year trend is worth anything? UAH5.6 has several times that rate, supposedly from the same data even with that cherry-picked start date. It has structural uncertainty is the way the RSS scientists excuse their data variants. Just not enough independent points to verify against.
        http://woodfortrees.org/plot/uah5/from:1998/trend/plot/uah5/from:1998

      • a 20 year trend is nothing, you need centry level trends, and we don’t have records that far back.

        And even then, where is the proof that a warmer earth is so horrible? We know that the earth has been much warmer in historical times (We are finding farms under retreating glaciers in Greenland for example)

      • 75% of the CO2 had been added in the last 60 years, 75% of the warming has been in the same period, and the 60-year trend is clearly above anything in history. This should be enough, but some still wonder about 60-year trends while also believing in 15-year pauses meaning anything. Highly inconsistent.

      • bedeverthewise: The only acceptable answer to that question is No.

        I think “not yet” is also a good answer, maybe because it’s mine. Perhaps some day that will be established beyond reasonable doubt, but not yet.

      • He was asked about the consensus view and it certainly looked like he said he didn’t agree that CO2 was the primary driver. There was a ‘no’ in his answer.

      • bedeverethewise

        In the history of our planet, the level of CO2 in the atmosphere has ranged from less than 200 ppm to thousands of ppm. During that time, the earth’s climate has been widely variable and it would appear that factors other than CO2 have overwhelmed CO2 as the “control knob”.

        I would also say that it appears that there have been times where the global temps have been decreasing while CO2 levels have been increasing and vise versa. There have been times when the CO2 levels have been much higher than present while the climate has been much colder.

        That doesn’t mean that CO2 levels are not an important factor, or that our current situation isn’t dangerous. But it makes it very hard to make the case that CO2 is “THE primary control knob”. Now perhaps you have some unusual definitions for the word primary. Or you are imagining that there are some unspoken qualifiers such as, the only factor that humans have any control over. But I choose to simply use the words that were spoken even if they are inane.

      • Take Milankovitch cycles. According to those, we should be about as cool as the LIA still because its forcing gives a cooling trend. However, it has been increasingly overwhelmed by GHG forcing in the last couple of centuries which is why the trend is not only opposite to the millennial-scale Milankovitch one but an order of magnitude larger. Primary is the correct term for the current state of things. You can add in the sun and volcanoes too, and it doesn’t change anything.

      • Steven Mosher

        Beyond a reasonable doubt? Since when did that become the standard of proof for policy making.?

        We make all manner of policy. .Like travel bans.. on standards like probable cause..

        It’s more likely than not that human influence will cause damage. .that’s the right standard for policy.

      • Yes, there are always uncertainties in decision-making. Sea level is rising and we don’t have to know exactly how fast before saying we have to do something about it. Ditto temperatures rising.

      • Steven Mosher: It’s more likely than not that human influence will cause damage. .that’s the right standard for policy.

        I agree that’s a reasonable standard. I do not think that standard has been met yet with regard to anthropogenic CO2. It’s more likely than not, given some recent reviews, that the combination of warming, increased rainfall, and increased CO2 over the past 135 years or so has been beneficial.

      • If you like the climate as it is now, you should strive to keep it that way. This climate, at a mere 1 C warmer than pre-industrial, is typical of 350 ppm and 350.org name themselves that way because they see it as optimal, even beneficial. As it is, we are blowing through that on the way to 700 ppm by 2100. Keeping it closer to 350 ppm than 700 ppm is what the IPCC targets aim at doing, so that is why we have the Paris agreement.

      • Jim D “and we don’t have to know exactly how fast before saying we have to do something about it.”

        You should go and read up about Real Options.

      • bedeverethewise

        Jim D,
        If the question had been “Do you believe that it’s been proven that Milankovitch Cycles are the primary control knob for climate? ” I would expect some sort of positive response. But that wasn’t the question.

      • It’s more equivalent to him denying the Milankovitch cycles too. They have just as much evidence.

      • Jim D: If you like the climate as it is now, you should strive to keep it that way.

        Is that your backward way of admitting that, on the evidence, the combination of increased CO2, increased rainfall, and increased global mean temp over the past 135 or so years has been largely beneficial to life?

      • As I mentioned, 350.org makes that case because otherwise we would still have an LIA climate. It is not me. If you want to make a case for 700 ppm, go for it. No one has gone there yet, possibly worried they might look crazy. 700.org would be a good name for it. Choose your optimal level and advocate for it.

      • Jim D: As I mentioned, 350.org makes that case because otherwise we would still have an LIA climate

        You stay away from agreeing that the evidence supports the notion that the warming since about 1985 has been beneficial.

        As to an optimum combination of CO2, temp, and rainfall, no one knows how to calculate an optimum.

  44. Reblogged this on Patti Kellar and commented:
    God bless Dr. Judith Curry….the voice of reason amidst the insanity of politicized climate change.

  45. We can debate climate sensitivity, kinetic energy, solar forcing, etc. until the chickens come home. The reality is that every science-based federal budget will be cut a MINIMUM of 15% EVERY year for the next 4 years.

    People in science will lose their jobs. The future is now bleak and the tunnel we are entering is exceptionally dark with no light at the end.

    Time spent on this BB might be better used to polish resumes for those who depend on federal funding.

  46. 50-year HadCET4 trend is .177 ℃ per decade… shortly after the end of the negative phase of stadium wave

    We’re now in the positive phase of the stadium wave… 38 straight months of positive PDO, and not a sign anywhere in observations of the earth’s system that it going to anything except stay strongly positive for at least another year.

    David Rose’s La Nina-inspired cooling nonsense has rapidly disintegrated. For a negative ONI, the February anomaly is through the roof.

    Heatwave… all due to anthropogenic carbon dioxide.

  47. The media are a business, not an information resource. Their product is not news but your eyeballs. They sell them to advertisers.

    There’s no market for hard news (think city council meetings). So except for one-offs like Princess Di or JFK Jr or the originator of it all Jessica-in-the-well, hard news can’t pay the daily bills.

    There’s one market that will tune in every day, news or no news, and that’s the soap opera audience. They’re 20% of the population but that’s big enough to pay the daily bills, so soap opera narratives is what you’ll always get. If something isn’t soap opera, it will be rewritten so that it is, lest the soap opera audience tune away.

    That’s a business constant. It can’t change without the media going out of business.

    Politicians free-ride on that business necessity, by supplying soap opera narratives for the media to run.

    The tastes of soap opera people edit every public debate, as a result. An entertainment choice determines public policy.

    The solution is ridicule, so that at least the media don’t any longer have the aura of seriousness that they’ve been trading under.

    Trump got elected by demonstrating he could throw sand in the media narrative gearbox, as he continues to do. Perhaps once again actual problems that could not be talked about can show up in public debate.

  48. I can understand arguing over trend lines, where to start them, here to end them, even the processing preformed to create an individual dataset.

    But to say “all due to anthropogenic carbon dioxide”. Where does that come from?

    How?
    Why?
    Proof?

    • Without anthropogenic CO2, the GMST today would be around the 1910-1920 level.

      • “Scientific interest in the climate effects of black carbon (BC) intensified with the publication of Crutzen and Birks’ (1) report dealing with the ejection of large amounts of smoke into the atmosphere after a major nuclear war. A key component of smoke is BC, which is the strongest absorber of visible solar radiation. BC solar absorption became a central issue in climate change research when a synthesis of satellite, in situ, and ground observations concluded (2) that the global solar absorption (i.e., direct radiative forcing, DRF) by atmospheric BC is as much as 0.9 W⋅m−2, second only to the CO2 DRF. BC is also an important component of air pollution, which is plaguing large parts of the world. BC results from poor combustion of fossil fuel, household burning of coal briquettes, wood, and dung as fuel for home heating and cooking practiced by 3 billion people, as well as from agricultural and natural vegetation fires. These fine BC particles thus touch on personal and cultural basics, such as how we cook our food, how we move about, and the quality of the air that we breathe. This air pollution, consisting of BC and other particles, causes worldwide an estimated 7 million premature deaths annually, with most in East and South Asia (3). BC particles are also implicated in large-scale environmental effects, such as melting of the Himalaya and other glaciers (e.g., refs. 4 and 5). BC, along with the coemitted organic aerosols, is a major source of global dimming (2), which has been linked with reduction in precipitation (6). ”

        Add in land use/ abuse and old school EPA policy to reduce pollution that adversely impact health starts dealing once again with a large portion of “climate change” as well as quality of life. Of course, if all you have is a CO2 hammer, every problem is just another nail ain’t it?

      • And was the world a better place in 1910? I don’t think so.
        And civilization since then, of course, was built by fossil fuels.

        Climate events of that time:

        Paris: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/7a/Paris_1910_Inondation_gare_Saint-Lazare.jpg

        Dayton Ohio: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/13/OHdayton-flood1913-4thst.jpg

        Central US:https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/f/f9/Tri-State_Tornado.JPG

        and many others.

        Global temperature doesn’t have much to do with these things and reducing CO2 is not going to change adverse climate.

      • Dr. Curry

        Here I go again, back in moderation again. What is the sin I’m in? On this cold wintery day.

      • TE – hilarious. Just hilarious.

    • The IPCC has this for 1951-2010. You can draw the conclusion from this. Note where natural forcing variations and internal variability are.

      The realclimate page this comes from is here.
      http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2013/10/the-ipcc-ar5-attribution-statement/

      • 2010? You still buying 2010 cutting edge technology?

      • AR5. It’s the latest report they have. If you know of a newer one go for it. That was during the so-called pause.

      • David Wojick

        NAT and IV are wildly undervalued, plus the so-called observed warming is bogus. The satellites did not see this warming. In fact they have yet to see any GHG warming. None.

        You do understand that the IPCC is a political front for the UNEP, right? Why do you present their stuff as factual?

      • That’s just denial, not an argument. Find someone who says those are undervalued in a publication or even on WUWT and say why you believe them. They don’t use that argument and for good reason – no evidence.

      • Jim D there has been a lot written recently about estimates of climate sensitivity using semi-empirical approaches, and these are lowering the estimates significantly. You should dig this stuff out (perhaps starting with the ‘Sensitivity and feedback’ category here). It simply reinforces the point that being too certain about all this can lead to costly mistakes.

      • catweazle666

      • If you are talking about Lewis and those types of studies, they all assume 100% attribution to begin with because they have a positive remaining imbalance built in which means there is warming in the pipeline even if we stop emitting. I prefer the effective transient sensitivity which is warming per CO2 rise that stands at 1 C per 100 ppm from the last 60 years of observations (2.3 C per doubling). This uses CO2 as a proxy for the total forcing, and the fit is good as I have shown many times and will spare you from that data again. I would take the last 60 years of data as typical for planning purposes because it averages out various natural cycles and leaves just the forced change. It is also very sharp at 2.3 C rather than 2.0 or 2.6. By the time we add something on for equilibrium, we may be in the 2.8-3.0 C per doubling range. Observation based, no models.

      • Steven Mosher

        HAS
        There is one method that gives lower numbers

        No reason able analyst focuses on one set of numbers

      • Observation based

        Since 1979, observations indicate ~1.7 C per effective CO2 doubling.

        Water vapor and Arctic sea ice are thought to be the largest positive feedbacks and certainly both have contributed to this 1.7C rate.

        The Hot Spot is thought to be the largest negative feedback and it has been a no show for this period.

        It’s difficult to make a case for anything beyond what is observed.

      • The trend since 1979 is consistent with the trend since 1950, if you look at it, 1 C per 100 ppm.
        http://woodfortrees.org/plot/gistemp/from:1950/mean:12/plot/esrl-co2/scale:0.01/offset:-3.2

      • catweazle666

        “The trend since 1979 is consistent with the trend since 1950, if you look at it, 1 C per 100 ppm.”

        Yet more of your scientifically illiterate utter drivel.

        You haven’t even grasped the concept of a logarithmic relationship yet, and you consider yourself qualified to comment on climate science.

        Unbelievable!

      • When CO2 changes by 30-40%, a log profile looks quite linear, as you can see. You can try plotting a log function between 1 and 1.3 if you don’t believe me. It’s simple mathematics, but many are confused by this concept of linearity over small ranges. You can calculate a doubling rate from the gradient and that is 2.3 C per doubling, as I mentioned before.

      • catweazle666

        “When CO2 changes by 30-40%, a log profile looks quite linear”

        No it doesn’t, as you would realise if you had done the calculation. But you haven’t, because you can’t.

        “You can calculate a doubling rate from the gradient and that is 2.3 C per doubling, as I mentioned before.”

        More drivel, Jimbo.

      • David Springer

        catweasel’s graph of falling ECS and TCR estimates vs. time is pure gold.

      • You can do that if you cherry pick your studies. Now we’ll see an opposite trend as studies start to take 2016 into account. End-date sensitivity is not good to have but that is a large part f what you are looking at.

      • Steven Mosher: No reason able analyst focuses on one set of numbers

        It depends on context: when the most recent estimate is clearly the best, that’s what reasonable people go with. Michelson’s estimate of the speed of light, for example, and the Michelson and Morely estimate of the effect of the ether drag had large impacts.

        The earlier estimates of the TCS and ECS were based in part on climate experts’ opinion, stated as prior probability distributions. Those prior distributions have been shown to have been terribly inaccurate. Yet they are still included in tables as being reasonable. That’s as foolish as using pre-Michelson estimates of the speed of light.

      • Based on catweasel’s graph, TCR will be zero by about 2020!!

      • Not after people start figuring 2016 in.

      • “One could be badly misled by taking observed trends and extrapolating into the future, because we do not expect this particular warming pattern to persist.” … – Chen Zhou

        Latest research is pointing toward higher, not lower, climate sensitivity.

        There are some strangely linear adherents of chaos theory here at CargoCult Etc.

      • Steven Mosher, we were discussing the contribution of a new set of numbers/method (as you please) to uncertainty.

        JCH what were the particular new works you had in mind?

      • David Springer

        JCH please feel free to demonstrate how you can cherry pick studies by making your own cherry picks and put them in a graph like Catweazel did. In the meantime he’s the only game in town, so to speak.

      • David Springer

        Empirical ECS estimates are based on decades of records. One year (2016) won’t have much influence. Anyone with even modestly informed on these studies with above average aptitude in math would not need me to explain this. So you’re either dummies or dishonest or both.

      • Empirical ECS estimates are based on decades of records.

        And show warming is a regional issue, which can only be due to moving water. There is no other mechanism capable of altering regional climate.
        https://micro6500blog.wordpress.com/2016/05/18/measuring-surface-climate-sensitivity/

      • > we were discussing the contribution of a new set of numbers/method (as you please) to uncertainty.

        Actually, it is you who went on that tengent, HAS. Attribution ain’t the lukewarm studies’ thing. As Jim D mentions, it’d be circular.

        Hence Mr. T.

      • Willard, Jim D’s circularity comes because he “take[s] the last 60 years of data … because it averages out various natural cycles and leaves just the forced change” to quote.

      • Lewis and Curry are circular by that argument. Take the data and fit a line. That’s all anyone does in observational studies. The positive imbalance shows that the change is forced., so if you have another cause it has to be external forcing too.

      • You can use Google Scholar better than me. Heading for a hot year, maybe even a record 4th warmest in a row. That low climate sensitivity is really kickbutt.

      • Here, HAS:

        [T]hey all assume 100% attribution to begin with because they have a positive remaining imbalance built in which means there is warming in the pipeline even if we stop emitting.

        There’s not much other choice, since injecting too much variability in their so-called “observational” modulz doesn’t help lower the limits of justified lukewarm disingenuousness.

      • Bjorn Stevens, who wears a white hat, and is one of the good pre-approved, CargoCult Etc. good guys:

        Correcting the simple model interpretations of the instrumental record by allowing for a 33 % pattern effect would imply that the studies cited in Table S1 can, with some (here the eighty-third percentile) confidence, rule out values of ECS greater than about 2.4 K to 3.7 K, depending on the study. We adopt a more conservative statement, and assert that an ECS greater than 4 K becomes difficult to reconcile with the instrumental temperature record. Some recent work suggests that even such a large correction to the upper bound (from 2.8 K to 4.0 K) may still insufficiently account for pattern effects [Gregory and Andrews, 2016], thereby further undermining the ability of the instrumental record to refute the story line for a very high ECS.

      • JCH perhaps read the Sevens et al paper itself rather than quote the SI (out of context). Available here http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/pubman/faces/viewItemOverviewPage.jsp?itemId=escidoc:2270489:11#files

        Willard perhaps you might find it useful to read this too.

      • Jim D:

        “Lewis and Curry are circular by that argument. Take the data and fit a line. That’s all anyone does in observational studies. ”

        ECS (and its relations) are simply defined metrics. They are directly derived from estimates of physical attributes of the wider climate system. It isn’t estimated by “taking data and fit[ting] a line”.

        However what does need to happen in all approaches is to estimate the various parameters. In doing that it doesn’t make any difference to the integrity of the calculation whether you are using climate models for all your estimates (as done in some cases) or just some and rely upon estimates more directly derived from empirical observations for the balance (as is done in these semi-empirical approaches). There are arguments that would say, all thing being equal, the latter approach is preferable because if you use climate models you are calculating their ECS as if they were the real climate, and many would see that as circualr.

        As long as the various parameters are estimated independently there can be no basis for arguing circularity, and even it were it is a sin of all techniques.

        Where the arguments do lie between the various approaches is how well they estimate the various parameters. E.g. whether the models better represent feedbacks or not, or how well the various approaches give estimates of ECS that are stable in time (although there is no reason why they must, but there is the need for an explanation if not).

        These are the issues that define the current debate, I’ve never heard anyone raise the the question of whether semi-empirical approaches “take away the number you first thought of” to get to their answer (aka “are circular”).

      • The way Lewis and Curry try to remove natural variability is by choosing their endpoints. They assume they are correct because they have chosen the correct end points. However, those were debatable because they started in warm anomalous periods and ended in a cold one (the pause). They make other assumptions about aerosols and other GHGs to try to extract the CO2 component, and have to make further assumptions about the OHC change to get the ECS. I just take the temperature and the longest CO2 record and get an effective sensitivity of 1 C per 100 ppm or 2.3 C per doubling. It is simple and applies directly to the CO2 level. Someone using that number in 1950 at 310 ppm could have predicted today’s temperature at 400 ppm. Less assumptions, easier to use. Lovejoy got a similar effective transient sensitivity using the full temperature record and the pre-industrial CO2 level where log CO2 and temperature can be plotted on a line for this period.

      • Jim D

        If you read Lewis and Curry 2014 for example you will find there is quite an extensive discussion of end points and the impact on the results.

      • If they had more objectively used a linear fit to the whole period and used CO2 forcing values instead of estimated total forcings that used a rather unknown, and they assumed weak, aerosol component they would have got Lovejoy’s result. Their reference beginning periods were both warm, one even being 1930-1950, and the end was at the pause.

      • Thanks, HAS. So far, Stevens & al is well written and clear enough for me. Transforming sensitivity matters into a satisfiability problem sounds intuitive to me. There was no need to call it “reasoning by refutation” but that’s a minor point.

        What seems to be required, if we need more than “adumbrate” (nice word) storylines, would be something like constraint programming. No idea how this should be done. But I know that satisfying a set of propositions by hand on that state space size can’t really be done by hand alone. More so if those propositions express quantities.

      • It is perhaps the wrong question. The right question is how sensitive is the planet to forcing?

        There is about 25W/m2 difference in the energy budget between the last glacial maximum and today. So that’s about 5W/m2 per degree warming – or 0.2 degrees C/W/m2.

        I’d assume somebodies missing something. It is technically known as a sanity check and a lot of people in climate alarmism seem to be coming up short.

      • Most people don’t count the feedback as part of the forcing. It’s just the definition of forcing. You want to redefine it? Go for it, but better to use another word to avoid confusion.

      • “It depends on context: when the most recent estimate is clearly the best, that’s what reasonable people go with. ”

        Let me explain why a reasonable analyst will NOT merely look at “observational” estimates.

        When it comes to ECS

        1. Paleo records, take Hansen’s LGM estimate,
        A) Are long enough to include all the physics of the system
        B) suffer from Uncertainty in the observations
        2. Short term Obseervational methods (Like Lewis)
        A) Have relatively small amounts of uncertainty in observations
        B) Suffer from not being long enough to include all physics

        3) Modelling
        A) Have certain “onbservations”
        B) Do not contain all known physics

        The range of ECS is still wide and I havent seen any argument that Narrows the range in any convincing manner.

        In short I am skeptical That Lewis and Curry have settled the science.
        IF they HAD, then Pruit would have cited them

      • Steven Mosher: The range of ECS is still wide and I havent seen any argument that Narrows the range in any convincing manner.

        The widest estimates were Bayesian estimates that depended on unrealistically wide priors. It could be, or could have been, an expert’s actual opinion that there was 5% probability that the value could be greater than 10, but that clearly isn’t based on any evidence and there is no reason for us to give the resultant computation great weight. Of the estimates, the most recent 25% are more dependable than the earliest 25%.

        Notice how you shifted your ground: first you gave a sort of universal-sounding rule that was clearly false; then you wrote a more sensible case.

      • Steven Mosher
        “The range of ECS is still wide and I havent seen any argument that Narrows the range in any convincing manner. ”

        In practice the issues are clearer (see eg Sevens et al) and semi empirical approaches are making the top of the range less likely, but increasing the uncertainty about the bottom.

      • “The decreasing surface albedo caused by continuously retreating sea ice over Arctic plays a critical role in Arctic warming amplification. However, the quantification of the change in radiative forcing at top of atmosphere (TOA) introduced by the decreasing sea ice albedo and its feedback to the climate remain uncertain.”
        http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/abs/10.1175/JCLI-D-14-00389.1

        Ice cover is a feedback. The change in energy out at TOA is a forcing.

        Mistaking what you imagine for what most people think is your error.

      • So is water vapor a forcing or a feedback in your book? That is so confused. It’s not called a positive albedo feedback for nothing. In this case they may have been talking about a sea-ice change that wasn’t related to warming in which case it would be a correct usage. The Milankovitch cycles are started by an albedo forcing, but mostly consist of feedbacks. Maybe you have a tough time distinguishing in your mind, and that is just fine. I won’t explain.

      • “The decreasing surface albedo caused by continuously retreating sea ice over Arctic plays a critical role in Arctic warming amplification. However, the quantification of the change in radiative forcing at top of atmosphere (TOA) introduced by the decreasing sea ice albedo and its feedback to the climate remain uncertain.”
        http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/abs/10.1175/JCLI-D-14-00389.1

        Ice cover is a feedback. The change in energy out at TOA is a forcing.

        Mistaking what you imagine for what most people think is your error.

      • Water vapor changes the energy out too. So do clouds. Everything becomes forcing. Nothing is left as feedback. Completely useless definition.

      • The global energy equation is very simple – and it is all that matters in warming and cooling.

        Δ(H&W) ≈ Ein – Eout

        The change in heat energy content of the planet – and the work done in melting ice or vaporising water – is approximately equal to energy in less energy out.

      • It makes sense to separate cause from effect in forcing, but you don’t see the need. Fine.

      • David Springer

        The instrument temperature record is regional, not global, prior to the satellite-borne instrument era which began 38 years ago. If the ground temperature record of Europe and the United States were an adequate proxy for satellite measurements of the global ocean/atmosphere system we wouldn’t need the satellites. Worse, if the satellites were adequate for describing the global heat budget we wouldn’t need the ARGO ocean-temperature sensing network.

        The bottom line is we need to know what’s happening in the ocean, temperature-wise, in order to determine what effect (if any) CO2 is having on the global heat budget. Unfortunately the ARGO network has been operational for barely a decade.

        You dress up a pig but it’s still a pig. Without decades of reliable data on global ocean temperature, top to bottom, we just don’t know what’s really happening with the global heat budget because the ocean is indisputably and by several orders of magnitude the largest reservoir of solar energy.

      • David Springer

        Energy balance at top of atmosphere is important to know but it isn’t well-enough known at this time. Its magnitude is bounded to a fairly small number but the margin of error in the estimate is insufficient to reasonably establish its polarity!

        Despite that uncertainty in TOA energy balance if we presume it to be some small positive number at the center of the error bars (0.5W/m^2) this is sufficient to heat the entire ocean volume by only 0.2C per century which is of little practical concern.

        Thus the horns of the dilemma aren’t so much whether or how much energy is accumulating in the system due to TOA imbalance but rather the distribution of the accumulating energy. If it’s somehow limited to the top 10% of the ocean then its effect on surface temperature is 10x greater than if it were evenly distributed through the ocean’s entire volume.

        We know it isn’t confined to the top 10%. It mixes downward by both conduction and convection. The ocean overturns through the global conveyor belt. The critical thing is how rapidly this occurs and we simply don’t know the rate at which ocean surface heating migrates to the abyss. We don’t know if that rate is constant or variable or what conditions might change it significantly. The data is simply absent and there’s no reliable substitute for empirical data. ARGO is a great start but it has only been operational for a decade and we know that mixing varies cyclically on at least multi-decade timeframes; AMDO and PDO for example and potentially much longer cycles too. Moreover ARGO buoys dive to maximum depth of 2000 meters which is only half the average depth of the global ocean so ARGO completely misses any temperature change in the lower half of the ocean.

      • David Springer

        Microwhatever you say regional temperature change can only be due to moving water. That’s ignorant on the face of it. Altered jet streams have dramatic effects on regional temperatures. Folks in the northeast US right now are experiencing that effect even as we speak.

      • Microwhatever you say regional temperature change can only be due to moving water. That’s ignorant on the face of it. Altered jet streams have dramatic effects on regional temperatures. Folks in the northeast US right now are experiencing that effect even as we speak.

        Have you not noticed, the jet stream routes around high pressure zones, like the ones that build over warm pools of water. The blob had this effect on the jet stream.
        My point, is the increased water vapor generated by warm water pools alters land surface temps.
        In Ohio, it is obvious that where the air mass overhead comes from makes a 10 or 15F swing in temps. When the jet stream runs north of us, the air comes from the gulf of mexico, and it is warm and humid. When it runs south of us, we get cooler, dryer air out of Canada.
        So you are right the jet stream matters, but it too is impacted where the warm pools of water accumulate in the ocean.
        The recent el nino is another example of how the oceans moving pools of warm water changes the jet stream.

      • The effect of ice sheet changes – jimmy d – is a 25W/m2 forcing change at toa for a 5K change in temperature.

        Fine – you neglect the significant fact as usual.

        The energy imbalance is given by Argo. Satellites can’t provide absolute values with useful precision. It’s the calibration problem. Anomalies are much more precise and provide information about which components in the energy budget are changing and by how much.

      • “The energy imbalance is given by Argo. Satellites can’t provide absolute values with useful precision. It’s the calibration problem. Anomalies are much more precise and provide information about which components in the energy budget are changing and by how much.”
        I agree with all this. You have made progress.

      • And you have not the slightest clue jimmy d.

      • Well, you said something I agreed with, and I sure don’t know why. Let’s leave it at that.

      • David Springer

        Microwave is there any literature that supports your contentions? It appears to me you’re just making up your own explanations and they’re not well enough informed to be taken seriously.

  49. “Mandy Gunasekara, who supplied the snowball U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe famously tossed on the Senate floor two years ago, has been named new EPA chief Scott Pruitt’s top adviser on air and climate issues.”

    Gunasekara, a former lobbyist and congressional aide, has a BA in Communication and Media Studies and a law degree.

    But, uncertainty, right?

    • Presumably a top advisor on the communication and law aspects of air and climate issues, of which there is great stock thanks to the alarmists.

      Even more good news re apointing Inhofe staffers:

      I helped Inhofe’s staff get up to speed on skepticism, back in the day. He and I (and CEI) sued NSF to block the first National Assessment (National Scare is better) from becoming policy back around 2001. Pruitt is picking the right people.

      • Was that back in the day you consulted for coal companies?
        How are they all doing these days, by the way?

      • David Wojick

        Indeed it was, although my main client was nonprofit rural electric power cooperatives who depended on economical coal fired power. But as you and Mr. Trump know, we lost the left’s war on coal, so far anyway. Time will tell.

      • By the 1999 AEC estimate there were between 1,000 and 100,000 years of fissionables. They get more expensive, but plant dominates costs due to the high energy density, so the fuel costs can actually rise by 10x or more before they start to matter to the end user. We still can’t do fusion despite many, many computer models that failed to predict reality (there used to be a joke that theory always experiment, but for some reason they both changed every year) and it’s still an open question whether that transition will be very painful or even technically possible. There’s no more low-hanging fruit in 2017.

        As long as coal can be extracted cheaply someone will always be burning it, and benefiting economically from their choice.

      • Trump/Pruitt will not like this survey:
        “Record percentages of Americans are concerned about global warming, believe it is occurring, consider it a serious threat and say it is caused by human activity. All of these perceptions are up significantly from 2015.”
        http://www.gallup.com/poll/206030/global-warming-concern-three-decade-high.aspx

        Trump’s approval ratings have yet to reach 50% after 50 days in office. In fact they are approaching record lows!
        Gallup Poll. Rolling average. N=approx. 1,500 adults nationwide. Margin of error ± 3.
        The way Donald Trump is handling his job as president
        Date Approve Disapprove Spread
        3/11-13/17 39 55 – 16

        So what is Trump doing today? He’s in Detroit to tell auto makers that he will roll back auto emissions standards.

      • These are the same pollsters who said he had no chance of being elected, right?

        Trump isn’t ‘rolling back’ standards in any way that would allow them to produce more emissions than they do today, he’s just not ratcheting them down further the way Obama scheduled them to happen.

        He understands cost-benefit analysis where Obama only looked at the benefits without considering the costs.

        and after decades of media bombardment, and the ongoing claim that you are stupid if you don’t believe in global warming, I would expect that people would not want to look stupid by saying they don’t believe it.

        but belief isn’t what matters.

        The global warming scares are not based on science, they are based on flawed models.

        There’s a good writeup on why these are not actually science here: http://motls.blogspot.com/2017/03/selection-of-climate-model-survivors.html

      • Jack

        Here is the original survey you cite and at the foot of the document is the actual methodology used

        http://www.gallup.com/poll/206030/global-warming-concern-three-decade-high.aspx

        Just over 1000 telephone respondents chosen from ALL 50 states? Is that a representative number? Are they giving the answers expected in order to virtue signal? Would these results change with the recent heavy snow?
        .
        These polls failed completely to pick up the unexpected results of the 2015 UK General Election, Brexit and Trump. Do these telephone polls questioning a very tiny number of people have any credibility in the States?

        tonyb

      • tonyb
        Nope.

        But they do fit a political correct meme and garner headlines.
        Scott

      • Well how about Rasmussen, Trump’s favorite pollster:
        “The latest figures include 28% who Strongly Approve of the way Trump is performing and 44% who Strongly Disapprove. This gives him a Presidential Approval Index rating of -16. (see trends).”
        http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/trump_administration/prez_track_mar15

        Gallup has been polling this question longer than anybody. Sure I’m skeptical of polls too. They are used to both reflect and shape public opinion.

        Does this poll confirm your suspicions?
        “Forty-two percent of Americans say they personally worry a “great deal” about race relations in the United States, up seven percentage points from 2016 and a record high 17-year trend.”

        Guess who did that poll?

      • David Springer

        Libtards concerned about global warming won’t like this survey:

        http://www.gallup.com/poll/1675/most-important-problem.aspx

        Global warming is an acknowledged concern of many Americans but its priority barely warrants mention among all problems. By far the greatest areas of concern are economic and national security.

        Failure to address the most important concerns of a majority of states resulted in the loss of over 1000 federal and state elected offices once held by Democrats at the start of Obama’s term in office. Republican majority in state offices are greater than any time in the past 150 years.

        Mitigation of carbon emissions in the US will not have any significant effect on global warming. It only serves to drag down the US economy and sends the emissions overseas where there are even fewer constraints. China took over as the world’s largest emitter nearly ten years ago and global emission is higher than ever. The net result of driving down emission in the US was increasing it worldwide! An unintended consequence of defective libtard thinking.

      • David Springer

        See what happened in 2000 when US got aggressive about curbing CO2 emission? It flattened and went down in the US while simultaneously Chinese emission accelerated like a rocket and took over as the world’s largest emitter by 2008.

        Stupid is as stupid does. Establishment Republicans and Democrats alike are responsible. Thus Trump was sent to Washington to bust it up. The perfect guy for the job.

  50. To: Turbulent Eddie and Capt’nDallas regarding your comments up thread about what was life like in 1910 and issues of black carbon.

    I am reposting this as I have been in moderation and speculate that my reply to TE and CD resulted in a WordPress default ding.

    And further to your point, in the USA urban dwellers where household coal burning plus industrial sources black carbon (which Capt’nDallas was addressing) lodged in the lungs of residents. Autopsy of cops on the beat, trolley drivers and others who lived and worked in the cities demonstrated black carbon accumulation in these people’s lungs; visible on plain inspection as a speckled pattern on the outside, coating of the mucus on the inside of airways and enlarged lymph nodes loaded with black carbon. A prosector’s knife had a gritty feel to it as it sliced through the tissues.

    One of my contentions regarding the dramatic improvement in the incidence and prevalence of Pulmonary Tuberculosis in the US centers around the abrupt change in the use of natural gas for heating homes instead of coal. Gas pipes were already in many urban homes because of lighting. When electricity became generally available, the gas pipes were used as conduits for electric wires and the gas was diverted to the converted coal furnace in the basement, sometimes leaving the coal bin still containing coal from the last shipment. The change occurred around the 1920’s, and, over the next 10 years, the city skies could see blue again, and, remarkably, the number of people with new cases of tuberculosis plummeted. There was no breakthrough in medical cares for Tbc, that would not come until Streptomycin and INH were developed in the late 1940’s and used extensively in the 1950’s.

    My speculation is that the respiratory burden of black carbon was profoundly reduced in the 1920’s, the respiratory defense systems were no longer overwhelmed, hence, could subdue, sequester and kill the Tbc organisms.

    What is relevant for todays 2+ billion people exposed to black carbon and other products of combustion like the aldehydes, that just by introducing electric cooking would save millions of lives from death by tuberculosis. To me it is almost criminal that there is a solution to billions of people’s struggles that won’t become available because of ideology.

    • It is nothing less than a crime against humanity. Can we jail them and throw away the key?

    • It is pretty amazing how CO2 developed into a primary issue when direct action on the “low hanging fruit” would have accomplished more for less and still would have reduced CO2 emissions in the ROW.

    • http://www.copenhagenconsensus.com/post-2015-consensus/nobel-laureates-guide-smarter-global-targets-2030

      Many of these have population implications, one requires increased organic content in soils, development allows updating of fuel sources and equipment. There is a mention of a tax but it disaoppears in the detail. It is mostly concerned with health – and should there be a problem with encouraging minimal emissions of black carbon and sulfate. And yes low bc and sulfate emission technology is already widely adopted.

      • Chief

        If, and this is a big IF people in power of the UN believed in the Millennium goals: ie, reduce Tuberculosis deaths by 90%, reduce infant mortality by 70% and reduced indoor air pollution by 20%, all could be accomplished by installing electric cooking. Imagine that, millions of deaths averted annually by a stroke of an International Monetary Fund pen, allow electric power generation and distribute that power to billions of people. The numbers are there. The observational data is there. The science is there. Only the Gavin Schmidt’s and Michael Mann’s and Kevin Trenberth’s impeded this humanitarian activity. What would the people say if they knew?

      • The UN has 169 goals that are basically photo opportunities in poor countries. For God’s sake don’t send them money.

        Alternatively – these are the 19 goals where you could spend your philanthropic dollar if you wanted to have the best effect.

      • “The UN’s flagship energy access program, for example, claims that “basic human needs” can be met with enough electricity to power a fan, a couple of light bulbs, and a radio for five hours a day.”

        I recall it to be some 100kW/year.

      • Only the Gavin Schmidt’s and Michael Mann’s and Kevin Trenberth’s impeded this humanitarian activity. …

        Exactly how, with facts, did they do this?

    • Introduce electric cooking (welfare) for billions… go ahead.

      • The first step is to avoid imposing extremely tight emissions requirements on new generating plants. While they would not be up to the standards of what the US or China would want with our population densities, even the worst coal generating plants in history would be better for many of these countries than the problems they have from burning dung inside for cooking.

      • Who is going to pay for it?

      • We should ask these billions what they would do with an extra 100 US a month, would they want electricity, or would they spend it elsewhere?

  51. Weather weirding

    My lake near Lake Minnetonka of about 140 acres in size and with 8 feet of average depth went ice out on March 7th. Wind speeds were at least 30 mph for a sustained time. My lake is now ice in. I do not recall this happening in the past 2 decades. I typically see 2 regime changes per year. Looks like will have double that amount for 2017. I’d say the high winds forced a regime swap removing lake insulation. The lake wanted its ice back and got it.

    I’ve also seen another rare occurrence. Typically the creek/ditch outletting to Lake Minnetonka stops doing that before and during Winter. The creek is dry. It will flow all Winter this year as it did a year ago. Back to back occurrences means what? There has not been unusually high levels of precipitation. Call our recent Winters milder. Cold decreases water flow. With global warming, farmland may drain more in Winter. The farmers can get into the fields earlier. They may need less tile. There may be less Spring Flooding in Fargo. Perhaps it’s the case that a sped up hydrological cycle is better.

    • Ragnaar

      Given that your name elicits in my mind of a Norse Viking landscape, I too have observed a double icing this winter. Pond hockey earlier and now, a scant covering of ice, just enough to insulate the waters, not enough to lace up the skates.

  52. Everything in the alternate reality of global warming is up for review. Models, internal variability, the amount of warming, the energy imbalance, the source of carbon in the atmosphere, drought and flooding, climate extremes – literally everything.

    Energy imbalance is one of those odd urban myths. The idea depends on thermal inertia. Add greenhouse gases and it takes a while for the oceans to warm. Turn that idea on its head – greenhouse gases stop some cooling. The instantaneous increase in greenhouse gas forcing is 1E-10 W/m2. Even warming from the interior of the Earth is in the order of a billion times more. The argument there is that interior energy is lost – but put the two ideas together and less of that energy from the Earth’s interior is lost – and no energy imbalance evolves at top of atmosphere. There is simply a warmer planet in a new quasi-equilibrium. Energy imbalance is a sacred shibboleth in the alternate reality of global warming. What else could could be causing warming and cooling now? To find out you need both ocean and satellite data – I’ll attach the latest at the bottom.

    I have not quite been following the Forde 2017 controversy – and certainly have not read the blog science that purports to be refutations of published science. I am inclined – just on that frenzied, pissant response to a disturbance of the mindset – to report that peer reviewed science says that only 17% of the increase in CO2 is caused by people.

    We are certainly used to simple minded zealots feeling entitled to harass respected scientists – encouraged by self-appointed gatekeepers of the truth. None of that will stand any more.

    “You claim to be a scientist, yet feel free to present an incomplete story intent on making gullible people believe it’s OK to ignore all this information – in favor of juvenile cherry-picked arguments.

    But, the evidence does exist… and what we ignore will hurt us and our children!”

    Not much evidence exists at all. Models are fair enough as far as they go. Models are incomplete and coarse grained. They all need tuning – as all models do. The input data is not precise to any relevant degree and processes are less than well known or even unknown. The central problem is not even the nonlinear equations of fluid motions at the core of climate models. From slightly different starting points these nonlinear equations have 1000’s of equally plausible solutions. The central problem is the opportunistic ensembles manufactured by the IPCC. There is no theoretical justification for opportunistic models that survives the reality of nonlinear math. It is known widely by modelers – so how did dissimulation arise and how it persist?

    “Sensitive dependence and structural instability are humbling twin properties for chaotic dynamical systems, indicating limits about which kinds of questions are theoretically answerable. They echo other famous limitations on scientist’s expectations, namely the undecidability of some propositions within axiomatic mathematical systems (Gödel’s theorem) and the uncomputability of some algorithms due to excessive size of the calculation.” James McWilliams

    Have you ever wondered why they start the count on temperature from 1951?

    The spike at the end of the record is another annoying little feature of the surface record. Drought changes the balance of latent and sensible heat at the surface with less soil moisture. Surface temperature (a measurement of sensible heat) increases with declining soil moisture. El Nino and drought caused the spike at the end of the record. The drought artifact does not happen with satellite records.

    We know that 20-30 years Pacific regimes added to warming between 1911 and 1944, cooled the atmosphere to 1976 and warmed it to 1998. We have since been in a neutral regime – and I suspect it will stay that way until the next shift due in a 2018-2028 window. Ask Anastasios Tsonis – who was the object of the ignorant rant referred to above.

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

    Most of the pre-1944 warming was quite natural. Anthrpogenic forcing in this period was negligible. Natural cooling during the 1944 to 1976 period offset a net increase in forcing – a net that includes sulfates. Warming to 1998 – according to the satellite evidence – is mostly cloud feedbacks to Pacific sea surface temperature. Models in a more appropriate use show that the cloud variability in that period cannot be a global warming feedback – just in case you’re wondering.

    “In summary, although there is independent evidence for decadal changes in TOA radiative fluxes over the last two decades, the evidence is equivocal. Changes in the planetary and tropical TOA radiative fluxes are consistent with independent global ocean heat-storage data, and are expected to be dominated by changes in cloud radiative forcing. To the extent that they are real, they may simply reflect natural low-frequency variability of the climate system.” IPCC, AR4, 3.4.4.1

    So why start at a low point in the cooling regime? The residual warming between 1944 and 1998 is 0.087 degrees C/decade. With no credible computer projections it is the starting point for scenarios for the next few decades at least.

    The regimes start with upwelling in the north-eastern and central Pacific and set up feedbacks in wind, curents, hydrology and biology across the planet – a great resonant system. It is very much the elephant in the room.


    http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=8703

    Upwelling is a function of offshore winds on the eastern margin driving currents in the Pacific ocean gyres.

    The gyres are set up by Ekman transport and Coriolis forces and are modulated by the internal resonance of the system. The beat is supplied by polar annular modes transmitting a solar signal via UV/ozone chemistry.

    You see – it is a different world entirely.

    • Don’t fool yourself. Some guy named Feynman said that is easy to do. Apparently especially easy for alternate reality libertarians. Hey, but even Feynman wasted a day to go and meet Uri Geller the spoon bender.

      Drought… that’s a good one.

    • The dynamics of the warming hiatus over the Northern Hemisphere

      The results conclude that the DMO (decadal modulated oscillation) can not only be used to interpret the current warming hiatus, it also suggests that global warming will accelerate again when it swings upward.

      it also suggests that global warming will accelerate again when it swings upward.

      Gee, what would a DMO accelerated warming look like? How about three warmest years in a row? Nah, it wouldn’t look like that. No way. Don’t fool yourselves.

    • It is very simple physics of latent and sensible heat. Drought increases the sensible heat component at the surface.

      ‘The term “global warming” has been used to describe the observed surface air temperature increase in the 20th century. However, this concept of “global warming” requires assessments of units of heat (that is, Joules). Temperature, by itself, is an incomplete characterization of surface air heat content.’ http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1029/2004EO210004/abstract

      And ENSO activity is correlated with solar irradiance over a very long time.

      “Using Markov chain method, this study explored a strong relation between Sunspots and ENSO according to the resemblance on the formation of the values of the transition matrices, tracks of transition diagram, and found the same formation of the return period values. Moreover, these relations are more confirming with the evaluation of 2-dimensional correlation of 0.5897 and 0.9518 between Sunspots and the ENSO transition matrices of 1996–2009
      and 1950–2014 data sets respectively. The above results infer that Sunspots influence the ENSO data.” https://friendsofscience.org/assets/documents/CliSci/Hassan-SSPT&ENSO-relationship.pdf

      The mid-Holocene transition from La Nina to El Nino dominated, the Medieval climate optimum high in El Nino activity – and the modern 1000 year high.

      The 20 to 30 year regimes add up to variability on millennial timescales. The next shift in a 2018 to 2028 window is – with a less active Sun – likely to be to more Pacific upwelling . That’s the experiment under way.

      The assumption that the next shift will be to warmer again is really just that. Millennial evidence shows it just ain’t necessarily so.

  53. Pingback: Bits and Pieces – 20170312, Sunday | thePOOG

  54. This is exactly what Feynman and Hayek warned about and Tetlock proved experimentally: experts are competent neither to define scientific truth nor to run the world.

    A climate skeptic is one who believes in the ignorance of experts as to how little they really know about what they imagine they can design.

    • You got Feynman backwards. He was warning you not to fool yourself, and you’ve gone and done it anyway. You’re not alone. The warming PAWS made fools of a lot of very smart people.

      • “Science can be defined as the belief in the ignorance of experts.”

        “There’s all kinds of myths and pseudoscience all over the place. I may be quite wrong, maybe they do know all these things, but I don’t think I’m wrong. You see, I have the advantage of having found out how hard it is to get to really know something, how careful you have to be about checking the experiments, how easy it is to make mistakes and fool yourself. I know what it means to know something, and therefore I see how they get their information and I can’t believe that they know it, they haven’t done the work necessary, haven’t done the checks necessary, haven’t done the care necessary. I have a great suspicion that they don’t know, that this stuff is [wrong] and they’re intimidating people. I think so. I don’t know the world very well but that’s what I think.”

        If you think the models have anything like the reliability claimed… well, see above for what you haven’t done.

      • To summarize:

        Feynman: it’s really hard to be sure
        Pruitt: it’s really hard to be sure
        Curry: it’s really hard to be sure
        Various Science Press: we’re sure and saying it’s really hard to be sure is science denial

      • The reason you pick Feynman is simple. He is dead and he cannot straighten you out. He noted that Americans have this propensity for flirting with spoon benders. Climate skeptics are spoon benders.

      • Feynman: it’s really hard to be sure
        Pruitt: it’s really hard to be sure
        Curry: it’s really hard to be sure
        Various Science Press: we’re sure and saying it’s really hard to be sure is science denial
        JCH: we’re sure and saying it’s really hard to be sure is spoonbending

      • And while I would have loved to hear him say it himself, it’s a safe bet that if you told Feynman you could not only predict with 99% certainty global temperatures to within a degree or two for the next 100 years but also incidentally prove the dominant factor was going to be human contributions of a trace gas, he’d have started laughing even before he saw the track record of the models or the spread of sensitivities in the literature.

      • Man: It’s really hard, to be sure

        Woman: Are you really sure it’s hard?

  55. Pingback: Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #262 | Watts Up With That?

  56. Judith Curry:

    ”If I am interpreting Pruitt’s statements correctly, I do not find anything to disagree with in what he said: we don’t know how much of recent warming can be attributed to humans. In my opinion, this is correct and is a healthy position for both the science and policy debates.”

    As I see the present climate problem is too complicated to be clearly understood only by reading institutional reports – like published by IPCC. Topics and comments of threads – like Climate etc – help your understanding as an open-minded person. Anyhow, that demands even scrutinizing by yourself. This kind of multi-disciplinary problems I am used to solve my own way. As a starting point of my own I usually have tried to make myself know real circumtances of the problem, well enough. Simultaneously you can get qualifications to learn accurately to know the problem, which helps the scrutiny of your own on that.

    UN politicians focus on the mere belief according to which the recent global warming is dominated by CO2 emissions from fossile fuels, whereas my first priority in order to solve the role of those anthropogenic CO2 emissions on warming, compared to total warming, is to base it per se on the expreriences of my own.

    In the Rio conference 1992 UN politicians acknowledged, that there was not awailable any true evidence in reality which could duely prove that the emissions from fossile fuels dominate the climate warming. In spite of that, according to precausionary principle, the politicians regarded cost-effective cuttings of man-made CO2 emissions as necessary. As the cuttings in accordance with the Kyoto protocol prove, until now, cuttings of CO2 emissions caused by fossile fuels have caused only disarsters, which makes even the Paris agreement be obviously questionable. Any working solution demands a result that is excact enough – and that is what I am here striving for, too.

    At first I have been interested in the question why on the dry savannas in Africa any climate temperature during day time can be even about 70 C, but during night time that can drop below zero Celsius degrees. The frost in clear, dry atmophere of savanna during night time can be explained by the lack of water vapor as green house gas in atmosphere. At the same time, according to pragmatic logic, it proves that influence of present CO2 content in atmosphere as greenhouse gas is unnoticeable.

    At second I have thought, why a smoke streak of jet plane in the sky sometimes can be seen, sometimes it can not be seen. On basis of what I have experienced it means that the clear sky without the kind of smoke streaks, in spite of presence on flying jet planes, is a consequence of low relative humidity in the air. The lack of water vapor as green house gas makes even climate get colder during night times. Correspondingly higher relative humidities in air lessen the cooling of climate during night times, and that can make even water drops of smoke streaks be possible. Even though foehn winds are regarded as dry, the relative humidity in air seems to be still high enough to make smoke streaks of jet planes be possible.

    At third in earlier comments of mine I have already argued: a) geological and recent observations prove that during last 100 million years change trends of CO2 content in atmospher follow change trends of climate temperature and not vice versa; and b) the share CO2 content from fossile fuels in the recent increase of CO2 content in atmosphere has been only about 4 % at the most; https://judithcurry.com/2017/02/10/the-new-climate-denial/#comment-838229 .

    As my summary I can ascertain: a) even any total increase of CO2 content in atmosphere has not been proved to cause any distinguishable climate warming; b) as the share of CO2 from fossile fuels in the recent total increase of CO2 content in atmophere has been only about 4 % at the most, the influence of it on climate sensitivity can not be distinguished from zero; c) the Paris agreement will be disastrous; and d) cutting CO2 emissions from fossile fuel mus be replaced by adaptation to natural climate changes and extreme weather events.

  57. It is the job of scientists to question everything, and seek answers. It is the job of politicians to distort everything, and provide answers based upon their distortions.

    It is the job of the media to report on everything. But they seem to have lost their job and think they are politicians.

    Excellent analysis. Thanks for providing it.

  58. Geoff Sherrington

    So much global warming debate now involves pitting of 2 camps, one being “Parse the Process” and the other “Show the Science” if you will pardon the shorthand.
    Preserve some time andbenergy for the second one, the one that matters.
    Geoff

    • But, but … ‘We have 25 or so years invested in the work.
      Why should I make it available to you, when your aim is
      to try and find something wrong with it.’
      Phil Jones, climate scientist..

      • Beth

        I approached Phil Jones a couple of weeks ago regarding some data I needed that Lamb originally produced about winds. There seems to be a much better correlation between wind and temperature than co2 and temperature.

        I must say that Phil has been extremely helpful and generous with his time and has sent me a number of useful looking documents

        tonyb

      • Tony,

        Sharing’s nice. )
        Look forward to yr forthcoming climate history long view.
        bts

      • Geoff Sherrington

        BTS,
        That famous comment came to Warwick Hughes in relation to a project on climate that Warwick had brought to some of us for funding in 1992 or so. So I’m intimately aware of it.
        Geoff.

  59. And still, the Earth has cooled for four and a half billion years.

    Sad?

    Cheers.

  60. The Twitter link “What Happens When an Archaeologist Challenges Mainstream Scientific Thinking?” is very interesting.. as John P. A. Ioannidis has pointed out “Claimed research findings may often be simply accurate measures of the prevailing bias” — in this and many other cases, the current consensus in many a scientific field is “simply accurate measure of the prevailing bias.” (ref: “Why Most Published Research Findings Are False” (.pdf here).

    For those still agog at the idea of “alternative facts”, this is a fine example of true alternative facts being presented and rejected as they appeared contrary to the currently accepted interpretation of other true facts. As is often the case, those alternative facts, when taken seriously, led to a huge advance in human archaeology of the Americas.

    • Your shoes are on the wrong feet. You just turned left when you should have turned right. Oh well. It’ not like you matter. The AMO cargo plane is never coming.

    • One observation of that current consensus was that they seemed “almost brainwashed.”

      Sounds eerily familiar with another consensus position that is near and dear to our hearts.

      It took decades for some to be enlightened in that case. Even if we had an impending ice age, there would still be some holdouts deep
      into this century, just like some Japanese soldiers who hid out in the South Pacific
      islands for many years after WWII.

      • As the Iwo Jima battlefield shrank down to the last pocket of armed resistance, my father’s platoon was ordered to assist translators who were there to talk bypassed Japanese soldiers and sailors/marines into coming out of their caves and bunkers and surrendering. Iwo is a volcanic island, so the caves and bunkers were unbearably hot. The conditions inside were about as bad as it gets. Waiting outside for them was life, water, food, and medical treatment. In total, around 100 out of a garrison of around 20,000 surrendered to the three USMC divisions in 36 days of combat. They were told if they did not come out, engineers would blast the entrances shut, and they would experience slow, agonizing deaths in total darkness. A large number went that way. Often they heard grenades and gunshots as they ended their lives. I have a bayonet that my father removed from a dead soldier’s belly. He was in a small cave at the base Mt. Suribachi. After the USMC turned the captured island over to US Army units, they eventually got around 1,000 to surrender, but also had kill many dead enders.

        Like so many here, you’re completely wrong and it’s getting worse.

        The highest ranking officer to successfully surrender emerged from a cave opening and ran straight to my father. He spoke English. In Japan he lived the rest of his life in shame… seldom came out of his house.

      • JCH

        I’ve noticed you have a lot of problems but I didn’t know reading comprehension was one of them.

        Did I say Iwo Jima? Did you realize there were battles all across the
        Pacific? In the 1950s , I saw film of Japanese soldiers surrendering on isolated islands. In the 1960s I saw film of Japanese soldiers surrendering on isolated islands. In the 1970s I saw film of Japanese soldiers turning themselves up. I believe even in the 1980s they found one on one the tiny islands.

        Don’t tell me I’m wrong about what I said when you didn’t even know what I said.

        You make it easy to dismiss your blather when you can’t even read simple sentences.

      • Yes, my father was in 6 Pacific War campaigns… from Guadalcanal to training for the invasion of Japan. What you don’t get is you’re them… a dead ender.

      • JCH:
        お早うございます
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Indianapolis_(CA-35)
        This man in a cave thinks the oceans will moderate changes in the GMST.

      • My wife is from the Philippines. Those Japanese soldiers were still shooting people on Lugang into the 1970s. When the new pacifist gov’t helpfully sent someone to clear them out, one soldier told them:

        “No, I won’t go back! For me, the war hasn’t ended!”

        https://mikedashhistory.com/2015/09/15/final-straggler-the-japanese-soldier-who-outlasted-hiroo-onoda/

        For some, the war never ends.

      • JCH
        My Dad was also on Iwo Jima, Okinowa, Saipan and Guadacanal. The Japanese fought hard, were intelligent and brave. In the end they seemed wrong in their ideals as events demonstrated.

        Like the last CAGW idealists, they ignored reality until it no longer was possible.

        I see we have something in common about our Dads.

        I don’t believe your religion of CAGW but am willing to observe and see which way the temperatures and climate goes. Like most.observers.

        Scott

      • In general, Marines and attached sailors who served in combat on Iwo did not serve on Okinawa unless the they were crewmen on US Navy vessels, as many warships left Iwo early to meet the Okinawa invasion schedule.

        Yes, I believe the last holdout was captured in the Philippines. There was a story about him in Life Magazine.

        And they are very much like climate skeptics in that there is a complete break with rationality. So sorry.

      • JCH: And they are very much like climate skeptics in that there is a complete break with rationality. So sorry.

        That is untrue.

        In the CO2 policy debates, the nearest examples of “complete break with rationality” are (a) Stephen Schneider’s recommendation that each scientist find a comfort level (not his words) with exaggerating the risk of CO2-induced warming; (b) Lisa Jackson’s immersion of chalk into vinegar; (c) scientists ad hominem Scientific American responses to Bjorn Lomborg’s damage assessments; (d) vilification of scientists who agree to act as consultants to GWPF.

        If you want to cite some examples of “complete break with rationality” by specific “climate” skeptics, we could perhaps evaluate how general the “complete break with rationality” is among them.

      • Beware your wishes, MattM.

        There’s nothing irrational in realizing that the GWPF is first and foremost an energy think tank that peddles contrarian crap, and a thread on denying teh Scott’s denial may not be the best place to ask for examples of denial.

        All this only indicates Denizens need a new thread.

      • willard: There’s nothing irrational in realizing that the GWPF is first and foremost an energy think tank that peddles contrarian crap

        No. It mostly does not exclusively peddle crap. It peddles stuff you disagree with or would rather ignore.

      • > No. It mostly does not exclusively peddle crap. It peddles stuff you disagree with or would rather ignore.

        Pure contradiction is weak sauce. MattM.

        Of course the GWPF peddles crap, e.g.:

        https://andthentheresphysics.wordpress.com/?s=gwpf

        That I disagree with it or not is independent from that fact. That you agree with it too, for that matter. Even baron Lawson of Blaby’s beliefs are independent from that fact.

        I can agree that it’s good crap, however. It still is crap. The whole luckwarm playbook is definitely crap.

        All this can wait. We now have a new thread. Too bad it’s not about the Colbert Report’s interview. I mean, the Corbett Report.

        Open Source Intelligence News – What’s not to like?

    • > this is a fine example of true alternative facts

      Hence the title’s *scientific thinking*, and the piece’s mention of *story* and *model*.

      • Here’s the single mention of the word “alternative” in the piece:

        At Bluefish Caves, the crucial evidence consisted of animal bones that were dated to around 24,000 years ago and seemed to be cut, shaped or flaked by humans. So critics focused on those. They dismissed Cinq-Mars’s identification of butchery marks and tools, and offered alternative explanations. Rockfall from the caves, they suggested, had fractured the bones, leaving splinters that merely looked like human artifacts. Or large carnivores had chomped on a carcass, producing grooves that resembled cut marks or fragments mirroring artifacts. Some skeptics even suggested that living mammoths could have taken bad tumbles nearby, accidentally splintering limb bones. Other critics wanted to see multiple lines of evidence for the presence of early humans at Bluefish Caves, including dated hearths with stone tools in close association.

        http://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/jacques-cinq-mars-bluefish-caves-scientific-progress-180962410

        Notice how “skeptics” and “critics” built up impossible demands, just as Denizens do daily. There’s even a One Single Proof, Sir Rud’s favorite.

        It’s as is Cinq-Mars got a taste of the auditing sciences.

        Furthermore, the community’s skepticism seems to have died down as evidence from other sites piled up. Another model now seems to be preferred: the Beringian standstill hypothesis.

  61. HERE IS MY CLIMATE FORECAST BASED ON TWO FACTORS

    FACTOR NUMBER ONE – ALL of the solar conditions must meet my criteria. Thus far all have with the exception of the solar wind /ap index but that should come in line soon ,as sunspots vanish. The coronal holes will dry up which is temporary keeping up the solar wind speed and ap index .

    FACTOR TWO – The upcoming probable El Nino, but this is very temporary and will last worst case scenario 9 months.

    So let’s say a moderate El NINO develops and last around 9 months that would take us to the end of 2017 /early 2018.

    At that time that is when the global temperatures will fall below the 30 year running normal.

    It will be fast not slow when it happens.

    Look at the period 1275-1325 the climate changed quickly.

    Now if El Nino should fizzle and major volcanic activity picks up this dramatic cooling below the 30 year avg. will come before the end of year 2017.

    So my climate outlook is, this is the end of the warm period. It has one year or less to go and when it ends the global temperatures will fall fast and be below the 30 year running normal and stay there.

    If my two factors take place and the global temperatures do not fall I will be wrong.

    I know two things for sure which are this period of time in the climate is in no way unique and AGW does not exist. at part.

    y

    • And here we have a prediction that’s measurable in a reasonable timeframe

    • Can I see your 2014 forecast that predicted the 2015-16 global mean temperature?

    • …in the next few years we will know, who is right and who is wrong.

      I will be proven correct along with many in my camp that predict this will be the decade of global cooling…Mark my words.

      So said Salvatore Del Prete in 2010.

      • Pat Cassen: So said Salvatore Del Prete in 2010.

        Thank you for the link, and the reminder. Time is running out, but has not expired yet, on that prediction.

    • Me and Sal have something in common.

      Every year I predict a new Arctic sea ice minimum and every year Sal predicts record cooling.

      One of us is occasionally right and one of us knows he is not making scientifically sound predictions.

  62. AGW is the biggest hoax every to be put upon the public.

    The data does not support it and yet the scam whatever one wants to call it lives on but as I have said many times before this decade is out AGW theory will be obsolete.

  63. Patience climate skeptics ,everything is falling into place.

  64. Pingback: Scott Pruitt (New Head of the EPA) Is Absolutely Right About Carbon Dioxide

  65. Remember my prediction was based on the sun having very low solar parameters which did not take place until just recently therefore the verdict is out.

  66. The solar parameters were way above my criteria for having a climate impact from 2011- 2016. This is now changing.

    • Salvatore del Prete: The solar parameters were way above my criteria for having a climate impact from 2011- 2016.

      Every failed prediction has explanations. Those explanations are tested, not always confirmed, by new predictions.

      Good Luck.

      • I have never changed my prediction based on the solar parameters. The low solar parameters did not materialize until now.

        Back in 2010 I thought the low solar parameters(2008-2010) were going to continue . The maximum of solar cycle 24 although weak was much stronger then I thought .

        My prediction is all based on very low solar parameters.

      • The Sun will cool in the Schwabe cycle. But the effect is some 0.12W/ms at the surface.

        https://wordpress.com/post/watertechbyrie.com

        A return to “Maunder Minimum” conditions is now put at 20% by some people. But again it is only 0.4W/m2 at the surface.

        A prediction of solar decline is no great stretch – but the direct insolation effects are minimal. What else you got?

  67. The right’s refusal to accept the authority of climate science

    It’s because they are wrong about their key points.

    or that humans have caused ‘more than half’ of the recent warming (which was the conclusion from the IPCC AR5.

    And even this was only grudgingly, and only after a famous Climate Scientist was plastered with flack when she suggested such a thing.

  68. The right’s refusal to accept the authority of climate science is of a piece with…

    Galileo’s refusal to accept the Church’s authority on matters astronomical.

  69. Pingback: Scientists can be wrong? Hmmm. – Ordinarily Skeptical

  70. Curry agrees with:
    ” there’s tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact”
    …and yet here in the real world, more than two dozen studies of sensitivity have all produced results that agree with each other.

    It’s almost as if “tremendous disagreement” was completely made-up….

  71. Pingback: Scott Pruitt’s statement on climate change | privateclientweb

  72. Robert it is not the reduction in solar irradiance although that contributes
    but rather all of the secondary effects.

    As far as the climate of the earth this period of time is in no way unique.

    The climate in the big picture is controlled by Milankovitch Cycles, Land Ocean arrangements, with Solar Activity and the Geo Magnetic Field Strength of the earth superimposed upon this.

    These factors then exert influences on the terrestrial items on the earth that determine the climate.

    Terrestrial Items which are effected due to very low solar activity. These are the secondary effects which will have a big impact on the climate in my opinion.

    Atmospheric Circulation

    Sea Surface Temperatures

    Global Cloud Coverage

    Global Snow Coverage

    Global Sea Ice Coverage

    Enso

    Volcanic Activity

    All of this gives an x climate over x time. The historical climatic record supports this.

    That is WHAT likely makes the climate change, NOT the scam they promote which is AGW.

    The historical climatic record showing this period of time in the climate is in no way unique while changes in CO2 concentrations having no correlation in leading to resultant climate changes.

    Now how the cooling evolves will have to be monitored. Of course going from an El Nino condition to an La Nina condition is going to cause an initial cooling.

    For clues that if solar is involved the depth of the cooling will have to be monitored and if the cooling is accompanied by the terrestrial items I have mentioned above.

    Each one of those terrestrial items having been shown to be linked to Milankovitch Cycles Land Ocean Arrangements in the big slow moving picture while solar and geo magnetic variability being factors that can change these terrestrial items on a much smaller time scale.

    The solar parameters needed are

    Solar Wind sub 350 km/sec.

    AP index 5 or lower

    EUV LIGHT 100 units or less

    COSMIC RAY COUNTS – 6500 or greater

    SOLAR IRRADIANCE – off by .15% or greater.

    All very attainable going forward and being compounded by a weakening geo magnetic which if attained with sufficient duration of time will translate into bringing the terrestrial items that control our climate to values which will cause the climate to cool gradually if not in a sharp drop off if certain thresholds should be meant.

    • “Since irradiance variations are apparently minimal, changes in the Earth’s climate that seem to be associated with changes in the level of solar activity—the Maunder Minimum and the Little Ice age for example—would then seem to be due to terrestrial responses to more subtle changes in the Sun’s spectrum of radiative output. This leads naturally to a linkage with terrestrial reflectance, the second component of the net sunlight, as the carrier of the terrestrial amplification of the Sun’s varying output. Much progress has also been made in determining this difficult to measure, and not-so-well-known quantity.” http://bbso.njit.edu/Research/EarthShine/literature/Goode_Palle_2007_JASTP.pdf

      The question of solar irradiance has been asked and answered – only the global energy budget matters when it comes to warming or cooling. So what you are looking for – at scales less than 100,000 years – are cloud changes from a subtle solar effect.

      Cloud cover is anti-correlated with sea surface temperature in the Pacific.

      There are 20 to 30 year abrupt shifts in the Pacific state. Abrupt shifts occur in chaotic systems – which brings a new dimension of complexity to the problem.

      A warm (cool) PDO is associated with intense and frequent El Nino (La Nina). The 20-30 years shifts in means and variance of the system add up to millennial variability.

      Salt content in a Law Dome ice core varies with the intensity of circum-polar winds. High intensity winds drive ocean/atmospheric circulation in the southern ocean. High intensity winds and wind driven currents result in upwelling in the eastern Pacific. High intensity winds create the conditions for La Nina and rainfall in Australia.

      The cause of changes in the polar annular modes is changes in surface pressure between polar and sub polar regions. The solar connection to surface pressure appears to be solar UV/ozone chemistry in the stratosphere – at both poles. So the circuit is complete.

      So I think that conditions in the Pacific will persist until the next Pacific climate shift – due in a 2018-2028 window. Then – with a cooling Sun – I’d suggest that a shift to a yet cooler Pacific is on the cards. But I suggest there are no hard and fast rules. When the conditions are right in the resonant, chaotic Pacific system – a small change in solar UV will push it into a new state.

      • What needs to be brought out is the fact that the climate can shift very abruptly from one regime to another if thresholds are met. Past climatic history shows this happening time and time again, and many times these shifts have taken place after a prolonged warm period . An recent example would be the rapid transition from the Medieval warm period to Little Ice Age conditions.

        Solar being very active during the Medieval warm period only to plummet and the coming of the Little Ice Age which I define from 1320-1840 .

  73. AMS Executive Director Keith Seitter misrepresents Pruitt, and chastises him for what he didn’t say, in a letter on AMS letterhead, presuming to speak for the Society, when in fact he didn’t poll members. I take Seitter to task at http://cornwallalliance.org/2017/03/how-ideologues-abuse-power-in-professional-associations-exhibit-a-ams-letter-to-pruitt.

    • CalvinB, who runs the Cornwall Alliance all by himself, criticizes the AMS’ “cadre of ideological activists who run the organizations.” By quoting Senior who handwaves to two of his usual citations, NRC 2005 and an obscure textbook. If AGW is so easy to refute, why would Senior provide the refutation once and for all? Fame and glory await him.

      Oh, and Pruitt clearly denied that CO2 is “a primary contributor to the global warming that we see.”

      Next post, please.

      • >Oh, and Pruitt clearly denied that CO2 is “a primary contributor to the global warming that we see.”

        Black Carbon forcing ~0.9 W/m2, Non-CO2 greenhouse gas forcing ~1.1 Wm-2, Cloud Radiative forcing neutral to likely negative, In direct land use effect not well understood, aerosol indirect effects not well understood, pre-industrial reference temperature uncertainty ~ +/-0.5 C and CO2 all by itself is estimated at ~1.9 Wm-2 of forcing. Looks like a toss up to me.

      • Black Carbon forcing ~0.9 W/m2, Non-CO2 greenhouse gas forcing ~1.1 Wm-2, Cloud Radiative forcing neutral to likely negative, In direct land use effect not well understood, aerosol indirect effects not well understood, pre-industrial reference temperature uncertainty ~ +/-0.5 C and CO2 all by itself is estimated at ~1.9 Wm-2 of forcing. Looks like a toss up to me.

        All of that is really trivial. There’s ~35Wm-2 of regulation at this sample site in the mid latitudes.

        There could be 10Wm-2, and it’s still not cause any warming, if it doesn’t cause have a source where it can cause amplification. That’s one of their fails with water vapor enhancement to warming, over land there just isn’t a lot of available water to suck up, and in most places, about the time it’s sucked up, it rains again. There just isn’t a lot of water to find inland.

      • Unless you are confident that the odds that land use is more than 1.9 W/m^2 is 50% or up, I would not bet on that coin toss if I were you, Cap’n.

        Knowing that the numbers are around 0.2 W/m^2 (eg Betts’) I’d ask you how much you can afford to lose.

        Since land-use is a surface albedo effect, I’m not sure we want a very big number, otherwise JimH’s modulz would become more relevant than lukewarmingly portrayed by Denizens.

      • 0.9 + 1.1 = 2.0 > 1.9 or CO2 only may contribute nearly 50% of the forcing. Land use indirect effects like impacts on local hydrology, wind erosion etc. would be gravy for not just CO2 done it crowd. Since all the other than CO2 contributors have adverse health impacts, pollute the air, and waters of the world they would fall in the original wheel house of the EPA.

        Now you could go with the flow and inspire immediate action or whine some more.

      • 0.9 + 1.1 = 2.0 > 1.9

        Yet 0.9 < 1.9 and 1.1 < 1.9, Cap'n.

        AMS statement is about "our emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases" (i.e. your 1.1 goes on the right side) and teh Scott is denying CO2 as "a primary contributor" (i.e. your equation is irrelevant).

        But you're right: we should talk about black carbon a bit more. It is after all an anthropogenic aerosol, and if we're serious about AGW, then we should consider all should be subsumed under A. For instance, you should say that your 1.1 is "through all forcing mechanisms, including clouds and cryosphere forcing," as we can read in Bond & al 2013's abstract. With 90% uncertainty bounds, it goes without saying. Also note:

        We estimate that black carbon, with a total climate forcing of +1.1 W m−2, is the second most important human emission in terms of its climate forcing in the present-day atmosphere; only carbon dioxide is estimated to have a greater forcing.

        http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/jgrd.50171/abstract

        This quote should suffice to show the extent of teh Scott’s denial.

        ***

        And then Ron Broberg wondered why I asked that we clarify our quantifiers a while ago.

      • The 0.9 for BC is a rough average of several papers as did the 1.1 for non-CO2 ghgs. Together they equal to 2.0, CO2 comes in second to the pair. The Scott addressing the pair can accomplish much in a short time frame since BC tends to rapidly age reducing forcing. I know, it is low hanging fruit, but it would have a big bang for the buck within our lifetime.

      • > The Scott addressing the pair can accomplish much in a short time frame since BC tends to rapidly age reducing forcing. I know, it is low hanging fruit, but it would have a big bang for the buck within our lifetime.

        Teh Scott doesn’t need to deny that carbon dioxide has the greatest forcing among all known forcings to deflect Sanders’ question toward that low hanging fruit, Cap’n.

      • Teh Scott doesn’t need to deny that carbon dioxide has the greatest forcing among all known forcings

        lol

      • The Scoot doesn’t have to agree with teh Willard to make positive progress. The Scoot can establish reasonable regulations for the more mundane pollutants and shame certain nations into cleaning up their acts. http://www.scpr.org/news/2017/03/02/69496/smog-from-asia-causing-ozone-emissions-to-rise-in/

      • Teh Scott certainly doesn’t have to deny established scientific viewpoints to do good things, Cap’n. For instance, his Oklahoma RedHawks regularly rated among the league’s leaders in attendance and merchandise sales. The main problem with his denial is that Denizens may try to minimize it, rationalize it, or worse deny it.

        Double denial ain’t two rivers in Egypt.

      • Scott would be denying established scientific viewpoints. ~0.9 for BC is a scientific view point as is ~1.1 for “super pollutants” that fall under normal EPA jurisdiction. Scott would simply be putting emphasis on is responsibilities and the uncertainty often ignored teh Willards of the world. Land use as it relates to clean water and streams would simply be gravy. Believe it or not, there are other government agencies that focus on energy concerns.

      • > Scott would be denying established scientific viewpoints

        You mean teh Scott is actually denying established scientific viewpoints. Some of them are even written on the website of the agency he’s supposed to rule.

        Let’s make #AlternativeFacts great again!

      • Yep, the EPA has a lot of stuff on their site that belongs elsewhere. 15 milliREM fo Yucca Mountain comes to mind. 740 B/L for tritium versus a global average limit of ~10,000 Bq/L also indicate political more than scientific influence.

      • Teh Scott may not be able to deny that AGW carries its load of environmental concerns, Cap’n. That you indirectly do by reducing it to an energy problem is par for the course, however.

        Seems that teh Scott’s denial is going viral:

        There is some kind of invisible consensus around questions of climate change. Say an obvious untruth and be mocked the world over. Say a non-commital vapidity—which has the same import as an outright lie—and you don’t wind up on Colbert. I suspect that an effect like this exists across politics, but it is surprising to see it so clearly on this one issue, where scientific agreement on reality is so strong.

        https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2017/03/my-last-scott-pruitt-is-a-climate-denier-post-for-now/519504/

        Teh Scott has an history of denying AGW, but right now the role is reverse. He’s a boss. He’s accountable.

        Three cheers for democracy indeed.

      • Considering one of Fearless Leader’s first major EPA recommendations was the CFLB “small steps to sustainability” the bar for Scott isn’t set very high.

        Grab your popcorn and watch the show.

      • Indeed, Cap’n. It’s hard to wait to see how low can teh Scott go:

        AT LEAST 15 COMPANIES with financial ties to Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, [teh Donald]’s nominee to run the Environmental Protection Agency, have faced hundreds of EPA enforcement actions, which are the basic tool the agency uses to enforce environmental rules and laws.

        Among the Pruitt donors with enforcement cases against them in recent years are Continental Resources, an oil company that contributed to Liberty 2.0, a pro-Pruitt Super PAC; Murray Energy, which was a co-party in eight of 14 lawsuits Pruitt filed against the EPA and contributed to his political campaigns; and Devon Energy, which raised money for the Republican Attorneys General Association when Pruitt led it and whose lawyers penned a letter that Pruitt sent to the EPA. Peabody Energy, whose executive Fred Palmer contributed to Pruitt’s 2014 re-election campaign for Oklahoma attorney general, is the parent company of 12 separate coal companies that have faced EPA enforcement actions. In addition to the energy companies, the agricultural company Monsanto, which contributed to Pruitt’s 2010 and 2014 election campaign, has been named in 96 formal administrative cases, according to EPA records. It’s impossible to tally a complete list of the enforcement cases filed against Pruitt donors because some donations, such as those to the most recent pro-Pruitt PAC, Protecting America Now, can be made secretly.

        https://theintercept.com/2017/02/14/financial-backers-of-epa-pick-scott-pruitt-have-faced-hundreds-of-pollution-actions/

        I thought you were saying something about the fact that the EPA had nothing to do with energy concerns.

        Oh, well.

      • One of Fearless Leaders pledges was to bankrupt coal power. The targets are allowed legal representation and when Oklahoma Gas and Electric is a target, guess who gets to play? The EPA lost a fair amount of the cases for over stepping their authority. Imagine that?

      • > and when Oklahoma Gas and Electric is a target

        It’s a nice cherry you picked there, Cap’n. Now, read the paragraph that follows:

        [O]ther enforcement efforts were much larger, such as the one that resulted in a settlement with Southern Coal and 26 affiliated mining companies in 2016. Southern Coal is a division of Southern Power, which has been co-party in four of Pruitt’s 14 suits against the EPA. (A Southern executive, L. Ray Harry, contributed to Pruitt’s 2014 re-election fund.) An EPA investigation of Southern Coal found numerous violations of the Clean Water Act at its mines in Appalachia, which according to EPA records impacted waterways, killing fish and endangering the health of local communities. The EPA’s response, which included instituting preventive measures, data tracking, and training of mine workers, cost some $5 million and eliminated an estimated 5 million pounds of pollution from being released into local waterways.

        What’s five millions pounds between friends?

        ***

        Since Denizens like emails:

        Back in 2014, Eric Lipton of The New York Times won a Pulitzer Prize for an investigation that showed Pruitt was sending letters to the federal government under his own name that were in fact written by lawyers and lobbyists for Oklahoma oil and gas company Devon Energy. And Pruitt appears to have made a false claim under oath during his confirmation hearings to suggest he pursued an environmental lawsuit against a company.

        […]

        But the emails do fill in gaps and add chapters to the story of Pruitt’s previous dalliances with big, EPA-opposing business interests.

        As CMD highlighted in their press release, the emails show Pruitt’s then-chief of staff coordinating legal efforts with Devon Energy. The oil and gas lobbying group American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers also passed along language for petitions opposing Obama-era ozone regulations and the Renewable Fuel Standard Program. Pruitt’s office later filed both petitions.

        http://finance.yahoo.com/news/scott-pruitts-emails-reinforce-coziness-200715880.html

        You gotta admit, Cap’n – we’re in fish & barrel territory here.

        It’s really time for a new thread.

      • you may want to note that the EPA lost a lot of these cases, so it was proven that their claims were overblown and that they were overreaching their authority.

      • I’d rather note your “a lot” weasel wording, DavidE, and that teh Scott was involved in many of those cases:

        In a letter to the Office of Government Ethics, several Senators expressed concerns that Pruitt’s history of accepting large donations from fossil-fuel companies could impact his decisions. In particular, they pointed to his involvement in numerous Political Action Committees, most notably the Rule of Law Defense Fund, a nonprofit offshoot of the Republican Attorneys General Association that has received at least $175,000 in donations from the Koch brothers’ lobbying group Freedom Partners.

        https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2017/01/trumps-appointees-conflicts-of-interest-a-crib-sheet/512711/

        Please, do continue.

      • Micro, EPA and Pruitt are the topic, classical pollutants should be the primary focus of the EPA.

      • Micro, EPA and Pruitt are the topic,

        Yes, and I’m addressing the fundamental truth of his answer. I thought that was applicable.

        classical pollutants should be the primary focus of the EPA.

        As it should have always been.

  74. Pingback: Bits and Pieces – 20170314, Tuesday | thePOOG

  75. Who is Wayne Tracker?
    It has been revealed that former EXXON CEO Rex Tillerson and more than 30 other EXXON upper management personnel used secret email accounts to talk about climate change with external sources. Of course he lied about it to deflect attention from their criminal activities. They knew they were screwing the environment all along.

    Rex sadly only got $180 million in exchange for giving up his restricted stock units. This comes on top of the $54 million that Tillerson already had coming to him in Exxon stock he already owned. Recognizing the sacrifice Rex has made to become a Trump goon the Trump’s transition team structured his separation package to avoid over $71 million in taxes.
    Adding insult to injury Rex also lost his lifetime free gas Exxon credit card.

  76. The bottom line is this period in the climate is not unique not even close ,it has been much warmer then it is now over the last 8000 ears. Holocene Optimum in particular.

    This is yet another reason / more evidence why AGW is just plain old BS.

  77. It may just be low frequency climate variability according to the IPCC.

    “With this final correction, the ERBS Nonscanner-observed decadal changes in tropical mean LW, SW, and net radiation between the 1980s and the 1990s now stand at 0.7, 2.1, and 1.4 W/m2 , respectively, which are similar to the observed decadal changes in the High-Resolution Infrared Radiometer Sounder (HIRS) Pathfinder OLR and the International Satellite Cloud Climatology Project (ISCCP) version FD record but disagree with the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) Pathfinder ERB record. Furthermore, the observed interannual variability of near-global ERBS WFOV Edition3_Rev1 net radiation is found to be remarkably consistent with the latest ocean heat storage record for the overlapping time period of 1993 to 1999. Both datasets show variations of roughly 1.5 W/m2 in planetary net heat balance during the 1990s.”
    http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/pdf/10.1175/JCLI3838.1

    Cloud is anti-correlated with sea surface temperature – and the biggest changes in SST are in the Pacific.

    The Pacific switched to a warm mode at the beginning of the 20th century – with a more active Sun – ya gotta think it will switch back.

    What direct evidence there is – late last century – says it isn’t CO2.

  78. David L. Hagen

    Jeff Jacoby opines:
    Why are climate-change models so flawed? Because climate science is so incomplete
    Pruitt’s statement:

    was an accurate and judicious answer, so naturally it sent climate alarmists into paroxysms of condemnation. . . . .
    The list of variables that shape climate includes cloud formation, topography, altitude, proximity to the equator, plate tectonics, sunspot cycles, volcanic activity, expansion or contraction of sea ice, conversion of land to agriculture, deforestation, reforestation, direction of winds, soil quality, El Niño and La Niña ocean cycles, prevalence of aerosols (airborne soot, dust, and salt) — and, of course, atmospheric greenhouse gases, both natural and manmade. . . .
    But for the sake of argument, say there are merely 15 variables involved in predicting global climate change, and assume that climatologists have mastered each one to a near-perfect accuracy of 95 percent. What are the odds that a climate model built on a system that simple would be reliable? Less than 50/50. (Multiplying .95 by itself 15 times yields 46.3 percent.) Is it any surprise that climate-change predictions in the real world — where the complexities are exponentially greater and the exactitude of knowledge much less — have such a poor track record?

    Pruitt got it right: Measuring human impacts on climate is indeed “very challenging.” The science is far from settled. That is why calls to radically reduce carbon emissions are so irresponsible — and why dire warnings of what will happen if we don’t are little better than reckless fearmongering.

    Most of the feedback to his thought provoking article does not seem to understand either the science or statistics he is addressing.

  79. The First Lady looks out over DC and sees no indication of global warming:

    https://evilincandescentbulb.files.wordpress.com/2017/03/first-lady-dc-eagle-cam.png?

    This today from: http://www.dceaglecam.org/

    • Thanks for the link David. This is indeed good to read.

      Let’s hope that the President listens to the pros and has a heart to heart talk with his precious daughter and her husband.

      Real progress in reigning in EPA over reach on regulation of carbon dioxide will be a real boost to the economy and IMHO is more important than a lot of the other noise we are hearing on a daily basis. The greenies and the Dems will not go away quietly though so the detailed pragmatic approach being developed under Scott Pruitt is absolutely critical for success.

      Do you think they will go after the “Endangerment Finding”? The finding was a gross miscarriage of justice and while it stands, it opens the door to endless green lawsuits.

  80. David Middleton post @ WUWT on the social cost of carbon.

    ‘A real world discount rate zeros out all of the economic benefit
    rates of carbon emission regulations.

    The simple application of a 7% discount rate to the social cost of
    carbon would falsify the EPA’s endangerment finding and obviate
    the agency’s court-imposed obligation to regulate co2.’

    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2017/03/15/discounting-away-the-social-cost-of-carbon-the-fast-lane-to-undoing-obamas-climate-reg

  81. The evidence is substantial and has a solid scientific support. It is solar driven – it is independent of greenhouse gas warming – and it is likely to enter a centuries long cooler phase this century. They just missed it – but in some quarters this has become such an identity defining issue that review of assumptions will require a great deal more cognitive dissonance.

    “Instead, it is more likely that the LIA global cooling was initiated by a decline in solar irradiance (and lower atmospheric CO2 and potentially increased volcanic activity)60 and amplified by the strengthened PWC that occurred in parallel with a latitudinal contraction of the ITCZ41…

    Our findings have significant implications for projections of decadal-scale changes in tropical atmospheric convection and global temperatures. For example, from the beginning of this century until recently, the tropical Pacific was locked into a negative Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation phase (that is, low-frequency La Niña-like pattern) in association with increased Walker and Hadley circulation winds and eastern Pacific cooling2,3. The La Niña-like pattern is thought to be a factor contributing to the recent so-called ‘warming hiatus’2,3 and earlier twentieth century cool and warm decades4. Therefore, our analysis of multicentury hydroclimate variability suggests that projections of tropical rainfall patterns, and global temperature extremes, will remain uncertain until paleoclimate records and models consistently capture the lower-frequency variability, and associated feedbacks, in the tropical Pacific.” http://www.nature.com/articles/ncomms11719

    However, only changes in TOA radiant flux – incoming and outgoing energy – cause a planet wide change in energy content. It is mostly in the outgoing energy where large variability is found.

    Most of the last few years warming is cloud change associated with El Niño conditions. A combination of increased IR out and less SW reflectance.

    The decline in energy out in the shortwave in the last few years is a result of a decrease in albedo of about 0.3%.

    The previous ERBS and ISCCP records show the same pattern of changes in TOA radiant flux. It can be safely assumed that the underlying mechanisms operate at both short and long timescales. Observations suggest that cloud is anti-correlated with sea surface temperature changes associated with extreme variability in ENSO patterns.

    Only in the 21st century is comprehensive and reliable data on the Earth’s budget available – and it is telling a story that confirms the science of natural variability.

    • btw – net flux = -IR – SW

    • and as I have said over and over and over again the warm period is coming to an end .

      • The warm period is just getting fired up. GISS February 2017 anomaly is 1.1 ℃.

        The last ONI reported was -0.4. 1.1 ℃ popping out of -0.4. So now what do you think is going to happen as ONI goes positive?

        As for the rest of 2017, there is nothing in the current observations that will stop it from getting even hotter.

    • The warm period is just getting fired up.

      Hmmm….

      Is the CERES data net upward SW? so negative means an anomalous surplus in the atmosphere?

      If so, the latest hottie years ( 2015 and 2016 ) were fueled from both anomalously high inputs of energy both from the Top of the Atmosphere ( increase SW ) and from the bottom of the atmosphere ( big decrease of Oceanic Heat Content ):

      Reversion to the mean is not a necessary physical result.

      Shifts can and do occur.

      But it would seem more likely based on the history that 2017 will have a lower global mean temperature than 2016.

      • Shortwave is upward flux. Net is upward warming – net = -sw -ir

        The Oceanic Niño Index (ONI) is responding to the La Niña Modoki fading in the central Pacific – as it is wont to do this time of year.

        I don’t know what the rest of the year will bring – but it is more sensible to use a running satellite mean than annual averages of surface temps.

      • OHC has already resumed it’s rather mean upward march, essentially simultaneous with a sharp upturn in the rate of SLR.

        The PDO has remained positive for 38 straight months, which I believe is a record, and it looks like the NE Pacific will warm for the rest of the year, meaning it’s possible the PDO could reach 48 straight months in positive territory… and maybe more. The peak of the positive phase of the PDO usually occurs within a decade, and it’s now gone on for three years and counting.

        There is already a pseudo El Niño sea surface pattern present, and an actual El Niño could be in place as early as June-July.

        So sober up and read the paper the Church of Judith proclaimed important:

        The synthetic series in Fig. 5a also show examples of greatly accelerated warming lasting a decade or more, which are evidently spring-back effects as an internal variability cooling episode is followed by a strong internal variability warming episode. The strong warming episodes are further amplified by the underlying forced warming trend. One extreme example shows a warming of almost 1 °C in 15 years—a much greater 15-year warming rate than has occurred in the observations to date (red curves). These spring-back warmings illustrate another important potential consequence of strong internal multidecadal variability as simulated in CM3, and reinforce the need to better understand whether such internal variability actually occurs in the real world.

        One of the first blog scientist to discover the above was GIRMA, by far the highest quality stadium wave scientist.

  82. Pingback: Climate Apocalypse Cult Built on Faulty Models | al fin next level

  83. TFL asks, where’s the global warming?

    “Last night’s bitter cold temperature caused damage to the advanced stage blossoms on the cherry trees.” More at http://go.nps.gov/17krmo 

  84. Hello!
    I’m happy to have found this blog.
    I need to interview someone who is a self identified climate skeptic or skeptical of the role that humans play in earth’s climate.
    This is for a Master’s program assignment, and the intention isn’t to change someone’s attitude or thoughts about the matter, but to LISTEN and explore different viewpoints. This interview must be done in real time (over the phone, or through lie chat).
    Any chance you can point me to someone that would be enjoy having their thoughts heard?
    Thank you!!

    • Hello!
      I’m happy to have found this blog.
      I need to interview someone who is a self identified climate skeptic or skeptical of the role that humans play in earth’s climate.
      This is for a Master’s program assignment, and the intention isn’t to change someone’s attitude or thoughts about the matter, but to LISTEN and explore different viewpoints. This interview must be done in real time (over the phone, or through lie chat).
      Any chance you can point me to someone that would be enjoy having their thoughts heard?
      Thank you!!

      How long of an interview? What/who is the audience for your assignment?

  85. David Springer

    Trump cuts EPA budget 31%. State Department 29%. NASA cut by only 1%.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/politics/trump-presidential-budget-2018-proposal/

    Awesome! Go Trump!

      • Less money for the poor, the children and the sick too. Go Trump!

      • David Springer

        Number living in poverty set a record high during Obama’s presidency.

        The federal government cannot bring people out of poverty through increased spending.

        The definition of crazy is doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result. Libtards are all nuts.

    • I agree. Awesome. Go Trump!!

      • David Springer

        Trump likes NASA’s original, primary mission of manned space exploration because it fosters national pride. I expect it will be reorganized to reflect that. I hope he gets Newt Gingrich involved who is also a big fan and possibly the smartest guy in Washington.

    • I am grateful to Trump for having the ability to see the difference between science and propaganda.

  86. Trump is the best thing that has happened in climate science in years.

    • David Springer

      I have no problem with nuclear regulatory reform in the US but I don’t expect it to have any beneficial effect on the industry because it’s been no more than a scapegoat. France was once held out as the shining nuclear powered nation on a hill with 80% nuclear power. France’s nuclear power industry has been moribund for almost 20 years and slowly shrinking as a percentage of electrical generation since peaking in 2004.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_power_in_France#/media/File:Electricity_in_France.svg

      No one wants abundant clean energy across the globe more than me. I have simply given up hope that nuclear energy is the answer and its not for lack of trying or over regulation its because of high capital costs coupled with high uncertainty about being able to operate at a profit for the decades it takes to earn a return on invested capital. On a level playing field it just isn’t competitive. Ultimately I believe the dominant technology will be the harvest of solar energy through collectors that are grown like leaves on a tree instead of manufactured like boilers and turbines. Cheap high density energy storage will continue to be in hydrocarbons but they’ll be created on demand rather than harvested out of deep underground reservoirs. Mark my words.

    • Regulatory reform is one thing, finding the money to build the plants is another.

      Revisit the TVA model and have the government pay for, build and operate the plants for the first fuel cycle and then auction the plants to the highest bidder.
      And watch the operators like a hawk.

      You know the nuts that hold the reactor vessel head are tightened by hand on a GE BWR6.

      Oh, and David’s right and Peter is wrong.

  87. These 20 to 30 year year Pacific regimes are nodes in the global climate system. The Stadium Wave is a signal that propagates around the world as tremendous energies cascade through powerful sub-systems. No peaks – no troughs – it is not just another part in the system to be reduced to simple cause and effect. It is an attempt to come to terms with the collection of parts of a complex and dynamic, global spanning system. The system is characterised by abrupt and unpredictable shifts in state. Network approaches to the system are important in bringing some order to the apparent disorder.

    “Networks can transform vast expanses into “small worlds”; a few long-distance links make all the difference between isolated clusters of localized activity and a globally interconnected system with synchronized [1] collective behavior; communication of a signal is tied to the blueprint of connectivity. By viewing climate as a network, one sees the architecture of interaction – a striking simplicity that belies the complexity of its component detail.” Marcia Wyatt

    The synchronized behaviour of the collection of parts explains abrupt shifts in the trajectory of surface temperature. Warming from 1911, cooling from 1944 to 1976 and warming to 1998. Net warming from 1944 to 1998 – warm peak to warm peak – is some 0.4K. Most 20th century warming was quite natural.

    Cooling regimes start with increased upwelling in the eastern Pacific. Upwelling is triggered by offshore winds and sets a series of feedbacks in wind, cloud and currents that temperature, hydrology and biology across the planet.

    The 20 to 30 year regimes have persisted for at least a 1000 years. More salt in a Law Dome ice core is La Nina like cool conditions.

    http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/abs/10.1175/JCLI-D-12-00003.1?af=R

    The Law Dome record is an important clue. Winds and wind driven ocean gryes – in both hemispheres – are driven by surface pressure differences between polar and sub-polar regions. The latest Pacific Ocean climate shift in 1998/2001 is linked to increased flow in the north (Di Lorenzo et al, 2008) and the south (Roemmich et al, 2007, Qiu, Bo et al 2006) Pacific Ocean gyres. Roemmich et al (2007) suggest that mid-latitude gyres in all of the oceans are influenced by decadal variability in the Southern and Northern Annular Modes (SAM and NAM respectively) as wind driven currents in baroclinic oceans (Sverdrup, 1947).

    Warm and cool Pacific states are correlated with solar activity over millennia. The cool La Nina like state over most of the past 1000 years with low sow solar activity and a cooler planet. The specific mechanism appears to be solar UV/ozone chemistry in the stratosphere influencing surface pressure at the poles.

    No one can predict what happens in the Pacific this year or in the next decade. At this time of year there is the NH spring predictability barrier. There are only chaotic triggers of abrupt shifts. Small changes that initiate large feedbacks in the globally connected system. But a cooling Sun this century suggests a retreat from a 1000 year high El Nino warm state and a global cooling influence. This will give those corals a rest – although they don’t much like cold. The next Pacific Ocean climate shift is due in a 2018-2028 window and a shift to a yet cooler rather than warmer state is more probable.

    Global warming zealots barely have the highlights of natural variability – if at all. Denying it requires odd mental gymnastics – and that will not end until cognitive dissonance makes the meme set untenable.

    • “……a striking simplicity that belies the complexity of its component detail.”
      Marcia Wyatt

      A simple statement that expresses a complex idea conjured up by a complex mind.

      Contrasted with the Control Knob Theory. A simple statement expressing a simple idea conjured up by a simple mind.

      Intuitively, the former wears well just as the latter doesn’t measure up.

  88. “To provide [electricity] in today’s world, an ‘advanced reactor’ must improve over existing reactors in the following 4-core objectives. It must produce significantly less costly, cost-competitive clean electricity, be safer, produce significantly less waste and reduce proliferation risk. It is not sufficient to excel at one without regard to the others.” Dr. Christina Back, Vice President, Nuclear Technologies and Materials for General Atomics, May 2016 testimony before the US Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing on the status of advanced nuclear technologies.

    Modern materials science and nuclear fuel cycles brings decades old nuclear technology into the 21st century. There are some 50 designs being commercialized globally. Several of these new designs are likely to be cost-competitive due to high fuel utilisation, heat conversion efficiency, small modular design and factory fabrication. By all means let’s avoid the folly of subsidising energy of any sort. The future of nuclear fuels seems quite likely to be focused on fuel recycling and re-fabrication rather than mining and geological storage. The new designs are cheap, safe, reduce both the volume and half-life of waste currently stored in drums and leaky ponds and considerably reduce the potential for weapons proliferation.

    https://watertechbyrie.com/2016/06/18/safe-cheap-and-abundant-energy-back-to-the-nuclear-energy-future-2/

    The General Atomics’ Energy Multiplier Module (EM2) is a technology evolution designed to a performance specification that included cost, safety, fabrication, installation and operations that give it outstanding potential to change the energy landscape. The fast-neutron reaction first converts fertile material – including nuclear waste, uranium, plutonium and thorium – to fissile material which then splits under neutron bombardment to produce heat and lighter elements. Inert helium moving through and around the core is heated and drives a high efficiency Brayton cycle gas turbine. Helium is then cycled back through the reactor. Helium – rather than water – cooling enables siting flexibility in a footprint that is ten times less than conventional nuclear plants. The small modular design allows network grids to be developed in place of large and expensive grids shuffling energy across whole continents. A huge cost advantage in regions without existing electricity grids. Or indeed in regions with high penetration of wind and solar electricity generation – where grid augmentation is one partial solution to the wind and solar intermittency problem.

    Modular factory fabrication reduces upfront capital costs by an order of magnitude. Of course – it matters only if they can deliver.

    The COP21 alternative is an increase in emissions of 3.7 billion tonnes CO2-eq in energy emissions to 2030 – even with a vast expansion of gas infrastructure. At a cost of $13.5 trillion dollars for a ‘Clean Power Plan’ (CPP).

    We would be much better off putting $13.5 trillion to sequestering 360 billion tonnes of CO2 as 100 billion tones of carbon in soils and ecosystem – carbon that has been lost from terrestrial sinks over several hundred years.

    Carbon sequestration in soils has major benefits in addition to offsetting anthropogenic emissions from fossil fuel combustion, land use conversion, soil cultivation, continuous grazing and cement manufacturing. Restoring soil carbon stores increases agronomic productivity and enhances global food security. Increasing the soil organic content enhances water holding capacity and creates a more drought tolerant agriculture – with less downstream flooding. There is a critical level of soil carbon that is essential to maximising the effectiveness of water and nutrient inputs. Global food security, especially for countries with fragile soils and harsh climate such as in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, cannot be achieved without improving soil quality through an increase in soil organic content. Wildlife flourishes on restored grazing land helping to halt biodiversity loss. Reversing soil carbon loss in agricultural soils is a new green revolution where conventional agriculture is hitting a productivity barrier with exhausted soils and increasingly expensive inputs. It is not an idea – it is a global reality supported by many countries and millions of people.

    The non-problem of global warming has been solved and they haven’t quite caught up with that either.

  89. Tripp

    This is a good paper concerning coral bleaching at a specific site called Magnetic island in Australia. Unfortunately it dates from 1997 so I don’t know the story since then;

    http://www.int-res.com/articles/meps/158/moral 158p289.pdf

    The authors were able to ascertain water temperatures back to the early 1990’s and air temperatures back to 1927 with what sounds like a reasonable thesis that bleaching is related to high air and water temperatures. Records of bleaching seemed to start around the late 1970’s, but comprehensive records were not kept prior to the early 1970’s as recorded in the paper;.

    “The bleaching status of the reefs around Magnetic Island prior to 1970 is unknown.”

    Whether they occurred or not therefore seems difficult to ascertain, but there is this very intriguing comment;

    “However, it should be noted that air temperatures similar to those experienced during recent bleaching events are not without precedent in the longer term record (Fig. 2).”

    As can be seen from Figure 1 the highest air temperatures recorded in the pre 1997 record was around 1935 but we do not know the corresponding water temperature.

    tonyb

    • This chart totally contradicts the anecdotal claims of “observed” temperatures from one study, from one site on the GBR in the 1930’s, being higher than today.

      • Funny how Tripps graph for GBR diverges from temperatures from tree rings, ice cores and proxy data around the world.

        Here is a graph from Nino 3 since 1900 showing now sea surface temperature trend

        [img]http://landscapesandcycles.net/image/122413936.jpg[/img]

        And from the same paper (Evans 1999) their proxy data shows a similar trend with a more defined warm spike in 40s similar to most other global data sets up until the early 2000s.

        [img] http://landscapesandcycles.net/image/122413935.jpg [/img]

        Why does Tripp’s graph look so different. More recently temperatures have been adjusted surprisingly fitting the rising CO2 profile. As Maya Angelou said “when people show you who they are believe them the first time.” Such is the case for climate scientists who by their own words conspired to change the data:

        From: Tom Wigley
        To: Phil Jones
        Subject: 1940s
        Date: Sun, 27 Sep 2009 23:25:38 -0600
        Cc: Ben Santer

        [quote]”Phil, Here are some speculations on [b].correcting SSTs to partly explain the 1940s warming blip.[/b]. If you look at the attached plot you will see that the land also shows the 1940s blip (as I’m sure you know). So,[b]. if we could reduce the ocean blip by, say, 0.15 degC, then this would be significant for the global mean — but we’d still have to explain the land blip[/b]..

        I’ve chosen 0.15 here deliberately. This still leaves an ocean blip, and i think one needs to have some form of ocean blip to explain the land blip (via either some common forcing, or ocean forcing land, or vice versa, or all of these). When you look at other blips, the land blips are 1.5 to 2 times (roughly) the ocean blips — higher sensitivity plus thermal inertia effects. My 0.15 adjustment leaves things consistent with this, so you can see where I am coming from. Removing ENSO does not affect this. It would be good to remove at least part of the 1940s blip, but we are still left with “why the blip”. [/quote]

        Thus I dont trust Wigley, Jones, Santer or Tripp’s “data”

      • “More recently temperatures have been adjusted surprisingly fitting the rising CO2 profile.”

        wrong again.

        When are you going to stop making things up.

        The SST temperatures have been cooled
        The land temperatures in africa,, cooled
        The land in europe about flat
        The US, up a bit.
        Nobody has adjusted temperatures to fit the C02 profile, however since
        the increase in c02 has caused the increased in warming it is no surprise that those regions that have a cool bias would, after adjustments for known errors, end up more in line with c02

        Stop reading goddard. it rots the mind

      • Mosher, You can scapegoat Steve Goddard, but I have downloaded hundreds of USHCN temerpatures over the past seven years. I have watched “climate scientists” remove the warm blips just like their own words revealed they had conspired to do. Graphs from quality controlled USHCN data I published in my book, had their trends reversed in a matter of years.

        Take maximum temperatures at Death Valley for instance”

        Yet the original Death Valley data matches Yosemite trends, showing greater max temps in the 30s and 40s.

  90. Interesting. Both, you and Jim Steele trotted out this study last year when Jim posted his discredited “guest column, edited by Judith Curry” about instantaneous, miraculous coral adaption by symbiont shuffling to try and dismiss the record devastation caused by heat-induced bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef. It is one of the few studies that was cited then and now, and the only part of the study you deemed “intriguing” was that observed temperatures were higher in the 1930’s.

    When Jim Steele cited this paper last year, his primary take-away was also that observed temperatures were higher in the 1930’s. Apparently, this conclusion is reached from looking at one chart that shows one really hot outlier year in 1935 and three other data points that appear lower than the highest temperatures shown in the early 1990’s before 1997. This might be one of the most extreme examples of cherry-picking I have ever seen. A couple of things:

    1. The chart indicates these are air temperatures (as you also noted), not SST. We do not know the more important SST averages.
    2. The chart shows air temperatures from three different weather stations, with no indication of how the data was collected, what kind of instruments were used (were they in the sun?), are there consistent differences between the temperature collection sites, etc. – it is just a blurry chart cobbled together using 3 different temperature gathering stations.
    3. There is only one data point that backs up what you call the “intriguing” element of the study. One from 1935.
    4. The chart stops in 1997. The 1998 El Nino would be higher than any data point on that graph, and the record-breaking temperatures from 2014, 2105, and 2016 would be even higher.
    5. Any statistics package analyzing the data points shown in the graph would clearly show an upwards trend line in temperatures.
    6. While this study was cited to pick out one sentence (and one data point) about observed temperatures in the 1930’s perhaps being as high as bleaching years before the first global bleaching event in 1998, the entire study documents rising temperatures and the increasing frequency in bleaching. It supports all my conclusions about AGW causing bleaching and coral death on the GBR. This study supports the broad consensus in the marine science community about the dangers of rising temperatures and bleaching, and all that before the record-breaking heat and bleaching in 1998.
    7. The summary of the study states: “There has been a significant increase in annual summer and winter air temperatures in the Magnetic Island area since the middle of the present century. Significant warming trends have also been observed in the nearby state of Queensland and in Eastern Australia over the same period.”
    8. The paper also states: “It has been established that corals in subtropical and tropical locations are existing very close (1 to 2°C) to their upper thermal lethal limit during summer months (Coles et al. 1976)”and “The relationship between bleaching events and periods of elevated air and seawater temperatures (Figs. 1 & 2), and the absence of similar air temperatures from the late 1930s until the late 1980s, is suggestive that bleaching events at Magnetic Island are a comparatively recent phenonenon (in the last 25 yr) and are associated with a change in the local climate system.”

    This is what I wrote on June 4, 2016, on this blog: “Jim claims that the paper says that observed temperatures were higher in the 1930’s when the entire thrust of the study is that there had been significant warming trends and that bleaching is a recent phenomenon due to rising temperatures. Jim pulls out one graph from one location (*from 3 different weather stations) that has one or two outlier high temperatures in the 1930’s to distort the entire thesis of the paper. This is just one of dozens of examples of Jim concocting his own conclusions that are in direct opposition to the conclusions to the studies that he cites.”

    Also, once again you highlight the lack of recorded bleaching before 1970 by quoting from the study: “The bleaching status of the reefs around Magnetic Island prior to 1970 is unknown.” You conclude “Whether they occurred or not therefore seems difficult to ascertain,”

    Again, I state that the more likely explanation is why would scientists keep records of something that did not occur?

    • Tripp, shouldn’t have even bothered.

      We do not know the more important SST averages.

      Lol
      Like that is the key to how warm the GBR is.
      You realize that’s just the same cherry picking you were protesting.
      Nah, probably not.

      • You don’t think Sea Surface Temperature is more important than air temperatures for corals that live near the surface of the ocean? LOL

        No, I don’t realize I used cherry-picking, because I did not. You can’t cite evidence that I used cherry-picking since it doesn’t exist. Basically, your comment has zero merit or substance.

      • No, I think the sea temp where the corral is matters more than the average temperature of the southern ocean, the Arctic ocean, the Atlantic Ocean, the Indian Ocean, the Northern pacific ocean, I don’t think they mean squat. But apparently you seem to think it’s critical to the condition of the GBR, and without it, we’ll there’s just no evidence of anything.
        That Tripp is cherry picking.

    • ROTFLMAO

      Tripp is a tad schizo. He trots out a graph of sea surface temperatures that show a nice linear trend that conflicts with most data showing a more oscillating temperrature.

      Then for the Great Barrier Reef he admits, “We do not know the more important SST averages”

      True other than proxy data we dont, but that doesnt stop Tripp from endless insults and attack based on his belief in imaginary data.

      • Jim, unsurprisingly, you miss the point. The dubious graph you cited and posted was air for temperatures, not SST that are more important in figuring out stress on corals. That is why we don’t know the SST, your graph did not show them. You really should read more closely before you toss out insults that end up making you look bad, again.

      • Micro6500, I posted a chart of sea surface temperatures on the GBR!!! What are you talking about? I didn’t mention the temperatures of all the oceans that you mentioned. I also don’t think the temperatures of all other oceans are relevant to the GBR. That is why I posted a chart of temperatures on the GBR. LOL

    • Jim, I care about coral reefs. Coral reefs have no future if we do not reduce emissions of GHG to address man-caused climate change. You are one of the few people who have tried to post some pseudo-science to pretend that coral bleaching isn’t a big deal on “skeptic” blogs. Your post was ignorant, misguided, and wrong. The GBR bleached again this year. I wanted to make sure all the skeptics knew that your theory of instant adaption through symbiont shuffling was proven wrong and that you had no idea what you were talking about when you tried to downplay the effect of rising temperatures and climate change on coral reefs around the world. Your denial of CO2 and denial of the damages of global coral bleaching are misguided and discredited. Tonyb brought up the same BS you were selling last year, so I wanted to make the point you were wrong then and wrong now. However, I do love that you don’t defend your stupid posts anymore, you just accuse me of stalking since I have so thoroughly demolished your silly con-job, “Is bleaching the legacy of a marvelous adaptation mechanism or a prelude to extirpation?” Victory.

    • Tripp

      As I do not follow corals obsessively I do not know if I posted this a year or two back. It seemed the most relevant.

      You said about my comment

      ‘Also, once again you highlight the lack of recorded bleaching before 1970 by quoting from the study: “The bleaching status of the reefs around Magnetic Island prior to 1970 is unknown.” You conclude “Whether they occurred or not therefore seems difficult to ascertain,”

      Again, I state that the more likely explanation is why would scientists keep records of something that did not occur?’

      The scientists used the words ‘unknown.’ It is therefore surely fair of me to conclude that whether or not it happened before is difficult to ascertain?

      As I know from trawling through a thousand years of records relating to England, a number of criteria need to be set;

      firstly the event needs to have occurred.
      secondly it needs to have been noticed (by a very small population)
      thirdly it needs to have been recorded
      fourthly the records needs to have survived
      fifthly, it needs to be retrieved and noticed again
      sixth, it then needs to be put into the wider public domain by being digitised.
      Seven That digital record then needs to be put into a credible paper

      As I know from perusing many thousands of records from the archives at the Met Office in Exeter and The Scott Polar institute in Cambridge, as yet a fraction of the records have as yet reached level five let alone any further.

      The coral reefs were remote places little explored in depth (pun intended) until the second half of the 20th century.

      So surely ‘unknown’ is a fair word for the authors and myself to use?

      I would not lay great credence on SST’s until the second part of the 20th century due to the methodology employed.

      I could not read the legend on your graph very well, so can you please tell me where a a graph of GBR SST’s accurate to tenths of a degree dating back to 1900 emanates from?

      Thanks

      tonyb

      • Tripp

        I note the graphic seems to have come from Ed Hawkins whose article on the subject and subsequent tweets about it seem very limited.

        The graphic seems to be a mean annual average. We are looking for Jan/Feb temperatures I believe, as that is when bleaching seems to occur.

        AIMS in Australia seem to have been monitoring SST’s at the reefs only since 1987 so I have asked them regarding the likely position of GBR specific information dating to 1900 and the methodology employed.

        I will let you know if they reply.

        I has a very long conversation with John Kennedy at the Met Office about Historic global SST’s following my article on the subject several years ago. He is a fine scientist but in essence the idea that we have highly accurate SST’s dating back some 170 years (let alone in remote areas where one reading could be interpolated over surrounding grids) is an area that invites scepticism.

        tonyb

      • TonyB,

        Here’s a perspective to help put some boundaries on your discussion:

        Paleotemperature data suggest that deep ocean temperatures were between 15 and 17°C, compared to modern values of 1–2°C. Tropical surface temperatures were evidently similar to modern values, or a few degrees higher. A combination of these data (Figure 3) suggests that the globally averaged surface temperatures were 6–12°C higher than at present, with polar temperatures 20–50°C higher.

        Source: UCLA, “Climatic Variation in Earth History: PDF Version”, Chapter 1, p1 https://www.ucar.edu/communications/gcip/m10histclimvar/m10pdfoverview.html

        And, guess what – life thrived during these much warmer times!

      • Further to life thrives during warmenrt times, that includes corals.

        Coralaine limestones – i.e. formed from coral reef – are common in Australia’s Great Dividing Range (the eastern highlands of Australia). The coral reefs thrived in very warm waters during the Silurian period (look for Australia on the eastern side of the below map, then the dark blue line which was a subduction zone during the Silurian). Notice that the area that is now the eastern highlands was sea and straddled the equator. This is where these coral reefs thrived.

        Source: http://www.scotese.com/newpage2.htm

        The average temperature of the tropics in the Silurian period was about 3C warmer than now.

      • Correction: dark blue lie is a sea floor spreading zone, not a subduction zone.

      • I snorkeled at Magnetic Island and have scubaed the Great Barrier off Townsville. In my opinion it would be impossible for locals in Townsville to not notice large-scale coral bleaching by the island. As for the Great Barrier, I suspect the same thing.

      • Again, I state that the more likely explanation is why would scientists keep records of something that did not occur?’

        An observation, sea level during the last ice age was far lower than now, shallow corrals were likely stranded above ground.

        Also, there have been intervening warm periods where sea level was both higher and the water had to be warmer than now. And the corrals are still here. The polyups float through the oceans, looking for a home, even when their current home is stressed.

        Plus, co2 is not causing any significant warming

      • Micro6500

        Coral reefs grow much faster than sea level rises. Coral atolls grew as sea level rose 140 m since the LGM. This is why those who say sea levels rise will inundate coral islands haven’t a clue what they are taking about.

  91. Thanks JHC, I see that to post an image here I must use a bit more html than other sites. Does it need to be uploaded first to the Climate etc wordpress library?

    I am going toexperiment if I can post my other graph “from the same paper (Evans 1999) their proxy data shows a similar trend with a more defined warm spike in 40s similar to most other global data sets up until the early 2000s.”

    • Just post the link to the image which usually ends in jpg or gif or png, and it appears as an image.

    • Looks like somebody took it down. Like Jim D says, just paste the image address. Don’t add anything to it.

    • David Springer

      Put the image link on a line with no other characters preceding it. If there’s another character on the line preceding it then it displays as a hotlink instead of an embedded image.

      If you want to post an image where no link exists, like say a screen capture, then go here imgur.com to upload and get a link to it.

  92. Pingback: The House Science Committee's Latest Hearing on Climate Change Was As Demoralizing and Stupid As Ever  | Auto Test 2

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