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All IPCC definitions taken from Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis. Working Group I Contribution to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Annex I, Glossary, pp. 941-954. Cambridge University Press.

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Comments 61551 to 61600:

  1. Berényi Péter at 19:13 PM on 1 May 2011
    What was it like the last time CO2 levels were this high?
    "This tells us our climate is sensitive to changes in CO2".

    No. This tells us our climate is sensitive to the formation of the Isthmus of Panama and the associated changes in ocean circulation.

  2. Can you make a hockey stick without tree rings?
    Although regional in context, Aono's data documenting the start of the Kyoto Cherry Blossom Festival also describes a hockey stick:



    The Ljungqvist and the Loehle reconstructions are present on this graph because I originally collated the data in response to one of Tim Lambert's Deltoid posts.
    Moderator Response: [mc] Please restrict image width to 500 or less.
  3. Waste heat vs greenhouse warming
    continuing 413
    ... that is, thermal energy in the water of a swimming pool. This can be understood clearly if for instance you compare the rise in temperature of the pool vs. the skewer. Adding 1000 W for 2 minutes to the skewer may raise its temperature hundreds of degrees (depending on its size), whereas a temperature change of the pool after doing the same might not be detected at all. Both have acquired the same energy. In the same way, you are unlikely to "see" waste heat with IR cameras.
  4. Waste heat vs greenhouse warming
    The IR photography proves nothing, or at best reveals lack of grounding.

    Temperature is not energy, just as voltage is not energy. The familiar shock from static discharge involves a very high voltage, yet is harmless (although a nuisance). And more to the point, there is way more energy contained in the water of a swimming pool at 20 C than a hot skewer at 300 C.
  5. trunkmonkey at 15:29 PM on 1 May 2011
    Models are unreliable
    352.
    No. I know we have a problem. I just don't know how big it is, but I'm not yet convinced you do either.

    As Sphaerica has discerned, I care deeply about this. It may be the defining issue of our time.

    We paleo guys have been beating our heads against the wall forever and have a profound sense of how difficult climate is.

    I have seen many projections of the models into the future. You claim that the models are hindcast, but I have never seen a graphic to demonstrate.

    I am not surprised you find emergent phenomena in models.

    Surely DO didn't disappear just because we added 150ppm CO2...

    Where can I get my own AR4 level model?
  6. How climate change deniers led me to set up Skeptical Science website
    John D. The IOD, just like the NAO, the PDO & the AO, have all existed for time immemorial, yet never before have they been shown to be able to alter climate over a period of *several* decades-& certainly not across the entire planet at the same time. Yet people such as yourself *cling* to such flotsam, with an almost religious fervor, in order to convince others (& yourselves) that these various Oscillations are to blame-as opposed to rising greenhouse gas emissions. Yet in spite of the vast amount of study of these various oscillations, Contrarians still are unable to explain a mechanism for how they can-all by themselves-change global energy balance over the course of several decades. Thats because of the fact that, unless they're capable of generating energy all by themselves, they really can't-all they can do is shift existing energy around the system.

    One last point, John D: "and introducing new ideas to people steeped in tradition"

    Judging from your comments on other blogs here, you & Ken sound like the ones who're "steeped in tradition", & in need of being "introduced to 'new' ideas" (well, new to you at any rate). John Cook & Co certainly are trying very hard to do so, but I feel that they're probably wasting their time with people like yourselves.
  7. What was it like the last time CO2 levels were this high?
    Henry, I have replied on your CO2 question here as requested by moderator.
  8. CO2 lags temperature
    Responding to Henry Justice from another thread (and recycling comment from "models are unreliable")

    We know that isnt true. The isotope ratios for fossil fuel produced CO2 is different from that produced by carbon cycle feedbacks. If you look at the isotopes in CO2 from ice core bubbles, the increased CO2 during warming is from carbon cycle. If you look at isotope ratio in current atmosphere, you see increase is due to fossil fuel. At the moment, the carbon sinks are cleaning up about half our emissions. Over longer time, this will reverse.
  9. Wakening the Kraken
    Please note that GW potential for methane is higher than what is generally reported. From a post of RC:

    " There is a paper by Shindell et al., “Improved Attribution of Climate Forcing to Emissions“,
    http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/abstract/326/5953/716
    This paper argues that methane is more potent than previously realised due to the interaction with black carbon. The paper gives a revised Global Warming Potential for methane measured over 100 years as 33. This is an increase of over 30% compared to the value of 21 given in the IPCC Second Assessment Report used for the Kyoto Protocol. Over 20 years. Shindell et al. calculate this GWP to be 105. If this measure were used the climate impact of methane (e.g. for Plan B above), it would be 5 times the value agreed at Kyoto."
  10. What was it like the last time CO2 levels were this high?
    Henry Justice @56 even modern CO2 measurements show CO2 levels much higher than 390 ppm. To get those values, all you need to do is to take your samples near a local source of CO2. We know it is contamination from a local source because if you move away from it by gaining altitude (first image), or if the effect of the local source is diluted by high wind speeds (second image), the measurements converge on the values obtained for CO2 by measurement at remote locations free from contamination.





    The problem with the CO2 measurements you claim to have been thrown out is that they are known to have been located near or in major sources of CO2 such as towns, industrial plants, roads and forests. Forests are interesting because during the day trees draw CO2 from the atmosphere, diluting it, while at night they add CO2 to the atmosphere. That pattern can be clearly seen in CO2 measurements from forests, although it is weaker the higher the wind speed.

    Contrary to your claim, CO2 measurements from ice cores are not measurements of a proxy, but of atmospheric CO2 trapped in ice bubbles. There are no trees or factories in the antarctic, so no contamination. Hence the measurements are accurate.

    So, why should we take contaminated measurements with no quality control (as Beck does) over uncontaminated measurements?
  11. What was it like the last time CO2 levels were this high?
    Measuring the CO2 trapped in an air bubble in the ice is a pretty direct analysis if you ask me. You dont "chuck out" analyses, you examine their error bars and sampling technique (which is a more common reason to reject a sample as being representative of atmosphere at the time).
  12. muoncounter at 10:28 AM on 1 May 2011
    Waste heat vs greenhouse warming
    RSVP#411: "all energy associated with waste heat must vanish through radiation as soon as temperature increases. If this were true (which it is not) ... "

    Let us view some evidence, in the form of thermal IR photos:


    Power plant from a distance of 5.2 miles: Ground in large area around plant is at same temperature. Heat from plant does not affect surroundings at this distance.


    Parked Ford SUV: Hot surfaces of car, radiated IR reflecting from pavement underneath. Surrounding area cool.


    Nevada casino from a distance: Building is colder than surrounding ground, which is presumably warmed by the sun.

    There are 14 pages of these images. Waste heat seems to 'vanish' from the larger environment, without heating it in any perceptible way. Isn't that exactly what KR said?
  13. How climate change deniers led me to set up Skeptical Science website
    Stephen Baines at 05:05 AM, unlike you, I am not "not sure", nor having to "guess" about the reasons people hold doggedly to certain positions.
    In Ken's case, even though I haven't a clue who he is, I have been able to pick up that he has been around a long time, as I have, and accumulated a width and depth of experience from operating in different environments which resonates with me.
    In my case, with a technical background, going into places foreign, and introducing new ideas to people steeped in tradition, required people who are prepared to slug it out, unfortunately they are all too few on the ground, but I see Ken as being one of those who would most likely succeed where many fail.
    It is one thing to hold the evidence, it is quite a different matter to make it penetrate the mindset of the masses.
    To put things into a climate perspective, think of the various ocean basin oscillations that have so far been identified. It typically started out with one man, or small group of people identifying a pattern that no-one else could see. Having identified it and presenting the evidence, it then becomes a slog to get those whose mindset has them only seeing the rungs when looking a ladder, to actually recognise the holes.
    One such instance is the IOD, here we are more than a decade on from it being identified, and having followed the progress of the research for much of that time, have seen how from a small group of people who both recognised the evidence and it's relevance, it has been a hard slog to gradually get wider acceptance from experts to adjust their established mindsets and preconceived notions.
    Here we are in Australia, according to the official weather services, still several years away from having reliable seasonal forecasts, still recovering from the latest floods, still being attributed by most to a strong La Nina, when perhaps the most relevant factor was the coinciding again of phases from the Indian and Pacific Oceans that caused a repeat of previous such coincidences.
    How much longer is it going to take for those following the evidence to converge on the answer?
  14. muoncounter at 08:43 AM on 1 May 2011
    What was it like the last time CO2 levels were this high?
    henryj#56: "Yet, the leaf stomata proxy, ... is also unacceptable. Why is this?"

    Because the leaf stomata data are terrible: The error bars around stomata reconstructed CO2 values tend to be +/-50ppm.

    See the plant stomata thread for a reference and further comments.
  15. Bob Lacatena at 08:29 AM on 1 May 2011
    Medieval project gone wrong
    28, scaddenp,

    I don't know how much time I could commit, but I don't think it would take that long to go through things, so I'd give it a shot.

    If you leave a comment on my occassional-blog with your e-mail address, I can reply by e-mail, and we can set something up whereby I tell you which papers I can't get, and you can try to e-mail them to me.
  16. Henry justice at 08:20 AM on 1 May 2011
    What was it like the last time CO2 levels were this high?
    If the CO2 levels rise following a warm period, could today's rising levels of CO2 be the result of a warming period 800-1000 years ago? Tree rings evidence do show a warming period at this time in the past. So, today's rising CO2, if this is true, could be the delayed response from centuries before.
    Moderator Response: Post your comment on the thread CO2 lags temperature.
  17. Henry justice at 08:15 AM on 1 May 2011
    What was it like the last time CO2 levels were this high?
    Let me get this straight, the preindustrial levels of CO2 are determined by ice core and other proxies, not by direct chemical analysis. The 90,000 preindustrial chemical analysis were thrown out as unreliable. The ice core proxies, and others, were then accepted at about 280 ppm. Yet, the leaf stomata proxy, a study that did show the CO2 levels were about the same as today, is also unacceptable. Why is this? Could it be that the CO2 levels were, in fact, nearly the same as today? How is global warming real if the preindustrial levels of CO2 are the same as today?
  18. Models are unreliable
    So truckmonkey, you think it is rational policy to continue adding CO2 in the face of all known physics in the hope that somehow there is unknown laws of nature at work?

    You are aware that emergent phenomena occur in models? And that life and other emergent phenomena do not break the laws of thermodynamics - only some people's misinterpretation of them?

    Of course paleo matters - a theory of climate must account for the past. However, there are many puzzles there that cant be solved because of lack on constraining data not because of a problem with the theory. However, if it is difficult to distinguish between solar forcing, ocean forcing and ice melt dynamics in sorting out DO, it doesnt mean that is an issue with climate for next 100 years, because none of those causes are in effect now.
  19. Medieval project gone wrong
    Spaerica - much of the data should be in these places

    While Mann 2010 might indeed do the job, it isnt really a counter to CO2"science" PR. If you wanted to pursue, I could probably get all the papers.
  20. Clouds provide negative feedback
    DB,

    Which specific questions have I been 'dodging'?
    Moderator Response: [DB] Start with Sphaerica's.
  21. Clouds provide negative feedback
    Sphaerica (RE: 161),

    "So, for the sixth time you've dodged the question, as well as my other points."

    That's what you think.


    "You made the following statement:

    'I do not see where the issues I've raised has been addressed or answered.'

    I pointed out:

    That's because you ignore the statements that do address them.

    I then proceeded to itemize where and how the issues you've raised have been addressed and answered, and I took you to task to yourself address the discrepancies.

    And you ignored them."


    No, I've largely ignored your declarations that the issues I've raised are incorrect. Declarations are not scientific discussion.
    Moderator Response: [DB] Actually, hand-waving aside, it is indeed pretty clear you've been dodging questions. And not just Sphaerica's.
  22. Waste heat vs greenhouse warming
    mclamb 406
    "What areas are experiencing a long term cooling trend? It's certainly not Phoenix. "

    With a PC turned on, the CPU can be "cooling constantly" while at the same time maintaining operation at a constant temperature. Heat is being drawn away. This is called cooling, even if its temperature is not dropping.

    Likewise, according to KR, all energy associated with waste heat must vanish through radiation as soon as temperature increases. If this were true (which it is not) temperatures would never increase, since all energy would radiate the moment something got warm, which it wouldnt, since all warmth would radiate before it could get warm (following KRs "logic").
    Moderator Response: [DB] Again, as has been pointed out to you several times, you are conflating temperatures and forcings. Forcings due to temperature increases go away as soon as the TOA reaches radiative equilibrium. And you would do well to unlock that mindset you have and learn some of KR's "logic".
  23. Stephen Baines at 05:05 AM on 1 May 2011
    How climate change deniers led me to set up Skeptical Science website
    KL @ 26 "I am not made of sugar candy - and will slug it out with the best of them if I think the point is important enough..."

    To me this quote epitomizes the problem people have. It implies that for you it is not about following the evidence but rather about doggedly holding a position whose "importance" is set by...well, I'm not sure.

    Something besides the evidence, I guess, because following the evidence should otherwise lead everyone to converge on the same answer, rather that simply slugging it out.
  24. muoncounter at 03:59 AM on 1 May 2011
    Waste heat vs greenhouse warming
    RSVP#408: "This is dictated by heat transfer fundamentals."

    Of course. To solve a complex problem, you pick out a single concept and develop a simple explanation. Without benefit of any actual evidence. Despite hundreds of posts with evidence to the contrary.

    "industry in the northern hemisphere acts like a thermal noose around the Artic." It's been demonstrated to you that the total industrial energy is insufficient. It's been demonstrated to you that industrial energy radiates to the environment, where it behaves just like all other energy; much of it escaping to space, unless, of course, it is constrained by GHGs. Industrial energy does not have a preferential path to the Arctic. North is not up.

    "the air conditioners running in Phoenix" If you are truly concerned about this, you should be campaigning actively to eliminate them (good luck with that). How do the air conditioners of Phoenix not warm the nearby desert, which cools rapidly at night? Are you aware that Phoenix has a well-documented 'CO2 dome' due to its peculiar topography, winds and locally high emissions rate?

    "GHG should affect the entire planet equally refers to the assumption that CO2 is in general evenly distributed throughtout" It's actually not that evenly distributed; the concentration has much greater variation as a function of in latitude than your 'assume' (see NOAA's Carbontracker).

    What about solar input? Unevenly applied at TOA due to time of year and latitude; unevenly reflected at surface due to locally differing albedo. This uneven heating alters temperature due to locally varying thermal properties of earth, air and water. In the short term, the result of those discrepancies is what we call 'weather.' If industrial energy is such a huge input, why do your industries not create their own weather patterns?

    Why did the planet warm in the late '30s, when industrial output was low due to the depression? Why did the planet then cool during the post-war industrial expansion?



    No, 'heat transfer fundamentals' are not enough to explain this behavior.
  25. Medieval project gone wrong
    GP mentioned Mann, so it seems more toward that particular individual,


    Mann doesn't generate his own dendro proxy series. Yes, Mann's McI's favorite target, but Briffa (the leading paleo climatology dendro guy) isn't far behind.

    Hoskibui:

    wether or not it works I think is irrelevent of this post - but by the way, with or without the dendrocronology the new hockey stick works (I can make a post about that if you want :)


    True, letting GP derail the thread through a one sentence cherry pick of a quote from a single paper distracts from your post, and of course you're right that there are more hockey sticks than we know what to do with ...
  26. muoncounter at 03:48 AM on 1 May 2011
    Cosmic ray contribution to global warming negligible
    Eric#53: "the earth's magnetic field has slight seasonality"

    No. That seasonal variation in your reference is the external magnetic field (solar or IMF), not the earth's field. The entire GCR/clouds idea is about IMF variations.
  27. Medieval project gone wrong
    Hi, thank you all for your responses. I think that most questions have been dealt with - questions of dendrocronology and wether or not it works I think is irrelevent of this post - but by the way, with or without the dendrocronology the new hockey stick works (I can make a post about that if you want :)

    With the help of google translator and many good people of the Skeptical Science I think the point of the post comes a cross - thank you.
  28. Bob Lacatena at 02:12 AM on 1 May 2011
    Clouds provide negative feedback
    106, RW1,
    I addressed this already HERE.

    Really? You call that "addressed?" This was what you said:
    Look, I can only deal with one thing at a time.
    So, for the sixth time you've dodged the question, as well as my other points.

    You made the following statement:
    I do not see where the issues I've raised has been addressed or answered.
    I pointed out:
    That's because you ignore the statements that do address them.
    I then proceeded to itemize where and how the issues you've raised have been addressed and answered, and I took you to task to yourself address the discrepancies.

    And you ignored them.

    Instead your response now is basically that you already have addressed them (you haven't), and that you don't have to... because justifying your personal theories about net cloud feedbacks would be off topic on a thread about cloud feedbacks (although that didn't stop 50 meandering posts about Trenberth's energy budget diagram when you thought that in some way buttressed your personal theories).
  29. Lindzen Illusion #2: Lindzen vs. Hansen - the Sleek Veneer of the 1980s
    Mdenison @39,

    Please read my post @40. There is a very easy way for Lindzen to clarify this and settle this matter-- and that is for him to actually step up to the plate and produce an AOGCM of his own, and generate his own global temperature chronology. He has not and will not. Instead he chooses to play this game of nit picking, being ambiguous, and obfuscating. How people can defend that is completely beyond me.

    It is very clear, his estimates of a climate sensitivity of <1 K for doubling CO2 is horribly wrong, that much has been obvious for decades now, and is only going to continue to diverge further from reality.
  30. Philippe Chantreau at 01:59 AM on 1 May 2011
    Medieval project gone wrong
    I think you're pushing it Dhogaza. GP mentioned Mann, so it seems more toward that particular individual, who has gathered the irk of so-called skeptics, thanks to Steve McIntyre. It seem that McIntyre has somehow made things more personal with Mann than anybody else, as if he was the only one doing reconstructions. Then, in true Rush Limbaugh or Beck fashion, he has managed to instill anger agaiinst Mann's person among crowds who barely understand the subject.

    As to what McIntyre is ready to do to try to discredit Mann, this gives a notion.

    It is painfully obvious to anyone really paying attention that Mann is far more trustworthy than the charlatans (Trenberth' word) attacking his work and his person.
  31. Lindzen Illusion #2: Lindzen vs. Hansen - the Sleek Veneer of the 1980s
    This post clearly illustrates that global surface air temperature (SAT) chronology (as predicted using a climate sensitivity of + 3 K and the observed CO2) forcing is tracking very well with observations. In contrast, we have Lindzen, a complete outlier, with estimates of global surface air temperatures based on his arguments shown to, even now, be in negative territory (and would not even feature in the graph shown @35.

    I find it incredibly telling that Lindzen and his fellow contrarians have not ventured to produce long-term temperature predictions of global SATs in the reputable peer-reviewed scientific literature, but instead rather choose to adopt the rather cowardly and wholly unproductive tact of nit-picking others hard work and sincere efforts to advance the science.

    I'm seriously beginning to think that Lindzen is not a self-styled maverick or contrarian or "skeptic", but at this point is in fact in deep denial about what is unfolding before his very eyes. His reticence to concede error, to change his position is the very antithesis of good science, and for this reason the annals of scientific history will not paint a flattering picture of him, despite all his accolades.

    d82, neat graphs!
  32. Lindzen Illusion #2: Lindzen vs. Hansen - the Sleek Veneer of the 1980s
    Dana @22

    I think you misinterpret Lindzen because the model you use to produce a Lindzen prediction is based on random noise and a small bias of 0.1C per century to allow for greenhouse gas warming. Lindzen's 1989 comments suggest he believes that there is a heat source (the ocean) that allows for more warming than just 0.1C and that this produces the long term temperature changes observed. You could possibly model this with low frequency noise. Not to model a heat source (or sink) it is to misrepresent Lindzen's position.

    So far as I can tell in 1989 Lindzen could mainly see noise. He did not have a model that could explain past events nor make predictions; so he made none. The main difference between Lindzen and Hansen is that Hansen had a model with cause and effect that could be tested and make predictions, Lindzen had none.
    Response:

    [dana1981] No, I strongly disagree.  Lindzen clearly said the surface warming was only 0.1 +/- 0.3°C.  Noise does not cause long-term trends, and I represented the effects of the oceans in the random noise.

  33. Lindzen Illusion #2: Lindzen vs. Hansen - the Sleek Veneer of the 1980s
    dana1981; Thanks for this excellent analysis. I would love for Lindzen to leave a comment!
  34. Clouds provide negative feedback
    Sphaerica (RE: 159)

    "1. Your theory is inconsistent with all of the lines of evidence which point to a climate sensitivity of 3˚C or greater.

    You have seen this presented to you now at least 6 times, and you keep dodging it. How does your theory account for this? Until you answer that question, your theory fails."


    I addressed this already HERE. To delve into all those things here would be off topic. Moreover, it is absurd to think that I (or anyone else) is obligated to explain each line of evidence they present in the context of every other line of evidence in the whole subject of climate science.
  35. Medieval project gone wrong
    GP:

    I think this implies that dendochronology is affected by more than a single variable.


    To add to the piling on, if dendochronologists trying to do paleoclimate reconstructions weren't aware of this mind-numbingly obvious fact, they wouldn't put so much effort into finding areas where there are long sequences available that *aren't* mostly impacted by spring precipitation.

    In particular, this is why all the tree ring proxies that are used are near their altitudinal or latitudinal boundaries, as the major impact on growth in such areas are summer temperatures. The bristlecones used, for instance, are those that are stunted in growth due to there only being a few short weeks where temps are warm enough for them to put down much growth. Bristlecones at lower elevations in the Great Basin look like "real trees" and don't live nearly as long as those that most people are familiar with (from them being the "oldest trees on the planet"). Those stunted, long-growing trees get as much or more precipitation than those 1000 feet lower on the slopes. April showers aren't the limiting factor for them (snow showers, typically, I might add).

    Ain't it grand how GP gloms on to one sentence pulled out from a paper and assumes that shoots down an entire field of scientific endeavor, simply because he disagrees with the implications of the work being done?
  36. Bob Lacatena at 00:06 AM on 1 May 2011
    Models are unreliable
    349, trunkmonkey,
    I can understand how you guys feel that if you have the physics nailed down...
    Since you obviously care about the issue, I would urge you to study until you also feel you have the physics nailed down. At that point where you have a viable understanding, you would also have a viable opinion. Until then, your entire position is based on feeling, not knowledge or reason.
    ...[feel that] the paleo stuff barely matters.
    Quite to the contrary, all of the evidence matters, and any contradictory evidence must be resolved one way, or the other. The problem is, there is no contradictory evidence. Observations, physics, models, paleoclimate of many... each of them in multiple, varied, forms... it all agrees, which is why there is talk of a consensus. But the real consensus isn't just among the scientists, but also among the data. All of the data is in agreement.

    The only contradictions that I've ever seen come from people simply making stuff up, or purposely misinterpreting or misrepresenting it to make it try to seem like there are contradictions.

    There are gaps, mind you. There are certainly things we don't know, or things we think we know but the margin for error is so wide that there is uncertainty.

    But for what we do know, everything fits.

    And we know a whole lot.
  37. Waste heat vs greenhouse warming
    Except your position is that waste heat is the source of a long term overall heating trend. If the heat transfer requires heat to move from higher to lower temperatures, there should be some place that is experiencing a long term cooling trend. What areas are experiencing a long term cooling trend? It's certainly not Phoenix.
  38. Eric (skeptic) at 23:32 PM on 30 April 2011
    Cosmic ray contribution to global warming negligible
    Muoncounter, you say "Seems to be a seasonal effect, which isn't a hallmark of GCRs." The effects of GCR on clouds could be seasonal due to differences in vertical profiles, cloud heights, etc. I would only expect slight seasonality from GCRs themselves as the earth's magnetic field has slight seasonality, e.g. http://geophysics.ou.edu/solid_earth/notes/mag_earth/earth.htm
  39. A Flanner in the Works for Snow and Ice
    143, Ken,

    In your tally, I believe you are ignoring a major component, i.e. energy absorbed by land (deprived of previous snow/ice cover).

    More importantly, Flanner's study covers the entire northern hemisphere, not just the Arctic circle, so this change in albedo would extend well south, and include a strong input resulting from the earlier springs and later winters that we have experienced since the onset of recent climate change.

    You keep restricting your estimate to 4.4% of the earth (I'm assuming this is the Arctic Circle, plus a bit), when snow and ice extends considerably farther south than that, particularly on land.
  40. How climate change deniers led me to set up Skeptical Science website
    Astonishing, JMurphy. You wouldn't be suggesting, by that last quote, that Trenberth is arguing for policy to 'follow the data', rather than follow their favourite 'team'? Surely Trenberth wouldn't act like a true scientist and go where the data takes him?

    Ken Lambert, no scientist is a 'proponent of AGW' - they don't, as others say, follow it blindly like their local football team. If any person or group could come up with data successfully challenging the consensus, they would be lauded and celebrated, and the climate science community would celebrate being wrong about their prognosticatin for the Earth. Champagne would be cracked open in every climatology, geography, geology, physics and chemistry department in the world, and a great many people would sleep easier. Reputations are of trivial importance by comparison to an unpleasant future for all of mankind.

    The problem with denial, and the reason Skeptical Science is such a useful tool, is that those continuing to deny the evidence act very much like supporters of their local football club after they have lost the local derby match 3-0. We hear cries of "It was the ref's fault", or "Smith is a cheating so-and-so", "They fall over at the slightest touch to con the ref". What you never hear, of course is "The other team were better in every department". It's difficult to reason with entrenched people, especially when they do not understand that you would absolutely love for them to be proven correct.
    Moderator Response: [DB] Well-spoken, and amen!
  41. Lindzen Illusion #2: Lindzen vs. Hansen - the Sleek Veneer of the 1980s
    Looking at the decadal averages of the temperature since 1880 and comparing them with Hansen et al. 1981, 1988 (solution B) and the prediction of 2007 looks as follows:

    Natural variability as defined in Hansen et al. of 1981 (hatched gray areas) looksbad. For more information start at
    http://www.xs4all.nl/~pduinker/Problemen/Klimaat%20Verandering/Warming/index.html
  42. How climate change deniers led me to set up Skeptical Science website
    You've done it again ! ;-)
  43. How climate change deniers led me to set up Skeptical Science website
    You just beat me Sphaerica but I'm glad you were able to pick up the way these terms are used too - I thought it was just me being picky !

    Also, I forgot to add the following about being "a believer in greenhouse gas causation of climate change" - do we also call Richard Dawkins a 'believer' in Evolution, and Stephen Hawking a 'believer' in the Big Bang Theory ?
  44. Medieval project gone wrong
    19 gc:
    For extra amusement, this issue is touched on, all be it in parsing, in Mr. Sinclair's latest video.
  45. How climate change deniers led me to set up Skeptical Science website
    36, Ken,

    Another example, just from your closing line:
    Sounds like a believer...
    "believer", as if it were a religious faith instead of a considered, logical conclusion, based on a lifetime of education, study, thought and hard work.

    These subtle little jabs, meant to prey on people's perceptions of the scientists, do not go unnoticed.
  46. How climate change deniers led me to set up Skeptical Science website
    Ken Lambert, you are still unable to accept that the way you use words and terms is determined by your own innate bias. You are not the only one but it is very prevalent.
    To be a "proponent of AGW" is akin to being pro-AGW, as some others have used, i.e. to be for or supportive of AGW - in other words, to be glad of its existence in some way.
    Those who accept AGW are neither pro-AGW nor do they just believe in it.
    Those like Dr Trenberth who accept the facts of AGW are working hard to "track energy in the climate system" - and out of courtesy to others, I will link to the paper.

    You will also note that he references (the [2] in your quote) the IPCC AR4 Physical Science Basis for his statement, i.e. he has scientific fact to back up his claim.

    Finally, and not wishing to go any further off-topic on this thread, it is useful to bear in mind the concluding lines of Dr Trenberth's paper :

    A climate information system that firstly determines what
    is taking place and then establishes why is better able to
    provide a sound basis for predictions and which can
    answer important questions such as ‘Has global warming
    really slowed or not?’ Decisions are being made that
    depend on improved information about how and why
    our climate system is varying and changing, and the
    implications.
  47. How climate change deniers led me to set up Skeptical Science website
    36, Ken,

    I think you missed the point.

    No scientist is "in favor of or supports AGW." They may adhere to current climate theory, but the characterization of such adherence as "support" (as if they want it to happen), or the generalization of climate science into "AGW" or even "AGW theory" is playing games with words.

    This is what JMurphy was pointing out, that just a few words are subtly used to slight and denigrate climate scientists, and so to undermine the evidence they present, as if they've become a fan of a favorite team in a sport, and so will argue their own team's superiority (like any good fan) regardless of the evidence.
  48. Medieval project gone wrong
    19, gallopingcamel,

    To clarify things for people that don't bother to follow the links on dendroclimatology:

    1) Scientists are well aware of the many factors that affect tree growth (and other proxies), allow for the errors that may be introduced, and take steps to reduce that error.

    2) Tree rings are far from the only proxy used in any study.

    3) All proxies are compared with other proxies and when possible actual observations to calibrate and validate them.

    4) No proxy is perfect... all suffer from some issues... scientists are trying to infer temperatures from hundreds to thousands of years ago, so what would you expect? But when many different proxies agree, it becomes fairly compelling evidence.
  49. How climate change deniers led me to set up Skeptical Science website
    JMurphy #22

    I should not let you get way with this one either JMurphy:

    "You have to remember that Dr Trenberth is a proponent of AGW..."

    No - Trenberth does not argue in favour of or support AGW : he is a scientist whose "primary research has focused on the global energy and water cycles and how they are changing, and his work mainly involves empirical studies and quantitative diagnostic calculations. Trenberth is a primary advocate for the need to develop a climate information system that is an imperative for adaptation to climate change."

    Well here is the relevant quotation from the Introduction to Dr Trenberth's --"tracking the Earth's global energy - Aug09" here:

    Quote:

    "Given that global warming is unequivocally happening
    [2] and there has so far been a failure to outline,
    let alone implement, global plans to mitigate the warming,
    then adapting to the climate change is an imperative.
    We will of course adapt to climate change. The question
    is the extent to which the adaptation is planned and
    orderly with minimal disruption and loss of life, or
    whether it is unplanned? To plan for and cope with
    effects of climate change requires information on what
    is happening and why, whether observed changes are
    likely to continue or are a transient, how they affect
    regional climates and the possible impacts. Further, to
    the extent that the global community is able to reduce
    greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate the climate
    change, then information is required on how effective
    it is. This article addresses vital information needs to help understand climate change." endquote

    Extract:

    "Further, to the extent that the global community is able to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate the climate
    change..."

    Sounds like a believer in greenhouse gas causation of climate change to me.
  50. A Flanner in the Works for Snow and Ice
    Oops - accidental enter - ignore #143

    Thanks for your apology of sorts Tom. We can keep this on first name terms surely.

    Lets go to Dr Trenberth's paper "Tracking the Earth's Global Energy" Aug09 and make a generous estimate from it: Ref Table 1.

    These are his estimates: in Joules/year

    Arctic Sea Ice: 1E20
    Ice Sheets: 1.4E20 (half Greenland half Antarctica)
    Ocean (global): 20-95E20 (average 58E20)

    For the Arctic estimate of NET heat absorption (incoming minus outgoing):

    Arctic Sea Ice: 1E20
    Ice Sheets: 0.7E20 (including all Greenland loss)
    Ocean: 4.2% of 58E20 = 2.44E20 for all Earth area above 66N

    Total: 1 + 0.7 + 2.44 = 4.14E20 Joules/year

    This assumes that ALL the Greenland ice loss is included and the area proportion (4.2%) of the global average ocean heat absorption even though not all the ice is lost in the Arctic in summer so the average albedo for the whole planet's oceans is implied in using the 4.2% proportion. This is conservative because most of the worlds oceans are ice free and the average albedo would be lower than the Arctic which still has ice in summer.

    Even if we took the top end of Dr Trenberth's range for global oceans of 95E20 Joules/year, then 4.2% of that would be 3.99E20 and the sum 1 + 0.7 + 3.99 = 5.69E20 Joules/year.

    With the above conservative assumptions, the NET Arctic range is 4.14 - 5.69E20 Joules/year.

    Adding in the 4.2% proportion from the global oceans also ignores any transport of heat from elsewhere on the planet, so surely overestimates the effect of absorption Solar heat by albedo decrease due to ice loss of the Arctic surface area by itself.

    The above 4.14 - 5.69E20 number is still roughly half the NET 9.17E20 Joules/year you are claiming from Flanner.

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