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Ocean Cooling Corrected, Again

Posted on 28 July 2011 by Rob Painting

The ongoing difficulty of accurately measuring the Earth's ocean heat content has led to premature "skeptic" claims about ocean cooling. A recent paper Von Schuckmann & Le Traon (2011) put the kibosh on ocean cooling claims. They find that from 2005 to 2010 the global oceans (10 to 1500 metres down) have continued to warm, although they caution that their result is based on the assumption that there are no more systematic errors in the data gathered from ARGO floats which measure ocean heat.

Figure 1 -Revised estimate of global ocean heat content (10-1500 mtrs deep) for 2005-2010 derived from Argo measurements. The 6-yr trend accounts for 0.55±0.10Wm−2. Error bars and trend uncertainties exclude errors induced by remaining systematic errors in the global observing system. See Von Schuckmann & Le Traon (2011)

The more (data), the merrier 

The ARGO float network began rollout in 2000, but prior to 2005 there wasn't sufficent global coverage, and because of this Von Schuckmann and Le Traon (2011) start their analysis from 2005 onwards. The authors found that only after November 2007 (when ARGO was 100% complete) is the ARGO network sufficiently robust to give accurate short-term trends of what they term 'global ocean indicators'. This being steric sea level changes (sea level rise from thermal expansion as the oceans warm), heat content, and ocean salinity. This is probably best illustrated in the figure below, where the authors apply their method of analysis to the satellite sea surface height (SSH) data (AVISO):

Figure 2 -Method validation using gridded altimeter SSH measurements (AVISO): gridded SSH during 2005–2010 has been subsampled to the Argo profile position and the simple box averaging method has been applied. Global mean SSH derived from the AVISO grid (bold line) is compared to its corresponding subsampled result.  

The two lines represent the satellite data and a subsampled set using the position of the ARGO float profiles and the authors 'box averaging' method - a method to account for the irregular distribution of ARGO floats in the ocean, and missing and spurious (faulty) data. After 2007 (vertical dashed line), when the ARGO installation is complete, it is obvious that both sets show greater agreement. This highlights how sensitive the short-term trends are to the number of ARGO floats in the network. 

Errors reduce as the length of observation increases 

Von Schuckmann & Le Traon (2011) also estimate the errors in global trends from the period analysed, and also future error uncertainty. For the 2005-2010 period the error uncertainty is plus/minus 0.1 watt per square metre; quite large considering the global trend over the period is 0.55 watts per square metre. However, after 15 years of observations the uncertainty drops considerably, down to ± 0.02 watts per square metre. This demonstrates how longer periods of observation, along with the complete ARGO network, are critical to derive more accurate long-term ocean trends. 

Ocean warming in context

The warming trend observed is slightly smaller than that seen in Von Schuckmann (2009), where the authors measure down to ocean depths of 2000 metres, and found a warming trend of 0.77 ±0.11 watts per square metre. However, it completely refutes a recent (2010) skeptic paper which suggested the oceans were cooling, based on the upper ocean down to 700 metres. Clearly much heat is finding it's way down into deeper waters. And although small in comparison, the deep ocean is gaining heat too. 

Upper ocean warming (0-700mtrs) is slower than that observed during the 1990's, but the oceans are still gaining heat. Indeed, the slow-down is to be expected if recent papers on increased reflective aerosols in the atmsophere are correct

Conclusion

The ARGO network was completed in November 2007, and only since then has the network been able to provide more robust short-term trends. Over the period 2005-2010 the oceans (10-1500 meters down) have warmed 0.55 watts per square meter, but error uncertainty is almost 20%. Uncertainty will reduce as the length of the observational record increases, but Von Schuckmann and Le Traon (2011), caution that this is provided no more systematic errors remain in the network.    

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Comments 101 to 144 out of 144:

  1. Rob Painting #98

    "And is typical of BP, he never acknowledges his mistakes, or apologizes for slurs against actual scientific experts, but simply moves on to the next bit of nit-picking. It's a shining example of the lengths even very intelligent people, like BP, will go to in order to fool themselves."

    Incorrect - I did see BP acknowledge a mistake once (a couple of years ago) - obviously he has improved his act since.

    There are TWO sources of land ice loss.

    What you have ignored in your charts above is half the story viz: Glacier & Ice Cap loss in 2006 is 402+/-95 Gt/yr.

    You have only shown the charts for the Greenland & Antarctica Ice Sheet Loss which was 475+/-158 Gt/yr in 2006

    All BP did in his calculation was run along the trend line from 2006 to 2010 for BOTH sources of land ice loss.

    I will graciously accept your future apology to me and BP can please himself.
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    Response:

    [DB] "I did see BP acknowledge a mistake once (a couple of years ago)"

    The mind simply boggles at this statement.

    "I will graciously accept your future apology to me"

    ??? Who appointed you BP's Agent Provacateur?  You would do well to focus less on the moderation others receive, Mr. Lambert, as it tends to reduce your comment to caricature, which surely is not your intent.  You are capable of far better than that.

  2. Hello Ken,

    Re your comment "All BP did in his calculation was run along the trend line from 2006 to 2010 for BOTH sources of land ice loss."

    Yes, I know that he used both sources of ice loss, as did I, as did Hansen. BP's numbers are not right, and you have now elected to make those errors yours as well. You both have been told (and shown) why that is multiple times now by several people. Yet you steadfastly refuse to listen.

    And instead of soliciting unnecessary apologies from Rob Painting, you should rather be asking BP to apologize for slandering scientists on this thread and for sending us all on a wild goose chase.
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  3. Albatross #102

    Rob Painting at #80 and again at #98 has told HALF the story. In both posts he has only included charts for Antarctic and Greenland ice sheet loss.

    He has not mentioned Glacier and Ice Cap loss which roughly DOUBLES the equivalent SLR.

    BP has simply combined the two and run down the trend lines shown on the Richot's charts starting in 2006.

    This gives a mass SLR of +3.1mm/yr in 2010. That was his point. If you believe Richot et al (2011) then that is the result.

    That was BP's point - not whether Hansen or others have lower numbers.

    There is no 'colossal' error - just a logical conclusion from analysing Richot's numbers.

    Richot may well be at the upper limit. Take Hansen's numbers if you like.

    Would you also take Hansen's 'delayed Pinitubo rebound effect' as an explanantion for the reduced warming imbalance as well?
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  4. Hello Ken @103,

    No, sorry but you are still wrong-- and from your post I can see again where your logic continues to fail you. But I have addressed those problems (note plural) before, you are not listening. I used BOTH too (i.e., glaciers and ice caps, plus GIS and Antarctica), and I also allowed for the estimated increase, and you do not get a mean contribution to GSL from ice melt for the 2005-2010 window of 3.1 mm/yr, the value is very close to 2.6 mm/yr, 2.4 mm/yr if one does not allow for the expected increase.

    Please stop trying to float red herrings about Pinatubo. And it is not Richot, it is Rignot et al. (2011).
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  5. Albatross,

    I agree that six years is too short to make grand assertions. Therefore, neither von Schuckmann nor Rignot can be considered definitive.

    Getting past the obvious uncertainties, we can still evaluate the measurements in comparison to one another. I think we can agree that the Rignot numbers for SLR contribution from Greenland and Antarctica are high. Ignoring the extrapolation out to 2011, his 2010 value still leads to 1.7 mm/yr SLR, which combined with the mountain glacial loss from Meier results in 2.9 mm/yr. Whether you use this value or your quoted value of 2.6 mm/yr, the contribution from all glacial melt still exceeds the recently observed SLR of 2.2 – 2.4 mm/yr.

    Therefore, either the above values for SLR contribution from all glaciers are too high, or the steric component is negative. Simple math.
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  6. Albtross #104 and ETR #105

    Rignot - R I G N O T....I will do better. Was writing blind of previous posts showing the gentleman's name - forgive me M Rignot.

    ETR has got if pretty right. Whether land ice melt SLR is 2.6 or 2.9 or 3.1mm/yr - all of which are within the wide error bars on these measurements - they are all greater that 2.2, 2.3 or 2.4mm/yr satellite observation of global SLR.

    That means the steric rise is -0.2 to -0.9mm/yr (negative means contraction) which means cooling not warming.

    Your outrage at my defence of BP's Rignot analysis - which is probably at the high end - is therefore an exaggeration - probably contrived for the less analytical viewers in the hope of avoiding the admission that the numbers are not in favour of OHC increase - nor in fvour of AGW.
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  7. Ken Lambert - "[the oceans are] cooling not warming."

    Just to be clear on this, Ken - are you asserting that the ARGO network is in error, that the thermometers measuring actual temperatures are incorrect? I would think that the ongoing work on the ARGO network, network coverage, calibration and analysis was only improving, hence giving Von Schuckmann & Le Traon 2011 some weight.

    You have also fallen prey to the same misinterpretation as BP, in that you have assumed that ice melt has been linearly scaling up since 2006, whereas Rignot et al show that over 2007-2009 ice mass increased. In short term variability the ice melt contribution to SLR has been lower than trend over a fair bit of the last 5 years, a statistically insignificant period.

    I would agree with what EtR actually said - "...either the above values for SLR contribution from all glaciers are too high, or the steric component is negative". And given the uncertainties and the notable misrepresentation of ice melts, I would opine that the SLR contributions are far too high. Certainly the thermometer data from ARGO indicates that there is a positive steric contribution over that time.

    Your statement that "[the oceans are] cooling not warming." is quite simply unjustified by the evidence.
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  8. All,

    Well, Ken @106 that is I guess about as close as we can expect you to come to admitting error. Eric, your 2.9 mm/yr is still too high, that is the value for 2010 using a 2005 start, it is not the mean value for the 2005-2010 window, and that is what we need to calculate to compare with the other mean values for that period. That is like using the observed GSL change from the satellites in 2010 and saying that that value represents the mean rate of rise for the 2005-2010 window. That is not correct.

    It is falling on deaf ears, but FWIW I'll say it again-- we are working with noisy data (i.e., relatively large error bars) for a short period of time. Now the "skeptics" are not considering the possible ranges of data during this period (say the 90-95% confidence intervals). I'll repeat here what I wrote up thread @64 (source Fig. 18 in Hansen et al. (2011):

    "Here are the relative contributions for the 2005-2010 period:
    Ice melt: +1.27 to +2.4 mm/yr
    Abyssal oceans and southern oceans: +0.156 mm/yr
    Steric rise: +0.55 to +0.83 mm/yr

    Total: +2.0 mm/yr to +3.4 mm/yr (mean near +2.7 mm/yr). Now, satellite GSL increase for the same period was +1.4 to +3.0 mm/yr (mean +2.2 mm/yr), data from Leuliette and Willis (2011). Pretty good agreement given the limitations of the observations."


    Notice the positive values and range for steric, and that Leuliette and Willis (2011) also get a mean positive steric contribution of +0.5 mm/yr for January 2005 through September 2010, and Von Schuckmann and Le Traon (2011) estimate a positive steric contribution for 2005-2010 of +0.69 ±0.14 mm/yr. Notice too that the mean increase in the satellite GSL for the 2005-2010 window was most likely between +1.4 and +3.0 mm/yr, compared to +2.0 to +3.4 mm/yr for steric + ice melt. There is a huge amount of overlap.

    One cannot claim without any amount of confidence that there is a "contradiction". And one cannot, based on these data, claim like Pielke Snr or Knox and Douglass or Monckton or our resident "skeptics" that the "oceans have been cooling". Regardless, it is a moot point, because as I keep noting (which is also falling on deaf ears) Katsman and Voldenborgh (2011) have shown that slowdowns (or even periods of cooling) are not fairly common in the OHC data.

    Again, we have "skeptics" making a lot of noise about the noise, and worse yet making misguided extrapolations and assertions about the alleged implications and meaning of said noise. It is called muddying the waters, obfuscating, detracting attention away from AGW-- techniques that "skeptics" use all the time. Why? Because that is all they can do in this point in the game.

    PS: Does anyone know if there is a published paper out there that states the estimated annual loss by year from GIS, Antarctica?
    PPS: Hopefully there is sufficient period of overlap between the aging GRACE mission and the new CRYOSAT2 mission that will allow scientists to improve their estimates of ice loss.
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  9. Albatross,

    The difference is that you are using Hansen's numbers, not Rignot's. If you were to use the values from Rignot, then you would get 2.0 - 3.4 mm/yr averaged over the 2005-2010 period. This equates to your total of Hansen plus steric. While there is enough uncertainty in these values to preclude making definitive statements, the appearance is that Rignot's values are too high. You seem to agree, otherwise you would not be continuously espousing Hansen's figures. Yes?

    The following paper was published recently, and also discussed in the 7/22 edition of Science magazine.

    http://www.springerlink.com/content/9k58637p80534284/
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  10. Albatross - I agree wholeheartedly with your post.

    In this discussion 'skeptics' have taken rates from singular, rather outlier years, incorrectly applied those extreme rates to the 5 period under discussion (cherry-picking), and used these completely off numbers to claim both a 'contradiction' and that the oceans are cooling.

    Add to that the statistically meaningless duration of the period under discussion, and I would have to consider these arguments ill-founded in the extreme. Definitely cases of confirmation bias, if those presenting them have not bothered to look at the difference between a single year rate and average rate over this time period. I sincerely hope that mistake was not intentional.

    Ken Lambert, Berényi Péter - bad arguments, no donuts.
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  11. Eric @109,

    "The difference is that you are using Hansen's numbers, not Rignot's"

    For goodness' sakes, this is getting silly. I and Hansen et al. (2011) did incorporate Rignot's data. Read Hansen et al. (2011), they reference Rignot et al. (2011) and say that:

    "The "high" estimates in Fig. 18 for Greenland and Antarctica, respectively, 281 and 176 Gt/year (360 Gt = 1 mm sea level), are from Velicogna (2009). A recent analysis (Rignot et al., 2011) compares surface mass budget studies and the gravity method, finding support for the high estimates of Velicogna (2009)."

    Using the data for 2006 in Rignot et al. (2011) you get an singular contribution to GSL for 2006 from ice melt of ~2.4 mm (~+1.3 mm from GIS and Antarctica and ~+1.1 mm from other sources). So the Rignot et al. value for 2006 (an extreme year for ice loss from Antarctica and GIS) represents the upper limit used by Hansen et al. (2011). Hansen et al. did not allow for the impact on the mean contribution arsing from a linear increase in ice melt between 2005 and 2010, but that increases the mean contribution for 2005-2010 from ~+2.4 to ~+2.6 mm, the increases is well within the margin of error.

    I do agree, however, that Rignot's values are probably too high, as suggested by Wu et al. (2010) and Zwally and Giovinetto (2011). On that note, it is unfortunate that "skeptics" here have accused Rignot et al. of purposefully inflating the ice loss-- that accusation is nonsense and still has not been rescinded and an apology issued. Why must 'skeptics' repeatedly engage in innuendo and accuse scientists of fudging/exaggerating/inflating the data? That is all the more bizarre when it is in fact the 'skeptics' who are doing just that.

    The point though is that two published papers show the mean steric contribution for 2005-2010 to be near +0.5 mm/yr., and "skeptics" here have had to employ some interesting data manipulation and cherry-picking to try and force a negative steric contribution.

    So Eric, you too are now arguing in circles, and are also guilty of not paying attention nor listening. This is beginning to sound more like denial on the part of you, BP and Ken rather than true skepticism.

    PS: The radar altimeter data used by Zwally and Giovinetto are known to significantly underestimate the loss of ice from around ice margins, also their analysis excludes ice loss from the Antarctic Peninsula. Their paper is by no means the last word on this. Again, hopefully Cryosat2 will shed some light on what is happening.
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  12. 108, Albatross
    One cannot claim without any amount of confidence that there is a "contradiction". And one cannot, based on these data, claim like Pielke Snr or Knox and Douglass or Monckton or our resident "skeptics" that the "oceans have been cooling".
    I have to disagree. They certainly can claim it, apparently, as they have proven thread after thread. BP provides a lengthy gish gallop of numbers and facts and conclusions. Points of contention or inaccuracy are ignored or dismissed out of hand.

    Ken and Eric pile on, cheerleading from the sidelines and adding their unwavering support.

    The complete lack of skepticism or critical inquiry from them is itself enlightening, but none-the-less, by bombarding the thread with post after misleading but mutually supportive post, they accomplish at a minimum allowing any I-want-to-be-a-denier pals to look at this and say the OP is wrong. At best, they totally confuse people who are already confused, and looking for edification, so that they leave thinking science and scientists don't actually know anything.

    That their points have been repeatedly and roundly refuted is of no matter. They just ignore the refutations and move ahead by saying black is white.

    That their own position and analysis is not remotely tenable, and yet they accord it a higher level of confidence than published scientific studies, is a fact.

    The sorry truth is that they can claim anything they want, and they can make it look not only palatable but substantive, simply by throwing around numbers and equations and citations.

    Between the three of them, they create quite a formidable tag team.

    Too bad they are (a) grossly wrong, (b) as skeptical as the first caveman to declare fire and the wheel a complete waste of time, and (c) so focused on a single, desired conclusion that they cannot admit to even one of their errors (except misspelling Rignot's name) let alone all of them.

    No, I'm sorry, they claim anything they want.

    They just can't be right about it, but it seems they don't have to be.
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  13. Sphaerica @112,

    Yes. That was a poor choice of words, of course, they can claim whatever they want, that is how they play this game.

    As I have said before, they are entitled to their opinion, but they are not entitled to their own facts. Moreover, by allowing bias and opinion to trump facts they are entitled (actually destined) to be very wrong....

    You say "That their own position and analysis is not remotely tenable, and yet they accord it a higher level of confidence than published scientific studies, is a fact."

    Agreed.

    You say "At best, they totally confuse people who are already confused, and looking for edification, so that they leave thinking science and scientists don't actually know anything."

    Actually, I am confidant that informed and reasonable people reading this thread will see right though their charade. Those same readers will also notice some very important signs or "tells" that reveal the bias and agenda of the "skeptics".
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  14. 113. Albatross,
    Those same readers will also notice some very important signs or "tells" that reveal the bias and agenda of the "skeptics".
    Such as the fact that there is not a single post on SkS or aspect of climate change that they agree with without reservation?

    Ocean acidification.
    Sea level rise.
    Rising ocean temperatures.
    Rising tropospheric temperatures.
    Rising surface temperatures.
    Extreme weather events.
    Melting ice.
    CO2 levels.
    CO2 facts.
    Physics.
    Models.
    Proxies.
    Climate sensitivity.
    Clouds.
    TSI.
    Aerosols.
    Mitigation.
    Adaptation.
    etc.

    And yet they agree with absolutely nothing, ever, over and over again. It's not true. It's inaccurate. Where it is accurate (but it's not!) the conclusions are wrong. It's biased. It's fudged. It's cherry-picked. It's just wrong.

    You'd think a true skeptic would agree with some (most?) of the science, and just question or even harp on certain key points.

    And yet what we see, instead, from skeptics is hard, unyielding refutation and refusal of acceptance of each and every fact and detail of climate change. Every single one, without fail.

    That's the real "tell."
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  15. This thread does provide a fascinating look at the dynamics of the so-called skeptic argument (or debate, if you prefer). In September 2010, our two rebuttals to 'Oceans are cooling' included the following caveats:

    From Basic:

    It is a fine example of denialist spin, making several extraordinary leaps: :
    * that one symptom is indicative of the state of an entire malaise (e.g. not being short of breath one day means your lung cancer is cured).
    * that one can claim significance about a four year period when it’s too short to draw any kind of conclusion
    * that global warming has not been occurring on the basis of ocean temperatures alone


    From Intermediate:

    ... the most common error is focusing on a single piece of the puzzle while ignoring the big picture. The ocean cooling meme commits this error twofold. Firstly, it scrutinises 6 years worth of data while ignoring the last 40 years of ocean warming. Secondly, it hangs its hat on one particular reconstruction that shows cooling, while other results and independent analyses indicate slight warming.

    The arguments presented in this thread are basicaly the same as those back in September. To paraphrase:
    - Based on X years of data (out of X + n), we can see clearly that the trend is ...
    - Since P + Q doesn't add up to R, all of AGW theory is invalid ...
    - If I take values Y and Z, derived from an isolated set of measurements and apply them as averages for the entire ocean volume, I get YZ, which is less than W, so that ...
    - These measurements, Q +/- .75Q, clearly indicate that ...
    - Based on my experience in {fill in field of study other than climate science}, I am right and everyone else is wrong.

    It appears that no one took those caveats to heart. Yes, resolving the balance of ocean heat is important, but it is just one piece of a large puzzle. Conclusions drawn from a single piece of evidence must be tested against all the other pieces. If this ARGO controversy leads you to conclude unequivocally oceans are cooling, you better be able to provide answers to the following (and no doubt other) questions:

    What is melting sea ice? Why are sea surface temperatures rising? Why are ENSO cycles changing in a manner that suggests more energy in the system, not less? If sea level rise is not due in part to ocean warming, where is that excess water coming from? What explains rising ocean acidity? increasing evaporation? changes in salinity?

    Did I say 'dynamics' of these debates? If we don't learn anything from one to the next, its more like statics. A case of deja-vu all over again.
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  16. #110 KR at 04:17 AM on 3 August, 2011
    Add to that the statistically meaningless duration of the period under discussion, and I would have to consider these arguments ill-founded in the extreme.

    Are you trying to tell us the 6 year long period Von Schuckmann & Le Traon have chosen for their OHC analysis is statistically meaningless?
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  17. Berenyi Peter:
    We all know that the six years that Von Schuckmann & Le Traon report is too short of a time frame to establish a trend that is useful.
    A short time frame to show anything meaningful has been debunked numerous times on this site.
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  18. Depends on what hypothesis you are testing. For climate purposes, a period covers the full solar cycle would be necessary.
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  19. #107 KR at 00:39 AM on 3 August, 2011
    Rignot et al show that over 2007-2009 ice mass increased.

    No, they do not do that. Quite the contrary, they estimate a peak loss rate for those years.



    Compare it to

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  20. Berényi Péter

    From Von Schuckmann: "Our revised estimation ... indicates a clear increase of global ocean heat content and steric height. Uncertainty estimations due to the data handling reveal that this increase is significant during the years 2005–2010 (this does not mean, of course, that these are long term trends)."

    Remember, short term variations, however well established, do not override long term trends. But for the time period you discussed (albeit statistically meaningless in terms of long term trends), where you asserted negative steric increases, you are contradicted by the Von Schuckmann data of actual OHC. As for the long term trends, you have established exactly nothing, due to the statistical limitations. 3.2 mm/year is the long term trend for SLR.

    And, as noted by several people, you took single year rates and accelerations and assumed that they applied to every year since 2006. That's not justified, even for the short term, especially since we actually have data for those years. I believe Albatross's postings state it better than I have, however.
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  21. Berényi Péter

    "#107 KR at 00:39 AM on 3 August, 2011
    Rignot et al show that over 2007-2009 ice mass increased."


    My sincere apologies - you are quite correct, ice mass did not increase.

    The rate of ice mass decreased, is what I intended to say, and the rate of 2006 did not (as per your linear assumption) hold through the entire period.
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  22. KR @120,

    "And, as noted by several people, you took single year rates and accelerations and assumed that they applied to every year since 2006."

    KR, yes, he took the estimate rate calculated for 2010 and assumed that that rate held true for each year between 2005 and 2010. To do so is very wrong.

    Note too how the deception continues, he now shows a figure @119 which has text very boldly stating that current contribution to GSL from GIS is (not estimated to be) 1.9 mm/yr. Well, you are not going to believe this, that is the expected value for the contribution in 2012, and we are meant to be discussing the estimated mean rate for 2005-2010 (which was, as per BP's graph and my calculations is ~1.5 mm/yr)! I do not use exclamation marks very often, but here it is warranted.

    Now his graph also shows how he misled earlier, claiming that the mean contribution from ice melt to GSL for 2005-2010 was 3.1 mm/yr. Well, his very own graph shows that he did that by taking the expected rate for 2010 (~1.75 mm/yr from GIS and Antarctica, plus ~1.3 mm/yr for estimated contribution from glaciers in 2010), and claimed that that resulting rate ~3.1 mm/yr applied for all years between 2005-2010. That is he claimed that the estimated rate in 2010 was the mean rate for 2005-2010. Wrong.

    I'm not sure whether BP's post @ 119 should be deleted b/c it is so deceptive or kept as a beautiful example of blatant, willful deception by BP. It was not smart of him to post that figure @119-- he has just shot himself in the foot.

    And I find it odd that at the same time using Rignot et al's data to argue his misguided case, BP suggested earlier that Rignot et al. exaggerated the contribution from GIS and Antarctica. That is, suggesting malfeasance on their part.
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  23. Albatross #122

    At #9 BP wrote:

    "I translate it for you. According to Rignot at al. rate of land based ice melt is 877+48.1(t-2006) in gigatons (where t is time in years AD). As it takes about 360 gigatons to raise sea level by 1 mm, in 2011 this rate is 3.1 mm/year."

    At #122 Albatross is still claiming that:

    "Now his graph also shows how he misled earlier, claiming that the mean contribution from ice melt to GSL for 2005-2010 was 3.1 mm/yr. Well, his very own graph shows that he did that by taking the expected rate for 2010 (~1.75 mm/yr from GIS and Antarctica, plus ~1.3 mm/yr for estimated contribution from glaciers in 2010), and claimed that that resulting rate ~3.1 mm/yr applied for all years between 2005-2010. That is he claimed that the estimated rate in 2010 was the mean rate for 2005-2010. Wrong."

    Where did BP claim that "the estimated rate in 2010 was the mean rate for 2005-2010."?

    I read through his posts and cannot find this claim.

    He clearly says in #9 that the 2011 rate is 3.1mm/yr by using the formula he derived from Rignot.

    Using that formula: 877+48.1(t-2006), the rates would be:

    2006:
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  24. Sorry accidental post - continuing #123

    2006: 877/360 = 2.4mm/yr
    2007: (877+48.1)/360 = 2.57mm/yr
    2008: (877+96.2)/360 = 2.7mm/yr
    2009: (877+144.3)/360 = 2.84mm/yr
    2010: (877+192.4)/360 = 2.97mm/yr
    2011: (877+240.5)/360 = 3.1mm/yr

    Again Albatross - where did BP claim that 3.1mm/yr applied for the whole period 2005-2010?
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  25. #124 Ken Lambert at 23:38 PM on 3 August, 2011
    Again Albatross

    Dear Ken, let them alone, please. They will not understand, because they are not willing to.

    ( -Moderation Complaints Snipped- ).

    Suffice it to say high and accelerating rate of mass addition to ocean (like land based ice melt and groundwater depletion*) is inconsistent with much thermosteric expansion if eustatic sea level change is (sub)linear.

    Also worth noting, that it is not heat accumulation that melts ice, but (local) temperature. That is so, because very small amount of heat is needed to melt ice compared to warming seawater (because volume of oceans is a bit larger than global ice volume and also because mass addition is much more efficient in raising sea level than expansion driven by heat accumulation). Therefore rate of ice loss (or gain) is only dependent on the details of heat distribution in the climate system, not on changes in its absolute heat content.

    * "We estimate the contribution of groundwater depletion to sea level rise to be 0.8 (±0.1) mm a−1", see Wada 2010. Needless to say it is also accelerating.
    0 0
    Response:

    [DB] "very small amount of heat is needed to melt ice compared to warming seawater"

    You are not having a good day.  From ze Wiki:

    "When ice melts, it absorbs as much energy as it would take to heat an equivalent mass of water by 80 °C."

    You also left out this bit from the conclusions of Wada 2010:

    "However, it is also mentioned that uncertainty is large and that the positive contribution of groundwater depletion may be offset by impoundment in reservoirs and associated recharge of surrounding aquifers. For this reason, anthropogenic contributions to sea level rise are not quantified in Fourth Assessment Report, although they are mentioned as the possible cause for the discrepancy between observed sea?level rise and the sum of the known sources [Church et al., 2001]"

    Please note that posting comments here at SkS is a privilege, not a right.  This privilege can and will be rescinded if the posting individual continues to treat adherence to the Comments Policy as optional, rather than the mandatory condition of participating in this online forum.

    Moderating this site is a tiresome chore, particularly when commentators repeatedly submit offensive, off-topic posts or intentionally misleading comments and graphics. We really appreciate people's cooperation in abiding by the Comments Policy, which is largely responsible for the quality of this site.
     
    Finally, please understand that moderation policies are not open for discussion.  If you find yourself incapable of abiding by these common set of rules that everyone else observes, then a change of venues is in the offing.

    Please take the time to review the policy and ensure future comments are in full compliance with it.  Thanks for your understanding and compliance in this matter, as no further warnings shall be given.

  26. Ken @124,

    You are stating the obvious, I have crunched the numbers too. You sadly continue to fail to see the problem.

    Ken laments "where did BP claim that 3.1mm/yr applied for the whole period 2005-2010?"
    Really that is your defense? I see. Allow me to quote from the OP.

    From the opening paragraph of the OP:
    "A recent paper Von Schuckmann & Le Traon (2011) put the kibosh on ocean cooling claims. They find that from 2005 to 2010 the global oceans (10 to 1500 metres down) have continued to warm"

    From Fig.1:
    "Revised estimate of global ocean heat content (10-1500 mtrs deep) for 2005-2010"

    From Fig.2:
    "Method validation using gridded altimeter SSH measurements (AVISO): gridded SSH during 2005–2010 has been subsampled to the Argo profile position and the simple box averaging method has been applied."

    Also:
    "For the 2005-2010 period the error uncertainty is plus/minus 0.1 watt per square metre."

    From the Concluding paragraph:
    "Over the period 2005-2010 the oceans (10-1500 meters down) have warmed 0.55 watts per square meter, but error uncertainty is almost 20%."

    So if all else fails try to plead ignorance and dismiss context. "Skeptics" are admitting to not looking at the means for the 2005-2010 when that is what one should be doing in the context of the OP. And even when it was blindingly very clear that others here were using data for the appropriate time window, 2005-2010, "skeptics" continued to push the incorrect data.

    "They will not understand, because they are not willing to."
    This is laughable. A classic case of projection-- and we know that BP knows what that means ;) Come on, falsely accusing others of doing exactly what you are doing is also an old 'skeptic' and debating trick. This thread demonstrates that multiple times.

    And interesting how "skeptics" are still giving BP free pass for claiming that current (~mid 2011) estimated contribution of GIS and Antarctica to GSL is actually a value for 2012.....
    0 0
    Moderator Response:

    [DB] BP gets no more free passes.

  27. Albatross,

    How do you reconcile the following:

    Groundwater depletion has increased its contribution to SLR from 0.4 (pre-1990) to 0.8 mm/yr (2000), and expected to continue rising.

    Mountain glacial runoff has increased its contribution from 0.4 (pre-1990) to 1.1 mm /yr (2006), and expected to rise 10% by 2010.

    Greenland and Antarctic did not contribute to SLR prior to 1993, but had increased to 1.3 mm/yr by 2006, and continues to increase to ~1.7 mm/yr currently.

    The steric rise component has increased from ~0.5 mm/yr to 0.7 mm/yr today (the average of your posted values @108).

    Granted there are large uncertainties in each of these measurements, but the summation of groundwater, mountain glaciers, GIS & Antarctica, and steric rise has increased from 1.3 mm/yr prior to 1990 to 3.7 mm/yr around 2000 and to 4.6 mm/yr today.

    According to tidal gauge measurements, the SLR prior to 1990 was ~1.5 mm/yr, good agreement with the summation value. According to the University of Colorado, SLR reached a maximum increase of ~3.9 mm/yr around 2000, another good agreement. However, since then, the SLR has decreased to ~2.3 mm/yr, about half the summation value.

    Do you see the dichotomy here?

    In your opinion which value(s) do feel are most in error?
    0 0
  28. EtR @127,

    You are determined to argue/debate in circles here-- we are now at post #128. I'm not biting or wasting more time on this, so please do not try and bait me with a Gish Gallop, or by moving the goal posts.

    "In your opinion which value(s) do feel are most in error? "
    All the values cited in Hansen et al. (2011) and Leuliette and Willis (2011) and von Shuckmann and Le Traon (2011), as well as the various estimates of GSL have error bars or uncertainty ranges-- figure it out yourself, but without preconceived biases. I'm intrigued that until now "skeptics" on this thread have expressed little or no interest in error bars or uncertainty.

    Finally, it might help your credibility in future if you bothered read the papers (and the stated caveats and limitations) that BP carefully cites, instead of uncritically accepting his claims. BP's cherry picking of Wada (2010) being the most recent example.

    I am no longer going to engage people on this thread who are not here to discuss these matters in good faith, or who give free pass to repeated deception by the likes of BP.
    0 0
  29. Eric the Red - Regarding groundwater contributions: Don't forget that groundwater depletion is not the only direct human influence on the hydrological cycle. Dam building (Fiedler and Conrad 2010) has offset something like 30.0 mm (∼10,800 km^3) over the 20th century. While dam construction has slowed over the last several decades, and groundwater depletion only increased, are the numbers you are giving corrected for impoundment to show a total contribution?

    And, to second Albatross on this, why have you not stated any uncertainties in those numbers?
    0 0
  30. KR,

    The uncertainties have been discussed several times previously. The point I was trying to make is that all the the listed contributions to SLR were increasing, and were significant beyond the error bars (at least according to the published papers). Since SLR has been decelerating recently, this is a contradiction; ALL the factors contributing to SLR cannot increase at the same time that SLR is decreasing.

    ( -Snip -).

    BTW, the issue of groudwater being held in reservoirs was addressed in Wada 2011, and found to reduce the runoff to the oceans significantly also.
    0 0
    Response:

    [DB] Per Wada 2010, uncertainties in groundwater contributions are large enough to make them unquantifiable.

    As for the rest, please note that inflammatory tone and accusations of misconduct contravene the Comments Policy and were deleted.  Keep the focus on the science and avoid personalizing the discussions.

    As has been already noted on this very thread, posting comments here at SkS is a privilege, not a right.  This privilege can and will be rescinded if the posting individual continues to treat adherence to the Comments Policy as optional, rather than the mandatory condition of participating in this online forum.

    Personally, moderating this site is a PITA, particularly when commentators repeatedly submit offensive or off-topic posts. We really appreciate people's cooperation in abiding by the Comments Policy, which is largely responsible for the quality of this site.
     
    Finally, please understand that moderation policies are not open for discussion.  If you find yourself incapable of abiding by these common set of rules that everyone else observes, then a change of venues is in the offing.

    Please take the time to review the policy and ensure future comments are in full compliance with it.  Thanks for your understanding and compliance in this matter.  Please also note that there will be no other warnings to you in this matter.  We look forward to your future positive contributions to the dialogue and discussion on this blog.

    Have a nice day.

  31. Eric the Red - WRT groundwater influences, please see the Moderator comments in this post. Groundwater contributions, as Wada notes, are so uncertain that they are not incorporated.

    If you feel otherwise, then I would suggest doing the groundwater study yourself and reducing those uncertainties. Your inclusion of groundwater contributions is not justified due to those, and I consider it rather a red herring.

    Albatross did not avoid the question, he simply pointed out (unlike some of the posters on this thread) that there are uncertainties on all of the measurements, that anyone should be capable of examining them. If you feel that the range of uncertainties do not overlap, that there is sufficient information to consider some of the numbers unsupportable:

    Then show your numbers. Demonstrate that the input/output values differ by more than is understandable given their uncertainties. Demanding that others do your work for you (as you did with Albatross), and implying that they are incorrect if they don't, is a Burden of Proof fallacious argument, one that I see on this site entirely too often from the skeptics. If you feel the numbers are wrong, that published work is incorrect, demonstrate it with the uncertainty ranges.
    0 0
  32. KR,

    The contributers with uncertainties (all taken for earlier post).

    Pre-1990:
    Groundwater: 0.4 +/- 0.1 mm/yr
    Mtn Glaciers: 0.4 +/- 0.1 mm/yr
    GIC & Antarctica: 0.0 +/- 0.2 mm/yr
    Steric: 0.5 +/- 0.1 mm /yr
    TOTAL: 1.3 +/- 0.3 mm /yr compared to tidal gauge SLR of 1.5 (uncertainty unknown).

    Early 2000s:
    Groundwater: 0.8 +/- 0.1 mm/yr
    Mtn Glaciers: 1.1 +/- 0.3 mm/yr
    GIC & Antarctica: 1.3 +/- 0.45 mm/yr
    Steric: 0.5 +/- 0.1 mm /yr
    TOTAL: 3.7 +/- 0.5 mm /yr compared to satellite SLR of 3.9 +/- 0.6 mm /yr.

    2010:
    Groundwater: 1.0 +/- 0.2 mm/yr
    Mtn Glaciers: 1.2 +/- 0.3 mm/yr
    GIC & Antarctica: 1.7 +/- 0.5 mm/yr
    Steric: 0.7 +/- 0.15 mm /yr
    TOTAL: 4.6 +/- 0.65 mm /yr compared to satellite SLR of 2.3 +/- 0.8 mm /yr
    0 0
  33. Does anyone know the average temperature of the volume of melt water being added to the system, and how that distributes over the (significant) upper layer of the ocean? Does that in any way affect the steric component? I'm sure scientists have considered it. Has it entered into any calculations here? Wouldn't a certain amount of heat transfer reduce the steric contribution, temporarily masking its effects due to warming (until the original plus melt water has had time to warm to an equilibrium value)?
    0 0
    Response:

    [DB] I'll email someone who may know.

  34. KR @131,

    You are correct. My post @64, based on Hansen et al. and others, incorporates the uncertainty. And FWIW, Eric is still comparing the wrong data @132-- we are talking about the 2005-2010 window here, not end points, and despite being advised to the contrary he has used the estimated groundwater contributions (note how the goal posts have shifted). The former point concerning the time frame under consideration has been made ad nauseum, and it is inconceivable that they continue to ignore that important fact.

    Further to that, and with that observation in mind, as a publishing scientist I take very strong exception to the accusation made by EtR:

    "His avoidance of the issue borders on climate misinformation, as he appears to believe that all these factors can increase simultaneously, while SLR decreases."

    I request that EtR apologizes for that and for misrepresenting my position which has been very clearly stated in previous posts.

    The true misinformation being perpetuated here is by BP and his supporters. There are more falsehoods in EtR's post @130, but quite frankly I can't be bothered with them...astute readers following this thread can decide for themselves who is playing fast and loose with the facts here.

    ( -Snip- )
    0 0
    Response:

    [DB] Let's try and take the high road here (translation: let me be the bad guy; as moderator, that's my role...keeping electrons from being wasted).

  35. Albatross - Agreed.

    Eric the Red - Groundwater contributions are a red herring without consideration of impoundment. You're again using end point numbers (single years) when discussing 6 year averages.

    The fact remains that Von Schuckmann has demonstrated directly measured (i.e., thermometers) temperature increases in the oceans, particularly in the deeper sections. Steric expansion is perhaps the most certain contributor to SLR - if you feel the numbers are in error I suggest you look at melt contributions or GIA estimates instead. Don't forget to consider seasonal/yearly variations in the signal.

    Absolutely none of the cherry picked numbers or arguments that have been bandied about here actually address the thermal readings from Von Schuckmann's paper. And hence, quite frankly, they are off-topic in this thread on OHC.
    0 0
  36. Albatross #126

    You have avoided the point Albatross - assertion without content.

    Give us a straight answer to this question: Where did BP claim that 3.1mm/yr applied for the whole period 2005-2010?
    0 0
  37. Rob Painting

    I called your error at #101 when you only told half the story and claimed that I 'did not listen'.

    As the author of the header of this thread, why have you not answered?
    0 0
  38. I would suggest, 'tho I'm not a moderator, that discussions of SLR and the components thereof be taken to a more appropriate thread (perhaps How much is sea level rising?), leaving this one for discussing OHC and the current state of deep temperature measurements.
    0 0
    Response:

    [DB] Seconded; motion carried.  Parties interested in discussing SLR may do so on the thread indicated by KR; OHC & temperature discussions may continue on this thread.

  39. Ken @136,

    You are now resorting to games, arguing strawmen and being argumentative. As any reasonable person reading this thread (as well as other threads) will note, I try and avoid making assertions without content. You are entitled to your own (misguided) opinions but not your own facts.

    "Where did BP claim that 3.1mm/yr applied for the whole period 2005-2010?"
    Your continued defense of BP's attempt to use his (inflated) end point values to refute the published works is truly mind boggling. You yourself said @101 that:

    "All BP did in his calculation was run along the trend line from 2006 to 2010 for BOTH sources of land ice loss"
    So you too were under the impression that BP was speaking to the 2006-2010 window. Indeed that is what he did, as did I, but his mistake (and I think that is a generous characterization) was to use the end point data, not the means. BP also makes multiple references to the 2005-2011'ish window in his posts @9, 70 and 73. So the reader is left with the very clear impression that his 3.1 mm/yr value was intended to refute the published works dealing with the 2005-2010 window. EOS.

    And I might add that you are also trying to argue a strawman with Rob.
    0 0
  40. KL @ 137 - "Rob Painting I called your error at #101 when you only told half the story and claimed that I 'did not listen'.As the author of the header of this thread, why have you not answered?"

    Busy with other things Ken, but I see you are still reluctant to admit BP's error, despite Albatross repeatedly going over this.
    0 0
  41. I received an answer to the issues Sphaerica raised in 133 above.

    Per Hansen, "ocean cooling due to Antarctic ice cap melt
    could delay or reverse loss of sea ice for awhile"

    Not saying that that is definitive, mind you, but it is an interesting wrinkle to consider...
    0 0
  42. As a latecomer to this thread, KL and BP need to answer the criticisms of Albatross and Rob Painting. Otherwise their ability to argue a case must be in question.
    0 0
    Response:

    [DB] Not to pick on them unduly, but those individuals have a long history of selective focus when it comes to posting comments at SkS.

  43. #142 critical mass at 22:54 PM on 7 August, 2011
    As a latecomer to this thread, KL and BP need to answer the criticisms of Albatross and Rob Painting. Otherwise their ability to argue a case must be in question.

    Tell them not to delete my posts indiscriminately and you'll have all the answers you could wish for. However, until such time you'll get nothing, sorry.
    0 0
    Response:

    [DB] "Tell them not to delete my posts indiscriminately"

    Then don't commit flagrant and willful violations of the Comments Policy. 

    Really, you bring it on yourself by putting yourself above a mandatory condition of participation that virtually everyone who ever posts in this Forum has no issues abiding by.

  44. BP @143,

    Last week you excused yourself from this forum. Please be a man of honour and keep your word, instead of coming back to make more fallacious allegations in a drive-bye style post.
    0 0
  45. Continuing from here

    Steve, the IPCC reports on published science up to cut off date for the report. When the IPCC report for 2013 (or 2014) comes out, what do you think it will say on OHC given the data available now?
    0 0
  46. What do I think it will say? The same thing that the IPCC thinks it will say. and the same thing that you think it will say. ( -Snip- ) John Cook may now delete this post. Right John?
    0 0
    Response:

    [DB] If you have nothing constructive to add to this discussion, why bother.  Right?

    Note:  John seldom moderates these days.  Those comments you have forced the moderators to intervene on and/or delete have been acted upon by others.

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