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    More than 100 comments found. Only the most recent 100 have been displayed.

  • Is Nuclear Energy the Answer?

    Preston Urka at 07:15 AM on 6 September, 2020

    michael sweet - it seems no discussion of economics: the value of dispatchable power vs intermittent energy, or the distinction between average cost and marginal cost, or the distinction between the cost of a single plant vs a total grid system - these are simply not allowed.

    Since this is outside the permissible discussion topics here, I just won't make any further economic arguments for nuclear.

    Post @202 is not about using waste heat to power industry, but about using heat (as in primarily, skipping the conversion to electricity and back again).

    An example of using waste heat to power industry is Palo Verde used to treat sewage.

    "It is uneconomic to run since a reactor requires many more operators than a traditional ship. Military vessels do not care about the extreme cost." - what, a bald statement without a citation? I might give you that the military is insensitive to cost, but you have not presented evidence for this conclusion. Ditto your _belief_ that this is a tempting terrorist target.

    Of course, there are exceptions: a rather opinionated, belief-ridden statement "Nuclear power is uneconomic." from @206, without citations or calculations lives on. Taking construction cost and time-to-build, you put it through your arithmetic machine and end up with ... I mean it looks like you have a point, but one does have to keep close a bunch of pre-conceived notions about economics and power grids and then finish the thought for you for an actual conclusion to be reached.

    To have the privilege of discourse where almost any thought is censored, well ... if that is the site you guys want, you are welcome to it.

  • We've been having the wrong debate about nuclear energy

    nigelj at 08:23 AM on 6 August, 2020

    michael sweet @11

    "I note that you have provided no references, even to industry propaganda, to support your wild claims. "

    There is detailed criticism of Jacobsons work easily googled. I didnt think I needed to quote that which is easly googled, but here is some material. I do not accept all the criticisms, but some look credible.

    I do not know of an actual peer reviewed published study attempting to refute Jacobsons or Abbots work. My undertanding is that most published studies including ones that turn out to be wrong, are not specifically refuted by other published studies. That doesn't make the original published study correct as M Sweet seems to believe.

    If I'm not allowed to criticise someones work, or at least express doubts, because there is no relevant published study I can quote that is refuting the work, then that is clearly and indisputably absurd nonsense, and it is scientific censorship. If people cant express opinions or thoughts without a bibliography of references, that is also quite absurd. 

    "You have just made up your 20% claim. "

    Apologies. That was a typo. I confused  the 5% with a 20% number you quoted.

    "It is possible that in 5,000 years steel will run out and we will have to all go back to using stone. I doubt it. You are simply speculating without any support. "

    Where did I quote just steel? You are putting words in my mouth again. Renewables use copper, aluminium, and dozens of other relatively scare materials. Its well known that some of these materials are scarce. There is no need to provide references for common knowledge.

    Renewables like solar panels use many more materials than nuclear power plants. This is kinda obvious when you look at the size of solar and wind farms, but I have a reference here to satisfy the nit pickers. I'm just suggesting this is something that needs consideration in a world where we are using resources very fast. It doesnt make renewables a bad thing, but it does suggest we combine a wide range of options.

    "Nuclear plants are being shut down worldwide because nuclear is not economic."

    Unsupported assertion made with no references. Talk about hypocrisy. And more importantly its an unbalanced comment. At least some nuclear plants are shut down due to panic about safety, eg in Germany and plenty of nuclear plants are also being built here.

    "Nuclear proponents have been saying that in 10 years they will have solved all nuclear's problems ever since I was born and I am an old man now. "

    I agree and Im older now and I've certainly observed this. However not all the renewables problems have been solved either, and most of the plans that they can be solved are speculative or have not been scaled up,  just like the nuclear industries speculation and promises and experimental plant.

    All I'm saying is I think theres room for many clean zero carbon energy sources. Some countries could elect to use renewables and clearly are doing this. Others might use nuclear power. Countries could mix both perhaps in different parts of the country. Countries already mix various energy sources like geothermal and hydro. Its not clear to me why everyone would have to just use solar and wind and why nuclear must be excluded. Purists and dogmatic people get on my nerves.

    I will not be commenting futher on all this.

  • A conundrum: our continued presence on Facebook

    nigelj at 07:04 AM on 20 July, 2020

    My take in a bit more detail and having read the comments: There appear to be a couple of main issues with facebook. 1)Micro targetting of ads and information that can reinforce climate denialism, and 2) facebooks poor fact checking, because facebook claim climate denialism articles are not news articles, they are opinion so they dont need fact checking.

    Facebook show no signs of changing this behaviour, despite these issues being raised on various websites. Im assuming people have also lobbied facebook directly. The government hasn't intervened very much, presumably because its afraid of being seen to censor free speech and excessively interfering in how facebook do business in relation to micro targetting.

    Fact checking opinion articles or dealing with complaints about them would be very time consuming for governments. Even if the public lobbied governments, it looks to me like they might be reluctant to act. Governmnets usually only get tough if its a question of safety, blatantly inaccurate news articles, and so on. I guess we could argue lies about climate change threaten the safety of humanity. Would that have potential, or is it too tenuous?

    So things might only change if users leave facebook and thus start hurting their bottom line. However the problem is if only a few users leave it wont make a difference. You would need quite a big exodus. People like facebook, and the issues we see as a problem might not bother enough people, or they might not be smart enough to understand them. So the risk is a few leave, but 99% stay and so what would we have achieved?

    I did leave facebook some time ago for a combination of reasons. 

  • Models are unreliable

    Deplore_This at 03:49 AM on 3 July, 2020

    @ ClimateDemon 1173

    Thank you for your response. I have a background in Operations Research developing and using models and simulations for other disciplines. This is partly why the models used for climate change predictions are of interest to me. I see that parts of your comment has been censored but my understanding is that AOGCM climate simulation models are in fact used to generate long-term predictions which in turn are used to justify carbon taxes and regulations. This is why I am challenging the validity of the models.

    I think I’m posting in the correct article which states the science is:
    “While there are uncertainties with climate models, they successfully reproduce the past and have made predictions that have been subsequently confirmed by observations.”

    So I am trying to understand what are these uncertainties as well as how well these models hindcast by acquiring an understanding of and hands on use of these AOGCM. I was looking for a university course that teaches this subject to climate researchers.

    You threw me off course by stating that models that accurately predict climate change are a set of differential equations because I haven’t seen that courses in differential equations or even calculus for that matter are course requirements for degrees in atmospheric sciences. So my questions are how are climate researchers taught to use and evaluate these models? And what course can I take that teaches the models that are used to generate long-term predictions which in turn are used to develop public policy?

    Thank you again for your help.

  • YouTube's Climate Denial Problem

    Eclectic at 12:32 PM on 10 April, 2020

    Since the SkS  scene is a bit quiet at the moment (a covid-19 effect?) , I take the liberty of doing some more waffling about the notorious WUWT  website.   So my apologies for this long post.

    WUWT  claims to be the world's "most viewed site" for global warming and climate change ~ and I have seen no evidence disproving WUWT 's possession of the crown for most popular Climate Denial echo-chamber website status.

    As mentioned above, WUWT  has a rapid churn of headlines to keep its fans interested & clicking-on frequently.   Proprietor Anthony Watts claims WUWT  receives no subsidy from the fossil fuel industries ~ I don't know if this was so in its early days, but it could well be so nowadays.   (There are of course many ways in which secret sponsors can covertly channel funds indirectly to WUWT  or associated entities . . . but that's not immediately relevant to the site's anti-science activities.)   Judging by the large range of of on-line advertising at the WUWT  site, it seems there is no shortage of dollar income ~ and it also suggests that the on-line advertising agencies have examined  & confirmed a high rate of traffic going to the website.

    Nigelj and OPOF ~ my earlier wording that many of the regular WUWT  commenters "are thick as two short planks" . . . was a colloquialism, and was not meaning that Denialists are of lower IQ than the general population.   AFAIK, there is no evidence that Denialists have an average IQ lower than logical thinkers have.   Yes, most of the WUWT  commenters are "pretty average" [another colloquialism!].   But as always ~ it is not whether you are intelligent but whether you actually use the intelligence you have.

    And there are indeed [a few] highly intelligent commenters at WUWT.   My favorite is Willis Eschenbach.  Very intelligent, and he has a sense of humor I like . . . but despite his analytical skills, he nevertheless has a "Dark Side" twist in his psyche ~ such that he always fails in the end to reach the destination of logical synthesis of the full context of the climate issue.   I reckon he has a combination of Motivated Reasoning and Doublethink.   Like so many (all?) Denialists, he somehow manages ultimately to suppress seeing the Bleeding Obvious.

    # There are certain neurological conditions [often, from stroke] where the brain fails to identify the human face, or other objects.   Climate Denialists achieve that status, sometimes wilfully perhaps . . . but eventually it becomes an automatic mental habit to "not see" what their emotions don't want to see.

    Nigelj , as I mentioned earlier, it surely must be that the WUWT  Moderators allow Nick Stokes as a token example of their "non-discrimination" policy.   But there is yet another example ~ Steven Mosher.   Mosher does not come from the strong scientific background of Stokes . . . but over the years he has gained his stripes as a scientist (in a de-facto manner).   IIRC, Mosher was at first rather climate-skeptical, and joined the original BEST project in a sort of literary capacity.   And when the BEST project eventually confirmed the mainstream climate science data, he accordingly "converted" to become a mainstreamer.

    As a convert from "skepticism" , Mosher is loathed and hated by the bulk of WUWT  commenters.   Mosher's style is usually not to go into details on how the OP or fellow commenters have messed up or been stupid . . . but he more often issues a one-liner to point out an error, or he merely says [in effect] : "Sigh. You've gotten it wrong again."   Unsurprisingly, this enrages many of the Denialists.

    Stokes is hated too, and is hated also because he is unfailingly correct , and the Denialists can find no chinks in his scientific armor ~ not that the Denialists at WUWT  would ever change their viewpoint merely because someone publicly proves them wrong !

    In the past, WUWT  had a system where registered commenters could vote a Like  or a Dislike  to any post in the Comments column.   Run-of-the -mill Deniaist comments sometimes garnered one or two or a handful of Likes.   But I always found it amusing to see how every comment by Stokes or Mosher was immediately garnering 20 - 50 Dislikes !   (In a way, it's pity this Like/Dislike barometer got scrubbed.)

    # Over my years of observation, there have not really been any other "anti-Denialists" to stay the course in the hostile environment at the WUWT  comments columns.   Some appear for a little while, then disappear ~ mostly by being censored I think (but doubtless, a few have become tired & disgusted).   Yet I also detect a few who (after banning) resurrect themselves under a new pseudonym.   However, in recent months WUWT  has introduced a new stricter regime of registration to make resurrection far more difficult.   ( It also raises your risk of being doxxed.)

    And no, I myself don't post at WUWT.   The denizens there are largely  rabid political ultra-extremists, quite uncharitable to humanity as a whole.   There are also some (apolitical or non-partisan) scientific crackpots.   But all are hard-core deniers of climate science, and they show zero inclination to become sane.

    #  If you examine the bulk of WUWT  posted articles, you see a strong undercurrent of petulant and childish propaganda slant.   Clearly WUWT  is essentially aiming at the Lowest Common Denominator of everyday Denialists.   (Some Denialist websites exist, which are slightly more high-brow  e.g. Judith Curry's and Roy Spencer's .)   But for rampant psychopathology, my "vote" goes to WUWT.

    My apologies once again for the long post.   I hope readers have found elements informative and/or entertaining.

  • Is Nuclear Energy the Answer?

    michael sweet at 09:04 AM on 10 April, 2020

    David Benson:  

    The BIER VII report was comissoned by the National Academy of Science to provide a summary of current scientific consensus.  A group of experts in the field reviewed all the recent data.  They concluded that LRNT is strongly supported by the data.  Linking to a 100+ response list on a blog is not a refutation of a NAS scientific consensus report.  Please link to the relevant comments instead of making us read all the chaff on your unmoderated site.

    The Executive summary contains a summary of the information in the report.   Even if there was a minor error in the Executive summary that would not invalidate the netire consensus of experts.

  • YouTube's Climate Denial Problem

    nigelj at 06:06 AM on 9 April, 2020

    Eclectic @16, the other reason WUWT keep N Stokes on is probably so they can't be accused of censorship and being anti free speech. As long as they have one regular warmist they can maintain their charade of free speech.

    Psychopaths are self centred and dont like rules, so they are going to be annoyed with the whole climate change mitigation thing, so they will be attracted to the other side. Psychopaths are intensely dishonest so this explains their ridiculous and contradictory denialist rhetoric. They just don't care, as long as they think they can fool people, and they have a captive audience that is easily fooled.

  • CO2 increase is natural, not human-caused

    MA Rodger at 06:35 AM on 29 March, 2020

    mkrichew @30,

    I would say it is a bit lax to substitute 18 for 19 within the OP but given the situation the OP describes, it makes zero difference to the argument presented. The "19 billion tons" figure in the OP is described as "roughly" the ΔCatm required to give a +2.4ppm(v) increase which is given as the rate of CO2 increase "recently."

    We could be more precise and say that a +2.4ppm increase would require ΔCatm = 18.7 Gt(CO2), but given the wobbles caused by ENSO to the annual increase in atmospheric CO2, it is impossible to be that precise about it. The OP was written in 2012 and the source of the MLO CO2 data cited ESRL give a value for the 2012 annual MLO CO2 increase as +2.61ppm = 20.4Gt(CO2) although if the average of the 12-month increases through 2012 is used to calculate a value the result is +2.20ppm. Or if the ESRL Global data is used instead of MLO data, ΔCatm  for 2012 is given by ESRL as +2.39ppm while tha average of the months yields +2.00ppm =15.6Gt(CO2). Or an alternative source of the value would be the Global Carbon Project's 2012 ΔCatm of 5.07Gt(C) = 18.6Gt(CO2) (altough note the 2012 LOC emissions are a long way from zero which is the assumption made in the the OP).

  • Multi-agency report highlights increasing signs and impacts of climate change in atmosphere, land and oceans

    MA Rodger at 00:30 AM on 16 March, 2020

    As a way of disentangling ENSO etc from the temperature record, Foster & Rahmstorf (2011) used Multiple Linear Regreession to factor out ENSO as well as volcanic forcings and solar variation for the period 1979-2010. Foster (aka Tamino) repeated the exercise last October for the period 1950-2018 and the graph of the adjusted annual temperature series for the various surface records is presented below:-

    Tamino MLR graph 1950-2018

  • Multi-agency report highlights increasing signs and impacts of climate change in atmosphere, land and oceans

    David Kirtley at 00:09 AM on 16 March, 2020

    william @1, perhaps you are thinking of something like this:


  • Sea level is not rising

    Eclectic at 17:58 PM on 15 March, 2020

    Sorry Duncan, but the human memory is often shoddy over the course of 44 years [your 58 minus 14] . . . and especially  so, when handicapped by psychological bias.

    ( Can even be shoddy over 4 years or less ! )

    Which is exactly why all scientists rely on records & data from tide gauges, satellite sensors, and so on.

    But Duncan, there's no pressing need for you to be worrying that you are losing your marbles . . . for as I explained in #28 , there is a 150+ mm fluctuation over the cycle of a decade or so, owing to variations in the local oceanic currents.  But in the overall long term, the measured average sea level rise at Fremantle is about 200 mm  ~ which is very similar to sea level rise measured in most parts of the world.  Unsurprisingly.

  • Multi-agency report highlights increasing signs and impacts of climate change in atmosphere, land and oceans

    One Planet Only Forever at 08:38 AM on 15 March, 2020


    The fuller story is what is relevant. And that fuller story is what is being presented.

    Although it is corrrect that random variable events such as the ENSO affect the global average surface temperature, it would be incorrrect to try to claim all el Nino events are equal and only compare 'those years'.

    It is far better to identify significant random variable events affecting years being compared, as was done in the article by stating "...2016, when a very strong El Niño event contributed...".

    2019 could be considered to be a year in the ENSO neutral band that was nearer to el Nino than la Nina. What should it be compared to, only ENSO neutral years? And what would be the point of such a declaration and restriction of comparison? People could claim that 2019 was close enough to el Nino to need to only be compared to el Nino years.

  • Multi-agency report highlights increasing signs and impacts of climate change in atmosphere, land and oceans

    william at 04:51 AM on 15 March, 2020

    When reporting temperature rise, If we are in a El Nino year, we should compare the temperature with the most recen El Nino year and similarly for La Nina years and neutral years.  This gives a better indicator of the true state of temperature increase.  Even better, we could take the past 6 or so eqivalent ENSOR years and report the present one in comparison with them.

  • Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature Study: “The effect of urban heating on the global trends is nearly negligible”

    MA Rodger at 21:20 PM on 28 February, 2020

    YTeddy @45,

    You are correct in that there are no satisfactory answers posted for Lassesson @2.

    I'm not sure what is being asking regarding 1865-70 but the "huge peak arond 1880" was the 1877-78 El Niño which appears in the extended MEI record, its impact on the global temperature records (both BEST & HadCRUT cover back to 1850) being excentuated by the preceding and succeeding La Niñas.

    Extended MEI graph

    The article you link-to is describing the work presented at the 2017 AGU Fall Meeting ' El-Niño Grande and the Great Famine (1876-78) '. Looking at the citations the paper gained here, I don't see any response to the paper from climatologists although it does receive attention for its analytical method.

  • 2019 in climate science: A continued warming trend and 'bleak' research

    Philippe Chantreau at 09:19 AM on 22 February, 2020


    because of the Walker circulation and the thermocline angle between the 2 sides of the Pacific. See here and the Wiki.

  • Too late to stop Climate Change?

    takamura_senpai at 06:25 AM on 1 February, 2020

    "Too late to stop Climate Change?" never be to late.

    2. In my the very first post here i wrote: "...6. We have to speak NOT about sea level, but about forest fires, droughts, health, economic....locusts.... Forest fires produce smoke, enough to destroy health, even kill millions....."
    And today read about big/ unprecedented threat/problems with locusts  in Africa. The biggest in last 25 years.
    "A typical swarm can contain up to 150 million locusts per km2, and its daily consumption of crops can correspond to the daily consumption of 35 000 people. The current swarms represent an unprecedented threat to food security and livelihoods in the Horn of Africa."
    But i am waiting more: the locusts in Europe, Noth America and even Asia in .......biblian numbers. Global warming in all its shine.    ..   censored

  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #2, 2020

    GwsB at 04:32 AM on 20 January, 2020

    ''Seqenenre at 1. Thank you for pointing out that the ocean temperature has only increased by 0.075 degrees Celcius over the 1981-2010 average. An increase of 0.075 over 25 years is quite small. It will take 25/0.075=333 years for the oceans to heat up by one degree. Hence w may depend on the oceans to cool us down over the next three centuries and we need not worry about rising sea levels, 0.7 meters over the next three centuries.

    Either that or the value of 0.075 degrees in the CNN article is a mistake.
    Is there anybody out there who can translated 225 zetajoules into degrees Celcius, so we can clear up this issue?''

    This was posted at 00.57 AM on 18 January, 2020. Since then it has been deleted. Does Skeptical Science use censors? If so, who are they, and where does one apply to find out the reason for deleting the original post?

  • It's Urban Heat Island effect

    Eclectic at 18:32 PM on 14 January, 2020

    Absolutely right, Darinscoop, if not more so.  The alternating currents of the urbanised regions do produce a concentrated electromagnetic induction effect, warming the temperature sensors in the local weather stations.  The previous explanation of UHI from "exhaust-heat and sun-warmed pavement" is a shabby falsehood put forward by a conspiracy of contrarians, who are receiving grants & other funding from Big Oil.

    The world is actually cooling and the sea level is falling.  Even the contrarians are hoaxing us.

  • Is Nuclear Energy the Answer?

    John ONeill at 18:44 PM on 13 January, 2020

    Michael Sweet - sorry, that was just an error, not an insult. The beryllium was proposed for Advanced Gas-cooled Reactors, but not used in the end. Sorenson's Flibe reactors are currently just one of many paper reactors. So apart from very small amounts for welding flux, and only in Candu fuel rods, my statement is correct. 

  • The never-ending RCP8.5 debate

    michael sweet at 11:40 AM on 4 January, 2020

    Another fact and reference free post from Nick Palmer disparaging me.

    Let us review the conversation.

    At 12 I entered the conversation.  I supported William Reese's article advocating allowing people to discuss high danger possibilities of AGW.  Currently only low ball projections are publicly discussed.

    At 13 you entered calling me a doomer for supporting discussing high danger, low probability issues.  You criticize Reese and others who worry about the long, very fat tail of probabilities.  You provide no data to support your claims.  You quote Reese to support your argument.

    At 15 you claim without data that "the majority [of scientists are] saying 'things are proceeding at about the rate we thought'.  You claim without suppport that Cauderia says 6 billion dead is scaremongering crap.

    At 22 I use the example of gross underestimates of sea level rise in the IPCC reports to support my claims.  I point out that Hansen was roundly criticized for his estimates of 5 meters rise 15 years ago.  You would have completely censored him.  I point out that 5 meters rise is now standard in the fat tail of possibilities.  I point out that 600 million people are currently at risk from 2 meters of sea level rise alone (currently at risk, an estimated 800 million at risk by 2100).  Here is the paper describing this risk, it was widely discussed several weeks ago.  Previous estimates understated the problem by a factor of three.

    I then list more 4 examples of underprediction.  It would be easy for me to list many more.

    At 28 you describe Alleys talk.  You complain about Hallam using the word "will" while Alley only says the probability is low.  (According to DB the probability has increased significantly since Alley was recorded).  You ignore your previous complaints about underprediction and shift the goalposts to a single word Hallam said.  You complain about people who discuss worst case scenieros and imply that I discuss worst case scenieros.

    At 30 I detail IPCC lowballing of sea level rise with references.  I point out that the IPCC numbers are very low ball numbers, far below the scientific norm.  I state I believe most people will only respond after problems directly affect them.  I state I do not use numbers from the end of the fat tail but support others using what they think is appropriate.

    At 31you insult me for supporting extremist views, although that is not my position.  You change the goal posts to describe how best to affect public opinion.  You state your opinion of the best way to address the public without any citations to support your reasons.

    At 35 I detail my claim about IPCC lowballing scientific estimates with detailed citations.  I show 2 meters was a reasonable choice, within the 90% percentile.  I prove the IPCC AR5 lowballed sea level rise.  I provide numerous quotes of scientists complaining about IPCC lowballing.  I state that I see no reason to think lowballing issues will get more people to take action than describing extreme problems.  I point out that lowballing has had no effect for the past 30 years.

    At 38 you shift goalposts again and state that I do not differentiate between what will happen and what might happen, although I have clearly shown that 2 meters is around the 90th percentile of probability for a high emission model.  You then shift the goal posts again to discuss RCP 8.5, which I have not discussed at all.  You claim that you do not need to cite data since you have discussed this issue with scientists and your recollection of the discussion is enough.

    None of us know what will happen after tomorrow.  All projections have to be taken with that caveat.  In the full video that we discussed above of Dr Alley he shows the entire curve and states emphatically that we must take strong action to ensure the end of the fat tail [15-20 feet] does not happen. (watch the video yourself to find this). 

    I think lowballing problems as you advocate is bad policy.  I try to discuss problems near the 90% area.  Hallam goes further up the tail.  That reflects on Hallam, not me.  People here in Tampa think 0.5 meters by 2100 is the top estimate of sea level rise because the IPCC numbers are so low.  That is a disservice to the public and keeps people from taking action.

    You have been deliberately offensive.  You keep shifting the goal posts when I give examples that you are incorrect.  You have not provided a single reference to support your claims.

    Moderators: Nick Palmer is sloganeering and deliberately insulting other posters.  Please ask him to provide references to support his wild claims and stop insulting me.

    I found this reference by Oreskes, Oppenheimer and Jamieson:

    Scientists Have Been Underestimating the Pace
    of Climate Change
     (description of book)

    The problem of underestimating problems is much more complicated than I described and much more widespread.

    I think your suggestion that we should all lowball the problems of AGW is a bad idea.  It has failed for 30 years.  In the next 10 we will see if Hallam's efforts are helpful or harmful.  He can hardly do worse than the last 30 years of lowballing.  In the past year Extinction Rebellion has gotten more attention for AGW action than traditional sources you advocate.

    I note that Michael Mann is making much stronger public statements than he used to.  Australia, your country is burning – dangerous climate change is here with you now


  • Is Nuclear Energy the Answer?

    John ONeill at 08:42 AM on 2 January, 2020

    Michael Sweetman - The use of beryllium you cite is just for about 35% of the welding flux ( with zirconium ) to attach tags to fuel rods, and that only for Candu reactors, which make up less than 5% of the global fleet - hardly a serious resource demand. I believe the reference was in regard to finding alternatives for beryllium, because of stricter safety standards for manufacturing. Aluminium, together with other metals, was considered a possible alternative. I knew that the British Advanced Gas Cooled Reactors were originally planned to have beryllium fuel tubes, but technical difficulties prevented this. As a result they were not able to use unenriched uranium, which severely affected the economic rationale for using gas cooled rather than water cooled plants. 

    World beryllium production in 2018 was only 230 tons, so it could be a constraint on the proposals for molten salt reactors with beryllium as part of the salt mix - 'Flibe' ( Fluoride-Lithium-Beryllium) is even registered as the brand name for Kirk Sorenson's company. However, I think the requirement for Lithium to be isotopically enriched to 99.995 % Li7 is a bigger hurdle, and as far as I remember, most other molten salt startups are proposing different salt mixes.

      Your argument for metal shortages preventing large scale nuclear use relies on once-through use of fuel, as at present. If reactors breeding fuel from U238 or thorium are used, fuel recycling will also be able to recycle associated metals. The recycled fuel will have to be handled remotely, so some induced radiation in any tubes or other fittings, or salt, would make little difference. In the short term, which is what we should be focussing on to cut increasing CO2 emissions, the argument is irrelevant. There are enough uranium reserves to replace coal power production for a generation at least; the main roadblock is reactor cost. Costs of manufacture are not set in stone, even for current designs, as shown by the experience in Sweden, France and Belgium - half to ninety percent of electricity supply, built in twenty years, with power costs comparable to coal. Don't tell me those aren't safe enough, they've yet to kill anyone in forty years.

  • Is Nuclear Energy the Answer?

    michael sweet at 22:59 PM on 15 December, 2019


    The claims by Engineer Poet and David Benson at RealClimate that renewable energy requires immense storage are simply false.  If you wish to repeat those false claims here you need to provide a citation.  Currently you are repeating nuclear propaganda.

    If you read the cited by references at GOOGLE for recent renewable energy papers you will find lists of interesting and relevant papers.  For example:

    papers that cite Smart Energy Europe (268 cites since 2016) paper

    papers that cite Energy Storage and Smart Energy Systems (115 citations)(the original paper can be accessed free as a PDF from the paper list for Smart Energy Europe linked above)

    Jacobson et al 2018  citing papers cited by 52 since 8/19, lists all required materials for a completely renewable system without using any combustion energy sources. Jacobson uses no new pumped storage, it is too expensive.  Why is pumped storage the only option for Engineer Poet?

    This paper addresses many false claims that nuclear supporters make about renewable energy: Response to Burden of Proof.  You are wasting your time talking to Benson and Engineer Poet.  Think: why do these guys only post on unmoderated sites?  They could post here at SkS but they know that they do not have references for their wild claims.

    Nuclear supporters making wild, unsupported claims only cause people to doubt that renewable energy can provide All Power and support the fossil fuel industry.  Nuclear is a failed technology and has no option besides bad talking successful Renewable Energy.

  • Here Are 3 Climategate Myths That Have Not Aged Well

    MA Rodger at 18:43 PM on 1 December, 2019

    nyood @28,

    I fear you rely on the commentaries of climate change deniers rather than the source documents they cherry-pick from.

    Tom Wigley was taking issue with Kevin Trenberth in 2009 not 1997 (1997 also the date of the hockeystick work)  and it was an entirely civilised and understandable interchange (although the actual e-mail thread does suggest that there was some history to the interchange).

    Wigley argued that the global temperature evolution 2000-10 could be explained by ENSO, volcano & solar variation (as per Foster & Rahmstorf 2011) but this was not entirely what Trenberth was saying (note the CERES reference). Then Trenberth responds pointing this inexactness out with perhaps allusions to some past interchange.

    I fail to see how this 2009 interchange in any way relates to uncertainty in climatology being kept private, unless it is within the febrile mind of a climate change denier.

  • 2019 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #40

    nigelj at 08:02 AM on 7 October, 2019

    The five: Donald Trump’s attacks on science.

    The US president is a climate-crisis denier, but it is not the only field in which he is at odds with scientists and their work

    Last week, a report by US campaign group the National Task Force on Rule of Law and Democracy, compiled by ex-government officials, concluded that under the Trump administration that there were now “almost weekly violations” to the impartiality of scientific research.

    Conservation cut

    In April the Trump administration withdrew funding for the Landscape Conservation Cooperatives, a large and successful conservation programme that tackled issues such as the climate crisis, species extinction and energy security. Sixteen of the original 22 research centres have now been dissolved or are on an indefinite “hiatus”. This was in defiance of instructions from Congress, which had approved $12.5m of federal funding for the cooperatives.

    Weather blackout

    Donald Trump’s government has refused to publicise dozens of studies from the US Department of Agriculture that examine the impact of the climate crisis. Agriculture secretary, Sonny Perdue, has previously expressed scepticism about climate change, believing it to simply be due to “weather patterns”.

    Climate censorship

    In June, it was reported that the White House had tried to stop Dr Rod Schoonover, a senior intelligence analyst, from discussing climate change when delivering congressional testimony. The reason given was that the science was not aligned with the views of the Trump administration.

    Short-term approach

    James Reilly, the director of the US Geological Survey (USGS), has ordered that scientific assessments produced by USGS use climate models that only track the possible impact of climate change until 2040, rather than until the end of the century, as they had done previously. The second half of the century is likely to see the most dramatic impacts of global heating.

  • It's not us

    KR at 11:34 AM on 2 October, 2019

    richieb1234 - As MA Roger pointed out, volcanic activity adds complexity to any kind of curve-fitting. Climate response to volcanic aerosols is quite fast compared to other forcings. 

    Tamino did an excellent article on using a combination of a simple 2-box model (one fast response, one slow) along with ENSO, and and showed an excellent fit to the observed climate response, see Once is not enough. Two time constants (2 and 26 years) and one large oscillation appear to be sufficient parameters to map the climate response to forcings. 

  • It's not us

    scaddenp at 06:47 AM on 2 October, 2019

    For a purely empirical fit of ENSO, Volcano, solar to temps since 1950, try here. Unlike other curve-fitting exercises which try to show warming is due orbit of jupiter, rise of irrigation etc, this uses half the data as training set and then uses the result to model the other half.

    Benestad & Schmidt 2009 challenged Scafetta nonsense with naive empirical analysis of effects of forcing which I think may be closer to what you want.

  • CO2 lags temperature

    scaddenp at 08:08 AM on 14 August, 2019

    "Great question. Also an intellegent question. It's something that many Climate Scientists have tried to brush off with a "yes, but CO2 then becomes the forcing agent" as if autocorrelation is only done at the beginning of each interglacial phase. It isn't. It's done over the entire time series, including when CO2 is suppose to become the forcing factor."

    Let's break this down. Firstly, do you accept that glacial cycle is orbitally forced? Further discussion makes no sense if this is not the case.

    Assuming you accept orbital forcing, how do you explain why SH glaciation is synchronous with NH (since orbital forcing is anti-phased). Its easy if you accept known physics (GHE included) but you apparently want to deny that increasing CO2 will warm the planet.

    Secondly, how about linking to some more actual detail about your "autocorrelation" stuff. I dont get your point and I certainly not clear to me what you think you are proving. The relationship between T and CO2 is still somewhat unconstrained but is clearly non-linear and involves multiple mechanisms operating on scales from years to millenia.

    What is the basis for your understanding of "their ever decreasing estimates of how much CO2 impact climate". I certainly do not get that from successive IPCC reports.

    You seem to be implying that papers on direct observation were arguments from correlation. This is not the case. The arguments in those are of the form, "fundimental physics allows us to predict what observations done by this method would show. Let compare model results with observation".

    So from this, you compute how much much the radiation at the surface will change with GHG concentration change - and measure it. You look at how GHG changes would change the spectrum of outgoing or incoming radiation - and measure them. That is what those papers do. Hansen and Sato compute forcing from change in GHG using ice core bubbles as proxy for atmospheric concentration, and compute the change in albedo based on sealevel etc, and finally the global solar irradiation change from milankovitch. Climate theory would expect icecore temperature to be related to that forcing calculation extremely closely and that is what is observed. A failure to observe that would be evidence against.

    Can I ask whether you accept Planck Law? ie, if irradiation of surface increases, then it temperature must rise.

    Finally, climate change at present appears to be forced by GHG change. The feedback mechanisms that apply during ice ages wont cut in any significant way for 100s of years. The natural system is still moping up about half of our emissions which make 616 invalid (actually so many issues with this, its hard to know where to start. You need 30 year averages remove the internally variability, especially ENSO.)

  • Welcome to Skeptical Science

    Persephone at 13:20 PM on 4 August, 2019

    Is there anyone here who might be able to tell me about Dr. Rex Fleming (fomerly with NOAA). He seems to have defected from the ranks of serious climate researchers and apparently claims that warm temperatures cause CO2 increases and not the other way around. Obviously this is hooey, but it seems to have made him the new darling of the denier crowd. I can't find any papers he's written that were published in peer reviewed journals and Fleming claims he's being censored. What's up with this guy? I'd like to debunk those who quote him. Thanks.

  • Models are unreliable

    rupisnark at 05:51 AM on 28 July, 2019

    MA Rodgers @1119
    Re response to @1117
    ♣ ….You bat the"~750 Million Units" into the long grass but there is also the "6 trillion" which is part of the talk transcript While the 750M quantity could be considered as the rough total (that's total as in down to absolute zero) heat content of the atmosphere per sq metre of the planet, the 6T quantity would be 80 times more than the equivalent for the oceans (which are usually considered the largest thermal pool the climate has to cope with). So what the 6T quantity is supposed to be, I know not. I assume it is just meant to appear very very big.

    ->6trillion. As a guess, could the heat content of the Earth might be the figure he is referring to? The mass of the earth is more than 4*10^6 times bigger than the mass of the water on earth, so it is within a few orders of magnitude! I have no idea how much heat transfer is going on between the oceans and the rest of the Earth, there would obviously be different speed of change issues compared to atmosphere/ocean and atmosphere/Earth’s surface. Happy to be shot done on this one if my guess is unreasonable.

    ♣ Slide 1 of Christy (2019) says it takes the values from AR5 Fig 2.11. It is Christy's comparison, not mine.

    ->I was not sure whether you did or didn’t agree with my previous summary of the point:-
    The imbalance of 0.6W/m2 (0.18 units?), the statement that at the surface it is in balance, and the claim that 0.5 units is caused by extra CO2 whereas 100 units is caused by H20, clouds and aerosols (and not mentioned but presumably also existing CO2).

    I understand you do disagree with the 6tr figure (and 750 units).

    [I may appear to be slowly going through certain points, but I have learned from experience in many different fields, that this is an effective method of reaching a proper understanding, clarifying where difference of opinion lie and exposing falsehoods (which I believe is also one of the aims of this website).]

    Re response to @1118
    ♣ The non-denialist distortions would be a more interesting subject, if you know of any.
    ->I am making a list of them. I will then contact the people who appear to have distorted matters to enable them to respond (and if I have misunderstood, to enable me to correct my misunderstandings). I want to see who is distorting matters, not to add to the many distortions already floating around.
    ♣ Whether you have the time to cope with all the nonsense served up by Christy, or not. We haven't got very far with the content of this Christy talk in more than one iteration. And there is the question of whether I (or others) could be fussed to continue untangling the garbage of you into chunks you will understand.

    ->We have not got far because your initial response only discussed one of the many points raised in the lecture. The more points you can answer the quicker I will understand. I have come to this forum with the aim of checking for myself some claims which have extraordinary consequences and if the claims made by your side of the debate were wrong could reduce GDP in 50 years time by well in excess of current world GDP. If true it could have the widely discussed consequences.
    […. I am taking a 1% reduction in global GDP pa to combat global warming… again estimates vary widely.]
    If you do not wish to respond fully, I can understand that; but don’t then complain that the public are not willing to reduce their own and their children’s standard of living for a cause that have less than complete faith in.
    ♣ Note these Sea Surface temperatures (which C&M 2017 appears to say it uses to subtract ENSO from its TLT record) are not de-trended (as for instance the AMO is) so they do still have an AGW signal. Subtracting the NINO signals will thus also subtract some AGW signal
    ->I need to read further on this point. References welcome.
    ♣ Does C&M(1994) repeat the method of C&M(2017)? The implication is that it does (note that I have not access to C&M1994) but one difference is the UAH TLT v5.6 record was not used in 1994 as it didn't exist. The corrections to the UAH data set (mainly not the result of work by the UAH team) would have made significant changes to the 1994 result. So it is strange that C&M(2017) only finds a very small difference
    ->You seem to have a good point here… I will try to get hold of Christy at some point and challenge him on this and other matters. ( I have no idea if he will respond).
    ♣ Christy was one of six lead authors of Chapter 2 of IPOCC WG1 TAR (1990). Note the prmary finding of that chapter "The warming rate since 1976, 0.17°C/decade." This contradicts the primary finding of both C&M(1994) and C&M(2017).

    ->He could agree with that conclusion and his 1994 and 2017 papers could still be valid, given for example that he is adjusting for Volcanic and El Nino effects and there may be other caveats in the paper; so I am not sure that it does contradict those findings.

    ♣ If Christy is happy to give the GWPF the time of day, he will get no respect from me!!!

    ->I have no idea what Christy’s views of the GWPF are. I don’t think Christy gets any respect from you anyway, given your previous comments. Again, I would rather that we just discuss issues, adding this type of comment is not helpful.

  • 2019 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #27

    MA Rodger at 19:08 PM on 26 July, 2019

    billev @30 &33,

    I would agree with fellow commenters that you are demonstrating ignorance but perhaps we can rectify that situation.

    Your assertion @30 that you see "no correlation between the periods of pause in temperature rise and EL Nino activity" would be reasonable if you could find your way to making clear which "periods of pause in temperature rise" you are referring to. We know you will be using NOAA data (although that is not of any significance) and will be considering only post-1959 data. And pretty-much all of that period sees global temperature "pauses" resulting from ENSO or volcanic activity, as per the Foster & Rahmstorf (2011) adjustments described @32.

    The remainder of you comment @30 and the entirety of that @33 concerns IR transmission through the atmosphere. Your questions @30 are rather poorly framed. The amount of IR emitted by the surface that is absorbed within five feet will depend on the wavelength. In the 15 µm band absorbed by CO2 (which is a significant portion of the whole) 100% would be absorbed but then quickly re-emitted. Again it would be re-absorbed after a short distance. This in itself would make no significant difference to the temperature measurements or indeed the temperature as the energy does not hang about, it being very quickly re-emitted another small distance (up, down or sideways) where it will again be absorbed/re-emitted and on and on. The impact on temperature is trivial. (You will perhaps note that this is not the nub of the AGW mechanism.)

    @33 you reference the "U.S. weather service." @26 you also  mentioned this was a source of data you were referring to but I fear you are probably mis-citing the US Standard Atmopsphere (presumably the 1976 version) which is the work of NOAA, NASA & USAF. Can you provide your reference as in the circumstance it is good to be clear exactly what you are talking about.

    Your major point @33 is that the abilities of "aircraft equipped with IR detection equipment" somehow is not compatable with the existence of a a greenhouse effect. You may find the responses @34 &35 a bit too involved. Very simply put, IR 'thermography' uses shorter IR wavelengths than the 15 micron band that is absorbed by CO2 and gives us AGW, shorter wavelengths where the atmosphere is less opaque. (These wave bands are often called 'windows'.)

  • 2019 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #27

    Bob Loblaw at 11:17 AM on 26 July, 2019


    You can't see something you refuse to look at. For the effects of El Nino on global temperatures, look no further than this paper. Once effects of El Nino volcanic aerosols, and solar variability are removed, very little year-to-year variation is left.

    Grant Foster and Stefan Rahmstorf (2011), Environmental Research Letters, Volume 6, Number 4, "Global temperature evolution 1979–2010"

    For a readable summary of the Foster and Rahmstorf paper, try here. The key graphic is the following:

    Adjusted global temperature

    As for chasing the squirrel of IR radiation affecting near-surface air temperature measurements, you really are scraping the bottom of the barrel. Air temperature in the lower tens of metres is vastly controlled by ground (or ocean) surface temperature, which is heated by the sun. Air temperature measurements are taken inside radiation shields, such as the Stevenson Screen. This not only eliminates IR effects, it pretty much removes errors related to solar radiation heating, which is a far more important issue. We've only known about these sort of issues since the mid-1800s.

    You're not catching up - you're falling even farther behind. Yesterday, it was 1964 information you were missing. Now it's 1864 information. As one of my colleagues says "he's so far behind he thinks he's in the lead".

  • 2019 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #27

    scaddenp at 08:06 AM on 24 July, 2019

    I would add two things.

    1/ The actual surface temperature year to year is strongly affected by internal variation. ie heat sloshing around in a wet, unevenly heated planet. ENSO is the dominant component of this. For this reason, climate is defined as 30 year average. Arguably, Ocean Heat Content is a better metric than surface because most of the heat goes into the ocean and the total energy varies less (the little wobbles are ocean/atmosphere exchange). However, we have only been able to measure this with confidence relatively recently.

    2/ Climate changes in response to net forcing. Changes GHGs are only one element (though the dominant one in recent history), but aerosols either man made or from volcanoes are also important (especially mid 20th century, and after really big tropical volcano eruptions). Changes in solar input and albedo are the other important inputs into calculation of forcings.

  • 2019 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #27

    Rob Honeycutt at 06:59 AM on 24 July, 2019

    billev... Well, there are lots of reasons for the variations in global temperature. The most dominant one would the El Nino Southern Occilation (ENSO). Most of the accumulated heat is going into the world's oceans, and that heat goes through phases of gaining and releasing that energy into the atmosphere, and that affects the annual global temperature.

  • Models are unreliable

    MA Rodger at 06:15 AM on 23 July, 2019

    rupisnark @1117/1118,
    In reverse order.
    "Your website ... already do(es) that job." Firstly, SkS is not my website. Secondly, SkS addresses distortions that are prediminantly of 'denialist' origin, not "non-denialist". The non-denialist distortions would be a more interesting subject, if you know of any.
    ♣ Whether you have the time to cope with all the nonsense served up by Christy, or not. We haven't got very far with the content of this Christy talk in more than one iteration. And there is the question of whether I (or others) could be fussed to continue untangling the garbage fo you into chunks you will understand.
    NINO1+2 & NINO3.  Note these Sea Surface temperatures (which C&M 2017 appears to say it uses to subtract ENSO from its TLT record) are not de-trended (as for instance the AMO is) so they do still have an AGW signal. Subtracting the NINO signals will thus also subtract some AGW signal.
    ♣ Does C&M(1994) repeat the method of C&M(2017)? The implication is that it does (note that I have not access to C&M1994) but one difference is the UAH TLT v5.6 record was not used in 1994 as it didn't exist. The corrections to the UAH data set (mainly not the result of work by the UAH team) would have made significant changes to the 1994 result. So it is strange that C&M(2017) only finds a very small difference.
    ♣ Christy was one of six lead authors of Chapter 2 of IPOCC WG1 TAR (1990). Note the prmary finding of that chapter "The warming rate since 1976, 0.17°C/decade." This contradicts the primary finding of both C&M(1994) and C&M(2017).
    ♣ The GWPF are anti-scientific to the point of being bare-faced liars. I will be happy to demonstrate that fact if you are interested. If Christy is happy to give the GWPF the time of day, he will get no respect from me!!!
    ♣ Have you understood correctly? What we can call Slide 1 of Christy (2019) is saying AGW is trivial to the point of insignificance. That is not borne out by the science. And denying the energy imbalance is pretty unforgiveable. You bat the "~750 Million Units" into the long grass but there is also the "6 trillion" which is part of the talk transcript While the 750M quantity could be considered as the rough total (that's total as in down to absolute zero) heat content of the atmosphere per sq metre of the planet, the 6T quantity would be 80 times more than the equivalent for the oceans (which are usually considered the largest thermal pool the climate has to cope with). So what the 6T quantity is supposed to be, I know not. I assume it is just meant to appear very very big.
    ♣ Slide 1 of Christy (2019) says it takes the values from AR5 Fig 2.11. It is Christy's comparison, not mine.

  • Models are unreliable

    rupisnark at 00:15 AM on 23 July, 2019

    MA Rodgers @ 1116
    Using terms like “climate change denial” does not help my understanding of what is going on, instead it undermines my trust in the people who use the term. I started out with the view that the consensus was probably right about global warming happening and being man-made, but that the solutions so far implemented and being proposed were not terribly good and, in my cases, counterproductive. The tone of this website should be to encourage questions and let people work out for themselves whether people like Christy know what they are talking about or not. “I bring a hum-dinger of climate change denial.” Throwing mud at a former IPCC lead author is more likely to bring into question the whole IPCC process than to make people reject arguments without understanding the issues.

    “Christy & McNider (2017) attempts to expunge ENSO & volcanic effects from the UAH TLT satellite temperature record but in doing so also manage to expunge much of the warming signal of AGW.”

    Does this paper follow the same methods that they used in 1994? Was Christy trying in 1994 to argue that Global Warming was not occurring (or was occurring at a lower rate)? Did the 1994 paper suggest this?

    “Certainly their use of NINO1+2 and NINO3 as an ENSOsignal is one possible cause as these two SST series do contain an AGW signal.”

    I do not understand this. Please give me the appropriate background reading and I will get up to speed on it.

    “I could continue down the many arguments he makes but how long have you got?” I will look at all the arguments you put up.

    And if you wish to check out "distortions of information from both sides", perhaps addressing the apparent distortions on the other non-denialist "side" would be a better appraoch.

    Your website and many others already do that job.

  • Models are unreliable

    MA Rodger at 21:53 PM on 22 July, 2019

    rupisnark @1114,

    You must forgive me my intolerance of those in the scientific & political community that remain imprisoned in climate change denial. Yet you do bring a real humdinger of climate change denial here for comment. Christy makes many many 'points' in that GWPF talk and he is pretty-much wrong it all of it.

    I could continue down the many arguments he makes but how long have you got?

    Consider the second point (The nonsense of the first point I dealt with up-thread @1113.), the graphic "What's happening at the surface?"

    This second graphic shows a very small "Extra CO2" effect. This likely makes sense only if this tiny box represents the imbalance in the surface energy flux which is causing AGW. If it is meant to represent the impact of the AGW-induced warming, the box should be roughly the size of the cooling "Heat Flux" box and also have a cooling box the same size to balance.

    The second graphic as-presented is scientific nonsense. But as that is really only repeating the incompetence of the first graphic, perhaps I should consider the third argument set out by Christy.

    So graphic number three which makes sense to also consider graphic number four. This bring quite a lot of stuff into the discussion - Christy & McNider (1994) and Christy & McNider (2017) as well as Hansen et al (1998). But without getting too deep into all this, the bottom line is that Christy makes two crazy mistakes. Firstly Christy grossly misprepresents Hansen et al (1988) both in his GWPF talk and in  Christy & McNider (1994).  Hansen et al did not predict a +0.35ºC/decade temperature trend as Christy states (see this SkS post).  Secondly Christy & McNider (2017) attempts to expunge ENSO & volcanic effects from the UAH TLT satellite temperature record but in doing so also manage to expunge much of the warming signal of AGW. Thus a trend of +0.16ºC/decade in UAH v5.6 is converted into +0.095ºC/decade. Exactly how Christy & McNider achieve this would require some detailed analysis. Certainly their use of NINO1+2 and NINO3 as an ENSO signal is one possible cause as these two SST series do contain an AGW signal.


    Certainly I would concede nothing regarding Christy's work without first checking it out. His work is totally untrustwothy.

    And if you wish to check out "distortions of information from both sides", perhaps addressing the apparent distortions on the other non-denialist "side" would be a better appraoch.

  • Is Nuclear Energy the Answer?

    richieb1234 at 05:29 AM on 21 June, 2019

    Hi:  New member here.  I have been reading comments and articles on various sections of Skeptical Scientist, and I feel as if I have hit the mother lode of good information on all aspects of climate change.

    Regarding "is nuclear the answer," I have some experience and expertise, having served for 25 years on the technical staff of the USNRC, with specialties in engineering analysis, risk assessment and emegency response.  I would offer the following thoughts:

    1. The current world wide fleet of nuclear plants is safe, but not safe enough to meet the requirements of the climate crisis.  Experience of the past decades indicates a core melt frequency of 1 in 10,000 reactor-years if the reactor is operated by a company with a good safety culture and regulated by a competent and assertive regulatory body.  Otherwise, the core damage frequency is higher.  That is not good enough in a world envisioned to have thousands of reactors.  The good news is that there is a new generation of reactors under development with more inherently safe characteristics.  One of these, the NuScale small modular reactor is approaching regulatory design approval in the U.S.  Other designs based on non-light water reactor physics are in the development stage.

    2. The economics of the current designs are not good enough.  Recent experience with new construction shows that new plants built with current technology will carry a debt burden that will make them non-competitive.  Future plants will have to be built in factories rather than constructed on site.  Also future plants will have to be designed so as to justify a less burdensome approach to safety regulation; another reason for the importance of inherently safe design.

    3. Many if not most countries lack the technical and industrial infrastructure, and the skilled workforce required to build, maintain and operate a fleet of nuclear plants.  That is why nuclear has been confined to a relatively small group of countries.  Modular, factory-based construction can help here.

    My bottom line would be that nuclear is not ready to meet the climate challenge, but that it could be an important part of the answer in a decade or so if public and private commitment to development is sustained.

    [I have tried to follow the commenting rules.  I apologize if I still need improvement :-).]

  • Should a Green New Deal include nuclear power?

    DPiepgrass at 01:40 AM on 10 June, 2019

    It's not fair, either, to dismiss new nuclear power on the basis of two failed startups while ignoring all the other activity that is still going on. Among molten-salt reactor enthusiasts centered on Gordon McDowell, Kirk Sorenson et al., TransAtomic power wasn't given much attention and Kirk Sorenson viscerally rejected the travelling wave reactor design (the one promoted by Bill Gates), saying "it's just so darn hard!"

    I've been looking at MSRs for years with great interest. My favorite reactor designs right now are the Stable Salt Reactor by Moltex and the IMSR by Terrestrial Energy. I was a big fan of ThorCon - they have a great plan logistically speaking, but they require a generous regulatory environment to build their reactor (e.g. they seem to want to use uranium fuel enriched to 19.75% U-235 which is four times higher than most other reactors use, and they want a testing-based certification scheme rather than the traditional "prove it works on paper first to the eggheads in NRC" model)... I think it will be much harder to get the desired regulations than they seem to think.

  • Does providing information on geoengineering reduce climate polarization?

    bricoyle at 04:46 AM on 12 April, 2019

    This article misinterprets Kahan's work. It's four years old, but the subject is more important than ever.

    Kahan studies polarization that forms around scientific issues, particularly those that evince scientific consensus. He does research on public response to vacines, evolution, and more.

    Skuce critized Kahan's study for the type of geoengineering information it presented: giant scrubber filters, organics to accelerate ocean CO2 absorbtion, reflectors that "could be turned on and off" to reduce solar heating. Skuce is correct that these are very expensive and require massive deployment, which isn't stated in Kahan's material. For that reason, Skuce claims subjects were misled to believe geoengineering was an affordable option.

    Kahan did not describe the most likely to be deployed technology, stratospheric geoengineering. That is "affordable" and far easier to understand. Kahan didn't use it because he wanted to emphasize a human ingenuity "dimension". Many who study the public's response to climate change posit that its mass scale and global impact make people anxious and unable to respond. The human agency implied by clever technology might mitigate that.

    But Kahan also finds that people shape their opinions about global warming in response to what others believe. For example, Republicans were much less skeptical about it near the end of the G.W. Bush administration, when prominant party leaders expessed strong agreement with climate change consensus. Republicans become strongly opposed, however, when they recall that Gore is a leading global warming activist, and that President Obama pulled together the Paris agreement.

    That geoengineering is an anethma to climate activists is hardly a secret. That it could temporarily delay global warming acceleration is something many activists want to avoid discussing. Instead they jump to censor it, sometimes stating that human technology caused global warming, so deploying more technology to solve it is illogical. Most would not object to having complex medical technology treat themselves or a loved one, even though cancer may be caused by technological byproducts.

    This censorship is tacitly, if not manifestly, understood by many climate change skeptics. Hence attractive geoengineering information demonstrates their ideological opponents aren't morally superior, because they repress an important solution to a great crisis. As preceding comments show, some activists put their intentions clearly: they don't want geoengineering discussed, because it's a "get out of jail free" card. They want to corner skeptics, humble them into assention, and talk about geoengineering may defuse that.

    Unfortunately, human nature doesn't work like that. When people are cornered, they fight.

  • The temperature evolution after 2016 suggests hotter future

    scaddenp at 07:18 AM on 27 March, 2019

    Thinkingman, you are falling for a number of deniers tricks here.

    1998-2000 "commonly cited" by pseudo-skeptics trying to claim the science has got it wrong and it is a cherry-pick because it only considers part of the record, and to make it work, you have to start the period with an exemptional El nino. Do the the arguments still make sense if you start with 1996?

    This post here goes in a proper statistical analysis of what is going on. You also seem to bought the idea that something has gone wrong with model predictions. This is nonsense. No scientist expects the actual temperature time series to evolve along the model mean. The science (everything we know about ENSO) says that is impossible.  Please read again my earlier reply. A good expectation is that the 30-year trend in temperature series will be close to the 30-year trend in the model mean. However, there is still a wide uncertainty in climate sensitivity.

    Finally, I do not accept that you can take two cooling periods (1910-) and (1940-) caused by two different changes in climate forcing and propose a natural cycle for them.  This is not evidence, it is misinformation.

  • Models are unreliable

    Cedders at 19:36 PM on 25 March, 2019

    It's been suggested that 'models are unreliable' is a particularly pernicious myth. The models have been useful, and are getting even better, but some make the false claim that models have deviated demonstrably from reality.

    Those who are misinformed or content to be misinformed often make up unsourced past 'predictions', perhaps because they are reacting against journalists' sometimes sensationalist ways of describing individual studies. Eg in the last few days in response to a climate article: "By 2016, New York will be under a foot of flood-water because of all the melting ice caps, melting glaciers and so on", which is clearly not a direct quotation despite being in quotation marks and impossible to trace as a statement.

    If they're schooled in climate confusion, they might refer to Peter Wadhams's projections of sea ice, or the chat with James Hansen; on social media you often find images of local press cuttings, taken out of context and with pink highlighter taken from Tony Heller's blogs. (There's also the argument, which that because models can't reliably predict short-term weather patterns, how can predictions be made for decades in advance, how the range of weather is affected by changes in the Earth's energy balance.)

    This article includes links to CarbonBrief's series on modelling, but I don't see a link to Zeke Haufather's comparison of historical models against later trends:

    (The late Wally Broecker's simple 1975 model was nearly spot on. Then there's the 1979 Charney Report.)

    Also, I found this a useful resource:

    It's not just that 'Models successfully reproduce temperatures', but also patterns of warming.

    Putting these together in one image (not sure if it will come out):
    Reliability of climate models from CarbonBrief and Barton Paul Leveson

  • The temperature evolution after 2016 suggests hotter future

    scaddenp at 08:36 AM on 23 March, 2019

    thinkingman - I appreciate your question. It is always good to clarify so we dont talk past each other. It is also worth clarifying "cooling".

    By "natural cooling forces" I understand you to mean things that would affect the temperature trend as opposed to year by year or even decadal average variation. On scale of 3-10 years, then the natural, chaotic, ENSO cycle is dominant. The upper ocean exchanges heat with atmosphere. A series of La Nina can look like cooling; a series of El Nino can look like warming. However on climatic scales (or even scales of decade), these do not affect the temperature trend. I mention this because you asked "since 1998" which immediately rings alarm bells. A lot of pseudo-skeptic arguments are based on cherry picking a big El nino event and then comparing trend after that. You can expect "since 2016" to become popular on certain websites.

    Assuming you mean temperature trend and actual forcing, I can be more definitive. You could say that AGW is countering some external forcings. The Milankovich cycle has been slowly cooling for some time, though the effect is so slow that its impact on climate even over a century would be hard to determine. You could also argue that total solar irradience trends since 1990s has been slightly negative. The change in forcing again is incredibly minor comparied to measured AGW-driven changes in surface radiation. I dont see volcanic aerosols having any particular trend.

    I do not see any convincing evidence for some magical 60 year/80 year cycles, especially when proponents struggle to identify a physical source.

  • The temperature evolution after 2016 suggests hotter future

    scaddenp at 07:13 AM on 21 March, 2019

    Invoking unspecified "natural cycles" does not further understanding. There are certainly natural "cycles" or more likely quasi-periodic variations at work. It is important to distinquish between internal variability (energy moving around in an unevenly heated water-covered planet) and variability in climate forcing (eg milankovich cycles, solar output variation, volcanic aerosols). Internal variability is things like the ENSO cycle which is dominate cause of intra-decadal variability. These are unpredictable, (chaotic) and affect climate largely by heat exchange between ocean and atmosphere. Climate models have no skill in predicting these variations. When you see a graph like:

    then the grey area is the space defined by multiple individual model runs. Any observational line within the grey area is compatiable with the model output. If you look at individual runs of the climate models, then you see the many possible outcomes. This post covers what the models are actually telling you. There is no skill expected at decadal predictions, but the model mean does a pretty good job at prediction the 30-year (climate) trends.

    While small amounts of heat transfer from oceans affect temperature, blaming warming on heat coming from the ocean while ocean heat content is increasing is "voodoo economics". If some unknown ocean "cycle" is providing the heat, then how come the ocean is getting hotter?


    Variation in external forcings is another story. The milankovich forcing is readily calculated and we are warming despite a very slow negative orbital forcing. Solar has quasi-periodic cycles but we can directly measure solar input at top of atmosphere. You cannot claim a solar cause when solar input is flat or declining. Volcanoes of cource are unpredictable but models must put in a "average" changes to aerosol forcings or the models would run too hot. You can always re-run models with actual forcings for solar, volcanic etc and this is done.

  • The temperature evolution after 2016 suggests hotter future

    MA Rodger at 21:28 PM on 19 March, 2019

    ThinkingMan @17,

    The concept of a natural unforced climate cycle is part of the denialist armoury and is usually presented as a 60-year cycle. I think it gets lengthened to allow more abiguity when fitting it to data.

    The sole basis of it is the global temperature record which can been seem as having peaks in 1880, 1940 & 2000 and dips in 1910 & 1970. Thus a 60-year cycle is proposed as causing these peaks and dips.

    Hadley global temperature

    Those proposing the existence of such a 60-year natural cycle have failed to take the idea forward. Further the peaks and dips can be understood without the existence of some grand natural wobble.

    Thus the so-called 'hiatus' of recent years can be explained by the impact of ENSO which is a natural wobble-maker. Yet such a natural wobble does not explain the slight cooling post-1940. This has more to do with a slowing of AGW positive forcings through those years and a massive increase in the rate of anthropogenic SO2 emissions. The 1940 peak is more of a challenge but over half of it results from forcing, most of this anthropogenic. And back to the 1880 dip, the volcanism during the latter part of the 19th century easily privide the dip without any 60-year wobble.

    Another approach to finding a 60-year wobble is to seek evidence for the wobble within the known natural oscillation. As set out above, ENSO (& thus PDO) are not powerful enough to be a source of the size of wobble being talked about. One other candidate is AMO mentioned @16. AMO is an interesting phenomenon. It was fisrt identified within a proxy reconstruction of North Atlantic temperatures. This were part of the work that resulted in the famous 'hockeystick' reconstruction of Northern Hemisphere temperatures. And here's a thing - the AMO is not seen in the 'hockeystick',  suggesting it too has not the power to provide a significant 60-year global wobble (IPCC AR5 also demonstrate the lack of power) although there is much work now showing the AMO is a true oscillation of roughly 60-year pitch.

  • Freedom of Information (FOI) requests were ignored

    Daniel Bailey at 00:21 AM on 11 March, 2019

    1. Satellite sensors measure brightness, not temperatures. Temperatures can be inferred from brightness, but there are numerous "corrections" and "adjustments" to the raw data that must take place prior to these inferred numbers being considered reliable. The corrections to the satellite data vastly outweigh the minor changes to the surface station data during the homogenization process.

    2. Data series span multiple generations of orbital platforms. A tremendous amount of "corrections" and "adjustments" to the data are needed for these time series to become long enough to achieve statistical significance.

    3. The one data channel that some favor among all the satellite data channels is that of the TLT. This is nominally of the lower troposphere. The TLT channel is a synthetic (derived) product, and not a measured product. Further, it is not a measurement of the surface (where people live), but of the lower troposphere (where airplanes fly). Thus, it CANNOT be used to compare to surface temperatures.

    4. The known uncertainties in the satellite trend, as estimated by the record providers, are five times the known uncertainties in the thermometer record trend.

    5. Thermometer measurements from ground-based and radiosonde instrument packages are still the gold standard. Note that the radiosonde temperature series goes back to 1958, so it's a longer and more robust series than is the satellite record. It shows continued warming of the lower troposphere.

    In summary:

    1. Satellites don't measure temperatures, they measure brightness
    2. Satellites don't measure the surface temperatures, where people live
    3. Satellites measure brightness of the air thousands of feet above the surface, where birds and airplanes fly
    4. Satellites convert brightness to temperatures via computer models
    5. The known uncertainties in the satellite trend, as estimated by the record providers, are five times the known uncertainties in the thermometer record trend.

  • It's waste heat

    scaddenp at 06:18 AM on 4 March, 2019

    Responding to comment here.

    " it would be correct to state that such an atmosphere does not radiate IR."

    Anything with a temperature above absolute zero must radiate, including gases nitrogen and oxygen. What nitrogen and oxygen do not do is absorb IR (and then reradiate it).

    You seem to missing the fundimental point that exergy fluxes must balance. At any level in the atmosphere, the outgoing energy must balance incoming radiation. (and think about what "heat" is. Why discount ground heated by sun). If radiation reaching the surface (say) increases (as it does because of IR being reradiated when GHG increases), then temperature of surface must increase till outgoing radiation matches the incoming. Grab a physics textbook and revise blackbody radiation and Stefan-Boltzmann law.

    Heat is absolutely radiated to space all the time - and is measured by satellites. The amount of outgoing IR and its spectrum are completely consistent match GHG theory with extraordinary precision.

    If your notions were correct, what would you predict IR sensors on satellites would detect?

  • It's El Niño

    MA Rodger at 19:37 PM on 15 February, 2019

    Max or not @202,

    I have to conclude that you have nothing to link the 18.6 year cycle of the lunar orbital plane to ENSO intensity other than the coincidence of 2015 seeing both a major El Niño and the 'minor lunar standstill' in that 18.6 year cycle and this coupled with the one previous major El Niño occurring 18 years earlier.

    Of course, the major cycle regarding tides is the metonic cycle which is 19.0 years in length. Yet if such tidal effects triggered El Niños, they would presumably be premature El Niño and thus minor El Niño.

    As for what drives the intensity of an El Niño, it is the warm pool accumulated in the western Pacific alone that provides the heat. It is a lessening of trade winds (roughly measured by SOI) coupled with the instability of the warm pool that triggers an El Niño and both of those are greatly influenced by the PDO. In a warming climate, it is surely the frequency  of major El Niño that is expected to increase, not the intensity of individual El Niños per se, although there is much still to learn on this mechanism. (See for instance Cai et al (2015) 'ENSO and greenhouse warming'.)

  • It's El Niño

    scaddenp at 06:04 AM on 15 February, 2019

    "Could we experience an almost flat line in the air temperature to 2034 while the sea surface will continue to rise gently ?"

    ENSO is primary cause of the "wriggle" about a positive trend in surface temperatures. Whatever ENSO does, that trend (driven primarily by increasing GHG) will continue. Climate models have emergent ENSO-like feature but cannot predict what ENSO will do. They are good at picking the underlying trend however.

  • It's El Niño

    MA Rodger at 05:50 AM on 15 February, 2019

    Max or not @199,

    And what basis do you see for such "pushing"? The ENSO activity that we have record-of during previous 'minor lunar standstill' appear to be stiffled rather than pushed anywhere.

  • It's El Niño

    MA Rodger at 00:09 AM on 15 February, 2019

    Max or not @@197,

    It is difficult to understand much of what you actually ask.

    But regarding the 18;6 year cycle of the lunar orbital plane and ENSO. The 2015/16 El Niño did coincide with the 'minor lunar standstill'  which occurs every 18.6 years. And the 2015/16 El Niño was 18 years behind the 1997/98 El Niño. If the 18.6 year lunar cycle were triggering major El Niños perhaps there should have been a major El Niño in 1978/79 (2 x 18.6 yrs before 2015) and perhaps another in 1960/61 (3 x 18.6 yrs before 2015). Yet there wasn't. (See ONI data here.) That there were no such El Niños in those years surely suggests your proposed linkage between ENSO and the lunar orbit is solely based on a single conicidence that has not been repeated in the past, and so probably will not repeat in the future.

  • Two Centuries of Climate Science: part one - Fourier to Arrhenius, 1820-1930

    Skeptical Wombat at 12:46 PM on 26 January, 2019

    It turns out that Eunice Brooks identified the importance of Carbon Dioxide three years prior to Tyndal -See Circumstances Affecting the Heat of the Sun's Rays.

    Unfortunately Brooks did not have Tyndal's  flair for self promotion so her contribution has lain unnoticed until it was recently discovered by Raymond Sorenson.

  • Greta Thunberg's TEDx talk

    Nick Palmer at 02:28 AM on 30 December, 2018

    I personally think that tweaking the 'free market' so it encourages responsible, rather than wasteful and/or irresponsible purchasing decisions by the greater mass of people is 'the answer' - not just to global warming but all the other envirnmental issues too. The 'over free' market enabled the problem. Reining it in a bit might be the solution.

    Conventional economics, never mind the more exreme neo-liberal economics, takes little account of the 'externalities' - those effects caused by a product or service that somebody else ends up paying for the clean up of, rather than the manufacturer/service provider that made the product or provided the service.

    More nuanced economic systems, such as Hermann Daley's ecological economics, which assign the costs of the clean up to the bottom line costing of a product, should have a very powerful effect on changing peoples' purchasing decisions - not as a result of burdensome legislation or moral crusades, but because the cleaner greener options work out cheaper!

    The beauty of this is that we already know that it would work in principle because of how putting a price on acid gas pollution cleaned up industry smoke stacks rapidly and effectively in the 70s. A  proper price on carbon would do the same.

  • 2018 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #51

    MA Rodger at 23:01 PM on 29 December, 2018

    Nigelj @23,
    You say the last 20 years of atmospheric emissions trends "are accelerating" but also that I have attempted to account for the ENSO cycle. I have elsewhere been quite strong in pointing out that "emissions" data show no increase for the period 2014-17 which would suggest no acceleration woud result within the rise of atmospheric CO2 levels (eg MLO data) for those years. This would contrast with the record since 1960 when an acceleration is evident.

    I have also attempted to adjust MLO CO2 data for MEI. Just as ENSO wobbles global temperature, it also wobbles the CO2 increase, the latter with an 8-month lag (with some complications that I ignore). Using MEI as a measure of ENSO, I found that the Airborne Fraction (the amount of extra CO2 in the atmosphere as a proportion of the amount of anthropogenic CO2 emitted) is boosted/reduced by 11% for a unit increase/decrease in MEI. The adjusted airborne fraction can then be used to adjust the CO2 increase, this reducing the noise within the MLO data by 50%. (Also a base MEI value of +0.1 is assumed.)

    I have pondered how to best present this data, whether a simple table or with added analysis of some form. Perhaps the best presentation would be graphically with an OLS for each of the measured/adjusted data. A graph has been duly uploaded here (usually two clicks to 'download your attachment'). You may draw your own conclusions as to whether the adjusted data shows acceleration (an increase in ppm/yr) over recent years, or indeed what should constitute "recent years" in any statistically-significant analysis.

  • Global warming ‘hiatus’ is the climate change myth that refuses to die

    Ken in Oz at 10:26 AM on 28 December, 2018

    Anticorncob6 - I also like to use the axial tilt theory of seasons as an analogy -  on average each day of Spring will be warmer than the day before but we don't expect a few days or weeks of colder than average weather in Spring to mean there won't ever be Summer any more or that it "proves" the axial tilt theory must be wrong.

    I admit I was surprised at how much traction "the Pause" got; to me it always looked exactly like the variability overlaying a continuing warming trend that closer studies confirm. Too little "expert" effort distinguishing between shorter term variability and underlying warming and expert efforts at learning what processes are involved in that shorter term variability?

    Foster and Rahmstorf's work that estimated and "removed" ENSO, Volcanic Aerosol and Solar Intensity changes confirmed what I thought - that known sources of variability alone were enough to make "the Pause" indistinguishable within a longer term warming trend.

    Averages of many model runs, where each run has ups, downs, pauses, accelerations may make for a smooth, each year warmer than the last type graph; it is not and should never be seen as a year by year prediction. Should perhaps have taken a leaf out of Exxon's book; their projections were of a (smooth) band of tempertures rising, not a single line average. But people making policy or having fiduciary duties of care - or journalists reporting about it - should be expected to know better.

  • 2018 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #51

    MA Rodger at 06:50 AM on 27 December, 2018

    Evan @15,

    Indeed you are correct in putting the MLO measurements of atmospheric CO2 levels as the prime data and to say that it shows there has undoubtedly been an acceleration in the CO2 rise since 1960. Back then, the rise was averaging some 0,7ppm/yr and it is now averaging some 2.4ppm/yr, suggesting an acceleration of roughly 2% per year over the period. And over that same period, the CO2 emissions from all anthropogenic sources have also risen at a rate of roughly 2% per year. This does suggest that the Keeling Curve is driven by anthropogenic emissions, and nothing else.

    So if in recent years (since 2014), if anthropogenic sources have shown no rise, would this suggest that the acceleration may have been halted (at least for the years 2014-17 as we still await the 2018 figure for total emissions)?

    Now, the MLO data does show a lot of wobble, much of it based on the ENSO cycle. If the ENSO cycle is accounted using MEI (shifted by 8 months which gives he best fit to the CO2 wobble) and correlated against the CO2 Airborne Fraction (as per the Global Carbon Project numbers), the MLO data does appear to show an end to the acceleration (abet still noisy), or at least no reason to suggest that there is any significant non-anthropogenic source of CO2 emissions impacting the atmospheric levels.

    With no increase in anthropogenic emissions, I would suggest that any notion of continued acceleration through recent years requires a non-anthropogenic source. (This of course does not mean a return to accelerating anthrpogenic emissions can be guaranteed.) I have not ever found evidence to support the existence of any significant non-anthropogenic emissions as the source of acceleration. (This of course does not mean there has not been such accelerating emissions, either now or future.)

    So is there some reason to consider such analysis invalid?

  • 2018 was the hottest La Niña year ever recorded

    barry at 14:47 PM on 26 December, 2018

    The choice of Nina metrics seems a little arbitrary. Make different choices and 2017 is the warmest la Nina year.

    Substantively, the point hardly alters, but the messaging is a little less compelling...

  • Corals are resilient to bleaching

    scaddenp at 06:18 AM on 13 December, 2018

    dvaytw - I think you are talking past each other. Looking at this figure:

    You can see that any no. of La nina blue dots are warming than past El nino red dots. I suspect that he is confused with how the ENSO anomaly condition is defined.

    Figure 5 in this paper (esp 0-700) does not support his assertion that ocean warming is mostly high latitude. The sea surface certainly warms slower than land, but it sure is warming. Here is anomaly in SST to 2012  for tropical area, black line is for coral reef locations from here.

  • Corals are resilient to bleaching

    dvaytw at 01:52 AM on 13 December, 2018

    Ps can anyone help me with an argument related to the above article in #33? I quoted Hughes as saying the following:

    La Niña periods today are actually warmer than El Niño periods were 40 years ago.

    The fellow with whom I’m arguing says in response to this:

    BS. Here you can see the ENSO data going back seventy years and the zero degree anomaly line hasn’t changed at all. For your “expert” to be right, it would’ve had to have gone up by two degrees Celsius.

    He also says:

    Your problem is that ocean warming is far less than amospheric warming - and it is mostly at high altitudes. But yet somehow it is responsible for bleaching at mid altitudes.

    I‘m in over my head as usual, but this guys *rules* the climate discussions in an FB group of over 30,000 people. If he is wrong - and I’m guessing he is - I’d really like to prove it.







  • COP24: UN climate change conference, what’s at stake and what you need to know

    MA Rodger at 00:11 AM on 7 December, 2018

    scaddenp @5,

    Those ENSO wiggles, along with volcanic and solar forces wiggles, have been addressed using MLR to better reveal the underlying tend. Tamino repeated analysis this using annual data (& 2018 to August as a partial year) back in October. This shows the adjusted 2018 is (so far) a little cooler than the warmest adjusted year which is 2017. (The 'As Is' in the graph is the unadjusted values.)

    Tamino adjusted Oct 2018

  • COP24: UN climate change conference, what’s at stake and what you need to know

    scaddenp at 10:23 AM on 6 December, 2018

    juddb. Take a long look at the global temperature record. It consists of pronounced up/down wiggles following at upward trend. The trend is climate - 30 year average - while the wiggles are "weather". Those wiggles are the El Nino/La Nina (ENSO) cycle which is chaotic and so far defies any long term prediction. Record temperatures are always set during an El Nino - which last peaked in Apr 2016. You expect temperatures to decline after that. You wont get a new temperature record till the next big El Nino. Climate models cannot pick El Ninos; what they can do pick the trend. Focus on that. The ENSO cycle is just about redistribution of heat on an unevenly heated, wet planet. In the cool La Nina phase heat is being buried in the ocean. In El Nina, that surfaces and heats the atmosphere.

    How much lower? We havent had a strong La Nina since apr 2016, it mostly neutral but 70% chance of a weak El Nino in next few months so it will likely go back again. If you look at previous strong La Nina (2011 was a doozy), you will get an idea of far it can go down.  Please lets not have a repeat of the "Global warming stopped in 1998, 1995, 2002, 2007, 2010, ????" meme.

  • But their Emails!

    nigelj at 10:27 AM on 1 December, 2018

    JP66, the email you quote is a single email relating to climategate taken completely out of context, which shows the whole problem with these thefts / hacks. It's hard to even know what they are really saying, other than they appear to be arguing whether a paleo climate reconstruction of the medieval warm period is reliable, notice its in reference to "a" reconstruction.

    I don't see what "theory" this undermines. Greenhouse gas theory, human impacts on climate,and future modelling of temperatures obviously do not rely on reconstructions of the medieval warm period.

    What theory do you claim it undermines? What is it you think they are really saying?

    Yes they are also talking about problems they are having with analysing the past, misakes that might have ocassionally been made, people attacking their work and how they should respond to this. Wouldn't any normal person do this? Why do you think this is somehow nefarious or abnormal?

    If this is the so called smoking gun in climategate its laughable.

    I do agree with you if the latest data and the accepted theory diverge then question the theory, but this is not apparent in this case.  Also question whether the data is reliable, as it often turns out the data is wrong, for example the problems where the satellite temperature record originally showed a cooling, when it turned out there were problems with the satellite sensors or something.

    Please note that many groups have analysed the MWP and found it was no warmer than temperatures over the last decade.


  • Discussing climate change on the net

    Doug_C at 05:14 AM on 28 November, 2018

    "Rebukes that this constitutes censorship or infringement of their rights to free speech can be safely ignored as there are many other websites - perhaps even their very own Facebook page! - where they can post whatever they want. And if they don't get this message, you can always show them the door via XKCD's neat cartoon:"

    When you look at the amount of money from individuals like the Koch brothers and corporations like Exxon Mobil, I don't see how climate change denial can be considered free speech in any sense. And more and more this denial is being funded in the same way drug cartels and terrorist groups move money around to avoid discovery.

    "Dark Money" Funds Climate Change Denial Effort

    "The study, by Drexel University environmental sociologist Robert Brulle, is the first academic effort to probe the organizational underpinnings and funding behind the climate denial movement.

    It found that the amount of money flowing through third-party, pass-through foundations like DonorsTrust and Donors Capital, whose funding cannot be traced, has risen dramatically over the past five years.

    In all, 140 foundations funneled $558 million to almost 100 climate denial organizations from 2003 to 2010."

    Climate change denial has nothing to do with evidence and fair comment, it is essentially deceptive advertizing. And follows on from the same kind of deceptive campaign to prevent action in the public interest that tobacco corporations funded for years.

    The denial industry

    'So the fight against a ban on passive smoking had to be associated with other people and other issues. Philip Morris, APCO said, needed to create the impression of a "grassroots" movement - one that had been formed spontaneously by concerned citizens to fight "overregulation". It should portray the danger of tobacco smoke as just one "unfounded fear" among others, such as concerns about pesticides and cellphones. APCO proposed to set up "a national coalition intended to educate the media, public officials and the public about the dangers of 'junk science'. Coalition will address credibility of government's scientific studies, risk-assessment techniques and misuse of tax dollars ... Upon formation of Coalition, key leaders will begin media outreach, eg editorial board tours, opinion articles, and brief elected officials in selected states."'

    When comments from such sources are removed and people who are quite likely being paid to disseminate false information are banned it is in all our interests.

    Climate change is becoming more destructive and deadly every year, the wildfires in California now are just the opening stage of this catastrophic process. 

    Sites like Skeptical Science and those who are involved in presenting the real story based on clear evidence are working in the interests of our entire species against what is now obviously an existential threat.

  • Discussing climate change on the net

    nigelj at 14:03 PM on 27 November, 2018

    Free speech is just a shorthand term that means people should be free to hold opinions without fear of state censorship or violence. Free speech is obviously not a licence to say anything in absolutely any context, go way off topic, fill websites with lies and blatant propoganda, and  to threaten and insult people. Indeed such bullying speech shuts down free exchange of opinions by intimidating people.  

    About 90% of the climate denialism seems to be based on logical fallacies rather than factual erros as such, so it makes sense to counter it by explaining the logical fallacies. I dont think this has been done well enough in the past, so its an opportunity for us.

  • Increasing CO2 has little to no effect

    grindupBaker at 07:21 AM on 7 August, 2018

    "warming has occurred since 1975, at a rate of roughly 0.15-0.20°C per decade". More specifically and quite interestingly:

    +0.165 degrees / decade: La Nina years 1967-2012
    +0.165 degrees / decade: ENSO-neutral years 1970-2013
    +0.20 degrees / decade: El Nino years 1966-1990
    +0.23 degrees / decade: El Nino years 1990-2013 (sparse data though)

    El Ninos are "pulling away".

  • There are genuine climate alarmists, but they're not in the same league as deniers

    michael sweet at 00:03 AM on 16 July, 2018


    My point is that when Hansen originally made his projection that 5 meters sea level rise was a better estimate than the IPCC estimate many called him an alarmist.  As time has passed the IPCC estimate has increased substantially while Hansen has maintained his top estimate.  Current high sea level estimates by mainstream scientists approach Hansen's estimate and he no longer can be considered "alarmist".  The original IPCC estimate (from around 1990) is clearly overly optimistic.

    "Alarmist" scientific estimates are very rare.  Meanwhile deniers like Lindzen, who in 1989 testified next to Hansen that he thought temperatures would stay unchanged, write Op-Ed pieces in the Wall Street Journal.  Curry publishes bullshit about Hansens 1989 projections.   The deniers claim that accurate projections are "alarmist". 

    We have to support scientists like Hansen and Waldhams when they speak their minds.  Otherwise we contribute to the censorship of the majority scientific opinion that currently occurs.

    In posts above I copied dates from other posts.  On review I find that Waldhams projection originally comes from 2007 when he suggested that sea ice could be completely gone by 2016 +/- 3 years.  Note his projection was made before the 2007 sea ice collapse.  At the time mainstream projections for ice free were 50+ years in the future.  He has maintained his projection to today wile mainstream projectins now are decadesw earlier than they were. 

    The mainstream has come closer to Waldham than they are to previous mainstream projections.  Even if it is 2030 before the first ice free year, Waldham will have been much closer when he made the projection.   Every January many of the posters on the Arctic Sea Ice Forum have long discussions about whether this year is finally the one where the ice will collapse.  Waldham's projection is still in play, to call him an alarmist is to contribute to scientific censorship.

  • Increasing CO2 has little to no effect

    Bob Loblaw at 23:03 PM on 7 July, 2018

    I will try to add to MA Rodger's commentary.


    Keep i mind that the only thing that the thermometer tells you is the temperature of the thermometer. Although this may seem a triviality, it is essential to start with this understanding. The next stage in trying to use the thermometer for any practical purpose is to try to get the temperature of the thermometer to match the temperature of the thing you are really interested in. In your experiment, you are interested in the gas inside the bag (comparing air-filled vs. CO2).

    A good way to think of the behaviour between the thermometer and its surroundings is to describe the energy balance of the thermometer. What are all the energy flows in and out of the thermometer, and under what conditions will the temperature of the thermometer match the gas in the bag?

    The thermometer can have three methods of energy exchange with its surroundings:

    1. Radiation. It can absorb visible (solar) radiation, absorb IR radiation, and emit IR radiation. The end result can be either a net gain or a net loss, or zero if all radiation terms balance.
    2. Exchange of thermal energy with its surroundings. If warmer than its surroundings, the thermometer will lose heat. If colder, it will gain heat. The goal is to get this term to zero, to match the gas in the bag.
    3. Loss of energy through evaporation. Changing liquid water to gas requires energy (latent heat of vaporization). That energy has to come from somewhere, and it will tend to cool the thermometer (energy loss). This is easily avoided by keeping the thermometer dry.... keeping it wet turns it into a psychrometer.

    So, in your experiment, you want terms 2 and 3 to equal zero to make sure you have the thermometer at the same temperature as the gas in the bag. This only happens if the radiation term is also zero.

    If the radiation term is positive, and the evaporation term is zero, then the positive radiation input will make the thermometer warmer than its surroundings. It will heat up until the radiation input is exactly matched by the thermal loss (energy moving from warm thermometer to cooler gas).

    Now, how can you get the radiation term to zero when your goal is to see the effect of increased absorption due to CO2? If the CO2-filled bag is absorbing IR radiation in greater quantities than the air-filled bag, then initially it will warm, but after it has warmed the bag/thermometer will also be emitting more IR - which you hope will balance the extra absorbed IR.

    There are two catches to this:

    1. The bag also has an energy balance. It's really the bag absorbing more IR that you want to detect, so you need to double-up on the energy balance description, tracking both the thermometer and the bag.
    2. The radiation term also includes absorption of sunlight (visible light). In order to isolate the IR effects, you need to make sure that the two bags/thermometers are not absorbing different amounts of solar radiation. Any solar absorption messes up the energy balance, creating an error (higher temperature) in the thermometer, but at least if the two bags are exactly the same, the error will be the same in both and you can still make a comparison.

    Catch #2 is the experiment-killer. You said you performed this out "in the sun". You haven't mentioned a time of day or location, but direct beam solar radiation usually approaches 1000 W/m2 on a nice clear day, and very slight differences in absorbed solar radiation will overwhelm the IR effect you want to see (maybe 1 W/m2?). My guess would be slight differences in the angle of the thermometers, or reflectivity of the system. Perhaps the plastic bag surface reflects a bit of sunlight at certain angles, so slight differences in shape or orientation alter the amount of solar radiation hitting the thermometer.

    Controlling for solar radiation error is a critical factor for weather observations of air temperature. Thermometers are usually housed in a Stevenson Screen or other radiation shield. They are also typically well-ventilated (strong air circulation).

    You can't "well-ventialte" the air and CO2 in your bags, because that defeats the purpose of getting the elevated CO2 to absorb IR. That leaves a very large factor of solar radiation error, which makes it difficult in your experimental setup to know if you are looking at an IR effect. (You are most likely not.)

  • 30 years later, deniers are still lying about Hansen’s amazing global warming prediction

    Oortcloud at 01:12 AM on 27 June, 2018

    Patrick Michaels is not the only one presenting false information. Here ( is the NOAA ENSO record. YThe author cherry-picked his start date so as to eliminate the 1998 El Nino event. Since 1999 there has been 0ne lengthy La Nina immediately following the 1998 El Nino event. All 5 of the others have been short and weak. What the author has failed to mention is that the period he chose is the period of the pause in warming. The 2015 El Nino upped temperatures tremendously, but the latest La Nina and current neutral period has dropped temps down to pause level again.

    Hansen made no "prediction" about the warming rate in arctic. "Arctic amplification" is a known effect of the Hadley circulation and had been known well before Hansen's testimony.

    We have not seen "dramatic" warming as the author puts it. Warming has been less than 1C and is well within natural variability as shown by paleo reconstruction of the LIA and RWP.

  • Climate Science websites around the world

    dudo39 at 03:24 AM on 11 June, 2018

    In Série negacionismo: “não há consenso científico”
    Por cienciaeclima on 2018/05/06. Please see my previos comment 

  • TV Meteorologists Seen Warming to Climate Science

    Xulonn at 02:32 AM on 3 May, 2018

    Meteorologist Dr. Jeff Masters, a former "Hurricane Hunter" crew member, co-founded The Weather Underground, Inc. in 1995 while working on his Ph.D.  In the meteorology community, he was an early supporter the findings of climate science that indicated that AGW/CC (Anthropogenic Global Warming and Climate
    Change) was a looming disaster for human civilization.from   Jeff was among the minority of meteorologists for many years

    One of the subset of blogs at Weather Underground for several years was that of University of Michigan climate scientist and mitigation planner Dr. Ricky Rood.  I participated at the Rood blog for several years, discussing science and doing battle with hard-core AGW/CC denialists, even as I continued to study climate science.  I even took an online course (MOOC) in basic climate science from Canada's University of British Columbia.  

    Unfortunately, the Rood climate blog was discontinued a couple of years ago when IBM purchased Weather Underground for its weather analysis products.  Fortunately, even though it does not produce a "revenue stream"  Jeff Masters and his climate communication associate Bob Henson, continue to blog there - and they frequently discuss climate and AGW/CC. 

    During my years of participation at Dr. Rood's blog, I became acutely aware that, based on surveys, a majority of broadcast meteorologists were firmly in the "AGW/CC denialist" camp.  Along with the engineering community, these were two major groups of science-based professionals that we should be able to convince with science and logic.  But logic be damned, these professionals stubbornly resisted science and fact-based reality for many years.  (Unfortunately, broadcast meteorologists - if they want to keep their jobs - are bound by the direcives of their employers to toe the corporate line and ignore AGW/CC - or treat it as a false alarm.)  

    It is great to see this significant change in the participation of broadcast meteorologists in the AGW/CC discussion.  They probably reach and influence more laypersons than any other group, and are critical to informing the public of the reality of the dangers of anthropogenic global warming and climate change. 

    Engineers are another issue.  Although they do not communicate daily with the public like broadcast meteorologists, many are still vocal in their denialism.  Plus, it is an unfortunate reality that many engineers think that they and their technoogies can fix almost any problem - including AGW/CC.  Engineering and technology solutions can generate massive revenue for corporations, so their proponents tend to ignore or overlook societal impacts and other externalities.  Again, basic human nature makes us want to ignore or deny anything that would have a negative impact on our lives and economic well-being.  Therefore many people will eagerly jump on the promises of technological solutions, adding yet more resistance to the unequivical necessity of reducing greenhouse gas emission.  

    But that is a "whole 'nuther problem" - and I am very happy to see the positive changes in the broadcast meteorology community. 

  • Climate Science Denial Explained: Tactics of Denial

    DPiepgrass at 12:16 PM on 22 April, 2018

    Doug_C @6 From rationalism I learned the concept of steelmanning: rather than defeat a very weak form of your opponent's argument, as you've done, try to find a better argument than your opponents themselves use and defeat that instead. But it's hard to even find a fleshed-out conspiracy theory of climate science; everything I've seen is extremely vague.

    But obviously, if I was going to invent a conspiracy theory of climate science, it wouldn't assume that the conspiracy started in the 19th century. One might instead assume that somehow the 19th century scientists made an honest mistake, or that 19th century scientists were mostly right but that 1960s and 1970s scientists made a mistake about the climate sensitivity, and that scientists who discovered this wrongness were somehow censored. This is more like what real climate conspiracy theorists do - they might point to some obscure paper that says humans don't cause warming, and they say "behold the proof that climate science is a sham! Media and governments are suppressing the truth!" (there are a number of these, and mainstream scientists, of course, consider them to be variously inaccurate / nonsensical / incompetent.) We could take this argument and steelman it as some sort of, let's say, institutional bias created secretly at some point in the 1980s to teach budding scientists false beliefs. I find this more plausible than a conspiracy stretching back to the 19th century, but it remains vague and relies on the idea of scientists being too dumb to notice they've been duped. (I find it hard to steelman this, maybe due to the fact that this is my first attempt at steelmanning and my heart isn't really in it.)

    I'd argue against the conspiracy theory with three points. First, a conspiracy needs to have a goal. So what's their goal? Obviously, the solution to global warming is to replace fossil fuels with clean energy like nuclear, solar and wind, while increasing energy efficiency of our technology. So... why would someone create the world's greatest hoax just to encourage clean energy? Wouldn't it be easier to ignore the climate completely and make arguments like (1) air pollution caused largely by fossil fuels kills millions of people per year and clean energy doesn't, (2) clean energy can give us energy independence, (3) energy costs less if we use less of it, and (4) fossil fuels reserves will run out anyway so we may as well replace them before a crisis arises?

    Second, what good is a conspiracy that convinces 97% of climate scientists but only convinces 60% of the general public 35 years (or whatever) after the conspiracy started? What good is a conspiracy that doesn't convince politicians to pass a carbon tax? Clearly the conspirators picked the wrong target - for this evil plan to work it must win over lawmakers, not scientists.

    Third, who is easier to fool, scientists or the general public? The conspiracy theory would have you believe that thousands of scientists who specifically study climate were dumb enough to believe conspirators' disinformation, while the general public (conservatives anyway) were smart enough to see right through it.

    Of course, as you say, the idea that certain oil companies promote disinformation makes considerably more sense.

  • Climate Science Denial Explained: Tactics of Denial

    DPiepgrass at 12:04 PM on 22 April, 2018

    Doug_C @6 From rationalism I learned the concept of steelmanning: rather than defeat a weak form of your opponent's argument, as you've done, try to find a better argument than your opponents themselves use and defeat that instead. But it's hard to even find a fleshed-out conspiracy theory of climate science; everything I've seen is extremely vague.

    But if I was going to invent a conspiracy theory of climate science, it obviously wouldn't assume that the conspiracy started in the 19th century. One might instead assume that somehow the 19th century scientists were wrong, or that 1960s and 1970s scientists studying global warming were wrong, and that scientists who discovered this wrongness were somehow censored. This is more like what real climate conspiracy theorists do - they might point to an obscure paper that climate scientists consider to be scientifically inaccurate/nonsensical/incompetent, a paper that says humans don't cause warming, and they say "behold the proof that climate science is a sham! Media and governments are suppressing the truth!" We could then steelman this as some sort of, uh, institutional bias created secretly at some point in the 1980s to teach budding scientists false beliefs. I find this more plausible than a conspiracy stretching back to the 19th century, but it remains vague and relies on the idea of scientists being too dumb to notice they've been duped. (I find it hard to steelman it though, maybe due to the fact that this is my first attempt and my heart isn't really in it..)

    I'd argue against the conspiracy theory with three points. First, a conspiracy needs to have a goal. So what's their goal? The solution to global warming, obviously, is to replace fossil fuels with clean energy like nuclear, solar and wind, while increasing energy efficiency of our technology. So... why would someone create the world's greatest hoax if it just encourages clean energy? Wouldn't it be easier to make ordinary arguments like (1) clean energy can give us energy independence, (2) air pollution caused largely by fossil fuels kills millions of people per year and clean energy doesn't, (3) energy costs less if we use less of it, and (4) fossil fuels reserves will run out anyway so we may as well replace them before a crisis arises?

    Second, what good is a conspiracy that convinces 97% of climate scientists but only convinces 60% of the general public 35 years (or whatever) after the conspiracy started? What good is a conspiracy that doesn't convince politicians to pass a carbon tax? Clearly the conspirators picked the wrong target - if this evil plan were going to work it would have to win over lawmakers, not scientists.

    Third, who is easier to fool, scientists or the general public? The conspiracy theory would have you believe that thousands of scientists who specifically study climate were gullible enough to believe conspirators' disinformation, while the general public (conservatives anyway) were smart enough to see right through it.

    Of course, as you say, the idea that certain oil companies promote disinformation makes considerably more sense.

  • Explainer: The polar vortex, climate change and the ‘Beast from the East’

    scaddenp at 14:29 PM on 31 March, 2018

    Alchemyst, given your earlier comments expressing doubts about modelling, I am surprized at you pushing a modelling paper. I am a little curious as to how you found it but yet missed any the 2014 reviews of arctic influence. No matter – the paper in question (Ineson et al, 2011) was written showing some modelling support for hypothesis of low solar activity contributing to the then recent cold winters. The corollary of this view is that anomalous jet stream behaviour (present in those events) should have eased when the sun returned to active mode. It did not – anomalies continued right up to this year. Furthermore, if the solar is the dominant influence, (as opposed to a contributing factor), then the 2018 tree ring study of jet stream behaviour should be also revealing the link – it does not. 

    Overland et al 2015 has a discussion of arctic – jet stream linkages which I found very helpful. It notes solar (citing Ineson et al) among other possible influences (ENSO, QBO, AMO etc). However, the evidence is increasing pointing towards the loss of ice in the arctic basins as the dominant cause of recent anomalous jet stream variability. The tree ring study by itself put any "Its just a natural cycle" explanation in doubt.

    Interestingly, the model effect from solar changes in Ineson et al affecting the jet stream variability is the decrease in equator-polar temperate gradient.

    "This temperature change is directly attributable to the decrease
    in ozone heating associated with ultraviolet irradiance, which
    is important at these levels11. This signal peaks in the tropics
    and corresponds to a relative decrease in the pole-to-equator
    temperature gradient. This response is reproduced in our model
    (Supplementary Fig. S1) with significant cooling of about 2 K near
    the tropical stratopause. Geostrophic balance requires that the
    diminished polewards temperature gradient is matched by a weak
    easterly wind anomaly in the subtropical zonal mean circulation
    in the upper stratosphere"

    Sea-ice loss does exactly the same thing.

    As this article clearly states, the science is still young but it certainly cannot be dismissed. 

  • How blogs convey and distort scientific information about polar bears and Arctic sea ice

    ImaginaryNumber at 11:52 AM on 15 March, 2018

    michael sweet said:

    Peer reviewed papers are written for experts to read. They leave out information that everyone who is expert knows. There is not enough space to rewrite the history of science in every paper. Crockford's suggestion that they have left out necessary information is only relevant to people who are not experts (like Crockford). Subadult seals include pups, experts know this and it does not need to be explained. Experts know about snow conditions and leads, Crockfords comments are irrelevant.

    As evidenced by your own faulty knowledge, you are not a polar bear expert and therefore shouldn't be reading Pagano's paper. I'll not comment on your other questionable comments for fear of the moderators censoring my remarks as being argumentative.

    According to this paper seal pups are different than seal subadults.

    pup < 1 years old

    subadult1–4 years

    old adult ≥ 5 years old

  • Stop blaming ‘both sides’ for America’s climate failures

    NorrisM at 15:08 PM on 13 March, 2018

    michael sweet @ 34

    I have not ignored our discussion regarding sea levels. 

    I have made it clear that I have been waiting for the last instalment on sea level rise on another website before I respond to you because I would like to have as much technical information as I can before I explain where I am on sea level rise.  I have my doubts about the Nerem 2018 paper and how much it will be followed by the IPCC in its next assessment for reasons that I have not fully discussed only because my understanding is that the last instalment of the Judith Curry essays on sea level rise is expected to address the Nerem 2018 paper.  Some of the blogs on the earlier instalments on her website have effectively said that if you eliminated the reliance by Nerem on the adjustments to the first 6 years of the TOPEX satellite measurements and removed the assumptions about what sea level rise would have occurred without Mt Pitabo (sp) eruption it would eliminate all of the acceleration.  Fuerthermore another blogger has said that Nerem's method of removing ENSO is patently wrong.  I want to hear what Judity Curry has to say about Nerem in the body of one of her instalments rather than rely on a couple of the bloggers who do sound like they know something about climate science.   I will get back to you on this as soon as this last instalment appears.

    So right now for 2100 we are at a projected linear increase of about 11" if the present rate holds, with Nerem's adjustments, we are at around 26" and the IPCC at 1-3 feet and the US Climate Report at 1-4 feet with what can only be described as an outlier suggestion that we cannot rule out 8 feet but refusing to risk this outlier.  Having said this their risk analysis of sea levels increasing beyond 4.9 feet lies around 1.3%  so why they would even mention 8 feet in the Executive Summary makes me pause to wonder why (See Charts 12.1 and 12.4).  According to their own classifications, such a chance is either "Extremely Unlikely" of "Exceptionally Unlikely".  Take your pick.  

    So I would appreciate it if we could stick to the best estimates for now.  But I would really ask that we just put this on hold until I have read the last instalment of Curry.  It may or may not help but I would like to see what she has to say about Nerem before I make any futher comments on projections about sea level rise.

  • Impact of climate change on health is ‘the major threat of 21st century’

    Riduna at 03:41 AM on 27 February, 2018

    The human response is not to curb greenhouse gas emissions but to automate. Expect to see AI-automation occurring most rapidly where exposure to heat and health risk are probably the highest – farming.

    In Australia, research, development and demonstration of automated machinery able to till, plant, tend and harvest crops without human intervention is gaining momentum. Guided by GPS and optical sensors, machines are being developed which have the capacity to prepare the soil and where appropriate add fertilizer before planting seed or young plants at pre-determined depth and spacing over a given area. Other machines already exist which can recognise and eliminate weeds and others have been designed to harvest crops.

    Eventually, multipurpose machinery, electrically driven and computer controlled will be deployed to undertake all agricultural activity where human labour was once deemed essential. Its cheaper, more efficient and doesn’t need time off when it gets too hot and humid.

  • 2018 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #5

    NorrisM at 03:28 AM on 26 February, 2018

    OPOF @ 143

    Thanks for this summary of the continuing changes that we will be required to address with climate change.  They obviously will be things that must and will be addressed as the costs of operating our society. When these adaptation costs become too burdensome for the public then you will see the outcry that will get the public behind more mitigation measures. I just see at the present time a different mix of adaptation and mitigation than many others on this website. 

  • Anti-vaccers, climate change deniers, and anti-GMO activists are all the same

    Alan at 06:30 AM on 22 January, 2018

    Eclectic, I appreciate the time you took for your answer, but we're at a stalemate as we both hold contrary opinions.
    And as this website is dedicated to climate change, it is not my desire or intent to proselytize and convert readers, and I won't descend to "troldom", so this will be my last post.
    For disclosure's sake, I was erroneously directed to this site by google search, and saw the site interesting, with an open comments section (uncensored).

  • 2018 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #1

    Eclectic at 09:44 AM on 8 January, 2018

    Rkrolph @1 , the article by journalist/propagandist Brandon Morse is a complete misrepresentation of the true situation.

    As you will note from Nigelj's link above to the Nature paper [ published Jan 4th 2018 : authors Bereiter, Shackleton, Baggenstos, Kawamura, and Severinghaus — the same Severinghaus so grossly misrepresented by Brandon Morse ] that the the paper's Abstract says nothing to support Morse's allegations.

    Morse's article is full of nonsense — it is merely an example of the same old denier-style propaganda attempt to clutch at and "spin" (by misrepresenting) any slight straw that happens to come floating past. 

    Was there any basis, even the slightest basis, to Morse's claim that Severinghaus had stated /suggested /claimed his co-authors' study raised doubt about modern evidence of AGW-caused ocean warming?   We will probably never know.  Morse claims a link to a post (by Severinghaus) at Scripps Institution of Oceanography — a post which Morse implies gives weight to his article.  But the link is dead, and seemingly the post has been deleted.  Conspiracy Theorists will point to censorship of the Ghastly Truth.  A sane explanation is that Severinghaus likely made a post which was poorly worded & open to misinterpretation by the mischievous (e.g. by Morse) . . . and Severinghaus decided (or was advised) to delete that post.  All that we can know for the moment, is that the wording of the Bereiter et al. 2018 paper provides zero support for Morse's allegations.

    Other than that, Mr Brandon Morse comes up empty.

    More nonsense from the Morse article :-

    "we are cooling" (unquote). [He fails to mention that the evidence says the opposite.]

    ... and his mention of support from a Dr Happer [a thoroughly discredited climate science denier]

    ... "A study in 2015*, for instance, predicted that the Earth is about to undergo a major climate shift that could mean decades of cooler temperatures" (unquote)

    * the paper is: McCarthy et al. 2105 — and here Morse makes another supreme "tarradiddle", for the McCarthy paper in no way supports Morse's claim.

    Morse appears to be one of those anti-science propagandists who sprinkles his article with referenced scientific papers — scientific papers which he implies support his statements.  And he does so in the knowledge that few if any of his readers will bother to follow the links to check the truth of the matter.  And so Morse gets away with his "tarradiddles" . . . which go on to circle through the deniosphere.

    In short, Rkrolph, basic science does not support Morse's whole schema of climate denialism.

    Morse is using the propagandist technique of suggesting that since there could be a hint of doubt about the health one of the Elephant's toenails . . then it follows that the whole Elephant is fatally diseased.

  • 2017 was the hottest year on record without an El Niño, thanks to global warming

    One Planet Only Forever at 04:54 AM on 3 January, 2018

    Dr. Roy Spencer's Blog Post "UAH Global Temperature Update for December, 2017:" further exposes that he is either:

    • a deliberate deciever/denier, well aware of the unacceptability of what he is doing
    • or someone who is not well aware or is lacking a good understanding of things

    He states that: "2017 ended up being the 3rd warmest year in the satellite record for the globally-averaged lower troposphere, at +0.38 deg. C above the 1981-2010 average, behind 1st place 2016 with +0.51 deg. C, and 2nd place 1998 at +0.48 deg. C."

    All of that is technically accurate. But he fails to make any mention of the influence of the ENSO cycle on the satellite data results; He fails to attempt to make people more aware and better understand what is going on.

    If "Technocognition" proposed in the Guardian article "Fake news is a threat to humanity, but scientists may have a solution" (re-posted on SkS) does get traction, would it flag Dr. Roy Spencer?

  • There's no empirical evidence

    NorrisM at 03:18 AM on 1 January, 2018


    That was why I was asking for some estimate of warming from two periods, 1950 and 1975. Perhaps the two periods should be from 1950 and 1970.

    I agree that the rate from 1950 at least would be more relevant.  It would be interesting to look at 1970 but we then get into shorter periods which themselves have problems.

    I appreciate my question on models might be getting "off topic" but these questions on the rate of temperature increase certainly relate to "empirical evidence".

    Perhaps this is just impossible to do because of other factors such as the aerosols, volcanoes, ENSO etc.  I think I read somewhere on this website that ocean temperature increases are a better measure.  Surely there are some papers on this because it is such an obvious question.

    Are there studies to show accelerating ocean temperatures?

  • 2017 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #52

    nigelj at 05:41 AM on 31 December, 2017

    "Hearing that the Trump administration would scrub federal sites of information on climate change or obscure other important research, researchers worked with dozens of coders, archivists, and librarians to preserve data sets and web pages from agencies, like the EPA, NOAA, and NASA"

    Astonishing that things have come to this level of anti-science and blatant denial of reality, and blatant censorship of science. This is supposed to be the 21st century, not the medieval period of book burning. The year 2017 will go down in infamy as the dumbest year on record (and almost certainly one of the hottest based on data so far this year)

    I feel protest marches and other shows of resistance are probably quite powerful. I dont think its a coincidence that Trumps approval ratings are all down near 30% now, it has to be the cumulative effect of protest, along with the nonsensical, damaging and self promoting things he says on a daily basis.

  • How blogs convey and distort scientific information about polar bears and Arctic sea ice

    Alchemyst at 13:13 PM on 27 December, 2017

    Dear moerator

    not once have I supported Susan C's views only her right to express them. I have asked you or arguments to bring it down. The only one that I hear is that she is not an expert.  please could you please be specific as to why I am censored.

    I believe that personalities should be left out of the arguments because I think it is counter productive

  • 2017 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #49

    michael sweet at 12:15 PM on 15 December, 2017

    Tamino has a new analysis of sea level rise. Apparently there was a problem with early satalite data. When the data is corrected and ENSO is removed, he gets this graph:

    sea level rise

    Note the strong acceleration after 2010.   Tamino estimates sea level rise from 2010-2017 as 5.5mm/yr.  It may not be significant since the time is so short.

  • American leaders should read their official climate science report

    nigelj at 07:31 AM on 30 November, 2017

    Chriskoz @16

    Yes hydrogen fuel cell powered trucks are a scary thought. Please appreciate I'm just trying to be a bit open minded as well on the issue. Apparently the tanks in the Honda hydrogen fuel cell car  have impact sensors that shut off the fuel supply, and very rigid strong tanks. On the other hand, if this failed on a truck, it would be totally catastrophic. 

    My instinct has always been that hydrogen fuel cells are a dead end idea, unless we run out of materials for batteries.

  • American leaders should read their official climate science report

    nigelj at 06:08 AM on 30 November, 2017

    Yes making hydrogen safe is going to be expensive. This may partly explain the high cost of hydrogen fuel cell cars (about $60,000 US). This is more than basic electric cars.

    There might be a psychological factor with hydrogen fuel cell cars. People just may not want to be sitting on a tank of hydrogen. Of course the fact they are on the market suggests they are well safety tested and probably have crash sensors etc,  but people will still be cautious. 

  • Battered by extreme weather, Americans are more worried about climate change

    Daniel Bailey at 10:09 AM on 23 November, 2017

    "Given the scale of the graph, would the impacts of ENSO variations even be discernible? "

    Possibly.  As referred to earlier, analysis shows that 2015 would still have been a record year even had the El Niño never occurred.

    "El Niño made only a small contribution (a few hundredths of a degree) to the record global temperatures in 2015"


    "After removing the estimated contribution from El Niño of 0.07C, the average global temperature in 2015, according to NASA, would have been 0.8C above the 1951-1980 average"


    "There is no evidence that that warming trend has slowed, paused, or hiatused at any point in the last few decades."

    El Niño, La Niña and ENSO-neutral years are all warming.  Due to the human burning of fossil fuels.


  • Battered by extreme weather, Americans are more worried about climate change

    scaddenp at 06:09 AM on 23 November, 2017

    Let's distinguish carefully between natural forcings (things that change the planetary energy balance and thus climate of natural origin) and internal variability (modes of weather variation due to uneven heating of a wet planet - ie ENSO, PDO etc. This is internal redistribution of heat, not a change in planetary energy balance). Climate is defined formally as 30 year average of weather because shorter time periods are dominated by internal variability. The temperature readings are absolutely a combination of internal variability and long term forcings but internal variability is chaotic and cant be predicted more than few months in advance.

    If you want to see how well you can account for the temperature record using just forcing + ENSO, then see the excellent series here. Unlike various mathturbation exercises  fitting climate to planets, moon, no. of athetists in world etc. this uses part of the record to determine the fit parameters and then then uses those to predict the other part. However, this cannot be used to predict the temperatures in next decade because ESNO in the future is unknown (and seems to be unknowable).

  • Battered by extreme weather, Americans are more worried about climate change

    SteveS at 04:47 AM on 23 November, 2017

    First of all, I have to agree that including ENSO would be incorrect. However, if one were to do so, I believe you would be able to, on occasion, see an ENSO event on the above chart. Gavin Schmidt is on record as estimating the effect of ENSO on the 2015 temperature as 0.07C (see here). That would suggest that there would be a visible blip at 2015 in the natural line. However, again, that wouldn't be the correct thing to do. My understanding of the blog article by Karsten Haustein is that they were only looking at climate forcings (i.e., things that actually cause the climate to change) and ENSO isn't a forcing.

  • Battered by extreme weather, Americans are more worried about climate change

    One Planet Only Forever at 03:38 AM on 23 November, 2017


    You are clearly misunderstanding what El Nino is.

    Even if you looked into El Nino a little more you might still misunderstand its relationship with global warming. It is complex, but understandable with a little effort.

    NOAA is one of the groups that reports its measurement of the status of the ENSO cycle (La Nina, El Nino). It is the NOAA Ocean Nino Index (ONI).

    The explanation of the NOAA ONI process is presented by NOAA on the tabulated summary of the ONI values.

    The presentation includes the understanding that they need to update the baseline for determining if the Nino 3.4 region of the Equatorial Pacific Ocean is warmer or cooler than average.

    The NOAA presentation of their updates of the 30-year averages every 5 years shows that the 5 year averages have been increasing. That increase is not a natural variation. That increase is due to the warming caused by the added GHG created by human activity.

    The 30-year averages have increased about 0.3 C. That is significant compared to the threshhold of + 0.5 C for declaring La Nina or El Nino. If NOAA did not adjust the ONI baseline then eventually there would be no identified La Nina events. And with a little more human induced global warming eventually El Nino would be identified as permanent. That would be a massive misunderstanding since the Nino 3.4 would still be cycling warmer and cooler than the average.

    Properly understanding many aspects of climate science requires the setting aside of personal preferences for information that excuses a personal desire to benefit from the burning of fossil fuels. Once you have set aside personal belief preferences you will be able to more effectively analyse the legitimacy of information sources.

    Warning - if you do not set aside your personal interests you will struggle to properly understand many things, potentially going so far as to believe/claim that information like NOAA's ONI is fake because they revise the numbers every 5 years, and by extension believing that everything from NOAA or NASA or any other major science group that is contrary to your preferred beliefs is fake.

  • Battered by extreme weather, Americans are more worried about climate change

    John Hartz at 02:31 AM on 23 November, 2017

    Daniel Bailey or SteveS:

    Given the scale of the graph, would the impacts of ENSO variations even be discernible? 

  • Americans want a tax on carbon pollution, but how to get one?

    sauerj at 00:24 AM on 25 October, 2017

    What does $15/mon equates to $X/ton-CO2?: Rough math: Avg Emission: 18ton/US-person/yr; so $15/(18*4/12)=$2.5/ton. Close enough? Compare to: CCL's $100/ton (after 10yr ramp) or CLC's starting $40/ton plus ~2%>%GDP ramp. CCLs: at $100/ton is ~$1/gal petro and $0.10/kwh for coal power. So, $2.5/ton is 2.5c/gal petro and $0.0025/kwh. ... $2.5/ton rate is negligible in correcting the 'market failure' of the existing FF price signal.

    A more apropos survey question would be aimed at increasing household total costs (direct & indirect) to equal either 1) 'the generally accepted present value of future costs' or 2) 'current CCL or CLC proposed rates'. For example, $240/mon (@ $40/ton) or $600/mon (@ the full ramped $100/ton). The survey results would then be more forthcoming on public sentiment for the degree of incremental price signal required to truly drive market-based transitions with a high degree of economic force & efficacy.

    The implications on the weak carbon tax policies of EU and Australia should also be considered in the big picture here, where some of the revenue was returned to the carbon polluters as hardship subsidies (EU) or used for pet projects by the government (both); the former making the tax ineffective, the latter making it regressive. This history shows how hard it is for the public to economically & politically "bite the bullet" in transiting away from status quo. We are enslaved by its 'present-day' short-term security; fooled by the lie of its incorrectly low 'non-future cost' pricing; and too weak & ignorant to want to pay the correct price now & let 'right' economics force us to change.

    Of all macro policies (tax, cap-trd, cmnd-cntrl, subs), it is relatively obvious that carbon taxing is the most effective (least burdensome, most direct); read book linked below. But, contrary to the weak tax policies of EU & Au, we have to let the tax force non-sustainable processes to crater & die, and this means making the tax as politically durable as possible, so it doesn't 1) get repealed (like in Au), 2) doesn't subsidize the polluters and 3) has serious economic force to it. Policitical durability makes it stick for businesses: "We are in this for keeps; you better change if you want to remain profitable". And, the most politically durable plan is to return all of the revenue to the households, no pet political favors & projects! Let the market drive the best technologies and where the investments go. Or, at the most, do these side transitional efforts with side money; let them support themselves financially; like we would do today with today's tax revenue.

    Read the book linked here and see if you can find anything wrong with it. It's about the truest, clearest thinking on how best to fix our present-day market failure of carbon energy pricing.

  • Climate and energy are becoming focal points in state political races

    nigelj at 12:52 PM on 23 October, 2017

    Just my two cents on this freedom of speech issue. We do have some restrictions imposed on university campuses in America. I read an article recently cant recall where, may be the, but it made some excellent observations.

    1) Its not the students. Polls show quite clearly university students are far more tolerant of letting people express extreme views even hate speech, than the general  population

    2) Its universities imposing rules to keep the angry minority of anti free speech aggrieved lobby groups happy. Its easists and expedient

    For myself I think closing down free speech would be unfortunate. People should have a right to opinions even crazy ones, provided they dont incite violence or descend to swearing and blatant threats.

    However free speech is never unlimited and is also somewhat dependent on location and even the America Constitutions recognises "time and place restrictions". although this would not extend to government control of what is said on campus. Free speech concepts were really designed to strictly limit ability of governments to censor etc, not give a free pass to anything. Website do moderate comments to reduce endless personal fueds etc cluttering things up.

    So free speech is not a simple thing but I feel opinions should be a strong right as a general rule.

    Coming to the books, I read Ian Plimmers sceptical book heaven and hell, a load of old nonsense. Yes its hard for most people to know who to believe and the devil is in the detail. But good detective work and sharp legal minds like Norris should spot some clues. Plimmers book depended on about 10 key graphs that looked mighty suspicious to me and different to the IPCC, and nowhere did his book give sources for these graphs. It listed sources for quotes, but not the graphs.

    Detail  matters, and you dont need any science to spot that sort of thing. I'm sorry, but the sceptical climate books I have read are riddled with cherrypicking, out of context material, missquoting people, and a dozen logical fallacy outrages, as well as bad science.

  • It's a natural cycle

    Eclectic at 03:47 AM on 18 October, 2017

    Postkey @29 , yes that video presentation evoked both laughter & boredom, simultaneously.

    Postkey, as you increase and extend your knowledge of climate matters, you will soon discover two things :-

    (A) For all their imperfections & uncertainties, the scientists aim to present things as honestly & truthfully as they can.

    (B) The anti-science propagandists (such as Mr Heller/Goddard) do not hesitate to mislead and deceive.   They will cherrypick / "doctor" / fabricate . . . to whatever extent they think they can get away with.  They aim to outright deceive the reader — or at least get him thinking that with so much "controversy" then he might as well put the climate/AGW issue on the backburner 'cos it seems nobody knows what the hell's going on.   ~Either of those outcomes will satisfy the propaganda industry, as represented by GWPF, Heartland Institute, and other such "front" organizations.  (And you will notice, Postkey, that the more scientifically-ignorant their audience, the more these proagandists extend their lies & deceptions.  You will see that in places as diverse as Wall Street Journal op-eds and "lie & spin" websites like WattsUpWithThat or JoNova.  They are completely shameless in their disregard for truthful presentation.)

    Postkey, as for the AMO — what do you mean by "a statistical base"?   There are very short-term trends (e.g. the ENSO) having a short up-or-down effect on the global surface temperature, but which (when you think it through) are incapable of altering the long-term climate trends produced by real drivers of climate change (e.g. long-term solar activity changes / Milankovitch-cycle insolation / Northern Hemisphere ice albedo changes / continental drift positional effects / and of course Greenhouse gas alterations).

    But as for long-term (decadal) oceanic events such as the AMO — do they actually exist as some sort of real physical cycle, or are they only a collection of random natural variations that we interpret in our minds as some sort of "real" thing?   ~Interpret in a similar way as our minds "see" a Face in the Moon . . . when in reality we are only observing a random asteroidal-bombardment pattern on the Moon's surface.

    Still, whatever existence the AMO has or doesn't have — it does not and cannot cause significant climate change in the real way that Greenhouse gasses & other such "drivers" do.

    That video presenter was way off into crazy territory.  Either from his own ignorance or from his insane Conspiracy Theory beliefs or from some underlying extremist-political ideation.  And he was certainly shooting himself in the foot by using the mendacious Mr Heller as his "rock".   BTW, the presenter seemed to be "into" some form of agricultural permaculture (which in general I would say is a reasonable thing) but he hints at a Survivalist-type tendency — which is crazy-wrong in regard to apocalyptic "ice-age" threats . . . but which might well make some sense if North Korean nuclear attack occurs!   ~Alas, if the ongoing Global Warming gets very bad, then there will be no "hiding out in the mountains" for would-be Survivalists, since the climate change itself and the hordes of climate refugees will render such plans null & void.

  • Global climate impacts of a potential volcanic eruption of Mount Agung

    MA Rodger at 01:05 AM on 14 October, 2017

    The OP does appear to take for ganted that there is a good chance of an La Nina developing in the next few months and also that Mount Agung is soon to erupt. I would suggest there is some significant doubt on both assumptions.

    Concerning the La Nina, this is a long way from a certain outcome, even a weak La Nina. The predictions (eg here) have been remarkably changeable over the last couple of months with an El Nino being predicited as much more likely as recently as July. And even as recent as September the continued ENSO Neutral condition was predicted as the most likely outcome over the winter.

    Also the seismic activity generated by Mount Agung is being taken as the sign of a forthcoming major eruption. Yet (and this a hostage to fortune - a major eruption is entirely possible), the BBC report the following in their Mount Agung story:-

    "According to the volcanologists monitoring Mount Agung, this situation could continue for weeks, maybe even months. An eruption may not even happen, they simply don't know. At the government observation base, senior seismologist Devy Kamil remains patient - despite the long queue of journalists who have been knocking on his door all week, hoping for some news. "There are some examples where you have swarms of activity for as long as six years," he explains, "and it is not always ended by an eruption."

    So an eruption is not guaranteed and the seismic activity may last years. (The further point is made elsewhere that today's instrumentation was not available back in 1963 so comparisons with that eruption are not possible.)

    And the idea that any new eruption will be a repeat of 1963 is not supported by the historical evidence. The eruption previous to 1963 was 1843 and that does not apper to feature in the volcanic ejection record in polar ice cores (eg Jiang et al 2012) (although Osipov et al (2014) show no 1836 Cosigüina eruption but instead an eruption dated to 1840 and labelled 'unknown' - this indicative of the reliability of the dating of ice core data).
    Certainly nothing giving such a mark as the 1963 eruption appears on the appropriate portion of the 19th century ice core record.
    Indeed, there is little enough information about Mt Agung prior to 1963. Zen & Hadikusumo (1964) set out the reports from 1843 thus:-

    " «After having been dormant for a long time, this year the mountain began to be alive again. In the first days of the activity earthquake shocks were felt after which followed the emission of ash, sand and stones.» These are the only words which described the eruption of 1843. "

    And prior to 1843, the record of Mt Agung eruptions is entirely sparce. There is mention of the first recorded eruption being a 1808 eruption that dragged on to 1821, or mention elsewhere that 1821 was a seperate eruption. Today the standard press quotes seems to be a repeat of a 20th Sept UPI item "There was an eruption of similar intensity in 1843, and several in the 16th to 18th centuries," a quote that beyond 1843 is not based on evidence, or none that I can see.

    So we may or may not have a weak La Nina in the offing. And we may or may not have Mt Agung erupt and if it does it may or may not be as climatically significant as 1963.

  • Arctic sea ice has recovered

    sailingfree at 06:47 AM on 6 October, 2017

    Can anyone comment on this:

    Based on MASIE data, they claim not much decline recently.

    Multisensor Analyzed Sea Ice

  • The Mail's censure shows which media outlets are biased on climate change

    nigelj at 06:16 AM on 27 September, 2017

    Tom13 @12

    "This is supposed to be a science blog - are you stating the there should be a repeal of the first amendment - Are you saying there should be a "ministry of Truth"?

    Yes this is a science blog, but from time to time science intersects with politics and media or economics etc, and these things are worthy of discussion. This is such a case obviously.

    Regarding the first amendment on free speech,this only applies to America. Many people commenting here are not Americans.  

    Anyway the american constitution only says that governments may not pass laws restricting free speech. Private organisations however are allowed to have whatever rules they like.

    The supreme court in america has also historically recognised many exceptions to constitutional free speech eg time and place restrictions, defamation law, restrictions on pornography etc. However its fair to say legal restrictions requiring media balance would be unlikely in America.

    In my view free speech is very important but principally related to the right to have an opinion, and particularly without government censorship or the like and threats of violence or intimidation, just for expressing a view. It is not a right to shout whatever rubbish we want in any context at all and obviously there are unspoken cultural rules about whats acceptable.

    In that respect I dont think the media have the right to print blatant factual inaccuracies, and to be be totally unbalanced especially in smaller countries with just one main media outlet or only a couple. There needs to be a code of practice with some teeth. In america this would have to be self regulating, and not law as such given their constitution, but in other countries there are often legal provisions. It's obviously a balancing act between freedom of  expression, and commonsense limits. Websites usually have some form of sensible moderation with a few limited rules against personal abuse, off topic political ranting, threats etc. They do need to be just a few rules, and not excessive. This reduces clutter, and issues becoming clouded with emotion. Only morons and angry people have a problem with this. Its not rocket science.

  • Temp record is unreliable

    randman at 12:55 PM on 24 September, 2017

    I am a little concerned about rebutting you on sea levels as not sure it's OK here to do that or not. But be that as it may, consider the following:

    "The numbers didn’t add up. Even as Earth grew warmer and glaciers and ice sheets thawed, decades of satellite data seemed to show that the rate of sea-level rise was holding steady — or even declining.

    Now, after puzzling over this discrepancy for years, scientists have identified its source: a problem with the calibration of a sensor on the first of several satellites launched to measure the height of the sea surface using radar. Adjusting the data to remove that error suggests that sea levels are indeed rising at faster rates each year."

    1. The July 2017 report says the satellite data did not show sea level rise. My question to you is did you know that or were you led to believe prior to July that the satellite data showed sea levels rising? Be honest and ask yourself how that happened if "scientists" actually knew the data said something else.

    2. Note the solution of adjusting the data. (Note to mods: this is why I think responding on this is appropriate on this thread because we are discussing the trustworthiness and reliability of data.)

    If "adjusting the data" were just a one-off thing, this would appear unobjectionable perhaps. Would have to look at the technicals on the sensor stuff, but this seems like part of a pattern. Baseline in the 80s was 15 degrees celsius and then that's "adjusted" to 14 degrees which just happens then to show warming.

    You don't find that suspicious, especially in light of the recent paper questioning such "adjustments" along with many scientists also questioning the adjustments with some of them having been much more pro-AGW. 

    I think there is an issue here and should be looked into. Are we merely being sold a story based on adjusting data to fit a narrative?

  • New research, September 11-17, 2017

    Paul Pukite at 09:16 AM on 23 September, 2017

    Lots of new research results at the upcoming AGU meeting. I will present forcing models for ENSO and QBO. The model forcing uses precise lunisolar data to match the behavior for cross-validated intervals over the instrumental record.  The general model was derived from Laplace's Tidal Equations, which form the basis of all GCMs.


    See you there!

  • Scientific models saved lives from Harvey and Irma. They can from climate change too

    John Hartz at 07:59 AM on 20 September, 2017

    Tom 13 @10:

    If you read the Met Ofice news release, A Pacific flip triggers the end of the recent slowdown, and watch the two short videos embeded in it, you will learn that PDO and ENSO are two different cycles. 

    Two key paragraphs from the news release...

    Prof Stephen Belcher said: “After a period during the early 2000’s when the rise in global mean temperature slowed, the values in 2015 and 2016 broke records and passed 1 °C above pre-industrial levels. Data from the Met Office shows that the long-term rate of global warming has now returned to the level seen in the second half of the 20th century.”

    Although there has been scientific debate about the exact framing of the so-called ‘slowdown’, by looking at rolling 15-year trends, the Met Office confirmed that while the globe remained at near record warmth, the rate of global warming did slow between 1999 and 2014, but now this rate has picked up once more.

  • 2017 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #35

    Eclectic at 10:14 AM on 5 September, 2017

    Tom13 @9, thank you for the "txhur" link to a history [published 2009] of Texas hurricanes.  

    Interesting reading, of historical woes, and hurricane frequency.  As others have pointed out, the "noisy" background makes it difficult to detect the initially small but now growing influence there of AGW/climate-change.

    Particularly of note (and also noteworthy in view of the author's effort of 3 years in total preparation) was the brief paragraph titled "Long term trends/hurricane cycles".  From which I quote: "We are currently [2009] in a hurricane-rich period which began in 2003.  This is expected to last until around 2014, plus or minus a few years."

    Not even a hint of a mention of Global Warming, or its likely effects.  Possibly that derives from local censorship pressures in Texas — or from some bias on the part of the author (who is not representative of the NOAA).   But a remarkable omission, even for 2009.

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