Climate Change

Ugly Climate Models

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change can't explain the last 15 years.

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In September the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released the final draft of Climate Change 2013: The Physical Sciences Basis. The report's "Summary for Policymakers" flatly states: "Warming of the climate system is unequivocal, and since the 1950s, many of the observed changes are unprecedented over decades to millennia. The atmosphere and ocean have warmed, the amounts of snow and ice have diminished, sea level has risen, and the concentrations of greenhouse gases have increased."

Pretty much everyone concerned with this issue agrees that those are the facts. But what is causing the planet to warm up? Here is where it gets interesting.

The report's "Summary for Policymakers" declares it "extremely likely that human influence has been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century." Whether that is so can be probed by comparing observed temperature trends with the simulations of the U.N.'s computer climate models, which assume that human influences are driving climate change. According to the IPCC researchers, "There is very high confidence that models reproduce the general features of the global and annual mean surface temperature changes over the historical period, including the warming in the second half of the 20th century" (emphasis in original). So far, so good: Both the model's projections and actual temperatures rose during the latter half of the 20th century.

As evidence that the models "reproduce the general features" of actual temperature trends, the new report provides a handy graph comparing projections made in the panel's previous report with three different temperature records. The report says "the trend in globally-averaged surface temperatures falls within the range of the previous IPCC projections."

But is that so? Most temperature records show that since 1998 the models and observed average global temperatures have parted ways. The temperatures in the models continue to rise, while the real climate has refused to warm up much during the last 15 years.

The IPCC report acknowledges that almost all of the "historical simulations do not reproduce the observed recent warming hiatus." Not to worry, it assures us; 15-year pauses just happen, and you can't really expect the models to simulate such random natural fluctuations in the climate. Once this little slow-down passes, the report maintains, "It is more likely than not that internal climate variability in the near-term will enhance and not counteract the surface warming expected to arise from the increasing anthropogenic forcing" (emphasis in original). In other words, when the warm-up resumes temperatures will soar.

John Christy, a climatologist at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, has come to a different conclusion. Christy compared the outputs for the tropical troposphere of 73 models used by the IPCC in its latest report with satellite and weather balloon temperature trends since 1979. "The tropics is so important," Christy explains in an email message, "because that is where models show the clearest and most distinct signal of greenhouse warming-so that is where the comparison should be made (rather than say for temperatures in North Dakota). Plus, the key cloud and water vapor feedback processes occur in the tropics."

When it comes to simulating the atmospheric temperature trends of the last 35 years, Christy found, all of the IPCC models are running hotter than the actual climate. The IPCC report admits that "most, though not all, of [the climate models] overestimate the observed warming trend in the tropical troposphere during the satellite period 1979-2012." To defend himself against any accusations of cherry-picking his data, Christy notes that his "comparisons start in 1979, so these are 35-year time series comparisons"-rather longer than the 15-year periods whose importance the IPCC downplays.

Why the discrepancy between the IPCC and Christy? As Georgia Tech climatologist Judith Curry notes, data don't speak for themselves; researchers have to put them into a context. And your choice of context-say, the year you choose to begin with-can influence your conclusions considerably. While there may be nothing technically wrong with the way the IPCC chose to display its comparison between model data and observation data, Curry observes, "it will mislead the public to infer that climate models are better than we thought." She adds, "What is wrong is the failure of the IPCC to note the failure of nearly all climate model simulations to reproduce a pause of 15-plus years."

As noted above, the IPCC report concedes that "almost all historical simulations do not reproduce the observed recent warming hiatus." It argues that the difference "could be caused by some combination of (a) internal climate variability, (b) missing or incorrect radiative forcing, and (c) model response error." That is to say, the projections are being thrown by pesky natural climate fluctuations, and possible errors in calculating how much warming a given greenhouse gas will produce.

The IPCC report obliquely refers to an August study in the journal Nature Climate Change finding that the observed rate of warming during the last 20 years was half of what a representative sample of the models relied upon by the IPCC projected. Looking at just the last 15 years, the models were four times hotter than the actual trend in the average global temperature.

But the IPCC is confident that warming will soon resume at a pretty fast clip. Back in 2007, other modelers were similarly confident about their forecasts for future warming. At the U.N.'s annual climate change conference in Bali, the U.K.'s Hadley Centre predicted that between 2004 and 2014 the global average temperature would rise by around 0.3 degree Celsius. Instead, the Nature Climate Change article reports, the trend during the last 15 years has amounted to an increase of just 0.05 degree Celsius per decade-one-sixth the Hadley Centre's predicted rise.

The Hadley Centre also predicted that half of the years after 2009 would be hotter than the record year at the time, 1998. So far, judging from the Hadley Centre's latest data, which were adjusted upward last year, only one year after 2009 has been hotter than 1998, and then only by 0.02 degree.

The IPCC now reports that the observed global mean surface temperature increased at a rate of 0.12 degree Celsius per decade from 1951 to 2012, for a total increase of about 0.72 degree during that period. At that rate, the global average temperature by the end of this century will be more than one degree higher than it is now. An increase of just one degree more is unlikely to be catastrophic.

The computer climate models are supposed to give policy makers reliable data regarding future trends in man-made global warming. By failing to predict a flat 15-year period, the U.N.'s new report does not inspire the kind of confidence that could justify a trillion-dollar climate policy bet.

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  1. Semi topical:

    I wasn’t around H&R for a few days much last week when someone passed this along to me. Not sure if covered.

    The EPA’s highest-paid employee and a leading expert on climate change deserves to go to prison for at least 30 months for lying to his bosses and saying he was a CIA spy working in Pakistan so he could avoid doing his real job, say federal prosecutors.

    http://investigations.nbcnews……-feds?lite

    1. “With the help of his therapist,” wrote attorney John Kern, “Mr. Beale has come to recognize that, beyond the motive of greed, his theft and deception were animated by a highly self-destructive and dysfunctional need to engage in excessively reckless, risky behavior.” Kern also said Beale was driven “to manipulate those around him through the fabrication of grandiose narratives ? that are fueled by his insecurities.”

      Could one of those grandiose narratives have been that human activity is leading to climate apocalypse?

      Sorry, couldn’t resist.

      1. Wow, that diagnosis sounds like every politician ad high-level bureaucrat ever. How appropriate.

      2. Global warming is clearly caused by Affluenza

    2. This is epic. I expect he’ll be revealed as an H&R commentor, next.

    3. Beale was driven “to manipulate those around him through the fabrication of grandiose narratives”

      Isn’t that what we’ve been saying of these warmist alarmists?

  2. Pretty much everyone concerned with this issue agrees that those are the facts.

    I don’t even agree that the amalgam of temperature readings from the varied data sources over the decades can be credibly called a global temperature.

    1. Particularly given that we know that much of the data was falsified and even destroyed.

    2. True, I hardly think that the last warming trend, which seems to have stopped 15 years ago, is “unprecedented over…millennia”.

      1. I’d think it would be hard to know of every 15 year period for the past millenia in order to compare them with the last 15 year period. But then again, this is the IPCC. They have god-like powers and of course know pretty much everything anyone really needs to know about this.

    3. “I don’t even agree that the amalgam of temperature readings from the varied data sources over the decades can be credibly called a global temperature.”

      An interesting point. It may well be the models are pretty much correct and the 15 year hiatus is the result of mismeasurement.

      1. No it isn’t. Christy chose that time period because we have good and reliable global satellite coverage over that time span.

        1. “we have good and reliable global satellite coverage”

          Perhaps the global satellite coverage isn’t as good or reliable as you believe it to be.

          1. Oh there’s a convincing argument. The onus is on you to show an error in the measurements. The data is freely available and a completely different group (RSS) gets effectively the same results as UAH. Their averaging period is different so you have to take that into account when comparing the two anomalies.

            1. “Oh there’s a convincing argument.”

              It’s not an argument at all. Just a possibility that figures are not accurate. Don’t see why this is such an outrageous thing to consider.

              1. Especially considering that 1) the data are supplied by NASA, 2) global warming’s #1 cheerleader, Hansen, works for NASA, 3) NASA is a government agency, and 4) global warming is a great excuse to expand the power of government in every aspect of human existence.

                But we should trust the temperature data because governments never lie or ever distort the facts.

                1. This is my thinking as well. But I shy away from climate change as a government conspiracy to expand their powers. They don’t need great excuses, after all, as anyone following events should realize. Poor excuses will do just fine.

              2. If the figures are not accurate, there is no justification for taxing and spending enormous sums and significantly altering the global economy. Get reliable data first then start changing policy. Or is there a magic wand that says that *any* of the data sets cannot possibly be mistaken.

  3. So why did non of the models predict the 15 year pause?

    Either GW isn’t that big of a deal or the 15 year pause isn’t mearketable when begging for funding….

    1. Even the word ‘pause’ is a suspect term.

      If I say something is going to happen at a given rate and it doesn’t, why do I get to call it a ‘pause’ instead of a failed prediction?

      1. Good point. It is like saying that the Dow 20,000 people didn’t fail to predict the market. There was just an unexpected pause in the market’s rise.

        1. I agree with the analogy given acknowledgement of the following two caveats;

          1. The Dow and global markets are simpler than climate.

          2. The Dow and global markets are overwhelmingly anthropogenically driven.

          Not that I doubt your belief in those two statements, but that I don’t think many realize the inherent profitability of successfully predicting simpler systems with high probability.

          1. That is an excellent point.

          2. The Dow and global markets are simpler than climate

            No. Sorry, but the Dow is dependent on millions of people and all kinds of motivations. Climate depends on a handful of factors but largely the big star about 93 million miles away.

            A model has been developed that explains the pattern of global temperatures for the past ~ 150 years quite well and depends on only two factors – sunspots and the decadal ocean oscillation. No other model explains the pattern very well. It has also been extended back to 1620, but I haven’t seen an attempt to fit temperatures since they aren’t known as well before 1850.

            I believe this model will eventually be fine tuned, and over the next few years will be proven correct as global temperatures fall.

            1. I believe the reason sunspots are so significant is that they are indicators of the magnetic state of the sun. And that magnetic state affects the intensity of charged particles emitted and of course Earth’s magnetic field.

              The link may be the CERN CLOUD experiment that showed that cosmic rays initiated cloud formation, as Henrik Svensmark postulated. In times of low sunspots, more cosmic rays and charged particles are able to penetrate the earth’s magnetosphere and reach the atmosphere. There, clouds form and the clouds increase the albedo (reflectivity) of the Earth. So the Earth cools.

            2. Uh… a fundamental aspect of complexity is that enumerating the (arbitrary) components provides little indication of the expanse of the overall problem.

              Humanity could, well within a year, end all global markets (whether we would want to is a separate question). Ceasing climate or putting out the Sun is outside all of humanity’s reach for at least the next 2 generations, and that’s insanely optimistic.

              Additionally, by virtually anyone’s definition, global mean temperature is not climate. Moreover, there’s plenty of evidence the climate existed prior to 1850 or even 1620 (and some of it actually conflicts with much of the DOOOOM! that has been predicted). Additionally, much of the well-studied cycles of the sun comes not from global mean temps but from ice sheet formation.

              Lastly, visit any statistics or machine learning forum on the web, the rule of thumb (train/validate/test) is 50/25/25. That is to say, if you want to *supposedly* model/predict 100 years into the future, you need to train your model on 200 years of data and validate on 100 before you can test on the next 100. The fact that you clip your dataset at 1850 significantly hampers your ability to train and validate.

              1. The dataset is not arbitrarily clipped at 1850, the data are available going back thousands and hundreds of thousands of years, but their precision is not as good. So a model that is to model temperature changes of less than one degree cannot be reliably trained, validated, or tested on those data.

                The model is fitted to 160 years of data – that’s 2.5 ocean oscillations and 14 solar cycles. It should be good for predicting a few solar cycles into the future – ie 25 years, although the solar cycle itself behaves in an erratic manner.

                The solar cycles do not come from global mean temps or from ice sheets, they arise from magnetic structures in the sun and our understanding comes from observations of sunspots that go back to 1610, and from sediments, isotopes, and tree rings etc. going back much further. The solar cycle appears to be the dominant factor governing the earth’s climate on a global scale.

                Having attempted to develop the earth’s average temperature from ground data, I am skeptical of the ‘measurements’, but it has become the indicator of choice in the debate. If you have another one you like, please introduce it.

                1. You’re right, they *should* be able to predict. The fact is, their predictions are failing so the reality is that they are demonstrating that they can’t predict.

      2. Because you’re lying and trying to sell a load of shit?

      3. AGW isn’t dead, it’s pining for the fjords.

        1. My good man, this model ain’t restin’ or pinin’. It is stone deed. This is an ex-model.

      4. Paul.|12.18.13 @ 1:44PM|#
        “Even the word ‘pause’ is a suspect term.”

        I’ve been griping about this for a while; the term *presumes* a continued trend has been interrupted.
        These are supposed to be scientists; why use such a loaded term if you are to be data-driven?

        1. This is consensus driven science, a certain amount propaganda is required.

    2. “Either GW isn’t that big of a deal or…”

      Only two alternatives? How about the possiblity that the 15 year 0.05 degree C rise in something as nebulous and slippery as ‘average global temperature’ is inaccurate and the models are largely correct? I don’t see anyone here questioning the 0.05 figure, and everyone seems willing to take it at face value. So much for climate skepticism.

      1. Or perhaps the period *before* the last 15 years was the true ‘pause’ on the geologic scale. Just throwing this out there.

        1. Don’t mean to be obtuse, but what period before the last 15 years, and pause in what?

      2. Seriously? You want to put more faith in a model, which by definition is wrong the only question is to what degree, versus actual measured data? You really don’t have a clue how real science works, do you?

        It doesn’t matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn’t matter how smart you are. If it doesn’t agree with experiment, it’s wrong. -Richard P. Feynman

        1. “versus actual measured data?”

          Actual measured data of the average global temperature? Come, come, you must realize that any two scientists working independantly will never agree to a single correct figure. I’m not putting my faith in a model. That’s fraught with its own dangers. But I do urge those who would jugde the models by something as slippery and amorphous as average global climate to think carefully.

          Feynman is fine but this is not an experiment, and the earth’s atmosphere is not a laboratory. Experiments, if they are truly experiments, are controlled and repeatable. That’s what the real scientists would tell you.

          1. The experiment is the observations. The models made a prediction. Data was collected. The models were wrong. Therefore models falsified. That is science. The UAH and RSS data is peer reviewed and freely available. Cite a source that questions the validity of the data. Just because you can’t understand what a global average temp means doesn’t mean that the concept is invalid. You have to understand what they’re talking about(corrections for diurnal drift and proper weightings), but there is such a thing.

            Your statement about two scientists working independently is nonsensical. Two scientists working independently sure as hell will agree on a single correct figure for the speed of light in a vacuum. Or the gravitational constant. Or the charge on an electron. Or a whole host of things.

            1. An experiment is a controlled procedure to test a hypothesis. A scientific experiment must be repeatable. If not, the results are shunted off into some pseudo scientific limbo.

              “Cite a source that questions the validity of the data.”

              Sorry, that’s not really my bag, but if you mean that nobody is questioning the validity of the data, maybe they should. Following the herd has its advantages, but striking out on one’s own and questioning the consensus can win nobel prizes.

              I don’t mean that the average global temperature is an invalid concept. Just damnably sippery. I’m sure two scientists, charged independantly to come up with their own figures for this, would differ. I wasn’t thinking about the problem of the speed of light etc.

              I don’t see why you put so much stock in the fact that the models are being proved incorrect. Surely that is to be expected. We’ve been unsuccessfully modelling the climate and weather since the invention of computers, if not longer. Isn’t it a little disingenuous to expect all that to change?

              1. The hypothesis is that increasing CO2 causes catastrophic global warming or more precisely an Equilibrium Climate Sensitivity of ~4C per doubling of CO2. We have injected additional CO2 into the atmosphere and now we measure the resulting temperature. We measure solar output, volcanic emissions of aerosols and everything else we can think of. Guess what? The data don’t agree with the hypothesis. There’s you experiment. Not only must an experiment be repeatable, it must be falsifiable and CAGW up to his point hasn’t been because literally everything has been ascribed to global warming: warming, cooling, wetter, drier, more hurricanes, fewer hurricanes. Finally we have something testable and poof the null hypothesis cannot be rejected, i.e. the hypothesis failed.

                I put so much stock in the fact that the models have failed because ALL OF THE DIRE PREDICTIONS ARE BASED UPON THEM. Does Chicken Little ring a bell?

                1. I appreciate the point you are making. I’m not sure what you take from the failure of the hypothesis. I think it’s still a little too hasty to think we can continue to emit dozens of gigatonnes of CO2 each year without adverse effects somewhere down the line.

                  The hypothesis is naive. We have a simple equation that a middle school student could understand and expect it to link CO2 levels and average global temperatures in a lock-step fashion. The interactions between the elements of the earth’s atmosphere are hellaciously complex and the science to study them is in its infancy. Hypotheses are bound to fail. I think, however, the basics are sound and nobody is questioning them. Greenhouse gases are heat-trapping. Emiting them into the atmosphere will result in higher temperatures. I don’t see any way of getting around that.

                  1. But what if they increase the albedo?

          2. The experiment is the observations. The models made a prediction. Data was collected. The models were wrong. Therefore models falsified. That is science. The UAH and RSS data is peer reviewed and freely available. Cite a source that questions the validity of the data. Just because you can’t understand what a global average temp means doesn’t mean that the concept is invalid. You have to understand what they’re talking about(corrections for diurnal drift and proper weightings), but there is such a thing.

            Your statement about two scientists working independently is nonsensical. Two scientists working independently sure as hell will agree on a single correct figure for the speed of light in a vacuum. Or the gravitational constant. Or the charge on an electron. Or a whole host of things.

          3. The experiment is the observations. The models made a prediction. Data was collected. The models were wrong. Therefore models falsified. That is science. The UAH and RSS data is peer reviewed and freely available. Cite a source that questions the validity of the data. Just because you can’t understand what a global average temp means doesn’t mean that the concept is invalid. You have to understand what they’re talking about(corrections for diurnal drift and proper weightings), but there is such a thing.

            Your statement about two scientists working independently is nonsensical. Two scientists working independently sure as hell will agree on a single correct figure for the speed of light in a vacuum. Or the gravitational constant. Or the charge on an electron. Or a whole host of things.

  4. The IPCC now reports that the observed global mean surface temperature increased at a rate of 0.12 degree Celsius per decade from 1951 to 2012, for a total increase of about 0.72 degree during that period. At that rate, the global average temperature by the end of this century will be more than one degree higher than it is now. An increase of just one degree more is unlikely to be catastrophic.

    Because we all know every trend continues at a constant rate to infinity. Their models are wrong Ron. They are crap. So I don’t see how you can make any projections about the future. So what if temps have increased over the last however many years? Without a valid model to explain why, that observation tells us nothing about the future.

    1. Hey, if my nephew continues his current rate of growth, in 30 years he’ll be 20 feet tall!

      1. It’s a true statement.

        1. But scientifically impossible.

          1. try plotting the kid’s growth rate on Al Gore’s hockey stick.

            1. Then he would be 800 feet tall.

    2. There’s really nothing wrong with saying that as long as you make explicit that it rests on the assumption that the past trend will continue at least for another 100 years.

      The point is that even if we make this groundless assumption, the outcome won’t be catastrophic.

      1. There’s really nothing wrong with saying that as long as you make explicit that it rests on the assumption that the past trend will continue at least for another 100 years.

        I came to a similar realization recently. I can’t tell how many times I’ve read something like; ‘the warming believed to be from anthropogenic sources will force expected temperatures up’ and just assumed that they meant humans were making the world warmer when ‘as humans make more predictions, the predictions go up’ is an near equally valid and accurate interpretation.

    3. “Without a valid model to explain why…”

      I think we’ve had a valid model for some 150 years now, since the heat trapping qualities of greenhouse gases was first discovered. We emit something like 20 billion tonnes of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere every year. Actions have consequences. How’s that for a valid model?

      1. CO2 has a logaritmic effect, which means each doubling of CO2 has smaller and smaller effects. This is why I think that even if human CO2 emissions are causing the warming that there is really nothing to do unless you want an engineering solution, or you have a time machine, i.e. the really critical amounts of CO2 were emitted in the 50’s. Now you could double it again and have a very small effect.

        1. “which means each doubling of CO2 has smaller and smaller effects”

          Sure, when X is large. But when X is small, the effects can be enormous.

          1. No, what it means is that you have to double CO2 to get a linear change in temperature, i.e. 280-560ppm to get the next ~1-1.5C rise. And then 560-1120ppm to get the next 1-1.5C rise. Each additional ppm of CO2 in the atmosphere has less and less of a warming effect.

            1. I take your point. My point is that it takes much less additional CO2 to double the amount when the amount is small. Doubling from 1 ppm to 2 ppm, for example.

              1. We’re at 400 and adding 2-4 per year. At that rate we’ll have doubled Pre-industrial about 40 years from now.

                1. “At that rate we’ll have doubled Pre-industrial about 40 years from now”

                  But most businesses aim at much better returns than a 40 year doubling period. Wouldn’t a CEO who appeared before the stock holders promising to double their investment in 40 years find himself out of a job by the next day? I’m assuming that economic growth is linked to fossil fuel consumption, of course. The economic imperatives tell the managers to burn as much fossil fuel as quickly as possible. Therein lie profits.

                  1. “The economic imperatives tell the managers to burn as much fossil fuel as quickly as possible.”

                    You don’t understand economics. Businesses improve profits by becoming more efficient – burning less fuel for the same work, since fuel is a cost.

                    Population growth and industrialization drive up fuel use. Population will peak in about 20 years, industrialization of China etc is following a less energy intensive path than the West due to technology. The CO2 from humans, which is a small fraction of CO2 produced, will peak in about 30-40 years and then decline.

                    1. If we can double the size of the economy while decreasing our CO2 emissions, then I will certainly have to reconsider my thoughts on the issue. So far I’m not convinced this is possible.

                  2. In order to increase human CO2 forcings, fossil fuels must be extracted from the ground, refined, distributed, purchased by businesses and consumers and then combusted in cars, factories, power plants etc. Unlike stocks, there have to be tangible actions by people to increase the amount of CO2 forcings and it is not reasonable to think that all of these things will grow at a faster and faster rate. I have read that the WHO believes the world population will level out in the second half of the 21st century. Oil production is up in North America but it hasn’t doubled.

                    The number of cars isn’t doubling any time soon, nor is the number of power plants, etc. The IPCC models apparently assume a rate of increase in CO2 forcings that would be unprecedented in history.

                    1. “The number of cars isn’t doubling any time soon, nor is the number of power plants, etc.”

                      OK, any time soon, but how about doubling in the next 20 or 30 years? And continuing like that for a century? That’s what it would take to grow of the wealth of the entire world’s population to a decent level. Where poverty in Bangladesh or Mali for example is equibly interchangable with poverty in the USA. That’s been the implicit promise all along.

                      I have another, more interesting question on a topic you brushed across. Often you hear that China is opening 3 coal burning power plants each and every week. Something like this. I suspect this is bullshit. That seems insanely high. Any comments?

              2. If Earth’s atmosphere had 2 ppm CO2, we wouldn’t be here. We wouldn’t be dead. We’d never have been. Atmospheric CO2 is essential for terrestrial life.

            2. Moreover, what we produce annually is nowhere near (by at least 1-2 orders of magnitude) what the biosphere releases and collects annually. This can be seen in the Mauna Loa charts where seasonal variations persist and even grow larger in addition to the rise in CO2 and in opposition to the more steady emission by humans.

              It should be noted that the majority of the biosphere itself prefers a warmer more carbon rich atmosphere and, without us (or via us) is able to tap into carbon reserves that had been lost during various ice ages. Lots of scientists worry that coral formations are going away, but considering that coral formations represent the dead, calcified (and carbon!) remains of living organisms, it’s a rather good sign for biology.

      2. I think we’ve had a valid model for some 150 years now, since the heat trapping qualities of greenhouse gases was first discovered. We emit something like 20 billion tonnes of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere every year. Actions have consequences. How’s that for a valid model?

        Correlation is not causation.

        We understand CO2 chemistry and physics rather well. The models require a 3-5x amplification factor (usually ascribed to H2O) in order to attain the observed T increase.

        More importantly, the shape of the curve predicted by the CO2-centered models is wrong. CO2 has increased monotonically (steadily increased) over the past 150+ years, but the T curve has gone up and down. Take the period 1940-1975 when CO2 increased from about 308 to 330 ppm, but the T declined slightly. This proves that other factors are more important than CO2 concentration.

        These other factors are much less well understood, but are now coming into better focus. Most important appears to be the solar cycle – sunspots are indicators of the cycle. The other key factor appears to be the decadal ocean oscillation. A simple combination of these two factors explains quite well the shape of the T curve over the past 150 years. This model predicts that we will enter a cooling period for the next 20 years – a result NEVER predicted by CO2-centered models.

        Thus, we will soon have definitive refutation of AGW.

        1. Surely there is nothing new in the theory that sunspots and ocean cycles are important factors in the earth’s climate. And nothing you’ve written suggests that we can continue to emit greenhouse gases with impunity.

          1. Solar cycles have been discounted by the AGW folks because they have focused on the luminosity of the sun, which oscillates only slightly – not enough to account for the temperature changes observed. But the AGW folks have not taken into account the effect of the solar magnetosphere on the earth. It has a significant impact on the cosmic radiation and ionic wind that reaches the earth’s atmosphere. The solar magnetosphere varies much more widely than the luminosity. The CERN CLOUD experiment conducted in 2011 provided experimental evidence for the link between cosmic radiation and cloud formation. And more clouds means a cooler earth.

            The ocean cycles are a smaller factor and thus more difficult to deconvolute from the data. Currently a 65-year period provides the best fit, but this is likely to be revised as more data are collected in the next few decades.

            Between them, the sunspot number and the ocean oscillation explain about 90% of the variation in the ‘average T’ of the earth since 1850. All the other factors – CO2, volcanoes, la Nina, etc at most account for about 10% of the variation.

            1. I don’t know the state of the science, but perhaps it’s simply too much to ask the climatologist/modellers to incorporate something like solar wind into their models. A CERN experiment, 2 years ago, I doubt ever been independently replicated, causing climatologists to rework their models seems precipitate to me. Not enough is know about the phenomena perhaps to make it possible. And models have to leave things out. That’s the nature of models. You want something with everything in? You got reality.

      3. correlation is not causation

        yes, CO2 has a ‘greenhouse’ effect
        yes, we were in a warming period

        Those two statements do not have to relate at all. The fundamental argument against AGW is that the models are wholly invalid because CO2 is the dominant factor in those models, giving little weight to solar impact or even the largest greenhouse gase, H2O.
        So no, that is not a valid model.

        1. “So no, that is not a valid model.”

          Are there any valid models?

    4. “Essentially, all models are wrong, but some are useful.”
      -G.E.P. Box

  5. The science is settled! A bunch of really smart scientists took a vote and agreed that the politicians who provide the funding for their climate research grants need to do something about the climate!

    What else do you need? Hypothesis, experiments and conclusions? Predictive computer models that actually predict? That’s so quaint!

    They took a vote! A fucking vote! There’s a consensus! CONSENSUS!

    1. That’s really the worst part. Even if the scientific evidence were overwhelming in support of AGW, the question of what should be done about it is not a scientific one.

    2. Democracy, is there nothing it can’t do?

    3. It’s good to see that somebody else around here understands science.

      It seems that most people think that science has not progressed beyond Francis Bacon’s 1620 “scientific method” that they learned about in junior high school or Karl Popper’s rejection of classical views in favor of empirical falsification that they maybe learned about in college.

      Science has advanced far beyond those discredited paradigms. It is now all about advancing the consensus narrative that is most likely obtain government funding.

  6. The models are likely being sold as much more advanced than they really are – this is not uncommon among scientists. To wit, the models very likely make incorrect implicit assumptions regarding the effects of coupling. Mathematical models quite often are simplified (for various reasons including computational efficiency, lack of reliable data, etc.) by neglecting coupling or other so-called second order effects. The problem is that, when considered in whole, these effects no longer are negligible. I am not a climatologist, but I question (for instance) how well the models incorporate the effect of increased plant growth or other flora or fauna adaptation to carbon dioxide levels, which would help dampen the levels. Even if this issue is accurately accounted for in the models, there are likely myriad other crude approximations or neglection of mechanisms/coupling.

    In the area of science that I work in, the systems we are trying to model are orders of magnitude simpler than the global climate – yet, by and large, our models are loaded with implicit assumptions and simplifications.

    1. That’s an interesting and persuasive comment. However, couldn’t your objections to modelling be applied to the measurement of the ‘average global climate’ with equal validity?

      I’m sure you’re right about the limitations of the models, but we are measuring the models against this average global climate, which is just as dubious and prone to simplification, yet nobody treats with any skepticism.

      I hope I’m making myself clear. The models are found wanting when compared with the average global temperature, yet it’s just as plausible that this average global temperature is inaccurate. Perhaps it’s the models that are accurate and the problem lies in our inability to put an accurate number on the average global temperature.

      1. But aren’t the models predicated on the ‘average global temperatures’ as measured or estimated before now to begin with? You’re just saying we might not be able to rely on these whatsoever. This would affect both sides of the argument.

        1. “But aren’t the models predicated on the ‘average global temperatures’ as measured or estimated before now to begin with?”

          I honestly don’t know the answer to that. The models may or may not have the concept of average global temperature plugged into them, along with a whole load of other variables. It’s still conceivable that the models may accurately predict warming that our ham fisted attempts to measure average global temperature have failed to capture.

          1. In other words, that’s great in practice but it’ll never work in theory.

            You don’t “plug in” global temperature, you compute it. Or you measure it. And if you’re worried about the measured data being messed up, then you should be even more skeptical of the models since the measurements for GISS have been consistently adjusted up from the raw measurements. Even with that forcing the models still overpredict the actual temps.

      2. it’s just as plausible that this average global temperature is inaccurate.

        Sorry, NO. The average global T has been measured by satellite since 1979, and it agrees well with integrated ground measurements. It is considered more accurate, however, since it takes into account the entire globe – an integrated function of millions of data points – whereas the surface data are sparse in many regions (Pacific Ocean, Antarctica, Arctic) and occasionally polluted with local effects (heat islands).

        Before 1979, going back to about 1850, we have surface T measurements. Before 1850 everything becomes more speculative since we have to use proxies (tree rings, ice cores, isotopes, sediments) that are indirect measures of T and are influenced by other factors. Nevertheless, the broad T profiles are discernible going back hundreds of thousands of years. By that measure we are in one of the warmer periods of the last 500,000 years.

        1. Your last statement is wholly inaccurate. There have been a number of warm periods comparable or greater than that currently.

          What has raised concern is the rate of increase in this century, not the temperature itself.

          Additionally, it is very reasonable to question the accuracy of global temperature measurements. Many of the models do not rely on ‘satellite measurements’, but rather mundance ground measurements of questionable consistancy.
          There are also very significant questions concerning the tree ring data, much of which had been was brought to light in ‘climategate’ where the analysis was suspect and the original data was found to have been “lost”.

          1. Your last statement is wholly inaccurate. There have been a number of warm periods comparable or greater than that currently.

            I didn’t say there were not other warm periods – I said: “we are in one of the warmer periods of the last 500,000 years”

            The rate of temperature increase is not unusual. The reason one might think it is unusual is that we have very precise data for the past 160 years measured to +/- 0.1 degree C, but only proxy data for prior epochs, which are by their nature smoothed over multiple years. It’s a red herring.

            Tree ring data depend on many factors (rain, clouds, nutrients, competing species) in addition to temperature, so they are suspect, as you indicate. This is particularly true if one limits the number of samples, as was done in the climategate data you refer. Nevertheless, the data can be helpful for estimating multi-year conditions if they are correlated over wide geographic ranges.

    2. The models are being sold not for their scientific accuracy, but rather for their political utility.

      1. Unfortunately true for most of the models, as Christy points out.

  7. The report’s “Summary for Policymakers” declares it “extremely likely that human influence has been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century.”

    That’s a big change of heart compared to those years when human action was blamed for ALL the warming and treated those that suggested other causes as flat-earthers, deniers and pimps for Big Oil. Now we humans are called the dominant cause. Next couple of reports and if there is anybody left who cares, they will call us the nominal cause. I call that progress.

    1. In my experience, ‘dominant’ continues a trend in the opposite direction. The original IPCC report suggested humans may be contributing, then humans are contributing but the degree or significance is uncertain, then humans are significantly contributing, and now we are the dominant force.

      And, of course, no consideration of the larger context is given outside of ‘less carbon or doom!’. Personally, even if humans are the sole cause over the last 50 yrs. I’d still prefer warm warm beaches, a moon with an American flag in it, one Germany (without Communists or Nazis), and my wireless internet fast.

  8. If you like your AGW computer model, you can keep it…period.

    1. This made my day, sir.

  9. The models are most certainly inadequate, but is there a case to be made for a low-cost hedge against catastrophic GW? I realize that’s not what’s being offered, but that debate is more relevant.

    1. low-cost hedge against catastrophic GW

      A low cost hedge would be cheaper then what we are already paying.

    2. A hedge already exists and is in play, it is simply contrary to progressive ideology so it is ignored.

      If sea levels rise, land prices near risk areas will reflect both risk and uncertainty. Anywhere there is risk and uncertainty, there is a natural market. if you believe the risk is larger than other locals, sell out and reap that profit. If you think the risk is overstated, buy the real estate and profit.

      The same goes for food prices, real estate with weather risk, farm land and most elements of climate change. This won’t happen suddenly, things will slowly adjust just as the climate slowly adjusts. Our optimal solution is most likely to get out of the way and let every individual do what they think best to improve their lot.

      Any actual practicing farmer is an expert in risk management, it is their primary job. Trust me, they understand this much better than the babbling eco loon who just understands how to get the next pilfered grant form big daddy gov and little else.

      Things will happen this way climate change or no climate change. Different crops will be grown in different places and different parcels of farmland will be worth different amounts. So it goes unless some guys with guns see ways to steal things.

      Of course such a scenario doesn’t increase government handouts to the right cronies, so it certainly not what they want to hear.

      1. And all the lefties live on the coasts and will have to give up their land! “Can you even imagine dear? We’d have to move to Stockton! We must fight global warming!”

    3. Does low-cost include profitable hedges against catastrophic AGW? Because every discussion I’ve had with AGW believers about nuclear power (esp. newer reactor designs) seems to end up revealing the fact that low-cost is, to me, synonymous with lose-lose (e.g. higher taxes, less freedom).

  10. my neighbor’s sister-in-law makes 61 USD hourly on the laptop. She has been fired for 6 months but last month her income was 19604 USD just working on the laptop for a few hours. over here
    ????????????????
    =====================
    http://www.tec30.com
    =====================

    1. You neighbor’s sister-in-law blows goats for money.

  11. More dinner party conversation from Salon:

    http://www.salon.com/2013/12/1…..r_partner/

    7 ways to shut down a climate change denier

    Within the community of scientists and others concerned about anthropogenic climate change, those whom Inhofe calls skeptics are more commonly termed contrarians, naysayers and denialists. Not everyone who questions climate change science fits that description, of course?some people are genuinely unaware of the facts or honestly disagree about their interpretation. What distinguishes the true naysayers is an unwavering dedication to denying the need for action on the problem, often with weak and long-disproved arguments about supposed weaknesses in the science behind global warming.

    What follows is only a partial list of the contrarians’ bad arguments and some brief rebuttals of them.

    1. I haven’t clicked on the link. What’s one of the ways to shut down a denier?

      1. Tell the denier he/she is a dumbfuck cause consensus rules.

        1. Tell the climate alarmist to stop believing in a pseudoscience headed by AL Gore.

      2. I posted in the AM links:

        So what if the hockey stick graphs might be wrong. The predictions are made on models. Got that! Models which were proven by the hockey stick but the models are still OK even if the hockey stick is wrong.

        1. unfortunatly all models are based on the assumption that the Hockey stick is correct and therefore all models start there and continue in error.

        2. But what about the puck? It’s the puck that really matters.

      3. Ad hominems, straw men, moving the goalposts, appeals to authority, appeals to ignorance…. The standard list of fallacies that the left truly feel are compelling arguments.

      4. #5: put him in a headlock and give him a noogie

      5. I have braved the derp for you. Since this is a topic I’m intimately familiar with and have heard all this before, my mind is inoculated against this particular brand of derp.

        1. 1. “myth”: CO2 is only a trace gas, so it can’t be causing climate change.
          “truth”: Even though it’s only .04 percent of the atmosphere and 95% of that is from natural causes, it’s causing “forcing” in the water vapor cycle

          2. “myth”: Hockey stick disproven, medieval warm period ignored.
          “truth”: A bunch of smart people believe in the hockey stick and there’s a “high level of confidence. TAKE THAT!

          3. “myth”: the 17 year hiatus.
          “Truth”: Nuh, uh. The extra heat is in the ocean (which we have no proof of) and even if it isn’t, so what! We still say we know what’s going on!

          4. “myth”: It’s the sun, stupid.
          “truth”: Well, I’m gonna punch this strawman about solar intensity and claim that the study done about cosmic radiation is bunk.

          5. “myth”: Consensus doesn’t matter, Science isn’t done by popularity.
          “truth”: The data is all publicly available! (You know, all that cherry picked, “adjusted” data that proves them right)

          6. “myth”: Climatologist do it for the money.
          “truth”: Nuh uh, the US spent ONLY $5billion on climate sciences. They spent way more on other stuff. Obviously, no one would lie for a mere $5b.

          7. “myth”: Tech advances in energy sources would be a better fix than punishing “polluters”
          “truth”: By implementing taxes and fines, we ARE encouraging new forms of energy production.

          1. “truth” 2000 the consensus was Snowfall was a thing of the past. What happened?

            Warming is so far manifesting itself more in winters which are less cold than in much hotter summers. According to Dr David Viner, a senior research scientist at the climatic research unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia,within a few years winter snowfall will become “a very rare and exciting event”.

            “Children just aren’t going to know what snow is,” he said.

            http://www.independent.co.uk/e…..24017.html

            Oh yeah I know! NOW global warming is causing MORE snow, Correct?

            If one way doesn’t work change it to suit you agenda.

    2. Ah yes. Because if you don’t want the government to do something, you don’t want anything to be done at all by anyone.

      1. The sad thing is that Team Blue devotees actually believe that.

    3. How to shut down climate change leftoids, if they responded to logic or reality: remind them that the onus of proof is upon *them*, not the skeptics, and that all their alleged proofs are just rationalistic theories and mathematical models which do *not* refer to facts of reality.

      1. Oh yeah, forgot ‘switching the burden of proof’ in my list of standard leftist fallacies.

      2. When I was forced to personally research AGW by a friend, I was amazed at how much “evidence” was actually models, and how often true data aka measurements went against the models, which then had to be tweaked, etc.

    4. If a lull in global warming continues for another decade, would that vindicate the contrarians’ case? Not necessarily, because climate is complex.

      ITS COMPLEX!!!

      As a climate change Denier i would shut down his shut down by pointing out calling something “complex” is simply another way of saying you do not understand it.

      Another decade would mean the world has not warmed for 27 years. When you predict warming over a 100 year period and there is no warming for 27 years your prediction has failed.

      1. As a climate change Denier i would shut down his shut down by pointing out calling something “complex” is simply another way of saying you do not understand it.

        Oh yeah, well just because you don’t understand it doesn’t mean climate scientists don’t understand it! They’re like really smart and stuff! You’re just a libertarian with a simple mind who only understands simple things! Smart people watch the Daily Show, and I watch the Daily Show, so that makes me smart! Do you watch the Daily Show? Didn’t think so!

        /Tony

      2. “When you predict warming over a 100 year period and there is no warming for 27 years your prediction has failed.”

        Complex, chaotic, non-linear all basically mean unpredictable. Not random and not predictable. A complex system, by definition, is not predictable.

        1. Wrong. Complex systems are modeled all the time. Ab initio models are computationally expensive and we tend to do them only on small ensembles because of that but that doesn’t mean it can’t be done. Chaotic systems are not necessarily disordered systems. Many still tend towards at least metastable if not stable states which are computable. Non-linear is the least compelling of your adjectives. Non-linear problems are numerically solved all of the time.

          1. “Complex systems are modeled all the time.”

            Systems as complex as the earth’s climate being modelled all the time? Maybe so, but I doubt that they are modelled successfully.

            1. Now you’re getting it. But you also need to ask why all of the models show a warming bias. Could it be that they have a bad assumption in there? Say, an assumption that the ECS is 4C per doubling instead of the 1-1.5C due to just CO2 alone? And if you go back to the actual theory that’s pretty much exactly the number, 1.5, it will tell you. The 4C that they plug in is because they assume massive positive H2O feedback. As more measurements have been made and real world results collected, it’s increasingly likely that H2O feedback is mildly negative.

            2. mtrueman,

              Water vapor is the biggest GHG. If the atmosphere is largely saturated as far as absorbance (although not thought to be the case) then adding CO2 has little effect.

              If the amplification due to water vapor is not occurring (which it does not seem to be both experimentally) then the effect of CO2 will be much less than predicted.

              If clouds, not yet well understood, change by a few %, this can counteract any effect of CO2.

              Ocean cycles and the sun are not well understood and are being evoked by CAGW believers including climate scientists to explain away the “pause”. We should not be making predictions (or taking them seriously) when there is much to be discovered about the solar system and the climate on earth.

              Your argument that maybe the temperature data is wrong is an unusual one. There are at least 5 different temp. records – many of the surface ones have similar sources. You also have sea surface temps, and more recent ocean heat, as well as the two satellite and balloons. All say that the temp. is not increasing very fast, although one argument is the heat is hiding in the deep ocean without heating the upper layer.
              There are many documented (on their own web sites) adjustments of surface records, always to make the temp. change appear larger (coincidentally I’m sure, not believer bias), Thus any errors in the temp. record may be in the opposite direction.

            3. So before you argued that the models were good but why trust the temp. records and now you are arguing that complex systems can’t be modeled?

              Make up your mind and stop changing the goalposts.

              1. “Make up your mind and stop changing the goalposts.”

                There is no need to make up my mind, I’m skeptical and this is a field in its infancy. I’m not a political partisan and don’t view the issue as a football game, goalposts and all.

                I was simply entertaining the possibility that the measurement of ‘average global temperature’ may not be as accurate as everyone here assumes it to be. Of course complex systems can be modelled. The climate has been modelled since the advent of computers. Problem is that it’s never been modelled accurately. It’s a little disingenuous to go on about the failure of these recent climate models as though it were something new and unexpected.

                Don’t really understand your saying that we should not be making predictions. That’s like saying we shouldn’t be doing science. Science begins with predictions. You don’t sound like an anti-science yobbo.

                You say *or I imagine you saying* that we shouldn’t take any steps when there is so much that is unknown. A sensible suggestion, I think. But we are taking steps, emitting dozens of gigatonnes of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere each year, an irrevocable step into the unknown. This makes me very leery, and I’m surprised at the complacency and sneering doubt with which the possibly dire outcomes are dismissed. I see a relexive and unpersuasive defence of the status quo at work here.

  12. One of the warmist lines is that there has been no warming because the heat has gone into the deep oceans. Is there actual data to verify this or is just bullshit?

    1. Cytotoxic|12.18.13 @ 3:02PM|#
      “One of the warmist lines is that there has been no warming because the heat has gone into the deep oceans. Is there actual data to verify this or is just bullshit?”

      There was a guy who used to show up here and would engage on real points. He made this claim, but then was honest enough to admit is was simply theorized, mostly since the catastrophists had no other mechanism t explain it.
      I asked whether that didn’t suggest a bit of modesty was indicated for the claims, and got hems and haws.
      I’ve asked since in other locations, and gotten not much more. It was ‘written up’, but…

    2. The problem with that theory is that the air above the water would still have to be much hotter than the water to be true the water can’t just suddenly absorb all of the heat. If it could it wouldn’t just stop at a certain point it would continue to absorb more heat and we would quickly head towards another ice age, oh wait nobody would ever predict another ice age would they.

      1. Not since the 70’s at least.

      2. “we would quickly head towards another ice age”

        Don’t mean to be a pedant, but we are already in the midst of an ice age. The ice at the poles means we are in an ice age.

        1. We are not considered to be in an ice age. We are in a relatively warm period if you consider millions of years of history. Usually an ice age is considered when extensive glacier fields cover both N and S hemispheres.

          1. “We are not considered to be in an ice age”

            Ah the passive voice! The good folks of wikipedia do consider us to be in an ice age. Check out the tell-tale ice at the north and south poles if you need confirmation.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quaternary_glaciation

            1. You’re right. We are in an ice age, but we happen to be in an interglacial at the moment. The “normal” historical state of the planet is to be much warmer. Wait about a billion years and we’ll be back to that and then some as the solar output continues to increase.

              1. Perhaps I should have used the term ice-age epoch – the really cataclysmic freezing of the earth. We are NOT in one of those super-cold periods.

                A very informative blog that discusses much of this is here.

  13. The warmists are NEVER going to admit they don’t have the slightest idea what they’re doing.

    I’m just sick of all this. Bad data, bad statistics, bad models, worthless predictions, and cries of “Burn the heretic!” against anyone who tries to point this out.

    Not to mention the bad economics ass-uming that warming is necessarily bad. Quick trivia question, do more people live in the tropical or the polar regions?

    ‘But, CITIES WILL BE INUNDATED!’ B——t. At 1% annual depreciation and reconstruction, the cost of moving an entire city, ANY city, in 100 years is ZERO. Old buildings get torn down (as they do), new ones get built not in this (soon to be flooded) lot, but a different one instead. 50 feet to the left or 50 miles, it doesn’t matter.

    Between 1945 and 1985 a city of a million people was moved 2000 miles west by this process. No catastrophe, no refugees. But a million people left Chicago and Los Angeles gained a million. Not everyone leaving Chicago went to LA of course, and not everyone moved to LA from Chicago. But on average that’s what happened.

    I mean, what a radical concept, that bright ball in the sky is driving climate, just like it always has. CO2 is all but irrelevant to warming. But it is produced by EEEVIL industry, and any good socialist will tell you that EEEVIL industry must be controlled by good and beneficent government…

    1. Quick trivia question, do more people live in the tropical or the polar regions?

      The trivia questions are endless.

      Between 1945 and 1985 a city of a million people was moved 2000 miles west by this process. No catastrophe, no refugees. But a million people left Chicago and Los Angeles gained a million. Not everyone leaving Chicago went to LA of course, and not everyone moved to LA from Chicago. But on average that’s what happened.

      No catastrophe, no process, and no top-down intervention. Brilliant!

    2. Your point about migration is an interesting one. The affect on coastal cities is one of the things that really does concern me, but I hadn’t considered how frequently new cities rise and old cities fall (metaphorically and in some cases literally).

      1. Yes, this is a very good argument against alarmism.

        Basically the entire movement to the Sun Belt was completely painless, and so would any movement of people to counteract the extremely slow, almost glacial pace of any temperature increases.

        One look at the globe also shows large areas of land in Siberia and Canada that would open up. It would probably be a net good.

        1. “One look at the globe also shows large areas of land in Siberia and Canada that would open up. It would probably be a net good.”

          Similarly, there is concern regarding the Polar Bears; loss of habitat, etc. But Polar Bears eat seals; if there are fewer bears, there might be more seals.
          Who decided that X Polar Bears is the right number?

          1. Al Gore decided.

          2. Go to the web site Polar Bear Science.

            Much of the data on polar bears is misrepresented.

            http://polarbearscience.com/

  14. The effect of phytoplankton on global temperatures.

    It is my (layman’s) understanding that the earth is a self-regulating system. If temperatures are too warm, then the phytoplankton release a larger quantity of DMS into the atmosphere, which helps to form clouds. More clouds means more energy and heat are reflected back out into space, causing the earth to cool. When it gets too cold, then less of the DMS is released, reducing the amount of cloud cover, which in turn allows more heat to reach the earth.

    1. DMS is that shit Chinamen cooks use that gives my wife a headache.

    2. It is my (layman’s) understanding that the earth is a self-regulating system.

      This is entirely true. A climate catastrophe has already occurred on this planet and the organisms that caused it (continue to) dominate the biosphere by several orders of magnitude. In a ‘global organism’ sense, we could be considered a recently adapted symbiote intended to get at the carbon (and temperature) that has been lost through glaciation.

      1. I’d be careful how far you push this. It smacks of the Gaia hypothesis.

        There are some self-regulating mechanisms, but consider that the newborn earth had NO oxygen and lots of CO2, NH3, and CH4. A lot has changed with the advent of life. Early organisms devoured CO2 and eventually produced the oxygen we have now. And the concentrations of oxygen and CO2 have varied substantially in the past few million years. Self-regulating implies that the system comes back to some steady state, but that is far from the case.

  15. All of you are just anti-science.

    Which is settled by the way.

    1. It’s not the science that ultimately is the problem here. I believe it’s the economics. If you follow the arguments of self described skeptics, it won’t take too long before you come across statements that warmists won’t be happy until they destroy the economy. They’ve put their finger on the fact that implicit in the scientists take on the issue is a prescription against economic growth, which has been an absolute necessity for economists, both left and right, for at least the past couple of centuries.

      You say the readers here are anti-science. I say they allow social science to trump physical science.

      1. Right, and the warmists quote the Precautionary Principle. Remind me again how that is scientific? The core skeptic argument lies in the science itself. The passion comes from the fact that the warmists want to abuse the science to achieve particular goals. And if you listen to Hansen or read the SPM it isn’t implicit, it’s explicit.

        1. “The core skeptic argument lies in the science itself”

          I’m not sure I’m aware of the core skeptic argument. Self-described skeptics I’ve followed tend to go on about Al Gore and corrupt climatologists, or contend that since their models fail to predict, the whole enterprise must be a sham. Or say that a warmer climate is a better climate or that CO2 is nothing more than plant food. Eventually, they almost always end up wringing their hands over economic issues.

          How do warmists ‘abuse the science?’

          1. Mann’s hockey stick. Gatekeeping in journals. Actively removing editors which don’t agree with their positions. Stitching disparate data sets together to tell a story, i.e. using dendrochronology data when it agrees with warming and then neglecting the data (replacing it with a completely different metrology) when it disagrees with warming. See Yamal. And now claiming that their models haven’t failed when the data clearly says they have.

            It’s truly despicable.

          2. The core skeptic argument is that Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming is false because the direct warming from a doubling of atmospheric CO2 gives rise to a 1-1.5C rise in mean global temps and not the 4C that the IPCC claims and which the models use and which is the likely reason that they run hot.

            As to the whole thing being a sham, consider the actions of one of the grandfathers of CAGW: For his testimony Hansen and his sympathetic Team Blue pal chose the historically hottest day of the year in DC and turned off the AC in the committee chamber just to improve the optics as Hansen went on about how we’re all going to boil. What would you call that? I’ll also add as someone who has worked in an academic environment I have seen firsthand just how corrupting federal research funding is to academics. I even knew one researcher who was forced to write a letter of apology for double publishing. But don’t worry about him. He was so good in pulling in the grant money that he was hired at an Ivy League college shortly afterwards.

            1. That’s a good core skeptical argument, but we really can’t be certain what the temperature will be when and if we double atmospheric CO2. At least not until it’s actually doubled. A 1.5 degree C increase in temperatures may be more catastrophic, a subjective term it seems to me, than we bargain for.

              Can’t answer for the mischief that goes on in climate science departments. People are people, after all.

      2. “You say the readers here are anti-science. I say they allow social science to trump physical science.”

        How is physical science being “trumped”?

        1. The economic ramifications of dealing with climate change are so horrifying that the science, whatever it says, is set aside. If we were to seriously curtail fossil fuel use and go with alternatives, that would result in a severe economic disruption. The lives of billions could conceivably be lost.

          1. The physical science says we’re not warming catastrophically. The shrill cries I hear come from the Left saying that Keystone XL will kill the planet and coal trains are death trains. The burden of proof is on the warmers and not the other way around.

            1. ‘Catastrophical’ is not a word that has a scientific basis. It’s subjective. Of course it’s essentially a political issue, and those with the smaller commitment to capitalism and the existing status quo, the Left, will be willing to question it. That’s in America. In Venezuela, arguably the most significant Leftist regime on the planet at the moment, the government subsidizes fuel prices, encouraging fossil fuel consumption.

              This burden of proof thing is irrelevant. It’ll come down to a political fight and the stronger, more commited side will come out on top.

      3. It is my (layman’s) understanding that the earth is a self-regulating system.

        Statistics is not physical science and modeling is intrinsically rather anti-physical. Moreover, complexity science, esp. one based on anthropogenicity, can’t avoid being a social. Saying CO2 absorbs radiation has little to climate. This has been true since the beginning when Svante Arrhenius hypothesized the phenomenon he suggested we burn fossil fuels strictly as an intrinsic means to prevent global winter and hypothesized that we wouldn’t be able to produce enough CO2 to avert catastrophe. His estimates didn’t account for the Industrial Revolution.

        Moreover, because of statistics, you say that they allow social science to trump physical science when it’s equally valid to say that they’re placing the contemporary physics of resources and scarcity above future social discomfort and unrest.

      4. I said that sarcastically.

  16. Let’s just set forth a few parameters: 1.- it is getting warmer. 2.- Is mankind the cause? Maybe , maybe not. 3.- If mankind is the cause what is to be done? I think the answer is clearly that mankind should do what we have been doing for the last several hundred thousand years- ADAPT. I do not deny Global warming I just think that we really do not know enough about it to start monkeying around with the controls.

  17. I made the mistake of watching The Simpsons this last Sunday. It was about global warming

    Homer “Gee, 100% of scientists are right. Who knew”?

    Ugh. Pure propaganda

  18. “By failing to predict a flat 15-year period, the U.N.’s new report does not inspire the kind of confidence that could justify a trillion-dollar climate policy bet.”

    So, Ronald, if we had been modeling back in 1940, do you think the models would have predicted not just a 20 year flat lining of temperatures, but an actual decline (from 1942 to 1962)? The IPCC is correct, there have not only been longer periods of stabilization in the last 100 years, there have been longer periods of actual temperature decrease.

    But I get confused with you…bottom line this for us. Man is not responsible for at least some of the temperature rise we have seen in the past 100 years? We should ignore it? If it continues back up, it won’t be so bad? You admit temperatures in both the atmosphere and sea have gone up, sea levels are rising, ice and snow are diminishing…your conclusion is that man has nothing to do with it, therefore no effort from man is needed?

    1. http://www.giss.nasa.gov/resea…..06_gms.jpg

      Supporting data on the period from 1942 to 1962.

      1. Without a number for average global albedo the data have very little information.

  19. Finally coming around Bailey?

  20. Why isn’t anyone asking about average global albedo?

    1. I’m not so sure its ignored.

      http://www.skepticalscience.co…..effect.htm

      http://nsidc.org/cryosphere/se…..lbedo.html

      1. Where are the numbers of albedo for the last 200 years.

      2. But are the numbers correct enough to be sure albedo isn’t driving the system rather than CO2?

        Well any way I’m still looking for the missing heat and trying to figure out how it got to where it is missing without anyone noticing.

        Oh. Yeah. And the warmists admit clouds are not well understood. When will there be enough understanding to to be sure the cloud feedback numbers are well understood?

        When will there be enough computing power so that smaller grid cells can be used. When will there be enough computing power so that physics rather than parameterization can drive the models.

        1. You are onto something. But you are asking the wrong question.

          The correct question is what drives global albedo? The answer appears to be cosmic rays and solar wind as demonstrated in the SKY experiment and confirmed in the CERN CLOUD experiment.

          1. Well I was aware of that. But I didn’t want to get too sciency for a non-science audience.

            I’m an engineer.

      3. Why are there so many models? Why isn’t one enough?

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  22. The political aspect cannot be ignored. And the intense political energy and money around CAGW creates overwhelming suspicion about any model or prediction.
    Money corrupts. Power corrupts. The money and power afforded to those scentists who support CAGW is life changing for most of them.
    Perhaps those who do not work in academia or NGO/Governmental research cannot truly fathom what this means in practice. Take someone like Michael Mann. I don’t know him and cannot speak to his integrity, but it is important to appreciate what the ‘hockey-stick’ and its associated publicity meant for his career. That sort of attention (and the money and power that goes with it) is the holy grail for an academic. There is not a higher achievement and as a result, can you imagine what a person of average/typical integrity would do to achieve it or protect it? You don’t need to imagine evil corruption to believe that there is enormous pressure to toe the line. The little stretches, the white lies, to support what you are expected to show. Climategate brought just a hint of that to light and what it showed was shocking.
    Look at what happens to scientists who dare question CAGW. They are ostracized and labelled pawns of big-oil. Can you imagine what that means for their careers?
    With this kind of political influence and pressure, every aspect of climate science is now suspect and has been for quite a few years.

    1. Here we go again with one of the biggest conspiracy theories around. So tell us, who is doing the buying off of all these scientists who are warning about AGW? This is the first science exploration that has been subject to fraud through dollars? Smoking and cancer wasn’t? Who is doing all the funding to buy off all these scientists? The green industry? And yet more money exists in the oil industry. They don’t do any buying off? They’re honest as opposed to the green industry? Why were scientists saying the same exact thing when Republicans controlled both houses and the executive branch? Guess they were not too worried about government grants back then. So pray tell, where is all this “pressure” coming from that has bought off National Academy of Sciences, American Geophysical Union, American Physical Society, and every major science organization in the country? Really, you put 9/11 conspiracy theories to shame.

      1. You are wrong to defend the virtue of scientists. They are as corrupt as the rest of us are. Mendel and Ptolemy were cheats. By all accounts Newton was an absolute cunt. But these men aren’t remembered today for their various personal failings. They’re remembered because they got the science right.

        1. No one is defending the “virtue” of scientists. But someone on this blog (actually it is many people) is suggesting that there exists are worldwide conspiracy that has successfully bought off the clear majority of all climate scientists, no less every single major science organization in the country. And that is what I answered. It’s the conspiracy theory to end all conspiracy theories, and it is trotted out here constantly. And yet, no one can explain exactly who is funding it all.

          But you are right about one thing…whatever scientists you mentioned with less than admirable virtues got one thing right…the science. A good lesson to be learned.

          1. Common motivation (The government grants and thus their paychecks depend on scary predictions that need more funding to resolve) produces the same sort of activity as conspiracy.

            1. Really? When Republicans controlled all the purse strings they wanted scary predictions on the climate?

  23. Time and again, when faced with observations and historical records that do not agree with the Global Warming narrative, advocates respond by suggesting novel reasons for that circumstance. Perhaps the heat passes directly to the deep ocean where we can’t detect it; perhaps it is due to poorly understood and temporary climate dynamics that will soon adjust to the mean; perhaps the warming is most prevalent in those areas of the Earth where weather stations are sparse. There is no scarcity of such dodges.

    There is another discipline where we can find a similar use of such dodges to dismiss inconvenient scientific facts and observations: Intelligent Design.

    Both Intelligent Design and Anthropomorphic Global Warming are primarily driven by faith, not science, although they both make the pretense to science for justification.

    1. The ocean is warming and absorbing heat. Even Ronald says so above. And I would suggest it is you who has the faith that scientific consensus is wrong. Hold onto that faith.

  24. The ocean is warming and absorbing heat.

    No, they are not

  25. The ocean is warming and absorbing heat.

    No, they are not

  26. One of the problems with the current US data is it is no longer valid. James Hansen altered the data according to “his” corrections. The actual original data has now been altered there by rendering it useless. Thanks James Hansen for that. So we may be warming, we may be cooling, but the raw data for the last 100 years has been altered so we don’t know. Of course he altered it to support global warming, so maybe we really do know.

    1. The raw data has not been altered. Any data collection effort goes through revisions, whether its on climate, point of sales, or anything where numbers are collected. Better technologies become available, better historical fact finding, etc. And in fact, in some of the revisions Hansen made it actually showed less heat.

      But it reminds of some of the similar complaints Richard Muller had…until he did his own data analysis and subsequently lost his skepticism.

      http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07……html?_r=0

  27. Actually there was a brief explanation given for the lack of any warming since 1998

    IPCC: Lack of warming since 1998: It’s a Miracle!

  28. The model identified by BigT that calculates temperature anomalies since 1895 (including the pause) with 90% accuracy (and a reasonable estimate since 1610) is updated at http://agwunveiled.blogspot.com/

  29. OK JackAce,

    I’ll ask again.

    Why are there so many models? Why isn’t one enough?

    1. I’m not even sure what that question means, so it really does not deserve a response. Why would you limit how many models there are? Has science ever only had one model for anything? Why do we have more than one scientist in any field? All meaningless.

      1. F=ma for low speeds. Modified of course for speeds near the speed of light. Depending on the accuracy required.

        Similarly E=IR (in the relevant range). Modified of course by the temperature coefficient of resistance. If you need the accuracy.

        E= 1/2 mv^2.

        And so on. If we understood the system wouldn’t one model be sufficient?

        Why do the different models use different co-efficients for the various parameters? I could understand error bars. But different? That essentially means either wrong or not sufficiently well known.

        And from this useful projections can be made? I suppose. If the error bars are sufficient.

        Now about the cloud parameters which can dwarf any CO2 component. The modelers admit they are not well understood.

        And then there is the pause – not predicted at the 95% confidence interval.

        But of course – the science is settled. By whom? Science is never settled.

        1. Its just not settled for you, but it is for the majority of science. Its why historically well respected science organizations like National Academy of Sciences, American Geophysical Union, American Physical Society, and so many others have made clear, decisive statements about AGW…its real, its primarily caused by man, and it is time we do something about it.

    2. Maybe I should ask you a question. The fact that there is more than one computer model on climate indicates what to you?

      1. That there is a LOT that is not well determined.

        1. So the fact that there are numerous scientists that enter fields every year is just an indication that things are not well determined? Not really. It just means that different people believe they have new approaches to offer, and to maybe make contributions to the files. And it is exactly the same with climate models.

          At the end of the day, they are still models and only that. No one ever said any one of them is perfect. And because we are speaking about the climate of the EARTH, we can’t do test tube experiments that replicate the entire globe…hence models.

          But fair enough…its not well determined to you. It is, however, well determined for the clear majority of science. You just side with the minority.

          1. Nice way to change the subject.

            Many models mean that the understanding is limited.

            There is one physics model for forces at low speeds.

            F=ma

            One for energy at low speeds

            E = 1/2 mv^2

            etc.

            One model for the energy mass equivalent

            E= mc^2

            etc.

            Doesn’t matter how many are entering the field.

            1. Don’t be so sensitive, M. I’m not changing any subjects, just sticking with your point (an erroneous one at that)that only one model exists for anything in science. Or that models are never proposed until there is 100% certainty that they are correct.
              In addition to your conflating “laws,” “theories,” and “models.”
              Surely you don’t believe that Einstein thought E= mc^2 ended all discussion, future models, or even was 100% correct?

              http://www.inquisitr.com/14426…..han-light/

              Maybe this is it
              E^2 = p^2c^2 + m^2c^4, where p is the linear momentum. New models, theories and laws arise all the time. And science evolves, just like climate science has. Nothing new here.

              1. By the way, using your loose definition of models, here is one that just may resonate with you that has since been debunked.
                http://www.lhup.edu/~dsimanek/flat/flatmap.jpg

                Back in the day, they thought there was only one model as well.

              2. No Einstein never thought new models wouldn’t come into being.

                But so far we still use E=mc^2 for engineering.

                And the modelers admit that clouds – are not well modeled.

                A small change in the could/albedo model would wipe out the whole CO2 theory.

                Which tells me the models are not on firm ground.

                As I said. In EE a model good to 1% is a VERY GOOD model. And that is in a domain where everything is fairly well understood and modeled. Big money depends on the models being right. Models are constantly checked against reality.

                I see nothing like that in the current iteration of climate models.

  30. I’m an EE. We consider models good enough for most purposes if they are +/- 5%. 300K * 5% = +/-15K. A really good model of a simple and well understood electrical model can get to 1% accuracy. 300K * 1% = +/- 3K error bar. That is in the range of the expected signal. To be good enough to give some decent idea of the expected signal the models would need better than a 1K +/- error bar. Better would be +/- .3K error bar. A .3K error = .1% model accuracy. A 1K error is about .3% model accuracy.

    None of the models claim a +/- .3K error bar for 100 years. So we have models (if they had predicted the current reality – they didn’t) where the signal is barely above the model noise. At best.

    And then there is the initial conditions problem for chaotic coupled systems where not all of the interactions or their parameters are known. And from this we are supposed to make decisions worth hundreds of trillions of dollars?

    You will excuse me if I’m sceptical. (I prefer the Brit spelling)

    1. No. You are supposed to listen to what science is warning you about and take steps to avoid potential catastrophe that it says might await you. Science tells you that if you smoke, you are possibly leading yourself into lung cancer. And yet some scientists disagree. Do you smoke?

      But show me where the proposal is that says we must spend one hundred trillion dollars to solve the problem? All the solutions proposed are merely incremental…wean ourselves off of fossil fuels, limit methane in the atmosphere, etc. We have started some of that with better battery technologies, fuel standards, etc. You propose doing less of that, or more?

      1. I do listen when the predictions have proven correct. So far we don’t know which climate model is correct.

        Care to nominate one?

        1. What I care to nominate is all the science, scientists and models that show the earth is warming, and that man-made CO2 is the likely culprit, and that we may just be heading toward catastrophe. Too many models show exactly the same, even with subtle differences. But like I said, fair enough…you are waiting for 100% certainty from one model. Not going to happen, so if you can’t take the findings of the clear majority of science, jackand ace certainly is not going to convince you.

        2. Here is one statement I would nominate, including their assessment on the consensus of models.

          “Humanity is the major influence on the global climate change observed over the past 50 years. Rapid societal responses can significantly lessen negative outcomes. Human activities are changing Earth’s climate….Climate models predict that global temperatures will continue to rise, with the amount of warming primarily determined by the level of emissions. Higher emissions of greenhouse gases will lead to larger warming, and greater risks to society and ecosystems. Some additional warming is unavoidable due to past emissions.”

          Revised statement on climate change, American Geophysical Union. Which we can safely assume represents the majority view of its 62,000 members…unless of course there is a conspiracy afoot.

      2. Wean ourselves off fossil fuels?

        Have you had a word with China and India on that?

        1. Well, being American, we never wait for the rest of the world in order to do what is right. At least not on most things, although on this we seem to be.

          But I will say this…whichever country creates that next clean energy source, whatever that may be, is going to be the country that rules the roost. I for one am hoping it is not China or India. I hope it is America.

          And by the way, in addition to modeling, you would be mistaken if you think China is sitting idly by.

          http://www.bloomberg.com/news/…..bined.html

  31. Clouds as the regulator of the global climate system:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/201…..at-engine/

    1. By the way, M…Merry Christmas!!!

      1. Same to you. And keep warm.

  32. There is one model that is reasonably accurate. It matches the climate record for several hundreds of thousands of years when it is run backwards. As you may be aware in computer simulations the direction of time does not matter and that model does pretty well. It also predicts that we are due to re-enter another ice age. So even if human caused Global warming is true it will be offset by the cooling due to our orbit. Currently we tilt towards the sun during perogee when we are moving the slowest and are farther away and tilt away from the sun during apogee when we are moving the fastest and are closest. As that changes the summers will get hotter but shorter and the winters will get colder but longer and voila we are back in the ice ages again. So I like global warming. I will do everything I can to promote global warming. And as it gets colder I will adapt.

  33. declares it “extremely likely that human influence has

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