October 11, 2009

For 11 years, as man-made carbon dioxide has increased, there has been no increase in global warming, the BBC observes.

What's happening to our world...  and our big theory about which, we were told, the scientists had reached consensus?

191 comments:

Peter V. Bella said...

"... and our big theory about which, we were told, the scientists had reached consensus?"

Um, actually the vast majority of scientists have not reached a consensus. only a few with ties to the UN reached a consensus. The rest of those spouting science fiction are politicians- who stand to make a killing for heir pals and themselves, celebrities- who believe anything, and luddites.

Fred4Pres said...

Maybe, just maybe, Michael Crichton and Bjorn Lomborg are right.

But that just makes you a right wing facist, if you think something crazy like that. Andrew Sullivan and Charles Johnson know better.

AJ Lynch said...

Mmm Mmm Mmm....the Althouse hillbillies love your chum.

chickenlittle said...

The really sad and tragic thing is that our top peer-reviewed science journal, Science, and Obama's top scientific advisor, Steven Chu, are all on board the CO2 is evil bandwagon, as are many hard science academicians and other Federal teat suckers.

rhhardin said...

It's not science in the first place.

The model builders are pulling equations out of their asses.

So the two sides are model affirmers and model deniers, neither doing science.

The odds of the earth being in the balance at the exact moment we have all this data gathering capability and analysis capability are nil, on first principles, however.

In other words, the alarm is raised as soon as there's the capability of raising the alarm, just as a sociological matter.

If the Navier Stokes equations turn up someday, then it might be science; but that's far out of range of solution today and probably in the future as well.

Jason (the commenter) said...

They never let anyone see the data and now they say they lost it.

JohnAnnArbor said...

None of the models predicted this 11 years. And now, the sunspot numbers have cratered. Last time that happened, it was called the "little ice age."

miller said...

"Science" isn't "Consensus." "Science" is "Facts."

"Consensus" is high school.

When they can point to data and say the data says X, then I'll believe them. For now, it's "but so many impressive people believe it." And fail to say "and so many other impressive and ordinary people do not."

I know that Al Gore must not be sleeping easily today in his 14,000 square foot house.

traditionalguy said...

It was all a bald faced lie. Surprise, surprise. The United States Government under a Democrat controlled Congress and ruled by Obama the President are now at war with the people of the United States of America. We are truly living in interesting times.

Chef Mojo said...

Science is not about consensus.

At one time, the vast majority of scientists supported eugenics. How did that work out when translated to policy?

When dicksmacks like Al Gore run around screaming that "the science is settled," you can rest assured that they are completely unscientific in their thinking and outlook.

lucid said...

See this link. The data on global warming may be faked. The whole global warming meme may be the same as Obama's peace prize, i.e. a piece of liberal idiocy and arrogance.

http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=ZTBiMTRlMDQxNzEyMmRhZjU3ZmYzODI5MGY4ZWI5OWM=

Chef Mojo said...

Science is also not about "belief."

That's religion. Anyone who says they "believe" in anthropogenic global warming is indistinguishable from the most hardened religious fanatic.

Jason (the commenter) said...

miller: "Science" isn't "Consensus."

Thank you! "Consensus" is a word politicians use, it's a word politicians are all about. But it doesn't necessarily have anything to do with science. Scientists test their theories on nature, politicians at the ballot box.

Jason (the commenter) said...

chickenlittle: The really sad and tragic thing is that our top peer-reviewed science journal, Science, and Obama's top scientific advisor, Steven Chu, are all on board the CO2 is evil bandwagon, as are many hard science academicians and other Federal teat suckers.

Doesn't matter who they have on their side; they've turned their backs on nature. Ironic, no?

kynefski said...

Gee, this is really great.

I can't say how grateful I am learn that I won't, in fact, have to sacrifice anything to future generations.

Damn, I was worried there for a minute. Now I can dream on.

JohnAnnArbor said...

Doesn't matter who they have on their side; they've turned their backs on nature. Ironic, no?

Yep. Also the AGW crowd sucks all the environmental attention away from real problems, like fisheries that are crashing, for instance.

Jason (the commenter) said...

I'd rather be called someone who denies global warming than someone who denies nature.

miller said...

"Global warming" might be real. It might not.

Its verity isn't something I decide based on my beliefs or my bias.

Here's a question I'd like answered: what's the right temperature? That is, if the globe is warming, what temperature is it warming from, and is that temperature the "right" one or simply a low data point?

When you make science to be something you sway people with, you're not doing science. You're acting.

Science is "on July 27, 1972, I measured the temperature at station X and recorded 21.2c"

And if the link to Nat'l Review is correct, we don't even have that -- we have forged data.

I am old enough to remember reading the actual artifact of the Nat'l Geographic Magazine going on about the dangers of global cooling, and I remember that when I first heard the story of global warming my B.S. detector started going off.

Gabriel Hanna said...

Climate models are tested against nature all the time, but so many people think that putting their hands over their ears and closing their eyes means that the research isn't being done. It is.

Which of the 11 people who posted here, saying it is a scam, regularly read scientific journals? How many of you get ALL of your climate information entirely from skeptics?

Climate is a huge, complicated, chaotic system, and it isn't going to move in a smooth progression. It is not fully understood.

Climate science is the application of simple physics to a very complicated system. Computer models are used for problems that are too complicated to solve with pencil and paper ALL THE TIME.

They are used to design airplane wings and ship hulls; I don't see any of you refusing to fly or buy imported goods.

Quayle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lamar63 said...

Also the "hockey stick" data has been shown to be false. When the data is properly interpreted this warming period is on a par with the Roman warming period and the middle ages warming period. The wheels are coming off this "crisis".

Now having said that we should be looking for renewable energy sources hydro, solar, wind and nuclear for environmental and security reasons.

Quayle said...

"Truth" in science is whatever the prominent majority of scientists say is true today.

Note how many "truths" of yester-year are now considered not "true."

It has been shown historically that how scientists come to reject current "truth" and settle on new "truth" is a very complex sociological problem that involves more than just the raw observable data.

Given science's long and regular history of confidently stating the "truth", only to have that "truth" later replaced with another "truth", would engender a bit more humility and tentativeness in their pronouncements.

Yet we still see scientists boldly condemn anyone that doesn't immediately warm and accept their current "truth."

From Inwood said...

Prof A

Alas, you as a lawyer are looking at an evidentiary standard & you castigate these poor scientists because they haven't been able to meet your standard lately. But they have truth, the truth of consensus on their side & the weight of the Union of Concerned Scientists.

What, you say, the USC membership requirement (slightly changed to drop some obviously non-scientist categories) is as follows: "UCS members are people from all walks of life: parents and businesspeople, biologists and physicists, teachers and students."

Heck, I understand that even nuns who teach 4th Grade kiddies about the birds & the bees can join. Except if they are anti-abortion, of course.

Anyway, as an English major, I prefer my stuff about science from, well, writers.

Like this from the above misnamed USC.

Thoreau's Legacy: American Stories about Global Warming

AN ONLINE ANTHOLOGY


The UCS apparently hadn’t got, at printing time in last Sunday’s NYT ad, the memo about the recent Orwellian name change to “Climate Change”, due to the fact that, as the BBC notes, there hasn’t been any Global Warming to speak about lately, but I digress.)

OK, then. To summarize: The UCS, made up of anyone who calls himself a scientist, as well as anyone who has danced with a man who danced with a girl who danced with a scientist, has produced this anthology which “brings together established writers and fresh voices to inspire us with their personal stories and images about global warming”.

Hey, not impressed yet? Let me quote from the description of who these writers are

Authors

“The 67 contributors selected for Thoreau's Legacy include scientists, students, grandparents, activists, veterans, journalists, evangelical Christians, artists, and businesspeople. Their muses are as diverse as their backgrounds. View the authors and their essay titles in the Table of Contents below.”

Oh, wait, now you’re gonna complain about the fact that of the nine categories listed, only one refers to, you know, scientists. That’s your problem & the problem with your nay saying commenters. You're lost in scientific facts & facts are, well you know, inconvenient. Ask Al Gore.

Inwood

PS I want an activist to tell me about weather for pimps!

Gabriel Hanna said...

http://www.realclimate.org/

The blogosphere (and not only that) has been full of the “global warming is taking a break” meme lately. Although we have discussed this topic repeatedly, it is perhaps worthwhile reiterating two key points about the alleged pause here.

(1) This discussion focuses on just a short time period – starting 1998 or later – covering at most 11 years. Even under conditions of anthropogenic global warming (which would contribute a temperature rise of about 0.2 ºC over this period) a flat period or even cooling trend over such a short time span is nothing special and has happened repeatedly before (see 1987-1996). That simply is due to the fact that short-term natural variability has a similar magnitude (i.e. ~0.2 ºC) and can thus compensate for the anthropogenic effects. Of course, the warming trend keeps going up whilst natural variability just oscillates irregularly up and down, so over longer periods the warming trend wins and natural variability cancels out.

(2) It is highly questionable whether this “pause” is even real. It does show up to some extent (no cooling, but reduced 10-year warming trend) in the Hadley Center data, but it does not show in the GISS data, see Figure 1. There, the past ten 10-year trends (i.e. 1990-1999, 1991-2000 and so on) have all been between 0.17 and 0.34 ºC per decade, close to or above the expected anthropogenic trend, with the most recent one (1999-2008) equal to 0.19 ºC per decade – just as predicted by IPCC as response to anthropogenic forcing.

Even the highly “cherry-picked” 11-year period starting with the warm 1998 and ending with the cold 2008 still shows a warming trend of 0.11 ºC per decade (which may surprise some lay people who tend to connect the end points, rather than include all ten data points into a proper trend calculation).

lucid said...

@jason:
I was typing when you posted your link. Sorry to repeat the information. But, for HTML ignoramuses, how do you create a live link? Say it very simply, please.


wv: ingod--suggested motto for a new half-dollar bill, intended to relfect the changing world status of the dollar.

JohnAnnArbor said...

They are used to design airplane wings and ship hulls; I don't see any of you refusing to fly or buy imported goods.

That's idiotic on its face. Aircraft and ship hulls are simplicity itself compared to the global climate. Modeling the flow of air over a wing is something that can be done quite well. The air over the whole bleeping planet? That's so much more complicated that i's hard to quantify. The models in this case are far closer to wild guesses.

Can they take the weather data from 20 years ago and run their model forawrd to get today's climate? No? Then their predictions for 20 years from now are nothing more than guesses.

It doesn't help that they've been caught using very dubious statistical methods, selecting only data that fits their theory adn discarding the rest, and claiming that weather data is a national secret (really). The blog Climate Audit has been calmly trying to tease apart the actual data behind the studies, only to be met by stonewalling on data and hyterical name-calling by the true believers.

traditionalguy said...

Kynefski...Pick a religion and you can sacrifice away. They used to kill their kids for the Idol, and then used captured enemies, and then used bulls and lambs. After around 36 AD the Judeo-Christian tradition lets you offer yourself as a living sacrifice loving God and your neighbor. But we have a Constitution that says "No established..by Government funding..Church" shall be permitted. So go send all your own money to finance UN slush funds and windmills. That is a post Christian sacrificial system for you to chose for yourself. But keep your legalistic/priestly hands off my, currently free from religious bondages, life.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@JohnAnnArbor:

That's idiotic on its face. Aircraft and ship hulls are simplicity itself compared to the global climate.

And what is your relevant technical expertise in turbulent flow

It doesn't help that they've been caught using very dubious statistical methods, selecting only data that fits their theory adn discarding the rest, and claiming that weather data is a national secret (really). The blog Climate Audit has been calmly trying to tease apart the actual data behind the studies, only to be met by stonewalling on data and hyterical name-calling by the true believers.

In other words, you only read the skeptics' side of the story.

Can you even NAME the major climate science journals?

Quayle said...

They are used to design airplane wings and ship hulls; I don't see any of you refusing to fly or buy imported goods.

There is one big difference: the number of assumptions that go into designing a wing is close to zero.

All the forces, ranges, strengths, performance, weaknesses, tolerances, breaking points, etc. are already well known and tested, for every active elements and components of a wing.

The number of unprovable assumptions that go into climate modeling boggles the mind.

miller said...

"Climate Change" is, of course, the perfect new scam, because climate is always changing. The Earth does not have a stable climate.

If you think that saving resources for future generations is a good thing, then argue that. But sneaking that in is an admission that you see that "Global Warming" is a fake belief. "The ends justify the means" is a chestnut that few want to eat anymore, except, perhaps, for people like Al Gore and his monstrosity of a carbon-emitting house.

You like bromides? Here's one to people like Al Gore: "Physician, heal thyself."

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Quayle:

The number of unprovable assumptions that go into climate modeling boggles the mind.

Name them. Any relevant technical qualifications you have would also be welcome.

I don't appreciate doom-mongering any more than anyone else. I think the precision of the climate models has been oversold.

That does not mean that climate science is made up or a scam. The lot of you argue just like creationists; cherry-pick sources and accuse everyone of bad faith.

Big Mike said...

Which of the 11 people who posted here, saying it is a scam, regularly read scientific journals? How many of you get ALL of your climate information entirely from skeptics?

Well, actually, I do.

As I've said in the past, the appeal to "consensus" is the first clue that we are not looking at science. History is replete with learned consensuses (consensi?) that turned out to be wrong, WRONG, WRONG!!! How about the "consensus" that blacks are inherently less intelligent than whites? We even had a Nobel laureate pushing that one. Anybody still believe that?

How about the consensus that blacks could never play basketball as well as whites? You don't believe that such a consensus ever existed, Gabriel, my man? Try reading Second Wind by a guy named Russell (played a little ball for some dumb team up Boston).

How about the consensus that the earth was the center of the Universe? Had a pope using the power of the church to push that consensus.

At any rate, there is no true consensus about anthropogenic global warming, and there never was, not among climate scientists. A few months back a large group of them bought an add in the Washington Post (and other newspapers, I'd imagine) pointing out the inconvenient fact that the actual, observed, climate data since the late 1990's has not fit the mathematical model upon which the theory of anthropogenic global warming rests.

The key step you miss, Gabe, old buddy -- I'm guessing you blew off that class in stochastic modeling to go picket Ann Coulter or something -- is validation. The models that predict how wings and ship hulls function have been validated. The anthropogenic global warming model was "validated" using the same past data that was used to create it. In other words, from a mathematical perspective, it was never validated at all.

JohnAnnArbor said...

Climate Audit is a "side" of the debate? All he asks for are the actual data so that we, the dirtbag public (the ones being asked to pay for all the "needed" changes, and amongst whom are some very good staticticians) can run our own analyses on the data.

These climate scientists are asking for world-bending economic changes based on their studies. The onus is on THEM to dot every i and cross every t. Instead, they play "hide the data" and call anyone who so much as asks questions about how models work, how they reached conclusions, etc. a "denier."

Big Mike said...

Glenn Reynolds seems to have been among the first to notice that every time Al Gore goes somewhere to give a talk on anthropogenic global warming, unseasonably cold weather inevitably follows.

It's almost enough to make me give up my atheism in favor of the smiling Buddha.

miller said...

"Global Warming" is like the now-ludicrous Nobel Peace Prize: it is something that is simple "not Bush."

If Bush believed the sky was blue, the AGW crowd would be up in arm with "consensus" that the sky is, in fact, purple or green or puce or whatever -- but not, never, nohow blue.

JohnAnnArbor said...

That does not mean that climate science is made up or a scam.

I do not say that. I do say that the poeple pushing the theory have to back it up. And I think they are prone to "groupthink," just like any group of scientists. Unfortunately, they don't allow data, like a hurricane lull (remember the predictions of more and worse hurricanes) to get in the way of their pet theory.

The lot of you argue just like creationists; cherry-pick sources and accuse everyone of bad faith.

In my experience, that's how the global warming alarmists behave, actually.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Gabriel Hanna said

Computer models are used for problems that are too complicated to solve with pencil and paper ALL THE TIME.

They are used to design airplane wings and ship hulls; I don't see any of you refusing to fly or buy imported goods.


Yes, they use computers to design airplane wings. After they have a design, they make scale models and test them in wind tunnels. Then, they build the real thing, and spend many, many hours flying it with a test pilot and no passengers to make sure it works as expected.

Do you honestly believe that the climate models they are using have gone through anywhere near that much real world confirmation?

And as far as ship's hulls and buying imports, that's a pretty silly example. Any imported goods that I buy have, by definition, already successfully made the trip. But I'll be sure to refuse to buy any that sink on their way here.

From Inwood said...

Gabe Hanna

You say:

"Which of the 11 people who [had then] posted here, saying it is a scam, regularly read scientific journals? How many of you get ALL (sic) of your climate information entirely from skeptics?"

Speaking for myself, I get most of my info from the True Believers in the MSM & it's all Global Warming, OOPS, Climate Change all the time.

It's just the inconvenient facts that I get from skeptics with credentials that make me a skeptic also. Or at least make me stop & take a deep breath.

And those debunked facts put out by the true believers.

And the pretending that the skeptics’ inconvenient facts never happened or just ignoring them & the name calling that make me wonder.

Also, if I answer you in ALL caps, will that impress you?

PS is your thesis on climatology?

Jason (the commenter) said...

Gabriel Hanna: Climate models are tested against nature all the time, but so many people think that putting their hands over their ears and closing their eyes means that the research isn't being done. It is.

The global warming people wouldn't let critics see their data, and when they were threatened with freedom of information suits, claimed to have lost it.

You're the one with you're hands over your ears.

JohnAnnArbor said...

In 1703, a hurricane hit Britain, full force.

If that happened today (God forbid), what would Al Gore say? What would the climate scientists say?

Every heat wave was used in the 1990s to justify "global warming." Now that it's cooling off, it's just "weather." Well, weather is a complicated thing that we do not understand fully, especially on long time scales ("climate"). Precision-wise, climate science is not even where astronomy was in 1900--and then, the galaxies seen in telescopes were thought to be nearby gas glouds and Mars was thought to harbor life.

Jason (the commenter) said...

Maybe I could be on Gabriel Hanna's side if he had data that was available for others to study. Right now I don't think he could pass the Amazing Randi's Million Dollar Challenge.

traditionalguy said...

You know if there was even a small HotHouse Gas effect from pumping out good old CO2 from coal, and Gas, and oil, then there would be hope that this winter's super cold temperatures killing plants, animals and people might be remedied some by Man made actions. By February we will probably be begging the US Government to increase CO2 emissions on an emergency basis as Global Freezing is a crisis like the 1997 to 2003 warm spell was never a crisis to anyone. But alas, we will not have a truthful leadership in place until Sarah Palin takes Office.

From Inwood said...

Big Mike & Jo Ann

I can't type as fast as some. And I’m watching the NYY beating up on The Twins as I type. I can multitask, but slowly!

So, I posted before reading your posts. You both said what I said but said it better.

Gabe is trying to impress us with his ABD physics situation.

I know that he hasn't read the law review articles I have, but I'm sure that he'd feel free to disagree with some legal analysis I've made. And laugh if I cited, say, some lawyer in The Federalist Society as my trump-card expert.

What happened, happened; what hasn't happened, hasn't happened.

Also, the drafters of the securities laws, rules, & regs understood the meaning of the "whole truth" when they said that not only is it a no no for you to tell an untruth in a prospectus, ya can't put in something which while true is misleading in context. So pictures of polar bears on ice flows which, when cropped, seem to be far from shore but really are only 100 yards away are not the whole truth. But those who've danced with a man who's danced with a girl who's danced with a scientist seem to think so.

elHombre said...

Gabriel Hanna wrote: How many of you get ALL of your climate information entirely from skeptics?

It is not possible to get "ALL" climate information from skeptics. The overwhelming majority of information and references in the MSM portray climate change as fact. One must search out the opinions of skeptics.

It is therefore far more likely that true believers in global warming have not been exposed to both sides of the issue.

Climate science is the application of simple physics to a very complicated system.

Three questions:

1. How do statistics produced by computer models equate with "simple physics?"

2. Why have proponents altered the nomenclature from "global warming" to "climate change?"

3. What is the long term significance of a warming trend of 0.11 ºC per decade?

I don't read science journals, which is why I am asking the questions. Thank you for your consideration.

Gabriel Hanna said...

Funny that I'm being accused of being a liberal now. I'm not interested in shutting down the economy in order to avoid global warming when no one can figure out what to do or how much.

I'm just saying that the people who are saying climate science is a scam or just wrong are unqualified to have opinions.


@JasontheCommenter:

http://www.randi.org/site/index.php/swift-blog/219-swift-september-19-2008.html


James Randi is the wrong guy to cite in support of climate science skeptics.

Every heat wave was used in the 1990s to justify "global warming." Now that it's cooling off, it's just "weather.

By the media and by activists. This is the same media that every few months publishes some minor disagreement among biologists under a headline about Darwinism being disproved.

If you only get one side of the story, you don't know what you're talking about.

If you don't know how to calculate the slope of ten points, you are not qualified to argue whether average temperature has gone up.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@elHombre

1. How do statistics produced by computer models equate with "simple physics?"

http://www.aip.org/history/climate/GCM.htm

This article from the American Institute of Physics is a good place to start--if you are actually interested in learning about how climate modelling works. But what would they know about simple physics or computers?

2. Why have proponents altered the nomenclature from "global warming" to "climate change?"

I don't know. Politics, I guess?

3. What is the long term significance of a warming trend of 0.11 ºC per decade?

Depends on how many decades it does that, now doesn't it, and what temperature you like.

I don't read science journals, which is why I am asking the questions. Thank you for your consideration.

I only have time for the ones that directly affect my work. But I've done computer simulations, though not of climate.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@From Inwood:

Gabe is trying to impress us with his ABD physics situation.

You brought this up, I didn't. I'm not a climate scientist and never claimed to be one, and there's no point in citing my unrelated technical expertise in support of something that isn't my job.

I wouldn't tell my lawyer how to defend me, or my surgeon where to cut, but there's an awful lot of people who think they can be biologists or climate scientists without having any relevant expertise.

If you think your science is BETTER than scientists', you must first prove you can do it as well.

traditionalguy said...

The burden of proof of CO2 being a HotHouse gas is entirely upon the Fear Sellers since 10 years of increase in CO2 has resulted in extreme cooling...not stability...not warming, but extreme cooling. If anyone wants a CRISIS it is upon us as Atomic Fission weapons are going Global as we speak. That resulting explosion of fears and national wars, starting between Iran and Israel, and then spreading into South America is no illusion being propagandised for easy money by a few low level con-men. Talk about that a while.

jimspice said...

For some intelligent discourse, better to read the post and comments on ScienceBlogs take on the BBC treatment: http://bit.ly/MJRNN

Father Martin Fox said...

Gabriel:

I readily admit I am not well read in the scientific research at all. I will only justify my skepticism to the extent that any rational person should operate from a "show me" point of view anytime someone says, "change things"--and the more massive the change advocated, the more warranted that skepticism is.

That said, I concede: I'm not terribly conversant in the whole subject.

So I'll ask you the question that I keep coming back to: how do you account for the significant warming periods that long predate the industrial period in the theory that blames human causation? Did the Romans and Medievals actually cause those warming periods?

I guess I'm dumb, but that seems a pretty strong counter-argument.

Penny said...

Is there anything left that hasn't been politicized, and eventually marketed?

The real question is whether those that start this falderol are doing so for their own gain or for some greater good.

Big Mike said...

Funny that I'm being accused of being a liberal now.

No you're not. You're accused of being mathematically illiterate, and that's different.

I'm just saying that the people who are saying climate science is a scam or just wrong are unqualified to have opinions.

Juxtaposed with:

If you only get one side of the story, you don't know what you're talking about.

Gabe, my man, you really need to proofread before you click on "Publish your comment." (Or perhaps you don't see the inconsistency between these two insufferably dogmatic statements?)

And one does not "calculate the slope of ten points." One attempts to fit an equation to a set of points according to some criteria for determining "best fit." I'm guessing that you mean you want to fit a linear equation to the observed points using, for instance, least squares. But I could easily take ten (x,y) pairs from a cubic equation so that they exactly fit the equation, then use least squares to fit a line to them. But the line would predict one thing and reality would be quite another.

Jason (the commenter) said...

Gabriel Hanna: If you don't know how to calculate the slope of ten points, you are not qualified to argue whether average temperature has gone up.

Great, I've calculated R squared on paper, so I must be eminently qualified.

The scientists in support of the global warming theory have no data.

You might as well be telling us to base our behavior on string theory.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Father Martin Fox:

So I'll ask you the question that I keep coming back to: how do you account for the significant warming periods that long predate the industrial period in the theory that blames human causation? Did the Romans and Medievals actually cause those warming periods?

No one ever said that ONLY carbon dioxide affects climate, or that it never changed until we started burning coal.

Have you read Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire? Gibbon thought that the massive deforestation of Europe warmed the climate, and cited historical evidence (freezings of the Rhine and Tiber) in its support. Sounds reasonable to me, but I'm not an expert. If I remember correctly Neolithic farmers made the Sahara and Gobi deserts too.

I guess I'm dumb, but that seems a pretty strong counter-argument.

No, you're not dumb, but you're asking the wrong question. It's like asking what part of the car is responsible for its having 150 horsepower; no one part is responsible for all of it.

MadisonMan said...

So, the huge temperature spike in 1998 hasn't been surpassed, despite increased levels of Carbon dioxide. Conclusion: CO2 is not the be-all and end-all of climate forcing.

I think that's about the only conclusion that can be made, given the data.

And let me defend modelers: They do not pull equations out of their asses. They find a set of observations, and use those observations to approximate the effect of what they are trying to simulate. Two things can go wrong: the observations they use may not be representative of the Globe for a long period of time. This is a big problem that is the subject of much hair-pulling (of the trying to find things out variety, not of the scientists fighting amongst each other variety) because of the great paucity of observations. Problem two is that their approximations may not be accurate. This is guarded against, in part, by peer review.

JohnAnnArbor: You are behind the times. Sun Spots have returned.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Big Mike:

No you're not. You're accused of being mathematically illiterate, and that's different.

I'm mathematically illiterate? I'd better change careers then.

One attempts to fit an equation to a set of points according to some criteria for determining "best fit." I'm guessing that you mean you want to fit a linear equation to the observed points using, for instance, least squares.

Yes, that's exactly what I meant. Good of you to clarify. Do that for the temperature data from 1998 to now and what do you get? Hint: not cooling.

MadisonMan said...

The burden of proof of CO2 being a HotHouse gas is entirely upon the Fear Sellers since 10 years of increase in CO2 has resulted in extreme cooling...not stability...not warming, but extreme cooling.

What the hell are you talking about? Extreme cooling would mean widespread glacial advance, widespread sea ice thickening, longer lake ice seasons, shorter growing seasons. None of that has happened.

What planet are you living on?

Big Mike said...

If you think your science is BETTER than scientists', you must first prove you can do it as well.

As Jason and lucid pointed out, the so-called scientists refuse to publish their data so that would be pretty hard, wouldn't it? From a purely scientific perspective, it is at least unethical to fail to provide your data, and if the result of that failure is the presumption of dishonesty, then they have no one but themselves to blame.

And, nope, I'm not a scientist. I build stochastic models, and I'm pretty good at it. I'll put my math skills up against yours any day.

Jason (the commenter) said...

Father Martin Fox: I readily admit I am not well read in the scientific research at all.

Don't worry. No one is. The people who said there was evidence for man-made global warming also said they had data to back it up. Unfortunately they refused to show this data to people who might challenge it. After being threatened with a law suit, they claim to have lost the data. So it now looks as if scientific fraud occurred. Happens often.

Maguro said...

Penn Jillette has a really good question here.

The question is: What would it take to disprove global warming theory? Is it even possible for real-world weather to disprove their computer models? It seems like every kind of weather - hot, cold, rain, no rain - their theory.

If global warming is a true scientific theory and not a secular religion, it should be falsifiable like other scientific theories. Any global warming supporters care to comment?

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Big Mike

As Jason and lucid pointed out, the so-called scientists refuse to publish their data so that would be pretty hard, wouldn't it?

http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/4735/home?CRETRY=1&SRETRY=0

Then what are all these articles about?

I know you're talking about one group that supposedly didn't give the data to someone who asked for it--I've only heard one side of that story--but what you are saying is not true of the whole field of climatology, and it is dishonest of you to pretend that it is.

Big Mike said...

Extreme cooling would mean widespread glacial advance, widespread sea ice thickening, longer lake ice seasons, shorter growing seasons. None of that has happened.

Well, actually, it appears that it has, down in the Southern hemisphere. It's difficult to determine to what extent this balances observations from the Northern hemisphere, because the data is published as percentages and not in terms of tons of H20 tied up in sea ice and glaciers.

Gabriel Hanna said...

The question is: What would it take to disprove global warming theory? Is it even possible for real-world weather to disprove their computer models? It seems like every kind of weather - hot, cold, rain, no rain - their theory

Climate models are not trying to predict weather. Journalists and activists like to hype it up, and ascribe every little thing to it, and I am sorry to say a few scientists like James Hansen seem to be okay with that.

If for a sustained period of years climate models were widely different from actual climate, that would be a good reason to think the models are wrong. There are people who claim that has already happened. I don't think much of those claims, but ten years of actual, significant cooling, as opposed to the positive slope of the last ten years, would show that something important was left out of the model.

This article is a good place to start:
http://www.aip.org/history/climate/GCM.htm

Big Mike said...

Then what are all these articles about?

Gabriel, you got me there. When I went to follow your link (please learn how to use the 'a' html tag, thanks) I got this error message:

"An error has occured [sic] because we were unable to send a cookie to your web browser."

I disable most cookies for anti-viral reasons, and I'm not convinced that it would be a good idea to relax this for Wiley.

Big Mike said...

Interesting discussion, but it's late and I've got a tough week ahead. G'night, all.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Big Mike:

I disable most cookies for anti-viral reasons, and I'm not convinced that it would be a good idea to relax this for Wiley.

Wiley is a big science publisher, journals and books and textbooks and whatnot. I don't think they'll be sending you a virus.

Jason (the commenter) said...

Gabriel Hanna http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/4735/home?CRETRY=1&SRETRY=0
Sorry, that link doesn't work.

Then what are all these articles about?

I know you're talking about one group that supposedly didn't give the data to someone who asked for it--I've only heard one side of that story--but what you are saying is not true of the whole field of climatology, and it is dishonest of you to pretend that it is.

Here's one of the articles we're talking about. It was posted at the beginning of the thread and many of us were wishing you would address it.

I think that if the "one group" had all the data on global surface temperatures and we are talking about global warming, then that one group is very important. And if you don't have their data then you don't have anything to defend.

Ken Mitchell said...

Gabriel Hanna said "Computer models are used for problems that are too complicated to solve with pencil and paper ALL THE TIME. They are used to design airplane wings and ship hulls; I don't see any of you refusing to fly or buy imported goods."

The problem with using mathematical models to make predictions is when you forget to - or REFUSE to - incorporate one or two fundamental factors into your model. Then the model will give you the WRONG RESULTS, no matter how good the model might otherwise be.

The entire AGW debate is tied to carbon dioxide, as if CO2 was the only (or even the most important) "greenhouse" gas. It isn't. The one component that has a much larger contribution to the "greenhouse" effect is water vapor. Unfortunately, the models do not include water vapor; it is too hard to measure remotely, and too hard to include in the model. So the modelers have essentially ignored it - which means that we can essentially ignore all of the AGW models, because they WON'T WORK.

Feeding in all the climate records form 1900 through 1990 did not predict the weather in 2000; not even close. And the weather models now are pretty accurate one day in the future, sort of accurate 3 days out, and hardly better than 50/50 more than a week out.

AGW is a scam, and a dodge to increase governmental power. I am perennially puzzled by the fact that the requirements for surviving the coming ice age, as predicted back in the '70's, turn out to be the same requirements to surviving global warming now; less liberty, more governmental control, and more taxes.

Jason (the commenter) said...

Big Mike: "An error has occurred [sic] because we were unable to send a cookie to your web browser."

Gabriel, this is the same error I received. You may be signed in to a site we can't access, even if you give us the link.

MadisonMan said...

Big Mike, I'm not sure which part of the Southern Hemisphere you're talking about. A big problem in Antarctica is the calving of huge icebergs, which suggests glaciers are decaying more rapidly. (See here, for example). There have been several notable examples tracked using satellites from here on campus, but those are a while ago now -- it seems like yesterday, but it was before 2004! There's also a recent USGS study here.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Ken Mitchell:

The entire AGW debate is tied to carbon dioxide, as if CO2 was the only (or even the most important) "greenhouse" gas. It isn't. The one component that has a much larger contribution to the "greenhouse" effect is water vapor. Unfortunately, the models do not include water vapor; it is too hard to measure remotely, and too hard to include in the model. So the modelers have essentially ignored it - which means that we can essentially ignore all of the AGW models, because they WON'T WORK.

The models do include water vapor as a greenhouse gas. You are being lied to.

Penny said...

"If you think your science is BETTER than scientists', you must first prove you can do it as well."

My "science" doesn't have to be better. It just needs to be supported by

1. Those in power, or
2. Those with a lot of money, or
3. The majority, or
4. Those who make a whole helluva lot of people laugh at them or with them.

Ken Mitchell said...

MadisonMan said "JohnAnnArbor: You are behind the times. Sun Spots have returned."

Ummm.... Not so much, no. The Sun is spotless today, as it has been for 222 days of this year so far. There were two small - VERY small - sunspots two weeks ago, which lasted for 3 or 4 days. The Sun is currently still in the deepest "Solar Minimum" in the past 100+ years, and we haven't much budged yet.

Check out SpaceWeather.com for details.

Gabriel Hanna said...

Gabriel, this is the same error I received. You may be signed in to a site we can't access, even if you give us the link.

I'm working from a university computer.

I'd have thought you could look at that even if you couldn't download the articles.

Try this one:

http://ams.allenpress.com/perlserv/?request=get-toc&issn=1520-0442&volume=22&issue=19

MadisonMan said...

Thank you Ken. I read that sunspots came back, but not that they'd left again. I figured the bottom was reached and we were on the way up. That's a good climatological forecast for them, after all, at this point in the cycle.

Jason (the commenter) said...

Gabriel Hanna: I don't think much of those claims, but ten years of actual, significant cooling, as opposed to the positive slope of the last ten years, would show that something important was left out of the model.

Another criticism I've heard about global warming proponents is that they are simply setting their data up so they continue recent trends. They don't include things like the little ice age or other periods of cooling.

If you only include data from the little ice age to this point in time obviously your models will show continued warming.

One of the reasons people wanted to see the data which disappeared was because they thought the analysts dealing with it might have been selecting data improperly. Basically constructing their models so it would always show warming.

If you want to talk statistics you know we have to be able to see the raw data or it's meaningless.

montana urban legend said...

I'm so glad that all the conservative lay people here have come to the consensus that this statement solves everything for all time and closes the book permanently on the great conspiracy of science urging us to be cautious about releasing vast quantities of heat-retaining gases into the atmosphere!

I'm so glad to know that every conservative idea is empirically tested through dozens of unbiased, peer-reviewed scientific studies and is never, ever wrong! Or fallacious! But just full of good ol' sweetness and love of America or whatever.

Fuck science. It ain't nothin' but a bunch of dogma. Conservatism, on the other hand, is the new empiricism! There is nothing subjective about it whatsoever. It is always dispassionate and objective! Forever and ever and ever and ever until the end of time.

And, don't forget, the world was created in 6 days and every species didn't develop from precursors but was hand-picked and dropped out from heaven by the invisible hand of the Almighty Creator - the one who penned the Constitution and the Bible - as is. The new science of conservatism says so! No peer-reviewed publications or controlled trials necessary!

QED.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Ken Miller:

From AIP:

http://www.aip.org/history/climate/Radmath.htm

Getting a proper calculation for the actions of water vapor seemed all the more important after Möller's discovery that a simple model with water vapor feedback could show catastrophic instability. No doubt his model was over simple, but what might the real climate actually do? Partly to answer that question, in the mid 1960s Syukuro Manabe with collaborators developed the first approximately realistic model. They began with a one-dimensional vertical slice of atmosphere, averaged over a zone of latitude or over the entire globe. In this column of air they modeled subtle but important features. In particular, in layers of air at different altitudes they found a different balance between the way clouds trapped radiation and warmed the planet, or reflected sunlight back into space and cooled it. These balances would change when warming of the planet added moisture to the air.

Now if climate models have included water vapor as a greenhouse gas for fifty years, why would someone tell you that climate models don't? Why would someone lie to you about that?

Gabriel Hanna said...

@JasontheCommenter:

Another criticism I've heard about global warming proponents is that they are simply setting their data up so they continue recent trends. They don't include things like the little ice age or other periods of cooling.

If you only include data from the little ice age to this point in time obviously your models will show continued warming.

I might put it a little differently. Climate models can't account for anything exactly. They need simplifying assumptions and approximations, like most things in science, but the system they are trying to model is so complex that you may not know when an assumption is invalid. If a climate model works really well, you are in danger of treating it like a magic box that produces Science, and when it does start to go wrong it can be very hard to figure out why.

From Inwood said...

Gabe

You also missed somewhere between Kindergarten & ABD the thing that one doesn't have to be a lawyer to know: He who espouses a fact or a theory has the Burden of Proof.

You can't just sit there typing on a 21st Century innovation & say that since we can't disprove GW, OOPS Climate Change, it must exist & we must spend vast sums of money & change our life style back to the Middle Ages. Or, as they said 30 yrs ago: Global Freezing is a'comin' & you (we) can't disapprove it, so prepare to meet thy doom.

If you’re not saying this, the Climate Change proselytizers sure are.

Interestingly, some wag has said that he'll believe in GW when those who espouse it begin to live their personal lives as if there was GW. Tom Friedman, who married into a shopping-center developer family, you know the ones the UCS says are defoliating & despoiling our planet, & who lives on an 11 acre spread with beaucoup rooms, says that we have to march on Washington to get something done about Climate Change.

I went back to Inwood in North Manhattan last Saturday, with the idea of climbing up the hill to The Cloisters (a branch of the Met devoted to the Middle Ages) high above the Hudson River. The torrential rain got me & I found when I got in the museum that my jacket was no longer waterproof. Heck, it was a blotter. I was a wet noodle. But, for some reason, the folks in The Cloisters had a heater on an outside, repeat on an outside, wall in one of the gardens in their reconstructed cloisters. And it was 71º. And they lecture us about saving the planet with herbs & flora & keeping our carbon footprint small. Anyway, I was able to dry myself & my jacket thanks to these phonies.

You, the ABD scientist, will sneer that I am giving anecdotal evidence. OK, but I don’t have the burden of proof. You do. And the guys who used to say that it was hotter than ever in Yankee Stadium in the late ‘90s are now commenting on the game.

The Yankees just won & I'm signing off for the nite.

Quayle said...

Gabe, first of all, the burden of proof is on the scientist making the claim, not the skeptic.

Second, the interesting thing about science is that one doesn't have to be a PhD in physics to shoot a hole in the basic setup of the physicists proposition, anymore than one has to be a PhD in German to speak German.

You speak of qualified scientist, but what does that actually mean? Does it mean they are more qualified to read correlation graphs, or more qualified to draw vertical boundary lines on a bell curve?

If a child can identify a variable that doesn't seem to be accounted for in the scientists correlation calculations, can't the child point that out, or can only the person who has a piece of paper that says that they are educated?

It really is very simple. Scientists have many theories as to why the ice ages happened.

And it really is very simple to ask how the scientist knows that the global warming they see correlated to CO2 isn't actually caused by the same underlying factor as the ice ages.

I've never heard one scientist opine on that simple question; all I've heard is their certitude that they know exactly what is going on, and their arrogant view that nobody else does.

Isn't, after all, all science tentative forever?

Gabriel Hanna said...

@mul:

Can you stop flinging feces? You are not helping this discussion.

What do YOU know about climate science that you're so goddamn superior to everybody here? Do you know anything, or do you just believe the opposite of what you think conservatives must believe?

Jason (the commenter) said...

Gabriel Hanna:Try this one:

http://ams.allenpress.com/perlserv/?request=get-toc&issn=1520-0442&volume=22&issue=19

Thanks, which of those articles deals with the loss of all records of global surface temperatures? New data doesn't help much right now, if you want to do statistical analysis in models you'd need decades of it to make up for what was lost.

Jason (the commenter) said...

Gabriel Hanna: @mul:

Can you stop flinging feces? You are not helping this discussion.

Yeah montana urban legend, we want to hear Gabriel's response to the article.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@From Inwood:

He who espouses a fact or a theory has the Burden of Proof.

Prove it. :)

Seriously, though, when do we treat something as proved? If it's gravity, 400 years ago everybody was convinced and if you disagree now you are a crackpot. If it's evolution, states will pass laws saying that you have to put disclaimers on the textbooks 150 years later.

Where are your climate models that show you can add CO2 and get no effect? The people who are affirming the positive publish hundreds of papers every year. They are doing their bit.

You can't just sit there typing on a 21st Century innovation & say that since we can't disprove GW, OOPS Climate Change, it must exist & we must spend vast sums of money & change our life style back to the Middle Ages.

I don't think this. I know some people do.

Science can't tell you what you SHOULD do. It can only tell you--sometimes--what WILL happen, whether or not you want it to happen.

Heck, it was a blotter. I was a wet noodle. But, for some reason, the folks in The Cloisters had a heater on an outside, repeat on an outside, wall in one of the gardens in their reconstructed cloisters. And it was 71º. And they lecture us about saving the planet with herbs & flora & keeping our carbon footprint small. Anyway, I was able to dry myself & my jacket thanks to these phonies.

We had a record heat wave in Seattle this year. This is why we "sneer at anecdotes". Data needs a numerator as well as a denominator.

montana urban legend said...

Oh... ok. Scrolled back up and saw you guys got your go-between Gabe to sell you the goods. Will continue to monitor the non-politicized portion of this discussion from behind the walls of the liberal conspiracy.

Penny said...

"Why would someone lie"

I have a few guesses, Gabriel Hanna, but how about you guess first.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Quayle:

If a child can identify a variable that doesn't seem to be accounted for in the scientists correlation calculations, can't the child point that out, or can only the person who has a piece of paper that says that they are educated?

If the child doesn't know enough about climate modelling to write his own, and if all he ever heard about climate models is wrong or distorted (like when Ken said they don't include water vapor, when they have since the mid 60's), then the child is not going to figure it out.

And it really is very simple to ask how the scientist knows that the global warming they see correlated to CO2 isn't actually caused by the same underlying factor as the ice ages.

How does the scientists know that when NASA launched the Cassini probes that it would end up at Jupiter, years before it ever did? Would you be willing to tell them they must be doing it wrong, when you never even so much as had a celestial mechanics class?


Isn't, after all, all science tentative forever?


Yes. But that isn't the same as knowing nothing whatever about it.

Gravity is just as tentative now as when Newton first wrote it down; more so, considering that he's been "proven wrong" by Einstein--but Newton was so close to right it took 300 years to figure out he was wrong.

Eric said...

Climate is a huge, complicated, chaotic system, and it isn't going to move in a smooth progression. It is not fully understood.

The problem in modeling (of all kinds) is always "is my model close enough to reality to be useful." For the case of climate modeling the answer is clearly "no". We have people making statements about the climate 50 years hence and the model didn't get the next ten years right.

One of the reasons proposed early on for warming trends was variations in solar output. No, we were told, that's not the reason. See, we have this model that says C02 is the driving influence. Reality doesn't match the model and all of the sudden we're told this is just a pause... due to variations in solar output.

Of course you're right - climate is complicated, chaotic, and not well understood. But we're being asked to spend trillions of dollars based on models that are provably not accurate enough to yield useful data.

Before we bankrupt ourselves over something that may not even be real, how about waiting for a ten year period where the predictions match observed data closely enough to give us some confidence in the accuracy of 50-year predictions?

Alex said...

Let's just cut to the chase. Do the pro-AGW crowd want the carbon taxes or not? Will they build more nuclear power plants or not? I'm sick and tired of their bullshit.

montana urban legend said...

Sorry, Gabe. Don't mean to harm your handiwork. But it got pretty tiring listening to these guys declare everything to be a politicized conspiracy for the last few years or so. I'm glad to see that someone who knows what he's talking about and can talk in the language your guys understand, can relay facts that are as relevant to them as the constant, baseless barrage of accusations of a conspiracy became incomprehensible and senseless to me.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Penny:

I have a few guesses, Gabriel Hanna, but how about you guess first.

I prefer to think that they deceived themselves first, rather than that they intended to deceive others.

It's really easy to just repeat what other people told you, and if you don't bother to do any research on your own you won't know you're saying something false.

@JohntheCommenter: I can't read your underlined article; if it's the BBC article I read it already.

Chip Ahoy said...

Lucid, in case you're still awaiting an answer, here's how to code a link.

The example relies on your browser displaying it the way it was written, spaces and width of typeface and such. If it's not aligned properly you'll still be able to make sense of it.

If not, you can search "+html +link" and get tons of straightforward solutions.

Jason (the commenter) said...

Gabriel Hanna: Seriously, though, when do we treat something as proved?

I dare you to put that in your doctoral thesis.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Eric:

Before we bankrupt ourselves over something that may not even be real, how about waiting for a ten year period where the predictions match observed data closely enough to give us some confidence in the accuracy of 50-year predictions?

I'm with you 100% on that.

@Alex:

If they were serious, if they really thought the planet would die due to carbon dioxide, they'd build 200 nuclear plants in the next few years and not let the hippies sue.

@mul:

I don't think you are interested in discussing things; I think you are primarily interested in mocking people you don't agree with. If you tried to engage people, without judging them or assuming you know what they think about everything, they might listen to you.

Jim Howard said...

"That's idiotic on its face. Aircraft and ship hulls are simplicity itself compared to the global climate."

"And what is your relevant technical expertise in turbulent flow"

I'm an aerospace engineer. The first statement is correct.

Airplane wings are designed to avoid turbulent flow. We can't model turbulent flow all that well even now. Even on a two dimensional model of air flowing over an airfoil in a wind tunnel. Let alone the whole fracking planet!

And even though we can model the characteristics of a craft in flight, we still have to flight test them, and we're often surprised when reality differs from the models.

Anyone else remember the famous dueling predictions from Carl Sagan and Fred Singer during Gulf War I?

Sagan used models to predict widespread catastrophe due to the oil well fires in Kuwait. Singer disputed Sagan's model, predicting that effects of the fires on the atmosphere would be local and short lived.

Singer was right, because he was using science. Sagan used a religion driven model and was wrong.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@JasontheCommenter:


I dare you to put that in your doctoral thesis.


It's really not a big deal if you do say things like that. Have you heard the spherical cow joke? If you have a physics problem about cows, first approximate the cow as a sphere.

It's a model. It could be 50% right, 80% right, 95% right, but until we get to look in God's physics book it will never get to 100%.

In my thesis there are two common physical models of atoms that I (gently) make fun of. I also quote Humpty Dumpty and mention Leonidas and the Spartans at Thermopylae.

traditionalguy said...

MUL...You are not fighting against a new conservative cabal based upon reading scriptures. Then you could just get angry and huff and puff. But you are fighting the current facts about the sun spot activity that is easily measured rather than revealed by God in his inspired scripture. Whatever once heated the Global Climate from the early 1990s until 2003 has left. To conjure up innocent CO2 emissions by the American way of life as an evil causing a Warming Disaster, that has left us before it even got started, can only be from supernatural revelations from a god that only eats American Money and lives in its UN Temple in New York City.

Joe said...

Gabriel, please submit a link to a computer model where data from the 18th century was input, a starting date of 1900 was picked and the climate trends of the 20th century were reproduced with reasonable accuracy. (The model should also include source code to verify that the programmers aren't just inputing magic numbers to force the results. To verify that this is the case, starting dates of every century from 100 CE should also be enterable and it should produce reasonably accurate results.)

chickenlittle said...

I think that's about the only conclusion that can be made, given the data.

Madison Man sums it up best and wins the thread IMO.

Gabriel, you sound just a little too invested in the outcome to be credible. And you shouldn't go around telling people you're smarter or more qualified than they are, because it might just turn around and bite you one day.

But don't worry, you got a strong public defender in Montana Urban Legend. :)

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Jim Howard:

Sagan used models to predict widespread catastrophe due to the oil well fires in Kuwait. Singer disputed Sagan's model, predicting that effects of the fires on the atmosphere would be local and short lived.

Singer was right, because he was using science. Sagan used a religion driven model and was wrong.

Right, but the question before this house is, is climate science based on religion-driven models?

Sagan was one guy, more of a science popularizer than a true scientist, and he let his politics trump his science. But I find it very hard to believe that the thousands of climate workers are all doing that. The reason is that there are physics crackpots who accuse physicists of conspiring to ignore whatever, or that there is something so simple that they're all too stupid to figure out, and I know that those things are not true.

Joe said...

Second challenge: Explain the science behind using selected proxy data for years preceding 1900 and measured data afterward, entirely ignoring proxy data.

Third challenge: Explain why the measurements of atmospheric CO2 in the first half of the 19th century which showed concentrations roughly equal to today have been discarded by anthropological climate warming proponents.

Fourth challenge: Explain how, if CO2 behaved in the way claimed by AGW proponents, we could build a energy production facility. Since such facilities have not be built, explain why they haven't.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@chickenlittle:

Gabriel, you sound just a little too invested in the outcome to be credible. And you shouldn't go around telling people you're smarter or more qualified than they are, because it might just turn around and bite you one day.

I am not a climate scientist, and never claimed any relevant expertise or qualifications in climate science, and I never claimed to be smarter than anyone.

I deferred to the experts, and I asked who here had the kinds of qualifications or experience that was relevant.

If I was trying to sell you a cure for cancer, wouldn't you want to know that I knew what I was talking about?

Jason (the commenter) said...

Gabriel Hanna: I also quote Humpty Dumpty and mention Leonidas and the Spartans at Thermopylae.

I bet Leonidas would have addressed the article instead of turning into an apologist.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Joe:

Joe, do you believe airplanes work?

Because I won't until I see you build and fly one.

Why do I have to get a second job to try to convince you of something you're not willing to believe?

If you think you can model climate better, then write your model, disprove the whole thing and get a Noble prize (as we say the other day it can't be that hard). Don't waste your time with me.

montana urban legend said...

I don't think you are interested in discussing things;

Well, I'm interested in discussing some things. And I have no problem with the things you're discussing. Or with listening to them or reading them. I just think that it is wrong for someone who advocates placing a stress or change in the inputs to a natural system to believe that the burden is on those who are not advocating that change to prove that it is not significant or possibly deleterious.

I think you are primarily interested in mocking people you don't agree with.

I disagree. I have tons of conversations with people I don't agree with and there is plenty of cogent discussion in those conversations that goes way beyond any mocking that may or may not exist in them from either side. Except on Althouse.

If you tried to engage people, without judging them or assuming you know what they think about everything, they might listen to you.

As you, I am not a climate scientist but also know enough science to perceive the difference between that and dogma. Just because you are more well-versed in the specific science and methodology doesn't mean that I can't resent the fact that people who aren't still resent me for not accepting bogus claims, which I can perceive as false or poorly reasoned - even if I am not as knowledgeable as you in understanding the origin of the thought processes that form the source of error in them, or as articulate in explaining exactly what their error is and how such a misunderstanding came to be held.

If you think that there isn't a bit of skepticism coming from the commentariat of this crowd that is more than a bit slightly overdone, then we'll have to agree to disagree.

MadisonMan said...

Gabriel, please submit a link to a computer model where data from the 18th century was input,

Give me a link to a global sea surface analysis from the 1700s and we'll talk. As I noted upthread, the availability of data is very limited.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@JasontheCommenter:

I read NRO every day. I already read the article. It is one guy's side of the story about what happened when he asked one group for data. It's not an indictment of the entire science and the thousands of people who've worked on it for decades.

Alex said...

MUL - are you going to build 200 nuclear power plants in the next 10 years?

MadisonMan said...

Second challenge: Explain the science behind using selected proxy data for years preceding 1900 and measured data afterward, entirely ignoring proxy data.

Meteorological data is shockingly limited prior to 1900. It really doesn't amount to much 'til after the American Civil War, then observations start to become more prevalent.

Measured data are preferred to proxy data because they are more accurate. At some point, comparisons between the two are made.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Madison Man:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/8291267.stm

Looks like they're working on that.

Joe said...

Another intriguing issue: until recently clouds were not included in climate models. They were thought irrelevant. Verifiable (and disprovable) scientific experiments have shown otherwise. However, clouds are still not modeled correctly for the simple reason that scientists don't understand clouds very well.

Then there are El Nino, La Nina, the Pacific Decadal Oscillation and the Arctic Oscillation. We can predict what will happen when these occur and/or change, but we cannot yet predict WHEN they will occur or why they change (the PDO and AO aren't oscillations at all since they don't proceed on a predictable repetitive schedule.) If a computer model cannot predict when these occur and does not take them into account when they do, it simply cannot be remotely accurate.

montana urban legend said...

See Alex? There you go again. I understand you care about where we get cheap, efficient, affordable power, quickly if not NOW. But that has nothing to do with whether or not the science of AGW has merit to it or not.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Joe:

Another intriguing issue: until recently clouds were not included in climate models.

Is "recently" 40 years ago? I already linked to the American Institute of Physics articles on that. Did you bother to take a look? Why not?

However, clouds are still not modeled correctly for the simple reason that scientists don't understand clouds very well.

I'm sure they are far from perfect, but they know way more about it than you or I.

If a computer model cannot predict when these occur and does not take them into account when they do, it simply cannot be remotely accurate.

How do you know? Did you run some and check the difference? Did you read the journal articles written by people who did? Did you ever bother to find out what an actual climate scientist actually said about his own work?

Alex said...

MUL - ah yes it does. If you AGW-types are serious then you have to be for building nuclear power plants. If all you want is a rhetorical victory so you can destroy the US economy, I will not grant you that.

Elliott A said...

Unlike many of the non-provable arguments of our time, this one is. In 2030, we will know if the world is warming due to human spew, or the observed warming of the 70s through the 90s (really the beginning of reliable sattelite observation)was just a normal rise as predicted by the Pacific Decadal oscillation. It should cool for 20 more years. Stay tuned,

Joe said...

Gabriel, you didn't answer my questions. You made statements and won't back them up with scientific articles. I did not ask YOU to produce a model, I asked you to reference such a model. I cannot write one since it is impossible--there are too many unknowns (and I'm an expert computer programmer.)

YOU made the claim that computer models were accurate, yet cannot submit a link to a verifiable computer model. Instead you deflect the question in the lamest way possible.

BTW, if you are curious about how airplanes work, I can send you many scientific references, replete with computer models and source code. Amazingly enough, you can build a wind tunnel in your basement and reproduce many of the results for relatively slow flying planes. The Wright Brothers did it over 100 years ago.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Alex:

MUL has a point and so do you.

Nuclear plants are a good idea if global warming is really going on.

Nuclear plants MAY be a good idea even if it isn't.

But thinking about nuclear plants can't tell you if the climate science is right. The universe does what it does; we have to decide whether we want the nuclear plants. We may decide wrongly.

former law student said...

Nonlinearity.

In 16 years, I grew an additional four feet in height, but I did not get three inches taller each and every year. Some years I barely grew at all. Some years I shot up. On the average, though I grew some three inches a year.

But climate researchers should be of good cheer. The UK's National Archives is putting two centuries of temperatures of ships' logs online.

http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,,26173286-2703,00.html?from=public_rss

The new name for climate change skeptics is "Climate Truther." I get it from the personal website of the "free-lance scientist" -- a proud graduate of Auckland U -- cited by the National Review (of Climatological Studies?). Hughes hos "NZ Climate Truth" on his website. Ergo, Climate Truther.

http://www.warwickhughes.com/gray04/

Gabriel Hanna said...

Gabriel, you didn't answer my questions. You made statements and won't back them up with scientific articles.

Did you follow any of my links? Is the American Institute of Physics not composed of scientists?

I cannot write one since it is impossible--there are too many unknowns (and I'm an expert computer programmer.)

Then why don't you write to the journals and prove to them they are all doing it wrong? Should be easy if it's impossible.

YOU made the claim that computer models were accurate...

No, I said they were not a scam, not made up, and they reflect reality to some degree. Read what I wrote, not what you assume I must think.

yet cannot submit a link to a verifiable computer model...

Why WOULD I? Am I a climate scientist, to know exactly where to find climate models at the drop of a hat? And what would you call "verifiable"?

How many times do I have to link to the AIP articles that have so much information for the interested layman? But you never read what I DID link, so why should I go on a snipe hunt for you?

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Joe:

http://www.aip.org/history/climate/Radmath.htm

Here's a place to start. Note the disclaimer:

Looking for a complete explanation of greenhouse warming, equations and all? You won’t find it here or anywhere on the Web: first you have to fully grasp at least one good textbook, and even then you can only see how climate may change by running the equations on a large computer model that takes into account all the details of crucial factors like clouds and ocean circulation. (For a link to a draft of a textbook and some other technical information, see the first paragraph on the links page.)

Jason (the commenter) said...

Gabriel Hanna: It's not an indictment of the entire science and the thousands of people who've worked on it for decades.

Good. As long as no one is saying there is data to support the models indicating man-made global warming, I'm fine.

Now, someone tell the politicians. They're making all sorts of laws to cause certain outcomes which aren't certain at all.

We're wasting political capital and money on needless projects, possible even causing wars, when we could be using them to improve our standard of living.

former law student said...

In college I was surprised to learn that actual airplanes were designed according to the shockingly oversimplified thin airfoil theory in the early 1900s -- and moreover, they flew!

Joe said...

Gabriel, if you believe that accurate modeling of clouds is not necessary to accurate modeling of climate then you an ignorant and quite gullible fool.

How do you know? Did you run some and check the difference? Did you read the journal articles written by people who did? Did you ever bother to find out what an actual climate scientist actually said about his own work?

Because I have a brain between my ears and take it upon myself to be informed by reading articles and the synposis of articles. Yes, I did find out what actual climate scientists say, but apparently you are just cherry picking convenient data, dismissing inconvenient data and projecting your ignorance onto others when challenged with facts.

So cough it up. I laid out several direct flaws with AGW theory and you respond to none.

I'll go simple; the PDO affects the climate. What the PDO does is fairly well understood, however when the PDO happens isn't predictable. How can anyone create even the most simplistic model where one known variable is entirely unpredictable in occurrence? The answer is that you can't.

montana urban legend said...

Now, someone tell the politicians. They're making all sorts of laws to cause certain outcomes which aren't certain at all.

Ah... there's the rub, Jason. The outcomes of policies won't be certain but the outcome of releasing vast amounts of CO2 into the atmosphere indefinitely into the future is.

I see.

MadisonMan said...

Joe, it doesn't help your credibility to make the ridiculous claim (it's not at all intriguing -- it's baseless; what's intriguing is that you thought you were making a valid point) that clouds aren't present in climate models.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@JasontheCommenter:


Good. As long as no one is saying there is data to support the models indicating man-made global warming, I'm fine.


There is, and you refuse to look. When you saw that the journals are full of published climate data, you claimed it was all NEW data that doesn't count.

Are you seriously saying that ALL the climate data that EVER was was on one guy's hard drive? I'm sorry, the article you cited didn't get anywhere NEAR saying that.

AJ Lynch said...

Jason:
I copied that article and sent it to my nephew. He is a college senior majoring in bio-physics. I jokingly warned him to never fudge the data because someday, someone will ask to see it.

Joe said...

Gabriel, give me a fucking break:

Here's a place to start. Note the disclaimer:

Looking for a complete explanation of greenhouse warming, equations and all? You won’t find it here or anywhere on the Web:


You won't find it because they don't exist. The reality is that the equations are largely made up out of thin air.

Again, point to a link with an accurate computer model including source code. Surely for an issue this important, this potentially disastrous to mankind, such models would be plentiful. Where are they? Why can't you link to one and instead produce links to sites that immediately start out by saying that there is a gnosis, but trust us?

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Joe

When you say the models don't include clouds right, you don't know what you are talking about. They've had clouds in the models for forty years. Are they perfect models? No. But you have no qualifications whatever to judge how good they are, because you have done no work in this field and done no research of your own.

Would you like it if climate modellers never looked at what you did and just told you were doing it wrong? Why do you think you have the right to do it to them? Do you tell your lawyer he doesn't know the law, or your doctor that he doesn't know medicine?

MadisonMan said...

Joe, the relevant question is: is predictability of the PDO necessary to understand climate over multi-decadal time scales? Or, to put it another way, if you are trying to understand what's happening on a timescales of 50-1000 years, is a 20-50 year oscillation significant?

Your implicit assumption is that it is vital somehow. Based on what?

Joe said...

Joe, it doesn't help your credibility to make the ridiculous claim (it's not at all intriguing -- it's baseless; what's intriguing is that you thought you were making a valid point) that clouds aren't present in climate models.

But Clouds weren't included in most original climate models. They were thought to be inconsequential to overall climate. When clouds were included, they were treated simply as masses of water vapor. In the past few years, our understanding of clouds has increased by magnitudes and we've discovered that they are much more complex than previously thought.

Elliott A said...

@fls- Don't forget that 200 years ago we were still in the Little Ice Age, and the increasing temps of the last 200 years represent a recovery from it.

As an aside, does anyone here notice that the doom scenarios only are doom for developed nations? (Maybe a few islands) If it got as warm as the AGW crowd says, the Sahara will once again become a savannah, and the Arabian Peninsula wooded. After all the species expected to die off go, imagine all the neat new ones we will get as has happened every other time in the planet's history. Atlantic Canada can once again become a wine producing region. (The Vikings were vintners there 1000 years ago.) The orange and peach crops won't freeze anymore. We'll adapt and go on, many for the better.

Lastly, why do the scientists among us not squawk when global climates are linearly averaged? An increase in temperature in the tropics requires 16 times the energy as the same increase in the polar regions.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Joe:

I've already put up links to a summary written by the American Institute of Physics. If you ever bothered to read it, you might be able to find out more about climate modeling from people who do it.

I don't think any research groups have links on the web to their source code.

Why don't you write to one and ask them?

Never thought of that?

Gabriel Hanna said...

But Clouds weren't included in most original climate models. They were thought to be inconsequential to overall climate. When clouds were included, they were treated simply as masses of water vapor.

Joe, why don't you write to the American Institute of Physics and tell them that their articles about modeling clouds are totally wrong because the models don't exist? Take it up with them, mmkay?

MadisonMan said...

But Clouds weren't included in most original climate models.

They weren't included in early weather forecast models either.

And yet people got PhDs using them.

So unfair.

Joe said...

is predictability of the PDO necessary to understand climate over multi-decadal time scales?

Since the PDO can be multi-decadal, it seems quite obvious that yes, it is important.

More directly, the current drought in California can be explained by the PDO and El Nino, and the thinning of Arctic ice can be explained by the interaction of the PDO and AO.

montana urban legend said...

If it got as warm as the AGW crowd says, the Sahara will once again become a savannah, and the Arabian Peninsula wooded.

Eksqueeze me? Deserts become more lush the hotter they get? WTF?

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Joe

Since the PDO can be multi-decadal, it seems quite obvious that yes, it is important.

More directly, the current drought in California can be explained by the PDO and El Nino, and the thinning of Arctic ice can be explained by the interaction of the PDO and AO.

Since you won't RTFA:

Another positive note was the plausible representation of middle-scale phenomena such as the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO). This irregular cycle of wind patterns and water movement in the tropical Pacific Ocean became a target for modelers once it was found to affect weather powerfully around the globe. Such mid-sized models, constructed by groups nearly independent of the GCM researchers, offered an opportunity to work out and test solutions to tricky problems like the interaction between winds and waves. By the late 1990s, specially designed regional models showed some success in reproducing the structure of El Niños (although predicting them remained as uncertain as predicting any specific weather pattern months in advance). As global ocean-atmosphere models improved, they began to spontaneously generate their own El Niño-like cycles.
<=The oceans
Meanwhile other groups confronted the problem of the North Atlantic thermohaline circulation, spurred by evidence from ice and ocean-bed cores of drastic shifts during glacial periods. By the turn of the century modelers had produced convincing simulations of these past changes.(98) Manabe's group looked to see if something like that could happen in the future. Their preliminary work in the 1980s had aimed at steady-state models, which were a necessary first step, but unable by their very nature to see changes in the oceans. Now the group had enough computer power to follow the system as it evolved, plugging in a steady increase of atmospheric CO2 level. They found that sometime in the next few centuries, global warming could seriously weaken the ocean circulation.(99)

MadisonMan said...

What Big Mike said at 10:08

montana urban legend said...

Aye.

Joe said...

Joe, why don't you write to the American Institute of Physics and tell them that their articles about modeling clouds are totally wrong because the models don't exist? Take it up with them, mmkay?

I did NOT say this. I did say they weren't accurate. But let me have a scientist writing for the American Institute of Physics speak for himself:

The sharpest ever measurement of ice crystals in clouds will help to improve climate change predictions. Scientists have created an instrument designed to help determine the shapes and sizes of tiny ice crystals typical of those found in high-altitude clouds, down to the micron level, comparable to the tiniest cells in the human body.

Among the hundreds of factors climate scientists must take into account in modeling weather, the nature of clouds is one of the most important and least understood.

- Number 870 #1, August 26, 2008 by Phil Schewe

Gabriel Hanna said...

Yeah, I gotta go too.

Joe, you said that models don't include clouds and don't include PDO and El Nino, and you're wrong about that, and the models have had clouds for decades and PDO and El Nino for ten years.

So, you don't actually know what climate modelers do, but you still feel free to tell them it is wrong. You claim they are wrong for not including things which they actually include.

You've been deceived.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Joe:

Among the hundreds of factors climate scientists must take into account in modeling weather, the nature of clouds is one of the most important and least understood.

True. Does that make the climate models worthless? No. It makes them less than perfect, which is all science.

Joe said...

Gabriel, did you even read what your wrote and think about the implications. I already said that we have gained a huge understanding of HOW the PDO, AO, El Nino and La Nina work when the occur. The problem is predicting WHEN these phenomenon happen. What triggers the change? The science is ongoing.

(I also observe that the end of your quote included a hypothesis. Atmospheric CO2 concentration might influence the above, but it may not. It may actually be the result of the above.)

Joe said...

Joe, you said that models don't include clouds and don't include PDO and El Nino, and you're wrong about that, and the models have had clouds for decades and PDO and El Nino for ten years.

Goddamn it. I didn't say that you fucker. I said the original models didn't include clouds. Then they included a simplistic view of clouds. And now we've learned that that isn't adequate and we are LEARNING how to model them, but haven't.

I also pointed out that PDO, AO, El Nino and La Nina are well understood, but what triggers them is not. When the PDO shifts is obviously very important, but why does it shift? Without knowing that, model accuracy plummets.

Quayle said...

@Gabe

How does the scientists know that when NASA launched the Cassini probes that it would end up at Jupiter, years before it ever did? Would you be willing to tell them they must be doing it wrong, when you never even so much as had a celestial mechanics class?

Ah, but whether I attempted to correct them or not, their calculations would be ultimately validated by the probe's result.

Re CO2 global warming - we could spend trillions and not know whether it was our attempts or some other factor.

The two situations are hardly close enough in complexity to compare.

Methadras said...

And yet leftists nearly everywhere embrace the religious fervor that is Global Warming without a single shred of doubt or worry because their Dear Leaders tell them that there is a climatological crisis of global shattering proportions and that we are on the brink of utter doom unless we do something now. And these little lemmings put their hands on their faces like Macauly Culkin in Home Alone in the aftershave scene and scream that the sky is falling and ask "what can we do, dear leader, what can we do?" and then Dear Leaders pull out the proper legislative cure and viola, just like that global warming will be fixed.

You leftist baboons have been sold a bill of goods and your idiocy has made it's way into public policy and for what? You still can't tell anyone what the proper CO2 limits in the atmosphere should be much less what you think the ideal surface temperature should be either. You are idiots of the highest order. The lot of you.

John Lynch said...

Cassini had to make in flight corrections. NASA did not, in fact, predict its actual course. They did plan for being wrong, so it still got there.

The reason we can get fairly close when calculating orbits is that there aren't many factors. People in the 18th century could track comets and planets with a fair degree of accuracy even without computers (they were still wrong, just less wrong than the people who came before). Space is as free from randomness as anyplace is going to get, and even then we aren't able to predict the course of asteroids passing near the Earth.

If you follow the news about near-earth asteroids, their odds of coming too close to the planet regularly change because our predictions aren't that good. An object has to be observed for quite a long time to get an accurate orbital prediction.

When you examine something much more complex, like stock markets or the climate, the number of factors that could overturn the entire prediction become so numerous that it's foolish to try. Only one large and unpredicted event can ruin the whole prediction.

Eric said...

Eksqueeze me? Deserts become more lush the hotter they get? WTF?

All you need to make a desert into a jungle is a new weather pattern that brings rain. The jungles of Southeast Asia are much warmer than the deserts of Southern California.

Methadras said...

JohnAnnArbor said...

None of the models predicted this 11 years. And now, the sunspot numbers have cratered. Last time that happened, it was called the "little ice age."


The sun runs 11 year sunspot cycles. Besides, none of the models could run an 11 year predictive cycle on an open system anyway. Introduction of Chaos couldn't be accounted for in models like this anyway and would render it unusable. This is nothing more than the trappings to secure government grant cash and they've spend the last 30 to 40 years hanging on to the public tit to try and preserve it.

Synova said...

"How does the scientists know that when NASA launched the Cassini probes that it would end up at Jupiter, years before it ever did? Would you be willing to tell them they must be doing it wrong, when you never even so much as had a celestial mechanics class?"

That's ENGINEERING.

Oh, sure it's math and physics, but it's not even remotely theoretical.

Quite frankly, I've got no time and no inclination to listen to someone who demands a list of bonafides before other people are allowed an opinion, and global warming believers are the worst at this that I've ever come across. I've had conversations with any number of excessively educated PhD's employed at our nation's top-tier universities (ain't the internet grand?) about their particular area of expertise... and somehow this having to prove I'm *qualified* to have an opinion mostly only happens with global warming and climate science.

Why is that?

And why are those demands for credentials made by people who are NOT climate scientists themselves?

I mean, seriously, I once was told that Freeman-freaking-DYSON was not QUALIFIED to have an opinion about climate modeling... because he wasn't the right sort of scientist? Egad.

There are so many "tells" that delegitimize the AGW promoters. That's just the biggest one.

Demonizing "deniers" is another. Trying to avoid making data public is another. Refusing to explain Historical warm periods is another. Depending on emotional arguments is another.

And as for the politicizers like Gore and any number of celebrities and eco-movement people... They aren't serious. Look at what they *do* and they aren't serious. Look at the solutions they demand and *clearly* they aren't serious.

I don't know that I blame the scientists too much. They live off of grants and who's going to pass up good money to study the effects of global warming? And they can't control what people like Gore do or whatever celebrity is telling us not to use as much toilet paper while they pay for their virtue by giving money to each other and calling it "carbon credits."

Take this out of the political realm and let them do *science*.

And I'll start taking the "celebrities" serious when they're marching on Washington and demanding nuclear power.

Hector Owen said...

Billions and billions in "government grant cash." Climate Money (PDF). From the Summary:

The US government has spent over $79 billion since 1989 on policies related to climate change, including science and technology research, administration, education campaigns, foreign aid, and tax breaks. […]

Carbon trading worldwide reached $126 billion in 2008. Banks are calling for more carbon-trading. And experts are predicting the carbon market will reach $2 - $10 trillion making carbon the largest single commodity traded.

There's big money in this climate business, and big power too. The debate should be vigorous. Not declared over.

Cedarford said...

Yep. Also the AGW crowd sucks all the environmental attention away from real problems, like fisheries that are crashing, for instance.

There are other, urgent problems that are going to be a crisis long before we see "oceans rise" even if the Green religion is fully correct...and far far before it is a crisis of CO2 is only a minor factor or not a factor yet.

Yes, long term, 12.9 billion carbon emitters are going to be a problem unless we deliberately crash 3rd world populations before we "correct against our will by war and famine.

Before then:

1. WE could have a global crisis if the oil economy crashes while Green religionists are demonizing coal and chasing non-oil substitute expensive solar and wind as an "exciting alternative"

2. We are very close to another mass species extinction event. And not in nations with "evil excess carbon emitters" but in overpopulated "morally correct low carbon emitting peopled" lands now cutting down the last large forests and scrublands for fuel and to open more marginal land up to sunsistence farming.

3. We are seeing collapsing ecosystems and lands where current farming is using "fossil water" and unsustainable when that runs out. And the only nations that now produce a food surplus that is exported, save Thailand, are "evil fossil fuel excess use" nations. Fancy that!

4. Outside the environmental, we know have populations with out of control breeding rates where for only the last 50 years of the last 8,000 of civilization...all the chilluns survive thanks to food aid, welfare, and free medical care. This is leading to politically unmanagable Mega-Cities where those with a future are building walls and hiting military to protect them from the excess, unwanted surplus people with no future at all.
And countries where overpopulation has led to 50% of young males being jobless with no prospects of a better future. Which is inherently destabilizing when you look at nations now in that trap - densely populated African and ME nations...Pakistan, places like Haiti and Jamaica.

Smart people can see the disasters coming...but the media is fretting about a possible 20% drop in sustainable polar bear numbers..

Penny said...

No shit, Hector. Problem is that Jon Stewart's producers think they wore out the GW "funny".

Do we really have to start all over with the BBC's pretty pics and dire warnings?

Let the Brazilians run with this. A saucy Latin spin might be just what we need.

blake said...

I like the way the "Real Climate" argument calls natural variability an oscillation, while the real 800 pound gorilla in the room is wicked man and his carbon dioxide.

But let's say it's right, and the temperature goes up 1.1 degrees in the next century. Where's the evidence that this would be bad?

Generally speaking, warmer weather is good!

Michael Hasenstab said...

I'll post the same question here that I posted on other global warming threads. I still haven't received and answer.

Which man-made event(s) resulted in the warming that destroyed the glaciers some ten million years ago?

AllenS said...

Michael--

I believe that the glaciers around here started to melt a mere 10,000 to 20,000 years ago. Those are indisputable facts which leads us to conclude that it's a climate crisis!

EnglishKanighit said...

Who here thinks the current state of climate science and modeling is sufficient to support human efforts to control the climate.

Pogo said...

When scientists finally create a really big thermostat to control world temperature and set it at 68 daytime and 50 at night, then we're talking about sumpin'.

rhhardin said...

Models persist as long as funding persists.

Science persists as long as curiosity persists.

Look at the current supporters. Do we see funding? Yes.

Do we see curiosity? No.

Hoosier Daddy said...

I disagree. I have tons of conversations with people I don't agree with and there is plenty of cogent discussion in those conversations that goes way beyond any mocking that may or may not exist in them from either side. Except on Althouse.

Which begs the question why you even waste your time here? Actually, you seem to just enjoy listening to yourself talk more than engaging on a constructive debate.

As you, I am not a climate scientist but also know enough science to perceive the difference between that and dogma.

Well I think what you and Gabe are missing in this conversation is the difference between climate change and man-made climate change. It is quite logical to believe in the former and heap scorn on the latter as bad science. Climate by its very nature, changes. It must because at one time a glacier rested where my house now sits so it stands to reason that the planet went through a major warming period long before SUVs, and coal fired plants roamed the Earth.

I also tend to become very skeptical of any ‘we must do radical change’ when those shouting the loudest live a lifestyle that is opposite that they expect the rest of us to follow. I also tend to follow the money. Mr. Gore is making a nice tidy sum lecturing the rest of us while not having to actually defend his tripe. Also for those of us who have been on planet Earth longer than 1990 have lived through more doomsday scenarios than I can count. I vividly recall being a small childrens in the early 1970s and terrified at the prospect of the coming ice age. Since then I have survived that, swine flu (the 70s version) AIDs, SARs, Jimmy Carter, nuclear winter, Y2K and bird flu. So you’ll have to forgive me if I’m not pissing down my pant leg at the most recent sky is falling scenario. Oh and when I am told that countries like China and India get a pass while the rest of us have to pay through the nose, then I call bullshit. Therefore when it comes to dogma you might want to look in the mirror first before casting stones.

Dark Eden said...

The AGW crew will go down in history as the snake oil salesmen of the modern era. In fifty years people will chuckle at how stupid and gullible so many people were.

Synova said...

C4: 4. Outside the environmental, we know have populations with out of control breeding rates where for only the last 50 years of the last 8,000 of civilization..."

About that and about the deforestation and ecological problems in developing nations...

We KNOW how to stop both of those things, we know "how to get there from here" and it's not fetishizing the noble agrarian... it's economic and industrial development.

This is another area where the AGW crowd is unserious. They see the solution to their crisis in terms of an irrational romanticizing of quaint pre-industrial peoples living in harmony with nature.

An out and out lie and only supportable with a great big dollop of religious (the green kind) faith.

Instead of paying to maintain a jet-setting lifestyle by paying poor brown people to live in grass huts and acting like this is a *good* thing, they should promote education, industrialization, and the modernization that would result in smaller families (because it always does) and the excess wealth necessary to waste a good deal of it on clean air and water. That would show seriousness and it wouldn't cripple the global economy or retard developing countries, keeping people poor longer out of some need for (false) personal virtue.

datechguy said...

What an amazing coincidence the BBC questions it's position on Global warming at the same time that Charles Johnson decided the evidence goes the other way.

Salamandyr said...

I don't understand why we are worried about the amount of warming that is said to occur over the next century anyway. It would have a number of beneficial effects...larger temperate zones, decreased desertification, It seems to me that this might actually be something to hope for rather than avoid.

lkdemott said...

Here is a good article by Roy Spencer, a skeptical climate scientist, on the global climate models and their shortcomings. http://www.drroyspencer.com/2009/07/how-do-climate-models-work/

Photog714 said...

Those who forget Paul Ehrlich are destined to repeat his mistakes.

Roger J. said...

Late to this thread and the I am not a climate scientist applies to me. I have had some experience with covariance structural modelling, and I subscribe to Gabriel's point about model creation and refinement.

He's telling us how the modelling process works, and I agree with him on that part. How people use those models and for what purpose probably has to do with (1) personal opinion (2) grant funding and (3) ideological mindset.

What makes the modelling process so difficult with respect to climate it seems to me are the amount of variables to consider. Thus the modelling process is an iterative process and the real dilemma is that climate is slow moving which makes model verification even more difficult.

With respect to Mr. Hannah's observations re modelling PROCESS, please do not throw the baby out with the bathwater.

lkdemott said...

A key graph that seems on-target from Dr. Spencer's article.
"It is also important to understand that even if a climate model handled 95% of the processes in the climate system perfectly, this does not mean the model will be 95% accurate in its predictions. All it takes is one important process to be wrong for the models to be seriously in error. For instance, how the model alters cloud cover with warming can make the difference between anthropogenic global warming being catastrophic, or just lost in the noise of natural climate variability."
http://www.drroyspencer.com/2009/07/how-do-climate-models-work/

Hoosier Daddy said...

The problem I have with the AGW crowd is that all of the 'sacrifice' seems to be laid at the foot of the West, the US in particular while 'developing' nations like China and India get a pass (never mind that both countries are well past the 'development' stage). And then to top it off, the West which is expected to hamstring itself with carbon output is also expected to contribute to the poorer nations while at the same time create the 'green' sector that will reduce carbon emissions (never mind that China and India which constitute nearly half the planet's population get a pass).

If AGW is the threat to mankind that Gore, et. al keep screaming it is, no country would get a pass and the fact that they are specifically exempt is all I need to know that AGW is nothing but a bunch of bullshit. Oh and lets not forget who really gets to profit from the whole carbon trading scheme. Not just Al but Wall Street who are salivating at the prospect of the trillion dollars in carbon trading that is out there.

I suppose if the liberal left had any clue how this would enrich the fat cats on Wall Street they might sing a different tune.

elHombre said...

@Gabriel Hanna: Thanks for your answers to my questions.

It does seem to me as a non-scientist that the shift from "global warming" to "climate change" raises some questions that go beyond mere politics.

Otherwise, I'll read the article you recommended and leave the debate to those more qualified.

Father Martin Fox said...

Re: Gabriel & Medieval and Roman warming...

(My comment appears to have been eaten, so I'll try again--and sorry for a double post if it happens...)

Is it actually the contention of serious scientists, studying this subject, that the warming periods during the Middle Ages and the Roman periods were also caused--to a significant degree--by human action?

Is that really the argument?

Because I'm finding that very hard to believe. I'd like to see something further on that, if anyone can provide a link.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Because I'm finding that very hard to believe. I'd like to see something further on that, if anyone can provide a link.

There has been quite a bit of new research on Roman history since Gibbon's day. Quite simply, there was hardly enough population in Europe at that time to even begin the level of deforestation that he links to causing climate change.

former law student said...

Hoosier Daddy's point is well taken. If the human activities that cause global warming* are merely shifted from the developed world to the developing world, how does this solve the problem?

Reminds me of when air pollution regulations shifted metal casting from the US to Mexico, and then China. The difference is that global warming affects everyone.

*Accept this for the sake of argument.

MadisonMan said...

Reminds me of when air pollution regulations shifted metal casting from the US to Mexico, and then China. The difference is that global warming affects everyone.

So does air pollution. Pollution from China is observed in satellite data reaching Alaska and the Pacific Northwest.

virgil xenophon said...

Cedarford, JohnAnnHarbor, Big Mike and Jason, and half a dozen others here are much too logical and well read.. Ann should banish them from the site forever. Please don't confuse the troops with facts and logic--spoils the emotive discussion.

And Cedarford and others who mention the crashing of the oceans' fisheries are dead on target. This is something that is happening at geometric rates and is potentially one of the most catastrophic short term threats ever. And its for real--and very measurable. We are currently like the guy who jumped off the Empire State Bldg and half-way down exclaimed: "So far so good!" The fish thing is going to be an abrupt, near civilization-ending disaster that NO ONE is preparing for.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Hoosier Daddy's point is well taken. If the human activities that cause global warming* are merely shifted from the developed world to the developing world, how does this solve the problem?

I've yet to hear an answer on this other than 'we're rich' so we can better afford the costs. As I said, I tend to follow the money and when I see Wall Street lining up behind schemes like carbon trading I know we're being sold a bill of goods.

I'm all for cleaner energy and a cleaner environment but as another commenter said, having a viable alternative in place would be helpful. Fact is, outside of nuclear power, there is no viable energy alternative that will meet the energy demands of a 21st century nation with a population of 300 million people.

From Inwood said...

OK

After 177 comments & a hijack of this thread by an ABD student who wants to stop everyone else from commenting because they don't have his, um, climate credentials & haven't read all the articles he cites (which apparently don't raise GW above a theory) & have read only articles of which he disapproves (which apparently debunk the inaccurate or misleading “facts” presented by GW advocates), we are back to the pithy, packed paragraph of Peter V. Bella, in comment #1.

Coudda saved my time stopping there.

My hat's off to him.

Note: I'm not picking on ABDs. My two now PhD daughters were once that way. I'm just laughing at this guy for failing to understand burden of proof (good luck on his PhD dissertation) & attempting to stifle comments simply by flashing his credentials & citing articles which do not prove the GW theory & apparently do not address Prof A's BBC article's point.

Cedarford said...

Synova - Instead of paying to maintain a jet-setting lifestyle by paying poor brown people to live in grass huts and acting like this is a *good* thing, they should promote education, industrialization, and the modernization that would result in smaller families (because it always does) and the excess wealth necessary to waste a good deal of it on clean air and water.

It is an incorrect article of faith that improving standards of living ALWAYS produce lower birthrates.

But that is not born out by FACTS.

In certain cultures, it has..in others, it hasn't...and in others, there has been a slight drop in fertility, but population still grows explosively because intense efforts to use free food, mass free medical care has doubled or tripled the number of children surviving to reproductive age.

Mexico, for example, dumped it's poorest people on the USA. Same with many other CA nations. Plus the Haitians. Free of need for women to work in fields....birthrates for certain Latin and Caribbean countries actually INCREASED in 2nd-gen Hispanic Americans.

The Palestinian birthrate increased with improved food and sanitation and medical access in refugee camps, and more survived...And in KSA and Kuwait - where women lived dramatically better lives starting in the 1950s - new wealth, modernization, education led to them saying they could AFFORD to have even larger families. And they did.

In African nations that had improved standard of living with the green revolution and new jobs in cities from industrialization and modernization...they went from having 8 kids down to 6.5. But instead of just half the kids living to breed (4 per couple), they have 6 out of 6.5 survive - which in effect in regards to population growth, caused a 50% increase in human numbers each year.
And within America, we have dysfunctional black women who - freed by welfare from the need to work and declining education in a sea of opportunity - have MORE kids than their working momma or granma.

Japan's example does not = the Muslim World.
White civilization does not = the poor Latin's breeding patterns as things improve.


Chinese authorities found that education, modernization, industrialization (and greatly reduced child mortality) had left Chinese attitudes unchanged. In respect to parents still culturally committed to regarding the more babies made and surviving to support parents in old age in traditional tithe paybacks - the better. Communist teaching that smaller families were better went unheeded. Massive propaganda efforts and easy access to abortion and birth control barely made a dent.
Hence, China HAD to go with a coercive 1-child policy before they became another Haiti, Rwanda, Uganda....

John Lynch said...

How many predictions have to be wrong before people start getting skeptical?

Big Mike said...

Good thing I checked back, so I can beg and plead with the professor not to take virgil's advice. What will I do to occupy my evenings if I can't comment on Althouse? I might actually have to get going on my wife's "Honey Do" list.

Spare me, please, professor!

Kevin said...

An excellent blog on on the subject of AGW is Anthony Watts' Watts up with That? blog.

Watts is a meteorologist and the creator of the Surface Station project.

Kevin said...

A link to the Surface Stations project. Take a look at how many of the stations have an error of about 2 deg C.

dbp said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
dbp said...

This bothered me for a while:

"Even the highly “cherry-picked” 11-year period starting with the warm 1998 and ending with the cold 2008 still shows a warming trend of 0.11 ºC per decade (which may surprise some lay people who tend to connect the end points, rather than include all ten data points into a proper trend calculation)."

I don't think it is mathematically possible to show a warming trend when the highest point is at the start. I will grant that one could show a warming trend for the last decade if one starts from another arbitrary point in time.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@From Inwood:

attempting to stifle comments simply by flashing his credentials

You, sir, are the only person who mentioned my "credentials"; anyone can verify this by reading my posts. You, sir, are a liar. You also seem to be a lawyer, but I repeat myself. (Why should you have all the fun of argument ad hominem)?

All I asked was, what are your relevant qualifications to judge results in a field which requires technical expertise?

@dpb:

I don't think it is mathematically possible to show a warming trend when the highest point is at the start. I will grant that one could show a warming trend for the last decade if one starts from another arbitrary point in time.

Have you got Excel? Plot these points and fit a line to them. I got them from NASA's GISS set by averaging the monthly temperatures for each year:

1998 0.70
1999 0.43
2000 0.40
2001 0.56
2002 0.67
2003 0.65
2004 0.59
2005 0.75
2006 0.64
2007 0.72
2008 0.55

I get a slope of 0.01 degrees per year. This is consistent with the linear fit of the general trend of 1960 - 2008 (0.016 degrees per year).

Try fitting it yourself, Excel can do it.

If global temperatures are starting to decline, the data does not yet show it. There is enough variation from year to year that some points are going to be lower than others, but the general trend is clear.

NASA's GISS data is here. Those who wish to impeach it are free to produce their own data set and publish in the climate journals.

http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/

I used to only listen to the skeptics too, until I downloaded and plotted this data. That's when I could see for myself that the oft-repeated claim "cooling since 1998" was completely false, by any reasonable standard of evaluating a trend in data with scatter. I got interested enough to see what climate scientists said for themselves, and I saw how many lies were being told about the climate models, and so I accepted that the earth's temperature really is going up and carbon dioxide is one reason for that.

I am not convinced that we need to spend billions or go back to the Middle Ages; I think efforts are better put toward mitigation. Maybe by building nuclear plants.

Did any of the skeptics on this blog even get the temperatures and plot them themselves? Ever even think of it?

dbp said...

--The link you provided does not go directly to any data, so it is unclear where the numbers you provide come from.

--It is dbp

--The purveyors of doom and gloom are the ones who claimed that 1998 was the "warmest year on record" since that record has not been exceeded since then, that means it has either cooled since then or 1998 was an anomaly.

--For myself, I never put much stock in 1998 being exceptionally warm, but then this was my data source.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@dbp

The link you provided does not go directly to any data, so it is unclear where the numbers you provide come from.


I suppose you'd have to read the pages and follow links. These aren't quite the same as the ones I posted, but I downloaded mine a year ago.

http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/graphs/Fig.A2.txt

The purveyors of doom and gloom are the ones who claimed that 1998 was the "warmest year on record" since that record has not been exceeded since then, that means it has either cooled since then or 1998 was an anomaly.

So, did you plot them in Excel and fit the line and get a positive slope?

If the answer is "yes", then you know 1998 was a little higher than average, but still within the normal variation of the warming trend; and that the Earth has been consistently getting warmer for about forty years now, and the degree of warming is several times larger than the cooling period of the 30s and 40s.

If you plot that data, you will see how misleading the BBC article was when it described the trend of the last ten years.

dbp said...

One doesn't need to do a regression to see that the data you point to have a positive slope. My point is that this isn't the data used by the hysterics who flogged 1998 as being so bad. NASA to its credit did fess-up though and you are dealing with the corrected data.

Hector Owen said...

3 pm in Connecticut, 38°, snow mixed with rain and freezing rain, all falling at once. It seems a little early for this.