James Hansen’s Former NASA Supervisor Declares Himself a Skeptic – Says Hansen ‘Embarrassed NASA’, ‘Was Never Muzzled’, & Models ‘Useless’

nasa_logoUPDATE 1/28: Full text of Dr. Theon’s letter has been post on the Senate website and below.

This is something I thought I’d never see. This press release today is from the Senate EPW blog of Jame Inhofe. The scientist making the claims in the headline, Dr. John S. Theon, formerly of the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies, Arlington, Virginia, has a paper here in the AMS BAMS that you may also find interesting. Other papers are available here in Google Scholar. He also worked on the report of the Space Shuttle Challenger accident report and according to that document was a significant contributor to weather forecasting improvements:

The Space Shuttle Weather Forecasting Advisory Panel, chaired by Dr. John Theon, was established by NASA Headquarters to review existing weather support capabilities and plans and to recommend a course of action to the NSTS Program. Included on the panel were representatives from NASA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the Air Force, and the National Center for Atmospheric Research.

For those just joining the climate discussion, Dr. James Hansen is the chief climate scientist at NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) and is the man who originally raised the alarm on global warming in 1988 in an appearance before congress. He is also the keeper of the most often cited climate data.

EPW press release below – Anthony


Washington DC, Jan 27th 2009: NASA warming scientist James Hansen, one of former Vice-President Al Gore’s closest allies in the promotion of man-made global warming fears, is being publicly rebuked by his former supervisor at NASA.

Retired senior NASA atmospheric scientist, Dr. John S. Theon, the former supervisor of James Hansen, NASA’s vocal man-made global warming fear soothsayer, has now publicly declared himself a skeptic and declared that Hansen “embarrassed NASA” with his alarming climate claims and said Hansen was “was never muzzled.” Theon joins the rapidly growing ranks of international scientists abandoning the promotion of man-made global warming fears.

“I appreciate the opportunity to add my name to those who disagree that global warming is man made,” Theon wrote to the Minority Office at the Environment and Public Works Committee on January 15, 2009. “I was, in effect, Hansen’s supervisor because I had to justify his funding, allocate his resources, and evaluate his results,” Theon, the former Chief of the Climate Processes Research Program at NASA Headquarters and former Chief of the Atmospheric Dynamics & Radiation Branch explained.

“Hansen was never muzzled even though he violated NASA’s official agency position on climate forecasting (i.e., we did not know enough to forecast climate change or mankind’s effect on it). Hansen thus embarrassed NASA by coming out with his claims of global warming in 1988 in his testimony before Congress,” Theon wrote. [Note: NASA scientist James Hansen has created worldwide media frenzy with his dire climate warning, his call for trials against those who dissent against man-made global warming fear, and his claims that he was allegedly muzzled by the Bush administration despite doing 1,400 on-the-job media interviews! - See: Don't Panic Over Predictions of Climate Doom - Get the Facts on James Hansen - UK Register: Veteran climate scientist says 'lock up the oil men' - June 23, 2008 & UK Guardian: NASA scientist calls for putting oil firm chiefs on trial for 'high crimes against humanity' for spreading doubt about man-made global warming - June 23, 2008 ]

Theon declared “climate models are useless.” “My own belief concerning anthropogenic climate change is that the models do not realistically simulate the climate system because there are many very important sub-grid scale processes that the models either replicate poorly or completely omit,” Theon explained. “Furthermore, some scientists have manipulated the observed data to justify their model results. In doing so, they neither explain what they have modified in the observations, nor explain how they did it. They have resisted making their work transparent so that it can be replicated independently by other scientists. This is clearly contrary to how science should be done. Thus there is no rational justification for using climate model forecasts to determine public policy,” he added.

“As Chief of several of NASA Headquarters’ programs (1982-94), an SES position, I was responsible for all weather and climate research in the entire agency, including the research work by James Hansen, Roy Spencer, Joanne Simpson, and several hundred other scientists at NASA field centers, in academia, and in the private sector who worked on climate research,” Theon wrote of his career. “This required a thorough understanding of the state of the science. I have kept up with climate science since retiring by reading books and journal articles,” Theon added. (LINK) Theon also co-authored the book “Advances in Remote Sensing Retrieval Methods.” [Note: Theon joins many current and former NASA scientists in dissenting from man-made climate fears. A small sampling includes: Aerospace engineer and physicist Dr. Michael Griffin, the former top administrator of NASA, Atmospheric Scientist Dr. Joanne Simpson, the first woman in the world to receive a PhD in meteorology, and formerly of NASA, Geophysicist Dr. Phil Chapman, an astronautical engineer and former NASA astronaut, Award-Winning NASA Astronaut/Geologist and Moonwalker Jack Schmitt, Award-winning NASA Astronaut and Physicist Walter Cunningham of NASA's Apollo 7, Chemist and Nuclear Engineer Robert DeFayette was formerly with NASA's Plum Brook Reactor, Hungarian Ferenc Miskolczi, an atmospheric physicist with 30 years of experience and a former researcher with NASA's Ames Research Center, Climatologist Dr. John Christy, Climatologist Dr. Roy W. Spencer, Atmospheric Scientist Ross Hays of NASA's Columbia Scientific Balloon Facility]

Gore faces a much different scientific climate in 2009 than the one he faced in 2006 when his film “An Inconvenient Truth” was released. According to satellite data, the Earth has cooled since Gore’s film was released, Antarctic sea ice extent has grown to record levels, sea level rise has slowed, ocean temperatures have failed to warm, and more and more scientists have publicly declared their dissent from man-made climate fears as peer-reviewed studies continue to man-made counter warming fears. [See: Peer-Reviewed Study challenges 'notion that human emissions are responsible for global warming' & New Peer-Reviewed Scientific Studies Chill Global Warming Fears ]

“Vice President Gore and the other promoters of man-made climate fears endless claims that the “debate is over” appear to be ignoring scientific reality,” Senator James Inhofe, Ranking Member of the Environment & Public Works Committee.

A U.S. Senate Minority Report released in December 2008 details over 650 international scientists who are dissenting from man-made global warming fears promoted by the UN and yourself. Many of the scientists profiled are former UN IPCC scientists and former believers in man-made climate change that have reversed their views in recent years. The report continues to grow almost daily. We have just received a request from an Italian scientist, and a Czech scientist to join the 650 dissenting scientists report. A chemist from the U.S. Naval Academy is about to be added, and more Japanese scientists are dissenting. Finally, many more meteorologists will be added and another former UN IPCC scientist is about to be included. These scientists are openly rebelling against the climate orthodoxy promoted by Gore and the UN IPCC.

The prestigious International Geological Congress, dubbed the geologists’ equivalent of the Olympic Games, was held in Norway in August 2008 and prominently featured the voices of scientists skeptical of man-made global warming fears. Reports from the conference found that Skeptical scientists overwhelmed the meeting, with ’2/3 of presenters and question-askers hostile to, even dismissive of, the UN IPCC’ ( See full reports here & here ] In addition, a 2008 canvass of more than 51,000 Canadian scientists revealed 68% disagree that global warming science is “settled.” A November 25, 2008, article in Politico noted that a “growing accumulation” of science is challenging warming fears, and added that the “science behind global warming may still be too shaky to warrant cap-and-trade legislation.” More evidence that the global warming fear machine is breaking down. Russian scientists “rejected the very idea that carbon dioxide may be responsible for global warming”. An American Physical Society editor conceded that a “considerable presence” of scientific skeptics exists. An International team of scientists countered the UN IPCC, declaring: “Nature, Not Human Activity, Rules the Climate”. India Issued a report challenging global warming fears. International Scientists demanded the UN IPCC “be called to account and cease its deceptive practices.”

The scientists and peer-reviewed studies countering climate claims are the key reason that the U.S. public has grown ever more skeptical of man-made climate doom predictions. [See: Global warming ranks dead last, 20 out of 20 in new Pew survey. Pew Survey: & Survey finds majority of U.S. Voters - '51% - now believe that humans are not the predominant cause of climate change' - January 20, 2009 - Rasmussen Reports ]

The chorus of skeptical scientific voices grow louder in 2008 as a steady stream of peer-reviewed studies, analyses, real world data and inconvenient developments challenged the UN’s and former Vice President Al Gore’s claims that the “science is settled” and there is a “consensus.”

On a range of issues, 2008 proved to be challenging for the promoters of man-made climate fears. Promoters of anthropogenic warming fears endured the following: Global temperatures failing to warm; Peer-reviewed studies predicting a continued lack of warming; a failed attempt to revive the discredited “Hockey Stick“; inconvenient developments and studies regarding rising CO2; the Spotless Sun; Clouds; Antarctica; the Arctic; Greenland’s ice; Mount Kilimanjaro; Global sea ice; Causes of Hurricanes; Extreme Storms; Extinctions; Floods; Droughts; Ocean Acidification; Polar Bears; Extreme weather deaths; Frogs; lack of atmospheric dust; Malaria; the failure of oceans to warm and rise as predicted.

# # #

ORIGINAL FULL TEXT LETTER SENT VIA EMAILS:

—–Original Message—–
From: Jtheon [mailto:jtheon@XXXXXXX]
Sent: Thursday, January 15, 2009 10:05 PM
To: Morano, Marc (EPW)
Subject: Climate models are useless
Marc, First, I sent several e-mails to you with an error in the address and they have been returned to me. So I’m resending them in one combined e-mail.
Yes, one could say that I was, in effect, Hansen’s supervisor because I had to justify his funding, allocate his resources, and evaluate his results. I did not have the authority to give him his annual performance evaluation. He was never muzzled even though he violated NASA’s official agency position on climate forecasting (i.e., we did not know enough to forecast climate change or mankind’s effect on it). He thus embarrassed NASA by coming out with his claims of global warming in 1988 in his testimony before Congress.
My own belief concerning anthropogenic climate change is that the models do not realistically simulate the climate system because there are many very important sub-grid scale processes that the models either replicate poorly or completely omit. Furthermore, some scientists have manipulated the observed data to justify their model results. In doing so, they neither explain what they have modified in the observations, nor explain how they did it. They have resisted making their work transparent so that it can be replicated independently by other scientists. This is clearly contrary to how science should be done. Thus there is no rational justification for using climate model forecasts to determine public policy.
With best wishes, John
# #
From: Jtheon [mailto:jtheon@XXXXXX]
Sent: Tuesday, January 13, 2009 12:50 PM
To: Morano, Marc (EPW)
Subject: Re: Nice seeing you
Marc, Indeed, it was a pleasure to see you again. I appreciate the opportunity to add my name to those who disagree that Global Warming is man made.  A brief bio follows. Use as much or as little of it as you wish.
John S. Theon Education: B.S. Aero. Engr. (1953-57); Aerodynamicist, Douglas Aircraft Co. (1957-58); As USAF Reserve Officer (1958-60),B.S. Meteorology (1959); Served as Weather Officer 1959-60; M.S, Meteorology (1960-62); NASA Research Scientist, Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (1962-74); Head Meteorology Branch, GSFC (1974-76); Asst. Chief, Lab. for Atmos. Sciences, GSFC (1977-78);  Program Scientist, NASA Global Weather Research Program, NASA Hq. (1978-82); Chief, Atmospheric Dynamics & Radiation Branch NASA Hq., (1982-91); Ph.D.,  Engr. Science & Mech.: course of study and dissertation in atmos. science (1983-85); Chief, Atmospheric Dynamics, Radiation, & Hydrology Branch, NASA Hq. (1991-93); Chief, Climate Processes Research Program, NASA Hq. (1993-94); Senior Scientist, Mission to Planet Earth Office, NASA Hq. (1994-95); Science Consultant, Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (1995-99); Science Consultant  Orbital Sciences Corp. (1996-97) and NASA Jet Propulsion Lab., (1997-99).
As Chief of several NASA Hq. Programs (1982-94), an SES position, I was responsible for all weather and climate research in the entire agency, including the  research work by James Hansen, Roy Spencer, Joanne Simpson, and several hundred other scientists at NASA field centers, in academia, and in the private sector who worked on climate research. This required a thorough understanding of the state of the science. I have kept up with climate  science since retiring by reading books and journal articles. I hope that this is helpful.
Best wishes, John

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659 Responses to James Hansen’s Former NASA Supervisor Declares Himself a Skeptic – Says Hansen ‘Embarrassed NASA’, ‘Was Never Muzzled’, & Models ‘Useless’

  1. Mike C says:

    C’mon now, we all know James Hansen is a top of the line scientist without a politically motivated bone in his body.

  2. davidgmills says:

    So I guess this guy admits he failed to muzzle Hansen which in turn caused Gore to be taken in by Hansen.

  3. Brute says:

    The house of cards is really beginning to tumble………………

  4. barbee butts says:

    Embarrassed NASA?

    What an understatement. Hansen’s words and actions have cast a noxious cloud so large that it has sullied the reputation of the “Scientific Community” in general.

  5. George says:

    An article in our local paper by Seth Borenstein an AP Science Writer, states that 2008 was tied for the 8th warmest year in records that go back to 1880 according to the US NOAA. Stories of this ilk are all over the internet. What’s up with this?
    George

  6. Mark Fuggle says:

    This is quite big isn’t it? Upstageing Mr Gore before he gives his speech.Oh dear, how embarasing.

  7. Greg F says:

    C’mon now, we all know James Hansen is a top of the line scientist without a politically motivated bone in his body.

    Not entirely accurate, he does have one bone that is politically motivated. Unfortunately it is his jaw bone.

  8. tarpon says:

    The parade to the exit is beginning. All aboard.

  9. helvio says:

    But now you have Barack Obama and Steven Chu, two men in power, determined to following the ideology, even though it’s ‘tumbling down’… it should tumble faster, before serious commitments are made!

  10. David Holliday says:

    Wow. He annihilated Hansen. He is very well spoken and clear. His point about the models is what I tried to explain a while back. He’s just much better at it than I am.

  11. JimB says:

    Definitely refreshing to read. Wonder if anyone’s going to put a copy of this on O’s desk in the morning? He wanted to get elected, but he also doesn’t want to be wrong, becuase on something of this scale, you could measure the time it takes for the second 4yrs to disappear with an egg timer.

    JimB

  12. Psi says:

    “there are many very important sub-grid scale processes that the models either replicate poorly or completely omit…”

    Can someone explain what this means?

    Thanks in advance.

  13. wattsupwiththat says:

    Just a note to commenters here. I realize this is a piece of news that will tend to play on emotions a bit, but please maintain civility and decorum in comments. Any that do not, will be deleted. – Anthony

  14. bucko36 says:

    “Fresh Air” seems to be “leaking” from inside the NASA “hot air” balloon! It’s about time.

  15. Robert Wood says:

    “Furthermore, some scientists have manipulated the observed data to justify their model results. … “

    Damning. Just damning!!!

  16. VG says:

    If this is really true its got to be the biggest story of the year re AGW see if the NYT publishes this…

  17. Robert Wood says:

    Psi:

    there are many very important sub-grid scale processes that the models either replicate poorly or completely omit…”

    Can someone explain what this means?

    What is meant is that the models are useless.

  18. George M says:

    Unfortunately, this is another sterling example of NASA’a dysfunctionality; boss fails to discipline underling. Probably to keep the funds rolling in. Sad, isn’t it? Maybe the oil companies should buy NASA. See how that sits with the greenies.

  19. MattN says:

    Wow. Just…wow.

  20. Craig says:

    While I agree with the arguements in this article and personally derive great pleasure from calling global warming supporters alarmists and fear mongers, etc., I can’t help but cringe at the biased style of writing chosen by the author. By inserting subjective jargon such as “man-made global warming fear soothsayer, etc.,” the article undermines its objectivity – unnecessarily. Let the story speak for itself!

    My skepticism usually peaks when I read the sensationalized accounts of doom and gloom from the AGW crowd. In order to win support for true skepticism, objectivity is a must. Any unnecessary display of bias makes us no better than them. When “scientists” become political, they often resort to hyperbole, insults, fear mongering and name-calling to support inconvenient scientific results… Let them be the side that does that. Time, science and history will ultimately settle the score.

    Please accept this as humble/respectful, constructive criticism. I absolutely enjoyed this story and visit WATTSUPWITHTHAT daily.

  21. PPV says:

    Pffft. None of this will make into the MSM.
    The MSM will print what it sees fit, and ignore what it does not.

    The problem is the media, and not the scientists. It was never the scientists. There have always been far far more sceptical scientists that believer scientists. The AGW hoax cannot and will not be exposed until people takle the media. And the only way this will happen if political parties have the guts to stand up and threaten criminal action against the editors and journalists who have deliberately created this hoax. There is a very simple and very good argument to say the actions of the media are an act of treason against our country – and as such, the journalists and editors who created this hoax will face the full force of treason laws. But no politician will ever do that, so we will continue to see these things happen ::
    -global temps cooling for a decade
    -far more sceptical scientists than believers
    -weekly new studies/science refuting AGW
    -weekly growing absurdity of the junk science that believers use
    -MSM will ignore the above and continue printing lies

    And so it goes.

  22. Psi – An example is convection… It’s hard to have a mile wide grid or cube (typically much larger) and expect a model to accurately simulate the effect of heat transferring through the cube’s faces the same as heat transfer in a natural space would. You need to know more about what’s behind the face rather than that one giant block of air. Another would be diffusion. A grid model just can’t hack it… There are countless downfalls of GCM’s, but they make pretty pictures if you’re into animations and know what parameters to set to achieve your political agenda. For modeling real world processes, there aren’t many who even know how to write such models for clouds, shadows, etc. The grids need to be infinitesimally small to work reasonably correctly.

    I think small scale modeling of physical processes would be extremely cool to work on (I mean small as in the processes going on in the woods and lakes around my house on a sunny or cloudy or rainy day, or when a cloud passes by). That would be fun to work on and then scale up… Can you imagine the complexity?

    Now imagine being constrained to HUGE blocks of real estate and imagine how you’re going to get the influences to transfer from one block to another correctly, in 50 MPH wind and driving rain… Too coarse. Now imagine the detail needed that would generate a stratus cloud that moves and ripples successfully over an hour, over a few hundred square miles, and what the shadows do to the evapotranspiration rate of trees below and evaporation rate of recent rain from wet ground? And the humidity and temperature layers that result from the sun & shadows, after being influenced by the effects of all the other small cubes all around the subject cube, just after they get influenced by the cubes next to them? And the convection currents that naturally erupt through chaotic motions of small cubes after a cumulus cloud moves by. You’re going to need a HUGE computer or worldwide distributed network to get anything useful for this small area. I would be truly impressed to see something like that…

    So GCM’s are necessarily large-grid and somewhat incapable of detail small enough to model phenomena that we see every day. You’ll notice that even weather forecasts are quite large scale compared to the actual storms that develop, and they can do a pretty good job of forecasting a few days out, once you know the current state, even within a narrow band a hundred miles wide.

    And as we’ve seen, doing it over hundreds or even thousands of years with great accuracy is evidently a far easier situation, you know, once you understand all those little factors like they do… Yep, uh-huh.

    Anyone need $140 million for real data?

  23. E.M.Smith says:

    Psi (16:46:50) :
    “there are many very important sub-grid scale processes that the models either replicate poorly or completely omit…”

    Can someone explain what this means?

    The models break the world into large squares, called a grid, and pretend that everything in that square is uniform. Then they look at energy flows into and out of the squares as a whole, ignoring ‘little things’ that happen inside the squares. The quote is saying that the ‘little things’ inside of the smallest resolution of the squares are, in fact, big things.

    An example:

    Hansen takes reasonably valid data from NOAA (within their accuracy of 1F) and ‘homogenizes’ it. This is done in a couple of steps. In one of them, he divides the world into 6 latitude zones of 30 degrees each. Then within each zone it is assumed that stations ‘near’ each other can tell you how to ‘correct’ or ‘adjust’ each other. So 30-60 degrees north covers just about the whole US. This implies that San Francisco is ‘fungible’ with Sacramento. That it can be treated as ‘the same’ for temperature curve fitting.

    When San Francisco data are to be ‘corrected’ for their Urban Heat Island effect, reference is made to ‘local’ rural stations. The San Francisco historical temperature curve slope is ‘adjusted’ based on stations that are inland, sometimes a long ways. Hundreds of kilometers.

    Why not? Well, in summer the fog comes in over San Francisco and the temperatures are very often 60F +/- 5F where inland is more like 95F +/- 10F or even +/- 15F and the hotter it is inland, the more SF cools as the rising inland hot air sucks more cold fog in from the ocean.

    So not only is it wrong to say SF behaves like inland (it is negatively correlated) but it is clearly subject to a very flat temperature slope while inland is more volatile. Putting all this in one box hides these facts. It also hides the (roughly by my observation) 3 day cyclicality of the whole process. (Air inland heats and rises, dragging in cool marine layer, stopping rise in about 1.5 days, then starts heating again and 1.5ish days later is rising… the pump works in long slow pulses.)

    These processes are very important! The models “don’t get it”. All that mass flow, all the energy in it, all the water flow dynamics, all the changes in albedo as fog flows in over SF, all ignored. How can you ‘get it right’ when you ignore most of what is happening?

  24. Mongo says:

    This in the end, will mean next to nothing. Threr have been many instances where the “data” used by proponents of AGW theory, refuted, and yet we still continued our lemming-like march to the cliffs.

    Folks, our leadership is convinced this is a real issue. There has already been legislation made into law (remember that “emergency” bill last year that was riddled with all kinds of issues including treating CO2 as a pollutant), with more to come. Just look at the agenda of the people who chair the various committees and sub committees in the Congress, heading regulatory agencies and our President. It’s a train wreck that has already happened – we just haven’t felt the effects in the last car.

    I write to my Representatives and Senators regularly, and get responses from them, NOT staffers. I am holding them as accountable as I am able – and posting here without doing the same is just chatting. Let them hear you, clearly, concisely and without rancor.

  25. TerryBixler says:

    It seems that only retired people are willing to speak their minds as they are now afraid that government policy will further ruin their retirement. People still employed by the government want a piece of that $140 million or more. I applaud Dr. John Theon’s candor I only hope that those currently employed by our government are listening. Hopefully they will not interpret this as a call to fix the models and spend more money without looking out the window.

  26. Luke says:

    Wow, what great news. Is the wall finally crumbling?

  27. Cathy Wilson says:

    ” . .please maintain civility and decorum in comments.”

    OK, Anthony.

    I was going to shout “HALLELUJAH!”

    But I’ll just whisper it instead: “hallelujah” ;0)

  28. FatBigot says:

    Something which, I think, should not be ignored is how difficult many doubters must find it to air their views. We have all read of people losing their jobs by doing so but there is an additional factor. Not everyone has sufficient self-confidence to push themselves forward even if they are convinced that the so-called consensus view is utter nonsense. I am sure we can expect many more to air their dissent as time goes on.

    I find it telling that many scientists say they agreed with the catastrophic AGW position until they read into the subject in detail. Does anyone know how many, if any, have said the reverse?

  29. These counter arguments are very important but they are not enough to slow down the momentum of the AGW alarmists. If anything, the AGW alarmists are even more determined to get their CO2 controls put in now, while there is still time, and before the apponents are able to rally their forces. The AGW alarmists may realize that mother nature is weighing in heavily on the subject, and by getting their bills passed now, there will be no turning back, and they can then claim credit for saving the earth as temperatures continue to moderate.

    We need modern day Spartans who can slow down the Persian (AGW) assault and give us more time to prepare for battle and victory.

  30. Jim Norvell says:

    I can’t wait to read about this over at RC.

    Jim N

  31. J Nicklin says:

    Why do many of these people have to wait until they are retired to make these pronouncements? It may well be that if Theon had denounced Hansen several years ago, we might have avoided much of the crap that has come down the pipe in the last couple of years.

    It is nice to see that more real scientists are voicing their skeptical views. Unfortunately Newton’s Laws still apply, an object set in motion will stay in motion until acted on by an outside source sufficient to slow or stop it. I fear that Hansen and his allies have a large inertia behind their movement and its going to take a very large external force to stop their wagon.

    I guess we can take heart that more people like Theo are throwing themselves in the path of the AGW movement, more friction means less forward momentum, eventually.

  32. ROM says:

    The end game begins !

    It must have been incredibly difficult for one of the most highly profiled administrators in American science to voluntarily admit that he had failed to ensure that in at least one of his fiefdoms, good science was not being carried out by the scientists under his charge and that he had failed to take action to correct the situation.
    There must now be quite a few lower level administrators in NASA [ and in other US government climate research organisations ] that are now starting to look at their heritage and the reputation they will leave behind when they leave NASA.
    When they see their old boss’s Mea Culpa they may be doing some very hard thinking.
    Far reaching changes may soon be afoot in the climate research industry even if we don’t see any visible signs of it for another year or two.

  33. squidly says:

    This is just affirming what I have already suspected. I am so very glad that these things are finally beginning to come out, lets us all hope that it is soon enough.

  34. Just want truth... says:

    Wow… i don’t think it’s sunk in yet how important this one is….

  35. just Cait says:

    If Dr Theon knew what Hansen was doing was wrong, why didn’t he stop Hansen? Maybe that question is not appropriate for this forum, but I would still like to know the answer.

  36. Kath says:

    A copy of the original article & link should be sent to the Drudge Report.

  37. David Ermer says:

    Unfortunately this will make absolutely no difference in the ‘scientific’/political debate. It will be ignored and I predict this guy will characterized as having senile dementia or some such.

  38. Cathy Wilson says:

    @ Mango

    You rained on my parade.

    And, I’m grateful.

    Sobering.

  39. AnyMouse says:

    George (16:40:42) :

    An article in our local paper by Seth Borenstein an AP Science Writer, states that 2008 was tied for the 8th warmest year in records that go back to 1880 according to the US NOAA. Stories of this ilk are all over the internet. What’s up with this?

    It’s probably due to NOAA saying that in “NOAA: 2008 Global Temperature Ties as Eighth Warmest on Record” (January 14, 2009)

  40. Hey Skipper says:

    It’s hard to have a mile wide grid or cube (typically much larger) and expect a model to accurately simulate the effect of heat transferring through the cube’s faces the same as heat transfer in a natural space would.

    Obviously. At RealClimate, I on a thread devoted to GCMs, I noted that, at one time, aeronautical engineers had proven bumble bees cannot fly.

    In that case, of course, the AEs knew their model was wrong: there must have been something they were not taking into account.

    Gavin deleted the comment.

    ++++

    E.M. Smith:

    You win the thread.

  41. sonicfrog says:

    Oh come ON!!!! Dr. Theon isn’t even a climate scientist!!!!

    // sacasm off //

  42. Smokey says:

    If Dr Theon knew what Hansen was doing was wrong, why didn’t he stop Hansen?

    Dr. Theon has a boss, too.

  43. Just want truth... says:

    “sonicfrog (18:30:47) :

    Oh come ON!!!! Dr. Theon isn’t even a climate scientist!!!!”

    will you be saying next he’s paid by big oil?

  44. Bill Junga says:

    An eyeopening post for sure. Another furrow in the face of defeat for AGW alarmism. It appears that the “skeptics” are by far the superior scientists to the most vocal alarmists. These scientists are the ones making significant progress in explain the workings of the climate, unlike the ones who only say manmade global warming to explain everything. Maybe we should start referring to the alarmists as CO2-phobes.

  45. Craig M. says:

    This will not get nearly as much media coverage as “Climate change irreversible for 1000 years”, “Obama gets a new dog” or “Britney Spears goes to the washroom”

  46. John A says:

    It reminds me of the story of Nikita Khrushchev giving a speech denouncing Stalin’s atrocities to an audience of the Soviet Communist Party, and someone in the audience shouted:

    “You were right there next to Stalin. Why didn’t you stop him?”

    Khrushchev immediately shouted back:

    “Who said that??”

    The place went deathly quiet. After several heartbeats, Khrushchev said quietly:

    “Now you know why”

  47. Robert Bateman says:

    If I were NASA, and I was aware of the methods being proposed to force the climate to a colder stage based on compromised data and Secret Formula Modeling, I’d be distancing myself from a terribly embarassing 3 ring circus about to hit the proverbial fan.

    The stage is set for Gore to give an account in the midst of a miserable wave of freezing rain set to hit the East Coast, with snapped trees and downed powerlines for all.
    I have no problem with anyone wanting to clean up toxins dumped into our environment, but this is gone way over the cliff of disbelief.

  48. Jeff Id says:

    Boom!

    This is huge. Noconsensus baby.

    He just trashes Hansen, deservedly so. I didn’t expect anything like that from the government in my lifetime.

    Great stuff, made my day.

  49. RICH says:

    The glass roof on their greenhouse is about to come crashing down.

  50. Ric Werme says:

    Well, this is certainly pleasant news, and from a source I hadn’t considered being a source.

    My big hope for this year is for the MSM to take note that not only is the science unsettled, but that there’s a news story going on that they’ve missed. One reason I hoped for a blizzard at the inauguration is that both Washington and New York media would have it right in their face on a day with millions of people watching. There have been cold events pretty much across the country this winter so it’s been hard to ignore. So far there hasn’t been much progress in the media, but the year’s still young.

    I’ve never seen an EPW press release get much attention in mainstream media, and I doubt this one will either, at least not without some effort to get them to pay attention. Write the editor! Perhaps this one has a chance of getting some news media to ask questions before printing the next piece from Hansen about how we are going to destroy Creation.

  51. VG says:

    looks like a cycle 23 spot may be forming… again!
    http://www.solarcycle24.com/

  52. Joseph says:

    Re: Mongo (17:47:32) :

    This in the end, will mean next to nothing. Threr have been many instances where the “data” used by proponents of AGW theory, refuted, and yet we still continued our lemming-like march to the cliffs.
    ——————————————————————-
    Mongo, “we” are not marching lemming-like towards the cliffs, the climate-alarmists are trying to herd us in that direction, in an effort to make us feel good about reducing our standard of living (and paying more for it), in favor of “saving the planet”.

    I’m not convinced that our leadership actually believes this is a real issue. I think they are just willing to go along with it because it meshes so nicely with the societal and economic changes they wish to impose upon us.

    I do agree with your metaphor of this being “a train wreck that has already happened”. Carbon trading has begun, and millions of dollars have already changed hands. Once that level of economic momentum has built, it is very difficult to stop. I am concerned that we are probably in for at least a decade of this nonsensical waste of human efforts. We will be ill-prepared if we are confronted with a real crisis.

    Looking back upon this time from the future, this will certainly be seen as one of our inglorious moments.

  53. Robert Bateman says:

    VG (18:56:41) :

    looks like a cycle 23 spot may be forming… again!
    http://www.solarcycle24.com/

    Well don’t that just beat all ??!!
    Yup, that’s got SC23 written all over it. I’ll be hooked on the SOHO and GONG images tonight. My refractor goes with me to work.
    Oy ye vay.

  54. Bill Illis says:

    I’d like to see the actual letter that Dr. Theon wrote.

    It would be far more powerful as a stand-alone letter rather than the potentially out-context-quotes and other off-topic inserts from the Inhofe page.

  55. Fred says:

    If Dr Theon had tried to silence Hansen, the entire world would have heard that the evil Federal government was silencing an independent thinker and Hansen would not have given 1,400 on-the-job interviews but 2,800. Obviously, they would only silence him if he was telling the truth. Just like in a Hollywood movie.

  56. Mike Davis says:

    Rumor has it that Gore has canceled his speach tommorow due to ICE and cold

  57. juan says:

    E. M. Smith
    Thank you for an explanation that we laymen can understand. Your example reminds me of Mark Twain’s comment that the coldest winter he ever lived through was a summer in San Francisco.

  58. Brent Matich says:

    People are finally starting to wake up and smell the BS. The world has bigger fish to fry than listen to an old washed up politician and his cronies ( Hansen ,UN fools etc ) and their computer models ( garbage in garbage out ).

    Long live my Chevy Tahoe!

    Brent in Calgary

  59. Grant Hodges says:

    A couple of things I think I have learned. The question is asked why the writer didn’t expose Hansen when it might have prevented the impending imposition of the economic destruction and social engineering planned by the UN/IPCC crowd on the basis of “climate change”.

    the answer is simple. It would have cost him. I find that most people stand back from telling the truth or joining the fray if it might seriously cost them. If I sound cynical, it is only because I have found myself standing alone on more than one occasion when an issue such as freedom of speech and the press was on the line in my town. It is very lonely to take a stand while the outcome is still in doubt. I find most men are cowards.

    Second: I agree that civility is a high value. But the AGW dragon will not be dead until the masses laugh at those who champion it’s “remedy”. Satire, parody, stand up comedy routines, are the final step in killing the lie. It will only be dead when the public “gets” the jokes.

    I don’t know what to do with that, except I believe there will be a public confrontation one day and some wag will offer a priceless comment and the warmists will be unable to answer for the guffaws. Then it will be truly over.

  60. Steven Hill says:

    Makes no difference for the US…Obama and the Enviro hacks are going to do their thing, they won the election.

    I hope that I am wrong, don’t bet on it.

  61. Mick says:

    tick, tick, …tick ……tick ……….tick_______________pegs up!!!

    The AGW tent collapsing

    LOL

  62. philincalifornia says:

    helvio (16:43:02) : wrote:
    But now you have Barack Obama and Steven Chu, two men in power, determined to following the ideology, even though it’s ‘tumbling down’… it should tumble faster, before serious commitments are made!
    —————————————————-

    I’m hoping, respectfully, that you have this (the first part) called incorrectly. So far, since being inaugurated, Obama has not come out and said anything totally stupid as far as I know – except when the BBC had to fraudulently modify his speech to approaching the stooopid level. Like many individuals who frequent this site, both he and Chu have stated interests in cleantech and reducing pollution. I sincerely hope that they will do it while still retaining the kind of scientific integrity inherent in us so-called skeptics. I have faith in them, mostly because Chu is an excellent scientist, and Obama watched what bad counseling on weapons of mass destruction did to Dubya. Is it next week when Obama’s walking, talking weapon of mass destruction, Al Gore, gets to give bad counsel ?? I shall keep faith in our elected leader until at least the aftermath of that polar bear and penguin circus act.

  63. montjoie1095 says:

    Sadly, Hansen was allowed to testify as an expert in a British criminal case that ended up letting off a bunch of vandals who trashed a coal plant (I think) because of his testimony that their “efforts” were for the common good.

  64. MC says:

    I believe the reason Theon only now expresses his skeptisism is that he senses a social wave of non support for AGW. He senses that if he does not write about his true feelings he can be seen with egg on his face when the climate proves Hansen and Gore wrong. Distance and the truth is what he seeks to clear himself from the stupidity of manmade global warmimng. If this is true for Theon its true for many others who have their reputations at risk.

  65. Lance says:

    One wonders what fantastic and new discoveries in science/earth sciences could of been achieved from all the billions of dollars going toward AGW. It’s a travesty to think real work has gone disregarded by their own collegues because of one hypotheses just to save face.
    Fortunately. I don’t think this is a conspiracy, more of doing what you’re boss says and keeping funding. I think most of them do believe in their heart that AGW exist, a scientist caught in the middle, just trying to do research they’ve been trained to do.
    That said, climate science now has become political, and as someone over at RC posted, says it all,

    “Sometimes public policy needs to serve science, and sometimes science needs to serve public policy. Now is a time for the latter.”

    So as you can see their minds are made up already, science or no science, facts and reality don’t enter into the equation.

  66. hotrod says:

    If Dr Theon knew what Hansen was doing was wrong, why didn’t he stop Hansen? Maybe that question is not appropriate for this forum, but I would still like to know the answer.

    It is entirely possible that the internal political culture of NASA would not allow him to control Hansen or others! Just like the NASA culture would not listen to the Morton Thiokol engineers that begged them not to launch Challenger, and the specialists that begged them to take high resolution pictures of Columbia to verify if it had damage from the foam strike.

    The internal peer pressure in large organizations can be fearsome, and you literally risk your livelihood to raise some issues. It is a problem in ALL large human organizations. It is wired into our DNA not to risk our own welfare to call out the leaders of our group unless they go out of their way to encourage honest feed back.

    This “group think” tendency was traced out to be one of the root causes in several major airplane accidents, as the pilots did not encourage feedback from other crew members — read the story of the Tenerife accident where two planes collided on the runway for an example.

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

    It is such a powerful tendency, that senior commanding officers in the military occasionally tell junior subordinates that there is no rank in the airplane and if they see anything wrong they want to hear about it. That sort of a culture starts at the very top of the agency and cannot be pushed up from the bottom.

    It will be years before we hear the inside story of bloody battles and shouting matches in conference rooms and hallways, where sane scientists tried to stop this years ago. In all likelihood they got quietly pushed out to dead end assignments and that “Who said that” comment by Khrushchev is exactly what prevails. After one or two people get sent to dead end assignments, or can’t get good job references or can’t publish because they get blackballed by prestigious journals, others quickly learn to keep their head down or get out.

    I have been through this sort of thing in a State agency, and ended up leaving because I could not associate my self with what they were doing. Not everyone has the financial or family support to be that willing to walk away from a career. In small technical fields you can get black listed just like actors were in the 1950′s if you confront the wrong people.

    Larry

  67. G Alston says:

    Here’s how this news will be handled by the alarmist crowd —

    “This is little more than yet another ossified has-been scientist who hasn’t contributed anything useful in years and for whom real science has sadly passed him by.”

    Obviously that’s not true, but that’s how retirees who speak their minds are treated, as well as those in the Dr. Spencer age bracket. On the other hand if you’re e.g. Steve Chu and a true believer, you’re one of those marvels who can contribute bigtime lomng past the “sell by” date.

    Those of you who think the tide has changed are mistaken.

    There was a show on NOVA about the “CA green energy gamble.” Essentially the die is cast already. The show featured Steve Chu, waxing poetically about the infinite number of new high paying non-exportable “green” jobs.

    That’s why you are mistaken. This is what you are up against. People are being promised jobs. Good jobs. High paying jobs. And in a time where jobs are getting scarce. They don’t know climate science from dissertations on whale spleens. Nor do they care. Who are they going to believe?

    On the other hand, remember that despair is a sin.

  68. G Alston says:

    hotrod

    You’re describing Jerry Pournelle’s Iron Law of Bureaucracy, which states:

    “…that in any bureaucratic organization there will be two kinds of people: those who work to further the actual goals of the organization, and those who work for the organization itself. The Iron Law states that in all cases, the second type of person will always gain control of the organization, and will always write the rules under which the organization functions.”

  69. JohnD says:

    Thanks, Dr. Theon, for speaking up now that the damage is done.

  70. Steve Hempell says:

    Bill Illis (19:04:28) :

    I’m with Bill on this. Any chance of getting the original letter EPW? Knowing what was actually written is most important.

    REPLY: I’ve asked for it, and got a response sayimg they’ll get it to me tomorrow when they get to the office (assuming they can make it through the snow and ice there). – Anthony

  71. Steve Hempell says:

    Should have been from EPW

  72. Robert Bateman says:

    The new SC23 spot is just barely visible on a SOHO image converted to Luminance and maximum clipped to compensate for the overwhelming advantage of space-based imaging.
    I have it visible as a flyspeck on a Teide GONG image of 01/27/09 16:54 image exponential stretched.
    That makes 2 SC23′s in 1 month. Does this shoot a hole in SC24 minimum of Sept/0ct 08?
    We are comparing SC23 flypecks to SC24 flyspecks. Seems fair to me.
    Egg on face. Gore takes a ‘freezing rain check’.

  73. Robert Bateman says:

    Oh yeah, I got a process to bring SOHO images down to lowly Earthling based images.
    Go ahead, make my day, count that spot.
    You know you want to.

  74. April E. Coggins says:

    My guess as to why Hansen wasn’t exposed earlier is because he was under-estimated and who could have known that powerful political forces would run with his theory. Face it, the science industry is filled with people who have whacky theories. Isn’t that the point of science, to coddle and probe every possibility? I imagine that Hansen was considered to be just another insecure, egocentric, imaginative scientist.

  75. Richard M says:

    If Fox News and CNN, in the form of Lou Dobbs, pick up this story and highlight it, I can see the rest of the MSM being forced to address the issue. Not only that, but this is great drama. This is very, very marketable.

  76. Adam Sullivan says:

    @ G Alston

    Interesting the “jobs” argument. I agree that Climate Change Catastrophism has become a self promoting machine with enough inertia to make it a permanent part of government.

    Sad – thinking people would understand that the burden of AGW ‘remedies’ kills jobs and kills any potential for a manufacturing renaissance in the US.

  77. E.M.Smith says:

    Easy as one two three… First news report was one ship stuck in the St. Lawrence river. Second report was two (one the icebreaker sent to the rescue…)

    http://www.canada.com/topics/news/national/story.html?id=1222717

    while this one says three:

    http://www.startribune.com/world/38455609.html

    May not take all that long for the ‘message’ to get through… Now if we can just get NY harbor to freeze…

  78. Shallow Climate says:

    I too hope that this Theon statement makes a huge (appropriately huge) impact. However, we know (as with the Hockey Stick) how the alarmists can ignore the reality and go right on with the same old same old. And if I, or we, thought this was new, I just read this, by Colin McEvedy, in The New Penguin Atlas of Ancient History: “Worse than that, there is a reflex in favour of the status quo. When Flinders Petrie, an eminent Egyptologist if ever there was one, pointed out that Middle Egyptian Bronze Age implements were actually copper, you might expect his observations to cause something of a rethink. Not a bit of it: the official view is still that his remarks, though technically correct, are, in some wider sense, unhelpful, even confusing. That’s a tale from a fair while ago, but how about this, from the standard work on the Aegean Bronze Age published in the 1990′s: ‘For the sake of simplicity vessels which might be of copper or bronze are referred to as “bronze” throughout’. Wow!”

  79. Jim B in Canada says:

    Ok he has the truth now does he have a good publicist? Is he going to be plugging a book soon?

    I’m a cynical skeptic, and I would lay good money right now if he does not have a good publicist and a book coming out soon from a solid publisher, this will be the first and the last we will hear of Dr. John Theon.

    Truth or no truth.

  80. tarpon says:

    “Furthermore, some scientists have manipulated the observed data to justify their model results. In doing so, they neither explain what they have modified in the observations, nor explain how they did it. They have resisted making their work transparent so that it can be replicated independently by other scientists. This is clearly contrary to how science should be done. Thus there is no rational justification for using climate model forecasts to determine public policy,”
    A true statement, after digging in the data, we all suspected it. This is a just damn, especially with all the information built up on sites like Anthony’s WUWT and others. When your former boss says this, it means much more than when some bloggers claims this to be the case. It is what it is, and we all know what that is.

    To say the least it sheds new light on last weeks hysterical “new findings” in the Antarctic. It was a Gore setup.

    IMHO — Open science is going to be the only way for climate science to recover from this worldwide hoax, if it ever can. People of the world deserve better than to be scammed by science and those who claim to practice the art.

  81. trevor says:

    I think that some of you guys are being a bit tough on Dr Theon. It takes real courage to speak out as he has, and we should compliment him on that and be thankful.

  82. Robert Bateman says:

    Considering the fiasco of a 2nd SC23 spot today, Theon is the light at the end of the tunnel.
    SC24 is falling into quicksand.
    Gore, Hansen & Hathaway have painted themselves hard into the corner.
    Another year of this and thier onion will be nicely peeled.
    The rest of the AGW crowd will be begging for Theon and his like to come forward to head the investigation into “How could this have happened?”.

  83. anna v says:

    E.M.Smith (17:47:18) :

    Psi (16:46:50) :
    “there are many very important sub-grid scale processes that the models either replicate poorly or completely omit…”

    Can someone explain what this means?

    Your elucidation is good, but still it does not hit the heart of the problem.

    The methodology of general circulation models is wrong, because the weather/climate system depends on an extensive system of highly non linear coupled differential equations. This is what is meant by its being “chaotic”. This means that any gridding, no matter how small, ( how big the computer) will get it wrong after a a number of time-steps. This is because the logic of gridded models depends really on assuming linear approximations to highly non linear coupled differential equations. Anyone that has taken some mathematics analysis knows that functions can be expanded in series, and often the first few terms are good approximations. This is not true for solutions of coupled differential equations, because usually they are highly divergent, the first terms do not describe them. After a number of time steps reality will diverge with a vengeance from the assumed approximations. This happens for weather models in a few days, for climate in a few years.

    There is no solution in throwing millions for larger computers. The only way to model climate is by using tools of chaos and complexity, a vigorously expanding research topic from biology to physics. ( See the Tsonis et al work I have referenced several times in these threads).

    In general, I agree that at the moment it is the money that is giving the momentum for cap and trade. A lot of people smell a lot of money down the pike and they will fight tooth and nail to get at it. They will not be bothered with the facts, which is what has brought on the current economic downfall too.

  84. AEGeneral says:

    PPV (17:46:54) :

    The problem is the media, and not the scientists. It was never the scientists. There have always been far far more sceptical scientists that believer scientists. The AGW hoax cannot and will not be exposed until people takle the media. And the only way this will happen if political parties have the guts to stand up and threaten criminal action against the editors and journalists who have deliberately created this hoax.

    No, the only way you remove the media bias from the equation is to buy them out while they’re struggling financially. I have been screaming this to the masses on various forums on the internet since the Chicago Tribune declared bankruptcy. This is an unprecedented opportunity to seize control of the media right now.

    There is no criminal case against the media. Never will be.

    Craig (17:42:46) :

    While I agree with the arguements in this article and personally derive great pleasure from calling global warming supporters alarmists and fear mongers, etc., I can’t help but cringe at the biased style of writing chosen by the author.

    That was my initial reaction as well, although part of me thinks the writing style is irrelevant. If it doesn’t fit the agenda, the MSM won’t pick up the story.

    If it’s green, it leads.

  85. evanjones says:

    I don’t know what to do with that, except I believe there will be a public confrontation one day and some wag will offer a priceless comment and the warmists will be unable to answer for the guffaws. Then it will be truly over.

    “Lights=0!”

    (And the audience explodes with laughter.)

  86. David Ball says:

    There will be a “tipping point”, just not the one Hansen had hoped for, ……”Brother, can you paradigm?” ( from the department of redundancy department) :^)

  87. evanjones says:

    (My best joke was snipped from both WUWT and Climate Audit . . . in my own best interests I am sure.)

  88. Just want truth... says:

    “REPLY: I’ve asked for it, and got a response sayimg they’ll get it to me tomorrow when they get to the office (assuming they can make it through the snow and ice there). – Anthony ”

    It would be nice to see the original from the man himself. I looked around for it, didn’t turn it up.
    Hope it’s here tomorrow.
    Thanks,

  89. Pamela Gray says:

    Since we are worried about our new President’s belief about global warming, I would like to say that better gas mileage is alright with me (that’s in the stimulus package). And better controls on pollution sources are a good thing. We used to have a coal stove in the ranch. The soot caked to the walls and inside the chimney. I imagine it caked to the inside of our lungs as well.

    But more important, I would like to put in my two cents for banning men’s cologne. That stuff is worse than a three-day old chewed up cigar. And you could add commercial bathroom smell-dispensers to my list of banned substances. I did my part last week when I tore the dispenser off the wall of my favorite tavern and threw it in the garbage.

  90. Ross says:

    Very interesting and informative article by Dr. Theon.

    May we expect to see it on the front page of the NY Times any time soon – with 3″ BANNER headlines?

    One can but hope.

  91. E.M.Smith says:

    Hey Skipper (18:30:25) :
    E.M. Smith:
    You win the thread.

    juan (19:11:51) :
    E. M. Smith
    Thank you for an explanation that we laymen can understand. Your example reminds me of Mark Twain’s comment that the coldest winter he ever lived through was a summer in San Francisco.

    BLUSH!! Another ‘two-fer’ & Mentioned in the same breath as Twain!

    I lived on a boat in SF bay for a couple of years. Any day of the year it can be 50F and dank. Finally sold the boat after mold ate a favorite WWII trench coat & a favorite book… (it would just randomly ‘take’ one object leaving the one next to it pristine. Very strange. Decided to move back ashore before I woke up moldy one day ;-)

    I’ve driven from SJC airport at 105F (50 miles south) to SF at 60F within 1 hour, then back to SJC and it was still 103F… So much for ‘local reference station method’ ! And I’ve been in SF when the fog rolls in and it drops 15F almost instantly.

    FWIW, some long time ago I learned that ‘big words’ & jargon were handy some times, but mostly they hid more than they revealed. Shortly after that I learned that what they often hid was the ignorance or insecurity of the speaker.

    Now I try to always reduce jargon and fluff and excessive vocabulary to the simplest residue of truth. It lets me keep a tidy mind (and it’s a lot easier to remember).

    MC (19:32:19) :
    I believe the reason Theon only now expresses his skeptisism is that he senses a social wave of non support for AGW. He senses that if he does not write about his true feelings he can be seen with egg on his face when the climate proves Hansen and Gore wrong. Distance and the truth is what he seeks to clear himself from the stupidity of manmade global warming.

    I added a bit of bold.

    Reminds me of the Sean Connery film “Rising Sun” “See how they distance themselves?” he says to kohai (Wesley Snipes) as the Japanese manager peer group and one level up in the board room physically move away from the ‘suspect’ who has brought loss of face to The Corporation…

    What we are seeing is the beginning of ‘distancing themselves’. That his ex-boss has done it early now provides cover for anyone of lower rank and anyone higher up the food chain. One via an appeal to authority, they other through an appeal to new information… (“I never new until his ex-boss said so, or I would have said this sooner”) We will see ever more folks ‘distancing themselves’ … It can be as simple as saying “Gee, I have no opinion…” and the group near Hansen shrinks.

  92. April E. Coggins says:

    Pamela: Are you really looking forward to Prius powered vehicles towing trailers down Rattlesnake Grade?

  93. Ross says:

    A little OT.

    I wanted to send a link to this article to the Whitehouse.

    It seems that the comments@whitehouse.gov link has been removed from
    The White House

    If the link is still there I can’t find it.

    Guess they grew tired of public feedback.

  94. evanjones says:

    Colin McEvedy

    Mac has always been one of my favorites.

  95. Robert Bateman (20:23:30) :
    The new SC23 spot is just barely visible on a SOHO image [...]
    That makes 2 SC23’s in 1 month. Does this shoot a hole in SC24 minimum of Sept/0ct 08?

    TSI may have begun its slow climb back up:
    http://www.leif.org/research/TSI-SORCE-2006-now.png

    The green curve is a quadratic fit. The green triangle [at day number 229 = Aug. 16th, 2008] ] marks the ‘minimum’ of the fitted curve.

  96. deadwood says:

    Marc Moreno is more to blame for the caustic aftertaste of the article than Dr. Theron. He is better known for his eye gouging and poking than for his adherence to the finer rules of parliamentary decorum. Then again he is a staffer for a Republican from an oil state who might find it somewhat difficult to heard otherwise.

    Drudge sometimes runs Moreno’s stories though. I suspect that Drudge is bit of a skeptic, so I’ll be watching. His showcase get pretty wide distribution.

  97. VG says:

    Better make sure it’s a “certain” (“The letter”) before coming to more conclusions.. it could be a “plant” LOL. It appears to be quite genuine. I don’t think a US senator would post this unless it a was a certainty. Maybe someone should write directly to Dr Theon…
    Maybe if warmist realized that the only quibble we have with them is the CO2 story. In most other environmental issues we probably see eye to eye (I do anyway). Too many people, too much concrete, plastic bags, waste, yes even pollution ect?

  98. Flanagan says:

    I’m tired of all this… Has someone else noted that that the main “scientific” opposition to the AGW theory is made of op-eds and vague declarations?

    I’m still waiting for a paper showing in a coherent and (loosely) proved way that something else could be responsible for the observed warming… Svensmark? He’s still spending his millions of public-funded euros to try and prove his theory, for which we don’t even know how much would be the impact on climate. Gerlich and Teuschner? Their 2-years old “paper” is still not published. So, what else?

    In my opinion, the evolution of the American opinion is simply a proof that lobbying works..

  99. Alex Llewelyn says:

    On an unrelated note, there’s another SC23 sunspot!
    http://www.solarcycle24.com/

  100. Roger Knights says:

    Grant Hodges: “I find that most people stand back from telling the truth or joining the fray if it might seriously cost them. … It is very lonely to take a stand while the outcome is still in doubt. I find most men are cowards.”

    Everyone’s a hero–as long as it’s not High Noon.

  101. Ron de Haan says:

    This is a surprising development, however it will not effect the current US Administration policies towards the UN AGW climate doctrine.

    The United Nations have been building this doctrine for twenty years now and the current structure and network is gigantic.
    It involves thousands of NGO’s, (many of them advising Governments all over the world on policies), Environmental organizations, Scientific Institutes and Universities Representatives of the doctrine now have taken position dominating complete political parties including the one that currently holds the US presidency which means that our current President is part this pact.

    It is their objective to mitigate the “devastating” effects of a run away world population that thrives on the industrialized mass production made possible by the abundance in cheap fossil energy.

    Because any burning of fossil fuels generates CO2 this innocent plant food has been qualified as a poisonous gas that is responsible for the greenhouse effect to cause a catastrophic warming of the earths atmosphere, melting the Poles and rising the sea level. In short, Humanity will be grilled and drowned unless…our political elite get total control over CO2 emissions, read your life.

    The US presidential elections represented the final crucial stage of execution of the Global Warming Doctrine.
    Now the “right man is in the right place” we will experience the full effects of the doctrine.

    Unfortunately it will take a lot more than a retired NASA Boss turned skeptic and The Best Science Blog WUWT to counter this one.

    So unless you are a passionate tree huger that loves to drive an eco box that only operates at room temperatures, you better get organized and hit the streets before some of the elected geniuses decides to flick the switch on the life you’re used to.

    The mess they will cause on the road to create their “Green Utopia” will kill more people than all the Communist and Socialist Regimes put together.

  102. Flanagan says:

    Oh, yeah right, I almost forgot to mention that, in my opinion, J.S. Theon can call himself anything but a climate scientist. Well, I must say he published some papers…

    In fact, 4 papers in the last 20 years. Including one abstract on aldehyde hydrocyanation, one book chapter where actually no science is discussed (“the status of the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) is discussed in this chapter”), one named “My View of the Early History of TRMM” and finally one about the effect of turbulences on commercial aircrafts which has been cited… well, never over the last 18 years.

    So, to me, with all due respect, J.S. Theon has so to say been scientifically inactive for the last 20 years at least. How can he proclaim himself a specialist in climate modelling? Is he the new “homme de la renaissance”? The typical knows-it-all?

  103. Rhys Jaggar says:

    Well

    I guess President Obama has spoken on record as ‘being happy to listen to good ideas from wherever they may come’.

    Is it perhaps time to put his words on record to the test and humbly request that a panel of some of the most eminent retired or soon-to-be-retired climatologists etc (the names in the article, including Simpson, Spencer, Christy et al) be allowed to explain, in simple layman’s terms, why AGW is, in the infamous words of Mrs Thatcher’s Press Secretary, the late Bernard Ingham, ‘bunkum and balderdash’?

    At least then Obama wouldn’t be able to say that he hadn’t been given the benefit of dissenting views?

    And he did, after all say in his inauguration address that ‘the US administration will respect science’. I think he was talking about Stem Cells, but I guess you might want to try Climate Science on him too?

    IMHO

  104. Lance says:

    “In my opinion, the evolution of the American opinion is simply a proof that lobbying works..”

    Though that may be true, I agree. And from my understanding we should leave all science behind and assimilate for the good. Your thinking is the epidamy of a ~snip~.

    I will never be a part of your world.

  105. Pete Stroud says:

    This will never be reported by the BBC.

  106. TonyB says:

    Flanagan

    Catastrophic climate change is typified by the violent lurch upwards in temperature from -10C to +10C in fifty years immediately afteer the last ice age-within the time scale of human activity.

    Unless you believe the sun is controlled by a giant thernmostat designed to keep us to exatly the same temperature, natural variability is all we currently are experiencing. The obserrved warming over the last 150 years is very minor, disappears when you look at periods even during the LIA -for example the early 1700′s, and todays values become negative when you examine the MWP, The Roman Warm periods and the Holocenes.

    TonyB

  107. TonyB says:

    I think it important we get confirmation this letter is real before making too much out of it.

    If it is true it is a powerful weapon and perhaps ought to be fleshed out with Wirths admission that after choosing a hot day he turned off the A/C before Hansens congress hearing… and Hansens latest escapade in Britain defending vandals at Kingsnorth…hhis comments about deniers and the Nazis… and his belief about a 20 foot rise in sea levels in 90 years.

    Hard to believe he’s an employee of the Amrican govt sometimes.

    TonyB

  108. Adam Gallon says:

    “Jim Norvell (17:53:17) :

    I can’t wait to read about this over at RC.

    Jim N”

    I’ll bet on a high level of censorship about this!
    Perhaps Tamino will add another luminary to his list of the terminal stupid.

  109. What observed warming?

  110. Neil Crafter says:

    Flanagan (23:45:52) :
    I’m tired of all this… Has someone else noted that that the main “scientific” opposition to the AGW theory is made of op-eds and vague declarations?

    I’m still waiting for a paper showing in a coherent and (loosely) proved way that something else could be responsible for the observed warming… ”

    You’re tired of it? Poor darling. Spare a thought for those of us who have had Gore and Hansen’s doomsday pronouncements stuffed down our throats. Well I’m still waiting for the paper that proves its CO2 and it does the warming its supposed to. Is there one? And not a computer model either. As its your theory, you have to prove it, not the other way round. Assume its all natural processes first and foremost.

  111. Brendan H says:

    “NASA warming scientist James Hansen, one of former Vice-President Al Gore’s closest allies in the promotion of man-made global warming fears, is being publicly rebuked by his former supervisor at NASA.”

    Translation: unknown retired old guy disses famous scientist. Sorry people. This ain’t news. News needs an issue and authorised spokespeople, not just a disagreement.

    The rest of this so-called ‘press release’ is a standard rehash of Imhofe’s staffers’ usual prolix bilge. The technique is to make a grand announcement that someone disagrees with AGW, then attempt to give the announcement credibility by throwing in everything including the kitchen sink, hoping something will stick.

    This is not journalism. It’s just cutting and pasting. If anyone wants to get excited about this sort of non-story, best to do so in the privacy of their own home. Whooping and hollering in public just looks silly and smacks of desperation.

  112. Pierre Gosselin says:

    This is something we have to see a lot more of.
    Scientists, free from intimidation, coming out and telling us what they really think.
    It’s high time that we stand up to the intellectual thuggery, smearing and intimidation practiced by the alarmists.
    They all ought to step forward at the upcoming NIPCC Convention.

  113. Phillip Bratby says:

    Flanagan:

    I too am tired of all the AGW theory touted by publicly funded folk with a vested interest and others with a massive financial interest.

    I am waiting for all these climate scientists with their wonderful theories and models to explain how the Medieval Warm Period and all the other climate optima are dut to carbon dioxide.

    But there is no evidence for carbon dioxide driving any warming we may have had and computer models are GIGO.

  114. Neven says:

    quote: I’m tired of all this… Has someone else noted that that the main “scientific” oppositon to the AGW theory is made of op-eds and vague declarations?

    I totally agree with this. I said a while ago that I hold great expectations for WUWT in the AGW debate but if it cannot go beyond the level of acting as Morano’s mouthpiece all its momentum (increasing amount of visitors, Best Science Blog Award) will be lost.

    If you want to be serving the skeptic side of the argument you have to steer well clear of Inhofe’s blog, as at least 90% on it doesn’t hold up under closer scrutiny. For instance, I researched quite a few people on those lists of scientists myself and found out things that totally killed any credibility the list had for me.

    Now, the way I see it is that the good skeptics have to start distancing themselves from the bad and incompetent skeptics. For when some renewed warming kicks in or the Arctic Sea Ice hits a new bottom their voice will sink because of all the excess weight from the incompetent or dishonest skeptics. But I believe a good skeptic voice is needed to combat the nefarious consequences of AGW mitigation, such as biofuels and emission trading.

    I personally believe that AGW is real and even underestimated, so the parties that try to cash in on AGW must be stopped. With all the money already thrown at saving failing banks/car manufacturers and killing American soldiers/Iraqi civilians we cannot afford criminal profiteers taking advantage of AGW. There are actually measures that help mitigate AGW AND increase energy independence AND reduce pollution at the same time. It’s these measures that need to be promoted the most, irrespective of AGW being a reality or not.

    So Anthony, please be very careful what stories you reproduce. Otherwise I fear you may be digging a hole for the side of the skeptic argument that has something useful to contribute. Better not to post anything for a few days than to reproduce unsubstantiated nonsense, that in the worst case might even be deliberate misinformation (of which I highly suspect Morano’s efforts).

  115. Stefan says:

    Flanagan wrote:
    I’m tired of all this… Has someone else noted that that the main “scientific” opposition to the AGW theory is made of op-eds and vague declarations?

    I’m still waiting for a paper showing in a coherent and (loosely) proved way that something else could be responsible for the observed warming

    One doesn’t require a competing scientific theory if AGW was never a good theory nor good science in the first place.

    Without any good theory grounded in good science, the simple answer is to what is causing the warming is, we don’t know.

    Better to know you don’t know than to believe wrongly that you know.

  116. Flanagan

    As soon as you produce a body of work that proves that AGW is loosely proven, the AGW theory has had over 20 years of data to compare to its predictions, how is it doing so far? Well 10 of those years just refuse to behave…

    The IPCC did not do any science they only presented their opinion. Kinda like a technical Op-Ed.

    Perhaps you should look-up lobbyist, it has nothing to do with American Public Opinion it actually has to do with elected officials and special interests, and we know what way they are leaning! The Environmental lobby is twice the size of most groups. The government gives more assets (Public Money) to environmental groups than any other, in the form of financing, grants, endowments, land trusts titles, regulation enforcement, prosecution and special injunctions.

    More money has been lost in US manufacturing industries due to environmental issues than any other, including labour. That is why CA is trying to get exemptions to get infrastructure spending rolling. Did you know it takes less than 5 years to plan and build a transit train route, but takes almost 7 years for environmental approval.

    The environmental lobby is one of the most powerful forces in western government(s) it is the same in Canada and the EU.

    Sierra Club ( just one group, search the database for your favorites )

  117. John Philip says:

    I was dismayed when the ‘debate’ began to get politicised, now I am doubly so as it is clear that some wish to push it past the political and into the personal.

    If anyone has earned the right to have a Press Release treated with extreme caution it is surely Mr Morano in whose universe, when it suits his purposes, the presenter of a TV gardening show is a member of the set of ‘prominent scientists’.

    But let us assume we are being told the truth, the whole truth and nothing but. The timeframe is interesting – when exactly did Dr Hansen ‘embarrass’ the agency? Dr Theon is apparently referring to Dr Hansen’s Congress testimony over two decades ago. Not exactly breaking news then. Given the startlingly good record of the temperature projections presented on that occasion, I speculate that many climatologists would give their right arm for such ‘embarrassment.’

    And most of Dr Hansen’s complaints about NASA censorship actually date from around 2005 onwards, at least a decade after Dr Theon left his position.

    I do not doubt Dr Theon’s sincerity and I respect his experience and qualifications, and his decision to voice his views, nor do I question that he is keeping his expertise up to date by reading the academic journals and other literature, however while he is reading papers on the latest climate science, Dr Hansen is writing them. While Dr Theon is writing pieces for the AMS about his time at NASA, the same august body, who one would assume are equally aware of the current state of the science, recently awarded the good Doctor their highest honour.

    Fascinating.

  118. The Skeptic says:

    Flanagan, the point is we just don’t know enough about how this highly complex system works to give definitive answers.

    Catastrophic AGW is just a speculative hypothesis with lots of dollars, media hype and government support. Therefore, on that basis along it is taken as fact to by many people.

    Therefore, all other attempts to explain a highly complex natural system are, by nature going to be incomplete, and will require lots of support and further research before anything definitive can be said. But they are in for a hard road with a lot of obstructions.

    The best we can say is that there are some speculative models about how the whole system works and is driven (long term). But unfortunately, those that control the money have the power to pass speculation as fact, and undermine competing views.

  119. stephen richards says:

    Look at it the other way, Mr Flanagan.

    Where is the proof that the GW is ma

  120. stephen richards says:

    I’ll try that again

    Mr Flanagan, where is the proof that GW is man made?? Only the data issueing forth from the Hockey team supports it, et alors ???

  121. bigcitylib says:

    1) Retired 15 years ago.
    2) His real work (papers) stop around that time as well.
    3) Was “in effect” Hansen’s superviser, presumably in contrast to “in reality”.
    4) Has absolutely no first hand knowledge of the Bush years, or whether or not Hansen was muzzled.

    [snip, BCL stop the childish commentary. Your only purpose is to troll. BTW how is that bigfoot research coming along? Any new photos or radio shows? - Cheers Anthony]

  122. Smokey says:

    John Philip, did it occur to you that Dr. Theon, like more and more people in the scientific community, has become so fed up with the claims that the unmeasurably small effect of CO2 on temperature [which may, in fact, be a negative forcing], that he finally decided to say something? And this isn’t just another scientist joining the swelling ranks of those questioning Hansen’s unleashed attacks on anyone who questions catastrophic AGW. This is Hansen’s former superior.

    Hansen spouts his version of reality all the time to anyone who will listen — then runs and hides out from any questioning himself. Is no one else allowed to respond, without instant attacks from the warmist contingent? Can’t you people just respond to the merits, instead of nitpicking issues like the amount of time since Dr. Theon retired, or by demanding that a supervisor in charge of dozens of other scientists must also continue doing personal research and writing papers? That is not how the real world works.

    The fact that Hansen has complained, with a straight face, that he has been “muzzled” by the Bush Administration when he gave some 1400 interviews to the press and others says something about his non-existent veracity. That is a fact that goes directly to Hansen’s credibility.

    You are more rational and civil than many of Hansen’s supporters, John. Don’t you have problems with the situation he has created for himself?

  123. Flanagan says:

    Well, to all:

    I can give tens of references showing that the increase in temperatures is above natural variability. The Medieval warm period has nothing to do with that… And noone ever said CO2 is the only factor affecting climate!

    I’m a bit surprised by the claims that “there’s no proof” that CO2 is causing the observed warming. What would you consider a proof? That CO2 is a greenhouse gas, that it absorbs and reemits IR? That the troposphere is warming more rapidly than the upper layers of the atmosphere? Numbers about the amount of energy CO2 is capable of reinjecting back? This is all given in the IPCC ARs and in many independent publications.

    On top of that it is also almost certain that the CO2 released by ocean warming in the past (you know, the 800 years delay) accelerated the warming through the greenhouse effect…

    So what do you need?

  124. Jerry says:

    I’d like to second Craig’s comment re the use of hyperbole in our dialog. I have been told by objective bystanders listening to my debate with Alarmist that I immediately lose credibility when resort to hyperbole. If you ever saw the play or movie West Side Story remember the song “Keep Cool”. Bringing it to mind helps.

    Craig, if you read this check me out on Twitter – TheSlyFox

  125. Ken Hall says:

    Craig (17:42:46) I agree completely. for my part I am guilty of name calling amongst parts of my criticism of the AGW proponents. We on the logical and scientific side of the argument MUST let time and real science settle this, one way or the other.

    I think if nothing else, this debunking of Hansen et al, by his former supervisor will, (or should) utterly finish, destroy and kill off the absurd notion of consensus within the serious and relevant scientific community about AGW.

    There are serious and decent eminent scientists, specialising in climate sciences (atmospheric, oceanographic, geological etc) that agree with AND others within that same community that vehemently dispute the AGW thesis.

    I think my last paragraph sums up one of the few facts that we ALL should be able to agree with. There is NO scientific consensus.

  126. Smokey says:

    Flanagan said:

    I’m a bit surprised by the claims that “there’s no proof” that CO2 is causing the observed warming.

    There’s not much argument that CO2 has a slight effect on temperatures, in theory. But to claim that CO2 ‘is causing the observed warming’ is contradicted by by the facts: click

    It is increasingly apparent that any effect on the temperature by CO2 is so tiny that many other factors overwhelm it. On balance, the effect of CO2 on life on Earth is so beneficial that the planet needs much more of this highly desirable trace gas, not less.

  127. Ken Hall says:

    Flanagan: “On top of that it is also almost certain that the CO2 released by ocean warming in the past (you know, the 800 years delay) accelerated the warming through the greenhouse effect…

    So what do you need?”

    How about one example of an IPCC computer projection based on the computerised climate models that accurately predicted the earth cooling? Or even any model that with the same raw data, manages to model the cooling in spite of continuing increases in atmospheric concentrations of CO2….Just for a start? Hmmmmmmmmmmmmm?

  128. Sophie says:

    Let us be clear that what drives the AGW mantra in statutory quarters is not climate concern but, in the EU anyway, the intention to minimise dependence on fuel imports from ‘unstable’ or ‘unreliable ‘ neighbours. In the UK it is now not uncommon to hear senior politicians discussing ‘security’ of supply amongst the major drivers for renewable energy strategies, while GW is tagged in only at the end …’Oh yes, and our environmental targets, ahem’.

    Accordingly the outlandish claims made by AGW campaigners and energy developers are allowed to pass unchallenged even when the evidence is to the contrary because it serves the governments purposes to have the like of Gore and the environmental lobby whipping up hysteria. Ignoring the critics conveniently leaves the impression that the criticism was unfounded.

    Meanwhile a multi-trillion dollar industry in carbon trading and renewable energy develops, which is actually achieving virtually nothing in terms of reducing carbon emissions. In fact, despite the alleged ‘fact’ that AGW is going to trigger a global catastrophe in near future, there is absolutely no evidence, if you look carefully, of any meaningful global effort to reduce emissions, within the timescale which is apparently required.

    What we see is the birth of a new economy, which truly is based on hot air, which effectively imposes further taxes consumers and industry, and in the long term will probably make the sub-prime fiasco look like a tea party. The major problem, as with sub-prime, is that while interested parties cash in to the tune of billions there is no incentive for anyone to listen to reason, including our politicians.

  129. Flanagan says:

    Smokey:

    Alas, typical… So where’s the scientific publication asserting that the role of CO2 in the greenhouse effect is “tiny”. Looking at a graphic is not science. Moreover, and this is quite funny, both the CO2 and temperature increase in your graph. What is the problem? The lines are not parallel? I’m sure we can arrange that we proper rescaling if you want. But actually it makes no point.

  130. Denis Hopkins says:

    OT
    I have read somewhere that all the frequencies of em spectrum that are absorbed by CO2 are already being absorbed in the atmosphere and that any extra CO2 cannot absorb any more at these frequencies as all the energy is already being absorbed. Is this true does anyone know?
    I should have thought if it were true that more would have been made of it in the arguments about greenhouse gases.

  131. Robert says:

    I found this at Bad Astronomy, The Seven Warning Signs of Bogus Science
    http://chronicle.com/free/v49/i21/21b02001.htm

  132. Raven says:

    Flanagen says:

    “I’m a bit surprised by the claims that “there’s no proof” that CO2 is causing the observed warming. What would you consider a proof? That CO2 is a greenhouse gas, that it absorbs and reemits IR?”

    CO2 is a GHG – so what? The AGW rests on the argument that the climate system is dominated by positive feedbacks and a small CO2 induced warming will result in a large change in climate. There is no proof of that claim.

    So what you need to provide is proof that these net positive feedbacks exist and the only way to do that is with experimentation. i.e. make a prediction and verify that the prediction can true.

    Unfortunately, we cannot conduct these kinds of experiments in a lab so we really have no option but to wait and see. So far, the evidence collected since the last batch of IPCC models strongly suggests that these positive feedbacks do not exist and the effect of CO2 is much less than claimed. Obviously we are in the grey area right now and we cannot rule out the possibility that the climate models are still correct despite the cooling trend.

  133. Robert Bateman says:

    Ken Hall (04:12:48) :

    I think my last paragraph sums up one of the few facts that we ALL should be able to agree with. There is NO scientific consensus.

    That is correct. Debate rages with the same ferocity as the ice storms sweeping across the heartland toward the East Coast, snapping power line, downing trees, crashing airplanes & wrecking cars.

    Only, one side is trying to commandeer the public while at the same time getting political ears to propose thier corrective measures. Claiming 1000 yrs for the Earth to clean out the evil C02 and seeking the green light to implement Doomsday Measures. When it all goes wrong, what will they then do?

  134. TonyB says:

    Flanagan said;

    ” I can give tens of references showing that the increase in temperatures is above natural variability. The Medieval warm period has nothing to do with that… And noone ever said CO2 is the only factor affecting climate!”

    Please give your references and clarify why the MWP has nothing to do with that.

    TonyB

  135. Flanagan (23:45:52) :
    I’m tired of all this… Has someone else noted that that the main “scientific” opposition to the AGW theory is made of op-eds and vague declarations?
    I’m still waiting for a paper showing in a coherent and (loosely) proved way that something else could be responsible for the observed warming…

    I’m still waiting for the proof that the AGW theory you are promoting is shown in a choerent and proven way that is responsible for the obeserved warming. I think that there is still a lot of science to be done on this subject to identify and disqualify the theoretical drivers of the climate systems.

    Whilst I currently sit firmly on the sceptic side, I am open to suggestions of human induced drivers, but they must be clear, coherent and sufficient enough to disqualify natural drivers. An open mind is currently the correct mind set to have, in my opinion.

  136. Don L says:

    This poor and honest soul will be relegated to spend his dying days in the Arctic with a thermometer and a (frozen) ball point pen.

    The battle is over folks -they have propagandized sufficiently to alarm the masses raised on Captain Planet and Bambi to bring about the control of people and the loss of US sovereignity. Obamination will use it to force us into international submission.

  137. Nigel Calder says:

    Flanagan says:
    “I’m still waiting for a paper showing in a coherent and (loosely) proved way that something else could be responsible for the observed warming… Svensmark? He’s still spending his millions of public-funded euros to try and prove his theory, for which we don’t even know how much would be the impact on climate.”

    The Svensmark effect of cosmic rays on cloud cover is sufficient to explain all the warming of the 20th Century, and also the mid-century cooling and the present flatterning. This theory is not just coherent but tightly verified and it is far more secure scientifically than the AGW models.

    Here are the main references.

    Henrik Svensmark and Eigil Friis-Christensen, ‘Variation of Cosmic Ray Flux and Global Cloud Coverage – a Missing Link in Solar–Climate Relationships’, Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics, Vol. 59, pp. 1225–32, 1997
    Henrik Svensmark, ‘Influence of Cosmic Rays on Earth’s Climate,’ Physical Review Letters, Vol. 81, pp. 5027–30, 1998
    Nigel Marsh and Henrik Svensmark, ‘Low Cloud Properties Influenced by Cosmic Rays’, Physical Review Letters, Vol. 85, pp. 5004–07, 2000
    Nigel Marsh and Henrik Svensmark, ‘Cosmic Rays, Clouds, and Climate’, Space Science Review, Vol. 94, pp. 215–30, 2000
    Henrik Svensmark, Jens Olaf Pepke Pedersen, Nigel Marsh, Martin Enghoff and Ulrik Uggerhøj, ‘Experimental Evidence for the Role of Ions in Particle Nucleation under Atmospheric Conditions’, Proceedings of the Royal Society A, Vol. 463, pp. 385–96, 2007 (released online 2006)
    Henrik Svensmark, ‘Imprint of Galactic Dynamics on Earth’s Climate’, Astronomische Nachrichten, Vol. 327, pp. 866–70, 2006
    Henrik Svensmark, ‘Cosmic Rays and the Biosphere over 4 Billion Years’, Astronomische Nachrichten, Vol. 327, pp. 871–5, 2006
    Henrik Svensmark, ‘The Antarctic Climate Anomaly Explained by Galactic Cosmic Rays’, eprint http://arxiv. org/abs/physics/0612145, 2006
    Henrik Svensmark, ‘Cosmoclimatology: a new theory emerges’, Astronomy and Geophysics, Royal Astronomical Society, London, Vol. 48, Issue 1, 2007
    Henrik Svensmark and Eigil Friis-Christensen, ‘Reply to Lockwood and Fröhlich – The Persistent Role of the Sun in Climate Forcing’, Danish National Space Center
    Scientific Report, 3/2007, September 2007

    Other papers are pending. There is also a plain-language book:

    Henrik Svensmark and Nigel Calder,: The Chilling Stars, Icon Books (Totem in USA) 2007, updated edition 2008

    Flanagan’s remark about “millions of public-funded euros” is inept. Svensmark has had very little public funding and has had a ten-year battle to keep his very small team going.

  138. old construction worker says:

    E.M.Smith (22:10:47) :
    ‘I’ve driven from SJC airport at 105F (50 miles south) to SF at 60F within 1 hour, then back to SJC and it was still 103F… So much for ‘local reference station method’ ! And I’ve been in SF when the fog rolls in and it drops 15F almost instantly.’

    And yet alarmists want us to believe water vapor is a postive feedback to “heat”.

    Is there any place in nature where water vapor is a positive feedback to “heat”?
    Why do crop pickers in the Southwest, US wear a couple of layers of clothing?
    What happens if we stop sweating while working in the “heat”?

    Why would nature change her game plan when it comes to the heating and cooling the earth?

  139. Ric Werme says:

    Flanagan (00:12:22) :

    Oh, yeah right, I almost forgot to mention that, in my opinion, J.S. Theon can call himself anything but a climate scientist.

    If Anthony limited discussion here only to people who are published scientists who are willing to use their full name would we have to listen to you?

    It doesn’t take another astrophysicist to realize that Hansen is an embarrassment. A backfilling algorithm that adjusts decades-old data each month makes it difficult to reproduce GISSTemp studies. Testimony to congress over the inpending catastrophe ignores his own data that currently shows the temperature fell between June 1988 and 2008 is irresponsible. Testifying in defense of Pamela Gray’s recent ecoterrorism on a restroom air freshener is simply made up.

    ——

    Congrats on passing the 8,000,000 hit count!

  140. J.Hansford. says:

    Flanagan…….. You got all backwards and inside out with you Tropical Troposphere example there mate.

    You said. “That the troposphere is warming more rapidly than the upper layers of the atmosphere?” …. You got it wrong. The TT is supposed to warm at a faster rate than the surface.

    The AGW hypothesis is based on modeling that shows that the TT was supposed to warm at twice the rate of surface temperature change…. However, that is not what is observed….

    A recent study tried to use windshear as a measurement for temp in the TT, which was grasped at by the AGW proponents, for it offered a possibility of re-explaining the low temps that were observed by both satellites and radiosondes…. However this study, http://www.climatesci.org/publications/pdf/R-342.pdf
    shows that, that is not the case. Dr Pielke Sr says this…. “In our paper we examine evidence for this conclusion from a variety of directions and find that evidence for a significant tropical tropospheric warming is weak.”

    There is no smoking gun that shows that CO2 is causing significant warming….. Indeed, Global Temperature as defined by the IPCC, has been static or cooling for over Ten years.

    Climate Audit has a good thread going on TT trends at the moment too.

  141. PPV – “The problem is the media, and not the scientists. It was never the scientists. There have always been far far more sceptical scientists that believer scientists…”

    It is the media plus … this is a complex social phenomenon, the “scare phenomenon”. It relies of a closed loop between advocates (pushers) politicians and the media. The pushers feed the message in, it is picked up by the media, the politicians respond to the media, the media reports the politicians, the pushers respond to that media, and the polticians then respond to the media, which is then again reported in a continous cycle.

    The public, in the scare dynamic, is always the spectator, not allowed into the cycle – for them, the scare is a spectator sport.

    This is why science and “being right” is not enough. The truth will not prevail of its own accord. You have to understand that the scare phenomenon has its own dynamics and rules. To defeat it, you have to break the cycle.

  142. hunter says:

    Flanagan,
    The fact that there has never been a run away greenhouse effect is a pretty good falsification of AGW.
    The fact that not one of the AGW community’s predictions have come true is pretty good falsification.
    The fact that there is not ‘troposphere hotspot’ as predicted by the aGW community is pretty good evidence.
    The fact that the AGW promotion industry has to constantly rewrite history of climate and their own predictions in order to maintain the level of fear.
    The very fact that AGW process is based on fear of an apocalypse should, in the normal course of events, show that its promoters are not rational.

  143. old construction worker says:

    BTW, I got a lot of white condensed “positive feedback water vapor” falling on my drive way right now (we are expecting 12” of the stuff) on top of the clear hard “positive feedback water vapor” that came down last night. The body shops are going to be very busy.

  144. Joel Shore says:

    Smokey says:

    There’s not much argument that CO2 has a slight effect on temperatures, in theory. But to claim that CO2 ‘is causing the observed warming’ is contradicted by by the facts: click

    Yup…That graph shows quite strong evidence that the transient climate response for doubling CO2 is not around 9 C. Of course, since the IPCC estimate is that it is somewhere in the neighborhood of 2 C, I am not sure exactly who you think you are arguing against.

  145. Bernard says:

    How many read this low down the page?

    Why didn’t Dr. Theon denounce Obama while he was still active at NASA?

    Despite the growing evidence against AGW, with Barak Obama now in power, it appears the US is about to commit another major economic blunder, by implementing a series of actions to fight AGW. Cap-and-trade will be the worst, with brokers taking commisions on so-called “carbon” transactions. Of course, sophisticated financial products will have to be put in place to hedge against risk… Sounds familiar?

    “Money for nothing”, as the Dire Straits song goes. Money that could be spent on solving real problems.

  146. Richard111 says:

    Why do people talk about CO2 as though it is a heat reflector? CO2 can absorb long wave energy and reradiate it, no question. But it radiates in all directions, up and down and horizantally. Horizantal radiation cancels out leaving up or down, these two paths have to be equal, therefore CO2 can only reradiate HALF the energy it absorbed back to the surface. Also CO2 can only absorb 8% of the available energy radiated from the surface, thus only 4% of the available energy could possibly be reradiated back to the surface.

    Stand outside any where on the planet on a clear calm evening and note how rapidly the temperature drops as the night passes.

  147. Brute says:

    Smokey,

    Nice graph. I like to compare your graph with this one when attempting to “reason” with an eco-chondriac.

    http://icecap.us/images/uploads/WATTSSOLAR1.jpg

  148. terry46 says:

    How many of you think we will see this very informative report on the news ?In my opinion the only news organization that may touch this is Fox News.

  149. Garacka says:

    My sense is that Theon was stifled in taking action because, NASA had been politically cornered.

    Hansen was brilliant in publicly saying he had been muzzled, because any disciplinary actions against him by NASA would then “validate” his contention of being muzzled.

  150. YourWiseUncleRick says:

    We have a situation. Common sense – and for some time- reputable scientists have been telling us that this global warming/cooling is natures way. We’re but ants on an acre, something the enviro’s can not grasp. The main point is this, however: this fellow Hansen, and ex VP Gore have cried Fire in a crowded theatre and punishment is due, jail time at the very least.

  151. Allen63 says:

    Being a retired NASA scientist (among other things), I can relate.

    Fresh out of school, my first research area was a dead end. Being new, I did not figure that out for a long time.

    I was part of a team, we produced peer reviewed reports, we were considered world experts, and it was exciting. The team (including me) and our managers argued for funding every year which we got — even though some NASA Headquarters folks were “skeptical” of our research.

    Finally, I figured out that we were “barking up the wrong tree” — but others on the team remained convinced regarding the value of the research. I did not attempt to “blow whistles”. I merely transferred to another department and continued my career (in what turned out to be a very satisfactory way).

    The research continued for over a decade after I left. Ultimately, the research area was a “dead end” and not one dime of value was returned to the taxpayers. What was worse, I thought, was the wasted careers for those who kept on after I left.

    So, nothing in the “revelations” surprise me. Sounds like business as usual. That is, people of good intent at all levels in the organization have difficulty recognizing/admitting failure and hesitate to say “no”.

  152. dhogaza says:

    If Dr Theon knew what Hansen was doing was wrong, why didn’t he stop Hansen?

    Because he retired FIFTEEN YEARS AGO and was never Hansen’s boss.

    Regarding his claim that Hansen was “never muzzled”, this was confirmed by independent investigation and Theon was no where near NASA at the time and in no position to judge.

    Regarding his claim that some climate scientists are guilty of scientific fraud because they change data to fit models, well, he needs to provide some solid evidence of this serious charge. After he stops beating his wife.

  153. lichanos says:

    For those who see this controversy as a battle between GOOD and EVIL, with the “doubters” on the side of GOOD, I say only, “Calm down.” Recall the obstacles facing the AGW crowd – this is why they tend to get hysterical. They feel that’s the only way they can get anything done. I, as a political super liberal, feel comforted by the built-in conservatism of society in this case!

    Fads in science and social policy can do damage, but I fear little in this instance. Some bad policy may go into effect, but if the critics continue their good work, and as weather records continue their natural, changing course, the AGW crowd will loose steam. My prediction is that ten or fifteen years from now, people will be writing Ph. D. dissertaions on AGW as an example of science and public policy gone bad.

    John A: nice story about Nikita, but what’s the point?

  154. old construction worker says:

    April E. Coggins (22:10:49) :

    ‘Pamela: Are you really looking forward to Prius powered vehicles towing trailers down Rattlesnake Grade?’

    That can be done with the right type of wheel motors that can be swtiched to generators which could produce enough Eddy currents to make the vehicle safe for towing.

  155. Allen63 says:

    P.S. to my above post

    In another parallel, the manager of our team was very forceful. He “believed”. He definitely skewed things at times to meet his biases. It was he who kept the research area alive. Reminds me of what Hansen may be doing — except Hansen has a lot more folks than the research team on board his train.

  156. stephen richards says:

    Flanagan

    You are ommiting to look at the origin of the data you are using. IE GCMs, NASA adjustments, poor quality surface stations, etc Then look at the Climate audit site to study the invented statistics and you will see why we suggest that the science supporting CO² GW is weak.

    We all ackowledge that CO² has the potential to warm BUT 0.04% ? and it is ‘highly likely’ (IPCC terms) that water vapor has a much larger affect and there is little science at the moment, other than from the playstation mob, to support the effects promoted by the hockey team and its supporters.

    Being a physicist, I know about the absorption spectrum of CO² but I also know that of H²O. I suggest you review them, do the appropriate calculations and then think about the results.

  157. Steve M. says:

    OT, maybe: From the MET office website regarding HARCRUT3:
    “We have recently changed the way that the smoothed time series of data were calculated. Data for 2008 were being used in the smoothing process as if they represented an accurate esimate of the year as a whole. This is not the case and owing to the unusually cool global average temperature in January 2008, it looked as though smoothed global average temperatures had dropped markedly in recent years, which is misleading.”

    Am I missing something? They have to change their process because January 2008 was “unusually cool.” And I thought HARCRUT might have better data than GISS.

  158. Mark says:

    I can only hope that something like this gets the attention of Obama such that he at least takes the time to listen to his reasons why he’s now a skeptic.

    Given that his ‘energy czar’ belonged to Socialist International’s ‘Commission for a Sustainable Society’ which called for global governance and for the US to reduce our economy, I’m not holding my breath.

    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/jan/12/obama-climate-czar-has-socialist-ties/

  159. Bruce Cobb says:

    I hope Dr. Theon realizes that he has now joined with “climate criminals”, “traitors”, “blasphemers, people who are committing “intergenerational crimes” and “terracide”, and generally “bastards” who are “members of the global warming denial industry”, for whom there should be “Nuremberg-style trials”. Obviously, he’s in the pay of “Big Oil” and “Big Coal”, but sleeping at night could be a problem. Sarc/off

    The AGW fraud is being exposed, the house of cards is collapsing, and those who can and who are smart enough are getting out while the getting is still good. The MSM though, still either don’t seem to get it, or simply want to keep the AGW fraud alive for as long as they can; probably a bit of both.

    Craig: Time, science and history will ultimately settle the score.
    Perhaps. The problem is that the AGW machine, although in trouble, is still in place, and capable of doing a great deal of harm. There is both a scientific as well as political side to this. But, it should be pointed out, it is the AGW industry which created the political side, most notably with the UN’s IPCC. Furthermore, the politics go far beyond the usual liberal vs conservative type of debate, since it’s been pointed out numerous times that many liberals and/or Democrats are skeptics
    or climate realists. This issue actually encompasses truth vs lies, science vs pseudo-scientific propaganda, and freedom vs authoritarianism.
    Given what is at stake here, is there any wonder people’s emotions run high at times? Indeed, one would have to be a robot to NOT be passionate about this.

  160. Smokey says:

    Wowfail:

    How the hell did this blog win best science blog? Epic epic fail

    WUWT won Best Science blog because folks like you are in a small minority. Who is really the epic failure?

    Congrats, Anthony, on surpassing 8 million hits!

  161. Sven says:

    Re: Steve M. 06:28:05
    Where did you find that statement? I can’t see this.
    I was wondering for quite some time why Metoffice has not renewed their graphs, some from November, some even from April 2008. I sent hem an e-mail yesterday asking about that and got a reply that it was forwarded to some specialists who would get back to me. Nothing so far apart from the fact that they have (interestingly soon after my mail?!) replaced the year 2007 with 2008 without redrawing the graphs (that still show only 2007 with 0.4C anomaly as the end) themselves at

    http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/climatechange/science/monitoring/hadcrut3.html

    and these plots still end with Nov. 2008

    http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/climatechange/science/monitoring/temperatures.html

    Metoffice used to redraw the graphs simultaneously with new data coming in and it seems to me that they are uncomfortable showing the picture of temps going visibly dow. Reading what you just posted, it really seems to be the case – they are sitting and thing about what to do? Sounds like a conspiracy theory but…?

  162. Flanagan says:

    about the feedback : as the troposphere gets hotter, the water vapor pressure increases (this is known for, well, centuries) which means more water can be stored in the same space. Now, satellite measurements exist since the mid 80s that prove that a more humid atmosphere strongly increases the Greenhouse effect (a paper in Nature, I can find it if you like).

    So basically, the first and most important feedback is already observed.

  163. John Philip says:

    Smokey

    John Philip, did it occur to you that Dr. Theon, like more and more people in the scientific community, has become so fed up with the claims that the unmeasurably small effect of CO2 on temperature [which may, in fact, be a negative forcing], that he finally decided to say something?

    What evidence is there that Dr Theon holds that view? His issue, as reported, is with the reliability of models as predictive tools. As for the views of the scientific community at large, I refer you to the two surveys recently discussed hereabouts showing a substantial majority (97% among climate scientists) who hold the view that human activity is a significant driver of global temperature change.

    Nobody seriously disputes that greenhouse gas concentrations have been increased by human activity. The size of the resultant radiative forcing is actually quite well-quantified, within an uncertainty of about 5%. The question with perhaps the highest uncertainty is by how much this increased forcing will increase the global temperature. Here the published estimates cluster around a value of 3C for a doubling of CO2. Personally I steer clear of the emotive word ‘catastrophic’, [though one could argue that it was an individual catastrophe for those already killed] and you will not find it in any IPCC document either, however such a rapid change in global temperatures is almost certainly unprecedented in the history of civilisation. The human price notwithstanding, the financial costs have been quantified by Stern, Garnaud, Yohe and others and all agree that a combination of mitigation and adaptation produces a large positive benefit-cost ratio.

    You are convinced that Hansen has the science wrong. His political views are informed by his research which is peer-reviewed and published in the academic literature.
    I would point especially to the ‘Target CO2′ and ‘Trace Gases’ papers. Perhaps you could explain exactly where he is mistaken, or point to other papers that demonstrate his errors? From one standpoint, there’s a danger that the prominence given to a long-retired academic who might have managed Dr Hansen a decade and a half ago, and the torturing of a single sentence from his bio beyond all reason will appear like a tacit admission of an inability to put a dent in the hard science.

    Over to you.

  164. Alex says:

    hectic post!!
    A new Cycle 23 region has grown! :) I was going to comment about a tiny cy 23 area that popped up 2 days ago but I forgot… well it looks like it might fetch a number soon..
    This reminds me of the whole dogma and mysticism surrounding the number 23… solar cycle 23 seems to be proof of this :)

  165. colion says:

    Methinks that there is a fire in the temple.

  166. Sven says:

    sorry for all the typos. I should really check before hitting the submit button

  167. Layman Lurker says:

    bigcitylib:
    1) & 2) Therefore what? He is no longer capable of critcal thinking?
    3) Not sure why this even matters, but what point are you making…Dr. Hansen was actually independant of Dr. Theon?
    4) Not first hand maybe but certainly not limited to water cooler gossip. Woodward and Bernstein had no first hand knowledge of Watergate either.

  168. Frank K. says:

    This is the real “smoking gun” here…a profound commentary on climate models:

    Theon declared “climate models are useless.” “My own belief concerning anthropogenic climate change is that the models do not realistically simulate the climate system because there are many very important sub-grid scale processes that the models either replicate poorly or completely omit,” Theon explained. “Furthermore, some scientists have manipulated the observed data to justify their model results. In doing so, they neither explain what they have modified in the observations, nor explain how they did it. They have resisted making their work transparent so that it can be replicated independently by other scientists. This is clearly contrary to how science should be done. Thus there is no rational justification for using climate model forecasts to determine public policy,” he added.

    And in the case of Hansen’s group at GISS, we really even don’t know what their climate models are doing because they apparently don’t know how to document their numerical models adequately, be it Model E, GISTEMP,…sad, but true…

  169. AEGeneral says:

    Richard North (05:15:07) :

    This is why science and “being right” is not enough. The truth will not prevail of its own accord. You have to understand that the scare phenomenon has its own dynamics and rules. To defeat it, you have to break the cycle.

    This cannot be stated too many times.

    Whether anyone likes it or not, the cultural & political elements of this have to be confronted as well.

    For crying out loud, they’re targeting my 2-year-old on Noggin now. Scientific evidence to the contrary isn’t going to stop Moose & Zee’s new “Eco-Rangers” gig.

  170. Sven says:

    Re: myself 06:54:05
    OK I found the Metoffice statement:

    http://hadobs.metoffice.com/hadcrut3/diagnostics/global/nh+sh/

    It seems that, in order not to show cooling, they have just not used the 2008 data for the smoothing at all?
    And the grapphs I was referring to earlier still are not up to date

  171. Unfortunately the stench rises much higher than Dr. John S. Theon, the former supervisor of James Hansen. The Space Studies Board (SSB) supervises NASA, the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) reviews budget recommendations for NASA, NSF, DOE, etc., and Congress allocates their funds beginning with the Appropriations Committee of US House of Representatives.

    I had the “pleasure” of seeing this system in action on 26 June 2008 at a colloquium at the National Academy of Sciences Building.

    Dr. Ralph Cicerone*, President of the National Academy of Sciences, chaired the meeting. The guest speaker was Congressman Alan B. Mollohan, Chair of the Subcommittee on Science Appropriations for the U.S. House of Representatives. The SSB Vice-Chair, A. Thomas Young of Lockheed Martin, was moderator.

    After Congressman Mollohan’s speech, Dr. Cicerone interrupted and tried to stop me from commenting about NASA’s involvement in promoting untruths about the causes of global climate change.

    Other dignitaries present at the colloquium were Lennard A. Fisk, SSB Chair, Charles Kennel, the incoming SSB Chair, and other NAE/NAS members and former SSB Chairs – Louis Lanzerotti and Claude Canizares.

    The events that I observed on 26 June 2008 match very closely those that former U. S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower warned about in his 17 January 1961 Farewell Address to the Nation:

    “The prospect of domination of the nation’s scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present and is gravely to be regarded”.

    http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/ike.htm

    *Dr. Ralph J. Cicerone, President of the US National Academy of Sciences, led the 2001 NAS study of climate change that persuaded US President Bush to support the IPCC. Six years later Dr. Frederick Seitz, the distinguished former NAS President, replied in the forward to the 2007 NIPCC Report, “. . . we do not currently have any convincing evidence or observations of significant climate change from other than natural causes.” ["Nature, not human activity, rules the climate: Summary for Policymakers of the Report of the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC), The Heartland Institute, Chicage, IL 2008, 50 pages. http://www.sepp.org/publications/NIPCC_final.pdf ]

  172. Sven says:

    Oh, one more thing. Actually I remember now that this statement “We have recently changed the way that the smoothed time series of data were calculated. Data for 2008 were being used in the smoothing process as if they represented an accurate esimate of the year as a whole. This is not the case and owing to the unusually cool global average temperature in January 2008, it looked as though smoothed global average temperatures had dropped markedly in recent years, which is misleading. ” is actually old. It was put there earlier last year. Before that they did smoothing with data from an incomplete year and after this announcement stopped doing this. But now it seems they are not doing it even when the year is over?!

  173. G Alston says:

    Flanagan — “Oh, yeah right, I almost forgot to mention that, in my opinion, J.S. Theon can call himself anything but a climate scientist.”

    Just as I predicted someone would say earlier in this thread. Stabbing the messenger is an opportunity rarely passed. I’m getting good at this. And the following is directed to you as well:

    Wowfail — “How the hell did this blog win best science blog?”

    The way things work is to look at the merits of the argument rather than who made them. Guys who work, say, in the patent office have just as valid an opinion here as do eminent physicists. If you don’t quite follow the reference in the previous sentence, I’d not be surprised. Anthony (our host) doesn’t stand at a mountaintop issuing pronouncements, either. Science in realtime is a little messy. Sorry to have offended your preference to have the agreed upon results spoonfed to you.

    Ken Hall — How about one example of an IPCC computer projection based on the computerised climate models that accurately predicted the earth cooling?

    Unfair request. This is not what they really do. Models are intended to make a long term extrapolation. In the short term you may get heating or cooling, neither condition being an outlier in the long term. So if you start in 1900 and your model misses cool-down periods but still accurately enough comes up to say 0.5 deg/century and this is close enough to what has happened, prponents will say that the model has demonstrated enough long term skill. In short the idea is that model results are tendencies.

    That said I think the models are abysmal in that any number of natural and/or unknown factors can give you the same result (and ought to) over the same long term time period. e.g. we know that since the LIA the world has been warming naturally, so predicting an increase over 100 years is no more skillful than what any schoolchild can do with a graph.

    What I would like to see (and never have) is the results of model runs where an exorbinant amount of CO2 was released in the atmosphere at point X and then see where the models left off at at X + 70 years. (This sort of thing, CO2 release as in volcanoes, seems to have happened historically.) This would tell us not only if the model works, but would validate (or not) any beliefs about C02 longevity in the atmosphere.

  174. Smokey says:

    John Philip, you quote the UN/IPCC. They are no longer credible. You also quote an obviously agendized/bogus poll which purports to show that 97% of all climate scientists believe that human-emitted CO2 is a significant driver of global temperature change. How does that fit in with this? Do climate scientists not have that information??

    I’m not going to get into a long running argument over all the propaganda out there. Anyone who looks at the declining global temperature occurring when CO2 is steadily rising understands that any small effect that CO2 may have is overwhelmed by other factors.

    The Earth is starved of beneficial carbon dioxide [click on page to expand]. When CO2 levels go up, plants grow faster. And CO2 has no noticeable effect on temperature. You’re worrying about a black cat in a dark room — but when you turn on the light… there’s no cat.

    CO2 is a non-issue, and everyone is beginning to see that. The truth is emerging. Deal with it.

  175. Pamela Gray says:

    I think the good argument against AGW is in weather. Patterns that is, and what drives patterns. These drivers are WAY stronger than puny CO2 and the Sun combined! I think the reason we are not winning this argument is that we are using a weak driver, the Sun, instead of a strong driver. And there are plenty out there. Right outside your door.

  176. Frank K. says:

    John Philip (06:58:08) :
    “I would point especially to the ‘Target CO2′ and ‘Trace Gases’ papers.”

    Ah yes, the great “Trace Gases” paper – one of the strangest papers I’ve ever read that was purportedly a “scientific” publication. It contains my all time favorite “peer reviewed” prose (probably written by Hansen himself), talking about the potential of “cellulosic fibre” farms to save the world:

    “The potential of these ‘amber waves of grain’ and coastal facilities for permanent underground storage ‘from sea to shining sea’ to help restore America’s technical prowess, moral authority and prestige, for the sake of our children and grandchildren, in the course of helping to solve the climate problem, has not escaped our attention.”

    Of course, given what GISS has done to climate science, I suppose we may need to “restore America’s technical prowess”…

  177. Grant Hodges says:

    I posted this link to Drudge on his tip line. Urged him to turn up the orginal letter if possible. Could also get WUWT some more face time to a broader audience.

  178. TonyB says:

    Flanagan

    You seemed to have overlooked my querstion above. Could you please reply?
    Thanks

    TonyB

    (04:50:33) :

    Flanagan said;

    ” I can give tens of references showing that the increase in temperatures is above natural variability. The Medieval warm period has nothing to do with that… And no one ever said CO2 is the only factor affecting climate!”

    I said;

    Please give your references and clarify why the MWP has nothing to do with that.

  179. G Alston says:

    John Philip — “You are convinced that Hansen has the science wrong.”

    That’s overly ambitious. As per the nature of surface stations project the suspicion is that the good Doctor may have some of the data wrong. Land use alone can raise/lower/influence any given reporting station. The suspicion is that he’s reporting a temp increase at station X and assuming global warming (or evidence thereof) when a closer examination of the apparatus and surroundings says that the station has been accurately reporting the local changes in land use moreso than a global signal.

  180. Spurwing Plover says:

    [snip, the language used is not acceptable, no name calling please]

  181. TomT says:

    Flanagan

    “I can give tens of references showing that the increase in temperatures is above natural variability. “

    Can you please tell me where you found this definition of “natural variability”? I’ve been trying to find out what the defined “normal” temperature of the earth is and it seems that no one actually stops to define this. Instead every thing races off talking about how we are out side of the normal.

    It seems very important to have a solid and agreed on definition of what the earths “normal” temperature is before we can discuss warming or cooling in any significant way. After all do we call the temperatures during the ice ages normal? In that case the earth is currently suffering massive catestrophic warming compared to that. Perhaps normal is based on the period of time when temperatures averaged 8 degrees warmer than they do now? No? Then what is the earths normal temperature?

    Second why is warming bad? Amoung the many other beneficial effects of warming is extending growing zones and growing seasons.

  182. TJ says:

    “I’m still waiting for a paper showing in a coherent and (loosely) proved way that something else could be responsible for the observed warming…” -Flanagan

    No you are not. What needs to be “loosely proved” is that climate fluctuations in the 20th century are abnormal first, then we can talk about causes. What proof is there of that? One disasterously flawed paper by Mann. The hockey stick. Are you going to defend that here? Please do try. A few people have a few questions.

  183. Steve D. says:

    John Philip, this estimate of 3C temp increase due to CO2 is crud. The actual figure is about 0.5C – the rest comes down to feedbacks & whether they are positive or negative. These are not well understood or modelled. The IPCC crowd suggest it could be up to 6C’ observational measurement for the last 20 years suggest it is not. The problem for the modellers is that we have now had some 20 years to look at their predictions & the actual measured temperatures don’t support their thesis.

    On another note, Gavin over at RC seems to be saying re Dr. Theon “don’t know the chap, never heard of him, wouldn’t speak to him if I did”

    http://www.realclimate.org/?comments_popup=644#comment-110819

    Watching the cognitive dissonance going in that heavily censored echo-chamber is becoming quite amusing.

  184. Adam Gallon says:

    I dropped this one into the latest topic on RC.

    Quote: Retired senior NASA atmospheric scientist, Dr. John S. Theon, 15th Jan 2009,”My own belief concerning anthropogenic climate change is that the models do not realistically simulate the climate system because there are many very important sub-grid scale processes that the models either replicate poorly or completely omit. Furthermore, some scientists have manipulated the observed data to justify their model results. In doing so, they neither explain what they have modified in the observations, nor explain how they did it. They have resisted making their work transparent so that it can be replicated independently by other scientists. This is clearly contrary to how science should be done. Thus there is no rational justification for using climate model forecasts to determine public policy.”

    Anyone at Real Climate care to comment?

    [Response: Dr. Theon appears to have retired from NASA in 1994, some 15 years ago. Until yesterday I had never heard of him (despite working with and for NASA for the last 13 years). His insights into both modelling and publicity appear to date from then, rather than any recent events. He was not Hansen’s ‘boss’ (the director of GISS reports to the director of GSFC, who reports to the NASA Administrator). His “some scientists” quote is simply a smear - which scientists? where? what did they do? what data? what manipulation? This kind of thing plays well with Inhofe et al because it appears to add something to the ‘debate’, but in actual fact there is nothing here. Just vague, unsubstantiated accusations. - gavin]

    Interestingly, they did heavily edit my initial questions, which were….
    “In view of Dr John S Theon’s press release, http://epw.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=Minority.Blogs&ContentRecord_id=1a5e6e32-802a-23ad-40ed-ecd53cd3d320 casting a large measure of doubt upon climate models.
    Where does this leave the paper on Antarctic temperatures, as it does appear to rely heavily upon modelling and extrapollation?

    ““My own belief concerning anthropogenic climate change is that the models do not realistically simulate the climate system because there are many very important sub-grid scale processes that the models either replicate poorly or completely omit,”

    Also, the Steig paper appears to show Antarctica is warming at a similar rate to the rest of the planet. Don’t the models say it should be warming faster?
    I’m becoming increasingly skeptical about the accuracy of the climate models being used, if the UK’s Met Office can’t predict the general weather a few months ahead (http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/corporate/pressoffice/2008/pr20080925.html “The Met Office forecast for the coming winter suggests it is, once again, likely to be milder than average. It is also likely that the coming winter will be drier than last year”. Milder, it has not been, now drier looks better, but thr weather’s doing a good job currently in trying to refute that prediction too!)
    How much faith can we place in models trying to predict climate on a decade/century scale or those trying to model climate from the past and extrapolate into the future?
    May I also draw your attention back in time to http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2008/02/antarctica-is-cold/langswitch_lang/sk

    “Bottom line: A cold Antarctica and Southern Ocean do not contradict our models of global warming. For a long time the models have predicted just that.”

    Cold Antarctica is consistent with global warming models, warm parts are also consistent?
    Hopefully the $140m+ that’s been promised for improving these models will be well spent.

    I have reposted asking about their somewhat contradictory statement re Antarctic cooling being consistent with global warming models, but I’ve had no response as of yet.

    It is a pity than Dr T hasn’t expanded upon his statement
    “Furthermore, some scientists have manipulated the observed data to justify their model results.”
    Which scientists, what data and which model?
    If the debate is to advance, this needs to be known, else all get tarred with the same brush and it gives the Zealots a reason to ignore the claims.

  185. Adam Sullivan says:

    So am I to understand that the only people qualified to criticize AGW claims and the methods used to establish and justify those claims are “climate scientists” who support AGW?

    Absurd.

    While we are at it, why don’t we ban Patent Clerks (and other Newtonian Mechanics Deniers) from commenting on physics.

  186. Richard Sharpe says:

    Flanagan says:

    Now, satellite measurements exist since the mid 80s that prove that a more humid atmosphere strongly increases the Greenhouse effect (a paper in Nature, I can find it if you like).

    Either:

    1. Too lazy to do a little bit of work to support his assertion with one paper that mentions this effect, or

    2. It really doesn’t exist.

  187. Jim Steele says:

    It is ironic that anyone at RealClimate would have been concerned at Hansen’s purported muzzling. The RealCimate blog’s heavy deletion of opposing views is the epitome of muzzling any debate. I just had the following deleted . Have others experienced the same “muzzling”?

    Jim Steele Says: Your comment is awaiting moderation. 
28 January 2009 at 12:27 AM Chapman did a similar study of Antarctic temperatures. And to Chapman’s credit he duly noted that depending on the start dates one could construct warming or cooling trends. He chose to generate a warm trend. However if the start date began sometime around 1935 or 1980, we would generate cooling trends.

    The skeptics can readily point to the fact that this recent cooling trend remains if you start around 1980 and data for increased sea ice supports that trend. The recent cooling trend coincides with the time period during which global warming was greatest and decoupled from solar effects.

    Start dates that are chosen simply because that is the beginning of certain instrumental observations may be just as arbitrary as picking a date during a period of abnormally high or low temperatures. 
A discussion of the why specific start dates are chosen would be more constructive. But instead there seems to be a battle to control the “memes of warming” vs the “memes of cooling” so all sides cherry pick their trends. This is not good for science.

  188. ked5 says:

    Mike C (16:26:16) :

    C’mon now, we all know James Hansen is a top of the line scientist without a politically motivated bone in his body.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Mike, didn’t your mother ever tell you not to make funny faces or it might freeze that way? Isn’t it painful to have your tongue so far in your cheek?

  189. anna v says:

    At Jennifer’s there is mention of a second high up who has come out of the closet

    http://jennifermarohasy.com/blog/

    Today, a founder of the International Journal of Forecasting, Journal of Forecasting, International Institute of Forecasters, and International Symposium on Forecasting, and the author of Long-range Forecasting (1978, 1985), the Principles of Forecasting Handbook, and over 70 papers on forecasting, Dr J. Scott Armstrong, tabled a statement declaring that the forecasting process used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) lacks a scientific basis. [2]

  190. superDBA says:

    I’m a database administrator for a financial company. I’ve always been a proponent of seperation of duties when it comes to data. There are those that store it and supply it to others (me) and those that crunch the numbers and use it.

    The database administrator is the gate keeper. We are always under pressure to “include this” or “exclude that”, but if the data is to be trusted by anyone, then it must remain pristine. If those that crunch the numbers have control over the storage and reporting, then there is opportunity for misuse, even if it seems to be for the very best of reasons. Having an activist in charge of the data that most of the world is using, presents at the very least the appearance of wrong doing.

    I believe that some agency should be in charge of providing the raw data to the world. No TOBS adjustments, nothing! Then the consumers of the data can make their own adjustments as they see fit, and defend their methods through open and documented peer review.

    I realize that NASA makes the raw GISS data available, but given the circumstances, do you know for a certainty that it has not been altered?

  191. DR says:

    Where are the experimental data that CO2 has such magical heat trapping ability? The closest I’ve run across are grade school quality experiments on YouTube. One bottle is filled with CO2 (100%? 50%? who knows), another with ambient air, then two lights are shined on them and temperature measurements are taken; viola!, proof of the greenhouse effect! 

    Aside from such silly unscientific experiments, the dirty little secrets that continually escape the discussion are:
    1) A strong positive feedback mechanism (water vapor) is assumed to follow incremental increases in atmospheric CO2. This is the only way for the CO2 AGW hypothesis to work is with that assumption.
    2) Per DOE 97% of atmospheric CO2 increase is from natural sources. Do the math.
    3) It is assumed, with no experimental evidence, that CO2 has an extraordinarily long residence time, now said to exceed 1000’s of years.
    4) There is no evidence that increases in atmospheric CO2 levels can account for the increase in OHC from 1993-2003 as quoted by Hansen et al 2005, aka “the smoking gun”. Why hasn’t OHC increased since 2003? Without oceans continually warming, there cannot be “global” warming. Where is the missing heat?
    5) Changes in cloud cover, their causes and cloud dynamics in general are poorly understood. This lack of knowledge is programmed into climate models. What is understood does not support the CO2 AGW hypothesis, and are left out of climate models. Unlock the mysteries of clouds and the rest can be filled in.

    For years we’ve been told AGW has overcome natural variation and therefore onward and upward increases in global surface temperatures will most assuredly be the norm. 1998 was a watershed year for CO2 worshipers. Ah, but things haven’t worked out so well since 2001. Suddenly, without warning, natural variation, even the sun, is rediscovered in 2007 and are masking AGW. Met O assured us not once, but twice, 2007 would return to the inevitable Big Warm, exceeding 1998. By shear coincidence, when it became clear something wasn’t quite right, Met O introduced their latest and greatest new and improved climate model in August 2007. Ha! A glitch in their program is to blame. Problem solved. Now they include ocean data, variations in sun output and other overlooked natural hiccups throwing wrenches in the works.

    Haven’t we also been told the sun doesn’t change enough to affect climate? Or is the inconvenient truth the non-participation of the sun is yet another untested assumption by AGW Climate “scientists”? I assign the title ‘AGW’ as many scientists (and there are many) have hung their reputations on CO2. Journals, societies, newspapers and premiere scientific bodies joined the herd, also known as consensus. Surely so many well funded institutions could never be wrong, and their motives are pure and untainted by the prospect of perpetual increases in tax payer dollars funding their retirement portfolio. No, all are unbiased, objective and have no political agenda. Oh, and they all wear white lab coats.

    It is now 2009 and we are witnessing the falsification of IPCC predictions in real time. Rest assured however, by 2014 1998 will have disappeared into the ash heap of the distant cool past. Honest, they mean it this time. Of course, when Met O blessed us with this holy utterance in August 2007, published in the Holy Scriptures of the journal Science, it had nothing to do with the assumption solar cycle 24 would be off the charts. Well, it is off the charts, but the wrong sign.

    Remember however, the sun has nothing to do with weather or climate. We must all be reminded of that. Oh, and PDO cycles, AMO, NAO, SOI and all that other stuff? Blah blah blah. One anomalous unpredictable La Nina can explain it all, yeah that’s it.

    So I ask the Warmologists, as you have placed your faith in the Magic Gas with zero direct evidence of its powers of driving temperatures in either the atmosphere or the oceans deep, at what point do you become a bit suspicious that just maybe the science isn’t settled after all? You may ask what it would take for some of us skeptics to change our minds. As one who makes a living relying on accurate and precise empirical data, I demand experimental and observational evidence based on sound science. Pumping another $140 million into unvalidated expensive video games run by hoards of monkeys at the keyboards does not impress. As one noted in another blog, ‘pulling back the curtain reveals a bunch of bumpkins pulling levers on GCM’s.’

    We could also discuss NOAA and their predictions of a ‘warmer than normal’ winter for the U.S. while we in Michigan have been ice fishing since the first week of December, freezing our behinds off from multiple weeks of unrelenting sub zero temperatures and record snow, but that’s another subject.

    BTW, isn’t Al Gore supposed to be making a big speech on global warming in Washington or somewhere today?

  192. John Philip says:

    I’m not going to get into a long running argument over all the propaganda out there

    Not what I asked for – I was looking for a credible riposte to Hansen (et al)’s scientific findings in the academic literature, apparently you class the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society and The Open Atmospheric Science Journal as nearer to propaganda than some unattributed graph and the manipulations of Joe D’Aleo.

    The graph you linked to uses this much of the available data, – rather than cherry-pick your period to suit, if you simply graph all the available data it looks like this. I imagine most climate scientists are aware of which of these most qualifies as ‘propaganda’.

    Bye for now.

  193. John W. says:

    Fred (19:07:23) :

    If Dr Theon had tried to silence Hansen, the entire world would have heard that the evil Federal government was silencing an independent thinker and Hansen would not have given 1,400 on-the-job interviews but 2,800. Obviously, they would only silence him if he was telling the truth. Just like in a Hollywood movie.

    He did. You accurately summarized the MSM narrative on the attempt. The MSM did not, however, report on the hundreds of interviews he had been ginving while being “silenced.”

  194. CodeTech says:

    Nobody seriously disputes that greenhouse gas concentrations have been increased by human activity.

    I do.

    In fact, watching someone trying to maintain a high level of CO2 in his greenhouse was among the first things that alerted me to the fact that “CO2-genic global warming” was a myth. No matter how well Bob sealed his greenhouse, no matter how much he pumped in, the plants would ramp up their work removing it. And that was a small sealed environment!

  195. Jeff Alberts says:

    Pamela Gray (21:57:03) :

    Since we are worried about our new President’s belief about global warming, I would like to say that better gas mileage is alright with me (that’s in the stimulus package). And better controls on pollution sources are a good thing. We used to have a coal stove in the ranch. The soot caked to the walls and inside the chimney. I imagine it caked to the inside of our lungs as well.

    But more important, I would like to put in my two cents for banning men’s cologne. That stuff is worse than a three-day old chewed up cigar. And you could add commercial bathroom smell-dispensers to my list of banned substances. I did my part last week when I tore the dispenser off the wall of my favorite tavern and threw it in the garbage.

    I agree heartily on better gas mileage. But there will be a point of diminishing returns, something like the Smart Car. The gasoline version gets barely better mileage than my wife’s Toyota Matrix, yet you can barely fit two adults and a week’s worth of groceries into the thing. The Smart car isn’t.

    And I heartily agree on cologne! Though my beef is with women who don’t know the meaning of the word “moderation” when applying perfume and makeup. Fortunately my wife is allergic to most of that crap, so she stays naturally beautiful ;)

  196. Alex says:

    With all due respect.. there is no use for these discussions with flanagan… the folks at globalwarminghoax.com have *unsuccessfully* been toiling for close to a good few months over trying to find answers from him and change err…certain attitudes… (with some very strange discussions!!)
    So prevent argumentitive circling by resisting those urges…
    just smile and wave…. ;)
    And flanagan,,, join the Goracle and preach in snow-blasted Washington…

  197. Hank says:

    This piece provides a nice peek behind the curtain. This Hansen guy strikes me as a man who has found a way to advance his name by preaching on the failings of the modern world – think especially of his sermons about Faust, usufruct, and comparisons he makes to Nazis . I am sympathetic to a lot of the aims of the environmental movement but preachy environmentalism is as big a turn off as creation science. If you want to convince me there is a crisis don’t run around proclaiming the sky is falling.

  198. Jeff Alberts says:

    April E. Coggins (22:10:49) :

    Pamela: Are you really looking forward to Prius powered vehicles towing trailers down Rattlesnake Grade?

    You mean like diesel locomotives? They’re exactly the same technology. Electric drive motors driven by power from diesel generators. Electric motors, as far as I know, give you more torque with better response than IC engines. The problem is delivering power to the electric motors. In a locomotive you have enough space to provide big diesel generators for continuous power to the electric motors. Correction, it’s not the same as a Prius, since the Prius will actually be driven by the gas motor under certain conditions. But essentially they’re the same.

  199. Daniel M says:

    philincalifornia (19:27:02) :

    So far, since being inaugurated, Obama has not come out and said anything totally stupid as far as I know … I have faith in them, mostly because Chu is an excellent scientist, and Obama watched what bad counseling on weapons of mass destruction did to Dubya.

    Totally stupid? Well, that’s setting the bar mighty low. The proposed budget is laden with funding to study climate change with the focus primarily on reducing GHGs. Allowing states to dictate CO2 standards to automakers at the same time they are on the ropes.

    If Obama doesn’t slam on the brakes soon, this WILL be his WMD issue…

    …AGWMD?

  200. Jeff Alberts says:

    Flanagan (23:45:52) :

    I’m tired of all this… Has someone else noted that that the main “scientific” opposition to the AGW theory is made of op-eds and vague declarations?

    I’m still waiting for a paper showing in a coherent and (loosely) proved way that something else could be responsible for the observed warming… Svensmark? He’s still spending his millions of public-funded euros to try and prove his theory, for which we don’t even know how much would be the impact on climate. Gerlich and Teuschner? Their 2-years old “paper” is still not published. So, what else?

    We’re still waiting for anything to show us in a coherent and (loosely) proved way that any fluctuation in “global” temperatures (as silly a metric as that is), are anything but natural. There has been no observed warming since the 1930′s peak, none since the MWP as best as we can tell, or the RWP or previous interglacials.

  201. Flanagan says:

    ok, difficult to follow because of hectic posts. About the “above natural variability”, a few references

    Natural variability of the climate system and detection of the greenhouse effect
    T. M. L. Wigley & S. C. B. Raper
    Nature 344, 324 – 327 (22 March 1990)

    Simulations of Atmospheric Variability Induced by Sea Surface Temperatures and Implications for Global Warming
    Arun Kumar, Ants Leetmaa, and Ming Ji
    Science 28 October 1994:
    Vol. 266. no. 5185, pp. 632 – 634

    Model assessment of the role of natural variability in recent global warming
    R. J. Stouffer, S. Manabe & K. Ya. Vinnikov
    Nature 367, 634 – 636 (17 February 1994)

    External Control of 20th Century Temperature by Natural and Anthropogenic Forcings
    Peter A. Stott, S. F. B. Tett, G. S. Jones, M. R. Allen, J. F. B. Mitchell, G. J. Jenkins
    Science 15 December 2000: Vol. 290. no. 5499, pp. 2133 – 2137

    Global-scale temperature patterns and climate forcing over the past six centuries
    Michael E. Mann*, Raymond S. Bradley* & Malcolm K. Hughes†
    NATURE | VOL 392 | 23 APRIL 1998

    among others were one can find conclusions such as “More than 80% of observed multidecadal-scale global mean temperature variations and more than 60% of 10- to 50-year land temperature variations are due to changes in external forcings.”

    I said the MWP has nothing to do with that because we know it wasn’t related to a change in the CO2 concentration

  202. Flanagan says:

    Alex: what a nice post you did there.You’re so constructive you should be elected “scientific poster of the year”

    The only attitude I have is that I tend to base my conclusions on scientific publications. What a fool I am!

  203. Flanagan says:

    Richard Sharpe: it looks like I’m not as lazy as you are finally…

    Observational determination of the greenhouse effect
    A. Raval & V. Ramanathan
    Nature 342, 758 – 761 (14 December 1989)

    “Satellite measurements are used to quantify the atmospheric greenhouse effect, defined here as the infrared radiation energy trapped by atmospheric gases and clouds. The greenhouse effect is found to increase significantly with sea surface temperature. The rate of increase gives compelling evidence for the positive feedback between surface temperature, water vapour and the green-house effect; the magnitude of the feedback is consistent with that predicted by climate models. This study demonstrates an effective method for directly monitoring, from space, future changes in the greenhouse effect.”

  204. Kum Dollison says:

    My son, who could care less about all of this, explained it to me. He said, “look Dad, most people don’t believe in the diagnosis, but they’re in favor of the prescription.”

    People in L.A. don’t want the brown haze over their city. People in Pittsburgh don’t want a layer of Coal Dust on their cars. People in Mississippi want to be able to go fishing, and eat the fish, and people in Detroit want to be able to put gasoline in their gas tank to go to work, or to the ball game.

    So, when you tell these people about “Global Warming,” they’re a little skeptical; but when you tell them the “cure” is Wind, Solar, and Biofuels they shrug, say “eh,” and go about their business.

    People, in general, aren’t nearly as stupid as the “elite” scientists, politicians, and, yes, bloggers, think they are.

  205. crosspatch says:

    OT: Looks like an old cycle 23 spot forming on Old Sol today.

    And the climate “scientists” could put an end to all the back and forth by simply releasing their data and methods so others can check them and attempt to verify the result as is done in the scientific community. Why the area of climate research is somehow outside the scope of normal scientific practice is beyond me.

    And note that people seem to have to wait until they are retired in order to speak out. There seems to be a lot of academic intimidation going on here.

  206. Jeff Alberts says:

    It is increasingly apparent that any effect on the temperature by CO2 is so tiny that many other factors overwhelm it. On balance, the effect of CO2 on life on Earth is so beneficial that the planet needs much more of this highly desirable trace gas, not less.

    It’s like the so-called “Butterfly Effect” that never was. Like the butterfly, CO2′s ability to affect climate is utterly overwhelmed.

  207. PaulHClark says:

    John Philip (06:58:08)

    It is the statement that “The size of the resultant radiative forcing is actually quite well-quantified, within an uncertainty of about 5%.” that I have the most problem with.

    Is this empirical evidence or modeled – the abstract of the paper you cite appears to suggest it is the latter Until someone can show empirically that this so called ‘forcing’ is real I cannot see why I should believe it.

    The earth has warmed in the last century but such a trend is not unusual in history – for the AGW argument to hold someone has to show the modeled forcing occurs in the real world. Between the 1940′s and 1970′s the evidence is that the modeled effect did not hold. Since 1998 it looks as if it may be failing again.

    The onus is actually on the proponents of AGW to prove it – that’s how science works (or at least it used to).

    Over to you.

  208. Flanagan says:

    And to finish:

    1- the most basic and strongest suggest feedback in AGW is that CO2 induces T elevation, which in turn induces more tropospheric water vapor. See recent measurements here :
    http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v449/n7163/fig_tab/nature06207_F1.html

    2- More water means more greenhouse effect (see the Nature ref I gave before)

    Conclusion: it’s gonna be hot…

  209. psi says:

    Michael Smith, E.A. Smith, and Anna V –

    Thanks for your assistance elucidating the (to a layman) obscurities of that quote.

    I feel the tide is shifting…I am one of those who only a year ago was wholly in the “green” alarmist camp on this issue. I still consider myself green. There are many viable reasons — economic, social, and environmental — to be transitioning towards more efficient, locally produced and alternative forms of energy. But I hate to see the green movement held hostage to AGW junk science.

    For those with an interest, one good website that is bucking the AGW agenda while preserving an explicitly ecological agena is Lucy Skywalker’s http://www.greenworldtrust.org.uk/Science/Curious.htm.

  210. Sean says:

    I think what’s interesting here is the increased sophistication of the skeptic community. I suspect Prof. Steig’s release of his data massaging paper last week to show Antartic warming was to buck up support for Al Gore’s testimony before Congress today. So the skeptic community comes out with this revelation from Dr. Theon the night before Al Gore is set to speak. All of this smells of politics to me, a skeptic.

  211. Joel Shore says:

    Adam Sullivan:

    While we are at it, why don’t we ban Patent Clerks (and other Newtonian Mechanics Deniers) from commenting on physics.

    Einstein published his work on relativity in the peer-reviewed literature. He didn’t just send it off to a Senate staffer.

    REPLY: Oh come on Joel, really. That’s probably the most ridiculous thing you’ve ever posted. Letters expressing doubt now should be “peer reviewed”? Simply sending them to someone in government employ expressing concern over a government funded issue is not enough unless peer review is involved? Your comparison is just silly.

    Adam’s point is valid, What if Einstein had chosen a journal that wasn’t open minded back then? What if the journal editor made a snap decision that Einsteins claim was so “out of touch with current thinking” that he simply discarded it and sent the standard rejection form letter? What if Einstein had this process repeated again and again until he ended up publishing in an obscure journal (witness what happened to McIntyre and McKittrick) – would history have been irrevocably altered? The CO2/AGW issue is so entrenched today that alternate considerations are becoming squeezed out of the thought process. – Anthony

  212. Joel Shore says:

    PaulHClark:

    Is this empirical evidence or modeled – the abstract of the paper you cite appears to suggest it is the latter Until someone can show empirically that this so called ‘forcing’ is real I cannot see why I should believe it.

    The value of the forcing is even accepted by “skeptical” scientists like Richard Lindzen and, I believe, Spencer and Christy. You are welcome to disbelieve it if you wish but just don’t expect to find much company in the scientific community.

  213. Stefan says:

    John Philip wrote:
    The graph you linked to uses this much of the available data, – rather than cherry-pick your period to suit, if you simply graph all the available data it looks like this.

    That doesn’t look any better for your case. It is still temperatures going up and down, whilst CO2 rises. If you increase the time period even more over thousands of years then temperature appears to drive CO2, with a lag.

    One would think that if the CO2 forcing was the primary one, it would be obvious to everybody. And yet it is only “obvious” to those who have decided to agree.

    Richard North wrote :
    The public, in the scare dynamic, is always the spectator, not allowed into the cycle – for them, the scare is a spectator sport.

    This is why science and “being right” is not enough. The truth will not prevail of its own accord. You have to understand that the scare phenomenon has its own dynamics and rules. To defeat it, you have to break the cycle.

    Regarding the cultural aspects, there are many voices in the world calling for some form of a One World Government. I am in favor of some kind of unity, because we have many problems that are international. Pollution is the obvious one, along with nuclear proliferation. There are many voices calling for this, out in the open, and at think tank meetings between current and former world leaders. That debate has been going on for decades. And I wish they would simply make that call more open to the public, get people involved in the issues of world citizenry, directly—-and then we might not have to have these long and time wasting debates about politicized science. Global Warming is a side issue. It is not the main issue. The main issue is Global Government. Let’s separate the science from the politics. Let the scientists off the hook, take the load off their backs. Get the activists and remind them what they are really supposed to be concerned about. Get the scientists back to doing just the science; they are scientists, not politicians, and it is unfair to them that they are asked to behave like politicians. They are no good at it, as we can all see, and it serves nobody anyway.

  214. Flanagan says:

    Another very good example of “skeptic’s science”… Here is a graph posted on Climate Skeptic in order to try and show that temperatures are not increasing in Arizona:
    http://www.climate-movie.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2009/01/grand_canyon_temp.gif

    Waah, look, it’s actually cooling! Global warming is a scam!

    But… What’s that first point on the left of the graph 10s of degrees higher than the rest? And why is it hand-cut in 2005? How do the original data look like?
    http://cdiac.ornl.gov/cgi-bin/broker?id=023596&_PROGRAM=prog.gplot_meanclim_mon_yr.sas&_SERVICE=default&param=UTAVE&minyear=1903&maxyear=2006

    Well, illustrative of the method, isn’t it?

    REPLY:I don’t like the sort of tone you project. “flanagan” if you weren’t so intent on smackdowns, you might realize why the data on the left side of the graph is not an error, but an actual measurement issue. And, that lots of stations in the turn of the century time frame had this measurement issue. The data source you cite is different than the one, and has been adjusted via USHCN1 methodology.

    I’ll leave it to you to figure out what I’m speaking of, the answers are here on my blog and at CA. Look it up and report back in 24 hours. Cheers – Anthony

  215. Smokey says:

    dhogaza (06:08:23) :

    If Dr Theon knew what Hansen was doing was wrong, why didn’t he stop Hansen?

    “Because he retired FIFTEEN YEARS AGO and was never Hansen’s boss.”

    Um… Dr. Theon makes clear that he was ‘the former’ supervisor of James Hansen.

    Please provide credible evidence that Dr. Theon ‘was never Hansen’s boss.’

    The ball is in your court.

  216. matt v. says:

    kum dollison

    Your comments illustrate the problem.The AGW issue has sidetracked the entire world from the real problem which was and still is , namely to reduce and eliminate real POLLUTION and not CO2. [Like the war in Iraq side tracked us from the real threat in Afganistan.} Here is what EPA says about this.
    The Clean Air Act requires EPA to set National Ambient Air Quality Standards for six common air pollutants. These commonly found air pollutants (also known as "criteria pollutants") are found all over the United States. They are particle pollution (often referred to as particulate matter), ground-level ozone, carbon monoxide, sulfur oxides, nitrogen oxides, and lead. These pollutants can harm your health and the environment, and cause property damage. Of the six pollutants, particle pollution and ground-level ozone are the most widespread health threats. NOTICE THAT CO2 IS NOT EVEN MENTIONED.
    The sooner we stop trying to eliminate global warming by reducing CO2 [which by the way will not do anything to change the climate] and getback to reducing real pollution ,the sooner will our life become healthier.

  217. David Jay says:

    Flanagan:

    You don’t know what you don’t know.

    Anyone who quotes a Michael Mann authored paper as a source (8:46) has to be a AGW debate ignoramus or a comic:

    “Did you hear the one about turning red noise into a hockey stick?”

  218. G Alston says:

    Joel Shore — “Einstein published his work on relativity in the peer-reviewed literature. He didn’t just send it off to a Senate staffer.”

    What you appear to be missing here is the assumption that were the current political climate in force back then, Einstein wouldn’t have had his paper published because it didn’t agree with the Newtonian consensus.

    As far as I can tell, there is merit to this argument; the anti-AGW histrionics are proportional to those which precipitate them… e.g. if Dr. Hansen was to publish his work and merely go home, that would be one thing. But he doesn’t. An opposite reaction takes place. Not surprising.

  219. Flanagan says:

    David: that’s not really clever to start ad hominem like that. You don’t like Mann? OK, so what about the other papers?

    REPLY: Everybody, let’s cool down the discussion, or I will close the thread. Anthony

  220. hereticfringe says:

    Matt,

    I agree 100% with your position on controlling REAL pollution instead of the CO2 distraction.

    In my opinion, humanity has done the earth a great service by liberating CO2 that has been lost from the biomass over the ages. Compared to previous epochs of the earth’s history, our current epoch is carbon poor which means that plant life is competing for the available carbon and benefits from the additional (albeit small) amounts of CO2 that we generate.

    Heretic

  221. Jeff Id says:

    Flannigan said,

    I can give tens of references showing that the increase in temperatures is above natural variability. The Medieval warm period has nothing to do with that… And noone ever said CO2 is the only factor affecting climate!

    I would love to see even one correct paper which shows this. There are a lot of faulty temperature reconstructions I’ve read many but you absolutely cannot make the claim that we know anything about natural variability in the last two thousand years. We just don’t. – please don’t cite papers which use trees for thermometers, they give me headaches.

    If you take a moment to look at how even ground measurements were made in the 30′s (with an open mind) you’ll quickly realize that even the measured variability is in question.

    We just don’t know.

  222. Mike Abbott says:

    Dr. Theon says “you could say” he was Mr. Hansen’s supervisor. However, in his original email he also said “I did not have the authority to give him his annual performance evaluation.” That authority defines the supervisor-employee relationship. I think it is a stretch (at the minimum) by Dr. Theon to call himself Hansen’s “supervisor” and a mistake by Marc Marano and Anthony Watts to keep repeating that term. It doesn’t significantly weaken Dr. Theon’s message, but Hansen’s supporters will jump all over the issue and use it to discredit Theon.

  223. Jeff Alberts says:

    Flanagan (08:59:34) :

    And to finish:

    1- the most basic and strongest suggest feedback in AGW is that CO2 induces T elevation, which in turn induces more tropospheric water vapor. See recent measurements here :
    http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v449/n7163/fig_tab/nature06207_F1.html

    2- More water means more greenhouse effect (see the Nature ref I gave before)

    “Suggest[ed]“… Actually more water vapor means more clouds, which means less Solar radiation reaching the surface, which means cooling, right here in River City…

  224. Sven says:

    Steve M 08:18:43
    Thanks, Steve, I did find this link

    http://hadobs.metoffice.com/hadcrut3/diagnostics/global/nh+sh/

    but if you look closely then you see that they only changed the text on the graphs to 2008 but did not change the graphs themselves!
    a) the first graph still treats 2008, even though all data is in, as “provisional annual average” that is, according to the stated new policy, not used for smoothing.
    b) On the second and third graphs, even though they say that they are for 1850-2008, in fact, 2008 (0.312C) is not on the graphs, but they rather end with the 0.4c of 2007.
    c) The third graph with monthly temperature has actually not been renewed since early last year…

  225. David S says:

    Hell freezes over; “James Hansen’s Former NASA Supervisor Declares Himself a Skeptic”

    Come to think of it, if hell is anywhere near here it may well be freezing over.

  226. What is it the final purpose (perhaps something like the Adolf Eichman´s “Final solution”) of all this issue of “global warming”, now conveniently changed to “climate change”, sponsored by the UN?
    Could WUWT dedicate a more direct effort to clear it up totally, because “truth will make you free”?
    Is it a kind of Malthusianism behind?, if it is so, who are the unwanted human beings?

  227. MarkW says:

    I find it amazing that people claim that a man, who gave almost daily press briefings, was being muzzled.

  228. P Folkens says:

    Matt v. @ 9:23:05 is spot on.
    In a related matter, excess CO2 per se does not seem to be the AGW’s focus, but rather the emission of CO2 from one class of source. From my point of view, if the real concern was residual CO2 there would be more attention on deforestation (where the clearing/burning adds the atmospheric CO2 and reduces the forests’ ability to sequester carbon) and ocean pollution (which diminishes the world’s largest carbon sink from operating optimally). Hansen’s focus has been on the emissions scenarios without regard to other sources of increased CO2. Indeed, he ignored the paper in Nature in 2000 that showed the dominant source of anthropogenic CO2 was Third World home fires (not fossil fuel burning). A subsequent paper also in Nature in 2005 focused the source to home fires in rural China.

  229. philincalifornia says:

    Daniel M (08:41:14) : wrote

    philincalifornia (19:27:02) :

    So far, since being inaugurated, Obama has not come out and said anything totally stupid as far as I know …

    Totally stupid? Well, that’s setting the bar mighty low. The proposed budget is laden with funding to study climate change with the focus primarily on reducing GHGs. Allowing states to dictate CO2 standards to automakers at the same time they are on the ropes.

    If Obama doesn’t slam on the brakes soon, this WILL be his WMD issue…

    …AGWMD?
    —————————————

    Awww, cut me some slack Daniel, after all he is a President !! If he mentions polar bears and/or boiling oceans, I shall revise my optimism downwards immediately, I promise.

    In fact, I may be guilty of overly optimistic overextrapolation, but I’m equating whats happened so far with a desire for energy independence and cleantech, with the “spectre of a warming planet” as a secondary justification (unless you listen to the BBC fraud version).

    I’m pretty close to biofuel R&D myself, and I’m considerably more bullish than some on here about breakthroughs that have the potential to change that game. In short, I think Obama got that call right ….

    ….. but no polar bears please.

  230. Sven says:

    Sorry for another off topic, but just as an early warning, it seems that UAH indicates that 2009 is going to have a really hot start, as from here:

    http://discover.itsc.uah.edu/amsutemps/

    You need Java and choose the 5 km altitude. Right now it shows 0.82F warmer that last year!

  231. Jeff Alberts says:

    One would think that if the CO2 forcing was the primary one, it would be obvious to everybody. And yet it is only “obvious” to those who have decided to agree.

    The claim is not that CO2 is the primary forcing agent, but that it’s one of them, and since we’re supposedly adding “unnatural” CO2 (Is that even possible?) we’re causing an “unnatural” increase. And then the existing, presumably “natural”, feedbacks amplify the effect. The problem is that ANY warming would then cause the amplification, if it existed. So when Summer rolls around in the NH, it would never stop. Since this obviously doesn’t happen…

  232. Bruce Cobb says:

    Pamela Gray (07:28:22) :
    I think the reason we are not winning this argument is that we are using a weak driver, the Sun, instead of a strong driver.
    The Sun a weak driver? No, sorry, it’s the “big Cahuna” of drivers. But, oceanic oscillations certainly have a lot of power as well, perhaps even overriding the sun’s effects in the short term.
    And, we’re not “losing”, we’re winning. But it will take time, commitment, courage, and good old-fashioned gumption to rid humanity of the AGW monstrosity, due to the fact that is become so deeply and firmly entrenched, and that there is a lot of money, and careers at stake.

  233. John Galt says:

    G Alston (09:24:55) :

    Joel Shore — “Einstein published his work on relativity in the peer-reviewed literature. He didn’t just send it off to a Senate staffer.”

    What you appear to be missing here is the assumption that were the current political climate in force back then, Einstein wouldn’t have had his paper published because it didn’t agree with the Newtonian consensus.

    As far as I can tell, there is merit to this argument; the anti-AGW histrionics are proportional to those which precipitate them… e.g. if Dr. Hansen was to publish his work and merely go home, that would be one thing. But he doesn’t. An opposite reaction takes place. Not surprising.

    How can we possibly compare Hansen to Einstein? That’s like comparing … well, let’s don’t go there.

    Let’s move back to science. When Einstein proposed his theory of Special Relativity, the question came up, how to test it? Any scientific theory must be falsifiable. The first such test was an eclipse in 1919. The apparent location of a star changed, which matched the predictions made by Special Relativity. Thus Special Relativity was verified, but not proven. We’re still testing Special Relativity to this day and so far no valid, repeatable experiment has ever shown Special Relativity to be incorrect.

    But how do we test Hansen, Mann, the IPCC climate models, etc? How do you test a climate model that purports to show the climate in 50 or 100 years? One method is to carefully review the inputs and source code of the models, but this still doesn’t tell us if the calculations are correct.

    Another method is to “backcast” the historical climate, but that still doesn’t tell us whether the model is full of fudge factors and magic numbers that appear to make the model work for that time period, or whether the model actually got it right. For instance, when Mann cherry picked his data for his various climate proxies, the proxies can be shown to closely reflect the climate for certain time periods but have the exact opposite correlation during other time periods.

    Perhaps the only test is to compare the actual climate with the models’ output. Going back to Hansen’s 1988 scenarios, we can see CO2 is much higher than his worst case scenario but the climate is cooler than his best case scenario. As for models that project the climate for the year 2100, should get a time capsule for the models and ourselves and wait 90 years?

    At Real Climate, we’re told both global warming and global cooling (or continental warming/cooling, or hemisphere warming/cooling) are consistent with the models. How are we ever to validate the models? If it can’t be tested, how can this be science?

  234. Hank says:

    Andy Revkin is mentioning his preliminary views on Dr. Theon over at NYTimes in the comments section of a piece titled “Europe to US:” I hope Revkin does his job and calls Dr. Theon up to get his characterizations of Hansen.

  235. PaulHClark says:

    Joel Shore (09:09:42)

    It is not that I disbelieve the forcing – it is that I have not yet seen anything in the real world that shows it to be accurate – all I see is modeled/theoretical arguments. If you or anyone can show that the forcing is real then I would like to see it and then I may well be convinced by the AGW argument.

    You say, “The value of the forcing is even accepted by “skeptical” scientists like Richard Lindzen” – I have 2 specific questions:

    1) What exactly is the value and definition of that forcing to which you refer?

    2) Where exactly can I find reference to Lindzen supporting that forcing in published work?

    You go on to mention Spencer and Christy. Dr Roy Spencer on his website seems certainly to question radiative forcing – but again if you have evidence that Dr Spencer supports the AGW theory on forcings then please let me know where I can find it – because I would like to enhance my understanding.

  236. John Philip says:

    Stefan: That doesn’t look any better for your case. It is still temperatures going up and down, whilst CO2 rises.

    Up and down? Sure, but mainly up.

    cheers!

  237. TomT says:

    You know Flanagan you still haven’t answered my question on what is the ‘normal’ temperature of the earth and its secondary adjunct, why must warming be bad?

    Oh and of course I would like to see how this ‘normal’ temperature was determined.

  238. Simon Evans says:

    I note that the release quotes Theon as follows:

    Theon declared “climate models are useless.”

    However, this statement does not appear in the emails from Theon which have since been published.

    REPLY: Morano also did a personal sit down interview, the statement may be from that.

    ALSO I notice that it is in the subject of the email sent by Theon, perhaps you missed that?

    Subject: Climate models are useless

    So yes, Theon said it.

    - Anthony

  239. Mark says:

    Flanagan (08:59:34) :

    And to finish:

    1- the most basic and strongest suggest feedback in AGW is that CO2 induces T elevation, which in turn induces more tropospheric water vapor. See recent measurements here :
    http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v449/n7163/fig_tab/nature06207_F1.html

    2- More water means more greenhouse effect (see the Nature ref I gave before)

    Conclusion: it’s gonna be hot…

    This supposed theory of enhanced greenhouse is supposed to greatest in the tropical troposphere. Like this!:

    http://www.junkscience.com/MSU_Temps/RSSTrop.html

    What the hey?

  240. benjaminvallen1 says:

    HALLEFREAKINGLUYAH!!!!!! Another high-level, intelligent person is joining the fight against the Global Lie.

  241. Robert Bateman says:

    They are winning this arguement because they have suceeded in planting the idea that the Sun is non-existant as a driver of climate.
    Nothing could be further from the truth.
    The Sun is the ultimate source of heat or lack of it on the Earth.
    Everything else is a heatsink.
    Go stand on the ground with your thermometer in the path of a total Solar Eclipse and tell me the Sun doesn’t warm the Earth when it’s active.

  242. Frank K. says:

    Joel Shore (09:07:03) :

    Re: Albert Einstein

    It turns out that Einstein published four landmark papers in 1905, one of which introduced the “radical” special theory of relativity. But look at what wikipedia says about how they were received by his “peers”…

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albert_Einstein#Patent_office

    “All four papers are today recognized as tremendous achievements—and hence 1905 is known as Einstein’s “Wonderful Year”. At the time, however, they were not noticed by most physicists as being important, and many of those who did notice them rejected them outright. Some of this work—such as the theory of light quanta—remained controversial for years.[27][28]”

    Personally, I think that the radical AGW theories (e.g. tipping points etc.) and their proponents have a lot in common with the theory of luminiferous aether from the 19th century:

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

    The concept of “the aether” was dreamed up because light waves had to have a medium within which to propagate. Even Maxwell and Lord Rayliegh believed in the aether! This line from the above reference is, in my opinion, is an excellent analog to today’s entrenched AGW beliefs within the climate science community:

    “Contemporary scientists were aware of the problems, but aether theory was so entrenched in physical law by this point that it was simply assumed to exist. In 1908 Oliver Lodge gave a speech in behalf of Lord Rayleigh to the Royal Institution on this topic, in which he outlined its physical properties, and then attempted to offer reasons why they were not impossible.”

  243. joecool says:

    I love it. Science is golden when the peer review process is allowed to proceed normally, by either confirming or debunking results.
    Just like there are good car mechanics & bad car mechanics, so there are good scientists & bad scientists-people who basically don’t know their $hit.
    Thank God the scientific community has started to peer review again!

  244. Richard deSousa says:

    Frank K: how can you think or believe AGW theory ranks with Einstein’s work? The results “achieved” by the AGW theorists are replete with errors of statistics and bad data gathering. It’s as simple as that.

  245. Benjamin says:

    You know, bottom line

    the planet is getting warmer, whatever we can do to curb this trend is a good thing.

    So models don’t work, well duh…. the whole of science is a compramise, to fit models.. this is hardly news. The map will never be the territory, but an aproximation is an aproximation….

    Seems to me this is just republican backlash or fuel companies etc. and those that are growing fat on contributing to climate change, for example all the Petrolium producers.. Perish the thought that things be made cleaner and more efficient!

    Literalism…. this is what it gets you

  246. Mark says:

    John Philip:

    “rather than cherry-pick your period to suit, if you simply graph all the available data it looks like this.”

    You mean like this?

    http://www.junkscience.com/Greenhouse/IrradianceVsTemp.gif

  247. MattN says:

    Awesome.

    Gore is supposed to address the US Senate about climate policy today (1/28). (http://www.turkishweekly.net/other-news/82615/gore-to-address-us-senate-panel-on-climate-cnn.html)

    The forecast in Washington DC today is: Winter Storm Warning until 6pm.

    You can’t make stuff up this good….

  248. E.M.Smith says:

    While looking on http://www.solarcycle24.com at the report that yesterdays cycle 23 sunspeck was gone already… I visited their discussion boards to see what they were thinking about it. Where I ran into:

    http://www.solarcycle24.com/graphics/comic.jpg

    Giggle

  249. realitycheck says:

    Neil Crafter:

    “As its your theory, you have to prove it, not the other way round. Assume its all natural processes first and foremost.”

    Nicely said – you hit the nail on the head.

    The null hypothesis is that we are seeing random noise (natural variability). I have not read a single peer-reviewed article in the climate litrature or otherwise that disproves this null-hypothesis (and believe me I have read a lot of papers).

    AGW alarmists – wheres the beef?

  250. Bruce Cobb (09:49:10) :
    The Sun a weak driver? No, sorry, it’s the “big Cahuna” of drivers.

    Robert Bateman (10:16:26) :
    The Sun is the ultimate source of heat or lack of it on the Earth. Go stand on the ground with your thermometer in the path of a total Solar Eclipse and tell me the Sun doesn’t warm the Earth

    Both of you use the oldest trick in the book: “turn off the Sun if you don’t think the Sun is the driver”.

    when it’s active
    And then slip in that innocent statement. I have done precisely what you suggest for both solar minimum and solar maximum eclipses and I tell that there is no difference I could feel.

    So, live up to being on ‘the best science blog’ and realize that what we should be talking about are the minute variations in the solar output. There is no evidence for those controlling the climate in a big way.

  251. Craig D. Lattig says:

    Mike Abbott (09:38:52) :

    Dr. Theon says “you could say” he was Mr. Hansen’s supervisor. However, in his original email he also said “I did not have the authority to give him his annual performance evaluation.” That authority defines the supervisor-employee relationship. I think it is a stretch (at the minimum) by Dr. Theon to call himself Hansen’s “supervisor” and a mistake by Marc Marano and Anthony Watts to keep repeating that term. It doesn’t significantly weaken Dr. Theon’s message, but Hansen’s supporters will jump all over the issue and use it to discredit Theon.

    Mike: one has to be careful when translating gov speak into english….
    The person who is directly above me, and writes my performance reports, is my supervisor…my ” Immediate Supervisor”…but for at least two levels above that are individuals who include supervising me in their job descriptions…and who could legitemately refer to themselves as my supervisor…
    just input from the swamp….
    cdl

  252. As more and more top-level administrators/scientists weigh in on the side of skepticism, I begin to wonder why the diehard CO2-induced climate changers stick with their increasingly dubious belief. Convincing data to make anyone a believer in CO2-caused climate change just isn’t there.

    There has to be another reason–could it be that the pro-green brainwashing that they get in our schools is finally bearing fruit, as they move out into the work force and become journalists, scientists, administrators, etc.?

    They’ve been led to believe that we are, and have been destroying the environment since time began. When you’ve been fed that hogwash for most of your existence, it’s got to be very difficult to let go of an idea that reinforces that years-long indoctrination.

    It’s going to take a lot of blogging and the re-establishment of independent thinking back into our culture to reverse this trend. We are only at the beginning, and it’s going to take a lot more ice storms, cooling, unintended results, and statements by experts like Dr. Theon before we can call it a day.

  253. Alex says:

    :D :D Ahh Thanks Flan-man! *Accepts award, smiles and waves*
    ….
    Anyways back to the normal discussions…
    Interesting link someone put up here about a warm start to 2009… The latest ENSO report published 28 Jan shows that conditions are slipping back into neutrality… perhaps 2009 may be warmer…
    No, no dear skeptics, I am not joining Flan-man team… just pointing out that 2009 may be normal not hot or cold…

  254. Zer0th says:

    Anthony, Simon Evans…

    “Climate models are useless” is the Subject line of the second email.

  255. Sarah says:

    Simon Evans (09:56:45) wrote:

    “I note that the release quotes Theon as follows:

    Theon declared “climate models are useless.”

    However, this statement does not appear in the emails from Theon which have since been published.”

    Actually it’s the subject line Theon chose for his e-mail.

  256. Pierre Gosselin says:

    Sven,
    Atmospheric temps tend to fluctuate widely. I expect it to come back down soon.

  257. Mason says:

    It’s a religion. Don’t expect the “warmers” to forsake their god. Better that they driven from the public square much as other religions are treated nowadays.

  258. Tim Clark says:

    Flanagan (03:58:33) :
    I’m a bit surprised by the claims that “there’s no proof” that CO2 is causing the observed warming. What would you consider a proof? That CO2 is a greenhouse gas, that it absorbs and reemits IR? That the troposphere is warming more rapidly than the upper layers of the atmosphere? Numbers about the amount of energy CO2 is capable of reinjecting back? This is all given in the IPCC ARs and in many independent publications.

    I will refrain from usage of the word proof. The most basic tenet of the AGW hypothesis is that CO2 causes significant warming in the atmosphere. What I would consider evidence suggesting the effect of CO2 is more than trivial at best is: experimental data from a non-containerized, replicated, open air study subject to convection etc., where all other GHG’s are held at a constant concentration while the concentration of CO2 is varied, resulting in a statistically significant effect on ambient temperature. Failing that, the assumption that CO2 acts in a similar fashion in the atmosphere as it does in a greenhouse is just that ie. an assumption used in computer generated time trials with flawed inputs.

    Joel Shore (09:09:42) :

    PaulHClark:

    Is this empirical evidence or modeled – the abstract of the paper you cite appears to suggest it is the latter Until someone can show empirically that this so called ‘forcing’ is showing the effect real I cannot see why I should believe it.

    The value of the forcing is even accepted by “skeptical” scientists like Richard Lindzen and, I believe, Spencer and Christy. You are welcome to disbelieve it if you wish but just don’t expect to find much company in the scientific community.

    The value of the forcing accepted by the scientists you mention is not attributed to CO2.

  259. BobMbx says:

    [snip, imagery too graphic]

  260. Off-topic, but from a link in the comments:

    Correcting Ocean Cooling

    http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Features/OceanCooling/page3.php

    Am I reading this correctly? My take is that, when it was found that the Argo floats showed unexpected cooling, the floats showing cooling were thrown out, another source of data showing warming was substituted so that the cooling trend would go away.

    I guess good science today is defined different from what I was taught. If the results don’t match what you expect, find another data set that does!

  261. Steve Z says:

    Psi:

    there are many very important sub-grid scale processes that the models either replicate poorly or completely omit…”

    Can someone explain what this means?

    Meteorological models divide the atmosphere over the world into three-dimensional grid cells, where each cell is a rectangular solid, generally a few kilometers long horizontally, and maybe 50 or 100 meters high vertically. They input current conditions (as well as they are known) for each cell, and then try to solve the mass, momentum, and heat balances around each cell simultaneously in order to predict the future weather.

    A “sub-grid scale process” is a local process that occurs in some locations WITHIN a grid cell, and not in other areas within a grid cell. Some examples of this can be upward lifting of air upwind of a mountain (which tends to cause cloud formation in humid conditions), downsloping winds downwind of a mountain (which tends to heat and dry the air), and “sea breezes” in coastal areas when land temperatures are warmer than water temperatures. There can also be man-made effects, such as heat loss from buildings in winter, or local hot spots over sunlit asphalt pavement, such as roads or parking lots.

    Most of the models used for short-range (5-10 days) forecasting use grid cells only about 1 to 10 km on a side (horizontally), meaning that not too many small-scale phenomena are overlooked, but the predictions of even these models tend to diverge from eventual reality after about 5 days or so.
    There are gaps in the input data, because ground weather stations are often 50 to 100 km apart, and upper-air stations (for data high above the ground) are several hundred km apart, and data for in-between cells needs to be interpolated, which is guesswork at best.

    The fact that predictions from short-term weather models diverge from reality after about 5 days is not a major problem, because input data to the models are constantly updated, and 5 days’ warning for a major storm are usually enough to evacuate people from the affected area, or allow people to take cover in case of danger.

    In order to attempt to predict climate over the next 100 years, which would require tremendous computer time with small grids, “global” climate modelers try to reduce computer time by using much larger grids, such as 100 km on a side. But this means that local effects of mountains, lakes, cities, and seacoasts are ignored within a 100 km grid–what are the “average” conditions in a grid cell containing Palm Springs, CA in the desert near sea level, and mountains over 11,000 feet high, which is treated as a single point in a global climate model? If a short-range model based on finer grids diverges from reality after 5 days or so, how can a long-range model with coarse grids be good for a 100 years?

    There are other problems with long-range models, based on time-dependent parameters. A short-range model, made to predict the weather 5 days from now, can realistically assume that solar energy output and ocean currents will remain roughly the same for five days, without going too far wrong. But there are many time-dependent cycles in tides, sunspot activity, ocean currents, volcanic activity, and other phenomena which vary over decades, whose effects on climate are poorly understood and quantified because they have not been extensively studied over many cycles. Who can predict NOW how many sunspots or volcanic eruptions there will be in 2030, or whether there will be an El Nino in 2050? Yet the effects of these cycles can be many times greater than the effect of increased CO2 in the atmosphere, but they are conveniently ignored in “global climate models”.
    The GCMs have a very low “signal-to-noise” ratio–a very small CO2 “signal” with lots of variable “noise” of unknown size swept under the rug.

    It is a well-documented fact that the Romans tended vineyards in England, where it is now too cool and wet for vineyards, and the Vikings raised sheep in pastures which gave Greenland its name in medieval times, while it is now too cold. What caused those warmer periods in history, when man-made CO2 emissions were much lower than now? Why did the climate get colder since then? When someone can explain the causes of those historical climate cycles, which had nothing to do with man-made CO2, and incorporate their predicted effects into the future into a model, MAYBE the models can be useful. Unless, of course, the predictions run counter to the political agenda of the modelers!

  262. tmtisfree says:

    Flanagan

    May I suggest you ?

  263. tmtisfree says:

    Humm. Click on the ? above to follow the link:
    The paper is entitled:
    “Falsification Of The Atmospheric CO² Greenhouse Effects Within The Frame Of Physics”

  264. David Walton says:

    The worm turns. It is a slow turn, but a significant one. I personally feel quite elevated and even optimistic about the state of climate science with just this one piece of news. My dread has long been that AGW adherents would drag science through the mud and irrevocably damage adherence to the scientific method.

    We will never be able to take politics and ego out of science. After all, it is a human endeavor fraught with human fallibilities, but AGW proponents apparent aim (intentional or inadvertent) to take the science out of science is too much for me to bear cheerfully.

    I am indeed pleased!

  265. Alex says:

    Reading some fragments of this thread…
    It strikes me how some people can type with a straight face that the sun has no influence on climate…
    Seriously,,, try looking at it from a common sense point of view… like a child, just try it. Don’t dig into the science for one minute, as the more you dig, the more questions, uncertainty ,etc arise and you increasingly deviate from the truth and reality is blurred…
    Common sense will tell you that day is warmer than night, and mercury is warmer than pluto.
    Ask a child why is this so, and they will point to the sun’s influence.
    It must be noted that the entire biosphere and indeed the entire solar system is in it’s current formation and state because of the sun’s influence. If there were no sun there would be no life and no climate.
    The sun IS the driver of climate, so no matter how many “ghgs” you pump into the atmosphere, if the sun would go you would freeze to death very quickly.
    It is a worthwhile exercise to try using common sense because it applies to reality, not opinion.
    The sun’s influence is direct but more often indirect. We just don’t exactly know how it does it, but it does…
    Since 2006 we have been told by “experts” that sc 24 will be huge and should arrive very soon… dates have been pushed forward time and time again and 2009 is here and we are still waiting… They tell us that everything is normal. Of course it is. Because if they admitted that something’s up then they would run into some trouble big time.
    If the sun goes quiet, well then we freeze over. It might or it might not. Right now it looks like a Dalton event is on the cards… but we will see.
    People will always look for a false science to cause panic and hysteria and so it is useful to go back to basics and use a little common sense… which doesn’t seem to be too common…
    sigh… just my 2 cent philosophies

  266. John Galt says:

    P Folkens (09:43:22) :

    Matt v. @ 9:23:05 is spot on.
    In a related matter, excess CO2 per se does not seem to be the AGW’s focus, but rather the emission of CO2 from one class of source. From my point of view, if the real concern was residual CO2 there would be more attention on deforestation (where the clearing/burning adds the atmospheric CO2 and reduces the forests’ ability to sequester carbon) and ocean pollution (which diminishes the world’s largest carbon sink from operating optimally). Hansen’s focus has been on the emissions scenarios without regard to other sources of increased CO2. Indeed, he ignored the paper in Nature in 2000 that showed the dominant source of anthropogenic CO2 was Third World home fires (not fossil fuel burning). A subsequent paper also in Nature in 2005 focused the source to home fires in rural China.

    Underground coal fires in China reportedly emit as much CO2 annually as all light trucks and passengers cars in the USA. Why isn’t that a concern? Not only do those fires emit CO2, but they also emit a great deal of soot and the energy is wasted instead of put to good use. There seems to be little concern about that by Hansen or anyone else.

    In fact, how can reducing our carbon footprints make any difference in the global climate unless it’s a global reduction in carbon emissions? (There’s a misnomer. CO2 is not a pollutant, but CO is, and so is soot.) Are we really trying to make a difference or do we just want to feel better about ourselves?

  267. Peter says:

    I don’t know if you have seen this, but the economic stimulus package have been made public, and in it it has $400 million for global-warming research and another $2.4 billion for carbon-capture demonstration projects. Whatever that is…I guess the AGW crowd is winning the PR war…..

  268. Joel Shore says:

    Jeff Alberts says:

    The claim is not that CO2 is the primary forcing agent, but that it’s one of them, and since we’re supposedly adding “unnatural” CO2 (Is that even possible?) we’re causing an “unnatural” increase. And then the existing, presumably “natural”, feedbacks amplify the effect. The problem is that ANY warming would then cause the amplification, if it existed. So when Summer rolls around in the NH, it would never stop. Since this obviously doesn’t happen…

    In fact, that is not a problem at all. Our current understanding of temperature responses to past events (such as those to the Mt. Pinatubo eruption or to the changes that occurred between the last glacial maximum and now) in fact seems to require such positive feedbacks.

    Note that positive feedbacks do not necessarily lead to instability as you imply. They can just lead to magnification if the feedback are positive but not too strongly positive. Mathematically, the distinction is between converging and diverging infinite series. For example, if feedbacks add an additional half-a-degree warming to any 1 C of warming, then you get an infiinite series like 1 + 1/2 + 1/4 + 1/8 + …, which does not diverge but rather converges to the value of 2.

  269. Robert says:

    I’ll add my bravo for Dr. Theon’s coming out of the skeptic closet and subjecting himself to ridicule for speaking truth to power.

    OT to the post but in the spirit of the thread. One point that I never see emphasized is that the CO2 feedback mechanism used to drive the models implies that the climate is unstable. If true, one wonders how the Earth has been relatively temperate for at least the few hundred million years. Since the earth in the distant past was far warmer and had much higher levels of CO2 then now, how did we ever have the ice ages? Would not the dominate impact of CO2 overwhelm the subtle changes caused by the Milankovitch cycle?

    Has anyone tried to initialize their favorite GCM to the conditions just prior to the current ice age just to see that we indeed get that first Pliocene glaciation. How about initializing the GCM to the middle of the most recent glaciation. Does the model predict the current Holocene interglacial? Given their inability to predict short term trends, I would hope that the models could be validated using some of the reasonably well understood long term trends. I hope that some of the new money flowing into the climate modeling community would support validation of the models against the reality of the ice age from which the planet is enjoying a brief respite.

  270. Joel Shore says:

    John Galt says:

    Perhaps the only test is to compare the actual climate with the models’ output. Going back to Hansen’s 1988 scenarios, we can see CO2 is much higher than his worst case scenario but the climate is cooler than his best case scenario.

    In fact, you are wrong…The actual forcings relative to those in Hansen’s scenarios fall a little below his middle scenario, Scenario B. And, the temperature has generally followed that scenario…There has been some deviation below it in the last few years but I don’t think the difference is statistically-significant. Of course, given that the climate model he used for that had a climate sensitivity at the high end of the current IPCC estimate, we should hope that we do eventually see some statistical deviation low of his estimate. Otherwise, it would suggest the climate sensitivity is not only in the IPCC range but at the high end of it.

    As for models that project the climate for the year 2100, should get a time capsule for the models and ourselves and wait 90 years?

    How are we ever to validate the models? If it can’t be tested, how can this be science?

    There are plenty of ways in which the models can and are being tested, just as evolution is tested without having to actually watch evolution occur in the lab. (Well, you can see what creationists call “micro-evolution” in the lab but this doesn’t convince them that “macro-evolution” occurs.) I suggest reading the IPCC reports for further discussions.

  271. Simon Evans says:

    Zer0th (11:07:29) :

    Anthony, Simon Evans…

    “Climate models are useless” is the Subject line of the second email.

    and Sarah (11:12:28)

    Thanks – I missed that. My apologies for the red herring.

    I’m a bit surprised that a scientist would be make such an absolute statement in print, but thereyago.

  272. psi says:

    Benjamin (10:29:32) :

    You know, bottom line

    the planet is getting warmer, whatever we can do to curb this trend is a good thing.

    So models don’t work, well duh…. the whole of science is a compramise, to fit models.. this is hardly news. The map will never be the territory, but an aproximation is an aproximation….

    Seems to me this is just republican backlash or fuel companies etc. and those that are growing fat on contributing to climate change, for example all the Petrolium producers.. Perish the thought that things be made cleaner and more efficient!

    Ben –

    I sympathize with your confusion, but your sociology is weak. Many, like myself, who are coming to doubt the veracity of AGW theory, are traditional liberals. Things can and should be made cleaner and more efficient. I would hope that informed conservatives will share this view — and I think that more and more of them do. But we should also not be stampeded into taking expensive actions that will have little or no effect to ameliorate a CO2 “crisis” that may not — I believe now *does not* — even exist. We have enough real problems to deal with.

    I suggest you review the evidence that is now piling up that AGW warming either does not exist at all or is, at least, very unlikely to produce the catastrophic consequences that Hansen et. al have irresponsibly predicted. Following these threads is a good start. Based on the accumulating data on Solar Sunspot cycle 24, it looks to me that we’re in for quite a cold snap over the next decade, if not longer.

  273. gary gulrud says:

    And references to Nature? That rag? Next it’ll be the National Enquirer or…the New York Times!

  274. Bill says:

    Follow the money. Who would benefit from schemes like the Cap and Trade? More research and study $. BTW does Al Gore have to give back the Nobel prize.

  275. Ed Darrell says:

    Sounds like Theon’s quite jealous of the attention Hansen gets.

    Theon wrote to the Minority Office at the Environment and Public Works Committee . . .

    So it’s not testimony, it’s not communication with the committee intended for making legislation, it’s . . . political hackery. Why doesn’t this guy write to the full committee? He’s afraid of controversy? He’s not up to defending his position? He needs to hide behind the skirts of the Republicans?

    “Hansen was never muzzled even though he violated NASA’s official agency position on climate forecasting (i.e., we did not know enough to forecast climate change or mankind’s effect on it). Hansen thus embarrassed NASA by coming out with his claims of global warming in 1988 in his testimony before Congress,” Theon wrote

    So, now you’re calling Bush’s NASA inspector general a liar?

    How many more of the Seven Warning Signs of Bogus Science does this guy erupt with daily?

  276. Joel Shore says:

    Robert says:

    OT to the post but in the spirit of the thread. One point that I never see emphasized is that the CO2 feedback mechanism used to drive the models implies that the climate is unstable. If true, one wonders how the Earth has been relatively temperate for at least the few hundred million years. Since the earth in the distant past was far warmer and had much higher levels of CO2 then now, how did we ever have the ice ages? Would not the dominate impact of CO2 overwhelm the subtle changes caused by the Milankovitch cycle?

    See my response to Jeff Alberts. It does not imply instability. And, in fact, the paleoclimate history suggests that the climate is at least as sensitive to perturbations as the models predict. Here is a paper that discusses this: http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/summary/sci;306/5697/821 It concludes

    Climate models and efforts to explain global temperature changes over the past century suggest that the average global temperature will rise by between 1.5º and 4.5ºC if the atmospheric CO2 concentration doubles. In their Perspective, Schrag and Alley look at records of past climate change, from the last ice age to millions of years ago, to determine whether this climate sensitivity is realistic. They conclude that the climate system is very sensitive to small perturbations and that the climate sensitivity may be even higher than suggested by models.

    By the way, you use of the term “CO2 feedback mechanism” and your discussion also suggests that you are confused on this point. The feedbacks are present no matter what mechanism is causing the warming. Hence, your question about CO2 vs Milankovitch makes no sense. In the models, the feedbacks occur for all mechanisms.

    Has anyone tried to initialize their favorite GCM to the conditions just prior to the current ice age just to see that we indeed get that first Pliocene glaciation. How about initializing the GCM to the middle of the most recent glaciation. Does the model predict the current Holocene interglacial? Given their inability to predict short term trends, I would hope that the models could be validated using some of the reasonably well understood long term trends. I hope that some of the new money flowing into the climate modeling community would support validation of the models against the reality of the ice age from which the planet is enjoying a brief respite.

    Yes, the models can be used to study the temperature change between the interglacial and now. In fact, you don’t even need the models really (except perhaps to calculate the original forcings involved). All you do is take the estimated temperature change and divide by the estimated forcings and you get the climate sensitivity. (The main forcings, in order from strongest to weakest, are the change in albedo due to the ice sheets, the change in greenhouse gas levels, and the change in aerosols; the Milankovitch oscillations themselves do not produce a significant forcing since they just change the distribution of energy from the sun, not the total amount…although they are the cause of the growth or shrinkage of the ice sheets that cause the largest forcing.) Jim Hansen and others have done this calculation…and it gives a result about right in the middle of the IPCC range for the climate sensitivity.

  277. Noel Skippen says:

    The breach in the wall of ‘consensus’ just got a whole lot bigger!

  278. Robert says:

    “It is a well-documented fact that the Romans tended vineyards in England, where it is now too cool and wet for vineyards”

    Skeptics have a greater obligation to get their facts right.
    http://www.internetwineguide.com/structure/ww/v&w/europe/uk/vwuk.htm

  279. Robc says:

    Just being a layman, I could understand how scientists could misread the correlation between CO2 and temperature, but surely there can be no doubt which is the driver in the sun temperature correlation, all that is needed surely is to discover the mechanism, if in fact there is any significant warming.

  280. Brian Johnson says:

    From US News
    Professor Gore’s Climate Change Lecture Warmly Received by Senate
    By Kent Garber
    Posted January 28, 2009

    Even the Republicans liked it!

    The USA will pay heavily for going down this route of Carbon Stupidity.

  281. Roger Sowell says:

    Peter 11:48

    Response to what are carbon capture demonstration projects

    There are a number of existing technologies to remove CO2 from gas streams; typically a liquid with an affinity for CO2 is sprayed downward countercurrently as the CO2-rich gas flows upward past the droplets. Then the CO2 is separated from the liquid, and the liquid is recirculated.

    http://www.nma.org/ccs/carboncapture.asp

    The issues include cost to build, and energy costs to run these systems.

    Btw, we have been running CO2 capture systems for decades in refineries and chemical plants. This is not a technology that needs billions thrown at it by the government. Kind of like re-inventing the wheel.

    Just one man’s opinion.

  282. Robc says:

    Robert (12:38:38) : said

    “It is a well-documented fact that the Romans tended vineyards in England, where it is now too cool and wet for vineyards”
    Skeptics have a greater obligation to get their facts right.

    I believe they are still digging artifacts out of the permafrost in Greenland using JACK HAMMERS.

  283. Stefan says:

    Benjamin wrote:
    So models don’t work [...] The map will never be the territory, but an aproximation is an aproximation….

    Seems to me this is just republican backlash or fuel companies etc.

    Approximately speaking, the temperature will change by -3C to +3C.

  284. Jeff Alberts says:

    Alex (11:43:03) :

    Reading some fragments of this thread…
    It strikes me how some people can type with a straight face that the sun has no influence on climate…

    A lot of people are oversimplifying. No one is seriously meaning the sun has no influence (if they are, they they are, indeed, whack). The gist of it is that the sun doesn’t vary enough to have a governing influence on major changes. Though with day and night and seasons, the heat moves around a lot, and causes the weather we see day to day. And of course the climate…

  285. [snip, this has nothing to do with this discussion, and is only a way to draw traffic to our own blog. This blog is not a tool for that purpose.]

  286. Jeff Alberts says:

    Joel Shore (11:54:25) :

    Note that positive feedbacks do not necessarily lead to instability as you imply. They can just lead to magnification if the feedback are positive but not too strongly positive. Mathematically, the distinction is between converging and diverging infinite series. For example, if feedbacks add an additional half-a-degree warming to any 1 C of warming, then you get an infiinite series like 1 + 1/2 + 1/4 + 1/8 + …, which does not diverge but rather converges to the value of 2.

    Well, I only imply instability because we’re told there are “tipping points” and that there is a climate crisis going on as we speak. Instability is simply a matter of perspective.

  287. Simon Evans says:

    Alex (11:43:03) :

    Reading some fragments of this thread…
    It strikes me how some people can type with a straight face that the sun has no influence on climate…

    I’m not aware that anyone has said that. What I expect has been said is that the variation in observed solar output cannot in itself alone account for the changes in climate.

    Robert (12:01:31) :

    One point that I never see emphasized is that the CO2 feedback mechanism used to drive the models implies that the climate is unstable. If true, one wonders how the Earth has been relatively temperate for at least the few hundred million years. Since the earth in the distant past was far warmer and had much higher levels of CO2 then now, how did we ever have the ice ages? Would not the dominate impact of CO2 overwhelm the subtle changes caused by the Milankovitch cycle?

    I’m not sure I follow you – you’re suggesting that the equilibrium is stable yet wondering how we had ice ages?

    The effects of the Milankovitch cycle are thought to have been small globally but significant on a regional/seasonal scale. Whatever the equilibrium that pertained before, the growth of ice sheets introduced a cooling albedo effect. GHGs don’t ‘fight against’ a rebalancing of the budget!

    The fact of significant climate variation in the past attests to the many factors other than the sun that influence our climate. We might have spent billions of years in a near-snowball state when the sun was weaker were it not for the changing parameters that we are considering today.

    I find it a little bit odd that some seem to think that the ‘Dalton Minimum’ spectre means we are heading for a cold period. We are at the bottom of a solar cycle now – there’s no sensible reason to think that solar output will diminish from here!

  288. Robc says:

    Leif Svalgaard (10:57:01) : said,

    I have done precisely what you suggest for both solar minimum and solar maximum eclipses and I tell that there is no difference I could feel.

    So, live up to being on ‘the best science blog’ and realize that what we should be talking about are the minute variations in the solar output. There is no evidence for those controlling the climate in a big way.

    Dr Svalgaard , could it be that you do not know the actual mechanism.

  289. Joel Shore says:

    Alex says:

    Reading some fragments of this thread…
    It strikes me how some people can type with a straight face that the sun has no influence on climate…

    Who has said that? But, see what Leif says. The issue is not whether or not the sun has a strong influence on the climate; rather, the issue is whether the VARIATIONS in solar irradiance have a strong influence. And, the answer seems to be that these variations are generally very small on the timescales of interest (of order of a century). In fact, the direct forcing due to changes in solar irradiance are about an order of magnitude or so smaller than the forcing due to changes in greenhouse gas concentrations.

    The only way it seems to make the sun the dominant driver is to posit some sort of strong amplification mechanism specific to solar. One such hypothesized mechanism is the sun modulating intergalactic cosmic rays which in turn modulate cloud formation. However, this mechanism is still very speculative and, furthermore, the warming seen over the last 30 years or so does not seem to have been accompanied by any significant trend in cosmic rays.

  290. Jeff Alberts says:

    John Philip (09:55:25) :

    Up and down? Sure, but mainly up.

    Sure, from a cooler period to a warmer period. Why not start from 1934?

  291. PaulHClark says:

    Tim Clark (11:24:53)

    I am a little confused by the italics but I sense we are saying the same thing – see my further comment in response to Joel Shore – PaulHClark (09:55:23)

    Leif Svalgaard (10:57:01)

    I hold you in the highest regard but I have a problem with anyone who says the sun is not the driver of the earth’s climate.

    I suspect we may get into semantics but let me try an analogy – the driver of a business is its income (there is nothing else). In a very similar way unless you can convince me there is another source of energy for our climate then I would suggest there is only one driver – the sun.

    Whether the sun is the ‘moderator’ of our climate is another issue (and a big one which is why I still have an open mind about the AGW theory – they just need to convince me it works empirically – like your doubts about the sun no-one has shown CO2 forcings work in the real world – to me at least.

    Just like a business has income as its sole driver the moderator of its success is a very complex equation of all the other effects on its ability to turn that income into value. So it is with the sun.

    For our climate there are geomagnetic effects, atmospheric effects, oceanic effects, wind and sea current effects, albedo changes, cosmic ray intensity changes, aerosol changes and effects, …….. ad nauseam (Leif that bit was obviously not for you please undersatnd) and when someone works out how they all interact we will have a climate model that works. BUT our climate will only ever have one input/driver – just like a business.

  292. hotrod says:

    Skeptics have a greater obligation to get their facts right.
    http://www.internetwineguide.com/structure/ww/v&w/europe/uk/vwuk.htm

    How long have those wine operations have been running?

    England’s oldest organic vineyard, established 1979 at Sedlescombe in Sussex.

    Sharpham Partnership is the trading name for the diversified activities run on the family estate. Situated on the banks of the River Dart near Totnes in South Devon, our vineyards, creamery and organic dairy farm have been producing wines and unpasteurised cheeses for over twenty years to local, national and international acclaim.

    Three Choirs is a friendly way to discover how healthy vines and classic wines have once again taken root in England after an absence of nearly 900 years.

    The present owner, Sir Peter Michael acquired Foley Lodge Hotel in 1996 and after extensive refurbishment The Vineyard at Stockcross opened in March 1998.

    The present owner, Sir Peter Michael acquired Foley Lodge Hotel in 1996 and after extensive refurbishment The Vineyard at Stockcross opened in March 1998.

    ‘A family estate producing fine English wines since 1971′

    In 1985 they were one of the first to pioneer commercial English sparkling wine for which their reputation is now firmly established winning many awards including a Gold medal in 1988 & 1999 in the Challenge International du Vin.

    Sandyford Vineyard is part of our 400-acre family farm based in the village of Great Sampford in rural North West Essex. As well as the 2-acre vineyard, we grow wheat, barley, sugar beet, oilseed rape and beans and rear free-range turkeys for the Christmas market.

    The vineyard was planted in 1999 on a sheltered southwest facing slope with the help of family and friends.

    Davenport Vineyards is slowly becoming one of the more established producers in the UK as several new plantings come on-stream over recent years. Their original vineyard was planted in 1991 in Kent, and they now have 12 acres of vines, all managed organically under UK Soil Association Certification since 2000.

    I think the point is, most of the wine production in GB is small holdings of relatively recent date. Just because there are a handful of operational wine operations now (during a warming period by the admission of the AGW folks) does not invalidate that for a considerable period of time vineyards were not profitable in GB

  293. Steve Brown says:

    Here’s how the AGW “philosophy”, so warmly embraced by our avowedly Socialist Government in the slightly-United Kingdom, can penetrate the most unusual nooks and crannies of society and its institutions.

    Once the civil servants think that the Man-at-the-Top believes in something they vie to out-do each other to impress him with their “devotion” to the same cause, coming up with the most outlandish schemes which they justify as ‘assisting in combatting AGW. No further argument or discussion is permitted.

  294. John Galt says:

    You know, bottom line

    the planet is getting warmer, whatever we can do to curb this trend is a good thing.

    So models don’t work, well duh…. the whole of science is a compramise, to fit models.. this is hardly news. The map will never be the territory, but an aproximation is an aproximation….

    Seems to me this is just republican backlash or fuel companies etc. and those that are growing fat on contributing to climate change, for example all the Petrolium producers.. Perish the thought that things be made cleaner and more efficient!

    Literalism…. this is what it gets you

    What if the warming is natural? There is little real data to show current warming exceeds previous warm periods. You are also mistaken to believe warm is bad. Cold kills. Check out the MWP and the LIA. In regards to climate, which would you rather live in?

    Check out who is really getting rich off AGW — it’s not the oil companies. It’s people like Al Gore who are trying to convince us there is a problem and then sell us the cure, or T. Boone Pickens, who wants our tax dollars, our various other large corporate interest who seek mandates on what we must buy, regardless of whether we want it or not. Cap-and-trade is a scam being pushed because the brokers expect to profit greatly from it.

    The argument about big oil is simply intellectually lazy. As for the climate models not being right — they’re the basis of AGW. No hockey stick, no crisis!

  295. Steve Brown says:

    The link was dropped. Here it is.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/7853093.stm

  296. E.M.Smith says:

    John Philip (02:37:30) : Mr Morano in whose universe, when it suits his purposes, the presenter of a TV gardening show is a member of the set of ‘prominent scientists’.

    Well, I’d take the word of a gardener over that of a computer model when it comes to ‘has it gotten colder or warmer’ for the simple reason that plants don’t lie and gardeners deal in the real world.

    While I don’t know the particular ‘presenter’ you are talking about, I do know that the guys who make it to TV often have rather good credentials (you know, things like PhD in botany or agronomy). So what are this guys credentials? (Not your ad-hom slur, his actual bio.)

    If you don’t think agriculture, farming, agronomy and yes, even gardening, require a keen understanding of weather and climate, abandon all hope…

    Sidebar: During the recent ‘warm in the west’ I lost 2 small avocado trees. They were started from a tree that has grown here for about 20 years (i.e. genetically OK for the last 20 years). What does this say? It says it was cold. But that cold is lost in the averages of averages of averages that the computer models use…

    I grew up in a farm town. The best weathermen were the local farmers. They would look at the sky, sniff the wind, think a bit, and give a good call. 40 years of historical weather patterns in their heads.

    bigcitylib (02:59:36) :
    1) Retired 15 years ago.

    So? Does that invalidate his time observing Hansen?

    2) His real work (papers) stop around that time as well.

    So? What part of ‘retired’ is unclear? Or do you mean that papers have an expiration date? If so, when did the work of Newton and Einstein expire?

    3) Was “in effect” Hansen’s superviser, presumably in contrast to “in reality”.

    Never worked in a matrix organization?

    It was the fad about 15 – 20 years ago. One line of the organization is the formal reporting path and does the performance review (good at HR stuff and overall staffing decisions – picks what areas of knowledge the organization needs) the other is the project oriented path (day to day supervision on particular projects that can run for years; gives input to the performance review but does not write it nor do the hiring and firing.)

    It would be nice to see an actual org chart for NASA to clear this up, by my take on the statement is just that he managed Hansen’s area day to day but the other part of the matrix did the performance review. (It was thought that having the HR skilled folks give the bad news would leave the direct managers free to have a better relationship with the employee day to day…)

    This is all speculative and an org chart would clear it up, but it is what the extant data available support.

    4) Has absolutely no first hand knowledge of the Bush years, or whether or not Hansen was muzzled.

    You have got to be kidding! You can’t open a magazine, watch TV, read a newspaper, or even follow court proceedings in the UK without tripping over Hansen! Muzzled? The guy is positively a news hound and media darling.

    Garacka (05:56:00) :
    My sense is that Theon was stifled in taking action because, NASA had been politically cornered.

    It is simpler than that. In any organization, if a manager goes public talking dirt about an employee they open the organization to lawsuits. I was run through ‘Managers and the Law” about ever 2 years during my time as a manager (part of why I left the field…).

    Theon simply knew that to go to the press and talk down Hansen or to restrict his media access, which would result in a media food fight, would all expose NASA to suit for his actions and truncate his career (google ‘Career Limiting Move’ – lawsuit bait would qualify). Oh, and any guidance or counseling given to Hansen will not see the light of day. To even talk about it would result in suit. If an employee shouts to the world that there are being wrongly persecuted, and you as manager know they are being counseled about very real problems, you can say exactly nothing about it. Best you can do is ask HR and Legal to take a look.

    And firing someone? Especially from a government job? Don’t get me started… I once caught someone in the act of theft. Hard evidence. HR advised me to try to talk the guy into resigning… (he did) and reminded me that I could never say a bad thing about him if called for a reference… I’ve also watched a 2 year attempt to dump an incompetent once. If he met the requirements for just one period, the timer started over again. And again. And again…

    dhogaza (06:08:23) :
    Regarding his claim that some climate scientists are guilty of scientific fraud because they change data to fit models, well, he needs to provide some solid evidence of this serious charge.

    Well, in the GISStemp code they do just that. NOAA hands over real temperature data, this is then changed via the ‘reference station method’ that thinks Lodi knows more about San Francisco temperatures than SF does. It also takes a (rougly 10 year) set of recent years and uses that to change the past years (for stations with both GHCN and USHCN data) based on the belief that recent changes to TOB (time of observation bias) or equipment control past TOB and equipment. Both are clearly wrong and both clearly change the data to fit the model of reality that they represent.

    I can provide the code in question if anyone wants. (I am presently working my way through GISStemp and I’m up to STEP1 – which is actually the fourth process… gives a clue right there. 1- manually download data. 2 – compile and run a sort program for antarctic data. 3 – run STEP0 programs. 4 – proceed to STEP1…)

  297. Bill D says:

    Having read quite a lot but not all of this posting, I an not the first to mention that scientific debates take place in the scientific literature. Check out John S Theon on google scholar. He has a very small number of hardly cited publications. He may have had a distinquished career as an administrator, but he was hardly involved in scientific research of any kind.

  298. David L. Hagen says:

    FMR. V.P. Gore Testifies on Global Climate Change
    Warns of
    * Complete melting of Arctic ice in summer
    * Up to 11 deg F heating within the century.
    * Melting of Greenland ice with 20 ft rise in ocean level this century.
    * Release of methane from arctic regions.
    January 29, 2009

  299. Bruce Cobb says:

    Leif Svalgaard (10:57:01) the oldest trick in the book: “turn off the Sun if you don’t think the Sun is the driver”.
    The only “trick” I see is you stating your “interpretation” of what what I said vis a vis the sun being the “big Cahuna” of drivers.

    As far as “minute variations in the solar output”, and there being “no evidence for those controlling the climate in a big way”, that is your opinion, and you are certainly free to have that opinion ~snip~ Please try to be as polite as possible to our colleagues. ~ dbstealey, mod.

  300. After the gospel of man-made global warming is sufficiently debunked, what will be the new messianic mission to pursue and promote?

  301. Fortunately third world countries won´t do too much against “CO2 pollution”, no matter what they say or pledge, so the only ones affected by green policies will be developed countries and perhaps…only the USA

  302. Robert says:

    Re: Joel Shore (12:22:11) : (Still OT but in the spirit).

    It appears that the short answer to my question is: Yes, way back in 1999 Bard ran your suggested experiment. See
    http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/summary/284/5417/1133

    PALEOCLIMATE:
    Ice Age Temperatures and Geochemistry
    Edouard Bard
    Whether the last ice age was unusually chilly is more than merely historical curiosity. Such information is used to bench mark the computer models that are used to estimate future greenhouse warming. In his Perspective, Bard discusses recent efforts to use geochemical data to calculate past climate behavior. Data from noble gases in groundwater and trace elements in corals, for example, can indicate past sea surface temperatures. This can be compared with general circulation models, a comparison that shows good progress in modeling and also highlights where improvements can be made. According to the author, these advances have been made possible by the extensive exchanges of information between the data measurement and the modeling communities.

    Unfortunately, I did not find a free version of the complete article. Dr. Schrag reproduces his survey here:
    http://environment.harvard.edu/docs/faculty_pubs/schrag_ancient.pdf

  303. M. Simon says:

    Every one knows that water vapor is 20X as effective as a greenhouse gas as CO2 is.

    So why aren’t we banning methane (CH4) and promoting coal?

    And where is the hot water tax?

  304. M. Simon says:

    President Obama has spoken on record as ‘being happy to listen to good ideas from wherever they may come’.

    We must stop boiling water at once. Doesn’t he know how devastating to climate that is?

  305. Maxx says:

    At least Dr. Theon spoke out after he retired. I can’t blame him for not speaking out sooner, nobody wants to lose their job.

    Part of the new stimulus package the Democrats are so eager to pass contains another 450 million dollars for “global warming research.” You can bet NASA is one of the agencies that will get some of that money.

    It works like this:

    Say global warming is real…. you get money.

    Say global warming is not real….. you don’t get money.

    This is how the Democrats make us pay for our own deception. They make “global warming” the bread and butter of a segment of the scientific community and let it be known what their findings MUST BE, in order to get more money. It’s pure corruption and the heads of NASA are going along with it.

  306. Roger Knights says:

    RJ Hendrickson wrote:
    “They’ve been led to believe that we are, and have been destroying the environment since time began. When you’ve been fed that hogwash for most of your existence, it’s got to be very difficult to let go of an idea that reinforces that years-long indoctrination.”

    This is a major reason for media promotion of AGW: it “fits the template” they’ve been taught, as John Leo would say. They feel that AGW nests nicely into the belief system and overarching stance of every properly Annointed person; disbelief is Benighted.

  307. Simon Evans says:

    Bruce Cobb (13:39:42) :

    Leif Svalgaard (10:57:01) the oldest trick in the book: “turn off the Sun if you don’t think the Sun is the driver”.
    The only “trick” I see is you stating your “interpretation” of what what I said vis a vis the sun being the “big Cahuna” of drivers.

    As far as “minute variations in the solar output”, and there being “no evidence for those controlling the climate in a big way”, that is your opinion, and you are certainly free to have that opinion, wrong-headed as it is. There is plenty of evidence to support it, but you obviously aren’t interested. Your ego and scientific position have become sadly entangled.

    Do you mean ‘evidence’ of the kind you presented on another thread which included a fabricated graph? Or are you thinking of something better?

    I think you should present your ‘evidence’ rather than resorting to ad homs against another poster – they will only ever be demeaning of you rather than of your intended target.

  308. Fernando says:

    evanjones (21:55:05) :
    (My best joke was snipped from both WUWT and Climate Audit . . . in my own best interests I am sure.)

    David Ben…new messianic mission…

    Ice Memorial day…

    I presume

  309. George E. Smith says:

    “” Psi (16:46:50) :

    “there are many very important sub-grid scale processes that the models either replicate poorly or completely omit…”

    Can someone explain what this means?

    Thanks in advance. ”

    Why not try Googling: Nyquist Criterion or Nyquist theorem, or Aliassing Noise, or sampled data system theory.

    If you find a hole in the ground and measure its depth, then you know within some margin of error what the depth of that hole is. But you can’t extrapolate from that hole, to say anything about any other holes in the ground.

    The land based (non satellite) sytem of weather stations; including the avant garde ones Anthony has shown us, fails by orders of magnitude (in space), and also by a significant ratio (in time_ to properly sample the continuous function they are trying to measure.

  310. John Galt says:

    In fact, you are wrong…The actual forcings relative to those in Hansen’s scenarios fall a little below his middle scenario, Scenario B. And, the temperature has generally followed that scenario…There has been some deviation below it in the last few years but I don’t think the difference is statistically-significant. Of course, given that the climate model he used for that had a climate sensitivity at the high end of the current IPCC estimate, we should hope that we do eventually see some statistical deviation low of his estimate. Otherwise, it would suggest the climate sensitivity is not only in the IPCC range but at the high end of it.

    I’m referring to the three scenarios charted in the appendix to Hansen’s 1988 testimony. Sure looks to me like he was way off, but if you use NOAA or perhaps GISS data, perhaps it looks at lot closer.

    There are plenty of ways in which the models can and are being tested, just as evolution is tested without having to actually watch evolution occur in the lab. (Well, you can see what creationists call “micro-evolution” in the lab but this doesn’t convince them that “macro-evolution” occurs.) I suggest reading the IPCC reports for further discussions.

    I’m sure you’re not suggesting the IPCC models are correct because the IPCC says so, are you?

    When we test software, we compare the results to the expected outcome. For a given input, the exact results are known. We know what the correct answer is, and we compare that to our output. In contrast, the IPCC doesn’t know what the exact output is supposed to be. Neither does Hansen or anybody else. The IPCC is at least honest enough to call their output “scenarios” and not “predictions” or “forecasts”.

    The exact interactions of all elements in the climate system are not known. Many experts also tell us we don’t have enough computing power to accurately model the climate, even if we did know how to quantify all the interactions.

  311. Ayrdale says:

    Another crack appears in the crumbling facade of “consensus”.
    I have followed the comments thread, but nobody appears to have observed yet that James Hansen has promised record high temperatures before the end of this presidential term.
    He maybe, and is I think very wrong, but he has firmly nailed his reputation and colours to the mast.
    See http://www.nzherald.co.nz/environment/news/article.cfm?c_id=39&objectid=10552746&pnum=0

  312. Smokey says:

    Climatologist Timothy Ball, PhD:

    Proponents of human induced warming and climate change told us that an increase in CO2 precedes and causes temperature increases. They were wrong. They told us the late 20th century was the warmest on record. They were wrong. They told us, using the infamous “hockey stick” graph, the Medieval Warm Period (MWP) did not exist. They were wrong. They told us global temperatures would increase through 2008 as CO2 increased. They were wrong. They told us Arctic ice would continue to decrease in area through 2008. They were wrong. They told us October 2008 was the second warmest on record. They were wrong. They told us 1998 was the warmest year on record in the US. They were wrong – it was 1934. They told us current atmospheric levels of CO2 are the highest on record. They are wrong. They told us pre-industrial atmospheric levels of CO2 were approximately 100 parts per million (ppm) lower than the present 385 ppm. They are wrong. This last is critical because the claim is basic to the argument that humans are causing warming and climate change by increasing the levels of atmospheric CO2 and have throughout the Industrial era. In fact, pre-industrial CO2 levels were about the same as today, but how did they conclude they were lower? [source]

    “Down is up, white is black, evil is good, and global warming causes global cooling.” The general public can take that sort of scam talk for only so long before they start to wise up: click

  313. Robc (13:05:08) :
    Dr Svalgaard , could it be that you do not know the actual mechanism.
    Well, no mechanism is needed for no effect. There are lots and lots of proposed and believed and cherished mechanisms. They just don’t hold up as to qualify as major drivers.

    Even if the Sun were absolutely constant, we would still have temperature differences between day and night, between summer and winter, and still have glaciations come and go. All these things are due to variations of the Earth’s position and cycling.

    PaulHClark (13:14:23) :
    unless you can convince me there is another source of energy for our climate then I would suggest there is only one driver – the sun.

    My response [above] is for you as well.

    Bruce Cobb (13:39:42) :
    Your ego and scientific position have become sadly entangled
    And Bruce could do well with learning some manners.

  314. Adam Sullivan says:

    Joel -

    If I am to understand you and others here correctly, you contend that Theon is not really a Climate Scientist ® and has not submitted his skeptical assertions for peer review via a major journal. He may have been a fine administrator but he is not a scientist. Let’s, for the sake of argument, accept that in whole.

    Here is Theon’s core assertion in his email -

    some scientists have manipulated the observed data to justify their model results. In doing so, they neither explain what they have modified in the observations, nor explain how they did it. They have resisted making their work transparent so that it can be replicated independently by other scientists.

    That is an allegation of fraud. How is it that a peer reviewed journal can provide any input or feedback on such an assertion? Is it an assertion requires a scientist to interpret? Or make? Or is it an assertion that only has credibility based on the position of the observer? Theon, as an administrator, was in the position to observe and level such an accusation. In fact, it takes the skills, insights and access of an administrator (or a sufficiently empowered and persistent auditor) to make such an accusation credible.

    So you and others have moved the goal posts (actually the whole playing field) by trying to attack his credibility as a scientist when what is at issue is a matter of administrators enforcing discipline so that the organization’s credibility can be preserved, which is the thrust of his email.

    And, in such a context, sending such an accusation to a Senator on the committee that is supposed to provide oversight is perfectly appropriate. The real question we should all be asking is “why didn’t he do it earlier?”

    The data are in doubt and have been for sometime. Garbage in, garbage out. Fraud in, fraud out. It really is that simple.

  315. Leif Svalgaard (14:26:10) :
    Even if the Sun were absolutely constant, we would still have temperature differences between day and night, between summer and winter, between poles and tropics, and still have glaciations come and go. All these things are due to variations of the Earth’s position and cycling.

  316. Simon Evans says:

    Smokey (14:21:01) :

    Very good, Smokey, you link to an article entitled:

    “Pre-industrial CO2 levels were about the same as today. How and why we are told otherwise?”

    It’s Ernst-Georg Beck again! Are you really, really wanting to propose this seriously? Do please tell me it is so – I would have much fun discussing it with you!

    Ernst-Georg Beck, then. Tell us all why you take his papers seriously. Do tell us why you think the overwhelming majority of his data being derived from a three month (from memory) period on the outskirts of the city of Bremen gives us a good indication of global C02 concentration. I’m looking forward to it.

  317. planoblog says:

    sounds like he should be named Aristotle

  318. George E. Smith says:

    It is not clear that Dr Theon was Hansen’s boss or supervisor in the usual sense.

    But Theon did have to get Hansen’s budget approved (by his upstairs line, and

    “””
    “I appreciate the opportunity to add my name to those who disagree that global warming is man made,” Theon wrote to the Minority Office at the Environment and Public Works Committee on January 15, 2009. “I was, in effect, Hansen’s supervisor because I had to justify his funding, allocate his resources, and evaluate his results,” Theon, the former Chief of the Climate Processes Research Program at NASA Headquarters and former Chief of the Atmospheric Dynamics & Radiation Branch explained. “”

    So I think the chain of command was more complex.

    Dr Theon is just the latest of higher level NASA Scientist/managers who have become “whistle blowers” after leaving NASA. Dr Joanne Simpson had the same situation. She pretty much let out a whoop, right as the NASA door narrowly missed whacking her tush on the way out. I believe she has impeccabole scientific credentials.

    I would think that in government structures, there are all sorts of rules about discipline. I doubt that Dr Theon was in a position to criticise Hansen on other than the job performance in his department; and his involvement in pushing for Hansen’s budget, and commenting on his results, would be limited to his on the job at NASA work, and not his public pronouncements.

    If Hansen’s public relations stuff was damaging to NASA, it likely would have been someone well above Dr Theon who’s responsibility to speak out for the agency, should be under scrutiny.

    I’ve not heard anything negative really about what Hansen was actually doing for NASA. We have been questioning his data reconstitutioning processes and habits; but we don’t have any evidence that NASA thought his department work was unsatisfactory.

    I think it is sufficient that someone at Dr Theon’s level, make the scientific statement as to the validity of the MMGW hypothesis; and alsoto squash any media claim that Hansen was ever muddled (by the Bush administration as has been alleged in the past).

    Well Jim Jones only took around 960 with him who drank his coolade. We have maybe the next 8 years to find out what the score will be for the current pied piper.

  319. George E. Smith says:

    “” John Galt (13:19:00) :

    You know, bottom line

    the planet is getting warmer, whatever we can do to curb this trend is a good thing. “”

    I take it you have some scientific basis for making that statement.

    I think if you polled the peopole of the world, you would find that more people would prefer it to get a little warmer, rather than alittle colder.

    So if you had the thermostat knob; just where would you set it, and why ?

  320. JimB says:

    Simon,
    Are you published in the field of science?

    JimB

  321. Smokey says:

    Neither you, Simon Evans, nor any other AGW-runaway global warming believer has falsified Beck, and especially not that jamoke Keeling. Dr. Beck has been entirely transparent, and answers all questions. Unlike Hansen and Mann. [What are they hiding?] Of course, I understand that you’re trying to change the subject of the thread. I would too, if I were in your shoes.

    I see that it’s time again to remind everyone that the burden of proof is not on scientific skeptics to prove anything. The burden of proof is entirely on the purveyors of the new AGW-CO2-runaway global warming-climate catastrophe hypothesis, to show definitively that increasing levels of atmospheric carbon diioxide will lead to planetary catastrophe. So far, they have completely failed. The globe is cooling.

    Global catastrophe due to CO2 is the AGW promoters’ alarming argument. If the warmists are now backing away from that hypothesis, in which they have invested so much of their egos, then their only ethical course of action is to now demand, as loudly and vociferously as they promoted their AGW-catastrophe hypothesis, that the government must immediately cease action on “climate change,” and end its plans to spend $trillions on a non-problem.

    We’re waiting to hear that from the AGW promoters. But I’m not holding my breath.

  322. M. Simon says:

    I’m wondering why the effects of CO2 have yet to be corrected for te warming caused by the PDO.

  323. Grant Hodges says:

    Hi Simon,

    Instead of drilling Smokey, just tell us what it is. I am of the opinion that CO2 percentages of the atmosphere actually haven’t changed much over the last 300 years if you put them on a chart that doesn’t distort their size in the atmosphere. On any chart of that purpose one would see that CO2 is flat. Saw such a chart a week or two ago.

    So deal the facts to us. I’ll listen.

  324. ace says:

    As of 3 PM Pacific, Wednesday, January 28th, a search of Google News uncovers a grand total of 9 references, and only two, from the National Post in Canada, represent any sort of mainstream media.

    Nothing more to see here, folks….. move along…..

  325. Steve D. says:

    Simon Evans – why is measuring CO2 outside Bremen less valid than measuring on the side of a Hawaiian volcano, as Keeling did?

  326. theduke says:

    Dr. Theon has quite a resume:

    John S. Theon Education: B.S. Aero. Engr. (1953-57); Aerodynamicist, Douglas Aircraft Co. (1957-58); As USAF Reserve Officer (1958-60),B.S. Meteorology (1959); Served as Weather Officer 1959-60; M.S, Meteorology (1960-62); NASA Research Scientist, Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (1962-74); Head Meteorology Branch, GSFC (1974-76); Asst. Chief, Lab. for Atmos. Sciences, GSFC (1977-78); Program Scientist, NASA Global Weather Research Program, NASA Hq. (1978-82); Chief, Atmospheric Dynamics & Radiation Branch NASA Hq., (1982-91); Ph.D., Engr. Science & Mech.: course of study and dissertation in atmos. science (1983-85); Chief, Atmospheric Dynamics, Radiation, & Hydrology Branch, NASA Hq. (1991-93); Chief, Climate Processes Research Program, NASA Hq. (1993-94); Senior Scientist, Mission to Planet Earth Office, NASA Hq. (1994-95); Science Consultant, Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (1995-99); Science Consultant Orbital Sciences Corp. (1996-97) and NASA Jet Propulsion Lab., (1997-99).

  327. Robert says:

    George E. Smith (14:43:17) :
    “….after leaving NASA. Dr Joanne Simpson had the same situation. She pretty much let out a whoop, right as the NASA door narrowly missed whacking her tush on the way out. I believe she has impeccabole scientific credentials.”

    Hmm, this guest blog seems very measured: more like a criticism of both extremes in the climate debate. Is there some other communication that is more critical of the AGW argument?
    http://climatesci.org/2008/02/27/trmm-tropical-rainfall-measuring-mission-data-set-potential-in-climate-controversy-by-joanne-simpson-private-citizen/

  328. Flanagan says:

    [snip, try rephrasing that without ad-hom ]

  329. realitycheck says:

    Flanagan:

    I appreciate you posting the publications. However, here is my concern and its a large one: – they are ALL based on the output from simulations (models) or in the case of the Mann paper on “climate proxies”. WHERE IS THE EMPIRICAL DATA proof? I have posted my comment on each paper after the R:

    1) Natural variability of the climate system and detection of the greenhouse effect
    R: In the abstract we read “…Simulations with a simple climate model are used to determine the main controls on internally generated low-frequency variability…” – they are using a model to determine what the range of “natural” variability in the atmosphere is, NOT ACTUAL data

    2) Simulations of Atmospheric Variability Induced by Sea Surface Temperatures and Implications for Global Warming
    R: The title says it all “Simulations” – they are not using ACTUAL DATA

    3) Model assessment of the role of natural variability in recent global warming
    R: “Model”, not ACTUAL DATA How can a GCM, which contains gross simplifications of the physics of the atmosphere, and which the IPCC have themselves indicated cannot be used for prediction (see AR4) reasonably be used to determine with the magnitude of natural variability is?

    4) External Control of 20th Century Temperature by Natural and Anthropogenic Forcings
    R: Here they attempt to replicate the 20th century record by a GCM – the GCM cannot replicate the temperature record – not surprising, since it does not reproduce many of the natural modes of variability in the atmosphere/ocean system such as NAO, AO, PDO, PNA, AMO etc. and even the IPCC indicate that GCMS should not be used for climate prediction (see AR4). So they adopt the old chestnut explanation – what else could it be? aha, must be CO2 NOT PROOF that CO2 drives climate.

    5) Global-scale temperature patterns and climate forcing over the past six centuries
    R: This is a study by Michael Mann using….oh dear….climate proxies….oh dear. NOT ACTUAL DATA. I won’t even go further here – read any of the excellent work by Steve McIntyre and Ross McKitrick for further explanation

    I will repeat – where is the beef?

  330. henry says:

    First of all:

    NASA warming scientist James Hansen”

    Nice way to characterize all his years of work with other things for NASA. This Might be the only way he’ll be remembered.

    Second:

    “…and his claims that he was allegedly muzzled by the Bush administration despite doing 1,400 on-the-job media interviews!”

    Just imagine how many interviews he would have given had he NOT been “muzzled”.

    Now that a new adminstration is in power, let’s see if the number of interviews increases or decreases. Especially when the new NASA administrator takes over.

  331. Gerald Machnee says:

    RE: Flanagan (03:58:33) :

    ***I’m a bit surprised by the claims that “there’s no proof” that CO2 is causing the observed warming. What would you consider a proof? That CO2 is a greenhouse gas, that it absorbs and reemits IR? That the troposphere is warming more rapidly than the upper layers of the atmosphere? Numbers about the amount of energy CO2 is capable of reinjecting back? This is all given in the IPCC ARs and in many independent publications.***

    Proof would be a scientific study which MEASURES the percentage of the warming or cooling caused by CO2. To date no such paper exists. If you want a idea of how the logarithmic effect of warming by CO2 works you can check slide 22 of David Archibald’s presentation at: http://www.warwickhughes.com/agri/Solar_Arch_NY_Mar2_08.pdf
    Why do scientists believe that CO2 is responsible for most warming? They looked at graphs of CO2 and temperatures increasing, and not knowing what the main cause is, they concluded (not very scientifically) that CO2 is to blame – and the rest is history. A lot more work is needed including studying the sun. The IPCC4 essentially ignored the sun in the last Report as well as many scientists who where critical of the conclusions. You can find this in the comments part of the IPCC which they did not want to release.
    In addition,a second question can be asked: Where is there a detailed engineering quality calculation that a doubling of CO2 will cause a 2-6 Degree C increase in temperature? They (IPCC and others) are using a worn out old paper which is not detailed enough.

    ***On top of that it is also almost certain that the CO2 released by ocean warming in the past (you know, the 800 years delay) accelerated the warming through the greenhouse effect…***
    Almost certain- not really. It may have been greenhouse but was not caused by CO2. CO2 is released by water as it warms, but the initial cause of the warming is not mainly due to CO2. The models may be showing feedbacks as caused by CO2, but questions are being raised whether feedbacks from CO2 are positive or negative.

    ***So what do you need?***
    The two big reports as specified above.

  332. Simon Evans says:

    Smokey (14:52:42) :

    If anyone changed the subject of the thread it was you, by linking to an article talking of Beck’s notions. I simply showed the courtesy of following your link and asking you to say what you thought of it. I note that you don’t wish to do that, which is a bit of a shame, as I was looking forward to your thoughts on such very eccentric (I use that word correctly and not pejoratively) notions.

    As for your comments on the burden of proof, this is science – there is no ‘proof’. There is evidence. I don’t feel any burden at all, I assure you, but you might do, if you wish to change the assessment. I do suggest that you look a bit further than Ernst-Georg Beck if you wish to find it, but that’s JMV. I don’t have to prove anything to you, Smokey. I could tell you why I think Beck’s work is not of value, but I gather that you’re not interested in sceptical views, so I will leave you with your undisturbed faith in anything that supports your opposition to AGW theory.

    I din’t understand your last two paragraphs at all, by the way.

    Grant Hodges (14:56:07) :

    I’ll get back to you tomorrow if I may, since I’m UK based and it’s time for bed :-). Can you dig up the chart you’re referencing so that I know what you’re talking about? I’m very happy to discuss why I think Beck’s analysis is unsound, if that’s the subject.

    Steve D. (15:02:15) :

    Simon Evans – why is measuring CO2 outside Bremen less valid than measuring on the side of Hawaiian volcano, as Keeling did?

    Because one can reliably adjust for the localised known bias, which one can’t do when the source and extent of the bias is unknown. Of course, some here don’t like the idea of adjusting for bias – I become rather lost for words at that point! Keeling wasn’t an idiot, and he spent a long time looking for a sutable site to assess background C02 (he got Beck-like readings from earlier attempts elsewhere, with totally implausible suggestions of C02 flux (a la Beck!)).

    JimB (14:47:56) :

    Simon,
    Are you published in the field of science?

    JimB

    No. Are you? Actually, don’t answer that – I’ll just assess what you say on its own merits :-).

  333. TonyB says:

    Simon Evans

    I’m afraid your memory is faulty. Becks data is taken from surviving measurements made by hundreds of scientists- several of them nobel winners. They started in 1780 and became reliable around the time of Saussure in 1820 who took measurements in well mixed air on the banks of lake Geneva- measurements ceased around 1956. The co2 readings came from all over the world. They have been documented in numerous books many of which I have cited in another thread, and are available by links from Becks very comprehensive site.

    Taking measurements were a matter of course from around 1820 for all sorts of reasons, from medical to factory air monitoring. The first law stating the permitted co2 levels in working places was the UK Factories act way back in 1889, although levels were agreed some forty years earlier than that, but were never legally enforceable.

    The vast majority of measurements have not survived-I would estimate the 90,000 detailed on Becks site are less than 10% of the original total.

    From my own research of Becks data I would say that by no means all are reliable, but that still leaves thousands that seem reasonably accurate and I am inclined to believe that past levels were similar to today.

    Beck is by far the most accessible of those involved in co2 research apart from Ferdinand Engelbeen who doee not agree with Beck but is sceptical of the exaggerated claims for co2.

    If co2 was not variable at around todays levels but instead was fixed at 280ppm -according to the ice cores- what has driven the climate in the past when temperatures have fluctuated to heights much lower and much higher than todays?

    TonyB

  334. TonyB says:

    Simon Evans

    Sorry, just saw your latest post. I was very sceoptical of Becks assertions as well until I looked into it and also researched Keeling and GS Callendar. I am genuinely interested as to why you are sceptical if we are not going OT

    TonyB

  335. Joel Shore says:

    Adam Sullivan says:

    That is an allegation of fraud. How is it that a peer reviewed journal can provide any input or feedback on such an assertion? Is it an assertion requires a scientist to interpret? Or make? Or is it an assertion that only has credibility based on the position of the observer? Theon, as an administrator, was in the position to observe and level such an accusation. In fact, it takes the skills, insights and access of an administrator (or a sufficiently empowered and persistent auditor) to make such an accusation credible.

    Well, the allegation of fraud is a different story. It would not be appropriate for a peer-reviewed journal However, it is still appropriate to provide evidence to back up such a strong assertion. Or, do you think we should just accept that there is fraud because Theon says so?

    And, by the way, the interesting thing about this accusation is that it can be interpreted in so many ways. You have chosen to interpret it as Theon having inside info from his days as an administrator. In my interpretation, the accusation of fraud is probably just parroting what Theon has read in the blogosphere about Michael Mann and Jim Hansen and so forth. Of course, since he doesn’t present any evidence or even any elaboration, it can be interpreted any way you want.

  336. Mark says:

    Looks like this made it on youtube:

  337. RoyfOMR says:

    This thread has, for sure, stimulated a lot of synapses from both (all) sides of the AGW discussion (argument). I, for one, am happy that WUWT has provided an arena that permits equally worthy combatants to joust and exchange views in a setting unencumbered by petty subjectivity!
    If all blogs adopted the the polite philosophy promulgated by Mr Watts then, IMO, the race for ‘Best Science Blog’ would be far less certain than hitherto!

  338. G Alston says:

    Joel Shore — There are plenty of ways in which the models can and are being tested, just as evolution is tested without having to actually watch evolution occur in the lab. (Well, you can see what creationists call “micro-evolution” in the lab but this doesn’t convince them that “macro-evolution” occurs.) I suggest reading the IPCC reports for further discussions.

    I’m gathering you don’t know much about software. Models are not tested. At best, their initial conditions and parameterisations are tested. Easy to prove this. Models do not discover processes; e.g. Svensmark’s cosmic ray stuff. Let’s say for argument CERN validates Svensmark. Every model run has just been invalidated at that moment. Models at the outside can only be as good as their inputs (unless of course they’re using advanced AI techniques, but this seems unlikely.) The original poster is correct; models are not science and they are not data. And unless they’re knee-deep in next gen AI techniques, they’re little more than spendy, bloated spreadsheets with a zillion rows and columns and running in a loop. Not exactly really advanced stuff. Just big.

    And one more thing.

    The equating of AGW skeptics with creationists always manages to rear its ugly head. It’s inevitable. Death and taxes territory. Surely there’s a way to question the skeptic IQ and draw analogies without dipping into that. Low hanging fruit may either be too tempting or the limit of your reach.

  339. Simon Evans says:

    TonyB (15:36:21) :

    Simon Evans

    I’m afraid your memory is faulty. Becks data is taken from surviving measurements made by hundreds of scientists- several of them nobel winners.

    Be assured that I have no real issue with the accuracy of the measurements taken – my scepticism is to do with the representativeness of what was being measured (and, frankly, with the plausibilty of the results in terms of Co2 flux). I’ll try to write some more tomorrow if it’s of interest, but for now it’s late here! :-)

  340. Smokey says:

    As Dr. Roy Spencer likes to say:

    “No one has falsified the hypothesis that the observed temperature changes are a consequence of natural variability.”

    Until/unless that long-standing hypothesis is falsified, it is the AGW-CO2-climate catastrophe hypothesis that is wrong.

    I could as easily hypothesize that there is a black cat in a dark room. I could be one of a half-dozen people here arguing about it incessantly, and run endless computer models proving there’s a cat.

    So just turn on the lights, and you will see: There is is no unusual climate variability, there is no black cat, and there is no AGW catastrophe right around the corner. Deal with it.

  341. Steve H. says:

    Yep “The equating of AGW skeptics with creationists always manages to rear its ugly head”

    However, alarmists more closely resemble flat earthers.

    345 comments,,,, this is by far the best AGW discussion blog.

    And the AGW holdouts get fewer and weaker every day.

  342. Adam Sullivan says:

    Joel -

    However, it is still appropriate to provide evidence to back up such a strong assertion. Or, do you think we should just accept that there is fraud because Theon says so?

    While Theon (or anyone making such an accusation in any profession) should back it up, I think it is fair to point out that the whole idea of publishing data, methods and assumptions exists to short circuit such accusations and counter accusations. Transparency = credibility, not pedigree or reputation.

    the accusation of fraud is probably just parroting what Theon has read in the blogosphere about Michael Mann and Jim Hansen and so forth.

    I agree that there is room for that interpretation. When when looks at the emails they are almost casual in tone yet ended up in a less casual press release. Such is politics. Just the same, he provides his background and seems to value his reputation. Even if this is an opinion catalyzed by events that came to light after he retired there is a memory he has of NASA and of Hansen et al. Were his memory of people who were earnest, diligent, honest and sober scientists then I very much doubt he’d level the accusation. His is an opinion but not one that should be discounted outright. And again – full transparency would put everything to rest (at least for me).

  343. Robert says:

    re: G Alston (15:49:00) :
    “I’m gathering you don’t know much about software. Models are not tested. At best, their initial conditions and parameterisations are tested. ”

    I know a lot about software and a lot about electronic warefare models and simulations. So I assume that this is not a general statement about software models but a specific statement about the GCM class of models. Other than this nit, I agree with the general thrust of your post because the GCM models use large scale approximations. The application of (a whole lot more than $140 million worth of) additional computing power/programming that gets these models closer to the underlying physics would help them become more “testable”.

    Of course, we know that much of the underlying physics for climate remains poorly understood. So perhaps we need to spend more money there before working the model problem.

  344. E.M.Smith says:

    David S (09:39:43) : Hell freezes over; “James Hansen’s Former NASA Supervisor Declares Himself a Skeptic”
    Come to think of it, if hell is anywhere near here it may well be freezing over.

    Yup, sure is:

    http://www.wunderground.com/cgi-bin/findweather/getForecast?query=hell&wuSelect=WEATHER

    Hell, Michigan
    Local Time: 3:17 PM EST (GMT -05) — Set My Timezone
    Lat/Lon: 42.5° N 83.9° W (Google Map)

    19.7 °F
    Scattered Clouds
    Windchill:
    8 °F

  345. Smokey says:

    E.M. Smith: click

    [Photoshopped from Hell, MI]

  346. Robc says:

    Leif Svalgaard (14:26:10) : said

    Even if the Sun were absolutely constant, we would still have temperature differences between day and night, between summer and winter, and still have glaciations come and go. All these things are due to variations of the Earth’s position and cycling.

    The sun is though not absolutely constant and there is as you are aware a clear correlation between sunspots and temperature, sunspots may not be the cause just the visible markers of a driver of short term variations in climate, their none appearance at the present time appear to be linked to the present cooling. As I said, as yet I believe the mechanics of the earth/sun/climate link are not fully understood, the PDO was only discovered in 1997.

    I just wonder how complex the climate is compared with say to a computer processor, if that processor was given to the most talented engineers in 1800, how long would it have taken them to understand and replicate it, probably never.

    It took over 60 years in small steps to design and develop the processor in the average PC, I wonder how long it will take to unravel the secrets of the sun/earth/climate link.

  347. voodoo says:

    The science does not matter to Obama. What matters is the march to global socialism and the paradise it promises. ‘Climate Change’ is simply a handy tool being used to pry away your freedoms and fortune.

  348. Adam Sullivan says:

    Robert (16:11:30) :

    The application of (a whole lot more than $140 million worth of) additional computing power/programming that gets these models closer to the underlying physics would help them become more “testable”.

    Of course, we know that much of the underlying physics for climate remains poorly understood. So perhaps we need to spend more money there before working the model problem.

    A systemic problem with climate science is the capitalization. A research scientist at a university or think tank can’t simply go out an buy the equipment required to gather and process the data. The increasing complexity of the models compounds the problem. One can only hope to do “incremental” work and ultimately rely on data from other sources – the sources that admit to adjusting data but don’t fully disclose all of the raw data and the methods and assumptions that went into the assumptions.

    It starts to resemble a capital intensive tautology.

  349. Robert Wood says:

    This is, I believe, the most commented thread ever on WUWT.

    If only the MSM will take up Theon’s words.

  350. Pamela Gray says:

    If we really want to be serious about winning this argument, we need to have weather men and women explaining why things are hot here, warm there, wet down south, cold up north, why oranges are at risk right now, and why Washington, DC is freezing. They should stop just reporting temperatures in a two minute segment with a funny joke or a short skirt. They should be given time on all the news programs to explain the why of weather variations and patterns. They should be given time to explain why ice is growing or melting here and there. They should be given time to explain ocean climates and currents (since much of our weather is a gift from the oceans, good or bad). That is where the good stuff is and will, if allowed to happen, turn this debate into something winnable. Until then, we are just staring at the Sun waiting for something to happen, like deer caught in headlights.

    That does not mean I am uninterested in the Sun. I find that globe fascinating and beautiful. The greatest disappointment in my life is that I can’t look straight at it. My above statement also does not mean that I don’t appreciate the fact that it’s rays melts the ice I slipped on Monday. But the fact that ice occurred Sunday and melted today has nothing to do with some kind of variation in the Sun’s output. It had to do with Earth’s weather. I’m tellin ya, that is where the goodies are for this argument.

  351. Joel Shore says:

    G Alston says:

    I’m gathering you don’t know much about software. Models are not tested…

    Well, besides having done computational science for a living for the last 20 years-ish, no not much.

    Models do not discover processes; e.g. Svensmark’s cosmic ray stuff. Let’s say for argument CERN validates Svensmark. Every model run has just been invalidated at that moment.

    It is true that they do not include this very speculative process. However, even if CERN validates Svensmark, it is a long way to showing that this process is the dominating effect in producing the current warming (particularly given the lack of a significant trend in cosmic ray flux) and explaining why the warming due to CO2 does not occur.

    As for testing the models, there are lots of things that can be done…and really at the end of the day the main thing that the models are doing is giving us an estimate of the climate sensitivity to the known forcing due to CO2. (Even Richard Lindzen accepts that the value of the CO2 forcing is known to good accuracy.) The fact is that the models with the current processes incorporated in them give estimates for this that are in good agreement with estimates obtained by looking at various empirical data, such as the glacial – interglacial transition, the eruption of Mt Pinatubo, the instrumental temperature record, etc. And, furthermore, the various processes within climate models can also be tested. For example, Brian Soden and Andrew (?) Dessler and others have been verifying that the models seem to be getting the water vapor feedback basically right. The models can also be tested by looking at the fingerprint of the warming…E.g., is it warming in the troposphere but cooling in the stratosphere, the answer is yes (and this would not be true if, for example, direct solar forcing were causing the warming).

    The equating of AGW skeptics with creationists always manages to rear its ugly head. It’s inevitable.

    I might suggest reading some of the things that evolution “skeptics” say. If you don’t see the similarity in the arguments made, well I guess we’ll just have to agree to disagree. (I’m not saying that the analogy is perfect and I will admit that there is still more room in AGW to question the magnitude of the effects based on the uncertainties that do remain. And, just as in evolution where you have the gamut running from young-earth creationists to intelligent design or “directed evolution” adherents, in AGW you have the gamut ranging from those who argue that there is no greenhouse effect at all / that CO2 is not at unprecedented levels in at least the last 750000 years[ a la Beck] / that the basic physics of CO2 radiative forcing is not understood to those who simply argue about the value of the climate sensitivity, i.e., that it is being overestimated.)

    At any rate, ***I*** don’t really have to make the equation between the two because one of the few scientifically-reputable AGW skeptics (e.g., with a significant publication record in the field), Roy Spencer, is also an evolution skeptic: http://www.tcsdaily.com/article.aspx?id=080805I

  352. Joel Shore says:

    Adam Sullivan says:

    While Theon (or anyone making such an accusation in any profession) should back it up, I think it is fair to point out that the whole idea of publishing data, methods and assumptions exists to short circuit such accusations and counter accusations. Transparency = credibility, not pedigree or reputation.

    I don’t see the field of climate science as being any less transparent than the areas of physics that I have worked in. And, in fact, with the GISS Model E climate model, the data and programs from Mann et al.’s latest paper, and the code that Hansen et al use for GISTEMP all online now, it seems to me there is now much greater transparency than there has been in the areas of physics I have worked in. And I give the “skeptics” some credit here in moving the field in that direction…Maybe they should come on over and do the same thing in physics!

  353. Bravo, Dr Theon!

    Flanagan (04:27:47) : Smokey… So where’s the scientific publication asserting that the role of CO2 in the greenhouse effect is “tiny”. Looking at a graphic is not science. What? Looking at a graphic is not science? Examining some of the most basic and common forms of evidence is not science? Ah (light of illumination flashes) if the graphic is peer-reviewed one does not need to check it oneself, to ask tricky questions. Does Flanagan believe that only peer-reviewed material is real science? Oh, that could mean that he will not even weigh these words of mine, because I am not peer-reviewed! Will he just “know” in advance that I am probably wrong? Ah, there are many who rely on official authority, who maybe don’t even hear a possibility of truth or excellence in what is said to them on places like this blog, by non-published noobs.

    Makes me feel more and more we need a skeptics’ wiki so we have good science to hand but don’t have to keep on repeating ourselves while not getting heard.

  354. Krasnaya Zvezda says:

    Hansen’s words and actions have cast a noxious cloud so large that it has sullied the reputation of the “Scientific Community” in general.

    Perhaps that cloud is part of the reason why global warming isn’t actually happening.

  355. G Alston says:

    Robert — Of course, we know that much of the underlying physics for climate remains poorly understood. So perhaps we need to spend more money there before working the model problem.

    Absolutely.

    1. Where I was going with my equating models and big honkin’ spreadsheets… climate models were developed with the premise of understanding the role of CO2, so when one spits out any answer other than 42, are we to be astonished that the answer has something to do with CO2? Of course not. What would be a most welcome surprise would be a result that *didn’t* have something to do with CO2.

    2. Re models I was speaking as a general rule: if your spreadsheet/model is designed to calculate oil company finances, it’s not going to solve Fermat’s Last Theorem. Models are limited to their inputs and constraints.

    3. Loop to 1.

  356. Richard Sharpe says:

    So, I am trying to understand how absorption of photons by CO2 molecules in the air can have a positive feedback effect on the temperature of the atmosphere. That is, I am trying to understand the mechanism.

    I can understand that there are a number of photon wavelengths that are close to the energies associated with rotational and vibrational modes of the CO2 molecule, but what I wonder is:

    1. Can an excited CO2 molecule transfer that energy to an O2, N2 or H2O molecule as simple velocity during a collision or must the energy be transferred as an excitation level of the molecules it collides with? Ie, how is the energy transferred to other molecules in the atmosphere and thus raise the overall energy of the atmosphere.

    2. Are there preferential transfer paths, say with H2O that might then result in H2O rinsing higher in the atmosphere and then releasing that energy by radiation when condensing into water?

    That’s all I can think of at the moment. I can understand that at the densities near the surface, CO2 molecules will collide with other molecules before they have a chance to re-radiate the energy they absorbed … but what is the probability they will indeed transfer that energy during a collision?

  357. Ric Werme says:

    M. Simon (14:54:22) :

    I’m wondering why the effects of CO2 have yet to be corrected for the warming caused by the PDO.

    I’d like to get at least a couple more years of data before seeing people do that, and use the satellite temperature record. Weather is just too noisy, and we only have about 18 months of the recent negative PDO and 360 months of positive PDO, I think it would be tough to come up with good scaling coefficients that will stand up over time. I am going to lean on Joe D’Aleo for updates to the step before, his graphs showing the correlation between CO2 and temp, PDO and temp, and PDO+AMO and temp. His last set had the best correlation. Some people like to use SST 3.4, that could be mixed in too I suppose. I’m giving a talk in a couple weeks on the state of the climate and want those graphs.

    See http://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/01/25/warming-trend-pdo-and-solar-correlate-better-than-co2/ for last year’s graphs. Most of them go back to 1900.

  358. Steven Hill says:

    Does anyone know what the CO2 levels should be? What is the CO2 neutral point without any man produced CO2 (not counting exhaling)?

    I know this cannot be answered but I expect that Hansen and Gore have a number in their models.

  359. old construction worker says:

    I understand the Gore effect hit Washington DC today!

  360. E.M.Smith says:

    Steve M. (06:28:05) :
    OT, maybe: From the MET office website regarding HARCRUT3:
    “We have recently changed the way that the smoothed time series of data were calculated. Data for 2008 were being used in the smoothing process [...] it looked as though smoothed global average temperatures had dropped markedly in recent years, which is misleading.”
    Am I missing something? They have to change their process because January 2008 was “unusually cool.” And I thought HARCRUT might have better data than GISS.

    Oh great. Another data source that looks like it uses the recent past to rewrite the distant past. Gak! Can’t any of these folks figure out that it’s a bad idea to change the past?

    OK, does anyone have access to the HADCRUT source code? Or does anyone know if they have published a description saying they do something like GISS does (i.e. the ‘reference station method’ and /or adjusting for UHI using some kind of ‘recent 10 years’ adjustment?

    It is very easy to confound ‘smoothing’ with ‘creating’…

    And I do find it suspicious that they only cared about the effect of the most recent data when it turned cold… sounds to me like they had a trend acceleration method that they were happy with when the trend was up, but now… (No, I’m not asserting malice, I’m asserting that folks don’t search for what’s wrong when they like the answer…)

  361. Pamela Gray says:

    That liberal news source, MSNBC was panning Gore’s poor timing in that every time he has testified, it has been damned cold outside the nation’s government doors. Obama himself gave a nod to the decidedly unwarming like cold weather in our nation’s capital. Good ol’ plain Jane Weather has trumped Gore, Hansen, AGW, the Sun, and this debate. Not to be politically incorrect, but shall we call a spade a spade here? Global warming—and cooling—is weather, not climate.

  362. Glenn says:

    No need to worry about there being a consensus, apparently there is a need for more climate modelling:

    “not less than $140,000,000 shall be available for climate data modeling.”

    http://blog.heritage.org/2009/01/26/stimulus-plan-non-existent-unemployed-climate-modelers-get-140-million/

    We’re all gunna die.

  363. Adam Sullivan says:

    Steven Hill -

    I am not sure you would get a consensus on what “normal” is, but the Vostock ice cores are graphed here. The commonly referenced Mauna Loa readings are certainly higher, but Mauna Loa is closer to the equator than the south pole, where Vostok is so they don’t compare 1:1.

  364. Edward says:

    Talk about piling on check out this recent post at Jennifer Marohasy’s site:

    “Today, a founder of the International Journal of Forecasting, Journal of Forecasting, International Institute of Forecasters, and International Symposium on Forecasting, and the author of Long-range Forecasting (1978, 1985), the Principles of Forecasting Handbook, and over 70 papers on forecasting, Dr J. Scott Armstrong, tabled a statement declaring that the forecasting process used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) lacks a scientific basis. [2]

    He walks through 8 reasons why GCM and the IPCC “forecasts” violate statistical principles and lack a scientific basis.

    Link at: http://jennifermarohasy.com/blog/2009/01/no-scientific-forecasts-to-support-global-warming/#more-4115

  365. Adam Sullivan says:

    Has anyone ever suggested an open source climate model?

    The idea would be to get both skeptics and non-skeptics contributing source code to a model whose only objective is to be predictive on a back tested basis. Harvest idle time on various servers / pcs much like the SETI folks. The biggest challenge would be coming up with an architecture that allows folks to “snap on” and “snap off” code segments intended to simulate different phenomena. Any thoughts?

  366. DaveE says:

    psi (12:11:07) :

    I consider myself conservative but have to agree as I think any thinking person must.

    Efficiency is a prime consideration in all things, particularly use of energy, but diving headlong into uncharted territory is in my view suicide.

    Renewables may be useful in the long term but now are untenable and must be treated with caution.

    Joel Shore (12:22:11) :

    How you can contend that positive feedbacks are not unstable I just cannot understand.

    There is one plus however…

    This positive feedback only works in the upwards direction.

    Explain that please?

    DaveE.

  367. E.M.Smith says:

    psi (09:04:33) : Michael Smith, E.A. Smith, and Anna V –
    Thanks for your assistance elucidating the (to a layman) obscurities of that quote. I feel the tide is shifting…I am one of those who only a year ago was wholly in the “green” alarmist camp on this issue. I still consider myself green.

    psi, I think the “E.A. Smith” was me, assuming so:

    I’m strongly in favor of taking as much crud out of our environment as possible. I try to use bioDiesel whenever I can get it (and I’ve even made my own sometimes). Am I a green? Used to be, but now I don’t “fit” in the organizations…

    This leaves me with a dilemma: I’m getting the non-OPEC energy sources I want, but for all the wrong reasons. Frankly, if the use of coal to liquids was being promoted (to let us use our 250-400 years of coal to tell OPEC we no longer cared to play…) along with the wind, solar, etc. I’d have my dream scenario on energy.

    But I cannot accept AGW because it is wrong. It will lead to a lot of misallocation of resources and ‘very bad things’. The two I have cited most often are the rocket stoves and education. Even a tiny fraction of the money spent on the AGW fantasy would solve far more real world problems if spent elsewhere. So rest assured, you are in the company of fellow travelers here. Thinking AGW is bunk does not mean you are anti-green. For some of us it is exactly the opposite.

    Sidebar: Rocket Stoves are a trivial way to stop deforestation. They are very cheap. Simply building and teaching folks how to build these would do more to stop wood collection and deforestation that just about anything else. The also would save thousands of ‘woman years’ spent gathering wood.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rocket_stove
    http://www.pyroenergen.com/articles08/eco-rocket-stove.htm

    After women have free time available, education is the thing that correlates most strongly with reduced childbearing. Give each of those women an education and the population problem plummets.

    Cost? A trivial part of the rounding error of the money to be squandered on the AGW movement as it sucks the oxygen from every other green solution… and that is the kind of thing that causes me to put time in against the AGW ‘movement’. Waste is a sin.

  368. Maxx says:

    Americans owe Sen. James Inhofe a great debt of gratitude. He stood alone on this issue for a number of years and endured every kind of ruthless ridicule. Now the tide has turned and scientist are scampering away from the great man-made global warming hoax, attempting to salvage some small part of their credibility. But we need to remember their names because these “scientist” have no credibility. Indeed some of them are the same alarmist that were involved in the global cooling scare of the 1970’s.

    But the battle is not yet won. American taxpayers footed the bill for nearly four billion dollars worth of global warming research last year and lesser amounts going all the way back to the early 1990’s. America’s infrastructure is crumbling, we have bridges falling down, yet all of this money wasted on a scare tactic to assault our pocketbooks and our liberties. Enough all ready ! It’s time for the scientific man-made global warming gravy train to stop. Somebody should have to answer for all of this fraud, all of this waste and the fear it has put into the minds of our children. The whole farrago is despicable beyond belief.

    And yes, hoax is the correct word to describe man-made global warming… another very expensive hoax, brought to us by the U.N., the IPCC and primarily the Democratic party.

  369. DR says:

    Hello Flanagan,
    Perhaps you haven’t heard of these papers? They are ancient history compared to your examples I know, but the crux of the matter is AGW promoters have had this very nagging problem of the earth’s energy budget, still yet unsolved.

    Chen, J., Carlson, B.E. and Del Genio, A.D. 2002. Evidence for strengthening of the tropical general circulation in the 1990s. Science 295: 838-841.

    Hartmann, D.L. 2002. Tropical surprises. Science 295: 811-812.

    McPhaden, M.J. and Zhang, D. 2002. Slowdown of the meridional overturning circulation in the upper Pacific Ocean. Nature 415: 603-608.

    Wielicki, B.A., Wong, T., Allan, R.P., Slingo, A., Kiehl, J.T., Soden, B.J., Gordon, C.T., Miller, A.J., Yang, S.-K., Randall, D.A., Robertson, F., Susskind, J. and Jacobowitz, H. 2002. Evidence for large decadal variability in the tropical mean radiative energy budget. Science 295: 841-844.

    Let us fast forward to Santer et al (Gavin Schmidt) 2005, the ubiquitous “hot spot” :
    http://www.osti.gov/energycitations/servlets/purl/881407-xk2Sdg/881407.PDF
    Amplification of Surface Temperature Trends and Variability in the Tropical Atmosphere

    Ah, yes, the Big Red Dog :)

    Hansen claimed he found “the smoking gun” (just in time for IPCC AR4) in Hansen et al 2005
    Earth’s Energy Imbalance: Confirmation and Implications
    http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/abstract/308/5727/1431
    full version here:
    http://pubs.giss.nasa.gov/docs/2005/2005_Hansen_etal_1.pdf

    Unfortunately for CO2 AGW, the earth is not now absorbing 0.85 +/- 0.15 watts per square meter more energy from the Sun than it is emitting to space. Refer to OHC data since 2003. Oh well, he tried. Interestingly too is his untested assumption (amazing the “peer review” process didn’t question this) the oceans retained heat in such large quantities in just ten years as a direct result of increasing CO2 and “other greenhouse gases”.

    Now, you can present all the “high impact” peer reviewed literature you want warning of impending doom from elevated CO2 levels. You can also tell us of all those premiere scientific bodies that have jumped on board in agreement, but unless those aforementioned mechanisms are not supported by observational evidence, the entire hypothesis of CO2 driven AGW ist kaput, end of story.

    So my challenge to you is to provide empirical evidence to support the idea that a) the tropical troposphere is retaining heat as climate models dictate and b) earth’s energy budget is accounted for according to AGW.

    I know I know, Santer et al 2008, peer reviewed in a “high impact” journal (like crap through a goose) says all is well. But there’s a problem.
    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=4991 which you no doubt have been following.

    One would think the “peer review” process should be more thorough than a bunch of incompetent bloggers who are not climatologists, don’t you agree? Why was Roy Spencer told not to resubmit his paper? Are they afraid of something? Also, who on your side has falsified Miskolczi’s paper? Surely it can’t be that difficult.

  370. henry says:

    Pamela Gray (18:09:14) :

    “That liberal news source, MSNBC was panning Gore’s poor timing in that every time he has testified, it has been damned cold outside the nation’s government doors…”

    Maybe he should have done it the way Hansen did – read the weather report, and give his testimony during a heat wave…

  371. E.M.Smith says:

    Mike Abbott (09:38:52) :
    Dr. Theon says “you could say” he was Mr. Hansen’s supervisor. However, in his original email he also said “I did not have the authority to give him his annual performance evaluation.” That authority defines the supervisor-employee relationship. I think it is a stretch (at the minimum) by Dr. Theon to call himself Hansen’s “supervisor” and a mistake by Marc Marano and Anthony Watts to keep repeating that term.

    There are three valid cases I can think of where someone is a ‘supervisor’ but does not have the authority to give a performance evaluation.

    1) In a matrix organization the project supervisor does not do the review, the staff supervisor does.

    2) An employee not in a matrix organization is ‘loaned’ to another organization for ‘a while’. This can be years.

    3) The group manager does the reviews at one higher level up. (I did this for a while once. Had folks under me who wanted to concentrate on the technical and the only way I could get them to take supervisory duties was to promise that I’d keep doing the reviews if they would take everything else.)

    There is also a fourth, where the employee is a contractor, but I don’t think Hansen was in that group.

    There may be more.

    The ‘bottom line’ is that ‘authority to review’ does not define the supervisor role.

  372. Mike Bryant says:

    Joel,
    As a “screeching mercury monkey”, I feel I should refrain from commenting on evolution… or devolution either.
    Mike

  373. Robert Bateman says:

    An open source climate model would indeed lead to Science as it should be.
    That is a great idea.

    In the meantime, the AlGore effect is rather striking, is it not?
    It’s like somebody is trying to say “Oh no you don’t. Man is not the boss of climate”.
    Speaking of which, how much do the readers here pay attention to weather altering experiments? The ones where hurricanes were once seeded and currently the USFS runs to ‘enhance’ precipitation.

  374. I have to admit, I am a little confused. This paper http://arxiv.org/abs/0707.1161 argues that there is no greenhouse gas effect at all. I readily admit that I am not a scientist, and I did not check their math, but I found their argument convincing. That is to say, that it is impossible for gasses like carbon dioxide to contribute any kind of warming to the earth, at all. That the theory of reflected heat radiation from the ground to the air, and back to the ground is a pure fiction.

    Here’s my confusion: This paper was published 2 years ago. To my knowledge it has not been scientifically refuted by other physicists. Why then, are we still talking about greenhouse gasses, in any capacity, at all?

  375. TLM says:

    Geez. Thank God this Al Gore guy was never elected president.

  376. E.M.Smith says:

    John Galt (09:52:30) :
    One method is to carefully review the inputs and source code of the models, but this still doesn’t tell us if the calculations are correct.

    However it can show if assumptions are made that are clearly in violation of reality. The basis can be falsified. That is what I’m doing now in my source code review. So far I’ve found two significant issues (‘reference station method’ uses bad reference stations & ‘old data modified based on present variation’ i.e. recent TOB and Eq. changes are propagated into an indefinite past.) Since both of these are clearly creating error, we know that the modeled changes are not valid.

    Another method is to “backcast” the historical climate, but that still doesn’t tell us whether the model is full of fudge factors and magic numbers that appear to make the model work for that time period, or whether the model actually got it right.

    In stock trading (and elsewhere I think) this error is called ‘data modeling’. You have the historic data and keep changing your model until it predicts a short period. You leap to the conclusion you’ve discovered The Truth. Then something shows up that was not in the base data you used and your ‘model’ fails… “Quants” regularly fall on their sword on this one. See the present melt down and failure of many hedge funds, for example…

  377. Mike Bryant says:

    James Hastings-Trew (19:11:11) :
    Perhaps there should be more physicists involved in the debate.

  378. G Alston says:

    Joel Shore — …at the end of the day the main thing that the models are doing is giving us an estimate of the climate sensitivity to the known forcing due to CO2.

    Start of the day –

    “We know CO2 has a warming effect.”

    “How much?”

    “We’re not sure. We’ll model it.”

    So, at the end of the day, models designed to look at the effects of CO2 are showing that CO2 has an effect. Astonishing.

    …one of the few scientifically-reputable AGW skeptics (e.g., with a significant publication record in the field)…

    A credentialism nightmare come to life: a practicing [insert job title here]isn’t reputable enough to be allowed a skeptical opinion on some aspect of his/her field because s/he hasn’t written a paper on it. (And here I already used the word “astonishing.”)

  379. Robert says:

    Re: James Hastings-Trew (19:11:11) :

    This is an example of how there remains some question about the most basic physics. It is an enormously complex physics problem which, for example, dwarfs the complexity in building a high fidelity model of a nuclear explosion.

  380. Robert says:

    I’ll follow up to my own post. Is there experimental verification of the simplest laboratory situation – a well mixed column of atmospheric gases with no cloud cover and no wind? How about a rigorous simulation? Is it available on line?

  381. E.M.Smith says:

    Bill D (13:29:07) : He has a very small number of hardly cited publications. He may have had a distinquished career as an administrator, but he was hardly involved in scientific research of any kind.

    Not all research is published. Ask anyone who works on ‘black projects’ or things that give a company competitive advantage. Also, my workgroup got 4 patents. My name is on none of them, even though 3 of them were directly my ideas. Why? Didn’t want to take the patent bonus from my folks and don’t need the ego boost. Your ruler is a broken one…

  382. George M says:

    E. M. Smith:

    Your fourth point is in fact the case. I keep pointing out that Hansen is NOT a NASA employee. He works for Columbia University. On a BIG NASA contract. And thus………………..

  383. Robc (16:29:12) :
    there is as you are aware a clear correlation between sunspots and temperature
    No, there is not. It is claimed that there is [different thing]. It is also claimed that ‘the planet is in grave danger’. Claiming something doesn’t make that something. If anything, the solar variations may account for 0.1 degree or less, which is not what I would call a major driver.

  384. E.M.Smith says:

    David Ben-Ariel (13:39:42) :
    After the gospel of man-made global warming is sufficiently debunked, what will be the new messianic mission to pursue and promote?

    A really good way to stop glaciers? 8-)

  385. Robert says:

    I’ll follow up again: Google is my friend. Barrett Bellamy has a great overview of the mechanism. Just reading through this provides a flavor of how difficult a modeling problem that we face to rigorously model the impact of increased CO2 on the planet’s heat budget.
    http://www.barrettbellamyclimate.com/page5.htm
    Lots of other informative pages on this site. The introductory page identifies Dr. Barrett as a skeptic, but I did not pick up on that from the informative descriptions of the underlying science on the site. His co-author, Dr. Bellamy, may well be an AGW proponent.

  386. J. Peden says:

    James Hastings-Trew (19:11:11) :

    Here’s my confusion: This paper was published 2 years ago. To my knowledge it has not been scientifically refuted by other physicists. Why then, are we still talking about greenhouse gasses, in any capacity, at all?

    Regarding “peer review”, in general:

    1] The fact that a “peer reviewed” paper has not been refuted does not make it true. Too many papers are published – and from all over the place – for example, and quite often no one feels the need to refute the findings of a certain paper, or even read it.

    2] Peer Reviewers can publish anything they want to, for whatever reason. Take that one to the bank!

    Therefore,

    3] “Peer Review” does not deliver the “given truth” – another myth played upon by the AGW proponents. Keep that one very close.

  387. Scavenger says:

    Canadians have had the coldest winter in memory. In my 52 years of existence I cannot remember such a bone chilling and long miserable winter.
    It is pathetic that these greenies can spew so much of their propaganda at us concerning their nonsense.
    Everyone I talk to here hates the Green [snip], the blind and brainwashed Gore disciples, the pathetic way the environmentalists forever hold thier GW conferences in warm cities, so as not to make thier silliness to obvious to the rest of the watching world.
    I wish the [snip] would come to Canada in the middle of winter, but that would be an “inconvenient truth” for these losers.

    [Now, now, calm down, these things take time . . . ~ Evan]

  388. E.M.Smith says:

    Simon Evans (13:58:59) :

    Leif Svalgaard (10:57:01) that is your opinion, and you are certainly free to have that opinion, wrong-headed as it is.

    I think you should present your ‘evidence’ rather than resorting to ad homs

    Simon, I think if you look closely: Leif says that the ‘opinion’ is wrong-headed, not the person. That is, by definition, not an ad hominem since no person is attacked.

    Leif has been very though in providing convincing evidence (on many threads… frankly I wonder how he has the patience) and while he can be a bit brusque at times, his evidence has always been well researched.

    Yes, he forces you to admit that the connection between sun variance and weather variance, even 30 year weather variance, is not proven; and that there are other perfectly capable explanations (such as oscillations of ocean state) and while that may dampen enthusiasm for ‘the sun did it’ it is a valuable service.

    I have clearly advocated for a model that explains a way in which ‘the sun did it’ could be possible (O3 and GCR), and as long as I am careful to state that it is only a hypothesis of a possible explanation and subject to testing, Leif quite correctly lets it be. When I have asserted that which is not proven to be, such as any claim that the sun is known to be the 30 or 200 year weather driver, he correctly pulls my chain. Deservedly so…

    So I would just caution: Don’t toss pebbles at the Solar Cop… ;-)

    From kohai on the floor …

  389. E.M.Smith (21:00:34) :
    <that is your opinion, and you are certainly free to have that opinion, wrong-headed as it is.
    Bruce Cobb said that. I would never have. But the rest of your post is a fair assessment of my posting record. Thanks.

  390. J. Peden (20:54:46) :
    1] The fact that a “peer reviewed” paper has not been refuted does not make it true. Too many papers are published – and from all over the place – for example, and quite often no one feels the need to refute the findings of a certain paper, or even read it.
    Indeed, that is the way it is: poor papers are just ignored and forgotten. Papers that other people are trying to refute usually are on to something, so an attempt at refusal may be a sort of ‘validation’ of the paper.

  391. E.M.Smith says:

    Smokey (16:26:24) : [Photoshopped from Hell, MI]

    I want one!

  392. Jeff Alberts says:

    old construction worker (17:47:19) :

    I understand the Gore effect hit Washington DC today!

    I’m flying out there next week, will be right next to the White House too, lol. Supposed to be fairly warm, high 30s for daytime temps. But, we’ll have to see if a forecast that far out has any validity.

  393. vstarrider says:

    Follow the money and you will find the cause. Hansen bet his reputation and his wallet on his models. The longer this farce was carried out the richer he and his ilk became. Every time Algore opened his mouth more and more money was sent Hansen’s was to continue his flawed research. Algore himself is lining his pockets with global warming money. He has large investments in companies that play the middle man in the sale of carbon credits. Follow the money, and you will find the cause. This is indeed good news. Now if we can just get the left to listen before they ruin the economy in the name of global warming.

  394. anna v says:

    James Hastings-Trew (19:11:11) :

    Here’s my confusion: This paper was published 2 years ago. To my knowledge it has not been scientifically refuted by other physicists. Why then, are we still talking about greenhouse gasses, in any capacity, at all?.

    There is nothing to refute in the statement that the “greenhouse” designation of the property of some gases to increase the heat capacity of the atmosphere is a misnomer. This is accepted even by the most strident AGW supporters.
    Their physics statements are solidly based on thermodynamics, too.

    From then on everything is models, and refutation of models can only come from data, which is happening. If the data invalidates the models, it means that the physics principles have been used wrongly within them, but it is hard to pin point exactly what, within the models, there is such a confusion of physics in the assumptions they are built on: thermodynamics, mechanics, statistical mechanics and quantum statistical mechanics are in there in a pot pourri according to the taste of the modeller. The paper you quote uses purely thermodynamics to refute the existence of the “green house effect”.

    It has been attacked in the blogs, see Real Climate, because of course there is an effect of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere ( think deserts at night, how cold they get without the humidity “cover”), but not on the physics grounds it stands on (thermodynamics) so nobody has written up a refuting paper on par with it.

  395. E.M.Smith says:

    Adam Sullivan (18:24:44) :
    Has anyone ever suggested an open source climate model?

    Since I’m slogging through GISStemp I’d be happy to provide a review of what they do (as I finish each part!), including file format, source code commentary, process commentary, etc. It’s about 6000 lines or code and comments all told, and much of that is duplicate file, variable, etc. declarations; and lines that recompile every FORTRAN program prior to use, then delete it afterwards.

    STEP0 521
    STEP1 1050 (python)
    STEP2 1319
    STEP3 1560
    STEP4_5 1631

    total 6081

    I would suggest a central database that has the raw temp data plus variations for ‘accepted’ corrections. (TOB, Eq.). The ‘snap on’ would be a report writer function that lets you ask: Given the data set I’ve chosen and this process, what happens? That ought to be something that could be distributed over a COW (Collection Of Workstatons).

    Will program for beer ;-)

  396. anna v says:

    p.s. in my anna v (21:44:24) : in this thread I expand on the mistaken methodology of GCModels which are covered on points 14 and 15 in their physics summary ( http://arxiv.org/abs/0707.1161 )

    btw, I am a physicist

  397. E.M.Smith says:

    George M (20:22:36) : Your fourth point is in fact the case. I keep pointing out that Hansen is NOT a NASA employee. He works for Columbia University. On a BIG NASA contract. And thus………………..

    Oh D**m and thanks to IRS rules for contractors you can’t specify a particular person be on a contract (by name) without violating one of the (26 last time I cared) rules for ‘independence’ in a contractor … So as long as Columbia gets the contract he’s protected and as long as his comments do not divulge NASA work related embargoed information he can talk all he wants. As long as when he’s at work he does what is assigned, he’s protected.

    I now have great sympathy for Dr. Theon. Stuck with someone playing on the reputation of NASA but not a thing he can do to stop it. So he ‘soldiered on’. At least now he can ‘distance himself’ from the AGW mess as it hits the fan.

  398. Graeme Rodaughan says:

    Maybe “Climate” is a myth.

    What we actually have is weather, you can easily access weather, just step outside your front door…

    I can’t point to climate, can’t see it, touch it, hear it, taste it, or smell it…

    Climate seems to be rather abstract.

    Perhaps too abstract to spend time and money worrying about it.

    Now avoiding a flood, forest fire, storm surge, wind damage, water and food shortages etc… those are real problems that have real effects that could be mitigated by investment into more robust, cost-effective energy, water supply, extreme weather monitoring and mitigation systems.

    Just a thought.

  399. Manfred says:

    Joel Shore (12:05:30) :

    “The actual forcings relative to those in Hansen’s scenarios fall a little below his middle scenario, Scenario B. And, the temperature has generally followed that scenario…There has been some deviation below it in the last few years but I don’t think the difference is statistically-significant.”

    I cannot folow this comment. Temperatures compared to satellite data since 1990 were actually well beyond Hansens Scenario C, that implied drastic greenhouse gas reductions. His prediction was completely false.
    http://www.climate-skeptic.com/2008/06/gret-moments-in.html

    Maybe you compared Hansens’s prediction with Hansen’s own GISS temperature data.
    Following Steve McIntyre, this dataset is not reliable, as – among many other issues – the so called “corrections” are not plausible. For example, in this dataset about as many temperatures were “corrected” upward as downward, what is complete nonsense, because a proper inclusion of UHI would require many more downward “corrections”.

    Your statement also completely misses the effect of ocean currents and the string of many El Nino events during the observation time. The temperature increase due to the El Ninos should be removed from the data so that trend should be even further below Scenario C.

  400. Flanagan says:

    DR:

    Is it about the “absence” of hot spot in the tropics? First, as you say, there’s still debate about it, given the high variability of UAH and RSS data. Second, any type of warming (not only CO2- and H20-based greenhouse effect) should produce a hot spot, even warming due to the sun. Go check this model results:
    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/efficacy/
    and this disucssion in RC
    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2007/12/tropical-troposphere-trends/

    As we know the earth temperature has been going up that means that IF there’s no hot spot, it’s because there’s something we don’t understand about the tropics. BTW, the rest of the planet is doing “as predicted” (with all standard deviations included).

  401. Flanagan says:

    James Hastings-Trew:

    this paper has actually never been published in a peer-reviewed journal. ArXiv is a place where anyone can post papers. In my opinion, their math is in fact pretty bad, as discussed by Smith: http://arxiv.org/pdf/0802.4324 Go check and make your own idea…

  402. Phil. says:

    James Hastings-Trew (19:11:11) :
    I have to admit, I am a little confused. This paper http://arxiv.org/abs/0707.1161 argues that there is no greenhouse gas effect at all. I readily admit that I am not a scientist, and I did not check their math, but I found their argument convincing. That is to say, that it is impossible for gasses like carbon dioxide to contribute any kind of warming to the earth, at all. That the theory of reflected heat radiation from the ground to the air, and back to the ground is a pure fiction.

    Here’s my confusion: This paper was published 2 years ago. To my knowledge it has not been scientifically refuted by other physicists. Why then, are we still talking about greenhouse gasses, in any capacity, at all?

    It was refuted by many when it first came out, basically it’s junk and not worth the time (it’s also ridiculously long).

  403. VG says:

    where all all those guys/gals who posted that Dr J Theon was an hoax ect? Well now you have the correspondence (above) between the parties and it is genuine. You should be ashamed of yourselves this does definitely not help your cause

  404. raymccullie says:

    Two things strike me as obvious:

    One;

    Everyone knows their boss is always right and never has any personal grudge against someone he/she doesn’t like.

    Two;

    Established and respected scientists have never, ever, in the history of science, been wrong about a new idea.

    Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to go talk to some people about this “round” earth idea, it sure looks flat to me.

  405. technofemme says:

    To : VG
    Why should we be ashamed of ourselves ?

  406. Chris Schoneveld says:

    Manfred (23:20:54) : “Your statement also completely misses the effect of ocean currents and the string of many El Nino events during the observation time. The temperature increase due to the El Ninos should be removed from the data so that trend should be even further below Scenario C.”

    Manfred, why would you want to remove an essential mechanism that controls global surface temperatures like El Nino or other ocean oscillations from the data? Do you also suggest to remove the effect of the sun and the clouds from the data? They are ALL integral parts of our climate system!!

  407. John A. Davison says:

    It is the melting of polar and continental ice that is CAUSING the cooling. The energy required (80 cal/gm) to convert ice at 0 deg. C to water comes from the atmosphere and the sea. The same can be said for the latent heat of vaporization (540cal/gm) and the latent heat of sublimation, the sum of the two or about 620 cal/gm. This cooling will continue until a “tippng point” is reached when melting slows. At that time a rapid rise in temperatue will begin. It is all nothing but an expression of the physical chemistry of water and its various states. I realize this is not a popular position here but I hope I will be allowed to present it.

    Reply: This site does not censor opposing comments like many pro-AGW sites do. Differing points of view are always welcomed as long as they are reasonably polite and respectful. ~ dbstealey, mod.

  408. Mamfred says:

    Hansen’s projections did not include ocean currents, the sun or clouds.
    He only projected the effect of the greenhouse gases

    The climate of course is a sum of everything. If you try to verify or falsify Hansen’s projection, you need to remove the major non-greenhouse gas drivers, such as ocean currents and the warming effect of the much more frequent El Ninos compared with La Ninas during the last 20 years.

  409. tmtisfree says:

    Flanagan:

    It does not need to be peer reviewed. Gerlich is not presenting a theory. He is simply reviewing whether the greenhouse theories conform with the amply peer-reviewed laws of physics.

  410. tmtisfree says:

    That people have a blind belief in something not demonstrable, one calls that faith.
    That people stand on irrational belief in face of the experimental, physical, mathematical evidences, one calls that cognitive dissonance (Festinger, 1957). This phenomenon has been recently demonstrated on capucin monkeys (Egan, 2007).

    Related, below is what J. Sacherman (1997) said:
    American and British history is riddled with examples of valid research and inventions which have been suppressed and derogated by the conventional science community. This has been of great cost to society and to individual scientists. Rather than furthering the pursuit of new scientific frontiers, the structure of British and American scientific institutions leads to conformity and furthers consensus-seeking…

    This is the current situation.

  411. old construction worker says:

    It has been attacked in the blogs, see Real Climate, because of course there is an effect of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere ( think deserts at night, how cold they get without the humidity “cover”), but not on the physics grounds it stands on (thermodynamics) so nobody has written up a refuting paper on par with it.
    ( think deserts at night, how cold they get without the humidity “cover”),

    I did a comparison a few years back between Yuma, Az and Shreveport, La. Both have about a summer time population of 100,000 and are along the same latitude lines. The overnight lows where about the same. It was the day time highs that vary. Yuma was, on average, 15 F degrees hotter during the daylight hours. Of course, Yuma has very low humidity, very little cloud cover and almost no precipitation where as Shreveport has high humidity a lot more cloud cover and a higher precipitation rate.
    So, would this indicate water vapor as a positive or negative feedback to “heat”? Or I could ask whats the difference in climate condition between Yuma and Shreveport?

  412. TonyB says:

    Simon Evans

    I replied to your post to Smokey re Ernsy Beck as follows;

    “I’m afraid your memory is faulty. Becks data is taken from surviving measurements made by hundreds of scientists- several of them nobel winners.”

    To which you replied;

    “Be assured that I have no real issue with the accuracy of the measurements taken – my scepticism is to do with the representativeness of what was being measured (and, frankly, with the plausibilty of the results in terms of Co2 flux). I’ll try to write some more tomorrow if it’s of interest, but for now it’s late here! :-)”

    Just placing a marker here to continue our discussion as so many other comments have been posted and its very easy to lose trackl! I am British too so hopefully might catch up with you this evening.

    TonyB

  413. John Philip says:

    E. M. Smith While I don’t know the particular ‘presenter’ you are talking about, I do know that the guys who make it to TV often have rather good credentials (you know, things like PhD in botany or agronomy). So what are this guys credentials? (Not your ad-hom slur, his actual bio.)

    Last year, Morano released a list of 400 individuals who he described as ‘prominent scientists’ who made AGW-sceptical statements during 2007. In fact once the non-sceptics, duplicates, economists, filmmakers, politicians etc were removed there were maybe 30-40 scientists. I let others decide on their ‘prominence’.

    The gardener was UK TV presenter and popular novelist Alan Titchmarsh, best known for presenting the weekly ‘Gardener’s World’ on the BBC. Morano included him because he made some remarks in a newspaper article about there being more air pollution back in his childhood days. Titchmarsh is a thoroughly decent and deservedly popular guy, but prominent scientist he surely ain’t.

    None of those included were informed or asked for consent, which lead to …

    Take me off your list of 400 (Prominent) Scientists that dispute Man-Made Global warming claims. I’ve never made any claims that debunk the “Consensus”.

    You quoted a newspaper article that’s main focus was scoring the accuracy of local weathermen. Hardly Scientific…yet I’m guessing some of your other sources pale in comparison in terms of credibility. You also didn’t ask for my permission to use these statements. That’s not a very respectable way of doing “research”.

    We have climatic temperatures rising, greenhouse gas concentrations rising, any scientist that ignores this information because of a “lack of proof” is just irresponsible.

    from George Waldenberger.

    Hope this answers the question.

  414. MartinGAtkins says:

    Joel Shore (11:54:25)

    Note that positive feedbacks do not necessarily lead to instability as you imply. They can just lead to magnification if the feedback are positive but not too strongly positive. Mathematically, the distinction is between converging and diverging infinite series. For example, if feedbacks add an additional half-a-degree warming to any 1 C of warming, then you get an infiinite series like 1 + 1/2 + 1/4 + 1/8 + …, which does not diverge but rather converges to the value of 2.

    The theory of the magic molecule. Presumably it just sits there radiating back and forth. Gases conform to the same laws as fluids when heated and under pressure from gravity. They expand and having the same mass but more volume percolate upwards.

    Although the initial response is feed back, it’s transient in the real world and leads to cooling due to the molecule being replaced by a less active and more receptive molecule, ad infinitum.

  415. Simon Evans says:

    E.M.Smith (21:00:34) :

    Simon Evans (13:58:59) :

    ” Leif Svalgaard (10:57:01) that is your opinion, and you are certainly free to have that opinion, wrong-headed as it is.

    I think you should present your ‘evidence’ rather than resorting to ad homs”

    Simon, I think if you look closely: Leif says that the ‘opinion’ is wrong-headed, not the person. That is, by definition, not an ad hominem since no person is attacked.

    I was addressing Bruce Cobb, who’d made some remark about Leif’s ego, so you’ve misunderstood me there! I agree with all that you said regarding Leif’s remarkable contribution.

  416. Joel Shore says:

    tmtisfree says:

    It does not need to be peer reviewed. Gerlich is not presenting a theory. He is simply reviewing whether the greenhouse theories conform with the amply peer-reviewed laws of physics.

    That makes no sense at all. When a paper claims that an effect that has been studied for over 100 years is fictional and violates a basic law of physics, then it sure as heck has to be peer reviewed. And, by the way, I can tell you as a physicist that the paper is utterly ridiculous.

    As noted by Flanagan, Arthur Smith (who was actually a colleague of mine in physics grad school) wrote an excellent refutation of one of their major claims (that there is no sensible way to define what the average temperature of the planet must be in the absence of an IR-absorbing atmosphere). And, their basic claim regarding the greenhouse effect being a violation of the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics is so easy to refute that a simple example illustrating where they go wrong could be given to first-year physics students!

  417. matt v. says:

    In my opinion the real story in this post is summarized in the few words of

    the retired senior NASA atmospheric scientist, Dr. John S. Theon, the former supervisor of James Hansen, who declared that “climate models are useless.” “My own belief concerning anthropogenic climate change is that the models do not realistically simulate the climate system because there are many very important sub-grid scale processes that the models either replicate poorly or completely omit,” Theon explained.
    “Furthermore, some scientists have manipulated the observed data to justify their model results.
    In doing so, they neither explain what they have modified in the observations, nor explain how they did it. They have resisted making their work transparent so that it can be replicated independently by other scientists.
    This is clearly contrary to how science should be done.
    Thus there is no rational justification for using climate model forecasts to determine public policy,” he added.

    Yet this exactly what IPCC, Hansen and Gore seem to be doing in urging public policy based on uproven models to Congress and the rest of the world.

  418. Allan M says:

    Can anyone tell me how there can be a positive feedback in a passive system? There is no extra energy input. Seems like a perpetual motion machine to me.

  419. allister duncan says:

    If I understand John Theon’s quote correctly, “I was, in effect, Hansen’s supervisor because I had to justify his funding, allocate his resources, and evaluate his results,” he’s saying he signed off Hansen’s budget for work he believes was “useless”. I can’t understand why he allocated the money and justified the funding.

    I know if I signed off on a budget claim I knew to be garbage, I’d be fired at best, prosecuted for fraud at worst.

  420. old construction worker (02:47:56) :
    So, would this indicate water vapor as a positive or negative feedback to “heat”? Or I could ask whats the difference in climate condition between Yuma and Shreveport?

    Well, at a guess, the major difference would be proximity to a large body of water. As a child I was taught in geography class that large bodies of water have a moderating effect on local weather, because they act as a heat sink/resevoir. They cool the days, and warm the nights. Deserts are, generally, far from large bodies of water. Without a large body of water nearby acting as a heat sink and cooling the surroundings, and with reduced cloud cover, it gets very hot during the day. Any heat absorbed by the ground is immediately radiated into space at night, without a nearby large body of water warming the surroundings.

    The air is also such a heat sink/resevoir, like water, but with less thermal capacity because of the lower density. Perhaps humidity in the air is a factor in how “able” air is able to retain/radiate heat. This, in my mind, is an explanation for why the moon is colder than the earth – no water + no air + high albedo = poor heat retention.

    But that was my understand of the issue from grade school geography. Not to mention convection effects circulating the atmosphere and transporting the heat from the ground to the upper atmosphere, etc.

    Maybe a physicist can set me straight on this one – if you have a gas in the atmosphere that reflects long wave radiation from the ground, won’t this effect be balanced out by the fact that it will also be reflecting long wave radiation from the sun back into space? Won’t these two terms balance out to null? Explain it to me in ways my simple mind can grasp. :)

  421. Joel Shore says:

    Manfred says:

    I cannot folow this comment. Temperatures compared to satellite data since 1990 were actually well beyond Hansens Scenario C, that implied drastic greenhouse gas reductions. His prediction was completely false.
    http://www.climate-skeptic.com/2008/06/gret-moments-in.html

    Maybe you compared Hansens’s prediction with Hansen’s own GISS temperature data.

    There are several problems with comparing to UAH’s satellite data:

    (1) Hansen’s prediction was for surface observations, not the lower tropospheric temps derived from the satellites.

    (2) One has to align the data correctly. It is not clear how that cite that you gave chose to align it.

    (3) It is not GISTEMP which is an outlier in the trends. It is UAH. GISTEMP and Hadcrut trends agree well over the longer time periods, and the RSS satellite analysis trend also agrees well with them (although since it is measuring a somewhat different thing, this may be partly fortuitous).

    (4) Despite your claims, there is no justification for trying to correct for El Ninos and such. And, your statement “Hansen’s projections did not include ocean currents, the sun or clouds” is not correct (although the inclusion of these things was probably cruder at that time than it is today).

    A better comparison between Hansen’s predictions and the reality is given here: http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2007/05/hansens-1988-projections/langswitch_lang/in

  422. matt v. says:

    scavenger

    I agree with you.

    We seem to be headed for the same cool climate [ and possibly for the next 30 years ]that existed in the period of 1944-1976 due to upcoming similar ocean temperature cycles like PDO , AMO and ENSO. During the past cool cycle of 1944-1976, some Canadian regions saw a drop or departure from the long term trends of as much as 5.8 degrees C. Of the 11 coldest winters nationally 1948 to 2005, 10 were in this same past period. Here are just some cold temperatures records set during this past cool cycle. These are cities right across Canada.

    SNAG, YUKON 1947 -81.4F [CANADA’S COLDEST]
    WINNIPEG, MANITOBA 1966 – 45 F
    LONDON, ONTARIO 1970 -31.7 F
    MONTREAL, QUEBEC 1957 -37.8 F
    QUEBEC CITY, QUEBEC 1962 -36.1 F
    VANCOUVER, BC. 1950 -17.8 F

    Some of this cold weather creeps into the US as well .The coldest US continental temperature of -70 F was in Montana in 1954, during the same 1944-1976 period.

    So the next cooling trend has already started. Already in 2008/2009 new cold records have been set in Saskatoon [wind chills of -50C] and in the opposite side of Canada, Edmunston, New Brunswick [-47C.]

  423. Robert says:

    “I know if I signed off on a budget claim I knew to be garbage, I’d be fired at best, prosecuted for fraud at worst.”

    Not quite. Effective organizational dynamics dictate that we support decisions with which we disagree but are beyond our ability to influence. In this case, Dr. Theon’s customer (or superior) most likely wanted this work funded and executed. So he has a choice – quit or get it funded. Since this was a small part of his overall responsibility, it only seems to be a big deal in retrospect. At the time it was just one of many responsibilities.

    I know that there are a lot of passive aggressive folks out there that will try to sabotage or incessantly whine about efforts that they do not like, but in the long run, that it not helpful. If possible, state your disagreement and then move on, doing your part to make the organization a success.

  424. Robert says:

    “Can anyone tell me how there can be a positive feedback in a passive system? There is no extra energy input. Seems like a perpetual motion machine to me.”

    In the AGW CO2 forcing case, there is extra energy. The hypothesis is that the extra heat retained by the greenhouse effect of CO2 has an impact on the water vapor cycle and thus enhances the greenhouse effect of the water vapor. The idea is that for a given increase in CO2, the system stabilizes at a higher temperature (or retained heat or energy content) then would be accounted for just by the effect of the increased CO2. This is the bit that is most controversial about the CO2 forcing theory.

    However, as indicated in previous posts, the physics of the greenhouse effect of CO2 in our heterogeneous atmosphere is enormously complex. So while the basic temperature effect of increased CO2 is generally accepted, it is by no means proven.

  425. John Galt says:

    E.M.Smith (22:21:14) :

    Adam Sullivan (18:24:44) :
    Has anyone ever suggested an open source climate model?

    Since I’m slogging through GISStemp I’d be happy to provide a review of what they do (as I finish each part!), including file format, source code commentary, process commentary, etc. It’s about 6000 lines or code and comments all told, and much of that is duplicate file, variable, etc. declarations; and lines that recompile every FORTRAN program prior to use, then delete it afterwards.

    STEP0 521
    STEP1 1050 (python)
    STEP2 1319
    STEP3 1560
    STEP4_5 1631

    total 6081

    I would suggest a central database that has the raw temp data plus variations for ‘accepted’ corrections. (TOB, Eq.). The ’snap on’ would be a report writer function that lets you ask: Given the data set I’ve chosen and this process, what happens? That ought to be something that could be distributed over a COW (Collection Of Workstatons).

    Will program for beer ;-)

    How is it that you are working on the GISSTemp source code? Is it posted on the internet?

  426. allister duncan says:

    “Effective organizational dynamics dictate that we support decisions with which we disagree but are beyond our ability to influence.”

    I see that, but John Theon didn’t just “influence” Hansen’s work, he signed off on Hansen’s budget. It’s his management decision. If I was given responsibility for spending taxpayers money and I signed off on a fraudulent claim because of pressure from my boss, I don’t think a defense of “The boss made me do it, I just wanted to keep my job” would work too well in court. If I did it, I’d sure want to keep quiet about it.

  427. John Galt says:

    E.M.Smith (19:38:03) :

    John Galt (09:52:30) :
    One method is to carefully review the inputs and source code of the models, but this still doesn’t tell us if the calculations are correct.

    However it can show if assumptions are made that are clearly in violation of reality. The basis can be falsified. That is what I’m doing now in my source code review. So far I’ve found two significant issues (’reference station method’ uses bad reference stations & ‘old data modified based on present variation’ i.e. recent TOB and Eq. changes are propagated into an indefinite past.) Since both of these are clearly creating error, we know that the modeled changes are not valid.

    Another method is to “backcast” the historical climate, but that still doesn’t tell us whether the model is full of fudge factors and magic numbers that appear to make the model work for that time period, or whether the model actually got it right.

    In stock trading (and elsewhere I think) this error is called ‘data modeling’. You have the historic data and keep changing your model until it predicts a short period. You leap to the conclusion you’ve discovered The Truth. Then something shows up that was not in the base data you used and your ‘model’ fails… “Quants” regularly fall on their sword on this one. See the present melt down and failure of many hedge funds, for example…

    This is exactly my point.

    I often hear claims that the IPCC does validate their models. No, they validate that the models work as designed. The question remains, does the model actually model the real climate? At this time, none do.

  428. PaulHClark says:

    Joel Shore

    You have still not responded to the questions I raised in reply to your post – see
    PaulHClark (09:55:23) 28-01-2009

    It would be good to have a response unless, of course, you feel unable to substantiate your comments?

  429. Allan M says:

    Robert:
    This is the standard (controversial) explanation. However, if water vapour, with its own greenhouse effect, had a +ve feedback it would have driven itself into oblivion by now, without CO2.

    I am looking at a copy of “Langmuir’s Laws of Bad Science,” courtesy of John Brignell, and they seem relevent:

    1 The maximum effect that is observed is produced by a causative agent of barely detectable intensity, and the magnitude of the effect is substantially independent of the intensity of the cause.

    2 The effect is of a magnitude that remains close to the limit of detectability, or many measurements are necessary because of the low level of significance of the results.

    3 There are claims of great accuracy.

    4 Fantastic theories contrary to experience are suggested.

    5 Criticisms are met by ad hoc excuses thought up on the spur of the moment.

    6 Thr ratio of supporters to critics rises to somewhere near 50% aand then falls gradually to zero.

    The AGW crowd seem either to have adopted these as a modus vivendi, or have fallen into the suggested traps.

    ———–
    On another tack, I read a quote from Hansen on here that “Venus would never again have oceans.” (What tears are jerked!) This implies that it once did. What evidence (not speculation) can he have for this?

    Surely he can’t (as an astronomer, not a “climate scientist”) call this science. And yet he feeds the Gore with this sort of rubbish. Now I know personal relationships are as complex as the climate, but doesn’t this show that Hansen has a deep-down contempt for the man, and the rest of us?

    ——-

    In the talk of all this efficiency, which is said to be a good thing, it seems to be lost that in fact Nature is profligate, without any inefficiency. I reckon the belt tighteners don’t like people.

    Can anyone find for me a Malthusian or Eugenicist who believes themselves to be from the “inferior” part of the human race?

  430. Joel Shore says:

    James Hastings – Trew asks:

    Maybe a physicist can set me straight on this one – if you have a gas in the atmosphere that reflects long wave radiation from the ground, won’t this effect be balanced out by the fact that it will also be reflecting long wave radiation from the sun back into space? Won’t these two terms balance out to null? Explain it to me in ways my simple mind can grasp. :)

    First of all, it is more correct to say that it radiates (or “re-radiates”, modulo the pedogigical objections in the link I give below) than to say that it reflects the radiation.

    But, on to your question, yes the radiation occurs in both (actually all) directions; but, no, it doesn’t cancel out because the fact that any gets back to the earth means there is more warming than in the case where you do not have an IR-absorbing atmosphere and none of the energy that the earth radiates into space would get back to the earth.

    Here is a website by a retired meteorology professor who tries to state the greenhouse effect in the simplest and most pedagogically-correct way: http://www.ems.psu.edu/~fraser/Bad/BadGreenhouse.html The statement that he comes up with is simply this: “The surface of the Earth is warmer than it would be in the absence of an atmosphere because it receives energy from two sources: the Sun and the atmosphere.” He is a bit militant about the pedagogy for my taste, but his basic points about the science are correct.

  431. anna v says:

    James Hastings-Trew (06:02:28) :

    Maybe a physicist can set me straight on this one – if you have a gas in the atmosphere that reflects long wave radiation from the ground, won’t this effect be balanced out by the fact that it will also be reflecting long wave radiation from the sun back into space? Won’t these two terms balance out to null? Explain it to me in ways my simple mind can grasp. :)

    Ah,the magic of modeling.

    It is true that part of the sun energy arriving on the surface is in the infrared, and it plays ball with the molecules in the atmosphere. Note “part”.
    Most of the radiation though that hits the ground finally heats it, and heat means infrared radiation ( and convection and evaporation ). There is a lot more infrared radiated from the surface, than comes in from the sun, since a lot of the higher energy light goes into heat. How much? this is where models have to come in, because the sun spectrum is known, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Solar_Spectrum.png but the atmosphere/earth system is guessed at.

    To have a balancing effect as you ask for, the two quantities should be equal, in some sort

  432. Robert says:

    re; allister duncan (06:48:29) :
    “I see that, but John Theon didn’t just “influence” Hansen’s work, he signed off on Hansen’s budget. It’s his management decision.”

    No it is not his management decision. I am in software development. The customer occasionally asks me to build something that I think is dumb, or to build it in a manner with which I disagree. I am fortunate to work in an organization where I can freely express my opinion. However, after the discussion and I am overruled, I create the budget to do the work, get it approved through the chain, sign off on it and do the work. This is the way effective organizations work. I also have to admit that I have frequently been wrong.

    IMHO, to get to the position that you take, you have to believe that Drs. Hansen and Theon worked in an organization that included just the two of them and that Dr. Theon believed that his opinion on this matter was absolutely correct. This is manifestly not the case.

  433. Joel Shore says:

    John Galt says:

    I often hear claims that the IPCC does validate their models. No, they validate that the models work as designed. The question remains, does the model actually model the real climate? At this time, none do.

    Yes, in fact they do. Do they model it perfectly? No. I don’t know of any models of a physical system that model it perfectly in all of its complexity. However, the evidence is they they get enough correct to give credible projections of future climate change in response to a forcing. Besides which we have independent evidence of what the equilibrium climate sensitivity (ECS) is from past events and their effects on the climate (ice ages, volcanic eruptions, …) and these empirical estimates agree with the estimates obtained for the ECS from the climate models.

  434. Mahdi (aka anonymous) says:

    David Ben Ariel,

    “what will be the new messianic mission to pursue and promote?”

    Here’s a possible theory;

    “Barack Obama has only four years to save the world.”
    - James Hansen

    Supercomputer models ‘predicting’ our future is manufactured ‘prophesy’. Got that?

    prophesy ~ verb., 2. To predict.

    From a logical perspective (considering all known and unknown variables) this prophesy is most likely… false.

    Analogy: It is impossible to sail from Halifax to Nassau, without taking course corrections or “fixes” along the way. Regardless how many supercomputers are compensating for set and drift, you will NEVER reach your destination by steering your predetermined course.

    President Obama pledged to “restore science to its rightful place.”

    With the help of supercomputers, the false prophet is predicting our future. Clearly many sheep, worldwide, are following this shepherd.

    prophet ~ noun., 2. The chief spokesperson of a movement or cause.

    Movement? Which powerful movement could that be? The environmental movement? Save the world? Such a “Nobel” cause, isn’t it?

    Our false prophet may have arrived?

    This is just a theory, like AGW. Now go ahead and use your super computers to prove me wrong :)

  435. allister duncan says:

    “The customer occasionally asks me to build something that I think is dumb, or to build it in a manner with which I disagree.”

    It’s not a customer here, it’s the management hierarchy within a single organisation. When I sign off on a company document, it’s my signature and it’s my responsibility. There are people above me, and there are people below me, they all bring their opinions and I take those opinions into account, but at the end of the day I have to take personal responsibility for my own decisions. If I signed off a grossly defective piece of work, I’d be fired.

    “that Dr. Theon believed that his opinion on this matter was absolutely correct. This is manifestly not the case.”

    He’s called Hansen’s work “useless”, and he’s gone on record with that. He seems pretty sure of his opinion to me. If I was in his place, I’d refuse to sign off Hansen’s budget.

  436. E.M.Smith (16:13:41) :
    Come to think of it, if hell is anywhere near here it may well be freezing over.

    Yup, sure is:
    http://www.wunderground.com/cgi-bin/findweather/getForecast?query=hell&wuSelect=WEATHER

    Hell, Michigan

    Hell, Norway also frozen :-)
    http://www.yr.no/place/Norway/Nord-Tr%C3%B8ndelag/Stj%C3%B8rdal/Hell/

  437. Bruce Cobb says:

    Leif Svalgaard (20:30:18) :
    Claiming something doesn’t make that something. If anything, the solar variations may account for 0.1 degree or less, which is not what I would call a major driver.

    Of course, that is what you claim, anyway. As I said, there is plenty of evidence proving otherwise. It’s been given on numerous threads, and will surely be given in the future, where appropriate. Of course, more work needs to be done. But, there is certainly more to solar variation besides TSI, which is where you come up with “0.1 degree or less”.

  438. Joel Shore says:

    PaulHClark says:

    You have still not responded to the questions I raised in reply to your post – see
    PaulHClark (09:55:23) 28-01-2009

    It would be good to have a response unless, of course, you feel unable to substantiate your comments?

    Sorry…It is not always easy for me to keep up with all the questions / responses to my posts.

    You say, “The value of the forcing is even accepted by “skeptical” scientists like Richard Lindzen” – I have 2 specific questions:

    1) What exactly is the value and definition of that forcing to which you refer?

    I am talking about the radiative forcing due to a doubling of CO2 levels in the atmosphere. The accepted value is ~3.7-4.0 W/m^2.

    2) Where exactly can I find reference to Lindzen supporting that forcing in published work?

    Here, for example, is a statement from his testimony before the House of Lords ( http://ff.org/centers/csspp/library/co2weekly/20051201/20051201_04.html ):

    WHAT IS TRULY AGREED

    In order to analyse the meaning of the Prime Minister’s claim, it is helpful to break the claim into its component parts. I won’t suggest that there is no controversy over details, but there are few that would fundamentally disagree with the following.

    2. CO2 is a greenhouse gas and its increase should contribute to warming. It is, in fact, increasing, and a doubling would increase the radiative forcing of the earth (mainly due to water vapour and clouds) by about 2 per cent.

    PaulHClark says:

    You go on to mention Spencer and Christy. Dr Roy Spencer on his website seems certainly to question radiative forcing – but again if you have evidence that Dr Spencer supports the AGW theory on forcings then please let me know where I can find it – because I would like to enhance my understanding.

    What Spencer (and Lindzen) are questioning are the feedbacks that determine how the radiative forcing translates into a certain temperature response. This page is probably the best one on his website for explaining his basic views on the matter: http://www.drroyspencer.com/global-warming-101/

  439. anna v (07:20:45) :
    Most of the radiation though that hits the ground finally heats it, and heat means infrared radiation ( and convection and evaporation ). There is a lot more infrared radiated from the surface, than comes in from the sun, since a lot of the higher energy light goes into heat. How much?

    Ok, thank you. Now my wondering brain goes through this question process (please bear with me as I fumble through this):
    1) Some of the radiation from the sun hits the surface of the earth (dirt, water, ice, vegetation) and this energy warms the surface. I would imagine that some of this energy is absorbed completely, and some of it is radiated outwards as infrared energy.

    2) Some of this radiated energy interacts with water and CO2 in the atmosphere, and is re-radiated in all directions, some of it back to the surface, which causes additional warming. (I think I saw somewhere that CO2 re-radiates at a different spectral band than it absorbs at so I think this feedback is – in the parlance of computer graphics that i am more familiar with – a single bounce).

    3) Currently CO2 concentration in the atmosphere is 385 or so parts per million. Therefore, I would imagine that most of the radiated infrared energy from the surface simply escapes into space, with only some of it interacting with CO2 in the atmosphere.

    So it seems to me we are talking about hugely diminishing returns. Something along the magnitude of the thermal properties of Moonlight? Or am I confused again?

  440. Robert says:

    Re: allister duncan (07:44:26) :

    “It’s not a customer here, it’s the management hierarchy within a single organisation. When I sign off on a company document, it’s my signature and it’s my responsibility. ”

    1. I have no detailed insight into the workings of the NASA enterprise at that time. I treat all of the recipients of my work products as customers with all of the respect and privileges accruing thereto.
    2. Ditto for me. When I sign off on a budget, I am agreeing that it is reasonable and can be executed. I am not signing off that I think that whatever the budget funds is wonderful. I have authorized, supervised, and executed software work that I knew would never be used. In many cases, the customer does not understand what they have asked you to build until you put it in front of them. Not exactly the same situation as Dr. Theon’s but similar. If I fell on my sword over every organizational disagreement, I would certainly have a checkered employment history!

  441. Michael D Smith says:

    Steve Milloy at FoxNews did his weekly opinion piece on Gore & Venus Envy, mentions the John S. Theon story…

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,485064,00.html

  442. J. Peden says:

    Joel Shore:

    However, the evidence is they they [the Models] get enough correct to give credible projections of future climate change in response to a forcing.

    But the Models don’t make “forecasts” or make “predictions”, right?

    In other words, the ipcc’s substantial m.o. is to produce an “output” of propagandistic mumbo-jumbo.

  443. George E. Smith says:

    “” Glenn (18:11:36) :

    No need to worry about there being a consensus, apparently there is a need for more climate modelling:

    “not less than $140,000,000 shall be available for climate data modeling.”

    http://blog.heritage.org/2009/01/26/stimulus-plan-non-existent-unemployed-climate-modelers-get-140-million/

    We’re all gunna die. “”

    May I point out again that the $140M is NOT for “climate modelling”; but for “climate data modelling”. In other words; they are going to make up the data too; like more tree rings, ice cores, mud cores, coral reefs, insect migrations; anything other than MEASURING the data; they can MODEL the data to suit their own ends.

  444. Bruce Cobb (08:22:17) :
    As I said, there is plenty of evidence proving otherwise.
    ‘proving’ is a word that does not belong in a serious discussion about this. Nothing has been ‘proven’. I know there is plenty of claims. Give me a link to what you consider to the STRONGEST claim, the one YOU have most faith in.

  445. Robert says:

    Moderator: maybe dump my prior post.
    Dr. Spencer sums up the situation in which NASA operated in back then very well on his blog. http://www.drroyspencer.com/2009/01/another-nasa-defection-to-the-skeptics-camp/

  446. gary gulrud says:

    “We seem to be headed for the same cool climate [ and possibly for the next 30 years ]that existed in the period of 1944-1976 due to upcoming similar ocean temperature cycles like PDO , AMO and ENSO.”

    I also live on the Canadian schield, about +10 degrees Sout’ a’ Winnipeg.

    Being accounted a peer of Hansen, et al., will not be a happy association in the near future.

    Ice time thru June, lads. There is no doubt.

  447. Simon Evans says:

    TonyB (03:34:25) :

    Simon Evans

    I replied to your post to Smokey re Ernsy Beck as follows;

    “I’m afraid your memory is faulty. Becks data is taken from surviving measurements made by hundreds of scientists- several of them nobel winners.”

    To which you replied;

    “Be assured that I have no real issue with the accuracy of the measurements taken – my scepticism is to do with the representativeness of what was being measured (and, frankly, with the plausibilty of the results in terms of Co2 flux). I’ll try to write some more tomorrow if it’s of interest, but for now it’s late here! :-)”

    Just placing a marker here to continue our discussion as so many other comments have been posted and its very easy to lose trackl! I am British too so hopefully might catch up with you this evening.

    TonyB

    Hi Tony,

    Ok, I’ll run through my reservations with the Beck paper (E&E 2007) (with apologies to others for this being OT in respect of the original post).

    1. Beck refers to 90,000 analyses of C02 since 1812. Of these, 64,000 were taken at Giessen (not Bremen, as I mistakenly said last night) over an eighteen month period. So, some 79% of the data from which he draws conclusions about global C02 concentrations over a 150 year period is from one location over 18 months.

    2. Beck states that “The longest single time series was determined in Paris’ Montsouris laboratory, and comprises 12,000 measurements over the 30 years from 1876 until 1910″, but we don’t have any detail of these measurements beyond that. He then graphs details for four locations, none of which cover the same periods. I cannot see what validation of one location against another applies.

    3. Looking at the Kreutz/Gissen record as an illustration, we see very large variations in C02 measurements from one month to the next, e.g. c.300 to 430 between 9/39 and 10/39, and 340 to 550 over two months from 6/40 to 8/40. If such measurements were indeed representative of global CO2 concentration, then how could such quantities of C02 be moving in and out of the atmosphere at such a rate? This is equivalent to between a third and two thirds of all the CO2 contained in land plants globally. He refers to “monthly cycling” and suggests this is evident in Mauna Loa measurements, but not on that extraordinary scale! We have no evidence from ground observation or satellites to confirm such flux – are we to presume this is something that stopped happening in the 1950s?

    4. Seeing, then, the enormous and rapid variations in supposed global atmospheric C02 concentration as measured at Giessen and other locations, he then presumes that this can be fitted to the monotonic annual variation and steady rise in concentrations measured at Mauna Loa from the 1950s. How could this be plausible?

    5. Even if the measurement stations were entirely free from any contamination from human influence, and even if they were representative of a geographically ‘averaged’ location (that is, free from natural variability), they would not be able to measure background CO2. You can’t do that reliably close to sea level, owing to variations in atmospheric mixing (consider the build up of smog at certain times), or at least you can’t do it meaningfully without being able to apply corrections for bias.

    Beck is concerned to stress the accuracy of the instrumentation. I have no knowledge of that, so will take his word for it. But accuracy is of no use unless you know that you’re measuring what you want to be measuring.

  448. PaulHClark says:

    Joel Shore (08:46:57) :

    Thank you for the clarification of what you meant and for the link to the Lindzen testimony to the House of Lords.

    What is clear from that testimony under the heading ‘Beyond the Basic Consensus’ (pt.5) is that a doubling of CO2 ‘should lead… to a globally averaged warming of 1 degree C …. of which man’s contribution should be 0.76 deg C – which is already more than observed’.

    i.e. not supported by empirical evidence

    Moreover under ‘Climate Models and Baseless Alarmism’ Lindzen points out that the Climate Models ‘predict a response to a doubling of CO2 of about 4 deg C’ due to the assumed large positive feedbacks from water vapour and clouds.

    Clearly this is not supported by empirical evidence.

    See this:

    http://www.junkscience.com/Greenhouse/What_Watt.html

    which eloquently points out why the alarmism projected by those who promote the climate models should be questioned. In brief i am not convinced at all by the thesis that we should see CO2 as the problem.

    I just need someone to show me that the real world reflects the AGW thesis – at the moment I just do not see it.

    I strongly believe in protecting the environment but I fear we have our focus on the wrong issue.

    If you can convince me otherwise I do have an open mind but it needs to be an analysis founded on empirical evidence supporting the AGW theory.

  449. gary gulrud says:

    “accuracy is of no use unless you know that you’re measuring what you want to be measuring.”

    Words to live by. I will try not to unduly prejudice your discussion.

    I would agree at the outset from AIRS data CO2 is poorly mixed and I expect carried aloft by H2O owing to mild hydroscopy forming ‘aerial acid’ among other associations.

    AIRS measures at 24000 feet below which half the atmosphere resides. Looking at the daily variation at Mauna Loa and AIRS I surmise a daily total flux of 80Gtons into the atmosphere and out again.

    That and study of the variance in 13C:12C fraction of the MLO seasonal signal against the long-term trend (by Spencer here at WUWT last Jan or Feb)imply that neither the anthropogenic or biogenic fluences are visible, they are scrubbed and remixed.

    Now ultraplinian eruptions demand upto 20% of the ejecta be primarily H20 and CO2 to support the column extending into the atmosphere. Some here have suggested the Soufriere and Mayon eruptions as those preceding Tambora, but the latter, VEI 7, ejected 100 km^3. Visible in the data is a somewhat smaller effect beginning about 1812 with the data.

    My calculations do not indicate enough CO2 for a world-wide 450ppm level assuming 300 as the base point. I lack the climate expertise to resolve the issue.

  450. Benjamin says:

    psi (12:11:07) :

    Benjamin (10:29:32) :

    You know, bottom line

    the planet is getting warmer, whatever we can do to curb this trend is a good thing.

    So models don’t work, well duh…. the whole of science is a compramise, to fit models.. this is hardly news. The map will never be the territory, but an aproximation is an aproximation….

    Seems to me this is just republican backlash or fuel companies etc. and those that are growing fat on contributing to climate change, for example all the Petrolium producers.. Perish the thought that things be made cleaner and more efficient!

    Ben –

    I sympathize with your confusion, but your sociology is weak. Many, like myself, who are coming to doubt the veracity of AGW theory, are traditional liberals. Things can and should be made cleaner and more efficient. I would hope that informed conservatives will share this view — and I think that more and more of them do. But we should also not be stampeded into taking expensive actions that will have little or no effect to ameliorate a CO2 “crisis” that may not — I believe now *does not* — even exist. We have enough real problems to deal with.

    I suggest you review the evidence that is now piling up that AGW warming either does not exist at all or is, at least, very unlikely to produce the catastrophic consequences that Hansen et. al have irresponsibly predicted. Following these threads is a good start. Based on the accumulating data on Solar Sunspot cycle 24, it looks to me that we’re in for quite a cold snap over the next decade, if not longer.

    ………..
    REPLY:

    This is all good and well…

    the problem is while we’re busy acting like dogs chasing ou own tail
    “climate change” is occuring.

    You know, we’ve known for decades weather patterns are chaotic and thus highly erratic and not really all that predictable at all…. even with supercomputers.

    While it may or may not be likely that AGW is real, it is largely unimportant. Should we as a race, a peoples… carry on as we are? Or should we act like responsible people and actuallly take care of things?

    It is almost that if AGW is declared as not real, it can be used to justify carrying on business as normal toward the planet’s resources.

    What me worry? as Alfred E Neuman declares. Yes what me worry?

    Its a matter of responsibility and choice. We can carry on being selfish or we can change. Of course homosapiens are greedy somma beaches, so this foruma nd the whole climate change debate is largely hot air… a sick person doesn’t get well unless they want to get well.

    But everyone seems focused on being right or spending money.

    They are not the bottom line… we need to think ahead, not a month, not a year, not a presidency, not a decade, but perhaps beyond our own life times!

    Until the majority of homosapiens wake up to this, we may as feel put paper bags on our head and sing…

  451. Manfred says:

    Joel Shore (06:06:00) :

    “It is not GISTEMP which is an outlier in the trends. It is UAH.”

    GISTEMP fails only simple plausibility tests, like having more downward corrections than upward due to UHI.
    GISTEMP corrections are not well documented.
    GISTEMP is close to not maintained.
    GISTEMP has frequent data input errors.

    That IS an outlier, when we are speaking about data quality.
    There is no scientific justification to use “this”.
    And even with “this”, (and the help of many El Ninos) Realclimate had to make quite an effort to keep the data above scenario c for some years.

  452. allister duncan says:

    Hello Robert, thanks for replying to my remarks.
    This is in reply to your recent comment:
    “When I sign off on a budget, I am agreeing that it is reasonable and can be executed. I am not signing off that I think that whatever the budget funds is wonderful.”

    Very little of what I sign off is “wonderful”, but I do have an obligation to check that the proposed work will deliver what it claims it will deliver. If I decide, to the best of my judgement, that a proposed project is “useless”, I won’t proceed with it. When someone is given responsibility for a budget, it is their professional duty to verify that the budget is spent wisely – that means ensuring that the deliverables get delivered. If a manager simply rubber-stamps everything that passes under his nose, he’s adding no value, and he is not discharging his professional responsibilities.

    John Theon was the man inside the organisation who was responsible for justifying Hansen’s funding, allocating his resources, and evaluating his results. He found that, to the best of his judgement, Hansen’s work was “useless”, but he funded it anyway. If he was just going with the flow and looking for a quiet life, we call that an “empty suit” where I come from.

  453. anna v says:

    James Hastings-Trew (09:26:30) :

    3) Currently CO2 concentration in the atmosphere is 385 or so parts per million. Therefore, I would imagine that most of the radiated infrared energy from the surface simply escapes into space, with only some of it interacting with CO2 in the atmosphere.

    So it seems to me we are talking about hugely diminishing returns. Something along the magnitude of the thermal properties of Moonlight? Or am I confused again?

    You are forgetting water, both as vapor and as clouds. Water provides from 60% to 95% of the so called greenhouse effect, which you can roughly see from the link I gave for the sun spectrum. H2O covers much more region than CO2.

    But yes, most of the energy fortunately escapes to space, some is stored long term in the oceans, and shorter term in the wind/cloud pattern. What comes in, goes out, otherwise the surface temperature would go up and up until we boiled and worse. Actually this “equilibrium” is what defines the surface temperature. When the stored energy in the oceans is released, we get heating cycles, like the heating pacific decadal oscillation, when more of it is absorbed in the oceans we get a cooling pacific decadal oscillation, as now. Cycles are a more natural alternative to CO2 forcings in explaining the climate, in my opinion.

  454. Mike Bryant says:

    Do the models work? I believe Lucia has falsified their forecasts, projections, predictions or whatever you prefer to call them, repeatedly…

  455. matt v. says:

    Based on the smoothed data curve of the HADCRUT3 global air temperature graph [per http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/info/warming/%5D the temperature increased 0.465 degrees C between 1910 and 1940. This is almost the same as the so ‘called manmade global warming’ period increase of 1976-2007 or 0.491. degrees C. So the claim that the unprecedented warming during the period 1976-2007 could only have been caused by the sudden increase in manmade greenhouse gas emissions levels after 1976 seems false since similar warming have occurred before and this one quite recently when manmade CO2 levels were low .
    CO2 could not have been the reason for global warming periods prior to 1945 because the CO2 levels did not increase significantly until after the mid 1940’s.

    The past global temperatures seem to rise and fall independent of CO2 levels. Matter of fact there have been at least 10 episodes of past global warming and cooling that cannot have been caused by atmospheric CO2 [refer to the writings of Prof D.J.Easterbrook]

    To me it seems that the actual field data does not support IPPC science or claim that manmade co2 is the prime cause of global warming. This graph by Joe D’Aleo
    shows it best. It is just not happening. http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/info/warming/ CO2 is going up while the temperature is going down. No relationship. It would appear that if co2 does affect the temperatures at all it is so minor that it is dwarfed by much bigger factors such as PDO, AMO, ENSO , water vapor and the sun, factors which IPCC seem to downplay or ignore ]

  456. Jeff Alberts says:

    John Theon was the man inside the organisation who was responsible for justifying Hansen’s funding, allocating his resources, and evaluating his results. He found that, to the best of his judgement, Hansen’s work was “useless”, but he funded it anyway. If he was just going with the flow and looking for a quiet life, we call that an “empty suit” where I come from.

    Perhaps it wasn’t apparent how useless they were until after the funding was approved.

  457. matt v. says:

    This is the correct 2 nd graph by Joe D’Aleo that I meant to include in my previous post re CO2 VS TEMPERATURES

    http://icecap.us/images/uploads/TEMPSvsCO2.jpg

  458. Psi says:

    Benjamin (11:20:41) :

    psi (12:11:07) :

    Benjamin (10:29:32) :

    You know, bottom line

    the planet is getting warmer, whatever we can do to curb this trend is a good thing.

    So models don’t work, well duh…. the whole of science is a compramise, to fit models.. this is hardly news. The map will never be the territory, but an aproximation is an aproximation….

    Ben –

    I sympathize with your confusion, but your sociology is weak. Many, like myself, who are coming to doubt the veracity of AGW theory, are traditional liberals. Things can and should be made cleaner and more efficient. I would hope that informed conservatives will share this view — and I think that more and more of them do. But we should also not be stampeded into taking expensive actions that will have little or no effect to ameliorate a CO2 “crisis” that may not — I believe now *does not* — even exist. We have enough real problems to deal with.

    I suggest you review the evidence that is now piling up that AGW warming either does not exist at all or is, at least, very unlikely to produce the catastrophic consequences that Hansen et. al have irresponsibly predicted. Following these threads is a good start. Based on the accumulating data on Solar Sunspot cycle 24, it looks to me that we’re in for quite a cold snap over the next decade, if not longer.

    ………..
    REPLY:

    This is all good and well…

    the problem is while we’re busy acting like dogs chasing ou own tail
    “climate change” is occuring.

    You know, we’ve known for decades weather patterns are chaotic and thus highly erratic and not really all that predictable at all…. even with supercomputers.

    While it may or may not be likely that AGW is real, it is largely unimportant. Should we as a race, a peoples… carry on as we are? Or should we act like responsible people and actuallly take care of things?

    It is almost that if AGW is declared as not real, it can be used to justify carrying on business as normal toward the planet’s resources.

    What me worry? as Alfred E Neuman declares. Yes what me worry?

    Its a matter of responsibility and choice. We can carry on being selfish or we can change. Of course homosapiens are greedy somma beaches, so this foruma nd the whole climate change debate is largely hot air… a sick person doesn’t get well unless they want to get well.

    But everyone seems focused on being right or spending money.

    They are not the bottom line… we need to think ahead, not a month, not a year, not a presidency, not a decade, but perhaps beyond our own life times!

    Until the majority of homosapiens wake up to this, we may as feel put paper bags on our head and sing…

    You seem to have changed your position….The critical point is that the science supporting AGW theory is by no means settled or supported by a “consensus” of relevant experts. Public policy should not be formulated on the basis of flawed science, and that includes public policy designed to ameliorate environmental problems that extend beyond an individual’s lifetime.

    Of course we should be aware of larger time frames. And if you want to put a paper bag on your head and sing, fine. But how a person can shift in less than twenty four hours from flatly declaring that “the climate is getting warmer and whatever we can do to curb this trend is a good thing,” to admitting that “it may or may not be likely that AGW is real” but whether or not it is doesn’t matter because “it is largely unimportant” anyway,” can feel in a position to imply that anyone else has a paper bag over his head, is beyond the reach of my small brain.

    Of course it matters whether AGW is real or not. We would not be having this discussion if it didn’t matter.

    And I, for one, feel confident in stating that AGW, at least in its alarmist versions, is not at all real.

  459. Joel Shore says:

    PaulHClark says:

    Thank you for the clarification of what you meant and for the link to the Lindzen testimony to the House of Lords.

    No problem. However, it isn’t just a matter of what I meant but a matter of how terms in this discussion are generally defined. This whole discussion started because you disputed John Philip’s statement that “The size of the resultant radiative forcing is actually quite well-quantified, within an uncertainty of about 5%.”

    As I have shown, this fact seems to be agreed to even by those like Lindzen and Spencer who are at the fringe of the scientific debate in the scientific literature. Those who disagree with this are somewhere beyond the fringe.

    You have now gone on to discuss the issue of climate sensitivity and Lindzen’s take on it:

    What is clear from that testimony under the heading ‘Beyond the Basic Consensus’ (pt.5) is that a doubling of CO2 ’should lead… to a globally averaged warming of 1 degree C …. of which man’s contribution should be 0.76 deg C – which is already more than observed’.

    i.e. not supported by empirical evidence

    Moreover under ‘Climate Models and Baseless Alarmism’ Lindzen points out that the Climate Models ‘predict a response to a doubling of CO2 of about 4 deg C’ due to the assumed large positive feedbacks from water vapour and clouds.

    Clearly this is not supported by empirical evidence.

    Here is a summary of some of Lindzen’s major errors here:

    (1) His idea that we are 76% of the way to a CO2 doubling is obtained by some pretty creative accounting. He adds all of the greenhouse gas forcings together (CO2, methane, nitrous oxide, ozone, …) to get a radiative forcing due to all of them together and compares this to the forcing from a doubling of CO2 with the other gases at their pre-industrial levels. So, in order to be that far along in practice, we have to assume that we return all the other gases to the pre-industrial levels by the time we double CO2. Still, from the point-of-view of using empirical data to see how accurate the estimated climate sensitivity for doubling CO2 is, this approach is not erroneous. However, his more severe error is that he has added all of the positive forcing contributions but has neglected the negative radiative forcing contribution due to aerosols from air pollution. Unfortunately, this forcing is still not well-quantified but it is almost certainly negative…and quite possibly significantly negative. What this means practically is that much of the warming that would have occurred due to all of the GHGs may have been cancelled out or “masked” by cooling due to our emissions of these particulates.

    (2) He has neglected the fact that what we are talking about is EQUILIBRIUM climate sensitivity. Because the levels of greenhouse gases have been rising fairly rapidly and because it takes the climate quite a bit of time to adjust (mainly due to the fact that it takes a lot of energy to heat up the oceans), the climate system is not currently in equilibrium. Hence, we have not yet seen all of the temperature change that we could expect to see from the current levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Estimates are that we would see roughly another 0.5 C of warming over the next 50 years or so even if forcings were held constant.

    (3) He exaggerates what climate models predict on average. 4 deg c is toward the high end of the predictions. The current best estimate from the IPCC for the equilibrium climate sensitivity is 3 C with it likely being between 2 C and 4.5 C.

    The actual truth of the matter is that because of the uncertainties with regards to the radiative forcing due to aerosols and because of the warming that is “still in the pipeline”, so to speak…and also because we don’t know precisely what the climate would have done over the 20th century in the absence of any of the human forcings, the temperature increase during the 20th century does not place very strong constraints on the equilibrium climate sensitivity. Scientists who have analyzed this carefully have concluded that the 20th century climate record is compatible with a large range of equilibrium climate sensitivities from below to above the likely range of 2 to 4.5 C given by the IPCC.

    Better constraints are provided by other empirical observations such as paleoclimate evidence (especially, the difference in temps between the last glacial period and now) and by things like the cooling response from the eruption of Mt Pinatubo in the early 1990s. And, the best constraints are obtained by combining all of these empirical observations together.

    The other approach of cours (and the one you hear most criticized) is the use of climate models, with all understood feedback processes incorporated into them, to directly estimate the equilibrium climate sensitivity. These estimates are only as good as the degree to which one trusts that the models are accurately modeling the climate…But in fact one finds a similar range in climate sensitivities from the models as one gets from the empirically-based estimates.

    See this:

    http://www.junkscience.com/Greenhouse/What_Watt.html

    which eloquently points out why the alarmism projected by those who promote the climate models should be questioned. In brief i am not convinced at all by the thesis that we should see CO2 as the problem.

    I would caution against relying on the junkscience site for information and analysis as most scientists in this field (and other fields that are dealt with there) would tell you that it is aptly-named. The proprietor of that site, Steven Milloy, is not known as a scientific contributor in the field, or any field, but is rather a refugee from the tobacco wars: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steven_Milloy

  460. Robert says:

    re: allister duncan (12:22:21) :
    Hi again. I think the Dr. Spencer has explained the situation back then well. http://www.drroyspencer.com/2009/01/another-nasa-defection-to-the-skeptics-camp/

    I also went and reread the original emails. Climate models are useless appears in the subject of the email. From the email body we see: “Thus there is no rational justification for using climate model forecasts to determine public policy.” I would suspect that a more accurate subject to the email would be “climate models as they are being used to drive public policy are useless”. I further suspect that when he wrote that email that he did not expect you and me to be parsing the subject line!

    I also believe that climate models as they are being used to drive public policy are useless. I would like the field to receive more funding, more attention and more scrutiny from across the spectrum of scientific disciplines.

  461. anna v (12:42:44) :

    You are forgetting water, both as vapor and as clouds. Water provides from 60% to 95% of the so called greenhouse effect, which you can roughly see from the link I gave for the sun spectrum. H2O covers much more region than CO2.

    Thank you. I was leaving water out of my musings on purpose, trying to visualize the magnitude of CO2′s contributions to retained heat in the atmosphere vs. that of water. I can’t imagine that the contribution of CO2 is very significant, or that doubling it would have much of an effect at all, given that it is such a trace gas.

    This is where I found the Gerlich paper most persuasive – Table 7 on Page 10 that compares the thermal diffusivity of the air to a supposed doubling of CO2, and finds the difference negligible. Is that a reasonable “take-away” from that paper?

  462. Novoburgo says:

    Joel Shore (14:34:49) said:

    “Steven Milloy, is not known as a scientific contributor in the field, or any field, but is rather a refugee from the tobacco wars”

    Wow, what an impressive statement!

  463. Joel,

    Steven Milloy doesn’t claim to be a scientific contributor, he merely reports junk science as it occurs, which is far more than enough to keep him very busy on a daily basis. It’s saddening that he could make a living doing that, but he’s really only scratching the surface and publishing a few juicy tidbits for closer examination every day. I think he could probably hire a few hundred more people and never come close to getting the job done.

    I suppose you think it’s a bad thing to point out faulty science, bad statistics, poor measurements, lack of evidence and over-reaching conclusions. I don’t. I see it as a valuable service and he’s well qualified to do it. Science is getting more corrupt every day it seems, especially since AGW has cranked the floodgates wide open and everyone is noticing how easy it is to mislead the media to get your agenda fulfilled. We are starting to see an ever greater public awareness of this, and that’s a GOOD thing. If Steven shines the light on a subject for further examination, surely the subject science, if worthy, can withstand the examination. To query in detail suspicious or outlandish claims is every scientist’s obligation in my opinion. There’s plenty to look at as anyone on this blog knows. This week alone is chock-full of textbook examples. The evidence and conclusions, once examined, will stand of its own accord (or not).

    Thanks to folks like Anthony, we can discuss these juicy tidbits in detail in a cordial forum like this one… Let the chips fall where they may.

  464. matt v. (13:01:00) :
    the temperature increased 0.465 degrees C between 1910 and 1940. This is almost the same as the so ‘called manmade global warming’ period increase of 1976-2007 or 0.491. degrees C. So the claim that the unprecedented warming during the period 1976-2007 could only have been caused by the sudden increase in manmade greenhouse gas emissions levels after 1976 seems false
    The ingenious argument by AGWers is that the Sun is responsible for the 1910-1940 increase, but since solar activity the past 30 years has been flat or decreasing, the lower solar output should have cooled the Earth, so the effect of CO2 is even bigger than the 0.491 degrees, QED. Now, if we posit that the influence of the Sun is minor, they don’t have that argument and your argument holds…

  465. George E. Smith says:

    “” Joel Shore (14:34:49) said:

    “Steven Milloy, is not known as a scientific contributor in the field, or any field, but is rather a refugee from the tobacco wars” “”

    Are you saying that nothing that is written by anyone who is not known as a scientific contributor in a science field can be depended on ?

    One could expand on that, theme and simply say that nothing written by mainstream media reporters is reliable. Usually, these people try to talk to other persons who ARE recognized in the field; to the extent they can locate such people. Yes they can get it scrambled; but; the lay public would have NO information at all, if reporters did not try to get it from people in the field.

    Yes Steven Milloy is not known as a scientific contributor in the field of climatology. That doesn’t mean that he simply makes stuff up in his head.

    I can tell you that I have essentially absolute zero reputation for ANY contribution in the field of climate science, or meteorology, or climate modeling. Other than trying to contribute anything on forums such as this, I have exactly one letter published in anything that might even imagine itself as any kind of science magazine (Physics Toda); and that letter was roundly ridiculed by purported “experts” who are well known in the climatology field. Nevertheless, a climate related prediction that I made in June of 2004, was actually experimentally verified, as a result of ten years of satellite research by a British/Dutch research team, and published in mid 2006 in a peer reviewed climate journal. That doesn’t make me any kind of expert; and the matter was a question of hich school Physics, and not esoteric Climatology.

    I would suggest that attacking Milloy’s arguments, would be preferable to attacking the man. Is your position that weak, that you heve to resort to the ad hominem option ?

    George

  466. VG says:

    re Roy Spencer posting confirming ALL of J Theons statements. Please AGW’s don’t try

  467. Roger Knights says:

    Since Theon wasn’t Hansen’s direct supervisor, calling him Hansen’s “superior” would be better–much better. “Supervisor,” in casual use, implies direct supervisor.

    Anthony wrote:
    “I’ll leave it to you to figure out what I’m speaking of, the answers are here on my blog and at CA. Look it up and report back in 24 hours.”

    Anthony: When the $10M slice of the recent appropriation for climate research that is earmarked for WUWT reaches you, I suggest the following project: a sister site, or a portion of this site, that contains the best posts, including point/counterpoint exchanges, from WUWT’s threads, organized by topic. Topics would be such things as:

    Antarctic
    Glaciers
    Arctic Ice
    Urban Heat Islands
    Temperature Records
    Siting Problems
    Hockey Stick
    Sea Level
    Ocean Oscillations
    Computer Climate Modeling
    Hansen’s Intemperance and Crusading
    CO2′s posited feedback cycle with water vapor

    Etc., etc. This could be a very rough cut, with no segues inserted to smooth transitions between segments within topics, and yet could still be fantastically educational in getting new visitors up to speed. ItAnthony wrote:
    “I’ll leave it to you to figure out what I’m speaking of, the answers are here on my blog and at CA. Look it up and report back in 24 hours.”

    Anthony: When your $10M WUWT-earmarked-slice of the recent appropriation for climate research reaches you, I suggest the following project: set up a sister site, or a portion of this site, that contains the best posts, including point/counterpoint exchanges, from WUWT’s threads, organized by topic. Topics would be such things as:

    Antarctic
    Arctic Ice
    Glaciers
    Urban Heat Islands
    Temperature Records
    Siting Problems
    Hockey Stick
    Sea Level
    Ocean Oscillations
    Computer Climate Modeling
    Hansen’s Intemperance and Crusading
    CO2′s posited feedback cycle with water vapor
    Soot
    Etc., etc.

    The editing could be a minimalistic rough cut (eliminating small irrelevancies, for instance), and no segues or commentaries need be inserted (at least initially) to smooth transitions between segments within topics, or to provide introductions–and yet the result could still be fantastically educational in getting new visitors up to speed. It would also simplify the task of responding to posts by naive AGW-ers: They could simply be referred to the appropriate thread in the Summary Section (as I hereby dub it).

  468. Roger Knights says:

    OOps: My prior post contained duplicated data. Could the moderator please ignore it and post this one instead? TIA.–RK

    Anthony wrote:
    “I’ll leave it to you to figure out what I’m speaking of, the answers are here on my blog and at CA. Look it up and report back in 24 hours.”

    Anthony: When your $10M WUWT-earmarked-slice of the recent appropriation for climate research reaches you, I suggest the following project: set up a sister site, or a portion of this site, that contains the best posts, including point/counterpoint exchanges, from WUWT’s threads, organized by topic. Topics would be such things as:

    Antarctic
    Arctic Ice
    Glaciers
    Urban Heat Islands
    Temperature Records
    Siting Problems
    Hockey Stick
    Sea Level
    Ocean Oscillations
    Computer Climate Modeling
    Hansen’s Intemperance and Crusading
    CO2′s posited feedback cycle with water vapor
    Soot

    Etc., etc. The editing could be a minimalistic rough cut (eliminating small irrelevancies, for instance), and no segues or commentaries need be inserted (at least initially) to smooth transitions between segments within topics, or to provide introductions–and yet the result could still be fantastically educational in getting new visitors up to speed. It would also simplify the task of responding to posts by naive AGW-ers: They could simply be referred to the appropriate thread in the Summary Section (as I hereby dub it).

  469. Mike Bryant says:

    George,
    Shame on you for trying to pull down the curtain that climate “science” has been hiding behind lo these many years. We are to bow and scrape to climate scientists, or any scientists for that matter. The new administration will give science it’s due, and we, the lowly peasants must do what we are told. Gone are the days when common sense ruled the land. Now we will rely on the mutterings of those who have the keys to the Global Climate Models, the repository of all knowledge, past and future. We are entering a new order of scientocracy. Everything that you think you know must now be discarded and replaced with the output of the GCMs.
    Get back in line and keep your mouth shut. The new elite knows what is best for each and every one of us.
    Mike Bryant

  470. Lance says:

    I marvel at the intelligence that some of you have when it comes to scientific equations and such, I truly wish I had the aptitude.
    I guess I try to look at sceince a little simpler then trying to over complicated things, someone said ” Sometimes the simplest things are the ones that give us the most insight” and I do belive that it true sometimes.

    I’ve been working on a paper about the mechanism in forming a raindrop from a cloud, you’d think there would be thousands of papers on such a simple natural happening. No.
    What I’ve deducted(if I have it right) is that to form a raindrop you need a nuclei or salt. Salt is found in ever raindrop and even snow, also trapped in ice along with CO2. This got me wondering how the salt got up there in the first place? This lead me to how ozone is formed in our atmosphere through an electro chemical reaction, not only creating ozone, but NO2, carbon 14, and yes CO2. Ozone also is more prevalent in the summer month and less being formed in the winter, curiosity when times are cold the hole opens up making less ozone, it doesn’t get depleted, it gets formed from what ever chemical reaction that is taking place from in coming partials and gas from our sun and the galactic partials/rays/gas encroachments into our atmosphere at times of lower out put of our sun.
    So here’s what I think is going on, the hot gasses from earth, mainly water vapor, meet up with the in coming solar and galactic gasses/dust/? and through a electro chemical mixing gives the nuclei or salt to feed the formations of clouds. As this process is going on also the other residual like CO2 are dissolved into the rain drop and is carried to earth and makes its way to our oceans.

    Meaning CO2 is coming down dissolved in the rain and is a natural thing from our solar system. This would explain the lag behind and build up after the heat has stopped. So if we could study how the solar conveyor reaches from the sun to earth, you may be able to see how the different fazes of the sun inter act with our atmosphere.

    In stalagmite or stalactites you can see the mineral build up from the water and I’m starting to think that most of these minerals are coming from the rain.

    And here’s another abstract thought I had after thinking about it, could the continental plates be pushing themselves apart from the weight of the accumulated water in our seas and in its self, our planet is expanding to accommodate the build up of pressure ever so slowly and could we be wrong about glaziers building up a miles thick in the ice ages. I’d like to know why they think they were so thick ? Could it just of been a deep freeze not a ice world?

    (Sorry for the hack job of explaining, the document (with links) I’ve been writing is unavalable because of computer problems, I’ll post it when I have it fixed :( )

    Cheers

    Lance

  471. anna v says:

    James Hastings-Trew (16:18:10) :

    anna v (12:42:44) :

    This is where I found the Gerlich paper most persuasive – Table 7 on Page 10 that compares the thermal diffusivity of the air to a supposed doubling of CO2, and finds the difference negligible. Is that a reasonable “take-away” from that paper?

    Most skeptics are convinced by similar arguments that this is so, that the role of CO2 in warming has been widely and wildly exaggerated by the IPCC models, mainly by using an unphysical feedback with vapor mechanism. The rest think that CO2 plays no role and some even a cooling role !

    Gerlich et al think there is also double counting in the game, which may be true but I am not well versed in thermodynamics to argue for. I suspect it may be true, because the models use a mix of classical and quantum physics in their modeling and justifications, and it is easy to lose sight of double countings in such cases.

  472. Jeff Id says:

    I don’t know Anthony, did this one set a record? 500ish comments, ain’t too bad.

  473. Wondering Aloud says:

    Joel Shore

    I could debate with you virtually every point you make above in your criticism of Richard Lindzen who you refer to as “on the fringe”. Interestingly he wasn’t considered on the fringe when he was selected as lead author of the IPCC AR3. He became fringe when he decided that the process was flawed and the summary did not reflect the true situation. Hmm.. same thing happened to Dr. Landsea and AR4.

    Leaving all that aside just do one thing. Prove that the “feedback effect” from increased CO2 will be positive. It is clear from the paleo record it never has been before, so you are apparently assuming man made CO2 is magically different from any other CO2 in the last 600Myears. Here you are busy arguing about Lindzen disagreeing about how large it is when the data so far doesn’t even prove it is positive. Now I do not consider proof to be some computer generated fantasy that assumes it to exist from the start.

    Also if you are so sure that Miloy is full of it, why didn’t you profit from his recent challenge.

  474. allister duncan says:

    Hello again Robert,

    You say: “I further suspect that when he wrote that email that he did not expect you and me to be parsing the subject line!”

    As I understand it (I could be wrong) John Theon released these emails himself, or permitted them to be released, so I’m assuming he stands by them.

    I’m also assuming he’s talking about Hansen when he says:

    “Furthermore, some scientists have manipulated the observed data to justify their model results. In doing so, they neither explain what they have modified in the observations, nor explain how they did it. … This is clearly contrary to how science should be done.”

    He believes Hansen’s work was fraudulent through and through, yet when it was his job to evaluate it and allocate funding, he funded it.

    He was employed by the taxpayer to ensure that taxpayers’ money was spent wisely. If he was unable or unwilling to do the job he was paid to do, he should have found himself another job. I’ve seen some weak managers pleading that “I was just trying to keep by job”, or “Don’t rock the boat”, or “I was just trying to agree with everyone, that way everyone’s happy”, but I really have no patience for them. Where I work, everyone is expected to do the job they are paid to do, even when it gets difficult, if fact especially when it gets difficult.

  475. Smokey says:

    Wondering Aloud,

    I doubt that you will get specific answers to your questions. Only someone whose purpose is to obfuscate the issue would refer to the head of M.I.T.’s Atmospheric Sciences department as being on the “fringe.”

    It appears that a handful of posters here have decided to argue every possible point incessantly, in an effort to confuse the issue. Why else would this small group of individuals try to convince everyone else that black is white, down is up, evil is good… and CO2 causes runaway global warming?

    The facts speak for themselves. CO2 is beneficial, not harmful. More CO2 is better because the atmosphere is starved of carbon dioxide. Plants grow much faster with higher concentrations of CO2.

    Ice at the poles can not melt with a one or two degree warming, because that ice is still far, far below its freezing point. The sea level is static, not rising. Glaciers advance and retreat due to precipitation, not temperature.

    Droughts and floods come and go, they have nothing to do with a 0.6 degree change in the planet’s temperature over an entire century — a normal change that has been almost completely reversed over the past decade. The climate’s current fluctuations are well within normal historical parameters; nothing, I say again nothing unusual is occurring.

    Those here arguing that AGW is a problem never go on record to answer the critical question: do they personally believe that a rise in CO2 will cause irreversible, runaway global warming leading to climate catastrophe?

    They will not be pinned down to answering that basic question. Instead, they run daily interference, hoping to muddy the waters enough to allow those using the AGW scare to implement their agenda to jack up taxes and solidify their control in the name of reversing the use of the evil “carbon.” The Western world has produced an astonishingly beneficial standard of living. Unlike emerging economies, we have greatly reduced industrial pollution. We have become enormously wealthy due to economic freedom. That freedom and wealth are now being threatened by the dishonest CO2/AGW claim, which does not stand up to scrutiny.

    We are made of carbon. Carbon is not evil, it is good. The only way to make people think carbon [by which they really mean carbon dioxide] is evil, is to lie about it. This site is growing exponentially, and has won the Best Science award, because more and more people are becoming aware that Anthropogenic Global Warming is a lie. As CO2 levels rise, the planet is cooling, not warming.

    Rather than constantly nitpick, split hairs and attack anyone who points out that there is absolutely nothing to be alarmed about, the nay-sayers here who run their daily interference refuse to ever take a stand on the central issue in the entire AGW debate: whether imminent runaway global warming and climate catastrophe will result from rising levels of a minor trace gas. The fact that they argue anything else rather than answer that essential question exposes their mendacity and their agenda, which is based on their political philosophy and their egos, not on science.

    Until they state that Yes, CO2 will lead to catastrophe, they are being duplicitous. Because if they admitted that CO2 will not cause runaway global warming, they would be admitting that CO2 is not a problem that justifies spending vast sums to mitigate, and their AGW issue goes up in a puff of smoke.

    Those promoting the “carbon” scare are lying to you. Eventually, the truth will emerge; in fact, it is already happening. Let’s hope it is not too late, for the sake of our standard of living and our freedom.

  476. old construction worker says:

    Allan M (07:18:10) :
    ‘On another tack, I read a quote from Hansen on here that “Venus would never again have oceans.” (What tears are jerked!) This implies that it once did. What evidence (not speculation) can he have for this?’
    To put it a differnent way.
    Did Venus ever have oceans or is this notion just an another assumption made by Hansen?
    ———
    Where in nature is wapor vapor a positive feedback to “heat”?

  477. matt v. says:

    leif

    I agree with you that the AGWersdo not have an argument . If they say that the 1910 -1940 global warming is due to solar activity, during those 30 years the average annual sunspot number was 47. The average sunspot number for the so called global warming period was 70 or nealy 1.5 times higher, indicating that this period had even higher average solar activity and the so called global warming of 1976-2007 must be due to solar activity even more than the 1910 -1940 period. In addition there have been other periods in the past where global temperatures dropped and rose with no similar pattern in the CO2 levels . Prof. EASTER BROOK has listed at least 10.

  478. tmtisfree says:

    Joel Shore (04:48:17) :

    As noted by Flanagan, Arthur Smith (who was actually a colleague of mine in physics grad school) wrote an excellent refutation

    Not peer-reviewed…

    And he refutes nothing. He just rehashes what you find in climatology book.

  479. Simon Evans says:

    Smokey (03:39:10) :

    Yet another ad hominem rant from you, Smokey, in which you accuse those who disagree with you of being liars, politically motivated, evasive, etc. How you have the chutzpah to accuse others of ad hom I do not know, nor do I know how you have the cheek to celebrate the ‘courtesy’ of this site when you show none of it.

    If your intention is to drive away the commentary of those who disagree with you by such ad hom attacks then, in my case, you may succeed. I would like to discuss matters with those who have different views to mine, but I have better things to do than to be writing this response to you (and I am not of a nature to avoid responding to such misrepresentation when it’s in my face).

    You state:

    Those here arguing that AGW is a problem never go on record to answer the critical question: do they personally believe that a rise in CO2 will cause irreversible, runaway global warming leading to climate catastrophe?

    1. I think that rises in Co2 will be reversible. I think the effects of such rises are likely to be reversible eventually, but that might take a very long time. I’m certainly concerned for my children and their children, at least.

    2. If by ‘runaway’ you mean a runaway positive feedback (that is, a feedback equal to or in excess of input) then personally I do not consider that at all likely in the foreseeable future. Before such a stage would be reached I think the consequences of warming would be so severe that it’s rather a moot point anyway, in my opinion.

    3. How do you define “catastrophe”? The word generally suggest sudden calamity. Yes, I think there would be sudden calamities associated with unmitigated GHG increase, against a background of gradual degeneration in the life of the planet.

    Is that “on record” enough for you?

    Have a nice weekend.

  480. Joel Shore says:

    Wondering Aloud says:

    I could debate with you virtually every point you make above in your criticism of Richard Lindzen who you refer to as “on the fringe”. Interestingly he wasn’t considered on the fringe when he was selected as lead author of the IPCC AR3.

    I am almost sure that Lindzen’s skeptical views were well-known when he was selected to be a lead author for one of the IPCC assessment reports. I am positive that these views were well-known when he was chosen to be one of the authors on the 2001 NAS report. He was chosen to do so because he is a respected atmospheric scientist who, at that time, was still publishing (or at least had recently published) some interesting hypotheses…and presumably also because these organizations were bending over backwards to be inclusive. However, this doesn’t change the fact that he is at one edge of the scientific debate and, at least to my knowledge, he seems to have pretty much given up publishing in the peer-reviewed literature on climate change, instead publishing op-eds in the Wall Street Journal and screeds that Smokey likes to link to, and giving testimony to the House of Lords.

    Hmm.. same thing happened to Dr. Landsea and AR4.

    I think that Landsea went off the handle in regards to AR4. (If he thought they should be admonishing Trenberth when he expressed his scientific views and it was even mentioned that he is an IPCC lead author, I don’t see why he doesn’t think they should be admonishing Lindzen when he does the same.) However, I wouldn’t call Landsea “on the fringe” in terms of the science because the scientific debate regarding the effect of global warming on hurricanes is considerably less resolved.

    Leaving all that aside just do one thing. Prove that the “feedback effect” from increased CO2 will be positive. It is clear from the paleo record it never has been before, so you are apparently assuming man made CO2 is magically different from any other CO2 in the last 600Myears. Here you are busy arguing about Lindzen disagreeing about how large it is when the data so far doesn’t even prove it is positive. Now I do not consider proof to be some computer generated fantasy that assumes it to exist from the start.

    After saying “I could debate with you virtually every point you make above in your criticism of Richard Lindzen,” you seem to actually be basically ignoring what I wrote. I have no idea how you have come up with your own unique interpretation of the paleo record but it certainly doesn’t seem to be in accord with the interpretation of the scientists who actually study that record, like the two who wrote this “Perspective” piece in Science ( http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/summary/sci;306/5697/82 ):

    Climate models and efforts to explain global temperature changes over the past century suggest that the average global temperature will rise by between 1.5º and 4.5ºC if the atmospheric CO2 concentration doubles. In their Perspective, Schrag and Alley look at records of past climate change, from the last ice age to millions of years ago, to determine whether this climate sensitivity is realistic. They conclude that the climate system is very sensitive to small perturbations and that the climate sensitivity may be even higher than suggested by models.

    Just as a concrete example, what large forcing do you think they are underestimating or missing entirely that could explain the ice age – interglacial transition in a world where the feedback effect is not positive?

    Also if you are so sure that Miloy is full of it, why didn’t you profit from his recent challenge.

    That’s an easy one. As I understand it, Milloy asked for “proof” of AGW. Since science is inductive and doesn’t deal with proof, that is an impossible thing to ask. Science deals with only with evidence and one can always claim that the evidence is not sufficient. This is why there are still people claiming that there is no “proof” that the Earth is more than 10,000 years old. If people are willing to ignore the truly overwhelming evidence that the Earth is much older than that, how can I possibly expect to convince Milloy about AGW if he wants to believe otherwise?

  481. pyromancer76 says:

    Anthony, what a great article and, wow, almost 500 comments — more from around the world than from the U.S., if I read the stats right.

    I second Roger Knight’s brilliant proposal (18:01:17, 1/29)– it is not like you have anything else to do! But — such an undertaking attached to the respected banner of WUWT would give great confidence to readers.

    I would like to add topics:

    atmospheric physics
    data gathering (under which the topics of UHI and site problems would go?)
    forecasting (sub-head under modeling?)
    statistics (sub-head under modeling?)
    THE SUN
    omit Hansen

    Just something for a cold, rainy day. If only we could have more of these in Southern California. I miss our California “winter” even though I know: a warm planet is a happy planet. My “winter” plants are not too happy about the incessant heat.

  482. pyromancer76 says:

    Lief Svalgaard (17:21:21, 1/29), Isn’t it possible to view the sun’s heating of the earth on the scale of “climate” (100 years, 172 years, or longer?), whereas “weather” depends on a multitude of factors, earth’s topography, ocean circulation patterns, behavior of the atmosphere, etc.? Don’t these “weather” factors represent what our earth “does with” that energy? I read the respect for your solar physics on this blog, but where does the “heat” come from except from the sun and the planet’s interior? I apologize if you have explained this many times before.

  483. Tom M says:

    The old construction worker asks?

    “Where in nature is wapor vapor a positive feedback to “heat”?”

    That was my “Ah ha!” moment reading the Gerlich and T paper. I have been stewing over the kitchen pot metaphor ever since. I’m leaning towards the heat sink at night, cooling by day atmospheric model. Blaming all this on trace gas forcings seems wildly imaginary.

    Having said that we are probably running into a greater problem with the dimishing finite resources that produce CO2 than with any of the effects of burning it. Call it peak oil or whatever, if Al Gore can get everyone’s tail in a knot over some inexplicable and unprovable theory about global warming and CO2, what could a good communicator do with the inconvenience of a world with virtually no gas or oil at all? It’s as if we were all arguing over the pollution coming from the exhaust of our ship, while the ship was sinking.

  484. Robert says:

    Re: allister duncan (03:09:04) :

    Hello Allister. I think Dr. Spencer’s post (link above) gives a more clear picture of the evolution of the view of Dr. Hansen. Back when the work was being approved, Dr. Hansen was a “loose cannon” in terms of his public pronouncements. Getting the additional satellites and the accumulation of 20 additional years of data have allowed him (and others) to form additional conclusions. Nothing I see above indicates that he thought that the work was fraudulent at the time he approved budgets. Indeed, he does not use fraud. The indictment of the work since he left NASA is:
    “Furthermore, some scientists have manipulated the observed data to justify their model results. In doing so, they neither explain what they have modified in the observations, nor explain how they did it. They have resisted making their work transparent so that it can be replicated independently by other scientists. ”
    So the most negative term is manipulated …. data.
    I might have used “massaged ..data” instead. We should all be very careful with accusations of fraud. And excruciatingly careful with putting accusations of fraud into the mouths of others.

  485. anna v (22:01:28) :

    Gerlich et al think there is also double counting in the game, which may be true but I am not well versed in thermodynamics to argue for. I suspect it may be true, because the models use a mix of classical and quantum physics in their modeling and justifications, and it is easy to lose sight of double countings in such cases.

    Anna, thank you for your patient answers to my questions. This is why I came to this site. I have been a AGW skeptic for a long time, but every so often (generally after being called stupid on a public forum) I start to question if my belief is reasonable. There are a lot of people like me who are not scientists, have no expertise in mathematics, and therefore must rely on the wisdom of others to help form or fortify their beliefs. I realize a proper skeptic should work things out for themselves, but with my head already full of the things I need to do my job, there’s no room left for working out thermodynamic equations.

    The scientific community needs scientific answers to questions – bolstered by proper physics, chemistry, mathematical proofs and so on. A layman like me needs a reasonable “verbal” explanation that does not bend the limits of plausibility. For me, the theory of AGW bends those limits because, time and again, the claims made by it’s supporters do not line up with what is actually happening in the world. And I have an instinctive distrust of anyone who tries to buttress their argument with patently ridiculous doomsday scenarios.

    Thanks again. This is why WUWT is such a valuable resource on the web.

  486. Craig Moore says:

    Simon Evans-

    I hope you stay and continue your POV. There is great value in your jousts. Try to transcend those remarks you find ad hom. Remember to “¡Ole! the bull!”

  487. allister duncan says:

    Hello Robert,
    John Theon does not give the name of the scientist he is referring to. I am assuming he means Hansen when he refers to “some scientists”, but I don’t know.

    However, the statement

    “Furthermore, some scientists have manipulated the observed data to justify their model results”

    is a clear accusation of scientific fraud. If someone manipulates data to get a desired result, that is scientific fraud. If I altered a test result to get a defective product through a quality check, it’s likely to be a criminal offence. If my defense in court was “I didn’t fake the data, I just massaged it”, my chances of acquittal would be pretty slim.

  488. Smokey says:

    Joel Shore says: “…this doesn’t change the fact that [Lindzen] is at one edge of the scientific debate and, at least to my knowledge, he seems to have pretty much given up publishing in the peer-reviewed literature on climate change.”

    Sorry about the state of your knowledge: click

    Note that the esteemed Dr. Lindzen of M.I.T. has been publishing steadily right up through 2008. Is your criticism because he hasn’t published in January, 2009?

    Face it, the UN/IPCC is composed entirely of political appointees from various countries who make a pretense of being scientific, when in fact their real agenda is to separate taxpayers from large amounts of their money, and move the UN toward world government. If you don’t see this you need new glasses. The IPCC has been so wrong, so often, that the only credibility they have left is with governments, NGOs, and the diminishing number of believers in scary AGW.

    And Simon Evans, I just don’t know how to make you happy. I was thinking of a couple of others when I wrote my rant essay above. But you put on the hat, it fit, so now you say it’s your hat. OK.

    And:

    I think that rises in Co2 will be reversible. I think the effects of such rises are likely to be reversible eventually, but that might take a very long time.

    That’s a very wishy-washy response, which certainly doesn’t answer my question. But again, OK.

    Now to answer your question ["How do you define “catastrophe”? The word generally suggest sudden calamity."]: The climate moves slowly, so ‘sudden’ doesn’t apply in nominal human terms — any more than in the AIDS catastrophe. Which is a catastrophe, no? But a slow moving one.

    I define climate catastrophe as Al Gore and James Hansen define it: a few more years, and we may destroy “creation.” We only have four more years, right? After your fence-sitting answer about CO2 ["rises are likely to be reversible eventually"], I won’t try to pin you down. But I will point out two things:

    First, we can reverse rises in CO2 by abandoning our modern standard of living. We won’t do that, therefore there is no climate catastrophe. QED. If Al Gore, and the UN climate appointees partying hearty in Bali truly believed that their “carbon footprint” was contributing to climate disaster, they would be traitors to the human race for their profligate waste. Wouldn’t they? But of course, they’re in on the scam, and they know they’re selling a pig in a poke.

    Finally, AGW is not about the climate, or science, or who is right or wrong. AGW is about money and power. The demonization of “carbon” is being used as a pretext for unethical entities and individuals to get their hands deep into our pockets, and to control our lives. You can believe that AGW is proven, and that it’s all about science. But it’s not.

  489. Joel Shore says:

    tmtisfree says:

    Not peer-reviewed…

    How is he supposed to get a peer-reviewed publication out of something that is simply refuting a paper that is itself not peer-reviewed? As Arthur notes, nothing in his paper is particularly new. The point is simply to put what is already known in context to refute of the confusion (or deception) of G&T. What Arthur did is quite selfless in writing up such a refutation of a paper that hasn’t and won’t ever see the light of day in any real peer-reviewed journal.

    And he refutes nothing. He just rehashes what you find in climatology book.

    He actually shows exactly where their claim is wrong. And, as noted, I could give a problem to first-year physics students that would show exactly where G&T’s argument of the greenhouse effect violating the 2nd law is wrong. But, it would probably just fall on deaf ears here.

    This is actually really sad. You “skeptics” are continuing to marginalize yourselves better than anybody else could possibly do it to you. Until you are willing to actually do the hard work of distinguishing between real science and garbage, you will find that there is almost nobody in the scientific community who is going to take you seriously and you will continue to be puzzled when your view of reality isn’t embraced by the scientific community and policymakers.

  490. PaulHClark says:

    Joel Shore (14:34:49) :

    Thank you for taking the time to respond in such detail – I greatly appreciate you taking the time to explain your point of view – it has helped me as I progress upon my learning curve.

    Having been educated at MIT myself I think it is rather harsh to suggest Professor Lindzen is at the fringe of the scientific debate – no-one gets tenure at MIT at his level without being outstanding in their field.

    I recognise what you are saying but I still do not see where there is real world evidence to support the forcing and suggested feedbacks postulated in the AGW thesis – your note is not specific in its support of the projections and the question therefore remains.

    Dr Leif Svalgaard is an excellent contributor to this site and is always extremely clear on ensuring that people have good evidence to support their particular theories. In a similar vein the challenge to you is to support the AGW thesis with real world data that clearly shows the proposition to have supportable merit. I simply have yet to see that.

    Your final paragraph is, I would suggest, below the standards of the writer.

  491. matt v. (05:24:27) :
    I agree with you that the AGWers do not have an argument
    If we believe the Sun is the main driver [in normal times - the last 30 years excepted] the AGWers have a very strong argument: Solar activity and temperature follow each other rather closely during 1880-1975, but not thereafter, thus CO2, QED.
    [just calculating average sunspot numbers over half a century is too crude].

    pyromancer76 (07:48:22) :
    where does the “heat” come from except from the sun
    The ‘turn off the Sun’ argument is not valid. what is important are the VARIATIONS of the solar output, or even more important, the complicated interactions between all the elements of the climate. The latter mostly not controlled by the Sun.

  492. Jeff Alberts says:

    The ‘turn off the Sun’ argument is not valid. what is important are the VARIATIONS of the solar output, or even more important, the complicated interactions between all the elements of the climate. The latter mostly not controlled by the Sun.

    But, is most likely largely controlled by the Earth’s aspect to the Sun at any given time (day and night, seasons, etc)

  493. TonyB says:

    Simon Evans #10 31 04

    I have the answers to your questions from the man himself with whom I correspond frequently. It is distinctly OT here. Could you go to the new CO2 thread article by Frank Lanser and let me know you have read this and I will post Becks and my reply.

    Smokey-you had an interest in this data as well I think

    TonyB

  494. matt v. says:

    leif

    The temperatures from 1880-1976 are driven by more than just the sun as we have pointed out in previous posts . PDO ,AMO and ENSO effects seem to modify the solar activity . Of these PDO seems to have the greatest effect. So one cannot say just because the solar activity and temperature follow one another that the temperature rise is only due to the sun activity alone . In canada 8 out of the 10 coldest annual temperature departures from the 1948 -2008 took place when the PDO went negative 1944-1976. Co2 was rising. Solar activity was high. Temperatures were dropping. Similar pattern was about 1878 -1920

  495. Allan M says:

    Old construction worker:

    “Where in nature is wapor vapor a positive feedback to “heat”?”

    Exactly my point at the start of that post. Then there’s latent heat of vapourisation to consider (540cal/gm).

    If anyone wants to know about positive feedback, pull the plug on the amplifier and listen!

    A reply to me previous post had: “the situation is complex, but.” I don’t like “complex, but”‘s. Sort of an invitation to stop thinking (no chance!)

    Smokey:

    And Simon Evans, I just don’t know how to make you happy.

    He aint happy: he aint going to be made happy: he doesn’t do happy.
    There is no such thing as a happy greenie/AGWer.

  496. pyromancer76 says:

    Leif Svalgaard,
    Thank you for the answer to my question and for pointing out that “climate” and the Sun’s output are not directly connected. I can follow that the complicated interaction between all the elements of the climate are “mostly not controlled by the Sun”, although it is difficult to give up on some modernized notion of cycles (e.g., Milankovitch) “driven” by the earth’s relationship to the sun and the variations of solar output. I am concerned about the idea of “forcings” as if they somehow generate heat themselves — as it seems that Hansen and crew believe. My limited science says that all heat/energy, however distributed on earth, must come from the sun or the earth’s core; anything else is like magic — or corrupt politics (financial instruments representing wealth created out of bad debts?

  497. Bob Tisdale says:

    matt v: You wrote, “PDO ,AMO and ENSO effects seem to modify the solar activity . Of these PDO seems to have the greatest effect.”

    Your first sentence appears to be worded poorly, since it’s unlikely that oceanic oscillations on Earth would alter solar activity. Regardless… The PDO is a “statistically manufactured” dataset that was first created to bring out the ENSO signal in the North Pacific.
    http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2008/06/common-misunderstanding-about-pdo.html

    If you were to plot the raw NINO3.4 & PDO side-by-side, you’d see the similarities.
    http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2008/06/chicken-or-egg-pdo-or-enso.html
    http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2008/06/three-pdo-data-sets.html

    The PDO, in and of itself, really describes a pattern of SST. It is not an SST residual like the AMO. http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2008/06/amo-versus-mid-latitude-north-pacific.html

    Regards

  498. matt v. says:

    BOB Tisdale

    You are right about the poor use of words . I meant to say that the impact of PDO[Changing pacific water temperatures whether negative or positive ] on global surface temperatures seem to reduce or enhance the impact of solar activity on earth’s global temperatures .

  499. matt v. (11:27:33) :
    The temperatures from 1880-1976 are driven by more than just the sun as we have pointed out in previous posts
    Perhaps I was not being clear enough: You are not arguing with me. I don’t believe any of that argument I presented. It is the argument [and it is strong] that AGWers uses to explain why temperatures changed before the big CO2 push the last 40 years. I’ll try again: IF you believe that solar activity is a MAJOR driver, then you do need something [think CO2] else driving up the temperature during 1990-2006 [or so]. If you don’t believe that the Sun is a major driver, then you don’t need CO2 [actually CO2 won't work because climate also changed in the past]. If you don’t believe it is CO2, then you can’t argue that the changes are due to the Sun [mostly], but will have to invoke other things [and there are lots].

  500. Joel Shore says:

    Smokey,

    It’s not worth my trying to respond to the ranting or the CEI-like “some call it pollution, we call it life” part of your post. But I will give you an answer to this…

    Those here arguing that AGW is a problem never go on record to answer the critical question: do they personally believe that a rise in CO2 will cause irreversible, runaway global warming leading to climate catastrophe?

    Until they state that Yes, CO2 will lead to catastrophe, they are being duplicitous. Because if they admitted that CO2 will not cause runaway global warming, they would be admitting that CO2 is not a problem that justifies spending vast sums to mitigate, and their AGW issue goes up in a puff of smoke.

    (1) As Simon noted, almost no scientists claim that we will have “runaway global warming” (with the exception being Hansen and then he says that is possible or likely only if we really insist on burning all the conventional fossil fuels…and maybe even some of the non-conventional ones like tar sands). I am cautiously optimistic that the overwhelming majority of the scientists are correct and am thus fairly skeptical of Hansen’s claim. On the other hand, given the fact that Hansen has a track record of coming to conclusions quite a bit ahead of his scientific colleagues, I don’t think we can dismiss his speculations out-of-hand…But, I would like to see him put them out in a peer-reviewed forum so that other scientists can react to them.

    (2) In terms of “irreversibility”, this I think is more likely, at least on the timescales of interest to us. (I.e., it doesn’t really comfort me that things may recover in, say, 10,000 or 100,000 years.) For example, I think it may be quite possible that once we go to a summer ice-free state in the arctic, it may be hard to get back to the previous state because of the positive ice albedo feedback. The climate system is highly nonlinear, which makes such hysteresis effects quite possible and the past history of the climate system seems to suggest that there can be quite dramatic shifts in its state.

    (3) As Simon noted, “catastrophe” is in the eyes of the beholder. But, yes, I think it is likely the AGW can have some quite severe consequences. I will admit that there remains quite a bit of uncertainty in how bad it will be. What we are embarking on is a grand experiment. There may be many surprises…and alas I am not optimistic that the surprises will mainly be pleasant ones. We know enough to know that the earth’s climate system is quite sensitive to fairly small perturbations…And, that the perturbation that we are putting on through raising the GHG levels is a significant enough one to very likely provoke a significant response.

    (4) I also think that the costs of mitigation will be less than many people believe. And, since fossil fuels are a finite resource, getting off of them is something that we have to do eventually anyway. In our market system, the way that would happen is that scarcity would force the price to increase and that will push the development of alternatives sources of energy and greater efficiency in our use of energy. All we are doing by imposing a cap-and-trade system or a carbon tax is speeding up that process so that we get off fossil fuels before, rather than after, we have likely done irreparable harm to our environment.

  501. Joel Shore says:

    Whoops…Bad HTML coding! Everything after the “(1)” are my words, not Smokey’s.

  502. Joel Shore says:

    Michael D Smith says:

    Steven Milloy doesn’t claim to be a scientific contributor, he merely reports junk science as it occurs, which is far more than enough to keep him very busy on a daily basis.

    I suppose you think it’s a bad thing to point out faulty science, bad statistics, poor measurements, lack of evidence and over-reaching conclusions. I don’t. I see it as a valuable service and he’s well qualified to do it.

    Let’s not create some fiction that Milloy is some unbiased arbiter of junk science. His criterion for judging science to be junk is merely that it could be used to support environmental or health regulations. Nothing more, nothing less.

  503. Bob Tisdale says:

    matt v: The PDO, whether positive or negative, does not represent SST or SST anomalies of the North Pacific. The PDO is not a typical residual either.

    With regards to the timing of ENSO events and Solar Cylces, sometimes the Solar Cycles enhance the El Nino or La Nina, and sometimes they retard it. Here’s a gif animation that overlays the impact of solar onto a curve that synthesizes global temperature anomaly. The red curve is created from a running total of NINO3.4 SST anomalies that have been scaled to represent the impact of ENSO events on global temperature.
    http://i42.tinypic.com/k50pd0.jpg

  504. Joel Shore says:

    PaulHClark says:

    Thank you for taking the time to respond in such detail – I greatly appreciate you taking the time to explain your point of view – it has helped me as I progress upon my learning curve.

    No problem. Glad that I could help.

    Having been educated at MIT myself I think it is rather harsh to suggest Professor Lindzen is at the fringe of the scientific debate – no-one gets tenure at MIT at his level without being outstanding in their field.

    I think there is little doubt that Lindzen is an outstanding atmospheric scientist. And, maybe the word “fringe” is a bit too loaded. But, just because someone is a very good scientist does not make them infallible and the fact is that he is really out on the edge in the climate science field … And, for someone as smart as he is, I think that he has shown some very poor judgment in some of the arguments he has made or allowed himself to be associated with in the popular media.

    I recognise what you are saying but I still do not see where there is real world evidence to support the forcing and suggested feedbacks postulated in the AGW thesis – your note is not specific in its support of the projections and the question therefore remains.

    I tried to give you a rough outline of some of the evidence. However, if you really want to look into it, I suggest reading the appropriate sections of the IPCC reports. The problem is that many people want some sort of “smoking gun” but the fact is that in any field anywhere near the forefront of science, you are not likely to have anything like that. What you are going to have is a lot of evidence to wade through, some of it contradictory or uncertain but most of it in the end pointing in one direction.

    As I have pointed out before, this lack of absolute proof in science is the sort of thing that allows people to earnestly believe that the Earth is less than 10000 years old, including some with PhDs in science. (I actually had a fellow scientist at work sincerely start telling me at lunch one day about the wealth of evidence for a “young earth”…I nearly spit out my food.)

    By the way, I am not claiming that believing in a low climate sensitivity is as scientifically-unjustified at this point as believing in a young earth…although I think believing in the major conclusions of the G&T paper or believing that most of the current CO2 rise isn’t due to humans probably is at least quite close.

    Your final paragraph is, I would suggest, below the standards of the writer.

    I did get a little lazy there but the fact is that you linked to a long diatribe from the junkscience.com site without even noting which parts enticed you. Frankly, I don’t have the energy to go through and try to debunk all the standard “skeptic” talking points that are in there. So, I did take the shortcut in that case in pointing out that what you linked to is simply not considered a serious or reputable source by the scientific community. Rather, it is advocacy masquerading as science. And, I think you’d admit that if those of us in the minority viewpoint on this Board started linking to Greenpeace or Sierra Club as scientific sources, not very many people here would buy into that approach.

  505. VG says:

    Leif: if you turn the sun off the earths surface temperature falls to -273K (except close to magma openings ect ie volcanoes active, which also could die off without the sun possibly?). It follows that any changes in sun activity be it geomagnetic tsi ect would likely affect climate. Sunspot num despite its ups and down closely correlates with averaged global temps over the last 100 years

  506. Joel Shore says:

    Smokey says:

    Sorry about the state of your knowledge: click

    Note that the esteemed Dr. Lindzen of M.I.T. has been publishing steadily right up through 2008. Is your criticism because he hasn’t published in January, 2009?

    Thanks for the link. And, while you could perhaps quibble with my wording, I don’t think the gist of my statement is really incorrect. If you look at the actual publications for 2003 and later, only a few could qualify as “publishing in the peer-reviewed literature on climate change”. In particular, here is how I would breakdown the 18 things he has listed there on his publication list for 2003-2008:

    - Six appear to be atmospheric science works unrelated to climate change (#213, 214, 216, 219-221).

    - Three were published in the popular press (#226-228), in particular, the Wall Street Journal or Business Today.

    - Three are listed as “in preparation” or “submitted” (of which one seems to be to the popular press and may or may not have some relation to climate change) (#223-225).

    - One is a biographical memoir.

    That leaves us with five that are at least related to climate change and were published somewhere other than the popular press. One is a chapter in a book on climate change from the Brookings Institution; I don’t know what sort of refereeing they had for it (#222). One is a paper submitted to an economics journal regarding the Stern report (#229). One is an article in the journal “Energy and Environment” not considered a serious journal to interact with one’s scientific colleagues since, among other things, it is received by only a handful of libraries throughout the world) (#230). Two (#215 and 217) are honest-to-goodness papers in journals although both are comments on other papers rather than independent papers in their own right…Still, I am willing to count them.

    So, his overall published output over those 6 years has been 2 comments on climate change in refereed journals in the field, and maybe a couple of other papers that you could vaguely count if you really wanted to be generous. And, if you compare that to his output before 2002, I think you will see there is a fairly marked change. Hence my statement that “at least to my knowledge, he seems to have pretty much given up publishing in the peer-reviewed literature on climate change, instead publishing op-eds in the Wall Street Journal and screeds that Smokey likes to link to, and giving testimony to the House of Lords” seems to be a reasonably accurate description, depending on exactly how one interprets my modifier “pretty much”.

  507. Joel Shore says:

    VG says:

    Leif: if you turn the sun off the earths surface temperature falls to -273K (except close to magma openings ect ie volcanoes active, which also could die off without the sun possibly?). It follows that any changes in sun activity be it geomagnetic tsi ect would likely affect climate.

    However, the magnitude of the variations in solar irradiance are very small in the solar cycles…So small that the radiative forcing change is equal to, as I recall, something like 7 years of rise of CO2 at its current rate. The magnitude of the variations over longer periods of time is more uncertain and Leif can fill you in more on that but I think the current thinking is that it is likely on the low side of what had previously been believed.

  508. Smokey says:

    Simon Evans [06:15:42],

    I’m not arguing, and I didn’t ‘rant.’ I’m still just trying to get a straight answer. [But first, you stated that I wrote, “some call it pollution, we call it life”. Since you put it in quotation marks, you are quoting me verbatim. Please point out the time I said that, in case my memory is failing me. Thanx.]

    OK, by the numbers:

    1) I didn’t ask about what ‘scientists claim.’ I really want to know what you believe. Really. Will an increase in a minor trace gas that is a .00038 part of the atmosphere, to, say, .00048 part of the atmosphere, cause runaway global warming? Take your best shot. Yes or no.

    2) Aside from the fact that the Antarctic is significantly cooling, and despite the fact that Arctic sea ice is well within historical norms, you now say that “once we go to a summer ice-free state in the arctic…” Are you stating for a fact that the Arctic will become ice-free? When? And is CO2 your putative cause? If not, then what is? Is it natural, or is it AGW? Enquiring minds want to know.

    3) Well, I’ll skip responding to #3, since you’re just stating your opinion. Which you are entitled to, of course.

    4) I would also answer your #4 by explaining the difference between a market system and fascism, where a central government directs investment and production, but I prefer to remain on point and get to the central question of AGW: Do you believe that an extremely tiny trace gas change in the composition of the atmosphere over the past century, which left 99.99962 of the atmosphere unchanged, will lead to runaway global warming, melting the ice caps, etc., etc? If so, how do you explain this? Or this?

    If you have any doubts about the claims of catastrophic climate change, don’t you think it would be prudent to hold off on the wild spending proposals, until we know just a little more? Because the multi-trillion dollar cost of CO2 “mitigation” is already on the table — and the Davos Economic Summit this week is already discussing a “World Income Tax” to combat global warming. Tax receipts to be distributed through and by the UN, of course.

    You seem to be reasonable, Simon Evans. In fact, your views here seem to be moderating. That’s a good thing! There are already plenty of AGW extremists. Your voice is not necessary if you’re competing with James Hansen’s apocalyptic view, he will drown you out with his celebrity status.

    Finally — and this can not be repeated often enough — references to the UN/IPCC are references to a group of entirely political appointees, whose agenda is to levy huge world taxes on the U.S. and Western democracies to supposedly combat the fabricated bugaboo of AGW. The IPCC has forfeited credibility from their first assessment report predicting 20 meter rises in the sea level, etc., and every subsequent report has been backing and filling. Elmer Gantry had more credibility.

  509. Smokey says:

    Joel Shore

    You “skeptics” are continuing to marginalize yourselves better than anybody else could possibly do it to you.

    Sorry, Joel. That’s wishful thinking on your part.

  510. Oh, bother says:

    I have a question about the propriety of Dr. Theon signing off on Dr. Hansen’s budget: Dr. Hansen is actually employed by Columbia and is a contractor for NASA, yes? Dr. Hansen is an academic and academics spend a lot of time chasing grant money. (My sister has several employees who do nothing but write grant proposals for her institute; and Dr. Hansen is a much bigger player in his field than she is in hers.) Does NASA “administer” his grant money? If so did Dr. Theon have the right to deny him his grant money by excluding it from his budget?

  511. marshall says:

    This article is making accusations without backing any of them up.

    Scientists manipulated data to fit their models – how?
    Models omit certain sub grid scale processes – which ones?
    Lack transparency- then how do you know what’s been manipulated and omitted?

  512. Smokey (19:20:54) :

    I am liking it buddy! I like point 4, Do you believe that an extremely tiny trace gas change in the composition of the atmosphere over the past century, which left 99.99962 of the atmosphere unchanged, will lead to runaway global warming, melting the ice caps, etc., etc?. HAH! No need for further discussion. You give me your “click” links which are entirely unpredictable, sometimes serious, sometimes humorous, or corny and left-field, but pull off an argument like that? Brilliant. You’re a complex dude, entertaining, cynical, skeptical of most things, and really scientifically aware. I just wanted to give you a shout-out. Great stuff. You and I would probably have a blast swilling beers around a campfire (well, at least I would like the beer…)

  513. Joel Shore (19:10:36) :
    VG says:
    if you turn the sun off
    Please, can we stop this recurring nonsense?

  514. Brendan H says:

    Smokey: “…references to the UN/IPCC are references to a group of entirely political appointees, whose agenda is to levy huge world taxes on the U.S. and Western democracies…”

    I’m somewhat shaken to hear that, Smokey. For myself, I have tended to view the IPCC pronouncements as cast in stone, or at least on good quality bond paper. But if what you say is true, the UN plans to beggar the Western world.

    As a tax-and-spend liberal who lives in the Western world I’m not too unhappy about levying taxes, huge or otherwise, as long as someone else pays the taxes and I can do the spending. But the scenario you present upends this natural order to introduce something quite foreign to my nature.

    This is very disturbing news. What can we do? One option would be to raise a fund to prosecute the perpetrators of this fraud. A template exists in the Obama campaign, which raised millions of dollars from quite ordinary people via the internet.

    There would be sweet irony in this: using Al Gore’s own invention to smite him to his flabby knees for a well-deserved thrashing.

    I’m quite busy at the moment, but you seem to have the makings of an energetic campaigner. I’m sure many WUWT readers would be willing to contribute to your fund. Better than paying taxes to an unrepresentative and corrupt one-world body run by third-world dictators.

  515. TonyB says:

    Smokey and Simon Evans

    I have put up my comments on the queries by Simon on the Co2 thread by Frank Lansner.

    TonyB

  516. allister duncan says:

    @Oh bother

    Dr. Hansen is actually employed by Columbia and is a contractor for NASA, yes?

    Hello Oh Bother, as I understand it (and I’ve just checked his CV) Hansen is Director of GISS, hence a NASA employee. He is also an adjunct professor at Columbia, but that’s only a secondary academic affiliation.

    Dr. Hansen is an academic and academics spend a lot of time chasing grant money. Does NASA “administer” his grant money?

    Goddard money comes straight from NASA. John Theon explains in his letter that he was the man inside NASA responsible for allocating Hansen’s resources, so Hansen would have to apply straight to John Theon for his research budget. John Theon explains that he also “had to justify his [Hansen's] funding, allocate his resources, and evaluate his results”, so he was responsible for justifying Hansen’s work up the line, and checking the results of his work as well.

  517. matt v. says:

    bob tisdale

    RE PDO

    THIS IS FROM THE PDO WEB PAGE . I DON’T KNOW WHERE YOUR PERSONAL DEFINITION FOR PDO IS COMING FROM. I STAND BEHIND MY PREVIOUS COMMENTS

    The PDO is often quantified by the use of an index, referred to as the PDO Index. The PDO Index is calculated by spatially averaging the monthly sea surface temperature (SST) of the Pacific Ocean north of 20°N. The global average anomaly is then subtracted to account for global warming (Mantua, 2000). Normally only October to March values are used in calculating the PDO index because year-to-year fluctuations are most apparent during the winter months (Mantua, 2001).

    When the PDO Index is positive, waters in the north central Pacific Ocean tend to be cool, and waters along the west coast of North America tend to be warm. The opposite is true when the PDO Index is negative (Null, 2002).

    The effects of the PDO are most drastic in the Pacific Northwest. In this region, a positive, or warm phase PDO, generally correlates with lower than average rainfall and higher than average air temperatures. Likewise, a negative, or cool phase PDO, correlates with relatively high precipitation rates and low air temperatures (Null, 2002).

    The following figure shows how the PDO Index has varied over the past century. The PDO appears to oscillate between warm and cool phases every twenty to thirty years. 1900 to 1924, 1947 to 1976, and 1998 to present correspond to the negative, cool phase. The rest of the time period corresponds to the positive, warm phase.

  518. matt v. says:

    leif

    As I said before , in my opinion the global temperature rise in the period 1913 -1944 and again in 1976 -2007 was due to factors other than CO2. PDO,AMO and ENSO INDICIES all were positive and peaked during both of these two periods. I am not arguing that it was mostly due to the sun although the sun is part of the story, the amount of which I cannot quantify.

  519. Joel Shore says:

    Smokey says:

    [But first, you stated that I wrote, “some call it pollution, we call it life”. Since you put it in quotation marks, you are quoting me verbatim. Please point out the time I said that, in case my memory is failing me. Thanx.]

    Sorry if that caused confusion it was not quoting you. Rather it was characterizing your argument as being similar to the CEI’s (Competitive Enterprise Institute) “some call it pollution, we call it life” campaign. See here: http://cei.org/pages/co2.cfm

    1) I didn’t ask about what ’scientists claim.’ I really want to know what you believe. Really. Will an increase in a minor trace gas that is a .00038 part of the atmosphere, to, say, .00048 part of the atmosphere, cause runaway global warming? Take your best shot. Yes or no.

    As for the actual runaway part, I told you what I believe. I am skeptical…but I would like to see Hansen flesh out his argument for a scientific argument and have scientists respond.

    But, as for the general question about a “minor trace gas”, there are no hard-and-fast rules about how large a percentage of the atmosphere a gas has to be to cause a large effect. The atmosphere is about 99% constituents that are transparent to IR radiation, so the ~1% that is not plays an disproportionate role in our climate. Furthermore, over a large range of concentrations, the forcing is proportional to the logarithm of the concentration, which means small concentrations can play a disproportionate role in comparison to what they would play if the relationship were linear.

    2) Aside from the fact that the Antarctic is significantly cooling, and despite the fact that Arctic sea ice is well within historical norms, you now say that “once we go to a summer ice-free state in the arctic…” Are you stating for a fact that the Arctic will become ice-free? When? And is CO2 your putative cause? If not, then what is? Is it natural, or is it AGW? Enquiring minds want to know.

    Don’t know where you get your graphs from, but here is a graph of what has been happening to the Northern Hemisphere sea ice anomaly: http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/current.anom.jpg I don’t know when it will become ice-free but it seems to be happening much more rapidly than scientists were predicting only a few years ago.

    As for your plot of CO2 and temperatures over a very short period, we have discussed that before and I am quite amazed that you continue to use a plot which you have been told is deceptive and have never been able to defend. In order for the temperatures to follow the slope for the increase in CO2 on that plot would require a climate sensitivity at least 4 times the best estimates. If the plot is redrawn with a more reasonable scale, the fact that the temperature plot on these timescales is so dominated by the weather noise that the temperature trend has huge error bars that would tend to include what you would expect becomes fairly obvious even from a simple visible inspection. (For good measure, the plot also cherry picks the starting date and which temperature series it shows.)

    3) Well, I’ll skip responding to #3, since you’re just stating your opinion. Which you are entitled to, of course.

    An opinion basically shared by most of the scientific community and, in particular, all the scientific academies of all the G8+5 nations.

    Your point 4) is just a repeat of points that I have already responded to, including the incredibly deceptive graph that plots both temperature and CO2 that I discussed above in 2).

  520. jay vien says:

    Man-made global warming is simply a ploy for your government to reduce your freedoms in the name of saving the world. Man-made ignorance is the means by which your government markets that ploy. Hansen is merely a joke and hasn’t an intellectually honest bone in his entire body.

  521. Joel Shore says:

    Smokey, I meant to address this too…

    If you have any doubts about the claims of catastrophic climate change, don’t you think it would be prudent to hold off on the wild spending proposals, until we know just a little more? Because the multi-trillion dollar cost of CO2 “mitigation” is already on the table — and the Davos Economic Summit this week is already discussing a “World Income Tax” to combat global warming.

    I call this the “Wait until you sure your house is burning down before buying fire insurance approach.” There are at least a couple of problems that I would identify with this:

    (1) I think there is little reason to believe that we can burn through all of our fossil fuel reserves without seriously effecting our climate (and possibly the health of the oceans through ocean acidification). Furthermore, like I said, we have to face the costs of getting off of fossil fuels eventually because they are a finite resource.

    (2) There is a lot of inertia in the system. For example, there is inertia in the climate system…which means the amount of GHGs in the atmosphere commits us to an amount of warming considerably beyond what we see already. And, there is inertia in our societies / economies. (I believe that a coal plant that is built now can be expected to operate for the next 50 years.) Hence, waiting until we can more accurately assess the exact consequences risks not being able to prevent those consequences…or, at the very least, it being much more expensive to do so. The most prudent approach is to adopt measures that aim toward what the best science tells us with the flexibility to adjust targets later if further research suggests that either the less extreme scenarios of the Roy Spencers and Richard Lindzens of the world have some validity or if the more extreme scenarios of the Jim Hansens of the world are more correct.

  522. matt v. (07:00:46) :
    As I said before , in my opinion the global temperature rise in the period 1913 -1944 and again in 1976 -2007 was due to factors other than CO2.
    I don’t know why it is so hard to communicate, but that, perhaps, explains why the whole debate is dead on arrival because people simply do not listen to each other, just parrot the same sentence over and over.
    The dogma that the Sun is responsible for almost all natural climate change is central to and the strongest argument for the AGW argument. If we replace that with the dogma that the Sun plays no role whatsoever, the AGW argument for CO2 falls flat. The truth is, of course, somewhere in the middle: there are very many causes: solar irradiance, CO2 [yes, that too], PDO, land use, cosmic rays, chaos in a non-linear system, orbital changes, etc.

    I don’t think we disagree on any of this. My original post was simply a comment on the importance of the solar connection for the AGW dogma, pointing out that agreeing [not that you did, but there are plenty of people here that do - including Anthony himself] to a strong solar connection is giving the AGW crowd a strong argument ‘for free’. Because without it, they would have to agree that there can be plenty of different causes and that it is all a matter of degree, rather than the black-and-white which is necessary for acrimonious ‘debate’ and fear mongering.

    Now, one should not dismiss the solar connection simply to deprive the AGWers of their argument; that would be wrong too. So, the matter has to be discussed on its merit [or lack thereof] as we are trying to do in all the many postings on this blog following every speck the Sun produces [or fails to].

  523. Bill Junga says:

    If CO2 is a pollutant, then you better call oxygen a pollutant too.
    Oxygen is involved with many chemical reactions, maybe more than CO2. If someone can blame a bridge collapse on “global warming” as due to increased CO2 emission than, you should blame oxygen for a bridge collapsing due to rusting. And there is much more O2 in the atmosphere than CO2. If it weren’t for oxygen how could you get CO2 or even H2O in the first place. If there were no oxygen how could a person exhale 4,000 to 5,000 ppm of CO2?
    Blaming CO2 ,as in a food plant, for catastrophic heating of the Earth becomes more and more farfetched as the chemical and physical properties of that compound are examined.So no CO2, no plants and ultimately no people.

    Quite frankly, when I see my neighbors neon sign flashing the time and temperature 24/7 and I stand across the street from it with my digital temperature and the readings are 2 degrees F different. Yet when a sudden thundershower goes through both thermometers drop sometimes like 12 degrees. When a good sized cumulus cloud passes by and shades the sign the temp drops several degrees and goes back up when the sun comes out. Given the the temperature during the day can vary 20 degrees or so, it becomes increasing difficult to put credence into any extreme scenarios. A annual global mean temperature is a made up number. And they are using anomalies from that number. in my opinion, a fraction of a degree Celsius rise in this fiction number should not worry anyone. And increased CO2 does not appear to be the main cause of this rise.

  524. Pragmatist says:

    Smokey:

    Speaking for an assemblage of friends and colleagues, many of whom are just now waking up to the duplicitous AGW agenda – THANK YOU! We have not seen so cogent an assessment of the AGW clan and their disingenuous purpose in some time. As you point out, the demonization of carbon is a convincing indicator of the AGW clan’s real intent. That they pursue it by personal attack, manipulation of fact and incessant obfuscation – betrays their unstable scientific arguments.

    One must conclude from arm’s length point of view that climate alarmists are hardened misanthropes, willing to lie, cheat and steal that which man has built. Of course that construction is far from perfect. But those who condemn the entire human enterprise are in fact – an enemy. Exposure and transparency is anathema to them.

  525. matt v. says:

    LEIF
    I think we understand one another now. Thanks

  526. allister duncan says:

    @J Nicklin

    Why do many of these people have to wait until they are retired to make these pronouncements?

    That’s exactly what I’ve been wondering. When John Theon was working at NASA, and getting paid to check that taxpayers’ money was being spent correctly, he funded Hansen’s research and he justified Hansen’s modelling work to his superiors, even though he knew Hansen’s work on models was “useless”, and the data was “manipulated”. I can’t believe a manager that weak would last long anywhere outside the government sector. One thing I know for sure, I wouldn’t want him working for me.

  527. Brian says:

    I wonder if MSNBC has announced this story yet. Maybe Katie Couric will do a special on the evening news.

  528. Bob Tisdale says:

    matt v: I presume this is the webpage you quoted:
    http://ffden-2.phys.uaf.edu/645fall2003_web.dir/Jason_Amundson/pdoindex.htm

    Its definition is misleading. Try the actual JISAO PDO website:
    http://jisao.washington.edu/pdo/

    I’m not sure where your reference got his definition, but the definition I provided is from the gentleman who calculates the data, Nathan Mantua. On this page…
    http://jisao.washington.edu/pdo/PDO.latest
    …they state: “Updated standardized values for the PDO index, derived as the leading PC of monthly SST anomalies in the North Pacific Ocean, poleward of 20N. The monthly mean global average SST anomalies are removed to separate this pattern of variability from any ‘global warming’ signal that may be present in the data.”

    Also refer to the references at the bottom of the JISAO webpage. Then, when you’re through, email Nate Mantua and ask him to define the process he goes through to calculate the PDO. His reply to me stated:

    “The full method for computing the PDO index came from Zhang, Y., J.M. Wallace, D.S. Battisti, 1997: ENSO-like interdecadal variability: 1900-93. J. Climate, 10, 1004-1020.

    “They labeled this same time series ‘the NP index’ (see their figs 5 and 6). The steps are listed below, and files described below can be found at:
    ftp://ftp.atmos.washington.edu/mantua/pdofiles/

    “Data used: * monthly 5×5 Hadley Center SST 1900-93

    “Method:
    1. create monthly anomaly fields for all grid points
    2. create a monthly mean global SST anomaly time series for all months, 1900-93, using gridpoints specified in file grid.temp.glob_ocean.977
    3. create a “residual SST anomaly” field for the North Pacific by subtracting out the global mean anomaly from each North Pacific grid point in file grid.N_Pac_SST.resi.172 (20N-65N, only in Pacific Basin) for all months and locations
    np_resi(mo,loc)= np_ssta(mo,loc) – global_mean(mo)
    4. compute the EOFs of the North Pacific residual SST anomaly fields, and ignore all missing data point (set them to zeros)
    5. the PDO index is the leading PC from the above analysis
    6. for PDO index values post 1993, project observed ‘North Pacific residual SST anomalies’ onto the leading eigenvector (what we call the ‘PDO pattern’ of ssts) from the EOF analysis done in step 4. We now do this with the Reynold’s and Smith Optimally Interpolated SST (version 2) data.”

    matt v, that description was included in the link I provided earlier “The Common Misunderstanding About The PDO” :
    http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2008/06/common-misunderstanding-about-pdo.html

    matt v, feel free to stand behind a position that is incorrect. If you doubt the graphs I prepared that illustrated the SST anomalies and residuals for the North Pacific North of 20N, feel free to download the data yourself and create your own. There are links to my sources at the bottom of my webpages.

    Regards

  529. Mark says:

    Re: Brian (13:16:46) wrote:
    “I wonder if MSNBC has announced this story yet. Maybe Katie Couric will do a special on the evening news.”

    Bwa ha ha ha!!!

  530. Mike Bryant says:

    The music is about to stop. Any climate scientist who wants to maintain an ounce of credibility is beginning to weigh his/her options. Watch for more and more to get out of the game. Your friends and neighbors have begun to see the hoax for exactly what it is. Ask them and you will be surprised at their responses.
    Mike

  531. matt v. says:

    Bob Tisdale

    Re PDO

    Thanks for the extra information. I understand now what you were trying to say based on the article THE COMMON MISUNDERSTANDING ABOUT PDO. The article was a little clearer than your previous posts. Much appreciated for your persistence to get me to look at it .

    The article claims that PDO is a residual SST effect of ENSO or the after effect of ENSO events, yet it still impacts regional temperature[ notice the word 'impacts'which is what I was trying to say] and precipitation but the primary cause of the change in global temperatures and precipitation remains the ENSO.

    I had previously looked at ENSO and PDO but found better identification of more distinct temperature periods with the residual PDO index. These show the global cooling and warming periods together with positive and negative PDO periods better.
    The following reference shows the comparison. http://www.iphc.washington.edu/Staff/hare/html/decadal/post1977/pdoenso1.jpg

    The PDO Index and Canadian national surface temperatures well illustrate the warm and cool periods . The Maritime region seems to be impacted by AMO as well .

    I think I was on the right track but I will be more careful to qualify my words about which is primary and which is residual . Both have an effect.

    Thanks again Bob.

  532. Alan Wilkinson says:

    Roy Spencer has an interesting commentary on Theon’s “coming out” and the political manoeuvring inside NASA:

    http://www.drroyspencer.com/2009/01/another-nasa-defection-to-the-skeptics-camp/

  533. davidc says:

    Joel,

    “But, as for the general question about a “minor trace gas”, there are no hard-and-fast rules about how large a percentage of the atmosphere a gas has to be to cause a large effect. The atmosphere is about 99% constituents that are transparent to IR radiation, so the ~1% that is not plays an disproportionate role in our climate. Furthermore, over a large range of concentrations, the forcing is proportional to the logarithm of the concentration, which means small concentrations can play a disproportionate role in comparison to what they would play if the relationship were linear”

    (Firstly, for small concentrations a logarithm will be approximately linear, but more importantly …)

    I think the party line on this is that the trace gas CO2 is actually NOT able to raise the temperature significantly by itself. It needs help. Which is where the positive feedback loop involving water vapor kicks in. So the CO2 does just enough to evaporate some water to get it started, then the newly arrived water vapor causes more heating, more evaporation etc. Have I misunderstood this?

    The trouble with this mechanism is that it’s quite nonspecific for CO2. By the same mechanism an unusually hot summer afternoon could be the end of the planet.

    On the matter of the safety of burning all fossil fuels, why do you think they are called that? They are “plant fossils” and got all their carbon in the same way as plants do today. From CO2 in the atmosphere, though there was much more then. If we burnt every last milligram of fossil fuel we would simply be returning the CO2 to its rightful place.

  534. E.M.Smith says:

    Graeme Rodaughan (22:54:25) : Maybe “Climate” is a myth.
    What we actually have is weather, you can easily access weather, just step outside your front door…

    I generally agree with your comments.

    I’ve adopted the habit of talking about ’30 year weather’ and ’200 year weather’ etc.

    I’ve been convinced by Pamela Gray that ‘climate’ only changes if you move a mountain range, shift your latitude, or do something similar on a geologic time scale. Everything else is just weather. Some long, some short..

    FWIW, I’m also avoiding the use of the word “forcing”. There is no “forcing”. It implies something that can not be resisted. I’m using the older term ‘driver’ whenever possible. It implies something that pushes in a direction, but sometimes just doesn’t get there. Ever drive a herd of cats?
    ;-)

  535. anna v says:

    allister duncan (11:32:55) :

    @J Nicklin

    Why do many of these people have to wait until they are retired to make these pronouncements?

    That’s exactly what I’ve been wondering. When John Theon was working at NASA, and getting paid to check that taxpayers’ money was being spent correctly, he funded Hansen’s research and he justified Hansen’s modelling work to his superiors, even though he knew Hansen’s work on models was “useless”, and the data was “manipulated”.

    Been there, done that, in another field, in a smaller way. When you reach an administrative level you tend to trust the peer review process, the long curriculum vitae with the respectable publications. You tend to trust in the scientific integrity of the people in your “care” unless there has been something gross in their past.

    I am sure while dr Theon was administering the funds all this that he describes is hindsight. Even though Hansen was an alarmist, he was not a discredited by bad science scientist. He had a working model and he believed in his theories, which at that time might have been proven correct. It is the last ten years where science has been departing from the argument and naked politics has shown its face in this AGW hypotheis.

    There are a lot of retired people from scientific disciplines that start looking in the details of AGW because they now have the time. When they realize what has been happening they go @#$%^. Happened to me too, about a year ago. I also depended on the scientific integrity of the climatologists. I would not expect them to comment on the quark model so why would I doubt their climate model ab initio?

  536. E.M.Smith says:

    John Galt (06:41:08) : How is it that you are working on the GISSTemp source code? Is it posted on the internet?

    I have chosen to so that I can see what it really is doing. Yes, it is published for download. I’ve put directions in the comments under the ‘resources’ tab up at the top of this site.

  537. Joel Shore:

    Let’s not create some fiction that Milloy is some unbiased arbiter of junk science. His criterion for judging science to be junk is merely that it could be used to support environmental or health regulations. Nothing more, nothing less.

    I think you have it backwards. The frequency with which Milloy is debunking Junk Science in these areas is proportional to the frequency with which they occur there. Both fields are awash in Junk Science… Like I said, he could hire hundreds and never get the job done. It’s a bit overwhelming I’m sure.

  538. E.M.Smith says:

    marshall (20:10:37) :
    Scientists manipulated data to fit their models – how?

    In the GISStemp code from Hansen’s group, they take temperature data from three major data sets. Antarctic, GHCN & USHCN (Global and US Historic Climate Network – i.e. land thermometers). They then throw away many record and rewrite many others with different temperatures. I would call that ‘manipulation’.

    They throw out all records older than 1880.

    Where USHCN and GHCN both have data: Any GHCN data from prior to the earliest USHCN data for a given station are deleted. Why? Who knows.

    The remaining data have a ‘difference’ calculated by taking up to ten of the most recent years of data and subtracting the GHCN data from the USHCN data making an ‘average difference’ for each month. THIS is then subtracted from ALL prior USHCN records (with the resultant modified USHCN record kept) while the GHCN data are discarded. Why? (This matters because, for example, if a thermometer change was made in, say, Reno that reported 2F high and done 9 years ago, that 2F ‘correction’ would be subtracted from all months as far back in time as there were records. What does an equipment change in 2000 have to do with temperatures recorded in 1930?) I would assert this qualifies as ‘data manipulation’.

    The resultant temperatures can be ‘adjusted’ based on the temperatures at sites up to 1000 km away via what the software calls the “reference station method”. Just what does Lodi tell me about temperatures in San Francisco?

    Models omit certain sub grid scale processes – which ones?

    Take the Lodi / SFO example: In summer the air over Lodi gets hot and rises. This pulls fog over SFO and cools it. The code asserts that Lodi rising means SFO ought to have risen, so can ‘adjust’ SFO upward. The reality is that the model omits the sub grid scale process of fog and hot air rising over Lodi… and the fact that SFO negatively correlates with Lodi. There are other things omitted as well.

    Lack transparency- then how do you know what’s been manipulated and omitted?

    You may not know what, but you can know ‘that it has’. There is a thread on this site about temperatures in Italy. It includes a temperature graph for Pisa showing ‘as reported’ and ‘after GISS’. Some data points in the GISS data are moved up to 1.75 degrees. I can tell you it was done, and I can guess about what did it, but exactly what, why and how is not ‘transparent’ or clear.

    GISS data is clearly ‘cooked’ and IMHO useless for any scientific investigation.

  539. allister duncan says:

    @anna v

    There are a lot of retired people from scientific disciplines that start looking in the details of AGW because they now have the time.

    I suppose the issue I have with John Theon is that he was supposed to be looking into the details of AGW as part of his day job, not after he retired. He was responsible for evaluating Hansen’s results.

    I certainly agree that being a middle rank or senior rank manager in a large bureaucratic company is a complex and difficult task. It takes some brains, but more importantly it takes guts to do the job effectively. That’s why these managers get paid a larger than average salary to do the job.

    You’ll certainly find some quiet-life, go-with-the-flow managers in any organisation. The paperwork appears on their in-tray, they rubber-stamp it and put it onto their out-tray, and collect their salary at the end of the month. They provide no independent judgement, there is no added value. If they were removed from the loop, nothing would change.

  540. anna v says:

    allister duncan (03:59:41) :

    You are describing a government organization the world over:

    You’ll certainly find some quiet-life, go-with-the-flow managers in any organisation. The paperwork appears on their in-tray, they rubber-stamp it and put it onto their out-tray, and collect their salary at the end of the month. They provide no independent judgement, there is no added value. If they were removed from the loop, nothing would change.

    And do not forget that salary differences among peers with just a bit of extra seniority and responsibility, if they they exist, are not so huge.

    Still, from the head article here:

    “As Chief of several of NASA Headquarters’ programs (1982-94), ”

    he would be excused of being in negligence of Hansen’s reputation. There was nothing obviously wrong with it at the time , except a licence to speak out boldly, which probably the association with an academic institute gave him.

  541. Joel Shore says:

    davidc:

    (Firstly, for small concentrations a logarithm will be approximately linear, but more importantly …)

    No…a logarithm is a logarithm period. There are two possible sources of your confusion here: One is that any function including a logarithm will look linear (except right at maxima or minima) over a small enough range in concentrations…But since Smokey is presumably interested in the concentration that CO2 is actually at in comparison to some much higher concentration that he thinks would make its effects more plausible, that doesn’t apply. The second is that it is true that at low enough concentrations, the dependence of forcing on concentration is no longer expected to follow a logarithm but is expected to be more linear…but this is not due to properties of the logarithmic function itself…And, this is also irrelevant to the discussion because at the concentrations that CO2 is at, the logarithmic dependence is already occurring.

    I think the party line on this is that the trace gas CO2 is actually NOT able to raise the temperature significantly by itself. It needs help. Which is where the positive feedback loop involving water vapor kicks in. So the CO2 does just enough to evaporate some water to get it started, then the newly arrived water vapor causes more heating, more evaporation etc. Have I misunderstood this?

    Well, you are not completely off-base but I think you may be exaggerating the size of the water vapor feedback in relation to the direct rise in temp due to CO2. Basically, the breakdown in current climate models appears to be roughly like this (roughly because the feedbacks interact in a way that makes it hard to separate their effects): Doubling CO2 would directly raise temps about 1-1.2 C. The water vapor feedback roughly doubles this although the closely related negative lapse rate feedback takes some of that back, so that the net effect of the two is about a 1.5 X factor. The ice albedo feedback then adds a little bit more. And, finally the cloud feedback adds some more (and ranges from close to neutral to a quite positive feedback, depending on the model).

    The trouble with this mechanism is that it’s quite nonspecific for CO2. By the same mechanism an unusually hot summer afternoon could be the end of the planet.

    No…Things are not that sensitive. And, in fact, as I have pointed out above, the evidence from past paleoclimate events…and the cooling after the Mt. Pinatubo eruption…in fact seems to imply that the earth’s climate is indeed quite sensitive to small perturbations and thus our current understanding of these seems to require the net feedbacks to be significantly positive.

    On the matter of the safety of burning all fossil fuels, why do you think they are called that? They are “plant fossils” and got all their carbon in the same way as plants do today. From CO2 in the atmosphere, though there was much more then. If we burnt every last milligram of fossil fuel we would simply be returning the CO2 to its rightful place.

    Yes…but, while the earth is just fine with the seas being tens of meters higher than they are today, some people might find that less than ideal. And, as for ecosystems, the history of the earth is also full of dramatic extinction events. Furthermore, the rate at which we are returning the carbon to the atmosphere may have few or no other precedents…And, ecosystems are under other stresses, such as pollution and habitat fragmentation that will make it even more difficult for them to adjust than in the past.

    Now, if you are talking specifically of the prospect of a true runaway global warming effect: Hansen’s counterarguments to your point are that the sun is believed to have increased slowly in output over timescales of hundreds of millions of year and that the rate of release of CO2 into the atmosphere may be so unprecedented that it overwhelms the negative feedbacks that operate at more geological timescales (like those that drawdown CO2 levels over millions of years). Again, as I have noted, I remain somewhat skeptical of Hansen’s arguments in favor of such a true runaway effect…but I don’t think they can be dismissed out-of-hand using the argument that you do.

  542. PaulHClark says:

    Joel Shore (18:32:17) :

    Well I must say that your comment:

    “I think there is little doubt that Lindzen is an outstanding atmospheric scientist. And, maybe the word “fringe” is a bit too loaded. But, just because someone is a very good scientist does not make them infallible and the fact is that he is really out on the edge in the climate science field … And, for someone as smart as he is, I think that he has shown some very poor judgment in some of the arguments he has made or allowed himself to be associated with in the popular media.”

    is hugely arrogant. Your credentials are?

    As ever I find that when asked questions about giving “real world evidence” for your theory you have none. You refer to the IPCC report – please cite the specific references that support your comment because I cannot find any.

    I am not looking for absolute proof of CO2 as the cause of Global Warming as you intimate but I am looking for good evidence of it because like many people I do not believe there is such a thing. So please show me where I can find it?

    For the record I believe the earth is over 4 billion years old. I have no opinion on the G&T paper either.

    Your comments about the JunkScience site and its author say a lot more about you than you will ever know.

  543. Richard Sharpe says:

    PaulHClark said:

    For the record I believe the earth is over 4 billion years old. I have no opinion on the G&T paper either.

    For the record, I also am of the view that the evidence tells us that the earth over 4 Billion years old.

    I am also of the view that there is exquisite evidence for those who wish to see it that evolution has occurred! There are particularly convincing examples for the vertebrate eye, for example, and alternative designs available among the octopodia or whatever.

    I am also of the view that the evidence demonstrates that the Nazis did particularly nasty things to a particular group of humans, including working many of them to death and exterminating them via gas chambers.

    Have I missed any other disgusting ad-hominems that might be cast my way? Oh yes. I am married to a person with a different skin color than mine and speak a great deal of her language.

  544. Jeff Alberts says:

    Have I missed any other disgusting ad-hominems that might be cast my way? Oh yes. I am married to a person with a different skin color than mine and speak a great deal of her language.

    Me too. not the skin color, but my wife is from a strange place called New Jersey.

  545. old construction worker says:

    Jeff Alberts (16:50:20)
    Me too. not the skin color, but my wife is from a strange place called New Jersey.

    New Jersey? Isn’t that a suburb of New York, New York?

  546. Joel Shore says:

    PaulHClark says:

    Well I must say that your comment:

    is hugely arrogant. Your credentials are?

    Paul, then do you also consider it arrogant when people around here bash Hansen and Mann and so forth? Actually, I personally think it takes quite a bit more arrogance to say, “I have an opinion on AGW which differs from the opinions of the acknowledged authorities of the IPCC, the National Academy of Sciences and the analogous bodies in all of the other G8 + 5 nations, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the councils of the American Geophysical Union, the American Meteorological Society, the American Physical Society, etc., etc.” than it is to say, “I have an opinion which agrees with all of these authorities…but you can find a few scientists (such as Lindzen) who disagree with it.”

    As ever I find that when asked questions about giving “real world evidence” for your theory you have none. You refer to the IPCC report – please cite the specific references that support your comment because I cannot find any.

    I’ve told you where to find it but you refuse to seek it out. In particular, look at Chapter 9 of the Working Group 1 report: http://www.ipcc.ch/ipccreports/ar4-wg1.htm That will give you plenty of references. (If you want a more historical presentation of the evidence, you can look at Spencer Weart’s “Discovery of Global Warming”: http://www.aip.org/history/climate/ )

  547. Tom Berlett says:

    I call this the “Wait until you sure your house is burning down before buying fire insurance approach.” There are at least a couple of problems that I would identify with this..

    Doomsday Called Off had what I view as my epiphany post in the comments that addresses this far better than I could hope to do.

    Matt said….
    I feel the question boils down to, “Are you willing to bet your and your children’s future on the fact that you understand all the interactions of the earth’s systems to say you cannot be wrong?”

    David said…

    Matt,

    We are betting our children’s future either way because what the politicians are saying is necessary could destroy the global economy. I think that, if we are going to spend $42 trillion to fix something, thus heaping debt and economic desolation upon our children, we should know if we are getting our money’s worth.

    I’m willing to spend $100 to replace the spark plugs in my car if the engine is sputtering; I’m not willing to replace the whole engine on a whim when the problem might just be that I need new spark plugs. And the whole tone from alarmists comes off like a used-car salesman. Buy now or you’ll never have another chance!

    At 44, I’m old enough now to know better.
    _____
    Couldn’t agree more. The trillions the AGW alarmists are demanding that we spend on mitigation, with no proof that it will do any good whatsoever whilst in the midst of a global economic crisis is foolhardy.

  548. PaulHClark says:

    Joel Shore (18:41:10) :

    Chapter 9 and the various references in that chapter give no more than an assessment that the climate models might be suggesting that the climate models could be right.

    Many have commented that the findings in the report are biased with other contrary findings being ignored as they did not agree with the central thesis of the core team driving the desired output for AR4.

    Since AR4 I have little doubt that those ‘confidence levels’ would be in increasing doubt from recent evidence.

    You can see that proponents are becoming so concerned that they are having to adjust data retrospectively by suppressing temperature records in the past and amplifying recent trends. The reality is that recent trends in temperature are flat and this does not correspond with the expected outcome from the radiative forcing and feedback mechanisms that are postulated.

    Time will tell, but it will take a surge in temperatures over the next ten years to convince me that the catstrophic prediction is right and that the draconian measures now being planned are required.

    You should not worry though because those that advocate what you do are driving the political agenda and the policies in the UK are already set in support of it. They will shortly be set in the US to a similar degree.

  549. Joel Shore says:

    PaulHClark says:

    Chapter 9 and the various references in that chapter give no more than an assessment that the climate models might be suggesting that the climate models could be right.

    Well, I don’t think that is a very fair statement of Chapter 9. More accurate would be that it assesses climate models and their predictions by looking at the comparison between what they predict and empirical data, which is remarkably like what is done in many other fields of science.

    Many have commented that the findings in the report are biased with other contrary findings being ignored as they did not agree with the central thesis of the core team driving the desired output for AR4.

    And, this is different than what you would expect that people who are opposed to the conclusions would say exactly how? If you use this same standard in the field of evolution, you would most surely conclude that reviews of that field are biased too.

    The conclusion of most scientists working in the field seems to be that the IPCC AR4 report represents a fair, comprehensive view of the science. A few surely argue that it tends to be too alarmist…but others actually argue that it is too conservative in some of its projections (especially in regards to sea level change).

    Since AR4 I have little doubt that those ‘confidence levels’ would be in increasing doubt from recent evidence.

    The fact is that this argument has been used constantly by the “skeptics”. In between the 3rd Assessment report and AR4 they were saying how the Third Assessment was out-of-date and all sorts of new evidence increased the level of doubt. Then, AR4 came out and, in fact, the scientists were more confident of their conclusions.

    The reality is that recent trends in temperature are flat and this does not correspond with the expected outcome from the radiative forcing and feedback mechanisms that are postulated.

    That’s not so. Over short periods, the error bars in the trends are very large…and, in fact, the climate models forced with constantly increasing greenhouse gases themselves predict a wide variety of trends over such time periods: http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2008/05/what-the-ipcc-models-really-say/langswitch_lang/in

  550. PaulHClark says:

    Joel Shore (17:45:10) :

    Except that the predictions suggested by the models are not being borne out as time passes. Moreover, remarkably unlike what is done in other fields of science there is no falsifiabilty of the AGW hypothesis.

    There is now a large and growing body of scientists who do not support the IPCC AR4. It is not surprising to me that there aren’t more such scientists given that speaking out against the AGW mantra can cost you your tenure and that to get government funding you have to toe the line.

    Furthermore a good number of scientists were party to the workings of the IPCC and then ignored with the final conclusions being drafted by just a few.

    This hardly seems an appropriate way to develop the science in this field.

    Your suggestion that my argument here would lead me to a similar conclusion in the field of evolution is baseless. Oh and BTW I think the earth is round before you try that one next.

    The fact is that climate science is intolerably complex and we are no way close to having worked it out. Yet the arrogance of people like you is to suggest the science is settled.

    The models are very poor at taking account of the ocean temperature impact because we still do not know how or why they oscillate as they do. The IPCC takes the sun out of the equation because it is assumed to be constant but we know very very little about how the sun works and impacts on the earth’s climate. There are then countless other variables each with their own variable cycles or chaotic behaviour. Putting all those variables together and predicting how they may come together to change the earth’s climate is well beyond us at the moment.

    So in summary it looks to me like we do not know what we are doing.

  551. old construction worker says:

    Joel Shore (07:08:49) :
    ‘…..(roughly because the feedbacks interact (pure speculation)in a way that makes it hard to separate (no hot spot in the upper troposphere) their effects): Doubling CO2 would directly raise temps about 1-1.2 C. (backed by controlled experiments) The water vapor feedback roughly doubles (more speculation) this although the closely related negative lapse rate feedback (flat or cooling oceans and water vapor being a negitive feedback to “heat”) takes some of that back, so that the net effect of the two is about a 1.5 X factor (more speculation). The ice albedo feedback then adds a little bit more. And, finally the (“heat” trapping) cloud feedback (no observed increase of “heat” trapping clouds) adds some more (and ranges from close to neutral to a quite positive feedback, depending on the model).

    The government crashed a lot of rockets based on wrong assumptions and bad math models.
    Why don’t you first study and learn how to model water vapor, (the major greenhouse gas), cloud formation, precipitation from observed data and then worry about any trace gas?

  552. Joel Shore says:

    PaulHClark says:

    Except that the predictions suggested by the models are not being borne out as time passes. Moreover, remarkably unlike what is done in other fields of science there is no falsifiabilty of the AGW hypothesis.

    This is a claim often made by those who haven’t actually worked in other fields of science (or have but are being disingenuous). The fact is that it works the same in climate science as anywhere else. However, one has to conclude that the data really does falsify the hypothesis, which means that the data is not itself problematical and there is no way for the hypothesis to be consistent with it.

    In almost any field of science, there will be various observations that appear to contradict the prevailing theory. However, that doesn’t lead to immediate abandonment of the theory. If it did, we’d be back in the dark ages, with no theories around to explain anything.

    The fact is that those people who make this claim actually want climate science to operate by a different standard than other scientific fields, simply because they don’t like the conclusions that it is reaching.

    There is now a large and growing body of scientists who do not support the IPCC AR4. It is not surprising to me that there aren’t more such scientists given that speaking out against the AGW mantra can cost you your tenure and that to get government funding you have to toe the line.

    Yes….The old mass conspiracy theory. If there is really that much good science contradicting AGW, why are many of the examples that are always trotted out so poor…like Gerlich and Tscheuschner or Beck or some of the stuff with horrendous errors in the analysis that Roy Spencer has put out lately ( http://tamino.wordpress.com/2009/01/19/a-bag-of-hammers/ )?

    The fact is that climate science is intolerably complex and we are no way close to having worked it out. Yet the arrogance of people like you is to suggest the science is settled.

    So in summary it looks to me like we do not know what we are doing.

    Just because we don’t understand everything does not mean that we understand nothing. And, what we do understand should lead us, if anything, to be more cautious and concerned about what we don’t understand. And, what we do understand is that “The climate system is an angry beast and we are poking it with sticks!” as Dr Wally Broecker has said. We have a good idea of the kind and magnitude of perturbation we are putting on the climate system, even if there is still uncertainty in predicting exactly how it will respond.

  553. E.M.Smith says:

    This page:

    http://globalwarmingnot.blogtownhall.com/2008/07/28/bribery_at_nasa.thtml

    Makes some claims about monetary support for Hansen and Gavin Schmidt of Realclimate by George Soros and claims that may be in violation of various goverment rules, laws, or at the least, decorum…

    I don’t know enough about it to assess veracity. If anyone knows the truth about receipt of monetary support by government employees (or contractor agents) I’d be interested in knowing it. (I could convince myself either way. As a contractor, especially, what I do on my own time is my business; but if either of these guys is a ‘real’ employee, I’d expect “buckets ‘o money” to fall under some kind of prohibition (conflict of interest, at least… As an employee of a non-gov’t company I once had to refuse a ‘gift’ of nominal value from a Japanese visitor even though that was considered an insult of sorts.)

    BTW, please don’t bother with ‘attack the messenger’ arguments. I’m just interested in the facts, not the envelope…

  554. Mike Bryant says:

    “The climate system is an angry beast and we are poking it with sticks!” as Dr Wally Broecker has said.

    This statement is certainly an alarming one, however it seems to me that this beast has been domesticated in the last century. I am sure that you have seen the work of Indur M. Goklany here:

    http://www.csccc.info/reports/report_23.pdf

    As the people of earth have become wealthy, this beast has been chained. This beast’s wrath is now concentrated only in the poorest of nations. Surely the answer to climate change is increased freedom and wealth for the people, not chains and taxation. Take more of our earnings in taxes and other redistribution schemes, and watch the beast break free to kill us and plunder whatever little the UN and IPCC have somehow neglected to take.
    Mike Bryant

  555. PaulHClark says:

    Joel Shore (17:33:17) :

    I’m sorry but your comment:

    “However, one has to conclude that the data really does falsify the hypothesis, which means that the data is not itself problematical and there is no way for the hypothesis to be consistent with it.”

    rather baffles me.

    I do not for one moment suggest that we should abandon theories because observations appear to contradict the theory – but I do suggest that when observations do not support the theory we should be ever more questioning of the theory and that the authors should be re-evaluating the soundness of the assertions. I do not see any of this – indeed I see the contrary.

    I strongly object to your comment:

    “The fact is that those people who make this claim actually want climate science to operate by a different standard than other scientific fields, simply because they don’t like the conclusions that it is reaching.”

    The fact is the proponents of the AGW theory believe the science is settled already and the conclusion has already been reached. Those that argue against it, reasonably ask to see evidence to support the theory and for the scientific community to make the judgement that the data supports the proposed hyothesis otherwise how can anyone suggest a conclusion to the debate? – ergo the science is not settled in my view.

    The mass conspiracy theory is as much promoted by believers of AGW on the counter side of the argument you use. If you refer to the topic of this thread and read Dr Spencer’s thoughts on it on his site you will see there is real evidence to support the point I made. The Theon issue is not isolated – a good number of those that speak out have been vilified and government funding for any studies that may challenge the AGW theory is …. well where?

    Your final comment is one I have empathy with because we do not really understand the climate and how it works so we should indeed be cautious – but look at the reality – we are sure the science is settled even though the data may be suggesting otherwise. Politicians are making policy in a time when we should be cautious. That seems inappropriate to me.

  556. Joel Shore says:

    Mike Bryant:

    First, I wouldn’t become too overconfident in regards to our now being at a point where we, even in the 1st world, are no longer dependent significantly affected by the climate (and all the things related to it, like a stable water supply, a healthy ecosystem, etc.) And, the fact is also that the poor in this world still exist and probably would continue to exist in some libertarian eutopia that you might imagine.

    Second, it always amuses me when those railing against “alarmism” adopt this alarmist talk about “chains and taxation”. If we were simply running out of fossil fuels, I am sure you free market fundamentalists would not be running around saying that the sky is falling; you’d be telling us how the wondrous market will save the day by coming up with alternatives and better technologies. However, when it is proposed that we somehow emulate such scarcity of fossil fuels by taxing them (which could then be used to reduce other taxes…as Hansen has proposed) or adopting a cap-and-trade system, the same people predict economic catastrophe. Yet, the only real difference that I can see is that in the current case where we aren’t actually running out of them (at least not yet), we have a bit more flexibility since sequestration of carbon emissions is a potential option that can be thrown into the mix.

  557. Joel Shore says:

    PaulHClark:

    but I do suggest that when observations do not support the theory we should be ever more questioning of the theory and that the authors should be re-evaluating the soundness of the assertions. I do not see any of this – indeed I see the contrary.

    In fact, the areas where there seems to be disagreement between observations and theory are getting a lot of attention but, as with any well-established theory, that attention is not immediate abandonment of the theory but trying to better understand the theory predictions and where they might be wrong and to better understand the potential problems with the observations.

    ergo the science is not settled in my view.

    Well, I am not big on the phrase that “the science is settled” because I don’t really know what it means. Technically, all scientific knowledge is provisional, so in some sense the science of gravity is not settled (after all, noone has yet figured out how to make it compatible with quantum theory) and neither is evolution. And yet, that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t base public policy on gravity’s existence and teach evolution to students as the important unifying theory of biology that it is.

    Scientists will continue to investigate the scientific questions. But, in the meantime, that doesn’t mean that we can’t say anything about what scientists believe with a reasonable degree of certainty (while noting that complete certainty…i.e., absolute proof…is outside the realm of science).

    The mass conspiracy theory is as much promoted by believers of AGW on the counter side of the argument you use.

    I don’t think you support this claim whatsoever…or at least I am not following your logic. It is not a mass conspiracy theory to say that there will be a few scientists, especially ones like Theon who aren’t active in the field (and a few like Spencer and Lindzen who are), who for whatever reasons will not embrace the theory. What is a mass conspiracy theory is when you have to start to explain away why the overwhelming proportion of the peer-reviewed papers, almost all of the major world scientific societies, etc. endorse the theory.

    Your final comment is one I have empathy with because we do not really understand the climate and how it works so we should indeed be cautious – but look at the reality – we are sure the science is settled even though the data may be suggesting otherwise. Politicians are making policy in a time when we should be cautious. That seems inappropriate to me.

    Well, you seem to be equating caution with doing nothing. However, that is not the cautious approach at all in my view. The cautious approach would be to base our policies on the best science currently available, with the flexibility to adjust that policy as the science evolves. I am not advocating aiming for what Hansen believes to be necessary, i.e., reducing CO2 back down below 350ppm, but I also don’t believe we should adopt the “do-nothing about CO2 emissions” policy that would be the correct one only if it turned out that almost all the climate scientists (except, e.g., Spencer and Lindzen) were wrong.

  558. Smokey says:

    Joel Shore:

    I notice you have now promoted the AGW/CO2 hypothesis to a theory.

    How’d that happen?

  559. PaulHClark says:

    Joel Shore (17:54:56) :

    AGW is not “well established theory”.

    To take action as proposed on an unsubstantiated hypothesis has tremendous known cost and is high risk. Moreover with developing countries being exempt it is highly likely that it will have no effect at all.

  560. Joel Shore says:

    PaulH Clark says:

    To take action as proposed on an unsubstantiated hypothesis has tremendous known cost and is high risk.

    But, the point is, it is an “unsubstantiated hypothesis” according to who? Not according to the most of the scientists in the field or according to the scientific academies of all the G8+5 countries that are urging action: http://www.leopoldina-halle.de/cms/fileadmin/user_upload/G8_Statement_Climate.pdf Labeling it an unsubstantiated hypothesis doesn’t make it one anymore than labeling evolution an unsubstantiated hypothesis makes it one. (See here for one example of such labeling: http://www.evolutionordesign.com/code/evolution_or_design_evolution.html or type “evolution unsubstantiated hypothesis” into google for several more examples.)

    Moreover with developing countries being exempt it is highly likely that it will have no effect at all.

    Yes, they are certainly going to have to be included eventually. However, many of them want the industrialized countries to take the first step, which seems reasonably given that we are the ones who are responsible for most of the excess CO2 in the atmosphere at this point. (China has overtaken the U.S. in yearly emissions but is still far behind in cumulative emissions.) Also, the industrialized countries have greater capacity and resources to come up with the solutions that the developing countries will then be able to harness also.

  561. Smokey says:

    Joel Shore still fails to get it: CO2 is NOT A PROBLEM.

    Is that so hard to understand? The evidence is all around us. Sheesh.

    And saying that “developing countries” are going to have to be included “eventually” means this: They will never have to abide by G-8 standards. Never! The UN will always give them a pass.

    Some people know absolutely nothing about human nature, or how the real world works.

  562. Mike Bryant says:

    “However, when it is proposed that we somehow emulate such scarcity of fossil fuels by taxing them…”
    The government should not be in the business of deciding how much things should cost. Surely, anyone who has lived the last forty or fifty years knows this simple truth.
    Even the USSR and China now acknowledge that capitalism is their road out of poverty. Unfortunately, they will have no one to sell to in the west, since our governments are busily emulating us into poverty.
    Mike Bryant

  563. PaulHClark says:

    Joel Shore (10:22:27) :

    You seem to have an ability to link science that is well understood, such as evolution and gravity, with AGW which is embyonic and, given our very poor understanding of the complexities of how the climate works, far from being supported by the empirical evidence.

    As I have said I would suggest there are many more people who have increasing doubts about the hypothesis. That is not to say that the overwhelming ‘politically correct agenda’ is that the case is proven and we should get on and fix it – which creates great tension for those who have doubts.

    I have a challenging mind about the hypothesis nothing more. I do not want to trash our planet nor do I not want to trash our way of life.

    I object to daft policies – for example some of our brightest people are suggesting that UK citizens should be restricted as to how many flights they can take in a year. The carbon tax in the UK already adds 16% to UK electric bills that many people can ill afford. We have made significant investments in wind power which produces the power of 1 medium sized coal fired plant at huge economic cost relative to more traditional forms of power generation (some of which are carbon neutral).

    It’s bonkers in my view to embark on such draconian and ill thought out measures until we are reasonably convinced that the warming of the last century was so obviously down to human contributions to CO2 in the atmosphere.

    For goodness sake we can see that from 1940 to 1970 CO2 levels rose significantly and temperatures went down. We have leading proponents of the AGW theory saying that the MWP must disappear if we are to get people to believe. We have the first Co-chair of the IPCC saying; “Unless we announce disasters no one will listen”. Now we have temperatures not behaving as predicted over the last 10 years.

    That’s enough doubt in my mind for me to humbly suggest we should be a great deal more clear about whether the hypothesis is supported.

    Not involving the developing countries as you suggest is incredibly naive. If you seriously believe we have 4 years to fix the problem then we should exclude no-one. But I suspect the propents know their theory doesn’t stack up and that they could in no way convince those countries to believe.

    The Chinese have made a great poker play – ‘you pay we’ll play – over to you’. Would you like to bet with me that the ‘West (which means the USA) will support them?

  564. PaulHClark says:

    Just to emphasise the point on some the daft and ill thought through things that are being done in the name of reducing carbon emissions see this:

    http://co2sceptics.com/news.php?id=2738

    Engineers have also told me that the ‘end-to-end’ carbon footprint of wind power is worse than conventional power when you take into account build and maintenance carbon footprints related to the wind turbines.

    I say we don’t know what we are doing yet

  565. PaulHClark says:

    Mike Bryant (11:25:14) :

    I think Mr Shore has shown his true colours

  566. Joel Shore says:

    Mike Bryant:

    I suggest looking up “externality” in an economic textbook. Your statement just shows your fundamentalist views, i.e., that you believe in markets / capitalism as a religion. You do not want to deal with the virtues and limitations of market economics as understood by economists.

    Reply: Both of you back it down a tiny notch or at the very least avoid escalation ~ charles the moderator

  567. Joel Shore says:

    Smokey:

    Almost every time you have put up that graph, I have explained patiently to you what is very deceptive about it. You have not even tried to defend it and yet you continue to use it to try to score points. That to me, seems pretty indefensible.

  568. Simon Evans says:

    Joel Shore (13:39:38) :

    Smokey:

    Almost every time you have put up that graph, I have explained patiently to you what is very deceptive about it. You have not even tried to defend it and yet you continue to use it to try to score points. That to me, seems pretty indefensible.

    It’s a deliciously obvious example of manipulative cherry-picking though, Joel (and increasingly so with each passing month), so let’s not discourage him! As far as I’m concerned, insofar as these debates are really mostly ‘political’, I’m more than pleased to see risible stuff presented as being the ‘evidence’ from Smokey’s side! ;-)

  569. Mike Bryant says:

    Joel,
    I know very well what an “externality” is. Yes, there is a word in economics that precisely describes this type of government intervention. And no, I am not a fundamentalist, only a realist. Do you really believe that all economists support this externality?
    The bottom line is more money out of my pocket. My beliefs have absolutely no impact on my desire for the government to stay out of my wallet.
    Mike

  570. Smokey says:

    I agree with Simon that the CO2 argument is political. Because if it were based on real science, the fantastic proposition that a minor trace gas could cause the entire climate to change drastically would have been put to bed long ago.

    As Mike Bryant correctly points out, the argument is over money, not science.

    If Joel has a problem with the previous graph that he won’t explicitly state, here’s a different graph showing the same thing: click

    And I have more graphs that show CO2 rising as temperatures decline, if anyone is interested. The point of these graphs, of course, is that as CO2 increases, global temperatures fall. That pretty effectively falsifies the hypothesis that CO2 leads to runaway global warming, no?

  571. Joel Shore says:

    Smokey says:

    If Joel has a problem with the previous graph that he won’t explicitly state, here’s a different graph showing the same thing: click

    That graph suffers from at least 2, if not all 2-1/2, of the major problems that the other graph suffered from:

    (1) Most importantly, the scales of the CO2 and temperature axes are scaled relative to each other in a ludicrous way…One such that the temperature would have to be rising with CO2 levels at a rate of about 4 X what the IPCC predicts in order to have them align. In fact, on this plot, if you take away that problem alone, you would then see a much better agreement between the temp trend and the CO2 trend (although it would be obvious that the time range is too narrow to determine the temperature trend with much accuracy).

    (2) The dataset chosen is cherrypicked to be the one that shows the least warming over this particular period of all 4 of the major datasets (the two surface temp. ones and the two satellite ones).

    (3) The start of the time period is cherry-picked. Here the cherry-pick is not nearly so bad as in the previous graph, but it is still too short a time period to determine much. This post puts this sort of thing in perspective: http://tamino.wordpress.com/2008/12/31/stupid-is-as-stupid-does/

    And I have more graphs that show CO2 rising as temperatures decline, if anyone is interested. The point of these graphs, of course, is that as CO2 increases, global temperatures fall. That pretty effectively falsifies the hypothesis that CO2 leads to runaway global warming, no?

    You really have no idea about what AGW actually predicts do you? The current underlying trend is expected to be around 0.015 C – 0.02 C per year increase from increases in greenhouse gases with natural climate system variability that can lead to year-to-year changes of about 10X this amount superimposed on top of this.

    Do you have any idea of how to study a system that has an underlying trend but also a considerable amount of noise? The answer is clearly that you do not, which is why you can come to conclusions that are so at odds with the scientific community.

    Mike Bryant says:

    My beliefs have absolutely no impact on my desire for the government to stay out of my wallet.

    Yes, but your desire to have the government stay out of your wallet seems to have a large impact on your beliefs. (And, by the way, your use of the term “externality” in your reply implies to me that you don’t really understand the term. In general, an “externality” has nothing to do with government intervention, although attempting to correct it can. See here for one discussion of the term: http://tutor2u.net/economics/content/topics/externalities/what_are_externalities.htm )

  572. Mike Bryant says:

    “Yes, but your desire to have the government stay out of your wallet seems to have a large impact on your beliefs.”

    True, I believe I want the government out of my wallet.

    “And, by the way, your use of the term “externality” in your reply implies to me that you don’t really understand the term. In general, an “externality” has nothing to do with government intervention…”

    You seem to believe that only industry can cause externalities that the government must somehow correct. I believe it is a two way street…
    Governments cause the huge externalities in our financial lives.

    http://volokh.com/posts/1200276884.shtml

  573. Smokey says:

    Let me repeat:

    “The point of these graphs, of course, is that as CO2 increases, global temperatures fall.” Therefore CO2 does not cause measurable global warming. QED.

    Scale has nothing to do with the fact that temperatures fall as CO2 rises. But if scale bothers you so much, it is interesting that you never complain about this scale: click …when this scale should be used: click

    And to make this statement…

    “You really have no idea about what AGW actually predicts do you? The current underlying trend is expected to be around 0.015 C – 0.02 C per year increase…”

    …indicates that you believe that AGW is empirically measurable. It is not. AGW exists in the fevered imaginations of computer programmers who have already reached their desired conclusion.

    Climate models can not even predict today’s climate when input with all previously known climate data, yet you presume that AGW “predicts.” No computer model can predict the climate even one year in advance; this year is a case in point.

    Aside from always-inaccurate computer models, what proves that AGW is measurable? What is the measurement? The AGW/CO2/climate catastrophe hypothesis is discredited; there is nothing in the real world to back up the AGW model, and there is no way to falsify it. Only charlatans continue to use AGW as a scare tactic.

  574. Richard Sharpe says:

    Mike Bryant says:

    You seem to believe that only industry can cause externalities that the government must somehow correct. I believe it is a two way street…
    Governments cause the huge externalities in our financial lives.

    To which I can only add Maggie Thatcher’s comment (loosely quoted and an important qualification made):

    Government is (some of) us!

  575. Joel Shore says:

    Smokey says:

    “The point of these graphs, of course, is that as CO2 increases, global temperatures fall.” Therefore CO2 does not cause measurable global warming. QED.

    Scale has nothing to do with the fact that temperatures fall as CO2 rises.

    Wow! I guess you really don’t understand. Let me explain it by example. There is this not-too-controversial theory that our climate, at in the high latitudes, is strongly controlled by what is called “the seasonal cycle”, whereby it gets colder during the time of year when we are headed from summer to winter and warmer during the time of year when we are headed from winter to summer. Now, today here in Rochester, it got up to about 50deg but tomorrow it is supposed to be much colder (and, if you think that time separation is too close for a significant seasonal effect, I am quite confident that a week or two from now it will also very likely be colder than it was today). Since, during this time of year, the seasonal cycle hypothesis would say that it should be getting warmer, does this constitute falsification of the seasonal cycle hypothesis?

    But if scale bothers you so much, it is interesting that you never complain about this scale: click …when this scale should be used: click

    There is a good reason to plot CO2 on a scale large enough to see the details of the trend rather than one that doesn’t allow you to…and it is trivial enough for anyone to read the axis and see that it doesn’t start at zero. There is no known good scientific practice that I know of that requires always having the axis start at zero and, in fact, it is often a horrible practice.

    Only charlatans continue to use AGW as a scare tactic.

    Well, to be honest, if the charlatans are the IPCC, the National Academy of Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Physical Society, the American Geophysical Union, the American Meteorological Society, etc., etc. and the non-charlatans are people like Gerlich and Tscheuschner, William Gray, the Heartland Institute, and yourself, I think I’ll stick to the “charlatan” side!

  576. Mike Bryant says:

    “Only charlatans continue to use AGW as a scare tactic.”

    “Well, to be honest, if the charlatans are the IPCC, the National Academy of Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Physical Society, the American Geophysical Union, the American Meteorological Society…”

    So Joel, I guess this means that you are frightened for mankind. Are you really scared? Don’t be afraid everything will be ok.

    http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/images/stories/papers/scarewatch/really_cooling.pdf

    I hope that this reasoned article will help set your mind at ease.

    The constant drumbeat of argumentum ad baculum in the pages of the media and in scientific journals has only set people against AGW. Every bad thing is the result of AGW, and AGW will kill every cute, cuddly and noble thing. The people are smarter than scientists think. Also pedantic commentary from the ivory towers above does little to convince or endear.
    If anyone ever has presented the AGW case in a quiet reasonable voice, with clear documentation and without scare tactics, that person has escaped my notice. Is it because the case cannot be made without exaggerations? Without fudging data? Without withholding computer codes? Without computer models? Without talking down to peers? Without belittling those who question sincerely? Without an all-out attempt to frighten people into acceptance?
    Is there a man or woman who can convince reasonable people that trillions upon trillions of dollars must be spent now to fight AGW? I have not seen or heard from this person.
    I only see the pedantic, the fearmongers, the blowhards and many assorted others who push hard to turn back the tide of disbelief which is quickly advancing against them.
    Not one of these people really believes what they say, or they would have already gotten rid of their cars, their ocean front properties and their electric appliances.
    Mike Bryant

  577. Smokey says:

    Joel Shore,

    I will retract my charlatan label the minute those organizations take a secret ballot poll of their rank and file, dues paying membership, asking a question like this:

    “Do you accept as fact that a doubling of atmospheric carbon dioxide will result in runaway global warming and climate catastrophe, similar to what is predicted by the IPCC, Al Gore and James Hansen?

    “Please circle: Yes or No. Return ballot in the unmarked envelope.”

    But as Prof. Richard Lindzen and others convincingly argue, by naming names and explaining what’s going on in detail, those organizations will never allow their membership to voice such an opinion.

    So until the rank and file are allowed a say in the matter, yes, those organizations are run by charlatans who have managed to game the system at the expense of ordinary scientists and taxpaying citizens.

    Prove me wrong. Demand a secret ballot poll on the AGW/CO2 question. Or admit that charlatans have hijacked the process.

  578. Joel Shore says:

    Mike Bryant says:

    You seem to believe that only industry can cause externalities that the government must somehow correct. I believe it is a two way street…
    Governments cause the huge externalities in our financial lives.

    http://volokh.com/posts/1200276884.shtml

    I see how that line of argumentation can be relevant to something like healthcare but I don’t really see how it would be relevant for an externality caused by something like climate change.

  579. Smokey says:

    Climate change is completely natural.

    Deal with it.

  580. Joel Shore says:

    Smokey says:

    I will retract my charlatan label the minute those organizations take a secret ballot poll of their rank and file, dues paying membership, asking a question like this:

    “Do you accept as fact that a doubling of atmospheric carbon dioxide will result in runaway global warming and climate catastrophe, similar to what is predicted by the IPCC, Al Gore and James Hansen?

    “Please circle: Yes or No. Return ballot in the unmarked envelope.”

    First of all, the phrasing of your question is, in my opinion, poor. For one thing, you group together people who are saying different things…The IPCC is saying one thing. James Hansen has views that are increasingly more severe than what they are saying. And, Al Gore is a politician, not a scientist…and although most scientists in the field seem to believe he has done at least a somewhat reliable job of explaining the science (see http://stats.org/stories/2008/global_warming_survey_apr23_08.html ), I do think many would admit that he puts more emphasis on things that might happen that scientists are still uncertain about than, say, the IPCC report does.

    You are also using terminology incorrectly…since nobody is talking about “runaway” global warming (except for Hansen in the case where we really go to town burning all conventional and maybe some unconventional sources of fossil fuels). And, the term “catastrophe” is a loaded one that I have almost never heard from anyone except those on the skeptic side.

    My phrasing of the question would be something like, “Do you accept that a doubling of atmospheric carbon dioxide will likely lead to significant global warming of the magnitude stated, and with the attendant dangers outlined, in the IPCC reports?” Even a better phrasing would be to ask this in several parts…E.g., you could probe whether they think the IPCC is over- or under-estimating our uncertainties in regards to climate change (and, if underestimating, in the direction towards being too alarming or the direction toward understating the potential dangers).

    Second of all, although no surveys are ideal, a few have been done now…and the link above gives one example. And, while this survey may still have its problems (e.g., I think it cast its net pretty wide by not trying to restrict specifically to the climate science field and thus probably is biased in the direction of overstating the amount of skepticism that would exist in the field itself), I think it gives us some rough picture.

    Third of all, you are being very naive if you believe that all G8+5 academies of science, all these different scientific societies, and so on and so forth have all been “hijacked” (and without any real rebellion in these organizations). That is pretty much the mother of all conspiracy theories!

  581. Joel Shore says:

    Smokey says:

    Climate change is completely natural.

    Deal with it.

    Your views are shared by only a very small minority in the scientific community. Deal with it.

    (Actually, some of your views like the one that I outlined above are so extreme that I think even that small minority would have a hard time agreeing with them.)

  582. E.M.Smith says:

    PaulHClark (02:14:18) : To take action as proposed on an unsubstantiated hypothesis has tremendous known cost and is high risk. Moreover with developing countries being exempt it is highly likely that it will have no effect at all.

    We know the present CO2 output for China (more than the U.S.A.) and we know the build rate for coal power plants in China and their planed life span (50+years). We can say with certainty that the proposed restrictions in the developed countries can not decrease atmospheric CO2. It simply will not happen.

    You could completely shut down all CO2 production in the U.K, Australia, Canada, and Europe and you would buy yourself a couple of years, at most. So it’s not just ‘highly likely’; it’s a certainty.

  583. PaulHClark says:

    The King rides high on a chariot bedecked with gold, a banner on each side proclaiming “He who shouts loudly that the King’s clothes are the finest ever seen will be richly rewarded”.

    There is an enormous din, the shrieks of the crowd, forever proclaiming the King’s clothing to be the finest, are overwhelming.

    The behaviour to some is unseemly but the King is throwing money at anyone who cheers. The King’s adviser nods wisely – “I told you I would have them in the palm of your hand, sire, all of them. You did not need to worry that they were all fine scientists at one time”.

    But there stood a very small boy, very much in the minority, pointing steadfastly at the King shouting – “The Knig is NAKED”. His voice was thus far overwhelmed but he remained transfixed by the spectacle unable to understand why others could not see the reality.

    He stood his ground, never moving his gaze and pointed at the facts that were plainly before him….

  584. E.M.Smith says:

    PaulHClark (11:27:51) : The carbon tax in the UK already adds 16% to UK electric bills that many people can ill afford. We have made significant investments in wind power which produces the power of 1 medium sized coal fired plant at huge economic cost relative to more traditional forms of power generation (some of which are carbon neutral).

    Paul, when it gets really cold and dark, and they have taxed petrol to $40/gallon and electricity is un-reliable, consider one of these:

    http://www.centralmainediesel.com/order/Vegetable-Oil-Lister-Generator-6600-Watt.asp?page=L09989

    You can feed it old ‘chips’ oil with a little filtration, or buy food grade oil that will end up being cheaper than petrol… You can also easily tap the heat from it for combined ‘heat and power’.

    Only downside is you will need a garage for it and some sound absorptive wall hangings…

    These are mostly made in India, so you ought to be able to get one fairly cheap (i.e. not from the U.S.A site…)

    Not involving the developing countries as you suggest is incredibly naive. If you seriously believe we have 4 years to fix the problem then we should exclude no-one. But I suspect the propents know their theory doesn’t stack up and that they could in no way convince those countries to believe.

    It is not possible to do anything but have CO2 ‘go up’ for at least 20 years. Period.

    China is adding coal plants about 1 every 2 weeks last I looked. They already make more CO2 than we do (even though many of those plants have not yet shown up in the statistics). They have about 5 years worth of this build rate ‘in train’ and are not stopping nor slowing down. Once built, they run for 50+ years. There is no stopping it. And no, China listens to no one but China…

    Rail, ships, air, trucking: You can’t even begin to stop the oil use. We depend on international shipping for food globally and for products essential to life, globally. It takes 20+ years to turn over the fleet, IF we had a clue what fuel to turn them over to!

    Cars? How will folks do life’s chores? On the non-existent mass transit? Present capacity can’t do it. Lead time for buses and trains? 5 to 20 years. And what will you feed you buses? H or CNG? From what infrastructure? Add 5 years for fuel system build out (minimum if CNG).

    The Chinese have made a great poker play – ‘you pay we’ll play – over to you’. Would you like to bet with me that the ‘West (which means the USA) will support them?

    And Russia too. They ‘played’ as long as it was a free ride. Former USSR industrial collapse gave them ‘tradable carbon credits’ aka “money for nothing”. They now repudiate the AGW thesis since it would now require real economic changes. So, Russia is not playing in the “Cap and Tirade” game.

    So who’s playing? EU, UK, Australia, maybe Canada.

    U.S.A. is waffling (but if you want to see a revolution ‘right quick’ tell Joe Sixpack that there will be no tailgate party at the game, no drive to work, and the wife and kids are on the bus 4 hours a day… Oh, and he doesn’t get A/C or heat… and food costs 30% more…)

    So no, not only can nothing happen in 4 years in the USA, nothing can happen for 20 years. And with FSU, China & India growing like crazy, you can’t even hope to reduce CO2 globally in 50 years.

    So the choice is really:

    A) Keep sound economy and industrial capability and adjust as needed, if at all.

    B) Destroy economy, collapse industries needed to cope or adjust, and be overrun by China economically & politically with militarily close behind, and still be facing whatever would have happened in A.

    I’ll take “A” for a few dozen $Trillion…

  585. E.M.Smith says:

    Joel Shore (13:34:38) : I suggest looking up “externality” in an economic textbook. [...] You do not want to deal with the virtues and limitations of market economics as understood by economists.

    Joel, you are wrong.

    From the wiki (though wiki is often slighted, I can verify this wiki is correct. I am an Economist:

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

    In economics, an externality is an impact on any party not directly involved in an economic decision. An externality occurs when an economic activity causes external costs or external benefits to third party stakeholders who did not directly affect the economic transaction.

    Notice the words I’ve put in bold. Government is in there. In fact, much of economic regulation is de facto an externality. Farm price support causes someone to get less food. An externality. Biofuel mandates cause grain prices to rise and exports to drop. An externality that hits someone in another country. Raise the minimum wage? Someone loses a job (or fails to get one, same thing), while others get more money, and the price of goods rise across the board until a new equilibrium is reached. Lots of externalities.

    And economic decisions can be more than money, it includes such things as population dynamics; so a government program to hand out condoms or provide abortions decreases income to hospitals and lowers school demand – more externalities.

    And even your assertion that market economies are needed is false. As part of my Econ training I had to have instruction in non-market economies, such as communism and other command economic systems. Notice the careful wording in the wiki? The word ‘market’ does not appear. Command economies have lots of externalities too. The Commissar of Energy tells the Commissar of Mining to mine more coal, and it does. Some poor sot gets moved from his ancestral home – an externality.

    But wait, there’s more… You seem to think that all externalities are bad. They are not. Al Gore is planning to benefit greatly from government action to mandate demand for his service (energy indulgences). Though I suppose one could argue that he is involved in the ‘economic decision’ via his political activities… GE is expecting to benefit from demand for wind turbines driven by government mandates. Exxon is expecting to benefit from excess CO2 supply from their rivals (coal plants) to be used in cheaper enhanced oil recovery. The list goes on and on. Most lobby activities can be seen as simply attempts to force a positive externality for yourself from government actions (that might well have negative externalities for someone else) or to try to prevent those negative externalities from falling on yourself.

    In many ways, the whole AGW food fight is over who gets whacked with what externalities from a command economy behaviour by our government(s). If left to markets, there would be far fewer externalities involved, since more of the participants would be ‘directly involved in the economic decisions’.

  586. E.M.Smith says:

    Joel Shore (20:10:52) : And, the term “catastrophe” is a loaded one that I have almost never heard from anyone except those on the skeptic side.

    Nice try… From a couple of googles:

    Results 1 – 10 of about 217,000 for catastrophe Hansen.
    Results 1 – 10 of about 798,000 for catastrophe Gore.

    With titles like:

    Jim Hansen warns of threat of climate catastrophe | Environment …
    Jan 18, 2009 … Leading climatologist explains why President Obama’s administration is the last chance to avoid catastrophe.

    Netroots Nation or Nation of Sheep: Nancy Pelosi and Al Gore …
    The global climate crisis, he goes on, is about to turn into a climate catastrophe. Gore then points out that global warming is of course connected to the …

    Could you at least do a tiny little google ‘screen’ on some of your more fantastic claims? A momentary ‘sanity check’ would do wonders for your postings.

  587. Smokey says:

    E.M. Smith makes valid points about China’s ramping up of their coal fired power plants.

    I read an article in the Economist that said China is curren