A must read: The Yamal Hockey Stick Implosion in laymans terms

WUWT readers may remember when Bishop Hill wrote Caspar and the Jesus paper. It was a wonderful narrative of the complex subject of tree rings and Steve McIntyre’s quest with debunking the Mann MBH98 paper, which created the original hockey stick. Now Bishop Hill has done it again with another great narrative. – Anthony

McCoy_hockey_stick_Its_dead_Jim

The Yamal implosion

DateSeptember 29, 2009

There is a great deal of excitement among climate sceptics over Steve McIntyre’s recent posting on Yamal. Several people have asked me to do a layman’s guide to the story in the manner of Caspar and the Jesus paper. Here it is.

The story of Michael Mann’s Hockey Stick reconstruction, its statistical bias and the influence of the bristlecone pines is well known. McIntyre’s research into the other reconstructions has received less publicity, however. The story of the Yamal chronology may change that.

The bristlecone pines that created the shape of the Hockey Stick graph are used in nearly every millennial temperature reconstruction around today, but there are also a handful of other tree ring series that are nearly as common and just as influential on the results. Back at the start of McIntyre’s research into the area of paleoclimate, one of the most significant of these was called Polar Urals, a chronology first published by Keith Briffa of the Climate Research Unit (CRU) at the University of East Anglia. At the time, it was used in pretty much every temperature reconstruction around. In his paper, Briffa made the startling claim that the coldest year of the millennium was AD 1032, a statement that, if true, would have completely overturned the idea of the Medieval Warm Period.  It is not hard to see why paleoclimatologists found the series so alluring.

Keith Briffa

Some of McIntyre’s research into Polar Urals deserves a story in its own right, but it is one that will have to wait for another day. We can pick up the narrative again in 2005, when McIntyre discovered that an update to the Polar Urals series had been collected in 1999. Through a contact he was able to obtain a copy of the revised series. Remarkably, in the update the eleventh century appeared to be much warmer than in the original – in fact it was higher even than the twentieth century. This must have been a severe blow to paleoclimatologists, a supposition that is borne out by what happened next, or rather what didn’t: the update to the Polar Urals was not published, it was not archived and it was almost never seen again.

Read the rest here at Bishop Hill’s blog, and be sure to leave a nice comment if you like his writing.

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114 Responses to A must read: The Yamal Hockey Stick Implosion in laymans terms

  1. Michael says:

    It should be called the “Yamal Briffa Affair”. Maybe for the movie?

    CO2 is not the culprit, it is not the cause of global warming and climate change, nor is it a pollutant.

    CO2 is an integral part of their strategy to control the world. Who are they? They are the Bilderbergs and the global wealthy elite human beings of the planet whose only desire is to rule the whole entire place.

    There is no basis for claiming CO2 causes global warming, now referred to as climate change. There is no basis in fact or science. All your bases Bildreberg’s are belong to us.

    At least the Bilderbergs got a consolation prize. It’s called the Internet. They wanted a controlled collectivist society? Well the got it. Here we are.

    You can’t control the Internet just like you can’t control the weather.

  2. Michael says:

    I think this is how history is written.

  3. Roger Carr says:

    As I read through the Bishop Hill’s blog story you suggest above, Anthony, I keep thinking of the great traditions of a part of the English scientific community…
    “Piltdown Man” is a famous paleontological hoax concerning the finding of the remains of a previously unknown early human.

  4. Phillip Bratby says:

    The silence at RealClimate is stunning!

  5. Phillip Bratby says:

    The silence speaks volumes.

  6. Johnny Honda says:

    Or in other words:

    THE MUSIC HAS STOPPED FOR THE WARMISTS

  7. michel says:

    “CO2 is an integral part of their strategy to control the world. Who are they? They are the Bilderbergs and the global wealthy elite human beings of the planet who’s only desire is to rule the whole entire place.”

    This is harebrained conspiracy fantasizing, which adds nothing to the important fact. The important fact, the only one, is that the Hockey Stick studies have now been shown to be based on little or no evidence. We can hypothesize that the reason the data has been concealed for so long is that the authors were worried about what would be revealed by independent scrutiny. That much is about as far as we can or should speculate.

    The idea that Mann, Jones, Briffa….etc are part of a Bilderberg plot to rule the world is both silly and borderline insane. They are just bad scientists with an agenda. It happens. Look at the autism MMR case. Look at the cholesterol hypothesis. There were lots of scientists prepared to exonerate tobacco. Focus on the important fact, we now understand the climate better. What do we understand?

    That the best minds in the business have failed to find any robust evidence for any unusual 20c warming in the context of the last 2000 years. That is what matters. That is all that matters.

  8. David Hoyle says:

    I was getting more and more depressed as the runaway train heading to Copenhagensville was gathering momentum… then along comes this buffer… Hallelujah !!!

  9. tallbloke says:

    The internet is the biggect thing since the printing press. Bigger.

    The controlling elite persecuted pamphleteers in C18th Europe and governments got hired thugs to smash printing presses.

    Setting up a server or ten with it’s own name space and the ability to work over dial up might not be a bad idea. The pirate radio of the blogosphere.

    It depends just how determined the ‘powers that be’ are to ram falsehood down the throats of the masses.

    Being prepared for any eventuality is a sensible way to go in my view. Just in case censorship takes an ugly turn.

  10. Terry says:

    I cant find a single AGW site that has any hint of a rebuttal or even comment on this. The silence is deafening. Surely at least one of them will have something to say…….?

  11. RhudsonL says:

    It is a good day to die — but a bad day to drag the Trekkies into the AGW bottomless pit without them to focus on a new movie.

  12. Phillip Bratby says:

    Roger Carr: I like the quote about Piltdown man “The Piltdown man hoax had succeeded so well because at the time of its discovery, the scientific establishment had believed that the large modern brain had preceded the modern omnivorous diet, and the forgery had provided exactly that evidence.” Sounds familiar!

  13. nick-ynysmon says:

    One might easily take the comment above with a very large dose of salt. or even contempt. at one time I may have done so. I came to this website via a recommendation from the webmaster at the Dan Burisch website. now I look at this blog every day without fail. I am no scientist but pride myself in completely rational thinking which I aim for all the time. i have no time whatsoever for religion though we are all spirits in physical bodies which I accept fully. enough of that.
    now having said all that, there would seem to be some deep attempts at a manipulation of the world which means we people via possibly the Bilderbergers, New World order, and even the Illimuminati. assuming these exist I also believe they are foolish people and probably not very pleasant compared to the run of sane rational people.
    it may be the focus on so called global warming is one more attempt to manipulate the rest of us I am open to this being the case if proven .
    now, as far as climate goes, i was sympathetic to the global warming thesis, but after much reading and reflection, I believe like life itself, other complicating factors are at work and religiously blaming carbon dioxide may be one method of exerting control,
    there are other factors, which may influence warming. or cooling. one is the shift towards the galactic centre, during 2012. which seems to be scientifically accepted. am i right on this? many believe we are entering a region of dust accretion around this point where we are exposed to the galactic centre as we circle round the milky way. where the gravitational field exerts more pull on the surrounding matter. I believe all the planets in the solar system are warming up right now? am I right?
    another point, statistics are taken over a very short period of time and we assume only these factors are to blame that are actually looked at in our models. now assuming we incorporate some extra factors int our analysis, will these not influence our eventual conclusions ? so, the more things we consider the better weighted our conclusion may be in terms if what is actually happening. I read clouds are being taken more seriously, as far as creating cooling conditions and is the cosmic ray thesis really dead as proposed by the I think a Danish scientist?
    if we are entering a more cloudy area of the galaxy this must impact not only on our own atmosphere but on the sun as well, , are these things considered instead of blaming it all on carbon dioxide and methane? surely it may be we have to offset global warming with global cooling and then see how the hockey stick graph performs then, instead of sticking to one rigid model based purely on warming. the Earth may have warmed up over the last 150 years, but what is to say it will not cool down, if the sun stays as quite as it is? too much faith is placed in finely made models, but the only real ‘model’ we have is reality, how things are and we must thus be humble observers for a change.
    the problem with our models, is like religion I think. we first devote huge emotional resources into erecting the edifice then we spend the rest of our time finding reasons/justifications to believe the models are correct. we make the assumptions which the models are meant to prove, first, then the model is created, or theory, or such, then the facts are sought to boost our faith in the edifice we have built., –like religion.

    Nick

  14. Mac says:

    The Hockey Stick debacle reveals that dendroclimatology is more akin to astrology and alchemy. A fiction , a product of group think by the Team, one that delibrately played on the weakness of peer-review.

    Is science being badly damaged by this episode?

    It sure is!

  15. UK Sceptic says:

    How Steve McIntyre trashed the Hockey Stick in plain English. How Steve continues to trash AGW claims in plain English even a maths blind archaeologist can follow. What’s not to like? :D

  16. JLKrueger says:

    The AGW sites are trying to rebutt by silence. If they say nothing, then there is no controversy.

    Over at JoNova, however, there’s a true believer leading everyone on a red-herring chase as a form of rebuttal. It’s amusing.

  17. Bill Tuttle says:

    The silence is deafening. Surely at least one of them will have something to say……

    Yup. As soon as they recover their wits, it will be, “Lalalalalalalalalalalalalalalala…”

  18. Patrick Davis says:

    “tallbloke (02:01:27) :

    The internet is the biggect thing since the printing press. Bigger.

    The controlling elite persecuted pamphleteers in C18th Europe and governments got hired thugs to smash printing presses.

    Setting up a server or ten with it’s own name space and the ability to work over dial up might not be a bad idea. The pirate radio of the blogosphere.

    It depends just how determined the ‘powers that be’ are to ram falsehood down the throats of the masses.

    Being prepared for any eventuality is a sensible way to go in my view. Just in case censorship takes an ugly turn.”

    And I’d guess, just like China after a certain event, will be just as determined to prevent the masses from discovering the tuth. Here in Aus there was/is talk of interweb censorship, hidden behind “protecting children from porn” etc etc. While I agree, the interweby has opened up access to information, that “information” can, and as we know, is manipulated.

    Even though this site and others like it are truely awesome to visit, and are eye opening, 99.9% of people just like to “follow the authority” (A classic 1950’s shock experiment is testimony to that) on any given subject. And the “authority” is pro-AGW. Victorian bush fires, AGW (Incidentally, “authorities” are back burning in both states before summer this year). The Sydney dust storm, AGW. Flooding in the Phillipines, AGW. The Samoan tsunami, how long before someone spouts it’s cause to be AGW?

    What I see happening here in Australia (what’s the term I forget, it’s not like sponsorship, but more like product endorsement…like in certain films you see everyone using Motorolla or Nokia phones) in popular TV shows, like Good News Week on channel 10 (Which is REALLY funny), a pro-AGW comment, inline with the theme of the program, is, subliminally, poped in for good measure.

    A colleague of mine has a brother who is about to be involved with the Australian ETS, if it get’s started of course (Which of course it will, and KRudd747 will not return to power). My colleague appears to be pro-AGW.

  19. Chris Schoneveld says:

    Terry (02:02:30) :
    “I cant find a single AGW site that has any hint of a rebuttal or even comment on this. The silence is deafening. Surely at least one of them will have something to say…….?”

    For them it has to be peer-reviewed, didn’t you know?

  20. Ecotretas says:

    I checked the page where the raw data is, and it’s interesting to see the timestamps involved with the different objects on the page. It seems to have happened on Sep, 8th. But what intrigues me Steve is the TayBavRing.raw file; it also seems to be new. Might it also represent something special?

    Ecotretas

    Tue, 08 Sep 2009 10:38:27 GMT – /
    Sat, 21 Apr 2007 07:33:04 GMT – EurasianGridBox.dat
    Thu, 24 Jul 2008 10:29:20 GMT – Column.prn
    Mon, 14 Apr 2008 08:01:00 GMT – RCS_TRW_SSA.xls
    Wed, 10 Dec 2008 10:50:18 GMT – TornFinADring.raw
    Tue, 08 Sep 2009 10:31:04 GMT – YamalADring.raw
    Tue, 08 Sep 2009 10:31:08 GMT – TayBavRing.raw

  21. old construction worker says:

    Thank you, Steve and Anthony. I’ll be giving to both tip jars.
    Next, I’ll be hitting my “elected career politicians” with the news.

  22. Tony Hansen says:

    “It’s dead, jim….but not as we know it.”

    And Michel (01:46:12) is, as per usual, on the money.

  23. Bret says:

    Don’t we need to give Briffa a chance to explain himself before we can declare the hockey stick to be dead?

  24. Richie says:

    appreciate the post for those of us who don’t get all the science speak.

    also great for those who have just started visiting

  25. Robinson says:

    Andrew Orlowski of The Register sent me another link earlier. This is by far the best explanation of the whole sorry affair I’ve read so far. Still not much in the mainstream press though!

  26. wws says:

    nick wrote: “the problem with our models, is like religion I think. we first devote huge emotional resources into erecting the edifice then we spend the rest of our time finding reasons/justifications to believe the models are correct. we make the assumptions which the models are meant to prove, first, then the model is created, or theory, or such, then the facts are sought to boost our faith in the edifice we have built., –like religion.”

    That’s a good observation of human nature – and allow me to point out that this is the exact OPPOSITE of what Science done properly and honestly is all about! A true researcher following the Scientific Method first collects *all* of the data it is possible to collect; then looking at *all* the data he may venture a hypothesis that would explain something he’s seen. However, he continues to collect data and test new data against his hypothesis – if it does not fit into his theoretical framework, then that hypothesis must be ruthlessly junked and a new one examined. This process *never* ends, which is why it is an idiotic lie to say “the science is settled” on anything in which measurements are still being taken.

    Models are fine as long as the scientists using them know that they go into the trash when that first bad prediction comes out of them. Of course, we are years past that point with the warmist climate models.

    No true Scientist can ever love his Theory more than his Data – that is the realm, as you say, of religion, not to mention politics.

    and for Bret, who asked: “Don’t we need to give Briffa a chance to explain himself…”

    Briffa explaining himself – “hamina hamina hamina….” (looks at ground and pushes an imaginary rock around with his toe)

  27. Frank K. says:

    Anthony – love the Star Trek illustration for this post, complete with the hockey stick data in the background!

    Bones: “Dammit Jim, I’m a doctor not a dendroclimatologist!”

  28. Tim Clark says:

    Bret (04:44:41) :
    Don’t we need to give Briffa a chance to explain himself before we can declare the hockey stick to be dead?

    How long should that take? It’s been going on for three days now. The rebuttal should be simple. Did he select the 12 cores for a specific reason? Did he not know there were other cores available? Was it a simple mistake? The fact that it is taking an extended period to respond smacks of scheming a dodge.

  29. Halfwise says:

    Nick-ynysmom
    Thank you for your comments. You raise some important points.

    They would be far easier to read and grasp if you would use a paragraph break where needed, and a capital letter at the beginning of sentences (the way you do at the beginning of your name).

    Please indulge us with this next time. Cheers,

  30. Atomic Hairdryer says:

    The silence of the warmists.

    Easy explanation, Gore’s PR team are working on an official response.

    Some warmist sites like RC are helped out by green lobby groups supporting ‘green’ PR campaigns for ‘green’ business. Not really any different to the accusations levelled at sceptics being in the pockets of ‘big oil’. There’s no conspiracy as such, it’s just business.

    The fun thing about all this are the implications for science in general. Which is a more effective peer review process, opening it up to the ‘net, as happens here or at CA, and on other blogs, or keeping to the cosy, closed world of traditional peer review.

    The best thing about this affair is it clearly demonstrates the importance of full disclosure for good science, which should benefit everybody. Congratulations to all involved in this research.

  31. Ecotretas says:

    As they will certainly try to control the Media, by not talking, we have to secure other means. I have requested comments from the European Union, as they have funded Briffa’s work. I don’t expect much of a reply, but I believe we have to push the message ahead of the media, right to politics. Once they find they have been funding, and will be funding, one of the biggest hoaxes perpetrated on Earth, they will start moving in their chairs. Madoff is indeed nothing compared to this…

    Ecotretas

  32. bill says:

    There is a 200year temperature record. If tree grows do not support this record then that tree should be removed from the series. The data is wrong!

    If invalid data should not be removed, just statistically incorporated in the whole then this of course would change the need for WUWTs surface station project. The siting/equipment quality etc. of the site is irrelevant. Statistics will give the correct result – no need to throw away the data for the thermometers sited next to an airconditioner fan, in a broken screen, on a hectare of tarmac. All data is valid!!!!

  33. Jimmy Haigh says:

    Frank K. (05:16:00) :

    ‘Bones: “Dammit Jim, I’m a doctor not a dendroclimatologist!” ‘

    Brilliant! And another reason we frequent WUWT, apart from the science, is the humour.

    Being Scottish my favourite Star Trek quote is: “Ye cannae change the laws o’ physics!”

  34. David Ball says:

    And what does the data say , bill ?

  35. hunter says:

    The really annoying aspect of this is that AGW was never alive in the first place.

    We have wasted billions of dollars and countless hours of time, exploring nothing, accomplishing nothing, and doing nothing productive.

    We could have provided drinking water for the poor int he world, developed clean burning coal technology, cleaned up large amounts of environmental damage.

    Instead, we have made climate profiteers rich, damaged real industries, and held an endless number of conferences for climate insiders to attend.

    We have disrupted the world food markets and still have not built significant numbers of nuclear power plants.
    The entire AGW movement has been a tremendous subsidy of stupidity.

    And when ever something is subsidized, you get more of it.

  36. CheshireRed says:

    The UK Telegraph will follow up James Delingpole’s blog with one from Chris Booker this Sunday, you can depend on that.

  37. paulo arruda says:

    Sooner or later some “scientist” will have to answer. The contempt and silence will not serve as a response. Finally have to comply with Anthony, Steve M, etc. ..

  38. Smokey says:

    Robinson (05:13:38),

    Thanks for that link:

    http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2009/9/29/the-yamal-implosion.html

    It shows the shenanigans of the AGW crowd like his previous excellent exposé, Caspar And The Jesus Paper.

  39. Kenneth Slade says:

    I feel I am in the presence of giants, a mere layman, when I try to educate myself through your and Steve McIntyre’s tireless and uncompromising work.
    A deaf world is slowing hearing the whispers of truth and questioning the roar of deceit.

  40. Bob H. says:

    Interestingly, almost the entire AGW movement (religion) has been based on 12 trees in Siberia. That is true faith.

  41. Tim Clark says:

    bill (05:45:00) :
    There is a 200year temperature record. If tree grows do not support this record then that tree should be removed from the series.The data is wrong!
    If invalid data should not be removed, just statistically incorporated in the whole then this of course would change the need for WUWTs surface station project. The siting/equipment quality etc. of the site is irrelevant. Statistics will give the correct result – no need to throw away the data for the thermometers sited next to an airconditioner fan, in a broken screen, on a hectare of tarmac. All data is valid!!!!

    You are displaying inverted logic. If the data is wrong, which data. If the temperature data is wrong, then all the more necessity to do a Siberian surface station project. It appears that the twelve tree core data is in fact an incorrect subsample of a much larger series indicating that the temperature data is flawed.

  42. Lucas Strange says:

    McIntyre is a modern Copernicus. We need more people like him.

  43. Jepe says:

    Tamino wrote:

    “As for Steve McIntyre’s latest: I’m really not that interested. He just doesn’t have the credibility to merit attention. I have way better things to do.”

    http://tamino.wordpress.com/2009/09/30/message-to-readers/

  44. PaulH says:

    There is also an editorial about this mess in today’s (Sept 30) National Post:

    http://network.nationalpost.com/np/blogs/fpcomment/archive/2009/09/29/peter-foster-climate-policy-bust.aspx

  45. Doug in Seattle says:

    michel (01:46:12) :

    This is harebrained conspiracy fantasizing, which adds nothing to the important fact.

    Thanks. I was tempted several times over the last few days to respond to this loon, but could not find the right words to express myself adequately. Yours do an excellent job.

  46. Layne Blanchard says:

    Anthony,

    Perhaps I’ve missed something in all the posts on this, but why doesn’t Steve go to the russians for the data? i.e. Hantemirov and Shiyatov

  47. Bret says:

    Tim Clark (05:25:50) :

    How long should that take [to give Briffa a chance to explain himself]? It’s been going on for three days now.

    I scanned McIntyre’s posts but there was no indication Briffa has been contacted. After all, Briffa probably doesn’t read Climate Audit or WUWT.

    Secondly, McIntyre’s work of the last 3 days is voluminous. There’s more to it than just the selection criteria. It could take more than three days to come up with a well thought out response.

    We’ve been waiting 10 years. Watt’s a few more weeks?

  48. tallbloke says:

    Tim Clark (05:25:50) :

    Bret (04:44:41) :
    Don’t we need to give Briffa a chance to explain himself before we can declare the hockey stick to be dead?

    How long should that take?

    Keith Briffa is gravely ill. Let’s bear that in mind.

  49. DavidsBSD says:

    Cheery-pickers R Us – CRU

  50. Ron de Haan says:

    So what’s going to happen to the scientists responsible for this blunder?
    Who is going to write to the Nobel Prize Committee that they have awarded a price
    based on “cooked” science?

    Jennifer Morohasy made a clear statement about the scientists.
    They have to defend their work or resign.

    She is right.

    The reputation of science (and the Nobel Prize) is at stake.

    http://jennifermarohasy.com/blog/2009/09/leading-uk-climate-scientists-must-explain-or-resign/

  51. Layne Blanchard says:

    OT, I see it’s a toasty -84F in Vostok right now. Lows over the next few days near -100F. Sure glad humanity will have at least one land mass to migrate to when the rest of the planet starts cooking… :-)

  52. Ron de Haan says:

    Also read an excellent analysis by Luboš Motl:
    Especially his conclusions which are outright devastating.
    http://motls.blogspot.com/2009/09/beaten-with-hockey-sticks-yamal-tree.html

  53. TonyB says:

    Jimmy Haigh

    said

    “Being Scottish my favourite Star Trek quote is: “Ye cannae change the laws o’ physics!”

    You obviously didn’t hear the whispered aside at the end….”unless you’re from the IPCC of course….”

    tonyb

  54. Stephen Goldstein says:

    “There is a great deal of excitement among climate sceptics”

    I agree that anti-AGW arguments are improving as a result of studies like that described in this post and others covered on WUWT.

    And it is good to see that more scientists are speaking out which help invalidate claims of an overwhelming consensus that the issue is settled.

    Still, sorry to rain on this parade and with additional apologies to Winston Churchill, this is not the end, this is not even the beginning of the end, if we are fortunate, this may, possibly, be the end of the beginning . . . .

    Everyone is familiar with the saying, “I’ll believe it when I see it.”

    There’s a less well known corollary, “If you don’t believe it, you can’t see it” which is where I believe the warmist thought leaders are today. With a film like “The Day After,” even a severe winter in the US Northeast would be, to them, more evidence of what they have now termed “Man Made Climate Change.”

    Think of Gilda Radner and her famous Saturday Night Live character Emily Litella (here’s a classic http://www.hulu.com/watch/2364/saturday-night-live-weekend-update-emily-litella-on-violins-on-tv).

    Remember, there are SO many people SO invested in the AGW crisis . . . .

    Given the depth to which their stakes have been driven into the ground, we aren’t even close to being able to expect any of Al Gore, Barak Obama, Henry Waxman, Barbara Boxer, et al to offer their own “Never Mind.”

    Anyway, that’s what I think.

  55. Don S. says:

    wws (05:13:44) :

    nick wrote: “the problem with our models, is like religion I think. we first devote huge emotional resources into erecting the edifice then we spend the rest of our time finding reasons/justifications to believe the models are correct. we make the assumptions which the models are meant to prove, first, then the model is created, or theory, or such, then the facts are sought to boost our faith in the edifice we have built., –like religion.”

    That’s a good observation of human nature – and allow me to point out that this is the exact OPPOSITE of what Science done properly and honestly is all about! A true researcher following the Scientific Method first collects *all* of the data it is possible to collect; then looking at *all* the data he may venture a hypothesis that would explain something he’s seen.

    So, wws, are we now at the point where we must say the unsayable about the modellers?

  56. vg says:

    The silence from the team is deafening. He was of course right. There will be NO be no comment from RC on this. They simply cannot reply to it because in this case the implications of illegal activity are enormous and others may be involved?

    REPLY: I don’t know that there is any “illegal” activity. But in scientific circles the hand selection of data and the withholding of data despite requests for replication is certainly unethical. – A

  57. Steve S. says:

    realclimate?

    The pompous condescension is simply too overwhelming over there for the regulars to lower themselves into this fray.

    I’ve read the threads and comments for along time at RC.
    The more recent the more confident they are in their declarations and dismissal of any and all challenges.

    Their ultra despising of skeptics and all things critiquing of AGW is a phenomenon which leaves them entirely unable to recognize or acknowledge any science outside of their tyranical design.

    Only brutal force will dislodge their positions. Primarily their champions in public institutions must face consequences for their official malfeasance.

    The rest will follow.

  58. Ron de Haan says:

    Our Media, supporting the opposite side of science:
    http://www.quadrant.org.au/blogs/doomed-planet/2009/09/media-ecoevangelists

  59. Otter says:

    Oh, Come ON, people!

    …it’s clear the trees are in the pay of the oil companies.

  60. Douglas DC says:

    David Hoyle (01:58:11) :

    I was getting more and more depressed as the runaway train heading to Copenhagensville was gathering momentum… then along comes this buffer… Hallelujah !!!
    Actually it’s a tunnel and this is what the Yamal revelations are and it comin’ the other way: http://farm1.static.flickr.com/209/510252370_1d146ef809.jpg

  61. Michael says:

    Carl Sagan is rolling over in his grave.

  62. Michael says:

    It should be called the “Yamal Briffa Affair”. Maybe for the movie?

    We should have a vote on what to call it, For History.

  63. nick-ynysmon says:

    One might easily take the comment above with a very large dose of salt. Or even contempt. At one time I may have done so. ( reference to the Bilderbergers) I came to this website via a recommendation from the webmaster at the Dan Burisch website. Now I look at this blog every day without fail.

    I am no scientist but pride myself in completely rational thinking which I aim for all the time. I have no time whatsoever for religion though we are all spirits in physical bodies which I accept fully. Enough of that.

    Now having said all that, there would seem to be some deep attempts at a manipulation of the world which means, we people, via possibly the Bilderbergers, New World Order, and even the Illimuminati. Assuming these exist I also believe they are very foolish people and probably not very pleasant compared to the run of sane rational people. It may be they are as deluded as the people they actually think -erroneously- are deluded, ( ourselves) in other words, these groups may be actual victims of their own projections. A strange irony maybe…

    It may be the focus on so called global warming is one more attempt to manipulate the rest of us and I am open to this being the case if proven .

    Now, as far as climate goes, I was sympathetic to the global warming thesis, but after much reading and reflection, I believe like life itself, other complicating factors are at work and religiously blaming carbon dioxide and methane may be one method of exerting control, But, there are other factors, which may influence warming. Or cooling.

    One is the shift towards the galactic centre, during 2012, which seems to be scientifically accepted. Am I right on this? Many believe we are entering a region of dust accretion around this point where we are exposed to the galactic centre as we circle round the milky way. Where the gravitational field exerts more pull on the surrounding matter. I believe all the planets in the solar system are warming up right now? Am I right? also, if we are entering a new part of the Milky Way where the naked gravitational centre then exerts its full influence on us, this must perturb the gravitational and magnetic field of the sun. Have calculations been done on this, do we know what happens when we enter the constellation of ophiucus? And did the Mayans know what they were talking about and what we are in for? Why are these not made public, does NOAA know about this for instance or NASA?

    Global warming may be insignificant in a few years if we enter a vast gravitational field as the pundits keep saying we are doing.
    If we are entering a region of perturbed/heightened gravity and cosmic rays and such has this been building up over time which may help account for global warming in part or even in its entirety?

    Another point, statistics are taken over a very short period of time and we assume only those factors are to blame that are actually looked at in our models. Now assuming we incorporate some extra factors into our analysis, will these not influence our eventual conclusions ?

    So, the more things we consider the better weighted our conclusion may be in terms if what is actually happening. I read clouds are being taken more seriously, as far as creating cooling conditions, and is the cosmic ray thesis really dead as proposed by the I think a Danish scientist?

    If we are entering a more cloudy area of the galaxy this must impact not only on our own atmosphere but on the sun as well, are these things considered instead of blaming it all on carbon dioxide and methane? Surely it may be we have to offset global warming with global cooling and then see how the hockey stick graph performs then, instead of sticking to one rigid model based purely on warming.

    Tthe Earth may have warmed up over the last 150 years, but what is to say it will not cool down, if the sun stays as quite as it is? Too much faith is placed in finely made models, but the only real ‘model’ we have is reality, how things are and we must thus be humble observers for a change.

    The problem with our models, is like religion I think. we first devote huge emotional resources into first erecting the edifice then we spend the rest of our time finding reasons/justifications to believe the models are correct. We make the assumptions first which the models are meant to prove, then the model is created, or theory, or such, then the facts are sought to boost our faith in the edifice we have built., –like religion.

    I have re written and extended comment this and hope it is easier to read, thank you for the constructive criticism, I will bear this in mind in future

    Nick

  64. Aron says:

    “The silence at RealClimate is stunning!”

    Where’s the media????

  65. Aron says:

    “Carl Sagan is rolling over in his grave.”

    So are Orwell, Jefferson, Einstein, Washington, et al!

  66. Michael says:

    Documentation of the history of the conspiracy!

    “We are grateful to the Washington Post, the New York Times, Time Magazine and other great publications whose directors have attended our meetings and respected their promises of discretion for almost forty years. It would have been impossible for us to develop our plan for the world if we had been subjected to the lights of publicity during those years. But, the world is more sophisticated and prepared to march towards a world government. The supranational sovereignty of an intellectual elite and world bankers is surely preferable to the national determination practiced in past centuries.” (David Rockefeller, speaking at the June 1991, Bilderberg meeting in Baden-Baden, Germany June 1991.)

    http://www.ourrepubliconline.com/OurRepublic/Author/49

  67. x says:

    Off topic: The IEEE is at it again:

    http://spectrum.ieee.org/blog/energy/renewables/energywise/those-natural-gas-image-ads

    You can leave comments there if you so desire.

  68. Anne says:

    Unlike the eerie silence at RC
    Tamino has weighed in, in the wimpiest way possible:

    “As for Steve McIntyre’s latest: I’m really not that interested. He just doesn’t have the credibility to merit attention. I have way better things to do.”

    He got out of his “2 box” dilemma vs. Lucia by gloriously announcing her banishment.

    What a sad sack.

  69. Indiana Bones says:

    hunter (06:08:59) :

    The really annoying aspect of this is that AGW was never alive in the first place.

    We have wasted billions of dollars and countless hours of time, exploring nothing, accomplishing nothing, and doing nothing productive.

    You may be looking at this with too jaundiced an eye. What has happened is the “little guys” – purveyors of hard nosed research and fact – have dismantled a quite impressive opinion machine. It has happened not only because a fearless group of truth seekers refused to back down, but because the alarmist machine refused to admit their underlying agenda. That agenda is not science-based.

    One might recall the old grade school throwdown where the class bully insults the little guy, “Aw ya mudda wears army boots!” In this case, Mr. McIntyre has produced photos, charts and affidavits clearly demonstrating that his mother has never worn army boots. And that the accusation is pure hokum meant to intimidate individuals into serving the bully’s agenda.

    On the South side of Boston guys react to this insult with, “Ha? Whadidya say ’bout my mutha???”

    And oddly, science begins to regain its stature.

  70. Robinson says:

    Who is going to write to the Nobel Prize Committee that they have awarded a price
    based on “cooked” science?

    I’m sure they don’t care. They award the prize to, “the person who shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses”. Obviously this involves to some extent the “spirit of the times” (Zeitgeist). “They” are elected by the Norwegian Parliament (strangely, given Nobel was a Swede!).

  71. Cassandra King says:

    To see a world in a grain of sand, an eternity in a second and the future from a dozen trees?

    Congratulations to Watts and McIntyre, without their dedication and dogged perseverence where would we be?
    This is really a siren call to all of us to help the cause of truth and science in any way we possibly can, this is the time to act, when our grandchildren ask in years to come, ‘grandad/Grandma what did you do in the war against the alarmists?’
    The question each of us must ask ourselves everyday is ‘what have I done to help the cause of truth?’

    There is no middle ground, there are no spectators, you are either for truth and justice or you are not, lets make the choice?

  72. Ron de Haan says:

    Schellnhuber’s true objective for falsifying science: a personal CO2 budget for everyone:
    http://climatedepot.com/a/2796/ALERT-German-Climate-Advisor-proposes-creation-of-a-CO2-budget-for-every-person-on-planet

  73. Mark Bowlin says:

    I hate to be cynical but what difference will this make? Do we believe this is the straw that will break the mythical camel’s back?
    My point is the hockey stick was already discredited — along with its creator. That still didn’t stop the warmistas and the fawning, lazy, media from showing the graphic and citing Mann.

  74. Bill Marsh says:

    Unlike the eerie silence at RC
    Tamino has weighed in, in the wimpiest way possible:

    “As for Steve McIntyre’s latest: I’m really not that interested. He just doesn’t have the credibility to merit attention. I have way better things to do.”

    Like start looking for another area to conduct research?

    This is a complete surrender by Tamino. The equivalent of covering your ears and singing , “LALALALALALALA”.

  75. Thank you for this post and the link to Bishop Hill’s blog – this is the sort of thing a non-scientist like me had been praying for!

  76. Speaking layman terms, I thoroughly enjoy simple wikipedia. Here is my version of “global warming” article. Don’t think it would survive long enough for others to enjoy.

    ——————

    Global warming (aka climate change) is a controversial (oops, moot) subject. Sometime two hundred years ago some scientist (oops, a guy in a white robe) proposed (oops, came out with) a theory. His name was Arhellius (or something like that). Yeah, you know, if you enter greenhouse, can’t you notice its warmer there? His grand discovery laid dormant for a while, until madam Thatcher, who at the time was struggling with powerful coal union, decided to reincarnate and leverage it in her fight. All the rest is history, and now global warming is a new bogeyman. To make the matter short and answer your lingering question: “Can I fart?” Yes you can, but you have to buy a carbon credit for this.

  77. Ack says:

    Sorry folks, but as long as the worlds leaders treat this “Science” as fact, this will just keep on ticking.

  78. Mike Monce says:

    Yet even as we speak…er…write, the honorable Sen.’s Boxer and Kerry are introducing the lastest cap and trade legislation. The AGW train is still on the tracks and running, and will until enough politicians find it too dangerous to their re-elections to oppose the legislation.

  79. James Sexton says:

    Is it disquieting only to me that Briffa is suddenly quit stricken with a serious illness? While I’ve never been much of a conspiracy theorist, it is apparent there is a concerted effort to deceive people world wide by many powerful people. Suddenly, a person that is obliged to answer some very embarrassing questions is too sick to respond? I pray that it is only a coincident and for the safe recovery of Mr. Briffa.

    REPLY: We have this on word of a reputable (and appreciative of the new data) colleague who works with Mr. Briffa. We have no doubt of this, so please no more speculation. – Anthony

  80. gary gulrud says:

    Overheard in Happy Valley: Look what you’ve done! You stupid little denialists! You’ve ruined my wonderful wickedness. I’m melting!!! Melting…

  81. Nasif Nahle says:

    We should not press too much to scientists who had not an erroneous intention of doing the things wrong. Many times there is confusion with data or wrong interpretations of the data, or an erroneous methodology. I remember the case of Dr. Kramerer; the scientific society pushed him so much on that issue of his midwife toads that he at last committed suicide. After all, he was innocent.

  82. Mike McMillan says:

    Here’s hoping for the speedy recovery of Dr(?) Briffa and the speedy demise of the hockey stick.

    And the speedy release of everyone’s raw data.

  83. Michael says:

    For those of you who are not informed, David Rockefeller is a US Senator.

  84. Jeff Szuhay says:

    No! The Earth is flat, I say! Flat! And there are monsters on the edge. Monsters!

  85. Reed Coray says:

    Bret (04:44:41) wrote:

    “Don’t we need to give Briffa a chance to explain himself before we can declare the hockey stick to be dead?”

    For almost a decade, Briffa has fought tooth-and-nail to keep his data and methods from public scrutiny by AGW skeptics. As such, IMO he has had ample time to “explain himself”. In fact, his silence is his explanation–i.e., he has none.

    Reed Coray

  86. kcom says:

    Well done, Nick. Readability makes a huge difference.

  87. Sam bailey says:

    Giggle… to full blown..soda pop out the nose laughter(so glad i wont have to pay for the carbon tax on that)

    Science… is winning… and the truth has escaped its prison (with the help of scandalous truth bandits like mr watts)
    As some of you here may know… My own efforts which are meager when compared to others, has also been to see that every Algorite be rescued from there melting ice bergs of idiocy.
    This Morning, on reading this report.. I forwarded it to several of my favorite AGW zealots…
    I got three nasty phone calls… two drop dead emails..
    and one simple.. “I hate you and that damn website!”

    Long live MR Watts… for giving me a so much fun this morning.

  88. Jimmy Haigh says:

    Is it only me who finds something ironic in the fact that the hockey is a game played on ice?

  89. geoffchambers says:

    Ecotretas (05:44:24) mentions getting in touch with the European Union, which sponsored Briffa’s research. Good move. It’s British taxpayers’ money which finances the shenanegans at Hadley, CRU, etc. British readers should be doing all they can to influence the political process. There must be doubters among MPs in all parties, and the first party to break the stranglehold of Greenthink which has seized the whole of Westminster will hold a trumpcard in next year’s election.
    Forget Bilderberg. Think boring old-fashioned democratic political activism.

  90. KLA says:

    Let’s see if I understand this right.
    The Yamal series “hockey stick” proxy method is analogous to this scenario:

    Assume all of Shakespeares works were lost. All you have are a few select quotes. In order to recreate Shakespears work, you let 10 0000 monkeys loose for many years on 10 000 typewriters (for those who remember what those are). Then you examine the last few lines of their ‘writings’. You find, that the last few letter sequences one monkey typed were “two bee or knot 2 b”.
    Now, because this is a close enough correlation to a still known Shakespearean quote, you assume that all previous ‘writings’ of this monkey were also close recreations of Shakespears works.

    Is this about right?

  91. geoffchambers says:

    Cassandra King (09:05:32) said:
    To see a world in a grain of sand, an eternity in a second and the future from a dozen trees?

    By Gaia, I wish I’d said that. Spread that message everyone. For changing minds where it matters, that quote may be worth a thousand dry statistical analyses. (sorry Steve)

    Mark Bowlin (09:16:48) said:
    I hate to be cynical but what difference will this make? … the hockey stick was already discredited …
    True, but the truth doesn’t emerge in a straight line. A point worth making in any discussion is that you can’t get currently predicted temperature rises (4°C by 2060 seems to be the current favourite) without a steeply accelerating trend, i.e. a hockeystick. Ask warmists if they think it will happen, and why.

  92. KLA (11:28:57) :

    Is this about right?

    Thanks to the internet we know that those 10.000 monkeys will not even come close to “two bee or knot 2 b”

    BTW: the sinking of H(m)S Yamal is great news, it needed a lot of hits, but there it goes :)

  93. Sam bailey says:

    what 10000 monkeys with typewriters give you a very big pile of… carbon credits

  94. Treeman says:

    The dedicated forensic science effort by McIntyre has done a whole lot more than bury the hockey stick. Exposing the corruption within “settled science” has a far greater impact for me. Well done Steve. I’ve been circulating the breaking story each day to all the Australian politicians journos and bureaucrats I can.

  95. Robinson (09:01:39) :
    Who is going to write to the Nobel Prize Committee that they have awarded a price based on “cooked” science?

    I’m sure they don’t care. They award the prize to, “the person who shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses”. Obviously this involves to some extent the “spirit of the times” (Zeitgeist). “They” are elected by the Norwegian Parliament (strangely, given Nobel was a Swede!).

    You may perhaps suggest Steve & Anthony as candidates for next year…

    The political situation in Norway wrt. AGW is a sorry one. The fact that the whole thing is a scam was not even mentioned in the recent parliamentary election campaign. Every party, from left to right, competed in promising more in Copenhagen.

    Btw. it isn’t so strange that the Peace price is Norwegian. At the time of Nobel Sweden and Norway was in union.

  96. Chris says:

    Gore’s award was the Nobel Peace Prize which is usually given to politicians and others who promote “peace”. Another notable recipient was Arafat, although the peace part I don’t understand. You can see that this is a politically driven award and is not based on scientific merit. Don’t confuse this with the Nobel awards for the various branches of science (chemistry, physics, medicine, economics). These awards are for real accomplishments in science not just political b.s.

  97. NK says:

    Michael–

    Re David Rockefeller’s “world govenment” quote, you are misinformed. David is NOT a US Senator, never has been. For many years he ran the Rockefeller family bank — Chase Manhattan, and the family foundation. I have no doubt David made the statement in the website you linked to given David’s membership in the Council of Foreign Relations and Tri-Lateral Commission but he is not “Jay” Roekefeller US Senator. As a staunch AGW skeptic, i urge you to get your facts straight before making snarky triumphalist statements. When you’re wrong on an easily checkable fact, it makes you and other skeptics look foolish and hurts skeptics’ credibility.

    Cheers

  98. Reed Coray says:

    Just a few definitions:

    From Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary:

    Main Entry: den·dro·chro·nol·o·gy
    Pronunciation: \ˌden-(ˌ)drō-krə-ˈnä-lə-jē\
    Function: noun
    Date: circa 1928
    : the science of dating events and variations in environment in former periods by comparative study of growth rings in trees and aged wood.

    From a Dictionary of Plant Sciences | 1998 | MICHAEL ALLABY:

    dendroclimatology: A branch of dendrochronology dealing with the relationships between annual growth increment and climate, and especially with the reconstruction of past climates from dated tree-ring series.

    From me:

    Dandruffdendroclimatology: The flaky psuedoscience branch of dendroclimatology whose practitioners are obsessed with finding trees from which hockey sticks can be fabricated.

    Reed Coray

  99. L. Gardy LaRoche says:

  100. Richard says:

    It is not only upto Briffra to respond. He cant as he is seriously ill. Jones, Mann, Schmidt who have co-authored with him or used his results could also do so. But they choose silence. Perhaps wisely for their cause.

  101. Michael says:

    NK,
    My bad. Mistake accepted. John Davison Rockefeller IV, Senator, brother of David. Same family though.

  102. geo says:

    I hereby nominate Bishop Hill as “speaker to the open-minded” on behalf of the skeptic geeks. I’d nearly say he deserves a Pulitzer for it, because popularizing in an accessible way for the masses is damn important.

  103. Alexander Harvey says:

    I should like to say that Steve McIntyre has, in all likelihood, done more to highlight the discipline of Paleoclimatology during the last few years than anyone else.

    For that alone we owe him our gratitude.

    I will add that his efforts will, with any luck, aid an improvement of the science. It is not just about GW, it is about a worthwhile endeavour to ascertain the best information we can on past climates, in the hope that leasons can be drawn which will aid us if those climates return.

    In order to try to understand how past climatic shifts may have influenced the waxing and waning of past civilizations we first need to a window on past climates.

    The Yamal series does not mean the paleoclimatology is a pseudo-science or that paleoclimatologists are frauds or snake oil mongers.

    Alexander Harvey

  104. gtrip says:

    Tamino appears to be “sick/injured” also….self inflicted????

  105. Halfwise says:

    Nick – thank you for the revision. Much, much easier to read. And your points are still strong.

  106. Benjamin says:

    “A must read: The Yamal Hockey Stick Implosion in laymans terms”

    That would be me, a layman!

    And it wasn’t even a quarter as difficult to read and follow as I thought it would. It was a very straightforward illustration of science at work. Too often these days, a skeptic is painted as someone who simply denies (whatever the subject). McIntyre shows otherwise. He didn’t start off from an assumption that global warming data was wrong. He simply asked a series of questions of Briffa’s data, as his investigation evolved, that lead to that conclusion.

    This is the kind of stuff they should teach in elementary school level science, not that scientists are know-it-alls who shape and mold policy on their expert word alone, that we best believe simply because they are well-paid and prestigious know it alls!

  107. HarryG says:

    Didn’t Michael Crichton write the book?

  108. Ken Hall says:

    “Don’t we need to give Briffa a chance to explain himself before we can declare the hockey stick to be dead?”

    I think the data speaks for itself. The only thing Briffa needs to explain is why he withheld the data for so long and conducted his science in such an “apparently” sneaky, underhand fashion. Perhaps it is precisely because the raw data speaks for itself that he withheld it for so long. I would appreciate his view on this. You are right that we should wait to hear his version of events, but in the meantime, the data and analysis that McIntyre has now revealed appears damning.

    Briffa is allegedly suffering from illness at the moment, so that may be the reason that there has not been a rebuttal.

    (The use of the word “allegedly” is purely because I do not know if he is ill or not. I am NOT suggesting that any illness is not real or that any suggestion of illness is deceitful, purely that I read on another blog that someone else heard that he is ill. I do not have an authoritative view on the validity of his illness. To be clear, I am NOT questioning the validity of his illness in the least and have no reason to doubt the validity of the claims of his illness. Merely that I do not know for sure and therefore the claim of his illness is purely hearsay on my part.).

  109. Pressed Rat says:

    Keith Briffa now stands shoulder to shoulder with Al Gore as a charlatan, con-man and scientific liar. All Hail Anthony Watts!! All Hail Steve McIntyre!! Death to the Warmers!!

  110. D. King says:

    I can’t believe we use tree rings, when everyone knows tea leaves
    work better.

  111. Mick J says:

    Another Bonesism that I think fits.

    “Its science Jim, but not as we know it!

  112. George E. Smith says:

    “”” bill (05:45:00) :

    There is a 200year temperature record. If tree grows do not support this record then that tree should be removed from the series. The data is wrong! “””

    Yes, but of what ?

    There may indeed be 200 years of data relating to readings taken from some variable set of thermometers. I’m prepared to accept that even 200 years ago, the scientists of the day knew how to read their thermometers.

    what we don’t know is what it was in the environment that each of those thermometer readings relates.

    One of the biggest problems in experimental science is isolating the variable you wish to measure so that you can measure it. it is also one of the biggest problems in process control. If you know what the diffusion rate of boron is into silicon at 600 deg C, that will only help you do the correct diffusion if you have some way of knowing that the silicon itself is really at 600 deg C.

    Quite often process engineers measure something quite different from the variable they wish to control, and then they infer the value of their control variable from some assumed relationship between the two. That can work if you can prove that the proxy relationship is valid; if it isn’t; then you might get a process explosion instead of what was intended.

    And in climate science it seems that there is much assumption of proxy relationships that aren’t really valid.

    In classical optical absorption (in solids), there is lots of data to support a relationship of the form:- t =e^(-ax). This assumes that absorbed photon energy is completely converted into heat; so the only complexity is that over time that absorbed energy will be emitted as thermal radiation dependent on the temperature that the absorbing material reaches.

    Few real optical materials actually do that. A good example is a well known set of Schott sharp cut long wave pass absorption filters, which are available with 50% transmissions on a steep edge at wavelengths from the blue green into the near infra-red. The absorption edge is so sharp, that a 3 mm filter glass, can easily attenuate a near edge stop band wavelength down to the 10^-5 level. It is easy enough with a monochromator and photodetector to prove that these claimed steep absorptions are quite real. Yet if you remove the monochromator from the optical train, and simply measure the transmitted energy; regardless of its wavelength, then you may be surprised to find the energy attenuation is nowhere near that 10^5 reduction.

    The problem is all of those optical glasses fluoresce; and the 500 nm laser line that getrs wiped out by a 550 nm sharp cut filter, is simply transformed into an incoherent emisson at maybe 650 nm.

    You can stack a whole bunch of these filters together seeking to kill the energy transmission, and ally ou succed in doing is shifting the energy to a longer wavelength; with admittedly a lot of attenuation; but nothing like the spectral curves lead you to believe.

    The GHG absorption problem in the atmosphere is similarly plagued. The GHG molecular species may absorb a specific long wave IR wavelength or band of wavelengths; but only at high altitudes where the mean free path gets long enough does the excited state persist until spontaneous re-emission occurs. At lower altitudes where the bulk of the absorption takes place; collisions with the ordinary atmospheric gas molecules transfer the energy from the GHG molecule to the ordinary atmosphere gases. The re-emission of long wave IR from the atmosphere is then simply a funtion of the main atmosphere molecules and their density and temperature. The low altitude re-emission spectrum should contain no signature of the GHG species at all; it was simply the heating mechanism.

    That re-emission will also be essentially isotropic, since the thermal energy emissions can be in any arbotrary direction; and one can reasonably expect that about half of that energy will be downwards towards the surface, and the other half upwards towards space (both in roughly hemispheric radiation patterns). Since the air temperature and the surface temperature are not vastly different (Kelvins) the atmosphere is emitting a spectrum similar to the surface; so not surprisingly re-absorption of that atmospheric radiation will also take place; just as in the case of the filter glass fluorescence.

    Simple analysis of the processes, and the realities of the standard atmosphere temperature, and density profiles, will lead one to the conclusion, that the upward radiation encounters an increasingly friendly environment, where lower density, colder GHG molecules absorb with a narrowed absorption band, and a reduced absorption coefficient due to larger molecular spacings.

    The downward atmospheric emission get increasingly harsher treatment, encountering a higher density of GHG molecules, which are warmer, so they absorb an ever widening band of wavelengths, with increasing absorption coefficient.

    So it is hard to sell the idea that a very high altitude sparse layer of cold GHG molecules, can emit enough thermal energy; to survive the gauntlet down to the surface, and create significant amounts of warming at the surface. Certainly some radiation makes it; but the upward direction is favored over the downward.

    If this toptical transmission problem has ever been rigorously solved for earth’s atmosphere; and its various trace GHG species; including water vapor; then I am not aware of it; which doesn’t mean it hasn’t been solved; just I am not aware of enay such solution existing. 50 years ago, I might have attempted to solve that myself; but the vast majortity of my learned mathematical tools; have long since disappeared from my short term memory; so all that survices is that which I can produce “off the top of my head” as Joel puts it. I’ll leave it to younger brains to tackle that today.

    As for Dendrochronology; let me make it clear that I believe this is an ingenious well established tool for digging up certain information.

    Although the core drilling of live trees, clearly produces the To ring at the surface, so dating the layers is rather straight forward; it’s a different problem when one encounters an ancient log or timber from a bog or some other buried site. Who knows where the blazes the suface layer went.

    The matching of groups of rings between disparate samples from different locations, to identify ancient layers nowhere near the original tree surface, is a stroke of brilliance in my book, as it enables the continuous sequencing of rings long past the age of any living tree.

    Having employed a related kind of subterfuge myself when in college; I can attest to the wonderment of using such tricks to extend knowledge. In one of my early University year’s Physics labs; i was supposed to measure a couple of red wavelength lines in the neon spectrum, to determine their wavelengths to perhaps 0.01% using about a 1 cm long Fabry-Perot Etalon.

    It was supposed to be a one afternoon trivial experiment, with a rather crude interferometer device. Three weeks later, when I presented to the professor, the results of my experiment, I gave him the wavelengths of some 23 spectral lines in the red-orange region of the neon spectrum; all of them accurate to about one part in 10^8. It seems that that simple etalon, properly used, with the appropriate corrections for the refractive index of air as well as its dispersion, along with the humidity corrections, and the temperature correction of the quartz spaced etalon, and the expected phase change on reflection that occurred at the non infinitely conductive silver mirror surfaces; was capable of providing results of extreme precision.

    A practical problem was that with the lab micrometers available to us to mechanically measure the length of the etalon quartz spacer, the length uncertainty, was nowhere near the wavelength of the light passing through it, so the order of the interference rings was uncertain. It was tantamount to missing the top n-layers for a core bored tree ring sample. The sample in this case did not contain any integral number of interference rings; there was some non integral partial ring in the center; but the next full rings number was indeterminate by some relatively large number.

    But because I was able to match a number of relatively broadly spaced spectral lines; a set of rings so to speak, somewhat like the tree ring group matching, the determinable fractional ring could be appended to a sequence of integer rings for each wavelength, to compute an expected etalon length for each wavelength, and only when the correct integer numbers were used did the etalon length compute to the same value for all of the test lines.

    Once having found the “set match”, the etalon length was abtained to a small fraction of a wavelength, far beyond the resolution of a simple micrometer; and finally a whole slew of observable wavelength could be calculated based on only an approximate knowledge of a few widely spread wavelengths.

    So no; you won’t find me decrying the skills of the Dendrochronology practictioners; they strike me as a clever bunch of scientists.

    But just as I would not use my Fabry Perot Etalon as a proxy for temperature, or gravitational attraction, I am leery when tree ringers start inferring all kinds of proxy variable from thsoe tree rings; particularly since the exact mechanisms of ring growth don’t seem to be too well defined in Botanical circles.

    I was particularly impressed by the concept alluded to by one poster around here; that in fact trees are not robotic mindless creatures; and once reaching reproductive status; they can change their response to stimuli; evidently to preserve that reproductive success through thick and thin.

    That to me is a real Eureka ! moment. I don’t know how real it is; but I would not be surprised to learn that that is exactly what happens.

    So the difference between the young trees and the older trees, in Steve MacIntyre’s analyses; or the work of the others he worked with, could really be a true response of a creature who changes strides during its life, to follow the prime directive; to survive; regarless of what the weather or the climate throws at the individual tree.
    How bloody ingenious !!

    George

  113. Hockey Picks says:

    One of the best paint jobs I’ve seen in years

    This made me tear up…….

    And that is some serious paneling, my friend.thank u post…..

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