Spencer on climate sensitivity and solar irradiance

Updated: Low Climate Sensitivity Estimated from the 11-Year Cycle in Total Solar Irradiance

By Dr. Roy W. Spencer

http://rst.gsfc.nasa.gov/Sect20/solarcycle_soho.jpg

This montage, of SOHO images, shows representative appearances of the Sun during the 11 year cycle

NOTE: This has been revised since finding an error in my analysis, so it replaces what was first published about an hour ago.

As part of an e-mail discussion on climate sensitivity I been having with a skeptic of my skepticism, he pointed me to a paper by Tung & Camp entitled Solar-Cycle Warming at the Earth’s Surface and an Observational Determination of Climate Sensitivity.

The authors try to determine just how much warming has occurred as a result of changing solar irradiance over the period 1959-2004. It appears that they use both the 11 year cycle, and a small increase in TSI over the period, as signals in their analysis. The paper purports to come up with a fairly high climate sensitivity that supports the IPCC’s estimated range, which then supports forecasts of substantial global warming from increasing greenhouse gas concentrations.

The authors start out in their first illustration with a straight comparison between yearly averages of TSI and global surface temperatures during 1959 through 2004. But rather than do a straightforward analysis of the average solar cycle to the average temperature cycle, the authors then go through a series of statistical acrobatics, focusing on those regions of the Earth which showed the greatest relationship between TSI variations and temperature.

I’m not sure, but I think this qualifies as cherry picking — only using those data that support your preconceived notion. They finally end up with a fairly high climate sensitivity, equivalent to about 3 deg. C of warming from a doubling of atmospheric CO2.

Tung and Camp claim their estimate is observationally based, free of any model assumptions. But this is wrong: they DO make assumptions based upon theory. For instance, it appears that they assume the temperature change is an equilibrium response to the forcing. Just because they used a calculator rather than a computer program to get their numbers does not mean their analysis is free of modeling assumptions.

But what bothers me the most is that there was a much simpler, and more defensible way to do the analysis than they presented.

A Simpler, More Physically-Based Analysis

The most obvious way I see to do such an analysis is to do a composite 11-year cycle in TSI (there were 4.5 solar cycles in their period of analysis, 1959 through 2004) and then compare it to a similarly composited 11-year cycle in surface temperatures. I took the TSI variations in their paper, and then used the HadCRUT3 global surface temperature anomalies. I detrended both time series first since it is the 11 year cycle which should be a robust solar signature…any long term temperature trends in the data could potentially be due to many things, and so it should not be included in such an analysis.

The following plot shows in the top panel my composited 11-year cycle in global average solar flux, after applying their correction for the surface area of the Earth (divide by 4), and correct for UV absorption by the stratosphere (multiply by 0.85). The bottom panel shows the corresponding 11-year cycle in global average surface temperatures. I have done a 3-year smoothing of the temperature data to help smooth out El Nino and La Nina related variations, which usually occur in adjacent years. I also took out the post-Pinatubo cooling years of 1992 and 1993, and interpolated back in values from the bounding years, 1991 and 1994.

Note there is a time lag of about 1 year between the solar forcing and the temperature response, as would be expected since it takes time for the upper ocean to warm.

It turns out this is a perfect opportunity to use the simple forcing-feedback model I have described before to see which value for the climate sensitivity provides the best fit to the observed temperature response to the 11-year cycle in solar forcing. The model can be expressed as:

Cp[dT/dt] = TSI – lambda*T,

Where Cp is the heat capacity of the climate system (dominated by the upper ocean), dT/dt is the change in temperature of the system with time, TSI represents the 11 year cycle in energy imbalance forcing of the system, and lambda*T is the net feedback upon temperature. It is the feedback parameter, lambda, that determines the climate sensitivity, so our goal is to find a value for a best value for lambda.

I ran the above model for a variety of ocean depths over which the heating/cooling is assumed to occur, and a variety of feedback parameters. The best fits between the observed and model-predicted temperature cycle (an example of which is shown in the lower panel of the above figure) occur for assumed ocean mixing depths around 25 meters, and a feedback parameter (lambda) of around 2.2 Watts per sq. meter per deg. C. Note the correlation of 0.97; the standard deviation of the difference between the modeled and observed temperature cycle is 0.012 deg. C

My best fit feedback (2.2 Watts per sq. meter per degree) produces a higher climate sensitivity (about 1.7 deg. C for a doubling of CO2) than what we have been finding from the satellite-derived feedback, which runs around 6 Watts per sq. meter per degree (corresponding to about 0.55 deg. C of warming).

Can High Climate Sensitivity Explain the Data, Too?

If I instead run the model with the lambda value Tung and Camp get (1.25), the modeled temperature exhibits too much time lag between the solar forcing and temperature response….about double that produced with a feedback of 2.2.

Discussion

The results of this experiment are pretty sensitive to errors in the observed temperatures, since we are talking about the response to a very small forcing — less than 0.2 Watts per sq. meter from solar max to solar min. This is an extremely small forcing to expect a robust global-average temperature response from.

If someone else has published an analysis similar to what I have just presented, please let me know…I find it hard to believe someone has not done this before. I would be nice if someone else went through the same exercise and got the same answers. Similarly, let me know if you think I have made an error.

I think the methodology I have presented is the most physically-based and easiest way to estimate climate sensitivity from the 11-year cycle in solar flux averaged over the Earth, and the resulting 11-year cycle in global surface temperatures. It conserves energy, and makes no assumptions about the temperature being in equilibrium with the forcing.

I have ignored the possibility of any Svensmark-type mechanism of cloud modulation by the solar cycle…this will have to remain a source of uncertainty for now.

The bottom line is that my analysis supports a best-estimate 2XCO2 climate sensitivity of 1.7 deg. C, which is little more than half of that obtained by Tung & Camp (3.0 deg. C), and approaches the lower limit of what the IPCC claims is likely (1.5 deg. C).

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121 Responses to Spencer on climate sensitivity and solar irradiance

  1. Ed_B says:

    Very clever indeed! However, is the detrended temperature immune from the heat island effects, such as sun on pavement.. Would that not influence the sensitivity you calculate?

  2. Spencer:
    My best fit feedback (2.2 Watts per sq. meter per degree) produces a higher climate sensitivity (about 1.7 deg. C for a doubling of CO2)
    The 0.1K change is what we would expect from the variation of TSI, but explain what that has to do with the sensitivity to a doubling of CO2…

  3. Dave F says:

    Sorry, but as you yourself admit, I find it hard to believe that you can pull any reliable conclusions out of such a small change in forcing. What are the uncertainties associated with the data being used? What are the uncertainties in the result achieved?

  4. Charles Higley says:

    I greatly appreciate the discussion on climate sensitivity, but it should be included every now and then, for the reading public, that the doubling of atmospheric CO2 regularly mentioned in climate sensitivity does not mean that it will be doubling in the future.

    With the 50 to 1 partitioning between sea and air, we would be hard put to raise CO2 by 20% if we tried by burning all our available carbon.

    With the recent realization that the alarmists really do not know how much we emit and appear to use speculation and opinion, it is not reasonable to assume that we are having a great effect on atmospheric CO2.

    Unfortunately, the undiscriminating browser, who we want to become well informed, could mistake these discussions of climate sensitivity as discussions of an eventuality, which they are not.

    Just a thought. I cannot wait to get out on those cold Maine waters next month. ‘Haven’t had my boat cruising the coast for many moons and have the fun of refitting for the first time in 38 years – time to update a few systems, I guess. There appears to be a bit of fog this year, which is what we had a lot of back in the early 70s.

  5. Norman Page says:

    Your note re the cloud albedo effect makes the rest of the calculations completely useless. It is not possible to calculate real world CO2 sensitivity without resolving this matter. Look at the AR4 WG1 report which is supposedly the basis for the Summary for Policy Makers but which in fact contradicts the latters scary projections. Look at WG-1 fig 2-20 ( page 203) this first wrongly allots all cloud albedo effect to anthropogenic factors when most of it is very likely a GCR forcing effect based on the suns magnetic field strength. Look at the error bars, ie uncertainty, of this effect then multiply that uncertainty by 2 as indicated as possible in the climate efficiency column . This would give an uncertainty factor of 3+- watts /meter which would completely obscure any CO2 effect. The notion that the projections of IPCC Temperature are 95% certain is completely unfounded based on its own science section. At this point we simply don’t know enough to make any convincing estimate of the sensitivity of the earths temperature to anthropogenic CO2.It is about time that the mainstream climate scientists acknowledged this.

  6. Norman Page says:
    June 5, 2010 at 9:19 pm
    it is very likely a GCR forcing effect based on the suns magnetic field strength.
    The Sun’s magnetic field right now is what it was 108 years ago. So, based on your ‘logic’ the climate should be the same today as back then…

  7. Martin Lewitt says:

    I not sure what comfort the skeptic can derive from Camp and Tung’s estimate of climate sensitivity, for one, it is an estimate of climate sensitivity to solar forcing, and there is no reason to assume that the climate sensitivity to CO2 forcing is the same, given how differently the forcings are coupled to the climate system.

    Secondly, if Camp and Tung are wrong right, then the model attributions and projections are seriously under-representing a competing hypothesis for the source of recent warming:

    “Currently no GCM has succeeded in simulating a solar-cycle response of the observed amplitude near the surface. Clearly a correct simulation of a global-scale warming on decadal time scale is needed before predictions into the future on multi-decadal scale can be accepted with confidence.”

    I’ve wondered about the implications of Lean and Rinds subsequent article since they find an amplitude of the signature of the solar cycle about half that of Camp and Tung. If they followed through with an estimate of observationally based climate sensitivity by the same method, would their estimate also be half as high?

    “The 0.1 K (13-month mean) global solar cycle increase with modest warming at high latitudes (Figure 3) differs markedly from the 0.2 K solar cycle global increase dominated by significant high latitude warming that Camp and Tung [2007] derived by differencing solar cycle maximum and minimum epochs in the NCEP data. Their larger estimates of the solar cycle amplitude may be erroneous because of uncorrected volcanic cooling.”

    http://yang.gmu.edu/eos754/paper/Lean2008GL034864-marked-attached.pdf

  8. P.G. Sharrow says:

    And this is based on the HadCRUT3 global surface temperature data? Sorry if I find this conclusion hard to believe. Before CO2 forcings are determined for sure maybe we need a solid temperature data set. pg

  9. George Turner says:

    The eleven year cycle brings up another aspect that should probably be addressed by a post that goes up late on a Saturday night.

    Does anyone else find it odd that whereas most stars only go to ten, ours goes all the way to eleven?

    Anyone?

  10. Martin Lewitt says:

    Correction:

    “Secondly, if Camp and Tung are wrong …” should have been “Secondly, if Camp and Tung are RIGHT …”

  11. Norman Page says:

    Added note .The same figure also shows that the uncertainties in the Albedo effect completely overwhelm the effect of the small change in TSI during the solar cycle which is the commonly used by the AGW crowd to minimise the solar influence and enhance the GHG effect by comparison.

  12. Nicola Scafetta says:

    A much better analysis of the solar contribution to global mean surface temperature change is here:

    N. Scafetta, “Empirical analysis of the solar contribution to global mean air surface temperature change,” Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics 71 1916–1923 (2009), doi:10.1016/j.jastp.2009.07.007.

    The 0.2 K found by Camp and Tung is too large for the 11-year solar signature signature on the surface record . The real value cannot go above 0.1 K, as found by numerous authors.

    Moreover, everytime the climate sensitivity to solar irradiance or to anything the sun does is increased, the climate sensitivity to CO2 must be decreased because if not a model would nor reproduce the observed warming any more.

    Moreover, as I explain many times in my works, the climate sensitivity calculated with empirical methods such as mine and those of Camp and Tung use TSI records as “proxy” model for the 11-year cycle. The 11-year solar signature on climate is not produced just by TSI alone, there are several other factors including cosmic ray effects, UV effects etc.

    Therefore the climate sensitivity to doubling of CO2 cannot be calculated by simply using a regression model between the 11-year TSI cycle and the equivalent cycle found in the temperature. The two things are apples and oranges.

    The climate sensitivity to doubling of CO2 must be inferred indirectly by looking at other patterns. For example, in my paper just published it is argued that the climate sensitivity to CO2 doubling is 1/3 of what the IPCC has estimated. That is, something between 0.5 and 1.5 C.

  13. Norman Page says:

    Leif – don’t be disingenuous you know quite well that the earths climate – temperature – is the result of the complex interaction of many quasi cyclical processes of differing wavelengths . My point here was to show the IPCC reported uncertainty of the albedo effect . This applies whether the source of the change in albedo is GCRs or something else.

  14. FatBigot says:

    Doesn’t it all boil down to one thing?

    Adjust here, homogenise there, assume that, this idea is mirrored by reality except when it isn’t, that idea isn’t mirrored by reality except when it is; we know this therefore that will occur but we can’t explain why that doesn’t always occur. It’s the sun. No, it’s the oceans. No, it’s the wobble of the planet around its variable axis. No its … add to the list as you will.

    There is plainly and obviously no current authoritative answer. Draft the question how you will, the truthful answer is an unequivocal “who knows?”.

  15. rbateman says:

    Leif Svalgaard says:
    June 5, 2010 at 9:25 pm

    I hope you are correct and it’s 1902, not 1802.
    I don’t have any spot area data for 1802, but I have 1902 up and running:
    http://www.robertb.darkhorizons.org/TempGr/SC24vs13_14.GIF
    Changes made were
    1.) Align solar minimums of SC13/14 & 14/15 to 2008.8
    2.) Added the corrected flux
    3.) divided Debrecen SC23/4 data by 1.1 (note from Tunde Baranyi) to fit with Greenwich data.

    I’ll try another later on with umbral area data and see if a better fit to Flux results.
    If it is 1902, then the rollup/rolldown of the last 7 months is a prelude to imminent ramp.
    Almost the same thing happened with SC14/15.
    :)

  16. Bart says:

    You analysis still makes an assumption which constrains it, that of a first order lag model. I would advise you perform a cross correlation analysis, from which you can derive a more reliable system model. This is a fundamental reference. This is the one that really taught me how to do it many years ago. There may be a better reference on digital signal processing available today. MATLAB has routines for spectral analysis available in their Signal Processing Toolbox. There’ve have got to be rocket scientists on staff at UAH, or nearby at NASA, who might have their own canned routines for carrying this out, but at the very least might be valuable resources with whom to consult. Control systems people do this kind of stuff all the time.

    I’ve been meaning to do this with the data you presented in your book, but just haven’t had the time. A cross correlation analysis might show definitively whether water vapor is a positive or negative feedback, irrespective of radiative or non-radiative forcing. All you should need to do is look for either a positive or negative phase slope in the frequency band of interest.

  17. Bart says:

    The above was addressed to Dr. Spencer.

  18. Anu says:

    George Turner says:
    June 5, 2010 at 9:27 pm

    Most Sun-like stars only go to ten.
    They go down from zero, down through a minimum, then up through zero to maximum again, then down again – at ten, they are at zero.
    What we do is, if we need that extra push down the cliff, you know what we do ?
    Put it up to eleven years.
    Eleven. Exactly. One longer.

  19. Amino Acids in Meteorites says:

    It appears that they use both the 11 year cycle, and a small increase in TSI over the period, as signals in their analysis…..then go through a series of statistical acrobatics

    If that’s all you have to do to get global warming grant money I could made my fortune

  20. stumpy says:

    Obviously if the sun does influence global albedo in some way, the earths sensitivty to changes in TSI could be considerably different to the earths sensitivity to other factors such as green house gasses, and the GCR theory would add an amplification. There is little to support the amplification with co2. We could be comparing apples with oranges!

  21. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    Re: Bart on June 5, 2010 at 10:54 pm

    Did you read Dr. Spencer’s article “How the UAH Global Temperatures are Produced“?

    The millions of calibrated brightness temperature measurements are averaged in space and time, for instance monthly averages in 2.5 degree latitude bands. I have FORTRAN programs I have written to do this. I then pass the averages to John Christy, who inter-calibrates the different satellites’ AMSUs during periods when two or more satellites are operating (which is always the case).

    Did you read the About page on his site?

    Dr. Spencer’s work with NASA continues as the U.S. Science Team leader for the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer flying on NASA’s Aqua satellite.

    Have you done that, yet still are here providing your selections for basic digital signal processing references, mentioning freely-available tools, and suggesting he can check with the smart guys, the “rocket scientists,” at UAH, or perhaps NASA, for help like canned routines and additional info, so he can properly do a certain type of analysis?

  22. Doug in Seattle says:

    stephan says:
    June 5, 2010 at 11:32 pm

    who is lying?
    http://weather.unisys.com/surface/sst_anom.html
    or
    http://www.osdpd.noaa.gov/data/sst/anomaly/2010/anomnight.6.3.2010.gif

    They both show the same thing but use different color scales. The NOAA one uses yellow (a warm color) starting at 0 degrees, while the Unisys one has green (a cooler color). The end result is that the NOAA map “looks” warmer than the Unisys map.

    In a way the NOAA map tries to fool the reader into thinking there is warming going on where it is not, so in that sense is not entirely honest.

    I wouldn’t go so far though as to say they are lying. All one has to do is look at the color scale to see which colors mean warming. But if one doesn’t look at the scale (most people?) one would get the impression of a world on fire.

  23. Bob Tisdale says:

    stephan asked, “who is lying?” with respect to the differences between the Unisys and NESDIS SST maps.

    They’re likely different datasets. The NESDIS “corral watch” uses nighttime satellite data only. They also don’t adjust for biases at high latitudes. Discussed here:
    http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2009/09/note-about-sst-anomaly-maps.html

  24. tallbloke says:

    Dr Roy said:

    My best fit feedback (2.2 Watts per sq. meter per degree) produces a higher climate sensitivity (about 1.7 deg. C for a doubling of CO2) than what we have been finding from the satellite-derived feedback, which runs around 6 Watts per sq. meter per degree (corresponding to about 0.55 deg. C of warming).

    I think you missed the decimal point here Roy. Shouldn’t it be 0.6W/m^2 not 6?

    On a more general note about the depth to which the ocean warms, the steric component of global sea level increase would indicate that heat-energy gets pushed down a lot futher below the well mixed layer, too as much as 1000m in some parts of the world. Quite how this energy transfer occurs is a bit of a mystery, but logic dictates that it must occur. It is worth remembering that sensible heat isn’t the only kind of energy storage in the ocean. I remember you were taken to task by Raymond Pierre-Humbug for your previous model which used the 1000m figure. My calcs show you were right!

    The upshot of this is that the ocean stores and releases energy on longer timescales than previously thought, and that makes the effect of small multidecadal variations in TSI more effective in terms of global temperature change. My calcs showed that the steric component of sea level rise 1992-2002 indicated a thermal expansion of around 5200km^3 in the worlds oceans. The energy required to do that showed that the oceans were absorbing around an extra 4W/m^2 during that decade. This is way beyond anything co2 can do, so it must be down to the sun, amplified by cloud cover variation IMO.

    It also proves that the variation in global temperature over the solar cycle is damped by energy absorption in the ocean, and thus that centennial variation in TSI has more effect on global temperature than generally accepted.

  25. Atomic Hairdryer says:

    Re: Bart says: June 5, 2010 at 10:54 pm
    A cross correlation analysis might show definitively whether water vapor is a positive or negative feedback, irrespective of radiative or non-radiative forcing. All you should need to do is look for either a positive or negative phase slope in the frequency band of interest.

    This intrigues me. I’ve been curious if TSI is too blunt an instrument to draw meaningful conclusions. My background is in telecomms where there are dispersion challenges in fibre, particularly around the water peak. Launch power may be constant, received power may vary depending on band and dispersion characteristics of the fibre. Luckily lasers and fibre are usually more constant than the Sun and atmosphere. Surely it’s the energy variations in the bands of interest that is more significant, eg water and CO2 absorbption peaks, or PAR?

  26. Juraj V. says:

    1.7 deg C for CO2 doubling is invalidated by observations, where the PDO/AMO warm period in 40ties was just 0.3 deg C colder than similar warm peak in 2000s (and that’s per HadCRUT with its known warm biases) . Had the relation between CO2–>2xCO2 and temperature was for simplicity linear, CO2 increase of 80ppm since 1940 should have delivered 0.5 deg C.

  27. Bob Tisdale says:

    Roy Spencer: You wrote, “Note there is a time lag of about 1 year between the solar forcing and the temperature response, as would be expected since it takes time for the upper ocean to warm.”

    The Southern Hemisphere Sea Surface temperatures show a seasonal peak in February and March, leading to a lag from the Southern Hemisphere summer solstice of two to three months:
    http://i49.tinypic.com/qriywl.jpg

    But the surface does not reflect the inertia of the water column. So let’s look at steric sea level. In “Assessing the Globally Averaged Sea Level Budget on Seasonal to Interannual Time Scales”…
    http://ecco.jpl.nasa.gov/~jwillis/willis_sl_budget_final.pdf
    …Willis et al (2008) write, “Steric sea level has a seasonal amplitude of 3.7 +/- 0.8 mm, peaking in early April. Since two-thirds of the world’s oceans lie in the southern hemisphere, the phase reflects the peak warming in Austral summer.”

    That’s about a 3- to 4-month lag from solstice to steric sea level peak.

    So the one-year ocean lag is closer than the multiyear lags suggested in other papers.

  28. Graham Dick says:

    “As part of an e-mail discussion on climate sensitivity I been having (ah’s bin havin?) with a skeptic of my skepticism”

  29. wayne says:

    Nicola Scafetta says:
    June 5, 2010 at 9:52 pm
    … Therefore the climate sensitivity to doubling of CO2 cannot be calculated by simply using a regression model between the 11-year TSI cycle and the equivalent cycle found in the temperature. The two things are apples and oranges.

    Glad you pointed that out. Dr. Spencer seemed to be “out there” on this one. Roy, maybe you can clarify how you justify tying solar forcing to c02 forcing.

  30. Bob Tisdale says:

    tallbloke: You commented to Roy Spencer, “This is way beyond anything co2 can do, so it must be down to the sun, amplified by cloud cover variation IMO.”

    IMO those variations in cloud amount for the period you were discussing (1992-2002) would have resulted from the unusually strong trade winds associated with the 1995/96 La Niña and the shear length of the 1998/99/00/01 La Niña. Both had significant impacts on tropical Pacific OHC:
    http://i36.tinypic.com/eqwdvl.png

    And the impact of the 1998/99/00/01 La Niña is also visible in Indian Ocean OHC:
    http://i35.tinypic.com/2pphbf4.png

    Is the curious rise the tropical Atlantic in 2003 a lagged response?
    http://i38.tinypic.com/2me2vc1.png

  31. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    Can we put this in perspective?

    A paper was done showing a high climate sensitivity, placing it in warmist territory, which then was used to support (C)AGW. Dr. Spencer took his own simple model, matched it to HadCRUT3 which is warmist-approved, and came up with a much lower climate sensitivity near the low end of the IPCC-provided range. He used the Tung and Camp number in his model and found it didn’t work.

    So a warmist paper was debunked using Dr. Spencer’s model, which was tuned to warmist-approved data and had yielded a result within the IPCC-specified range. Using the enemy’s own weapons against themselves, if you wish to view it that way.

    It was noted the figure still didn’t match the real-world observations, namely from satellites which showed a much lower climate sensitivity, and that the model was simple and left out “…any Svensmark-type mechanism…” which are looking to be very important in regulating global temperatures.

    It’s all there, written in a gentlemanly scientific non-confrontational manner. ‘This ain’t reality, but if it was you’d still be wrong.’ What more do you want? ;-)

  32. John Finn says:

    Juraj V. says:
    June 6, 2010 at 2:11 am
    1.7 deg C for CO2 doubling is invalidated by observations, where the PDO/AMO warm period in 40ties was just 0.3 deg C colder than similar warm peak in 2000s (and that’s per HadCRUT with its known warm biases) . Had the relation between CO2–>2xCO2 and temperature was for simplicity linear, CO2 increase of 80ppm since 1940 should have delivered 0.5 deg C.

    The Hadcrut linear trend since 1940 is ~0.08 deg per decade. This gives an overall warming of 0.56 deg. The decadal average for the 1940s is approx -0.07, the average since 2000 is ~0.42, i.e. a difference of ~0.5 deg.

    What did you do – pick the highest number from the 1940s and compare it with the lowest from the 2000s?

  33. vukcevic says:

    Dr. Spencer
    I am odd one out here.
    I think that there is a strong possibility that oceans’ conveyor belt currents are affected (depending on their direction) by twists and turns of the Earth’s magnetic field, evolution of which (during last 400 years, for selected latitudes) is shown here:
    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/NFC6.htm
    Since the Earth’s magnetic field and solar activity show certain degree of synchronisation http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/LFC1.htm
    than it is tempting to misplace one for the other.

  34. Jbar says:

    Norman Page –
    Agree with your statement on cloud albedo effect. This effect is in the same direction as the solar cycle TSI variation effect. When sunspots are at a minimum, solar insolation is also at a minimum (cooling effect), cosmic rays are at a maximum (allowing for some months lag time) making the cloud albedo effect also at a maximum (cooling effect).

    Dr. Spencer’s analysis lumps the TSI and cloud albedo effects together and we can have no idea how much of the warming response is due to which. Therefore there must be great uncertainty or “error bars” on his estimated climate sensitivity value for TSI.

    Nevertheless, his calculation does indicate the magnitude of combined solar effects.

  35. Caleb Miller says:

    Leif Svalgaard says:
    June 5, 2010 at 9:25 pm

    “The Sun’s magnetic field right now is what it was 108 years ago. So, based on your ‘logic’ the climate should be the same today as back then…”

    That does not follow. Let’s start with the fact that the temperature was much higher before the decrease in in the Sun’s magnetic field this time around. A forcing should be expected to exert the same influence on temperature, but not that the influence result in the same temperature, unless the initial conditions, and the associated forcings, were also the same. In that latter connection, current temperatures are also under the strong influence of an El Nino. I am not a solar forcing enthusiast and I respect your solar expertise, but I think your argument is unsound.

  36. kim says:

    So it is suggested that the oceans and the atmosphere integrate the total solar effect in some so far uncharacterized manner.

    More data. Send shysters, gats, and loot.
    =========================

  37. Joe Lalonde says:

    Question?
    Since water can have and hold trace elements, can CO2 do the same?

  38. cba says:

    Roy,

    So it sounds like you have 0.2 w/m^2 +/- 5.0 W/m^2 uncertainty in albedo variation. Wouldn’t it make more sense to look for sensitivity in the albedo variation?

  39. Tom in Florida says:

    Someone, about a year ago or so, posted a chart on this blog showing the actually length of each solar cycle. I seem to remember seeing that the actual lengths varied from about 9.5 years to 13.5 years. This report compares 11 years solar cycles with corresponding 11 year cycles in temperature (“The most obvious way I see to do such an analysis is to do a composite 11-year cycle in TSI (there were 4.5 solar cycles in their period of analysis, 1959 through 2004) and then compare it to a similarly composited 11-year cycle in surface temperatures. “).
    It would seem to me that one should take the actual solar cycle length for each specific cycle and compare it with the exact same time period for temperature (with the starting point adjusted for lag if any) rather than using the 11 year average cycle for the entire period.

  40. Pamela Gray says:

    I still don’t understand how a temperature series can be used to wriggle match. The temperature response to weather (an incredibly strong driver) is a chaotically unbalanced compactly noisy data set. Any filtered smoothing based on a set time period (IE 11 years) is likely able to show what ever “hump” or “trend” you want based on the filter you use, but is it related to your proposed driver or is it still emphasizing close enough noisy temperature responses to the the influence of weather?

    It seems to me that one would have to first subtract somewhat predictable temperature responses to every pressure system impinging upon every sensor on at least a week by week basis in order to find temperature response to something other than weather, before then applying smoothing and filtering.

    In my opinion, trying to find trends related to any other forcing outside of weather systems using quasi-raw data (IE week by week weather related temperature response has not been removed) makes no sense whatsoever. Weather systems are an overwhelmingly powerful driver of temperature, are not anywhere near white noise, and cannot simply be “smoothed” out, or averaged out, to show some other driver. As it stands, chances are you will find a temperature response trend near your desired filter window, and will mistakenly call that something other than a weather related temperature response.

    In my mind, the only correlation that makes sense, and the only conclusion we can make, given the data set we have, has to do with the drivers of weather systems, the oceans. Until we can remove the oceanic driven weather system affect from every sensor on a weekly basis, we will not be able to find any other match to anything else.

  41. Ron Cram says:

    Charles Higley,

    You have an interesting viewpoint but I believe we have proxies telling us atmospheric CO2 has been more than double its current level in milleniums past. If it has happened before, why not in the future?

  42. Pamela Gray says:

    One such way to subtract weather response would be to subtract month to month predictions of weather related “change from a longterm (IE over the life of the record, not some artificial time span) average”. These predictions are probably stored somewhere in agricultural departments at state universities. For example, see:

    http://www.oregon.gov/ODA/NRD/docs/pdf/dlongrange.pdf

    It would be interesting to do this for the state of Oregon and see if some kind of long term trend shows up after weather related month to month changes are removed.

    But even then, in some parts of Oregon weather related changes can occur within 10 minutes, not predicted by the local weather service. One minute we are under a pressure system coming from the West and the next minute we are under a pressure system coming from the North. It is not unusualtso experience sudden and drastic drops or climbs to temperatures completely unpredicted. I believe that the record range for temp change in a 24 hour period in Oregon is 70+ degrees.

    The more I study this issue, the more I am convinced that you cannot determine the difference between weather system temperature response from anthropogenic response. The weather noise is just too powerful.

  43. tallbloke says:

    Bob Tisdale says:
    June 6, 2010 at 3:15 am

    tallbloke: You commented to Roy Spencer, “This is way beyond anything co2 can do, so it must be down to the sun, amplified by cloud cover variation IMO.”

    IMO those variations in cloud amount for the period you were discussing (1992-2002) would have resulted from the unusually strong trade winds associated with the 1995/96 La Niña and the shear length of the 1998/99/00/01 La Niña.

    Hi Bob, thanks for the observation. I wasn’t trying to imply the cloud variation must be solely don to heightened solar activity. I don’t have a problem with other factors being involved as well. Any idea why the trade winds were unusually strong? Because temps were up and the engine was running on high pressure maybe?

    Is the curious rise the tropical Atlantic in 2003 a lagged response?
    http://i38.tinypic.com/2me2vc1.png

    More likely a bad splice in the XBT/ARGO data IMO. With the degree to which Levitus et al have been playing fast and loose with estimates of OHC in the last ten years, who knows. What I do know is that they downwards revised their OHC estimates all the way back when they realised the big jump couldn’t be accounted for by co2 on their Levitus et al 2000 figures.

  44. Gail Combs says:

    Doug in Seattle says:
    June 6, 2010 at 1:15 am

    stephan says:
    June 5, 2010 at 11:32 pm

    who is lying?
    http://weather.unisys.com/surface/sst_anom.html
    or
    http://www.osdpd.noaa.gov/data/sst/anomaly/2010/anomnight.6.3.2010.gif

    They both show the same thing but use different color scales. The NOAA one uses yellow (a warm color) starting at 0 degrees, while the Unisys one has green (a cooler color). The end result is that the NOAA map “looks” warmer than the Unisys map.

    In a way the NOAA map tries to fool the reader into thinking there is warming going on where it is not, so in that sense is not entirely honest.

    I wouldn’t go so far though as to say they are lying. All one has to do is look at the color scale to see which colors mean warming. But if one doesn’t look at the scale (most people?) one would get the impression of a world on fire.
    _________________________________________________________________________
    Doug I do not think he was referring to the colors. I put the graphics up on two different screens and the areas do not match. Look at the area off the tip of south America or the area up near Alaska.

  45. S.E. Hendriksen says:

    @Charles Higley

    Hi Charles
    >>With the 50 to 1 partitioning between sea and air, we would be hard put to raise CO2 by 20% if we tried by burning all our available carbon.<<

    Prof. Tom V. Segalstad (Oslo Norway) made that calculation long time ago when the CO2 level in the atmosphere was 380 PPMv… if you burn all known fossil fuel, it will end up with 456 PPMv in the atmosphere (a rise of 20 %), so a doubling of the CO2 in the atmosphere is not possible due burning fossil fuel.

    But a CO2 release from the oceans (because of warming) can do it without any doubt.

    Here is the good news :
    http://tomnelson.blogspot.com/2010/06/breaking-fourth-grade-climate-realist.html

    Kind regards from Greenland

  46. bubbagyro says:

    Bob Tisdale says:
    June 6, 2010 at 2:52 am

    Not just inertia, Bob. Heat in water moves by convection from hottest to coldest, so the sea at great depth gradually gets warmer if the sea surface warms, and more slowly burps it out to space to reduce the heat sink (e.g. El Nino). But there must be a huge lag due to the protection of the haloclinic and the thermoclinic strata, especially during the potential heat build-up cycles. El Nino may be one of the rejection mechanisms when the thermocline interface rejects the heat movement? These interfaces, no matter what the real operational aspects, serve as elastic protective interfaces which must have huge lag times, barring any turnover caused by volcanic upheaval, for instance. No one puts these in models, because no one could get a fix on what a meaningful lag time would be, and any correlation would be blunted and lost over long times, eroded by any other influences.

    Nothing on earth is homogeneous or simple, yet models rely on homogeneity and simplicity for setting and choosing parameters.

    That is why Spencer uses simplistic TSI from the sun, leaving out more powerful UV, cosmic ray, radio, solar wind, and magnetic field (protective) influences: there aren’t enough Cray computers in the universe to string together to get any meaningful result from these variables. Too many variables, and only speculation for the (too few) equations.

    Let’s spend our (to be sharply reduced in the near future, of course, now that we see the ignominious waste and fraud involved) taxpayer money on useful enterprises, like actually doing real measurements in the field, and then we will be justified in spending a little capital crunching the results.

  47. Steve Fitzpatrick says:

    The best fit being for an effective (thermal) ocean depth of 25 meters, which is way too shallow, fairly well screams that the results are very doubtful. The temperature data over a few solar cycles is almost certainly too noisy to do this kind of analysis. I expect that if error bars were calculated, it is likely that the uncertainty would be comparable to or larger than the effect. If the analysis were extended to many solar cycles then the results may be more robust, but uncertainty in the early part of the temperature record would then be greater, and you would just be guessing at solar energy variation anyway…. more uncertainty. This may be tilting at windmills.

  48. Crashex says:

    Tom in Florida says:
    June 6, 2010 at 6:24 am
    ” I seem to remember seeing that the actual lengths varied from about 9.5 years to 13.5 years. ”

    “It would seem to me that one should take the actual solar cycle length for each specific cycle and compare it with the exact same time period for temperature ”

    Hear, Hear!!! Normalize the time scale to be 1 cycle, based on the observed length, and then compare the relative variations of TSI and Temperature. The variable cycle length introduces unnecessary uncertainty.

  49. Dave Springer says:

    Leif Svalgaard says:
    June 5, 2010 at 9:25 pm
    The Sun’s magnetic field right now is what it was 108 years ago. So, based on your ‘logic’ the climate should be the same today as back then…

    It was 105 years ago that Roald Amundson sailed through the Northwest Passage. No one duplicated that feat without an icebreaker until 2007 and again in 2008. The passage has since frozen back up again.

    It looks like history did indeed repeat itself at least where the arctic ice mass & extent is concerned.

    It could be just coincidence that the Northwest Passage opened up briefly only during periods of very very low sunspot minima but it’s enough to raise suspicion of a causal link.

  50. Norman Page says:

    These discussions are aimed towards predicting future climate.Fortunately I was able to channel that great climate spirit Dr Norpag who provided me with the AR5 Summary for Policymakers 2012 which should save everyone a lot of time and trouble.

    IPCC AR5 – Summary for Policymakers 2012

    Our AR4 report included the following statement:
    “The understanding of anthropogenic warming and cooling influences on climate has improved since the TAR, leading to very high confidence that the global average net effect of human activities since 1750 has been one of warming, with a radiative forcing of +1.6 [+0.6 to +2.4] W m–2 ”

    We further estimated an increase in temperature of about 3 degrees C. for a doubling of CO2.
    We now realize that our knowledge of the factors controlling earth’s climate is much more limited than we previously thought and we are at this time unable to calculate the possible future effect of anthropogenic CO2 with any degree of certainty useful for policymakers. We apologise to those policymakers who embarked upon economically destructive carbon emission control schemes based upon our previous statements and similarly apologise to those members of the western intelligencia who spent sleepless nights worrying about the fate of the planet and their days trying to reduce their carbon footprint.
    We can however make some possibly useful comments with suggestions for policymakers .
    It is now clear that the patterns of the earths ocean current systems provide the best guide to the current state of the climate and the best clues as to developments over the next 20 – 30 years. Beyond that time span predictions are of little practical value.

    Of particular note is the negative phase of the PDO which began about ten years ago and may well last for another 20 years. This suggests that La Ninas will be more frequent than El Ninos during this time span. A general earth cooling is thus more likely as was the case from 1940 to 1970 when similar conditions prevailed. Concurrent changes in the Arctic oscillation suggest a pattern of meridional atmospheric flow will be more common than the more latitudinal flows of warmer periods.

    In addition the sun has entered a quiet phase with a dramatic drop in solar magnetic field strength since 2004. This reinforces the probability of a cooling phase on earth.

    Policymakers may wish to note the following possible effects on earths climate for the next 20 – 30 years. A somewhat cooler world with lower SSTs usually means a dryer world. Thus droughts will be more likely in for example in California, and east Africa with possible monsoon failures in India. Northern Hemisphere growing seasons will be shorter with occasional early and late frosts and repeats of the harsh Central Asia (Mongolia) winters of 2009 – 10 . Cold European winters and cool cloudy summers will be more frequent .

    There will be a steeper temperature gradient from the tropics to the poles so that tornadoes will be more violent and more frequent in the USA, At the same time the jet stream will swing more sharply North – South thus local weather world wide will be generally more variable with occasional more northerly heat waves and more southerly unusually cold snaps. In the USA hurricanes may strike the east coast with greater frequency.

    The most general advice is that world food production may be subject to occasional serious severe restriction because of cold and drought. The use of food crops for biofuels should be abandoned and stockpiles built up for possible lean times ahead. There is no threat from the burning of fossil fuels for the forseeable future, indeed an increase in CO2 would positively help feed the burgeoning population.
    For the next 20 years climate science should be devoted to improving and enlarging the entire climate data base in particular with regard to solar data of all kinds. No climate model runs should be made until 2025 by which time the inputs will be more relevant to the real world.

  51. Bill Hunter says:

    Leif says:
    “The Sun’s magnetic field right now is what it was 108 years ago. So, based on your ‘logic’ the climate should be the same today as back then…”

    Maybe! Or maybe in 108 more years from today assuming all remains the same. Unrealized climate change is an essential element of every extreme point of view, otherwise we could all relax and enjoy the weather. Or the lack of it considering recent history.

  52. vukcevic says:

    Tom in Florida: June 6, 2010 at 6:24 am
    Someone, about a year ago or so, posted a chart on this blog showing the actually length of each solar cycle……..

    You can use this until you come accros something better.
    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/SSCsl.htm
    Cheers.

  53. R. Gates says:

    Another excellent post Dr. Spencer. I think your analysis is thorough enough, but there are still many unknowns here, and so too much left to speculation, especially in terms of how much the sun’s total irradiance truly does change during the shorter term versus the longer term trend. The Glory satellite to be launched later this year will help answer some of those questions, and I would send readers to this story:

    http://www.physorg.com/news194025410.html

    To get a good overview of the longer term issues really involved in solar irradiance. Also, this chart:

    http://www.climate4you.com/Sun.htm#Global temperature and sunspot number

    Shows the relationship between irradiance (which follows increasing sunspot numbers) and overall global temps over the past 50 years, and you can even see the ENSO signal on top of the cycle, especially in the strong El Nino years of 1998 and 1973.

  54. Bill Hunter says:

    Martin says:
    “I not sure what comfort the skeptic can derive from Camp and Tung’s estimate of climate sensitivity, for one, it is an estimate of climate sensitivity to solar forcing, and there is no reason to assume that the climate sensitivity to CO2 forcing is the same, given how differently the forcings are coupled to the climate system.”

    Correct me if I am wrong but isn’t SW radiation less likely to be perturbed by the climate system than LW radiation? If so, and there is a difference in sensitivity, would it not be more likely that solar forcing would be more likely to have high sensitivity?

  55. Bill Hunter says:

    Steve Fitzpatrick says:
    “The best fit being for an effective (thermal) ocean depth of 25 meters, which is way too shallow, fairly well screams that the results are very doubtful.”

    The primary thermocline is at 25 meters. Perhaps its a layering issue in a model that does not include a hard thermocline and as such the best fit is obtained there whereas with a properly designed ocean model better fits would be obtained at depths somewhat greater. So I am not sure how negatively this reflects on the result but maybe not much.

  56. mb says:

    Dr Spencer> Even if the numbers you get are small, it seems that this analysis says something about the feedback. I understand that these feedbacks can’t be assumed to be instantaneous, but that there could be various positive and negative feedbacks acting in different characteristic time frames.

    To make things simple, lets assume that the each solar cycle is exactly 11 year long, and that the method of summing cycles does indeed eliminate contributions from other forcings. Still, it seems to me that the total feedback at a certain time will depend not only of the solar forcing at that time (by instantaneous feedback), but also on the solar forcing at all other points in the 11 year cycle (by delayed feedback). So how do you isolate the feedback coming from the solar forcing acting at one particular time?

    I believe that my question is closely related to Bart’s remark above that you are using a first order lag model.

  57. Billy Liar says:

    Norman Page says:
    June 6, 2010 at 8:40 am

    Very good!

  58. Arno Arrak says:

    Climate sensitivity to doubling of CO2 is big on the agenda of true believers in AWG. But it is a dead issue because the work of Ferenc Mikolczi has shown that it may not even exist. He worked for NASA but his work first appeared in an obscure Hungarian journal in 2007. When his supervisors realized what he had done he was told not to talk about it, so he quit. His latest work is in E&E, Volume 21, No. 4 (2010). He shows that IPCC method of determining the water vapor feedback mechanism is error-prone and uses empirical data from sixty one years of radiosonde measurements to prove that feedback of water vapor effect on greenhouse-gas optical thickness is strongly negative, thoroughly contradicting the IPCC doctrine of it being positive. What this means is that computer models used by IPCC in predicting warming are all in error. In fact, if his theory stands there is no AGW now and there never was any. Warming, yes, but only of the natural kind.

  59. gman says:

    dave springer the rcmp boat the roche did the passage both ways in the 1940s.it now sits in the vancouver maritime museum.i can see it from my house.

  60. Steve Fitzpatrick says:

    Bill Hunter says: “The primary thermocline is at 25 meters. ”

    I don’t think this is correct. The well mixed layer of course varies a lot by latitude and with season (especially outside the tropics), ranging from a couple hundred meters to zero, but the area-weighted global average figure is usually taken as 50 meters or an little more. In the tropics (which receive the majority of solar energy, and where most ocean heat is accumulated) the average mixed layer is considerably deeper… near 100 meters or a bit more looks reasonable (based on a random grab of a few dozen ARGO profiles in the tropics).

    If you have some reference showing and average of 25 meters to the thermocline, I would like to read that.

  61. tallbloke says:

    Arno Arrak says:
    June 6, 2010 at 9:53 am

    Climate sensitivity to doubling of CO2 is big on the agenda of true believers in AWG. But it is a dead issue because the work of Ferenc Mikolczi has shown that it may not even exist. He worked for NASA but his work first appeared in an obscure Hungarian journal in 2007. When his supervisors realized what he had done he was told not to talk about it, so he quit.

    Actually, it was worse than that:
    http://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2010/01/04/why-the-sun-is-so-important-to-climate/

  62. Bill Illis says:

    It would be possible to measure the short-term climate sensitivity if we could actually tease a solar cycle signal out of the temperature series.

    Every now and again, it seems as though there is a small one but then it is not consistent, produces opposite signals and so on.

    If someone can show a solar cycle signal in the high resolution temperature data (as opposed to the annual data which is data selection in my opinion), then we can start measuring the sensitivity per Watt/m2.

    Failing that, the answer must be that the sensitivity is low since a high number would be easier to find.

  63. bubbagyro says:

    Steve Fitzpatrick says:
    June 6, 2010 at 10:39 am

    As I said earlier, thermoclines and haloclines are elastic and vary like a sheet waving in the wind, and react to tides and upwellings, volcanic or otherwise (earthquakes, volcanoes, etc.). They are not total barriers to heat transfer, and it is amusing to see modelers treat them as if it were ocean floor at 25 or 50 meters. As a deep sea fisherman at times, I have seen thermoclines disappear and move up and down, for unknown reasons, using sonar imaging, in large fresh and salt water bodies.

    I don’t know this ipso facto- but I’ll bet that the thermocline is disrupted when El Nino is forming east of Japan and rumbling eastward. Heat, building up over the thermocline, had to be relieved by the event because it could not go lower fast enough, and it must have created havoc to deeper ocean while doing so, as well.

    Other ocean oscillations possibly have their own similar mechanisms going on.

    Who knows what the halocline does? It comes and goes in strength at high latitudes, mostly affecting the northern hemisphere.

  64. dwb says:

    in reality we are estimating based on 5 data points – thats how many solar cycles we are using. Call it what you will but there is still significant uncertainty given the small solar variation.

  65. tallbloke says:

    bubbagyro says:
    June 6, 2010 at 11:56 am

    I have seen thermoclines disappear and move up and down, for unknown reasons, using sonar imaging, in large fresh and salt water bodies.

    Interesting. It’s a poorly understood subject. I wonder what happens when you pass electric current through temperature stratified water of varying salinity.

  66. Bill Hunter says:

    Steve F. says:
    “If you have some reference showing and average of 25 meters to the thermocline, I would like to read that.”

    More than likely what we have here is a difference in terminology. As a diver the thermocline is where the ocean makes a large step change in temperature. Thermocline in other vernaculars seems to mean the mixing zone. I am referring to the former.

    Over half of the energy absorbed the oceans is absorbed by the upper 10 meters. By the time you get to 25 meters energy absorption is very low. The mixing layer above the thermocline mostly varies by wind activity. Since wave action only mixes energetically below the water abit less than twice the distance they stand above the water, mixing below that is a far slower process. The Rayleigh distribution on wave heights suggest only 1 in 1000 waves exceeds 18.6 meters and 1 in 100 above 15.1 meters and only 1 in 10 greater than 10.7 meters (wikipedia-Significant Wave Heights). Divers know almost where ever they dive the thermocline is going to be usually 25 meters or less and the step down in temperature which can occur in just a few inches is up to around 10 degrees. You can sit there and, I have on many occasions, wave your hand through it and feel a huge drop in water temperature.

    So I what I am suggesting is perhaps the near immediate effect of sunlight penetrating is fairly well mixed in the upper 25 meters by energetic wave action at light energy penetration but there is a big temperature step that can be a shallower but seldom is a lot deeper than 50 meters that could potentially have an effect on models that assume more uniform ocean mixing to the depths you are likely calling the thermocline.

  67. Doug in Seattle says:

    Gail Combs says:
    June 6, 2010 at 7:54 am

    Doug I do not think he was referring to the colors. I put the graphics up on two different screens and the areas do not match. Look at the area off the tip of south America or the area up near Alaska.

    I did note the differences (using the same method). Note that the Unisys map shows Arctic and Antarctic waters while NOAA limits their coverage to areas presumably not covered by ice. They are also different days. NOAA is from June 3, while Unisys is from June 5.

    Other differences could arise from using different contouring software.

    I don’t the differences are big enough to indicate they are not using the same basic data set.

  68. rbateman says:

    Bill Illis says:
    June 6, 2010 at 10:57 am

    This was my best attempt at teasing a temp trend out of solar data:
    http://www.robertb.darkhorizons.org/SC24/Gr-DebINV2.PNG
    What I really needed were the data points from the US Historical Temp data set, and to update the recent Debrecen data into the umbra/penumbra ratio. Also, the Greenwich data after 1974 (USAF/SOON?) is highly approximated and very wrongly assumed to be a formula. Debrecen will eventually fill in 1980-1985 to bridge the gap.
    If you think about it, Umbra/Penumbra ratio is somewhat similar to L&P. The other part of Solar Phenomena not taken since 1974 are visible White Light Facula. Greenwich calculated TSI as a function of sunspots vs visible faculae for 100 years.

  69. Z says:

    Note there is a time lag of about 1 year between the solar forcing and the temperature response, as would be expected since it takes time for the upper ocean to warm.

    Can someone explain a bit more about the above statement? I can accept that a large cold reservoir will take time to warm up to a certain equilibrium temperature – maybe even a year – but the *response* should be immediate (or quite short, assuming the noise floor obscures the nascent signal). In other words, if I turn the sun off NOW, I’d expect everything to start cooling NOW (speed of light issues aside). I just can’t quite visualise the ocean taking a year to notice the giant lightbulb in the sky had gone out.

    The only exception I can see for that is if there is an “intermediate reservoir” of heat, that is warmer than the “cold reservoir”, in which case the cold reservoir would warm to meet the intermediate reservoir, then they’d both cool together.

    Where/what is that intermediate reservoir?

  70. Z says:

    tallbloke says:
    June 6, 2010 at 12:38 pm

    Interesting. It’s a poorly understood subject. I wonder what happens when you pass electric current through temperature stratified water of varying salinity.

    That’s also moving.

    In a magnetic field.

    Are you going to get more motion? Less motion? A different motion? A bigger electric field? A larger magnetic field? Heat? A research grant?

    More questions than answers there I’m afraid…

  71. wayne says:

    Slightly off topic:
    http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2010/04jun_swef/
    “The sun is waking up from a deep slumber, and in the next few years we expect to see much higher levels of solar activity. At the same time, our technological society has developed an unprecedented sensitivity to solar storms. The intersection of these two issues is what we’re getting together to discuss.”

    Hope they aren’t too disappointed when this doom doesn’t really appear. All of my indicators point to a maximum of 20 +/-5 spots per year. Nothing to write home about. Cycle 25 should be somewhat weaker. Many are saying “But, but, but.. it has always done that every 11 years.” Yes, for the last ~310 years but the exit of cycle 23 showed signals of being very different even three years ago. I am not claiming I know the reason why this is occurring, that I do not know, but what comes will be interesting. My only guess is we are beginning to see the flop side of a multi-century cycle of some sort.

    Maybe the sun does this. Fires up for ~300 years then subsides, fires up for ~300 years then subsides, … much like the 11 year cycle only centurial in nature. Just read an article from NASA saying they now see a ~0.05% decadal secular increase in the TSI across all satellites since the 70’s. Over 310 years, if present, would amount to ~1.5% increase. Lets see, 1.5% of 288 K is 4.3 K and seems a bit high to me. Could this be the same signature of the Maunder back in the early 1600’s before we had records? I guess anything is possible without data from that period and only time will tell.

  72. Manfred says:

    Billy Liar says:
    June 6, 2010 at 9:21 am
    Norman Page says:
    June 6, 2010 at 8:40 am

    Very good!

    Very very good indeed

  73. Jeff Green says:

    [Charles Higley says:
    June 5, 2010 at 9:03 pm
    I greatly appreciate the discussion on climate sensitivity, but it should be included every now and then, for the reading public, that the doubling of atmospheric CO2 regularly mentioned in climate sensitivity does not mean that it will be doubling in the future. ]

    I disagree with your assertion about the doubling. With business as usual burning of fossil fuels a doubling of co2 from 280 ppm starting point, 560 ppm will be reached quite easily later this century.

    [With the 50 to 1 partitioning between sea and air, we would be hard put to raise CO2 by 20% if we tried by burning all our available carbon.]

    Where did this 50 to 1 come from? When the economy is in full swing, we increase co2 into the atmosphere about 2% per year. Starting at 390 ppm to 560 ppm, we could reach 560 in 85 years. That is just straight emissions coming from the humans. Take into account as the earth warms, the oceans will absorb less and less co2, putting a larger portion into the atmosphere in the future.

    [With the recent realization that the alarmists really do not know how much we emit and appear to use speculation and opinion, it is not reasonable to assume that we are having a great effect on atmospheric CO2.]

    Possibly you only talk to the ignorant alarmists. As an alarmist, I would like to show that there is very easy accessible knowledge on the amount of co2 emitted into the air

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

    As of 2006 in wikipedia it was about 28 gigatons. We are still in that range.

    The main stream science behind climate sensitivity puts it about 3 degrees centigrade for a doubling of co2. Spencer comes out a lower number but still shows a change to a higher temperature. In Spencer’s own words, humans are changing the temperature on earth. No if ands or buts about it.

  74. Jeff Green says:

    [Norman Page says:
    June 5, 2010 at 9:37 pm
    Added note .The same figure also shows that the uncertainties in the Albedo effect completely overwhelm the effect of the small change in TSI during the solar cycle which is the commonly used by the AGW crowd to minimise the solar influence and enhance the GHG effect by comparison.]

    Data sets are showing in temperature change that the north polar reigion is increasing in temperature faster than the rest of the earth. About 2 to 3 times more. The melting of the artic ice which is one the most visible sensitive changes to observe, is loosing multi year ice every year. Part of the climate sensitivty measurement is a projected loss of ice and a warmig of the artic north waters. This is big. From there we get an ever northward moving of the thawing tundra. Which is another feedback that is postive for increasing the temperature of the earth.

  75. Tom in Florida says:

    vukcevic says:(June 6, 2010 at 8:43 am)
    “You can use this until you come across something better.
    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/SSCsl.htm
    Cheers.”

    Thanks. Just a follow-up observation of cycle lengths. Yes, the average cycle length is a tiny bit over 11 years. But, if the cycles are divided into 3 groups:

    a. less than 10.5 years
    b. 10.5 to 11.5 years
    c greater than 11.5 years

    it shows that there were only 6 cycles in the b group, 8 cycles in group a and 9 cycles in group c. So maybe that citing the “11 year average” is a bit misleading.

    Also, cycles appear to randomly vary in lengths, some substantially cycle to cycle, but cycles 15 – 19 are very close to the same length. Is there a reason for that?

  76. Jeff Green says:

    [stumpy says:
    June 5, 2010 at 11:49 pm
    Obviously if the sun does influence global albedo in some way, the earths sensitivty to changes in TSI could be considerably different to the earths sensitivity to other factors such as green house gasses, and the GCR theory would add an amplification. There is little to support the amplification with co2. We could be comparing apples with oranges!]

    Total solar iradiance cancels itself out during the cycle from solar min to solar max back to solar min.

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/solar-activity-sunspots-global-warming.htm

    In the last 35 years of global warming, the sun has shown a slight cooling trend. Sun and climate have been going in opposite directions.

    The rest of the article goes into the detailed explanation of the effect of the sun upon climate sensitivity.

    The sun is radiating slightly less and yet we are warming. co2 is like a one way valve letting the sun’s radiation in and reradiating back to earth some of the energy on its way back out to space. This is the whole crux of climate change theory. By observations the scientific community is observing 3 degrees centigrade increase in temperature with a doubling of co2

  77. Jeff Green says:

    [Martin Lewitt says:
    June 5, 2010 at 9:26 pm
    I not sure what comfort the skeptic can derive from Camp and Tung’s estimate of climate sensitivity, for one, it is an estimate of climate sensitivity to solar forcing, and there is no reason to assume that the climate sensitivity to CO2 forcing is the same, given how differently the forcings are coupled to the climate system.]

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

    We have a climate sensitivity to the really small changes in the sun and the sun has mildly decreased over the last 35 years. Add on to that a world temp record might occur this year depending on how strong the La Nina is. During solar minima. What will happen during solar maxima?

  78. Jeff Green says:

    [S.E. Hendriksen says:
    June 6, 2010 at 7:54 am
    @Charles Higley

    Hi Charles
    >>With the 50 to 1 partitioning between sea and air, we would be hard put to raise CO2 by 20% if we tried by burning all our available carbon.<<

    Prof. Tom V. Segalstad (Oslo Norway) made that calculation long time ago when the CO2 level in the atmosphere was 380 PPMv… if you burn all known fossil fuel, it will end up with 456 PPMv in the atmosphere (a rise of 20 %), so a doubling of the CO2 in the atmosphere is not possible due burning fossil fuel.]

    I disagree with your statement.

    http://www.globalwarmingart.com/wiki/File:Carbon_Stabilization_Scenarios_png

    This figure shows a range of simulated trajectories for carbon dioxide (CO2) that would result in stabilization of the atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration at between 450 and 1000 parts per million by volume (ppmv), and the variations in industrial emissions (expressed in gigatonnes carbon per year [GtC/yr]) that would be required to realize those trajectories.

    As is illustrated here, stabilization at 1000 ppmv or less is likely to require that CO2 emissions reach a maximum during the course of this century and are subsequently reduced to levels below present day. The oceans and atmosphere are presently able to absorb ~40% of modern emissions made each year, so immediate stabilization at present day levels (380 ppmv) would require an immediate 60% reduction in emissions.

    If you choose to read the article, the scientists seem to agree we can reach 1000 parts per million. Our oceans only absorb 40% of our co2 emissions. In one of my postings above 2006 was 28 gigatons of co2. Approximately 17 gigatons per year will go into the atmosphere. The 50 to 1 ratio just doesn't hold up.

  79. Jeff Green says:

    [tallbloke says:
    June 6, 2010 at 10:53 am
    Arno Arrak says:
    June 6, 2010 at 9:53 am

    Climate sensitivity to doubling of CO2 is big on the agenda of true believers in AWG. But it is a dead issue because the work of Ferenc Mikolczi has shown that it may not even exist. He worked for NASA but his work first appeared in an obscure Hungarian journal in 2007. When his supervisors realized what he had done he was told not to talk about it, so he quit.]

    Spencer has shown he believes in climate sensitivity, giving it a 1.75.

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

    Spencer was also at the Unipcc for the fourth publishing.

  80. Smokey says:

    Jeff Green says @2:43 pm:

    “By observations the scientific community is observing 3 degrees centigrade increase in temperature with a doubling of co2.”

    You have my attention.

    Please provide a reference/citation of those observations showing a 3°C temperature rise from a doubling of CO2.

    Omit anything resorting to models or to adjusted numbers, as that is conjecture. Show empirically that the rise in temperature has been observed to be caused by CO2; and that the rise in temperature and CO2 are not coincidental anomalies, and that CO2 is not rising as the effect of increasing temperature, but is the observed cause of increasing global temperature.

    You stated that this is the whole crux of climate change theory. Please provide testable evidence that CO2 is the driver of the climate. Thanks.

  81. phlogiston says:

    wayne says:
    June 6, 2010 at 1:55 pm

    Indeed, every time people get excited about returning sunspots and activity, the sun turns off again for a few days. This cycle looks like it will be much reduced in amplitude and the next should be lower still. Nick Scafetta predicted this in a previous post:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/03/14/dr-nicolas-scaffeta-summarizes-why-the-anthropogenic-theory-proposed-by-the-ipcc-should-be-questioned/

    where he superimposed the last few solar cycles on the solar wavetrain prior to one of the previous minima (dont remember which).

    The climate establishment is still in denial of this decline – perhaps subconsciously some of them know what it spells for the future.

  82. Jeff Green says:

    [Nicola Scafetta says:
    June 5, 2010 at 9:52 pm
    … Therefore the climate sensitivity to doubling of CO2 cannot be calculated by simply using a regression model between the 11-year TSI cycle and the equivalent cycle found in the temperature. The two things are apples and oranges.]

    From what I can gather from reading the first paragraph, there has been a great deal of work going on on just that.

    http://www.amath.washington.edu/research/articles/Tung/journals/solar-jgr.pdf

    1. Introduction
    Although previously attention has been focused on the UV part of the solar cycle and its absorption by ozone in the stratosphere, the amount of the total solar irradiance (TSI) reaching the earth’s surface is not negligible. The observed 0.90 Wm-2 variation of the solar constant from solar min to solar max in the last three solar cycles translates into a net radiative heating of the lower troposphere of 0.900.85 Q=4δi~0.19 Wm-2. The factor of 4 is to account for the difference between a unit area on the spherical earth and the circular disk on which the solar constant is measured, while 0.85 is to account for the 15% of the TSI variability that lies in the UV wavelength and is absorbed by ozone in the stratosphere with the remaining reaching the lower troposphere, the surface and the upper ocean [Lean, et al., 2005; White, et al., 1997]. This solar radiative forcing is about 1/20 that for doubling CO2 (δQ~3.7 Wm-2). Thus the annual rate of increase in radiative forcing of the lower atmosphere from solar min to solar max happens to be equivalent to that from a 1% per year increase in greenhouse gases, a rate commonly used in greenhouse-gas emission scenarios [Houghton and et al., 2001]. So it is interesting to compare the magnitude and pattern of the observed solar-cycle response to the transient warming expected due to increasing greenhouse gases in five years.
    The

  83. Jeff Green says:

    {Arno Arrak says:
    June 6, 2010 at 9:53 am
    Climate sensitivity to doubling of CO2 is big on the agenda of true believers in AWG. But it is a dead issue because the work of Ferenc Mikolczi has shown that it may not even exist. He worked for NASA but his work first appeared in an obscure Hungarian journal in 2007. When his supervisors realized what he had done he was told not to talk about it, so he quit. His latest work is in E&E, Volume 21, No. 4 (2010). He shows that IPCC method of determining the water vapor feedback mechanism is error-prone and uses empirical data from sixty one years of radiosonde measurements to prove that feedback of water vapor effect on greenhouse-gas optical thickness is strongly negative, thoroughly contradicting the IPCC doctrine of it being positive. What this means is that computer models used by IPCC in predicting warming are all in error. In fact, if his theory stands there is no AGW now and there never was any. Warming, yes, but only of the natural kind.}

    The ice cores from the last 800,000 years show a really strong correlation between co2 and temperature. Calculations are done to give the example that the earth would be an ice ball without GHG. So going the opposite direction, too much ghg’s will make us warmer no matter what the source human or the natural cycle of earth.

  84. tallbloke says:

    Jeff Green says:
    June 6, 2010 at 3:01 pm
    the sun has mildly decreased over the last 35 years.

    Cobblers.

    It had well above average TSI and sunspot numbers from the late 70’s to 2003.

    The Global temperature has on average fallen since 2003.

  85. Jeff Green says:

    Smokey says:
    June 6, 2010 at 3:23 pm
    Jeff Green says @2:43 pm:
    http://www.pik-potsdam.de/~stefan/Publications/Book_chapters/Rahmstorf_Zedillo_2008.pdf

    What you are asking for is pretty detailed. This is a readable article by one of the more experienced scientists in the field.

  86. Smokey says:

    Jeff Green,

    Wikipedia is not an authority on climate science. It promotes an incredible, one-sided alarmist view that hand-waves pro-CAGW opinion through, while repeatedly interfering with and deleting authoritative skeptical responses. William Connolley moderates Wikipedia and RealClimate. Please use credible references, there are plenty out there. Thanks.

    Prof Don Easterbrook states:

    The 2007 IPCC report provides no tangible physical evidence that CO2 is the cause of global warming. Rather, IPCC assumes that CO2 was the cause, and computer model simulations are all based on that assumption.

    And Prof Richard Lindzen states that the CO2 sensitivity number might be 2°F — not 2°C — and that negative feedbacks may well negate even this small number. Even without negative feedbacks, a 2°F rise in global temperatures is to be desired, not feared.

    Regarding your assertion that “ice cores from the last 800,000 years show a really strong correlation between co2 and temperature”, correlation is not causation. Note that those ice core samples consistently show that CO2 rises as an effect of rising temperature. Effect can not precede cause, therefore using the ice core data to support the CO2=CAGW hypothesis fails.

  87. Tom in Florida says:

    Jeff Green says:(June 6, 2010 at 3:46 pm)
    “The ice cores from the last 800,000 years show a really strong correlation between co2 and temperature. Calculations are done to give the example that the earth would be an ice ball without GHG. ”

    It is quite annoying when you first refer to CO2 and then morph into GHG.
    Water vapor, as we all know, is the dominant GHG. You are not fooling anyone with your subtle switch in mid paragraph. Furthermore, we are all aware what GHGs do to keep the Earth from freezing but that is not the argument.

  88. Steve Hempell says:

    Anthony,

    Have you seen this?
    http://www.rocketscientistsjournal.com/2010/03/sgw.html

    IPCC hoisted on it’s own data.

    Would you be interested in getting people to discuss this in a separate post. It seems another point of view on TSI.

  89. Jeff Green says:

    [Smokey says:
    June 6, 2010 at 4:01 pm
    Jeff Green,

    Wikipedia is not an authority on climate science. It promotes an incredible, one-sided alarmist view that hand-waves pro-CAGW opinion through, while repeatedly interfering with and deleting authoritative skeptical responses. William Connolley moderates Wikipedia and RealClimate. Please use credible references, there are plenty out there. Thanks.]

    This is an article written by Stefan Rahmsdorf, one of the leading climatologists in the world. He has a few pages refuting Richard Lindzen in his assertion that climate sensitivity is small. Which means Richard LIndzen recognizes climate sensitivity and the effect of co2 reflecting infrared back to the earth.

  90. Jeff Green says:

    [Smokey says

    Regarding your assertion that “ice cores from the last 800,000 years show a really strong correlation between co2 and temperature”, correlation is not causation. Note that those ice core samples consistently show that CO2 rises as an effect of rising temperature. Effect can not precede cause, therefore using the ice core data to support the CO2=CAGW hypothesis fails]

    I don’t expect to reach your absolute proof. CO2 is a postive feedback to the orbital and axial forcing. There is causal relationship to the temperature of the past. CO2 is a clearly proven GHG. It will never be disproven by anyone. If co2 increases we reflect more heat back to the earth. Hence temperature increase.

  91. rbateman says:

    Well I’ll be: I just learned from watching a story on “Need to Know”, that the FTC requires those who blog for pay, to disclose their paid status.
    Don’t look at me. Nary a penny has graced my mailbox.

  92. R.S.Brown says:

    The use of “HadCRUT3 global surface temperature anomalies”, while better in
    quality than GISS temp anomalies, still leaves a lot of arbitrary modeling
    assumptions lurking within Dr. Spencer’s commentary that aren’t accounted
    for, compensated for, or even documented within the study. (See P.G. Sharrow’s
    comment, above.)

    A HadCRUT3 dataset stripped of all the accumulated “adjustments” save for
    faulty equipment would add to the credibility of any paper looking at the
    “relationship between TSI variations and temperature”.

  93. Jeff Green says:

    [tallbloke says:
    June 6, 2010 at 3:47 pm
    Jeff Green says:
    June 6, 2010 at 3:01 pm
    the sun has mildly decreased over the last 35 years.

    Cobblers.

    It had well above average TSI and sunspot numbers from the late 70′s to 2003.

    The Global temperature has on average fallen since 2003.]

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/solar-activity-sunspots-global-warming.htm

    Figure 1: Annual global temperature change (thin light red) with 11 year moving average of temperature (thick dark red). Temperature from NASA GISS. Annual Total Solar Irradiance (thin light blue) with 11 year moving average of TSI (thick dark blue). TSI from 1880 to 1978 from Solanki. TSI from 1979 to 2009 from PMOD.

    Other studies on solar influence on climate

    If you choose to read the rest of the article there are several papers based in science showing the point I’m making.

  94. Jeff Green says:

    [Tom in Florida says:
    June 6, 2010 at 4:14 pm
    Jeff Green says:(June 6, 2010 at 3:46 pm)
    “The ice cores from the last 800,000 years show a really strong correlation between co2 and temperature. Calculations are done to give the example that the earth would be an ice ball without GHG. ”

    It is quite annoying when you first refer to CO2 and then morph into GHG.
    Water vapor, as we all know, is the dominant GHG. You are not fooling anyone with your subtle switch in mid paragraph. Furthermore, we are all aware what GHGs do to keep the Earth from freezing but that is not the argument.]

    H2O will become a positive feedback to co2. From an increase in co2 more H2O will be in the atmosphere increasing the total GHG effect due to higher temperature.

  95. Mike G says:

    @Jeff Green

    “By observations … 3.0 degrees… per doubling”

    What observations? This has been forecast based on tweaking tuning constants in models based on the asumption that all of the temperature increase in the past cyclical upswing was anthropogenic because Mann said it was. He lied. Also, it is not nearly as warn now compared to prior peak periods as Hansen would have us believe.

  96. Steve Fitzpatrick says:

    Bill Hunter says:
    June 6, 2010 at 12:59 pm

    The well mixed layer ends at the point where the thermocline begins, and is where the temperature falls with increasing depth instead of being almost perfectly constant. Here are ten randomly grabbed values for the depths (in meters) of the well mixed layer from ARGO floats currently located in the tropical Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian oceans: 92, 80, 91, 25, 50, 30, 75, 125, 70, 51. The average for these ten is 68.9 meters (if I have done the math right). An average value of 25 meters for the well mixed layer seems too low. Oceanographer Josh Willis (at NASA JPL), has suggested an average value for the well mixed layer of 50 meters.

  97. Smokey says:

    Jeff Green,

    Your link to Dr Stefan Rahmsdorf expresses his opinion. He is an oceanographer who calls himself a climatologist. [Maybe that's all it takes these days.]

    In your link Dr Rahmsdorf argues that Dr Lindzen is wrong, and he is right. Why would he feel the need to do that, if the sensitivity number was clearly established? From the 1st IPCC Assessment Report onward the sensitivity number has declined.

    In your link, Rahmsdorf bases much of his argument on an appeal to the authority of Svante Arrhenius, who made the first estimate of climate sensitivity to CO2 in 1896 as a hobby, when he estimated up to 6°C warming for a doubling of atmospheric CO2.

    But Rahmsdorf omits the fact that in his 1906 paper, Arrhenius had recalculated, and greatly reduced his sensitivity estimate to only 1.6°C. This is a much lower number than Rahmsdorf claims. But it doesn’t fit the CO2 alarmism upon which so much grant income depends, so Rahmsdorf never mentions the 1906 paper.

    Rahmsdorf also hand-waves away Lindzen’s methodology, saying that the sensitivity number simply must be high, and that unknown factors support his conclusion: “….there is no viable alternative explanation. In the scientific literature, no serious alternative hypothesis has been proposed to explain the observed global warming.”

    Do you see what Rahmsdorf is doing here? He is basing his conclusion on an argumentum ad ignorantiam: the fallacy of assuming that something is true, simply because it hasn’t been proven false. A major part of the catastrophic global warming scare employs this same fallacy.

    The climate’s sensitivity to CO2 is 1°C or less. Rahmsdorf admits that. But then he argues that various positive feedbacks make the sensitivity several times higher. That kind of conjecture is fine, as long as you understand that it is simply a conjecture, and not backed by any testable, empirical evidence.

    Further, there must be, a priori, many more negative feedbacks than positive feedbacks. Feedbacks cancel when the signs are opposite. We do not know nearly all the climate feedbacks with any precision. It is entirely possible, and in fact seems likely, that water vapor feedback is canceled by one or more negative feedbacks; the planet is clearly not warming as predicted.

    What I had originally responded to was your assertion that “…the scientific community is observing 3 degrees centigrade increase in temperature with a doubling of co2.” That is not correct. There has been no such empirical ‘observation.’ If there had been, Prof Lindzen and others would not destroy their hard earned credibility by continuing to debate a settled issue.

  98. Tom in Florida says:

    Jeff Green says:(June 6, 2010 at 6:06 pm)
    ” From an increase in co2 more H2O will be in the atmosphere increasing the total GHG effect due to higher temperature.”

    You have no clue do you. Now I know how Leif feels.

  99. Rob R says:

    Several years back Willis E. demonstrated in the comments section of a posting at this website that the direct effect of a change in TSI and that of an equivalent forcing in W/m2 by CO2 are not the same. A change in TSI adds or reduces heat input into the entire climate system. However, an equivalent change in forcing from CO2 suffers from losses due to convection etc. If my memory serves me correctly the effect of a globaly averaged change in TSI is 1.6 times greater than the equivalent forcing by CO2. Perhaps another reader has a clearer memory of that exchange than I do. It related to the “spherical iron greenhouse” hypothesis.

    I suspect Roy Spencer might need to consider this lack of equivalence in his assessment of the sensitivity of climate to forcing by CO2

  100. Arno Arrak says:

    Jeff Green says: “Data sets are showing in temperature change that the north polar reigion is increasing in temperature faster than the rest of the earth. About 2 to 3 times more. The melting of the artic ice which is one the most visible sensitive changes to observe, is loosing multi year ice every year. Part of the climate sensitivty measurement is a projected loss of ice and a warmig of the artic north waters. This is big. From there we get an ever northward moving of the thawing tundra. Which is another feedback that is postive for increasing the temperature of the earth.”

    You are confusing the effect and the cause. There is no doubt that Arctic warming is real. But you immediately jump to the conclusion that it must be greenhouse warming. For your information, greenhouse warming is ruled out because Arctic warming started suddenly at the beginning of the twentieth century, after a two thousand year old steady, linear cooling trend. You ought to check your physics sometime. It is impossible for carbon dioxide to start a sudden warming without its partial pressure simultaneously taking a jump, and this did not happen. It is highly probable that the abrupt start of the warming was caused by a rearrangement of the North Atlantic current system at the turn of the century which directed the Gulf Stream unto its present northerly course.

    The warming was interrupted from 1940 to 1960, then resumed, and continues to this day. It is impossible to explain this interruption by any carbon dioxide theory but variability of ocean currents makes it easily comprehensible. The Gulf Stream keeps the Russian Arctic ice free in the summer and has eaten away approximately one third of the Arctic sea ice that would otherwise exist. A smaller amount of warm water enters the Arctic through the Bering Strait. It is usually sufficient to keep the Chukchi Sea, just north of the strait, ice free.

    But thanks to winds in 2007 more than the usual amount of warm water came through and created a large ice free bubble on the Bering Strait side of the Arctic while the Gulf Stream side of it changed only a little.These currents are sufficient to explain all past and present Arctic warming. No greenhouse effect or some magical arctic amplification needed.

  101. savethesharks says:

    Jeff Green says:
    June 6, 2010 at 6:06 pm

    H2O will become a positive feedback to co2. From an increase in co2 more H2O will be in the atmosphere increasing the total GHG effect due to higher temperature.

    =====================================

    Huh?

    Circular reasoning at its best…and in its own negative feedback cycle.

    Chris
    Norfolk, VA, USA

  102. Bill Hunter says:

    Steve F. says:
    “Oceanographer Josh Willis (at NASA JPL), has suggested an average value for the well mixed layer of 50 meters.”

    Keep in mind the term “well mixed” implies a body of water with uniform temperatures which is not the case. It is always dangerous to deal with averages spread over a range of conditions that may for certain purposes be considered well mixed but in fact is not. Fact is even the “well mixed” zone is heavily stratified under normal weather conditions.

  103. Arno Arrak says:

    Jeff Green says:”The ice cores from the last 800,000 years show a really strong correlation between co2 and temperature. Calculations are done to give the example that the earth would be an ice ball without GHG. So going the opposite direction, too much ghg’s will make us warmer no matter what the source human or the natural cycle of earth.”

    This is quite confusing. First, correlation does not equal causality. He does not even mention that in those ice core data temperature rise precedes rise in CO2 values by as much as six hundred years. If you are looking for a cause and effect relationship, the cause is the one that comes first. Hence it was the temperature rise that caused the increase in CO2 and not the other way around. That calculation he cites is trivial and leads nowhere. I guess he means increase in GHG will make us warmer. That is just the point at issue: IPCC claims it does and Mikolczi has proven them wrong.

  104. savethesharks says:

    Arno Arrak says:
    June 6, 2010 at 8:12 pm
    @Jeff Green

    This is quite confusing.

    ===============================

    You bet it is!

    What I have read so far, every single one of Mr. Green’s posts are an encyclopedia of logical fallacies.

    As I said before, anyone who “reasons” in a circular manner, entraps themselves [unless they work hard to set themselves free]…in their own, personal negative feedback cycle of cognitive dissonance.

    Those that know little…or worse…those who argue with manipulation…should be quiet and listen more.

    They might learn something.

    Chris
    Norfolk, VA, USA

  105. Martin Lewitt says:

    Jeff Green,

    “We have a climate sensitivity to the really small changes in the sun and the sun has mildly decreased over the last 35 years. Add on to that a world temp record might occur this year depending on how strong the La Nina is. During solar minima. What will happen during solar maxima?”

    Solar activity was still unusually high during most of those 35 years. A solar maximum like we just experienced is unlikely to recur during the next century, but if it does presumably it may be as warm or warmer than last time, depending upon what the phases of the PDO and the NAO are. See Solanki’s work for perspective on how unusual the recent solar activity was.

    Unless there is significant net positive feedback to CO2 forcing. Global temperatures will naturally vary up and down over the next century and possibly average on the order of a degree C higher towards the end of the century. Record high and record low years will probably occur during the mean time, given the short historical temperature record.

  106. rbateman says:

    savethesharks says:
    June 6, 2010 at 8:00 pm

    Somebody forgot to clue Mr. Green in on Carbon Dioxide being a replacement gas in the atmosphere, with plenty of hungry plants competing for it.

  107. Martin Lewitt says:

    Bill Hunter,

    “Correct me if I am wrong but isn’t SW radiation less likely to be perturbed by the climate system than LW radiation? If so, and there is a difference in sensitivity, would it not be more likely that solar forcing would be more likely to have high sensitivity?”

    SW radiation penetrates much deeper into the ocean’s mixing layer (10s of meters) than the CO2 infrared wavelengths which penetrate mere microns. That makes CO2’s coupling to the ocean a skin effect at a complex interface that is not properly captured in todays models. Yes, I would expect a higher sensitivity to solar radiative forcing than for CO2 forcing due to the lag caused by immediate dispersal in the thermal mass of the ocean, by corollary to Hansen’s understanding:

    “The lag in the climate response to a forcing is a sensitive function of equilibrium climate sensitivity, varying approximately as the square of the sensitivity (1), and it depends on the rate of heat exchange between the ocean_s surface mixed layer and the deeper ocean (2–4). The lag could be as short as a decade, if climate sensitivity is as small as 0.25-C per W/m2 of forcing, but it is a century or longer if climate sensitivity is 1-C perW/m2 or larger.”

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/06/05/spencer-on-climate-sensitivity-and-solar-irradiance/#comment-404377

    Any energy imbalance has to eventually end up in the oceans where most of the thermal mass of the climate system is. Solar energy’s route there is more direct. CO2 has to slow the loss of heat by the ocean, another surface effect, so is more likely end up in the latent heat of water vapor. This is without considering the possible non-radiative solar couplings to the climate.

  108. TomVonk says:

    An aptly named Green wrote :

    If co2 increases we reflect more heat back to the earth

    Even if there was much more other noise and nonsense in the post , this above quote is enough to show that the Green has no clue about pysics in general and CO2 in particular .
    CO2 reflects nothing and certainly not heat .
    Reflection has nothing to do here . Back to school .
    I suspect that the Green is just another of the CAGW gang’s employees who had been given a set of links and predetermined sentences to post on blogs but who has no real understanding about the issues .

    Set Green on ignore .

  109. Joe Lalonde says:

    Since CO2 accumulates 90% to the 1900 foot off the planets surface, would not the CO2 theory reflect more solar radiation back out in space? After all, the higher you go up in the atmosphere, the less atmosphere there is.

  110. tallbloke says:

    Jeff Green says:
    June 6, 2010 at 5:57 pm
    TSI from 1880 to 1978 from Solanki. TSI from 1979 to 2009 from PMOD.

    Colour me uimpressed. A proxy derived curve spliced to a model driven record whose chief investigator stands accused by the original data gathering mission scientists of applying inappropriate adjustments.

  111. Ulric Lyons says:

    How about looking at the 17yr coronal hole cycle. We all know that one winter to the next can be many degrees different in temperature, so the big variable output of the sun would be the likely cause. This being the solar wind. If world temp`s followed SSN or radio flux, they would up and down like a roller coaster.

  112. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    Joe Lalonde said on June 6, 2010 at 5:01 am:

    Question?
    Since water can have and hold trace elements, can CO2 do the same?

    “Have and hold” may require some closer defining to get a proper answer. I’ll try anyway.

    Much of what is called water’s ability to “have and hold” is due to it being a polar molecule. Stuff dissolves in it, the result being called an aqueous solution. When common salt (NaCl) dissolves in water, it separates into Na+ and Cl- ions. CO2 in water becomes carbonic acid. Water can form other mixtures like suspensions and colloids.

    CO2 is a non-polar molecule so that limits its ability to “have and hold” other molecules. It also is not found under normal Earth conditions in solid and liquid forms, another limitation. As a gas it doesn’t do much. Chemically speaking, in solutions the substance present in the greatest amount is generally called the solvent, thus normal Earth atmosphere can be called a solution of gases dissolved in nitrogen which is the predominant gas. Likewise you could have a solution of other gases dissolved in CO2. But generally molecular interactions between gases are so rare that such are just referred to as mixtures, plain and simple.

    So CO2’s ability to “have and hold” trace elements and other molecules is effectively nil in any real sense, especially when considered relative to water.
    ———————-
    Joe Lalonde said on June 7, 2010 at 3:14 am

    Since CO2 accumulates 90% to the 1900 foot off the planets surface, would not the CO2 theory reflect more solar radiation back out in space? After all, the higher you go up in the atmosphere, the less atmosphere there is.

    CO2 does not “reflect” solar radiation. It absorbs radiation of a certain few wavelengths, then radiates the energy outwards, which a CO2 molecule can do in any direction. For what makes it a “greenhouse gas,” it absorbs infrared light coming from the ground in those wavelengths, then emits the energy. About half of that energy goes back towards the ground, half outwards to space.

  113. Michael Snow says:

    Charles Higley says:
    June 5, 2010 at 9:03 pm

    I greatly appreciate the discussion on climate sensitivity, but it should be included every now and then, for the reading public, that the doubling of atmospheric CO2 regularly mentioned in climate sensitivity does not mean that it will be doubling in the future.

    With the 50 to 1 partitioning between sea and air, we would be hard put to raise CO2 by 20% if we tried by burning all our available carbon.”

    Would appreciate comments and references on this.

  114. vukcevic says:

    Jeff Green says:
    June 6, 2010 at 2:27 pm
    Data sets are showing in temperature change that the north polar reigion is increasing in temperature faster than the rest of the earth. About 2 to 3 times more. The melting of the artic ice which is one the most visible sensitive changes to observe, is loosing multi year ice every year.

    Hi Mr. Green.
    Let me declare my view: Lately I come to like the global warming Anthropo – Genic or not, and further more I would like it to be Anthropo rather than anything else Genic, since we could keep it going, god forbid another Little Ice Age.
    However my hope may be somewhat forlorn. As far as the Arctic is concerned the old Gaia may have another answer, her two shaking magnetic arms appear keep warming the Arctic ocean as shown here:
    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/NFC1.htm
    So may we declare it Geogenic Global Warming or GGW and hope for the best .

  115. Joe Lalonde says:

    Thank you kadaka (KD Knoebel).

    Interestly enough, if our planet had 100 times more pressure, then we would have liquid CO2 pools.
    The research I have been doing has been showing that trace elements actually play a role in our planets evolution.

  116. Jeff Green says:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/climate-sensitivity.htm

    Climate sensitivity from models
    The first estimates of climate sensitivity came from climate models.

    •In the 1979 Charney report, two models from Suki Manabe and Jim Hansen estimated a sensitivity range between 1.5 to 4.5°C.
    •Forest 2002 uses a fingerprinting approach on modern temperature records and finds a range 1.4 to 7.7°C.
    •Knutti 2005 uses modelling (entering different sensitivities then comparing to seasonal responses) to find a climate sensitivity range 1.5 to 6.5°C – with 3 to 3.5 most likely
    •Hegerl 2006 looks at paleontological data over the past 6 centuries to calculates a range 1.5 to 6.2°C.
    •Annan 2006 combines results from a variety of independent methods to narrow climate sensitivity to around 2.5 to 3.5°C.
    •Royer 2007 examines temperature response to CO2 over the past 420 million years and determines climate sensitivity cannot be lower than 1.5°C (with a best fit of 2.8°C).
    Climate sensitivity from empirical observations
    There have been a number of studies that calculate climate sensitivity directly from empirical observations, independent of models.

    •Lorius 1990 examined Vostok ice core data and calculates a range of 3 to 4°C.
    •Hoffert 1992 reconstructs two paleoclimate records (one colder, one warmer) to yield a range 1.4 to 3.2°C.
    •Hansen 1993 looks at the last 20,000 years when the last ice age ended and empirically calculates a climate sensitivity of 3 ± 1°C.
    •Gregory 2002 used observations of ocean heat uptake to calculate a minimum climate sensitivity of 1.5.
    •Chylek 2007 examines the period from the Last Glacial Maximum to Holocene transition. They calculate a climate sensitivy range of 1.3°C and 2.3°C.
    •Tung 2007 performs statistical analysis on 20th century temperature response to the solar cycle to calculate a range 2.3 to 4.1°C.
    •Bender 2010 looks at the climate response to the 1991 Mount Pinatubo eruption to constrain climate sensitivity to 1.7 to 4.1°C.

    Here are papers discussing climate sensitivity. With fast feedbacks combined with slow feedbacks 3.0 degrees centigrade is the agreed upon.

    Schwartz did a paper of 1.1 c sensitivity over five years for different perturbations. With different comments on his paper he extended his time period out to 8.5 years to get 1.9 c sensitivity. It does appear that climate sensitivity over time gets higher due to feedbacks.

  117. Jeff Green says:

    [tallbloke says:
    June 7, 2010 at 3:28 am
    Jeff Green says:
    June 6, 2010 at 5:57 pm
    TSI from 1880 to 1978 from Solanki. TSI from 1979 to 2009 from PMOD.

    Colour me uimpressed. A proxy derived curve spliced to a model driven record whose chief investigator stands accused by the original data gathering mission scientists of applying inappropriate adjustments.]

    http://www.globalwarmingart.com/wiki/File:65_Myr_Climate_Change_Rev_png

    The PETM is all proxy. What we have learned is that the earth rapidly gained co2 in that time period in which one the great extinctions took place. We are emitting into our atmosphere co2 faster than that period.

  118. AJ says:

    Bob Tisdale says:
    June 6, 2010 at 2:52 am

    “So the one-year ocean lag is closer than the multiyear lags suggested in other papers.”

    Isn’t the lag in relation to the cycle length more important than the absolute lag. When I looked at mid latitude SST’s, I found the lag to be about 80 days from solstice. For inland mid-latitude temps, I found the shortest lags to be about 30 days. Converting this to an 11 year cycle, we should see a lag of between 1 to 2.5 years, presumably weighted towards the 2.5 value. I think Dr. Spencer’s calculated lag is too short.

    Interestingly the Willis paper you cite has a lag that is > 1/4th of a cycle. Assuming clear sky/sinusoidal irradiance cycle and a Newton Model of Cooling, the lag should be less than 1/4th of a cycle. But then again we actually have real sky irradiance and the tropics have two solar irradiance peaks per year. Also, Newton’s Model might not be appropriate for modeling ocean heat transfer. But I still find it interesting that your SST lag is shorter than Willis’s steric lag. How can the SST be cooling and the column still be expanding?

    AJ

  119. Tom in Florida says:

    AJ says:(June 8, 2010 at 8:56 am)
    “Isn’t the lag in relation to the cycle length more important than the absolute lag. When I looked at mid latitude SST’s, I found the lag to be about 80 days from solstice. For inland mid-latitude temps, I found the shortest lags to be about 30 days. Converting this to an 11 year cycle, we should see a lag of between 1 to 2.5 years, presumably weighted towards the 2.5 value.”

    But cycle lengths AVERAGE 11 years. Only one was exactly 11 years (cycle 1) and the majority of cycles have lengths outside the 10.5 to 11.5 range. Wouldn’t those variances skew any results based on using an 11 year fixed cycle?

  120. Martin Lewitt says:

    Jeff Green,

    In comment-405285 you paste in a list of climate sensitivity studies from another site, the most recent ones have probably been discussed previously. Since you just cut and pasted without discriminating I can’t tell how prepared you are to discuss them. Did you just expect us to be impressed by the length of the list?

    Did you notice that Camp and Tung had already been discussed up above and that there are articles that approximately halve their results. Bender 2010 is misclassified and should actually be considered model based.

    Knutti and Hegerl is a better summary, but is already out of date:

    http://www.iac.ethz.ch/people/knuttir/papers/knutti08natgeo.pdf

    We can dismiss the model based studies until they have a couple more generations under their belt addressing correlated and other diagnostic errors. The paleo estimates usually have the problems are large uncertainties in the forcings and temperatures, cover longer time frames and cross climate modes or tipping points. Volcanic aerosol and solar sensitivity estimates from the current climate should not be assumed to be the same as the CO2 sensitivity.

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